JEREMIAS II., jer"e-mai'as: Patriarch of Constantinople; b. at Anchialos (now Ahiolo, 130 m. n.w. of Constantinople) about 1530; d. at Constantinople 1595. He received no systematic education in his youth. After officiating as metropolitan of Larissa, he was patriarch of Constantinople from 1572 to 1573 or 1579, from 1580 to 1584, and again from 1586 to 1595. In his efforts to reorganize the Greek Church he reenforced the existing laws and ordinances, and reached the climax of his endeavors in the synod held at Constantinople in 1593, which assailed simony, demanded a better education of the clergy, who were also required to preach frequently, took up the question of common schools, and reinstituted the "national synod." In his foreign relations Jeremias is noteworthy as the founder of the patriarchate of Russia, during a visit to that country in 1588-89, while he vigorously maintained the independence of the Greek Church against the Jesuits sent by Gregory XIII. to the East to win it over to the Roman Catholic Church. In the same spirit he refused to accept the Gregorian calendar, which was regarded by the Greeks as heretical.
Jeremi is particularly interesting on account of his correspondence with the Lutherans of Tübingen, the letters being contained in the Acta et scripta theologorum Wirtembergensium et Patriarchae Constantinopolitani D. Hieremiae (Wittenberg, 1584). Although the replies of the patriarch were not actually written by him, but by his pronotary, Theodosios Zygomalas, and are merely compilations from such Church Fathers as Basil and Chrysostom, and modern authors like Joseph Bryennios, Nikolaos Kabasilas, and Symeon of Thessalonica, they are important for an evaluation of the modern Greek Church, since they manifest genuine Greek orthodoxy and contain its first official verdict on Lutheranism, which they definitely rejected.
The history of the affair was as follows: In 1573 Stephen Gerlach went to Constantinople as preacher to the German ambassador with letters of recommendation to the patriarch from Jakob Andreä
BIBLIOGRAPHY: P. Meyer, Die theologische Litteratur der griechischen Kirche im 16. Jahrhurdert, Leipsic, 1899; Hefele, in TQS, 1843, p. 544; P. Kerameus, in Byzantinische Zeitschrift, 1899, pp. 392 sqq.
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