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Seven Sleepers

Origin and Dissemination: – The story of the Seven Sleepers predates Gregory of Tours’ lifetime. – Earliest known version found in the writings of Jacob […]

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Origin and Dissemination:
– The story of the Seven Sleepers predates Gregory of Tours’ lifetime.
– Earliest known version found in the writings of Jacob of Serugh.
– Debate over original language, now accepted as Greek.
– Western versions by Gregory of Tours and Jacobus de Voragine.
– Legend preserved in over 200 manuscripts in various languages.
– Story spread widely in Christendom and popularized by Gregory of Tours.
– Bones identified as Seven Sleepers’ relics brought to Marseille.
– Resurrection date fixed in AD 478 in the reign of Theodosius.

Christian and Islamic Accounts:
– Seven young men persecuted by Emperor Decius for Christianity.
– Chose sleep over recanting faith, sealed in a cave.
– Discovered after many years, found by a landowner.
– Sent one sleeper to Ephesus for food, discovered changes.
– Died praising God after telling their miracle story.
– Referred to as Companions of the Cave in Quran 18:9-26.
– Exact number of sleepers not specified in Islamic accounts.
– Sleepers stayed for 300 years in the solar calendar, 309 in the lunar calendar.
– Quran addresses disputes over the number of sleepers.
– Various sets of names attributed to the sleepers.

Caves and Sites:
– The Cave of the Seven Sleepers is associated with an early Christian catacomb in Ephesus.
– Excavations in Mount Pion near Ephesus revealed several hundred graves from the 5th and 6th centuries.
– Other possible sites of the cave are in Damascus, Syria, and Afşin and Tarsus, Turkey.
– A cave near Amman, Jordan, also known as the Cave of Seven Sleepers, contains eight sealed tombs.
– The Seven Sleepers legend has been referenced in various literary works and series.

Feast Days and Commemoration:
– The Seven Sleepers of Ephesus are commemorated on various dates in different calendars.
– Roman Martyrology celebrates them on 27 July.
– Byzantine calendars have dates on 4 August and 22 October.
– Syriac Orthodox calendars also have various feast days for the Seven Sleepers.
– Different cultures have varying dates to honor the Seven Sleepers.

Cultural References and Further Reading:
– The legend of the Seven Sleepers has inspired various literary works and idioms.
– Different languages have idioms related to the Seven Sleepers.
– Scholarly works and articles discuss the legend of the Seven Sleepers.
– The Cave of the Seven Sleepers has been a subject of archaeological interest.
– The legend has been studied in relation to Greek, Jewish, and Christian antiquity.

Seven Sleepers (Wikipedia)

The Seven Sleepers (Greek: ἑπτὰ κοιμώμενοι, romanizedhepta koimōmenoi; Latin: Septem dormientes), also known in Christendom as Seven Sleepers of Ephesus, and in Islam as Aṣḥāb al-Kahf, lit. Companions of the Cave, is a late antique Christian and later also Islamic legend. The Christian legend speaks about a group of youths who hid inside a cave outside the city of Ephesus (modern-day Selçuk, Turkey) around AD 250 to escape Roman persecutions of Christians and emerged many years later. The Qur'anic version of the story appears in Sura 18 (18:9–26).

Seven Sleepers
Venerated inCatholic Church
Eastern Orthodox Church
Oriental Orthodox Church
Islam
CanonizedPre-Congregation
Feast27 July
4 August, October 22 (Eastern Christianity)
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