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Saint Papias (60 - 130 A.D.) was Bishop of Hierapolis in Phrygia, Asia Minor. A man of the Apostolic era, and eyewitness of the Apostolic preaching, he is an important witness of various events closely connected with the transmission of the Gospels to the Church. He sought to collect together sayings attributed to Christ that were not recorded in the Gospels. According to Irenaeus, he was a disciple of John and a companion of Polycarp. He was the author of Logion Kyriakon Exegesus (Expositions of the words of the Lord) and his work was quoted by both Irenaeus and Eusebius. One of his claims he made in his writing was that Mark was the interpreter of Peter and that he set down accurately, but not in chronological order, all that he had been told of the words and actions of Jesus.

Saint Papias wrote of the Gospel of Saint Matthew: “So then Matthew wrote the oracles in the Hebrew language, and every one interpreted them as he was able.” [1]. Bishop Eusebius wrote of Papias, quoting St. Irenaeus: “These things are attested by Papias, an ancient man who was a hearer of John and a companion of Polycarp, in his fourth book. For five books have been written by him.” Saint Irenaeus had a great reverence for the antiquity and wisdom of Saint Papias. [2]


Who’s Who in Christianity, Lavinia Coh-Sherbok, 1998