Rufinus of Aquileia

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Tyrannius Rufinus or Rufinus (Tyrannius) of Aquileia (* about 345 in Concordia in Aquileia , † 411 / 412 in Messina on Sicily ) was a monk, historian and theologian. He became known for his Latin translations of Christian writings from Greek, especially the works of Origen .


Rufinus was born in Concordia near Aquileia in 344 or 345 AD. After studying in Rome , where he met Hieronymus , he returned to Aquileia and entered a monastery. Around 372 he traveled to the Middle East, where he studied for some time with Didymus the Blind in Alexandria . From there he moved to Jerusalem and founded his own monastery. From 397 he lived again in Italy and finally died in Messina , Sicily , in late 411 or early 412 .



Around 400 Rufinus wrote a commentary on the Apostles' Creed ( Commentarius in Symbolum apostolorum ), which documents the use and interpretation of this creed in late ancient Italy. Most of his other works are defensive writings against Jerome .


Rufinus first translation from the Greek was the "Little Asketicon" of Basilus from Caesarea in Cappadocia . These monastic rules are only preserved in Rufinus' Latin version and were known as Regula Sancti Patris Nostri Basili , or Regula Basili for short . Rufinus translated the church history of Eusebius of Caesarea and wrote a continuation of the historical work for the period from the reign of Constantine I to the death of Theodosius I (395), which in turn was supported by the Greeks Socrates Scholastikos and Sozomenos for their continuations of Eusebius' work was recovered.

Origen's commentary on the Romans has only survived thanks to an abbreviated translation by Rufinus, as has Origen's main theological work De principiis . After the former friends Rufinus and Hieronymus fell apart, Hieronymus wrote at least three works against Rufinus in which he contested his views and questioned the quality of his translations. He even prepared his own (now lost) translation of De principiis against that of Rufinus, which he considered too free.

The translation of the pseudoclementine recognitions also comes from Rufinus' hand .

Most of the works of Flavius ​​Josephus were also translated into Latin by Rufinus.


Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Anna M. Silvas: Edessa to Cassino: The Passage of Basil's "Asketicon" to the West. In: Vigiliae Christianae, Vol. 56, No. 3, August 2002, pp. 247-259, here p. 248