Bäge’u, or Bäg’ä-Krestos, Abba, was originally a notorious brigand who was later converted and reformed his ways, joining Abba ‘Iyäsus-Mo’a, the celebrated abbot of Däbrä Hayq as one of his disciples. He is recognized as a saint by the Ethiopian Church and unpublished manuscripts of his hagiography have been found at Daga on Lake Tana and at Hayq. From the latter text it is clear that Abba Bäge’u lived and died in the lifetime of his teacher, Abba ‘Iyäsus-Mo’a. He was thus apparently never abbot of Däbrä Hayq himself, as Conti Rossini once assumed, but is revered for his proverbial monastic reputation.
C. Conti Rossini, “Il Gadla Filpos ed il Gadla Yohannes di Dabra Bizan,” Memorie della Reale Accademia dei Lincei, Vol. VIII (1900): 118, 166 n.
S. Kur, Actes de Iyasus Mo’a, Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium, Scriptores aethiopici, t. 49 and t. 50, p. 49 of text and pp. XV, 40 of trans.
Taddesse Tamrat, “The Abbots of Däbrä-Hayq 1248-1535,” Journal of Ethiopian Studies, Vol. VIII, No. 1 (1970): 89, n. 13.
This article is reproduced, with permission, from The Dictionary of Ethiopian Biography, Vol. 1 ‘From Early Times to the End of the Zagwé Dynasty c. 1270 A.D.,’ copyright © 1975, edited by Belaynesh Michael, S. Chojnacki and Richard Pankhurst, Institute of Ethiopian Studies, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. All rights reserved.