Classic DACB Collection

All articles created or submitted in the first twenty years of the project, from 1995 to 2015.

Efrem Soreyawi

Alternate Names: ‘Éfrém Soreyawi
306-c. 375
Ancient Christian Church

‘Éfrém Soreyawi (Ephraem or Ephraim the Syrian) was a very famous Syrian saint who became popularized in the Ethiopian Church, perhaps by Zä-Mika’él Arägawi or others of the Nine Saints. He was widely acclaimed as a great orator, poet and song-writer, and is referred to by some as “the Harp of the Holy Ghost.” Although little is known about his life, he was a prolific writer credited with 1400 homilies, and his writings are read publicly in the Ethiopian Church, quoted from Wädasé Maryam, Haymanot Abäw and other sacred books.

Ephraim Isaac


J. S. Assemani, “Ephraem Syri Opera,” Bibliotheca Orientalis, I.

E. Beck, Des heiligen Ephraem des Syrers Hymnen de Virginatate (Louvain, 1962).

E. A. Wallis Budge, The Book of the Saints of the Ethiopian Church (Cambridge, 1928).

A Dictionary of Christian Biography (London, 1911), Vol. II, 137-44.

Dictionnaire de Théologie (Paris, 1929), Vol. V, 188-93.

E. Emerau, St. Ephrém le Syrien (Paris, 1919).

Geschichte der Altkirklichen Literatur, Vol. IV, 342-93.

Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche (Freiburg, 1931), Vol. III.

C. W. Mitchell (ed), St. Ephraim’s Prose Refutations of Mani, Marcion, and Bardaisan (London, 1912-21).

Patrologia Orientalis, IV, 293-5; V, 291-9.

G. Ricciotti, Sant’Efrem Siro (Torino, 1925).

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.