Meletios Pegas

Meletios Pegas, b 1549 in Crete, d 14 September 1601 in Alexandria. Orthodox Patriarch of Alexandria. He entered the service of the patriarchal courts in Alexandria and Constantinople in 1575 and was consecrated patriarch in 1590. Meletios was well acquainted with church affairs in Ukraine. He opposed the Church Union of Berestia of 1596; corresponded with leaders of the Orthodox opposition (esp Prince Kostiantyn Vasyl Ostrozky); and dispatched his representative, Cyril Lucaris, to assist them. His letters to Sigismund III Vasa, in which he criticized the union and the notion of papal supremacy, have survived. Meletios also granted stauropegion rights to several church brotherhoods to help them resist conversion. Ivan Malyshevsky’s monograph on Meletios and his relations with the Russian and Ukrainian churches appeared in 1872.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 3 (1993).]

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