[St. Pachomius Library]

Mercurius, Emperor of Nubia

VII/VIII Centuries
Called the "second Constantine" by his admirers, Mercurius was the first great ruler of the united Christian Nubia which emerged from the difficulties of the VII Century, when Muslim forces twice attempted without success to conquer the region. The new empire was created by the fusion of the large, southern, melkite (Chalcedonian) state of Maqquria with the smaller, miaphysite kingdom of Nobadia. Mercurius, although himself a Maqqurian and reigning from the Maqqurian city of (Old) Dongola, chose to make miaphysitism the state religion, and to place the church under the jurisdiction of the Coptic pope.

Norman Hugh Redington


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