Gregory IV of Athens

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His Eminence, the Most Reverend Gregory IV of Athens, also Grigor Gjirokastriti (Greek: Γρηγόριος Αργυροκαστρίτης) was an Albanian scholar of the Church of Greece and Metropolitan of Athens from 1827 to 1828.


The date of Gregory's birth is unknown. Also, little is known of his early life. About 1744 he was a teacher in the New Academy, a famous educational institution in Moscopole now located in Albania, but a leading center of Greek culture at the time.

In 1799, Gregory was appointed bishop of Paramythia in Epirus, Greece, a position he retained only for a few months before he was appointed Archbishop of Euboea. In Euboea, he apparently was active in the revolutionary movement as when In the summer of 1821, as the Greek War of Independence spread to Euboea, he was placed under detention by the Turks. In January 1823, he was freed and immediately he put himself at the disposition of the Greek Revolutionary Government.

In July 1823, Gregory was forced, among many others, to flee to Corfu, in the Ionian Sea, as the revolution in Euboea failed. Also, in the meantime Bishop Neophytos of North Euboea usurped his see, although he retained his title in exile.

In Corfu, Gregory, collaboration with Vangjel Meksi, translated the New Testament from ancient Greek to Albanian. In 1824, a partial printing of this work was published in Corfu, followed in 1827 by a full edition that contained both the Greek and the Albanian text with the Albanian text printed in Greek letters. Later, Gregory divided the original one volume edition of 839 pages into two volumes, considering it a more suitable solution because "Albanians kept the holy scriptures close to their chest". It was for this work that one of his biographers, Kourilas, considered Gregory as "the founder of the Albanian philology", adding that "...albanologists use this translation as basic text but they only mention his (Gregory's) name ... but nothing about his home country and life" (Kourilas, p. 349).

In 1827, Gregory returned to Euboea. Then, on September 16, he was appointed Metropolitan of Athens, a position in which he remained for less than a year until his repose in March 1828. He was buried in Chalkis, Euboea.

Succession box:
Gregory IV of Athens
Preceded by:
Bishop of Paramythia
Succeeded by:
Preceded by:
Archbishop of Euboea
Succeeded by:
Preceded by:
Dionysius II
Metropolitan of Athens
Succeeded by:
Anthimus VII
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