Didymus the Blind

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Didymus the Blind (c. 313 - c. 398) was an ecclesiastical writer of Alexandria. He became blind at the age of four, before he had learned to read, but nevertheless succeeded in mastering the whole corpus of the sciences then known. On entering the service of the Church he was placed at the head of the Catechetical school in Alexandria, where he lived and worked until almost the close of the fourth century. Among his pupils were Jerome and Rufinus.

He was a loyal follower of Origen, though boldly opposed to Arian and Macedonian teachings. His surviving writings show a remarkable knowledge of scripture and have distinct value as theological literature. Among them are the De Trinitate, De Spiritu Sancto (Jerome's Latin translation), Adversus Manichaeos, and notes and expositions of various books, especially the Psalms and the Catholic Epistles.


Being the source of goodness, God, even after our failures, calls us anew, not effacing entirely from our mind the knowledge of good, even if we have turned away from virtue through sin. This is what God, at present, also does for Adam in calling him although he has hidden himself, saying to him: 'Adam, where art thou?' Adam, in fact, had been placed there by God for the purpose of working and guarding Paradise; he had received this place from Him to be his own. Having distanced himself from there by disobedience, it is proper that he should hear from God: 'Where art thou?'

Sources and further reading