Patriarch of Alexandria

The Patriarch of Alexandria is the archbishop of Alexandria, Egypt. Historically, this office has included the designation "pope" (etymologically "Father", like "Abbot"). The Alexandrian episcopate was revered as one of the three major episcopal sees (along with Rome and Antioch) before Constantinople or Jerusalem were granted similar status (in 381 and 451, respectively). Alexandria was elevated to de facto archiepiscopal status by the Councils of Alexandria[citation needed][which?], and this status was ratified by Canon Six of the First Council of Nicaea, which stipulated that all the Egyptian episcopal provinces were subject to the metropolitan see of Alexandria (already the prevailing custom).[citation needed] In the sixth century, these five archbishops were formally granted the title of "patriarch" and were subsequently known as the Pentarchy. Due to several schisms within Christianity, the title of the Patriarch of Alexandria is currently held by four persons belonging to different denominations: the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Alexandria, the Coptic Orthodox Patriarch of Alexandria, the Melkite Patriarch of Antioch, Alexandria, Jerusalem, and all the East and the Coptic Catholic Patriarchate of Alexandria. It was also previously held by the Latin Patriarch of Alexandria. Each of those denominations consider their patriarch as the successor to the original early bishops of Alexandria.


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