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cyril, brothers and slays

CYRILLUS and METHODIUS, apostles of the Slays. They were brothers and natives of Thessalonica. Cyril was the name adopted as a monk by Constantine, b. 827. For his learning he was surnamed .(the philosopher.* The Khasars, a Tartar people, having about the year 860 asked the Emperor Michael III to send them Christian missionaries, Cyril was sent and made many converts. The Bulgarians of Thrace and Mcesia were evangelized by Methodius, who baptized their king, Bogoris, in 861. At the request of Ratislav, Duke of Mo ravia, the brothers then turned to the countries on the March and Danube. They prepared a Slav translation of the Scriptures and chief liturgical books (which became the foundation of the literature of the Slays), and by their services in the mother-tongue won the hearts of the people from the Roman missionaries. The two brothers were summoned to Rome to explain their conduct in conducting services in the vernacular, and Cyril died there in 869. Me thodius, who in the same year was consecrated bishop of the Moravians, completed the evan gelization of the Slays. Called to Rome in 879 to justify his celebration of the mass in the native tongue, he succeeded in gaining the approval of Pope John VIII, and (according to most probable account) 'died Hradisch on the March, 6 April 885. Bohemia and Moravia

celebrated the millenary festival of their two apostles on 5 July 1863. Both brothers are recognized as saints by the Roman Catholic Church. Their festival falls in the Roman Catholic Church on 9 March; in the Greek Church 11 May. The Cyrillic alphabet modified out of the Greek by Cyril, superseded the more ancient Slavonic alphabet over a wide area. The history of Cyril and Methodius is still very obscure. Consult Bondwetsch, N., 'Cyril and Method' (Erlangen 1885) ; Ginzel, der Slawenapostel Cyril und Method' (Vienna 1857) ; Diimmler and Mildo sich, 'Die Legende vom Heiligen (ib. 1870) ; Goetz, 'Geschichte der Slawenapostel Constantinus (Cyrillus) and Methodius' (Gotha 1897); Miklosich (ed.), 'Vita Sancti Methodii' (Vienna 1870) ; Maclear, 'Conversion of the Slays'( London 1879) ; 'Acta Sanctorum,> ed ited by J. Boland (March, II, pp. 12-25, Octo ber, XI, pp. 168-171) contains some original sources.