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Justinianopolis

Titular see of Armenia Prima

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* Published by Encyclopedia Press, 1913.


Justinianopolis , a titular see of Armenia Prima, suffragan of Sebaste. This see is better known in history under the names of Acilizene and Keltzene. Acilizene is a province situated between the Euphrates and the Antitaurus, where Mithridates, pursued by Pompey, sought refuge. Strabo (XI, iv, 8; XI, xii, 3; V, xi, 6), Procopius (Bellum Pers., I, 17), and Ptolemy (V, xii, 6) also mention it. The ancient name of Justinianopolis seems to have been Eliza, capital of Acilizene, frequently mentioned by the Byzantine historians, and today known as Erzindjan. At first suffragan of Sebaste, later of Camachos, Keltzene was already an archiepiscopal see in 980, and had as many as twenty-one suffragans. Subsequently, until the fourteenth century, it became again a simple metropolitan, without any suffragans. Lequien (Oriens Christianus, I, 435) mentions six bishops of this town, between the fifth and the eleventh century. An earthquake destroyed Erzindjan in 1784; it has since been rebuilt on a more regular plan, and is today a sanjak of the Turkish province of Erzeroum, and serves as headquarters for the staff of the fourth and principal corps of the Turkish army. The town counts 30,000 inhabitants, nearly 10,000 of whom are Armenians, and a few hundred are schismatical Greeks.

S. VAILHE


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