The Most Famous

RELIGIOUS FIGURES from Greece

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This page contains a list of the greatest Greek Religious Figures. The pantheon dataset contains 3,187 Religious Figures, 40 of which were born in Greece. This makes Greece the birth place of the 13th most number of Religious Figures behind Israel, and Poland.

Top 10

The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary Greek Religious Figures of all time. This list of famous Greek Religious Figures is sorted by HPI (Historical Popularity Index), a metric that aggregates information on a biography’s online popularity. Visit the rankings page to view the entire list of Greek Religious Figures.

Photo of Saint Stephen

1. Saint Stephen (1 - 36)

With an HPI of 80.83, Saint Stephen is the most famous Greek Religious Figure.  His biography has been translated into 62 different languages on wikipedia.

Stephen (Greek: Στέφανος, translit. Stéphanos, lit. "wreath, crown", and by extension 'reward, honor, renown, fame', often given as a title rather than as a name; c. AD 5 – c. 34) is traditionally venerated as the protomartyr or first martyr of Christianity. According to the Acts of the Apostles, he was a deacon in the early church at Jerusalem who angered members of various synagogues by his teachings. Accused of blasphemy at his trial, he made a speech denouncing the Jewish authorities who were sitting in judgment on him and was then stoned to death. Saul of Tarsus, later known as Paul the Apostle, a Pharisee and Roman citizen who would later become an apostle, participated in Stephen's martyrdom. The only source for information about Stephen is the New Testament book of the Acts of the Apostles. Stephen is mentioned in Acts 6 as one of the Greek-speaking Hellenistic Jews selected to administer the daily charitable distribution of food to the Greek-speaking widows. The Catholic, Anglican, Oriental Orthodox, Eastern Orthodox, and Lutheran churches and the Church of the East view Stephen as a saint. Artistic representations often show Stephen with a crown symbolising martyrdom, three stones, martyr's palm frond, censer, and often holding a miniature church building. Stephen is often shown as a young, beardless man with a tonsure, wearing a deacon's vestments.

Photo of Pope Sixtus II

2. Pope Sixtus II (215 - 258)

With an HPI of 73.64, Pope Sixtus II is the 2nd most famous Greek Religious Figure.  His biography has been translated into 78 different languages.

Pope Sixtus II (Greek: Πάπας Σίξτος Β΄), also written as Pope Xystus II, was bishop of Rome from 31 August 257 until his death on 6 August 258. He was killed along with seven deacons, including Lawrence of Rome, during the persecution of Christians by the Emperor Valerian.

Photo of Demetrius of Thessaloniki

3. Demetrius of Thessaloniki (270 - 306)

With an HPI of 72.37, Demetrius of Thessaloniki is the 3rd most famous Greek Religious Figure.  His biography has been translated into 35 different languages.

Saint Demetrius (or Demetrios) of Thessalonica (Greek: Ἅγιος Δημήτριος τῆς Θεσσαλονίκης, Hágios Dēmḗtrios tēs Thessaloníkēs), also known as the Holy Great-Martyr Demetrius the Myroblyte (meaning 'the Myrrh-Gusher' or 'Myrrh-Streamer'; 3rd century – 306), was a Greek Christian martyr of the early 4th century AD. During the Middle Ages, he came to be revered as one of the most important Orthodox military saints, often paired with Saint George of Lydda. His feast day is 26 October for Eastern Orthodox Christians, which falls on 8 November [NS, "new style"] for those following the old calendar. In the Roman Catholic Church he is most commonly called "Demetrius of Sermium" and his memorial is 9 April in the 2004 Roman Martyrology and 8 October in the martyrology of the Extraordinary Form.

Photo of Pope Dionysius

4. Pope Dionysius (200 - 268)

With an HPI of 70.56, Pope Dionysius is the 4th most famous Greek Religious Figure.  His biography has been translated into 76 different languages.

Pope Dionysius (Greek: Διονύσιος) was the bishop of Rome from 22 July 259 CE to his death on 26 December 268. His task was to reorganise the Catholic Church, after the persecutions of Emperor Valerian I, and the edict of toleration by his successor Gallienus. He also helped rebuild the churches of Cappadocia, devastated by the marauding Goths.

Photo of Dionysius the Areopagite

5. Dionysius the Areopagite (100 - 100)

With an HPI of 69.37, Dionysius the Areopagite is the 5th most famous Greek Religious Figure.  His biography has been translated into 39 different languages.

Dionysius the Areopagite (; Greek: Διονύσιος ὁ Ἀρεοπαγίτης Dionysios ho Areopagitēs) was an Athenian judge at the Areopagus Court in Athens, who lived in the first century. A convert to Christianity, he is venerated as a saint by multiple denominations.

Photo of Saint Titus

6. Saint Titus (13 - 107)

With an HPI of 68.88, Saint Titus is the 6th most famous Greek Religious Figure.  His biography has been translated into 37 different languages.

Titus ( TY-təs; Greek: Τίτος; Títos) was an early Christian missionary and church leader, a companion and disciple of Paul the Apostle, mentioned in several of the Pauline epistles including the Epistle to Titus. He is believed to be a Gentile converted to Christianity by Paul and, according to tradition, he was consecrated as Bishop of the Island of Crete. Titus brought a fundraising letter from Paul to Corinth, to collect for the poor in Jerusalem. According to Jerome, Titus was the amanuensis of this epistle (2 Corinthians). Later, on Crete, Titus appointed presbyters (elders) in every city and remained there into his old age, dying in Gortyna.

Photo of Philomena

7. Philomena (291 - 304)

With an HPI of 68.80, Philomena is the 7th most famous Greek Religious Figure.  Her biography has been translated into 30 different languages.

Philomena ( FIL-ə-MEE-nə), also known as Saint Philomena (Ancient Greek: Ἁγία Φιλουμένη, romanized: Hagía Philouménē; Modern Greek: Αγία Φιλομένα, romanized: Agía Filoména) or Philomena of Rome (c. 10 January 291 – c. 10 August 304) was a virgin martyr whose remains were discovered on May 24–25, 1802, in the Catacomb of Priscilla. Three tiles enclosing the tomb bore an inscription, Pax Tecum Filumena (i.e. "Peace be unto you, Philomena"), that was taken to indicate that her name (in the Latin of the inscription) was Filumena (Ancient Greek: φιλουμένη, romanized: philouménē, lit. 'beloved'), the English form of which is Philomena. Philomena is the patron saint of infants, babies, and youth, and is known as "The Wonderworker". The remains were moved to Mugnano del Cardinale in 1805. There, they became the focus of widespread devotion; several miracles were credited to Philomena's intercession, including the healing of Pauline Jaricot in 1835, which received wide publicity. John Vianney attributed to her intercession the extraordinary cures that others attributed to him. From 1837 to 1961, celebration of her feast day was approved for regional calendars, but was never included in the General Roman Calendar. The 1920 typical edition of the Roman Missal included a mention of her, under 11 August, in the section headed Missae pro aliquibus locis ("Masses for some places"), with an indication that the Mass to be used in those places was one from the common of a virgin martyr, without any proper. The Coptic Orthodox Church celebrate the feast of Saint Philomena on 10 August of the Gregorian calendar which is 4 Misra of the Coptic calendar.

Photo of Antipope Alexander V

8. Antipope Alexander V (1339 - 1410)

With an HPI of 66.39, Antipope Alexander V is the 8th most famous Greek Religious Figure.  His biography has been translated into 41 different languages.

Peter of Candia, also known as Peter Phillarges (Greek: Πέτρος Φιλάργης) (c. 1339 – 3 May 1410), named as Alexander V (Latin: Alexander PP. V; Italian: Alessandro V), was an antipope elected by the Council of Pisa during the Western Schism (1378–1417). He reigned briefly from 26 June 1409, to his death in 1410, in opposition to the Roman pope Gregory XII and the Avignon antipope Benedict XIII. In the 20th century, the Catholic Church reinterpreted the Western Schism by recognising the Roman popes, as legitimate. Gregory XII's reign was extended to 1415, and Alexander V is now regarded as an antipope.

Photo of Pope Hyginus

9. Pope Hyginus (100 - 142)

With an HPI of 66.34, Pope Hyginus is the 9th most famous Greek Religious Figure.  His biography has been translated into 76 different languages.

Pope Hyginus (Greek: Υγίνος) was the bishop of Rome from c. 138 to his death in c. 142. Tradition holds that during his papacy he determined the various prerogatives of the clergy and defined the grades of the ecclesiastical hierarchy. Hyginus instituted godparents at baptism to assist the baptised during their Christian life. He also decreed that all churches be consecrated. He is said to have died a martyr, though no records verify this. The chronology of the early bishops of Rome cannot be determined with any degree of exactitude today.

Photo of Pope Eleutherius

10. Pope Eleutherius (171 - 189)

With an HPI of 66.30, Pope Eleutherius is the 10th most famous Greek Religious Figure.  His biography has been translated into 77 different languages.

Pope Eleutherius (Greek: Ελευθέριος; died 24 May 189), also known as Eleutherus (Greek: Ελεύθερος), was the bishop of Rome from c. 174 to his death. His pontificate is alternatively dated to 171-185 or 177-193. He is venerated as a saint in the Catholic Church. He is linked to a number of legends, one of them credited him with receiving a letter from "Lucius, King of Britain", but which is now generally considered to be a forgery.

People

Pantheon has 49 people classified as Greek religious figures born between 600 BC and 1956. Of these 49, 5 (10.20%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living Greek religious figures include Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem, Patriarch Theodore II of Alexandria, and Ieronymos II of Athens. The most famous deceased Greek religious figures include Saint Stephen, Pope Sixtus II, and Demetrius of Thessaloniki. As of April 2024, 8 new Greek religious figures have been added to Pantheon including Eugenios Voulgaris, Philothei of Athens, and Athanasius III of Constantinople.

Living Greek Religious Figures

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Deceased Greek Religious Figures

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Newly Added Greek Religious Figures (2024)

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Overlapping Lives

Which Religious Figures were alive at the same time? This visualization shows the lifespans of the 5 most globally memorable Religious Figures since 1700.