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 Maximus the Greek  

Born:   1475
Deceased:   1556

Writer and publicist


His secular name was Michael Trivolis. He was born into the family of a Greek official and studied in Italy. Soon after taking the vows, Maximus arrived in Russia for editing and correcting translations of church books. It happened in 1518, at the request of Vasily III. His extensive education, brilliant mind, and diligence made it possible for him to gain an exclusive status in high quarters of the Russian clergy. But later Maximus the Greek started interfering with politics, took side of the Nonpossessors and hence was condemned by church councils of 1525 and 1531 and kept prisoner till 1551.

Maximus the Greek spent the rest of his life and died in the Trinity-Sergius Monastery.

The biggest part of his work was directed against monastic land tenure and usury. In his opinion, the tsar was supposed to come into line with church and boyars. Maximus the Greek recommended determination in international affairs, but advised to avoid complications. Political views of Maximus the Greek had a great impact on the Select Council of Russia.

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