Basileus


Basileus is a Greek term and title that has signified various types of monarchs in history. It is perhaps best known in English as a title used by Byzantine emperors, but also has a longer history of use for persons of authority and sovereigns in ancient Greece, as well as for the kings of modern Greece.

While the terms used for the Roman emperor are Kaisar Augustos –  a decree from Caesar Augustus; Dogma para Kaisaros Augoustou, (see Luke 2:1) – or just Caesar. Herod is called Basileus.

Regarding Jesus the term Basileus acquires a new Christian theological meaning out of the further concept of Basileus as a chief religious officer during the Hellenistic period.

Jesus is known as the Basileus tôn Basileôn, the King of Kings (see Matthew 28:18).

In Byzantine art, a standard depiction of Jesus is Basileus tēs Doxēs, King of Glory or in the West the Christ or Image of Pity; a phrase derived from Psalms 24:10 and the Lord of Glory Kyrios tēs Doxēs in 1 Corinthians 2:8.

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