Shared traditions from later times

This brings us to the fact that the store of shared saints and hagiographic sources was enlarged when Syrian Christianity began to separate in the fifth century. To some extent the saints' lives crossed doctrinal borders, as did canon law and ascetic writings, sometimes, but not always, with a false attribution to an author whose doctrinal background was not under suspicion. Isaac of Nineveh, a famous seventh-century East Syrian writer of ascetic literature, proves that doctrinal quarrels did not necessarily dominate all spheres of ecclesiastical life. Isaac's writings have been honoured among all Christians, so that he has become a common saint of the East and West Syrians as well as the Byzantine and Latin traditions. When a saint such as Mor Awgen is said to have lived before the outbreak of the Christological differences, cross-border reception of hagiographic literature is even more likely. Febronia, who is praised as a 'super-saint' in her vita (a learned nun and teacher who gave her life in the Diocletian persecution) is a good example. Not only is it unknown if Febronia's vita, which is dated to the sixth or seventh century, is of East or West Syrian origin, but her cult which seems to have started in sixth-century Nisibis, had reached Constantinople by the seventh century. From there St Febronia continued her career to southern Italy and to France as well as to the Slavic world.

On the other hand, the reception of Byzantine hagiography was not restricted to the Melkite communities. It is apparent that Rabban Sliba, the Syrian Orthodox author of a local medieval martyrologion, used Melkite books for his collection, though in a selective manner. So St Nicholas and various martyrs typically celebrated by the Melkites entered the Syrian Orthodox and the Maronite calendars. There are examples of Maronite calendars which even commemorate various patriarchs of Constantinople along with 'typical' Syrian Orthodox saints.

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