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Nicolaus Cabasilas (born 1319/23, died after 1391) was a Byzantine mystic and theological writer.

He was on intimate terms with the emperor John VI Cantacuzene, whom he accompanied in his retirement to a monastery. In 1355 he succeeded his uncle Nilus Cabasilas, like himself a determined opponent of the union of the Greek and Latin churches, as archbishop of Thessalonica.

In the Hesythast controversy he took the side of the monks of Athos, but refused to agree to the theory of the uncreated light. His chief work is his ?? (ed. pr. of the Greek text, with copious introduction, by W. Gass, 1849; new ed. by M. Heinze, 1899), in which he lays down the principle that union with Christ is effected by the three great mysteries of baptism, confirmation and the eucharist. He also wrote homilies on various subjects, and a speech againt usurers, printed with other works in Migne, Patrologia Graeca, c. i. A large number of his works is still extant in MS.

See C. Krumbacher, Geschichte der byzantinischen Litteratur (1897), and article in Herzog-Hauck, Realencyklopadie fr protcstantische Theologie (1901).


This article incorporates text from the Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition, a publication now in the public domain.

Cabasilas' major works are "Life in Christ" and "Commentary on the Divine Liturgy." These works display a profound understanding of the sacramental and liturgical life of the Eastern Orthodox Church and are accessible to and instructive for any Christian today worshiping in either the East or West.

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