Religion: Death of a Patriarch

patriarch: the head of a family

First and foremost, he was head of the family. It was a large family — Russians, Greeks, Bulgars, Syrians — and it could be a quarrelsome one. His fellow patriarchs in the ancient sees of Jerusalem, Antioch and Alexandria, and newer ones like Moscow, recognized him only as the "first among equals." The power of his office had originally derived from its association with the Byzantine Empire, and later from its role as a kind of Christian viceroy for the Islamic Ottoman Empire. But modern Turkey had scant...

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