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Detail of a 13th-century Theotokos Aeiparthenos icon, the Eleusa Theotokos of Tolga

In the Eastern Orthodox Church, Aeiparthenos (Greek ἀειπάρθενος "ever-virgin") is the title of the Theotokos which refers to the "Ever Virgin" Mary, mother of Jesus, thus affirming the doctrine of the Perpetual virginity of Mary.[1]

The term is also used to refer to icons of Mary, as in the "Theotokos Aeiparthenos" icon.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church (item 499) also includes to the term Aeiparthenos and referring to Lumen gentium item 57 states: "Christ's birth did not diminish his mother's virginal integrity but sanctified it."[2][3][4]

The term Aeiparthenos is attested to by Epiphanius of Salamis from early 4th century.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ What Every Catholic Should Know about Mary by Terrence J. McNally 2009 ISBN 1-4415-1051-6 page 168 [1]
  2. ^ Catechism of the Catholic Church by the Vatican, 2002 ISBN 0-86012-324-3 page 112
  3. ^ Vatican website: Catechism item 499
  4. ^ Vatican website: Lumen gentium item 57
  5. ^ Joseph, Mary, Jesus by Lucien Deiss, Madeleine Beaumont 1996 ISBN 0-8146-2255-0 page 30