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Tikhon, Patriarch (1865–1925)

  1. William H. Parsons

Published Online: 25 NOV 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9780470670606.wbecc1387

The Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization

How to Cite

Parsons, W. H. 2011. Tikhon, Patriarch (1865–1925). The Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization. .

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 25 NOV 2011


Russian. Born Vasily Belavin on December 19, 1865 into the family of a Russian Orthodox priest, he took the name Tikhon after he became a monk at the age of 26. He was made a bishop in 1897 and served as bishop of the Aleutians and Alaska (later Aleutians and North America) from 1898 to 1907. As head of the Russian Orthodox Church in America he was responsible for establishing many churches in the United States and St. Tikhon's Monastery in Pennsylvania. When he returned to Russia, he advanced in the hierarchy of the church, becoming the Metropolitan of Moscow in August 1917, and becoming the Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church on November 5, 1917. He was the leader of the church through the first turbulent years of Soviet power.


  • Tikhon, Patriarch (1865–1925);
  • first patriarch in Russia, since Peter the great;
  • “living church” and deposed conservative bishops