Mary, mother of Jesus

Mary (Miriam)
BornSeptember 8 (traditional; Nativity of Mary) c. 18 BC[1]
Home town
ChildrenJesus,[a] possibly the brothers and sisters of Jesus.
Parent(s)unknown; according to some apocryphal writings: Joachim and Anne[b]

Mary[c] was a 1st-century BC Galilean Jewish[2] woman of Nazareth, and the mother of Jesus, according to the New Testament and the Quran.

The gospels of Matthew and Luke in the New Testament and the Quran describe Mary as a virgin;[3] according to Christian teaching she conceived Jesus while a virgin, through the Holy Spirit. The miraculous conception took place when she was already betrothed to Joseph.[4] She accompanied Joseph to Bethlehem, where Jesus was born.[5]

The Gospel of Luke begins its account of Mary's life with the Annunciation, when the angel Gabriel appeared to Mary and announced her divine selection to be the mother of Jesus. According to canonical gospel accounts, Mary was present at the crucifixion and is depicted as a member of the early Christian community in Jerusalem. According to Catholic and Orthodox teachings, at the end of her earthly life her body was raised directly into Heaven; this is known in the Christian West as the Assumption.[6][7]

Mary has been venerated since early Christianity,[8][9] and is considered by millions to be the most meritorious saint of the religion. She is claimed to have miraculously appeared to believers many times over the centuries. The Eastern and Oriental Orthodox, Catholic, Anglican, and Lutheran churches believe that Mary, as mother of Jesus, is the Mother of God (Greek: Θεοτόκος, translit. Theotokos, lit. 'God-bearer'). There is significant diversity in the Marian beliefs and devotional practices of major Christian traditions. The Catholic Church holds distinctive Marian dogmas, namely her status as the Mother of God, her Immaculate Conception, her perpetual virginity, and her Assumption into heaven.[10] Many Protestants minimize Mary's role within Christianity, based on the argued brevity of biblical references.[11] Mary also has a revered position in Islam, where one of the longer chapters of the Quran is devoted to her.

Names and titles

Virgin and Child with angels and Sts. George and Theodore. Icon from around 600, from Saint Catherine's Monastery.

Mary's name in the original manuscripts of the New Testament was based on her original Aramaic name מרים‎, translit. Maryam or Mariam.[12] The English name Mary comes from the Greek Μαρία, which is a shortened form of Μαριάμ. Both Μαρία and Μαριάμ appear in the New Testament.

In Christianity

In Christianity, Mary is commonly referred to as the Virgin Mary, in accordance with the belief that she conceived Jesus miraculously through the Holy Spirit without her husband's involvement. Among her many other names and titles are the Blessed Virgin Mary (often abbreviated to "BVM"), Saint Mary (occasionally), the Mother of God (primarily in Western Christianity), the Theotokos (primarily in Eastern Christianity), Our Lady (Medieval Italian: Madonna), and Queen of Heaven (Latin: Regina Coeli),[13][14] although the title "Queen of Heaven" was also a name for a pagan goddess being worshipped during the prophet Jeremiah's lifetime.[15] Titles in use vary among Anglicans, Lutherans, Catholics, Orthodox, Protestants, Mormons, and other Christians.

The three main titles for Mary used by the Orthodox are Theotokos (Greek: Θεοτόκος, lit. 'God-bearer' or loosely "Mother of God"), Aeiparthenos (Greek: ἀειπαρθὲνος, lit. 'Ever-virgin') as confirmed in the Second Council of Constantinople in 553, and Panagia (Greek: Παναγία, lit. 'All-holy').[16] Catholics use a wide variety of titles for Mary, and these titles have in turn given rise to many artistic depictions. For example, the title Our Lady of Sorrows has inspired such masterpieces as Michelangelo's Pietà.[17]

The title Theotokos was recognized at the Council of Ephesus in 431. The direct equivalents of title in Latin are Deipara and Dei Genetrix, although the phrase is more often loosely translated into Latin as Mater Dei (Mother of God), with similar patterns for other languages used in the Latin Church. However, this same phrase in Greek (Μήτηρ Θεοῦ), in the abbreviated form ΜΡ ΘΥ, is an indication commonly attached to her image in Byzantine icons. The Council stated that the Church Fathers "did not hesitate to speak of the holy Virgin as the Mother of God".[18][19][20]

Some Marian titles have a direct scriptural basis. For instance, the title "Queen Mother" has been given to Mary since she was the mother of Jesus, who was sometimes referred to as the "King of Kings" due to his ancestral descent from King David.[21][22][23][24][25][26] Other titles have arisen from reported miracles, special appeals, or occasions for calling on Mary. To give a few examples, Our Lady of Good Counsel, Our Lady of Navigators, and Our Lady Undoer of Knots fit this description.[27][28][29][30]

In Islam

In Islam, she is known as Maryam (Arabic: مريم‎, translit. Maryām), mother of Isa (Arabic: عيسى بن مريم‎, translit. ʿĪsā ibn Maryām, lit. 'Jesus, son of Mary'). She is often referred to by the honorific title sayyidatuna, meaning "our lady"; this title is in parallel to sayyiduna ("our lord"), used for the prophets.[31] A related term of endearment is Siddiqah,[32] meaning "she who confirms the truth" and "she who believes sincerely completely". Another title for Mary is Qānitah, which signifies both constant submission to God and absorption in prayer and invocation in Islam.[33] She is also called "Tahira", meaning "one who has been purified" and representing her status as one of two humans in creation (and the only woman) to not be touched by Satan at any point.[34]

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Maria
Alemannisch: Maria (Mutter Jesu)
አማርኛ: ማርያም
العربية: مريم العذراء
aragonés: Santa María
Atikamekw: Kitcitwa Marie
azərbaycanca: Məryəm
تۆرکجه: مریم
Bân-lâm-gú: Má-lī-a
беларуская: Багародзіца
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Багародзіца
български: Богородица
བོད་ཡིག: མིར་ཡམ །
brezhoneg: Mari, mamm Jezuz
Cymraeg: Y Forwyn Fair
dolnoserbski: Kněžna Marija
eesti: Maarja
Ελληνικά: Παναγία
emiliàn e rumagnòl: Maria (mär ad Gesü)
euskara: Maria
فارسی: مریم
Gaeilge: Muire
Gàidhlig: Moire
galego: Virxe María
ગુજરાતી: મરિયમ
गोंयची कोंकणी / Gõychi Konknni: Maria
hornjoserbsce: Knježna Marija
Ido: Madono
Bahasa Indonesia: Maria
íslenska: María mey
Basa Jawa: Maria
Kabɩyɛ: Maarɩ
ಕನ್ನಡ: ಸಂತ ಮೇರಿ
қазақша: Мәриям
kernowek: Maria Wynn
Kiswahili: Bikira Maria
kurdî: Meryem
Кыргызча: Мадонна
latviešu: Jaunava Marija
Limburgs: Maria
Lingua Franca Nova: Maria (madre de Jesus)
magyar: Szűz Mária
македонски: Богородица
മലയാളം: മറിയം
مازِرونی: مریم
Bahasa Melayu: Maryam
Mìng-dĕ̤ng-ngṳ̄: Séng-mū Mā-lé-ā
日本語: 聖母マリア
Napulitano: Madonna
norsk nynorsk: Jomfru Maria
Nouormand: Sainte Mathie
پنجابی: مریم
Patois: Mieri
Picard: Marie
română: Fecioara Maria
Runa Simi: Qullana Mariya
русиньскый: Богородіця
русский: Богородица
shqip: Mëria
Simple English: Mary (mother of Jesus)
slovenščina: Sveta Marija
کوردی: مریەم
српски / srpski: Богородица
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Marija (majka Isusova)
svenska: Jungfru Maria
татарча/tatarça: Изге Ана
తెలుగు: మరియమ్
Türkçe: Meryem
українська: Діва Марія
Tiếng Việt: Maria
Zazaki: Meryeme
žemaitėška: Pana Marėjė