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A martyrology is a catalogue or list of martyrs (or, more precisely, of saints), arranged in the calendar order of their anniversaries or feasts. Local martyrologies record exclusively the custom of a particular Church. Local lists were enriched by names borrowed from neighbouring Churches. Consolidation occurred, by the combination of several local martyrologies, with or without borrowings from literary sources.

This is the now accepted meaning in the Latin Church. In the Greek Church the nearest equivalent to the martyrology is the Synaxarium. As regards form, one should distinguish between simple martyrologies, which consist merely of an enumeration of names, and historical martyrologies, which also include stories or biographical details.

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