St Simon of Cleopas and St. James the Less related?



As I was looking through scripture and the Catholic encyclopedia to defend the perpetual virginity of Mary, I noticed that the Catholic encyclopedia states:

“Again, on comparing John 19:25 with Matthew 27:56, and Mark 15:40 (cf. Mark 15:47; 16:1), we find that Mary of Cleophas, or more correctly Clopas (Klopas), the sister of Mary the Mother of Christ, is the same as Mary the mother of James the Less and of Joseph, or Joses. As married women are not distinguished by the addition of their father’s name, Mary of Clopas must be the wife of Clopas, and not his daughter, as has been maintained.”

This same article states that: “About Simon nothing certain can be stated. He is identified by most commentators with the Symeon, or Simon, who, according to Hegesippus, was a son of Clopas.” (Source:

With that being said, wouldn’t that mean that St. Simon of Cleopas is the brother of St. James the less considering that Mary of Cleopas was married to St. Cleopas? Or is it so that St. Cleopas has children with another women prior to his later marriage with St. Mary the mother of James the less after his previous wife’s death? (If he had one).

I’m confused. Please enlighten me. Thank you.


So far I think I found the answer to my question.

Papias of Hierapolis, who lived c. 70–163 AD, Cleophas and Alphaeus are the same person:

“Mary the wife of Cleophas or Alphaeus, who was the mother of James the bishop and apostle, and of Simon and Thaddeus, and of one Joseph”


Yes that’s right they were brothers and cousins of Jesus.
St Jerome calls St James the Less the Lord’s brother.


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