Born: 675, probably in Damascus, Syria.
Died: December 4, circa 749, at Mar Saba, his monastery between Jerusalem and the Dead Sea.
John was the son of Sarjun ibn Mansur.
He was educated by the elder Cosmas, along with his foster brother, Cosmas the Melodist.
He held some office under the Caliph, and later retired to the laura of St. Sabas, near Jerusalem, along with his foster brother. There he wrote his theological works and hymns, and was ordained a priest of the church of Jerusalem late in life.
His enemies called him Mansur, for reasons unknown. His three orations in favor of icons earned him the sobriquets Chrysorrhous and The Doctor of Christian Art.