Dionysius in Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities

A Christian writer, called Areopagīta, from his having been a member of the court of Areopagus at Athens. He was converted to Christianity by St. Paul's preaching (Acts, xvii. 34). He is reported to have been the first bishop of Athens, being appointed to that office by the apostle Paul, and to have suffered martyrdom under Domitian. His fundamental thought is the absolute transcendence of God. During the Middle Ages a great number of writings were circulated under his name, and were collected together and printed at Cologne in 1536, and subsequently at Antwerp in 1634 and at Paris in 1646. They have now, for a long time, been deemed spurious, although scholars differ in respect to the times and authors of the fabrication. The most probable reasoning, however, fixes them at the end of the fourth century. The standard text is that of Corderius, reprinted by the Abbé Migne. Trans. by Parker (1894). See Harnack's Dogmengeschichte, vol. ii., and the studies by Niemeyer (1869) and Schneider (1884).

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