Arius in Roman Biography

A-ri'us or A-rei'us, popularly called A'rl-us, [Gr. "Aohoc,] the founder of Arianism, and author of the greatest schism that ever divided the Christian Church before the Reformation, was born at Cyrene, in Africa, shortly after the middle of the third century. He was ordained a deacon at Alexandria by the patriarch Peter, and promoted to the highest rank among the clergy by the patriarch Alexander. The controversy which arose between Alexander and Arius about 318 A.D. caused Constantine to summon the first general council, which met at Nicaea (or Nice) in 325 A.D., and condemned with great unanimity the doctrines of Arius, who denied that the Son is coeternal and coessential with the Father. Arius, who had attended this council, was exiled to Illyricum by Constantine, but this sentence was revoked two or three years later. Arianism spread rapidly in Syria and Asia Minor, and was approved by the Synods of Tyre and Jerusalem in 335 a.d. Soon after this date he returned to Alexandria; but his presence excited there so great a disturbance that Constantine recalled him to Constantinople, where the Arians were numerous and powerful. According to some writers, he avowed his submission to the creed adopted by the Council of Nice, and was about to be restored to communion, when he died suddenly near 336 a.d. Authorities differ respecting the place of his death and many events of his life. Arianism was patronized as the religion of the state by the emperor Constantius, and by Valens. The contest between the Arians and Athanasians (see Athanasius) raged for more than two centuries and carnal weapons were resorted to by each party to enforce its arguments. The Goths, Vandals, and Suevi of the fifth and sixth centuries were nearly all Arians. The sect became divided into two portions, called " Hetero-ousians" (who were strict or ultra-Arians) and Semi-Arians or " Homoiousians," who admitted the " similar essence" of the Son with the Father. The followers of Arius were often called Eusebians, from Eusebius, Bishop of Nicomedia. See Neandf.r," History of the Christian " Church;" Maimbourg, Histoire de 1'Arianisme , Stark, " Essay on Arianism," fin German,) 1783; G. M. Travasa, "Storia critica della Vita di Ario," 174S; Eusebius, " Vita Constantini ;" Sozombn, " Historia Ecclesiastical" Epiphanius, " Panarium :" Theodoret, " Historia Ecclesiastical" Reuterdahl, "Memorabilia Arii ejuaque Hx-reseos," 1813.

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Arius in Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities

(Ἄρειος). A celebrated writer and theologian of Alexandria, who denied the eternal divinity and consubstantiality of the Second Person of the Trinity. Though much persecuted for his heresy, he succeeded in winning the favour of the emperor Constantine, and supplanted his great opponent St. Athanasius. When about to enter the cathedral at Constantinople in triumph, he suddenly died, A.D. 336. From him the sect of the Arians gets its name.

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Arius in Wikipedia

Arius (AD 250 or 256 – 336) was a Christian presbyter from Alexandria, Egypt. His teachings about the nature of the Godhead, which emphasized the Father's Divinity over the Son, and his opposition to the Athanasian or Trinitarian Christology, made him a controversial figure in the First Council of Nicea, convened by Roman Emperor Constantine in 325 A.D. After Emperor Constantine legalized and formalized the Christianity of the time in the Roman Empire, the newly recognized Catholic Church sought to unify theology. Trinitarian partisans, including Athanasius, used Arius and Arianism as epithets to represent disagreement with co-equal Trinitarianism, a Christology representing the Father and Son (Jesus of Nazareth) as "of one essence" (consubstantial) and coeternal.[1] Although virtually all positive writings on Arius' theology have been suppressed or destroyed[2], negative writings describe Arius' theology as one in which there was a time before the Son of God, where only God the Father existed. Despite concerted opposition, 'Arian', or nontrinitarian Christian churches persisted throughout Europe and North Africa, in various Gothic and Germanic kingdoms, until suppressed by military conquest or voluntary royal conversion between the fifth and seventh centuries. Although "Arianism" suggests that Arius was the originator of the teaching that bears his name, the debate over the Son’s precise relationship to the Father did not begin with him. This subject had been discussed for decades before his advent; Arius merely intensified the controversy and carried it to a Church-wide audience, where other "Arians" such as Eusebius of Nicomedia and Eusebius of Caesarea would prove much more influential in the long run. In fact, some later "Arians" disavowed that moniker, claiming not to have been familiar with the man or his specific teachings.[3] However, because the conflict between Arius and his foes brought the issue to the theological forefront, the doctrine he proclaimed-though not originated by him-is generally labeled as "his"...

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