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The Donatist ChurchA Movement of Protest in Roman North Africa$
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W. H. C. Frend

Print publication date: 1985

Print ISBN-13: 9780198264088

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198264088.001.0001

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The Eclipse of Donatism a.d. 399–410

The Eclipse of Donatism a.d. 399–410

(p.244) XVI The Eclipse of Donatism A.D. 399–410
The Donatist Church

W. H. C. Frend

Oxford University Press

Eleven years saw the defeat of the Donatist movement in North Africa. The tactics pursued by the two Churches can be reconstructed in their detail. The great personal duel between Augustine and Petilian of Constantine becomes alive amidst the arid dialectic of the Augustinian anti-Donatist tracts. At the same time, the canons of the annual Catholic Councils provide the background of the internal condition of the victorious Catholic Church. The laws of the Codex Theadarianus shed light on the policy of the Imperial Court, and provide a clue towards understanding the mission of the Imperial mandatory Marcellinus to Africa in 411. Meanwhile, the Acta of the Council of Carthage, over which Marcellinus himself presided in June 411, reveals both the conflicting ideas of the two Churches and the outlook and personal beliefs of the advocates who defended them.

Keywords:   North Africa, Augustine, Petilian, Catholic Church, Imperial Court, Codex Theodosianus, Marcellinus

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