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Desert ChristiansAn Introduction to the Literature of Early Monasticism$
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William, S.J. Harmless

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780195162233

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2005

DOI: 10.1093/0195162234.001.0001

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Patriarchs, Councils, and Controversies: 300–451

Patriarchs, Councils, and Controversies: 300–451

(p.25) 2 Patriarchs, Councils, and Controversies: 300–451
Desert Christians

William, S.J. Harmless (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

The patriarchs of Alexandria would cast long shadows over the history of Egyptian monasticism. This chapter focuses on the five most influential: Alexander, Athanasius, Theophilus, Cyril, and Dioscorus. It surveys both their careers and their theological controversies, especially their doctrine-defining clashes at the ecumenical Councils of Nicaea, Ephesus, and Chalcedon. This chapter provides critical historical and theological background, since the politics and theologies of the bishops of Alexandria figure prominently in early monastic literature, and their international prominence would help draw the world’s attention to Egypt and its monks.

Keywords:   patriarch (of Alexandria), Alexander of Alexandria, Arius, Nicaea, Council of, Athanasius, Theophilus, Cyril of Alexandria, Ephesus, Council of, Dioscorus, Chalcedon, Council of

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