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Headword: *)ae/tios
Adler number: alpha,571
Translated headword: Aetios, Aetius
Vetting Status: high
From Antioch in Syria,[1] the teacher of Eunomios,[2] he happened [to be] of poor and lower-class parentage. His father was one of those in the army who were faring rather poorly; when he had just sent that son away, he died. So he [Aetios] having come to the extreme of difficulty took himself to goldsmithing and became very skillful. But when his nature yearned for better studies, he turned to logical theories. And he joined Paulinos right when that man had recently arrived at Antioch from Tyre. He still attended him [as a student] in the time of Constantine, displaying a great force of impiety in his disputations with his opponents, and few men could withstand him. After Paulinos died, when Eulalius held the see as twenty-third [in succession] from the apostles,[3] many of those who had been shamed by Aetios thought it a terrible thing to have been defeated by a man who was a newcomer and a craftsman: they banded together and drove him out of Antioch. Being driven out he came to Anazarbos.[4] And he, so full of every ability, brought forth fruits better than his given circumstances. He did not at all stop disputing them, although he was poorly dressed and lived as he happened to be able.[5]
This man was a heresiarch,[6] who was called an atheist in the time of Constantine the Great. He believed the same things as Arius and applauded the same doctrine, but he separated himself from the Arians. Aetios was a heretical[7] man earlier and he passionately hastened to advocate the dogma of Arius, for when he had learned a little in Alexandria he departed. And upon arrival in Antioch in Syria (for he was from that place) he was made a deacon by Leontios, who was bishop at the time. And he shouted at[8] those who met him, discoursing from the Categories of Aristotle and setting right the contentious arguments.[9] He also patched together letters to the emperor Constantine. But even though he said the same things as the Arianists, he nevertheless, although agreeing with those people, was thought a heretic by his own familiars who were unable to understand the complexity of the arguments. And on account of this he was expelled from their church and he himself decided [it was best] not to have dealings with them.[10] And now because of that there are men who were then called "Aetianists" but now "Eunomians". For Eunomios who was his secretary and was taught by him in the heretical doctrine assumed the leadership of this faction.
Greek Original:
*)ae/tios: e)c *)antioxei/as th=s *suri/as, dida/skalos *eu)nomi/ou, a)po\ penixrw=n kai\ eu)telw=n gone/wn tugxa/nwn. o( de\ path\r au)tw=| tw=n e)n stratia=| dusprage/steron e)nhnegme/nwn geno/menos, e)teqnh/kei komidh=| pai=da tou=ton a)fei/s. au)to\s de\ ei)s e)/sxaton a)pori/as h(/kwn, e)pi\ xrusoxoi/+an e)xw/rhsen a)kro/tato/s te e)ge/neto. e)pei\ de\ h( fu/sis au)tw=| meizo/nwn w)re/geto maqhma/twn, pro\s logika\s qewri/as e)tra/peto. kai\ dh=ta suggi/netai *pauli/nw| a)rti/ws a)po\ th=s *tu/rou ei)s *)antio/xeian a)fikome/nw|: e)/ti kata\ tou\s *kwnstanti/nou xro/nous tou/tou h)kroa=to, pollh\n e)pieikw=s fai/nwn th=s a)sebei/as th\n r(w/mhn ei)s ta\s pro\s tou\s diaferome/nous zhth/seis: kai\ ou)x u(po/statos h)/dh toi=s polloi=s h)=n. e)pei\ de\ *pauli=nos e)teqnh/kei, *eu)lali/ou tri/tou kai\ ei)kostou= a)po\ tw=n a)posto/lwn e)/xontos to\n qro/non, polloi\ tw=n u(po\ tou= *)aeti/ou e)legxome/nwn deino\n poihsa/menoi pro\s a)ndro\s dhmiourgou= kai\ ne/ou kata\ kra/tos e)lau/nesqai, susta/ntes e)ch/lasan au)to\n th=s *)antioxei/as. e)celaqei\s de\ ei)s th\n *)ana/zarbon a)fiknei=tai. o( de\ h)/dh ta/xista duna/mews pa/shs pimpla/menos mei/zous a)ei\ tw=n dedome/nwn a)formw=n ei)se/fere tou\s karpou/s. o( de\ ou)de\n e)pau/eto tou\s me\n diele/gxwn, fau/lws de\ a)mpisxo/menos kai\ w(s e)/tuxe zw=n. ou(=tos ai(resia/rxhs h)=n, o(\s kai\ a)/qeos e)peklh/qh e)pi\ tou= mega/lou *kwnstanti/nou. ta\ au)ta\ me\n ou)=n e)fro/nei *)arei/w| kai\ th\n au)th\n sunekro/tei do/can: pro\s de\ a)reiani/zontas diekri/neto. h)=n de\ kai\ pro/teron ai(retiko\s a)/nqrwpos *)ae/tios kai\ tw=| *)arei/ou do/gmati diapu/rws sunhgorei=n e)/speuden: e)n ga\r th=| *)alecandrei/a| mikra\ paideuqei\s a)nazeu/gnusi. kai\ katalabw\n th\n e)n *suri/a| *)antio/xeian, e)nteu=qen ga\r h)=n, u(po\ *leonti/ou tou= to/te th=s *)antioxei/as e)pisko/pou xeirotonei=tai dia/konos. eu)qu\s ou)=n sunecefw/nei tou\s e)ntugxa/nontas e)k tw=n *)aristote/lous kathgoriw=n dialego/menos, tou\s e)ristikou\s katwrqwkw\s lo/gous. e)pistola/s te suneka/ttue pro\s basile/a *kwnsta/ntion. a)ll' ei) ta\ au)ta\ toi=s a)reiani/zousin e)/legen, o(/mws u(po\ tw=n oi)kei/wn ou) duname/nwn sunie/nai to\ periskele\s tw=n logismw=n w(s ai(retiko\s o( o(mo/frwn au)toi=s e)nomi/zeto. kai\ dia\ tou=to e)kdiwxqei\s th=s au)tw=n e)kklhsi/as e)/docen au)to\s mh\ bou/lesqai koinwnei=n au)toi=s. kai\ nu=n ei)sin e)c e)kei/nou oi( to/te me\n *)aetianoi\ nu=n de\ *eu)nomianoi\ lego/menoi. *eu)no/mios ga\r taxugra/fos w)\n e)kei/nou kai\ u(p' au)tw=| paideuqei\s th\n ai(retikh\n le/cin tou= sti/fous tou/tou proe/sth.
See Catholic Encyclopedia entry on Eunomianism at web address 1.
[1] Syrian Antioch (cf. alpha 2692 and OCD(4) s.v. Antioch(1)) is on the River Orontes (cf. omicron 622), near present-day Antakya, Turkey, some 20km inland from the eastern Mediterranean coast (Barrington Atlas map 67 grid D4). The qualifier (again later in the entry) is used because there was more than one city of that name, e.g. one in Pisidia (in west-central Asia Minor; near the modern-day city of YalvaƧ, Turkey; Barrington Atlas map 62 grid F5).
[2] Eunomios: epsilon 3598.
[3] Eulalius was patriarch of Antioch for five months in the year 332.
[4] Anazarbos: alpha 1866.
[5] Philostorgius, Historia ecclesiastica III.15b, pp.44-47 Bidez-Winkelmann. Philostorgius himself had Arian sympathies, and presents a more favorable view of Aetius than does Socrates Scholaticus, in what follows here.
[6] The rest of the Suda entry is based on Socrates, Historia ecclesiastica 2.35. See translation at web address 2.
[7] Socrates says "contentious" (e)ristiko/s).
[8] Socrates says "he astounded them by his strange language" (e)cenofw/nei).
[9] This clause is not in Socrates.
[10] Socrates says that Aetios pretended to have decided for himself to break his association with the Arianists.
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2
Keywords: biography; Christianity; chronology; clothing; economics; ethics; geography; historiography; history; military affairs; philosophy; religion; science and technology; trade and manufacture
Translated by: Jennifer Benedict on 3 May 2001@16:36:40.
Vetted by:
Catharine Roth (modified translation, added references) on 3 May 2001@22:32:14.
Catharine Roth (Added link.) on 7 May 2001@20:06:41.
Catharine Roth (modified translation) on 8 May 2001@01:14:02.
Catharine Roth (added cross-reference) on 17 February 2002@23:19:35.
David Whitehead (augmented keywords; restorative and other cosmetics) on 10 June 2003@05:36:28.
Catharine Roth (augmented reference) on 28 November 2004@23:37:53.
Catharine Roth (added keyword) on 2 October 2005@01:41:21.
Catharine Roth (coding) on 17 August 2006@00:57:43.
Catharine Roth (tweaked translation) on 31 December 2011@17:50:58.
David Whitehead (more keywords; cosmetics) on 12 January 2012@06:00:52.
David Whitehead (another note) on 28 April 2015@02:41:46.
Catharine Roth (tweaked translation) on 28 April 2015@10:40:42.
Ronald Allen (added map notes and cross-references) on 5 April 2018@23:43:19.
Catharine Roth (modified translation, added a link) on 7 April 2018@18:24:07.
Catharine Roth (tweaked translation) on 7 April 2018@18:27:27.
Catharine Roth (expanded notes) on 7 April 2018@18:42:27.
Catharine Roth (recent tweaks inspired by Ron Allen's suggestions) on 7 April 2018@18:45:44.


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