A rigorist schism in the W. Church. Novatian was a Roman presbyter and author of a treatise on the doctrine of the Trinity. Apparently because he was disappointed by the election of Cornelius as Pope (251), he joined the rigorist party which deprecated concessions to those who had compromised in the Decian persecution, and he was consecrated rival Bp. of Rome. He suffered martyrdom in 257–8. The Novatianists, though doctrinally orthodox, were excommunicated. They survived into the 5th century.
Subjects: Christianity — Medieval and Renaissance History (500 to 1500).