Chapter

The Age of Parmenian <span class="smallCaps">a.d.</span> 363–91

W. H. C. Frend

in The Donatist Church

Published in print November 1985 | ISBN: 9780198264088
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191682704 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198264088.003.0014
The Age of Parmenian a.d. 363–91

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The position that Parmenian, the new Donatist bishop of Carthage, was called upon to fill was no easy one. Parmenian, however, showed himself equal to the situation. The year and a half of undisputed authority had evidently done much to remove the initial disadvantages under which he had arrived in Africa. His opponent, Optatus of Milevis, makes the most of the fact that he was a foreigner and therefore unfamiliar with the early history of the controversy and with African conditions in general. Yet by 364, Parmenian was the acknowledged spokesman of the Donatist Church, and throughout his long period of office, which lasted until 391/2, his authority was never seriously challenged. He brought Donatism successfully through the crisis of Firmus' revolt, the excommunication of Tyconius, and the Rogatist schism. By the end of his rule, Parmenian's Church had attained the height of its power and prosperity.

Keywords: Donatism; Numidian extremists; Carthage; Optatus; Rogatist schism

Chapter.  6591 words. 

Subjects: History of Christianity

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