The schism at Antioch in the fourth century
The thesis begins by analysing past treatments in theological literature of the Schism at
Antioch, and by discussing the distinctive features of the Antiochene Church. The
character of Antiochene theology is considered, beginning with Paul of Samosata, the
'school of Lucian', and the rise and fall of Eustathius of Antioch. The early stages of
the Schism, especially under the episcopate of Leontius are considered, and the events
surrounding the election and first exile of Meletius; these are related to the wider
context of relations between East and West following the Council of Serdica, and to
Eastern creed-making after Nicaea. The events following the accession of the emperor
Julian, especially the Synod of Alexandria in 362 and the consecration of Paulinus as
rival bishop of Antioch are discussed. Attention is given to the role of Basil of
Caesarea, as shown in his letters, and to the role of Pope Damasus in the West, and
Apollinarianism in the East, in particular as relating to the recognition of Paulinus at
Rome in 375/6. The restoration of Meletius on the death of Val ens, and the subsequent
conciliar activity at Antioch, Constantinople and Rome is considered, with reference to
the alleged compact between Meletius and Paulinus and the position of Gregory of
Nazianzus, and the controversy resulting from the election of Flavian on Meletius'
death as bishop of Antioch. The continuing local Schism is illustrated from the sermons
of John Chrysostom, and the efforts of Flavian to extinguish the Schism are described.
The final reconciliations between Alexandria and Antioch and between Rome and
Antioch are described, and the efforts made to bring about reunion in Antioch itself.
The thesis concludes with an analysis of the theological, christological and canonical
considerations which caused the Schism, and a reflection on the characters of the
principal parties involved.