Caesarea, Councils of (2)

Caesarea, Councils Of

(Concilium Ccesariense). Several such were held at the various places named below.

I. In Palestine, A.D. 196, on the Easter controversy that had arisen between pope Victor and the churches -of Asia Minor; Narcissus of Jerusalem, Theophilus of Csesarea, Cassius of Tyre, and Clarus of Ptolemais being present, as, we learn from Eusebius. They beg, in what he has preserved of their letter, to be understood as keeping Easter on the same day as the Church of Alexandria. But several versions of the acts of this council have been discovered in the West, at much greater length: the only question is, are they in keeping with the above letter? See Cave, Hist. Lit. i, 97; Mansi, i, 711-716.

II. In Palestine, summoned A.D. 331, to inquire into the truth of some charges brought against St. Athanasius by his enemies, but not held till 334, when he was further accused of having kept the council appointed to try them waiting thirty months. He knew too well to what party the bishop of the diocese belonged to appear even then; and, on his non-appearance, proceedings had to be adjourned to the Council of Tyre the year following. See Mansi, ii, 1122.

III. In Palestine, A.D. 357 or 358, apparently, under Acacius, its metropolitan, when St. Cyril of Jerusalem was deposed. Socrates adds that he appealed from its sentence to a higher tribunal, a course hitherto without precedent in canonical usage; and that his appeal was allowed by the emperor.

IV. In Pontus, or Neo-Csesarea, A.D. 358, at which Eustathius, bishop of Sebaste, was deposed; and Meletius, afterwards bishop of Antioch, set in his place.

V. In Cappadocia, A.D. 370 or 371, when St. Basil was constituted bishop in the room of Eusebius, its former metropolitan, whom he had been assisting some years, though he had been ordained deacon by St. Meletius. A work of the 9th century makes St. Basil anathematize Dianius, the predecessor of his own predecessor at this synod; but St. Basil himself denies ever having done so. In another place he seems to speak of another synod about to be held in his diocese, to settle the question of jurisdiction between him and the metropolitan of Tyana, consequent on the division of Cappadocia by the civil power into two provinces. St. Basil stood upon his ancient rights; but eventually the matter was compromised, by the erection of more sees in each, the carrying out of which, however beneficial to their country, proved so nearly fatal to their friendship. The date assigned to this council is A.D. 372. See Mansi, iii, 453.

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