(I.) is the name of a sect founded by Lucifer of Cagliari (q.v.), which originated as follows: In 360 the Arians of Antioch had chosen Seletius of Sebaste, formerly a Eusebian, but afterwards an adherent of the Nicene Confession, their bishop. But his inaugural discourse convinced them of their mistake about his views, and they deposed him after the lapse of only a few days. Meletius was next chosen bishop of the Homoousian congregation at Antioch. The appointment of one who had been an Arian was, however, resisted by a part of the people, headed by Paulinus, a presbyter. Athanasius and the Synodd of Alexandria. A.D. 362 used every influence to heal this schism. But Lucifel of Cagliari, whom the synod for this purpose reputed to Antioch, took the part of the opposition, and ordained Paulinus counter-bishop. What next followed has been narrated under LUCIFER. A comparison of this sect with the English Puritans is made by Punchard, Hist. of Congregationalisms 1, chapter 3.
(II.) The same name was afterwards applied to some heretics of the Middle Ages, who were accused of addressing prayers of the devil (Lucifer). It was particularly applied to fourteen of these heretics who were burned alive at Tangermünde, in Prussian Saxony (1336), by order of the elector of Brandenburg, influenced by the representations of the superior of the Franciscans. These heretics were probably Fratricelli (q.v.).