Basil

, bishop of Ancyra in the year 336, was ordained to that office by the bishops of Eusebius’s party, in room of Marcellus, whom they had deposed: but Basil was excommunicated, and his ordination declared void in the council of Sardica, although he continued still in the possession of his see. He disputed against Photinus in the council of Sirmium, in the year 351, and there confounded that heretic. He was one of the greatest enemies to the Arians, or Anomseans, i. e. those who openly vindicated the opinion of Arius, and maintained that the Word was not like to the Father. But he was, notwithstanding, considered as the head of the Semi-Arians, who maintained that the Son was similar to the Father in his essence, not by nature, but by a peculiar privilege. Basil maintained this opinion and procured it to be established by the authority of a council, which was held at Ancyra in the year 358, and defended it at Seleucia and Constantinople, against the Eudoxians and Acacians, who deposed him in the year 360, after charging him with many crimes. St. Jerome informs us, that Basil wrote a book against Marcellus, his predecessor; a treatise of Virginity; and some other lesser pieces, of which no remains are extant, but he had the reputation of a man of learning and eloquence. Although he is placed by some at the head of the Semi-Arians, yet it is not quite certain that he was deemed a heretic. St. Basil speaks of him as a Catholic bishop, and Athanasius confesses, in his book of Synods, that Basil of Ancyra and those of his party, did not differ from them that professed the consubstantiality, but only in words, and therefore Hilary and Philastrius call the bishops of the council of Sirmium, held against Photinus, of which Basil of Ancyra was the chief, orthodox bishops. 1

1

Cave, vol. I. Dupin. Lardner’s Works.