Eutyches

, originally a monk of the fifth century, and for his piety elected abbot of the convent near Constantinople to which he belonged, is said to have lived to an advanced age before he distinguished himself by any peculiar opinions. Then, through a violent desire to oppose the Nestorian heresy, which was supposed to divide the nature of Christ into two distinct persons, he became the leader of a new heresy, by absorbing the human nature of Christ entirely in the divine, and maintaining that the human body of Christ was only apparent. His doctrines were first noticed in a council assembled at Constantinople by Fluvianus, in the year 448, where they were condemned, and himself deposed from his dignity of abbot. Eutyches, however, had interest enough with the emperor Theodosius to procure another council at Ephesus, in the year 449, in which the former acts were reversed, Flavian and other bishops who had opposed Eutyches deposed, and every thing carried with such violence, that this council is generally named woJoj xwrrpun), the convention of robbers. A third council was necessary to settle these differences; and pope Leo the First, (called St. Leo, or Leo the Great) prevailed on Marcian, the successor of Theodosius, to cull one at Chalcedon, which met in the year 451, and was reckoned the fourth recumenical or general council. Six hundred and thirty bishops were present. Here Kutyches was condemned, though absent, and the following doctrine laid down in opposition to his heresy: “That in Christ two distinct natures were united in one person, without any change, mixture, or confusion.” Yet even after this decision, violent disputes and divisions subsisted for a considerable time. It is uncertain what became of Eutyches after the council of Ephesus; Leo certainly applied ta Marcian and to Pulcheria to have him deposed; but | whether he succeeded or not, is unknown. Two supplications to Theodosius, one confession, and a fragment of another by Eutyches, are still extant. 1

1

Cave, vol. I.—Dupin.—Mosheim’s Eccl. Hist.