Hermogenes

, an heretic of the second century, was a native of Africa, a painter, and stoic philosopher, and was alive in the days of Tertullian, according to Fleury. Tillemont makes him flourish in the year 200; but Du Fresnoy says he did not preach his erroneous opinions concerning the origin of the world, and the nature of the soul, till the year 208. He established matter as the first principle, and made Idea the mother of all the elements; for which reason his followers were commonly called Mattriarians. By his assertion of the self-existence and improduction of matter, he endeavoured to give an account (as stoic philosophers had done before him) of the original of evils; and to free God from the imputation of them, he argued thus: God made all things either out of himself, or out of nothing, or out of pre-existent matter. He could not make all things out of himself, because, himself being always unmade, he should then really have been the maker of nothing: and he did not make all out of nothing, because, being essentially good, he would have made every thing in the best manner, and so there could have been no evil in the world: but since there are evils, and these could not proceed from the will of God, they must needs rise from the fault of something, and therefore of the matter out of which things were made. His followers denied the resurrection, rejected water-baptism, asserted that angels were composed of fire and spirit, and were the creators of the | soul of man; and that Christ, as he ascended, diveste’d himself of human nature, and left his body in the sun. Tertullian has written against him. 1

1 Cave. Dupin. Lardner’s Works.