« Maximus the Cynic, bp of Constantinople Maximus, patriarch of Antioch Maximus, bp. of Turin »

Maximus, patriarch of Antioch

Maximus (15), patriarch of Antioch. After the deposition of Domnus II., patriarch of Antioch, by the "Latrocinium" of Ephesus, a.d. 449, Dioscorus persuaded the weak Theodosius to fill the vacancy with one of the clergy of Constantinople. Maximus was selected and ordained, in violation of all canonical orders, by Anatolius bp. of Constantinople, without the official sanction of the clergy or people of Antioch. Maximus, though owing his elevation to an heretical synod, gained a reputation for orthodoxy in the conduct of his diocese and province. He dispatched "epistolae tractoriae" through the churches subject to him as metropolitan, requiring the signatures of the bishops to Leo's famous "tome" and to another document condemning both Nestorius and Eutyches (Leo Magn. Ep. ad Paschas. 88 [68], June 451). Having thus discreetly assured his position, he was summoned to the council of Chalcedon in Oct. 451, and took his seat without question, and when the illegal acts of the "Latrocinium" were quashed, including the deposition of the other prelates, a special exception was made of the substitution of Maximus for Domnus on the express ground that Leo had opened communion with him and recognized his episcopate (Labbe, iv. 682). His most important controversy at Chalcedon was with Juvenal of Jerusalem regarding the limits of their respective patriarchates. It was long and bitter; at 715last a compromise was accepted by the council, that Antioch should retain the two Phoenicias and Arabia and that the three Palestines should form the patriarchate of Jerusalem (ib. 614–618). Maximus was among those by whom the Confession of Faith was drawn up (ib. 539–562), and stands second, between Anatolius of Constantinople and Juvenal of Jerusalem, in the signatories to the decree according metropolitical rank to Constantinople (ib. 798).

The next notice of Maximus is in a correspondence with Leo the Great, to whom he had appealed in defence of the prerogatives of his see. Leo promised to help him against either Jerusalem or Constantinople, exhorting him to assert his privileges as bp. of the third see in Christendom (i.e. only inferior to Alexandria and Rome). Maximus's zeal for the orthodox faith receives warm commendation from Leo, who exhorts him as "consors apostolicae sedis" to maintain the doctrine founded by St. Peter "speciali magisterio" in the cities of Antioch and Rome, against the erroneous teaching both of Nestorius and Eutyches, and to watch over the churches of the East generally and send him frequent tidings. The letter, dated June 11, 453, closes with a desire that Maximus will restrain unordained persons, whether monks or simple laics, from public preaching and teaching (Leo Magn. Ep. 109 [92]). Two years later, a.d. 455, the episcopate of Maximus came to a disastrous close by his deposition. The nature of his offence is nowhere specified. We do not know how much longer he lived or what became of him. Tillem. Mém. eccl. t. xv. passim; Le Quien, Oriens Christianus, t. ii. p. 725.

[E.V.]

« Maximus the Cynic, bp of Constantinople Maximus, patriarch of Antioch Maximus, bp. of Turin »





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