GENNADIUS OF MASSILIA: A presbyter of Massilia (Marseilles), contemporary of Pope Gelasius I. (492--496; cf. Gennadius, De vir. ill., xcix. [c.]), who, under the same title, continued Jerome's De viris illustribus, thus furnishing, in spite of many blunders, a very important source and in part the only source of our acquaintance with the ninety-one (ninety-three) authors treated therein. Gennadius knew Greek well and was well read in Eastern and Western, orthodox and heretical literature. He was a diligent compiler and a competent critic. His Semi-Pelagian attitude is evident in his eulogies of Cassian, Faustus of Riez, and others, as well as in his derogatory verdicts on the opposing side--Augustine, Prosper of Aquitaine, and even popes. The date of composition is uncertain. The present form of the text indicates a repeated revision of the entire work. It was edited by J. Andreas (Rome, 1468), by C. A. Bernoulli (Freiburg, 1895), by E. C. Richardson in


TU, xiv. (Leipsic, 1896), and is reprinted from J. A. Fabricius, Bibliotheca ecclesiastica (Hamburg, 1718), in MPL, Iviii. 1059-1120. There is an Eng. transl. in NPNF, 2d ser., iii. 385-402. Gennadius also composed Adversus omnes hæreses libri viii.; five books against Nestorius; ten books against Eutyches; three books against Pelagius; a Tractatus de millenio et de apocalypsi beati Johannis; and an Epistola de fide, which he sent to Gelasius. There is also attributed to Gennadius a Liber ecclesiasticorum dogmatum (Hamburg, 1614; reprinted in MPL, Iviii. 979-1054), an abstract of catholic doctrine with a polemical bent. Its composition by Gennadius would appear to confirm his leaning toward Semi-Pelagianism.

(G. Krüger.)

Bibliography: C. H. Turner, in JTS, vii (1906), 78-99; E. Jungmann, Quæstiones Gennadianæ, Leipsic, 1881; A. Ebert, Allgemeine Geschichte der Literatur des Mittelalters, i. 447-449, ib. 1889; B. Czapla, Gennadius als Litterarhistoriker, Münster, 1898; F. Diekamp, in Römische Quartalschrift, xii (1898), 411-420; DCB, ii. 631-632; H. Hurter, Nomenclator literarius, i. 409, Innsbruck, 1903; H. Koch, Vincenz von Lerin und Gennadius, in T U, xxxi. 2 (1907); Ceillier, Auteurs sacrés, x. 600-606.


CCEL home page
This document is from the Christian Classics Ethereal Library at
Calvin College. Last modified on 08/11/06. Contact the CCEL.
Calvin seal: My heart I offer you O Lord, promptly and sincerely