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Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

Irenaeus, Bishop of Tyre

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flourished in the first half of the 5th century, He was originally a count of the empire, and first took part in ecclesiastical affairs at the Council of Ephesus, A.D. 431, where he represented the emperor Theodosius as assistant to Candidius; to settle the controversy between Cyril and Nestorius, and their respective followers. Both he and Candidius favored Nestorius, and, failing to prevent his condemnation at the council, did their utmost, on their return to court, to counteract on the emperor's mind the influence and decision of the Cyrillians against Nestorius. For a time they succeeded well, as their representations "bore on their very face the impress of truth." But the Cyrillian party predominating, and John, the secretary of Cyril, appearing himself at court to counteract the efforts of Irenaeus and Candidius, the feeble sovereign was soon turned in favor of the Cyrillian party, and Irenaeus himself was banished from the court about A.D. 435. He at once betook himself to his friends, the Oriental bishops, and by them was raised to the bishopric of Tyre in 444. The emperor now issued an edict condemning the Nestorians. and, in addition, it was ordered that Irenaeus should be deposed from. the bishopric, and deprived of his clerical character. In 448 the sentence was finally executed. After his retirement Irenaeus wrote a history of the Nestorian struggle; under the title of Tragdia seu Comsenitarii de rebus in Synodo Ephesina ac in Oricite gestis. The original, which was written in' Greek, is lost, and only parts of it remain to us in a Latin translation published by Christian Lupus, under the inaccurate title of Variorum Patrum Epistole ad Concilinum Ephesinum pertinentis (Lotv. 1682). See Mansi, Sacr. Concil. Nov. Collect. 5, 417, 731; Tillemont, lam. Sirach 14; Cave, Hist. Litt. sub. ann. 444; Hoefer, Nouv. Biog. Genesis 25:949; Neander, Ch. Hist. 2, 468 sq.

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McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Irenaeus, Bishop of Tyre'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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