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Title: The Involvement of Theodore of Mopsuestia in the Pelagian Controversy
Subtitle: A Study of Theodore's Treatise Against Those who Say that Men Sin by Nature and not by Will
Author(s): MALAVASI, Giulio
Journal: Augustiniana
Volume: 64    Issue: 1-4   Date: 2014   
Pages: 227-260
DOI: 10.2143/AUG.64.1.3080613

Abstract :
Theodore of Mopsuestia (350-428) was the author of the only theological treatise written by an Eastern bishop in defence of Pelagianism. It is entitled Against those who say that men sin by nature and not by will. Regrettably, this treatise has been lost and only fragments remain. In addition to analyzing the extant sources relating to Theodore’s treatise, this article will provide a selective status quaestionis, in which the areas that have been left undeveloped by previous scholars will be identified. In particular, according to Photius, Theodore wrote this treatise to counter Jerome’s Dialogus adversus Pelagianos, but a comparison between these two works has yet to be undertaken. A careful comparison between the remaining fragments of Theodore’s work and Jerome’s dialogue will be used to suggest that Theodore did not have direct knowledge of Jerome’s dialogue. There are discrepancies and misunderstandings in Theodore’s work that would be difficult to explain if Theodore had relied directly on Jerome’s work. It will be proposed, as hypothesis, that Julian of Aeclanum, expelled from Italy in 418, acted as an intermediary, bringing the news of the Pelagian controversy to Cilicia. Marius Mercator recorded that Julian was welcomed by Theodore during his exile and that he wrote his last work (Ad Florum) against Augustine there. Julian’s work contains all of the issues found in what remains of Theodore’s treatise and several unique exegeses. It seems, therefore, that Theodore borrowed from Julian’s argument against Augustine to oppose Jerome.

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