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The Great DissentJohn Henry Newman and the Liberal Heresy$
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Robert Pattison

Print publication date: 1991

Print ISBN-13: 9780195067309

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195067309.001.0001

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Heresy and Liberalism: Cicero, Arius, and Socinus

Heresy and Liberalism: Cicero, Arius, and Socinus

(p.96) 3 Heresy and Liberalism: Cicero, Arius, and Socinus
The Great Dissent

Robert Pattison

Oxford University Press

This chapter explains how Newman reached the conclusion that Arius, the 4th-century heresiarch, defiled Christian civilization with liberal apostasy. Other heretics than Arius and Hampden might have been selected to illustrate the anti-dogmatic principle against which Newman rebelled. Among his contemporaries, Blanco White and John Stuart Mill provoked his indignation as much as Hampden did, and the ancient errors of Nestorius and Sabellius, were, he thought, tainted with the same protoliberalism that infected the theology of Arius. But Arius and Hampden are at least representative of the humanistic tradition against which Newman hardened his heart, and in addition, each can claim to be important in his own right. Arius has been controversial for 1,600 years, and if Newman was right, he is one of the pivotal figures of Western thought.

Keywords:   Arius, 4th-century heresiarch, Christian civilization, protoliberalism, Western thought, Cicero, Socinus

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