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Paul of Samosata

Paul of Samosata (səmŏs´ətə), fl. 260–72, Syrian Christian theologian, heretical patriarch of Antioch. He was a friend and high official of Zenobia of Palmyra. Paul enounced a dynamic monarchianism, denying the three Persons of the Trinity. He taught that the Logos came to dwell in Jesus at baptism, but that Jesus possessed no extraordinary nature above other men, the Logos being entirely an attribute of God. Paul was repeatedly challenged and finally excommunicated (269), but he continued to function as bishop under Zenobia's protection until the Romans took Palmyra (272). Arius may have been his pupil and his influence on Nestorius was considerable, but his connection with the Paulicians is disputed. See adoptionism.

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Paul of Samosata

Paul of Samosata (3rd cent.). Christian heretic. He became bishop of Antioch c.260 but was deposed by a synod there in 268 on account of his Christological teaching, little of which has survived. The best-attested accusation against Paul is that he taught that Christ was a mere man.

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