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A Trinitarian heresy that denied that the Logos, Jesus Christ, possessed subsistence and implied that God the Father Himself suffered and died on the cross in the guise of the Son. This term is thus synonymous with sabellianism and was invented by the Latin Fathers who called the propagators of monarchianism patripassiani (attributors of suffering to the Father) while the Greeks called them Sabellians. tertullian, in his Treatise Against Praxeas 1, first insisted on this implication of Sabellianism, taking Praxeas to task not only for his monarchianism, but also for his opposition to montanism, which Praxeas persuaded the pope (apparently Victor I) to condemn: Duo negotia diaboli Praxeas Romae procuravit: Paracletum fugavit et Patrem crucifixit (Praxeas achieved two works of the devil in Rome: he put the Holy Spirit to flight and crucified the Father). Some scholars think that Tertullian misrepresented Praxeas's archaic Trinitarian formulations to make him the father of modalism, and so discredit him, for the name Praxeas does not appear elsewhere in contemporary sources; others suggest that Tertullian is using the word Praxeas (busybody) as a nickname for Pope Callistus.

Bibliography: tertullian, Treatise Against Praxeas, ed. and tr. e. evans (Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge;1949). j. daniÉlou and h. marrou, Des origines à saint Grégoire le Grand, v.1 of Nouvelle histoire de l'Église (Paris 1963) 1:138. g. bardy, Dictionnaire de théologie catholique, ed. a. vacant et al., (Paris 190350) 10.2:21962200.

[p. lebeau]

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