Roman Law Requires Seizure of Property From Eunomian Heretics

Roman Law Requires Seizure of Property From Eunomian Heretics

Emperor Honorius
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Emperors Arcadius and Honorius issue a new law requiring the confiscation of property from Eunomian heretics and their exile from their cities.

According to this law:

"To prevent the madness of the Eunomians from continuing, track down with all zeal the authors and teachers of the Eunomians, especially their clerics, whose madness has induced them to such false doctrine. They must be exiled from the cities and segregated from all communities." [CTh 16.5.31-32]

The Anomeans (also known as Eunomians after one of their leaders, Eunomius of Cyzicus) are an Arian sect which teaches that Jesus possessed a completely different nature from God. The label Anomoean comes from the Greek for "not similar."

It's noteworthy that the Eunomians are described as suffering from "madness" — describing adherents of non-Christian religions or members of heretical sects as insane is a common theme in Roman laws. The possibility of people simply disagreeing with the doctrines of orthodox Christian leaders isn't even considered.

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