A term applied to the Eutychians who withdrew from Peter Mongus, the Monophysite Patriarch of Alexandria, in 482. With the apparent purpose of bringing the orthodox and heretics into unity, Peter Mongus and Acacius of Constantinople had elaborated a new creed in which they condemned expressly Nestorius and Eutyches, but at the same time affected to pass over the decisions of the Council of Chalcedon and rejected them hypocritically. This ambiguous formula, though approved by the Emperor Zeno and imposed by him in his edict of union, or Henoticon , could only satisfy the indifferent. The condemnation of Eutyches irritated the rigid Monophysites ; the equivocal attitude taken towards the Council of Chalcedon appeared to them insufficient, and many of them, especially the monks, deserted Peter Mongus , preferring to be without a head ( akephaloi ), rather than remain in communion with him. Later, they joined the partisans of the Monophysite Patriarch of Antioch, Severus. The Deacon Liberatus (Breviarium, P.L., LVIII, 988) supposes the name Acephali (Headless) to have been given to those at the Council of Ephesus who followed neither Cyril of Alexandria nor John of Antioch.
More Catholic Encyclopedia
Browse Encyclopedia by Alphabet
The Catholic Encyclopedia is the most comprehensive resource on Catholic teaching, history, and information ever gathered in all of human history. This easy-to-search online version was originally printed in fifteen hardcopy volumes.
Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching, the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church has defined, but also an impartial record of different views of acknowledged authority on all disputed questions, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archaeology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.
No one who is interested in human history, past and present, can ignore the Catholic Church, either as an institution which has been the central figure in the civilized world for nearly two thousand years, decisively affecting its destinies, religious, literary, scientific, social and political, or as an existing power whose influence and activity extend to every part of the globe. In the past century the Church has grown both extensively and intensively among English-speaking peoples. Their living interests demand that they should have the means of informing themselves about this vast institution, which, whether they are Catholics or not, affects their fortunes and their destiny.
Browse the Catholic Encyclopedia by Topic
Copyright © Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company New York, NY. Volume 1: 1907; Volume 2: 1907; Volume 3: 1908; Volume 4: 1908; Volume 5: 1909; Volume 6: 1909; Volume 7: 1910; Volume 8: 1910; Volume 9: 1910; Volume 10: 1911; Volume 11: - 1911; Volume 12: - 1911; Volume 13: - 1912; Volume 14: 1912; Volume 15: 1912
Catholic Online Catholic Encyclopedia Digital version Compiled and Copyright © Catholic Online