Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

A Neo-Platonic philosopher, a convert to Christianity, who flourished towards the end of the fifth century. In a dialogue entitled Theophrastus he alludes to Hierocles (of Alexandria ) as his teacher, and in some of his letters mentions as his contemporaries writers whom we know to have lived at the end of the fifth century and the beginning of the sixth. His testimony is often quoted in favor of the miraculous gift of speech conferred on the Christian martyrs whose tongues were cut out by order of the Vandal king Huneric ( Baronius, ad ann. 484, n. 91 sqq). Like all the Christian Neo-Platonists, Æneas held Plato in higher esteem than Aristotle, although his acquaintance with Plato's doctrine was acquired through traditional teaching and the study of apocryphal Platonic writings, and not -- to any great extent, at least -- through the study of the genuine Dialogues. Like Synesius, Nemesius, and others, he found in Neo-Platonism the philosophical system which best accorded with Christian revelation. But, unlike Synesius and Nemesius, he rejected some of the most characteristic doctrines of the Neo-Platonists as being inconsistent with Christian dogma. For instance, he rejected the doctrine of pre-existence (according to which the soul of man existed before its union with body), arguing that the soul before its union with the body would have been "idle", incapable of exercising any of its faculties ( Migne, P.G., LXXXV, 947). Similarly, he rejected the doctrine of the eternal duration of the world, on the ground that the world is corporeal, and, although the best possible "mechanism", contains in itself the elements of dissolution (op. cit. 958 sqq). Again, he taught that "man's body is composed of matter and form", and that while the matter perishes the "form" of the body retains the power of resuscitating the "matter" on the last day (op. cit., 982).


More Encyclopedia

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.

Catholic Encyclopedia

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.

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


Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Corinthians 2:1-5
1 Now when I came to you, brothers, I did not come ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 119:97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102
97 How I love your Law! I ponder it all day ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 4:16-30
16 He came to Nazara, where he had been brought up, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 1st, 2014 Image

St. Giles, Abbot
September 1: St. Giles, Abbot (Patron of Physically Disabled) Feast day - ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter