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§ 133. Hermogenes.

Tertullian: Adv. Hermogenem. Written about a.d. 206. One of his two tracts against H. is lost. Hippolytus: Philos. VIII. 17 (p. 432). Comp. Neander: Antignosticus, p. 448; Kaye: Tertullian, p. 532; Hauck: Tertullian, p. 240; Salmond: in "Smith & Wace," III. 1–3.

Hermogenes was a painter in Carthage at the end of the second and beginning of the third century. Tertullian describes him as a turbulent, loquacious, and impudent man, who "married more women than he painted."913913    This was enough to condemn him in the eyes of a Montanist.13 He is but remotely connected with Gnosticism by his Platonic dualism and denial of the creation out of nothing. He derived the world, including the soul of man, from the formless, eternal matter,914914    Hippol. l.c.: ἔφη τὸν θεὸν ἐξ ὕλης συγχρόνου καὶ ἀγεννήτου πάντα πεποιηκέναι.14 and explained the ugly in the natural world, as well as the evil in the spiritual, by the resistance of matter to the formative influence of God. In this way only he thought he could account for the origin of evil. For if God had made the world out of nothing, it must be all good. He taught that Christ on his ascension left his body in the sun, and then ascended to the Father.915915    This foolish notion be proved from Ps. 19: "He hath placed his tabernacle in the sun."15  But otherwise he was orthodox and did not wish to separate from the church.

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