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St. Athanasius stood contra mundum for the Trinitarian doctrine 'whole and undefiled,' when it looked as if all the civilized world was slipping back from Christianity into the religion of Arius, into one of those 'sensible' synthetic religions which are so strongly recommended today and which then, as now, included among their devotees many highly cultivated clergymen.
The three documents translated in this volume, "Against the Monophysites," "Concerning the Three Chapters," and On the True Faith," are significant imperial documents reflecting the conclusion reached in that theological program. Although they failed to convince the monophysites or reconcile them to the imperial Church, they articulate the interpretation of Chalcedon's Christological definition, upheld by Orthodox theologians even today, and set the stage for the Christological definitions of the Fifth Ecumenical Council.
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