Christological Controversies--I'm confused

I’m trying to understand a little more about Church history.

Dave Armstrong talks about how essentially the whole of the East fell out of the Catholic Church through the Robber Council of Ephesus and the Henoticon

One of the things I don’t understand is the Henoticon, which was apparently endorsed by all the East according to Armstrong and JH Newman.

How could the Henoticon condemn Eutyches yet be “silent” on whether Christ had one or two natures?

What exactly is Monophysitism? What exactly is Miaphysitism? And what exactly is Eutychianism?

How does Eutyches’s position differ from Monophysitism?


I recommend this OrthodoxWiki page on Miaphytisim:

And I recommend this article for Monophysitism vs. Eutychianism.

What follows are some quotes from the first volume of Jaroslav Pelikan’s A History of the Development of Doctrine, The Emergence of the Catholic Tradition (100-600).

Here again it is important to keep in mind that the Monophysite movement was the source not only of the extreme views of this relation [of Christ to mankind] that arose, but also of their refutation. Thus Eutyches was reported to have declared: “Until this very day I have never said that the body of our Lord and God is homoousios with us.” But even the opponents of the Monophysite position conceded that it “anathematizes both the synod [of Chalcedon] and Eutyches because he refused to say that the body of Christ homoousios with us.” (271)

the Chalecdonian party itself, which, during the century between the Council of Chalcedon in 451 and the Second Council of Constantinople in 553, oved steadily toward an interpretation of Chalcedon in terms of Cyril and therefore neared (though never quite near enough to heal the schism) to the Monophysite doctrine. The first stage in this theological process, launched immediately after the council, reached its formal doctrinal (and political) articulation in the Henotikon of the emperor Zeno, issued in 482; this document was an attempt to resolve the dogmatic impasse by major concessoins, amount to capitulation, to the Monophysite position. The only binding statement of dogmatic orthodoxy was affirmed to be the creed adopted by the 318 fathers of the Council of Nicea–but as interpreted by the Councils of Constantinople and Ephesus and above all by the twelve anathemas of Cyril. Both Nestorius and Eutyches were declared anathema, but so was “anyone who taught or teaches otherwise, now or in the past, at Chalcedon or at any other synod” . . . Christ was “homoousios with the Father according to his divinity and homoousios with us according to his humanity,” but this did not in any way mollify the strict insistence that “there is only one Son, not two.” Politically, the Henotikon failed to appease the Monophysites but managed to precipitate a schism with Rome. Dogmatically, it was, however, a somewhat exaggerated version of the eventual accommodation of Chalcedonian orthodoxy to an almost completely Cyrillian interpretation of the decree of 451 (274-275).

Thanks, edarlitrix,

The orthodoxwiki page was helpful. The New Advent page was too complicated for me.

Could someone give a simple explanation of the difference between Eutychianism and Monophysitism?

You’re welcome!

Here is an OrthodoxWiki page that I found very straightfoward:

According to the Historical Development section of the Monophysitism Wikipedia page (,

Eutycheanism is just a subset of monophysitism. It it falls within the category of monophysitism. Just like blue is a type of color–color is the broader category and blue is a specific example within that category. So Eutycheanism is a specific example within the category of Monophysitism.

The book Dissent From The Creed might be a helpful resource for you to check out.

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