Basilides and the Basilidians
DOI link for Basilides and the Basilidians
Basilides and the Basilidians book
Basilides was the first Christian intellectual known in the history of the Egyptian Church. His place of origin and his education remain unknown in spite of some biographical details invented by heresiologists to prove that his doctrine is part of the history of Christian heresies. Most of the fragments of Basilides's Exegetica are preserved in Clement of Alexandria's Stromata. The philosophical orientation of the author of the Elenchos underlines the medioplatonic context of Basilides's doctrine, and in particular Aristotelian sources of Basilides's cosmogony and Stoic sources of his ethics. Beside the Fragments of Basilides and Isidoros, and beyond the refutations of Irenaeus and the Elenchos, Coptic documents of the Nag Hammadi collection of Gnostic texts are now offering a new approach to Basilidian doctrine. Basilidians seem to be still present in Egypt at the time of Epiphanius just like the Valentinian Gnostics.