Part Three: The Pelagian Crisis (411–430)
Article 280: Council of Carthage (418)
Council of Carthage (418)
Winter may have prevented Zosimus from responding to the first letter of the African bishops. He had received it in 417 from the Council of Carthage (417) concerning the Pelagians. He responded on March 21, 418. Later he received a second letter of the council sent through Marcellinus.2 Zosimus made one short response to the two letters. He raised the subject of his dignity as pope and spoke of his communication sent to the Africans concerning the Caelestius’ affair as a favor to them. Nevertheless he assured the Africans he had left things as they were, as they had requested. As for the future he apparently intends to deliberate on taking any further action.
This letter was received in Africa on April 29, 418. The bishops were assembling in Carthage to hold a council of Africa on May 1 in the Basilica of Faustus.3 Doubtless this council was a general African council. Augustine and other bishops had written brief ordinances against the Pelagian heresy.4 In ancient manuscripts the title reports this council was assembled from the provinces of Byzacena, Stesa, Tripoli, Numidia, Caesarean Mauritania, and Spain.5 Aurelius was seated with Donatianus of Teleptus, primate of Byzacena, and two hundred and three other bishops. Other manuscripts read two hundred and fourteen or more.6 For some unknown reason Proconsular was not mentioned in the enumeration. The presence of bishops from Proconsular may perhaps be presupposed since the bishop of Carthage...