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Modalism
(609 words)

[German Version]

Modalism, the opposite of tritheism, is a collective term for a heterodox interpretation of the Trinity; in order to maintain the unity of God, it understands the divine triad – Father, Son, and Spirit – not as truly distinct persons but merely as aspects or manifestations (modi) of the one divine being. The term was already in common use in the 18th century (e.g. J.F. Buddeus, 1723). Since the 19th century, it has been used primarily in the history of dogma (Dogma, History of) to categorize certain early Christian heresies, especially those of Sabellius, Noetus…

Cite this page
Bienert, Wolfgang A., “Modalism”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 31 October 2020 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1877-5888_rpp_SIM_14294>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013



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