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(văləntē`nəs), fl. c.135–c.160, founder of the Valentinians, the most celebrated of the Gnostic sects (see GnosticismGnosticism
, dualistic religious and philosophical movement of the late Hellenistic and early Christian eras. The term designates a wide assortment of sects, numerous by the 2d cent. A.D.
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) of the 2d cent. The little that is known of his life is found in the works of early Christian theologians who refuted him, such as St. Irenaeus and Clement of Alexandria. Probably born in Egypt, Valentinus received his education in Alexandria and after c.135 taught in Rome, where he attracted brilliant converts. Valentinus viewed ultimate reality as a procession of aeons, 33 in all, issuing in pairs from the primal aeons, abyss and silence. From these came mind and truth, in turn engendering word (logos) and life. The thirtieth aeon, Sophia, by her inordinate desire to penetrate the abyss, caused great disorder within the pleroma (divine realm). Her passion was banished to a formless existence outside the pleroma. It is for the restoration of order and the salvation of the progeny issuing from the expelled passion that the last three aeons are produced—Christ, the Holy Spirit, and Jesus the Savior, who is the "common fruit" of the pleroma. Ruler of the outcast world is the proud Demiurge, identified with the deity of the Old Testament, who created the forms of life by which man is ensnared. Jesus appears in the world to reveal the knowledge (gnosis) that will restore man to the divine order. Valentinus wrote letters, homilies, and psalms, of which fragments survive. The recently discovered Coptic manuscript "Gospel of Truth" may be by Valentinus.


See J. Doresse, The Secret Books of the Egyptian Gnostics (tr. 1960); K. Grobel, The Gospel of Truth (1960); K. Rudolph, Gnosis (1982); B. Walker, Gnosticism (1986).

References in periodicals archive ?
During the middle ages, Valentine's Day was not associated with flowers, chocolates and gifts, instead it was a day to commemorate the acts of Valentinus.
The pope was peddling monogamy and marriage and Valentinus was something of a traveling salesman for the Vatican.
com/topics/valentines-day/history-of-valentines-day) report said that the Catholic Church recognized at least three different saints who went by the name of Valentine or Valentinus and all of them were martyred.
Valentinus is always pitted against Claudius, who's portrayed as an evil tyrant focused solely on his own needs, and extending the borders of the Roman Empire to fuel his own ego.
For example, the work variously called The Almanac of Philocalus, The Chronography of 354, or The Codex Calendar of 354, is a liturgical calendar with full-page illustrations (drawings), produced for a wealthy Roman Christian named Valentinus, by the leading calligrapher of the day, a fellow named Furius Dionysius Philocalus.
This corresponds with the viewpoint of Valentinus, who Clement of Alexandria presumably cites in his Stromata in the idea that "terror fell on the angels at this creature (Adam--F.
L'Eglise catholique, en effet, reconnait plusieurs saints dont le nom est Saint-Valentin ou Valentinus, et chaque dit d'avoir un lien avec cette fete maintenant de renommee internationale.
Ademas del grupo de filosofos modernos como Paracelso, Basilius Valentinus, Galileo Galilei y Girolamo Cardano.
The topics include moral progress in early Christian stories of the soul, Gnostic interpretations of Genesis, Stoic traditions in the school of Valentinus, Valentinian theories on classes of humankind, and New Testament theology and the challenge of practice.
THERE'S MORE THAN ONE ST VALENTINE There are a number of saints with the name - maybe as many as 12 as Valentinus was a popular Roman boy's name.
180), is a detailed attack on Gnosticism, which was then a serious threat to the Church, and especially on the system of the Gnostic Valentinus.