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Frequently Asked Questions
regarding
THE HERESY OF
CIRCUMCELLIONS.


Q. 1. What can you tell me about the heresy of Circumcellions?

A. 1. The heresy of Circumcellions was practiced by a militant sub-group of Donatism that relied on violence.

The Circumcellions (or Agonisticis as called by Donatists) were bands of Berbers considered as heretical Christian extremists in North Africa during the fourth century. This group preferred to be known as agonistici ("fighters for Christ"). The Circumcellions were initially concerned with remedying social grievances. But soon they became linked with the Donatist sect. They condemned property and slavery, and advocated canceling debts and freeing slaves. The Donatists prized martyrdom and had a special devotion for the martyrs, rendering honours to their graves.

Emperor Honorius outlawed the Circumcellions in 408.



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