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Athanasius of Alexandria

296 - 373

Athanasius was bishop of Alexandria (where he was born around 297) from 8 June 328 to 2 May 373. During his episcopate he was exiled and reinstated five different times by four different Roman emperors for his teaching of the Christian faith as found in the Scriptures, gaining for himself the attribution ‘Athanasius Contra Mundum’, or Athanasius Against the World. He vigorously opposed Arius and the Arian heresy, defending trinitarian orthodoxy at and after the Council of Nicaea. Athanasius also contributed to the establishment of the New Testament canon of 27 books and wrote several works of biblical exegesis. He died seven years after his final return to Alexandria. His work as a theologian was crucially helpful to the development of orthodox Christian doctrine in both the Eastern and Western church.

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