Gaius Marius Victorinus

Marius Victorinus (* 281-291; † after 363 ) was a late ancient Roman rhetorician and Christian scholars.


Victorinus came from the Roman province of Africa, graduated from training as a rhetorician and moved to 340 to Rome. He was regarded as one of the ablest orators of his time and taught in Rome including several senators. His reputation was so great that 354 a statue was erected by him on the Forum of Trajan.

Since Victorinus was pagan origin, Neoplatonism, and had clung to Christianity faced skepticism, the sensation was great when he converted to Christianity in 355 and was baptized. He is said to have arrived on the Study of the Prologue of John's Gospel to the view that this was consistent with a neo-Platonic philosophy. He defended the Nizänum and put 362 after Emperor Julian forbade in his Rhetorenedikt Christian teachers to give lessons about pagan school authors, resigned.

Victorinus died shortly after 363 He left a large number of journals, including comments on works of Cicero and Aristotle, several Latin translations of Greek texts (among other things of Plotinus ), as well as treatises on grammar, logic and rhetoric. He also wrote several theological works, including three hymns to the Trinity and comments to multiple letters of the apostle Paul. He was the first Latin commentator of Paul. Marius Victorinus, one of the founders of the Christian doctrine of the Trinity and influenced Augustine.

Editions and translations

  • Marius Victorinus: traità théologiques sur la Trinité. Texts établi par Paul Henry. Introduction, traduction et notes par Pierre Hadot. Commentaire par * Pierre Hadot. ( Sources chrétiennes 68, 69). Les Editions du Cerf, Paris, 1960.
  • Pierre Hadot (ed.): Marius Victorinus. Christian Platonism. The theological writings of Marius Victorinus. Artemis, Zurich 1967.
  • Paul Henry, Pierre Hadot, Franco Gori (eds.): Marii Victorini Afri Opera, Vol 1: Opera Theologica; Vol 2: Opera exegetica ( Corpus scriptorum ecclesiasticorum Latinorum 83). Publisher of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna 1971-1986.