A dispute in dispute: revisiting the Disputatio cum Pyrrho attributed to Maximus the Confessor (CPG 7698)

Ryan W. Strickler*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


This article revisits the authorship and dating of the Disputatio cum Pyrrho (CPG 7698), a text which depicts a theological disputation between Maximus the Confessor and Pyrrhus, the former patriarch of Constantinople. Most scholars have attributed this document to Maximus himself, or an impartial scribe, accepting the text as a transcript of the historical disputation which took place in 645. Jacques Noret opened the possibility of an author other than Maximus by pushing the date to between 655 and 667, the date of trial of Maximus in Constantinople and the death of his disciple Anastasius. This article builds upon Noret's work through a close examination of the Disputatio cum Pyrrho. By examining the language and arguments used, apparent textual seams, and the historical context of the Sixth Ecumenical Council in 680-681, this article argues that the Disputatio may be the product of two hands, including a primary composition following Noret's dating, and a later redaction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)243-272
Number of pages30
JournalSacris Erudiri
Publication statusPublished - 2017


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