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200’s Third century Alexandrian Gnostic writings: Apocalypse of Peter; Letter of Peter to Philip; Gospel of Mary; Bala’izah Gnostic fragments at monastic library at Bala’izah.
200’s Third century Sethian Gnostic writings: Hypostasis of the Archons, Gospel of the Egyptians, Three Steles of Seth, Zostrianos, Melchizedek, Thought of Norea, Allogenes (these either from Alexandria or Syria). Seth is a central figure (mythological) in the Nag Hammadi texts.
200’s Third century non-Gnostic literature of Egyptian provenance: Apocalypse of Elijah (Upper Egypt), Gospel of Bartholomew, Gospel of the Savior, Exhortation to the Greeks.
202 Clement leaves Alexandria for Palestine during Severan persecutions.
202 Origen’s father, Leonidas, is martyred in Alexandria during the persecution of Septimius Severus; Origen escapes as teen-age orphan.
202 Upon Clement’s leaving, Origen at age eighteen is called by bishop Demetrius to direct the catechetical school of Alexandria, assisted by Heraclas.
202–203 Persecution of growing Christianity in Africa and Egypt under Septimius Severus--- Eusebius reports “countless numbers” wreathed with crowns of martyrdom, escorted to the arena “from Egypt and the whole Thebais” (from Nile delta as far south as Syene); Martyrdom of Perpetua and Felicitas at Carthage and Victorius of Tabarka.
202–231 Origen, trained in Greek literature and philosophy under Ammonius Saccas, continues as head of the Alexandrian Catechetical school.
205 Birth of Plotinus, Egyptian philosopher.
212 Caracalla grants Roman citizenship to all free residents of the empire; legal recognition is nominally granted to Jews and Christians for the first time.
c. 212 Origen visits Rome.
215 Caracalla fearing revolt in Egypt, orders massacre of Alexandria.
216 Origen visits Palestine.
217­­­–222 Death of Clement of Alexandria.
220–229 Flourishing of Alexandrian School under Origen, Heraclas, and Demetrius; Origen’s first period of literary activity in Alexandria: Commentary on John.
222-235 Reign of Alexander Severus, Roman Emperor, halted Christian persecutions, offering religious tolerance.
225-300 Neo-Platonism develops in Alexandria.
c. 230 Origen writes: Hexapla and First Principles.
231 Bishop Demetrius of Alexandria deposes Origen from the priesthood; brings Catechetical school more under episcopal supervision.
231 Origen invited to Greece, teaches, writes and preaches in church as a simple presbyter.
231 Origen moves from Alexandria to Caesarea in Palestine where he completes his work Hexapla, as well as homilies and biblical commentaries which make frequent use of Jewish Midrashim exegesis; Gregory Thamaturgus describes his method of teaching; many church leaders emerge from Origen’s teaching; neither Origen or Plotinus changed teaching when they left Alexandria.
231 Origen succeeded by Heraclas as head of the catechetical school at Alexandria.
c. 231 Plotinus (founder of Neo-Platonism) begins his studies for eleven years in Alexandria with Ammonius Saccas.
232 Bishop Demetrius dies; Heraclas is consecrated bishop of Alexandria ND IS succeeded in the catechetical school by Dionysius.
232 Origen visits Julia Mammaea at Antioch.
232 Origen writes Commentaries on Genesis.
235 Origen writes Exhortation to Martyrdom.
c. 243 Plotinus moves his school of textual analysis of Platonists from Alexandria to Rome.
247 Death of Heraclas.
247 In Hermopolis Magna in Egypt, a Greek temple was converted into a church; bishop Conon received letter from bishop Dionysius allowing lapsed to be readmitted.
247–264 Dionysius, new bishop of Alexandria, brings theological teaching to village level in Arsinoite villages.
249 Beginning of Christian persecutions under Emperor Decius (249-51), who issued a general edict ordering Roman citizens to participate in a formal civic confession; tempting many Christians to lapse into idolatry.
249–251 3,600 Martyrs of Isna, Upper Egypt.
250 Letters of Porphry; Gnostic Gospel of Pistis Sophia.
250 Origen arrested and tortured.
c. 250 Origen writes Contra Celsum, Didascalia.
251 Birth of Anthony.
251 Persecution of Valerian.
257–260 Persecutions under Valerian.
260 upon Valerian’s death, Gallienus becomes sole emperor; issues Edict of Toleration, bringing second long peace; Sabellianism condemned.
260’s Paul the Theban born; later would settle in eastern Egyptian desert; Jerome claimed Paul proceeded Anthony in the desert.
264 Death of Dionysius, bishop of Alexandria.
264–282 Maximus, patriarch of Alexandria.
265–282 Theognostus heads school of Alexandria after Dionysius, followed by Prierus, Achillas, and Peter of Alexandria before Theognostus elected patriarch (c. 300); the curriculum of Theognostus described later by Photius as moving from Father to Son to Spirit.
270 Death of Plotinus.
270–300 Steady increase of Christianity in central Egypt and North Africa; intellectual attacks against Christian teaching by Porphyry, disciple of Plotinus.
270’s Anthony begins his ascetic life.
276 Death of Mani, whose disciples came to Africa before his death, requiring Christian response.
282 Death of Maximus, patriarch of Alexandria.
282–300 Theonas is patriarch of Alexandria.
284 Year one of Coptic calendar, dating from beginning of Diocletian’s reign, the era of the Martyrs.
285 Anthony retreats into the Egyptian desert, beginnings of eremitic monasticism.
285 Hieracas of Leontopolis guides an ascetic community, writing expositions on Scripture.
285 Roman Empire partitioned by Diocletian into Western and Eastern empires.
290’s Conversion of Arnobius of Sicca.
c. 295–298 Birth of Athanasius either in Alexandria or according to Dair Anba Maqar document, his parents came from al-Balyyana in Upper Egypt (see Bebawi); brought up in area of Oratory Theometor, built near the shore of Alexandria’s Eunostos harbor by Bishop Theonas (282-300), which served as episcopal residence (now Franciscan fathers at Rue Karam). Athanasius became bishop of Alexandria (328-373.)
297–299 Revolt in Alexandria against Diocletian’s taxation policies; repressive measures against the Christians; reinforcement of fort at Babylon in Old Cairo.