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hermeneutics. The presentation of Antiochene Christology by Diodore and Theodore, even if it is connected to Eustathius, cannot be understood without their opposition to Apollinarius. That Apollinarius gained anything from his debate with Diodore is improbable.

Will the representatives ofboth Christologies in the Nestorian crisis remain each trapped in their own perspective? Are they only intent on enforcing their own confession? Will they seek a compromise formula only because they are forced by political circumstances? Or can each of them recognise in dialogue the relativity of their confession from the perspective of the other?

The confrontation between Alexandria and Antioch

When Nestorius (c. 381-451), after his appointment as patriarch of Constantinople in 428, triggered the dispute about the Marian title 'mother of God', he entered the fray with homilies in which he called upon the Antiochene Chris-tology familiar to him. Cyril of Alexandria intervened with the journalistic means available at that time. For reasons of ecclesiastical politics, Cyril was anything but a fair arbiter; his attitude was heavily biased against Nestorius. Cyril wrote three official letters to Nestorius, adding to the third an 'ultimatum' of twelve anathemas.

The Nestorian crisis as a confrontation of arguments Nestorius saw in the title 'mother of God' a hidden danger of Apollinarianism. This salutation of Mary defeats 'the distinction of the natures'18 and involves their connection (synapheia) not as one of dignity and worship, but one of nature and hence as a mixing (krasis, mixis).

Nestorius' teaching at the beginning of the crisis and in Cyril's ultimatum

In the tradition of anti-Arian exegesis, Nestorius - like Apollinarius of Laodicea - distinguishes three classes of statements about Jesus. In contrast to Apollinarius, however, he sees in this the justification for a Christology of two natures. The Bible has statements (1) about the Godhead, (2) about the humanity, and (3) about both at the same time. Nestorius maintains that the Bible can speak either about the eternal Son of God or about the human being

18 In the terminology of the Antiochenes, the term dihairesis originally meant distinction, insofar as it is a question of the two natures, yet it means division if it is a question of the union of the two natures. On the way to Chalcedon the terminology introduced by Cyril prevailed, namely, to use in the first case only the term diaphora.

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