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Constantinople, Third Council of

Constantinople, Third Council of, 680, regarded by Roman Catholic and Orthodox Eastern churches as the sixth ecumenical council. It was convoked by Byzantine Emperor Constantine IV to deal with Monotheletism. The council was attended by more than 150 bishops from all over the world, and it was presided over by the papal legates. It condemned Monotheletism very clearly by defining the orthodox faith as the acceptance of a separate will and operation in each of the natures of Christ. It also condemned several churchmen as Monothelites, among them an earlier pope, Honorius I. The condemnation of Honorius is a much-discussed point in church history. The Orthodox Church accepts as an ecumenical part of the Third Council of Constantinople the Council of 692, summoned by Justinian II, son and successor of Constantine. It is called in the West the Trullan Synod because it met in the Trullo, i.e., in the dome of the palace at Constantinople, or the Quinisext Synod [Lat., = fifth-sixth] because it is considered in the East to supplement the fifth and sixth ecumenical councils. The Trullan Synod was entirely legislative, and its principal work was the pronouncement of the obligation to observe the canons of the Apostolic Constitutions. There was apparently in the legislation an anti-Western tone, and certain practices of the West were condemned.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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