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 (dŏn′ə-tĭst, dō′nə-)
A member of a rigoristic, schismatic Christian sect, strongly opposed by Saint Augustine, that arose in North Africa in the fourth century ad and believed in sanctity as requisite for church membership and administration of all sacraments.

[Medieval Latin Donatista, after Donatus, fourth-century ad ecclesiastic and rival claimant of the bishopric of Carthage.]

Don′a·tism n.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(Christian Churches, other) a member of a schismatic heretical Christian sect originating in N Africa in 311 ad, that maintained that it alone constituted the true church
[C15: from Late Latin Dōnātista a follower of Dōnātus, bishop of Carthage]
ˈDonaˌtism n
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈdɒn ə tɪst, ˈdoʊ nə-)

a member of a Christian sect that developed in N Africa in A.D. 311 and maintained that it alone constituted the whole and only true church.
[1350–1400; Middle English < Medieval Latin Dōnātista < Late Latin Dōnāt(us) a Numidian bishop and Donatist leader]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Donatist - an adherent of Donatism
adherent, disciple - someone who believes and helps to spread the doctrine of another
Adj.1.Donatist - of or relating to Donatism
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
As John Firth notes on Constantine's reaction to the Donatist crisis, "[s]o little observant was he of his own edict of toleration that he was prepared to use force to secure uniformity within the Church!" (25) Of course, such an observation can be applied to some of Constantine's actions to do with the Church in the later Arian crisis as well, where he openly exiled various persons and outlawed their writings based on their theological views.
However, Augustine gave up on toleration because he saw what he thought of as the Catholic Church's successful ending of the Donatist heresy by means that did not require toleration.
The battles are particularly clear in Augustine's confrontation with the "Donatist" and "Pelagian" Christians, he says, but they spanned continents, churches, cultures, and controversies.
Preacher of Grace: A Critical Reappraisal of Augustine's Doctrine of Grace in His Sermones ad Populum on Liturgical Feasts and During the Donatist Controversy.
Specifically, he moved toward accepting coercion as a means of solving (the Donatist) schism.
Augustine's theory of persecution developed in connection with the Donatists, a schism group in North Africa that passed itself off as the orthodox Catholic Church .Before the empire condemned Donatists as heretics in 405, Augustine described their schism as both heresy and blasphemy.The Donatist blasphemers, Augustine declared, slay souls," and for that must suffer physically.
For him, the term "circumcelliones, " which is mainly found in the polemic regarding the "Donatist" controversy, is nothing but the local terminology for "harvesters" (p.
Some, like Chapter 2, 'Donatist Aids to Bible Study: North African Literary Production in the Fifth Century' are reprinted with a change of name; it was originally published as 'North African Literary Activity: A Cyprian Fragment, the Stichometric Lists and a Donatist Compendium'.
"The Donatist Controversy: Sacramental Efficacy." Christian Theology: An Introduction.
237-256; William Hugh Clifford FREND, The Donatist Church.