Dictionary of Christian Biography and Literature to the End of the Sixth Century/Antidikomarianitae

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Antidikomarianitae (Ἀντιδικομαριανίται = Adversaries of Mary: Epiph. Haer. lxxxix.). The name given to those in Arabia in the latter part of the 4th cent. who (in opposition to the Κολλυριδιάνιδες) maintained the novel supposition advanced at that time by Bonosus of Sadica, and by Helvidius, that "our Lord's brethren" were children borne by the Blessed Virgin to Joseph after our Lord's birth. The controversy arose out of the then prevailing reverence for virginity, which in its extreme form had led certain women, originally from Thrace, but dwelling in Arabia, to celebrate an idolatrous festival in honour of the Virgin, by taking certain cakes (κολλύριδες) about in chariots, and then solemnly offering them to her and consuming them, in imitation of the Lord's Supper, or (more probably) of the pagan worship of Ceres. The reaction from this superstition led to the existence of the sect spoken of in this article, which, contemporaneously with the controversy carried on by St. Jerome and by others against Helvidius and Bonosus, the literary supporters of the hypothesis, was led to endeavour to cut away all pretence for the Collyridian superstition by adopting their view and so denying its very groundwork. The controversy itself is discussed in Smith's D. B. (4 vols. 1893) under Brothers and James, and in Murray's Illus. B. D. (1908) under James. For its literary history, see under Helvidius, Hieronymus.