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Tertullian's writings cover the whole theological field of the time—apologetics against paganism and Judaism, polemics, polity, discipline, and morals, or the whole reorganization of human life on a Christian basis; they gave a picture of the religious life and thought of the time which is of the greatest interest to the church historian.

Tertullian did not hesitate to call his opponents blind, utterly perverse, or utterly stupid.

Unlike many Church fathers, Tertullian was never recognized as a saint by the Eastern or Western catholic tradition churches, as several of his teachings on issues such as the clear subordination of the Son and Spirit to the Father, and his condemnation of remarriage for widows and of fleeing from persecution, contradicted the doctrines of these traditions; Tertullian was also a notable member of the Montanist sect, a group that was in schism from the orthodox Church, and which is comparable to the modern day Pentecostal movement.

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Though conservative in his worldview, Tertullian originated new theological concepts and advanced the development of early Church doctrine.

He is perhaps most famous for being the first writer in Latin known to use the term trinity (Latin: trinitas).

Following the latter mode, which is of a more practical interest, the writings fall into two groups. Hermogenem, De praescriptione hereticorum, and Scorpiace were written to counteract Gnosticism and other religious or philosophical doctrines.

Apologetic and polemic writings, like Apologeticus, De testimonio animae, the anti-Jewish De Adversus Iudaeos, Adv. The other group consists of practical and disciplinary writings, e.g., De monogamia, Ad uxorem, De virginibus velandis, De cultu feminarum, De patientia, De pudicitia, De oratione, and Ad martyras.

Two books addressed to his wife confirm that he was married to a Christian wife.

Last modified 26-Apr-2019 13:24