Dictionary of Christian Biography and Literature to the End of the Sixth Century/Asterius (1), bishop of Arabia
Asterius (1), a bp. of Arabia (called bp. of Petra, Tomus ad Antioch. § 10). He accompanied the Eusebians to the council of Sardica, but separated himself from them along with bp. Arius or Macarius (who by some confusion is also called bp. of Petra), complaining of the violent treatment to which the deputies had been subjected, with the view of driving them into supporting the Eusebian faction (Theod. ii. 8). The Eusebians soon had their revenge, and the two bishops were banished to Upper Libya, where they endured much suffering (Athan. Hist. Arian. § 18; Apol. § 48). On the promulgation of the edict of Julian, recalling all the banished bishops, Asterius returned, and (A.D. 362) took part in the important council summoned by the newly restored Athanasius at Alexandria, for the purpose of promoting union between the orthodox and those who, without embracing the errors of Arius, had held communion with the Arian party. One of the chief subjects that came before this synod was the unhappy schism at Antioch between the Eustathians and the Meletians. [ Luciferus (1); Meletius; Paulinus (6).] On the singular fact that the name of Asterius, together with that of Eusebius of Vercelli, is found among those to whom this letter is addressed, as well as among those by whom it was written, of which it is difficult to give a satisfactory explanation, cf. Tillemont, Mém. viii. p. 707; Baronius, Ann. sub. ann. 362, § 219.