Dictionary of Christian Biography and Literature to the End of the Sixth Century/Domnus II., bp. of Antioch
Domnus II. (4), bp. of Antioch, a friend of Theodoret. He was nephew of John, bp. of Antioch, brought up under Euthymius the famous anchoret of Palestine. He was ordained deacon by Juvenal of Jerusalem on his visit to the Laura of Euthymus in a.d. 429. Two years afterwards, learning that his uncle the bp. of Antioch had become entangled in the Nestorian heresy, he besought Euthymius to allow him to go and extricate him. Euthymius counselled him to remain where he was, telling him that God could take care of his uncle without him; that solitude was safer for him than the world; that his design would not turn out to his ultimate advantage; that he might not improbably succeed to his uncle's dignity, but would become the victim of clever and unprincipled men, who would avail themselves of his simplicity, and then accomplish his ruin; but the old man's counsels were thrown away. Domnus left the Laura without even saying farewell to Euthymius (Vita S. Euthymii, cc. 42, 56, 57). He obtained such popularity at Antioch that on the death of his uncle, a.d. 441, he was appointed his successor, and at once ranked as the chief bishop of the Eastern world. In 445 he summoned a synod of Syrian bishops which confirmed the deposition of Athanasius of Perrha. In 447 he consecrated Irenaeus to the see of Tyre (Theod. Ep. 110; Labbe, Concil. t. iii. col. 1275); but Theodosius II., having commanded that the appointment should be annulled, Irenaeus being both a digamus and a favourer of the Nestorian heresy, Domnus, despite Theodoret's remonstrances, yielded to the imperial will (Theod. u.s.; Ep. 80). Ibas, bp. of Edessa, being charged with promulgating Nestorian doctrines (Labbe, ib. t. iv. col. 658), Domnus summoned a council at Antioch (a.d. 448) which decided in favour of Ibas and deposed his accusers (ib. 639 seq.). Domnus's sentence, though revoked by Flavian, bp. of Constantinople, was confirmed by three episcopal commissioners to whom he and the emperor Theodosius had committed the matter. Domnus was one of the earliest impeachers of the orthodoxy of Eutyches, in a synodical letter to Theodosius, c. 447 (Facundus, viii. 5; xii. 5). At the Latrocinium, held at Ephesus, Aug. 8, 449, on this matter, Domnus, in virtue of an imperial rescript, found himself deprived of his presidential seat, which was occupied by Dioscorus, while precedence over the patriarch of Antioch was given to Juvenal of Jerusalem (Labbe, ib. 115, p. 251). Cowed by the dictatorial spirit of Dioscorus, and unnerved by the violence of Barsumas and his monks, Domnus revoked his former condemnation of Eutyches, and voted for his restoration (ib. col. 258) and for the condemnation of Flavian (ib. col. 306). Domnus was, nevertheless, deposed and banished by Dioscorus. The charges against him were, approval of a Nestorian sermon preached before him at Antioch by Theodoret on the death of Cyril (Mercator, t. i. p. 276), and some expressions in letters written by him to Dioscorus condemning the perplexed and obscure character of Cyril's anathemas (Liberatus, c. 11, p. 74). He was the only bishop then deposed and banished who was not reinstated after the council of Chalcedon. At that council Maximus, his successor in the see of Antioch, obtained permission to assign Domnus a pension from the revenues of the church (Labbe, ib. col. 681; append. col. 770). Finally, on his recall from exile Domnus returned to the monastic home of his youth, and ended his days in the Laura of St. Euthymius, where in 452, according to Theophanes, he afforded a refuge to Juvenal of Jerusalem when driven from his see (Theoph. p 92).