Basilides the heresiarch.

One of the gnostic heretics.


Attributed text(s).
Gospel of Basilides.
Exegetica.

Available text(s).
Gnosis: Fragments (English only).

Related text(s).
None.

Useful links.
Basilides at Early Christian Writings.
Basilides in the Catholic Encyclopedia.

Basilides was the founder of a gnostic strain of Christianity that was considered heretical. He lived early in century II and wrote a lengthy series of commentaries called the exegetica. Origin, in his Homily on Luke 1.1, writes that even Basilides dared to write a gospel and to entitle it by his own name (ausus fuit et Basilides scribere evangelium et suo illud nomine titulare). But I am not certain whether this gospel is meant to refer to his commentaries or to another work.

On the gospel of Basilides:

Hippolytus, Refutation of All Heresies 7.14; 7.20.1; 7.22.4; 7.27.7; 7.8.
Clement of Alexandria, Miscellanies 1.46.1-3; 3.1.1; 4.81.2-4.83.2; 4.86.1; 4.153.3; 4.162.1; 4.165.3; 5.3.2-3; 5.74.3; 7.106.4; 7.108.1.
Origen, Homilies on Luke 1.1.
Hegemonius, Acts of the Disputation of Archelaus with Manes 55 [67.5?].

Hippolytus, Refutation 7.14, writing of Basilides:

Τουτο εστι, φησι, το ειρημενον· Πνευμα αγιον επελευσεται επι σε, το απο της υιοτητος δια του μεθοριου πνευματος επι την ογδοαδακαι την εβδομαδα διελθον μεχρι της Μαριας, και δυναμις υψιστου επισκιασει σοι, η δυναμις της κρισεως απο της ακρωρειας ανωθεν του δημιουργου μεχρι της κτισεως, ο εστι του υιου.

This is, he says, that which is spoken: The holy spirit shall come upon you, that which came away from the sonship through the coterminous spirit upon the ogdoad and the hebdomad, unto Mary, and the power of the most high shall overshadow you, the power of judgment from the height from above, the demiurge, unto the creation, that is, the son.

Epiphanius, Panarion 24.5.2:

Αλλα φησιν ο αγυρτης· Ημεις, φησιν, εσμεν οι ανθρωποι, οι δε αλλοι παντες υες και κυνες. και δια τουτο ειπεν· Μη βαλητε τους μαργαριτας εμπροσθεν των χοιρων, μηδε δωτε το αγιον τοις κυσιν.

But the collector [Basilides] says: We, he says, are the men, but the others are all hogs and dogs. And on account of this he said: Do not cast the pearls before the swine, nor give what is holy to the dogs.