The rival patriarch of Alexandria in 537. When THEODOSIUS I, the official candidate for the patriarchate, appeared for his enthronement, a popular movement of all classes in the city swept Gaianus, who had been an archdeacon under TIMOTHY III, into his place. Against the Severianism (see SEVERIAN OF JABALAH) of Theodosius, Gaianus represented the more extreme Julianist doctrine that the flesh of Christ was incorruptible by nature. He had been in power for 104 days when Theodosius was restored by military force. Gaianus was exiled to Sardinia, where he later died. The Theodosian party gradually prevailed in Egypt, but the Gaianites continued with their own episcopal succession through the seventh century and perhaps even later.
- Hardy, E. R. Christian Egypt. New York, 1952.
- Joannes, Bishop of Nikiou. Chronicle of John, Bishop of Nikiu, trans. R. H. Charles, 92. 1-5, 10; 94. 2-6; 96. 10-11. London, 1916.
- Jugie, M. “Gaianites.” In Dictionnaire de théologie catholique, Vol. 6, cols. 999-1002. Paris, 1915.
- Julicher, A. “Die Liste der alexandrinischen Patriarchen im 6. und 7. Jahrhundert.” Festgabe J. K. Mueller, pp. 22-23. Tubingen, 1922.
- Maspero, J. Histoire des patriarches d’Alexandrie, pp. 110-17. Paris, 1923.