It is probably impossible to determine what his view was for certain, but what evidence is there that he believed eternal conscious torment, annihilationism, or universalism?

Evidence ranging from his words, to what his opponents, or even to the Christian school of thought he grew up in said is welcomed.

1 Answer 1


The only document assigned to Pelagius that I could find is his letter to Demetrias, a fourteen year old girl of wealthy family who shunned riches and made enquiries regarding her own religious desires.

The letter is presented online but the two presentations I have found (herein linked) are very different and there is some question about the accuracy of translation from the original Latin.

In one presentation I found the words :

But the joy of heaven, which is the reward for making good and wise choices on earth, lasts for all eternity. And the agony of hell, which is the punishment for making bad choices on earth, also lasts for all eternity. The day of judgement, when God will decide where to send us, is imminent; even if a person is young, and destined to live for a hundred years, the day is still imminent.

But the tone of the second presentation is different, the document is much longer and I am unable to find the above quoted words within it, so there is doubt about the accuracy of the documentation available.

The second link provides a copy of the original Latin written by Pelagius.

Grateful thanks to @Joseph Hinkle for providing the second link.

  • Thank you for posting this. Hopefully others can verify your finding with the original source. I don’t think I’ve been more confused about a “translation” before. It follows pretty closely for the first paragraph, and then progressively diverges until it’s unrecognizable from standard translations. Sep 12, 2018 at 13:15
  • @JosephHinkle I did Latin at school but I am by no means up to the task of translating the entirety of Pelagius' letter, even if I was inclined to do so.
    – Nigel J
    Sep 12, 2018 at 18:06
  • there's a good translation in the link I gave you Sep 12, 2018 at 18:25

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