Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Medieval Studies

First Advisor

Dr. Otto Gründler

Second Advisor

Dr. Rozanne Elder

Third Advisor

Dr. Guntram Bischoff

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


That the Albigensian heresy represents a resurgence of early Christian Gnosticism is the thesis of this work. The study defines Gnosticism in terms of its pattern of prevalent characteristics and traces the course of Gnosticism and its emergence as the Albigensianism of the Middle Ages. Using the finding of Hans Soderberg's La Religion des Cathares: Etudes, sur le gnosticisme de la basse antiquite et du moyen age as a point of departure through the analysis of documents discovered since 1949, the study shows that Gnosticism and the Albigensian heresy represent a continued tradition of religious expression as a recognizable alternative to the accepted and established institutions of Christianity in the Western world.