Hypostasis

Hy*pos"ta*sis

(?), n.;
pl. Hypostases (#).
[L., fr. Gr. subsistence, substance, fr. to stand under; under + to stand, middle voice of to cause to stand. See Hypo-, and Stand.] 1. That which forms the basis of anything; underlying principle; a concept or mental entity conceived or treated as an existing being or thing.
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2. (Theol.) Substance; subsistence; essence; person; personality; -- used by the early theologians to denote any one of the three subdivisions of the Godhead, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
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The Council of Alexandria (a. d. 362) defined hypostasis as synonymous with person. Schaff-Herzog.
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3. Principle; an element; -- used by the alchemists in speaking of salt, sulphur, and mercury, which they considered as the three principles of all material bodies.
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4. (Med.) That which is deposited at the bottom of a fluid; sediment.
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Wed 01st October 2014