The Article questions Hobbes’s political system focusing on his uses of the concept of heresy. First, it analyses the dual Hobbesian definition of heresy and the tensions implied in this duality. Secondly, it reconstructs the contention around the sovereign power and the right to distinguish between licit and illicit opinions related to these tensions. Finally, it retraces the way in which this contention is historically narrated in the Leviathan and subsequent works, clarifying the reasons for Hobbes’s partial justification of the crime of heresy. The aim is to bring to light aspects of Hobbes’s political thought that the interpretative canon tends to leave in the shadows, drawing attention not to the transparent and rational foundation of the state but to the opacity of the collective dynamics presiding over its genesis and dissolution; not to the juridical and unanimist logic of the covenant but to the political logic of division and conflict; and not to the triumphant but to the torn and challenged sovereignty.
Keywords: Hobbes, religion, heresy, sovereignty, political theology, resistance