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The History of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire by Edward Gibbon

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The History of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

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David Reed

History Of The Decline And Fall Of The Roman Empire

Edward Gibbon, Esq.

With notes by the Rev. H. H. Milman

Vol. 3

Chapter XXVII: Civil Wars, Reign Of Theodosius.

Part I.

Death Of Gratian. - Ruin Of Arianism. - St. Ambrose. - First
Civil War, Against Maximus. - Character, Administration, And
Penance Of Theodosius. - Death Of Valentinian II. - Second Civil
War, Against Eugenius. - Death Of Theodosius.

The fame of Gratian, before he had accomplished the
twentieth year of his age, was equal to that of the most
celebrated princes. His gentle and amiable disposition endeared
him to his private friends, the graceful affability of his
manners engaged the affection of the people: the men of letters,
who enjoyed the liberality, acknowledged the taste and eloquence,
of their sovereign; his valor and dexterity in arms were equally
applauded by the soldiers; and the clergy considered the humble
piety of Gratian as the first and most useful of his virtues.
The victory of Colmar had delivered the West from a formidable
invasion; and the grateful provinces of the East ascribed the
merits of Theodosius to the author of his greatness, and of the
public safety. Gratian survived those memorable events only four
or five years; but he survived his reputation; and, before he
fell a victim to rebellion, he had lost, in a great measure, the
respect and confidence of the Roman world.
The remarkable alteration of his character or conduct may
not be imputed to the arts of flattery, which had besieged the
son of Valentinian from his infancy; nor to the headstrong
passions which the that gentle youth appears to have escaped. A
more attentive view of the life of Gratian may perhaps suggest
the true cause of the disappointment of the public hopes. His
apparent virtues, instead of being the hardy productions of
experience and adversity, were the premature and artificial
fruits of a royal education. The anxious tenderness of his
father was continually employed to bestow on him those
advantages, which he might perhaps esteem the more highly, as he
himself had been deprived of them; and the most skilful masters
of every science, and of every art, had labored to form the mind
and body of the young prince. ^1 The knowledge which they
painfully communicated was displayed with ostentation, and
celebrated with lavish praise. His soft and tractable
disposition received the fair impression of their judicious
precepts, and the absence of passion might easily be mistaken for
the strength of reason. His preceptors gradually rose to the
rank and consequence of ministers of state: ^2 and, as they
wisely dissembled their secret authority, he seemed to act with
firmness, with propriety, and with judgment, on the most
important occasions of his life and reign. But the influence of
this elaborate instruction did not penetrate beyond the surface;
and the skilful preceptors, who so accurately guided the steps of
their royal pupil, could not infuse into his feeble and indolent
character the vigorous and independent principle of action which
renders the laborious pursuit of glory essentially necessary to
the happiness, and almost to the existence, of the hero. As soon
as time and accident had removed those faithful counsellors from
the throne, the emperor of the West insensibly descended to the
level of his natural genius; abandoned the reins of government to
the ambitious hands which were stretched forwards to grasp them;
and amused his leisure with the most frivolous gratifications. A
public sale of favor and injustice was instituted, both in the
court and in the provinces, by the worthless delegates of his
power, whose merit it was made sacrilege to question. ^3 The
conscience of the credulous prince was directed by saints and
bishops; ^4 who procured an Imperial edict to punish, as a
capital offence, the violation, the neglect, or even the
ignorance, of the divine law. ^5 Among the various arts which had
exercised the youth of Gratian, he had applied himself, with
singular inclination and success, to manage the horse, to draw
the bow, and to dart the javelin; and these qualifications, which
might be useful to a soldier, were prostituted to the viler
purposes of hunting. Large parks were enclosed for the Imperial
pleasures, and plentifully stocked with every species of wild
beasts; and Gratian neglected the duties, and even the dignity,
of his rank, to consume whole days in the vain display of his
dexterity and boldness in the chase. The pride and wish of the
Roman emperor to excel in an art, in which he might be surpassed
by the meanest of his slaves, reminded the numerous spectators of
the examples of Nero and Commodus, but the chaste and temperate
Gratian was a stranger to their monstrous vices; and his hands
were stained only with the blood of animals. ^6 The behavior of
Gratian, which degraded his character in the eyes of mankind,
could not have disturbed the security of his reign, if the army
had not been provoked to resent their peculiar injuries. As long
as the young emperor was guided by the instructions of his
masters, he professed himself the friend and pupil of the
soldiers; many of his hours were spent in the familiar
conversation of the camp; and the health, the comforts, the
rewards, the honors, of his faithful troops, appeared to be the
objects of his attentive concern. But, after Gratian more freely
indulged his prevailing taste for hunting and shooting, he
naturally connected himself with the most dexterous ministers of
his favorite amusement. A body of the Alani was received into
the military and domestic service of the palace; and the
admirable skill, which they were accustomed to display in the
unbounded plains of Scythia, was exercised, on a more narrow
theatre, in the parks and enclosures of Gaul. Gratian admired
the talents and customs of these favorite guards, to whom alone
he intrusted the defence of his person; and, as if he meant to
insult the public opinion, he frequently showed himself to the
soldiers and people, with the dress and arms, the long bow, the
sounding quiver, and the fur garments of a Scythian warrior. The
unworthy spectacle of a Roman prince, who had renounced the dress
and manners of his country, filled the minds of the legions with
grief and indignation. ^7 Even the Germans, so strong and
formidable in the armies of the empire, affected to disdain the
strange and horrid appearance of the savages of the North, who,
in the space of a few years, had wandered from the banks of the
Volga to those of the Seine. A loud and licentious murmur was
echoed through the camps and garrisons of the West; and as the
mild indolence of Gratian neglected to extinguish the first
symptoms of discontent, the want of love and respect was not
supplied by the influence of fear. But the subversion of an
established government is always a work of some real, and of much
apparent, difficulty; and the throne of Gratian was protected by
the sanctions of custom, law, religion, and the nice balance of
the civil and military powers, which had been established by the
policy of Constantine. It is not very important to inquire from
what cause the revolt of Britain was produced. Accident is
commonly the parent of disorder; the seeds of rebellion happened
to fall on a soil which was supposed to be more fruitful than any
other in tyrants and usurpers; ^8 the legions of that sequestered
island had been long famous for a spirit of presumption and
arrogance; ^9 and the name of Maximus was proclaimed, by the
tumultuary, but unanimous voice, both of the soldiers and of the
provincials. The emperor, or the rebel, - for this title was not
yet ascertained by fortune, - was a native of Spain, the
countryman, the fellow-soldier, and the rival of Theodosius whose
elevation he had not seen without some emotions of envy and
resentment: the events of his life had long since fixed him in
Britain; and I should not be unwilling to find some evidence for
the marriage, which he is said to have contracted with the
daughter of a wealthy lord of Caernarvonshire. ^10 But this
provincial rank might justly be considered as a state of exile
and obscurity; and if Maximus had obtained any civil or military
office, he was not invested with the authority either of governor
or general. ^11 His abilities, and even his integrity, are
acknowledged by the partial writers of the age; and the merit
must indeed have been conspicuous that could extort such a
confession in favor of the vanquished enemy of Theodosius. The
discontent of Maximus might incline him to censure the conduct of
his sovereign, and to encourage, perhaps, without any views of
ambition, the murmurs of the troops. But in the midst of the
tumult, he artfully, or modestly, refused to ascend the throne;
and some credit appears to have been given to his own positive
declaration, that he was compelled to accept the dangerous
present of the Imperial purple. ^12

[Footnote 1: Valentinian was less attentive to the religion of
his son; since he intrusted the education of Gratian to Ausonius,
a professed Pagan. (Mem. de l'Academie des Inscriptions, tom. xv.
p. 125 - 138. The poetical fame of Ausonius condemns the taste
of his age.]

[Footnote 2: Ausonius was successively promoted to the Praetorian
praefecture of Italy, (A.D. 377,) and of Gaul, (A.D. 378;) and
was at length invested with the consulship, (A.D. 379.) He
expressed his gratitude in a servile and insipid piece of
flattery, (Actio Gratiarum, p. 699 - 736,) which has survived
more worthy productions.]

[Footnote 3: Disputare de principali judicio non oportet.
Sacrilegii enim instar est dubitare, an is dignus sit, quem
elegerit imperator. Codex Justinian, l. ix. tit. xxix. leg. 3.
This convenient law was revived and promulgated, after the death
of Gratian, by the feeble court of Milan.]
[Footnote 4: Ambrose composed, for his instruction, a theological
treatise on the faith of the Trinity: and Tillemont, (Hist. des
Empereurs, tom. v. p. 158, 169,) ascribes to the archbishop the
merit of Gratian's intolerant laws.]
[Footnote 5: Qui divinae legis sanctitatem nesciendo omittunt,
aut negligende violant, et offendunt, sacrilegium committunt.
Codex Justinian. l. ix. tit. xxix. leg. 1. Theodosius indeed may
claim his share in the merit of this comprehensive law.]

[Footnote 6: Ammianus (xxxi. 10) and the younger Victor
acknowledge the virtues of Gratian; and accuse, or rather lament,
his degenerate taste. The odious parallel of Commodus is saved by
"licet incruentus;" and perhaps Philostorgius (l. x. c. 10, and
Godefroy, p. 41) had guarded with some similar reserve, the
comparison of Nero.]

[Footnote 7: Zosimus (l. iv. p. 247) and the younger Victor
ascribe the revolution to the favor of the Alani, and the
discontent of the Roman troops Dum exercitum negligeret, et
paucos ex Alanis, quos ingenti auro ad sa transtulerat,
anteferret veteri ac Romano militi.]

[Footnote 8: Britannia fertilis provincia tyrannorum, is a
memorable expression, used by Jerom in the Pelagian controversy,
and variously tortured in the disputes of our national
antiquaries. The revolutions of the last age appeared to justify
the image of the sublime Bossuet, "sette ile, plus orageuse que
les mers qui l'environment."]

[Footnote 9: Zosimus says of the British soldiers.]

[Footnote 10: Helena, the daughter of Eudda. Her chapel may
still be seen at Caer-segont, now Caer-narvon. (Carte's Hist. of
England, vol. i. p. 168, from Rowland's Mona Antiqua.) The
prudent reader may not perhaps be satisfied with such Welsh

[Footnote 11: Camden (vol. i. introduct. p. ci.) appoints him
governor at Britain; and the father of our antiquities is
followed, as usual, by his blind progeny. Pacatus and Zosimus
had taken some pains to prevent this error, or fable; and I shall
protect myself by their decisive testimonies. Regali habitu
exulem suum, illi exules orbis induerunt, (in Panegyr. Vet. xii.
23,) and the Greek historian still less equivocally, (Maximus)
(l. iv. p. 248.)]
[Footnote 12: Sulpicius Severus, Dialog. ii. 7. Orosius, l. vii.
c. 34. p. 556. They both acknowledge (Sulpicius had been his
subject) his innocence and merit. It is singular enough, that
Maximus should be less favorably treated by Zosimus, the partial
adversary of his rival.]

But there was danger likewise in refusing the empire; and
from the moment that Maximus had violated his allegiance to his
lawful sovereign, he could not hope to reign, or even to live, if
he confined his moderate ambition within the narrow limits of
Britain. He boldly and wisely resolved to prevent the designs of
Gratian; the youth of the island crowded to his standard, and he
invaded Gaul with a fleet and army, which were long afterwards
remembered, as the emigration of a considerable part of the
British nation. ^13 The emperor, in his peaceful residence of
Paris, was alarmed by their hostile approach; and the darts which
he idly wasted on lions and bears, might have been employed more
honorably against the rebels. But his feeble efforts announced
his degenerate spirit and desperate situation; and deprived him
of the resources, which he still might have found, in the support
of his subjects and allies. The armies of Gaul, instead of
opposing the march of Maximus, received him with joyful and loyal
acclamations; and the shame of the desertion was transferred from
the people to the prince. The troops, whose station more
immediately attached them to the service of the palace, abandoned
the standard of Gratian the first time that it was displayed in
the neighborhood of Paris. The emperor of the West fled towards
Lyons, with a train of only three hundred horse; and, in the
cities along the road, where he hoped to find refuge, or at least
a passage, he was taught, by cruel experience, that every gate is
shut against the unfortunate. Yet he might still have reached,
in safety, the dominions of his brother; and soon have returned
with the forces of Italy and the East; if he had not suffered
himself to be fatally deceived by the perfidious governor of the
Lyonnese province. Gratian was amused by protestations of
doubtful fidelity, and the hopes of a support, which could not be
effectual; till the arrival of Andragathius, the general of the
cavalry of Maximus, put an end to his suspense. That resolute
officer executed, without remorse, the orders or the intention of
the usurper. Gratian, as he rose from supper, was delivered into
the hands of the assassin: and his body was denied to the pious
and pressing entreaties of his brother Valentinian. ^14 The death
of the emperor was followed by that of his powerful general
Mellobaudes, the king of the Franks; who maintained, to the last
moment of his life, the ambiguous reputation, which is the just
recompense of obscure and subtle policy. ^15 These executions
might be necessary to the public safety: but the successful
usurper, whose power was acknowledged by all the provinces of the
West, had the merit, and the satisfaction, of boasting, that,
except those who had perished by the chance of war, his triumph
was not stained by the blood of the Romans. ^16

[Footnote 13: Archbishop Usher (Antiquat. Britan. Eccles. p. 107,
108) has diligently collected the legends of the island, and the
continent. The whole emigration consisted of 30,000 soldiers,
and 100,000 plebeians, who settled in Bretagne. Their destined
brides, St. Ursula with 11,000 noble, and 60,000 plebeian,
virgins, mistook their way; landed at Cologne, and were all most
cruelly murdered by the Huns. But the plebeian sisters have been
defrauded of their equal honors; and what is still harder, John
Trithemius presumes to mention the children of these British
[Footnote 14: Zosimus (l. iv. p. 248, 249) has transported the
death of Gratian from Lugdunum in Gaul (Lyons) to Singidunum in
Moesia. Some hints may be extracted from the Chronicles; some
lies may be detected in Sozomen (l. vii. c. 13) and Socrates, (l.
v. c. 11.) Ambrose is our most authentic evidence, (tom. i.
Enarrat. in Psalm lxi. p. 961, tom ii. epist. xxiv. p. 888 &c.,
and de Obitu Valentinian Consolat. Ner. 28, p. 1182.)]
[Footnote 15: Pacatus (xii. 28) celebrates his fidelity; while
his treachery is marked in Prosper's Chronicle, as the cause of
the ruin of Gratian. Ambrose, who has occasion to exculpate
himself, only condemns the death of Vallio, a faithful servant of
Gratian, (tom. ii. epist. xxiv. p. 891, edit. Benedict.)

Note: Le Beau contests the reading in the chronicle of
Prosper upon which this charge rests. Le Beau, iv. 232. - M.

Note: According to Pacatus, the Count Vallio, who commanded the
army, was carried to Chalons to be burnt alive; but Maximus,
dreading the imputation of cruelty, caused him to be secretly
strangled by his Bretons. Macedonius also, master of the
offices, suffered the death which he merited. Le Beau, iv. 244.
- M.]

[Footnote 16: He protested, nullum ex adversariis nisi in acissie
occubu. Sulp. Jeverus in Vit. B. Martin, c. 23. The orator
Theodosius bestows reluctant, and therefore weighty, praise on
his clemency. Si cui ille, pro ceteris sceleribus suis, minus
crudelis fuisse videtur, (Panegyr. Vet. xii. 28.)]

The events of this revolution had passed in such rapid
succession, that it would have been impossible for Theodosius to
march to the relief of his benefactor, before he received the
intelligence of his defeat and death. During the season of
sincere grief, or ostentatious mourning, the Eastern emperor was
interrupted by the arrival of the principal chamberlain of
Maximus; and the choice of a venerable old man, for an office
which was usually exercised by eunuchs, announced to the court of
Constantinople the gravity and temperance of the British usurper.

The ambassador condescended to justify, or excuse, the conduct of
his master; and to protest, in specious language, that the murder
of Gratian had been perpetrated, without his knowledge or
consent, by the precipitate zeal of the soldiers. But he
proceeded, in a firm and equal tone, to offer Theodosius the
alternative of peace, or war. The speech of the ambassador
concluded with a spirited declaration, that although Maximus, as
a Roman, and as the father of his people, would choose rather to
employ his forces in the common defence of the republic, he was
armed and prepared, if his friendship should be rejected, to
dispute, in a field of battle, the empire of the world. An
immediate and peremptory answer was required; but it was
extremely difficult for Theodosius to satisfy, on this important
occasion, either the feelings of his own mind, or the
expectations of the public. The imperious voice of honor and
gratitude called aloud for revenge. From the liberality of
Gratian, he had received the Imperial diadem; his patience would
encourage the odious suspicion, that he was more deeply sensible
of former injuries, than of recent obligations; and if he
accepted the friendship, he must seem to share the guilt, of the
assassin. Even the principles of justice, and the interest of
society, would receive a fatal blow from the impunity of Maximus;
and the example of successful usurpation would tend to dissolve
the artificial fabric of government, and once more to replunge
the empire in the crimes and calamities of the preceding age.
But, as the sentiments of gratitude and honor should invariably
regulate the conduct of an individual, they may be overbalanced
in the mind of a sovereign, by the sense of superior duties; and
the maxims both of justice and humanity must permit the escape of
an atrocious criminal, if an innocent people would be involved in
the consequences of his punishment. The assassin of Gratian had
usurped, but he actually possessed, the most warlike provinces of
the empire: the East was exhausted by the misfortunes, and even
by the success, of the Gothic war; and it was seriously to be
apprehended, that, after the vital strength of the republic had
been wasted in a doubtful and destructive contest, the feeble
conqueror would remain an easy prey to the Barbarians of the
North. These weighty considerations engaged Theodosius to
dissemble his resentment, and to accept the alliance of the
tyrant. But he stipulated, that Maximus should content himself
with the possession of the countries beyond the Alps. The
brother of Gratian was confirmed and secured in the sovereignty
of Italy, Africa, and the Western Illyricum; and some honorable
conditions were inserted in the treaty, to protect the memory,
and the laws, of the deceased emperor. ^17 According to the
custom of the age, the images of the three Imperial colleagues
were exhibited to the veneration of the people; nor should it be
lightly supposed, that, in the moment of a solemn reconciliation,
Theodosius secretly cherished the intention of perfidy and
revenge. ^18

[Footnote 17: Ambrose mentions the laws of Gratian, quas non
abrogavit hostia (tom. ii epist. xvii. p. 827.)]

[Footnote 18: Zosimus, l. iv. p. 251, 252. We may disclaim his
odious suspicions; but we cannot reject the treaty of peace which
the friends of Theodosius have absolutely forgotten, or slightly
The contempt of Gratian for the Roman soldiers had exposed
him to the fatal effects of their resentment. His profound
veneration for the Christian clergy was rewarded by the applause
and gratitude of a powerful order, which has claimed, in every
age, the privilege of dispensing honors, both on earth and in
heaven. ^19 The orthodox bishops bewailed his death, and their
own irreparable loss; but they were soon comforted by the
discovery, that Gratian had committed the sceptre of the East to
the hands of a prince, whose humble faith and fervent zeal, were
supported by the spirit and abilities of a more vigorous
character. Among the benefactors of the church, the fame of
Constantine has been rivalled by the glory of Theodosius. If
Constantine had the advantage of erecting the standard of the
cross, the emulation of his successor assumed the merit of
subduing the Arian heresy, and of abolishing the worship of idols
in the Roman world. Theodosius was the first of the emperors
baptized in the true faith of the Trinity. Although he was born
of a Christian family, the maxims, or at least the practice, of
the age, encouraged him to delay the ceremony of his initiation;
till he was admonished of the danger of delay, by the serious
illness which threatened his life, towards the end of the first
year of his reign. Before he again took the field against the
Goths, he received the sacrament of baptism ^20 from Acholius,
the orthodox bishop of Thessalonica: ^21 and, as the emperor
ascended from the holy font, still glowing with the warm feelings
of regeneration, he dictated a solemn edict, which proclaimed his
own faith, and prescribed the religion of his subjects. "It is
our pleasure (such is the Imperial style) that all the nations,
which are governed by our clemency and moderation, should
steadfastly adhere to the religion which was taught by St. Peter
to the Romans; which faithful tradition has preserved; and which
is now professed by the pontiff Damasus, and by Peter, bishop of
Alexandria, a man of apostolic holiness. According to the
discipline of the apostles, and the doctrine of the gospel, let
us believe the sole deity of the Father, the Son, and the Holy
Ghost; under an equal majesty, and a pious Trinity. We authorize
the followers of this doctrine to assume the title of Catholic
Christians; and as we judge, that all others are extravagant
madmen, we brand them with the infamous name of Heretics; and
declare that their conventicles shall no longer usurp the
respectable appellation of churches. Besides the condemnation of
divine justice, they must expect to suffer the severe penalties,
which our authority, guided by heavenly wisdom, shall think
proper to inflict upon them." ^22 The faith of a soldier is
commonly the fruit of instruction, rather than of inquiry; but as
the emperor always fixed his eyes on the visible landmarks of
orthodoxy, which he had so prudently constituted, his religious
opinions were never affected by the specious texts, the subtle
arguments, and the ambiguous creeds of the Arian doctors. Once
indeed he expressed a faint inclination to converse with the
eloquent and learned Eunomius, who lived in retirement at a small
distance from Constantinople. But the dangerous interview was
prevented by the prayers of the empress Flaccilla, who trembled
for the salvation of her husband; and the mind of Theodosius was
confirmed by a theological argument, adapted to the rudest
capacity. He had lately bestowed on his eldest son, Arcadius,
the name and honors of Augustus, and the two princes were seated
on a stately throne to receive the homage of their subjects. A
bishop, Amphilochius of Iconium, approached the throne, and after
saluting, with due reverence, the person of his sovereign, he
accosted the royal youth with the same familiar tenderness which
he might have used towards a plebeian child. Provoked by this
insolent behavior, the monarch gave orders, that the rustic
priest should be instantly driven from his presence. But while
the guards were forcing him to the door, the dexterous polemic
had time to execute his design, by exclaiming, with a loud voice,
"Such is the treatment, O emperor! which the King of heaven has
prepared for those impious men, who affect to worship the Father,
but refuse to acknowledge the equal majesty of his divine Son."
Theodosius immediately embraced the bishop of Iconium, and never
forgot the important lesson, which he had received from this
dramatic parable. ^23

[Footnote 19: Their oracle, the archbishop of Milan, assigns to
his pupil Gratian, a high and respectable place in heaven, (tom.
ii. de Obit. Val. Consol p. 1193.)]

[Footnote 20: For the baptism of Theodosius, see Sozomen, (l.
vii. c. 4,) Socrates, (l. v. c. 6,) and Tillemont, (Hist. des
Empereurs, tom. v. p. 728.)]

[Footnote 21: Ascolius, or Acholius, was honored by the
friendship, and the praises, of Ambrose; who styles him murus
fidei atque sanctitatis, (tom. ii. epist. xv. p. 820;) and
afterwards celebrates his speed and diligence in running to
Constantinople, Italy, &c., (epist. xvi. p. 822.) a virtue which
does not appertain either to a wall, or a bishop.]

[Footnote 22: Codex Theodos. l. xvi. tit. i. leg. 2, with
Godefroy's Commentary, tom. vi. p. 5 - 9. Such an edict deserved
the warmest praises of Baronius, auream sanctionem, edictum pium
et salutare. - Sic itua ad astra.]
[Footnote 23: Sozomen, l. vii. c. 6. Theodoret, l. v. c. 16.
Tillemont is displeased (Mem. Eccles. tom. vi. p. 627, 628) with
the terms of "rustic bishop," "obscure city." Yet I must take
leave to think, that both Amphilochius and Iconium were objects
of inconsiderable magnitude in the Roman empire.]

Chapter XXVII: Civil Wars, Reign Of Theodosius.

Part II.

Constantinople was the principal seat and fortress of
Arianism; and, in a long interval of forty years, ^24 the faith
of the princes and prelates, who reigned in the capital of the
East, was rejected in the purer schools of Rome and Alexandria.
The archiepiscopal throne of Macedonius, which had been polluted
with so much Christian blood, was successively filled by Eudoxus
and Damophilus. Their diocese enjoyed a free importation of vice
and error from every province of the empire; the eager pursuit of
religious controversy afforded a new occupation to the busy
idleness of the metropolis; and we may credit the assertion of an
intelligent observer, who describes, with some pleasantry, the
effects of their loquacious zeal. "This city," says he, "is full
of mechanics and slaves, who are all of them profound
theologians; and preach in the shops, and in the streets. If you
desire a man to change a piece of silver, he informs you, wherein
the Son differs from the Father; if you ask the price of a loaf,
you are told by way of reply, that the Son is inferior to the
Father; and if you inquire, whether the bath is ready, the answer
is, that the Son was made out of nothing." ^25 The heretics, of
various denominations, subsisted in peace under the protection of
the Arians of Constantinople; who endeavored to secure the
attachment of those obscure sectaries, while they abused, with
unrelenting severity, the victory which they had obtained over
the followers of the council of Nice. During the partial reigns
of Constantius and Valens, the feeble remnant of the Homoousians
was deprived of the public and private exercise of their
religion; and it has been observed, in pathetic language, that
the scattered flock was left without a shepherd to wander on the
mountains, or to be devoured by rapacious wolves. ^26 But, as
their zeal, instead of being subdued, derived strength and vigor
from oppression, they seized the first moments of imperfect
freedom, which they had acquired by the death of Valens, to form
themselves into a regular congregation, under the conduct of an
episcopal pastor. Two natives of Cappadocia, Basil, and Gregory
Nazianzen, ^27 were distinguished above all their contemporaries,
^28 by the rare union of profane eloquence and of orthodox piety.

These orators, who might sometimes be compared, by themselves,
and by the public, to the most celebrated of the ancient Greeks,
were united by the ties of the strictest friendship. They had
cultivated, with equal ardor, the same liberal studies in the
schools of Athens; they had retired, with equal devotion, to the
same solitude in the deserts of Pontus; and every spark of
emulation, or envy, appeared to be totally extinguished in the
holy and ingenuous breasts of Gregory and Basil. But the
exaltation of Basil, from a private life to the archiepiscopal
throne of Caesarea, discovered to the world, and perhaps to
himself, the pride of his character; and the first favor which he
condescended to bestow on his friend, was received, and perhaps
was intended, as a cruel insult. ^29 Instead of employing the
superior talents of Gregory in some useful and conspicuous
station, the haughty prelate selected, among the fifty bishoprics
of his extensive province, the wretched village of Sasima, ^30
without water, without verdure, without society, situate at the
junction of three highways, and frequented only by the incessant
passage of rude and clamorous wagoners. Gregory submitted with
reluctance to this humiliating exile; he was ordained bishop of
Sasima; but he solemnly protests, that he never consummated his
spiritual marriage with this disgusting bride. He afterwards
consented to undertake the government of his native church of
Nazianzus, ^31 of which his father had been bishop above
five-and-forty years. But as he was still conscious that he
deserved another audience, and another theatre, he accepted, with
no unworthy ambition, the honorable invitation, which was
addressed to him from the orthodox party of Constantinople. On
his arrival in the capital, Gregory was entertained in the house
of a pious and charitable kinsman; the most spacious room was
consecrated to the uses of religious worship; and the name of
Anastasia was chosen to express the resurrection of the Nicene
faith. This private conventicle was afterwards converted into a
magnificent church; and the credulity of the succeeding age was
prepared to believe the miracles and visions, which attested the
presence, or at least the protection, of the Mother of God. ^32
The pulpit of the Anastasia was the scene of the labors and
triumphs of Gregory Nazianzen; and, in the space of two years, he
experienced all the spiritual adventures which constitute the
prosperous or adverse fortunes of a missionary. ^33 The Arians,
who were provoked by the boldness of his enterprise, represented
his doctrine, as if he had preached three distinct and equal
Deities; and the devout populace was excited to suppress, by
violence and tumult, the irregular assemblies of the Athanasian
heretics. From the cathedral of St. Sophia there issued a motley
crowd "of common beggars, who had forfeited their claim to pity;
of monks, who had the appearance of goats or satyrs; and of
women, more terrible than so many Jezebels." The doors of the
Anastasia were broke open; much mischief was perpetrated, or
attempted, with sticks, stones, and firebrands; and as a man lost
his life in the affray, Gregory, who was summoned the next
morning before the magistrate, had the satisfaction of supposing,
that he publicly confessed the name of Christ. After he was
delivered from the fear and danger of a foreign enemy, his infant
church was disgraced and distracted by intestine faction. A
stranger who assumed the name of Maximus, ^34 and the cloak of a
Cynic philosopher, insinuated himself into the confidence of
Gregory; deceived and abused his favorable opinion; and forming a
secret connection with some bishops of Egypt, attempted, by a
clandestine ordination, to supplant his patron in the episcopal
seat of Constantinople. These mortifications might sometimes
tempt the Cappadocian missionary to regret his obscure solitude.
But his fatigues were rewarded by the daily increase of his fame
and his congregation; and he enjoyed the pleasure of observing,
that the greater part of his numerous audience retired from his
sermons satisfied with the eloquence of the preacher, ^35 or
dissatisfied with the manifold imperfections of their faith and
practice. ^36

[Footnote 24: Sozomen, l. vii. c. v. Socrates, l. v. c. 7.
Marcellin. in Chron. The account of forty years must be dated
from the election or intrusion of Eusebius, who wisely exchanged
the bishopric of Nicomedia for the throne of Constantinople.]
[Footnote 25: See Jortin's Remarks on Ecclesiastical History,
vol. iv. p. 71. The thirty-third Oration of Gregory Nazianzen
affords indeed some similar ideas, even some still more
ridiculous; but I have not yet found the words of this remarkable
passage, which I allege on the faith of a correct and liberal

[Footnote 26: See the thirty-second Oration of Gregory Nazianzen,
and the account of his own life, which he has composed in 1800
iambics. Yet every physician is prone to exaggerate the
inveterate nature of the disease which he has cured.]

[Footnote 27: I confess myself deeply indebted to the two lives
of Gregory Nazianzen, composed, with very different views, by
Tillemont (Mem. Eccles. tom. ix. p. 305 - 560, 692 - 731) and Le
Clerc, (Bibliotheque Universelle, tom. xviii. p. 1 - 128.)]
[Footnote 28: Unless Gregory Nazianzen mistook thirty years in
his own age, he was born, as well as his friend Basil, about the
year 329. The preposterous chronology of Suidas has been
graciously received, because it removes the scandal of Gregory's
father, a saint likewise, begetting children after he became a
bishop, (Tillemont, Mem. Eccles. tom. ix. p. 693 - 697.)]

[Footnote 29: Gregory's Poem on his own Life contains some
beautiful lines, (tom. ii. p. 8,) which burst from the heart, and
speak the pangs of injured and lost friendship.

In the Midsummer Night's Dream, Helena addresses the same
pathetic complaint to her friend Hermia: -

Is all the counsel that we two have shared.
The sister's vows, &c.

Shakspeare had never read the poems of Gregory Nazianzen; he was
ignorant of the Greek language; but his mother tongue, the
language of Nature, is the same in Cappadocia and in Britain.]
[Footnote 30: This unfavorable portrait of Sasimae is drawn by
Gregory Nazianzen, (tom. ii. de Vita sua, p. 7, 8.) Its precise
situation, forty- nine miles from Archelais, and thirty-two from
Tyana, is fixed in the Itinerary of Antoninus, (p. 144, edit.

[Footnote 31: The name of Nazianzus has been immortalized by
Gregory; but his native town, under the Greek or Roman title of
Diocaesarea, (Tillemont, Mem. Eccles. tom. ix. p. 692,) is
mentioned by Pliny, (vi. 3,) Ptolemy, and Hierocles, (Itinerar.
Wesseling, p. 709). It appears to have been situate on the edge
of Isauria.]

[Footnote 32: See Ducange, Constant. Christiana, l. iv. p. 141,
142. The Sozomen (l. vii. c. 5) is interpreted to mean the
Virgin Mary.]
[Footnote 33: Tillemont (Mem. Eccles. tom. ix. p. 432, &c.)
diligently collects, enlarges, and explains, the oratorical and
poetical hints of Gregory himself.]

[Footnote 34: He pronounced an oration (tom. i. Orat. xxiii. p.
409) in his praise; but after their quarrel, the name of Maximus
was changed into that of Heron, (see Jerom, tom. i. in Catalog.
Script. Eccles. p. 301). I touch slightly on these obscure and
personal squabbles.]

[Footnote 35: Under the modest emblem of a dream, Gregory (tom.
ii. Carmen ix. p. 78) describes his own success with some human
complacency. Yet it should seem, from his familiar conversation
with his auditor St. Jerom, (tom. i. Epist. ad Nepotian. p. 14,)
that the preacher understood the true value of popular applause.]

[Footnote 36: Lachrymae auditorum laudes tuae sint, is the lively
and judicious advice of St. Jerom.]

The Catholics of Constantinople were animated with joyful
confidence by the baptism and edict of Theodosius; and they
impatiently waited the effects of his gracious promise. Their
hopes were speedily accomplished; and the emperor, as soon as he
had finished the operations of the campaign, made his public
entry into the capital at the head of a victorious army. The next
day after his arrival, he summoned Damophilus to his presence,
and offered that Arian prelate the hard alternative of
subscribing the Nicene creed, or of instantly resigning, to the
orthodox believers, the use and possession of the episcopal
palace, the cathedral of St. Sophia, and all the churches of
Constantinople. The zeal of Damophilus, which in a Catholic
saint would have been justly applauded, embraced, without
hesitation, a life of poverty and exile, ^37 and his removal was
immediately followed by the purification of the Imperial city.
The Arians might complain, with some appearance of justice, that
an inconsiderable congregation of sectaries should usurp the
hundred churches, which they were insufficient to fill; whilst
the far greater part of the people was cruelly excluded from
every place of religious worship. Theodosius was still
inexorable; but as the angels who protected the Catholic cause
were only visible to the eyes of faith, he prudently reenforced
those heavenly legions with the more effectual aid of temporal
and carnal weapons; and the church of St. Sophia was occupied by
a large body of the Imperial guards. If the mind of Gregory was
susceptible of pride, he must have felt a very lively
satisfaction, when the emperor conducted him through the streets
in solemn triumph; and, with his own hand, respectfully placed
him on the archiepiscopal throne of Constantinople. But the
saint (who had not subdued the imperfections of human virtue) was
deeply affected by the mortifying consideration, that his
entrance into the fold was that of a wolf, rather than of a
shepherd; that the glittering arms which surrounded his person,
were necessary for his safety; and that he alone was the object
of the imprecations of a great party, whom, as men and citizens,
it was impossible for him to despise. He beheld the innumerable
multitude of either sex, and of every age, who crowded the
streets, the windows, and the roofs of the houses; he heard the
tumultuous voice of rage, grief, astonishment, and despair; and
Gregory fairly confesses, that on the memorable day of his
installation, the capital of the East wore the appearance of a
city taken by storm, and in the hands of a Barbarian conqueror.
^38 About six weeks afterwards, Theodosius declared his
resolution of expelling from all the churches of his dominions
the bishops and their clergy who should obstinately refuse to
believe, or at least to profess, the doctrine of the council of
Nice. His lieutenant, Sapor, was armed with the ample powers of
a general law, a special commission, and a military force; ^39
and this ecclesiastical revolution was conducted with so much
discretion and vigor, that the religion of the emperor was
established, without tumult or bloodshed, in all the provinces of
the East. The writings of the Arians, if they had been permitted
to exist, ^40 would perhaps contain the lamentable story of the
persecution, which afflicted the church under the reign of the
impious Theodosius; and the sufferings of their holy confessors
might claim the pity of the disinterested reader. Yet there is
reason to imagine, that the violence of zeal and revenge was, in
some measure, eluded by the want of resistance; and that, in
their adversity, the Arians displayed much less firmness than had
been exerted by the orthodox party under the reigns of
Constantius and Valens. The moral character and conduct of the
hostile sects appear to have been governed by the same common
principles of nature and religion: but a very material
circumstance may be discovered, which tended to distinguish the
degrees of their theological faith. Both parties, in the
schools, as well as in the temples, acknowledged and worshipped
the divine majesty of Christ; and, as we are always prone to
impute our own sentiments and passions to the Deity, it would be
deemed more prudent and respectful to exaggerate, than to
circumscribe, the adorable perfections of the Son of God. The
disciple of Athanasius exulted in the proud confidence, that he
had entitled himself to the divine favor; while the follower of
Arius must have been tormented by the secret apprehension, that
he was guilty, perhaps, of an unpardonable offence, by the scanty
praise, and parsimonious honors, which he bestowed on the Judge
of the World. The opinions of Arianism might satisfy a cold and
speculative mind: but the doctrine of the Nicene creed, most
powerfully recommended by the merits of faith and devotion, was
much better adapted to become popular and successful in a
believing age.

[Footnote 37: Socrates (l. v. c. 7) and Sozomen (l. vii. c. 5)
relate the evangelical words and actions of Damophilus without a
word of approbation. He considered, says Socrates, that it is
difficult to resist the powerful, but it was easy, and would have
been profitable, to submit.]
[Footnote 38: See Gregory Nazianzen, tom. ii. de Vita sua, p. 21,
22. For the sake of posterity, the bishop of Constantinople
records a stupendous prodigy. In the month of November, it was a
cloudy morning, but the sun broke forth when the procession
entered the church.]

[Footnote 39: Of the three ecclesiastical historians, Theodoret
alone (l. v. c. 2) has mentioned this important commission of
Sapor, which Tillemont (Hist. des Empereurs, tom. v. p. 728)
judiciously removes from the reign of Gratian to that of

[Footnote 40: I do not reckon Philostorgius, though he mentions
(l. ix. c. 19) the explosion of Damophilus. The Eunomian
historian has been carefully strained through an orthodox sieve.]

The hope, that truth and wisdom would be found in the
assemblies of the orthodox clergy, induced the emperor to
convene, at Constantinople, a synod of one hundred and fifty
bishops, who proceeded, without much difficulty or delay, to
complete the theological system which had been established in the
council of Nice. The vehement disputes of the fourth century had
been chiefly employed on the nature of the Son of God; and the
various opinions which were embraced, concerning the Second, were
extended and transferred, by a natural analogy, to the Third
person of the Trinity. ^41 Yet it was found, or it was thought,
necessary, by the victorious adversaries of Arianism, to explain
the ambiguous language of some respectable doctors; to confirm
the faith of the Catholics; and to condemn an unpopular and
inconsistent sect of Macedonians; who freely admitted that the
Son was consubstantial to the Father, while they were fearful of
seeming to acknowledge the existence of Three Gods. A final and
unanimous sentence was pronounced to ratify the equal Deity of
the Holy Ghost: the mysterious doctrine has been received by all
the nations, and all the churches of the Christian world; and
their grateful reverence has assigned to the bishops of
Theodosius the second rank among the general councils. ^42 Their
knowledge of religious truth may have been preserved by
tradition, or it may have been communicated by inspiration; but
the sober evidence of history will not allow much weight to the
personal authority of the Fathers of Constantinople. In an age
when the ecclesiastics had scandalously degenerated from the
model of apostolic purity, the most worthless and corrupt were
always the most eager to frequent, and disturb, the episcopal
assemblies. The conflict and fermentation of so many opposite
interests and tempers inflamed the passions of the bishops: and
their ruling passions were, the love of gold, and the love of
dispute. Many of the same prelates who now applauded the orthodox
piety of Theodosius, had repeatedly changed, with prudent
flexibility, their creeds and opinions; and in the various
revolutions of the church and state, the religion of their
sovereign was the rule of their obsequious faith. When the
emperor suspended his prevailing influence, the turbulent synod
was blindly impelled by the absurd or selfish motives of pride,
hatred, or resentment. The death of Meletius, which happened at
the council of Constantinople, presented the most favorable
opportunity of terminating the schism of Antioch, by suffering
his aged rival, Paulinus, peaceably to end his days in the
episcopal chair. The faith and virtues of Paulinus were
unblemished. But his cause was supported by the Western
churches; and the bishops of the synod resolved to perpetuate the
mischiefs of discord, by the hasty ordination of a perjured
candidate, ^43 rather than to betray the imagined dignity of the
East, which had been illustrated by the birth and death of the
Son of God. Such unjust and disorderly proceedings forced the
gravest members of the assembly to dissent and to secede; and the
clamorous majority which remained masters of the field of battle,
could be compared only to wasps or magpies, to a flight of
cranes, or to a flock of geese. ^44

[Footnote 41: Le Clerc has given a curious extract (Bibliotheque
Universelle, tom. xviii. p. 91 - 105) of the theological sermons
which Gregory Nazianzen pronounced at Constantinople against the
Arians, Eunomians, Macedonians, &c. He tells the Macedonians,
who deified the Father and the Son without the Holy Ghost, that
they might as well be styled Tritheists as Ditheists. Gregory
himself was almost a Tritheist; and his monarchy of heaven
resembles a well-regulated aristocracy.]
[Footnote 42: The first general council of Constantinople now
triumphs in the Vatican; but the popes had long hesitated, and
their hesitation perplexes, and almost staggers, the humble
Tillemont, (Mem. Eccles. tom. ix. p. 499, 500.)]

[Footnote 43: Before the death of Meletius, six or eight of his
most popular ecclesiastics, among whom was Flavian, had abjured,
for the sake of peace, the bishopric of Antioch, (Sozomen, l.
vii. c. 3, 11. Socrates, l. v. c. v.) Tillemont thinks it his
duty to disbelieve the story; but he owns that there are many
circumstances in the life of Flavian which seem inconsistent with
the praises of Chrysostom, and the character of a saint, (Mem.
Eccles. tom. x. p. 541.)]

[Footnote 44: Consult Gregory Nazianzen, de Vita sua, tom. ii. p.
25 - 28. His general and particular opinion of the clergy and
their assemblies may be seen in verse and prose, (tom. i. Orat.
i. p. 33. Epist. lv. p. 814, tom. ii. Carmen x. p. 81.) Such
passages are faintly marked by Tillemont, and fairly produced by
Le Clerc.]

A suspicion may possibly arise, that so unfavorable a
picture of ecclesiastical synods has been drawn by the partial
hand of some obstinate heretic, or some malicious infidel. But
the name of the sincere historian who has conveyed this
instructive lesson to the knowledge of posterity, must silence
the impotent murmurs of superstition and bigotry. He was one of
the most pious and eloquent bishops of the age; a saint, and a
doctor of the church; the scourge of Arianism, and the pillar of
the orthodox faith; a distinguished member of the council of
Constantinople, in which, after the death of Meletius, he
exercised the functions of president; in a word - Gregory
Nazianzen himself. The harsh and ungenerous treatment which he
experienced, ^45 instead of derogating from the truth of his
evidence, affords an additional proof of the spirit which
actuated the deliberations of the synod. Their unanimous
suffrage had confirmed the pretensions which the bishop of
Constantinople derived from the choice of the people, and the
approbation of the emperor. But Gregory soon became the victim
of malice and envy. The bishops of the East, his strenuous
adherents, provoked by his moderation in the affairs of Antioch,
abandoned him, without support, to the adverse faction of the
Egyptians; who disputed the validity of his election, and
rigorously asserted the obsolete canon, that prohibited the
licentious practice of episcopal translations. The pride, or the
humility, of Gregory prompted him to decline a contest which
might have been imputed to ambition and avarice; and he publicly
offered, not without some mixture of indignation, to renounce the
government of a church which had been restored, and almost
created, by his labors. His resignation was accepted by the
synod, and by the emperor, with more readiness than he seems to
have expected. At the time when he might have hoped to enjoy the
fruits of his victory, his episcopal throne was filled by the
senator Nectarius; and the new archbishop, accidentally
recommended by his easy temper and venerable aspect, was obliged
to delay the ceremony of his consecration, till he had previously
despatched the rites of his baptism. ^46 After this remarkable
experience of the ingratitude of princes and prelates, Gregory
retired once more to his obscure solitude of Cappadocia; where he
employed the remainder of his life, about eight years, in the
exercises of poetry and devotion. The title of Saint has been
added to his name: but the tenderness of his heart, ^47 and the
elegance of his genius, reflect a more pleasing lustre on the
memory of Gregory Nazianzen.

[Footnote 45: See Gregory, tom. ii. de Vita sua, p. 28 - 31. The
fourteenth, twenty-seventh, and thirty-second Orations were
pronounced in the several stages of this business. The
peroration of the last, (tom. i. p. 528,) in which he takes a
solemn leave of men and angels, the city and the emperor, the
East and the West, &c., is pathetic, and almost sublime.]
[Footnote 46: The whimsical ordination of Nectarius is attested
by Sozomen, (l. vii. c. 8;) but Tillemont observes, (Mem. Eccles.
tom. ix. p. 719,) Apres tout, ce narre de Sozomene est si
honteux, pour tous ceux qu'il y mele, et surtout pour Theodose,
qu'il vaut mieux travailler a le detruire, qu'a le soutenir; an
admirable canon of criticism!]

[Footnote 47: I can only be understood to mean, that such was his
natural temper when it was not hardened, or inflamed, by
religious zeal. From his retirement, he exhorts Nectarius to
prosecute the heretics of Constantinople.]

It was not enough that Theodosius had suppressed the
insolent reign of Arianism, or that he had abundantly revenged
the injuries which the Catholics sustained from the zeal of
Constantius and Valens. The orthodox emperor considered every
heretic as a rebel against the supreme powers of heaven and of
earth; and each of those powers might exercise their peculiar
jurisdiction over the soul and body of the guilty. The decrees
of the council of Constantinople had ascertained the true
standard of the faith; and the ecclesiastics, who governed the
conscience of Theodosius, suggested the most effectual methods of
persecution. In the space of fifteen years, he promulgated at
least fifteen severe edicts against the heretics; ^48 more
especially against those who rejected the doctrine of the
Trinity; and to deprive them of every hope of escape, he sternly
enacted, that if any laws or rescripts should be alleged in their
favor, the judges should consider them as the illegal productions
either of fraud or forgery. The penal statutes were directed
against the ministers, the assemblies, and the persons of the
heretics; and the passions of the legislator were expressed in
the language of declamation and invective. I. The heretical
teachers, who usurped the sacred titles of Bishops, or
Presbyters, were not only excluded from the privileges and
emoluments so liberally granted to the orthodox clergy, but they
were exposed to the heavy penalties of exile and confiscation, if
they presumed to preach the doctrine, or to practise the rites,
of their accursed sects. A fine of ten pounds of gold (above
four hundred pounds sterling) was imposed on every person who
should dare to confer, or receive, or promote, an heretical
ordination: and it was reasonably expected, that if the race of
pastors could be extinguished, their helpless flocks would be
compelled, by ignorance and hunger, to return within the pale of
the Catholic church. II. The rigorous prohibition of
conventicles was carefully extended to every possible
circumstance, in which the heretics could assemble with the
intention of worshipping God and Christ according to the dictates
of their conscience. Their religious meetings, whether public or
secret, by day or by night, in cities or in the country, were
equally proscribed by the edicts of Theodosius; and the building,
or ground, which had been used for that illegal purpose, was
forfeited to the Imperial domain. III. It was supposed, that
the error of the heretics could proceed only from the obstinate
temper of their minds; and that such a temper was a fit object of
censure and punishment. The anathemas of the church were
fortified by a sort of civil excommunication; which separated
them from their fellow- citizens, by a peculiar brand of infamy;
and this declaration of the supreme magistrate tended to justify,
or at least to excuse, the insults of a fanatic populace. The
sectaries were gradually disqualified from the possession of
honorable or lucrative employments; and Theodosius was satisfied
with his own justice, when he decreed, that, as the Eunomians
distinguished the nature of the Son from that of the Father, they
should be incapable of making their wills or of receiving any
advantage from testamentary donations. The guilt of the
Manichaean heresy was esteemed of such magnitude, that it could
be expiated only by the death of the offender; and the same
capital punishment was inflicted on the Audians, or
Quartodecimans, ^49 who should dare to perpetrate the atrocious
crime of celebrating on an improper day the festival of Easter.
Every Roman might exercise the right of public accusation; but
the office of Inquisitors of the Faith, a name so deservedly
abhorred, was first instituted under the reign of Theodosius.
Yet we are assured, that the execution of his penal edicts was
seldom enforced; and that the pious emperor appeared less
desirous to punish, than to reclaim, or terrify, his refractory
subjects. ^50
[Footnote 48: See the Theodosian Code, l. xvi. tit. v. leg. 6 -
23, with Godefroy's commentary on each law, and his general
summary, or Paratitlon, tom vi. p. 104 - 110.]

[Footnote 49: They always kept their Easter, like the Jewish
Passover, on the fourteenth day of the first moon after the
vernal equinox; and thus pertinaciously opposed the Roman Church
and Nicene synod, which had fixed Easter to a Sunday. Bingham's
Antiquities, l. xx. c. 5, vol. ii. p. 309, fol. edit.]

[Footnote 50: Sozomen, l. vii. c. 12.]

The theory of persecution was established by Theodosius,
whose justice and piety have been applauded by the saints: but
the practice of it, in the fullest extent, was reserved for his
rival and colleague, Maximus, the first, among the Christian
princes, who shed the blood of his Christian subjects on account
of their religious opinions. The cause of the Priscillianists,
^51 a recent sect of heretics, who disturbed the provinces of
Spain, was transferred, by appeal, from the synod of Bordeaux to
the Imperial consistory of Treves; and by the sentence of the
Praetorian praefect, seven persons were tortured, condemned, and
executed. The first of these was Priscillian ^52 himself, bishop
of Avila, in Spain; who adorned the advantages of birth and
fortune, by the accomplishments of eloquence and learning. Two
presbyters, and two deacons, accompanied their beloved master in
his death, which they esteemed as a glorious martyrdom; and the
number of religious victims was completed by the execution of
Latronian, a poet, who rivalled the fame of the ancients; and of
Euchrocia, a noble matron of Bordeaux, the widow of the orator
Delphidius. ^54 Two bishops who had embraced the sentiments of
Priscillian, were condemned to a distant and dreary exile; ^55
and some indulgence was shown to the meaner criminals, who
assumed the merit of an early repentance. If any credit could be
allowed to confessions extorted by fear or pain, and to vague
reports, the offspring of malice and credulity, the heresy of the
Priscillianists would be found to include the various
abominations of magic, of impiety, and of lewdness. ^56
Priscillian, who wandered about the world in the company of his
spiritual sisters, was accused of praying stark naked in the
midst of the congregation; and it was confidently asserted, that
the effects of his criminal intercourse with the daughter of
Euchrocia had been suppressed, by means still more odious and
criminal. But an accurate, or rather a candid, inquiry will
discover, that if the Priscillianists violated the laws of
nature, it was not by the licentiousness, but by the austerity,
of their lives. They absolutely condemned the use of the
marriage-bed; and the peace of families was often disturbed by
indiscreet separations. They enjoyed, or recommended, a total
abstinence from all anima food; and their continual prayers,
fasts, and vigils, inculcated a rule of strict and perfect
devotion. The speculative tenets of the sect, concerning the
person of Christ, and the nature of the human soul, were derived
from the Gnostic and Manichaean system; and this vain philosophy,
which had been transported from Egypt to Spain, was ill adapted
to the grosser spirits of the West. The obscure disciples of
Priscillian suffered languished, and gradually disappeared: his
tenets were rejected by the clergy and people, but his death was
the subject of a long and vehement controversy; while some
arraigned, and others applauded, the justice of his sentence. It
is with pleasure that we can observe the humane inconsistency of
the most illustrious saints and bishops, Ambrose of Milan, ^57
and Martin of Tours, ^58 who, on this occasion, asserted the
cause of toleration. They pitied the unhappy men, who had been
executed at Treves; they refused to hold communion with their
episcopal murderers; and if Martin deviated from that generous
resolution, his motives were laudable, and his repentance was
exemplary. The bishops of Tours and Milan pronounced, without
hesitation, the eternal damnation of heretics; but they were
surprised, and shocked, by the bloody image of their temporal
death, and the honest feelings of nature resisted the artificial
prejudices of theology. The humanity of Ambrose and Martin was
confirmed by the scandalous irregularity of the proceedings
against Priscillian and his adherents. The civil and
ecclesiastical ministers had transgressed the limits of their
respective provinces. The secular judge had presumed to receive
an appeal, and to pronounce a definitive sentence, in a matter of
faith, and episcopal jurisdiction. The bishops had disgraced
themselves, by exercising the functions of accusers in a criminal
prosecution. The cruelty of Ithacius, ^59 who beheld the
tortures, and solicited the death, of the heretics, provoked the
just indignation of mankind; and the vices of that profligate
bishop were admitted as a proof, that his zeal was instigated by
the sordid motives of interest. Since the death of Priscillian,
the rude attempts of persecution have been refined and methodized
in the holy office, which assigns their distinct parts to the
ecclesiastical and secular powers. The devoted victim is
regularly delivered by the priest to the magistrate, and by the
magistrate to the executioner; and the inexorable sentence of the
church, which declares the spiritual guilt of the offender, is
expressed in the mild language of pity and intercession.

[Footnote 51: See the Sacred History of Sulpicius Severus, (l.
ii. p. 437 - 452, edit. Ludg. Bat. 1647,) a correct and original
writer. Dr. Lardner (Credibility, &c., part ii. vol. ix. p. 256
- 350) has labored this article with pure learning, good sense,
and moderation. Tillemont (Mem. Eccles. tom. viii. p. 491 - 527)
has raked together all the dirt of the fathers; a useful

[Footnote 52: Severus Sulpicius mentions the arch-heretic with
esteem and pity Faelix profecto, si non pravo studio corrupisset
optimum ingenium prorsus multa in eo animi et corporis bona
cerneres. (Hist. Sacra, l ii. p. 439.) Even Jerom (tom. i. in
Script. Eccles. p. 302) speaks with temper of Priscillian and

[Footnote 53: The bishopric (in Old Castile) is now worth 20,000
ducats a year, (Busching's Geography, vol. ii. p. 308,) and is
therefore much less likely to produce the author of a new

[Footnote 54: Exprobrabatur mulieri viduae nimia religio, et
diligentius culta divinitas, (Pacat. in Panegyr. Vet. xii. 29.)
Such was the idea of a humane, though ignorant, polytheist.]
[Footnote 55: One of them was sent in Sillinam insulam quae ultra
Britannianest. What must have been the ancient condition of the
rocks of Scilly? (Camden's Britannia, vol. ii. p. 1519.)]
[Footnote 56: The scandalous calumnies of Augustin, Pope Leo,
&c., which Tillemont swallows like a child, and Lardner refutes
like a man, may suggest some candid suspicions in favor of the
older Gnostics.]

[Footnote 57: Ambros. tom. ii. Epist. xxiv. p. 891.]

[Footnote 58: In the Sacred History, and the Life of St. Martin,
Sulpicius Severus uses some caution; but he declares himself more
freely in the Dialogues, (iii. 15.) Martin was reproved, however,
by his own conscience, and by an angel; nor could he afterwards
perform miracles with so much ease.]
[Footnote 59: The Catholic Presbyter (Sulp. Sever. l. ii. p. 448)
and the Pagan Orator (Pacat. in Panegyr. Vet. xii. 29) reprobate,
with equal indignation, the character and conduct of Ithacius.]
Chapter XXVII: Civil Wars, Reign Of Theodosius.

Part III.

Among the ecclesiastics, who illustrated the reign of
Theodosius, Gregory Nazianzen was distinguished by the talents of
an eloquent preacher; the reputation of miraculous gifts added
weight and dignity to the monastic virtues of Martin of Tours;
^60 but the palm of episcopal vigor and ability was justly
claimed by the intrepid Ambrose. ^61 He was descended from a
noble family of Romans; his father had exercised the important
office of Praetorian praefect of Gaul; and the son, after passing
through the studies of a liberal education, attained, in the
regular gradation of civil honors, the station of consular of
Liguria, a province which included the Imperial residence of
Milan. At the age of thirty-four, and before he had received the
sacrament of baptism, Ambrose, to his own surprise, and to that
of the world, was suddenly transformed from a governor to an
archbishop. Without the least mixture, as it is said, of art or
intrigue, the whole body of the people unanimously saluted him
with the episcopal title; the concord and perseverance of their
acclamations were ascribed to a praeternatural impulse; and the
reluctant magistrate was compelled to undertake a spiritual
office, for which he was not prepared by the habits and
occupations of his former life. But the active force of his
genius soon qualified him to exercise, with zeal and prudence,
the duties of his ecclesiastical jurisdiction; and while he
cheerfully renounced the vain and splendid trappings of temporal
greatness, he condescended, for the good of the church, to direct
the conscience of the emperors, and to control the administration
of the empire. Gratian loved and revered him as a father; and
the elaborate treatise on the faith of the Trinity was designed
for the instruction of the young prince. After his tragic death,
at a time when the empress Justina trembled for her own safety,
and for that of her son Valentinian, the archbishop of Milan was
despatched, on two different embassies, to the court of Treves.
He exercised, with equal firmness and dexterity, the powers of
his spiritual and political characters; and perhaps contributed,
by his authority and eloquence, to check the ambition of Maximus,
and to protect the peace of Italy. ^62 Ambrose had devoted his
life, and his abilities, to the service of the church. Wealth
was the object of his contempt; he had renounced his private
patrimony; and he sold, without hesitation, the consecrated
plate, for the redemption of captives. The clergy and people of
Milan were attached to their archbishop; and he deserved the
esteem, without soliciting the favor, or apprehending the
displeasure, of his feeble sovereigns.

[Footnote 60: The Life of St. Martin, and the Dialogues
concerning his miracles contain facts adapted to the grossest
barbarism, in a style not unworthy of the Augustan age. So
natural is the alliance between good taste and good sense, that I
am always astonished by this contrast.]
[Footnote 61: The short and superficial Life of St. Ambrose, by
his deacon Paulinus, (Appendix ad edit. Benedict. p. i. - xv.,)
has the merit of original evidence. Tillemont (Mem. Eccles. tom.
x. p. 78 - 306) and the Benedictine editors (p. xxxi. - lxiii.)
have labored with their usual diligence.]
[Footnote 62: Ambrose himself (tom. ii. Epist. xxiv. p. 888 -
891) gives the emperor a very spirited account of his own

The government of Italy, and of the young emperor, naturally
devolved to his mother Justina, a woman of beauty and spirit, but
who, in the midst of an orthodox people, had the misfortune of
professing the Arian heresy, which she endeavored to instil into
the mind of her son. Justina was persuaded, that a Roman emperor
might claim, in his own dominions, the public exercise of his
religion; and she proposed to the archbishop, as a moderate and
reasonable concession, that he should resign the use of a single
church, either in the city or the suburbs of Milan. But the
conduct of Ambrose was governed by very different principles. ^63
The palaces of the earth might indeed belong to Caesar; but the
churches were the houses of God; and, within the limits of his
diocese, he himself, as the lawful successor of the apostles, was
the only minister of God. The privileges of Christianity,
temporal as well as spiritual, were confined to the true
believers; and the mind of Ambrose was satisfied, that his own
theological opinions were the standard of truth and orthodoxy.
The archbishop, who refused to hold any conference, or
negotiation, with the instruments of Satan, declared, with modest
firmness, his resolution to die a martyr, rather than to yield to
the impious sacrilege; and Justina, who resented the refusal as
an act of insolence and rebellion, hastily determined to exert
the Imperial prerogative of her son. As she desired to perform
her public devotions on the approaching festival of Easter,
Ambrose was ordered to appear before the council. He obeyed the
summons with the respect of a faithful subject, but he was
followed, without his consent, by an innumerable people they
pressed, with impetuous zeal, against the gates of the palace;
and the affrighted ministers of Valentinian, instead of
pronouncing a sentence of exile on the archbishop of Milan,
humbly requested that he would interpose his authority, to
protect the person of the emperor, and to restore the tranquility
of the capital. But the promises which Ambrose received and
communicated were soon violated by a perfidious court; and,
during six of the most solemn days, which Christian piety had set
apart for the exercise of religion, the city was agitated by the
irregular convulsions of tumult and fanaticism. The officers of
the household were directed to prepare, first, the Portian, and
afterwards, the new, Basilica, for the immediate reception of the
emperor and his mother. The splendid canopy and hangings of the
royal seat were arranged in the customary manner; but it was
found necessary to defend them. by a strong guard, from the
insults of the populace. The Arian ecclesiastics, who ventured
to show themselves in the streets, were exposed to the most
imminent danger of their lives; and Ambrose enjoyed the merit and
reputation of rescuing his personal enemies from the hands of the
enraged multitude.

[Footnote 63: His own representation of his principles and
conduct (tom. ii. Epist. xx xxi. xxii. p. 852 - 880) is one of
the curious monuments of ecclesiastical antiquity. It contains
two letters to his sister Marcellina, with a petition to
Valentinian and the sermon de Basilicis non madendis.]
But while he labored to restrain the effects of their zeal,
the pathetic vehemence of his sermons continually inflamed the
angry and seditious temper of the people of Milan. The
characters of Eve, of the wife of Job, of Jezebel, of Herodias,
were indecently applied to the mother of the emperor; and her
desire to obtain a church for the Arians was compared to the most
cruel persecutions which Christianity had endured under the reign
of Paganism. The measures of the court served only to expose the
magnitude of the evil. A fine of two hundred pounds of gold was
imposed on the corporate body of merchants and manufacturers: an
order was signified, in the name of the emperor, to all the
officers, and inferior servants, of the courts of justice, that,
during the continuance of the public disorders, they should
strictly confine themselves to their houses; and the ministers of
Valentinian imprudently confessed, that the most respectable part
of the citizens of Milan was attached to the cause of their
archbishop. He was again solicited to restore peace to his
country, by timely compliance with the will of his sovereign.
The reply of Ambrose was couched in the most humble and
respectful terms, which might, however, be interpreted as a
serious declaration of civil war. "His life and fortune were in
the hands of the emperor; but he would never betray the church of
Christ, or degrade the dignity of the episcopal character. In
such a cause he was prepared to suffer whatever the malice of the
daemon could inflict; and he only wished to die in the presence
of his faithful flock, and at the foot of the altar; he had not
contributed to excite, but it was in the power of God alone to
appease, the rage of the people: he deprecated the scenes of
blood and confusion which were likely to ensue; and it was his
fervent prayer, that he might not survive to behold the ruin of a
flourishing city, and perhaps the desolation of all Italy." ^64
The obstinate bigotry of Justina would have endangered the empire
of her son, if, in this contest with the church and people of
Milan, she could have depended on the active obedience of the
troops of the palace. A large body of Goths had marched to
occupy the Basilica, which was the object of the dispute: and it
might be expected from the Arian principles, and barbarous
manners, of these foreign mercenaries, that they would not
entertain any scruples in the execution of the most sanguinary
orders. They were encountered, on the sacred threshold, by the
archbishop, who, thundering against them a sentence of
excommunication, asked them, in the tone of a father and a
master, whether it was to invade the house of God, that they had
implored the hospitable protection of the republic. The suspense
of the Barbarians allowed some hours for a more effectual
negotiation; and the empress was persuaded, by the advice of her
wisest counsellors, to leave the Catholics in possession of all
the churches of Milan; and to dissemble, till a more convenient
season, her intentions of revenge. The mother of Valentinian
could never forgive the triumph of Ambrose; and the royal youth
uttered a passionate exclamation, that his own servants were
ready to betray him into the hands of an insolent priest.

[Footnote 64: Retz had a similar message from the queen, to
request that he would appease the tumult of Paris. It was no
longer in his power, &c. A quoi j'ajoutai tout ce que vous
pouvez vous imaginer de respect de douleur, de regret, et de
soumission, &c. (Memoires, tom. i. p. 140.) Certainly I do not
compare either the causes or the men yet the coadjutor himself
had some idea (p. 84) of imitating St. Ambrose]

The laws of the empire, some of which were inscribed with
the name of Valentinian, still condemned the Arian heresy, and
seemed to excuse the resistance of the Catholics. By the
influence of Justina, an edict of toleration was promulgated in
all the provinces which were subject to the court of Milan; the
free exercise of their religion was granted to those who
professed the faith of Rimini; and the emperor declared, that all
persons who should infringe this sacred and salutary
constitution, should be capitally punished, as the enemies of the
public peace. ^65 The character and language of the archbishop of
Milan may justify the suspicion, that his conduct soon afforded a
reasonable ground, or at least a specious pretence, to the Arian
ministers; who watched the opportunity of surprising him in some
act of disobedience to a law which he strangely represents as a
law of blood and tyranny. A sentence of easy and honorable
banishment was pronounced, which enjoined Ambrose to depart from
Milan without delay; whilst it permitted him to choose the place
of his exile, and the number of his companions. But the
authority of the saints, who have preached and practised the
maxims of passive loyalty, appeared to Ambrose of less moment
than the extreme and pressing danger of the church. He boldly
refused to obey; and his refusal was supported by the unanimous
consent of his faithful people. ^66 They guarded by turns the
person of their archbishop; the gates of the cathedral and the
episcopal palace were strongly secured; and the Imperial troops,
who had formed the blockade, were unwilling to risk the attack,
of that impregnable fortress. The numerous poor, who had been
relieved by the liberality of Ambrose, embraced the fair occasion
of signalizing their zeal and gratitude; and as the patience of
the multitude might have been exhausted by the length and
uniformity of nocturnal vigils, he prudently introduced into the
church of Milan the useful institution of a loud and regular
psalmody. While he maintained this arduous contest, he was
instructed, by a dream, to open the earth in a place where the
remains of two martyrs, Gervasius and Protasius, ^67 had been
deposited above three hundred years. Immediately under the
pavement of the church two perfect skeletons were found, ^68 with
the heads separated from their bodies, and a plentiful effusion
of blood. The holy relics were presented, in solemn pomp, to the
veneration of the people; and every circumstance of this
fortunate discovery was admirably adapted to promote the designs
of Ambrose. The bones of the martyrs, their blood, their
garments, were supposed to contain a healing power; and the
praeternatural influence was communicated to the most distant
objects, without losing any part of its original virtue. The
extraordinary cure of a blind man, ^69 and the reluctant
confessions of several daemoniacs, appeared to justify the faith
and sanctity of Ambrose; and the truth of those miracles is
attested by Ambrose himself, by his secretary Paulinus, and by
his proselyte, the celebrated Augustin, who, at that time,
professed the art of rhetoric in Milan. The reason of the
present age may possibly approve the incredulity of Justina and
her Arian court; who derided the theatrical representations which
were exhibited by the contrivance, and at the expense, of the
archbishop. ^70 Their effect, however, on the minds of the
people, was rapid and irresistible; and the feeble sovereign of
Italy found himself unable to contend with the favorite of
Heaven. The powers likewise of the earth interposed in the
defence of Ambrose: the disinterested advice of Theodosius was
the genuine result of piety and friendship; and the mask of
religious zeal concealed the hostile and ambitious designs of the
tyrant of Gaul. ^71

[Footnote 65: Sozomen alone (l. vii. c. 13) throws this luminous
fact into a dark and perplexed narrative.]

[Footnote 66: Excubabat pia plebs in ecclesia, mori parata cum
episcopo suo .... Nos, adhuc frigidi, excitabamur tamen civitate
attonita atque curbata. Augustin. Confession. l. ix. c. 7]
[Footnote 67: Tillemont, Mem. Eccles. tom. ii. p. 78, 498. Many
churches in Italy, Gaul, &c., were dedicated to these unknown
martyrs, of whom St. Gervaise seems to have been more fortunate
than his companion.]
[Footnote 68: Invenimus mirae magnitudinis viros duos, ut prisca
aetas ferebat, tom. ii. Epist. xxii. p. 875. The size of these
skeletons was fortunately, or skillfully, suited to the popular
prejudice of the gradual decrease of the human stature, which has
prevailed in every age since the time of Homer.

Grandiaque effossis mirabitur ossa sepulchris.]

[Footnote 69: Ambros. tom. ii. Epist. xxii. p. 875. Augustin.
Confes, l. ix. c. 7, de Civitat. Dei, l. xxii. c. 8. Paulin. in
Vita St. Ambros. c. 14, in Append. Benedict. p. 4. The blind
man's name was Severus; he touched the holy garment, recovered
his sight, and devoted the rest of his life (at least twenty-five
years) to the service of the church. I should recommend this
miracle to our divines, if it did not prove the worship of
relics, as well as the Nicene creed.]

[Footnote 70: Paulin, in Tit. St. Ambros. c. 5, in Append.
Benedict. p. 5.]
[Footnote 71: Tillemont, Mem. Eccles. tom. x. p. 190, 750. He
partially allow the mediation of Theodosius, and capriciously
rejects that of Maximus, though it is attested by Prosper,
Sozomen, and Theodoret.]

The reign of Maximus might have ended in peace and
prosperity, could he have contented himself with the possession
of three ample countries, which now constitute the three most
flourishing kingdoms of modern Europe. But the aspiring usurper,
whose sordid ambition was not dignified by the love of glory and
of arms, considered his actual forces as the instruments only of
his future greatness, and his success was the immediate cause of
his destruction. The wealth which he extorted ^72 from the
oppressed provinces of Gaul, Spain, and Britain, was employed in
levying and maintaining a formidable army of Barbarians,
collected, for the most part, from the fiercest nations of
Germany. The conquest of Italy was the object of his hopes and
preparations: and he secretly meditated the ruin of an innocent
youth, whose government was abhorred and despised by his Catholic
subjects. But as Maximus wished to occupy, without resistance,
the passes of the Alps, he received, with perfidious smiles,
Domninus of Syria, the ambassador of Valentinian, and pressed him
to accept the aid of a considerable body of troops, for the
service of a Pannonian war. The penetration of Ambrose had
discovered the snares of an enemy under the professions of
friendship; ^73 but the Syrian Domninus was corrupted, or
deceived, by the liberal favor of the court of Treves; and the
council of Milan obstinately rejected the suspicion of danger,
with a blind confidence, which was the effect, not of courage,
but of fear. The march of the auxiliaries was guided by the
ambassador; and they were admitted, without distrust, into the
fortresses of the Alps. But the crafty tyrant followed, with
hasty and silent footsteps, in the rear; and, as he diligently
intercepted all intelligence of his motions, the gleam of armor,
and the dust excited by the troops of cavalry, first announced
the hostile approach of a stranger to the gates of Milan. In
this extremity, Justina and her son might accuse their own
imprudence, and the perfidious arts of Maximus; but they wanted
time, and force, and resolution, to stand against the Gauls and
Germans, either in the field, or within the walls of a large and
disaffected city. Flight was their only hope, Aquileia their
only refuge; and as Maximus now displayed his genuine character,
the brother of Gratian might expect the same fate from the hands
of the same assassin. Maximus entered Milan in triumph; and if
the wise archbishop refused a dangerous and criminal connection
with the usurper, he might indirectly contribute to the success
of his arms, by inculcating, from the pulpit, the duty of
resignation, rather than that of resistance. ^74 The unfortunate
Justina reached Aquileia in safety; but she distrusted the
strength of the fortifications: she dreaded the event of a siege;
and she resolved to implore the protection of the great
Theodosius, whose power and virtue were celebrated in all the
countries of the West. A vessel was secretly provided to
transport the Imperial family; they embarked with precipitation
in one of the obscure harbors of Venetia, or Istria; traversed
the whole extent of the Adriatic and Ionian Seas; turned the
extreme promontory of Peloponnesus; and, after a long, but
successful navigation, reposed themselves in the port of
Thessalonica. All the subjects of Valentinian deserted the cause
of a prince, who, by his abdication, had absolved them from the
duty of allegiance; and if the little city of Aemona, on the
verge of Italy, had not presumed to stop the career of his
inglorious victory, Maximus would have obtained, without a
struggle, the sole possession of the Western empire.

[Footnote 72: The modest censure of Sulpicius (Dialog. iii. 15)
inflicts a much deeper wound than the declamation of Pacatus,
(xii. 25, 26.)]
[Footnote 73: Esto tutior adversus hominem, pacis involurco
tegentem, was the wise caution of Ambrose (tom. ii. p. 891) after
his return from his second embassy.]

[Footnote 74: Baronius (A.D. 387, No. 63) applies to this season
of public distress some of the penitential sermons of the
Instead of inviting his royal guests to take the palace of
Constantinople, Theodosius had some unknown reasons to fix their
residence at Thessalonica; but these reasons did not proceed from
contempt or indifference, as he speedily made a visit to that
city, accompanied by the greatest part of his court and senate.
After the first tender expressions of friendship and sympathy,
the pious emperor of the East gently admonished Justina, that the
guilt of heresy was sometimes punished in this world, as well as
in the next; and that the public profession of the Nicene faith
would be the most efficacious step to promote the restoration of
her son, by the satisfaction which it must occasion both on earth
and in heaven. The momentous question of peace or war was
referred, by Theodosius, to the deliberation of his council; and
the arguments which might be alleged on the side of honor and
justice, had acquired, since the death of Gratian, a considerable
degree of additional weight. The persecution of the Imperial
family, to which Theodosius himself had been indebted for his
fortune, was now aggravated by recent and repeated injuries.
Neither oaths nor treaties could restrain the boundless ambition
of Maximus; and the delay of vigorous and decisive measures,
instead of prolonging the blessings of peace, would expose the
Eastern empire to the danger of a hostile invasion. The
Barbarians, who had passed the Danube, had lately assumed the
character of soldiers and subjects, but their native fierceness
was yet untamed: and the operations of a war, which would
exercise their valor, and diminish their numbers, might tend to
relieve the provinces from an intolerable oppression.
Notwithstanding these specious and solid reasons, which were
approved by a majority of the council, Theodosius still hesitated
whether he should draw the sword in a contest which could no
longer admit any terms of reconciliation; and his magnanimous
character was not disgraced by the apprehensions which he felt
for the safety of his infant sons, and the welfare of his
exhausted people. In this moment of anxious doubt, while the
fate of the Roman world depended on the resolution of a single
man, the charms of the princess Galla most powerfully pleaded the
cause of her brother Valentinian. ^75 The heart of Theodosius wa
softened by the tears of beauty; his affections were insensibly
engaged by the graces of youth and innocence: the art of Justina
managed and directed the impulse of passion; and the celebration
of the royal nuptials was the assurance and signal of the civil
war. The unfeeling critics, who consider every amorous weakness
as an indelible stain on the memory of a great and orthodox
emperor, are inclined, on this occasion, to dispute the
suspicious evidence of the historian Zosimus. For my own part, I
shall frankly confess, that I am willing to find, or even to
seek, in the revolutions of the world, some traces of the mild
and tender sentiments of domestic life; and amidst the crowd of
fierce and ambitious conquerors, I can distinguish, with peculiar
complacency, a gentle hero, who may be supposed to receive his
armor from the hands of love. The alliance of the Persian king
was secured by the faith of treaties; the martial Barbarians were
persuaded to follow the standard, or to respect the frontiers, of
an active and liberal monarch; and the dominions of Theodosius,
from the Euphrates to the Adriatic, resounded with the
preparations of war both by land and sea. The skilful
disposition of the forces of the East seemed to multiply their
numbers, and distracted the attention of Maximus. He had reason
to fear, that a chosen body of troops, under the command of the
intrepid Arbogastes, would direct their march along the banks of
the Danube, and boldly penetrate through the Rhaetian provinces
into the centre of Gaul. A powerful fleet was equipped in the
harbors of Greece and Epirus, with an apparent design, that, as
soon as the passage had been opened by a naval victory,
Valentinian and his mother should land in Italy, proceed, without
delay, to Rome, and occupy the majestic seat of religion and
empire. In the mean while, Theodosius himself advanced at the
head of a brave and disciplined army, to encounter his unworthy
rival, who, after the siege of Aemona, ^* had fixed his camp in
the neighborhood of Siscia, a city of Pannonia, strongly
fortified by the broad and rapid stream of the Save.

[Footnote 75: The flight of Valentinian, and the love of
Theodosius for his sister, are related by Zosimus, (l. iv. p.
263, 264.) Tillemont produces some weak and ambiguous evidence to
antedate the second marriage of Theodosius, (Hist. des Empereurs,
to. v. p. 740,) and consequently to refute ces contes de Zosime,
qui seroient trop contraires a la piete de Theodose.]
[Footnote *: Aemonah, Laybach. Siscia Sciszek. - M.]

Chapter XXVII: Civil Wars, Reign Of Theodosius.

Part IV.

The veterans, who still remembered the long resistance, and
successive resources, of the tyrant Magnentius, might prepare
themselves for the labors of three bloody campaigns. But the
contest with his successor, who, like him, had usurped the throne
of the West, was easily decided in the term of two months, ^76
and within the space of two hundred miles. The superior genius
of the emperor of the East might prevail over the feeble Maximus,
who, in this important crisis, showed himself destitute of
military skill, or personal courage; but the abilities of
Theodosius were seconded by the advantage which he possessed of a
numerous and active cavalry. The Huns, the Alani, and, after
their example, the Goths themselves, were formed into squadrons
of archers; who fought on horseback, and confounded the steady
valor of the Gauls and Germans, by the rapid motions of a Tartar
war. After the fatigue of a long march, in the heat of summer,
they spurred their foaming horses into the waters of the Save,
swam the river in the presence of the enemy, and instantly
charged and routed the troops who guarded the high ground on the
opposite side. Marcellinus, the tyrant's brother, advanced to
support them with the select cohorts, which were considered as
the hope and strength of the army. The action, which had been
interrupted by the approach of night, was renewed in the morning;
and, after a sharp conflict, the surviving remnant of the bravest
soldiers of Maximus threw down their arms at the feet of the
conqueror. Without suspending his march, to receive the loyal
acclamations of the citizens of Aemona, Theodosius pressed
forwards to terminate the war by the death or captivity of his
rival, who fled before him with the diligence of fear. From the
summit of the Julian Alps, he descended with such incredible
speed into the plain of Italy, that he reached Aquileia on the
evening of the first day; and Maximus, who found himself
encompassed on all sides, had scarcely time to shut the gates of
the city. But the gates could not long resist the effort of a
victorious enemy; and the despair, the disaffection, the
indifference of the soldiers and people, hastened the downfall of
the wretched Maximus. He was dragged from his throne, rudely
stripped of the Imperial ornaments, the robe, the diadem, and the
purple slippers; and conducted, like a malefactor, to the camp
and presence of Theodosius, at a place about three miles from
Aquileia. The behavior of the emperor was not intended to
insult, and he showed disposition to pity and forgive, the tyrant
of the West, who had never been his personal enemy, and was now
become the object of his contempt. Our sympathy is the most
forcibly excited by the misfortunes to which we are exposed; and
the spectacle of a proud competitor, now prostrate at his feet,
could not fail of producing very serious and solemn thoughts in
the mind of the victorious emperor. But the feeble emotion of
involuntary pity was checked by his regard for public justice,
and the memory of Gratian; and he abandoned the victim to the
pious zeal of the soldiers, who drew him out of the Imperial
presence, and instantly separated his head from his body. The
intelligence of his defeat and death was received with sincere or
well-dissembled joy: his son Victor, on whom he had conferred the
title of Augustus, died by the order, perhaps by the hand, of the
bold Arbogastes; and all the military plans of Theodosius were
successfully executed. When he had thus terminated the civil
war, with less difficulty and bloodshed than he might naturally
expect, he employed the winter months of his residence at Milan,
to restore the state of the afflicted provinces; and early in the
spring he made, after the example of Constantine and Constantius,
his triumphal entry into the ancient capital of the Roman empire.
[Footnote 76: See Godefroy's Chronology of the Laws, Cod.
Theodos, tom l. p. cxix.]

[Footnote 77: Besides the hints which may be gathered from
chronicles and ecclesiastical history, Zosimus (l. iv. p. 259 -
267,) Orosius, (l. vii. c. 35,) and Pacatus, (in Panegyr. Vet.
xii. 30 - 47,) supply the loose and scanty materials of this
civil war. Ambrose (tom. ii. Epist. xl. p. 952, 953) darkly
alludes to the well-known events of a magazine surprised, an
action at Petovio, a Sicilian, perhaps a naval, victory, &c.,
Ausonius (p. 256, edit. Toll.) applauds the peculiar merit and
good fortune of Aquileia.]
The orator, who may be silent without danger, may praise
without difficulty, and without reluctance; ^78 and posterity
will confess, that the character of Theodosius ^79 might furnish
the subject of a sincere and ample panegyric. The wisdom of his
laws, and the success of his arms, rendered his administration
respectable in the eyes both of his subjects and of his enemies.
He loved and practised the virtues of domestic life, which seldom
hold their residence in the palaces of kings. Theodosius was
chaste and temperate; he enjoyed, without excess, the sensual and
social pleasures of the table; and the warmth of his amorous
passions was never diverted from their lawful objects. The proud
titles of Imperial greatness were adorned by the tender names of
a faithful husband, an indulgent father; his uncle was raised, by
his affectionate esteem, to the rank of a second parent:
Theodosius embraced, as his own, the children of his brother and
sister; and the expressions of his regard were extended to the
most distant and obscure branches of his numerous kindred. His
familiar friends were judiciously selected from among those
persons, who, in the equal intercourse of private life, had
appeared before his eyes without a mask; the consciousness of
personal and superior merit enabled him to despise the accidental
distinction of the purple; and he proved by his conduct, that he
had forgotten all the injuries, while he most gratefully
remembered all the favors and services, which he had received
before he ascended the throne of the Roman empire. The serious
or lively tone of his conversation was adapted to the age, the
rank, or the character of his subjects, whom he admitted into his
society; and the affability of his manners displayed the image of
his mind. Theodosius respected the simplicity of the good and
virtuous: every art, every talent, of a useful, or even of an
innocent nature, was rewarded by his judicious liberality; and,
except the heretics, whom he persecuted with implacable hatred,
the diffusive circle of his benevolence was circumscribed only by
the limits of the human race. The government of a mighty empire
may assuredly suffice to occupy the time, and the abilities, of a
mortal: yet the diligent prince, without aspiring to the
unsuitable reputation of profound learning, always reserved some
moments of his leisure for the instructive amusement of reading.
History, which enlarged his experience, was his favorite study.
The annals of Rome, in the long period of eleven hundred years,
presented him with a various and splendid picture of human life:
and it has been particularly observed, that whenever he perused
the cruel acts of Cinna, of Marius, or of Sylla, he warmly
expressed his generous detestation of those enemies of humanity
and freedom. His disinterested opinion of past events was
usefully applied as the rule of his own actions; and Theodosius
has deserved the singular commendation, that his virtues always
seemed to expand with his fortune: the season of his prosperity
was that of his moderation; and his clemency appeared the most
conspicuous after the danger and success of a civil war. The
Moorish guards of the tyrant had been massacred in the first heat
of the victory, and a small number of the most obnoxious
criminals suffered the punishment of the law. But the emperor
showed himself much more attentive to relieve the innocent than
to chastise the guilty. The oppressed subjects of the West, who
would have deemed themselves happy in the restoration of their
lands, were astonished to receive a sum of money equivalent to
their losses; and the liberality of the conqueror supported the
aged mother, and educated the orphan daughters, of Maximus. ^80 A
character thus accomplished might almost excuse the extravagant
supposition of the orator Pacatus; that, if the elder Brutus
could be permitted to revisit the earth, the stern republican
would abjure, at the feet of Theodosius, his hatred of kings; and
ingenuously confess, that such a monarch was the most faithful
guardian of the happiness and dignity of the Roman people. ^81
[Footnote 78: Quam promptum laudare principem, tam tutum siluisse
de principe, (Pacat. in Panegyr. Vet. xii. 2.) Latinus Pacatus
Drepanius, a native of Gaul, pronounced this oration at Rome,
(A.D. 388.) He was afterwards proconsul of Africa; and his friend
Ausonius praises him as a poet second only to Virgil. See
Tillemont, Hist. des Empereurs, tom. v. p. 303.]

[Footnote 79: See the fair portrait of Theodosius, by the younger
Victor; the strokes are distinct, and the colors are mixed. The
praise of Pacatus is too vague; and Claudian always seems afraid
of exalting the father above the son.]
[Footnote 80: Ambros. tom. ii. Epist. xl. p. 55. Pacatus, from
the want of skill or of courage, omits this glorious

[Footnote 81: Pacat. in Panegyr. Vet. xii. 20.]

Yet the piercing eye of the founder of the republic must
have discerned two essential imperfections, which might, perhaps,
have abated his recent love of despostism. The virtuous mind of
Theodosius was often relaxed by indolence, ^82 and it was
sometimes inflamed by passion. ^83 In the pursuit of an important
object, his active courage was capable of the most vigorous
exertions; but, as soon as the design was accomplished, or the
danger was surmounted, the hero sunk into inglorious repose; and,
forgetful that the time of a prince is the property of his
people, resigned himself to the enjoyment of the innocent, but
trifling, pleasures of a luxurious court. The natural
disposition of Theodosius was hasty and choleric; and, in a
station where none could resist, and few would dissuade, the
fatal consequence of his resentment, the humane monarch was
justly alarmed by the consciousness of his infirmity and of his
power. It was the constant study of his life to suppress, or
regulate, the intemperate sallies of passion and the success of
his efforts enhanced the merit of his clemency. But the painful
virtue which claims the merit of victory, is exposed to the
danger of defeat; and the reign of a wise and merciful prince was
polluted by an act of cruelty which would stain the annals of
Nero or Domitian. Within the space of three years, the
inconsistent historian of Theodosius must relate the generous
pardon of the citizens of Antioch, and the inhuman massacre of
the people of Thessalonica.
[Footnote 82: Zosimus, l. iv. p. 271, 272. His partial evidence
is marked by an air of candor and truth. He observes these
vicissitudes of sloth and activity, not as a vice, but as a
singularity in the character of Theodosius.]
[Footnote 83: This choleric temper is acknowledged and excused by
Victor Sed habes (says Ambrose, in decent and many language, to
his sovereign) nature impetum, quem si quis lenire velit, cito
vertes ad misericordiam: si quis stimulet, in magis exsuscitas,
ut eum revocare vix possis, (tom. ii. Epist. li. p. 998.)
Theodosius (Claud. in iv. Hon. 266, &c.) exhorts his son to
moderate his anger.]

The lively impatience of the inhabitants of Antioch was
never satisfied with their own situation, or with the character
and conduct of their successive sovereigns. The Arian subjects
of Theodosius deplored the loss of their churches; and as three
rival bishops disputed the throne of Antioch, the sentence which
decided their pretensions excited the murmurs of the two
unsuccessful congregations. The exigencies of the Gothic war,
and the inevitable expense that accompanied the conclusion of the
peace, had constrained the emperor to aggravate the weight of the
public impositions; and the provinces of Asia, as they had not
been involved in the distress were the less inclined to
contribute to the relief, of Europe. The auspicious period now
approached of the tenth year of his reign; a festival more
grateful to the soldiers, who received a liberal donative, than
to the subjects, whose voluntary offerings had been long since
converted into an extraordinary and oppressive burden. The
edicts of taxation interrupted the repose, and pleasures, of
Antioch; and the tribunal of the magistrate was besieged by a
suppliant crowd; who, in pathetic, but, at first, in respectful
language, solicited the redress of their grievances. They were
gradually incensed by the pride of their haughty rulers, who
treated their complaints as a criminal resistance; their
satirical wit degenerated into sharp and angry invectives; and,
from the subordinate powers of government, the invectives of the
people insensibly rose to attack the sacred character of the
emperor himself. Their fury, provoked by a feeble opposition,
discharged itself on the images of the Imperial family, which
were erected, as objects of public veneration, in the most
conspicuous places of the city. The statues of Theodosius, of
his father, of his wife Flaccilla, of his two sons, Arcadius and
Honorius, were insolently thrown down from their pedestals,
broken in pieces, or dragged with contempt through the streets;
and the indignities which were offered to the representations of
Imperial majesty, sufficiently declared the impious and
treasonable wishes of the populace. The tumult was almost
immediately suppressed by the arrival of a body of archers: and
Antioch had leisure to reflect on the nature and consequences of
her crime. ^84 According to the duty of his office, the governor
of the province despatched a faithful narrative of the whole
transaction: while the trembling citizens intrusted the
confession of their crime, and the assurances of their
repentance, to the zeal of Flavian, their bishop, and to the
eloquence of the senator Hilarius, the friend, and most probably
the disciple, of Libanius; whose genius, on this melancholy
occasion, was not useless to his country. ^85 But the two
capitals, Antioch and Constantinople, were separated by the
distance of eight hundred miles; and, notwithstanding the
diligence of the Imperial posts, the guilty city was severely
punished by a long and dreadful interval of suspense. Every
rumor agitated the hopes and fears of the Antiochians, and they
heard with terror, that their sovereign, exasperated by the
insult which had been offered to his own statues, and more
especially, to those of his beloved wife, had resolved to level
with the ground the offending city; and to massacre, without
distinction of age or sex, the criminal inhabitants; ^86 many of
whom were actually driven, by their apprehensions, to seek a
refuge in the mountains of Syria, and the adjacent desert. At
length, twenty-four days after the sedition, the general
Hellebicus and Caesarius, master of the offices, declared the
will of the emperor, and the sentence of Antioch. That proud
capital was degraded from the rank of a city; and the metropolis
of the East, stripped of its lands, its privileges, and its
revenues, was subjected, under the humiliating denomination of a
village, to the jurisdiction of Laodicea. ^87 The baths, the
Circus, and the theatres were shut: and, that every source of
plenty and pleasure might at the same time be intercepted, the
distribution of corn was abolished, by the severe instructions of
Theodosius. His commissioners then proceeded to inquire into the
guilt of individuals; of those who had perpetrated, and of those
who had not prevented, the destruction of the sacred statues.
The tribunal of Hellebicus and Caesarius, encompassed with armed
soldiers, was erected in the midst of the Forum. The noblest,
and most wealthy, of the citizens of Antioch appeared before them
in chains; the examination was assisted by the use of torture,
and their sentence was pronounced or suspended, according to the
judgment of these extraordinary magistrates. The houses of the
criminals were exposed to sale, their wives and children were
suddenly reduced, from affluence and luxury, to the most abject
distress; and a bloody execution was expected to conclude the
horrors of the day, ^88 which the preacher of Antioch, the
eloquent Chrysostom, has represented as a lively image of the
last and universal judgment of the world. But the ministers of
Theodosius performed, with reluctance, the cruel task which had
been assigned them; they dropped a gentle tear over the
calamities of the people; and they listened with reverence to the
pressing solicitations of the monks and hermits, who descended in
swarms from the mountains. ^89 Hellebicus and Caesarius were
persuaded to suspend the execution of their sentence; and it was
agreed that the former should remain at Antioch, while the latter
returned, with all possible speed, to Constantinople; and
presumed once more to consult the will of his sovereign. The
resentment of Theodosius had already subsided; the deputies of
the people, both the bishop and the orator, had obtained a
favorable audience; and the reproaches of the emperor were the
complaints of injured friendship, rather than the stern menaces
of pride and power. A free and general pardon was granted to the
city and citizens of Antioch; the prison doors were thrown open;
the senators, who despaired of their lives, recovered the
possession of their houses and estates; and the capital of the
East was restored to the enjoyment of her ancient dignity and
splendor. Theodosius condescended to praise the senate of
Constantinople, who had generously interceded for their
distressed brethren: he rewarded the eloquence of Hilarius with
the government of Palestine; and dismissed the bishop of Antioch
with the warmest expressions of his respect and gratitude. A
thousand new statues arose to the clemency of Theodosius; the
applause of his subjects was ratified by the approbation of his
own heart; and the emperor confessed, that, if the exercise of
justice is the most important duty, the indulgence of mercy is
the most exquisite pleasure, of a sovereign. ^90

[Footnote 84: The Christians and Pagans agreed in believing that
the sedition of Antioch was excited by the daemons. A gigantic
woman (says Sozomen, l. vii. c. 23) paraded the streets with a
scourge in her hand. An old man, says Libanius, (Orat. xii. p.
396,) transformed himself into a youth, then a boy, &c.]

[Footnote 85: Zosimus, in his short and disingenuous account, (l.
iv. p. 258, 259,) is certainly mistaken in sending Libanius
himself to Constantinople. His own orations fix him at Antioch.]
[Footnote 86: Libanius (Orat. i. p. 6, edit. Venet.) declares,
that under such a reign the fear of a massacre was groundless and
absurd, especially in the emperor's absence, for his presence,
according to the eloquent slave, might have given a sanction to
the most bloody acts.]

[Footnote 87: Laodicea, on the sea-coast, sixty-five miles from
Antioch, (see Noris Epoch. Syro-Maced. Dissert. iii. p. 230.)
The Antiochians were offended, that the dependent city of
Seleucia should presume to intercede for them.]

[Footnote 88: As the days of the tumult depend on the movable
festival of Easter, they can only be determined by the previous
determination of the year. The year 387 has been preferred, after
a laborious inquiry, by Tillemont (Hist. des. Emp. tom. v. p. 741
- 744) and Montfaucon, (Chrysostom, tom. xiii. p. 105 - 110.)]
[Footnote 89: Chrysostom opposes their courage, which was not
attended with much risk, to the cowardly flight of the Cynics.]
[Footnote 90: The sedition of Antioch is represented in a lively,
and almost dramatic, manner by two orators, who had their
respective shares of interest and merit. See Libanius (Orat.
xiv. xv. p. 389 - 420, edit. Morel. Orat. i. p. 1 - 14, Venet.
1754) and the twenty orations of St. John Chrysostom, de Statuis,
(tom. ii. p. 1 - 225, edit. Montfaucon.) I do not pretend to much
personal acquaintance with Chrysostom but Tillemont (Hist. des.
Empereurs, tom. v. p. 263 - 283) and Hermant (Vie de St.
Chrysostome, tom. i. p. 137 - 224) had read him with pious
curiosity and diligence.]

The sedition of Thessalonica is ascribed to a more shameful
cause, and was productive of much more dreadful consequences.
That great city, the metropolis of all the Illyrian provinces,
had been protected from the dangers of the Gothic war by strong
fortifications and a numerous garrison. Botheric, the general of
those troops, and, as it should seem from his name, a Barbarian,
had among his slaves a beautiful boy, who excited the impure
desires of one of the charioteers of the Circus. The insolent
and brutal lover was thrown into prison by the order of Botheric;
and he sternly rejected the importunate clamors of the multitude,
who, on the day of the public games, lamented the absence of
their favorite; and considered the skill of a charioteer as an
object of more importance than his virtue. The resentment of the
people was imbittered by some previous disputes; and, as the
strength of the garrison had been drawn away for the service of
the Italian war, the feeble remnant, whose numbers were reduced
by desertion, could not save the unhappy general from their
licentious fury. Botheric, and several of his principal
officers, were inhumanly murdered; their mangled bodies were
dragged about the streets; and the emperor, who then resided at
Milan, was surprised by the intelligence of the audacious and
wanton cruelty of the people of Thessalonica. The sentence of a
dispassionate judge would have inflicted a severe punishment on
the authors of the crime; and the merit of Botheric might
contribute to exasperate the grief and indignation of his master.

The fiery and choleric temper of Theodosius was impatient of the
dilatory forms of a judicial inquiry; and he hastily resolved,
that the blood of his lieutenant should be expiated by the blood
of the guilty people. Yet his mind still fluctuated between the
counsels of clemency and of revenge; the zeal of the bishops had
almost extorted from the reluctant emperor the promise of a
general pardon; his passion was again inflamed by the flattering
suggestions of his minister Rufinus; and, after Theodosius had
despatched the messengers of death, he attempted, when it was too
late, to prevent the execution of his orders. The punishment of a
Roman city was blindly committed to the undistinguishing sword of
the Barbarians; and the hostile preparations were concerted with
the dark and perfidious artifice of an illegal conspiracy. The
people of Thessalonica were treacherously invited, in the name of
their sovereign, to the games of the Circus; and such was their
insatiate avidity for those amusements, that every consideration
of fear, or suspicion, was disregarded by the numerous
spectators. As soon as the assembly was complete, the soldiers,
who had secretly been posted round the Circus, received the
signal, not of the races, but of a general massacre. The
promiscuous carnage continued three hours, without discrimination
of strangers or natives, of age or sex, of innocence or guilt;
the most moderate accounts state the number of the slain at seven
thousand; and it is affirmed by some writers that more than
fifteen thousand victims were sacrificed to the names of
Botheric. A foreign merchant, who had probably no concern in his
murder, offered his own life, and all his wealth, to supply the
place of one of his two sons; but, while the father hesitated
with equal tenderness, while he was doubtful to choose, and
unwilling to condemn, the soldiers determined his suspense, by
plunging their daggers at the same moment into the breasts of the
defenceless youths. The apology of the assassins, that they were
obliged to produce the prescribed number of heads, serves only to
increase, by an appearance of order and design, the horrors of
the massacre, which was executed by the commands of Theodosius.
The guilt of the emperor is aggravated by his long and frequent
residence at Thessalonica. The situation of the unfortunate
city, the aspect of the streets and buildings, the dress and
faces of the inhabitants, were familiar, and even present, to his
imagination; and Theodosius possessed a quick and lively sense of
the existence of the people whom he destroyed. ^91
[Footnote 91: The original evidence of Ambrose, (tom. ii. Epist.
li. p. 998.) Augustin, (de Civitat. Dei, v. 26,) and Paulinus,
(in Vit. Ambros. c. 24,) is delivered in vague expressions of
horror and pity. It is illustrated by the subsequent and unequal
testimonies of Sozomen, (l. vii. c. 25,) Theodoret, (l. v. c.
17,) Theophanes, (Chronograph. p. 62,) Cedrenus, (p. 317,) and
Zonaras, (tom. ii. l. xiii. p. 34.) Zosimus alone, the partial
enemy of Theodosius, most unaccountably passes over in silence
the worst of his actions.]
The respectful attachment of the emperor for the orthodox
clergy, had disposed him to love and admire the character of
Ambrose; who united all the episcopal virtues in the most eminent
degree. The friends and ministers of Theodosius imitated the
example of their sovereign; and he observed, with more surprise
than displeasure, that all his secret counsels were immediately
communicated to the archbishop; who acted from the laudable
persuasion, that every measure of civil government may have some
connection with the glory of God, and the interest of the true
religion. The monks and populace of Callinicum, ^* an obscure
town on the frontier of Persia, excited by their own fanaticism,
and by that of their bishop, had tumultuously burnt a conventicle
of the Valentinians, and a synagogue of the Jews. The seditious
prelate was condemned, by the magistrate of the province, either
to rebuild the synagogue, or to repay the damage; and this
moderate sentence was confirmed by the emperor. But it was not
confirmed by the archbishop of Milan. ^92 He dictated an epistle
of censure and reproach, more suitable, perhaps, if the emperor
had received the mark of circumcision, and renounced the faith of
his baptism. Ambrose considers the toleration of the Jewish, as
the persecution of the Christian, religion; boldly declares that
he himself, and every true believer, would eagerly dispute with
the bishop of Callinicum the merit of the deed, and the crown of
martyrdom; and laments, in the most pathetic terms, that the
execution of the sentence would be fatal to the fame and
salvation of Theodosius. As this private admonition did not

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