BOOK II

160 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.I.

BOOK II.

CH. I. History of the church from our Lord's ascension to St. Paul's preaching at Ephesus, A.D. 33-57.

WHEN the fulness of time was come, the divine grace, mercifully announced to mankind the saving visitation which was provided before the creation of the world, and towards its last age illuminated the dark recesses of the hearts of men with the rays of a new light. Our Lord Jesus Christ, as the sublime voice of the holy gospel truly informs us, in the fifteenth year of the emperor Tiberius Caesar, was baptized by John in the river Jordan; and the true sun shone forth by visible signs and wonders for three years and a half, and manifested to the world his divine nature, by which he is co-equal, consubstantial, and co-eternal, with the Father and the Holy Ghost. Afterwards, in his mercy, he suffered on the cross in the thirty-third year of his age, [1] for the salvation of man; and, having destroyed death, which for five thousand years had kept mankind fast bound in the chains of a just damnation, he despoiled hell, and, having vanquished Satan, the old serpent, on the third day rose triumphantly from the dead. Lastly, on the fortieth day, after he had confirmed the belief of the faithful witnesses in his resurrection, by often showing himself to them openly, and commanded them to preach the gospel to all nations, giving them power to perform miracles, he led the disciples forth as far as Bethany, and, standing on mount Olivet, blessed them, and while they beheld with joy, ascended into heaven. Ten days afterwards, while his friends were fasting and continuing in prayer with one accord, he sent to them the Holy Ghost the Comforter, and according to his promise instantly, by an internal unction, he taught them all things, gloriously filled them with all spiritual powers, strengthened them against all the assaults


[1] "The baptism of Christ took place at the commencement of the sixteenth, not the fifteenth, year of the reign of Tiberius. If, as now generally believed, our Lord was not born later than the end of the year 749 from the foundation of Rome, he had at least begun his thirty-seventh year at the period of his crucifixion in 786".- M. Le Prevost.

A.D. 32.] THE DAY OF PENTECOST. 161

of their enemies, and made them invincible champions of the faith and teachers of all nations.

Luke, a Syrian by birth, a physician by profession, and a faithful disciple of Christ, full of the grace of the Holy Spirit, after having written his gospel for the instruction of the faithful in Greece, added the noble volume of the Acts of the Apostles, which he addressed to Theophilus. The word means a lover of God, and may be applied to all who are studious and intelligent, and unceasingly devoted to meditation on the divine law. To such the word of God is justly addressed, and they eagerly receive it and hold it fast with sincere affection. The gospel, that is to say, the good tidings, penetrate their hearts, the triumphs of the invincible army of apostles and martyrs are recounted to them because they are accounted worthy to be made partakers of the heavenly mysteries. [1]

The eloquent Arator also, sub-deacon of the see of Rome, diligently copied the narrative of St. Luke, making it the substance of a metrical composition, in a poem he presented to Pope Vigilius, remarkable for the beauty of its melodious versification; leaving to future generations, a noble monument of his genius. [2] I aim at tracing the course of such illustrious precursors as these, although, like a lame man halting by the way, I can only follow them with slow and distant steps; but desiring to treat of the apostles and their blessed fellow combatants for the faith, with the materials which they have furnished.

Luke tells us, in his lucid narrative, that, on the holy day of pentecost, the apostles were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and spoke, in the different gentile languages, of the wonderful works of God, to the great amazement of the Jews, who were then assembled from various parts of the world. But while their enemies showed their hatred, and


[1] The Acts of the Apostles form the sequel to St. Luke's gospel, and are addressed to the same person. They embrace a period of thirty-three years, from the year 32 of the Christian era until about the year 65. Notwithstanding all their marks of authenticity, we do not find them quoted by the fathers of the church till an advanced period of the second century.- M. Le Prevost.

[2] Arator, at first secretary and intendant of finances to Athalaric, and afterwards sub-deacon of the Roman church, presented to Pope Vigilius in the year 544, the Acts of the Apostles in Latin verse.

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muttered, "These men are full of new wine", Peter, inflamed with zeal for the faith, stood up with the eleven, and, lifting up his voice, explained that the coming of the Holy Ghost the Comforter had been foretold long before by the prophet Joel. He supported the truth of his declaration, that Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God by miracles, and wonders and signs, was raised from the dead three days after his passion on the cross, by reference to predictions in the Psalms. The Jews were pricked in their heart, and, receiving the word to the salvation of their souls, were baptized; and the same day there were added about three thousand souls to the number of the believers. [1] Such was the origin of the primitive church, on which the heavenly grace was abundantly bestowed.

Many wonders and signs were done by the apostles at Jerusalem, and all those who saw these extraordinary things trembled with fear. And they that believed lived together, and had all things common. They sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. Every day the faithful increased in virtue, while the Lord added continually to the number of those who were to be saved.

Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the ninth hour, and there saw a beggar who had been lame from his mother's womb. Peter told the indigent man that he possessed no earthly riches, but offered him something more valuable; and, taking him by the hand, presently healed him in the name of Jesus Christ. Immediately his feet and ankle-bones received strength, so that he leaped up and ran, and entered with them into the temple, rejoicing and praising God before all the people, who were filled with wonder and amazement when they saw this special miracle performed in the name of Jesus Christ on the lame man, who was laid daily at the Beautiful Gate of the temple. While the apostles were thus employed, the people ran together to Solomon's porch, to see him who had just been healed by the virtue of the name of Christ. Seeing the multitude assembled, Peter opened his mouth and humbly disclaimed the merit of the cure, which he wholly ascribed to the divine nature of Jesus Christ. Mildly rebuking the


[1] Acts ii. 1-41. (Year 33 of the Christian era.)

A.D. 33.] ST. PETER'S PREACHING. 163

Jews who had persecuted him, and trusting in the inexhaustible mercy of his Master, he mildly excused them, because they did it through ignorance. At the end of his discourse, he exhorted them to repent of their sins, and proved to them in the clearest manner that the Saviour and true Prophet had already come, as Moses, and Samuel, and all the prophets had predicted long before. [1]

As they spake unto the people, the priests, and the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees, came upon them, and, laying hands upon them, put them in hold; for, being filled with the bitterness of iniquity, they were grieved that the apostles taught the people, and preached, through Jesus, the resurrection from the dead. Many of them which heard the word believed; and the number of the men was about five thousand. On the morrow, Annas, the high priest, and Caiaphas, and John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the kindred of the high priest, and the rulers, and elders, and scribes, were gathered together at Jerusalem. And when they had set them in the midst, they asked: "By what power, or in what name, have ya done this"? Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, testified clearly that the impotent man was made whole by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, and that there was none other name given under heaven whereby we must be saved. Now when their adversaries saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled, and were grieved; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus. And beholding the man which was healed standing with them, they could say nothing against the miracle, as it was manifest to all who were in Jerusalem, they were consumed with rage. Afterwards, having taken counsel, they called the apostles, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John refused to obey their injunction, saying with great boldness: "Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God; judge ye. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard". The assembly then sent them away with threats, but not daring


[1] Acts ii. 42-iii. 26.

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to punish them, as they perceived that the great miracle which they had just performed had gained them the favour of the people. On regaining their liberty, the apostles went to their own company, and reported all that had befallen them. And when they heard that, they lifted up their voice to God with one accord, and, inspired with holy zeal, offered a signal prayer of thanks to God. And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together, and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost; and the nets spread by their holy preaching drew many from the abyss of error to the light of faith and righteousness. [1]

And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any that aught of the things which he possessed was his own, neither was there any among them that lacked; but they had all things in common. The possessors of houses and lands sold them, and laid the price of them down at the apostles' feet; and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need. The primitive church at Jerusalem shone thus brightly, all its aspirations being fervently directed heaven-ward. The blessing of God sanctified this happy society, whence originated the excellent institutions which have come down to us. Joseph [Joses], who by the apostles was surnamed Barnabas, that is to say, the son of consolation, a Levite, of the country of Cyprus, ever ready in good works, having land, sold it, and brought the money, and laid it at the apostles' feet. Ananias also sold a field, but kept back part of the price, his wife Sapphira being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles' feet. When this fraud was revealed to Peter by the Holy Ghost, the apostle rebuked the man who endeavoured to deceive him by a lie. Ananias had scarcely heard the apostle's reprimand, when he fell down and gave up the ghost. And about the space of three hours after, his wife, not knowing what was done, came in, and, when Peter questioned her as to the price of the land, she also told a lie, and being rebuked by the apostle, fell down straightway at his feet, and yielded up the ghost. And great fear came upon all the church, and upon as many as beard these things. [2]


[1] Acts iv. 1-34.

[2] Acts v. 1-11.

A.D. 33.] ST. PETER RELEASED FROM PRISON. 165

By the hands of the apostles were many signs and wonders wrought among the people, and they were all with one accord in Solomon's porch. However, of the rest durst no man join himself to them, but the people magnified them. The number of men and women who believed in the Lord increased more and more. In the streets the sick were laid on couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them, and free them from their infirmities. Great numbers of the inhabitants of the neighbouring towns hastened together to Jerusalem, bringing to the apostles the sick and those who were possessed with the devil, and they all recovered the health they desired. [1]

The high priest and all they that were with him were filled with indignation, and laid their hands on the apostles, and put them in the common prison. But the angel of the Lord opened the prison doors by night, and bringing them forth, said, "Go, stand and speak to the people in the temple all the words of this life". They accordingly entered into the temple early in the morning, and there preached the word of God with boldness. But the high priest and they that were with him called the council together, and sent to the prison to have them brought. The officers truly found the prison shut with all safety, but no man within. At length, they heard that the men of whom they were in search were teaching in the temple. Then the captain and the officers brought them without violence, for they feared the people, lest they should have been stoned. When they had set them before the council, the high priest accused them of having filled Jerusalem with a doctrine which was contrary to their tenets, and opposed to the universal decisions of the elders. The apostles therefore answered, "We ought to obey God rather than man. The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree. Him hath God exalted with his right hand, to be a Prince and a Saviour, and to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins. We are witnesses of those things, and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him". When they


[1] Acts v. 12-16.

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heard that, they were cut to the heart, and took counsel to slay them. [1]

Then there stood up one of the council, a Pharisee named Gamaliel, a doctor of the law, who was held in reputation among all the people, who, causing the apostles to be removed from the assembly, as he wished to be of service to them, then plainly recounted how, only a few days before, Theudas with four hundred followers was brought to nought, and how Judas the Galilean, who drew away much people after him, perished in the days of the taxing, with all his faction. After having adduced examples of this kind, he continued: "And now I say unto you, refrain from these men, and let them alone; for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to nought; but if it be of God ye cannot overthrow it, lest haply ye be found even to fight against God". Having heard this, they concurred in Gamaliel's opinion, and having recalled the apostles and beaten them, commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for the name of Christ. And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ. [2]

In those days, as the number of the disciples was continually on the increase, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration. Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said: "It is not reason that we should leave the word of God and serve tables. Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word". This advice was unanimously adopted, and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, Philip and Prochorus, Nicanor and Timotheus, Parmenas and Nicolas, a proselyte of Antioch; and set them before the apostles, who, when they had prayed, laid their hands on them. The number of the disciples


[1] Acts v. 17-33.

[2] Acts v. 34-42.

A.D. 34.] ST. STEPHEN'S MARTYRDOM. 167

multiplied in Jerusalem greatly, and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith. [1]

Stephen, full of grace and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people. The Jews, therefore, moved with envy, rose up against him, and disputed with him, but were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spoke. Then they suborned false witnesses, who asserted that they had heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses and against God. And they stirred up the people, and the elders, and the scribes, and arresting him, brought him before the council, and began to accuse him. And all that sat in the council saw his face, as it had been the face of an angel. Being examined by the high priest, Stephen made an eloquent reply, and boldly unfolded the history of the fathers with great wisdom, expatiating fitly on the merits of Abraham, Moses, and the other patriarchs, and concluding with an account of many great events in a few words. He then rebuked the unbelievers, and those who despised the law, calling them plainly stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, who always resisted the Holy Ghost, and persecuted the prophets. When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and gnashed on him with their teeth. But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up steadfastly into heaven and saw the glory of God, and said: "Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God". Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord, and cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man's feet whose name was Saul. And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying: "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit". And he kneeled down and cried with a loud voice: "Lord, lay not this sin to their charge". And when he had said this, he fell asleep in the Lord. [2] This happened in the second year of our Lord's ascension, on the seventh of the calends of January [December 26]. Devout men then carried the corpse of the first martyr to Gamaliel's country


[1] Acts vi. 1-7. Our author, in his list of the seven deacons, inserts Timotheus instead of Timon.

[2] Acts vi. 8-vii. 60.

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house, which is called Caphargamala, where they buried him with respect, and made great lamentation over him. Nicodemus, Gamaliel, and Abibas, were afterwards interred in the same spot. This great treasure remained concealed there for three centuries, until the priest Lucian discovered it by a revelation from God; and John, bishop of Jerusalem, ordered it to be carried to that city, in the seventh year of the reign of the emperor Honorius [A.D. 415]. [1]

After Stephen was stoned, a great persecution arose against the church at Jerusalem, and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles. But during this dispersion, the disciples, strengthened by the Holy Ghost, passed into several countries, and there preached the word of God. Then Philip preached Christ in Samaria, and wrought before his hearers many wonderful works in the name of Christ, healing the paralytic, the lame, and those possessed with a devil. The Samaritans gave heed with one accord unto the things which Philip spake, and received the true faith with great alacrity. Then Simon Magus (who had long bewitched the people of Samaria, and blinded them with his sorceries to such a degree that these deluded men looked upon him as some great one, and called him the great power of God) believed also when he heard Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God. Being baptized in company with other men and women in the name of Jesus Christ, Simon continued with Philip, and beholding the signs and great miracles which were wrought, marvelled much at things so extraordinary. [2]

Now when the apostles, which were at Jerusalem, heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John, who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost. Then laid they their hands on those who were baptized, and they received the Holy Ghost. [3] Hence proceeds the institution of the church, that, after the catechumens have


[1] Our author is mistaken as to the time of St. Stephen's martyrdom, which happened only about nine months after our Lord's death. As to the discovery of his relics in 415, see book i. p. 106, and note p. 107.

[2] Acts viii. 1-13.

[3] Acts viii. 14-17.

A.D. 34.] SIMON MAGUS. 169

received the sacrament of baptism from the priest, the bishop shall lay hands on them, offering up prayers in their behalf, and anointing them with the chrism; and thus the confirmation of those who are baptized is completed by the gift of the sevenfold graces of the Holy Spirit. When Simon saw that, through the laying on of the apostles' hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money, saying, "Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost". But Peter said unto him: "Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter, for thy heart is not right in the sight of God. Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee. For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of iniquity". But Simon, making light of the apostle's words, left him, and became an apostate, and for a long time provoked the anger of God by his innumerable crimes. The apostles, when they had spoken the word of the Lord, returned to Jerusalem, and preached the gospel in many parts of Samaria. [1]

At the command of an angel of the Lord, Philip went to meet Candace, the eunuch who had the charge of all the treasure of the queen of the Ethiopians, as he was returning from Jerusalem; and having mounted the chariot, sat by him, and expounded to him the book of the prophet Isaiah which he was reading; and commencing with the prediction of the slaughter of the unresisting Lamb, preached unto him Jesus. The eunuch, listening to him with pleasure, readily comprehended and believed him, and, as soon as they found water, was baptized; and then returned to his own country, rejoicing in his renewal by holy regeneration. But the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, who preached the gospel in all the cities from Azotus to Caesarea. [2]


[1] Acts viii. 18-25. The account given in the Acts of the Apostles ends very differently: "Then answered Simon and said, Pray ye to the Lord for me, that none of these things which ye have spoken cone upon me".

[2] Acts viii. 26-40. Our author has confused the name of the eunuch with that of the queen of Ethiopia.

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Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, desired of the high priest letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that he might be able to make havoc of the church of God, and bring the men and women of the sect of the Nazarenes bound to Jerusalem. As he came near Damascus, a light from heaven shone about him. Falling to the ground, he heard the Lord rebuke him; he forthwith repented, and his conversion was profitable both to himself and many others. Being led into Damascus by his companions, who heard indeed the voice of the Lord talking with Saul, but saw no one, he was three days without sight, and neither did eat nor drink. Ananias, whom the Lord sent to him, put his hands upon him, comforted him, restored his sight, and baptized him. Thus Saul, who before had ravened as a wolf, and was a cruel persecutor of the church, became not only a lamb, but fearless as a ram, a chosen vessel, and the teacher of the Gentiles. He immediately entered the synagogues, and preached Jesus, that he is the Son of God, to the great amazement of all present, who remembered the bigotry with which in times past be had zealously followed the traditions of the fathers. [1]

Saul increased the more in strength, and confounded the Jews which dwelt at Damascus. But his faithful testimony roused their implacable hatred against him; so much so, that a short time after they narrowly searched for him, intending to kill him, and placed sentries day and night at the gates of the city, to prevent his escape. But the disciples, discovering the schemes of his enemies, defeated their projects by letting him down by the wall, in a basket, during the night. When Saul was come to Jerusalem, he endeavoured to join himself to the disciples; but they were all afraid of him, and believed not that he was a disciple. But Barnabas took him, brought him to the disciples, and related to them how he had seen the Lord in the way, and told them all the other things that had happened, and Saul faithfully attached himself to the disciples. He, therefore, returned thanks to God, and continued with them coming in and going out, doing every thing boldly in the name of the Lord Jesus. He disputed against the


[1] Acts ix. 1-21.

A.D. 35.] ST. PETER AND CORNELIUS. 171

Grecians, confounded the Jews, and by God's help refuted them all. The leaders among them, thus baffled in argument, were so enraged at Saul, that they tried to kill him. Which when the brethren knew, they brought him down to Cesarea, and sent him forth to Tarsus. Then had the churches rest throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, were filled with the comfort of the Holy Ghost; and the multitude of believers increased. [1]

The apostle Peter healed at Lydda a man sick of the palsy, named Eneas, who had kept his bed eight years. And all that dwelt in Lydda and Saron, when they witnessed this miracle, turned to the Lord. At Joppa, Tabitha, full of good works and alms-deeds, died, and was laid by the brethren in an upper chamber. The disciples, hearing that Peter was at Joppa, which was not far from Lydda, sent unto him two men, desiring him to come to them. As soon as he received the message of the brethren, he humbly obeyed the summons. When Peter was come, all the widows stood round him weeping, and showing the coats and garments which Dorcas made for them. But Peter put them all forth, and kneeled down, and prayed; and turning to the body said, "Tabitha, arise". And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter, she sat up, and he, giving her his hand, lifted her up, and presented her alive to the saints and widows. This miracle was known throughout all Joppa, and many believed in the Lord! [2]

Cornelius, a centurion of the cohort, called the Italian band, a devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, was constantly employed in acts of charity and prayers for his eternal welfare. This man saw plainly in a vision, about the ninth hour of the day, an angel of God, and as he regarded him with deep awe, heard him say, "Cornelius, thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God". The angel then commanded him to send for Simon Peter, who would give him saving advice. He therefore immediately obeyed the order, and sent three men to Peter. On the morrow, as they drew nigh unto the city, Peter went up upon the house-top to pray, about the sixth hour. While he was fasting, and his thoughts were dwelling


[1] Acts ix. 22-31.

[2] Acts ix. 32-42.

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on heavenly things, he saw in a trance heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending unto him, as it had been a great sheet, knit at the four corners, and let down from heaven to the earth, wherein were all manner of four-footed beasts and creeping things of the earth, and fowls of the air. And there came a voice to him, saying, "Rise, Peter, kill and eat". But Peter said, "Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean". And the voice spake unto him again the second time, "What the Lord hath cleansed, that call not thou common". This was done thrice, and the vessel was immediately received up again into heaven. By this revelation the conversion of the Gentiles through the four climates of the world, in every language and nation, was divinely intimated to Peter; and he was plainly taught by God himself not to reject any one who wished to be converted. Re-assured and joyful, he hospitably received in the house of Simon the tanner the messengers of Cornelius, and on the following day accompanied them to Caesarea of Palestine. On his arrival there, he found Cornelius, with his kinsmen and intimate friends expecting him, and as they were ready to hear him preach and obey his words, he kindly complied with their wishes. [1]

Peter, therefore, opening his mouth, said: "Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons; but in every nation, he that feareth him and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him. He sent his word unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all". When Peter had proclaimed these and many other things, respecting the advent of our Saviour and eternal life, and had supplied the thirsty souls with copious draughts of the water of life from the fountain of heavenly doctrine, the Holy Ghost fell on all who heard the word, and suddenly conferred upon them the gift of languages. Then Peter, to the great surprise of those of the circumcison who had accompanied him, baptized Cornelius and all those who believed with him. [2]

In compliance with the invitation of his distinguished


[1] Acts x. 1-33.

[2] Acts x. 34-48. There is a slight difference in the two accounts. Here we have St. Peter baptizing the centurion and his friends, in the Acts we are told that the apostle commanded them to be baptized.

A.D. 37-43.] ST. PAUL AT ANTIOCH. 173

converts, Peter remained some days at Caesarea, and having confirmed them in the faith, went up to Jerusalem, where he related to his fellow apostles the conversion of the Gentiles. Then certain men that were of the circumcision, contended with him, saying, "Why wentest thou in to men uncircumcised, and didst eat with them"? But Peter began to explain to them, in regular order, how, while fasting and praying in the city of Joppa, he had seen a vision in a trance, wherein God showed him the calling and conversion of the Gentiles, and promised his aid; giving them, further, a simple account of all that had happened. When they heard these things, they held their peace; and being full of brotherly love, praised and glorified God, who saves even Gentiles through repentance. The faithful of Cyprus and Cyrene, and others, who were scattered abroad by the persecution that arose about Stephen, travelled as far as Phenice, and Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to none but Jews. But when they were come to Antioch, they made known the Lord Jesus to the Greeks, and a great number believed and turned to the Lord. The church which was in Jerusalem hearing this, rejoiced in the Lord, and sent forth Barnabas, a good man, and full of the Holy Ghost and of faith, who, when he came to Antioch, and had seen the grace of God, was glad, and having comforted the disciples, departed to Tarsus, to seek Saul. From thence they both went together to Antioch, where they frequented the church a whole year, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first at Antioch. [1]

Then one of the prophets who came from Jerusalem, of the name of Agabus, predicted by inspiration that there would be a great dearth, upon which Saul and Barnabas, having received from their brethren the contributions intended for the relief of the saints, were despatched to Jerusalem. [2]

Tiberius Caesar reigned about twenty-two years. In the eighteenth year of his reign, as history correctly states, our Lord Jesus Christ suffered on the cross, rose again from the dead, performed, in an ineffable manner, many miracles,


[1] Acts xi. 1-26. This famine, which is mentioned before, book i. pp. 35, 86, was predicted A.D. 43, began in 44, and continued to desolate the East for several years.

[2] Acts xi. 27-30.

174 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.I.

which becoming known far and wide throughout the world, were the subject of a report from Pilate to Tiberius; adding, that on account of the innumerable wonders effected in his name, Christ was already looked upon as a God. Tiberius informed the senate of all that had come to his knowledge. But this body, we are told, as Tertullian writes in his Apology, showed nothing but contempt for Christ, because the judgment of this affair had not been referred at first to it, but the decision of the mob had anticipated its authority. For, according to an ancient law, no one could be considered a god amongst the Romans, if the title was not confirmed by a decree of the senate. Moreover, as Eusebius of Caesarea assures us, in the second book of his "Ecclesiastical History", what had taken place was necessary to prevent our thinking that the divine power has any need of the support of human laws. As we have just stated, the senate refusing to acknowledge Christ, Tiberius maintained his own opinion, and forbade any one from offering molestation to the Christians. [1] Divine Providence, no doubt, inspired the emperor with this determination, in order that, at first, the preaching of the gospel might be universally extended without opposition. The consequence was that suddenly, like light flashing from heaven, or the rays of the rising sun, the word of God illuminated the whole world with the brightness of its divine light, that the prophecy might be accomplished, which said, "Their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world". [2] From that time, in every town, and village, an immense number of people congregated in the churches, as the sheaves in harvest-time are crowded into the barns. All those who were held by the bonds of a deadly superstition, handed down to them by their fathers, now freed from their tyrannical masters by receiving the knowledge of the word of God, through the teaching of Christ, and by


[1] Tiberius, as before remarked, reigned little more than twenty-two years and a half after the death of Augustus. His prohibition of persecuting the Christians, if it really did take place, must have been issued A.D. 35; but there is some difficulty in crediting it, notwithstanding all the documents respecting it alleged by Turtullian and St. Justin as authentic.

[2] Psalm xviii. 5. Rom. x. 13.

A.D. 37-41.] IMPIETY OF CALIGULA. 175

witnessing the miracles performed in his name, turned to the one true God and Lord, their Creator, repenting of their old errors which they faithfully confessed.

On the death of Tiberius, Caius Caligula ascended the throne, but did not fill it quite four years. He gave the government of Judea to Herod Agrippa, son of Aristobulus, and, at the same time, conferred upon him the tetrarchates of Philip and Lysanias, to which he also shortly afterwards added that of Herod. This same Herod was the author of the death of John the Baptist, and had treated the Lord with derision a short time before his passion. The emperor, after having tormented him in many ways, banished him for life to Spain, as Josephus, the famous historian of the Hebrews, relates in his writings. [1]

At this time Philo the Jew, a most celebrated writer, who stands in the first ranks among those who have studied the philosophy of the Greeks, bequeathed to posterity glorious monuments of his learning. Among other things, he describes the cruelty and folly of Caligula, who carried his pride to such a pitch that he aspired to be worshipped as a god, and profaned the sanctuary at Jerusalem by setting up idols in the temples. In addition to this, the Jews, in punishment for their daring and heinous cruelties to Christ, suffered fearful massacres and tribulations, as the learned men above named, Philo and Josephus, relate in their works. Indeed, from the time they committed the impious crime, they were constantly exposed to the fury of seditions, and continually the victims of war and murder, until at last their ruin was complete at the siege of Jerusalem by Vespasian. Pilate, who, in the twelfth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, had been named procurator of Judea, and had pronounced sentence of death on Christ, suffered such persecution by the orders of Caius, that he killed himself with his own hand. During this reign, Matthew, who preached in Judea, wrote his gospel in the Hebrew tongue. [2]


[1] See before, book i., page 85. [16 or 26 March, 37- January 24, 41.]

[2] The account given by Philo of the follies, the cruelties, and the impieties of Caligula, in connexion with the Jews, may be seen in his work, De Virtutibus, sive de legatione ad Gaium. This mission took place in the year 40. The attempt of Caligula to have his statue raised in the temple at Jerusalem was made in September of that year, although Philo places it in the spring. The same year Pilate appears to have killed himself in despair at his disgrace, while, as it is supposed, he was in exile at Vienne, in Dauphiny; and it is reckoned that about this time St. Matthew composed his gospel in Hebrew, or rather Syro-Chaldaic; and it was immediately translated into Greek.

176 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.I.

Caius Cesar having been put to death, Claudius reigned thirteen years and eight months. During his reign a frightful famine desolated the whole world, as Luke tells us the prophet Agabus predicted. About that time, during the famine which happened under Claudius, Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church. Then James, the son of Zebedee, an apostle of our Lord Jesus Christ, visited all Judea and Samaria, and performed many miracles by the power of Christ. He disputed in the synagogues with the unbelievers, and expounded the Holy Scriptures, proving that every thing which had been prodicted by the prophets, was fulfilled in our Lord Jesus Christ.

Hermogenes, the magician, when he heard how highly James was spoken of on account of his virtues, was filled with envy, and sent his disciple Philetus to watch the motions of the apostle. Attended by a few pharisees, Philetus tried to oppose James, and to shake the truth of his preaching of our Lord Jesus Christ. But the apostle persisted with confidence in the Holy Spirit, and proving the falsehood of his adversary's assertions shewed from the sacred scriptures that Jesus of Nazareth was the true Son of God. Returning to Hermogenes, Philetus bestowed the highest praises on James, honestly admitted the truth of his statement respecting the true faith, extolled him as invincible in argument, and published abroad the numerous miracles he had seen or heard of. He ended his narrative by advising his master to go with him immediately to the apostle to entreat his favour and number themselves among his disciples. But Hermogenes was so much incensed, that he put Philetus in bonds, and he was unable to move. As soon as the apostle was apprized by the son of Philetus of this treatment, he sent his handkerchief to him, and commanded him to touch it in the name of the Lord. This done, Philetus was delivered from the bonds of the magician, and hastening to James in great joy, laughed at these

A.D. 41-43.] LEGEND OF HERMOGENES. 177

diabolical sorceries. However, the magician, seriously grieved, called up the demons by his nefarious art, and commanded them to bring to him James and Philetus in chains. But the devils, as soon as they made their appearance in the air, began to howl, complaining, with horrible groans that the angel of God had bound them with chains of fire which caused them excruciating pain. At last, being set free by order of the apostle, they went back to Hermogenes, and, in turn binding his hands behind with cords, led him thus bound before James.

The blessed apostle rebuked the magician, telling him that the society of demons was a detestable thing, and ruinous to man: he then ordered Philetus to untie the cords with which the magician, who stood before him humiliated and confounded, was bound. Thus liberated, he seized the apostle's staff to defend himself against the fury of the demons, and ordered his disciples to bring from his house, on their shoulders several coffers full of books. He then began to throw the books into the fire, but in compliance with the commands of the apostle he filled the coffers with stones and lead, and cast them into the sea, lest the smell arising from the combustion of polluted things should do injury to those who were unaware of their witchcraft. Hermogenes, thus delivered from the burthen of magic, returned to the apostle, and humbly embracing his feet, manifested sincere repentance to God; and, attaching himself to the blessed James, obeyed him in all things. He thus began to attain such a state of perfection in the fear of God, that the Lord through him wrought several miracles, by witnessing which many persons turned to the Lord, renouncing their errors and forsaking their eVil deeds.

The Jews, persevering in their malice, when they saw that the magician, whom they considered invincible, and his friends, had become believers in Christ, offered money to Lysias and Theocritus, the centurions of Jerusalem, who arrested James, and committed him to prison. The apostle was brought with great tumult into the judgment-hall, where all admired his confidence in the Lord. Being questioned by the Pharisees, he returned excellent answers, and commented on the holy scriptures with wisdom and eloquence. He proved from them irrefragably Christ's

178 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.I.

birth from a pure virgin, his passion and resurrection, and all the rest as confessed by the Catholic church. The apostle concluded his discourse with such power, that all who were present believed, confessed their sins, and became faithful adherents to the church of God.

A few days afterwards, Abiathar, the chief priest, perceiving that so great a multitude believed in the Lord, was grieved to the heart, and by giving money to the people, stirred up a violent tumult; the result of which was, that the scribe Josias put a cord round the neck of the apostle, and dragged him to the palace of king Herod, son of Aristobulus. The king, wishing to please the Jews, ordered that he should be beheaded. While James was on the way to the place of execution, he saw a man, afflicted with the palsy, lying on the ground, who begged him with faith to heal his infirmity; the apostle said to him, "In the name of my crucified Lord Jesus Christ, for whose sake I am led away to be beheaded, rise up sound in every limb, and bless your Saviour". The palsied man immediately got up, and rejoicing at being able to run, began to bless the Lord. At this sight, Josias threw himself at the apostle's feet, and humbly implored his pardon.

James, perceiving that the heart of the scribe was visited by the grace of God, rejoiced, and Josias confessed the Lord Jesus Christ, the true son of the living God. Then Abiathar ordered him to be detained while the bystanders beat him in the face with their hands, and having sent to Herod a report of what had happened, requested permission to behead the new convert also. When James had embraced the neophyte, he laid his hand on his head, and blessed him, making the sign of the cross upon his forehead. Josias, thus perfected in the faith, was beheaded with the apostle, and the Almighty Emmanuel granted them both an eternal reward.

The martyrdom of the blessed apostle James, the brother of John the great Evangelist, having been consummated on the 8th of the calends of August [the 25th of July], the day on which the devotion of the church celebrates his festival, seven disciples who had been instructed in the true faith by him, and were present at his passion, by divine inspiration, placed his body on board an old ship, and committed

A.D. 44.] PETER RELEASED FROM PRISON. 179

themselves to the sea, without a pilot, without rigging, but full of confidence in God's providence. They arrived in a miraculous manner on the coast of Spain, and being well received by the king of Gallicia, were the first to preach the faith and religion to the Spanish nation, and gave their master an honourable burial. Many miracles were there effected through the merits of St. James the apostle, and the inhabitants of the whole province soon embraced the faith of Christ. The canons of the cathedral church watch with veneration the precious body of the apostle; and devout Christians, from every quarter of the globe, flock thither, where they meet to implore the mercy of God through the intercession of the apostle. [1]

King Herod, called Agrippa by Josephus, finding that the execution of James was acceptable to the Jews, put Peter also in prison, and delivered him to the custody of four quaternions of soldiers. Peter, therefore, was kept in prison, as they intended after Easter to bring him forth to the people, to put him to death. The prayers of the church ascended incessantly to the Divine Majesty, beseeching him that the young flock might not be deprived of the guardianship of its pious shepherd. The Lord, in his clemency, listened to the prayer of his spouse and loving handmaid on behalf of her protector. Heavenly aid was not wanting to the church, and Herod's cruel designs were provided against and frustrated. Peter was sleeping at night between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and the keepers before the door kept the prison; when the angel of the Lord came upon him, surrounded with light, and smote him on the side, and raised him up, saying, "Rise up quickly". Immediately


[1] All that is known with any certainty of St. James the Great is, that he was the first of the apostles who shed his blood for the faith, having been beheaded by Herod Agrippa some time before the passover. The circumstances of his martyrdom, related by our author, are completely apocryphal, and the persons introduced supposititious, including the high-priest Abiathar, who never existed but in the days of David. The whole of this legend is merely an extract, sufficiently exact, from the fourth book of the "Apostolic History" of the Pseudo-Abdius, printed in the Codex Apocryphus Novi Testamenti of J. A. Fabricius.

If the relics of this apostle were really translated to Compostella, which is very doubtful, it could not have happened before the seventh or eighth century. It is certain that in the ninth they had already acquired a great reputation, and were highly venerated.

180 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.I.

the chains fell from off his hands, and, taking his girdle, binding on his sandals, and casting his garment about him, he followed the angel, passing through the guards, unto the iron gate which opened to them of its own accord. At first he thought that all this had happened in a dream; but when the angel had departed from him, Peter came to himself, and, perceiving the truth, returned thanks to his deliverer for his escape. [1] He then went to the brethren who were assembled in the house of Mary the mother of John, whose surname was Mark, and as he knocked at the door, a damsel, named Rhoda, went to see who was there. When she knew Peter's voice, she opened not the gate for gladness, but ran in, and told how Peter stood before the gate. At length, having obtained admission, he cheered the drooping spirits of the astonished disciples, and declared unto them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison, and, immediately departing, retired to another place. His escape caused great commotion among the soldiers, and, as they could not discover where he was, King Herod was greatly incensed with the guards. However, his cruel treatment of the apostle was not suffered to remain long unpunished; but the avenging hand of God was quickly upon him, as Luke tells us in the "Acts of the Apostles", and Josephus in the nineteenth book of his "Antiquities". For on his going to Caesarea, anciently called the Tower of Strabo, on a set day, he entertained the citizens with public shows, in honour of the emperor. Splendidly arrayed in apparel admirably embroidered with gold and silver, he proceeded to the theatre, and sitting upon his throne, made an oration to the people, who shouted that it was not the voice of a man but of a god. And immediately the anger of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory; and five days afterwards he expired, eaten of worms. [2]

Agrippa, the son of Herod, reigned twenty-six years, [3] that


[1] Acts xii. 3-12.

[2] Acts xii. 13-23. The death of Herod Agrippa certainly happened A.D. 44, shortly after the miraculous deliverance of St. Peter.

[3] It might be supposed from our author's mode of expression, that Agrippa succeeded his father; but it was Herod, his uncle, he succeeded in the kingdom of Chalcis and the custody of the temple, A.D. 49. Three years afterwards he received in exchange the tetrarchate of Philip, together with that of Lysanias. After the destruction of Jerusalem (A.D. 70) he came to reside at Rome, where he died in the year 90.

A.D. 42-45.] ST. PAUL IN CYPRUS. 181

is to say, until the extermination of the Jews. He lived in peace with the Romans and Christians, and the word of God grew and multiplied.

There were in the church at Antioch, certain prophets and teachers, viz. Barnabas, and Simeon Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen, foster-brother of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. As they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Ghost said: "Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them". And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away. So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia, and from thence they sailed to Cyprus. At Salamine they preached the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews, and travelled over the island as far as Paphos. [1]

There the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man, called for Barnabas and Saul, and having thankfully heard the word of God, believed. The apostle then struck Elymas the sorcerer blind for a season, because he withstood the doctrine of the faith. Saul now justly gained the name of Paul, from the first among the gentiles whom he brought into subjection to the faith, as Scipio was surnamed Africanus after he conquered Africa. They then repaired to Perga in Pamphilia, and afterwards to Antioch in Pisidia, where they went into the synagogue on the sabbath-day, and sat down. After reading the law and the prophets, the rulers of the synagogue having granted permission, Paul stood up, and, beckoning with his hand for silence, admirably reviewed the history of the patriarchs, and proved clearly that the promises of God, made long before by the prophets, were now fulfilled in Christ. [2]

The next sabbath-day almost the whole city came to hear the word of God, but the most bigoted of the Jews used their earnest endeavours to oppose the preaching of the apostles by their blasphemous outcries. Then Paul and Barnabas boldly exclaimed: "It was necessary that the word of God should first be spoken to you; but seeing that ye put it from


[1] Acts xiii. 1-6. (A.D. 42 or 44.)

[2] Acts xiii. 7-43. (A.D. 44 or 45.)

182 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.I.

you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the gentiles. For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying: 'I have set thee to be a light of the gentiles, that thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ends of the earth'". When the gentiles heard this, they were glad, and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed. But the Jews raised persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them out of their coast. Then, filled with joy, they came to Iconium, and preached in the synagogue both to the Jews and Greeks. Remaining in that city for some time, they laboured boldly for the glory of God, who worked signs and wonders by their hands. But the unbelievers, both gentiles and Jews, insulted them in their rage, and attempted to stone them. But they fled to Lystra and Derbe, cities of Lycaonia, and unto the whole region that lieth round about, and there they preached the gospel; and their doctrine caused a great commotion among the whole population. [1]

At Lystra, a lame man, who had never been able to walk, having heard Paul speak, called upon the name of the Lord Jesus, was immediately healed, and, leaping up full of faith, glorified the Lord. When the people saw what Paul had done, they were struck with wonder, and exclaimed, in the speech of Lycaonia: "The gods are come down to us, in the likeness of men". And they called Barnabas, Jupiter; and Paul, Mercurius. Then the priest of Jupiter and the people would have offered sacrifice to them, but the apostles immediately ran in among the people, rending their clothes, and humbly gave the glory of the miracle to the Lord. But although they thus humbled themselves, they could scarcely restrain the people from doing sacrifice unto them. And there came suddenly thither Jews from Antioch and Iconium, who persuaded the people to stone Paul; so that they drew him out of the city, supposing him to be dead. But while the disciples stood round him, he rose up and came into the city, and the next day he departed to Derbe. Some time after, the two apostles returned again to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch, and passed through Pisidia, preaching every where the word of life, and strengthening the souls of the disciples by their exhortations; and when


[1] Acts xiii. 44-xiv. 6. (A.D. 45.)

A.D. 45-50.] PAUL AND BARNABAS AT JERUSALEM. 183

they had ordained them elders in every church, and had prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord. From Pamphilia they went down into Attalia, and thence sailed to Antioch. [1]

There they abode a long time with the disciples. Then certain men, which came down from Judea, persuaded the believing gentiles to be circumcised and observe the law of Moses. Paul and Barnabas opposed this teaching, and were sent, by unanimous consent, to the apostles and elders at Jerusalem, to have the question determined. Passing through Phenice and Samaria, they published the conversion of the gentiles, and caused great joy unto all the brethren. At Jerusalem, they were received of the church, and declared all things that God had done with them. However, as certain of the sect of the Pharisees, which believed, were strongly inclined to Judaize, Simon Peter, James, and the other elders handled with great zeal the question proposed to them, and at last decided, by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, that chosen and experienced brethren should be sent to the gentiles, entrusted with a letter requiring them to cast off all other burdens, except abstaining from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication. [2]

Paul, therefore, and Barnabas, with Judas, surnamed Barsabas, and Silas, were sent to Antioch, and delivered the epistle of the apostles and elders to the multitude of believers among the gentiles, who, when they had read it, rejoiced for the consolation. Judas and Silas, being also prophets, comforted the brethren with many words, and confirmed them, and after a while returned in peace to Jerusalem. Notwithstanding, Paul and Barnabas preached the word of the Lord for some time at Antioch. On their departure from thence, they separated; Barnabas, with Mark and John, embarked for Cyprus, while Paul, having chosen Silas for his companion, went through Syria and Cilicia, confirming the churches, and commanding them to observe the commands which the apostles and elders had given. He then came to Derbe and Lystra, and there, to obviate the subtle scruples of the Jews, circumcised Timothy, who


[1] Acts xiv. 7-25. (A.D. 45, 46.)

[2] Acts xiv. 26-xv. 29. (A.D. 50.)

184 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.I.

was the son of a gentile. Passing through Phrygia, Galatia, and Mysia, he came down to Troas, and, warned by a vision in the night, crossed over into Macedonia. He preached at Philippi, which is the chief city of that part of Macedonia, where Lydia, a seller of purple, who worshipped God, listened to the things which were spoken of Paul, and believing, and being baptized with her household, she constrained the apostles, by her repeated entreaties, to lodge with her. [1]

As Paul, with his companions, was going forth to prayer, he was met by a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination, who brought her masters much gain by soothsaying. This girl followed them exclaiming, "These men are the servants of the most high God, which show unto us the way of salvation". Having done this for many days, Paul being grieved, said to the spirit: "I command thee, in the name of Jesus Christ, to come out of her". And he came out the same hour. But when her masters saw that the hope of their gains was gone, they were in a great rage, and caught Paul, and Silas, and drew them into the marketplace unto the rulers, and accused them of causing disturbances in the city by introducing customs foreign to the manners of the Romans. The excited populace also joining in the attack upon these innocent men, they were scourged, and, by order of the magistrates, thrust into the inner prison, with their feet made fast in the stocks. At midnight, Paul and Silas prayed and sang praises unto God; and soon received his special assistance. For suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one's bonds were loosed. At this sight, the gaoler was terrified beyond measure, and having heard from the lips of Paul the grounds of his faith, believed and was baptized with all his household. The magistrates of the city feared, when they heard that the apostles were Romans, and, releasing them from prison, desired them to depart out of the city. Being set free, they went to the house of Lydia, and then departed for Thessalonica by way of Amphipolis and Apollonia. At Thessalonica, on three Sabbath-days, Paul entered the Jews' synagogue, and publicly


[1] Acts xv. 32-xvi. 15. (n.o. 51, 52.)

A.D. 52.] ST. PAUL AT ATHENS. 185

reasoned with them out of the scriptures, alleging that "Christ must needs have suffered, and risen again from the dead; and this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ". Many, both Jews and gentiles, believed and joined the company of Paul and Silas. But the bigoted Jews, moved with envy, stirred up the multitude against them, and accused Jason and the other brethren, whom they drew before the rulers of the city. But the rulers, when they had taken security of Jason, and of the other, let them go. And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea; and thence, as the Jews had raised tumults there also, the brethren conducted Paul to Athens. Here he waited for Silas and Timothy, whom he had left at Berea. Meanwhile, he disputed in the synagogue with the Jews and devout persons, and preached in the market-place every day to those who came to hear him. Then certain philosophers of the Epicureans and Stoics disputed with him. For the Athenians, and strangers which were there, spent their time in nothing else, but either to tell or to hear some new thing. Then Paul, standing in the middle of the Areopagus, rebuked the Athenians for their idolatry and superstition, and began to speak of the altar on which he had found an inscription: "To the unknown God.". These words he took for the text of his expected discourse, and announced to them the true God, who, in former times, was unknown to the world; then, saying much in a few words, he preached earnestly the faith, and the hope of the resurrection. [1]

Then Dionysius the Areopagite, with his wife Damaris, and a few others, clave unto the apostle and believed his words. Paul afterwards departed from Athens and came to Corinth, where he testified to the Jews and the Greeks that Jesus was the Christ, and earnestly devoted himself to the ministry of preaching; and he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath. Meanwhile Silas and Timotheus arrived from Macedonia. Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, convinced by the arguments of Paul, believed and was baptized, with all his house, and many of the Corinthians. And Paul entered into a certain man's house named Titus the Just, whose house joined hard to the synagogue.


[1] Acts xvi. I6-xvii. 31. (A.D. 52.)

186 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.II.

Obedient to the commands of God made known to him by a vision in the night, Paul continued there a year and six months, teaching constantly the word of God. There lived at Athens a Jew, of the name of Aquila, born in Pontus, and his wife Priscilla; Paul, being a tent-maker as well as Aquila, assisted them in their labours, and thus gained a living by the work of his own hands. Paul then took leave of the brethren, and sailed thence into Syria, and came to Ephesus. He then went to Cesarea, and thence came to Antioch; and after he had spent some time there, he departed, and went over the country of Galatia and Phrygia strengthening the disciples. [1]

CH. II. Life of St. Peter, from the Acts of the Apostles, and the Recognitions of St. Clemens Romanus.

THUS far I have made brief extracts from the history of the primitive church as related by Luke in the Acts of the Apostles, as far as the account of Paul's baptizing at Ephesus, in the name of the Lord Jesus, those disciples who had before received the baptism of John. He afterwards remained there for three months with those who, filled with the Holy Ghost, spake with tongues and prophesied; he himself continually setting forth the kingdom of God, to the profit of many: and then departing thence, for the next two years he preached the gospel boldly in every part of Asia, and performed in the name of Jesus Christ a number of miracles on the sick and demoniacs. [2] I must now have recourse to other works, and collect some short notices of the apostles generally, from authorities which are considered authentic, and are used by the church.

The Creator of all things only knows the degrees of rank and the respective merits of the apostles; and He, who searches the secrets of the human heart, has apportioned to each the rewards of his labour. The word apostle signifies sent; for Christ sent them to preach the gospel throughout the world, in order that, as fishermen's nets haul shoals of fishes from the depths of the sea, the apostle's preaching might draw from the pit of perdition to the light of life,


[1] Acts xvii. 34-xviii. 23. (A.D. 52-55.)

[2] Acts xix. 1-10. (A.D. 54-57.)

A.D. 33.] CALLING OF ST. PETER. 187

those who were lost in the depths of sin. Their names are these: Simon Peter, and Andrew his brother; James, the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; James, the son of Alpheus, and Philip; Thomas and Bartholomew; Levi, Matthew, and Simon the Canaanite; Judas Thaddeus and Matthias. [1]

Peter, called the first, the greatest in dignity, the key-bearer, he who zealously obeyed Christ, and followed him with his whole heart - he it was who filled the highest seat in the company of the apostles. He was the son of Jonas or John, and born at Bethsaida, a village near the lake of Gennesaret, in the province of Galilee. To announce his future dignity and illustrious power, he received three names. The significations of the three words indicated the many virtues vouchsafed to him by Heaven; for Simon means obedient, Peter acknowledging, and Cephas a head. [2] Thus Simon, by the obedience with which, as soon as he heard the Lord's commandment, he attached himself to him, leaving all things, and ready to follow him to death, rose to the knowledge of the ineffable divinity. Inspired by Heaven, he ardently desired to be acquainted with divine things, above the powers of human intellect, and in the sincerity of his faith loudly proclaimed a glorious confession, "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God". He therefore, was honoured above measure by Christ himself, made the head and foundation of the church. The generous Benefactor, who had inspired him divinely with the knowledge of himself, rewarded with the highest rank and authority the faith of a pure heart to which his mouth had given utterance by that confession. "Blessed art thou", said he, "Simon Barjona, for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven".

Truly blessed, indeed, is Simon, that is to say, the obedient, who is also called Barjona, that is to say, the son of a dove, the symbol of the Holy Ghost. "An obedient man", saith Solomon, "boasts his victories".


[1] Acts 13, 26. (A.D. 33.)

[2] We are not aware that Peter is synonymous with agnoscens in any language. As for the Syro-Chaldaic word Cephas, it is by a mere abuse of its similarity that it can be connected with the Greek word kepbali, caput, a head.

[3] Matt. xvi. 16, 17.

188 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.II.

He who unremittingly observes the divine commandments is attacked by divers temptations in his daily conflicts with Satan, whom he overcomes by perseverance in the law of God. What, indeed, does the divine law command or teach, but that every man must engage in spiritual warfare, combat the old serpent, who is always lying in ambush for us, and labour diligently to obtain the reward of his heavenly calling? Thus, the brave soldier of the Lord doubtless speaks of his victories, when he returns thanks to God his protector, after triumphing over the enemy, saying with the prophet:- "Thou hast girded me with strength unto the battle; thou shalt throw down my enemies under me"; and others in the same strain. No one can please God the Father by his holy works, if he have not obtained the virtue of obedience through the grace of the Holy Spirit.

Then the Saviour, nobly consummating the reward of Simon's pious confession, said to him:- "Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates Of hell shall not prevail against it". Petrus, in Latin, Cephas, in Syriac, are names derived in both languages from the word petra, a stone, that is, from Christ, who is the chief corner-stone upon which the church is founded. Thus Simon, by his obedience, was prepared to acknowledge the Son of God, a knowledge which not flesh and blood, but the heavenly Father, revealed to him; and therefore Peter was considered, by our Saviour himself, to be worthy of the surname of acknowledging. Having afterwards given to him the keys of the kingdom of heaven, the King of Sabaoth appointed him to be Cephas, that is to say, head of the church, the prince and sovereign pontiff of the apostles, gifted with the power of binding and loosing, pre-eminent in doctrine and sanctity, exalted by signs and miracles, the first pastor of the flock of Christ in his church, and his special vicar.

Peter preached the word to those of the circumcision for the space of seven years, and performed, during that time, the wonderful works which Luke records in the Acts of the Apostles, as I have mentioned above. He healed, at the Beautiful gate of the Temple, the lame man, aged forty years, and baptized the five thousand Jews who were


[1] Psalm xviii. 39.

A.D. 37-41.] PETER'S MIRACLES. 189

converted; he punished, with his censorial power, Ananias and his wife Sapphira, who were guilty of deceit and falsehood, and thus gave a terrible warning, to the men of that day and to posterity, of the chastisement to be given for their souls' health. As he passed along the streets, his shadow alone, falling upon the multitude of sick people as they lay in their beds, was sufficient to heal them, so great were the merits and power which Heaven bestowed upon him.

At Lydda he restored to health, in the name of the Lord, the paralytic Eneas, who had kept his bed eight years; and brought to the faith those who saw and wondered at so unheard-of a miracle. At Joppa he raised to life the venerable widow Tabitha, and presented her alive to the saints and widows. The rest of his acts, from Judea to Antioch, and how he repeatedly overcame Simon Magus in his frequent disputes with him, Clemens Romanus, the son of Faustinian, has related in his book of the Recognitions, a work which he has also entitled the Itinerary of Peter. This author, having abandoned all he possessed at Rome, embarked for Palestine, and met the apostle Peter at Caesarea Stratonis, his residence being pointed out to him by Barnabas, whom he had hospitably entertained at Rome, and who treated him as a friend and guest worthy of the greatest respect. Clemens was kindly received by Peter, as a son by his father, on account of his regard for both him and Barnabas, and being fully instructed in the faith of the true Prophet, and renewed at the sacred font, he inseparably attached himself to Peter. [1]

Peter disputed with Simon Magus at Caesarea, and after Simon had retired in the evening with a thousand of his followers, he strengthened in the faith those who remained, and, invoking the name of God, healed the demoniacs and the sick.

The next day, the discussion was renewed, and with God's help, Simon was put to silence on many points. At last, as night was approaching, Simon, confounded, left the place with a few adherents, and the people rejoicing, threw


[1] St. Clemens, the disciple and the third successor of St. Peter, died in the year 100, after filling the pontifical chair nine years. The book of The Recognitions, attributed to him by our author, was justly rejected as apocryphal even in the time of St. Jerome.

190 ORDERICUS VITALIS [B.II. CH.II.

themselves at Peter's feet. The demoniacs and the sick were cured by his prayers, and having heard the doctrine and experienced the mercy of the true God, they retired full of joy. On the third day, Peter established the immortality of the soul, by the truth of his arguments, against Simon, who denied it, and laid bare his wicked principles, by giving proofs of them. The people, indignant, drove the blasphemer from the hall, and even thrust him out of the door of the house; and of the numbers who had been his followers for a long time, scarcely one now ventured to keep company with him. However, Simon loaded the shoulders of his companion with the polluted and execrable instruments of his art, and fearing that, if he were taken, he should come within the grasp of justice, he threw them at night into the sea, and ran away, his attendant refusing to accompany him, because he had by this time found him to be a detestable impostor.

Peter dwelt three months at Caesarea, ordaining Zaccheus bishop of that city; and baptized on a day of festival an immense number of believers, amounting to ten thousand. From thence he sent twelve brethren after Simon, to follow his track. Sophonias and Joseph, Micheas and Eleazar, Phineas and Lazarus, Elisaeus and Benjamin, son of Saba; Ananias, son of Saphra; Rubelus, the brother of Zacchmus; Nicodemus and Zacharias the architect, were selected by the apostle, that he might be assisted in the worship of God by twelve faithful brethren, though relying principally on divine grace, and that by their aid he might follow up Simon Magus and the other enemies of righteousness.

Having completed the three months he spent at Caesarea, Peter went, by way of Dora, to Ptolemais, and there remained ten days teaching the people the law of God. After this he was also employed in sowing the seed of the divine word at Tyre, Sydon, and Berytus; and then entered Tripoli with a considerable number of the elect, who followed him from each of these cities. At Tripoli he was entertained in the house of Maro with every token of regard from the citizens, who also granted to all the companions of Peter a gratuitous hospitality, marked with the greatest kindness. The following morning an immense multitude crowded into Maro's garden to hear the apostle, who, in the first place,

A.D. 41-?] LEGEND OF ST. PETER. 191

put to flight the foul spirits which cried out from the bodies they possessed, and after his sermon healed the sick in that place. There, for the space of three months, he sowed abundantly the words of salvation, and baptized Clemens, and several others, at fountains which were in the neighbourhood of the sea; appointing Maro, his host, who was already perfectly prepared in all things, bishop.

Thence he repaired to Antarados, and divided the multitude of believers who followed him into two bodies, ordering Nicetas and Aquilas to conduct them, and go before him, to Laodicea, from fear that such a concourse of persons accompanying him might excite the jealousy of the enemies to the faith. During the journey, Clemens informed Peter, in a familiar conversation, whence he came, described his family, and related the history of his parents. The next day, he visited a neighbouring island, in order to see some pillars of glass [1] of an immense size; and here, thanks to Peter, he recognized his mother Matidia, after a separation of twenty years. Peter healed by his prayers a paralytic woman, who was the hostess of Matidia, and Clemens gave her a thousand drachms as a remuneration for her services.

After this, Peter went to Balancas, and then to Palthos and Gabala, and thus reached Laodicea, where he stayed ten days; during which time the recognition of the mother and her three sons, Clemens, Faustinus, and Faustus, took place. Two of the brothers, who were twins, related, that after being shipwrecked, as they were tossed to and fro by the waves, holding on to a piece of plank, some pirates found them, and taking them on board their boat, sailed with them to Caesarea, and there sold them under feigned names to a certain woman, who had acted most justly towards them, having educated them as her own children, instructed them in liberal and Greek literature, and, when they had arrived at the proper age, put them to the study of philosophy.

While Peter remained at Laodicea, incessantly occupied as was his custom, in pious works, an old man, named Faustinian, who appeared to be in a state of poverty, went


[1] Vitreas. M. Le Prevost proposes to read viteas, observing that pillars of vine-wood, however large we may suppose them, are less incredible than pillars of glass, immensis magnitudinis. The learned editor remarks, that the temple of Juno at Metapontum was supported by pillars of vine-wood.

192 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.II.

to him, and began to deny the existence of God, of a providence in this world, and the necessity of divine worship; asserting that every thing was done by mere chance and by generation. [1] His three sons, whom he had not yet recognized, opposed him in the hearing of all the people for three days, and, by their answers, instructed their hearers in many abstruse doctrines.

The first day, Nicetas ably argued that there exists a God who is master of all things, who made the world, and governs it by his providence, a just God, who will reward every man according to his works. On the second day, Aquilas discoursed with eloquence on the just disposal of all things by a God of justice. On the third day, Clemens disputed on the origin of things, inquiring whether all depended upon generation, or whether there was aught in us effected not by the hazard of birth, but by the will of God. It was then that, by a divine motion, without which nothing happens, the obstinate old man and his wife recognized their children, although twenty years had elapsed.

The chief magistrate of the town used his utmost endeavours to detain at his house Peter and the brethren who were with him; and his daughter, who for twenty years had been the prey of a cruel demon, was set free and healed.

At this time, as Faustinian, while on a visit to his friends, Anubis and Appio, who lodged at the house of Simon, was taking his supper with them, his face was transformed by magic art into that of Simon: a circumstance which caused the greatest fear to all his friends, as they dreaded that, by an order of the emperor, he would be taken for the magician, and punished in his room.

After this Peter went to Antioch, where he was received with great demonstrations of joy by the inhabitants: he there preached the word of God, restored to health the sick who were brought to him, and healed the people afflicted with the palsy, possessed with a devil, as well as all those who suffered from any kind of accident. The number of the sick was immense. Peter was offering up a prayer to the Lord for them all, in the presence of the people, when suddenly, by the grace of God, an extraordinary light appeared in the midst of the audience, and all who were


[1] "Genesis": genitura, fatum, horoscopus.- Ducange, Gloss.

A.D. 42?] ST. PETER AT ANTIOCH. 193

afflicted in any way immediately recovered their health. In consequence, all the inhabitants of Antioch, with one voice, confessed the Lord, and within seven days more than ten thousand souls believing in God were baptized.

Theophilus, who held the highest rank among the great men of the city, was inflamed with so ardent a love for God, that he freely offered the great hall of his own house to be converted into a spacious church. [1] It was consecrated under the name of a church, and an episcopal throne [2] was erected in it for the apostle Peter by the entire population. Meanwhile Faustinian, laying open his mind to the heavenly mysteries, at the sight of so many miracles threw himself publicly at the feet of the apostle, and, abjuring his ancient errors, requested to be baptized. Peter enjoined him a preparatory fast, baptized him on the following Sunday, and, standing in the midst of the people, made the conversion of Faustinian the subject of a discourse, in which he recounted the events of the convert's life. This account was generally pleasing and useful, and gained for the old man and his family the favour and esteem of the inhabitants of Antioch. The entire city made a happy progress in divine things, and the number of the faithful increasing daily, holy mother church rejoiced in Christ Jesus. [3]

The blessed apostle Peter filled the see of Antioch for the first seven years, and preached the word in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia. Afterwards, Simon Magus having gone to Rome, Peter set in order the church of Antioch, and consecrated Evodius bishop in his place. He then proceeded to Rome, [4] attended by several chosen disciples, and, entering the city in the time of the emperor Claudius, found the juggler, so often mentioned, deceiving


[1] Basilica; from a Greek word signifying a royal palace, hall, or court of justice. Every one knows that most of the early Christian churches consisted of such halls converted to religious uses; from whence it arose that in old writers this word is often synonymous with church.

[2] Cathedra, literally a chair or seat; hence "St. Peter's chair", "the see", or "seat of a bishop", and the ecclesiastical phrases, "sat", "filled the see", etc.

[3] Our author's quotations from the Recognitions of St. Clemens end here: Recognitionum S. Clementis ad Jacobum fratrem Domini, libri x.

[4] This first journey of St. Peter to Rome is generally supposed to have taken place in the year 42; but there are great doubts respecting it.

191 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B. II. CH. II.

the people with a variety of phantoms raised by virtue of the diabolical power called a familiar spirit. This impostor was so puffed up with pride, that he set himself up for a god, and even obtained from the Roman citizens the honour of having a statue erected to him, as a god, on the banks of the Tiber, between the two bridges. In fact, Satan had taken entire possession of this insane contriver of all wickedness, who was the first he armed with the weapons of impious heresy to war against the true faith of the church. The Almighty Emmanuel prepared the illustrious leader of his army to contend with him in close combat; I mean Simon Peter, to whom Christ entrusted the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and appointed him to be the prince of the apostles and the firm ruler of his church. He, therefore, on his arrival in Rome, dispelled the darkness of falsehood by the brilliant light of truth and justice; and there, as a worthy censor, judging with equity, he filled the see twenty-five years, two months, and three days. [1]

When the bright light of the word of God had shone forth in the Roman capital, and the word of truth, which Peter preached, had enlightened the minds of all his hearers, and had caused them so much satisfaction that hearing only did not satisfy those who daily attended, Mark, a disciple of the apostle, was induced by repeated solicitations to compose his gospel, that what the one taught by word of mouth might be committed to writing by the other, and thus transmitted to posterity for the perpetual instruction of the readers. Peter was delighted to find that through the influence of the Holy Spirit, his teaching was appropriated by a kind of pious fraud; [2] and perceiving in this their faith and piety, he confirmed himself the work of the evangelist, and delivered this Scripture [3] to the


[1] It is the common opinion of the church, still current at Rome, that Peter governed that chuch more than twenty-five years. Unfortunately, there is nothing less authentic, or more easily refuted, than the assertion of this long residence of St. Peter at Rome. What appears most probable, after a careful inquiry, is that he made his first journey to Rome in A.D. 58, and returned there in 65.- M. Le Prevost.

[2] Religioso se spoliatum furto.

[3] It is a tradition generally received by the church, that St. Mark wrote his gospel from details given him by St. Peter of the actions and words of Jesus Christ; but as this gospel, which is so much shorter than those of St. Matthew and St. Luke, contains only two facts, and those of slight importance, which are not related by the other evangelists, we may be permitted to doubt his having drawn his information from a source which would have supplied a vast number of particulars omitted by the others. At any rate, the account given by our author must be considered altogether apocryphal.

A.D. 42?] ST. PETER AT ROME. 195

churches to be read for ever; besides which, he composed two epistles which are called canonical. [1] Peter worked manfully in Christ's vineyard, during the reigns of Tiberius Caesar, Caius Caligula, Claudius, and Nero, nurturing many excellent disciples, and, when they were well imbued with virtue and learning, sending them into different countries. He placed his disciple Mark, whom he loved as a son, first at Aquileia, and then at Alexandria; Martial at Limoges; Apollinaris at Ravenna; Valerius at Treves; and many more in different places, where, in Christ's name, they brought vast crowds of the Gentiles to the light of faith, and having regenerated them placed them in the bosom of our holy mother the church, by the water of holy baptism.

One day when Peter was at Rome, while several of the brethren were at table, Titus said to the apostle, "As thou hast cured all the sick, why dost thou let Petronilla lie suffering from palsy"? The apostle answered, "It is expedient for her that it should be so; but in order that no one may think that I wish, by words, to cloak my inability to heal her, I say to this woman, 'Rise up, Petronilla, and come and serve us'". She rose up able to minister to them; but, as soon as her attendance was no longer required, he ordered her to return to her pallet. However, when she began to be proficient in the fear of God, not only was she perfectly healed of her own infirmity, but her prayers were the means of restoring health to others. [2]


[1] The authenticity of the First Epistle of St. Peter has never been suspected; that of the second was questioned by Origen, Eusebius, and St. Jerome; but at the present day it is generally admitted.

[2] The legend of St. Peter which Ordericus has inserted in this chapter, has no claims to a detailed examination. Except the last three paragraphs, it is a tolerably faithful extract from the apocryphal book of The Recognitions, already referred to. The foundation of the church of Antioch by St. Peter is generally fixed A.D. 36. His pretended journey to Rome, A.D. 42, has been already commented on. The date of his martyrdom is better established, as having occurred on the 29th of June, 66. As to the episode of St. Petronilla, copied from the Acts of SS. Nereus and Achilleus, and St. Peter's sending St. Martial to Limoges, St. Mark to Aquileia, St. Apollinaris to Ravenna, and St. Valerius to Treves, they must be considered as entirely apocryphal.

196 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.III.

CH. III. Life and death of St. Paul, compiled from the Acts of the Apostles and ancient legends - with St. Peter's martyrdom.

PAUL, the illustrious champion of the Almighty, a chosen vessel, the teacher of the Gentiles, and preacher of the truth, who was worthy to fill the twelfth throne among the apostles, [1] and was caught up into heaven to hear the mysteries which man must not repeat,- ought to be worthily extolled and continually honoured by the sons of the church as their learned schoolmaster. He was first called Saul, which means in Hebrew temptation; because he began his career by tempting the holy mother church. Having afterwards changed his name, instead of Saul he was called Paul, that is to say, wonderful, having been converted in a marvellous manner, from a ravenous wolf into a mild lamb. In Latin Paul may be taken for little; wherefore he said publicly, when speaking of himself, "I am the least of the apostles".

Paul was of the tribe of Benjamin, a pharisee of the pharisees, born at Tarsus, a city of Cilicia, but brought up at Jerusalem from his childhood, and instructed in the law of God by Gamaliel. In the second year after our Lord's ascension, while he displayed excessive zeal for the traditions of the elders, and became, therefore, a violent persecutor of the Christians, he went to Damascus, bearing letters from the high priest, commissioning him to persecute even to death all the worshippers of Christ who dwelt there. When, however, he came nigh the city, he was suddenly surrounded by an extraordinary light, and, hearing with amazement the heavenly voice of the Lord Jesus, he fell to the ground; but his salvation was secured, for he arose divested of his former ferocity, and was led by


[1] Our author expresses himself incorrectly, and contradicts what he has previously said, when he describes St. Paul as the twelfth apostle. It has already appeared that, long before his conversion, the number of the apostles was filled up by the election of St. Matthias. The truth is, that St. Paul was ordained as apostle of the gentiles, along with St. Barnabas, at Antioch, in the year 44, but this mission had nothing in common with that of the twelve apostles properly so called.

A.D. 35.] ST. PAUL'S CONVERSION. 197

his companions of the journey into Damascus, where, for three days, he was unable to move. At the end of that time, by God's command, he was visited by Ananias, and embraced the faith which he had combated, and, having been baptized, boldly preached it to Jews and Gentiles. Beginning at Jerusalem, he proceeded as far as Illyria, Italy, and Spain; [1] and made known the name of Christ to the inhabitants of many countries who had not yet heard it.

Luke, the evangelist, Paul's companion and fellow labourer, speaks of him to the end of his work with exactness and dignity, pursuing the thread of his history to the omission of others. Arator, also, a sub-deacon of the holy Roman church, has written a second book on this subject, in which he piously made a metrical version of the Acts of the Apostles, in which he related the labours of Paul, his patience in adversity, and the shipwreck he suffered. I have already collected from these works some brief notices respecting him in the preceding pages, but it is by no means an irksome task to recapitulate them to the glory of God.

Saul, who is likewise called Paul, having parted from his companions, in obedience to an admonition of the Holy Ghost, preached at Paphos, where he struck blind Elymas the sorcerer, who resisted the words of the faith, and converted to Christianity the proconsul Paulus. Having entered the synagogue at Antioch, he commanded silence by waving his hand, and related how the people of Israel went out of Egypt by passing through the sea, and spoke of the different miracles which were wrought in the desert. On another sabbath day he rehearsed Christ's passion and resurrection, which he illustrated by passages from the prophets, and increased the flock of the church by a great number of believers.

At Lystra, Paul healed a man impotent in his feet from his mother's womb, who listened with attention to the word of God; but when he saw the ancient superstition of the


[1] We have no account of St. Paul having included Illyrium and Spain in his journeyings. He announced his intention (Rom. xv. 24-28) to visit the latter country, but there is nothing to show that he carried it into effect.

198 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.III.

Lycaonians, who wished to offer sacrifice to him, he rent his clothes, and used eloquence and reason to restrain their zeal.

After much opposition to his preaching, he handled the question raised by the baptized Jews, whether believing Gentiles ought to be baptized before they were circumcised. Paul, therefore, went to Jerusalem with others chosen from among the faithful, and consulted Peter and James, and the other elders, and transmitted an epistle containing their decision that Christians need only abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication.

At Philippi he cast an unclean spirit out of a young woman who was a Pythoness, and who gave responses to those who consulted her; the demon being expelled, her covetous masters were deprived of the gains obtained by her divination. They therefore accused Paul before the magistrates, by whose orders he was imprisoned. In the night, the apostle prayed to the Lord of light, and the merciful guardian of his faithful people quickly heard him. For there was a sudden earthquake, and the chains of the prisoners fell from them; and the keeper of the prison having been baptized, with his whole family, Paul and Silas, the servants of the God of Sabaoth, were allowed to go free.

Paul, preaching at Athens, was surnamed by the people there, the sower of tho word, [1] and thus received a suitable name from the unbelievers; for his words were a fountain of eternal life to thirsty souls, and he scattered freely the seed of salvation for all who desired to gather it. He disputed with the philosophers, both Epicurean and Stoic, and eloquently proclaimed the true God who was called by the Athenians "The Unknown God". Dionysius the Areopagite, and his wife Damaris, [2] believed and were baptized; and Paul admitted him among his most intimate friends, on account of his wisdom and love of righteousness. Soon


[1] Seminiverbius; in the Greek text of Acts xvii. 18, apepuoloyoc; in the authorized English version "a babbler".

[2] It is by no means certain that Damaris was the wife of Dionysius, or St. Denys, the Areopagite, and the text of St. Luke by no means favours the assertion (Acts xvii. 34). All that we know for certain of St. Denys, by the testimony of his namesake of Corinth, is that he was bishop of Athens. It appears also that he suffered martyrdom.

A.D. 54-56.] ST. PAUL AT ATHENS AND EPHESUS. 199

afterwards, as Aristides the Athenian tells us, Dionysius was ordained bishop of Athens by the apostle, and after an illustrious life received the glorious crown of martyrdom. Paul went from thence to Corinth, where he found Aquila preaching, with his wife Priscilla; he went to reside at their house, and there practised the art of tent-making, in which they were expert. There also, being admonished by Christ not to cease from preaching, he faithfully obeyed, and many were converted.

At Ephesus, twelve men lately baptized by Paul in the name of the Lord, were filled with the Holy Ghost, and had the gift of divers kinds of tongues. Also, while Paul was healing, in the name of the Lord Jesus, those who were afflicted with various sorts of diseases, seven Jews, the sons of one Sceva, chief of the priests, took upon them to lay their hands on a man who had an evil spirit, calling over him the name of the Lord Jesus, whom Paul preached. But the demon, acting through the man who was possessed, made a public acknowledgment of Jesus and his disciple Paul. He also suddenly rushed upon the unbelieving exorcists, whom he wounded and put to flight. A great number of the Ephesians, having heard the truth preached to them, believed and were baptized. Some of those who used curious arts, burnt their books of magic, the value of which they estimated at fifty thousand pence. So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed; and his grace thus strengthening the faithful, the party of the ungodly dwindled and was confounded. But Paul sent Timotheus and Erastus into Macedonia, while he himself stayed in Asia for a season. [1]

Demetrius, a silversmith, perceiving that the teaching of Paul induced the inhabitants of Ephesus to forsake the temple of Diana, and grieved that the profits of his trade were reduced to almost nothing, by the idols being condemned to destruction, called together his fellow workmen, and, setting forth their common grievances, stirred up a clamorous tumult of the people. The riotous mob rushed furiously into the theatre, having caught Gaius and Aristarchus, men of Macedonia, Paul's companions; but their uproar, while they quarrelled among each other, was to no purpose. [2]


[1] Acts xix. 1-22.

[2] Acts xix. 23-40.

200 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.III.

Paul, having called the disciples to him, bid them farewell, after exhorting them to persevere in their new career; and then departed to go into Macedonia. He remained three months in Greece. His companions were Sosipater, son of Birrus of Berea; and of the Thessalonians, Aristarchus and Secundus; Gaius of Derbe, and Timotheus; and of Asia, Titicus and Trophimus. After the days of unleavened bread, Paul and Luke sailed from Philippi, and came to Troas in five days; where they abode seven days. And upon the first day of the week, when several of the disciples came together to break bread, as they were listening to a long discourse which Paul, who was ready to depart on the morrow, continued until midnight, a young man, named Eutychus, who sat in a window, fell down from the third loft, overcome by sleep, but was restored to life by the prayers of Paul, to the joy of all beholders. [1]

From Miletus Paul sent to Ephesus, and calling the elders of the church, addressed them at length on matters pertaining to the salvation of souls. And when he had finished his discourse he kneeled down and prayed with them all. And they all wept sore, and when they had embraced each other, the brethren accompanied Paul unto the ship. Then embarking, he came with a straight course unto Coos, and to Rhodes, and from thence to Patara, and, passing through Syria, arrived at Tyre, where he stayed seven days with his faithful friends in Christ. From Ptolemais he went to Caesarea, and entered into the house of Philip the evangelist, who had four daughters, virgins, which did prophesy. [2]

Then came down from Judea a prophet, named Agabus, who bound his own hands and feet with Paul's girdle, and by the grace of the Holy Ghost clearly predicted that the Jews at Jerusalem would bind Paul in the same manner, and would deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles. All who heard him began to weep, but Paul said to those who


[1] Acts xx. 1-12. Our author, following Origen, gives the name of Sosipater to the person St. Luke calls Sopater. He makes him the son of Birrus, instead of Pyrrhus; of Gaius of Derbe, he makes two persons, Gaius; Derbeus. He always writes Titicus for Tychicus.

[2] Acts xx. 13-xxi. 9. St. Philip, the deacon, who must not be confounded with the apostle of the same name.

A.D. 58.] ST. PAUL IMPRISONED AT JERUSALEM. 201

besought him not to go up to Jerusalem, "I am ready, not to be bound only, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus". [1]

Thus supported by the firmness of his faith, Paul went up to Jerusalem, and related to James and the other elders what things God had wrought among the gentiles by his ministry; and when they heard of the conversion of the gentiles, they magnified God the Creator of all things. The next day Paul entered into the temple to purify himself, and began to perform the ceremonies of the Mosaic law, in order to remove every occasion of scandal to those who were zealous for the laws of their fathers; that thus making himself a Jew among the Jews, he might gain all men. But the Jews which were of Asia, when they saw him in the temple, stirred up the people by their malevolent clamours, and laid hands on him. And all the city was moved, and the people ran together; and they took Paul, and drew him out of the temple, and forthwith the doors were shut. They then began to beat him, and sought to kill him. Claudius Lysias, the tribune of a cohort, when he heard that all Jerusalem was suddenly in an uproar, immediately took soldiers and centurions, and ran down to them, and, to prevent the populace from taking the apostle's life, he forcibly rescued him out of their hands, and having bound him with two chains, drew him out of the crowd, and commanded him to be carried into the castle, that he might inquire of him who he was, and what he had done. With the tribune's consent, Paul ascended the stairs, and, speaking to the people in the Hebrew tongue, gave a full account of his conversion, and of his former conversation as a Jew, and offered afterwards the best arguments for his change to the faith of Christ. While he was thus judiciously speaking, the Jews, impatient at the force of his words, began to raise violent clamours, and furiously exclaimed: "Away with such a fellow from the earth: for it is not fit that he should live". The chief captain, therefore, commanded him to be brought into the castle, and scourged and tortured. Then Paul said unto the centurion that stood by: "Is it lawful to scourge a man that is a Roman and uncondemned"?


[1] Acts xxi. 10-13. (A.D. 58.).

202 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.III.

The chief captain, after he knew that he was a Roman citizen, was afraid because he had bound him. [1]

On the morrow Paul was brought before the council, and standing in the midst defended himself with great ability. But the high priest Ananias commanded them that stood by to smite him on the mouth. Then said Paul unto him: "God shall smite thee, thou whited wall; for sittest thou to judge me after the law, and commandest me to be smitten contrary to the law"? And they that stood by said, "Revilest thou God's high priest"? Then said Paul: "I wist not, brethren, that he was the high priest. For it is written: Thou shalt not speak evil of the ruler of thy people". [3] But when Paul perceived that the one part were sadducees, and the other pharisees, he cried out in the council, "Men and brethren, I am a pharisee, the son of a pharisee; of the hope and resurrection of the dead I am called in question". At these words, there arose a dissension between the two parties, and the multitude was divided. For the sadducees say that there is no resurrection, neither angel nor spirit; but the pharisees confess both. Some of the pharisees took his part, saying, "We find no evil in this man; but if a spirit or an angel hath spoken to him". [3] ... And when there arose a great dissension, the tribune, fearing lest Paul should be pulled in pieces by them, commanded the soldiers to take him by force from among them, and to bring him into the castle. [2]

And the night following, the Lord stood by him, and said: "Be of good cheer; for as thou hast testified of me in Jerusalem, so must thou bear witness also at Rome". And when it was day, more than forty Jews came to the chief priests and elders, and bound themselves by an oath that they would neither eat nor drink till they had killed Paul when on his way to the council. The tribune, hearing of this conspiracy from Paul's sister's son, dextrously defeated the plot of these wicked men. For at the third hour of the


[1] Acts xxi. M-xxii. 29. (A.D. 58.)

[2] Exodus xxii. 28.

[3] Ordericus omits the concluding words of the sentence: "Let us not fight againt God".

[4] Acts xxii. 30-xxiii. 13.

A.D. 58.] PAUL SENT TO CAESAREA. 203

night, he sent the apostle in chains to Caesarea under an escort of two hundred soldiers, and threescore and ten horsemen, and two hundred spearmen, and remitted the case to the governor Felix in a letter which he wrote to him. Thus conducted to Caesarea, Paul was confined in the guardhouse of Herod's palace, and after five days was called before the assembly. Ananias, the high priest, was present with the elders of the Jews, and the orator Tertullus framed an insidious accusation against Paul. The accused, with the governor's permission, briefly replied, and by his prudent answer completely refuted all that was laid to his charge. Felix the governor then adjourned the assembly until the arrival of the tribune, and ordered the centurion to treat Paul kindly. And after certain days, Felix came with his wife Drusilla who was a Jewess, and sending for Paul, heard him concerning the faith in Christ Jesus. And as he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled; but he often sent for him, hoping to obtain money from him. At the end of two years, Portius Festus succeeded Felix, who, willing to show the Jews a pleasure, left Paul bound. [1]

Not long afterwards Festus went down to Caesarea, and there commanded the Jews to bring forward their accusation against Paul. In consequence they laid many and grievous complaints against him, which they could not prove, while Paul justified himself in these words: "Neither against the law of the Jews, neither against the temple, nor yet against Caesar, have I offended anything at all". At last, through the under-hand arts of the Jews, and the double dealing of the judge, whose policy it was to conciliate them, Paul found it necessary to appeal to Caesar. He was also brought before an assembly over which King Agrippa and the governor Festus presided, when, raising his hand, he gave an account of his calling and his faith in Christ, in a very eloquent speech. When it was ended, all present admired his wisdom; and the great men going aside, talked between themselves, saying: "This man hath done nothing worthy of death or of bonds. He might have been set at liberty, if he had not appealed unto Caesar". He was, therefore, delivered to Julius, a centurion of the Augustan cohort, one


[1] Acts xxiii. 10-xxiv. 27.

204 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.III.

Aristarchus, a Macedonian, and Luke, being his fellow travellers. There were in the ship two hundred and seventy-six souls; the voyage, which violent tempests rendered very dangerous, lasted fourteen days, during which they saw neither sun nor stars; and took no food as they despaIred of being saved. Paul had tried to persuade them to winter in Crete, but the earnest advice of the pilot and the master of the ship prevailed with the centurion and soldiers to prosecute the voyage. Their heedless haste induced them to brave the storms of the winter season, and almost the whole of them would have been lost, but for the aid afforded them by the merits of Paul. But they suffered much from terror and fatigue when they were wrecked on the quicksands; and all the tackle of the ship was carried away, and they were forced to throw overboard the wheat and all that burdened the vessel. Meanwhile, the angel of God stood before Paul, and said to him, "Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar; and, lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee. [1]

After the ship had gone to pieces, it was with the greatest difficulty that they reached the island of Mitylene. [2] And the barbarous people showed them great kindness, and kindled a fire for their comfort, because of the rain and cold. And when Paul was heaping faggots on the fire, a viper came out of the heat, and fastened on his hand. The barbarians, seeing this, cried out that the man was a murderer, and would doubtless soon die. But Paul shook the viper into the fire, and, to the surprise of all, felt no harm. [3]

Publius, the governor of the island, hospitably entertained the shipwrecked people three days. While there, Paul went to see the father of Publius who lay sick of fever and dysentery, and having prayed over him, laid his hands on him, and healed him. Others also of the islanders who had diseases came to him, and were healed. They therefore treated the shipwrecked crew and passengers with great respect, on account of Paul's merits, and when they departed, supplied them with all that was necessary for their voyage. At the end of three months, they embarked in a ship of Alexandria, which


[1] Acts xxv. 1-xxvii. 24.

[2] St. Luke calls this island Melita, generally supposed to be the present Malta.

[3] Acts xxvii. 25-xxviii. 6.

A.D. 63.] ST. PAUL AT ROME. 205

had wintered in the island, and, by God's guidance, arrived not long afterwards at Rome; when some of the brethren, hearing of Paul's arrival, went out to meet and congratulate him. At Rome Paul was suffered to dwell by himself; in the custody of a soldier; and after three days, he called the chief of the Jews together, and complained to them of his arrest and the ill-treatment he had suffered from their brethren at Jerusalem. He then gave them a faithful account of the true faith which is in Jesus Christ. He dwelt two whole years in his own hired house, preaching to all men the kingdom of God, and teaching the things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ, with all confidence, no man forbidding him. [1]

I have hitherto followed the narrative of St. Luke the evangelist, in the Acts of the Apostles, who, omitting further notice of the other apostles, relates that Paul went to Rome, where, for the space of two years, he preached the word of God without hindrance. He came to Rome in the second year of the reign of Nero, and defended himself before the emperor, who at the commencement of his reign was as yet disposed to be merciful. By God's help, he was set at liberty at the command of Nero, whom, by a figure, he calls "The Lion"; and quitting Rome, he journeyed through the nations of the west, as far as Narbonne, a city of Gaul. It is reported that he there built a church, which he dedicated in honour of the Maccabean martyrs, where is still seen the sign of the cross, marked in oil, which the apostle traced with his thumb on the wall; he then ordained his disciple Paul bishop of that city, who there, after performing many good works, terminated his career by a happy end. [2]

In the same manner, several others, who had been instructed in the doctrine of the Catholic faith by the holy doctor of the gentiles, shed a wonderful lustre on the church of God, being placed in the chair of authority to govern the people of God in various countries. Luke in Bithynia,


[1] Acts xxviii. 7-3I. (A.D. 61-63.)

[2] The metropolitan church of Narbonne was neither founded by St. Paul nor one of his immediate disciples, but by a person of the same name, one of the seven bishops sent into Gaul, about A.D. 250, as we learn from Gregory of Tours.

206 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.III.

Titus in Crete, Carpus at Troas, Timothy and Archippus in Asia, Trophimus at Arles, Onesimus at Ephesus, Sosthenes at Corinth, Tychicus at Paphos, Dionysius the Areopagite at Athens, Epaphras at Colosse, and Erastus at Philippi, spread the nets of faith, and drew the heathen nations from the darkness of ignorance to the light of truth, as fishes are caught from the depths of the sea. Pointing out to others the path of righteousness, they retained them in it by their words and actions. Their names are, therefore, written in the book of life, and all nations will proclaim their wisdom and celebrate their praise. [1]

It now becomes necessary for me to speak of the triumphant deaths of the saints, and I shall faithfully continue the thread of my narrative from the materials furnished by the writings of the fathers. I shall have to tell how these glorious princes of the earth, nobly bearing the standard of the true Joshua, re-conquered the land of promise; how they loved each other during their lives, and were not separated in death; how, animated with the same spirit, they fought at Rome against the emperor Nero and Simon the magician; and how, having vanquished the enemy, they received on the same day their heavenly crowns. [2]

Marcellus, a Roman, son of the prefect Marcus, baptized by the apostle Peter, has described the frowardness of Simon Magus and the simplicity of Peter, in a letter addressed to the holy martyrs Nereus and Achilleus, [3] while they were


[1] St. Trophimus, the disciple of St. Paul, is a different person from his namesake, the bishop of Arles, one of the seven bishops mentioned in the preceding note. Ordericus Vitalis has made other mistakes of the same kind in this passage. Thus St. Luke, though he preached in many parts of Bithynia, never settled there, and SS. Carpus and Sosthenes were simply disciples of St. Paul, without any particular mission or ecclesiastical rank. The attributing to Onesimus the bishopric of Ephesus arose from confusing the disciple of the apostle with a bishop who was contemporary with St. Ignatius in 107. Tychicus was not sent to Paphos, but successively to Colosse and Ephesus. As for Erastus, all that is known about him is, that he held the post of treasurer of some city (probably Corinth) before he attached himself to St. Paul.

[2] Ordericus is speaking particularly of the apostles SS. Peter and Paul, though the former parts of the passage may apply to the apostles and martyrs in general.

[3] The apocryphal account of the martyrdom of SS. Peter and Paul has been published by Florentinius in his Notes on the Ancient Martyrology of St. Jerome. Ordericus has borrowed several passages from it in the sequel, as will be observed in passing; but this paragraph, and part of that which follows, is taken from another source, the legend of SS. Nereus and Achilleus. Act. SS. Mensis Maii, iii. pp. 9, 10.

LEGENDS OF ST. PETER. 207

banished to the island of Palmaria for the faith of Christ, and daily combated the magicians Furius and Priscus, disciples of Simon Magus with irrefragable arguments for the truth. Marcellus relates that on a certain day, while Simon was disputing with Peter, calling him a magician, and endeavouring to excite the hatred of the Roman people against him, a widow happened to pass with a great crowd, following to the grave her only son over whom she mourned with loud cries. Then Peter said to the followers of Simon, "Approach the bier, and remove the corpse. Whoever restores it to life may be well believed to possess the true faith". When the people had done as he desired, Simon said: "If I should bring him to life again, will you put Peter to death"? The multitude answered: "We will burn him alive"! Then Simon having conjured up his demons, began with their aid to operate on the body, which made a slight motion, and the people, observing it, raised shouts in praise of Simon, and threatened Peter with death. However Peter, having with some difficulty obtained silence, addressed the crowd in these words: "If this body lives, let it speak, walk, take food, and return home. If not, be assured that you are deceived by Simon". Then the people exclaimed with one voice: "If Simon be not able to do this, he shall suffer the punishment which he destined for Peter". Simon now, feigning to be angry, tried to run away; but the crowd caught hold of him, and loaded him with reproaches. Peter, then extending his hands towards heaven, said: "Lord Jesus Christ, who saidst unto us thy disciples: 'Go, in my name, cast out devils, heal the sick, raise the dead'; restore now this child to life, that all the people here may acknowledge that thou art God, and that there is none other than thou, who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, through all ages, Amen". The child immediately arose, and worshipped Peter, saying: "I saw the Lord Jesus Christ commanding his angels thus: 'At the request of Peter, my faithful friend, let that orphan, and only child, be restored to his widowed mother'". The people

208 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.III.

now began to exclaim unanimously: "There is but one God, the one that Peter preaches". Simon meanwhile transformed himself into the shape of a dog, and tried to escape; but the populace held him fast, and, as they strove to throw him into the fire, Peter rushed into the midst of the crowd and set him free. "Our Master", he said, "taught us to render good for evil". Simon, therefore, escaped, and went to see Marcellus, whom he had already seduced, and tied up at the entrance of the house an enormous dog, which could scarcely be held fast by the iron chain with which it was bound. "We shall now see", said he, "if Paul, who is accustomed to come to see you, will be able to enter". An hour had scarcely elapsed when Paul appeared at the door, and, making the sign of the cross, unchained the dog, saying: "Go and say to Simon: Cease from employing the services of demons to deceive the people for whom Christ shed his blood". Marcellus, witnessing such wonders, ran to meet Peter, and throwing himself at his feet, received him into his house, from which he expelled Simon with utter contempt. The dog now became gentle towards every one except Simon, whom he continually worried; but, one day, when he had got him under him, Peter ran up to him, exclaiming: "I command thee, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, not to inflict a bite on any part of that man's body". The animal from that moment could not touch one of Simon's limbs, but it so tore his clothes that no part of his body remained covered. Then all the people, and especially the children, ran after him with the dog, and drove him beyond the walls of the town, howling as if they had been in pursuit of a wolf. Unable to bear the scandal of this ignominious treatment, Simon did not venture to make his appearance for a whole twelvemonth; but after that, he made himself known to the emperor Nero, and the rogue thus attaching himself to one of the worst of men, became all the worse for the connexion.

As the end of the apostle's warfare drew nigh, the Lord appeared to his servant Peter in a vision, saying: "Simon and Nero, fully possessed by demons, are plotting against thee. Fear not, for I am with thee, and will grant thee the consolation of seeing Paul my apostle, who to-morrow will enter Rome. In concert with him, thou shalt make war

SS. PETER AND PAUL AT ROME TOGETHER. 209

upon Simon for the space of seven months, and when thou hast conquered, driven away, and cast him into hell, ye shall both come to me crowned as victors. All this took place. Indeed Paul arrived the very next day. Pope St. Linus has related when and how the apostles met, and how they had a conflict with Simon seven months afterwards; with full particulars of their martyrdom in a work written in the Greek language for the use of the eastern churches. [1] From this narrative I propose to make some extracts in the way I have already done, and to compile, in as few words as I can, an abridged account of all the circumstances.

Having learnt that Paul was arrived at Rome, Peter was overjoyed, and immediately rose and went out to meet him. When they saw each other, they wept with delight, remained for a long time locked in a close embrace, and bathed themselves mutually with tears. These two great apostles beginning to preach the word of God, the greater part of the mixed population believed, nor could the infuriated assemblies of Jews or Gentiles make any open resistance to those whom the Holy Spirit had largely endowed with the fulness of all wisdom.

While an innumerable multitude of persons were converted to the Lord by Peter's preaching, it happened that Livia, the consort of Nero, and Agrippina, the wife of the prefect Agrippa, also embraced Christianity; and, in consequence, they separated from their husbands, and vowed to lead a life of chastity for love of the eternal King.

Paul also displayed the lustre of manifold graces, and roused the wonder of the Roman world by signs and wonders, by his great learning, and admirable sanctity. [2] Having purchased a public garden outside the walls, there, assisted by Luke, Titus, and other faithful members of the church, be discoursed on the word of life. Meanwhile he began to


[1] Ordericus here refers to a pseudononymous work entitled, D. Lini, pontificum secundi, de sui praedecessoris D. Petri apostoli passione libellus. ... Item de passione D. Pauli libellus alter. Our author has only made use of this second part, See the Bibliotheca Patrum maxima, t. 11, pp. 1-67.

[2] The preceding paragraph is borrowed from the legend of St. Linus. The next, with those which follow, are extracted from the account attributed to Marcellus.

210 ORDERICUS VITALIS, [B.II. CH.III.

collect a very great multitude of hearers, and, by God's help, many souls were added to the faith through him; so that the fame of his preaching and holiness was noised throughout the city, and his reputation spread over the whole neighbouring country. Many officers of the emperor's household hastened to hear him preach, and became believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. Some also of the guards of the imperial bed-chamber resorted to him, and, becoming Christians, left the service. Inflamed with inward fervour, they attached themselves to Christ, and refused to return to their ranks in the palace, preferring the glory conferred by the true faith and its virtues, to the profession of arms, riches, and honours. Thus every day the cause of Satan suffered loss, while the triumphs of the faithful increased. Even Seneca, the emperor's tutor, formed so close an intimacy with Paul, finding in him divine knowledge, that he could scarcely live for a moment without conversing with the apostle; and when he was prevented from listening to his words, he sought by an interchange of letters to enjoy the charms of friendly communication, and to profit by his good advice. It was thus that, through the agency of the Holy Spirit, his doctrine spread itself and made itself beloved; so that he taught freely, and was listened to with enthusiasm by his numerous hearers. He disputed with the pagan philosophers and confounded the Jews; and almost all the world submitted to his teaching. Even some of his writings were read to the emperor by his own tutor; a circumstance which made him generally esteemed: the senate also were not indifferent to his merits.

But while these two illustrious apostles thus shed a divine lustre, not only amongst the Romans, but also amongst all who from different countries thronged to Rome, the capital of the world, the elders of the synagogues and some chief men of the gentiles, inflamed with bitter zeal, stirred up the hatred of the turbulent mob against the apostles by their impious accusations. They, therefore, sent Simon Magus to Nero as he was leaving the palace, and commissioned him to prefer false charges against the blessed apostles. Simon began to speak much evil of Peter, declaring him to be a magician and a corrupter of the people. The wicked believed this man, who deluded them with

ST. PETER CONFOUNDS SIMON MAGUS. 211

magical tricks, at which they gaped with ignorant wonder; for at his command a brazen serpent moved, dogs cut in stone barked, bronze statues laughed and walked; while he himself would run and suddenly rise into the air.

As a contrast to these impositions, Peter cured the sick with a word; restored sight to the blind by his prayers; drove away demons by a simple command. Meanwhile he even raised the dead, and drew away all those he could from the pernicious company of the magician. The result was that every religious man detested Simon, while all the wicked men, on the contrary, became his accomplices, and by false testimony accused Peter of crimes which he had not committed. At last these accusations came to the ear of Nero, who ordered the magician to appear before him. When conducted into the emperor's presence, he began to deceive the spectators by illusive tricks, transforming himself into different shapes, so as at one time to appear a boy, the next moment an old man, and at another time a youth. Thus, by the help of Satan, he played his antics in different forms; a sight which so astonished the emperor, that he took him for the son of God. Then the magician, with his accomplices, accused the apostles, and Nero gave orders that Peter and Paul should be brought in great haste before him. As early as the day after, the apostles and the magician disputed before Caesar; and, as our faithful narrative informs us, they performed many wonders. For the disciples of the truth declared the truth, asserting that the magician was throughout a thief and a rogue; and to prevent the weak-minded from listening to him, protested solemnly that he was an infamous apostate. When Simon threatened to send his angels to punish Paul, the latter secretly requested Nero to order that a barley-loaf should be brought and given to him privately. This having been done, Peter took the loaf, which he blessed, broke, and hid in his sleeve: he then inquired of the magician, who boasted of being the son of God, what he had just done. Provoked at not being able to discover the apostle's secret, Simon called loudly to several enormous dogs, and ordered them to come and devour Peter before the eyes of Caesar. Behold, suddenly there appeared dogs of a wonderful size, which leaped upon Peter. The apostle, however, kneeling on the

212 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.III.

ground, extended his two hands, and exhibited the loaf he had blessed. As soon as the dogs perceived it, they suddenly disappeared. Thus the magician was publicly exposed, and became the laughing-stock of all the world, as he could only exhibit the ferocity of his dogs, instead of the power of the angels he had promised to send against the apostle; and in this manner showed that the angels who obeyed his orders came from the kennel, and not from heaven.

At last, Simon Magus having been frequently confounded by the power of the apostles' words, Nero commanded that a lofty wooden tower should be built in the Field of Mars. The next day, the emperor, the senate, the Roman knights, and all the people assembled there to witness the show; and, by the command of Nero, the apostles were also brought to the place. Then Simon, having ascended to the top of the tower, before all the people, crowned with laurel, he extended his hands towards heaven, and began to take his flight in the air. Meanwhile, Paul, on his knees in the presence of the whole crowd, was praying to the Lord; while Peter was attentively watching Simon's tricks, and waited patiently for the moment favourable for the infliction of divine vengeance. At last he said to his faithful companion, "Paul, raise your head a little, and look". Paul lifted up his eyes, full of tears, and saw Simon already flying through the air; then he said: "Peter, why do you delay? Finish what you have begun, for the Lord Jesus Christ already calls us to him". Then Peter, looking towards Simon, exclaimed: "Angels of Satan, who bear this impostor through the air to lead into error the hearts of the unbelievers, I adjure you, by God, the Creator of all things, and by our Lord Jesus, his Son, who on the third day was raised from the dead, that from this moment you cease to carry him, and let him fall".

Immediately, obeying the voice of Peter, the demons allowed their burden to drop from the clouds, and the magician fell on the spot which is called the Sacred Street [Via Sacra], where his body, broken into four quarters, spread over four stones, which bear testimony to the triumph of the apostles to the present day. Hearing the crash, Paul raised his head, and returned thanks to God, the just judge.

SS. PETER AND PAUL IN THE MAMERTINE PRISON. 213

Nero, inflamed with rage, ordered Peter and Paul to be thrown into prison; while, by his orders, Simon's corpse was carefully guarded for three days and as many nights, because he was convinced that the magician would rise again on the third day. Paul, on the contrary, asserted that he was damned to all eternity. While the apostles were rejoicing in the Holy Ghost, and openly confessed that the Lord Jesus was their master, Nero, transported with anger, said to his prefect Agrippa: "It is absolutely necessary that those impious men should perish by a condign punishment; procure, therefore, some iron chains, and let them be burnt in the Naumachia". Agrippa replied: "It is not right that you should order them to be executed in that way, as Paul appears to be innocent of the murder of Simon; it is, however but just that he should lose his head, on account of his impiety. As for Peter, who committed the homicide, order him to be crucified". [1] The emperor assenting, the teachers of eternal salvation were immediately removed from his presence and delivered over to Paulinus.

Paulinus, one of the most illustrious of the Roman magistracy, received the charge of the apostles of Christ, and confined them in the Mamertine prison, where they were guarded by Processus, Martinian, and other soldiers. They remained in this prison for nine months, and cured by their prayers many sick people and demoniacs who came to them. Moreover, as their fellow prisoners cried without ceasing, and united in begging for water to quench the thirst that tormented them, the blessed apostles prayed to God, and their prayer was quickly answered by him whom they trusted. For the blessed apostle Peter, having made the sign of the cross on the Tarpeian rock, at the same moment a spring burst from the side of the hill. Then Processus, Martinian, and all the prisoners, threw themselves at the feet of the apostle Peter, and forty-seven persons, believing in the Lord, were baptized. The apostle offered up for them the eucharistic sacrifice and made them partake of the holy communion.


[1] This paragraph, thus far, and the two preceding ones, are extracted from the apocryphal work attributed to Marcellus.

214 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.III.

At the sight of so many wonders, the officers, [1] Processus and Martinian, said to the apostles: "Depart wherever you like, for Nero has forgotten you, and will not miss you". Peter and Paul, being entreated by the brethren to leave the prison, quitted it at the end of nine months, and, passing along the Via Appia, arrived safe at the city gate. Then Paul went to visit his acquaintance and friends in the city, and strengthened in the faith the Romans and the rest of the believers, who rejoiced greatly at his escape; and, as his custom was, sowed the seed abundantly of the word of God, and, with his help, added for some days to the number of the faithful. The blessed Peter, who had the flesh of his leg eaten into by the fetters (the bandage falling off by the side of the fence in the Via Nova), had almost reached the Appian Gate, when the Lord Jesus Christ appeared to him. As soon as Peter had perceived him, he worshipped him, saying: "Lord, whither goest thou"? The Lord said to him: "Follow me, Peter; for I am going to Rome to be crucified a second time". The apostle, immediately following him, turned back towards Rome, and our Saviour then said to him: "Fear not, for I am with you until I introduce you into my Father's house". [2]

When Paul returned to the city in the morning, the officers arrested him, and dragged him before the emperor's tribunal. Then Nero, remembering what had before occurred, gave orders that Peter should be nailed to a cross, and Paul be beheaded. But when Peter was led to the foot of the cross, his thoughts wholly occupied with heavenly things, he acutely felt that the Lord Jesus Christ, who descended from heaven upon the earth, had been raised upon a cross planted upright, and he entreated the executioners to reverse his, and crucify him with his head downwards. This they did, fixing his feet above and his hands underneath. Then an innumerable multitude of people assembled so full of indignation that they would have committed the emperor Nero


[1] Magistriani, called also magisteriani, were ministerial officers of the lower empire. Ducange describes them as agentes in rebus.

[2] These two paragraphs, and the sentence which precedes them, are taken from a work called The Acts of SS. Processus and Martinian. Act. SS. Mensis Julii, i. pp. 303, 304. A church built on the spot which tradition reports to be the scene of this apparition, took its name from St. Peter's words: Domine quo vadis?

A.D. 67?] MARTYRDOM OF ST. PETER. 215

himself to the flames. But Peter forbade them, saying: "Nay, nay, my children, put no obstacle in my way; my feet already walk on the road to heaven. Grieve not, but rather rejoice with me, for to-day I receive the fruit of my labours".

Then after a long exhortation, in which he clearly explained the type of the cross of Christ, whose steps he followed, he prayed, and returned thanks to God, saying: "I give thanks to thee, O good Shepherd, because the flock that thou hast entrusted to my care share with me this trial; and I beseech thee, Lord, to let them partake with me of thy mercy in thy kingdom". He added: "Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ, I commend to thee the sheep that thou didst commit to my care, that they may not perceive that they have lost me, having thee for their protector, by whose aid I have been able to govern this flock". With these words he yielded up his spirit.

Immediately, there appeared men, who had never been seen in that place, and whom no one had been able to see there, either before or afterwards, and they said that they were come from Jerusalem for Peter's sake. These men, in concert with the illustrious Marcellus, secretly carried off the body of the apostle, and deposited it under a turpentine tree, near the Naumachia, in the place which is called the Vatican; testifying that the friends of our Lord Jesus Christ were ordained to be the mighty patrons of the Romans. [1]

I shall now make some brief extracts from the history of the martyrdom of St. Paul, the teacher of the Gentiles, showing how he fought a good fight, and finished his course, and obtained the reward of his heavenly calling, inserting the account in this place to the praise of the ineffable Saviour. [2]

After Paul had left the prison, as before related, he returned to the garden, where he lodged before; and there great numbers of his friends resorted to him with much joy. At last one day, towards evening,


[1] The preceding three paragraphs are borrowed from the account published under the name of St. Marcellus.

[2] Here our author again takes up the apocryphal story of St. Linus, which he follows in this and the six following paragraphs.

216 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.III.

as he was inculcating his saving doctrine, and teaching the crowds in an upper chamber, Patroclus, the emperor's cup-bearer, having been invited by some of his own intimate friends, withdrew from his master's presence, and repaired at nightfall to Paul that he might hear the lessons of everlasting life. But on account of the crowd he could not get near the master, to hear conveniently the word of God which he fervently loved: he therefore got up into a very high window, and there sat. Now as Paul prolonged his discourse until a late hour, the young man became drowsy, and through the snares and malice of Satan, fell asleep, and falling from the window of the room, which was on a very high floor, expired. The news of this accident was speedily carried to Nero as he was returning from the bath, and being extremely attached to the young man, he was much concerned, and appointed another to be cup-bearer in his place.

Meanwhile Paul, who still continued his instructions within, immediately knew, through the Holy Spirit, what had happened, and informed those present of the accident, ordering them to bring forthwith the lifeless body to him. As soon as the corpse was brought into the room, Paul addressed the people, and exhorted them to pray with a full faith to the Lord Jesus for the resurrection of the dead man. All present fell on their knees to join in prayer, which being concluded, Paul said: "Young Patroclus, rise up and relate what the Lord has done for you". Whereupon Patroclus suddenly arose as if from sleep, and began to glorify Almighty God. Then Paul sent him away rejoicing with the other officers of Caesar's household. [1]

While Nero was lamenting the death of Patroclus, and abandoning himself to extreme grief, he heard those about him say that Patroclus was alive and standing at the gate of the palace. On hearing this, the emperor was seized with fear, and forbade him to enter the palace and appear in his presence. At last, listening to the persuasions of his friends, he gave Patroclus permission to come in, and when he saw him safe and sound, and showing no signs of death,


[1] This tale is one of the repetitions, so frequent in the apocryphal legends, of the miracle in which St. Paul restored to life the young Eutychus of Philippi.

LEGENDS OF ST. PAUL. 217

he was overwhelmed with amazement; and having conversed with him for awhile, perceived that he was become a Christian; and, unable to restrain his rage, gave him a blow on the cheek, which caused Patroclus to rejoice the more in the Lord Jesus.

Then Barnabas and Justus, Paul, the soldier Arion of Cappadocia, and Festus the Galatian, all attendants and friends of Caesar, said to their master: "Why did you buffet this young man who is well taught, and gave true answers? We also are soldiers of the invincible king, Jesus Christ our Lord". When Caesar heard them all, with one mind and one voice, call Jesus the invincible king, he ordered them to be thrown into prison, resolving to torture cruelly those he had fondly loved. He also commanded a strict search to be made for all the setters forth of this great King, and published a cruel edict that as many as were discovered should be tortured and punished without trial. In consequence, a strict search was made for the faithful by the officers, and a great number of them were found and brought into the presence of Caesar.

Amongst these, Paul, always in bonds for Christ's sake, was led before the emperor in chains. All the other Christians looked upon him as their master, and justly honoured him whom the Lord had pronounced to be a chosen vessel, each of them preferring him to himself in all things. Nero, therefore, without any witness could easily understand that Paul commanded the soldiers of the great King. Having asked him why he had furtively intruded himself into the jurisdiction of the Roman state and enticed his soldiers to desert the imperial service, and enlist under the banner of his own King, [1] Paul, full of the Holy Spirit, boldly


[1] However apocryphal, and even absurd, are many of the details of this legend, the writer seems to have penetrated the true motive of these persecutions. Under the large toleration allowed by the religious system of the Romans in the time of the emperors, the introduction of a new god might have been received with indifference, or even with favour; but, in addition to the exclusive character of the new faith, the ruling powers became evidently alarmed lest the kingly character attributed to Christ should interfere with their temporal power. This view of the case was adroitly put forward by the Jewish Sanhedrim when Christ was arraigned before the Roman procurator; but Pilate either believed our Lord's disclaimer of "a kingdom of this world", or thought him too insignificant a person to cause any serious disturbance, and therefore handed him over to his accusers to be dealt with according to their law, and he was finally sentenced, on his own confession, for what they called blasphemy, that is the assertion of his divine nature.

218 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.III.

proclaimed before all present, the power of Almighty God, and invited them all to partake of the bounties of his hand which can dispense the richest gifts to every one according to his deserts. He also admonished the emperor himself to pay dutiful allegiance to the supreme King. Lastly, he asserted that his King would come to judge the quick and the dead, and destroy the world by fire. At these words, Nero Caesar was inflamed with anger, and commanded that all the soldiers of Christ should be burnt at the stake. But Paul was treated as one guilty of high treason, and a decree of the Senate was passed, condemning him according to the Roman laws to lose his head. Having been delivered to the prefects Longinus and Megistus, and the centurion Acestus, to be executed without the walls, Paul preached to them by the way, without intermission, the word of salvation. The apparitors and officers also who were hastily despatched by Nero to seek for them, used their utmost endeavours to hunt out the Christians who concealed themselves, in order to put them to death. In consequence, such immense numbers of the faithful were massacred, that the Roman people, becoming exasperated, made a forcible entrance into the palace, with the intention of laying violent hands on Caesar himself. Then Nero, frightened at the clamours of the people, issued another edict commanding that the Christians should be allowed to live in peace. This rendered it necessary that Paul should be brought before him a second time; but as soon as Nero saw him, he vehemently exclaimed: "Take away the magician, take away the sorcerer; cut off the impostor's head, and sweep from the face of the earth this perverter of the people's minds". But Paul firmly declared that after death he should live eternally, and be with his invincible King, and that, to prove the truth of his words, he would show himself visibly alive to the emperor himself after they had beheaded him. Paul was now led rejoicing to the place of execution, unceasingly publishing the words of life to his executioners, and to all who accompanied him. With the aid of the Holy Spirit, he showed the emptiness of idolatry, proved its nothingness,

A.D. 67?] MARTYRDOM OF ST. PAUL. 210

and admirably set before them the true faith and the knowledge of the true God; concluding his discourse with a magnificent description of the damnation of the reprobate, and the glorious rewards of the righteous. He did not speak in vain, for his divine teaching suddenly produced its fruits; touching and inflaming the hearts of the crowds who listened to him, and converting the shouts of the new converts into wailings for their sins.

In the meantime, as these holy occupations caused some delay, while the dense crowd rent the air with their cries, Nero sent Parthenius and Phereta to see if his orders had been carried into effect, and hasten the apostle's execution, if he were still alive. In these men also Paul endeavoured to plant the seeds of salvation, but, evil prevailing, and their hearts being hardened, his labour was in vain.

As he went towards his place of martyrdom, followed by innumerable multitudes, he met at the gate of the city of Rome, Plautilla, a noble matron, to whom he said: "Adieu, Plautilla, daughter of eternal salvation". He then requested her to give him the kerchief she wore on her head, to bind his eyes at the time of his suffering. The lady, in tears, immediately presented him the kerchief, and commending herself to his prayers, retired a little out of the crowd, as the apostle had commanded her. Paul, observing that she was subjected to insults by the pagans, who reproached her with believing in a magician and an impostor, spake words of comfort to her, ordered her to wait for his return in some unfrequented place, and told her that she would receive, by means of her kerchief, an unmistakeable token of his death. He then in few words instructed Longinus and those of his companions who believed, how and by whom they could be baptized after his death. Arriving at the place of execution, he turned towards the east, lifted up his hands to heaven, and prayed in Hebrew for a long time with the tears trickling down his cheeks, and concluded with returning thanks to God. After this, taking leave of the brethren, he blessed them, and having bound his eyes with Plautilla's hood, he knelt down on both knees, and stretched out his neck. The executioner struck him with all his might, and cut off his head, which, after it was separated from the body, pronounced with a clear voice the name of Jesus Christ in

220 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.III.

Hebrew. A stream of milk immediately gushed from the body upon the soldier's clothes, and blood flowed afterwards. The hood, which he had bound over his eyes, disappeared. Such an intense light burst from heaven at the moment of his decollation, attended by delicious perfume, that the mortal eyes could not bear the brightness, and no human tongue could give a description of the fragrance. All who witnessed these wonders were filled with admiration, and, for a long time, gave praises to the invincible King of Sabaoth. But Parthenius and Phereta returned to the city, and when they reached the gate, found there Plautilla giving glory to the Lord; but they presently asked her in derision, why she did not cover her head with the hood she had given to Paul. She, inspired with the ardour of faith, answered nobly: "O vain and wretched men, who know not how to believe even the things that you see with your own eyes and touch with your own hands! I have indeed the kerchief I gave, now gloriously tinged with that precious blood". She then told then with triumph that Paul had come from heaven, attended by an innumerable company of angels clothed in white, and restored her hood, thanking her for her kindness towards him, and adding the promise of an eternal reward. Then Plautilla drew the hood [1] from her bosom, and showed it to them dyed red with blood. On seeing this the men were struck with terror, and quickened their pace to reach the palace, and inform Caesar of what they had seen and heard. Upon receiving the intelligence, the emperor was greatly astonished, and, horribly alarmed, began to consult the philosophers, his own friends, and the officers of state as to the meaning of all that had been reported to him.

About the ninth hour, while they were all wondering at these events, and inquiring and conversing about them, Paul


[1] This article of female attire, which became the object of so much superstition, is variously called in the legend, as quoted by our author, pannum, a cloth, napkin, or kerchief, panniculum, and mafora, otherwise mavora, a covering for the head (Ducance Glossar.), but never velum or velamen, a veil, the character assigned to it by modem writers. It appears to have been either a hood, or a kerchief, which, wrapped round the head, still forms the graceful head-dress of Italian females of the lower order, and must also be familiar to many readers as that of the Madonnas of Carlo Dolce and Sassa Ferrata.

A.D. 67.] THE FIRST GENERAL PERSECUTION. 221

entered the palace although the doors were closed, and standing before the emperor, said to him: "O Caesar Nero, behold Paul, the soldier of the eternal and invincible King, stands before you! You will now, perhaps, believe that I am not dead, but live by the power of my God. As for you, wretched man, unutterable woes await you shortly, the bitterest punishment and eternal death; because, among your other crimes, you have shed like water the blood of the faithful". Having said these words, he suddenly disappeared; while Nero, on hearing them, was struck with unspeakable horror; and having almost lost his senses, was at a loss how to act. At last, by the advice of his friends, he ordered Patroclus and Barnabas to be set at liberty, with all those who had been thrown into chains with them. Longinus, also, and his companions came to Paul's sepulchre early in the morning, as he had appointed, and there saw two men praying, and Paul standing between them. Terrified at this wonderful sight, they dared not approach nearer; but then Titus and Luke, awaking from the trance into which they had fallen in the fervour of their prayer, saw the prefects and the centurion, who had been the instruments of Paul's death, hastening towards them, with natural alarm they immediately took to flight. But the officers, calling to them in gentle accents, they immediately stopped, and having heard their profession of faith, baptized them with religious joy.

At this time, the first thunder-cloud of a terrible persecution burst over the Christians, who furnished admirable examples of resolution and constancy for those that followed. In Tuscany, Torpes, one of the great officers of Nero, was beheaded, after suffering various tortures; at Rome, Processus, Martinian, and forty-six of their companions were baptized by the blessed apostle Peter. Longinus and two others were converted by Paul, and received the washing of salvation at the hands of Titus and Luke. All these, followed their spiritual teachers step by step, for their faith and martyrdom. At Milan, Nazarius, Gervasius, Protasius, and Celsus, a boy, suffered for Christ. [1] Thus Nero added war against God to his innumerable crimes, and


[1] It hardly need he remarked that we possess no authentic accounts of any of these persons, whose acts in the martyrologies are completely apocryphal.

222 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.H. CH.III.

incurred the hatred of the army and Roman people, who decreed that he should be publicly scourged to death. On hearing this sentence, he trembled with fear, and, struck with intolerable alarm, the wretched prince absconded, and was never seen again. Some relate that, while wandering about after his flight, his limbs became stiff from hunger and cold, and he was devoured by wolves. [1]

Such are the notices respecting the two most eminent senators of the church, which I have collected faithfully, extracting from the accounts of their remarkable acts, contained in a great number of volumes, a short abridgment for the information of posterity.

Peter preached for seven years to the circumcision, and held the see of Antioch for another seven years. He went to Rome in the time of Claudius Caesar, to oppose Simon Magus, and there preached the gospel for twenty-five years, being the first bishop of Rome. He was crucified in the thirty-sixth year after Christ's passion, on the third of the calends of July [June 29], and his body was interred by the Aurelian Way, near the palace of Nero on the Vatican. [2] On the same day, Paul, after nobly suffering innumerable pains and labours, was beheaded at the second milestone on the road to Ostia, in the gardens situated ad aquas Salvias, (at the Salvian waters [3]). Both the apostles suffered at Rome during the reign of the emperor Nero, when Bassus and Tuscus [4] were consuls; the first is honoured with the devotion of all the inhabitants of that city near the Triumphal Way, the second enjoys similar honours on the road to Ostia. [5] Rome, the capital of the world, glories in having


[1] The conclusion of this paragraph is taken from the apocryphal work attributed to St. Marcellus. The received opinion is that the tyrant Nero took refuge in the cottage of one of his freedmen, and ended his days by suicide.

[2] The martyrdom of the two apostles took place, not in the thirty-sixth, but in the early part of the thirty-fourth year after our Lord's crucifixion.

[3] It was on this spot that the church of Sto. Paulo fuori muri was afterwards erected.

[4] Tuscus, one of the two consuls here mentioned, is a supposititious personage. C. Lecanius Bassus was consul in 64, two years before the date which seems to be the right one.

[5] Notwithstanding the respectable traditions which support the statement, there is some difficulty, as it has been already intimated, in believing that for the purpose of opposing Simon Magus, or even with the object of founding a church at Rome, Peter undertook a journey there as early as the year 42, from which he had to return to Jerusalem in 44. It is equally difficult to admit that St. Peter and St. Paul suffered martyrdom at Rome the same day, the one on the Vatican, the other on the road to Ostia, two miles from the city. We learn from Prudentius that in the fourth century it was supposed, and this is a more probable story, that the same meadow was watered with the blood of the two apostles.

LEGENDS OF ST. ANDREW. 223

for her patrons such exalted saints, to whose temples the faithful resort from all parts of the globe, in order that, by assistance of these powerful advocates, they may be protected from all their adversaries and all hostile influences. All who with becoming devotion implore their intercessions, quickly experience their aid, through the mercy of God, the supreme King, who, in the unity of Trinity, reigns throughout all ages. Amen.

CH. IV. The acts of St. Andrew the apostle - and his martyrdom, collected from the legends.

ANDREW, the brother of Simon Peter, according to the Hebrew etymology, signifies handsome or responding; but in Greek is derived apo rou, avopog, that is, a viro, and means virile. To this apostle Scythia and Achaia were allotted, for the field of his ministerial labours; in which last, in the town of Patras, he died suspended on a cross, upon the second of the calends of December [November 30]. We possess a short but excellent work, containing particulars of many wonderful acts of St. Andrew. Although the name of the author is unknown to me, yet some account of these will, I think, be very acceptable to the reader. I propose, therefore, to make brief extracts from the narrative, to the glory of the Almighty Messiah, and insert them in my own work.

When Matthew, apostle and evangelist, published the word of salvation to the Myrmidons, he was seized by some cruel men who put out his eyes, and threw him into prison and chains. Meanwhile, the apostle Andrew, by command of the angel of God, went down to the sea-shore; and having found a ship, immediately embarked, and the winds being favourable, made a quick passage to the town where St. Matthew was confined in a loathsome prison. Here, seeing his fellow apostle and the other prisoners, in great

224 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.IV.

affliction, he wept bitterly; but when they had prayed together, the whole place suddenly shook under them, and a light shone in the prison. The eyes of the blessed evangelist were also restored to him, and their fetters being unloosed, Matthew and the rest of the prisoners were set free, and quitted the dungeon. While, however, Andrew was preaching the word of God to the inhabitants of the country, they seized him, tied his legs together, and dragged him through tho street of the town, so that his hair was torn out by the roots, and blood flowed from his head. At last, the prayers of the apostle being heard, great fear fell on the inhabitants of Myrmidonia, [1] who presently set him at liberty. Then prostrating themselves at his feet, they eagerly listened to his preaching, and, divinely influenced, believed in the Lord and were baptized. After this, Andrew departed, and, returning to his own country, there touched the eyes of a blind man who immediately recovered his sight.

Demetrius, the governor of the city of Amasia, [2] having heard of the miracles which Andrew performed in the name of Christ, came in tears to throw himself at the feet of the apostle, beseeching him to restore to life a young Egyptian who had died of fever. The kind apostle consoled him in his affliction, repaired with him to the house of mourning, and after he had prayed, the child arose in perfect health. All who saw this miracle rejoiced, believed, and were baptized.

Sostratus, a Christian youth, having been tempted by his mother to commit incest, ran off to the apostle; but the woman, full of spite, accused her son of the crime before the proconsul. The young man remained silent through modesty, but St. Andrew defended him, and publicly rebuked the lewd woman for her iniquity. The proconsul, in anger, ordered the young man to be tied up in the leathern sack used for parricides, and to be thrown into the river, and Andrew to


[1] The preaching of St. Matthew among the Myrmidons is a fact completely apocryphal: as well as all the other events mentioned by our author as connected with the history of St. Andrew. The whole of this legend is also borrowed from the Pseudo Abdias, lib. iii.

[2] There is no such town in Achaia, the country of St. Andrew, according to the preceding paragraph. There were several of the name, but all situate in Asia Minor.

ST. ANDREW'S MIRACLES. 225

be taken to prison. But while he was praying, a violent earthquake, attended with frightful claps of thunder, threw the proconsul from his seat, and the rest all fell on the ground. The mother of the lad was struck by lightning, and burnt to death. Then the proconsul threw himself at the feet of the apostle, saying: "Have compassion on us, thou servant of God, for we are perishing, and the earth will swallow us up". By the prayers of Andrew, the earthquake ceased; the air became serene, and, going round, he restored all those who were agitated with fear. The proconsul received the word of God, and, believing in the Lord with his whole family, was baptized by the apostle.

Gratinus of Sinope, [1] having an attack of fever, fell seriously ill, and at the same time his wife became swollen with the dropsy. His son also, while washing in the women's bath, was grievously tormented by a demon, which deprived him of his reason. At the request of the proconsul, Andrew ascended a chariot and came into the town, and as soon as he entered the house of Gratinus, drove out the demon, and cleansed and healed the young man. He rebuked a man and his wife who were foul with adultery, and cured them, after having received a promise, that they would amend their lives; afterwards, when both were recovered, they received the faith of Jesus Christ, and were baptized with great joy, and their whole house.

At Nice, seven demons lurked among the tombs by the wayside, and stoned those who passed by at mid-day, having already killed a great number. At last, hearing that the apostle was approaching the gates, the whole city was in a tumult of joy, and the inhabitants, going out to meet him with branches of palm-trees, exclaimed: "Thou man of God, our salvation depends on you". They then explained to him the state of affairs, and heard in return from the apostle's lips all the rules of faith and religion. They were immediately filled with joy, believed in the Lord, and confessed that Jesus Christ was the Son of God. Andrew then returned thanks to God for their instant conversion; and, commanding the demons to appear before the people in the shape of dogs, banished them to arid and barren wastes.


[1]There is no more a town of this name in Achaia than one of that of Amasia. Sinope was a town of some importance in Paphlagonia.

226 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.IV.

where they could hurt no one. Thus armed with the power of God, he delivered the city of Nice, baptized the citizens who believed, and appointed Celestine, [1] a good and wise man, to be their bishop.

At tho gate of Nicomedia Andrew met a young man lying dead on a pallet, whose aged parents were following to the grave the corpse of their son, weeping bitterly. Grieved at seeing their tears, he inquired what was the cause of the youth's death. But they were afraid and returned no answer; their servants answered his question, saying: "While he was alone in his room, seven dogs suddenly appeared and leaping upon him, miserably tore him, so that he fell down dead". Then Andrew knew that this was the work of the seven demons he had driven out of Nice, and sighing towards heaven he begged of God the life of the deceased. Having concluded his prayer, he turned himself towards the bier, and said: "In the name of Jesus Christ, rise up". To the great astonishment of the people, the young man arose, and attached himself to him to whom he owed his restoration to life. The apostle took the young convert with him as far as Macedonia, and instructed him in the words of salvation.

Having quitted the town he went on board a ship, and entered the strait called Hellespont, intending to sail to Byzantium, when suddenly the sea became rough, and a violent gale sprung up which nearly sank the ship, so that the sailors expected to perish every moment. At length the blessed Andrew prayed to the Lord, at whose command the wind was still and the sea tranquil, so that a favourable voyage soon brought them, delivered from their peril, to Byzantium.

As they approached the shores of Thrace, a great multitude of men appeared with drawn swords, and brandishing lances in their hands, ready to fall upon those who came within their reach. But the blessed Andrew made the sign of the cross towards them, and prayed to God for the preservation of his followers. Then the angel of the Lord, passing through the band with great radiance, touched their.


[1] In the Pseudo Abdias this person is called Calixtus. We are now fairly landed in Asia, as those words are inserted after Nice in the original work.

ST. ANDREW'S MIRACLES. 227

swords and, falling on the ground, they allowed the man of God and those who accompanied him to go through unhurt. The apostle Andrew arrived at Perinthus, a maritime city of Thrace, where he found a vessel which was to sail with all speed for Macedonia. The angel of God commanding him to embark in it, when on board he preached the word of God; and the pilot and all the sailors believed in the Lord.

There was at Thessalonica a young nobleman extremely rich named Exous. He went to the apostle without his family knowing it, and having heard him preach the word of God believed in the Lord, and, leaving his parents and property, attached himself to him. His relations searching for him, found him at Philippi, and used their utmost endeavours to detach him from the apostle by employing presents and threats, but were not able to do so. Andrew whom they treated with contempt, preached to them the word of salvation, and, having got together a numerous band, they threw fire upon the house, and being furnished with bundles of rushes and sedges and with torches, they began to succeed in their efforts to reduce it to ashes. Then the young man, having called upon the name of Christ, poured upon the flames a bottle of water, and the divine power extinguished the fire in an instant, as if it had not been lighted. Enraged at the failure of their attempts, they brought ladders to scale the walls, and put to the sword all who were in the house; but they were struck blind by the power of God, so that they were unable to see how to ascend the ladders. Then Lysimachus, one of the citizens, acknowledged the hand of God, and strongly rebuked his neighbours for their folly, saying: "Why, O simple mortals, do you consume your strength in fruitless attempts? God himself fights for these men, and you do not perceive it! Cease this folly, lest the anger of Heaven should destroy you". At these words they were pricked to the heart, and while the darkness of night was thickening around them, they were illuminated by light from heaven. Going up they found the apostle praying; and, prostrating themselves on the floor, entreated his forgiveness, which they received. He then kindly raised them up, and, being strengthened in the faith, they praised the Lord. However the parents

228 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.IV.

of the young man were not among the number of those who believed; and cursing their child, they returned to their own country, where, at the end of fifty days, they both expired in the same hour. Then the young man received his whole patrimony from his fellow-citizens, by whom he was much beloved, and attaching himself to the apostle, he distributed amongst the poor the revenue of his estates.

Some time after they both departed together for Thessalonica, where the citizens thronged about them in the theatre with great rejoicings. While Exous was preaching to them the word of God, the blessed Andrew, admiring his wisdom, listened in silence. After this, at the request of the multitude, he ordered them to bring to him Adimathus, the sick son of Carpianus. This young man, having received from his father an assurance that he would be healed, believed his words, and putting on his clothes, rose from the bed on which he had lain twenty- three years, and, running swiftly, so that he left his parents behind him, repaired to the theatre, fell down at the apostle's feet, and, to the amazement of the people, returned thanks for the recovery of his health. A certain Thessalonian, having implored the apostle to heal his son who was possessed with a devil, Satan, the master of a thousand artifices, [1] suffocated him in a secret chamber. The father, having found his son dead, and being in great affliction at his bereavement, yet strong in faith, did not give up all hope, but had the corpse carried to the theatre by his friends, and told his case to the apostle. The latter, turning to the people, exclaimed: "O men of Thessalonica, what can it profit you to witness the performance of miracles, if you do not believe"? However, as they promised to believe if they saw the miracle, the apostle Andrew said to the dead man: "In the name of Jesus Christ, rise up, young man"! And he immediately arose, and the people astonished, faithfully kept the promise they had made to receive the faith.

Medias of Philippi, begged St. Andrew with tears, to have compassion upon his son, who was very ill; and the benevolent apostle kindly listened to his request, and, taking him


[1] Mille Artifex; of the names which it was pretended the devil sometimes gave himself as will be seen hereafter in the legend of St. Marcellus.

229 ST. ANDREW AT PHILIPPI.

by the hand, went with him to Philippi. As they were entering the gate of the city, an old man came up to them, and implored his interference in favour of his sons, who were thrown into prison by Medias for some offence they had committed. The apostle exhorting him to be merciful, Medias threw himself at his feet, and, in the hope of obtaining the recovery of his son, pardoned not only the two sons of the old man, but also seven other prisoners for whom no one had said a word. When they were set at liberty, the apostle healed Philomede, who had been twenty-two years infirm.

The people then calling upon the apostle to cure their sick also, Andrew, trusting in the Lord, said to the young man whom he had just healed: "Visit all the sick at their own homes, and command them to rise up in the name of Jesus Christ, who has restored you to health". He immediately obeyed the apostle's word, and the people believed when they saw the miracles, and offered many presents to the man of God; but as he preached the word of life to all without reward, he refused to accept of anything, but invited all men to come and receive the faith. He also healed gratuitously the daughter of Nicholas, who was in a languishing state; although her father offered him a very valuable present, that is to say, a gilded chariot with four white mules, and the same number of horses.

The fame of the apostle's miracles on the sick spreading throughout Macedonia, Quirinus, the proconsul, was incensed against him, and he sent soldiers to Thessalonica to lay hands upon Andrew; but when they saw the brightness of his countenance, they dared not touch him. The people of the place who believed in God receiving information that a band of soldiers was coming there to do harm to the apostle, they became so exasperated that they were ready to fall on them with swords and staves; and although the apostle forbade, they could scarcely refrain from murdering them. Again the proconsul sent a band of soldiers, who, when they saw the apostle, became so agitated that they were not able to utter a single word. The third time, the proconsul despatched a large body of troops, one of whom was possessed with a devil, and made use of the most violent language against the proconsul in his absence. The demon

230 ORDERICUS [B.II. CH.IV.

afterwards came out of the soldier, who fell down on the ground and expired, At last, the proconsul came himself transported with fury, but, although he stood near the apostle Andrew, was not able to see him until he heard him speak. This wretched man, seeing the holy servant of God, loaded him with abuse and threats. But the benign saint endeavoured to calm the fury of the judge with gentle words; and, pouring forth prayers to the Lord, restored the dead soldier to life. The proconsul, however, still persisted in his insane fury, and the next morning ordered that wild beasts should be let into the arena, and the blessed apostle led to the spot, and thrown to the wild beasts. The savage guards then dragged Andrew by the hair towards the arena, threw him in, and let loose upon him a ferocious and horrible boar. The animal walked three times round the holy man of God, but did him no harm. By order of the proconsul, another boar was brought by thirty soldiers, and driven into the place by two hunters; but it would not touch Andrew, while it tore the huntsmen iu pieces. At last, giving a horrible grunt, it fell down and expired. While the people, for this deliverance, were celebrating the praises of the Lord, an angel was seen to descend from heaven to comfort the holy man of God, who was still in the stadium. At last the cruel proconsul, boiling with rage, commanded that a most ferocious leopard should be let loose; but as soon as it was at liberty, disregarding the apostle, the animal ascended the steps to the proconsul's seat, and, leaping on his son, instantly strangled him. Utter madness must have possessed the proconsul, for he was not at all grieved at what had happened, nor did he speak a word. Then the blessed man, comforted the people with the love of God, and, to strengthen their faith, promised to restore to life the proconsul's dead son, Prostrating himself upon the ground, he prayed for a considerable time, and then, taking the hand of the deceased in his own, raised him up in the name of the Lord. The people witnessing this miracle magnified God, and would have killed the proconsul Quirinus, who in his unbelief had dared resist God's saint; but the apostle would not permit them. The proconsul retired to the pretorium in confusion,


[1] According to the supposititious Abdias it was a bull.

ST. ANDREW'S MIRACLES. 231

Moved by the entreaties of a certain woman, the blessed Andrew followed her to a farm where there was a serpent fifty cubits long which devastated the whole country. At the approach of the apostle, the serpent made a loud hissing, and, erecting its crest, glided towards the persons present to their great consternation. Then the holy man of God said to it: "Hide thy head, cruel monster! thou hast raised it since the creation of the world for the destruction of the human race. Submit thyself to the servants of God, and die". The serpent immediately uttered a tremendous groan, and, coiling round the trunk of a large oak-tree that was near, vomited a stream of poison and blood, and expired. The apostle afterwards went to the farm-house belonging to the woman, where he found her little child lying dead, having been struck by the serpent. He then sent the parents to see that the reptile which had killed the infant was itself dead. After they had left the place, the apostle said to the proconsul's wife: "Go, and restore the child to life". She, nothing doubting, approached the corpse, and said: "In the name of my God, Jesus Christ, rise up whole"; and the child instantly arose, to the great joy of all present, who returned thanks to God.

On the following night, tho blessed Andrew saw Peter and John in a vision, when it was revealed to him that in a short time he would be hung on a cross, and thus be a partaker of the same suffering as the Lord Jesus at his crucifixion. Whereupon he called together the brethren, and related the vision to them, explaining its meaning, and endeavouring to console them in the affliction which the announcement of his sudden departure from this world had caused them. During five days he instructed them in saving truths, and having, by devout prayers, commended the flock of his church to God, he departed for Thessalonica. [1]

The proconsul, Lisbius, endeavouring to resist the designs of God, sent soldiers on several occasions to take Andrew, but his abominable attempts were foiled; and, on the arrival of the apostle, Lisbius was cruelly scourged bv two demons. Upon this he sent for the man of God, and confessed his iniquity to him in the presence of all the people. He then


[1] Our author has forgotten to add that from Thessalonica St. Andrew repaired to Patras, where the events that follow took place.

232 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.IV.

willingly heard the word of God from the apostle's lips, and being healed of his wounds, believed in God, in whose laws he thenceforth diligently walked.

Calista, the proconsul's wife was extremely jealous of Trophima, who formerly had been his concubine, but who, being now united to another man, adhered to the apostolic doctrine. She therefore, unknown to Lisbius, sent for her steward, and ordered him to condemn the woman as a prostitute, and to send her to the stews. Trophima being therefore conducted there, and given up to the bawd, made incessant prayers to God. When the lewd presented themselves, she held out the gospel which she carried in her bosom, and suddenly their libidinous desires were extinguished. One day a gay young man of very licentious habits drew near her, and would have violated her, but she resisted him, and, during the struggle, the gospel fell to the ground. Then Trophima, in the extremity of her distress, lifted up her hands to heaven, and, bursting into tears, said: "Do thou, Lord, save me from pollution, for whose name I am devoted to chastity". The angel of the Lord immediately appeared to her, and the debauched youth fell down at her feet, and expired; she, however, comforted by divine grace, blessed God, and raised the young man to life in the name of Christ, and the whole city ran to witness the spectacle.

Calista repaired to the bath with her steward, and while they were in the water together, a horrible demon appeared before them, and struck them both dead. This sudden catastrophe was followed by great lamentations, and was announced to the apostle and the proconsul. Calista's nurse, who, on account of her great age, was obliged to be carried, implored the apostle to restore her mistress to life. Although the husband was justly irritated when he heard of the foul offence she had committed, the gentle apostle ordered the corpse to be laid where it could be generally seen, and, approaching the body, and having prayed, touched the head of the woman, saying: "Arise, in the name of Jesus Christ, my God". The woman immediately rose up, and begged to be reconciled to Trophima. At the sight of these divine miracles the proconsul Lisbius, under the guidance of the apostle, made progress in the faith, and faithfully obeyed his counsels in all things.

ST. ANDREW AT PATRAS. 233

One day when they were both sitting on the sea-shore, and many persons were there listening with the greatest attention to the word of God from the apostle's lips, a dead body was thrown by the waves at the feet of Andrew, who soon brought it to life again after he had offered up a prayer to God. The body was that of a young man named Philopater, son of Sostratus, a Macedonian citizen. He bewailed the loss of his companions who were drowned, and supplicated Andrew to restore them to him; upon which the apostle addressed his prayers to heaven, and the waves, obeying his commands, brought to the shores thirty-nine corpses, which he restored to life, commanding each of the brethren who were there to lay his hand upon a corpse, and to say to it: "May Jesus Christ, the Son of the living God, raise you from the dead". In this manner thirty-nine men came to life again, and glorified the Lord Almighty.

After performing many miracles and good works, of which it would be impossible for me to give a particular account, the blessed apostle Andrew went to Patras, [1] where Maximilla the wife of the proconsul Egeas, [2] who had succeeded Lisbius lay seriously ill. Then Effidima, [2] who had been converted by the preaching of Sosias, besought the apostle to visit Maximilla, lying sick under an attack of fever. He repaired to the bed-chamber of the sick woman, preceded by Effidima; and, having prayed, the fever disappeared, and the woman was cured. The proconsul now offered to the holy man of God a hundred silver pieces, which he would not even look at. While the blessed apostle was at Patras performing a great number of miracles, and many were led to embrace the faith of Christ by these displays of corporal succour, Stratocles, the brother of the proconsul Egeas, arrived from Italy. He had with him a slave named Algmana, [3] of whom he was extremely fond, and who, having been attacked by a demon, lay in the court, foaming at the mouth. This caused much disturbance, and Stratocles, whose grief was unbounded, at the instance of


[1] In the original legend, St. Andrew returns to Patras, after a journey to Corinth and Megara.

[2] These names should be written Ageates and Ephidama, or Iphidamia.

[3] Alcman.

234 ORDERICUS [B.II. CH.IV.

Maximilla and Effidima, sent for the blessed Andrew, who, by his prayers, healed the demoniac boy. In consequence Stratocles believed in the Lord; and, strengthened in the faith, attached himself to the apostle, in order to hear him preach the word of God. Egeas had left for Macedonia; and Maximilla, in the fervour of her spiritual love, sought continual opportunities of receiving from the apostle the heavenly doctrine, and piously devoted herself to him. The proconsul therefore became highly incensed against the apostle, and indignant, because his wife, after she had received the doctrine of salvation, would no longer share his bed.

I shall now endeavour to relate briefly the martyrdom [1] of the most blessed Andrew, inserting carefully in my work the account which the pious devotion of our holy mother the church has preserved in her libraries, and faithfully recites. The priests and deacons of the churches of Achaia were, doubtless, eye-witnesses of it clearly, and they described it well for the instruction of all the churches founded in the four climates of the globe. [2]

The proconsul Egeas, on his return from Macedonia, went to Patras, a city of Achaia, and began to compel the believers in Christ to offer sacrifices to idols. St. Andrew went to see him, and reasoned with him to bring him over to the true faith; but wisdom could not penetrate his perverse mind. Then the liberal steward of divine knowledge, although his attempts to profit the impious Egeas were not crowned with success, abundantly supplied the food of his heavenly doctrine to others who were predestinated to life. He discoursed with wisdom on the mystery of the cross, showing plainly why God was made man and suffered for us, and fully explained the history of our Lord's passion, and


[1] Ordericus Vitalis always uses the word passion to describe the final scenes of suffering and death which closed the career of the primitive martyrs. The theological sense of the word is, perhaps, generally understood from its application in the formularies of the church to our Lord's last sufferings, but it has been thought most advisable in these cases to substitute the word martyrdom.

[2] Our author often speaks of the "four climates", as we do of the four quarters of the globe, and as the theory of the zones is now mitiquated, the modern phraseology might have been adopted but for its involving an anachronism in the state of geographical knowledge.

ST. ANDREW'S SUFFERINGS. 235

the common advantages which mankind had derived from it. Irritated at this discourse, Egeas ordered the apostle to be seized and thrown into prison, where multitudes visited him from almost every part of the province, intending to kill the proconsul and liberate the apostle by forcing the prison doors. But Andrew restrained them by his salutary counsels, spending the wbole night in teaching them, and, recalling to their memory the patience of the Lord Jesus, earnestly entreated the people not to offer any obstacle to his passion.

The next day the proconsul Egeas sent to have the apostle brought before him, and, sitting on the tribunal, employed every means to gain him over; but the saint, whose faith was built on God, firmly resisted both his threats and his fair words. Egeas at last ordered him to be stretched out and lashed with seven scourges of three thongs; [1] but, after receiving these stripes, the brave champion of Christ set forth the merits of the cross, and, notwithstanding the fury of tbe tyrant, firmly maintained the truth of his averments.

Then the enraged proconsul, exasperated to the last degree erdered the apostle to be attached to the cross, commanding the ministers of torture to bind his feet and hands, and stretch his limbs as if he was placed on the wooden horse that his sufferings might be protracted, because, if he were fastened with nails, he would die too soon. As the holy man was led along by the executioners, he was followed by a great concourse of people who clamoured loudly, saying: "What has this just man, the friend of God, done, that you are leading him to be crucified"? But Andrew walked with composure and cheerfulness, begging the crowd not to hinder his passion, and continuing to teach his saving doctrine. When he had arrived at the spot which was to witness his last struggle, and saw the cross at a distance, he exclaimed in a loud voice: "Hail, O cross, consecrated by having borne the body of Christ, and adorned by having his limbs attached to thee as if they were precious jewels! O, good cross, that hast received from these thy lustre and beauty; long desired, dearly loved, sought for unceasingly, and now, at last, prepared for my longing soul"! Having


[1] Septem ternionibus flagellis; the French translator renders the phrase sept fouets tresses, but, as usual, avoids the difficulty.

236 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.IV.

given utterance to this and much more full of love and devotion, the apostle stripped himself, and gave his clothes to the executioners, who drew near the cross, on which they stretched his limbs, and suspended him with cords. In this cruel manner they executed the orders of the impious proconsul. A crowd of more than twenty thousand men stood round, exclaiming that the holy man was suffering unjustly; among whom was Stratocles, the brother of Egeas. St. Andrew comforted the minds of the faithful, exhorting them to patience under worldly afflictions, because martyrdom was the best road to an eternal reward.

Meantime, the multitude thronged to the palace of Egeas, shouting with one accord, "What sentence is this you have pronounced, proconsul? You have given an unrighteous judgment. Grant us the life of this just man; restore to us this holy man; do not put to death a man who is dear to God". Egeas, hearing these and other such cries of the people, was seized with fear, and promising to take the apostle down, immediately went with them towards the place of execution. As soon as St. Andrew saw him, he exhorted him to believe in Christ, and to have recourse to the faith for his salvation while it was still in his power. All this time, suspended from the cross, he serenely triumphed; and, enjoying the vision of Christ, whom he had loved with all his soul and long desired to see, in his excessive joy he exclaimed: "I now see my King; I now adore him; I am come into his presence". Then the executioners, handling the cross, were unable to touch him; and, though they all made successively repeated efforts to loose him, the arms of those who attempted to take him down became benumbed. Then St. Andrew cried with a loud voice, and poured forth a devout prayer to God. After having prayed for a long time to Jesus, his good Master, he was suddenly surrounded in the sight of all the people, by an extraordinary light flashing like lightning from heaven, too bright for human eyes to bear. This luminous appearance continued about half an hour, and, at the moment when it vanished, Andrew, the illustrious champion of Christ, gave up the ghost, and went with it to meet the Lord. Maximilla, a woman of senatorial rank, respectfully removed his body; and, having caused it to be embalmed, interred it in a well-chosen spot.

ABOUT A.D. 70.] ST. ANDREW'S MARTYRDOM. 237

But Egeas was seized by a demon as he was returning to his palace, and died tormented by the evil spirit, on the public road, in the presence of all the people. As for Stratocles, the brother of Egeas, he would not touch the smallest portion of his fortune, but withdrew, carrying with him the body of the holy apostle Andrew. All the inhabitants of the province were seized with such a consternation that not a person remained who did not believe in the Saviour, our God. It is reported that, from the sepulchre of St. Andrew, manna like flour, and oil of an exquisite odour flow, which indicate to the inhabitants of that country what will be the fertility of the year. If the produce be small, the earth gives her fruit sparingly; if, on the contrary, the yield be abundant, the harvest is also great. [1]

Glorious apostle of Jesus Christ! inspired by a singular affection for thee, I have briefly described the course of thy life so happily adorned with divine grace, to the praise of thy omnipotent Master to whom thou didst remain faithfully devoted until death. Gentle Andrew, kindly take under thy patronage me, thy devoted servant, and recommend me, sinner that I am, by thy pious prayers, to the Creator's mercy, in whose worship I desire, with his aid, to remain constant through good and evil. As thou didst, when hanging on the cross, exhort the cruel Egeas, thy persecutor, to embrace the true faith, succour unceasingly the faithful sons of the church, who, with the utmost devotion of their hearts and the modulations of their voices, address to thee this pious canticle: "Blessed Andrew, the gentlest of the saints, obtain for us the pardon of our offences; and by thy intercession, raise up us who are weighed down by the burden of our sins. We are tossed among the turmoils of a reeling world, and groan in our


[1] This apocryphal account of St. Andrew's martyrdom may be seen in Surius, under the date of the 30th of November; but, with the exception of an unimportant addition at its close, describing the marvels connected with the tomb of the saint, the particulars are entirely supplied by the pseudo-Abdias, to which reference may be made for the complete legend.

We have very few authentic notices respecting St. Andrew, the traditions respecting him having been only collected in the fifth century. It is generally believed that having travelled through Sogdiana (Capital Samarcand), Colchis, European Scythia, Pontus, Epirus, the Peloponnesus, and Achaia, he suffered martyrdom at Patras about the year 70.

238 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.V.

weakness. Beseech the majesty of the Lord that he will grant us the enjoyment of the true light. Amen"!

CH. V. The calling - life - sufferings - banishment - acts - and death of St. John the evangelist, from the gospels and legends.

JAMES and John, the sons of Zebedee, were named by Christ Boanerges, or, what would read much better, Boanereem, [1] that is to say, the sons of thunder; on account of the strength and greatness of the faith with which they kept inviolably, and taught in all its purity, the law of the Lord. James [Jacobus] signifies he that supplants, but John the grace of God, or in whom is grace. These elect brethren well merited such distinguished names, as, by supplanting of vice, they obtained a brilliant victory over the crooked serpent on the stage of this frail life, and became the especial friends or God, and, full of his manifold grace, enlightened our holy mother the church with the doctrine of truth. I have inserted in the preceding Book of this work, [2] a plain and short account of the blessed James, carefully abridged from the writings of ancient authors; relating how he carried the gospel into Judea and Samaria, and how he suffered martyrdom by the command of Herod, the son of Aristobulus, on the accusation of the chief priests and pharisees. I now enter on the inquiry, what has been written respecting John the divine, [3] the beloved disciple of Jesus Christ; desiring to make a brief summary of all that relates to him, to the glory of the God of Sabaoth. I shall consult what Mellitus [4] wrote to the Laodiceans and the


[1] This correction was suggested by St. Jerome.

[2] We find the legend of St. James the Great, not in the first, but in the present book, page 176. It is borrowed, as before stated, from the pseudo Abdias.

[3] Theologo. It has been already remarked in the first book, that our author adopts this title of St. John the Evangelist from the writings of the Fathers, and the acts of the council of Ephesus. It was constantly used by the Greeks; and they gave him also the title of Syminista, the co-initiated, borrowed from Clemens Alexandrinus.

[4] The following narrative is, as our author states, extracted with great exactness, and for the most part literally, from the apocryphal history of St John, attributed to a supposititious Mellitus, bishop of Laodicea. It was published at Lucca in the Martyrology of Florentinus, in the year 1688. See p. 130, etc.

A.D. 95.] ST. JOHN BANISHED TO PATMOS. 239

other faithful brethren scattered over the face of the earth, and what other celebrated antiquarians have published relating to St. John, especially Jerome, the commentator on the holy scriptures, in his preface to the Apocalypse.

John, the apostle and evangelist, was chosen to perpetual celibacy by the Lord Jesus Christ, who loved him more than all the other disciples, insomuch that he allowed him to recline on his bosom at the paschal supper, and afterwards committed to him the care of his own mother, when he was the only disciple standing by the cross; thus appointing to the guardianship of a virgin, one whom he had called to perpetual chastity at the time when he thought of marrying. While John was publicly preaching the word of God in Asia, and incessantly bearing testimony to Jesus Christ both to Jews and Gentiles, an accusation against him was forwarded to Rome by the malicious enemies of the truth. By order of Domitian, who, after the example of Nero, raised the second persecution of the Christians, he was carried off from Ephesus, and brought before Caesar and the senate, near the Latin gate. Standing firm in the true faith, as immovable as a strong and lofty mountain, he was thrown into a caldron of boiling oil, by Domitian's command, on the second of the nones [6th] of May; but, protected by the divine grace, he came out of it unhurt. On that day, in every year the faithful devoutly celebrate a festival to his memory. He was then banished to the isle of Patmos, where he wrote the Apocalypse, in which the condition and order of the church are described, as foreshown to him, in seven stages, together with the depths of tribulation and the rewards of good deeds.

At length, by the providence of God, who disposes all things aright, the same year that John was banished, the Roman senate condemned Domitian to death for his cruelties; [2] and declared also, by a general decree, that all the orders issued by the emperor should be considered null and


[1] These words probably refer to some tradition of an intended marriage of St. John, which has not reached us.

[2] St. John's immersion in a cask of boiling oil, and his banishment to the Isle of Patmos, one of the Sporades, in the Egean Sea, took place May 6, A.D. 95. Domitian was not assassinated during the course of the same year, nor for a year afterwards, but in September, 96.

210 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.V.

void. In consequence of this decree, St. John the apostle, who, by command of Domitian, had been banished with ignominy, returned to Ephesus with honour, amid general rejoicings. For the whole population of Ephesus went out to meet him on his return, and both men and women, in the faithful expression of their joy, exclaimed as if with one voice, "Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord".

As John was entering the city, behold they were carrying to the grave the corpse of Drusiana, who, loving him fervently, had desired to see him before her death. The widows, and the poor, parents and orphans, all wept together, and exclaimed: "St. John, the apostle of God, you see us bearing to the grave Drusiana, who, following your holy counsels, fed us all, served God in chastity and humility, and, sighing for your return, said daily: 'O that I could see with my own eyes the apostle of God before I die'"! Then the blessed John having commanded them to put down the bier, and to uncover the corpse, said with a loud voice: "Drusiana, may my Lord Jesus Christ restore thee to life! Rise up on thy feet, and return to thy house, and there prepare refreshment for me". Immediately she arose, and obeyed the apostle's command with great joy, as well she might, for it seemed to her that she had been awakened not from death, but from sleep. And then the people ceased not shouting, for the space of three hours: "There is but one God, he whom St. John preaches; there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ".

At that time, two brothers, who were extremely rich, sold their inheritance by the advice of Crato the philosopher, and bought diamonds of singular value, which they crushed in the forum before all the people; thus making an ostentatious exhibition of their contempt for the world. St. John happening to be passing through the forum, witnessed this display, and pitying the folly of these misguided men, kindly gave them sounder advice. Sending for Crato their master, who had led them into error, he blamed the wasteful destruction of valuable property, and instructed him in the true meaning of contempt for the world according to Christ's doctrine; quoting the precept of that teacher, his own master, when, in reply to the young man who inquired of him how he might obtain eternal life, he said: "If thou

LEGENDS OF ST. JOHN. 241

wilt be perfect, go and sell all that thou hast and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven; and come and follow me". [1] Crato the philosopher, acknowledging the soundness of the apostle's teaching, entreated him to restore the jewels which had been foolishly crushed to their former condition. St. John then gathered up the precious fragments, and while he held them in his hand, prayed for some time, with his eyes raised to heaven. His prayer being concluded, and all the faithful present having said Amen, the broken pieces of the jewels became so closely united that there remained not the slightest appearance of any fracture. Then Crato the philosopher with all his disciples, threw himself at the apostle's feet, believed, and were baptized; and Crato, preaching openly the faith of the Lord Jesus, became a true philosopher. [2] Moreover, the two brothers, who before destroyed their property to no purpose, now, in obedience to the evangelical precept, sold their jewels and distributed the price in alms to the poor of Christ. And a multitude of believers began to attach themselves to St. John and to follow his steps.

Atticus and Eugenius, two brothers, [3] and noble Ephesians, imitated the conduct of the youths already mentioned; selling all that they had and distributing to the poor, and becoming followers of the apostle as he went about the cities preaching the word of God. It happened that as they were entering Pergamus they beheld their own slaves parading in garments of silk, and making a display of worldly vanities. The devil's malice shot the arrow, when the pride of the two brothers was wounded at seeing their slaves swaggering and gay, while they were poor and reduced to a single cloak. The blessed apostle, comprehending the wiles of Satan, directed that bundles of straight twigs and small pebbles from the sea-shore should be brought to him. When this was done, he called on the name of the Lord, and the twigs were turned into gold and the pebbles into precious stones. Then the holy apostle said to the brothers:


[1] Matt. xix. 21.

[2] Either this Crato, or another of the same name, is subsequently mentioned by Ordericus in book ii. c. 11 of the present history.

[3] In the original legend the brothers whose names are here given, are the same as those mentioned in the preceding paragraph.

242 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.V.

"Go, for seven days, among the goldsmiths and jewellers, and let me know when you have tested your gold and diamonds". The brothers accordingly went round the workmen's shops, and returning at the end of the seven days informed the apostle that the goldsmiths declared the gold to be pure, and the jewellers pronounced the stones precious. Then St. John said: "Go, now, and re- purchase the lands which you sold, for you have lost the heavenly inheritance. Clothe yourselves in robes of silk, that you may be as gay as the rose for a season. The flower is delightful both for its scent and colour, but soon fades. You envied the appearance of your slaves, and regretted that you had reduced yourselves to poverty; flourish then for a while that you may decay and perish; be rich in this world, that you may be stripped of all in the next. Is not the hand of the Lord powerful to make his servants abound in wealth and above measure glorious? But he has appointed a trial of the soul, that men may believe that these will obtain eternal riches, who for his sake have relinquished their worldly advantages".

While the blessed John was delivering these edifying precepts and others like them, and descanting nobly on the misery and contempt of the world, on apostacy, and perseverance in well-doing, it happened that a young man named Stacteus was followed to his grave by his mother who was a widow. In her deep affliction the mother, with the crowd of people attending the funeral, threw themselves at the apostle's feet, and besought him with many tears, that in the name of God he would restore this young man to life, as he had done in the case of Drusiana, and kindly relieve the distress of his mother and his newly married wife. Then the apostle knelt down and prayed for some time weeping, thrice rising from his supplications, lifting his hands to heaven and praying in secret. Then he directed the body to be loosed from the grave-clothes, and calling on the youth by name, commanded him to arise and give a true account of what he had seen while he was dead. Then Stacteus arose, and worshipping the apostle began to rebuke his disciples: "I saw", he said, "your angels weeping, while Satan's angels were rejoicing at your humiliation. I saw the kingdom prepared for you, and chambers garnished

ST. JOHN AT EPHESUS. 243

with bright jewels, full of delights, feasts, riches; endless life, eternal light, and all the joys which you have lost. I saw also the chambers of darkness, for which, alas! you have made the exchange,- full of dragons and pit-falls, full of hissing flames and torments, full of corruption and sorrow". While Stacteus was describing these and similar scenes, the crowd of people who listened to him were struck with amazement. But Atticus and Eugenius, with the young man raised from the dead, threw themselves at the apostle's feet together, and entreated him to intercede with the Lord on their behalf. At length, St. John gave this answer to their entreaties, that they should do penance for thirty days, during which time their chief prayer to God should be that the golden twigs should be restored to their primitive state, and the stones become as worthless as they were at first. It turned out, however, that the thirty days elapsed without the gold being changed into twigs, or the jewels into pebbles. The brothers then came to the apostle in great distress, and besought his clemency with many tears and prayers. Compassionating their grief and penitence, and moved hy the intercessions of the multitude on their behalf, the apostle then ordered the twigs to be carried back to the wood, and the pebbles to the beach, restored to their own nature. Upon which, the two brothers recovered the grace they had forfeited, so that, as they had done before, they cast out devils, healed the sick, gave sight to the blind, and performed many miracles in the name of the Lord.

While the name of John was in every one's mouth, and his character reverenced, not only at Ephesus, but through the whole province of Asia Minor, that city became the scene of tumults raised by the idol-worshippers. The heathen, roused to frenzy, dragged John to the temple of Diana, and used all their efforts to induce him to join in their impure sacrifices. But he, inspired by the Holy Spirit, proposed to them that they should accompany him to the church dedicated to Christ, and, invoking the aid of Diana, lay it in ruins by her power; while, if they failed of success, he would, in the name of the God he served, overthrow the temple of Diana and destroy her image. Reason would convince them that, if he did this, they ought to abandon their vain superstition, and follow the path of the

244 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.V.

true and right faith. A proposal of this sort was suited to the popular impulse, although some few objected to affairs being put on such an issue. And now John gently exhorted the crowd to stand aloof while he with a devout mind prayed audibly to Almighty God. Immediately the temple and all its shrines fell to pieces and were ground to powder, like dust scattered by the wind from the face of the earth. The same day twelve thousand heathens, not counting women and children, were converted and received baptism in the name of the holy Trinity. Then Aristodemus, who was chief pontiff of all the idol temples, at the instigation of the evil spirit, stirred up the commonalty to a new insurrection, in which citizen was ready to fight against citizen. Upon which John, whose loving mind was bent on preserving peace, addressed himself to Aristodemus, saying: "Tell me, O Aristodemus, what I can do to abate your indignation". The pontiff replied: "If you desire that I should believe in your God, drink the poison which I will give you, and should you escape death it will be manifest that yours is, indeed, the true God". The apostle assenting to this proposal, Aristodemus, to strike terror into him, went to the proconsul and begged of him two culprits who lay under sentence of decapitation for their crimes. Having obtained his consent, they were brought into the forum, and there, having drunk poison in the presence of the apostle and all the people, forthwith expired. Then the blessed John, standing over their dead bodies, fearlessly took into his hands the poisoned cup, and making the sign of the cross over it, with devout prayers, he recounted to all who were within hearing the marvellous works of God. Having ended his discourse, he armed himself with the sign of the cross, and, draining the cup to the dregs, remained uninjured, offering thanksgiving to God. Upon which the spectators shouted: "There is one only true God, and John is his prophet".

Meanwhile, Aristodemus, after narrowly watching the apostle for the space of three hours, and perceiving that he neither looked pale nor exhibited any signs of fear, was so far from yielding to the truth that he hardened his heart against it, though the by-standers complained loudly of his withholding his belief. At last, he required that the

ST. JOHN'S MIRACLES. 245

prisoners who had died by the poison should be restored to life, upon which all doubt would be removed from his mind. The crowd, however, were incensed with rage, and threatened that they would set fire to his house and throw him into the flames if he ventured further to persecute the Lord's apostle. Whereupon, John, perceiving that a desperate conflict was impending between the faithful and the unbelievers, interposed and thus addressed the surrounding throng: "Patience is an exemplary virtue, one of the divine graces which it is our duty to imitate. If then Aristodemus is still held in the bonds of unbelief, let it be ours to set him free; and I will never desist from my undertaking until I have found a remedy for his disordered mind, like a skilful physician who perseveringly adapts his cure to the various forms of his patient's disease. In the case of this distempered man, if what has been done already fails of restoring him to a sound mind, we must do something which hitherto has not been tried". He then called Aristodemus to him and invested him with his own tunic, while he himself stood covered with his mantle, and gave these directions to the pontiff: "Go, and, stretching yourself upon the corpses of the deceased malefactors, say: "John, the apostle of our Lord Jesus Christ, hath sent me unto you, that in his name you may be restored to life, and that all may know that life and death obey Jesus Christ, my Lord and master". Aristodemus obeyed the apostle's command, and, struck with astonishment at the restoration of the dead men, worshipped John, and, hastening to the proconsul, eagerly related to him all that had occurred, and then with a wise determination, he said to the proconsul: "Let us go to the apostle and implore his pardon on bended knees". This they accordingly did, and John, lovingly receiving them, offered up on their behalf prayer and thanksgiving to God, and enjoined on them a week's fasting. At the expiration of this, the apostle baptized them, with their parents, their kindred and their whole households; and they destroyed their idol images, and dedicated a church to the honour of St. John, in which he was afterwards buried.

When, at last, the blessed John was ninety-nine [1] years of age, the Lord Jesus Christ appeared to him with his disciples


[1] In the original legend we read seven.

246 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.V.

saying: "Come unto me, for it is time that thou shouldest sit down to feast, with thy brethren, in my kingdom". Then John, arising, prepared to depart; but the Lord said to him: "On the Sunday, which is the anniversary of my resurrection, three days hence, thou shalt come unto me": and having thus spoken ascended to heaven. On the Lord's day following, therefore, the whole multitude of the faithful assembled with John in the church erected in his name, where he celebrated the divine mysteries from cock-crowing to the third hour, when he addressed the congregation, saying: "Brethren and fellow servants, co-heirs and partakers of the kingdom of God, ye know what gifts and graces, and signs and miracles, together with doctrine, our Lord Jesus Christ hath vouchsafed to you through my ministry. Henceforth continue without ceasing to walk in his commandments, for the Lord is pleased now to call me out of this world".

Thereupon he caused a grave to be dug near the stately [1] altar, and the earth thrown up to be carried out of the church. He then descended into the grave, and, lifting up his hands to the Lord, said: "O Lord Jesu Christ, at thy summons I come, with thanksgiving, to the heavenly banquet to which thou hast graciously vouchsafed to invite me, knowing that I have desired thee with my whole heart. Beholding thy face, I am restored to life even from the tomb. The odour of thy presence sheds in my heart desires of everlasting life. Thy voice is sweeter than honey, and thy words far beyond angelic eloquence. I have committed to writing thy works which my own eyes have seen, and thy words which I heard with my own ears. And now, Lord, I commend to thee thy children which their virgin mother the church hath regenerated in thy name by water and the Holy Ghost. Receive me now, that I may join the company of my brethren, with whom thou appearedst to call me to thy presence. Open unto me the gate of life and lead me to the heavenly banquet, in which all thy faithful disciples feast with thee. For thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God, who, according to the will of the Father, didst become the Saviour of the world. To thee, therefore,


[1] Quadratum, four-square.- Duchesne. The reading of the French Historical Society is quadratam, applied to the grave.

ST. JOHN'S DEATH. 247

we give thanks for ever and ever". And when all the people had answered "Amen"! the apostle was surrounded, for the space of an hour, with a light so effulgent that no eye could bear to look on it. It was then discovered that the grave had been filled up, and contained manna only, which the place produces to the present day, [1] being distinguished by the multitude of miracles in honour of him who was in an especial manner our Lord's beloved disciple. Crowds resort to the spot, pouring out prayers and supplications to God, receiving through the merits of St. John, the apostle and evangelist, answers to their petitions, and obtaining by his intercession the relief they implore from their diseases and sufferings. Among whom let me, sinner that I am, present myself, humbly paying my devotions, and pouring forth my heart in prayer, with faith and hope, to the beloved disciple of our Lord:-

"O blessed John, our Lord's familiar friend, who wert chosen by the same Lord Jesus Christ to be a virgin, and, being loved more than others, and, specially taught in the heavenly mysteries, became his most distinguished apostle and evangelist, I humbly implore thy aid; beseeching thee, that unworthy as I am, yet being thy devoted follower, thou wouldest vouchsafe to listen to my petitions. Pity, I beseech thee, the pains and sorrows which I continually suffer, and, regarding my manifold infirmities of body and troubles of mind, cause them to be effectually removed by virtue of thy living merits and devout prayers to the Lord on my behalf, that being cleansed from my sins I may be worthy to join, without ceasing, in the heavenly worship, and with the white-robed company of the faithful, offer eternal praises to the Lord God of Sabaoth. Amen"!

CH. VI. Life of St. James the Less - Account of his martyrdom from Hegesippus.

JAMES the less, the son of Alpheus, is called in the Gospel our Lord's brother, because Mary, the wife of


[1] The manna produced at the tomb of St. John is spoken of by St. Augustine, Gregory of Tours, and other ecclesiastical writers as late as the eighth century. Our author appears to adopt the opinion put forth by St. Ephrem and others, that St. John did not actually die, or that he was immediately restored to life. The opinion was founded on a well known passage in his gospel, ch. xi 22, 23.

248 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.VI.

Alpheus, who is named by John the Baptist Mary the wife of Cleophas, was the aunt of our Lord's mother. Immediately after the ascension, James was ordained by the apostles bishop of Jerusalem, which see he filled during thirty years. He was held in deep reverence by all the other apostles, both on account of his great sanctity and his kindred to our Lord; so that, however they were dispersed in their mission of preaching the gospel through distant regions, they, from time to time, resorted to him as their common father, and humbly implored his counsels, as their master, when occasion required. At length, in the seventh year of Nero's reign, while James was preaching Christ the Son of God, at Jerusalem, he was thrown headlong from that temple by the Jews and stoned to death, and buried there near the temple on the first of May. [1]

Hegesippus, [2] a holy and learned man, who lived near the apostles' times, mentions James the Just in the fifth book of his Commentaries; relating that after the death of Festus, who succeeded Felix as proconsul of Judaea, while the province was without a governor and chief before the appointment of Albinus, James, the brother of the Lord, was cruelly martyred by the Jews. He was sanctified from his mother's womb; wine or strong drink he never tasted, nor ate flesh; steel never approached his head, nor were his limbs anointed with oil, and he never used the bath. He wore no garments made of wool, but contented himself with a wrapping of coarse cloth. He spent his time in solitary prayer for the pardon of his people, until, by continual kneeling, his knees became callous, like those of a camel. His marvellous self-denial and rigid virtue obtained for him the surname of the Just, and of Oblias, which signifies the defence of the people.


[1] St. James the Less had the government of the church at Jerusalem committed to him by the other apostles, a few months after our Lord's ascension. He suffered martyrdom by order of the high-priest Ananias about Easter in the year 62, and consequently in the eighth year of Nero's reign.

[2] Hegesippus, the oldest of the church historians, was born about the beginning of the second century, and died about A.D. 180. Some fragments only of his Ecclesiastical History are extant. The present legend of St. James the Minor is an extract front it. See Eusebius's Eccl. Hist. ii. 23, and iv. 22.

MARTYRDOM OF ST. JAMES THE LESS. 249

A person belonging to one of the seven Jewish sects having asked him what was meant by Jesus being the door, [1] he replied: "It means the Saviour". The Jews, indeed, are divided among themselves into seven sects, all of which have departed from the way of truth. Thus the Pharisees and Sadducees, the Essenes and Galileans, the Hemero-baptists, the Masbuthaeans, and the Samaritans, [2] glory in distinct names, and hold and defend with obstinacy the various doctrines which they severally adopt. Some of these, through the ministry of James, were converted to the faith of Christ. But when many of the principal Jews believed in Jesus, the scribes and pharisees were in great consternation, and said: "What remains, but that all the people should speedily believe that Jesus is the Christ"? They then, acting in concert, presented themselves to James, and courteously besought him to ascend a pinnacle of the temple at the feast of the passover, and bear a true testimony concerning Christ to the multitudes of Jews and Gentile§ assembled at the feast, both from the neighbourhood and from distant countries. The apostle was filled with joy at the opportunity thus afforded him on declaring the truth, and gave his consent to what they entreated, though not according to what those wicked men designed; for the just man knew that this was directed by divine inspiration, and therefore it was that he acceded to their request. Standing, accordingly, on a pinnacle of the temple, he addressed the people with a loud voice, showing clearly and without doubt that Jesus, the Son of God, had fulfilled all that the prophets had foretold concerning him.

The apostle James, having now concluded his faithful discourse, the multitudes shouted with joy, "Hosanna to the Son of David"! But the pharisees and other enemies of the truth were greatly troubled, and, taking counsel together, exclaimed, "Oh! Oh! The Just one also is deceived". Then was fulfilled what is written in the book of wisdom, "We will take away the just, for he is unprofitable to us". [3] The pharisees now ascending to the place where he stood, said


[1] St. John x. 7.

[2] Our author has borrowed this enumeration of the Jewish sects froni a quotation of Hegesippus in the Ecclesiastical History of Eusebius, v. c. 22.

[3] Wisd. xi. 12.

250 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.VII.

to him: "We entreated thee to disabuse the people of their error concerning Jesus, but thou hast given it strength"; to which James replied, "I have opened their eyes to their error, and given them to see the truth". The pharisees therefore finding that the multitude received with joy the preaching of the apostle, and believed in Christ, threw him from the summit of the temple and began to stone him. But he fell on his knees praying, "O Lord, my God and Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do". While he was thus praying, and stones were being showered upon him, one of the priests, a son of Rechab, cried out, "Spare him, I beseech ye, spare him, what do ye? The Just one whom you are stoning prays for you". Then one of the pharisees, in a frenzy of rage, seized a fuller's beam and struck the apostle violently on the head and beat out his brains. Thus was the martyrdom of the confessor of Jesus Christ accomplished, and he was interred near the temple on the calends [1st] of May. [1]

Shortly afterwards, Vespasian waged war against the Jews, which the wisest of them believed was ordained by divine Providence as a retribution for their cruelty to James the Just, as is clearly seen in the works of Josephus, tho celebrated Hebrew historian. While the unbelieving Jews were exposed to double peril, the church of God, triumphing in a true faith and saving grace, invokes the help of her intrepid warrior in her daily conflicts with pure devotion and in these exalted words: "Have compassion, O Jacob the Just, brother of our Lord, on us who are puffed up with pride and vainglory and polluted with the lusts of the world; mercifully hear our prayers, and procure for us the joys of the divine light. Thou who didst pray for thy enemies, vouchsafe thy aid to us who are devoted to thee, that we may obtain the everlasting reward. Amen".

CH. VII. Life of St. Philip - Legend from Abdias of the conversion of the Scythians - Predicts his own death.

PHILIP is interpreted the lamp's mouth; by which name it is signified that he was entirely open to the infusion of a twofold charity, obeying the divine commands and imbued


[1] The martyrdom of St. James took place about the 10th of April, 62, and not the 1st of May, as our author states, probably from that day having been selected by the church for celebrating his feast. The oldest martyrologies placed it on the 25th of March. Its being transferred to the lst of May seems to have arisen from the dedication on that day of a church built to his honour at Rome in the sixth century.

LEGEND OF ST. PHILIP. 251

with sacred graces; so that,like a shining lamp, he enlightened barbarous races by his bright example and true doctrine. Born at Bethsaida, a town of Galilee, he was among the first who followed the steps of Christ. After our Lord's ascension he preached the gospel during twenty years to the Gauls or Galatians, and Scythians, thus bringing different nations to the knowledge of the true light. It happened while he was in Scythia that, being seized by the heathen and dragged before an image of Mars to compel him to sacrifice to the idol, an enormous serpent issued from the base of the statue and struck dead the son of the pontiff, who was serving the fire for the sacrifice, as well as the two tribunes who governed the province, and whose officers held the apostle Philip in bonds. The venom exhaled by the serpent also infected all who were present, so that they began to faint and to exhibit symptoms of severe disorder.

Then Philip exhorted them all to believe in God, and to throw down and break in pieces the statue of Mars, fixing in its place the cross of our Lord, as the object of their adoration; adding that, if they did this, the languishing would recover, the dead be restored to life, and the deadly serpent be put to flight in the name of Christ. Those who were suffering immediately exclaimed in the bitterness of their pains: "Restore our strength and we will cast down the statue". The apostle thereupon called for silence and exorcised the serpent in the name of the Lord, commanding it to depart forthwith, and without injuring any one, betake itself to the wilderness and dwell in solitary places far from the paths of men. Upon this, the fierce serpent went forth and, gliding quickly away, was no more seen. The apostle also in the name of the Lord raised to life the son of the pontiff and the tribunes who had been struck dead, and also restored to health the crowd who were infected by the serpent's venom. All those who had persecuted Philip repented, and were ready to worship him, supposing him a god. But he, diligently instructing them for a whole year, imbued their minds with the knowledge uf the supreme God, and

152 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.VIII.

zealously sowed in the hearts of the believers all that belonged to the true faith. Many thousands were thus converted and baptized by the apostle.

By the abundant aid of divine grace, Philip also built many churches, and ordained in them bishops and priests, with the other ecclesiastical orders. Being recalled to Asia by a revelation, be took up his abode at Hierapolis, where he eradicated the malignant heresy of the Ebionites, who deny that Jesus was the Son of God, and do not believe that he took a true human body in the virgin's womb. Two of Philip's daughters accompanied him, consecrated virgins, by whose ministry the Lord increased the numbers of such holy women. The apostle himself, seven days before his death, assembled the priests and deacons, with the bishops of the neighbouring cities, and predicted in their presence that he should live only seven days longer, and he enjoined them all to stand firmly in the faith, and to be always mindful of the doctrine of the Lord. Then the blessed apostle, having exhorted the people at great length, departed in the Lord in the eightieth year of his age and on the 8th of May, his sacred remains being interred at Hierapolis. Some years afterwards his two daughters were buried there, one on his right the other on his left; and many miracles are performed by the merits of the apostle in answer to faithful prayers; and there resort affianced spouses, and joyfully chant with loud voices: "Prostrate before thy tomb, O Philip, mouth of the lamp, we beseech thee to cause our petitions to reach the ears of the Almighty Judge, that we may be saved from the punishment we have deserved and obtain the heavenly joys for which we pray. Amen". [1]

CH. VIII. The early ecclesiastical legends to be received with caution - Extracts from those relating to St. Thomas - His acts in India - His martyrdom - Translation of his relics to Edessa.

THOMAS signifies an abyss, and Didymus a twin, because this apostle, like our Saviour, was full of grace and heavenly


[1] This legend of St. Philip is almost literally borrowed from the false Abdias, forming the tenth book. All that is really known of this apostle is, that he preached the faith in Phrygia, where he was interred, with his two daughters, who were virgins, and are often confounded with the daughters of Philip the deacon. It is supposed, from a passage in Irenaeus, that the apostle survived at least till the year 81.

CHARACTER OF THE LEGENDS. 253.

gifts. He preached the gospel to the Parthians and Medes, the Hircanians and Persians, the Bactrians and Indians, and suffered martyrdom in the city of Calamine the 12th of the calends of January [21st of December] not long afterwards he became illustrious by numerous miracles in the city of Edessa.

We find many variations in the accounts given of the apostles, arising both from their remote antiquity, and from the vast distance of the regions in which the labourers in Christ's field preached to the barbarians, who so widely differed from the Romans both in their customs and in their languages. We may therefore have our doubts of some things which have been handed down to us respecting the holy apostles, because they have come to us from authors but little known; and more especially because pope Gelasius and other learned doctors have pronounced them to be apocryphal. The illustrious prelate, St. Augustine, [1] also hesitated respecting some works of this description, and has furnished an example against Faustus the Manichean, in his scrupulous researches in regard to the life of St. Thomas. What I have remarked on these contradictions, which are discovered in ancient records through all parts of the world, is not intended to disparage the accounts of the miracles of holy men, but that whatever is recorded of the apostles or other saints by the diligence of early writers should be examined with extreme caution, [2] for the confirmation of the faith and the edification of manners. I will now, in the name of God, pursue briefly my narrative of St. Thomas's journeyings, which were abundantly fruitful, his preaching


[1] St. Augustine against Faustus the Manichean, xxii. 79.

[2] Considering the age in which Ordericus Vitalis flourished, this caution, and the doubts just before expressed as to the apocryphal character of many of these early ecclesiastical records, do credit to the author's judgment and candour. The passage may be taken as a sort of protest, once for all, that although he has inserted in his history large extracts from these legends, they must be taken for what they are worth. Considered as religious romances, many of them are curious specimens of the popular literature of the age in which they were written.

254 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.VIII.

Christ with glorious success, and his painful passage, by martyrdom to eternal life.

Thomas Didymus being at Caesarea, the Lord Jesus Christ appeared to him and commended him to Abbanes the minister of Gondafor, king of the Indians, who invited him to return with him to India, and build a royal palace after the Roman manner. During the voyage Thomas conversed mysteriously with Abbanes on the knowledge of his art, and engaged to execute wonderful works of all kinds in marble and wood. On the seventh day they reached Andronopolis, [1] after a prosperous voyage, and as they were landing were struck with the sounds of voices singing to the music of flutes and pipes and harps. They learnt that the king of that city was celebrating the nuptials of his daughter Pelagia with Dionysius. Heralds proceeded through the streets, proclaiming that all should come to the royal banquet, whether rich or poor, nobles, citizens or strangers; and that whoever refused would offend the prince. Abbanes and Thomas, therefore, presented themselves among the guests; but Thomas, as was his habit, took no part in the merriment and the feast, but was wholly occupied in heavenly contemplation. Meanwhile, a Hebrew female singer, with a flute in her hand, went round the tables singing such melodies as any of the guests required; but when she came near St. Thomas, she stood lingering before him, for observing that he neither ate nor drank, but that his eyes were raised to heaven, she comprehended that he was a Hebrew, and a worshipper of the Lord of heaven. Rejoicing therefore at finding one of her own race, she began singing in her mother tongue: "The God of the Hebrews is one only God; the Creator of all things; who made the heavens and the earth, and laid the foundations of the seas". On hearing this, the apostle prayed more fervently, desiring the Hebrew girl to repeat the sacred words she had sung, with greater care. The steward of the feast, however, rebuked St. Thomas because he neither ate nor drank, buffeting him on


[1] In other legends of this saint, the name of this place is written Mandrinopolis. It is supposed to be the present Aden, a small sea-port at the mouth of the Straits of Babelmandel, at the entrance of the Red sea, now well known from its having become a station on the overland route to India.

LEGEND OF ST. THOMAS. 255

the face. The apostle then predicted in Hebrew what would presently befall him before the end of the banquet. And thus it happened; the steward going forth to draw water from a fountain, a lion attacked him, and, after sucking his blood, departed. Dogs came and devoured his limbs, and one of these animals, which was black, came into the guest-chamber carrying in his mouth the right hand which had buffeted the apostle. The guests were struck with astonishment at this spectacle, but the Hebrew singer, who alone understood the apostle's prediction, threw down her flute, and running to him began to kiss his feet, exclaiming: "This is either a prophet or an apostle of God: for when the steward struck him he foretold this catastrophe in the Hebrew tongue, saying, 'I shall not rise from this banquet until I see that hand brought hither by a black dog'".

The king, inquiring the cause of the disturbance and hearing what had happened, called the apostle aside, and entreated him to give his blessing to his daughter and her husband. St. Thomas therefore accompanied the king to the bride-chamber, and placing his hands with prayer on the heads of both the espoused, gave them his blessing in the name of God, repeating also the names of the patriarchs. The apostle was then leaving the chamber, conducted by the bridegroom, when a branch of a palm-tree loaded with fruit, suddenly appeared in the hand of the young prince. It filled him with delight, and he ran quickly to the bride and plucked the fruit for her to taste; and when they had both partaken of it, they suddenly fell asleep, and both dreamed the same dream. They saw, as it were, a mighty king with a jewelled crown and ornaments, who stood between them, and embracing both, thus addressed them: "My apostle hath given you his blessing, to the end that ye may be partakers of everlasting life". On their waking, each told the other the vision they had seen, when, behold St. Thomas stood in their presence, saying: "My Lord and King, who just now spoke to you in the vision, brought me in hither, although the doors are shut, in order that the blessing I gave you may be brought to good effect. Yours is the innocence which is the queen of all virtues, and the fruit of everlasting salvation. Virginity is the sister of angels, and the earnest of all felicity; virginity is the victory gained

256 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.VIII.

over the passions, the trophy of faith, a triumph over the enemy, and an assuranee of eternal rest. For from corruption springs uncleanness, from uncleanness guilt, from guilt dismay.

St. Thomas having discoursed thus, and more at large, in praise of virginity, and on the foulness of lust, with the many inconveniences which frequently arise from carnal intercourse, Dionysius and Pelagia thankfully listened to the teaching of the apostle, and thereupon two angels appeared to them: "We are angels", they said, "sent by God, in consequence of the apostle's blessing, that as long as you observe his precepts, we may offer to the Lord all your petitions".

Instructed by these and other pious monitions, the husband and bride threw themselves at the apostle's feet, saying, "Confirm us in all truth, that nothing relating to the knowledge of God be wanting to us". The apostle answered, "I will come to you the following night, and fully instruct iou before I depart". He came accordingly, and having initiated them both into the mysteries of eternal life, he sanctified them by the water of baptism. After these events he resumed his voyage; but in the course of time he sent them one of his disciples, whom he ordained priest, in order that he might be stationed and establish a church in that city, in which a multitude of people were converted to God. It became the seat of St. Thomas the apostle, and the Catholic faith is held there to the present day. Dionysius became bishop, his wife received from his hands the consecrated veil, and after his death completed her twofold martyrdom; having renounced her marriage rights, she refused also to sacrifice to idols. She was consequently beheaded for her confession of Christ; and the following inscription was placed over her tomb in the Greek tongue: "IN THIS PLACE LIES THE WIFE OF DIONYSIUS THE BISHOP, AND DAUGHTER OF THOMAS THE APOSTLE".

On their arrival at Hierapolis, a city of India, [1] Abbanes


[1] It was the tradition of the church in the time of Origen that St. Thomas carried the faith among the Parthians, and even into India. The French editors of Ordericus consider that there is no evidence of the apostle having penetrated into the south of the peninsula, "Malgre la pretention des Portugais d'avoir retrouve des traces et des monuments de son sejour sur la cote de Coromandel". It is, however, well known in England that there is a church of native Christians of great antiquity on the coast of Malabar, whose traditions are that it was founded by St. Thomas; and the primitive simplicity and purity of their doctrine and institutions, with their secluded and independent existence, afford considerable presumptive evidence that their claims may be admitted. Geddes, in his history of this church, says that on the discovery of Malabar by the Portuguese in 1504, they found the south inhabited by the Christians of St. Thomas, so calling themselves on account of their having been converted to the Christian faith by the apostle of that name. They have always, or at least for 1300 years, been under the patriarch of Babylon. Dr. Claudius Buchanan, who visited them a few years since, says in his Christian Researches, "we have as good authority for believing that the apostle died in India as that St. Peter died at Rome". St. Thomas is said to have landed from Aden at Cranganore, near which, at Paroor, is the oldest Syrian church dedicated to that apostle; and the tradition is that he continued there till he went to Melapoor and St. Thomas' Mount in Coromandel, where he was martyred.

ST. THOMAS IN INDIA. 257

presented himself before his king Gondafor, and informed him that he had brought with him a skilful architect whose name was Thomas. The king consulted with him on the plans of the palace he proposed building, and pointed out to him the site on which he intended to erect it. Thomas then took a rod, and measuring the ground said; "Here I shall place the gates; the entrance will be towards the east; this first space will be the vestibule; next will come an ante-chamber; then the hall of audience; the fourth space will be the banqueting room; the fifth, the winter chamber; the sixth the summer chamber; the seventh, the room for burning perfumes; the eighth, the warm baths; the ninth, the gymnasium; the tenth, the kitchens; the eleventh, the cisterns and tanks; in the twelfth will be the hippodrome and circular portico for the promenade". The king having considered this arrangement, said to Thomas; " You are, indeed, an architect, and deserve to build palaces for kings";


[1] M. be Prevost, the French editor of Ordericus, considers this curious enumeration of the various parts of a palace, which differs essentially from the ancient arrangement, to have been borrowed from a description of the palace of the dukes of Spoleto, about A.D. 814, in which there are found Byzantine innovations on the plan of the old Roman houses. This interesting account has been published by Mabillon (Rerum Italic, ii. p. 11) and by Muratori (Annali d'Italia, iv. 11), and has been republished by Mazois (Ruines de Pompeia), who renders important assistance in determining the author's precise meaning. See note to the Paris edition of Ordericus (1833), tom. i. p. 311.

258 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.VIII.

and the king departed, leaving with him a large sum of money.

The apostle, however, began to journey through the provinces and cities, preaching the word of God, baptizing those who believed, and distributing alms abundantly among the poor. He thus converted immense multitudes to the Lord, ordained priests, and built churches, and for two years, during the absence of Gondafor, established the faithful. However, when the king returned and learnt how the apostle had been employed, he ordered both him and Abbanes to be thrust into the lowest dungeon, bound in chains. But while he was thinking of having them flayed alive and then burnt, his brother Gad died, and as he was much beloved there was great lamentation. The barbarians, according to their usages, wrapped the corpse in purple and fine linen, adding jewelled ornaments, and the king commanded a monument to be erected to his brother of purple stone, and his body to be deposited in a sarcophagus of porphyry. While the workmen were preparing these magnificent works which delayed the performance of the funeral rites, Gad himself, the dead man, rose again the fourth day at the first hour, to the great astonishment and terror of all: and the wailings, which according to Indian custom accompany a royal funeral, were hushed into silence. Meanwhile Gad blamed the king his brother for designing to flay and to burn the favorite of Heaven, whom the angels obeyed. He related that he had seen in heaven a wonderful palace, planned in the manner Thomas had proposed, and reported besides much more on the merits of that holy man, and the secrets of heaven. He then hastened to the prison, freed the apostle from his fetters, and throwing himself at his feet entreated his pardon for Gondafor.

As the apostle was taking his departure, the king himself now rendered more humane, came to meet him, and prostrating himself before him entreated his forgiveness. And now the apostle, finding the opportunity favourable, applied himself to preaching amongst the barbarians and proclaming the truth. Among other things he said: "Jesus Christ, my Lord, hath shown you great favour in that he hath revealed


[1] The word memoria is here used in the sense of monumentum. St. Augustine uses the phrase, memoria marmorata, a tomb of marble.

ST. THOMAS TRAVELS TO UPPER INDIA. 259

his secrets to you. Lo, your provinces are full of churches; prepare yourselves, therefore, that you may be sanctified". Such words and many more he addressed to the princes, instructing them in the faith and the true religion.

All India speedly heard the report of the wonders which the Lord wrought by the hands of his apostle, and great multitudes of people were gathered to him from the cities both far and near. They proposed to pay him divine honours, offering him sacrifices of calves and rams, as they did to their gods. Meanwhile king Gondafor, by the apostle's advice, commanded them to wait a month until the whole province was assembled, and that they should then do what he directed. Accordingly, at the expiration of thirty days, multitudes of people assembled on the plain at the foot of mount Gazus, among whom there were a great number afflicted with divers disorders. The apostle then desired them to gather all the sick into one body, and placing himself in the midst, he spread forth his hands to heaven and prayed on their behalf. When his prayer was finished, a ray of light darted upon them with such force that they all thought themselves on the point of being destroyed by lightning. They fell prostrate on the ground with the apostle, and remained in that position for nearly half an hour, being sensible that the gracious presence of God was among them; for many who had fevers, and the dumb, and the blind, and the lame, and those who had other disorders, were healed by the power of the Creator. All now rose from the ground, at the apostle's command, and each one, full of joy for his recovery, glorified the Lord.

Then the blessed Thomas mounted on a rock where he could see all the people, and be seen of them, and calling for silence explained to them fully his true doctrine. The Sunday following, nine thousand men were baptized, besides women and children. The apostle afterwards, in consequence of a revelation, undertook a journey to Upper India; and there all the people hastened to hear him, and, being witness of the signs and wonders which he wrought, were so astonished that they did not dare to despise his preaching. He cast out devils, gave sight to the blind, cleansed the lepers, healed all diseases, both rheums and fevers, and raised the dead.

260 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH. VIII.

A certain woman named Sintice, who had been blind for six years, was so cured that no sign was left of her former infirmity. Hearing of this, the curiosity of Mygdonia, wife of Carisius, a cousin of the King Mesdeus, was excited, and disguising herself she mingled among her handmaids while the holy St. Thomas was preaching a saving discourse on the true God. The whole multitude believed at the apostle's teaching, and after a fast of seven days received baptism. Mygdonia, however, after hearing the apostle's discourse, would not again enter her husband's bed. Upon this, Carisius went to the king in great anger, and obtained permission to have the apostle arrested and thrown into prison. But Sintice conducted Mygdonia to the prison, and by bribing the gaoler obtained access to the apostle's dungeon. When he was informed of the faith of Mygdonia, he commanded her to return immediately to her own house, carefully close her chamber, and expect him. Accordingly at midnight the apostle appeared in the chamber as he had promised, and comforting Mygdonia instructed her in the faith and appointed her a seven days' fast. On the eighth, he returned in a similar manner, and baptized the believing woman, and all others who received the faith. Meanwhile Carisius, whose sister King Mesdeus had married, begged that the queen Treptia might be sent to his own wife to endeavour to recall her to her conjugal duties. King Mesdeus consenting, the queen went to Mygdonia, and lavishing caresses on her, used every effort to induce her to return to her former habits. But she, now confirmed in the faith of Christ, earnestly refused, and becoming a champion in the cause of truth, in her turn contended with Treptia, and ended by persuading her to yield to Christ. For she replied to that queen with endearing words, adroitly instilled into her mind a regard for the apostle, and gained her heart by a discourse of this kind: "My sister Treptia, if you knew all I have learnt, you would consider him not as a man but a god, for he gives hearing to the deaf; he has restored health in all manner of disorders, and sometimes he has even raised the dead. He teaches that there is another and immortal life, free from pain and all sorrow. This very night he restored life to a dead man; for Simforus, the captain of the soldiers, went to the prison and,

ST. THOMAS'S MIRACLES AND MARTYRDOM. 261

taking upon himself the safe custody of the apostle, received him from the gaoler and conducted him to his own house. The apostle having prayed, restored to life the only son of the captain, who lay dead. Even now he remains in that house, teaching all who eome to him, and healing all disorders". Treptia answered: "If it be as you say, let us go and see this man; and if I find these things to be true, I also will immediately accept the faith. It is unwise not to seek eternal life, and not to believe such extraordinary gifts". They went therefore to the captain's house, but having entered were unable to obtain access to the apostle, who was engaged in laying his hands on people labouring under various infirmities. The queen, at the sight of so many miracles, exclaimed in astonishment, "Cursed of God be those who do not believe the works of salvation". Then a man was brought in by the apostle's command suffering from elephantiasis, of horrible appearance, with a hoarse voice, and his face rough with scabs. The apostle wept over him, and praying a long time on bended knees, laid his hand on him, supplicating God. Next, a boy appeared with a cheerful aspect, and, leading a leper from a retired corner, stripped him of his clothes, his skin also peeling off from his body like a tunic, or as when one flays a calf. Being brought to the apostle, he signed him with the sign of the cross, and having baptized him, caused him to be clothed in new white garments. At this spectacle the people magnified God, and the queen kissing the apostle's feet entreated to be baptized; and he, perceiving that the time of his departure from the body was at hand, baptized her with the rest who were present.

On the queen's return, she announced her conversion to the king, and expressed her determination to continue in the faith. Then the king's heart was troubled, and his anger being raised against Carisius, he exclaimed, "While I was endeavouring to recover your wife, I have lost my own; for Treptia is become worse to me than Mygdonia to thee". Whereupon he sent for St. Thomas, commanding him to be brought into his presence with his hands bound behind his back. The king on seeing him, commanded him to use his influence with the women he had deceived to induce them to return to their conjugal duties. Upon his

269 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.VIII.

refusing this, and endeavouring to bring his persecutors to a saving faith, the king ordered iron plates to be heated, and the apostle to be placed upon them, standing with bare feet, until he fainted from pain. Immediately, however, a spring burst forth, and cooled the iron plates. Next, by the advice of Carisius, he was thrown into the furnace at the baths: but they were unable to heat the baths, and the apostle again departed unhurt. At last they attempted to compel him to offer sacrifice to the image of the sun. The statue was of gold, standing in a golden car drawn by four horses, and appeared to hold the reins loosely, while the car was whirled rapidly through the sky. In the temple heathen priests led the dance with barbaric rites, and virgins sung hymns to the melody of their lyres, with flutes and timbrels, and fillets and censers. The king and his courtiers having brought the apostle to the temple and exhorted him to sacrifice to this image of the sun, addressing the demon in the Hebrew tongue, he commanded him to come forth and obey his orders. The demon, having made his appearance, stood before the apostle, so that he was visible to him only; and the apostle talked with the devil in the Hebrew tongue, while no one knew what he said, or with whom he was conversing. When, at length, St. Thomas had worshipped the Lord in the idol-temple on his bended knees, and in presence of the king had enjoined the demon, in Christ's name, to do injury to no one, but immediately to destroy the molten image, the idol instantly dissolved and melted like wax at the fire. Then all the priests raised shrieks, and the pontiff pierced the apostle through the body with a sword. The king and Carisius took to flight, and there was a great tumult among the people, as the greater part shouted for the apostle, and sought for his murderer that they might burn him alive. The apostle's body was honourably borne with hymns of praise to the church, and being embalmed with precious aromatics, great signs and miracles were wrought there, for demoniacs were freed, and all diseases were healed. [1]


[1] These acts of St. Thomas are not borrowed directly from the false Abdias, but from some other legend which has altered some of the details, and shortened the conclusion. See note, p. 257, respecting the mission of St. Thomas to India.

RELICS OF ST. THOMAS AT EDESSA. 263

A long time afterwards the Syrians obtained a promise from Alexander, emperor of Rome, on his return from the Parthian war after defeating Xerxes, that he would send to the petty kings of India to demand that the remains of St. Thomas should be restored to them. [1] The body of the apostle was therefore transported from India, and deposited in the city of Edessa in a silver coffer, suspended by chains of the same metal. There no idolaters, no heretics, no Jews can live.

Abgarus [2] was chief; or king of Edessa, when he had the honour to receive the letter written by our Saviour's hand, which is read by a newly baptized child, standing over the gate of the city, when any barbarous tribe advances to attack the place. The very same day the letter is read, the invaders either make peace, or retreat, in terror both of our Lord's letter, and of the prayers of St. Thomas the apostle, surnamed Didymus, who having touched the Lord's side cried out, "Lord, thou art my God".

George Florence Gregory, the venerable archbishop of Tours, writes that he had heard some particulars respecting St. Thomas from one Theodore who had lately travelled in India, and on his return related what follows, as well as other circumstances.

"In India, at the place where the body of the blessed apostle St. Thomas was first deposited, there is a monastery and church of vast size, and built and ornamented with great care. In this church the Lord works a great miracle. A lamp burning before the tomb of the apostle gives, day and night perpetually, a splendid light, by God's special provision, though it is neither fed with oil nor supplied with wicks. It is neither extinguished by the wind, nor is it injured by any accident, nor does the flame diminish, receiving its increase by virtue of the apostle in a manner unknown to man, who can only attribute it to divine power.


[1] Our author speaks of the expedition of Alexander Severus against the Parthians under their king Artaxerxes, founder of the dynasty of the Sassanides, which was undertaken in the year 233. But we find nothing in the history of that emperor to countenance the demand here attributed to him. It is, however certain, that as early as the fourth century, the body of St. Thomas was supposed to be translated to Edessa.

[2] Agbarus.

264 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.VIII.

At the city of Edessa where, as we have already said, the blessed remains of the apostle are deposited, at the feast of the anniversary of his translation, a great concourse of people assembled from foreign countries both in performance of vows and for the purposes of commerce, and during a fair held for thirty days there is free liberty to buy and sell without payment of any tolls. In these days, which happen in the fifth month, great and unusual favours are conferred on the people. No quarrels take place in the throng, and neither flies infest tainted meat, nor is there scarcity of water for the thirsty crowd; for although during the rest of the year water is drawn from the wells at a depth of a hundred feet; during the fair, if you only pierce the surface, springs burst forth abundantly. There can be no doubt that these wonders must be attributed to the apostle's power. When the days of the feast are expired, tolls are again levied, the flies return, the springs dry up; but rain sent by God's providence so washes the whole court of the church from the filth and rubbish accumulated during the fair, that that you would suppose the pavement had not been even trod upon". [1]

Almighty God, our just and compasionate judge and. patient rewarder, glorifies his saints, crowning them with ineffable honour, chastises mankind by his terrors, and in punishing, saves them by penitence. Let us supplicate him while we groan in this valley of tears, let us give him thanks for his unspeakable benefits, and let us hasten to him by keeping his commandments. Let us also pray to St. Thomas the apostle, surnamed Didymus, and confiding in his intercession, say in our chaunts:

"O Thomas, who didst touch the side of our Lord, we beseech thee by those sacred wounds which have taken away all the sins of the world, cleanse us from our guilt by thy prayers. We feel the cruel wounds of our sins; we groan in our trouble, and pray with tears: in pity offer for us thy powerful intercession to God the thunderer. Amen".


[1] The preceding paragraph is literally transcribed from Gregory of Tours, De Glor. Martyr. i. 32.

ST. BARTHOLOMEW. 265

CH. IX. Acts of St. Bartholomew - Legend of his preaching and miracles in India - Description of his personal habits - His martyrdom - His relics translated to Lipari and Beneventum.

BARTHOLOMEW is a Syriac word, signifying the son of him who suspends the water. [1] It fell to this apostle's lot to preach in Lycaonia; afterwards he carried the gospel into Assyria and the third India. At length, when dwelling at Albano, of the greater Armenia, he was flayed alive by the barbarians, and beheaded by order of King Astyages, being: interred on the 9th of the calends of September [24th August]. His sacred body was at first translated, to the island of Lipari, and thence to Beneventum in the year of our Lord 809, where it is held by the faithful in pious veneration. Our careful researches will now be directed to the examination of the whole history of his passion, and the following brief account is inserted from ancient manuscripts.

According to historians, India is divided into three regions, which are reported to have contained five thousand towns, and nine thousand people. [2] The first India extends as far as Ethiopia; the second to the Medes; the third to the extremity, where it is bounded on one side by the region of darkness, on the other by the ocean. It was to this part of India Bartholomew came, and entering a temple in which stood the idol Astaroth, [3] he made it his resting place according to the custom of pilgrims. On the apostle's arrival


[1] The word Bartholomew is evidently Syriac. Our author's version of it, filius suspendentis aquas, which is given literally in the text, seems like the vepeln yspera Zeuc, "the cloud-compelling Jove", of Homer; but it is difficult to conjecture its origin. It is probable that Bartholomew really means the son of Tholomaea, or Tholomi, referring to the place of the apostle's birth, as Simon the Canaanite is called in the Syriac Cananaia.

[2] We cannot suppose that Ordericus would assign a population of only 9000 souls to a country containing 5000 towns. There must, therefore, be some error in the MSS., though they seem all to agree, and the enumeration is made in words, and not in figures.

[3] The worship of this idol, the Syrian Astarte, was early introduced among the Hebrews (1 Sam. xii. 10), and encouraged by Solomon and Jezebel. Astarte was represented as a female, and like the Egyptian Isis and the Ephesian Diana, typified the moon, while Baal was worshipped as the sun.

266 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.VIII.

Astaroth became dumb, giving no answers to those who consulted the idol, nor being able to succour those who were injured. The temple now became full of diseased people, Astaroth making no reply to those who daily offered sacrifice; the infirm therefore, who were attracted there from, distant parts, miserably bewailed their sufferings, and the idol-worshippers, neither profiting by their sacrifices, nor by cutting themselves according to their custom, went to another city where a demon named Berith [1] was worshipped. and offering him sacrifice, inquired respecting the silence of their own god, and other recent occurrences. The reply was this; "Your god is held captive, bound in chains of flame, that he cannot utter a word, nor scarcely breathe, since Bartholomew the apostle of God arrived in this country". They then asked him who this Bartholomew was; to which the demon answered: "He is the friend of the supreme God, and is come into this country for the purpose of expelling the gods worshipped by the Indians". The votaries of Astaroth said: "Tell us by what tokens we may distinguish him among the millions we see". The idol replied: "His hair is black and curling, his skin fair, his eyes full, his nose regular and straight, his ears covered by his long hair, his beard is long and but slightly grey, and his stature is of the middle height, neither long nor short. He wears a white tunic, without sleeves, fastened with purple clasps, over which is a white mantle having ruby coloured gems in the corners. [2] For twenty-six years he has worn the same clothes, which are neither soiled nor have they grown old. So also the sandals worn on his feet during the same period exhibit no signs of decay. A hundred times in the day he bends his knees before God, a hundred times in the night he rises to pray. His voice is clear as the sound of a trumpet. The angels of God are his companions, and


[1] See Judges viii. 33, and ix. 4, where this idol is called Baal-Berith.

[2] M. L. Prevost remarks that our author, or we should rather say the legend he copies, has given St. Bartholomew a dress, the Byzantine magnificence of which is little accordant with apostolic simplicity. The colobium, here translated tunic, was a vestment without sleeves, or having them very short and close-fitting, in opposition to the full sleeves of the dabnalic, which was substituted for it in the dress of the priests by Pope Silvester. However this may be, the whole description of the apostle is highly graphic and characteristic.

LEGEND OF ST. BARTHOLOMEW. 267

permit him neither to suffer fatigue nor hunger. His aspect is always the same, the same spirit animates him, he is always serene and happy. He foresees all things, knows all things, and speaks and understands the languages of all the nations of the earth. Even now he is aquainted with your inquiries, and my replies respecting him. The angels of God obey him, and are his precursors". Having said thus much and more, the demon was silent.

On their return, these people searched all the places frequented by strangers, narrowly observing their persons and dress; but for two days they were unable to discover the apostle. At length a demoniac named Seusticus cried out: "Apostle Bartholomew, thy prayers send fire through me". Upon which the apostle said: "Hold thy peace, and come out of him " And the man, who for many years had been tormented by an evil spirit, was freed from his power.

Polemius, [1] the king of that country, having heard of these occurrences sent to Bartholomew, entreating him to heal his daughter who was a lunatic, and bit with her teeth, or tore or beat, all who came within her reach. The apostle immediately arose, and accompanying the king's messenger, commanded, the girl to be released from the fetters with which she was bound: and when the attendants were afraid to come near her, the apostle said: "I hold in chains the enemy who had taken possession of her; go then and loose her, let her wash and eat, and bring her to me to-morrow early"; they did, therefore, as the apostle commanded, and the demon was no longer able to torment her. Then the king loaded two camels with gold and silver, and precious stones and garments, and sent them to the apostle, but as he was not to be found, they were brought back to the palace.

At the first dawn of day on the morrow, when the king was yet in his chamber, and the door seeurely closed, the apostle appeared to him, all alone, and instructed him in the true belief, and the doctrines of salvation. He treated, in order, of the incarnation of the Son of God by the immaculate virgin, and of the thrice-repeated temptation, and the threefold victory.


[1] In the false Abdias, this prince is called Polymius, and the demoniac mentioned in the preceding paragraph, Pseustius.

268 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.IX.

The king Polemius, yielding to the apostolical teaching, particularly ordered the idol priests to sacrifice on the morrow. When therefore they were sacrificing at day break, the demon broke silence, complaining of the torments to which he was subjected by the angels. At the apostle's command he also openly confessed the frauds by which he had injured the people. Then the apostle said to the multitude; "See what a god is this, that you thought could heal you. Hear now the true God, your Creator, who dwells in the heavens; and if you desire that I should pray for you, and that all the sick now present be restored to health, overturn this idol, and break it to pieces. When this is done, I will consecrate the temple in Christ's name, and will here sanctify all by his baptism". Upon this the king commanded ropes and pulleys to be brought, but with all their efforts, the crowd was unable to throw down the image. Then the apostle said to them "Loose the fastenings". And when all were loosened, he commanded the demon to go forth and demolish the image; and he immediately obeyed, and broke in pieces the idols of every description. All therefore who were eye- witnesses shouted with one voice: "There is but one God who is almighty, and him his apostle Bartholomew preaches". Then the blessed apostle spread out his bands to the Lord, and prayed long for the salvation of all present. And when the multitude answered "Amen", an angel of the Lord, having wings and shining like the sun, appeared, and taking his flight round the four sides of the temple, engraved with his finger the sign of the cross on the corner stones. The apostle commanded the people also to make with their fingers the sign of the cross on their foreheads. He then showed them a gigantic Egyptian, blacker than soot, his features keen, his beard long, and his hair hanging down to his feet, his eyes flashing fire, and emitting sparks like red hot iron. Sulphureous flames issued from his mouth and his nostrils, he had bristly feathers, and wings like the sphinx, [1] his hands were bound behind him, and he was secured by chains of fire. This malignant devil, having been seen by all the people, was set free by the angel, and receiving a command that he should depart into desert places, where none of human kind


[1] The false Abdias for sphinx, reads hystrix, a porcupine.

MARTYRDOM OF ST. BARTHOLOMEW. 269

dwelt and there await the day of judgment, uttering a fearful shriek with his terrible voice, he flew away and was seen no more. At the same time the angel of the Lord ascended to heaven in the sight of all.

Hereupon King Polemius, with his wife, his two sons, and his whole army, and all the people who were healed, and the inhabitants of his own city and of the neighbouring towns belonging to his kingdom, believing, was baptized; and laying aside his diadem and his purple, devoted himself to the apostle. Meanwhile, the priests and idolaters assembled from all the temples, and thus complained to king Astyages, the elder brother of their prince: "Your brother has become the disciple of a magician who takes possession of our temples, and breaks in pieces the images of our gods". While they were making these sorrowful complaints, the priests of other cities came with lamentations to repeat the same tale. Astyages, incensed, sent a thousand armed men in company with the priests to take the apostle wherever they could find him, and bring him in chains before him. Being brought to the king, and questioned by him concerning the true God, he replied with firmness. Meanwhile, it was told the king that his god Waldack had fallen down, and was reduced to atoms. Then he rent his purple robe, and commanded the blessed apostle to be scourged with rods, and afterwards beheaded. And an innumerable multitude of people from twelve cities, who were believers, came with pomp and hymns, and transported his body to a spot where a noble church was dedicated to the apostle, and there they deposited his sacred remains. On the thirtieth day after the deposit, the king Astyages and all the priests were taken possession of by the devil, and coming to the church acknowledged the apostle, and by the just judgment of God fell dead. And great fear fell upon the unbelievers; and those who witnessed the manifest vengeance of God were converted to the faith, and baptized by the priests whom the apostle Bartholomew had ordained. The king Polemius had, in consequence of a revelation, been ordained bishop by the apostle, with the acclamations of the clergy and people. He worked miracles, and lived twenty years in his episcopate, when, having well ordered and established the infant church, he departed to the Lord.

270 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.X.

Many years passed away; and again a persecution was raised against the Christians. And when the heathen saw the concourse of people which flocked to the tomb of the blessed Bartholomew, offering him incessantly the incense of their prayers, they were roused by envy to carry off his body, and enclosing it in a leaden chest, they cast it into the sea. But by God's providence, the leaden coffin, floating on the waves, was carried to the island of Lipari, where it was revealed to the Christians that they should receive it with honour. It was therefore interred with suitable attendance, and a magnificent church built over the tomb, with a choir of monks to perform divine worship. [1]

CH. X. St. Matthew preaches in Macedonia, and finally in Ethiopia - According to the legend of Abdias, he disconcerts the magicians, and converts the king and nation - His martyrdom - Writes his gospel in Hebrew.

MATTHEW, or Levi, as he relates in his own gospel, was a tax-gatherer, but being called from among the publicans he was added by our Lord to the number of his apostles, and endowed with much grace. He first preached the gospel in Judea; afterwards in Macedonia. At length he suffered martyrdom in Ethiopia while he was celebrating mass, under Hyrtacus Adelphus, after he had converted and baptized in the faith of Christ the king Eglippus with many thousands of his people. He thus happily departed in the Lord on the eleventh of the calends of October [21st of September]. The following account of the preaching and passion of the blessed evangelist is copied from ancient histories.


[1] This legend is borrowed almost literally from the false Abdias. Nothing certain is known of the preaching of St. Bartholomew, or the circumstances attending his death. The received opinion is, that he carried the faith into Arabia Felix; but the city of Albano, where the scene of his martyrdom is laid, was the capital of Albania on the shore of the Caspian Sea. The Emperor Anastasius, having built the city of Daras in Mesopotamia in 509, is said to have caused the relics of St. Bartholomew to be translated there, it is not mentioned from whence. About the same time they were believed to be deposited in the Isle of Lipari, according to the tradition followed by our author. Being profaned by the Saracens in 808, they are said to have been collected by a Greek monk, and carried to Beneventum the year following.

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The apostle Matthew, after writing his gospel in Judea in the Hebrew tongue, by the divine command went among the Ethiopians, where he worked many miracles, and brought multitudes to salvation. Having come to the great city Nadaber, he detected the artifices of the magicians Zaroes and Arphaxath, who said that they were gods, and thus imposed upon the king Eglippus and his people. They rendered men motionless as long as they pleased: they had the art to blind them, and cause them to become deaf; serpents inflicted wounds at their command, which they healed by their incantations. Their fame spread through all Ethiopia, so that crowds flocked to these magicians from the furthest parts of the country, and the dupes worshipped their deceivers. Indeed, as the proverb says, fear causes more reverence to the workers of evil than love to the kindly disposed.

The merciful Lord, therefore, in his providential care for mankind, sent Matthew the apostle to the relief of the Ethiopians thus doubly black, both naturally and morally. The Ethiopian Eunuch Candace, [1] who had been baptized by Philip the apostolic deacon, upon seeing Matthew, threw himself at his feet rejoicing, and brought him with great reverence into his house. The friends of Candace resorted to him, and hearing the word of life, believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, many being baptized, when they perceived that the apostle nullified all the mischief which the magicians caused to men. In fact, these impostors wounded all whom they got in their power that they might have the credit of healing them; and those passed for being cured whose wounds no longer appeared. But Matthew, the apostle of Christ, not only healed those who had been hurt by the magicians, but all others who were brought to him, under whatever diseases they were labouring. He also taught divine truth to the people, so that all were astonished at his eloquence, he being able to discourse with ease in the Greek, Egyptian, and Ethiopic tongues. Candace, having asked him questions in confidence, and in a kindly way, the apostle clearly explained to him that the confusion of


[1] Candace was not the name of the eunuch baptized by St. Philip, but of the queen in whose service he was. Acts viii. 27. It appears to have been a name common to several queens of Ethiopia.

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tongues occurred at Babel from man's presumption; and again how the Diety incarnate redeemed mankind, and overthrew the old enemy by Christ's humiliation; and how the Holy Spirit kindled the flame of inspiration in his elect servants, imparting to them the gift of tongues, and making them fully to understand the hidden wisdom of the holy scriptures. While the blessed apostle was engaged in freely opening to his hearers many life-giving truths from the treasures of wisdom, some one came and reported that the magicians, with their serpents, were near at hand. These serpents were crested, their breath was as a flame of fire, and their nostrils gave forth a sulphureous odour, sufficient to destroy those who inhaled it. Then St. Matthew crossed himself, and in spite of the remonstrances of Candace the eunuch, went forth to meet them; and as soon as he stood before the magicians, both the serpents lay down sleeping at his feet. Upon this the apostle said to the magicians, "Where is your art? Rouse the serpents from their sleep, if you are able". They accordingly endeavoured by their magical charms to rouse up the serpents, but entirely failed. A crowd had now assembled, and were astonished at what they saw. At length the blessed apostle commanded the fierce snakes, in the name of the Lord, to retire peaceably to their own place, departing without doing harm to any one. The serpents forthwith, raising their heads, began to depart, and passing through the open gates of the city, were never more seen.

The holy evangelist then addressed the people, who were full of joy, in an affectionate discourse, recounting to them in order the original state of man, the delights of paradise, the envy and craft of the apostate angel, the fall of Adam the first man, in consequence of his prevarication, and his recovery by the passion of the Son of God. While the apostle was thus largely discoursing on these abundant themes, his audience were suddenly startled by a tumult of grief in which lamentations were made for the death of Euphranon, the son of the king Eglippus. The magicians conducted his obsequies, and not being able to restore him to life, assured the king that his son was caught up by the gods into their assembly above, persuading him that he should be numbered among the divinities, and a temple

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erected to his honour. But the queen Euphenisia received a wiser counsel from the faithful Candace, and holding the magicians in utter contempt, sent nobles of rank to bring Matthew to the king. Upon his entering the palace, she threw herself at his feet, and fervently and devoutly entreated him to restore her son to life. The blessed apostle commended her sincere faith, and prayed to Almighty God to give life to the dead. Then taking the young man's hand, he commanded him to arise in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and immediately the young man rose up.

At the sight of such a miracle the king was struck with fear, and causing a crown and purple robe to be offered him, sent heralds through all the towns and provinces of Ethiopia, proclaiming: "Come to the city, and see the Lord manifested in the guise of man". Great multitudes, therefore, assembled with tapers and lamps, with incense and offerings of various kinds for sacrifice: but St. Matthew thus addressed them: "I am no god, but the servant of Almighty God, who has sent me to free you from your errors, and bring you to the knowledge of the true God, that you may worship him. Take away this splendid crown, and the silver and gold; go and erect a temple to the Lord, in which you may assemble and hear the word of God together".

On hearing this, the crowd departed rejoicing, and sixty thousand men set about building a temple to God, so that the church was completed within thirty days. Matthew called it the Church of the Resurrection, in memory of the restoration of the king's son. It became his apostolic seat for twenty-three years, and he attached to it priests and deacons, ordained bishops in the cities and towns, and founded many churches. The king and queen, and the different tribes of Ethiopia received the baptism of Christ, and the magicians in terror made their escape into Persia. Innumerable miracles were worked by St. Matthew, which it is impossible to recount in detail. The blind received sight, paralytics were cured, demoniacs liberated, and even the dead were raised to life.

The most Christian king Eglippus departed to the Lord in extreme old age, and Hyrtacus Adelphus succeeded to the government. He desired to marry Iphigenia, the

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daughter of the late king, a consecrated virgin who had received the veil from the apostle's hands, and now presided over a company of more than two hundred virgins. Hyrtacus, hoping for success in his suit through the apostle's influence, negotiated with him for that purpose: "Take", said he, "the half of my kingdom, so that I may be united in marriage with Iphigenia". Then the blessed Matthew commanded the king, and Iphigenia, and all the people, to assemble in the church on Sunday to hear the word of Almighty God; which was done accordingly. While strict silence was observed in the congregation, the apostle discoursed concerning celibacy, and a fitting matrimony with its proper results, expatiating on these subjects with wisdom and eloquence. He showed clearly that indulgence in food and the conjugal connexion were not sinful, though they may involve some degree of pollution. "Bodily unclean-ness", he said, "might be purged by alms and good deeds, while sins could not be washed away but by the tears of penitence. If any one, after eating carnal food, presumes on the same day to partake of the spiritual food of the body of Christ, he is guilty of a double crime, indecency and presumption; not because he satisfied his appetite, but because he aspired to the privileges of the eucharist against order, and justice, and the laws of God. Thus, homicide and falsehood, though in themselves sins, may yet appear justified by their motives. For instance, if any one tells an untruth to protect an innocent person, and thus shields him against his enemy; or, if a judge condemns to death one malefactor, to save the lives of many innocent persons; in such cases the results are good and profitable. This plainly appears in the homicides of Goliath and Sisera, of Haman and Holophernes. Thus also when marriages are contracted, they are founded on a right principle, if they are engaged in with justice and sanctity. But if a king's servant should presume to lift his eyes to his master's betrothed bride, he would clearly commit not only an offence, but so grievous a crime, that he would deserve to be cast alive into the flames. His crime would be, not that he married a wife, but that he committed injustice against his superior". By this discourse and others of the like nature, the apostle St. Matthew dissuaded King Hyrtacus from marrying the consecrated virgin

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Iphigenia, showing that he would incur the divine wrath if he presumptuously contracted matrimony with her. This only roused the king's wrath, and he departed in anger, While the apostle, full of determination and cheerfulness, continued his exhortations and prayers. Then he bestowed his blessing, before all the people, on Iphigenia, who had thrown herself at his feet, and gave the veil to all the virgins who were present. The whole congregation having now received the sacred mysteries, the mass being celebrated, returned to their homes, but the apostle remained near the altar where he had just consecrated the Lord's body, and was praying with uplifted hands when he received his death-blow. For then a soldier sent by Hyrtacus stabbed the apostle in the back and thus made him a martyr to Christ. On this being reported, the populace rushed to the palace with torches, and it was not without difficulty that the priests and deacons and other religious persons, by their pious remonstrances, prevented them from burning the king with all his court. Meanwhile, Iphigenia gave to the priests and clergy all the gold, and silver, and jewels she possessed, to enable them to build a church worthy to be dedicated in honour of the apostle, and the rest she ordered to be distributed among the poor. Hyrtacus, on his part, first employed the wives of his nobles, and afterwards the magicians, to persuade her to agree to his wishes. At last, when his suit entirely failed, he caused the building where she dwelt with the other virgins, serving God day and night, to be surrounded with flames. But when the fire was raging on all sides, an angel of the Lord appeared in company with Matthew the apostle, and comforting the sacred virgins, promised them speedy deliverance. Accordingly, before long, the Almighty sent a powerful wind, which swept the conflagration entirely away from the abode of his servant the virgin, and wrapt in flames the king's palace, until it was entirely consumed, with all his wealth. He made his escape, indeed, with great difficulty, saving his only son; but from that time he never enjoyed a moment's happiness. A powerful demon took possession of his son, and dragging him rapidly to the tomb of Matthew the apostle, the devil himself bound his hands behind him, and forced him to confess his father's crimes. As for the king, he was attacked by elephantiasis, and fell by

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his own hand, having plunged his sword through his bowels, and thus expiated the apostle's martyrdom. All the people insulted his remains, and taking Behor, the brother of Iphigenia, who had been baptized by the apostle, raised him to the throne. He was twenty-five years old when he began his reign, which lasted sixty-two years, during which he maintained a firm peace with the Romans and Persians. All the provinces of Ethiopia were supplied with churches, and many wonderful miracles were wrought at the place of the martyrdom of St. Matthew the apostle. He was the first who published a gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, which he wrote in the Hebrew tongue, and which was discovered on his own revelation, in the reign of the emperor Zeno. [1] Our holy mother the church observes the festival of his memory on the eleventh of the calends of October [September 21], and lifts voice and heart to his honour with a sweet melody:

"Holy Matthew, powerful with thy twofold gifts, without ceasing pray to Christ our Lord for us, that we hereafter may escape the eternal gulf"!

CH. XI. SS. Simon and Jude receive Persia for their province - Their acts and martyrdom.

SIMON the Canaanite, or Zelotes,- so called to distinguish him from Simon Peter, as well as from the traitor Judas, who was called also Simon Iscariot,- was of Cana, a village of Galilee, where the Lord turned water into wine. Egypt was the station in which he was allotted to preside. Jude, the son Of James, had three names; for he was called Thaddeus and Lebbeus as well as Jude. He preached in Mesopotamia and the interior of Pontus. Both Simon


[1] This legend of St. Matthew is, like the preceding ones, extracted from the fictitious Abdias, with some omissions. So little is known of the life and death of this apostle, that it is not even certain he suffered martyrdom. His gospel is generally believed to have been composed in Hebrew, or rather in Syro-Chaldaic, soon after the death of Jesus Christ, or at least before any of the others. It was soon afterwards translated into Greek. The fact of a discovery of a MS. of this gospel in the tomb of Barnabas, about the year 488, has been already noticed, p. 112. It could not have been the original text, as our author alleges, but a Greek version, as the gospel of the day was read from it on Holy Thursday in the chapel of the palace at Constantinople after it was there deposited by order of the Emperor Zeno.

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and Jude having travelled into Persia in company, after converting vast multitudes of the people of that country to the faith of Christ, suffered martyrdom on the fifth of the calends of November [October 28].

Crato, the disciple of these apostles, has given a long account of their acts during thirteen years, and their sufferings in Persia, comprising them in ten volumes, which Africanus the historian translated into Latin. Abdias also, who was ordained by those apostles bishop of Babylonia, wrote their memoirs in the Hebrew tongue, which were translated into Greek by his disciple Eutropius, from which a Latin version was also made by Africanus. [1] From these works I propose to make a short extract for the use of those who may wish to know the history of their preaching from the beginning, and by what end they left this world and departed to the realms above.

Now the holy apostles Simon and Jude, having gone into Persia by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, met there the two magicians, Zaroes and Arphaxath, who had fled from the presence of St. Matthew the apostle in Ethiopia. [2] The doctrine of these men was depraved, and full of deadly blasphemy against the Lord and his prophets. The apostles having arrived in Persia, fell in with Warardach, the general and commander of the king of the Babylonians, whose name was Xerxes, and who had engaged in war against the Indians, in consequence of their having invaded his frontier. On the apostles' arrival, the demons, who delivered false oracles to those who sacrificed to them, became dumb in all their temples, whereupon their worshippers resorted to the temple of a neighbouring city for advice. There the demons uttered groans, and intimated to those who came to


[1] "All the facts here alleged are apocryphal. We have no knowledge of any disciples of the apostles of the names of Crato or Abdias. There was no occasion for Julius Africanus, a Greek writer of the third century, to translate into Latin the stories attributed to the fictitious Abdias, because they were originally composed in that 1anguage".- M. Le Prevost, note to the Paris edition. It has escaped the learned editor's memory that a Crato, called "the philosopher", became the disciple of St. John at Ephesus, according to the account before given by Ordericus, p. 241; but he may not be the writer referred to in the text.

[2] See the legend in the account of St. Matthew, p. 271 of the present volume.

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consult them that their own gods could not speak in the presence of Simon and Jude, the apostles of God. Then Warardach, the general, caused the apostles to be searched for, and on their being found, inquired who they were, and whence they came; to which they replied that they were Hebrews, and were come there on the errand of the salvation of men. Upon his entreating them to restore the power of speech to their gods, they poured forth a prayer, and gave permission. But the fanatics were immediately led away by the demons, who predicted that a great battle would ensue, and vast numbers be slain on both sides. The apostles ridiculed this prediction, while the general was greatly alarmed; but at their instance he deferred till the morrow despatching ambassadors to demand peace. The heathen priests being incensed against the apostles, and exclaiming that low persons, in tattered garments, ought not to be allowed to speak, or be listened to in a city so magnificent as Babylon, the general ordered both the apostles and these outrageous priests to be kept in custody till the morrow, and by the advice of the former, waited till then the issue of the affair

The day following the word of the apostles was accomplished. The envoys of the general returned, mounted on swift dromedaries, with the ambassadors of the Indians, and brought intelligence that all had happened as the apostles had predicted. In short, the Indians restored the territories they had invaded, payed tribute, and concluded a treaty of lasting peace. The general, finding that the apostles had told the truth, as the event manifested, was enraged with the priests, and causing a great fire to be kindled, ordered them, with their accomplices, to be cast into the flames.

The apostles, mindful of our Lord's commands, threw themselves at the general's feet, scattering dust on their heads, and implored the pardon of their enemies, proclaiming loudly, to the admiration of all present, that such was the teaching of the God of the Christians.

In the end, Warardach ordered the priests to be numbered, and an account taken of all their possessions, in order that they might be made over to the apostles. The number of the priests attached to the temples was found to be a hundred and twenty, each of whom received from the taxes

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a pound in gold: but the chief priest received four times as much as the others. Their wealth in gold, and silver, and vestments, and cattle was so immense that it could not be reckoned. All this the general offered to the apostles, but they utterly rejected the gift, and commanded it to be distributed to the poor.

At length, however, the general, having reported these proceedings to the king, enlarging on the apostles' merits, Zaroes and Arphaxad, who were then at court, took occasion to depreciate them, endeavouring to instigate a persecution of them, unless they consented to worship their gods. The general, on his part, defended the apostles; and at length a disputation was appointed to take place in the king's presence. The magicians, having here spoken freely before all the people, the advocates on the other side were dumb, and for the space of nearly an hour no one of those who before were so eloquent and loquacious could utter a word. At length the magicians permitted them to speak, but they found themselves unable to walk, and stepping backwards, could see nothing, though their eyes were open. The spectators were much astonished at this prodigy, and reverenced the magicians, more however from fear than love. This spectacle was exhibited from dawn of day till the sixth hour, when the advocates returned home in confusion.

The general related all this to the apostles, who were much beloved by him, and he assembled in his house the advocates who had been thus foiled, presenting them to the apostles of God, that they might learn how, in obedience to their instructions, they could triumph over the magicians. The advocates, seeing before them men in mean attire, were disposed to hold them in contempt; but Simon checked their insolence by his shrewd remarks. He reminded them distinctly that articles of little worth were often inclosed in coffers of gold, enriched with diamonds; while precious jewels were deposited in common boxes of wood; and that splendid vases were filled with vinegar, while rich wines were stored in vessels presenting externally a foul aspect. Thus a mean exterior not unfrequently conceals the eminent virtues of persons, who by their merits are especially pleasing to the supreme Creator.

Then the holy apostles gave salutary counsel to the

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advocates, and commended him to God by prayers, signing them on their foreheads with the sign of the cross. Upon this, Zebedee and the other advocates, coming before the king, began to deride the magicians, who found no means of harming them. At length, in their rage, they brought in a number of serpents, to the great alarm of all the spectators. The king immediately summoned the apostles, who on their arrival filled their mantles with the serpents, and hurled them boldly against the magicians. The serpents instantly began to gnaw their flesh, till they howled like wolves, to the great joy of all who witnessed the tortures of those impious men. The king and all the people said to the apostles, "Let them die". But they answered: "We are sent to bring back from death to life, not to cast down from life to death". Then they prayed, and commanded the serpents to withdraw their venom from the magicians, and depart to their own place. But the magicians suffered still greater tortures when the serpents again gnawed their flesh and sucked their blood to eradicate the venom. When the serpents were departed, and the afflicted magicians, by the apostles' advice, had neither eat, nor drunk, nor slept, for three days, the apostles came to visit them, and instead of returning evil fer evil, healed their wounds. But the magicians still persisted in their malice, and as they had fled from the presence of St. Matthew the apostle, in Ethiopia, so they now retreated, covered with confusion, before the two apostles, and raised against them the fury of the idolaters through the whole of Persia. They went about offering sacrifices in all the temples, and by their incantations caused men to be suddenly motionless, and then free to move; suddenly blind, and again restored to sight; now deaf, and then able to hear. Thus they imposed on those who sacrificed to idols, and were like themselves.

At the entreaty of the king and his general, the apostles continued in Babylonia, working great wonders in the name of the Lord, making the deaf to hear, the lame to walk, the blind to see, and cleansing the lepers, and driving the demons out of the bodies they had taken possession of. In consequence they made many disciples, out of whom they ordained priests, and deacons, and clergy, in the churches.

The daughter of a very opulent satrap, who had been

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seduced, was in great danger during childbirth, and the deacon Eustosinus was consequently accused of having debauched her. The apostles, hearing of this, required the parents of the girl and the deacon to appear before them, and had the infant also brought, which was born the same day, at the first hour. Having commanded the infant to speak, it said in a very clear voice: "This deacon is a chaste and holy man; he has never polluted his flesh". The parents insisted on learning who was the father of the child, but the apostles replied: "It is our duty to absolve the innocent, but not to make known the guilty".

Nicharon, the king's friend, while engaging in warlike exercises, was shot by an arrow in the knee, which could not by any means be drawn out of the bone. Then the blessed Simon invoked the Lord Jesus, and applying his hand, immediately drew out the arrow, and the man was instantly healed, so that not even a sign of the wound appeared.

Two most ferocious tigresses, having escaped from their dens, devoured all that came in their way. Then the people fled to the apostles of God, who invoked the name of the Lord Jesus, upon which the savage animals, which never could be tamed, became gentle as lambs. During the day they remained like sheep among the people, and returning in the evening to the apostles' cell, became its guardians when the apostles visited other cities. From hence they took occasion mildly to instruct the people, pointing out what men gifted with reason ought to do, and how they ought to obey God, by the example of the brute animals thus exhibited to their observation.

At the entreaty of the king and the people the apostles abode at Babylon one year and three months, during which period more than sixty thousand men, besides women and children, were baptized, the king and all his courtiers being the first to receive the faith. For they saw that by a word the sick were cured, the blind received sight, and the dead were raised. Abdias, who had accompanied the apostles from Judea, and had himself seen the Lord Jesus with his own eyes, was ordained bishop, and the city [of Babylon] was full of churches. All which being duly regulated, the apostles departed, followed by crowds of disciples, to the

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number of two hundred and upwards, and they went through the twelve provinces of Persia and the cities thereof. It is now time that the passion of the holy apostles should be related. The magicians Zaroes and Arphaxad, of whom mention has been already made, committed abominations throughout the country, pretending to be of the race of the gods, but always fleeing from the face of the apostles. They only remained in any city until such time as they understood the apostles were at hand. There were seventy priests of the idol temples in Sanir, who received from the king a pound in gold each, four times a year, when they celebrated the feast of the sun, that is to say, at the beginning of spring and summer, autumn and winter. The before-named magicians raised all the opposition in their power against the apostles, and by preceding them had it in their power effectually to do so.

The holy apostles, having passed through all the provinces, took up their abode at Sanir in the house of Sennes their disciple. But on a sudden, about the first hour of the morning, the priests rushed in a body to the house of Sennes, shouting terribly that the enemies of their gods should be given up. In short, they seized the holy apostles, and dragged them to the temple of the sun. On their entering the temple, the demons cried out through some who were possessed: "What have we to do with you, O apostles of the living God! since your entrance here the flames consume us". In a chapel of the temple towards the east there was a chariot of gold drawn by four horses, in which was the statue of the sun encircled by rays also wrought in gold. In another chapel the image of the moon was wrought in silver, having a car drawn by a yoke of oxen, all in the same metal. While the priests and magicians, with the people, were urging the apostles to worship the idols, they were conversing together in the Hebrew tongue on a vision of the Lord, whom they beheld calling them into the midst of the host of angels. The angel of the Lord also appeared to them, and comforted them. Then, procuring silence, they addressed the people, pointing out to them in a reasonable manner their error of idly wasting on the creature the worship which is due to God only; and that it was injurious to him to enclose in buildings made

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with hands the sun and the moon which he had created from the beginning, and set in the heavens to give light through all generations. While all were in amazement, Simon commanded the demon to break in pieces the image of the sun and his chariot; Jude also, in like manner, commanded the image of the moon to be broken. Then two Ethiopians, with their black skins and naked bodies, and horrible features, were seen by all the people to come forth, and while crushing the images uttered hoarse and lamentable cries. Meanwhile the infuriated priests rushed on the apostles, and slew them while they were rejoicing and giving thanks to God. Sennes, their host, also suffered with them, because he refused to sacrifice to the idols. At that very time, when the heavens were perfectly serene, they shot forth bright flashes of lightning, which rent the temple into three parts from the highest pinnacle of the roof to the lowest foundation. Zaroes and Arphaxad were struck by the lightning and burnt to ashes.

Three months afterwards King Xerxes confiscated the property of the priests, and translated the bodies of the apostles with great pomp to his own city, in which he erected an octangular church, each of the angles containing eighty feet, so that its circuit embraced eight times eighty feet, the height being one hundred and twenty. It was built entirely of hewn blocks of marble, squared and faced, and the chapels were panneled with gilt plates. In the centre of the octagon was placed a sarcophagus of pure silver. Four years of incessant labour were employed in the erection, and it was completed on the birth-day of the two apostles; that is to say, the fifth of the calends of November [28th October], and worthy to be dedicated to the honour of the saints. [1] The faithful who venerate their martyrdom, which they suffered even unto death for the


[1] This is another of the legends borrowed from the fictitious Abdias. Nothing certain is known respecting the preaching and death of these two apostles. Others have made St. Simon the Cananite journey in Lybia, and even as far as England. As for St. Jude, cousin of our Lord, and brother of St. James the Less, some made him exercise his apostleship in Lybia, others in Persia. What appears more decided, is that he was married and left children. According to Eusebius, two of his grandsons, brought before Domitian as descendants of David, were sent home by that prince, and lived till the time of Trajan.

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sake of our Lord Jesus Christ, obtain heavenly gifts on that spot. We also, who, hoping in the Lord, are engaged in writing these memorials, set forth the praises of the blessed apostles who belong to the company of those who feast triumphantly with the great King, while we devoutly sing to their honour in the courts of Jerusalem, with the children who cried Hosanna to the Redeemer:-

"Blessed Simon and illustrious Thaddeus, [1] behold our grief and tears, that we, who through our fall deserve eternal punishment, may, by your intercession, obtain admission to heaven. Amen".

CH. XII. Election of St. Matthias - He preaches in Judea - and is there martyred.

MATTHIAS, one of the seventy disciples, having been elected by lot among the apostles in the place of Judas, preached in Judaea, where be suffered martyrdom for Christ. His feast is celebrated on the sixth of the calends of March [24th February], when the reverend choir in devout procession thus chants their prayer to him: "O Matthias the just! raised by lot to the throne of the twelve, free us from all the bonds of guilt that, through thy holy intercession, we may come to the joys of the true light. Amen". [2]

CH. XIII. Apostacy of Judas Iscariot - Eulogy of the eleven apostles who remained faithful - Their history given in the preceding chapters.

JUDAS, Simon Iscariot, was of the tribe of Issachar, and counted in the number of the twelve apostles. But inflamed with a fatal covetousness, having sold his master and Lord to the Jews for thirty pieces of silver, he lost the rank of an apostle, and, after a late repentance, miserably hanged himself. Even now there are many successors of Judas in the church, men who assume a sacred title without acting


[1] St. Jude is often confounded with Thaddeus, one of the seventy-two disciples who were supposed to have been sent to Edessa by St. Thomas. He is one of the apostles mentioned by St. Paul as having women in his company, which was very natural, as he was a married man.

[2] Some particulars respecting St. Matthias are to be found in the collection of the Bollandists, under the 24th of February, unknown to our author, because they were only introduced into the church in the twelfth century, by a monk of Treves. This apostle seems to have confined himself to Palestine.

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worthily of it. Unworthy as he was, Judas had worthy and mystical names by which false Christians are typified in the church. For instance, Judas means confessing; by which name those are signified, who, as the apostle says, "profess that they know God, but deny him by their works". Moreover, Simon means obedient, by which word are signified hypocrites and deceivers, and those who obey falsely, not doing the will of God from love of him and desire of heaven, but speciously following the traditions of their elders, for vainglory and the applause of men. Many among them are blinded by their covetousness, like Judas Iscariot, and quitting the pursuits and the companionship of good men, fall readily into detestable crimes and become indissolubly entangled in the snares of sin, enjoying a transitory reward in the present life, and receiving some recompense for a certain propriety and exterior decency of conduct, they are elated with vanity; but in the future life they will wail, inextricably chained, in the loathsome dungeons of hell, and tormented for the sins they have committed with indescribable forms of punishment, without any hope of forgiveness.

The traitor Judas having withdrawn from the company of the apostles, what did those merit who remained faithful to the Lord Jesus? Unspeakable honour and eternal blessedness. Holy mother church holds, and every true Catholic faithfully believes, that the twelve apostles are truly blessed and exalted and partakers of everlasting felicity. The salt of the earth and the light of the world, the twelve hours of the eternal day, the fruitful branches of the true vine, the fellow labourers with Christ, and fellow heirs of his heavenly kingdom, their memories are everywhere cherished in the hearts of the faithful, and who are honoured by all nations who profess the true faith, and devoutly reckoned the teachers of the people and rulers of the churches, as being appointed by Christ judges of the world, strict censors of the reprobate, but kind helpers of the devout, and their constant intercessors. For, holding all worldly things in contempt, they indissolubly attached themselves to Christ who is the true vine and life eternal. And now they reign in heaven with the King of kings, joining with the angels in praising him for ever, and sitting on twelve thrones, judge, with the Lord, the twelve tribes

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of Israel. I have searched out their acts as they are read in the church, and employed myself in abbreviating their histories, as I find them recorded in ancient books.

CH. XIV. Companions and successors of the apostles - St. Barnabas.

I PURPOSE now to treat of the companions and successors of the apostles, and by God's help will give a faithful account of some of them in my present work. I enter upon this undertaking from no vain fancy that they need my commendation, of whom God himself is the praise, who reigns Triune through all eternity, and blesses his saints with everlasting rewards in his own presence; but my work is intended to exhibit my devotion to these blessed saints, and to obtain their favour, in order that I may piously obtain my own salvation through their intercession. Joseph, surnamed Barnabas, that is to say, the son of consolation, and a native of the city of Cyprus, founded by Cyrus king of Persia, was joined with Paul in his mission to the gentiles the third year after our Lord's passion. [1] He was one of the seventy-two disciples of our Lord, and taking part with the apostles both in their joys and tribulations, ministered, as his name implies, the utmost consolation to the faithful.

In the first place, he sold the land he possessed and laid the price of it at the apostles' feet. He gave the hand of fellowship to Paul after his conversion, introducing him to the apostles by whom he was as yet unknown and suspected, and relating the account of his call to those who were ignorant of it. He was sent by the apostles to Antioch, where he rejoiced at seeing the grace of God manifested in the disciples, and by his preaching a great multitude was converted to the Lord. Thence he went to Tarsus to find Saul, and having found him brought him to Antioch, where both sojourned a whole year and taught much people: there the disciples were first called Christians. [2]

Barnabus and Saul, being compassionate and benevolent, brought the alms of the gentile believers to the brethren in Judea. On their return from Jerusalem, after accomplishing this mission, they joined John whose surname was


[1] Acts iv. 36.

[2] Acts xi. 29, 30; xii. 25; xiii. 1-48.

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Mark, and continued at Antioch among the prophets and doctors. And as these were ministering to the Lord and fasting, the Holy Ghost said unto them: "Separate me Saul and Barnabas for the work whereunto I have called them". And being sent forth by the Holy Ghost they came to Seleucia, and then sailed to Cyprus. Afterwards they struck Barjesus, the magician, who was also called Elymas, with blindness for a time, converted Sergius Paulus the proconsul to the true faith, and brought great multitudes to the light of truth. [1]

While, therefore, the elect walked in the way of faith and righteousness, the reprobates, inflamed with rage, made a tumult and drove the apostles out of their neighbourhood. But they, rejoicing and filled with the Holy Ghost, preached the word of God, and converted to the Lord great multitudes of Jews and Greeks. [2]

Coming to Lystra they healed one who was lame from his mother's womb; on seeing which miracle the people took them for gods, saying: "The gods are come down unto us in the likeness of men". And they called Barnabas Jupiter, and Paul Mercury. And the priest of Jupiter who was near the city brought oxen and garlands to the gates and would have sacrificed with the people. But the apostles, in horror of such an abomination, drove them away, and rending their clothes ran among the people exclaiming against it with much reasonable discourse, which with difficulty persuaded the crowd from sacrificing to them. [3]

After this they came to Derbe, preaching the gospel there, teaching many, and giving them instruction in virtue. And passing through several provinces in which they made known the word of God, at length they arrived at Jerusalem, and being received by the holy apostles told what wonderful things God had wrought by their means. At that time some evil disposed persons raised questions respecting the necessity of circumcision. Upon this the apostles took counsel and sent Paul and Barnabas to Antioch to allay the dissensions, who, coming there armed with an apostolic epistle, succeeded by their preaching in exterminating the impious heresy. [4]


[1] Acts xi. 29, 30; xii. 25; xiii. 1-48.

[2] Acts xiii. 49-52.

[3] Acts xiv. 6-17.

[4] Acts xiv, 6; xv. 1-21.

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Like true pastors, they published the word of God, taught the ignorant, healed the sick, and anxiously devoted themselves to promote religion in every way. They therefore frequently visited the churches in which they set forth the true faith, using every precaution lest the neophytes should fall into heresy. For they knew how crafty were the wiles of Satan, and watched against the hearts of the regenerate becoming foul with the deadly seed of the tares. Afterwards, as Luke the evangelist relates, it seemed expedient that Paul should return to Jerusalem, and Barnabas to Cyprus his native city, having John, surnamed Mark, as his co-adjutor in the ministry. He had been a gentile, and, with his companion Orduon, was in the service of Cyril, the high priest of the execrable Jupiter, but was baptized by Paul and Barnabas at a place called Iconium, and afterwards faithfully accompanied them in their journeyings.

At length, while the apostles just named were preaching in Pamphilia, and many, both Jews and gentiles, believed in the Lord, it was revealed to Paul by the vision of an angel in the night that he should quickly go to Jerusalem, and permit Barnabas to return to Cyprus. Having made known the vision, they prayed on bended knees, and kissing each other, bade farewell with many tears, and separated in the body, never again saw each other in this life. [1]

Barnabas and John now visited Laodicea and came to a city called Anemoria, [2] where certain prudent and well-disposed gentiles, having heard Christ preached, believed, and being baptized, received the grace of the Holy Ghost. They then sailed to Cyprus, where they found Timon and Aristion, servants of the Lord. Timon was suffering from a burning fever, but Barnabas having laid his hands on him, with the holy gospel, invoking the name of our Lord Jesus, the fever immediately left him, and his strength was so restored that he followed with joy the Lord's saints.

By the instructions of the apostles, St. Barnabas always


[1] Acts xv. 2, 33, 39. It was not to return to Jerusalem that St. Paul finally separated from St. Barnabas; and their parting does not appear to have been so friendly as our author describes it. The sacred writer says, "The contention was so sharp between them, that they parted asunder one from the other".

[2] Pliny calls this place Anemurium.

LEGEND OF ST. BARNABAS. 289

carried with him the gospel of St. Matthew the apostle, and, wherever be found sick persons, laid it upon them, and they were immediately healed of whatever disease they laboured under. Barnabas also ordained Heraclius, who had been baptized by the apostle Paul, bishop, for the teaching of the faithful. Afterwards when Barnabas wished to gain admission to Paphos, Barjesus, the Jewish sorcerer, whom Paul had struck blind for a time, recognized the apostle, and opposing him to the utmost of his power, forbade his entering Paphos. The holy man, however, came to a certain place where he saw the heathens, both men and women, running naked in public games. His indignation being roused he cursed the temple; and immediately part of it fell down, from the foundation upwards, and many of the heathens were crushed and perished in the ruins, but those who escaped took refuge in the temple of Apollo. The illustrious champion of Christ now entered the city of Salamis, and finding there a synagogue of Jews, he constantly preached the gospel to them and converted many of the Jews to the faith of Christ. Upon finding this, Barjesus displayed all the malice of which he was capable, and raised a tumult against the holy apostles of God. The Jews were willing to arrest Barnabas and deliver him to the consul of Salamis, having first subjected him to much suffering and various kinds of tortures. At length, as they were dragging him to judgment, bruised and shaken with their ill-usage, they found that Eusebius, an illustrious and powerful man, and a relation of the emperor's, had landed in the island, and fearing that he would snatch their victim out of their hands, they fastened a rope round his neck and dragged him lacerated from the synagogue to the Hippodrome, and from thence outside the gate. There they made a fire round him and cruelly burnt him. Thus the blessed apostle, after many sufferings and long conflicts, was burnt for the love of Christ, and departed to everlasting joys. The impious Jews, not content with his death, collected his remains, and enclosing them in a leaden coffer, intended to throw it into the sea; but John Mark, with Timon and Rodon, carried off the holy body by night and deposited it in the crypt which had been formerly the habitation Of the Jebuseans on the third of the ides [11th] of June. In consequence of this

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secret interment the venerable remains lay concealed for a number of years, the Christians not being able to discover where they were buried. At length they were found, by the revelation of the apostle himself, in the time of the emperor Zeno and pope Gelasius, when they were gloriously enshrined with hymns and thanksgivings to the honour of God. Blessings are bestowed on those who piously implore them through the merits of St. Barnabas the apostle, of which may the abundant grace of God, which works without ceasing, make us partakers, who is the protector through all ages of those whom he has predetermined to life. Amen. [1]

Ca. XV. Acts of St. Mark - Legend of his mission to Aquileia - Appointed first bishop of Alexandria - His apostleship there and in the Pentapolis - His martyrdom - His remains translated to Aquileia and Venice.

MARK, the evangelist, was both the disciple and the scribe of St. Peter the apostle, whose son he was in baptism, and from whose dictation he wrote his gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is reported of him that he caused his thumb to be cut off that he might be disqualified for the priesthood, but was so far from being rejected by the apostles on that account that they elected him bishop of Alexandria. When St. Peter was at Rome, he called upon him to preach the gospel to the Gentiles in Italy. "Why", he said, "do you remain inactive with us? you are fully informed of all that Jesus of Nazareth did; arise and go to Aquileia, and there propagate among the people the doctrines of the true religion". Mark, having his province for preaching thus allotted, and receiving the episcopal staff, took the road assigned to him and arrived at Aquileia, which is the first of the cities of Italy. He found there a young man afflicted with leprosy, whose name was Ataulfus, son of Ulfinus, the first and most illustrious of the citizens; and having spoken with him, took him by the hand and arm, and immediately the hand and arm were cleansed of the leprosy. Perceiving this, the youth ran to his father, and told him


[1] This history of St. Barnabas is compiled, with some slight variations, from his Acts, alleged to have been written by his disciple John Mark. They are to be found in the collection of the Bollandists, 11th of June.

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with joy what Mark had done to him. Upon this, Ulfinus hastening to the apostle, with a great crowd, found him sitting at the eastern gate, and implored him with eagerness to heal his son. Upon its being promised, if he believed, he declared his belief in the Lord Jesus; whereupon Mark baptized the young man, and he was entirely freed from the leprosy. After this cure Ulfinus also, with all his household, was baptized, and a multitude of the people besides, on the same day. After some years, Mark, desiring to see Peter, proposed to withdraw privately and go to Rome; but the people, discovering his design, assembled round him in great numbers at the dawn of day, and entreated him with shouts to appoint them a pastor. Then Hermagoras, being elected by the people, was taken by St. Mark with him to Rome. There he was ordained by St. Peter the apostle, first bishop of the Italian province, and after many miracles which God wrought by him among the people, he was martyred, with Fortunatus his arch-deacon, in the reign of the emperor Nero, under Sebastus the prefect, on the third of the ides [13th] of July. [1]

As for the blessed St, Mark, he undertook the government of the church of Alexandria by the command of St. Peter the apostle, being the first who preached the gospel of Christ in the land of Egypt. He also proclaimed the true religion in Marmorica and Ammonian Libya, or the Pentapolis; the inhabitants of this country being uncircumcised idolaters, in the practice of all uncleanness. When therefore Mark arrived at Cyrene in the Pentapolis, and found the natives immersed in execrable wickedness, beginning with a discourse on divine things, he healed the sick in the name of the Lord, cleansing lepers, and expelling many evil spirits by his word alone. Numbers who witnessed these miracles believed, and destroying their idols, and cutting down their sacred groves, were baptized in the name of the Triune God.

After this, it was commanded him by a revelation of the Holy Spirit that he should go to Alexandria. [2] Mark


[1] The legend, which is evidently apocryphal, of this pretended patriarch of Aquileia is to be found in Mombritius.

[2] The text reads Alexandriae phanum; perhaps employed as a synonym for pharum, a pharos, or beacon. The French translator renders it temple d'Alexandrie, supposing phanum to be a corruption of fanum.

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therefore took leave of the brethren, making known to them what had been revealed; and they accompanied him to the ship, and having broken bread together they parted from him, saying: "Jesus Christ prosper you in your journey". He reached Alexandria on the seventh day, and disembarking from the ship hastened to the city, when, as he was entering it, his sandal burst. "Truly", he said, "my journey is now at an end".

The holy man gave his sandal to a certain cobbler named Aniarius, to be mended; who, while at work upon it, sharply punctured his hand, exclaiming at the same time: "There is but one God". The blessed Mark hearing this said, inwardly rejoicing: "The Lord has prospered my journey"; and spitting on his right hand he anointed the man's hand, saying, "May this hand be healed in the name of Jesus Christ the Son of the living God", and it was instantly healed. The cobbler, struck by the presence of such a man and the efficacy of his words, as well as by the modesty of his appearance, requested him to honour his house by eating bread with him. Mark entering with joy, pronounced a blessing, with prayer, and made known the tidings of the gospel to all who heard him, declaring that the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. He subsequently added to his instructions signs and wonders in the name of the Lord, and Aniarius, being baptized with his whole household and many of his neighbours, became the assistant of his teacher in preaching the truth. Meanwhile the idolaters of Alexandria, perceiving that the Galilaean preacher was destroying their worship and ceremonies, sought to put him to death and laid many snares for him. But the blessed Mark, who knew their designs, ordained Aniarius bishop, and three priests, Melirius, Paberius, and Cerdon, with seven deacons, and eleven others with functions in the service of the church. After that he went into the Pentapolis, and dwelt there two years, comforting the brethren who were already believers, and ordaining bishops and clergy in those parts. Returning to Alexandria he found the brethren increased in faith and grace. Seeing also a church built by them at a place called

MARTYRDOM OF ST. MARK. 293

the Bucolia, that is, the cattle market, which is under the cliffs by the sea-shore, he was greatly delighted, and kneeling down glorified God, and kindly lent his aid to the good work by his exhortations and prayers.

In the fulness of time, when the Christians were multiplied, and the images of the idols overthrown, the heathen learned the return of the holy apostle, and were filled with rage at the miracles which they found him perform. For he healed the sick, preached to the unbelievers, and made the deaf to hear and the dumb to speak. But though they determined to arrest him, they were not able to find him; so that they gnashed their teeth in their idolatrous ceremonies, and exclaimed in their orgies: "Great is the power of this magician". At length on Easter Sunday, that is the eighth of the calends of May [24th April], at the time when the feast of Serapis was celebrated, their spies discovered the apostle consecrating the most holy offering to the Divine Majesty. These impious men immediately seized the servant of God, and putting a rope round his neck, dragged him cruelly over the stones, so that they were sprinkled with his blood, and the soil stained with his torn flesh. But while they were shouting with fury: "Let us drag this buffalo to the bull-ring", St. Mark offered praises to God, saying: "O Lord Jesus Christ, I give thee thanks that thou hast thought me worthy thus to suffer for thy name".

Night approaching, the idolaters threw him into prison, while they consulted by what death he should be despatched. But at midnight, when the doors were close shut and the keepers were slumbering before the gates, behold there was a great earthquake, and an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and touching him, said: "Mark, the servant of God, the first and chief publisher of his holy laws throughout Egypt, lo, thy name is written in the book of life, and thy memorial shall be preserved through all ages. Thou art admitted into the fellowship of the hosts above; in the heavens they shall receive thy spirit, and thy rest shall know no end". On hearing this the blessed Mark, stretching out his hands to heaven said: "I give thee thanks, O Lord Jesus Christ, that thou hast not deserted me, but hast remembered me among thy saints.

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Receive, I beseech thee, O Lord Jesus Christ, my soul in peace, and suffer me not to be longer separated from thee". When he had said this, the Lord Jesus came to him in the form, and clothed, as he had dwelt with his disciples before his passion, saying to him: "Peace be with thee, Mark, my evangelist". Mark replied: "Thanks be unto thee, O Lord". And in the morning the whole populace of the city assembled, and again putting the rope round his neck dragged him away, saying: "Take this buffalo to the bull-ring". And as he went along, he gave thanks to God, saying: "Into thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit"; and so saying, he gave up the ghost. An immense crowd of the heathen now lighted a fire in the place which is called, "Of the Angels"; resolving to burn the sacred remains. But by God's providence, a violent tempest arose, with a strong wind, and the sun's face was hidden, and there was loud thunder. Heavy rain also fell from morning to night, so that many houses were washed away and numbers perished. The guards, in terror, abandoned the body of the saint and fled; and some said, mocking, that Serapis raised the storm on his feast-day in hatred of his enemy.

Devout men then came and took the body and buried it with honour in a tomb of hewn stone on the seventh of the calends of May [25th April]. Thus St. Mark the evangelist, the first bishop of Alexandria, suffered martyrdom for Christ, and his body was buried on the eastern side of the city. After a long course of years, when Alexandria was threatened with the incursions of the infidels, who overran all the east like locusts, and subdued the greatest part of the world both to the north and the south, the faithful Christians translated the apostle's remains to Aquileia where St. Mark first propagated the faith of Christ. [1] The bishop of Aquileia therefore has now succeeded to the patriarchate formerly held by the bishop of Alexandria, and holds the fourth primacy in the


[1] It is generally believed that St. Mark was sent by St. Peter to govern the church of Alexandria about A.D. 52, and that he there suffered martyrdom in the eighth year of Nero's reign, the 25th of April, 62. Our author is one of the oldest writers who has given credit to his pretended mission to Aquileia. As for the details, equally apocryphal, which are here given of his apostleship at Alexandria and his martyrdom, they are almost identically the same as those supplied by the Bollandists under the 1st of April.

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world from reverence for St. Mark, to whom Peter, who bears the keys of heaven, committed Egypt, appointing him chief pastor in the southern regions for the salvation of many souls. The Venetians [1] and people of the west now glory in possessing the remains of the blessed evangelist, and continually pay them reverence to the praise of Almighty God, beseeching him that they may be reckoned in the number of the blessed for ever and ever. Amen.

CH. XVI. St. Luke writes his gospel, and the Acts of the Apostles - Dies in Bithynia? - His remains translated to Constantinople.

ST. LUKE the evangelist, a native of Syria, who practised the art of medicine at Antioch with great skill, became a disciple of the apostles of Christ, and following St. Paul even to his martyrdom, remained constant in unblemished celibacy, serving the Lord. By divine inspiration, he wrote his gospel in the parts of Achaia, setting forth to the believing Greeks our Lord's incarnation in a faithful narrative, and showing how he was descended from the stock of David. He afterwards published a special book for the purpose of clearly recording the acts of the Apostles, and the first beginning of the infant church. These two books Luke dedicated to Theophilus, that, is one who loves God, and published them for all who, under the inspiration of the holy Ghost, are inflamed by a double charity. In his first book he has described the true priesthood of Christ, in which the Lamb of God has expiated the sin of the world by shedding his own precious blood. In the second, he has unfolded the majesty of the ineffable Deity, to which the Son of God has ascended at the right hand of the Father in human flesh, and related the descent of the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete, on the apostles in tongues of fire, through which the primitive church shone with so glorious a light. In these two books of Luke the spiritual physician, is found the true medicine by which the deadly diseases of sin are expelled, and the remedy of justification unto life is provided for all who religiously


[1] Every one knows that the republic of Venice claimed to be under the especial protection of St. Mark, in virtue of possessing the relics of the holy evangelist, and many will recollect the richly decorated basilica of Byzantine architecture, and the stately piazza which bear the saint's cherished name. The lion of St. Mark was emblazoned on the standard of the republic.

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seek it. The blessed Luke proclaimed the Lord by his writings as well as his discourses, and exhibited the light of truth to those who were in darkness. Among other miracles, he is said to have restored life to a dead man, in the name of the Lord. At length, he died in Bithynia at the age of eighty-three years, full of the Holy Ghost, on the fifteenth of the calends of November [18th October]. His bones, with those of St. Andrew the apostle, and Timothy, St. Paul's disciple, were translated to Constantinople on the seventh of the ides [9th] of May, in the twentieth year of the reign of the emperor Constantine. [1]

CH. XVII. St. Martial, apostle of the Gauls, first bishop of Limoges - Legend of his life and martyrdom.

I HAVE now gladly enumerated all the apostles and evangelists who were contemporary with and companions of our Saviour, the same our Lord lending me his help; and have briefly and faithfully collected their sacred histories, as well as I could, digesting them from various works into one continued narrative.

It yet remains that I should give some account of the blessed Martial of Limoges, whose extraordinary virtues have raised him to the highest rank of saints after the apostles. Aurelian, whom he restored from death in the name of the Lord, has written the details of his life with order, truth, and diligence. From this narrative I propose to make some extracts, invoking the Holy Spirit to vouchsafe his aid to my undertaking.

While our Lord Jesus Christ was preaching in Judea, and great crowds of the Jews flocked around him, furnishing him with things necessary for his human wants, and learning the way of salvation by attentively listening to his instructions, one of the noblest of the Jews of the tribe of Benjamin, whose name was Marcellus, came to him, bringing with him his wife Elizabeth, and his only son Martial, who was then fifteen years of age. Beholding his marvellous works, and the saving doctrines he preached, they believed in Christ with contrite hearts, and at his command were baptized by the blessed apostle St. Peter. When all the others returned


[1] It is the commonly received opinion that St. Luke wrote his gospel while he was in Greece, about A.D. 53. He did not die in Bithynia as here stated, but in Achaia, probably at Patras, at a very advanced age. The translation of his relics to Constantinople took place the 3rd March, 357.

ST. MARTIAL, APOSTLE OF THE GAULS. 297

to their own homes, Martial devoted himself entirely to the Lord Jesus, and became one of his constant disciples. In so doing, be closely attached himself to the apostle Peter to whom he was nearly related. He was a spectator of the raising of Lazarus after being four days in the grave, as well as of many other miracles. He ministered with Cleophas at the last supper, and other mystical rites, and was present with other disciples, at sundry appearances of our Lord after his resurrection, and at his glorious ascension. He partook of the blessings connected with the descent of the Holy Spirit, and was abundantly endowed with his supernatural gifts, so that he was well prepared by grace and faith for prosecuting vigorously the work of evangelizing.

When the apostles were dispersed, Martial went to Antioch with his kinsman St. Peter the apostle, and thence, seven years afterwards, to Rome. There Peter and his companions were hospitably entertained by Marcellus, the consul, living for some time in his palace, and preaching publicly to the Romans the saving precepts of eternal life. At that time the Lord Jesus appeared to St. Peter, and commanded him to send Martial to preach in the provinces of Gaul. The apostle then called Martial to him, and duly informed him of the divine command; upon hearing which he wept bitterly, from fear of such distant countries and barbarous tribes. But the blessed Peter gently consoled him, and, reminding him of the divine monitions, sent him on his errand of preaching the gospel. Without delay, therefore, Martial, with two priests, Alpinian and Austriclinian, set forward on the journey enjoined him. Austriclinian, however, dying on the road, Martial returned sorrowful to Rome, and informed Peter of the death of his companion. But at the apostle's command, he returned to his deceased brother, and, touching his body with the apostle's staff, he was immediately restored to life, by the merits and intercessions of the saints.

Martial then, prosecuting his journey with his disciples, arrived at the castle of Tulle, [1] where he was hospitably entertained by a wealthy man named Arnulf, with whom he


[1] M. Le Prevost considers that this is not Tulle in the Limousin, the Latin name of which was Tutela, but a place called Toulx on Cassini's map, on an elevated spot in La Marche, a few leagues N.E. of Gueret, where the foundations of a fortification and many Roman antiquities have been discovered.

298 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVII.

remained two months, diligently employed in publishing the word of God. Crowds of people flocked to him daily, hearing thankfully from his lips the words of salvation, and witnessing miracles before unknown. During this time the daughter of Arnulf, who was daily vexed by a devil, was delivered from the unclean spirit at the command of Martial, and became as one dead; but the man of God took her by the hand, and, raising her up, restored her to her father, perfectly healed. He was holy, benevolent, humble, and constant in prayer.

The governor of the castle of Tulle whose name was Nerva, and who was related to the emperor Nero, had a son who was strangled by the devil. Upon this, the father and mother of the deceased, with all the crowd who were present, threw themselves at the feet of Martial and placed the youth's corpse before him with loud cries and lamentations, exclaiming in their grief: "Man of God, help us". The holy pontiff had compassion on the sorrow of these people; indeed he himself and his disciples wept with them, and they joined in prayer to Almighty God for the restoration of life to the dead. The prayer being ended, and the holy prelate having commanded the dead man to arise whole in the name of the crucified Saviour, he forthwith arose, and, throwing himself at the feet of the holy man, began to cry out: "Baptize me, thou man of God: and sign me with the sign of the faith"; adding: "Two angels came to me with great swiftness, saying that I should be restored to life by the prayers of the blessed Martial. Hell has no bounds; there is nothing but weeping and bitterness, darkness, wafflings and groanings, and deep sorrow; the heat and cold are intense and terrible, and never fail; there are the gnawings of serpents, and insupportable smells, corruption and misery, and the worm that never dies; there are infernal gaolers who torment the souls they seize with various sufferings". When he had made this and similar declarations, all the people began to confess the Lord, and three thousand six hundred souls of both sexes were baptized on the spot. Many gifts were offered to the blessed man, all which he

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commanded to be given to the poor. After this he went to the idol images, and broke and reduced to atoms all their sculptured statues.

The blessed prelate with his disciples came next to the village of Ahun, [1] and preached the true faith to the idolaters, who were deceived by the snares of the devil. Upon this the heathen priests assembled, and severely beat the holy preachers. But they, blessing the Lord and patiently bearing their ill-treatment for his sake, and faithfully supplicating his aid in this imminent peril, their persecutors were suddenly struck blind, and, holding each other by the hand, groped their way to the statue of Mercury. On their consulting the oracle as usual, it made no reply, the demon being bound by the angels of God. Having recourse to another idol they learned that their god could give them no answer, because he was chained by the angels of God in fetters of flame.

The priests who had been struck blind, came therefore to St. Martial, and throwing themselves at his feet implored his pardon; and the holy bishop restored their sight, and, presenting himself with all the people before the image of Jupiter, he adjured the demon in the Lord's name to come out, and break in pieces the statue in presence of the multitude; which command was immediately obeyed and the statue reduced to atoms. Two thousand six hundred souls were baptized there.

A man who was paralytic, hearing of this miracle, caused himself to be carried to the man of God. He was of high family, and rich in gold and silver, and great possessions. When now the man of God heard his entreaties and perceived his faith, he took him by the hand, and, praying for him, healed him. Thus restored to health, the paralytic glorified God, and offered rewards to the man of God, which he refused to accept, and ordered all to be distributed among the people.

While St. Martial dwelt there, the Lord appeared to him in a vision, saying: "Fear not to go down to Limoges, for I will glorify thee in that place, and will be ever with thee". Thereupon the blessed bishop, having encouraged those he had baptized, commended them to the Lord, and went to the


[1] Ahun, near Gueret.

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city with his disciples. They were hospitably received in the house of a noble widow named Susanna, and on the morrow began to preach the Lord in public.

There was a man afflicted with frenzy and bound in fetters in the house where the man of God was entertained, whom no one dared to unloose. Susanna having supplicated the bishop to heal him as he had done others who were sick, he yielded to her entreaties, and, making the sign of the cross over the diseased man, his chains fell off, and he was made whole. The noble mother, and her daughter Valeria, upon witnessing this miracle, believed, and were baptized by the holy bishop, with six hundred of their household.

The priests of the idols, being incensed that the holy men preached in the theatre, severely scourged them, and threw them into prison; but St. Martial and his companions bore patiently the injuries they received, giving thanks to God. St. Martial was praying about the third hour of the day following, when suddenly a light like that of the bright sun shone in the dungeon, and the fetters of those who were confined fell to pieces, and the doors were opened; so that all who witnessed it entreated to be baptized. The city was shaken with an earthquake, there were lightnings and thunder, the heathen seeking in vain the protection of their idols, for the priests who had scourged the holy men of God were killed by a thunderbolt. The citizens, therefore, were struck with universal terror, and, rushing to the prison, threw themselves at the bishop's feet, entreating pardon and help. The bishop and his colleagues offering their prayers, Aurelian and Andrew [1] were restored to life, and, throwing themselves on their knees, sought forgiveness, confessing the true God, with all the people who saw with amazement sueh unheard-of prodigies. The day following St. Martial assembled the whole population, from the least to the eldest, and, having addressed to them a suitable exhortation, baptized them all. Thus twenty-two thousand believed in the Lord, and submitted with joy to his saving worship.

The holy bishop then hastened with all the people to the temple, in which stood the statues of Jupiter, Mercury, Diana, and Venus, and, destroying the images, converted the


[1] Probably two of the idol-priests so named.

MARTYRDOM OF VALERIA. 301

temple into a church dedicated to the honour of St. Stephen, the first martyr.

The blessed Susanna died happily in the Lord, and was buried by St. Martial with great honour. She had conferred innumerable gifts and possessions on the holy bishop, and had granted to him the service of a number of her slaves. Moreover, her daughter Valeria devoted her virginity to the Lord, and, full of the Holy Ghost, showed herself a model of all good works. Hearing that Duke Stephen, to whom she was betrothed, was on his road to Limoges, and feeling sure that he would be grievously offended by her vow of chastity, she distributed to the poor all her wealth in gold, and silver, and vestments of various kinds, and precious stones. She had already joined her mother in making over to the holy bishop all their domains, with their slaves and serfs, that after his death his holy remains might be there interred.

Duke Stephen's principality extended from the river Rhone to the ocean, and he possessed all the country on this side the Loire, with Aquitaine, inhabited by the Gascons and Goths. [1] He was not called king, because no prince assumed that title except Nero, who possessed the Roman empire. On Stephen's reaching Limoges, he ordered Valeria, his affianced bride, to be conducted to him, and, finding from the conference that he was rejected by her, and that it was certain he would never prevail on her to become his wife, he became so enraged that he broke off the conversation, and ordered her to be immediately led out of the city and beheaded. Arrived at the place of execution she foretold the sudden death of the executioner, and, spreading out her hands in prayer, commended herself with confidence to the Lord her God. During her prayer a voice was heard from above, saying: "Fear not, Valeria, thou art expected in the celestial brightness which never ends". The virgin rejoiced at


[1] We might be surprised to find the Goths and Gascons settled in Aquitaine during the first century, if it were not known that the legend writers of the middle ages stuck at no anachronism. It was not till the beginning of the fifth ceatury (A.D. 412) that the Goths took possession of the basin of the Garonne, and in the course of the sixth the province of Novempopulanie changed its name for that of Gascony, derived from the Gascons of Spain. The only historical personage of this country of the name of Stephen was a count of Auvergne, killed by the Normans in 864.

302 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVII.

hearing these words, and, lifting up her eyes to heaven, said: "Lord, into thy hands I commend my spirit". Having thus spoken, she voluntarily offered her neck to the executioner, who cut off her head with a single blow. Many persons saw her spirit depart from the body, bright as the sun, and rising to heaven in a globe of fire, with a choir of angels, singing: "Blessed art thou, Valeria, martyr of Christ, for thou hast kept the commandments of God. Henceforth thou shalt be for ever in his sight, in the brightness of the light that knows no end".

The squire of Duke Stephen, who had beheaded Valeria, hearing these words hastened to his master, and told him all he had seen and heard. Mentioning last the virgin's prediction of his own impending death, he was struck by an angel, and fell at the duke's feet, and presently expired. Fear and trembling seized the duke and all the people, and the duke, covering himself with sackcloth, requested the blessed Martial to come to him. On his arrival, the duke prostrated himself at his feet, and said, with many tears: "I have sinned, most holy man, in that I have shed the blood of the righteous; but I pray thee to restore this my squire to life, and cause me to believe in your God". Then the holy bishop convoked the whole Christian population, and exhorted them all to supplicate for the recovery of the dead man. Silence being then made, he himself prayed with a loud voice, and, his prayer ended, he approached the body of the dead, and taking his hand commanded him to rise in the name of the Lord. And he immediately arose, and, throwing himself at the bishop's feet entreated to be baptized. Duke Stephen, also, on seeing this miracle; knelt before the holy bishop, imploring his forgiveness for the sin he had committed. The blessed prelate, therefore, enjoined him a penance for putting to death the virgin and martyr, and baptized him with all his counts, and officers, and the whole army, and all the people of both sexes, to the number of fifteen thousand. The duke of whom we are speaking, gave to Martial, his master in Christ, large sums of gold and silver, that he might build churches to the honour of the Lord. He also granted him large domains, with many beneficiary estates, and vineyards, and serfs, in the province of Limoges, to enable him to embellish the churches he built,

CHRISTIAN GAULS AT ROME. 303

and to supply the wants of the clergy, who were to serve God in them. He afterwards erected a hospital for the poor, to the charitable memory of Valeria, in which he directed three hundred poor persons to be fed daily. He also founded another, in which he made provision for refreshment being given daily to a crowd of the indigent, to the number of six hundred; and he also built a church over the tomb of St. Valeria, virgin and martyr.

Meanwhile Stephen, prince of the Gauls, was summoned to Italy by order of the emperor Nero, and there served in the army for six months with four legions of soldiers. During his military service Stephen did not forget the divine laws, but so ordered his troops that every one was satisfied with his own, and if any committed robbery he suffered death. After the term of his service was expired Stephen obtained his leave of absence, but he was unwilling to return to his own states until he had seen the blessed Peter the apostle. He hastened therefore, with all his troops, to Rome, and entering the city they found the apostle teaching great crowds of people in a place called the Vatican. Approaching the apostle with bare feet and sackcloth on their loins, they knelt before him and humbly besought his blessing. St. Peter, seeing the flower of the youth of Gaul, and learning that they had all been instructed in the gospel of Christ and baptized by the blessed Martial, was filled with joy and gave blessings to the Lord. He made many anxious inquiries of the pious duke concerning the manners and grace and way of life of the holy bishop, and the duke took pleasure in recounting many particulars of his goodness and miracles, and the conversion of the people who hastened from all parts to the font of holy baptism.

When the duke had received absolution from the apostle for having shed the blood of the innocent Valeria, he offered him the two hundred gold livres which he had just received as a donation from the emperor Nero, but the apostle directed him to take the gold to the holy bishop, that he might employ it in erecting churches or relieving the poor. Having therefore received the apostolic benediction, Stephen and his soldiers returned to Gaul, and at the duke's suggestion they visited their common father before they returned to their own homes. Arriving at a certain royal palace called

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St. Junien, they pitched their tents and pavilions on the bank of the river Vienne. [1] The heat of the weather drove them to the river for refreshment both from the dust and from the sun's rays, when Hildebert, son of Arcadius count of Poitou, was drowned by the devil at a place called Garri, and died on the spot, nor could his body be found although the whole army searched for it. Arcadius and all the soldiers were overwhelmed with grief, and hastening with lamentations to Limoges, he humbly implored the aid of Martial on his son's behalf. Great crowds of Goths and Saxons, and people of other provinces, had now flocked to Limoges, desiring to bear the word of salvation from the holy man. Arcadius therefore and all the people threw theinselves at Martial's feet, beseeching him with much lamentation on behalf of the young man drowned in the river. The holy man wept with them, and came to the place clothed in sackcloth, and with naked feet. All present joining in prayer, the man of God adjured the demons, who lurked in a hollow of the channel, that they should render themselves visible to the people and bring the corpse of the young man to the river-bank. Immediately the body was cast ashore at the distance of about six furlongs, the demons appearing iu the shape of swine. At length, the people making deprecatory prayers and the bishop adjuring, they rushed violently from the river, and came and lay down at the feet of St. Martial. They were like the Ethiopians, black as soot, their feet enormous, their eyes terrible and bloody, their whole body was covered with bristly hair, and from their mouths and nostrils they breathed sulphureous flames. Their speech resembled the croakings of the raven; and when the bishop demanded their names one of them answered; "I am called thousand-craft, because I have a thousand arts of deceiving the human race". Another said; "I am called Neptune, because I have dragged numbers of men into this hole and plunged them into the torments of hell". The holy bishop inquired, "Why do you wear rings of fire on your snouts"? The demons replied: "When we have seduced the souls of men, it is by chains attached to these we drag them to our master". The bishop asking


[1] There is a commune still called du Palais on the banks of the Vienne, about one league from Limoges.

ST. MARTIAL'S MIRACLES. 305

their master's name, they replied: "Strife, for he never ceases to stir up quarrels, and his rage and passion are without end". The demons then entreating the bishop that he would talk no more with them in Latin, and would not send them into the abyss or the boundless ocean, he commanded them, in the Hebrew tongue, to depart into a desert place, and to hurt no living creature to the day of judgment. The demons then flying through the air appeared no more. And now the duke with the whole crowd of people, and all the army collected from different provinces, and present at this extraordinary spectacle, threw themselves at the feet of the holy bishop pitifully imploring him to restore life to the young man who then lay dead. The bishop, moved at their distress, commanded all with one heart to make intercession to the Lord, and taking the hand of the deceased said, "In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, Hildebert arise"; and he immediately arose and lived piously twenty-six years afterwards. While all who witnessed so glorious a miracle were praising God, St. Martial called Hildebert and made inquiry of him, for the edification of the hearers, what he saw while he was dead. With some hesitation, he related as follows:-

"Bathed in sweat from the intense heat of the sun, I was washing myself in the river, when suddenly the demons plunged me into a deep hole and drowned me. But when they attempted to bind me in chains of fire, an angel of the Lord stood by me and delivered me out of their hands. We had begun to take the road to the east, when two bands of demons opposed our progress, throwing at us fiery darts. One of these bands attacked us in front, while the other assaulted us in the rear. For my part I was terribly frightened, but the angel my companion encouraged me; beginning to sing with a melodious voice and sweet expression: 'Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, praise his holy name. Who forgiveth all thy iniquities and redeemeth thy life from the pit'. At length we reached the purgatorial fire, where Christians are punished for such of their daily transgressions as are not aggravated to mortal sins. Purgatory is a river of fire, with a bridge across, over which the angel of the Lord conducting me stood still, and taking my hand said: 'Here you will remain until, being cleansed from all your sins, you are fit to be a partaker of the

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heavenly kingdom'. This being passed we arrived at the gate of Paradise, near which we found a crowd of demons assembled, whose rage and whose slanders I horribly feared. But at that moment a voice was heard from heaven, saying: 'Let the soul of the young man return to his body, and let him live twenty-six years'. The angel who conducted me was of incredible beauty, his whole aspect surpassing the human race. To my inquiries concerning our doctor, St. Martial, he replied: 'His merit in heaven is great because he has continued in celibacy, and is and means to be free from the love of women. From his youth he began to serve the lord and attach himself to the blessed Peter, never returning to his father's house. As he is known to be free from the concupiscence of the flesh, so he will be delivered from the pains of death. Twelve angels are commissioned by the Lord to attend him constantly, who do not suffer him to be weary, nor to hunger or thirst, but preserve him from all evil and shield him from every touch of sorrow'".

While Hildebert was relating these things and others similar to them, the hearts of the bishop and the duke and all the assembled people were gladdened, and they offered thanksgivings to the Lord for all the benefits conferred upon them. Hildebert, observing the angel's admonitions, shaved his bead, and attaching himself to the blessed prelate devoted himself to the service of the Lord, neither drinking wine nor eating flesh. He went bare-foot, and was satisfied with bread and water for food, and sackcloth for raiment. He gave himself up to constant prayers, and frequent fastings, and the continual performance of good works. All that he inherited from his parents he distributed to the poor; and reserved nothing for himself on the morrow. Multitudes followed his example, and renouncing their own wills hastened to Christ by the narrow way. Duke Stephen published an ordinance directing that through all the nations which were subject to his dominion, the temples and idols should be broken down and burnt with fire, and that they should worship the one only God, whom they should strive to obey. He himself, as he had learnt from his master, observed a life of religion towards God. He was liberal in alms, just in his judgments, careful for the poor, docile, and devoted to the priests and all

ST. MARTIAL AT BOURDEAUX. 307

the ministers of God; he was the wise father of the Christians, but a fierce persecutor of the pagans. From the day of his baptism he was never defiled by connection with any woman, but lived in chastity to the day of his death.

There was in the city of Bordeaux a count named Sigebert, who for six years was grievously afflicted with paralysis. Hearing the miracles which were wrought by the blessed Martial, he directed his wife Benedicta to go with all haste to the man of God, and, taking with her twenty-six livres in gold and a sufficient sum in silver, implore the favour of God through the intercession of his friend. She used the utmost despatch in preparing what was commanded, and hastened to the man of God with an escort o£ two thousand eight hundred horsemen. On her arrival she, earnestly petitioned the man of God for her husband's health, which he, rejoicing in her faith, promised to restore. He therefore delivered his staff to the matron, commanding her to lay it on her husband and he would be healed. He refused to accept the gold and silver, but according to the Lord's commandment conferred the spiritual benefits gratuitously. He baptized the noble Benedicta and all the companions of her journey, and dismissed them to their homes confirmed in the faith.

Meanwhile, when the populace of Bordeaux flocked to the idol temples and the priests burnt incense, the demon said that he would come out at the command of a certain Hebrew named Martial, and published with sorrow the great virtues of the holy bishop and his honour with God. As the matron was entering the city on her return, the elders of the people proceeded to meet her, and told her all that they had heard from Jupiter. Then the countess sent for the chief pontiff of the idols, and commanded him that he should go to all the temples, except those of the unknown God, and utterly destroy them. She then with her Christian companions implored God's mercy, and coming in his name to her husband's bed, placed on him the blessed apostle's staff. Immediately his limbs, which had been injured by the contraction of the nerves, and dried up by fever, became instantly as though they had never lost their power. After the just-named Count Sigebert was healed he went with a great retinue to the holy bishop and was

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regenerated by him, with all his followers, in the water of holy baptism. He returned abundant offerings of prayers and thanks for the heavenly benefits conferred upon him, and lived many years afterwards happily in the service of the Lord.

It happened on a certain occasion, that when the city of Bordeaux was, for the presumption of the inhabitants, in danger of being consumed by fire, the flames threatening its entire destruction, the pious Benedicta, in full faith, opposed the staff of the man of God to the progress of the fire, invoking the aid of the Creator, whose omnipotence she confessed. And the conflagration was immediately extinguished, so that no traces of fire remained.

At that time Martial, the bishop of Christ, moved by divine inspiration, went to the bank of the river Garonne, and preached the gospel to multitudes who flocked to him at a place called Mortagne; remaining there three months in the saving work of his divine mission. Nine demoniacs brought by their parents in chains from the city of Bordeaux were healed by St. Martin, the demons being expelled. The demons also, who by virtue of Christian faith were expelled from the city of Bordeaux, incensed with those whom they had subjugated, took possession of some miserable idolaters, and entering their bodies grievously vexed them. Their parents therefore brought them to the man of God, at whose prayers and commands their malignant enemies issued forth from their mouths with torrents of blood, and were no more seen.

On one occasion when the blessed St. Martial preached in Mortagne, and crowds of people flocked to hear the true doctrine, Count Sigebert resolved to join him with a considerable body of soldiers, and to show his friendship by supplying him with all that was necessary for meat and drink. Among, other things he desired a quantity of fish, and despatched his servants to the sea for the purpose of fishing. When at last the fishermen, bringing with them many kinds of fish, were looking forward with anxiety to reach the shore, a sudden storm arose and threatened them with shipwreck and destruction. The countess Benedicta, who with a crowd of people was on the shore waiting, saw the danger in great alarm. And now men began to

CHURCHES BUILT AT LIMOGES. 309

sink with the boats, when the devout woman, extending her hands towards heaven, called upon God with a loud voice, and the storm immediately ceased. The fishermen, with their boats, and fish, and nets, came safe to the harbour, and all who saw it glorified God.

On his return from Mortagne the amiable prelate again visited Limoges, and thence went to a village called Ansac. It boasted an idol of Jupiter held in great veneration by the heathen, which drew together numbers of sick folk labouring under various infirmities. On the bishop's arrival the demon was dumb, but at the request of the inhabitants the man of God commanded him to come out of the image, and breaking the statue show himself to the people in a visible form. There forthwith issued from the statue what had the appearance of a negro boy, black as soot, covered with dark and rough hair from head to foot, and fire flashing from his mouth, nostrils, and eyes, with a sulphureous smell. Thus the saint showed the people what sort of god they had worshipped, and repeated has order to the demon that he should destroy the image; which he accordingly reduced to powder, and never again appeared. Then the venerable bishop assembled round him all the sick, and making the sign of the cross over them healed them in the name of the Lord, baptizing all those who appeared to dwell in that place. Returning afterwards to his own see, he caused oratories to be built, and decorated them carefully with rich ornaments. One he dedicated to the honour of St. Stephen the first martyr, his own kinsman, and another to St. Peter the apostle, his own master. [1] The altar was overlaid all round with plates of gold. When the churches were built, the blessed bishop fixed a day for the consecration, and Duke Stephen caused preparations to be made for entertaining all who came to the holy solemnity. When however the holy bishop was celebrating the mass, Herve, count of Tours, was carried off by the devil, as well as his Christian wife. But the holy man did not suffer them to be long tormented, but calling them to him, he rebuked the


[1] The cathedral of Limoges is still under the invocation of St. Stephen. The church here called St. Peter's, has been known by the name of St. Martial since the time that the relics of that apostle of the Limousin were deposited in it.

310 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVII.

devils for taking possession of them. But they replied, that it was permitted them on account of the transgression of the count and his wife, who, contrary to the bishop's precept, had polluted themselves with carnal knowledge the whole night. Upon the count and the people entreating favour for the possessed, the holy bishop restored them to sound health and vigour, expelling the demon in the name of tho Lord. The church of St. Peter was consecrated on the sixth of the nones [2nd] of May, in the reign of the emperor Nero, when so dazzling was the light shed in it on the day of dedication, that it was scarcely possible to distinguish one person from another.

These ceremonies being duly performed, the blessed Martial ordained Aurelian to succeed him in the see of Limoges after his own decease. He also caused Andrew the priest to preside over the church of St. Peter the apostle, settling in it Hildebert, son of Count Archadius, and thirty-six clerks besides, for whom Duke Stephen provided out of his own domains an abundant revenue, to supply food and clothing.

Much has been written on the life of the blessed Martial, which cannot be fully recounted in detail. To sum up his character shortly, he was deeply imbued with divine wisdom, illustrious for his piety, exemplary in his morals, and regarded with awe for the miracles he wrought. Holding the world cheap, and loving God and his neighbour, for him "to live was Christ, to die was gain". He restored, as we have often noticed, sight to the blind, and caused the deaf to hear, the lame to walk, the dumb to speak, and the dead to return to life. There are many other particulars worthy to be recorded, as Aurelian remarks, of works done by St. Martial by the grace of Christ, which would be considered as apocryphal by unbelievers, if they were committed to writing.

In the year 40, after our Lord's resurrection, when the blessed Martial was praying, as he was wont, the Lord Jesus Christ appeared to him in glory with his disciples, and having graciously saluted him by name, predicted that the fifteenth day from thence would be the period of his departure out of this world. The holy man, full of joy, gave thanks to God, and during two weeks, prepared for his end

DEATH OF ST. MARTIAL. 311

with fasting, and watching, and prayer. After a short cessation, to rest his wearied limbs, he rose in the night for prayer at the hour appointed, and continued his prayers and divine lauds to the second hour of day. Then he offered the holy sacrifice to the Lord, for himself and the whole church, at the second hour, and afterwards preached diligently until the evening. Towards the close of day, as night approached, he took the nourishment to which he rigorously confined himself, viz. bread and water.

The period of his vocation being near, the holy man convoked his brethren and announced to them, that the day of his departure was at hand; making known the same also by messengers he despatched through all the provinces and districts which he had gained for the Lord. Great numbers assembled in deep sorrow, viz., the people of Poitou, Berry, Auvergne, Gascony, and Gothia. The day of his death drawing near, at the request of all he went out of the gate of the city called the Lime-gate, and there delivered a discourse on the true faith and the divine operations, and profitably recounted the blessed virtues which adorn the Christian life. At the end of his discourse he gave the benediction to the people, commending them to God in devout prayer, and then causing himself to be carried into the oratory of St. Stephen, and lying there in sackcloth and ashes waited his end, while, with bended knees and hands outstretched to heaven, he caused prayers to be offered to aid him in his last struggle. At the close he thus addressed the Lord: "Into thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit"; and whilst those who stood around were weeping and praying, he made a sign with his hand for silence, and said to them: "Be still, hear ye not the songs of praise proceeding from heaven? surely the Lord cometh, as he promised"; and immediately a great light shone around, and the voice of the Lord was heard calling him, and saying: "Blessed spirit, depart", and instantly he rose to heaven, surrounded by the glorious light, while a concert of angels was heard. On the morrow, at the third hour, a paralytic who touched his bier immediately became sound. When his body was carried forth for burial, at the moment of the departure towards the church of St. Stephen, the heavens were opened and continued open while the bearers of the holy remains

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carried them to the place of interment. Moreover, as a multitude of infirm persons was collected at the funeral, the blessed Alpinian taking the sudarium of the holy bishop applied it to the bodies of the sick, and invoking the name of Christ all were healed. Among the rest a dropsical man was brought from Toulouse, with six blind persons and four demoniacs, who, on the day following the obit of the holy bishop, were presented before his tomb, and healed by the touch of the sacred napkin.

Innumerable other miracles were wrought by the most holy prelate after his interment, the great number of which forbids their being reduced to writing in detail. Probably larger volumes, if they were written, would not content those who are dissatisfied with the present account. [1]

May the holy bishop Martial, the cotemporary of Christ and the companion of the apostles, who was the pious pastor of Limoges, and the first who preached to the people of the west, intercede for us who speak of him, that, protected by his prayers, we may be found worthy to be partakers of the eternal inheritance. Amen.

CH. XVIII. Epitome of the series of bishops of Rome, from St. Peter to Pope Innocent II. A.D. 1143.

HAVING determined to compose a history from the works of former writers, I commenced with ecclesiastical history, in the beginning of which I collected some short accounts of the holy apostles. Now, by God's help I shall endeavour to give a regular series of the Roman bishops, beginning with St. Peter the apostle, to whom Christ gave the keys of the kingdom of heaven; an undertaking I consider necessary, and useful to studious persons and others who desire instruction. My careful researches extend through eleven centuries, from the time that the Almighty Emanuel came to us, veiled in the flesh which he borrowed from the


[1] These supposed acts of St. Martial appear to have been substituted for the original, which was then lost, a few years before 994, the date of the second translation of his relics. Till that time it was believed, according to Gregory of Tours, that the period of his mission could not be carried higher than the reign of Trajan. A council at Limoges in 1029, another at Bourges in 1031, and, finally, a bull of the holy see, sanctioned the assertions of the fictitious account.

A.D. 66-78.] SUCCESSION OF POPES. 313

immaculate virgin. The city of Rome, which from its very foundation carried its fasces in triumph over all its neighbours, and which, by God's providence, extended its frontiers to the Euphrates and the Ocean, saw also many illustrious champions, who, by God's aid, held the reins of ecclesiastical discipline. It is delightful to trace their triumphant course over the waves of this world, that those who walk in the steps of the Christian heroes may strive to imitate their noble acts which lead to salvation.

The blessed SIMON PETER, the prince of the apostles, son of John, and born at Bethsaida, in the province of Galilee, first filled the see of Antioch during seven years. He then went to Rome in the reign of Claudius, to oppose Simon Magus, and there preaching governed the church twenty-five years. He often disputed before Nero and the people against Simon, whom he defeated; and his martyrdom by Nero at the same time as that of St. Paul, took place in the year 30 from the passion of our Lord, on the third of the calends of July.[29th June]. [1]

LINUS, son of Herculanus, and born in Tuscany, occupied the see of Rome eleven years, three months, and twelve days, suffering martyrdom on the sixth of the calends of December [25th November]. Following the precept of the apostle Peter, he decreed that no woman should enter a church without having her head covered. [2]

CLETUS, born at Rome, sat twelve years, one month, eleven days, and suffered under Domitian on the sixth of the calends of May [20th April]. The see remained void twenty days. Rufinus, priest of Aquileia, says in the preface of his history of Clemens, that Linus and Cletus performed the functions of bishops during the life of Peter the apostle, and afterwards succeeded him. I am much surprised that so sensible a critic and historian, and one so well read, both in Greek and Latin authors, should not have recollected, that both these bishops finished their blessed


[1] See former notes on the date of St. Peter's ministry at Antioch and Rome, and his martyrdom, pp. 194 and 195.

[2] Our author has followed the martyrology of Ado in placing the death of Linus on the 25th of December. It is generally placed on the 23rd of September. It is very doubtful whether this pope and his successor suffered martyrdom.

314 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

course by martyrdom, and that no one suffered persecution at Rome for the cause of Christ until the thirteenth year of Nero, after the fall of Simon Magus. Linus suffered in the time of Vespasian, and Cletus in the persecution under Domitian. [1]

CLEMENS, born at Rome on the Celian Mount, whose father was Faustinus, filled the see ten years, two months, ten days, and was thrown into the sea under the emperor Trajan on the ninth of the calends of December [23rd November]. The see was vacant twenty-one days. Following the discipline of the blessed Peter the apostle, he was so eminent for the ornaments of a good conversation, that he was esteemed by the Jews and Gentiles, as well as by the Christians, whose poor he caused to be all registered, not suffering those who had been purified by holy baptism to become public mendicants. He gave the consecrated veil to Flavia Domitia, a virgin who was niece of Domitian and espoused to Aurelius, [2] and confirmed Theodora the wife of count Sisinnius in her resolution of chastity. Her husband, having been led by his passions to follow her as she secretly entered the church, was immediately by St. Clemens' prayers struck blind and deaf. His servants seeking to remove him could not find the door, although they searched for it all round for some time, until Theodora obtained by her prayers on her husband's behalf, that he and his attendants might depart. Conducted home, his blindness still continued, and when mass was ended Theodora stated all the circumstances to Pope Clemens, who exhorted the people to offer their prayers. He himself, with the woman, visited the diseased man, and by his supplications caused his sight and hearing to be immediately restored. But though he recovered his bodily senses, he lost his reason, and ordered Clemens, whom he accused of following his wife, to be siezed and brought to him. His servants also


[1] This pope is also called Anaclete. The history of these first two successors of St. Peter is very obscure. There appears to be no foundation for the opinion of Rufinus, but the fact which our author opposes to it, is, as already observed, doubtful [23rd September? 78-91.

[2] If we believe, with the church, the existence of this saint, she must have been the niece, not of Domitian, but of Flavius Clemens, his cousin-german, who was consul in 82. Unfortunately we have no other guarantee for this story but the very suspicious Acts of SS. Nereus and Achilles.

A.D. 91-100.] POPE CLEMENS. 315

attached ropes to stone pillars, and dragged them within and without the house. Sisinnius and his servants being thus mad, Clemens departed, and Theodora spent the whole day in weeping and praying for her husband. At length in the evening Peter the apostle appeared to her and comforted her, saying: "Sisinnius shall be saved by thee, in order that the word spoken by my brother Paul the apostle be fulfilled: 'the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the believing wife'". [1] Sisinnius, recovering his reason, caused Theodora to invite Clemens to come to him, and confessing his former folly, declared his belief in Almighty God, and being confirmed in the faith was baptized the following Easter, with three hundred and twenty-three persons of both sexes. [2] Many noble and illustrious persons believed through him, and professing the true faith received baptism.

Publius Torqueanus, count of the sacred offices, becoming jealous of the increase of the Christians, gave money to his officers in various provinces, to stir up opposition to the name of Christ. A tumult of the people took place at Rome, while Mamertine was prefect, and by command of Publius Torqueanus, Clemens was privately brought before him; but the bishop, by his sensibly replies, endeavoured to bring him over to the true faith. The tumult still raging, a report concerning Clemens was forwarded to Nerva, and also to Trojan. The rescript of Trojan ordered that if Clemens refused to sacrifice to the idols, he should be banished to the city of Chersona, beyond the Euxine Sea. But the Lord gave such grace to the blessed Clemens that even the heathen judges grieved for him. Julian, the president, sorrowfully commended him by prayer to God, and supplied him with a ship, freighted with all that his comfort required, and he was accompanied in his exile by many devout persons, both of the clergy and laity. The holy pope found at his place of banishment more than two thousand Christians, condemned to hew blocks of marble; and rejoiced that they were suffering for the name of Christ, instructing them fully in the doctrine of patience and keeping the faith. Hearing that they had to fetch water on their shoulders six miles, he


[1] 1 Cor. vii. 14.

[2] The whole of this legend of St. Theodora is apocryphal, as it is easy to discover.

316 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

prayed the Lord to give them water. When his prayer was ended, he saw a lamb standing on a hill, and gently struck with a short rod the spot which the lamb had pointed out, by lifting its foot; whereupon a fountain burst forth supplied by copious springs, and speedily forming a river. This being known, the whole province flocked together, and great numbers listened to the teaching of St. Clemens, so that in one day five hundred souls, or more, were baptized; and in less than a year seventy-five churches were erected, the idols being demolished by the believers.

After three years, a malicious accusation was forwarded to Trajan at the instance of the pagans; and he sent the tribune, Aufidius, who put to death many Christians by various kinds of suffering. After this general massacre he ordered Clemens to be embarked alone on the sea, and thrown into the waves with an anchor attached to his neck. While this was doing, Phaebus and Cornelius, with a crowd of Christians, stood on the shore praying, with floods of tears, when the sea receded for almost three miles from the shore, and people walking on the dry land saw a strange spectacle. For they found a small building, having the appearance of a marble chapel, built by angelic hands, and the body of St. Clemens deposited therein in a stone coffin by the ministry of angels, with the anchor by which the body had been sunk laid near. It was revealed to the disciples that they should not remove the body, as, on the recurrence of the anniversary of St. Clemens' martyrdom, the sea would again recede, and for seven days permit approach to the tomb. Many miracles were wrought there, and all the heathen in the neighbourhood believed: in Christ, and became servants of Him who liveth and reigneth for ever and ever. Amen. [1]

By a constitution of Clemens's, the altar-cloth, the chair, and the candelabrum, were to be burnt when they became worn out.

ANACLETUS, [2] a Greek, of Athens, filled the see nine years two months, ten days; and on his death the third of the ides [13th] July, it was vacant sixteen days. By a decree of


[1] The details respecting St. Clemens contained in this and the preceding paragraph, are altogether apocryphal.

[2] See the note in p. 314, which describes Pope Anaclete as the same as Cletus.

A.D. 100-127.] EVARISTUS-SIXTUS. 317

his no accusation was to be received against a priest, except it were preferred by men of character and probity, above suspicion.

EVARISTUS, a Jew, of Bethlehem, whose father's name was Juda, filled the see nine years, ten months, two days, in the reigns of Domitian, Nerva, and Trajan. [1] After his martyrdom the see was vacant eighteen days. Evaristus appointed seven deacons to attend the bishop during his preaching, to be witnesses of his doctrine, [2] and to supply the place of eyes in his superintendence of all parts of his diocese. He also decreed that a man should not divorce his wife, or the wife leave her husband; and that no church should have a new bishop while the former was alive.

ALEXANDER was born at Rome, in the quarter of the Bull's Head, his father's name being also Alexander. He filled the see ten years, seven months, eleven days. He introduced the custom of blessing houses, by sprinkling holy water in which salt was mixed; as well as the reference to our Lord's passion, in the prayer used by the priest in celebrating mass. The Lord wrought many miracles, and brought salvation to many souls by his instrumentality. At length he was beheaded on the Nomentan way, andthe fifth of the nones [3rd] May, and see was vacant thirty-five days.

SIXTUS, born at Rome in the Latin Street [via Latina] whose father's name was Pastor, sat ten years, two months, one day. He decreed that none but persons in orders should presume to touch holy things. He also introduced into the [canon of the] mass, the hymn of angels and men, to be sung by the priests in the presence of the people: "Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of sabaoth. Heaven and earth are full of thy glory: hosanna in the highest. Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord: hosanna in the highest". Sixtus ordained that the character, truthfulness, life, and


[1] Our author commits a great anachronism in placing a part of the pontificate of St. Evaristus (who died A.D. 109) under the reigns of Domitian and Nerva, the last of whom died in the month of January, 98.

[2] This passage is very obscure. The text runs, qui custodirent episcopum praedicantem per stilum veritatis, "by the pen of truth". The ecclesiastical historians paraphrase it, somewhat as is here done, with the gloss, "lest the bishops detractors should attribute to him errors in his preaching, which he had not committed"; a curious instance of the use of what we call shorthand-writers in early times.

318 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

conversation of any one who brought forward charges against the clergy, should be narrowly scrutinized, and that no attention should be paid to such as were ignorant of the true faith, whose lives were irregular, or who came from the houses of Christ's enemies. At length he suffered martyrdom on the nones [5th] of April, and at his death the bishopric was vacant fourteen days.

TELESPHORUS, a Greek, held the see eleven years, three months, twenty-one days, in the time of Antonine and Marcus Aurelius. This pope ordained that the fast before Easter should last seven weeks, and the midnight mass at the feast of the Nativity, and introduced the hymn of the angels, that is the "Gloria in excelsis", as the commencement of the holy office. He was at length martyred on the nones [5th] of January. The see was then Vacant for seven days. [1]

HYGINUS, an Athenian, who had been a philosopher, held the bishopric four years, three months, four days, in the time of Verus and Marcus. He forbade metropolitans to hear causes in the absence of all the bishops of their provinces; and bishops without the assistance of their clergy; otherwise the decisions of both should be void. This pope was interred on the third of the ides [11th] of January, and the see was void three days. [2]

PIUS, an Italian, born at Aquileia, filled the see nineteen years, four months, three days, in the time of Antoninus Pius. From the teaching of an angel in guise of a shepherd, [3]


[1] A.D. 127-139. Our author here commits two mistakes. He makes the popedom of St. Telesphorus continue to the reign of Marcus Aurelius, though it did not exceed the first year of Antoninus Pius; and he attributes to him the addition of a seventh week to the Lent fast, while there were only six as late as the time of Gregory the Great. The other innovations attributed to him may not be better founded.

[2] A.D. 139-142. Our author again makes a grave mistake in placing this popedom under the reign of Marcus Aurelius, and still more of Verus, who was not associated in the empire till 161, though Marcus Aurelius was created Caesar in 139. The apostolical constitutions attributed to Hyginus are generally supposed to have been a compilation of much later date.

[3] A.D. 142-157. This obscure paragraph is an imperfect extract from Bede. It has been already remarked, p. 90, that the book called The Pastor, directly mentioned by Bede in this place, was written by Hernias, the disciple of the apostles, and not by the pretended St. Hermes, said to have been brother of Pope Pius I. It, however, contains nothing relative to the time of keeping Easter.

A.D. 142-218.] PIUS-CALISTUS. 319

he decreed that the feast of Easter should be observed on a Sunday. He died on the fifth of the ides [11th] of July, and the bishopric was vacant fourteen days.

ANICETUS, a Syrian, sat eleven years, four months, three days, in the time of Severus and Marcus. He decreed that the clergy should cut their hair; that no less than three bishops should be present at the ordination of a bishop; and that a metropolitan should be consecrated by his suffragans. He suffered martyrdom on the twelfth of the calends of May [20th April]. The bishopric was vacant seventeen days. [1]

SOTER, who was born at Fondi, a town in Campania, and whose father's name was Concordius, filled the see of Rome nine years, seven months, twenty-one days, in the time of Severus. He died on the fifteenth of the calends of May [17th April], and the bishopric was vacant twenty-one days. [2]

ELEUTHERIUS, a Greek, whose father's name was Abundius, filled the see fifteen years, three months, in the times of Antonine and Caracalla. This pope decreed that no one should be condemned in his absence, or the accusation of an informer be heard against him: also, that no food should be rejected by Christians, which was fit in reason for human use. He died on the seventh of the calends of June [26th May], and the episcopal see was in abeyance five days. [3]

VICTOR, an African, filled the see ten years, eleven months, ten days: he received the crown of martyrdom on the calends of August; and the bishopric was void twelve days. He decreed that no one should be placed on his defence upon loose charges. [4]

ZEPHYRINUS, born at Rome, sat eight years, seven months, and ten days, in the time of Antoninus and Severus. He was interred on the Appian Way on the seventh of the calends of September [26th August], and the see was vacant seven days. A constitution of his ordained that a clerk unjustly expelled should be provisionally restored to his benefice, and then should make answer to those who


[1] A.D. 137-168.

[2] A.D. 168-177. This pope could not have been contemporary with Septimus Severus, whose reign did not begin till 193.

[3] A.D. 177-193.

[4] A.D. 193-202.

320 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

accused him, according to law, being allowed sufficient time, if he required it. [1]

CALIXTUS, a Roman, from the province of Ravenna, filled the see seven years, two months, and ten days, under Macrinus and Heliogabalus. According to a decision of his, the bishops were not to judge or excommunicate those who belonged to another diocese; no one being subject to trial or sentence by any other bishop than his own. He determined that a man who had lapsed into sin should be restored to his former office, after undergoing fitting penance, and if he held no office before was capable of receiving an appointment. He ordered the Saturday's fast to be observed three times a year, of corn, wine, and oil, according to the prophecy the fourth, the seventh, and the tenth. At last he was martyred on the third of the ides [14th] of October, under the emperor Alexander, and the see was void six days. At that time Calepodius the priest, with Astirius and Palmatius, consular men, and two hundred of their familes, suffered martyrdom. [2]

URBAN, a Roman, sat four years, ten months, and twelve days. He decreed that all the faithful should receive the Holy Ghost by the imposition of the bishop's hands, after baptism, for their confirmation in the Christian faith. In his time Tiburcius, Valerian, Maximus, and Cecilia, suffered martyrdom, and he himself on the eighth of the ides of June [6th May]. [3]

PONTIAN, a Roman, filled the see nine years, five months, and two days, in the reign of the emperor Alexander, by whom he was banished to Sardinia with the priest Hyppolitus. He died on the third of the calends of November [30th October], and the bishopric was vacant ten days. [4]


[1] A.D. 202-218.

[2] A.D. 219-222. No such person as Palmatius is known to have existed. If we believe the martyrologies, there was no reign in which so much Christian blood was shed as that of Alexander Severus, while, on the contrary, it is certain that the church then enjoyed perfect tranquillity.

[3] A.D. 223-230. It would appear that this pope has been placed on the list of martyrs by mistake for another St. Urban, a bishop. As for the other saints named in this paragraph, St. Cecilia is the only one whose worship is too old and too authentic to leave any doubt as to her existence; but her acts are apocryphal, and there is good reason to believe that she suffered martyrdom in Sicily in the time of Marcus Aurelius

[4] A.D. 230-235. It was not by Alexander Severus, but by the cruel Maximia, his successor, and consequently after the month of March, 235, that St. Pontian was banished to Sardinia.

A.D. 235-253.] ANTHEROS-LUCIUS. 321

ANTHEROS, a Greek, sat twelve years, one month, twelve days. He suffered martyrdom on the third of the nones [3rd] of January, and the see was void thirteen days. [1]

FABIAN, a Roman, sat fourteen years, eleven months. Among other judgments of his, the following is recorded: "No account is to be taken of an accusation made by a man in a passion. Let him who brings forward a charge prove it, and if he fails let him suffer the punishment he would have had inflicted on another". This pope suffered martyrdom on the fourteenth of the calends of February [19th January], and the bishopric was in abeyance seven days. [2]

CORNELIUS, a Roman, sat two years, two months, and three days. [3] This pope disinterred the apostles' remains by night, at the request of St. Lucina. He deposited the body of St. Paul on the road to Ostia, and that of St. Peter in the temple of Apollo on the golden mount at the Vatican. [4] Cornelius was exiled to Centum Cellae in the reign of Decius, but was afterwards brought back to Rome, where he made many conversions, and was beheaded on the eighteenth of the calends of October [14 September], when the bishopric became vacant for thirty-five days. This pope determined that priests should take oaths only by pledging their faith. [5]

LUCIUS, a Roman, filled the see three years, three months, three days, in the time of Gallus and Volusianus. By God's will he returned from banishment and was beheaded


[1] November 23, 235-January 3, 236.

[2] A.D. 236-250.

[3] June 4, 251-September 14, 252.

[4] Some remarks have been already made.(p. 96) on the translation of the relics of SS. Peter and Paul, attributed to St. Cornelius. It is certain that they were deposited, the one at the Vatican, the other ad aquas Salvias, long before his time. To complete the details already given respecting these relics, it should be added that the report is that they were collected and weighed by Pope St. Silvester in 319, and then distributed in equal portions between the two churches where they now rest, so that each should possess one half of the body of each apostle. See Roma Subterranea, 1. iii. c. 3, p. 246.

[5] It was not under the reign of Decius, but in the reign of Gallus, that St. Cornelius was banished to Centum Cellae, now called Civita-Vecchia. He is supposed to have died there, but his claim to be ranked as a martyr is doubtful.

322 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

by Valerian the third of the nones [5th] of March; the see was void thirty-five days. He ordained that two priests and three deacons should on all occasions be present with the bishop for ecclesiastical testimony. [1]

STEPHEN, a Roman, sat seven years, five months, and two days, in the time of Valerian and Gallienus [and Maximus]. He restored sight to Lucilla who was blind from her infancy, and baptized her father Nemesius the tribune, with seventy-two others of both sexes. After the martyrdom of Sempronius, Olympius, Exuperia, and Theodotus, with twelve priests, among whom were Bonus, Faustus, Mourus, Primitius, Calumniosus, John, EXuperantius, Quirillus and Honoratus, who suffered martyrdom before him on the calends [1st] of August, he himself, having said mass,was beheaded on the fourth of the nones [2nd] of August, and the bishopric was void twenty-seven days. He ordained that infamous persons should not be allowed to accuse priests, and that priests and the rest of the clergy should not have their sacred vestments in daily use, but in the church only. [2]

SIXTUS, a Greek, formerly a philosopher, sat one year, ten months, twenty-three days, in the time of Gallienus and Decius. He made a law that whoever should despise his own judge and resort to another should be excommunicated. At length he was beheaded on the eighth of the ides [6th] of August with six deacons - Felicissimus, Agapitus, Januarius, Magnus, Vincent, and Stephen. The see was void thirty-five days. At that time Laurence, the archdeacon, and Hippolitus with his family, and Abelon and Sennes, petty kings of Persia, and many others, suffered martyrdom in various ways. [3]

DIONYSIUS, who had been a monk, filled the see six years, two months, and four days. This pope granted churches to


[1] September 25, 252-March 4, 253. It is unjust to attribute the death of St. Lucius to Valerian, who did not ascend the throne till the following year, and only began to persecute the Christians in 256.

[2] A.D. 253-257. It is probable that the Maximus here named was Galerius Maximus, pro-consul of Africa, who caused Cyprian to be beheaded in 258. All the persons and facts mentioned in this paragraph appear to be apocryphal, not excepting the martyrdom of St. Stephen himself.

[3] August 24, 257-August 6, 258. Our author has confused this pope with a Pythagorean philosopher of the same name. He was contemporaneous with Valerian and Gallienus, not Gallienus and Decius.

A.D. 269-304.] FELIX-MARCELLINUS. 323

the priests, and founded cemeteries, parishes, and dioceses. He suffered martyrdom on the sixth of the calends of January [27th December], and the bishopric was in abeyance five days. He decreed that "A forced confession is not to be accepted, for it ought not to be extorted, but made voluntarily". [1]

FELIX, a Roman, sat four years, three months, twenty-five days, in the time of Claudius and Aurelian. He was crowned with martyrdom on the third of the calends of June [30th May], and the see was void five days. He decreed that a bishop could not be deprived of his bishopric before his cause was heard. [2]

EUTYCHIAN, a Tuscan of the town of Luna, filled the see one year, one month, one day, in the time of Aurelian. He died on the sixth of the calends of August [27th July], and the bishopric was vacant eight days. [3]

CAIUS, a Dalmatian, sat eleven years, four months, twelve days, in the time of Carinus, Diocletian, and Constantius. This pope divided the clerks in orders into seven ranks; viz., porters, readers, exorcists, subdeacons, deacons, and priests. He suffered martyrdom on the tenth of the calends of May [22nd April], and the see was vacant eleven days. [4]

MARCELLINUS, a Roman, held the see nine years, four months, sixteen days, in the time of Diocletian and Maximian. By a decree of his, superiors were not subject to the judgments of inferiors, and no laic was suffered to accuse whatever clergyman. None of the clergy of whatever rank were allowed to sue any one in the secular courts, without the bishop's leave. This pope suffered martyrdom on the seventh of the calends of May [25th April]. Eighteen thousand persons were slain with him for the faith of Christ in thirty days; so grievous was the persecution of the


[1] A.D. July 22, 259-December 26, 269. All that our author relates of this pope is without foundation, including his martyrdom.

[2] A.D. 269-274. The martyrdom of this pope, without being quite certain, is more probable than that of his predecessor.

[3] A.D. 275-283. Our author has greatly mistaken the duration of the popedom of St. Eutychian, who was not only contemporary with Aurelian, but with Tacitus, Probus, and Carus.

[4] A.D. 283-296. It is doubtful whether this pope suffered martyrdom, and there is no foundation for the assertion that he instituted the seven orders of the clergy.

324 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

Christians, that the bishopric remained void for seven years, seven months, and twenty-five days. [1]

MARCELLUS, a Roman of the Via Lata, sat ten years, seven months, and twenty-one days, in the time of Maxentius and Maximin. He was condemned by the tyrant to groom horses in a stable, and died at length on the seventeenth of the calends of February [16th January]. The see was vacant twenty days. [2]

EUSEBIUS, a Greek, who was formerly a physician, sat six years, one month, and three days, in the time of Constantine. He died on the sixth of the nones [2nd] of October, and the see was void seven days. In his time the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ was found on the fifth of the nones [3rd] of May, and Judas Cyriacus was baptized. [3]

MELCHIADES, an African, filled the see four years. He forbade the faithful to fast on Sundays and Thursdays, according to pagan rites. He was interred in the cemetery of Calixtus, on the Appian Way, on the fourth of the ides [10th] of December, and the see was void sixteen days. [4]

SILVESTER, a Roman, whose father's name was Rufinus, and his mother's Justa, was bishop of Rome twenty-three years, ten months, eleven days. [5] He was educated at Rome by Cyrinus the priest, and imitating his life and conversation, reached the highest point of Christian perfection. From his youth he was given to hospitality and other good works. At that time he entertained Timotheus on his coming from Antioch to Rome, and seconded his efforts in publicly preaching Christ. Fifteen months afterwards, when Timotheus was put to death for the truth by Tarquin, prefect of the city, Silvester conveyed the body of


[1] A.D. 296-304. The preceding observations may be applied to the martyrdom and decrees of Marcellinus. The number of the martyrs who perished in 304 is not generally reckoned as more than sixteen or seventeen thousand. The holy see was vacant, not seven, but three years and a half.

[2] May 19, 308-January 16, 310. The degradation of Marcellus is very doubtful.

[3] A.D. 310. The discovery of the true cross by the empress Helena was not made till 327. Judas Quiriacus, or Cyriacus, is an imaginary person.

[4] July 2, 311-January 10 or 11, 314.

[5] January 31, 314-December 31, 335.

A.D. 314-335.] POPE SILVESTER. 325

the martyr by night to his own house, where he assembled Melchiades the bishop, with the holy priests and deacons, to perform the obsequies of the martyr for Christ. Timotheus was thus honourably interred in the garden of Theona, a Christian matron, near the tomb of St. Paul. But Silvester was arrested by order of Perpenna Tarquin, and thrown into prison to be tortured on the morrow as a confessor of Christ. Meanwhile, however, the prefect, while at dinner, was choked by a fish-bone in his throat, and Silvester was joyously released from prison, while his persecutor was carried with mourning to the grave. Silvester was thirty years old when he was ordained deacon, and soon afterwards, at the entreaty of all the people, he was ordained priest by Melchiades the holy bishop. On his death, Silvester was unanimously elected pope. He was illustrious for his virtues, and the merit of his sanctity procured for him the esteem of all men.

An enormous dragon appeared on the Tarpeian mount, on which the Capitol stands, and the magicians with the sacrilegious virgins resorted to it once a month, with sacrifices and offerings, descending three hundred and forty-five steps, as if they were going to the infernal regions. The dragon rose suddenly, and though he did not go forth, his breath so poisoned the air of the neighbourhood, that it caused a great mortality, and especially there was much lamentation for the death of children. At length, the heathen, having entreated Silvester's help, he enjoined a three-days' fast on the Christians, after which, as he had been instructed in a vision by St. Peter the apostle, he descended with three priests and two deacons, and in the might of God chained up the dragon, so that the whole city, from that day and ever afterwards, delivered from its pestiferous breath, gave thanks to God. Many of the Romans who witnessed this, having thus escaped the plague of the dragon, and believing in Christ, were baptized.

The emperor Constantine, compelling the Christians to sacrifice to idols, and making great slaughter among those who refused to worship images, Silvester retired from the city, with his clergy, and concealed himself for some time on Mount Soracte, devoted to fasting and prayer. The avenging hand of God, however, struck Constantine with elephantine

326 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

leprosy, and thus checked the effusion of the blood of his servants. The emperor, in despair at such a calamity, inquired anxiously for some cure for his disorder, and by the abominable counsel of the priests of the Capitol, ordered a crowd of infants, to the number of three thousand, to be massacred, that a bath might be prepared of their blood, in which, plunging while it was yet reeking, he was told his leprosy would be cured. But when Constantine went forth from his palace to the baths, and perceived crowds of women bitterly bewailing the [threatened] slaughter of their children; he inquired the cause of such great lamentation, and learning the fact, was dreadfully shocked. He condemned such savage cruelty, and extolling the humanity of the Roman government in a long and eloquent speech, ordered the children to be restored to their mothers unharmed, adding liberal gifts, with provisions and carriages, and thus sent them away to their homes rejoicing.

The night following, the blessed apostles Peter and Paul appeared to him in a vision, and admonished by them, he recalled Silvester and his clergy, and heard from his mouth instruction in the true way of salvation, and truly submitted to him in all things. Then the pope imposed on himself and the whole Christian population a week's fast, at the end of which, on Saturday evening, he ordered the laver of salvation to be prepared in the Lateran palace, and consecrated it according to the ritual. Constantine was then baptized, and while a bright light shone round for nearly half an hour, he was cleansed of his leprosy, and confessed that he had seen Christ.

By command of the emperor Constantine, a council of forty-four bishops was assembled at Rome. In it Pope Silvester disputed with twelve of the most learned Jews, overwhelming them by God's help, with a mass of powerful authorities. He contended against the rabbins Abiathar and Joases, that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost are one God. Against the scribes Godoliah and Anna, he showed clearly, from the books of the prophets, that Christ was born of a virgin, tempted by the devil, betrayed by a disciple, arrested by his enemies, mocked and scourged; that he drank vinegar, and was sold; that his garments were divided by lot; that he was nailed to the cross, dead, and

A.D. 314-335.] LEGEND OF POPE SILVESTER. 327

buried. Against Dohet and Chusi, masters, and Bonoin and Arohel, interpreters of the law, he showed the vast benefits arising from the incarnation, the temptation, and the passion of Christ. Against the pharisees Jobal and Thara, it was authoritatively maintained that Jesus Christ is perfect God and perfect man, who, in his human nature, was tempted, suffered, and died, that he might procure the salvation of all men; but the divine nature was exempt from suffering, as the light which shines upon a tree, when an incision is made by the stroke of an axe, receives no impression. A copious argument was sustained by Seleon the priest, that the Son of God is rightly called the Lamb without spot, because he was slain for the offences of the whole people. He was born of the virgin, that we may be born of our virgin mother the church. He was thrice tempted, that he might deliver us from the like temptation; taken, that we may be set free; bound, that we may be liberated from the bonds of the curse; mocked, that he might deliver us from the illusions of the demons; sold, that he might redeem us; humbled, that we might be exalted; a captive, that he might deliver us out of captivity to the demons; stripped, that the nakedness of the first man, by which death entered into the world, might be covered; crowned with thorns, that he might eradicate from us the thorns and thistles of the original curse; having gall for meat, and vinegar for drink, that he might bring us into a land flowing with milk and honey; and finally, sacrificed on the altar of the cross, that he might take away the sins of the whole world. Here the cause of the devil failed, who, having set calf against calf, and goat against goat, could not find a lamb to set against the Lamb without spot. Our King died, that he might subdue the power of death; he was buried, that he might consecrate the tombs of the saints; he rose again, that be might give life to the dead; he ascended into heaven, that he might not only restore to man the paradise he has lost, but might also open to him the gates of heaven. He now sits at the right hand of the Father, that he may grant the prayers of believers; and he will come to judge the living and the dead, that he may render unto every one according to his works. This is the true faith of Christians.

328 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

When Silvester had argued these and many other matters with great force, and Seleon, in the silence of the other Jews, had commended the statements of the pope, Zambri the twelfth, who was a very skilful magician, put himself forward in opposition. This man chose to contend, not with the authentic words of scripture, but with magic arts, demanding that a mad bull should be brought to him in the presence of them all. The pope and the emperor assenting, presently the bull of Terence, who was so fierce that a hundred stout soldiers could hardly hold him, was brought in. And upon Zambri's whispering something secretly into its ear, the wretched animal groaned, and its eyes leaping from their sockets, instantly expired. Upon this, the crowd of Jews began to insult Silvester, and for nearly two hours there was a violent tumult. The emperor, having at length enforced silence, Silvester, advancing to the magician, demanded whether he could restore to life, in the name of the Lord, the bull which he had just put to death. This Zambri was unable to do, but he declared loudly and swore, by the life of the emperor, that if Silvester would recover the bull from death, all the Jews would renounce the law of Moses, and embrace the religion of Christ. Hearing this, the holy pontiff spread out his hands, and prayed for some time in tears, and on bended knees. His prayers being ended, he drew near to the bull, and cried with a loud voice: "In the name of Jesus Christ, who was crucified by the Jews under Pontius Pilate, rise up, and stand quickly". The animal immediately arose, and the holy bishop, having set free its horns from the bonds, "Go peaceably", he said, "to the herd to which you belong". And the bull immediately returned to the herd with all gentleness. Then all the Jews threw themselves at the feet of Silvester, and entreated that they might be regenerated by the water of baptism.

Helena, herself, the emperor's mother, appeared in public without reserve, kissing the feet of the pope in the sight of all, and begging him to assign her a place of penance. At the same moment, many demons came out of the bodies they had taken possession of, confessing that they were compelled to depart by the commands of St. Silvester.

In the disputation between the Jews and Christians, which has been already mentioned, the emperor and senate

A.D. 335.] SILVESTER'S DECREES AND DEATH. 329

appointed Zenophilus and Crato censors and umpires, the one being a Greek and the other a Latin. Both were skil- ful orators, men of wit, and lovers of truth, and had been for a long time held in the highest esteem in the Roman court, as men of probity and contemners of avarice. Both were heathens, so that they might favour neither party on account of religions, but study only to promote justice, neither Christians nor Jews suspecting them of inclining to their side.

On the triumph of the Christian cause through Silvester, many gentiles as well as Jews believed, and as the eontroversy was held in the beginning of the first month, they ehanged their names, and were baptized at Easter. From that time the Lord's name began to be magnified by the Roman people, and the company of the faithful throughout the world to be strengthened, and greatly eXalted everywhere by the power of God.

At the eommand of Constantine, Silvester assembled a council of 318 bishops at Nice, in Bithynia, and of 227 at Rome. It was deereed that no layman should prosecute a charge against a clerk, and that the oppressed should choose their own judges. Deacons were to wear dalmatics, and to cover their right arm with a linen napkin. No clerk was to proceed in the civil courts for any cause whatever, nor to plead before any judge except in the ecclesiastical court. The sacrifice of the mass was not to be celebrated with a silk or coloured altar-cloth, but with one of linen only, as it is read our Lord's body was so wrapped by Joseph at his burial. Whoever wishes to become a soldier of the church, and to rise in the ranks, he must be a reader for twenty years, an exorcist for thirty days, an acolyte five years, a sub-deacon five years, a deacon seven years, a priest three years; and afterwards, if he be worthy, be may be made a bishop. Silvester died at last, after a long course of eXcellence, on the sixth of the calends of January [31st December].1 The see was Vacant 165 days.


[1] St. Silvester's feast occurs in the Roman breviary on this day. It need hardly be remarked, that almost all our author has said of him is of a legendary character. It does not appear even that the council of Nice was convoked by the pope; and his great age not allowing him to be present, he was represented by his legates.

330 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

MARK, a Roman, the son of Priscus, filled the see two years, seven months, and twenty days. He founded two churches, one in the cemetery of Balbina, on the road to Ardea, where he was buried, and the other in the city of Rome, near the Palatine mount. He ordained twenty-seven bishops to different sees, and died on the nones [7th] of October, and the bishopric was void twenty days. [1]

JULIUS, a Roman, whose father's name was Rusticus, sat fifteen years, two months, seven days. He suffered much tribulation in the time of Constantius the heretic, and was ten months in exile for the Catholic faith; but after the tyrant's death he was restored with honour to his bishopric. He founded two churches, and three cemeteries, and consecrated nine bishops. He died the day before the ides [12th] of April, and the see was void twenty-five years. [2]

LIBERIUS, a Roman, son of Augustus, held the see six years, three months, four days, in the time of Constantius. He was three years in exile for the faith; but afterwards, joining the party of the Arians, he was recalled by Ursatius and Valens, the heretical priests, and violently persecuted the Catholics. At length be was interred on the seventh of the calends of May [25th April] in the cemetery of Priscilla, on the Salarian Road; and the see was void six days. [3]

FELIX, a Roman, whose father's name was Anastasius, sat one year, three months, three days, during the exile of Liberius. In a council of forty-eight bishops he excommunicated the emperor Constance, who had been re-baptized by Eusebius, bishop of Nicomedia, as well as the heretics, Ursatius and


[1] January 18-October 7, 336. One of the churches built by Mark still retains the name of St. Balbina; the other bears his own name. The cemetery of St. Balbina, more anciently called the cemetery of St. Pretextatus, was situated between the Appian and Ardeatine roads, near that of St. Calistus, with which it had a communication.

[2] A.D. 337-352. This pope was neither subject to the banishment nor the tribulations attributed to him. The western church enjoyed profound peace during his popedom. One of the churches he built stood in the Forum, and another on the side of the Flaminian Way; his three cemeteries along the Flaminian, Aurelian, and Ostian roads.

[3] May 22, 352-September 24, 366. Liberius was banished from 355 to 358. He had the weakness to subscribe the decrees of the first council of Sirmich, but he never persecuted the Catholics, and returned to the orthodox faith in 359. Our author is mistaken as to the length of his popedom and the day of his death, but not as to the place of his interment.

A.D. 366-384.] POPE DAMASUS. 331

Valens. In consequence, he was deposed and put to death in the city of Corona, [1] on the third of the ides [11th] of November, and the see was void thirty-seven days. He consecrated nineteen bishops; and his days count in the episcopate of Liberius; for the statutes which Liberius made before his banishment have force, but those enacted after his return are void, because he had joined the heretics. [2]

DAMASUS, a native of Spain, whose father's name was Anthony, filled the see eighteen years, three months, eleven days. Ursinus was consecrated in opposition [3] at the same time, but being expelled from Rome he was made bishop of Naples. Damasus merits great praise for his virtues. He made researches for, and discovered, many remains of saints to whose memory he composed verses. Being maliciously accused of adultery by two deacons, Concordius and Calixtus, he was acquitted of the charge, and his accusers condemned by a synod of forty-four bishops. He ordered the psalms to be sung regularly day and night in the churches, and transmitted a decree to that effect to the priests and bishops and monasteries. Damasus had a great regard for St. Jerome the interpreter of the divine law, supporting him with his pontifical authority, and encouraging him to establish the true sense of the scriptures. He ordained sixty-two bishops in different cities. He was buried near his mother, in the church which he built on the road to Ardea, on the third of the ides [11th] of December, and the see was void thirty-one days. [4]


[1] There was a city of this name in the Peloponnesus. The French translator, however, renders it Cortona, which was in Tuscany, on the borders of Umbria, a more probable reading.

[2] Felix having been substituted for Liberius immediately after the banishment of the latter, he can only be considered an anti-pope. All that we here read of him is controverted, except the council he convoked in 358. After the restoration of Liberius Felix retired into the country, and died in 365.

[3] Sub intentione, a phrase often used by our author to express a double election, or one in opposition.

[4] A.D. 366-384. Baronius has collected the greatest part of the poems composed by Damasus in honour of the saints. The council of forty-four bishops at which it is said Pope Damasus cleared himself of the charge of adultery, being then eighty years of age, rests on the authority of the Pontificals, and could not have been earlier than the year 381. The part of the catacombs where he was interred was near the cemetery of St. Calistus, on the Via Ardea, as here stated. His remains were afterwards translated to the church he built near the theatre of Pompey, and which bears the strange name of St. Laurent in Damaso.

332 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

SIRICIUS, a Roman, son of Tiburtius, sat fifteen years. He made many useful decrees, which he promulgated throughout the world, being deeply concerned for the flock of Christ. He consecrated thirty-two bishops in different parts. He was interred in the cemetery of Priscilla on the Salarian Road on the eighth of the calends of March [22nd February], and the bishopric was vacant twenty days. [1]

ANASTASIUS, a Roman, son of Maximus, sat three years, and ten days. [2] He ordered that when the holy gospel was read the priests should not sit, but stand with their heads inclined. He forbade that any foreign clerk should be ordained without the signature of his own bishop. He built the Crescentian church in the second region of the city of Rome, and consecrated eleven bishops. He was interred in his own cemetery at Ursipilatum [3] the fifth of the calends of May [27th April], and the see was void twenty-one days.

INNOCENT, of Albano, whose father's name was also Innocent, held the see fifteen years, two months, twenty-one days. He made a great number of decrees; he discovered and banished many Montanists, [4] and condemned the heretics Pelagius and Caelestes. Innocent consecrated the church in honour of the holy martyrs Gervase and Protase, [5] built according to the will of an illustrious woman named Vestina;


[1] A.D. 384-398. We owe the first decretal which is considered anthentic to this pope. The epitaph inscribed on his tomb in the cemetery of Priscilla has been published by Gruter and Baronius.

[2] December 5, 498-April 27, 502.

[3] This word is written in the MS. of St. Evroult Arsipileatum; the French editor says it should be read, ad Ursum pileatum; query rather pilalum ? answering to our "bear and ragged staff", the cognizance of the Beauchamps, earls of warwick. There were two cemeteries of this name near Rome; the one here mentioned is situated on the road to the episcopal city of Ostia. It having been destroyed, Pascal I. translated the remains of his predecessor to the church of St. Praxidius.

[4] Kataphrygas. The Pontifical of Anastasius is the doubtful authority on which rests our author's statement of the banishment of the Montanists by Innocent.

[5] The situation of this church is unknown, but it formed a title of the Roman church which was no longer in existence in the time of Gregory the Great.

A.D. 417-422.] ZOSIMAS-BONIFACE. 333

and he honoured it with many gifts. He ordained fifty-four bishops. He ordered a fast to be observed on Saturday, because on that day our Lord lay in the sepulchre, and his disciples fasted. He was interred in the cemetery at Ursipilatum the fifth of the calends of August [28th July], and the see was void twenty-two days. [1]

ZOSIMAS, a Greek, whose father's name was Abramius, sat one year, three months, eleven days. [2] He made many ecclesiastical constitutions; amongst others, he ordered deacons to have the left arm covered with linen napkins, and that candles should be blessed in the parishes. [3] He consecrated eight bishops.

BONIFACE, a Roman, whose father was Jocundus, a priest, sat three years, eight months, seven days. [4] He was consecrated on the same day with Eulalius, in opposition, and the schism among the clergy lasted seven months and fifteen days. Eulalius was consecrated in the church of Constantine, and Boniface in that of Julius; but both were expelled by the authority of the emperor Honorius, and of Valentinian, son of Placidia Augusta. [5] At the approach of Easter, Eulalius entered Rome, baptized in the church of Constantine, and celebrated the festival. But the emperors, incensed at his presumption, banished him to Campania, and recalling Boniface to Rome, established him in the bishopric. He made a decree that no nun or woman should touch or wash the holy altar-cloth; and that no one but one of the clergy should carry incense into the church. No slave, and no one liable to any office in the courts, or in other affairs, could receive holy orders. [6] Pope Boniface founded,


[1] A.D. 402-117.

[2] "Zozimas". March 18, 417-December 26, 418.

[3] These two regulations are correctly attributed to Pope Zosimas.

[4] A.D. 418-422.

[5] Bonaface I. was consecrated in the church of St. Marcellus, not in that of Constantine, now called St. John Lateran. Honorius at first favoured the cause of Eulalius, but after a synod held at Milan both the pretenders were forbidden to enter Rome until the decision of a council convoked at Spoleto for the 13th of June was known. Eulalius disregarded this prohibition, but as he was driven out of the Lateran church and expelled the city on Holy Thursday, he could not have celebrated Easter there, as our author states.

[6] The two constitutions here attributed to Pope Boniface, according to, the Pontificals, are of very questionable authority.

331 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

an oratory in the cemetery of St. Felicitas the martyr, near her tomb; and ordained bishops in thirty-six different places. At last, he was interred near the body of St. Felicitas, on the Salarian road, the eighth of the calends of November [October 25]. The bishopric was vacant nine days. Then the clergy or the people demanded the return of Eulalius, but he would not consent to return to Rome. [1]

CELESTIN, a Roman, son of Priscus, sat eight years, ten months, seventeen days. He made many good decrees. He ordered that some of the one hundred and fifty psalms of David should be chanted by a double choir before the sacrifice of the mass; for before, only an epistle of St. Paul was read, and the holy gospel, and then mass was said. He consecrated forty-six bishops. He was buried in the cemetery of Priscilla, on the fourth of the ides [10th] of April, and the see was void twenty-one days. [2]

SIXTUS, a Roman, whose father's name was Xistus, sat eight years and nineteen days. Being accused by a man named Bassus, the emperor Valentinian assembled a council of fifty-six bishops, by whom the pope was acquitted, and Bassus condemned. The latter died within three months, and his body was interred at St. Peter's by the pope. Pope Sixtus added many ornaments to the churches of the saints, and ordained fifty-two bishops. He was interred on the road to Tibur, iu a crypt near the body of St. Lawrence; [3] and the see was void twenty-two days. [4]

LEO was born in Tuscany, and his father's name was Quintian. He sat twenty-one years, one month, thirteen days. [6] He assembled at Chalcedon, with the concurrence


[1] It is incorrect that Eulalius was proposed for successor to Boniface; nothing is known respecting him after this expulsion.

[2] September 10, 422-July 26, 432.

[3] Among the works of this pope are reckoned the restoration of the basilica of Liberius, now called the church of Sta. Maria Maggiore, and the baptistery of St. John Lateran. He was interred, as here stated, by the side of the road to Tivoli, in a crypt of the church of St. Lawrence in agro Verona.

[4] July 31, 432-August 18, 440. Our author has gathered this story of the charge made against Sixtus III. from the Pontifical of Anastasius, in which the accuser is called Bassus, who is described as of consular rank. In the text of Ordericus the phrase is a quodam vasso, "by a certan vassal".

[5] A.D. 440-451.

A.D. 440-492. ST. LEO-FELIX II. 335

of Marcian, a Catholic prince, a council of two hundred and fifty-six bishops, and having obtained the assent by their signatures of four hundred and six bishops, [1] he set forth the Catholic faith, and condemned the heretics Eutyches and Nestorius. Pope Leo wrote a number of epistles in defence of the faith, confirming frequently the decision of the council of Chalcedon. He addressed twelve epistles to the emperor Marcian; to Pulcheria the empress, nine; to the eastern bishops, eighteen. Full of zeal in sacred things, he did much good. He consecrated one hundred and eighty-five bishops. He was interred at St. Peter's, the third of the ides [11th] of April, and the bishopric was vacant seven days. [2]

HILARY, a native of Sardinia, whose father's name was Crispin, held the see of Rome six years, three months, ten days. [3] He addressed many epistles to the oriental churches, confirming the three councils of Nice, Ephesus, and Chalcedon, and condemning all heresies by an anathema. He placed many rich ornaments in the churches of the saints, and ordained twenty-two bishops. After many good works, he was buried at the church of St. Lawrence, in the crypt, near the tomb of Pope Sixtus, and the bishopric was vacant fifteen days.

SIMPLICIUS, born at Tibur, son of Castinus, sat fifteen years, one month, seven days. He ordained thirty-six bishops, and was interred in the church of St. Peter the Apostle, on the sixth of the nones [2nd] of May. The see was void six days. [4]

FELIX [II.], a Roman, son of the priest Felix, by the title of Fasciola, filled the see eight years, eleven months, seventeen days, [5] in the times of the emperor Zeno, and


[1] The number of the bishops assembled at the council of Chalcedon was 520, and the subscriptions (as our author himself states, book i. ch. xxiii. p. 123) were 630.

[2] The tomb of St. Leo was placed in the porch of the church of St. Peter. It was opened in 1607. See Aringhi, Roma Subterranea, i. p. 160, and the Bollandists.

[3] A.D. 461-468.

[4] A.D. 468-483. He was buried, like Pope Leo, in the porch of St. Peter's church.

[5] A.D. 483-492. The title of Fasciola was the same with that of St. Nereus and St. Achilleus.

336 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

Odoacer, king of the Goths, to the reign of Theodoric. This pope excommunicated Peter, bishop of Alexandria, and Acacius, bishop of Constantinople, who had departed from the right faith, sending two bishops, Misenus and Vitalis, from the apostolic see to depose them. But when they reached the city of Heraclea, they were induced by bribes not to execute the pope's commission. Felix, having heard this, examined the affair and excommunicated both. He consecrated thirty-one bishops, and was buried in the church of St. Paul, the Apostle, in the time of the king Theodoric, and Zeno, the emperor. The bishopric was vacant five days. [1]

GELASIUS, an African, son of Valerius, sat eight years, eighteen days. [2] He was a kind friend to the poor, increased the power of the clergy, and delivered Rome from famine and danger. This pope published constitutions for the entire church. He composed tracts and hymns like St. Ambrose, and published works against Eutyches and Nestorius, which are preserved to the present day in the archives of the libraries. He ordered the Manicheans, whom he discovered at Rome, to be carried into banishment, and caused their books to be burnt before the doors of the Church of Santa Maria. He condemned for ever, if they did not repent, Peter and Acacius, for the many crimes and murders they had caused. He ordained sixty-seven bishops, and was buried in the church of St. Peter the Apostle, on the eleventh of the calends of December [21st November]. The see was void seven days.

ANASTASIUS [II.], a Roman, whose father's name was Peter, of the fifth region called the Bull's Head, filled tho see one year, eleven months, and twenty-four days. [3] Many


[1] These legates arrived at Constantinople in 484. It was not at Heraclea, but at the Dardanelles, that they were arrested by order of the emperor Zeno. The council at which they were excommunicated, together with Acacius and Peter Mongus, was held after their return in the month of July, the same year. The death of Felix improperly styled III. (for the pope designated Felix II. was an antipope), is incorrectly assigned to the reign of the emperor Zeno, which ended on the 9th of April, 491, as well as to that of Theodoric, who did not succeed Odoacer till March, 493.

[2] March 1, 492-November 14, 496.

[3] November 24, 496-November 17, 498. It is easy to refute what our author has taken from the Book of Pontificals on the schism connected with the recall of Acacius, since he died in 489.

A.D. 498-514.] POPE SYMMACHUS. 337

of the clergy withdrew from his communion, on his wishing to recall Acacius privately, which he could not accomplish because he was struck by God. He consecrated twenty bishops. He was buried in the church of St. Peter the Apostle, on the thirteenth of the calends of December [19th November], and the bishopric was vacant four days.

SYMMACHUS, born in Sardinia, whose father's name was Fortunatus, filled the see fifteen years, seven months, twenty-seven days, in the time of Theodoric the king and Anastasius the emperor. [1] He was consecrated in opposition to Lawrence, bishop of Nocera; and by the decision of Theodoric, as he was the first consecrated and had the majority, he was confirmed in the apostolic see. But, three years afterwards, he was falsely accused through the ill-will of the Romans, and Peter, bishop of Altinum, usurped the apostolic see contrary to the canons. [2] A great schism was therefore made in the church, and the clergy again divided. But Pope Symmachus justified himself in a synod, in which one hundred and fifteen bishops were assembled, and Peter of Altinum, the usurper of the apostolical see, and Lawrence of Nocera, were condemned. Then Symmachus was replaced on the apostolical throne at St. Peter's by all the bishops, the clergy, and people, in great triumph. However, Festus, chief of the senate, and Probinus, ex-consuls, and other senators, commenced disturbances in the city, and attacked all who were in communion with Symmachus with such violence that they even dragged nuns from their convents and retreats, and, regardless of their sex, scourged them until their naked bodies were wounded with the stripes. They fought daily against a church in the middle of the city, where many priests and others of the faithful were slain. Among others, Dignissimus and Gordian, priests, were taken and slain with staves and swords, as well as many other Christians. None of the clergy were safe in the city, by


[1] November 22, 498-July 19, 514. The consecration of Symmachus and his competitor Lawrence, who was afterwards bishop of Nocera, took place the same day.

[2] The second schism appears to have commenced as early as 499. The last sitting of the council which confirmed the election of Symmachus was held on the 23rd of October, 501, and its decrees were subscribed, not by 115, but by 76 bishops. The scandals and outrages described by our author occurred in the early part of the preceding September.

333 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

night or by day; and Faustus, the ex-consul, was the only one who fought for the church. Notwithstanding, Symmachus maintained himself from the consulship of Paulinus to that of Senator. He drove into banishment the Manicheans, whom he discovered at Rome, and burnt their images and books before the gates of the basilica of Constantine. He enriched the churches of the saints with a variety of ornaments, and ordained one hundred and seventeen bishops. He ordered the angelic hymn [1] to be sung every Sunday. Every year he supplied money and clothes to the bishops who were banished to Africa and Sardinia. He ransomed captives in Liguria and other provinces, and distributed largely to the poor. After many good works he was interred in the church of St. Peter, on the nineteenth day of the mouth of July; and the bishopric was vacant seven days.

HORMISDAS, born in Campania, son of Justus, of the city of Frusinone, filled the see eight years, and seventeen days. By the advice of King Theodoric he sent to Constantinople Eunodius, bishop of Pavia; and Fortunatus, bishop of Catania; to absolve the Greeks who had been excommunicated on account of the heresies of Peter, bishop of Alexandria; and Acacius of Constantinople. But the emperor Anastasius, favouring the Eutychian heresy, sent back the envoys in great haste, and in his rescript to the pope, among other things, said haughtily: "It is ours to command, not to be commanded". Not long afterwards, by God's permission, he was struck with thunder. He was succeeded by Justin, a Catholic, who willingly submitted to the directions of the pope in all things, and received with honour Germanus, bishop of Capua, and the other envoys from the apostolic see, who were conducted by the consul Vitalian, and a great company of monks and men of rank, from the Round Tower to the city of Constantinople. Some of the clergy who were accomplices with Acacius, envious of such a triumph, shut themselves up in the great church of St. Sophia, and taking counsel together, sent a message to the emperor, that unless Acacius, their bishop, was unconditionally restored, they would refuse submission to the apostolic see. At this time, Clovis, king of the Franks,


[1] The Gloria in Excelsis, mentioned before, p. 318.

A.D. 523-526.] POPE JOHN. 339

becoming a Christian, sent an offering to the tomb of St. Peter the Apostle, with precious jewels. The aforenamed pope flourished from the consulship of Senator to the time of Symmachus and Boetius, and ordained fifty-five bishops in different places. He was interred in the church of St. Peter the Apostle, on the eighth of the ides [6th] of August. The bishopric was vacant seven days. [1]

JOHN, a native of Tuscany, son of Constantius, sat two years, nine months, and sixteen days, from the consulship of Maximus to that of Olibrius. At that time Justin, the orthodox emperor, wished to extinguish all heresies, and have the churches in which they were taught consecrated to the true faith. At this Theodoric Walamir, being a heretic, was much incensed, and determined on ravaging the whole of Italy with the sword. Pope John was requested by the king at Ravenna to undertake a mission to Constantinople, which, though he was sick, he accomplished, and while there gave sight to a blind man. He was received with great honour by the emperor Justin whom he crowned, and obtained from him indulgence for the heretics to save Italy from devastation. Meanwhile, the heretic king put to death the illustrious senators and ex-consuls Symmachus and Boethius. Pope John also, and the senators who had been honourably entertained by the emperor, were treacherously arrested by Theodoric on their return; and the pope was imprisoned at Ravenna and suffered martyrdom on the fifteenth of the calends of June [18th May]. Theodoric himself, by the will of God, died suddenly ninety-eight days afterwards. Pope John consecrated fifteen bishops. His


[1] A.D. 514-523. The mission of the bishops of Pavia and Catania to Constantinople took place in 515. It was on a second mission, in 517, that the emperor Anastasius made a reply in much the same terms as are here reported. Doubts are entertained whether he was really struck by lightning on the 8th of July of the year following, as also before stated, p. 113. It is certain, however, that he expired in the midst of the fright occasioned by the thunder storm. Justin succeeded him the next day. The pope's legates arrived at Constantinople the 25th of March, 519. It has been already observed, that Acacius was dead ten years before. The dispute respecting him was limited to the question whether his name should be retained in the diptichs. The resistance made by part of the clergy entrenched in Sta. Sophia is a mere fable. It was not with this pope, but with his predecessor Anastasius, that Clovis corresponded after his conversion.

310 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

body was translated from Ravenna to the church of St. Peter at Rome; and the bishopric was vacant fifty-eight days. [1]

FELIX, a Samnite, son of Castorius, filled the see four years, two months, and thirteen days, in the time of Theodoric, and Alaric his nephew, and of the emperor Justinian, from the consulship of Tiburtius to that of Lampadius and Orestes. He was inaugured without tumult, and ordained twenty-nine bishops. He was interred in the church of St. Paul the Apostle on the fourth of the ides [12th] of October. The bishopric was vacant three days. [3]

BONIFACE, born at Rome, whose father's name was Sigibuld, sat two years, twenty-five days, in the time of Alaric, the heretic, and the emperor Justinian. At his election there was great dissension, both among the clergy and in the senate, for twenty-eight days. Dioscorus was consecrated at the same time in the basilica of Constantine; but, by God's will, he died shortly afterwards on the second of the ides [14th] of October. He had numerous partisans. As for Boniface, he gave dishes of meat to the priests and deacons, and notaries, supplied from his own patrimony, and made abundant provision of food for the clergy when famine threatened. He assembled a synod in the church of St. Peter, and chose the deacon Vigilius for his successor, but afterwards, repenting his having subscribed the act, erased his signature in the presence of the clergy and senate. He was interred at St. Peter's on the seventeenth day of the month of October, and the see was void two months fifteen days. [3]

JOHN MERCURY, a Roman, son of Projectus, of the Coelian Mount, filled the see two years, four months, six days, in the time of Alaric and Justinian. That pious emperor,


[1] A.D. 523-526. In speaking of heresies in this paragraph, the Arians are to be understood. In giving to Theodoric the surname of Walamir, our author seems to adopt the opinion of those who regard him as Walamir's son, but he appears to have been only his nephew. The journey of the pope to Constantinople took place at the beginning of the year 525. Boetius was arrested at Pavia, and put to death as early as 521.

[2] A.D. 526-530. There was no consul of the name of Tiburtius.

[3] A.D. 530-532. The name of the father of this pope appears to have been Sigiswult, from which we may conclude that he was of Gothic origin, though born at Rome.

A.D. 535-538.] AGAPETE-SILVERIUS. 341

actuated by warm devotion to the Christian religion drew up a statement of his belief, which he sent to the apostolical see, with his own signature and many valuable gifts, by the hands of Eparchius and Demetrius. John consecrated twenty-one bishops. He was interred at St. Peter's on the sixth of the calends of June [27th May], and the see was void six days. [1]

AGAPITUS, a Roman, son of Gordian, a priest, filled the see eleven months, eighteen days. Theodotus, king of the Goths, who had put to death Amalasonta, daughter of king Theodoric, sent him to Justinian the emperor, by whom he was honourably received at Constantinople. While there he procured the banishment of Anthemius, bishop of that city, because he denied the two natures of Christ. Having consecrated Mennas, a Catholic, bishop of Constantinople, he died there on the tenth of the calends of May [22nd April.] His body was conveyed to Rome in a leaden coffin; and interred at St. Peter's on the twelfth of October, and the bishopric was vacant one month twenty-eight days. [2]

SILVERIUS, a native of Campania, son of Hormisdas, bishop of Rome, sat one year, five months, six days. He owed his elevation to the tyrant Theodotus, who was induced by bribery to effect it by violence and terror. Two months afterwards, by God's will, Theodotus died, and Witigis having carried off and married the daughter of Amalasonta, ascended the throne. The emperor Justinian commissioned Belisarius the patrician to deliver Italy from the Goths. The patrician consequently laid siege to Naples, which he took by storm, putting all the Goths and citizens to the sword, so that not even the priests and nuns in the monasteries escaped. Soon after this Witigis, collecting an army of Goths, besieged Rome for a whole year, vast numbers perishing by the sword as well as by the famine which now prevailed throughout the world. No one was allowed to enter or depart from the city. All property, private and public, not excepting the churches, was destroyed by fire, and the inhabitants were either butchered, or fell victims to famine and pestilence. At length, God in his mercy sent


[1] A.D. 533-535. The embassy of Hypacius (not Eparchius) and Demetrius to the pope took place in 533.

[2] A.D. 535-536.

342 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

Belisarius to defeat the Goths and save Rome. The empress requested Silverius to recall the heretic Anthemius, but the pope putting his trust in God refused compliance, and defended the sentence of his predecessors by his own authority. Upon this, the empress commanded Belisarius the patrician to send Silverius into exile, and to substitute Anthemius as his vicar-general in the church of Rome. Belisarius very reluctantly complied with the orders of the empress, and the pope being charged by false witnesses with plotting to deliver up Rome to the Gothic king, by introducing him at the Asinarian gate near the Lateran, he was arrested in the Pincian palace. Antonine, the patrician, then sharply rebuked the pope, and John the sub-deacon, removing the pallium from his shoulders, divested him of his pontifical robes in his chambers and dressed him as a monk. Silverius was banished to the island of Pontia, where, after great suffering, and being reduced to bread and water for sustenance, he was buried on the twelfth of the calends of July [20th June]. He consecrated eighteen bishops, and after his death performed many miracles in healing the sick. The see was void fourteen days. [1]

VIGILIUS, a Roman, son of the consul John, filled the see fifteen years, six months, twenty-six days. At this time Belisarius defeated Witigis, and John, the bloody master-general of the army, pursued him all night and made him prisoner. The captive king being conducted to Constantinople, Justinian received him into favour, and creating him patrician and count, sent him to reside on the Persian frontier, where he remained until his death. The emperor also conferred on Belisarius the highest military dignity, and employed him in Africa. Deceiving Guittarith, king of the Vandals, with friendly professions, Belisarius put him to death, and restored Africa to the dominion of Rome, from which it had been detached ninety-nine years. He then visited Rome, and made many offerings to God and St.


[1] A.D. 536-538. Theodotus was killed towards the month of August, 536. Belisarius came from Sicily to Italy in the spring of that year; took Naples after a siege of twenty-two days, and entered Rome the 10th of December. The siege of Rome by Witigis was in 537-538. Silverius was first banished to Patara in Lycia, afterwards to the island of Palmaria on the coast of Italy, where he was starved to death.

A.D. 538-555.] POPE VIGILIUS. 343

Peter distributing also alms to the poor, from the spoils of the Vandals.

The Empress Theodora urged Pope Vigilius, also, to recall the heresiarch Anthemius, but he positively refused, adhering strictly to the opinions of his predecessors. At the suggestion therefore of some ill-disposed Romans, who imputed the death of Silverius to the pope, Anthemius sent an imperial commissioner, arrested Pope Vigilius in the church of St. Cecilia, and carried him to Constantinople by way of Sicily. For two years the Greeks used the whole influence of the imperial authority to induce him to recall the heretic, as he had promised when he filled the office of deacon. But the pope persisted. in his refusal, preferring an honourable death to a dishonourable life. At length, when upon his strongly declaring his resolution in the presence of Justinian and Theodora, some one struck him in the face, the pope fled to the church of St. Euphemia, and clung to the pillar of the altar. But he was forced out of the church and dragged round the city by a rope about his neck till the evening. He was then committed to close custody, and the Roman clergy who had attended him were sent to different mines.

Meanwhile, the Goths elected Totila king, and soon afterwards laid siege to Rome. During the continuance of the siege the famine in the city was so severe that mothers were ready to feed on their own children. Totila at length gained entrance into the city, of which he held possession for some time, the people sheltering themselves in the churches. But afterwards the emperor sent Narses his eunuch and chamberlain into Italy, who defeated the army of Totila who fell in the battle. The emperor Justinian was full of joy at this intelligence, and on the petition of Narses and the Romans set at liberty Pope Vigilius and his clergy; but he died of stone at Syracuse. His body was brought to Rome and interred in the church of St. Marcellus, on the Salarian road, when the see was void three months and five days. This pope consecrated eighty-one bishops, and appointed Ampliatus the priest his vicar to govern the church during his exile, and sent from Sicily Valentine the bishop to the Lateran. [1]


[1] A.D. 538-555. Vigilius was elected and consecrated pope in the lifetime of his predecessor, but we date his popedom from the death of Silverius. Witigis was taken prisoner, and sent to Constantinople in 540. Belisarius's expedition to Africa was undertaken in 532, and the war ended by the captivity of Gelimer, king of the Vandals, in 534. Nothing is known of the person our author calls Guittarith, and his murder by Belisarius. The latter returned from Africa to Rome in the beginning of 547, soon after the pillage of the city by Totila. Vigilius arrived at Constantinople the 25th of January. We have no other account of the ill treatment he received in 551, proceeding to the length of his being buffeted in the presence of the emperor and empress; indeed Theodora was not then living, having died in 548. Rome was taken by Totila the second time in 549. Pope Vigilius died at Syracuse the 10th of January, 555, as he was on his return to Rome.

314 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

PELAGIUS, a Roman, son of John the vicar-general, filled the see eleven years, ten months, and twenty-seven days. He was consecrated by two bishops, John of Perugium and Bonus of Ferentino, with Andrew priest of Ostia. Numbers of the religious, and well-informed, and noble persons separated from his communion in the persuasion that Pelagius was a party to the death of Pope Vigilius, in consequence of the sufferings he had undergone. Pope Pelagius, therefore, and Narses consulted, and a procession having been formed from the church of St. Pancras, when litanies were sung, and hymns and anthems chanted, on their arrival at St. Peter's, the pope ascended a pulpit, holding the gospels in his hand with the crucifix raised on high, and satisfied the people that he had done no injury to Vigilius. He consecrated forty-nine bishops. Pelagius was buried at St. Peter's on the 6th of the nones [2nd] of March. The bishopric was vacant three months, and twenty-five days. [1]

JOHN, a Roman, son of the illustrious Anastasius, filled the see twelve years, eleven months, and twenty-six days. At that time the Heruli having elected Sindbal their king, were bent on subjugating the whole of Italy, but Narses slew their king and entirely defeated them. He also, by God's aid, put to death Amingus [Lothaire], and Buceline, chiefs of the Franks, who invaded Italy, to which he restored peace and prosperity. The Romans, however, from envy, accused him to Justinian, and raised disturbances against his government. Narses therefore, upon finding himself deprived of his dignities by the emperor, called in the


[1] A.D. 555-560. The epitaph on Pope Pelagius may be seen in Aringhi, Roma Subterranea, i. p. 161.

A.D. 574-578.] POPE BENEDICT. 345

Guinilian Lombards, who inhabited Pannonia, to invade Italy. Narses died not long afterwards, and his body being enclosed in a leaden coffin was conveyed, with all his wealth, to Constantinople. Pope John consecrated sixty-one bishops, and was buried in the church of St. Peter the apostle on the 3rd of the ides [13th] of July. The bishopric was vacant ten months and eleven days. [1]

BENEDICT, a Roman, son of Boniface, sat four years, one month, and twenty-eight days. [2] King Alboin led the Lombards into Italy in the year of our Lord 568. A great famine then afflicted Italy and compelled it to submit to Alboin. Upon learning this, the emperor Justinian sent to Egypt, and causing ships loaded with corn to be despatched to Rome, thus saved the city from the famine which threatened it. This emperor, for his numerous victories over foreign enemies, received the surnames of Alamannicus, Gothicus, Vandalicus, and Africanus. He founded a church, within the walls of Constantinople to the honour of Christ, which is called in Greek "Hagia", meaning Santa Sophia. This building so surpasses all others that it stands unrivalled among all the edifices in the world. Justinian was a prince devoted to the Catholic faith, pure in his conduct and just in his judgments, so that he succeeded in all his enterprises. In his time Cassidorus, a senator who afterwards became a monk, distinguished himself at Rome both in sacred and profane learning. Among his other excellent works, one of the principal is a commentary on the Psalms.

At that time also Dionysius, who was made an abbot at Rome, composed an admirable work on calculating Easter.

Priscian, also, a native of Caesarea, but established at Constantinople, penetrated, if I may so speak, all the depths of grammatical science.

Arator, likewise, sub-deacon of the church of Rome, an


[1] A.D. 560-573. Sindbaf, chief of the Heruli, was hung by order of Narses, before he had time to make great devastations. Our author has substituted Amingus for Lothaire, one of the French chiefs put to death by Narses. For observations on the calumnies of the Romans against Narses, see before, book i. p. 115, and the same note respecting the Guinili.

[2] A.D. 574-578. Alboin, king of the Lombards, issued from Pannonia the 2nd of April, 5613, to invade the Venetian provinces; he took Milan the 4th of September in the year following, and afterwards made himself master of the greatest part of Italy, including the duchy of Beneventum.

346 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

admirable poet, gave the Acts of the Apostles in hexameter verse.

Then also the most reverend father Benedict, who first settled at a place called Subiaco, forty miles from Rome, and afterwards at Monte Cassino, shed around him the light of his great virtues and apostolical life. His life, as is well known, has been the subject of an eloquent discourse in Pope Gregory's Dialogues.

Pope Benedict died, worn out with labours and troubles, and was buried in the church of St. Peter, the 2nd of the calends of August [31st July]. He consecrated twenty-one bishops; the see was void three months and ten days. [1]

PELAGIUS, a Roman, son of Winigild, [2] filled the see ten years, eleven months, and ten days. He was consecrated without the emperor's confirmation, because Rome was besieged by the Lombards who were fearfully devastating Italy. In his time there was much bloodshed and excessive rain. The pope was suddenly carried off by a contagious pestilence, and died on the 7th of the ides [7th] of February; and was buried at St. Peter's. He consecrated forty-eight bishops for different places, and the see was vacant six months and twenty-five days. [3]


[1] Our author makes a great mistake in representing Pope Benedict as contemporary with Justinian, who died on the 14th of November, 565. The church of Santa Sophia was consecrated 27th of December, 537. Cassiodorus had died at an advanced age in the time of Pope John III., about the year 565. Reference has been already made in the notes, book i. p. 115, to Dionysius the Little, who died in 540. Priscian, the celebrated grammarian, flourished at Constantinople about A.D. 525. Arator, as it has been already remarked, was contemporary with Pope Vigilius. St. Benedict, who was born in 480, after having founded his first monastery at Subiaco as far back as 497, retired to Monte Cassino, where he died the 21st of March, 543.

[2] It is curious to observe how speedily the posterity of barbarian and heathen invaders not only adopted the faith and civilization of the people subjected, but raised themselves to its first ranks. Pelagius is the second pope of Rome, in the sixth century, who was of Gothic extraction, Boniface (see p. 340) being the first. Thus we shall find in the sequel of this work that in England the primacies of Canterbury and York were both filled by Danes or Norwegians within fifty years after the island was first devastated by a people represented by the writers of the times to be in a state of unmitigated barbarism.

[3] November 30, 578-February 8, 590. Pelagius fell a victim to the plague which ravaged Rome in the beginning of the year 590.

A.D. 590-604.] ST. GREGORY THE GREAT. 347

GREGORY, a Roman and philosopher, son of Gordian the praetor, a man of the highest rank, and of the most excellent Sylvia, presided over the Roman see thirteen years, six months, ten days, in the reigns of the emperors Tiberius, Constantine, Maurice, and Phocas. [1] Gregory composed forty homilies on the gospels; he wrote commentaries on the Psalms and Ezekiel, and published a pastoral and a dialogue, with many other works which we cannot stay to enumerate. This incomparable doctor was highly distinguished for deep wisdom and great learning, both in the writings and discourses of his useful labours, by which he rendered the greatest service to the sons of the church of God. He added to the canon of the mass the words, "And grant thy peace in our days", etc. [2] The Roman patrician and exarch came to Rome while Gregory was pope, and occasioned great troubles. [3] On his return to Ravenna, he seized the cities of Sutri, Bomarzo, Amelia, Perouse, and some others held by the Lombards. Upon this, the king Agilulf, being greatly incensed, attacked Perouse with a powerful army, besieging in it Maurision, general of the Lombards, who had submitted to the Romans, whom he made prisoner in a few days, and immediately put to death. Not long afterwards, Agilulf, having returned to Pavia, made a lasting peace with the Romans, through the mediation of the blessed pope Gregory.

At the same time, St. Gregory commissioned the servants


[1] September 3, 590-March 12, 609. It was not St. Gregory's father who was praetor of Rome, but the bishop himself before his conversion. His popedom did not correspond with the reign of Tiberius Constantine, but only with those of the two other emperors here named.

[2] The words added are, dies nostros in tua pace disponas, atque ab eterna damnatione nos eripi et in electorum tuorum jubeas grege numerari. Per Christum Dominum nostrum; "Dispose our days in thy peace, preserve us from eternal damnation, and number us among thine elect; through Christ", etc. The clause immediately precedes the consecration prayer in the office of the mass. It appears to have been first introduced during the perils to which Rome was exposed when besieged by Agilulf in 595.

[3] The Roman patrician, who was also exarch of Ravenna from 590 to 597, constantly opposed the pacific policy of Gregory. The siege of Rome resulted from the exarch having taken possession of the places here named, which the Lombards had held. Peace with them was not restored until 598.

348 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

of God, Mellitus, Augustine, and John, with several others who feared the Lord, to preach to the English nation, and convert them to the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ. After many great and memorable works, Pope Gregory was buried in the church of St. Peter the Apostle, before the sacristy, on the fourth of the ides [4th] of March. He consecrated seventy-two bishops in different places, and the bishopric was vacant five months and eighteen days. [1]

SABINIAN, a native of Blesa, [2] in Tuscany, whose father's name was Bonus, sat one year, five months, and nine days. At this time Rome was afflicted with a grievous famine; and the pope, having concluded a peace with the Lombards, caused the granaries of the church to be opened, and corn to be sold at the rate of thirty bushels of wheat for a shilling. This pope was buried in the church of St. Peter, on the sixth of the calends of March [February 24]. He consecrated twenty-six bishops, and the see was void eleven months and twenty-three days.

BONIFACE [III], a Roman, son of John of Cappadocia, filled the see eight months and twenty-two days. [2] He obtained from the emperor Phocas his confirmation of the claim of the apostolical see to be the head of all churches, the church of Constantinople having made pretensions to precedence over that of Rome, and assumed the primacy. He was buried at St. Peter's on the second of the ides [12th] of November. He consecrated twenty-one bishops, and the see was void ten months and six days.

BONIFACE [IV.], a native of Valeria, [4] a city of the Marci, son of John the physician, filled the see six years, eight months, and thirteen days. In his time there were grievous famines, and pestilences, and inundations. He petitioned the emperor Phocas for the temple called the Pantheon,


[1] See before, book i. p. 117, respecting the mission of St. Augustine and his companions to England; and, in regard to the tomb of St. Gregory at St. Peter's, Aringhi, Roma Subterranea, i. p. 161. The secretarium of the pontifical churches was a sacristy reserved for the use of the popes, in which they were robed before they took part in the service.

[2] September 13, 604-February 22, 606. Blesa is now called Breda, a town ten miles from Viterbo.

[3] February 23-November, 606.

[4] A.D. 607-615. Valeria is a town of the Abruzzi.

A.D. 615-625.] DEUSDEDIT-BONIFACE V. 349

and having obtained it, dedicated it in honour of All Saints. [1] He was buried at St. Peter's on the eighth of the calends of June [May 25]. He consecrated thirty-six bishops. The see was void six months and thirty-five days.

DEUSDEDIT, a Roman, son of Stephen, a sub-deacon, sat three years, twenty-three days. [2] He greatly loved and honoured the clergy. At that time Eleutherius, the patrician and chamberlain, reduced Naples, and slew John Campius, in whose rebellion many had fallen. Peace, therefore, prevailed through all Italy, but there was a great earthquake, followed by so foul a pestilence, that no one could recognize the dead bodies of their friends. [3] Pope Deusdedit was buried at St. Peter's on the sixth of the ides [8th] of November. He bequeathed to each of the clergy a vestment for his obsequies. He consecrated twenty-nine bishops, and the see was void one month and sixteen days.

BONIFACE [V.], of the city of Naples, in Campania, whose father's name was John, filled the see five years. He was the mildest of men, and did great good in the church. At that time Eleutherius the patrician invaded the kingdom, but he was slain by the troops from Ravenna, on his road from Luceoli to home. This pope was interred at St. Peter's, on the eighth of the calends of November [Oct. 25].


[1] See note to book i. p. 118, for the day of the dedication of the Pantheon after it was converted into a church by Boniface IV. The anniversary of this feast attracted so many strangers as sometimes to threaten the city with famine; in consequence Gregory IV. changed the day to the first of November, a season of the year when Rome was better supplied with provisions.

[2] November 13, 615-December 3, 618. Eleutherius was exarch from 616 to 619. When marching from Ravenna to Rome, to compel it to receive him as emperor, he was killed by his troops.

[3] This pestilential disease appears to have been the elephantiasis, a sort of leprosy which produced a frightful scurf, which might have the effect here described.

[4] Rogam unam dimisit. M. Le Prevost considers the meaning to be that the pope left a legacy of a certain amount, "un legs special en argent; to each of his clergy. The word roga, however, from rogus, a funeral pile, rogalis, of or belonging to a funeral, seems to point to something immediately connected with that ceremony. M. Du-Bois, the French translator of Ordericus, renders the passage "il accorda pour se obseques un vetement a chacun des membres du clergy", a sense which is here adopted.

350 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII

He consecrated twenty-nine bishops. The bishopric was vacant thirteen days. [1]

HONORIUS, a native of Campania, son of the consul Petronius, filled the see twelve years, eleven months, and twenty-two days, in the time of the emperor Heraclius. [2] His good deeds were numerous and his teaching zealous. He appointed that every Saturday there should be a procession, departing from the church of St. Apollinarius, and going to St. Peter's, the people accompanying it with hymns and spiritual songs. He consecrated eighty-one bishops, and was buried on the fourth of the ides [12th] of October, in the church of the blessed martyr St. Agnes, whioh he had himself built from the foundation. [3] The bishopric was vacant one year, seven months, and seventeen days.

SEVERIN, a Roman, son of Albienus, filled the see two months and two days, under the emperor Heraclius. He was mild and liberal, and very kind to the clergy and the poor. In his time the Lateran palace was violently pillaged by the Roman army under the command of Maurice, keeper of the records, and Isaac, patrician and exarch. This pope, having consecrated four bishops, was buried at St. Peter's, on the nones [2nd] of August. The see was vacant three months and twenty-four days. [4]

JOHN, a Dalmatian, son of Venantius the Scholastic, sat


[1] A.D. 618-625. Castrum Luceoli appears to be the place now called Ponte Riccioli.

[2] October 27, 625-October 12, 638. The father of this pope is called a consul, or consular man, at a time when the consulship had long ceased to exist either as an office or dignity, in the primitive sense of the term. It is probable that Petronius held some local magistracy to which the name had been transferred. It was revived in still later times as a title of honour, if not of office. Not only do the early English historians sometimes use the title indiscriminately with that of earl, but Robert, the distinguished son of Henry I. of England, was expressly created "consul of Gloucester".

[3] The church of St. Agnes, first erected by Constantine at the request of his daughter Constantine, and embellished by Tiberius II., had been restored by Symmachus, and was now rebuilt from the foundation by Honorius. The mosaics which ornamented the apsis are still preserved, and represent the pope at the left hand of the saint, who stands in the centre. See Ciampini, vols. ii. and iii.

[4] May 29-October 11, 640. The papal treasury was pillaged during the unusual interval which elapsed between the death of the late pope and the election of Severin.

A.D. 642-655.] THEODORE-MARTIN. 351

one year, nine months, eighteen days. He transmitted large sums of money by the holy abbot Martin into Istria and Dalmatia for the redemption of captives; and caused, the relics of saints to be reverently transferred from thence. He was buried at St. Peter's, on the fourth of the ides [12th] of October; and the see was vacant one month, thirteen days. [1]

THEODORE, a Greek, son of Bishop Theodore, and born at Jerusalem, filled the see six years, five months, eighteen days. [2] At that time the abandoned Maurice, keeper of the records, revolted against Isaac the patrician, and secured the adhesion of the army and magistrates by oaths. But Isaac despatched Donus, his master of the troops and sacristan, to oppose Maurice, with directions to take him prisoner, and having beheaded him, to expose his head on a pole in the circus at Ravenna, and throw the others implicated into close imprisonment to await their punishment. [3] Isaac himself, however by God's will, soon after died suddenly, and Theodore Calleopa was sent by the emperor to succeed him in the government of Italy. Pope Theodore was very pious and good. He deposed Pyrrhus and Paul, heretical bishops of Constantinople, [4] and consecrated forty-six bishops. He was interred at St. Peter's, on the ides [15th] of May; and the bishopric was vacant one month, sixteen days.

MARTIN, of Lodi, filled the Roman see six years, one month, and twenty-six days. [5] In his time, Paul, bishop of Constantinople, revolted from the Catholic doctrine, and rudely overturned and stripped the altar belonging to the see of Rome, which was dedicated in the house of Placidia. He prohibited the pope's vicars from worshipping there, or


[1] December 24, 640-October 11, 642. The relics here mentioned were those of St. Anastasius, St. Venantius, St. Maur, and their companions.

[2] Novernber 24, 642-May 13, 649.

[3] Maurice, after the pillage of the papal treasury, took refuge in the church of Sta. Maria Maggiore from which he was dragged forth, and his head, having been cut off by the soldiers who had orders to take him to Ravenna, was presented to Isaac. The latter died by accident in 648, and was interred in the church of St. Vitalis, where his epitaph remained for several centuries.

[4] The deposition of the patriarch Paul and the excommunication of Pyrrhus were pronounced at a council in which the pope presided in 648, the decree of which he is said to have signed with consecrated wine.

[5] July 5, 649-September 16, 655.

352 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

offering the consecrated host, and celebrating the holy communion. On his being admonished by the apostolical vicars and other orthodox bishops, he only grew more furious, insomuch that he had some of them placed in confinement, some he sent into banishment, and others were subjected to scourging. Hearing this, Pope Martin assembled one hundred and five bishops at Rome, and condemning the heretics, confirmed the faith of the church of God. Afterwards, however, at the instigation of Paul, the emperor Constantine sent Theodore into Italy as exarch, and he caused Pope Martin to be banished to the Chersonesus, where the holy bishop died, on the fifteenth of the calends of October [September 17]. [1]

EUGENIUS, born at Rome in the first or Aventine quarter, and son of Rufinian, was bred to the church from his infancy. He filled the see two years, nine months, and twenty-four days. [2] He was a most excellent bishop, and excommunicated Peter, bishop of Constantinople, for his heresy. [3] He consecrated twenty-one bishops; and was buried at St. Peter's on the 4th of the nones [4th] of July. The see was void one month, twenty-one days.

VITALIAN, born at Segni in Campania, and son of Anastasius, filled the see fourteen years and six months. Ho was a strict observer of order, and consecrated ninety-seven bishops. At that time the emperor Constans besieged Romoald, the son of King Grimoald, in Beneventum, but


[1] The council assembled by Pope Martin was held in the month of October, 649. Though he was carried off from Rome in June, 653, he did not reach Constantinople till the 17th of September of the year following, having been detained in the island of Naxos. After a thousand hardships and outrages, his imprisonment was transferred to the Chersonesus, where he died at the time already stated.

[2] A.D. 654-657. This pope was nominated by the emperor in the lifetime of his predecessor. The Aventine was the first of the seven ecclesiastical districts called regions, into which Rome was divided in the middle ages. It extended on the left bank of the Tiber as far as the church of St. Paul, which was included in it, thus enclosing the region of the circuit of Augustus, called the Aventine, and perhaps the thirteenth (the Fishmarket), and the first (at the Capuan gate).

[3] It was in 656 that Peter, patriarch of Constantinople, having sent his confession of faith to Rome, it was rejected with indignation by the clergy and people, who would not permit the pope to celebrate mass until he had promised not to accept it.

A.D. 657-678.] VITALIAN-DONUS. 353

being defeated and forced to flee, he came to Rome, where he was honourably received and entertained by the pope and clergy for twelve days, but he raised money by stripping the city of the monuments which embellished it. He also wrought much evil on the Italians and other nations who owed him allegiance, but was soon afterwards assassinated in Sicily by his own attendants while he was bathing. Oa his death, the tyrant Mezentius usurped the throne. It was now that the Saracens massacred vast numbers of the Christians in Sicily. However, Pope Vitalian was then dead, and was buried at St. Peter's on the 6th of the calends of February [27th of January], and the bishopric was vacant two months and thirteen days. [1]

ADEODATUS, a Roman who had been a monk, and son of Jovian, filled the see four years, two months, and five days. Mezentius was now put to death by the Italian army at Syracuse, and his head, with those of several of the judges, was carried to Constantinople. The Saracens then took Syracuse, putting a multitude of the citizens to the sword, and returned to Alexandria, carrying with them the rich booty which the emperor Constans had lately brought from Rome. This pope consecrated forty-six bishops, and was interred at St. Peter's on the 6th of the calends of July [21st of June]. The bishopric was void three months and sixteen days. At that time there were such violent rains and thunder storms that the harvest could not be got in; but the next year the grain sprung up self sown. [2]

DONUS, a Roman, son of Maurice, filled the see one year, five months, and ten days. At that time a comet appeared in the east during three months, in the month of August


[1] A.D. 657-672. We have corrected the text in this paragraph by inserting the name of Constans for that of Constantine. The spoliations committed by Constans when he visited Rome in 663, after his fruitless siege of Romoald at Beneventum, have been already mentioned. The name of the usurper was not Mezentius, but Mizizi; but he was invested in the purple for some weeks against his own wishes. The Saracens, who had already made themselves masters of part of Sicily in 663, reduced and pillaged Syracuse about the year 673, carrying off to Alexandria all the bronze which Constance had stripped from the edifices at Rome.

[2] A.D. 672-676. It was Constantine Pagonat who put to death Mizizi, as well as his father's murderers. Why they are called judges we are at a loss to understand.

354 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CII.XVIII.

from cock-crowing till day-break, to the great terror of the inhabitants of many countries in which it was visible. A great mortality followed in the east. Pope Bonus granted various honours to ...; [1] and consecrated six bishops. He was interred at St. Peter's on the third of the ides [2nd] of April. The see was void two months and fifteen days.

AGATHO, a Sicilian, sat two years, six months, and four days, in the time of the emperors Constantine, Heraclius, and Tiberius. [2] At that time the moon was eclipsed for eighteen days in the month of June. [3] A great mortality ensued; parents with three or four of their children being carried to the grave together. The pope's legates were honourably received by the emperors in the royal city, and a general council of one hundred and fifty bishops of the east was assembled to discuss the Catholic faith. George of Constantinople, being convicted of heresy, submitted quietly to its decision; but Macharius, bishop of Antioch, persisting in his obstinacy, was condemned with his followers, and being deposed by a unanimous decree was banished to Rome. [4] Theophanius was made abbot in the island of Sicily. Pope Agatho consecrated eighteen bishops. He was buried at St. Peter's on the fourth of the ides [10th] of January; and the see was vacant one month and seven days.

LEO the younger, a Sicilian by birth, son of Paul, sat ten months and seventeen days. He was very eloquent, well read in the sacred scriptures, learned in the Greek and Latin languages, and he took the lead in chanting and psalmody, and was zealous in all good works. He convoked the sixth general council in the palace of the emperor Constantine, called Trullus, and translated its acts from Greek into Latin with great care. On the 16th day of April,


[1] The MSS. are imperfect in this place. M. Le Prevost suggests that the blank should be supplied with clerum, "clergy".

[2] June 26, 679-January 10, 682. Heraclius and Tiberius were the brothers of Constantine Pogonat, who associated them with him in the empire at the commencement of his reign, and put them to death before his own death.

[3] Every one knows that an eclipse cannot last many days. The one here mentioned took place the 17th of June, 680.

[4] Macarius died at Rome in the monastery assigned for his prison by Leo II.

A.D. 682-686.] LEO II. - JOHN. 355

the first indiction, after the Lord's supper, the moon was eclipsed, her face having the colour of blood almost all night, but after cock-crowing it began gradually to brighten. Pope Leo consecrated twenty-three bishops. He was buried at St. Peter's on the fifth of the nones [3rd] of July, and the bishopric was vacant eleven months and twenty-two days. [1]

BENEDICT the younger, a Roman, whose father's name was John, filled the see ten months and twelve days. He was in the service of the church from infancy, and devoted to good works. He flourished in the time of Justinian and Heraclius. At that time the moon was completely over-shadowed by a cloud, while the rest of the sky was clear, during the Epiphany. In the month of February a star disappeared from the east and appeared setting in the west. Afterwards in March, Mount Bravius in Compania vomited lava for ten days, and the whole neighbourhood was destroyed by the ashes of the eruptions. This pope consecrated twelve bishops; and was himself buried at St. Peter's on the eighth of the ides [8th] of May. The see was void two months and fifteen days. [2]

JOHN, born at Antioch in Syria, son of Cyriacus, filled the see one year and nine days, in the time of the emperor Justinian. While yet a deacon, he had been sent by pope Agatho with certain priests to the imperial city. He was interred at St. Peter's, on the fourth of the nones [2nd] of August, and the bishopric was void two months and eighteen days. He was continually unwell, and ordained thirteen bishops. [3]

CONON, a Sicilian, whose father's name was Traceseus,


[1] August 17, 682-July 3, 683. Pope Leo was not consecrated till the 8th of October. The sixth general council ought not to be confounded, as it is by our author, with the council in Trullo of A.D. 691. Leo II. implicitly received the decrees of that council, but it is not known that he translated them into Latin. The eclipse mentioned in this paragraph took place on the 16th of April, 683, at eleven P.M., being Holy Thursday.

[2] June 26, 684-May 7, 685. This pope was not contemporary with the emperor Justinian II. or Heraclius, but with Constantine Pogonat (668-September, 685). According to other historians, it was not the moon, but a star which exhibited the appearance here mentioned; and the mountain which was in a state of eruption was Vesuvius.

[3] June 23, 685-August 1, 686. This pope had been Pope Leo's legate at the council of Constantinople.

356 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

filled the see eleven months. There was a severe contest at his election, the clergy supporting Peter the arch-priest and the army Theodore the priest who was next on the list. But suddenly, by God's providence, they all abandoned Peter and Theodore, and unanimously chose the lord Conon, an old man of a noble presence and great piety. He suffered continually from sickness, but he consecrated sixteen bishops. He was buried at St. Peter's on the tenth of the calends of October [21st September], and the bishopric was void two months and twenty-three days. [1]

SERGIUS, whose family belonged to Antioch in Syria, but who was the son of Tiberius, settled at Palermo in Sicily, filled the see thirteen years, eight months, and twenty-three days, in the time of the emperor Justinian son of Constantine. [2] On the death of Pope Conon, part of the people elected Theodore the arch-priest, and another part Paschal, the arch-deacon; but while there was great contention, the clergy chose Sergius. Paschal had privately given a bribe to John Plantinus, the exarch, hoping through him to obtain forcible possession of the papacy, but he was disappointed. [3] Some time afterwards he was dismissed from the arch-deaconry for practising magical charms, and five years afterwards died impenitent. The emperor Justinian ordered a synod to be held in the imperial city, the acts of which confirmed by his own signature, he sent to Pope Sergius at Rome by the hands of Sergius, master of the offices. [4] But the pope, finding that some things were inserted contrary to the doctrine of the church, refused his subscription. This


[1] October 21, 686-September 21, 687. M. Le Prevost proposes to render the words de patre Traceseo, by "of a family from Thrace".

[2] December 15, 687-September 5, 701.

[3] For Plantinus read Platyn. The amount agreed on between the exarch and Paschal, one hundred livres d'or, was not paid, but promised; however Sergius was compelled to fulfil his engagement.

[4] The magistrianus, translated "master of the offices", was a high officer of the Greek emperor's household. The word occurs before, p. 214. The council in Trullo was held in 691, its decrees being subscribed by two hundred and eleven bishops. In 692, the emperor sent them to the pope, who did not even condescend to read them; and in 693 Zacharias, the protospathaire, was sent to Rome to arrest Sergius. This enterprise certainly did not succeed, but whatever our author may say, the pope had to suffer banishment for five years. Aringhi, i. p. 165.

A.D. 687-701.] POPE SERGIUS. 357

produced a great disturbance, and Zachary, the protospathaire, was despatched to Rome by the emperor with orders to arrest the pope, and bring him to Constantinople. But the Almighty stirred up the troops at Ravenna and the Pentapolis, who marched to Rome and blockaded the city gates, that they might have an opportunity of killing Zachary, while he, much alarmed, fled to the pope's own chamber, and pusillanimously concealed himself under the bed in terror of his life. The soldiery from Ravenna, entering Rome by St. Peter's gate, beset the Lateran palace with their armed bands, and when the gates were shut against them, threatened to demolish them unless they were immediately opened. Upon this, the holy pope went out and gave an honourable reception to the soldiers and the people who had hastily assembled for his protection, addressing them, in courteous terms, so that their fury was assuaged. But, full of zeal for God and love for the prelate, they would not relinquish the guard of the palace until they had driven the before named spathaire from the city with disgrace. His employer, also, the providence of God speedily so ordering it, was driven from his throne, while the church of God and its first bishop were by Christ's help preserved in safety. Pope Sergius discovered by a divine revelation a large piece of the true cross in a silver case in the sanctuary of St. Peter's, and directed that it should be adored by the people every year on the feast of the exaltation of the cross. [1] He also ordered that at the moment of breaking the Lord's body, the Agnus Dei should be sung thrice by the people. [2] This pope consecrated Damian archbishop of Ravenna, Bertwald archbishop of Canterbury, and Clement Willebrod bishop of the Frisians, with other bishops in various provinces, to the number of ninety-seven. He was buried in the church of St. Peter, on the 6th of the ides [8th] of September, under the reign of the emperor Tiberias. The bishopric was vacant one month, and twenty days.


[1] On the discovery of a portion of the true cross, see before, book i. p. 133.

[2] This was another of the additions to the ancient canon of the mass made by successive popes. It is retained in the English liturgy; "Lamb of God", etc. Concerning St. Willibrod, see book i. He arrived in Frisia in 690. Brihtwald, elected archbishop of Canterbury, July 1, 692, was consecrated June 29, 693, by Godwin, archbishop of Lyons.

358 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

JOHN, a Greek, sat three years, two months, and twelve days. [1] By his intercession Theophylact, exarch of Italy, was saved from being put to death in a tumult of the Roman people. He also caused Gisulf, chief of the Lombards, who burnt and ravaged Campania, to retire into his own states, after receiving large sums for the ransom of his prisoners. This pope consecrated fifteen bishops, and was buried at St. Peter's, the see remaining void one month and eighteen days.

JOHN, a Greek, son of Plato, filled the see two years, six months, and seventeen days. He flourished in the reigns of Tiberius and Justinian, [2] and was a most learned and eloquent prelate. He also carefully repaired many of the cemeteries of the saints and the churches which had fallen to decay and become ruinous. [3] It was then that Aribert, king of the Lombards, son of Raginbert, duke of Turin, restored to St. Peter the Cottian Alps, and recorded the donation in a charter with golden letters. [4] The emperor Justinian also, by the aid of Turbel, king of the Bulgarians, recovered the throne which he had lost, and caused tho usurpers Leo and Tiberius to be put to death in the circus before all the people. [5] Pope John ordained nineteen bishops. He was buried at St. Peter's, before the altar of St. Mary, mother of God, which he had himself erected, on the fifteenth of the calends of November [18th October]. The see was void two months.

SISINNIUS, a Syrian, son of John, sat twenty days. [6] His mind was firm, and he was anxious for the prosperity of


[1] October 28, 701-January 9, 705.

[2] March 1, 705-October 17, 707.

[3] The cemeteries repaired by this pope were those of Damasus, St. Mark, and St. Marcellinus, on the road to Ardea. He also rebuilt the church of St. Eugenius, which had become ruinous. The chapel he built and dedicated to St. Mary has been already mentioned.

[4] The facts here related have been already mentioned, book i. p. 126. It must not be understood that the whole Cottian Alps, or Mont Genevre, were included in the donation, but only the domains situated among them. It is singular that the Roman church, generally so careful to preserve the records of its title to estates, should have lost the charter of Aribert II. as well as that of Liutprand.

[5] Ordericus has inverted the chronological order of these events; the first took place in 702, the second in 701.

[6] January 18-February 7, 703.

A.D. 708-731.] SISINNIUS-GREGORY II. 359

Rome, but he was a martyr to the gout, and expired suddenly on the twentieth day after his consecration. He was buried at St. Peter's, and the bishopric remained vacant one month and eighteen days.

CONSTANTINE, a Syrian, whose father's name was John, filled the see eight years and fifteen days. [1] In his time there was a severe famine at Rome which lasted three years, and was followed by a season of extraordinary plenty. The emperor Justinian sent the patrician Theodore into Italy, who took Ravenna, and sent the contumacious archbishop Felix [2] into exile in Pontus, deprived of sight. The pope, at the emperor's request, undertook a journey to Constantinople with a numerous retinue, and was very honourably received by Justinian and Tiberius his son and the people. Not long afterwards Philip put Justinian to death and usurped the throne, but in a very short time he was deposed, and Anastasius, who succeeded, conformed to the orthodox belief. [3] This pope consecrated sixty-four bishops, and was buried at St. Peter's of the ides [8th] of January; the bishopric remaining void forty days.

GREGORY [II.], a Roman, son of Marcellus, filled the see sixteen years, nine months, and eleven days, in the reigns of the emperors Anastasius, Theodosius, Leo, and Constantine. [4] He founded many churches and abbies, and did many other good works which it is impossible to enumerate. He employed Boniface, the bishop, in converting the Germans to the Christian faith. During his pontificate the


[1] March 25, 708-April 9, 715.

[2] The epithet here applied to the archbishop of Ravenna has reference to his insubordination to the holy see.

[3] The expedition of the patrician Theodore to Ravenna was undertaken in 709. The pope's journey to Constantinople occupied the time from October 5, 710, the day of his departure, to the 24th of October of the year following. Justinian II. was beheaded October 11, 711, and his successor, Philip, had his eyes put out June 3, 713.

[4] May 19, 715-February 10, 731. The pontificate of Gregory was far from lasting to the reign of Constantine Copronymus, which did not commence until 741. The works undertaken by this pope consisted more in restorations than new buildings. He sent Boniface into Germany in 718. There appears some exaggeration in our author's account of the effects of the inundation of the Tiber in 717; according to other historians the flood in the quarter of the Via Lata did not exceed the height of a man.

360 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

moon had once the appearance of blood until midnight. The river Tiber overflowed its banks and inundated Rome for seven days, so that it rose above the passage of the Flaminian Gate, and in the Broadway was the depth of a man's stature and a half. Pope Gregory and his clergy, with the people, chanting frequent litanies, by the mercy of God, after the eighth day the flood abated. Anastasius, driven from the throne, engaged in battle with Theodosius, [1] but he was defeated and forced to become a monk. The infidel nation of the Saracens, having afflicted Spain for ten years, attempted to pass the Rhone into France, when they were met by Eudes duke of Aquitain, and defeated with a slaughter of 300,000 of the enemy, while 1,500 Franks only are said to have fallen. At that time a fiery rain was seen to fall from the sky in some place in Campania, which burnt up the wheat and barley and pulse. When Leo was emperor, Constantinople was twice besieged by the Saracens, but God protecting it, the city was not taken, but 300,000 of the inhabitants perished by famine and pestilence.

Liutprand, king of the Lombards, at that time oppressed the Romans, but at the intercession of the people, and respecting his prayers and sanctity, he was induced to spare them. Duke Basil and Paul the exarch, [2] with other malcontents, received instructions from the emperor Leo to put


[1] The text, which has it Tiberius, is corrected. Theodosius's victory over Anastasius was obtained in the month of February, 716. One might suppose at first sight that our author is describing the irruption of Anbessa across the Rhone, but it is plain by the amount of the number of the slain, that he is speaking of the battle of Toulouse. Three consecrated sponges which Eudes pretended to have received from the pope, and which he distributed to his soldiers, greatly contributed to inflame the zeal of the Christians.

[2] The conquest by Liutprand of the greatest part of the towns in the duchy of Rome was effected in 729. It was the exarch Eutychius who attempted to obtain possession of the city, and he did enter it, but in a peaceable manner, through the good offices of the pope with his powerful ally. The emperor took measures against the pope as early as 726 at least when Jordan, the keeper of the rolls, and Lurion (in the MSS. called Barion), were killed by the Romans, and the duke Basil driven out of the city. The exarch Paul, who was not better treated by the Romans in 727, fell during an insurrection at Ravenna in 728. The imprisonment and murder of Exhilharat, duke of Naples (written Exclarat in the MSS.), and his son, appear to be connected with the same period.

A.D. 715-741.] GREGORY II.-GREGORY III. 361

to death Pope Gregory; but the Romans and Lombards, by God's providence, resisted their attempts, and protected the holy bishop. They slew Jordan, the keeper of the records, and John Lurion, and Exhilharat the duke, with his son Adrian, and entirely frustrated the emperor's nefarious designs. He had decreed that no image of our Saviour or of his holy mother, or of any saint, martyr, or angel, should be allowed in the churches, pretending that they were all forbidden. Ho therefore commanded all images in the imperial city to be removed and committed to the flames, threatening all who opposed with loss of their heads or their limbs. Leo deposed Germanus, bishop of Constantinople, who resisted this decree, and elevated the priest Anastasius in his place. In the month of January, the star which is called Antefer, shone with bright rays in the west. After this Tiberius Petasus made an attempt on the crown, but he was defeated and slain by Eutychius the exarch and the Romans who had flown to arms. [1] Pope Gregory consecrated one hundred and fifty bishops, and, after many good works, was buried at St. Peter's on the ides [1st] of February. The bishopric was vacant one month and five days.

GREGORY, a Syrian, whose father's name was John, filled the see ten years, eight months, and twenty-five days, in the reigns of the emperors Leo and Constantine. [2] He was much distinguished for his sanctity, piety, wisdom, and eloquence in the Greek and Latin tongues. He founded many sacred buildings, and added ornaments to several churches. A synod consisting of ninety-three bishops was convoked by him at Rome, in opposition to the heresies of the emperors Leo and Constantine, who had cast out the images of Christ and his saints from the churches, and irreverently burnt them. He added the following words to be recited by the priest in the canon of the mass: "Whose holy festival is this day celebrated throughout all the world in the sight, of thy majesty, O Lord our God"; causing them to be


[1] Germanus, patriarch of Constantinople, was deposed the 17th of Jan. 730, and Anastasius was appointed in his place five days afterwards. The revolt of Tiberius Petasus was prior to the edict against images, which was not issued until 730, though the emperor had begun to oppose them in 727.

[2] March 18, 731-November 27 or 28, 741.

362 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

inscribed on stone in an oratory. [1] In his time Liutprand, king of the Lombards, laid siege to Rome, on which occasion the pope sought aid from Charles, king of the Franks. [2] It was then that Thrasimond, duke of Spoleto, having sought refuge at Rome, four cities were taken from the Romans. This holy pope consecrated eighty bishops, and was buried at St. Peter's on the fourth of the calends of December [28th November]. The see was void eight days.

ZACHARY, a Greek, son of Polychronius, filled the see ten years, three months, and fourteen days. [3] Adorned with every virtue he conferred great benefits on the church. In his time Italy was in a very disturbed state: the pope, however, had an interview with King Liutprand, and succeeded in negotiating a treaty of peace for twenty years, and, recovering the prisoner Liutprand, died in the thirty-second year of his reign, and was succeeded by Ratchis, son of Pemmon duke of Forli. Then while the emperor Constantine marched against the Arabs, one Artabasdus contrived to usurp the government, but Constantine assembling the army of the east took the imperial city by storm, and deprived the rebel and his accomplices of sight. At that time Carloman, son of Charles Martel, king of the Franks, became a monk at Monte Cassino. King Ratchis also, at the exhortations of the pope, came to Rome, and by God's grace laying aside his crown, became a monk. [4] Pope Zachary


[1] The council mentioned in this paragraph was held in 732. Ciampini iii. c. 4, preserves three prayers which Gregory III. caused to be inscribed in the crypt of St. Peter, but the fragment quoted by our author is not among them, and if the passage was introduced into the canon of the mass, its use has long since been discontinued. There are, however, corresponding words in the collect for the masses for martyrs, confessors, and bishops, and on the anniversaries of the dedication of churches.

[2] It will he observed that Ordericus Vitalis, like the Roman writers, always gives Charles Martel the title of king of the Franks. It was in 640 that Thrasimond, duke of Spoleto, who had revolted against Liutprand, having sought refuge and obtained succour at Rome, the Lombard king revenged himself by seizing the towns of Ameria, Orti, Bomarzo, and Bieda (?), and by besieging Rome.

[3] November 30, 741-March 14, 752.

[4] Liutprand, in his treaty with the pope at the close of 741, restored the four towns he had taken the preceding year. Thrasimond was pardoned on condition of his becoming a priest, a treatment to which he had subjected his father. Liutprand died towards the month of January, 744, after a reign of thirty-one years and seven months. Hildebrand, his nephew, was deposed the August following, and Ratchis, duke of Friuli, succeeded him. Artabasdus, brother-in-law of Constantine Copronymus, having revolted against him during his absence, had his eyes put out the 2nd of November, 743. Carloman became a monk at Monte Cassino in 747, and Ratchis in 749.

A.D. 752-757.] POPE STEPHEN II. 363

translated the four books of Dialogues of Pope St. Gregory from Latin to Greek, and consecrated eighty-five bishops. He was buried at St. Peter's on the ides [15th] of March, and the bishopric was vacant twelve days.

STEPHEN, a Roman, son of Constantine, sat five years and twenty-eight days. [1] The people had elected another Stephen, a priest; but, three days afterwards, rising from sleep in good health, and sitting down for the despatch of business, he was suddenly deprived of sense and the power of speech, and died the next day. Upon this, Stephen, the deacon, a man adorned by every virtue, was elected pope. At that time Astulph, king of the Lombards, cruelly persecuted the church, and used every effort to reduce Rome itself to subjection. In consequence, the pope, finding that neither money nor prayers were of any avail, was under the necessity of undertaking a journey to France, to implore protection for the church. He was received with high honour by King Pepin and the Frank nobles, and was entertained the whole winter at the Abbey of St. Deny's, near Paris. [2] Soon afterwards Pepin laid siege to Pavia, with an army of Franks, and compelled Astulph to swear to a treaty of peace with the Romans, but, as soon as Pepin retired to his own states, Astulph broke his oath, besieging Rome for four months, and violating the cemeteries, in which he disinterred the bodies of many of the saints. At the pope's entreaty Pepin again besieged Pavia, and, forcing the perjured king to surrender Ravenna, Narni, Rimini, and many other towns, added them to the patrimony of St. Peter. Not long afterwards Astulph perished while he was hunting, by a stroke divinely directed, and Duke Desiderius took possession of the throne. [3] Pope Stephen. consecrated


[1] March 26, 752-April 25, 757.

[2] Concerning this journey of Pope Stephen II. to France, see previous note book i. p. 131.

[3] The first siege of Pavia was in 754, that of Rome by Astulph began January 1, 755, and the second siege of Pavia was undertaken in the course of the same year. The number of places which Astulph was compelled to cede to the pope amounted to twenty-two, among which were Fano, Cesina, Sinegaglia, Forli, Comacchio, and Narni. Astulph died and was succeeded by Didier, in the beginning of the year 755.

364 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

fifteen bishops, and crowned Pepin king of the Franks, with his Queen Bertrade, and their sons Charles and Carloman. He was buried at St. Peter's on the calends [1st] of May, and the see was void five days.

PAUL, a Roman, brother of Stephen, filled the see ten years and one month, in the time of Constantine and Leo. [1] His good deeds were many; he ordained sixty bishops, and after his death the see remained void one year and one month, while the intruder Constantine took possession of the apostolical seat.

STEPHEN, a Sicilian, son of Olybus, filled the see three years, five months, and twenty-eight days. [2] He was a firm, wise, and excellent prelate, and rendered great services to the church. Before his election an unprecedented outrage was committed at Rome; for Toto, duke of Nepi, compelled George, bishop of Praeneste, very reluctantly, to consecrate the duke's brother Constantine pope, he being a layman. [3] Soon after the ordination George fell sick, and became so infirm that he never afterwards sang mass. For his right hand dried up and became so palsied that he could not raise it to his mouth. A year after Rome was delivered up to Christopher the dean, and Sergius the sacristan, and Duke Toto was treacherously assassinated by Demetrius and Gratiosus. Upon this, Stephen was lawfully elected pope with the general consent; and not long afterwards the intruder Constantine, with his brother Passibius, and Theodore, bishop and apostolic-vicar, were seized by some ruffians, who deprived them of sight; and Christopher, with his son Sergius and several others, perished by the craft and emissaries of King Desiderius. [4] Meanwhile Stephen, soon after his consecration, sent Sergius the secondary to the


[1] May 29, 757-June 28, 767. This pope was not contemporary with the emperor Leo, but with Constantine only.

[2] August 7, 758-February 1, 772.

[3] Nepi is a small town in the neighbourhood of Rome, on the river Briglia. Constantine retained possession of the apostolic see thirteen months.

[4] It was five years afterwards that Christopher and his son Sergius had their eyes put out by Paul Afriartes, acting in concert with King Desiderius.

A.D. 758-795.] STEPHEN III.-ADRIAN I. 365

court of Charlemagne, king of the Franks, entreating his aid and advice. Upon this the king deputed to Rome twelve of the French bishops of the highest character, and best instructed in the holy scriptures, and in the rules of the sacred canons. [1]

In the month of April a synod of bishops assembled in the church of St. Saviour, near the Lateran palace, and Constantine, who from a layman had been so precipitately made a clergyman and pope, was unanimously condemned. The synod further decreed, under penalty of excommunication, that no layman, or person of any order, should be raised to the popedom, except by passing through the regular degrees of orders; and that all which this Constantine had sanctioned in ecclesiastical affairs and divine worship should be performed anew, except baptism and holy unction. Pope Stephen consecrated thirty bishops, and was buried at St. Peter's, the bishopric remaining void eight days.

ADRIAN, a Roman, son of Theodore who lived in the district of the Broadway, filled the see twenty-three years, ten months, and seventeen days. [2] Of noble rank and graceful person, he was moreover firm, devout, and holy. In his time Desiderius, king of the Lombards, inflicted great evils on Rome, on Ravenna, and on the places subject to them. In consequence Charlemagne, at the pope's request, undertook an expedition into Italy, and after besieging Pavia for five months, by God's help forced it to surrender; and marching from thence to Rome, he and his army entered the city, amidst the highest honours, on the Saturday before Easter. He sent Desiderius captive to France, with his queen, and restored the patrimony of St. Peter which he had seized. [3] Pope Adrian founded and ornamented churches


[1] Sergius had been sent as legate to King Pepin immediately after Stephen became pope, but on his arrival (September 24, 768) he found Pepin dead, and his sons Charlemagne and Carloman in possession of his dominions.

[2] February 9, 772-December 25, 795.

[3] The Lombard king made himself master of Ravenna in 772, and proceeded on his march towards Rome the year following. The siege of Pavia lasted six months, as our author correctly states, during the winter and spring of 774, and Charlemagne entered Rome on Holy Saturday. Desiderius was confined in the abbey of Corby, where he ended his days. Charlemagne's donation to the Roman church included more territory than the Lombard kings had wrested from it.

366 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

and did many memorable things. He prevailed on the emperor Constantine to assemble a council of three hundred and fifty bishops at Nice, the acts of which he caused to be translated from Greek into Latin. [1] In the twentieth year of this papacy the Tiber overflowed its banks as far as the door of St. Peter's church, doing great injury to the citizens; but the pope ordered processions, and the Lord in his mercy abated the flood. [2] He consecrated one hundred and eighty-five bishops, and was buried at St. Peter's on the seventh of the calends of January [26th December], Leo being made pope in his stead the same day.

LEO [III.], a Roman, son of Aizuppius, sat twenty years, five months, and sixteen days, [3] following in all things the examples of his predecessors. While he was engaged in the due performance of his office, and on a certain day was going in procession with the people to the church of St. Peter, Paschal the primicier, and Campol the sacristan, [4] rushed from an ambush with their armed followers, and dispersing the terrified and unarmed populace, made an attempt to deprive the pope of his tongue and his eyes before the very altar of St. Peter. But some days afterwards Albinus the chamberlain released him from prison, and the Lord Almighty restored him to perfect health. Winigis, also, duke of Spoleto, came to his aid, and seeing the pope, who had been wounded with clubs and dashed before the altar, half dead and weltering in his blood, now wonderfully restored to health, the duke and the rest of the faithful


[1] This council assembled at Constantinople the 1st of August, 786, and resumed its labours at Nice on the 24th of September of the year following, continuing them to the 23rd of October. The translation of its decrees made by Pope Stephen was so literal as to be almost unintelligible.

[2] The inundation of which our author speaks occurred in the month of December, 791. The flood burst into the city at the Flaminian gate, now the Porta del Popolo, which it laid in ruins, as well as the Sublician bridge.

[3] February 9, 772-December 25, 795.

[4] Primicerius, Sacellarius. The primicier was the first officer of the Roman church, who in grand ceremonies attended the emperor and the pope on one side, while the secondary stood on the other, taking precedence of all other dignitaries. The sacristan was the fourth officer of the church, whose duty it was to distribute the pay of the troops, and the donations to the choir and clergy. The insurrection headed by these two leaders broke out on the 23rd of April, 749.

A.D. 772-821.] LEO III.-PASCHAL. 367

glorified God. The pope afterwards paid a visit to Charlemagne, and complained to him of the treatment he had received. He was received with the honours due to his high rank, and on his return was attended by two archbishops, Hildebald and Arno, with six bishops and three counts. [1] The king himself soon afterwards went to Rome and was crowned by the same pope on Christmas day at St. Peter's, being proclaimed by all, both Romans and Franks, emperor of Rome.

After this, on the second of the calends of May [30th April], the ninth indiction, a violent earthquake entirely destroyed the church of St. Paul, which Pope Leo rebuilt with great magnificence. This pope also instituted the rogations for three days before our Lord's ascension. [2] None of his predecessors bestowed so much care on the churches of the saints, their ornaments and all things necessary. He ordained one hundred and twenty-six bishops, and was buried at St. Peter's on the second of the ides [12th] of June. The see was void one month.

STEPHEN, a Roman, son of Marinus, sat seven months. [3] To establish the peace of holy church, he went into France to the emperor Lewis, and obtained of him all that he requested, and mercifully recalled the exiles who were banished for their outrage on Pope Leo. [4] He consecrated five bishops, and was interred at St. Peter's. The bishopric was vacant twenty-six days.

PASCHAL, a Roman, son of Bonosus, filled the see seven years, four months, and eighteen days. [5] He followed the examples of his predecessors in great sanctity, doing much


[1] Pope Leo met Charlemagne at Paderborn, and returned to Rome the 29th of November of the same year. Hildebald (spelt Idilvald in the text) was archbishop of Cologne, and Arno of Saltzburgh.

[2] The earthquake which shattered and threw down the roof of the church of St. Paul happened in 801. It was not this pope, but Mamertus, who instituted the rogations, about the year 470. It should seem that Pope Leo III. introduced them at Rome, or at least regulated the ceremonial to be observed in them.

[3] June 11 or 12, 816-January 24, 817.

[4] The emperor received the pope at Rheims in the month of August. There is no other account of his having brought back from France the assassins of his predecessor, and it is not a very probable circumstance.

[5] January 25, 817-May 11, 824. This pope rebuilt three churches, St. Praxede, St. Cecilia in Transtevere, and Santa Maria in Dominica.

368 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XVIII.

that was both useful and ornamental to the church. He consecrated eleven bishops, and was interred at St. Peter's, the see being void four days.

EUGENIUS, a Roman, a good and holy prelate, filled the see four years. [1] At that time extraordinary plenty and peace reigned throughout the world.

VALENTINE, a Roman, son of Peter, from the quarter of the Broadway, endowed with every virtue, filled the see fourteen days. [2] He was elected in the Lateran palace by one hundred bishops, and the chief men of Rome with all the people, and being taken from the church of St. Mary, mother of God, was placed on the papal throne; but he died shortly afterwards in sanctity.

GREGORY [IV.], a Roman, son of John, distinguished for his noble person and birth, and a wise and holy bishop, filled the see sixteen years. [3] In his time the Saracens made irruptions from their own territories on the islands and states of the Christians, which they grievously ravaged, butchering the inhabitants, and destroying in their fury the churches and dwellings of the faithful. Pope Gregory surrounded Ostia with walls to protect it from their incursions, from which it was afterwards called Gregorianopolis. [4] His other good deeds were numerous; for he built many churches, and, translating numerous relics of the saints, deposited them in suitable receptacles. He consecrated one hundred and eighty-five bishops, and was buried at St. Peter's. The bishopric was vacant fifteen days.

SERGIUS [II.], a Roman, whose father's name was also Sergius, filled the see three years. [5] Although he was canonically elected, John the deacon, with a band of armed peasants, burst the gates, and, trampling on all the traditions of law and order, forced their way into the papal palace. But in the course of an hour the troops, being seized with a panic, took to flight, and John the intruder


[1] June 5, 824-August 27, 827.

[2] August to September, 827.

[3] A.D. 827-854.

[4] The Saracens made themselves masters of Crete and Sicily between the years 820 and 830, which induced Gregory IV. to fortify Ostia, to protect Rome from their attacks.

[5] January or February, 844-January 27, 847.

A.D. 844-855.] SERGIUS II.-LEO IV. 369

was made prisoner, and having been scourged was degraded from his office of deacon. [1] At that time the emperor Lothaire sent to Rome Drogo, archbishop of Metz, with his own son Lewis, attended by many bishops, abbots, and counts. On their route they made great slaughter in the towns and country, so that the native inhabitants, terrified at their cruelty, were forced to take refuge in woods and dens. Then, on a certain day, the sky grew black with clouds, and some of Drogo's chief attendants were struck with lightning and killed. Lewis, however, proceeded to Rome, when Pope Sergius anointed him with holy oil, and consecrated him king of the Lombards. [2] This pope ordained twenty-three bishops and founded several abbies and churches. He was buried at St. Peter's, and the bishopric was vacant two months and fifteen days.

LEO [IV.], a Roman, son of Radvald, sat eight years, three months, and six days. [3] He shone brightly, like the sun, in the world, by his inestimable gifts, serving the church of God in various ways, both by building and embellishing churches, and by other useful undertakings. Presently, after the death of Pope Sergius, the Saracens pillaged the churches of St. Peter and St. Paul; but as their fleet was returning to Africa it was destroyed by a tempest. [4] At that time there was such an earthquake at Rome that all the elements seemed in disorder. Pope Leo prohibited laics from remaining in the sanctuary while mass was celebrated. In the first year of his papacy, he drove away by his merits and prayers a basilisk which, lurking in the dark caverns of Rome, destroyed many persons with its pestiforous breath. This holy pope also extinguished


[1] The election of Pope Sergius II. was hardly completed when John the deacon forced his way into the papal palace.

[2] Lewis II., son of the emperor Lothaire, arrived in Rome on Sunday the 8th of June, 844, and was crowned by Sergius II. the 15th of the same month, king of Lombardy; a young prince who defended his kingdom and the imperial rights in Italy with great spirit.

[3] January 27 or 28, 847-July 17, 855.

[4] The pillage of the churches of St. Peter and St. Paul, both then fuori muri, by the Saracens occurred in the month of August, 846, and consequently in the time of Pope Sergius. They were attacked by Lewis at the head of the Franks on their retreat, hut gained their fleet, in the ship-wreck of which the booty they carried off from Rome was lost.

370 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XIX.

a fire which raged furiously in the street of the Saxons, by simply making the sign of the cross. [1] He founded and embellished many churches, rebuilt cities, and repaired the walls of Rome. He also built a wall round the church of St. Peter, and was in some sort the founder of a city, since called from his name, the Leonine city, which he consecrated in the presence of the whole population of Rome with great rejoicings on the 4th of the calends of July [28th June]. [2]

CH. XIX. Continuation of the series of popes, from the death, of Leo IV., A.D. 855, to Innocent II., the reigning pope, A.D. 1142.

I HAVE now given, in a short chapter, such an account of a hundred popes who presided in the apostolical see after St. Peter, as I could collect from the writings of Pope St. Damasus to Jerome, or in the Pontifical. [3] But further, respecting the forty popes who filled the apostolical see from the time of Leo IV. to the present time, I have not yet been able to discover any genuine accounts; I shall, therefore, venture to say but little about them. Their names only it will be my endeavour to supply in regular order, hut I am under the necessity of observing silence on their origin and


[1] The fire here mentioned is that which is represented by Raphael in his celebrated picture, which goes by the name of Incendio del Borgo.

[2] Pope Leo IV. repaired many of the churches and monasteries, which he enriched and embellished, particularly the churches of St. Peter and Paul,from which he was anxious to remove all traces of the devastations made by the Saracens. The repairs of the walls of Rome and the fortifications with which he surrounded the Vatican, including the church of St. Peter, commenced in 848. These latter works lasted six years. Gibbon remarks of Pope Leo: "The capital of Christendom owed its salvation as much to the heroism of the pope Leo IV. as to the valour of the imperial troops. Born a Roman, the courage of the first ages of the republic glowed in his bosom".

[3] It is generally understood that the Pontifical, attributed during the middle ages either to Pope Damasus or St. Jerome, was the work of neither; but its history is too obscure and too complicated a subject to be discussed in a note. Suffice it to say, that it now bears the name af Anastasius the librarian, who, if not its author, was at least its compiler and editor. Ordericus has miscounted the number of popes contained in his list, which (including the antipope Felix II.) amounts to one hundred and forty.

A.D. 855-1047.] SUCCESSION OF POPES. 371

acts, until, by God's help, I shall have been able, as I wish, to meet with fuller records concerning them.

Pope BENEDICT filled the see one year, six months, and ten days. [1]

Pope NICHOLAS, four year and ten months. [2]

Pope ADRIAN, five yars. [3]

Pope JOHN, ten years. [4]

Pope MARINUS, one year and four months. [5]

Pope ADRIAN, one year and four months. [6]

Pope AGAPITUS, one year. [7]

BASIL STEPHEN, [8] one year; then FORMOSUS, [9] JOHN, [10] and STEPHEN, [11] flourished in the time of Lewis d'Outremer. [12] They were followed by MARINUS, AGAPITUS, OCTAVIANUS, LEO, BENEDICT, BENEDICT, GERBERT, SILVESTER, AGAPITUS, and BENEDICT. Thus, for nearly a hundred and ten years, eleven popes filled the apostolical see of whom I have been hitherto unable to discover either the genealogies, or the time of their elevation, or the date of their deaths. [13]

CLEMENT SUITGER, who had been bishop of Bamberg,


[1] Benedict III., July 17 or 18-September 1, 855-April 8, 858.

[2] Nicholas I., April 24, 858-November 13, 867.

[3] Adrian II., November 13 or 14, 867-December 13 or 14, 872.

[4] John VII., December 14, 872-December 15, 882.

[5] Marinus I., December, 882-May, 884.

[6] Adrian III., May, 884-September, 885.

[7] Agapitas was the same person as Adrian III.

[8] Stephen V., who bore the name of Basil in his youth, September, 885-August 7, 891.

[9] Formosus, September, 891-April, 896.

[10] For John, read Boniface VI. He was pope only fifteen days.

[11] Stephen VI., August, 896-897; about fourteen months.

[12] Our author is mistaken in representing the last three popes as contemporary with Louis d'Outremer, whose reign began in June, 936, and terminated the 10th of September, 954.

[13] Ordericus Vitalis omits the fifteen popes who filled the see of Rome between Stephen VI. and Marinus II. (897-942). Instead of Octavian read John XII. The tiara was contested between Leo VIII. and Benedict V. The crowning of Otho the Younger by John XIII. took place on Christmas day, 967. There should be inserted in the text between Benedict VI. and Benedict VII., Donus II., who filled the papacy for some months in 976; after Benedict VII., John XIV., John XV., John XVI., and Gregory V.; after Silvester II., John XVII., John XVIII., and Sergius IV.; and after Benedict VIII., John XIX., Benedict IX., and Gregory VI.

372 ORDERICUS VITALIS. [B.II. CH.XIX.

filled the see nine years, and crowned the emperor Henry and his empress Agnes. [1]

DAMASUS, formerly bishop of Aquileia, sat one year. [2]

LEO, a Lorrainer, sat five years. Under the name of Bruno he was bishop of Toul. When pope he came into Gaul and held a great council at Rheims. He restored to vigour many ancient decrees of the holy fathers which had fallen into disuse, and made many useful reforms both in civil and ecclesiastical affairs. [3]

GEBEHARD VICTOR filled the see three years. [4]

FREDERICK STEPHEN, son of Duke Gothelon, sat one year. [5]

GERARD NICHOLAS, the first pope of the French nation, sat two years. [6]

ALEXANDER of Lucca filled the see eleven years. [7]

GREGORY HILDEBRAND, a monk from his childhood, filled the see fourteen years. In his time the emperor Henry expelled the pope, and, intruding Guitberg, bishop of Ravenna, into the apostolical see, caused great disturbances in the church of Rome. [8]

DESIDERIUS VICTOR, who was abbot of Monte-Casino, filled the see eleven months. [9]

URBAN ODO, who had been a monk of Cluni, and bishop of Ostia, sat twelve years. He it was who stirred up the armies of Christendom to march to Jerusalem against the infidels. [10]


[1] Clement II. (previously bishop of Bamberg), December 25, 1046- October 9, 1047. He crowned Henry III. and his queen Agnes, on the very day of his own installation.

[2] Damasus, July 16-August 8, 1048. This pope was not previously patriarch of Aquileia, but bishop of Brixen.

[3] February 12, 1048-April 19, 1054. As to this pope, see book i. p. 151.

[4] March 13, 1055-July 28, 1057.

[5] Stephen IX., August 2, 1057-March 29,1058.

[6] Nicholas II., December 28, 1058-January 18, 1059- July 21 or 22, 1081. Ordericus, when he describes this pope as the first Frenchman who filled the holy see, forgot Silvester II. (Gerbert), who was a native of Auvergne.

[7] Alexander II., bishop of Lucca, September 30, 1061- April 21, 1073.

[8] Gregory VII., April 22-June 30, 1073-May 25, 1085. Gilbert, archbishop of Vienna, was elected by an assembly at Brixen, the 23rd of June, 1080, and died in 1100, after an intrusion of twenty years.

[9] Victor III., May 24, 1086-September 16, 1087.

[10] Urban II., March 11,1088-July 29, 1099. The date of the council of Clermont, where the first crusade was preached, is given before, book i. p. 154. The crusaders formed a junction at Nice the 14th of May, 109l, and laying siege to Jerusalem on the 7th of June, took it by assault on Friday, the 15th of July, in the same year.

A.D. 1099-1142.] SUCCESSION of POPES. 373

PASCAL REINER, a native of the valley of the Brutians, a monk, sat twelve years. [1]

GELASIUS JOHN, born at Gaieta, sat two years. [2]

CALIXTUS GUY, son of William, duke of Burgundy, who was archbishop of Vienna, filled the see six years. [3]

HONORIUS LAMBERT, who was bishop of Ostia, sat five years. [4]

INNOCENT GEORGE, of the family of the Papii, has filled the see twelve years. He held a great council at Rome in the ninth year of his papacy, at which many affairs were determined, although there are but scanty records of its proceedings. [5]


[1] Pascal II., a native of Bleda, August 13, 1099-January, 1118.

[2] Gelasius II., born at Gaieta, and not, as our author describes him, at Cadiz, Gaditanus, January 25, 1118-January 19, 1119.

[3] Callistus II., February 1, 1119-December 12, 1124. He was the son of William, earl of Boulogne, and filled the archiepiscopal see of Vienna at the time he was elevated to the papacy.

[4] Honorius II., December 21, 1124-February 14, 1130.

[5] Innocent II., February 15, 1130-September 23, 1143. Ordericus calls him Papiensis; but he was not a native of Pavia, as he is described more expressly towards the close of book i., but belonged to the family of the Papii. The council here mentioned was the second Lateran (the tenth general council), which met on the 8th of April, 1139, and was attended by nearly a thousand bishops.

The mention of twelve years having elapsed since the election of Innocent II., proves that this passage was written in the year 1142, and consequently some time before the last paragraph but one in the first book.

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