Defence against the arians

By Athanasius

Chapters VI

Documents connected with the Council of Tyre.

71. Thus ended the conspiracy. The Meletians were repulsed and covered
with shame but notwithstanding this Eusebius and his fellows still did not
remain quiet, for it was not for the Meletians but for Arius and his fellows,
that they cared, and they were afraid lest, if the proceedings of the former
should be, stopped, they should no longer find persons to play the parts,
by whose assistance they might bring in that heresy. They therefore again
stirred up the Meletians, and persuaded the Emperor to give orders that a
Council should be held afresh at Tyre, and Count Dionysius was despatched
thither, and a military guard was given to Eusebius and his fellows. Macarius
also was sent as a prisoner to Tyre under a guard of soldiers; and the Emperor
wrote to me, and laid a peremptory command upon me, so that, however
unwilling, I set out. The whole conspiracy may be understood from the letters
which the Bishops of Egypt wrote; but it will be necessary to relate how it
was contrived by them in the outset, that so may be perceived the malice and
wickedness that was exercised against me. There are in Egypt, Libya, and
Pentapolis, nearly one hundred Bishops; none of whom laid anything to my
charge; none of the Presbyters found any fault with me; none of the people
spoke aught against me; but it was the Meletians who were ejected by Peter,
and the Arians, that divided the plot between them, while the one party
claimed to themselves the right of accusing me, the other of sitting in
judgment on the case. I objected to Eusebius and his fellows as being my
enemies on account of the heresy; next, I shewed in the following manner that
the person who was called my accuser was not a Presbyter at all. When Meletius
was admitted into communion (would that he had never been so admitted !)
the blessed Alexander who knew his craftiness required of him a schedule of
the Bishops whom he said he had in Egypt, and of the presbyters and deacons
that were in Alexandria itself, and if he had any in the country district.
This the Pope Alexander has done, test Meletius, having received the freedom
of the Church, should tender many, and thus continually, by a fraudulent
procedure, foist upon us whomsoever he pleased. Accordingly he has made out
the following schedule of those in Egypt.

A schedule presented by Meletius to the

Bishop Alexander.

I, Meletius of Lycopolis, Lucius of Antinopolis, Phasileus of Hermopolis,
Achilles of Cusae, Ammonius of Diospolis. In Ptolemais, Pachymes of Tentyrae.
In Maximianopolis, Theodorus of Coptus. In Thebais, Cales of Hermethes,
Colluthus of Upper Cynopolis, Pelagius of Oxyrynchus, Peter of Heracleopolis,
Theon of Nilopolis, Isaac of Letopolis, Heraclides of Niciopolis,
Isaac of Cleopatris, Melas of Arsenoitis.

In Heliopolis, Amos of Leontopolis, Ision of Athribis. In Pharbethus,
Harpocration of Bubastus, Moses of Phacusae, Callinicus of Pelusium,
Eudaemon of Tunis, Ephraim of Thmuis.

In Sais, Hermaeon of Cynopolis and Busiris, Soterichus of Sebennytus,
Pininuthes of Phthenegys, Cronius of Metelis, Agathammon of the district of

In Memphis, John who was ordered by the Emperor to be with the Archbishop
[6]. These are those of Egypt. And the Clergy that he had in Alexandria were
Apollonius Presbyter, Irenaeus Presbyter, Dioscorus Presbyter, Tyrannus
Presbyter. And Deacons; Timotheus Deacon, Antinous Deacon, Hephaestion Deacon.
And Macarius Presbyter of Parembole.

72. These Meletius presented actually in person s to the Bishop Alexander,
but he made no mention of the person called Ischyras, nor ever


professed at all that he had any Clergy in the Mareotis. Notwithstanding our
enemies did not desist from their attempts, but still he that was no Presbyter
was reigned to be one, for there was the Count ready to use compulsion towards
us, and soldiers were hurrying us about. But even then the grace of God
prevailed: for they could not convict Macarius in the matter of the cup; and
Arsenius, whom they reported to have been murdered by me, stood before them
alive and showed the falseness of their accusation. When therefore they were
unable to convict Macarius, Eusebius and his fellows, who became enraged that
they had lost the prey of which they had been in pursuit, per-spaded the Count
Dionysius, who is one of them, to send to the Mareotis, in order to see
whether they could not find out something there against the Presbyter, or
rather that they might at a distance patch up their plot as they pleased in
our absence: for this was their aim. However,--when we represented that the
journey to the Mareotis was a superfluous undertaking (for that they ought not
to pretend that statements were defective which they had been employed upon so
long, and ought not now to defer the matter; for they had said whatever they
thought they could say, and now being at a loss what to do, they were making
pretences); or if they must needs go to the Mareotis, that at least the
suspected parties should not be sent,--the Count was convinced by my
reasoning, with respect to the suspected persons; but they did anything rather
than what I proposed, for the very persons whom I objected against on account
of the Arian heresy, these were they who promptly went off, viz. Diognius,
Maris Theodorus, Macedonius, Ursacius, and Valens. Again, letters were written
to the Prefect of Egypt and a military guard was provided; and, what was
remarkable and altogether most suspicious, they caused Macarius the accused
party to remain behind under a guard of soldiers, while they took with them
the accuser. Now who after this does not see through this conspiracy? Who
does not clearly perceive the wickedness of Eusebius and his fellows ? For if
a judicial enquiry must needs take place in the Mareotis, the accused also
ought to have been sent thither. But if they did not go for the purpose of
such an enquiry, why did they take the accuser ? It was enough that he had not
been able to prove the fact. But this they did in order that they might carry
on their designs against the absent Presbyter, whom they could not convict
when present, and might concoct a plan as they pleased. For when the
Presbyters of Alexandria and of the whole district found fault with them
because they were there by themselves, and required that they too might be
present at their proceedings (for they said that they knew both the
circumstances of the case, and the history of the person named Ischyras), they
would not allow them; and although they had with them Philagrius the Prefect
of Egypt, who was an apostate, and heathen soldiers, during an enquiry
which it was not becoming even for Catechumens to witness, they would not
admit the Clergy, lest there as well as at Tyro there might be those who would
expose them.

73. But in spite of these precautions they were not able to escape
detection: for the Presbyters of the City and of the Mareotis, perceiving
their evil designs, addressed to them the following protest.

To Theognius, Maris, Macedonius, Theodorus, Ursacius, and Valens, the
Bishops who have come from Tyre, these from the Presbyters and Deacons of the
Catholic Church of Alexandria under the most reverend Bishop Athanasius.

It was incumbent upon you when you came hither and brought with you the
accuser, to bring also the Presbyter Macarius; for trials are appointed by
Holy Scripture to be so constituted, that the accuser and accused may stand up
together. But since neither you brought Macarius, nor our most reverend Bishop
Athanasius came hither with you, we claimed for ourselves the right of being
present at the investigation, that we might see that the enquiry was conducted
impartially, and might ourselves be convinced of the truth. But when you
refused to allow this, and wished, in company only with the Prefect of Egypt
and the accuser, to do whatever you pleased, we confess that we saw a
suspicion of evil in the affair, and perceived that your coming was only the
act of a cabal and a conspiracy. Wherefore we address to you this letter, to
be a testimony before a genuine Council, that it may be known to all men, that
you have carried on an ex parte proceeding and for your own ends, and have
desired nothing else but to form a conspiracy against us. A copy of this, lest
it should be kept secret by you, we have handed in to Palladius also the
Controller of Augustus. For what you have already done causes us to
suspect you, and to.


reckon on the like conduct from you hereafter.

I Dionysius Presbyter have handed in this letter. Alexander Presbyter,
Nilaras Presbyter, Longus Presbyter, Aphthonius Presbyter, Athanasius
Presbyter, Amyntius Presbyter, Pistus Presbyter, Plution Presbyter, Dioscorus
Presbyter, Apollonius Presbyter, Sarapion Presbyter, Ammonius Presbyter, Gaius
Presbyter, Rhinus Presbyter, AEthales Presbyter.

Deacons; Marcellinus Deacon, Appianus Deacon, Theon Deacon, Timotheus
Deacon, a second Timotheus Deacon.

74. This is the letter, and these the names of the Clergy of the city; and
the following was written by the Clergy of the Mareotis, who know the
character of the accuser, and who were with me in my visitation.

To the holy Council of blessed Bishops of the Catholic Church, all the
Presbyters and Deacons of the Mareotis send health in the Lord.

Knowing that which is written, 'Speak that thine eyes have seen,' and, 'A
false witness shall not be unpunished, 'we testify what we have seen,
especially since the conspiracy which has been formed against our Bishop
Athanasius has made our testimony necessary. We wonder how Ischyras ever came
to be reckoned among the number of the Ministers of the Church, which is the
first point we think it necessary to mention. Ischyras never was a Minister of
the Church; but when formerly he represented himself to be a Presbyter of
Colluthus, he found no one to believe him, except only his own relations.
For he never had a Church, nor was ever considered a Clergyman by those who
lived but a short distance from his village, except only, as we said before,
by his own relations. But, notwithstanding he assumed this designation, he was
deposed in the presence of our Father Hosius at the Council which assembled at
Alexandria, and was admitted to communion as a layman, and so he continued
subsequently, having fallen from his falsely reputed rank of presbyter. Of his
character we think it unnecessary to speak, as all men have it in their power
to become acquainted therewith. But since he has falsely accused our Bishop
Athanasius of breaking a cup and overturning a table, we are necessarily
obliged to address you on this point. We have said already that he never had a
Church in the Mareotis; and we declare before God as our witness, that no cup
was broken, nor table overturned by our Bishop, nor by any one of those who
accompanied him; but all that is alleged respecting this affair is mere
calumny. And this we say, not as having been absent from the Bishop, for we
are all with him when he makes his visitation of the Mareotis, and he never
goes about alone, but is accompanied by all of us Presbyters and Deacons, and
by a considerable number of the people. Wherefore we make these assertions as
having been present with him in every visitation which he has made amongst us,
and testify that neither was a cup ever broken, nor table overturned, but the
whole story is false, as the accuser himself also witnesses under his own hand
[6]. For when, after he had gone off with Meletians, and had reported these
things against our Bishop Athanasius, he wished to be admitted to communion,
he was not received, although he wrote and confessed under his own hand that
none of these things were true, but that he had been suborned by certain
persons to say so.

75. Wherefore also Theognius, Theodorus, Maris, Macedonius, Ursacius,
Valens, and their fellows came into the Mareotis, and when they found that
none of these things were true, but it was likely to be discovered that they
had framed a false accusation against our Bishop Athanasius, Theognius and his
fellows being themselves his enemies, caused the relations of Ischyras and
certain Arian madmen to say whatever they wished. For none of the people spoke
against the Bishop; but these persons, through fear of Philagrius the Prefect
of Egypt, and by threats and with the support of the Arian madmen,
accomplished whatever they desired. For when we came to disprove the calumny,
they would not permit us, but cast us out, while they admitted whom they
pleased to a participation in their schemes, and concerted matters with them,
influencing them by fear of the Prefect Philagrius. Through his means they
prevented us from being present, that we might discover whether those who were
suborned by them were members of the Church or Arian madmen. And you also,
dearly beloved Fathers, know, as you teach us, that the testimony of enemies
avails nothing. That what we say is the truth the handwriting of Ischyras
testifies, as do also the facts themselves, because when we were conscious
that no such thing as was pretended had taken place, they took with them
Philagrius, that through fear of the sword and by threats they might frame
whatever plots they wished. These things we testify as in the presence of God;
we make these assertions as knowing


that there will be a judgment held by God; desiring indeed all of us to come
to you, but being content with certain of our number, so that the letters may
be instead of the presence of those who have not come.

I, Ingenius Presbyter, pray you health in the Lord, beloved fathers. Theon
Presbyter, Ammonas P., Heraclius P., Boccon P., Tryphon P., Peter P., Hierax
P., Sarapion P., Marcus P., Ptollarion P., Gaius P., Dioscorus P., Demetrius
P., Thyrsus P.

Deacons; Pistus Deacon, Apollos D., Serras D., Pistus D., Polynicus D.,
Ammonius D., Maurus D., Hephaestus D., Apollos D., Metopus D., Apollos D.,
Serapas D., Meliphthongus D., Lucius D., Gregoras D. 76. The same to the
Controller, and to Philagrius, at that time Prefect of Egypt.

To Flavius Philagrius, and to Flavius Palladius, Ducenary, Officer of
the Palace, and Controller, and to Flavius Antoninus, Commissary of
Provisions, and Centenary of my lords the most illustrious Prefects of the
sacred PrAEtorium, these from the Presbyters and Deacons of the Mareotis, a
home of the Catholic Church which is under the most Reverend Bishop
Athanasius, we address this testimony by those whose names are underwritten:--

Whereas Theognius, Maris, Macedonius, Theodorus, Ursacius, and Valens, as
if sent by all the Bishops who assembled at Tyre, came into our Diocese
alleging that they had received orders to investigate certain ecclesiastical
affairs, among which they spoke of the breaking of a cup of the Lord, of which
information was given them by Ischyras, whom they brought with them, and who
says that he is a Presbyter, although he is not,-for he was ordained by the
Presbyter Colluthus who pretended to the Episcopate, and was afterwards
ordered by a whole Council, by Hosius and the Bishops that were with him, to
take the place of a Presbyter, as he was before; and accordingly all that were
ordained by Colluthus resumed the same rank which they held before, and so
Ischyras himself proved to be a layman,--and the church which he says he has,
never was a church at all, but a quite small private house belonging to an
orphan boy of the name of Ision ;--for this reason we have offered this
testimony, adjuring you by Almighty God, and by our Lords Constantine
Augustus, and the most illustrious Caesars his sons, to bring these things to
the knowledge of their piety. For neither is he a Presbyter of the Catholic
Church nor does he possess a church, nor has a cup ever been broken, but the
whole story is false and an invention.

Dated in the Consulship of Julius Constantius the most illustrious
Patrician, brother of the most religious Emperor Constantine Augustus, and
of Rufinus Albinus, most illustrious men, on the tenth day of the month Thoth
[10]. These were the letters of the Presbyters.

77. The following also are the letters and protests of the Bishops who
came with us to Tyro, when they became aware of the conspiracy and plot.

To the Bishops assembled at Tyre, most honoured Lords, those of the
Catholic Church who have come from Egypt with Athanasius send greeting in the

We suppose that the conspiracy which has been formed against us by
Eusebius, Theognius, Maris, Narcissus, Theodorus, Patrophilus, and their
fellows is no longer uncertain. From the very beginning we all demurred,
through our fellow-minister Athanasius, to the holding of the enquiry in their
presence, knowing that the presence of even one enemy only, much more of many,
is able to disturb and injure the hearing of a cause. And you also yourselves
know the enmity which they entertain, not only towards us, but towards all the
orthodox, how that for the sake of the madness of Arius, and his impious
doctrine, they direct their assaults, they form conspiracies against all. And
when, being confident in the truth, we desired to show the falsehood, which
the Meletians had employed against the Church, Eusebius and his fellows
endeavoured by some means or other to interrupt our representations, and
strove eagerly to set aside our testimony, threatening those who gave an
honest judgment, and insulting others, for the sole purpose of carrying out
the design they had against us. Your godly piety, most honoured Lords, was
probably ignorant of their conspiracy, but we suppose that it has now been
made manifest. For indeed they have themselves plainly disclosed it; for they
desired to send to the Mareotis those of their party who are suspected by us,
so that, while we were absent and remained here, they might disturb the people
and accomplish what they wished. They knew


that the Arian madmen, and Colluthians and Meletians, were enemies of the
Catholic Church and therefore they were anxious to send them, that in the
presence of our enemies they might devise against us whatever schemes they
pleased. And those of the Meletians who, are here, even four days previously
(as they knew that this enquiry was about to take place), despatched at
evening certain of their party, as couriers, for the purpose of collecting
Meletians out of Egypt into the Mareotis, because there were none at all
there, and Colluthians and Arian madmen, from other parts, and to prepare them
to speak against us. For you also know that Ischyras himself confessed before
you, that he had not more than seven persons in his congregation. When
therefore we heard that, after they had made what preparations they pleased
against us, and had sent these suspected persons, they were going about to
each of you, and requiring your subscriptions, in order that it might appear
as if this had been done with the consent of you all; for this reason we
hastened to write to you, and to present this our testimony; declaring that we
are the objects of a conspiracy under which we are suffering by and through
them, and demanding that having the fear of God in your minds, and condemning
their conduct in sending whom they pleased without our consent, you would
refuse your subscriptions, test they pretend that those things are done by
you, which they are contriving only among themselves. Surely it becomes those
who are in Christ, not to regard human motives, but to prefer the truth before
all things. And be not afraid of their, threatenings, which they employ
against all, nor of their plots, but rather fear God. If it was at all,
necessary that persons should be sent to the Mareotis, we also ought to have
been there with them, in order that we might convict the enemies of the
Church, and point out those who were aliens, and that the investigation of the
matter might be impartial. For you know that Eusebius and his fellows
contrived that a letter should be presented, as coming from the Collutians,
the Meletians, and Arians, and directed against us: but it is evident that
these enemies of the Catholic Church speak nothing that is true concerning us,
but say everything against us. And the law of God forbids an enemy to be
either a witness or a judge. Wherefore as you will have to give an account in
the day of judgment, receive this testimony, and recognising the conspiracy
which has been framed against us, beware, if you are requested by them, of
doing anything against us, and of taking part in the designs of Eusebius and
his fellows. For you know, as we said before, that they are our enemies, and
you are aware why Eusebius of Caesarea became such last year. We pray that
you may be in health, greatly beloved Lords.

78. To the most illustrious Count Flavius Dionysius, from the Bishops of
the Catholic Church in Egypt who have come to Tyre.

We suppose that the conspiracy which has been formed against us by
Eusebius, Theognius, Maris, Narcissus, Theodorus, Patrophilus and their
fellows, is no longer uncertain. From the very beginning we all demurred,
through our fellow-minister Athanasius, to the holding of the enquiry in their
presence, knowing that the presence of even one enemy only, much more of many,
is able to disturb and injure the hearing of a cause. For their enmity is
manifest which they entertain, not only towards us, but also towards all the
orthodox, because they direct their assaults, they form conspiracies against
all. And when, being confident in the truth, we desired to shew the falsehood
which the Meletians had employed against the Church, Eusebius and his fellows
endeavoured by some means or other to interrupt our representations, and
strove eagerly to set aside our testimony, threatening those who gave an
honest judgment and insulting others, for the sole purpose of carrying out the
design they had against us. Your goodness was probably ignorant of the
conspiracy which they have formed against us, but we suppose that it has now
been made manifest. For indeed they have themselves plainly disclosed it; for
they desired to send to the Mareotis those of their party who are suspected by
us, so that, while we were absent and remained here, they might disturb the
people and accomplish what they wished. They knew that Arian madmen,
Colluthians, and Meletians were enemies of the Church, and therefore they were
anxious to send them, that in the presence of our enemies, they might devise
against us whatever schemes they pleased. And those of the Meletians who are
here, even four days previously (as they knew that this enquiry was about to
take place), despatched at evening two individuals of their own party, as
couriers, for the purpose of collecting Meletians out of Egypt into the
Mareotis, because there were none at all there. and Colluthians, and Arian
madmen, from other


parts, and to prepare them to speak against us. And your goodness knows that
he himself confessed before you, that he had not more than seven persons in
his congregation. When therefore we heard that, after they had made what
preparations they pleased against us, and had sent these suspected persons,
they were going about to each of the Bishops and requiring their
subscriptions, in order that it might appear that this was done with the
consent of them all; for this reason we hastened to refer the matter to your
honour, and to present this our testimony, declaring that we are the objects
of a conspiracy, under which we are suffering by and through them, and
demanding of you that having in your mind the fear of God, and the pious
commands of our most religious Emperor, you would no longer tolerate these
persons, but condemn their conduct in sending whom they pleased without our

I Adamantins Bishop have subscribed this letter, Ischyras, Ammon, Peter,
Ammonianus Tyrannus, Taurinus, Sarapammon, AElurion, Harpocration, Moses,
Optatus, Anubion, Saprion, Apollonius, Ischyrion, Arbaethion, Potamen,
Paphnutius, Heraclides, Theodorus, A gathammon, Gaius, Pistus, Athas, Nicon,
Pelagius, Theon, Paninuthius, Nonnus, Ariston, Theodorus, Irenaeus,
Blastammon, Philippus, Apollos, Dioscorus, Timotheus of Diespolls, Macarius
Heraclammon, Cronius, Myis, Jacobus, Ariston Artemidorus, Phinees, Psais,

Another from the same.

79. The Bishops of the Catholic Church who have come from Egypt to Tyre,
to the most illustrious Count Flavius Dionysius.

Perceiving that many conspiracies and plots are being formed against us
through the machinations of Eusebius, Narcissus, Flacillus, Theognius, Maris,
Theodorus, Patrophilus, and their fellows (against whom we wished at first to
enter an objection, but were not permitted), we are constrained to have
recourse to the present appeal. We observe also that great zeal is exerted in
behalf of the Meletians, and that a plot is laid against the Catholic Church
in Egypt in our persons. Wherefore we present this letter to you, beseeching
you to bear in mind the Almighty Power of God, who defends the kingdom of our
most religious and godly Emperor Constantine, and to reserve the hearing of
the affairs which concern us for the most religious Emperor himself. For it is
but reasonable, since you were commissioned by his Majesty, that you should
reserve the matter for him upon our appealing to his piety. We can no longer
endure to be the objects of the treacherous designs of the fore-mentioned
Eusebius and his fellows, and therefore we demand that the case be reserved
for the most religious and God-beloved Emperor, before whom we shall be able
to set forth our own and the Church's just claims. And we are convinced that
when his piety shall have heard our cause, he will not condemn us. Wherefore
we again adjure you by Almighty God, and by our most religious Emperor, who,
together with the children of his piety, has thus ever been victorious a and
prosperous these many years, that you proceed no further, nor suffer
yourselves to move at all in the Council in relation to our affairs, but
reserve the hearing of them for his piety. We have likewise made the same
representations to my Lords the orthodox Bishops.

80. Alexander, Bishop of Thessalonica, on receiving these letters,
wrote to the Count Dionysius as follows.

The Bishop Alexander to my master Dionysius.

I see that a conspiracy has evidently been formed against Athanasius; for
they have determined, I know not on what grounds, to send all those to whom he
has objected, without giving any information to us, although it was agreed
that we should consider together who ought to be sent. Take care therefore
that nothing be done rashly (for they have come to me in great alarm, saying
that the wild beasts have already roused themselves, and are going to rush
upon them; for they had heard it reported, that John had sent certain),
lest they be beforehand with us, and concoct what schemes they please. For you
know that the Colluthians who are enemies of the Church, and the Arians, and
Meletians, are all of them leagued together, and are able to work much evil.
Consider therefore what is best to be done, lest some mischief arise, and we
be subject to censure, as not having judged the matter fairly. Great
suspicions are also entertained of these persons, lest, as being devoted to
the Meletians, they should go through those Churches whose Bishops are here
[6], and raise an alarm amongst them, and so disorder the whole of Egypt. For
they see that this is already taking place to a great extent.

Accordingly the Count Dionysius wrote to Eusebius and his fellows as

81. This is what I have already mentioned to my lords, Flacillus and
his fellows, that Athanasius has come forward and complained


that those very persons have been sent whom he objected to; and crying out
that he has been wronged and deceived. Alexander the lord of my soul [7a] has
also written to me on the subject; and that you may perceive that what his
Goodness has said is reasonable, I have subjoined his letter to be read by
you. Remember also what I wrote to you before: I impressed upon your Goodness,
my lords, that the persons who were sent ought to be commissioned by the
general vote and decision of all. Take care therefore lest our proceedings
fall under censure, and we give just grounds of blame to those who are
disposed to find fault with us. For as the accuser's side ought not to suffer
any oppression, so neither ought the defendant's. And I think that there is no
slight ground of blame against us, when my lord Alexander evidently
disapproves of what we have done.

82. While matters were proceeding thus we withdrew from them, as from an
assembly of treacherous men, for whatsoever they pleased they did, whereas
there is no man in the world but knows that ex parte proceedings cannot stand
good. This the divine law determines for when the blessed Apostle was
suffering under a similar conspiracy and was brought to trial, he demanded,
saying, 'The Jews from Asia ought to have been here before thee, and object,
if they had aught against me.' On which occasion Festus also, when the
Jews wished to lay such a plot against him, as these men have now laid against
me, said, ' It is not the manner of Romans to deliver any man to die, before
that he which is accused have the accuser face to face, and have licence to
answer for himself concerning the crime laid against him [10].' But Eusebius
and his fellows both had the boldness to pervert the law, and have proved more
unjust even than those wrong-doers. For they did not, proceed privately at the
first, but when in consequence of our being present they found themselves
weak, then they straightway went out, like the Jews, and took counsel together
alone, how they might destroy us and bring in their heresy, as those others
demanded Barabbas. For this purpose it was, as they have themselves confessed,
that they did all these l things.

83. Although these circumstances were amply sufficient for our
vindication, yet in order that the wickedness of these men and the freedom of
the truth might be more fully exhibited, I have not felt averse to repeat them
again, in order to shew that they have acted in a manner inconsistently with
themselves, and as men scheming in the dark have fallen foul of their own
friends, and while they desired to destroy us have like insane persons wounded
themselves. For in their investigation of the subject of the Mysteries, they
questioned Jews, they examined Catechumens; 'Where were you,' they said,
'when Macarius came and overturned the Table?' They answered, 'We were
within;' whereas there could be no oblation if Catechumens were present.
Again, although they had written word everywhere, that Macarius came and
overthrew everything, while the Presbyter was standing and celebrating the
Mysteries, yet when they questioned whomsoever they pleased, and asked them,
'Where was Ischyras when Macarius rushed in?' those persons answered that he
was lying sick in a cell. Well, then, he that was lying was not standing, nor
was he that lay sick in his cell offering the oblation. Besides whereas
Ischyras said that certain books had been burnt by Macarius, they who were
suborned to give evidence, declared that nothing of the kind had been done,
but that Ischyras spoke falsely. And what is most remarkable, although they
had again written word everywhere, that those who were able to give evidence
had been concealed by us, yet these persons made their appearance, and they
questioned them, and were not ashamed when they saw it proved on all sides
that they were slanderers, and were acting in this matter clandestinely, and
according to their pleasure. For they prompted the witnesses by signs, while
the Prefect threatened them, and the soldiers pricked them with their swords;
but the Lord revealed the truth, and shewed them to be slanderers. Therefore
also they concealed the minutes of their proceedings, which they retained
themselves, and charged those who wrote them to put out of sight, and to corn
mit to no one whomsoever. But in this also they were disappointed; for the
person who wrote them was Rufus, who is now public executioner in the
Augustallan prefecture, and is able to testify to the truth of this; and
Eusebius and his fellows sent them to Rome by the hands of their own friends,
and Julius the Bishop transmitted them to me. And now they are mad, because we
obtained and read what they wished to conceal.

84. As such was the character of their machinations, so they very soon
shewed plainly the reasons of their conduct. For when they went away, they
took the Arians with them to Jerusalem, and there admitted them to communion,
having sent out a letter concerning


them, part of which, and the beginning, is as follows.

The holy Council by the grace of God assembled at Jerusalem, to the Church
of God which is in Alexandria, and to the Bishops, Presbyters, and Deacons, in
all Egypt, the Thebais, Libya, Pentapolis, and throughout the world, sends
health in the Lord.

Having come together out of different Provinces to a great meeting which
we have held for the consecration of the Martyry [3a] of the Saviour, which
has been appointed to the service of God the King of all and of His Christ, by
the zeal of our most God-beloved Emperor Constantine, the grace of God hath
afforded us more abundant rejoicing of heart; which our most God-beloved
Emperor himself hath occasioned us by his letters, wherein he hath stirred us
up to do that which is right, putting away all envy from the Church of God,
and driving far from us all malice, by which the members of God have been
heretofore torn asunder, and that we should with simple and peaceable minds
receive Arius and his fellows, whom envy, that enemy of all goodness, has
caused for a season to be excluded from the Church. Our most religious Emperor
has also in his letter testified to the correctness of their faith, which he
has ascertained from themselves, himself receiving the profession of it from
them by word of mouth, and has now made manifest to us by subjoining to his
own letters the men's orthodox opinion in writing.

85. Every one that hears of these things must see through their treachery.
For they made no concealment of what they were doing; unless perhaps they
confessed the truth without wishing it. For if I was the hindrance to the
admittance of Arius and his fellows into the Church, and if they were received
while I was suffering from their plots, what other conclusion can be arrived
at, than that these things were done on their account, and that all their
proceedings against me, and the story which they fabricated about the breaking
of the cup and the murder of Arsenius, were for the sole purpose of
introducing impiety into the Church, and of preventing their being condemned
as heretics? For this was what the Emperor threatened formerly in his letters
to me. And they were not ashamed to write in the manner they did, and to
affirm that those persons whom the whole Ecumenical Council anathematized held
orthodox sentiments. And as they undertook to say and do anything without
scruple, so they were not afraid to meet together 'in a corner,' in order to
overthrow, as far as was in their power, the authority of so great a Council.

Moreover, the price which they paid for false testimony yet more fully
manifests their wickedness and impious intentions. The Mareotis, as I have
already said, is a country district of Alexandria, in which there has never
been either a Bishop or a Chorepiscopus; but the Churches of the whole
district are subject to the Bishop of Alexandria, and each Presbyter has under
his charge one of the large. st villages, which are about ten or more m
numbers. Now the village in which Ischyras lives is a very small one, and
possesses so few inhabitants, that there has never been a church built there,
but only in the adjoining village. Nevertheless, they determined, contrary to
ancient usage, to nominate a Bishop for this place, and not only so, but
even to appoint one, who was not so much as a Presbyter. Knowing as they did
the unusual nature of such a proceeding, yet being constrained by the promises
they had given in return for his false impeachment of me, they submitted even
to this, lest that abandoned person, if he were ungratefully treated by them,
should disclose the truth, and thereby shew the wickedness of Eusebius and his
fellows. Notwithstanding this he has no church, nor a people to obey him, but
is scouted by them all, like a dog, although they have even caused the
Emperor to write to the Receiver-General (for everything is in their power),
commanding that a church should be built for him, that being possessed of
that, his statement may appear credible about the cup and the table. They
caused him immediately to be nominated a Bishop also, because if he were
without a church, and not even a Presbyter, he would appear to be a false
accuser, and a fabricator of the whole matter. At any rate he has no people,
and even his own relations are not obedient to him, and as the name which he
retains is an empty one, so also the following letter is ineffectual, which he
keeps, making a display of it as an exposure of the utter


wickedness of himself and of Eusebius and his fellows.

The Letter of the Receiver-General

Flavius Hemerius sends health to the Tax-collector of the Mareotis.

Ischyras the Presbyter having petitioned the piety of our Lords, Augusti
and Caesars, that a Church might be built in the district of Irene, belonging
to Secontarurus, their dignity has commanded that this should be done as
soon as possible. Take care therefore, as soon as you receive the copy of the
sacred Edict, which with all due veneration is placed above, and the Reports
which have been formed before my devotion, that you quickly make an abstract
of them, and transfer them to the Order book, so that the sacred command may
be put in execution.

86. While they were thus plotting and scheming, I went up [10] and
represented to the Emperor the unjust conduct of Eusebius and his fellows, for
he it was who had commanded the Council to be held, and his Count presided at
it. When he heard my report, he was greatly moved, and wrote to them as
follows. Constantine, Victor, Maximus, Augustus, to the Bishops assembled
at Tyre.

I know not what the decisions are which you have arrived at in your
Council amidst noise and tumult: but somehow the truth seems to have been
perverted in consequence of certain confusions and disorders, in that you,
through your mutual contentiousness, which you are resolved should prevail,
have failed to perceive what is pleasing to God. However, it will rest with
Divine Providence to disperse the mischiefs which manifestly are found to
arise from this contentious spirit, and to shew plainly to us, whether you,
while assembled in that place, have had any regard for the truth, and whether
you have made your decisions uninfluenced by either favour or enmity.
Wherefore I wish you all to assemble with all speed before my piety in order
that you may render in person a true account of your proceedings.

The reason why I have thought good to write thus to you, and why I summon
you before me by letter, you will learn from what I am going to say. As I was
entering on a late occasion our all-happy home of Constantinople, which bears
our name (I chanced at the time to be on horseback), on a sudden the Bishop
Athanasius, with certain others whom he had with him, approached me in the
middle of the road, so unexpectedly, as to occasion me much amazement. God,
who knoweth all things, is my witness, that I should have been unable at first
sight even to recognise him, had not some of my attendants, on my naturally
inquiring of them, informed me both who it was, and under what injustice he
was suffering. I did not however enter into any conversation with him at that
time, nor grant him an interview; but when he requested to be heard I was
refusing, and all but gave orders for his removal; when with increasing
boldness he claimed only this favour, that you should be summoned to appear,
that he might have an opportunity of complaining before me in your presence,
of the ill-treatment he has met with. As this appeared to me to be a
reasonable request, and suitable to the times, I willingly ordered this letter
to be written to you, in order that all of you, who constituted the Council
which was held at Tyre, might hasten without delay to the Court of my
clemency, so as to prove by facts that you had passed an impartial and
uncorrupt judgment. This, I say, you must do before me, whom not even you will
deny to be a true servant of God.

For indeed through my devotion to God, peace is preserved everywhere, and
the Name of God is truly worshipped even by the barbarians, who have hitherto
been ignorant of the truth. And it is manifest, that he who is ignorant of the
truth, does not know God either. Nevertheless, as I said before, even the
barbarians have now come to the knowledge of God, by means of me, His true
servants, and have learned to fear Him Whom they perceive from actual facts to
be my shield and protector everywhere. And from this chiefly they have come to
know God, Whom they fear through the dread which they have of me. But we, who
are supposed to set forth (for I will not say to guard) the holy mysteries of
His Goodness, we, I say, engage in nothing but what tends to dissension and
hatred, and, in short, whatever contributes to the destruction of mankind. But
hasten, as I said before, and all of you with all speed come to us, being
persuaded that I shall endeavour with all my might to amend what is amiss, so
that those things specially may be preserved and firmly established in the law
of God, to which no blame nor dishonour may attach; while the enemies of the
law, who under pretence of His holy Name bring in manifold and divers
blasphemies, shall be


scattered abroad, and entirely crushed, and utterly destroyed.

87. When Eusebius and his fellows read this letter, being conscious of
what they had done, they prevented the rest of the Bishops from going up, and
only themselves went, viz. Eusebius, Theognius, Patrophilus, the other
Eusebius, Ursacius, and Valens. And they no longer said anything about the cup
and Arsenius (for they had not the boldness to do so), but inventing another
accusation which concerned the Emperor himself, they declared before him, that
Athanasius had threatened that he would cause the corn to be withheld which
was sent from Alexandria to his own home. The Bishops Adamantius, Anubion
Agathammon, Arbethion, and Peter, were present and heard this. It was proved
also by the anger of the Emperor; for although he had written the preceding
letter, and had condemned their injustice, as soon as he heard such a charge
as this, he was immediately incensed, and instead of granting me a hearing, he
sent me away into Gaul. And this again shews their wickedness further; for
when the younger Constantine, of blessed memory, sent me back home,
remembering what his father had written, he also wrote as follows.

Constantine CAEsar, to the people of the Catholic Church of the city of

I suppose that it has not escaped the knowledge of your pious minds, that
Athanasius, the interpreter of the adorable Law, was sent away into Gaul for a
time, with the intent that, as the savageness of his bloodthirsty and
inveterate enemies persecuted him to the hazard of his sacred life, he might
thus escape suffering some irremediable calamity, through the perverse dealing
of those evil men. In order therefore to escape this, he was snatched out of
the jaws of his assailants, and was ordered to pass some time under my
government, and so was supplied abundantly with all necessaries in this city,
where he lived, although indeed his celebrated virtue, relying entirely on
divine assistance, sets at nought the sufferings of adverse fortune. Now
seeing that it was the fixed intention of our master Constantine Augustus, my
Father, to restore the said Bishop to his own place, and to your most beloved
piety, but he was taken away by that fate which is common to all men, and
went to his rest before he could accomplish his wish; I have thought proper to
fulfil that intention of the Emperor of sacred memory which I have inherited
from him. When he comes to present himself before you, you will learn with
what reverence he has been treated. Indeed it is not wonderful, whatever I
have done on his behalf; for the thoughts of your longing desire for him, and
the appearance of so great a man, moved my soul, and urged me thereto. May
Divine Providence continually preserve you, beloved brethren.

Dated from Treveri the 15th before the Cal-ends of July 6. 88. This being
the reason why I was sent away into Gaul, who, I ask again, does not plainly
perceive the intention of the Emperor, and the murderous spirit of Eusebius
and his fellows, and that the Emperor had done this in order to prevent their
forming some more desperate scheme? for he listened to them in simplicity.
Such were the practices of Eusebius and his fellows, and such their
machinations against me. Who that has witnessed them will deny that nothing
has been done in my favour out of partiality, but that that great number of
Bishops both individually and collectively wrote as they did in my behalf and
condemned the falsehood of my enemies justly, and in accordance with the
truth? Who that has observed such proceedings as these will deny that Valens
and Ursacius had good reason to condemn themselves, and to write s as they
did, to accuse themselves when they repented, choosing rather to suffer shame
for a short time, than to undergo the punishment of false accusers for ever
and ever?

89. Wherefore also my blessed fellow-ministers, acting justly and
according to the laws of the Church, while certain affirmed that my case was
doubtful, and endeavoured to compel them to annul the sentence which was
passed in my favour, have now endured all manner of sufferings, and have
chosen rather to be banished than to see the judgment of so many Bishops
reversed. Now if those genuine Bishops had withstood by words only those who
plotted against me, and wished to undo all that had been done in my behalf; or
if they had been ordinary men, and not the


Bishops of illustrious cities, and the heads of great Churches, there would
have been room to suspect that in this instance they too had acted
contentiously and in order to gratify me. But when they not only endeavoured
to convince by argument, but also endured banishment, and one of them is
Liberius, Bishop of Rome, (for although he did not endure(10) to the end the
sufferings of banishment, yet he remained in his exile for two years, being
aware of conspiracy formed against us), and since there is also the great
Hosius, together with the Bishops of Italy, and of Gaul, and others from
Spain, and from Egypt, and Libya, and all those from Pentapolis (for although
for a little while, through fear of the threats of Constantius, he seemed not
to resist them L yet the great violence and tyrannical power exercised by
Constantius, and the many insults and stripes inflicted upon him, proved that
it was not because he gave up my cause, but through the weakness of old age,
being unable to bear the stripes, that he yielded to them for a season),
therefore I say, it is altogether right that all, as being fully convinced,
should hate and abominate the injustice and the violence which they have used
towards me; especially as it is well known that I have suffered these things
on account of nothing else but the Arian impiety.

90. Now if anyone wishes to become acquainted with my case, and the
falsehood of Eusebius and his fellows, let him read what has been written in
my behalf, and let him hear the witnesses, not one, or two, or three, but that
great number of Bishops; and again let him attend to the witnesses of these
proceedings, Liberius and Hosius, and their fellows, who when they saw the
attempts made against us, chose rather to endure all manner of sufferings than
to give up the truth, and the judgment which had been pronounced in our
favour. And this they did with an honourable and righteous intention, for what
they suffered proves to what straits the other Bishops were reduced. And they
are memorials and records against the Arian heresy, and the wickedness of
false accusers, and afford a pattern and model for those who come after, to
contend for the truth unto death(2), and to abominate the Arian heresy which
fights against Christ, and is a forerunner of Antichrist, and not to believe
those who attempt to speak against me. For the defence put forth, and the
sentence given, by so many Bishops of high character, are a trustworthy and
sufficient testimony in our behalf.


List of Bishops present at Sardica.

[The materials for an authentic list are (1) the names given by
Athanasius, Apol. c. Ar. 50, previous to the lists of bishops from various
provinces who signed the letter of the council when in circulation. These
names, given with no specification of their sees, are 77 in number. (2) The
list of signatures to the letter of the council to Julius, given by Hilary,
Fragm. ii., 59 in number. The signatures to the letters discovered by Maffei
and printed in Migne, Pair. Gr. xxvi. 1331, sqq. Of these, 26 sign (3) the
council's letter to the Mareotic Churches, and 61, in part the same, sign (4)
the letter of Athanasius to the same (Letter 46 in this volume). These
signatures comprise 30 names not given by Hilary, while those in (1) add six
which are absent from (2) and (3) alike. This raises the total to 95. We add
(5) Grains of Carthage, present according to the Greek text of the Canons,
although he afterward signed the letter in a local council of his own, like
Maximin of Treveri, Verissimus of Lyons, and Arius of Palestine, who are
therefore given by Athanasius in his second list (the former two being omitted
from the first) : also Euphrates of Cologne, who was sent by Constans to
Antioch with the council's decisions (Prolegg. ch. ii. 6), and was therefore
most likely present at the council itself. We thus get 97 in all

This total is confirmed if we subtract from the '170 more or less' of
Hist. Arian. 15 the 76 seceders to Philippopolis (Sabinus in Socr. ii. 16), 73
of whom sign their letter, given by Hilary. This leaves 94 'more or less,' so
that the list now to be given, in elucidation of that of Athanasius, has
strong claims to rank as approximately correct. The numbers after the names
refer to the sources (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) specified above. 1. Adolius (1), See
unknown; 2. Aetius (1, 3), Thessalonica in Macedonia; 3. Alexander (1, 4),
Cypara (i.e. Cyparissus?) in Achaia; 4. Alexander (2), Montemnae (?) in
Achaia; 5. Alexander (1, 2, 3), Larissa in Thessaly; 6. Alypius (1, 2, 3),
Megara in Achaia; 7. Amantius (1, 4), Viminacium, by deputy; 8. Ammonius (4),
See unknown ; 9. Anianus (1, 2, 4), Casiulo in Spain; 10. Antigonus (1, 4),
Pella, or Pallene in Macedonia; II. Appianus (4), See unknown; 12. Aprianus
(1, 4), Peiabio (Petovio) in


Pannonia; 13. Aprianus (4), See unknown; 74. Arius (1, 2, 3), of Palestine,
See unknown (see note on Hist. At. 18); 15. Asclepas (1, 2, 4), Gaza; 16.
Asterius (1, 2, 3), [Petra in] Arabia; 17. Athanasius (1, 2, 3, 4),
Alexandria; 18. Athenodorus (1, 2, 3, 4), Plat'a in Achaia; 19. Bassus (1, 2,
3), Diocletianapolis "in Macedonia" (really in Thrace); 20. Calepodius (1, 2,
3), of Campania (? Naples); 21. Calvus (2, 4), Castrum Martis in Dacia
Ripensis; 22. Caloes or 'Chalbis' (1, 4), 23. Castus (1, 2, 4), Saragossa in
Spain; 24. Cocras (2), Asapofebiae in Achaia (= Asopus), perhaps the
'Socrates' of (1); 25. Cydonius (4), Cydon in Crete; 26. Diodorus (1, 2, 4),
Tenedos; 27. Dionysius (1, 2, 3), Elida (Elis?) in Achaia; 28. Dioscorus (1,
2, 3), Thrace, See unknown; 29. Dometius (or Domitianus) (1, 4), Acaria
Constantias (possibly Castra Constantia = Coutances); 30. Domitianus (1, 2,
3), Asturica in Spain; 31. Eliodorus (1, 2, 3), Nicopolis; 32. Eucarpus (1,
4), Opus in Achaia; 33. (4), See unknown; 34. Eucissus (4), Cissamus in Crete;
35. Eugenius (4 = Euagrius in 2?), (in Lucania? texts very corrupt); 36.
Eugenius (1?, 4), See unknown; 37. Eulogius (1, 4), See unknown Euphrates, see
below (97); 38. Eutasius (2), Pannonia, See unknown; 39. Euterius (1, 2),
'Procia de Cayndo' (corrupt); 40. Eutychius (1, 4), Methone in Achaia; 41.
Eutychius (1, 2), Achia, See unknown; 42. Florentius (1, 2, 4), Emerita in
Spain; 43. Fortunatianus (1, 2), Aquileia; Galba (see above (22); 44.
Gaudentius (1, 2, 4), Naissus; 45. Gerontius (1, 2, 3, 4), a Macedonia in
Brevi(?) in Hil.; Gratus, see below (96); 46. Helianus (1, 4), Tyrtana (?);
Heliodorus, see above (31); 47. Hermogenes (1, 4), Sicyai(?); 48. Hymenaeus
(1, 2, 4), Hypata in Thessaly; 49. Januarius (1, 2, 4), Beneventum in
Campania; 50. John (3), See unknown; 51. Jonas (1, 2, 3), Particopolis in
Macedonia; 52. Irenaeus (1, 2, 4), Scyros 53. Julianus (1, 2, 4), of Thebes in
Achaia (or Thera? see note to Letter 46); 54. Julianus (1, 4), See unknown;
Julius, see below (95); Lerenius (2), see above (52); 55. Lucius (l, 2, 3, 4),
Hadrianople in Thrace; 56. Lucius ('Lucillus' Ath. twice) (1, 2, 4), Verona;
57. Macedonius (1, 2, 4), Ulpiana in Dardania 58. Marcellus (2, 4, Marcellinus
in I), Ancyra; 59. Marcus (1, 2, 4), Siscia on the Save; 60. Martyrius (2, 4),
Naupactus in Achaia; 61. Martyrius (1, 4), See unknown; 62. Maximus (1, 2),
Luca in Tuscany; 63. Maximus (i.e. Maximinus) (4), Treviri; 64. Musonius (1,
4), Heraclea in Crete; 65. Moyses (or Musaeus, 1, 2), Thebes in Thessaly; 66.
Olympius (4), Aeni in Thrace; 67. Osius (Hosius), (1, 2, 3), Cordova; 68.
Palladius (1, 2, 4), Dium in Macedonia; 69. Paregorius (1, 2, 3, 4), Scupi in
Dardania; 70. Patricius (I), See unknown; 71. Peter (I), See unknown; 72.
Philologius (1), See unknown; 73. Plutarchus (1, 2, 3), Patrae in Achaia; 74.
Porphyrius (1, 2, 3, 4), Philippi in Macedonia; 75. Praetextatus (1, 2, 4),
Barcelona; 76. Protasius (1, 2, 4), Milan; 77. Protogenes (1, 2, 4), Sardica;
78. Restitutus (1, 3), See unknown; 79. Sapricius (1), See unknown; 80.
Severus (4), Chalcis in Thessaly (Euboea); St. Severus (1, 2, 3), Ravenna;
Socrates (1), see above, no. 24; 82. Spudasius (1), See unknown; 83.
Stercorius (1, 2, 4), Canusium in Apulia; 84. Symphorus (1, 4), Hierapythna in
Crete; Titius (2), see above (40); 85. Trypho (1, 2, 4), Achaia (See uncertain
from corruption of text); 86. Valens (1, 2, 3), 'Scio' in Dacia Ripensis; 87.
Verissimus (2, 4, text of latter gives 'Broseus' corruptly), Lyons; 88.
Vincentius (1, 2, 3), Capua; 89. Vitalis (1, 2), Aquae in Dacia Ripensis; 90.
Vitalis 1, 3, 4), Vertara in Africa; 91. Ursacius (1, 2, 4), Brixia in Italy;
92. Zosimus (1, 2, 4), Lychnidus or Lignidus in Dacia; 93. Zosimus (1, 4),
Horrea Margi in Moesia; 94. Zosimus (1, 4), See unknown; 95. Julius (l, 4),
Rome (by deputies); 96. Gratus (5), Carthage; 97. Euphrates (5), Cologne.

The names, both of bishops and of sees, have suffered much in
transcription, and the above list is the result of cornering the divergent
errors of the various lists. The details of the latter will be found in the
and in the discussion of the Ballerini, on whose work (in Leonis M. Opp. vol.
iii. pp. xlii. sqq.) is founded. In some cases the names of the see are
clearly corrupt beyond all recognition. The signatures appended to the canons
in the collections of councils, are taken (with certain uncritical
adaptations) from the Hilarian list, with the addition, in some copies, of
Alexander (3 supra), whose name, probably dropped out of the Hilarian text in
course of transmission.]