The beginning of the third Book, which (inasmuch as it is from the history of
Zachanah the believer, who wrote in Greek to one Eupraxius by name, a minister
of the king, and engaged in his service) records the events that took place in
the Synod, which met at Chalcedon, after the death of Theodosius, in the days of
Marcian, in the year seven hundred and sixty-four by the reckoning of the
Greeks. And the number of the bishops was five hundred arid, sixty-seven, who
were brought together in consequence of the exertion ,of Leo of Rome, and the
letter that he wrote to the king and his wife Pulcheria. And the Synod sent
Dioscorus of Alexandria away to Gangra of Thrace, and appointed Proterius bishop
in his stead, and received the letter of Leo, which is called the Tome. And the
other matters, which occurred in Jerusalem, or in Alexandria, or in other places
during, the life of Marcian, that is, a space of six years and a half; behold
they are written down here distinctly in these twelve Books below and the
chapters contained in them.
The first chapter relates the events which occurred in the Synod of
Chalcedon, until the public address of Marcian the king to the bishops assembled
The second chapter tells about the banishment of Dioscorus to Gangra, and the
consecration of Proterius in his stead; and the events which occurred in
Alexandria upon his entry there.
The third chapter relates the events which occurred in Palestine, concerning
Juvenalis of Jerusalem, who broke his promises, and separated from Dioscorus,
and agreed to the Synod. And when the citizens of Jerusalem and the Palestinian monks learned this, they appointed, as bishop in his stead, one
Theodosius, a monk; who, in his zeal, had attended and watched the Synod
closely, and then went back to Palestine and told what had occurred at
The fourth chapter tells of Peter the hostage, the son of the king of the
Iberians, a wonderful man, who was taken by the people of Gaza; and they brought
him to Theodosius of Jerusalem, by whom he was consecrated as their bishop.
The fifth chapter tells about the flight of Theodosius of Jerusalem, in
consequence of the king's threats; and also about the return of Juvenalis, by
force, to Jerusalem, and the great slaughter that ensued upon his entry there.
The sixth chapter gives an account of a certain blind Samaritan, who smeared
his eyes with the blood of the slain, and they were opened.
The seventh chapter tells how Christ appeared in vision to Peter the Iberian,
bishop of Gaza, and told him to depart from thence, and also himself to suffer
banishment of his own accord.
The eighth chapter tells about a certain monk, named Solomon, who acted
cunningly, and went in to Juvenalis of Jerusalem, and threw a basketful of dust
upon his head, and reproached him.
The ninth chapter tells how Theodosius of Jerusalem was taken, and was
imprisoned in a house containing lime, and there he ended his life.
The tenth chapter tells about the heresy of John the Rhetorican, and how this
heresy was anathematised by Timothy, the bishop of Alexandria, after him.
The eleventh chapter tells about the mission of John the Silentarius, from
the king to Alexandria.
The twelfth chapter tells about Anthemius, and Severus, and Olybrius, and Leo
the Less, and what happened in the seven years of their reign.1
The 2 first chapter of this book tells
about the events which occurred in the synod, being taken from the history of
one Zachariah by name, who begins to write in Greek to Eupraxius as follows
Since it is acceptable unto you, and desired by you, Christ-loving Eupraxius,3 who are dwelling in the royal palace, and are occupied in the service of kings,
to learn what happened, in the reign of Marcian, to the holy Church of God; and
who they were who, in regular succession, were the chief priests in Alexandria,
and Rome, and Constantinople, and Antioch, and Jerusalem, from the time of the
Council of Chalcedon—that Council which, ostensibly convened about the matter
of Eutyches, introduced and increased the heresy of Nestorius; and shook all the
world; and added evil upon evil; and set the two heresies, one against the
other; and filled the world with divisions; and confounded the faith delivered
by the apostles, and the good order of the Church; and tore into ten thousand
rents the perfect Robe of Christ, woven from the top throughout : therefore we,
anathematising those two heresies, and every wicked teacher of doctrine corrupt
and contrary to the Church of God, and to the orthodox faith of the three holy
Synods, which skilfully maintained the true doctrine; shall, to that end, employ
this history which you urged us to undertake.
After the death of the holy Cyril of Alexandria, who carried on the conflict
against many corrupt doctrines, and exposed them, Dioscorus received the throne
as his successor; and he was a
peaceable man, and also a champion; although he had not the same
promptitude and boldness as Cyril.
At that time Theodoret and Hibo, who, along with Flavian of Constantinople
and Eusebius, were deposed by the second Synod of Ephesus, which met there in
the days of Theodosius, about the matter of Eutyches, and Flavian— Theodoret
of Cyrrhus, because he wrote twelve censures upon Cyril's Heads against
Nestorius; and Hibo of Edessa, because he wrote a letter to Moris of Nisibis,
reviling Cyril -- were, both of them, upholding the doctrine of Theodore and
Diodorus. And Theodoret4 went up to Leo of Rome, and
informed him about all these matters; and, with the gift which blinds the eyes
of the soul, he got the better of him. Whereupon Leo composed 5 that letter which is called the Tome, and which was ostensibly written to
Flavian against Eutychianism. But Leo also wrote to Marcian the king, and his
wife Pulcheria, and warmly commended Theodoret to them.
This6 Marcian favoured the doctrine of Nestorius,
and was well disposed towards him; and so he sent by John the Tribune, to
recall Nestorius from his place of banishment in Oasis; and to recall also
Dorotheus, the bishop who was with him. And it happened while he was returning,
that he set at naught the holy Virgin, the Theotokos, and said,
"What is Mary? Why should she indeed be called the Theotokos!" And the righteous judgment of God speedily overtook him (as had been the
case formerly with Arius, who blasphemed against the Son of God). Accordingly he
fell from his mule, and the tongue 7 of this
Nestorius was cut off, and his mouth was eaten by worms, and he died on the
roadway. And his companion Dorotheus died also. And the king, hearing of it, was
greatly grieved; and he was thinking upon what had occurred, and he was in doubt as to what he should do.
However, written directions from Marcian the king were delivered by John the
Tribune to Dioscorus and Juvenalis, calling upon them to meet in Council, and
John also informed them of what had happened to Nestorius and to Dorotheus.
And when the bishops of every place, who were summoned, were preparing to
meet at Nicea, Providence did not allow them; for the king8 issued a new order that the assembly should be convened to Chalcedon, so that
Nicea might not be the meeting-place of rebels.
Then 9 the Nestorian party earnestly urged and
besought the king that Theodoret should be appointed the president of the Synod,
and that, according to his word, every matter should be decided there.10 And when they met at Chalcedon, Theodoret entered in and lived there boldly,
like an honoured bishop; he who a little time before had been ejected from the
priesthood by their means. And Dioscorus and the chief bishops were vexed and
troubled on account of the haughty insolence which the man displayed; but they
could not put a stop to it, because of the royal authority, though they saw that
the canons were despised by him, and by Hibo also, with the help of the Roman
legates of Leo, who were aiding and abetting them.
And when Dioscorus was proclaiming the doctrine of the faith in the Synod,
and with him Juvenalis, and Thalassius of Cappadocia, and Anatolius, and
Amphilochius of Side, and Eusebius of Ancyra, and Eustace of Berytus; then, as
by a miracle, Eusebius of Dorylaeum also agreed with them; for they saw that
the Nestorian doctrine of the two natures was confirmed, and established there,
by the co-operation of John of Germanicia, who fiercely contended, in the course
of the dispute there, with the side which said, "It is right for us to confess Christ after His incarnation as one Nature from two, according to
the belief of the rest of the Fathers, and not to introduce any innovation or
add any novelty to the faith."
Wherefore, John of Germanicia, and the rest of the Nestorian party, with
Theodoret at their head, brought about the deprivation of Dioscorus; because he
said, "It is right for us to believe that Christ became incarnate from two
natures; and we should not confess two natures after the union, like Nestorius.
And 11 then Anatolius, the bishop of the
royal city, cried out in words to this effect, "Not for the faith is
Dioscorus deposed; but he is set at nought for refusing to hold communion with
the chief priest, my lord Leo."
And after the outcry of many, and after the things had been spoken which have
been written in the Acts of that Council, at last those bishops being forced to
do so, defined our Lord Jesus Christ to be in two natures. And they praised the
Tome of Leo, and they called that an orthodox definition which said, "There
are two Persons, and two Natures, with their properties and their
operations." And this being so, they were required to subscribe under
compulsion; those very priests who, a little time before in the days of the
blessed Theodosius, being assembled at the second Council of Ephesus, cried out
many times, "If anyone shall say 'Two natures to two,' let the Silentiarius
come up !"
And when they repeated this over to Dioscorus, by means of John the chief of
the Silentiarii, and asked him to agree to it, and to subscribe, and get back
his throne; he said, courageously, "Sooner would Dioscorus see his own
hand cut off, and the blood falling on the paper, than do such a thing as
that." Whereupon he was sent into banishment to Gangra, because the Nestorian party published the report about him, that his opinions
were the same as those of Eutyches.
And I think it well, omitting many of his sayings, both what he spoke and
wrote to Domnus of Antioch, and in the Synod of Chalcedon itself, which testify
concerning the faith of the man, that his faith was like that of Athanasius, and
Cyril, and the other doctors, I think it well (I say) to make a written extract
out of what he wrote from his place of banishment to. Secundinus, in the
following words :—
"Omitting many urgent matters, this I declare, that no man shall say
that the holy flesh, which our Lord took from the Virgin Mary, by the operation
of the Holy Spirit, in a manner which He Himself knows, was different to and
foreign from our body. And, indeed, since this is so, they who affirm that
Christ did not become incarnate for us, give the lie to Paul. For he has said,
'Not from angels did He take (the nature), but from the seed of the House of
Abraham'; to which seed Mary was no stranger, as the Scriptures teach us. And
again,' It was right that in everything He should be made like unto His
brethren,' and that word 'in everything' does not suffer the subtraction of any
part of our nature : since in nerves, and hair, and bones, and veins, and belly,
and heart, and kidneys, and liver, and lungs, and, in short, in all those things
that belong to our nature, the flesh which was born from Mary was compacted with
the soul of our Redeemer, that reasonable and intelligent soul, without the seed
of man, and the gratification and cohabitation of sleep.
"For if, as the heretics think, this was not so, how is He named 'our
brother,' supposing that He used a body different from ours ? And how, again, is
that true which He said to His Father, 'I will declare Thy name to My brethren
?'12 Let us not reject, neither let us
despise, those who think in this way. For He was like us, for us, and with us,
not in phantasy, nor in mere semblance, according to the heresy of the Manichaeans, but rather in actual reality from Mary, the Theotokos. To
comfort the desolate and to repair the vessel that had been broken, He came to
us new. And as Immanuel, indeed, He is confessed; for He became poor for us,
according to the saying of Paul, 'that we, by His humiliation, might be made
rich.'13 He became, by the dispensation, like us;
that we, by His tender mercy, might be like Him. He became man, and yet He did
not destroy that which is His nature, that He is Son of God; that we, by grace,
might become the sons of God. This I think and believe; and, if any man does not
think thus, he is a stranger to the faith of the apostles."
And although14 this apostolic man had been well
versed in this confession of faith from the beginning of his life, yet he was
deposed and sent into banishment, because he would not worship the image, with
its two faces, which was set up by Leo and by the Council of Chalcedon; and
because he refused to hold communion with Theodoret and Hibo, who had been
deprived on account of their blasphemies.
But the story goes that when, oh one occasion, he saw Theodoret sitting upon
the throne in the Council, and speaking from it, and not standing and making his
defence, as one should who had been canonically deposed from the priesthood;
then he himself arose and descended from the throne and sat upon the pavement,
saying, "I Will not sit with the wicked, nor with vain persons will I enter
Whereupon the partisans of Theodoret cried out, "He has deposed
himself." But the other bishops cried out, "Our faith15 is perishing. If Theodoret, who holds the opinions of Nestorius, be accepted, we
reject Cyril." And then Basil, the bishop of Tripolis, stood up and said,
"We ourselves have deposed Theodoret."
But they say that Amphilochius was beaten on his head by Aetius the deacon,
to make him sign. It was this Aetius who went to Theodoret by night, and made a
complete copy for him of the Symbol
of the two Natures; and when 16 it was accepted by
the bishops, and they agreed to it, then Theodoret insolently derided them,
saying, "See how I have made them taste the leaven of the doctrine of
Nestorius, and they are delighted with it ! "17
"But Eustace of Berytus, when he signed the document, wrote in short
hand, "This have I written under compulsion, not agreeing with it."
And he wept very much, as did also others who proclaimed the compulsion and
exposed the hypocritical profession of faith which was made, because the chief
senators were present time after time at the discussions, and closely watched
the proceedings of the Synod. But, at last, the king came there, with his wife
Pulcheria, and he delivered a public address in the Martyr Church of Euphemia in
the following terms :
"From 18 the first time that we were chosen
and accounted Worthy of the kingdom by God, amidst all the care of public
business, no concern whatever in which we might be involved was allowed to
hinder us, but we made it our choice to honour the true faith of the Christians,
and to accustom the minds of men to it, with purity; all novelty of false
doctrines and preachings that do not agree with the well proved doctrine of the
Fathers, being taken out of our midst. Therefore we summoned this holy Synod
that it might cleanse away all darkness, and put away filth of thoughts : that
so, in pure mind, the doctrine of the faith which is in our Lord Jesus Christ
might be established," and so on, to the same effect.
When the king had finished his public address, the bishops praised him and
the Senate, and also the letter of Leo, affirming with respect to it that it
agreed with the faith of the Apostle Peter.
The second chapter tells about the banishment of Dioscorus, and the
consecration of Proterius in his stead; and about the slaughter which ensued
upon his coming in; and the church funds, which he expended upon his allies
the Romans, but which, by right, belonged to the poor
The Synod having received such an end as this, Dioscorus19 was decreed to be a confessor, and was sent away to live in Gangra;
and Proterius was appointed bishop in Alexandria, in his stead. This Proterius20 had been a presbyter on his side, and had contended earnestly against the Synod
at first, but afterwards, with the object of snatching the see for himself, he
became like Judas, a betrayer of his master, and like Absalom, of his father;
and he showed himself a rapacious wolf in the midst of the flock. And many who
were unwilling he afflicted and ill-treated, to force them into agreement with
himself. And he sent them into banishment, and he seized their property by means
of the governors who obeyed him in. consequence of the king's command.
Whereupon, indeed, the priests, and the monks, and many of the people,
perceiving that the faith had been polluted, both by the unjust deposition of
Dioscorus and the oppressive conduct of Proterius and his wickedness, assembled
by themselves in the monasteries, and severed themselves from his communion. And
they proclaimed Dioscorus, and wrote his name in the book of life as a chosen
and faithful priest of God.
And Proterius was very indignant, and he gave gifts into the hand of the
Romans, and he armed them against the people, and he filled their hands with the
blood of believers, who were slain; for they also strengthened themselves,21 and made war. And many died at the very Altar, and in the Baptistery, who had
fled and taken refuge there.
The third chapter narrates the events which occurred in palestine
respecting Juvenalis of Jerusalem, who broke his promises, and separated
himself from dioscorus. And the monks and the citizens of Jerusalem heard of
the matter from Theodosius, a monk, who, through zeal, was present at
Chalcedon, and who, after having carefully watched the proceedings there, came
to Jerusalem and gave information about them; and they made him bishop by
force, instead of Juvenalis
And in Palestine, indeed, there were evils like these, and worse. But from
what cause I shall now tell. When Juvenalis was summoned to Chalcedon, and he
learned from John the Tribune the will of the king; and also that Nestorius, who
had been recalled, died on his return from banishment; then he (inasmuch as he
was persuaded that the doctrine of the Tome, which favoured the opinion of
Nestorius, was corrupt) summoned the clergy, and gathered the monks and the
people together; and he exposed this false doctrine, and anathematised it. And
he confirmed the souls of many in the true faith. And he charged them all, that
if he should be perverted in the Synod, they should hold communion with him no
And at first when he went there, he made a great struggle, along with
Dioscorus, on behalf of the faith. But because the royal pressure was
brought to bear; and because of the flattery and compliments of the king, who
himself waited personally upon the bishops at the banquet, and showed great
condescension to them; and because the king also promised that he would give
the three provinces of Palestine to the honour of the see of Jerusalem; then
the eyes of his mind were darkened, and he left Dioscorus the champion alone,
and he went over to the opposite
side. And he treated with contempt the oaths which he had made in the name of
God. And both he and the bishops who were with him agreed and subscribed.
And 22 when Theodosius the monk, and his
companions who were in close fellowship with him, and who zealously watched what
was taking place in the Synod, heard about this they returned quickly to
Palestine; and they came to Jerusalem, and told about the betrayal of the
faith. And they called all the monks together, and gave full information to
And the monks assembled, and prepared themselves, and went to meet Juvenalis
as he was coming. And they reminded him of his promises, and that he had failed
to keep them. And they made this one request of him, that he would censure the
proceedings which had taken place, and anathematise them. But he showed himself
like Pilate, saying, "What I have written, I have written." And the
monks said to him, "We will not receive you then, for you have broken your
oaths and your promises." So he returned to the king.
But the assembly of monks and clergy went back to Jerusalem. And the people,
and the bishops who were with them, were distressed, and they consulted together
as to what they should do. And they decided to appoint another bishop instead of
Juvenalis. When they were speaking of the chaste monks, Romanus and Marcian, and
of other men of wonderful excellence; at length23 it was agreed that they should appoint Theodosius, who had been found zealous,
and who also had contended for years on behalf of the faith. And they took him
by force, while he persisted in refusing, and conjuring them not to do so, and
begging them to allow him to be the helper of the person whom they appointed
from amongst themselves. However, they would not yield to his entreaties; but
blessed him and placed him on the throne. And when the other cities of Palestine heard it; inasmuch as they knew him to be a man of
surpassing virtue, and zealous for the truth; they severally brought persons to
receive his blessing and be admitted to the priesthood.
The fourth chapter tells about Peter the Iberian; and how he also was
taken, and was brought to Theodosius by the people of Gaza; and he became
Among these also was Peter the Iberian, a man wonderfully celebrated
throughout the world, a king's son, who had been given as a hostage to
Theodosius; and who was beloved by him and by his wife Eudocia, on account of
his excellent parts. And he was brought up in the king's palace; and he was
placed in charge of the royal horses. But he resigned this appointment, and gave
himself up to the discipline of Christ along with John the Eunuch also, who was
his sponsor, and his father by water and the Spirit. And they prospered, and God
wrought signs by their means in Constantinople. And they fled from thence, and
betook themselves next to the wilderness of Palestine, and there they loved and
cultivated the monastic life. And although after this manner they desired to be
hidden, yet they became greatly celebrated; and they wrought signs like the
And as they were changing from place to place, they arrived opposite to Gaza
and Majuma. And the men and the women and the people of all ranks and ages went
out and seized Peter, and brought him to Jerusalem to Theodosius, whom they
besought to make him their bishop.
And he laid many charges against himself, and refused ordination. And against
his will Theodosius laid his hand upon his head and consecrated him, for he knew
the man. And when he became
violently agitated, and called himself a heretic; then Theodosius hesitated a
little, and said to him, "My cause and thine are before the Judgment Seat
of Christ." And he changed his words, saying, "A heretic indeed I am
not, but a sinner." And Theodosius, being well acquainted with the man,
blessed him as priest for the people of Gaza.
But there were other excellent deeds done by this man, which, however, I
omit, lest I should make my narrative too long.
The fifth chapter tells about the flight of Theodosius of Jerusalem, in
consequence of the king's threats; also about juvenalis, who returned with an
army of romans; and the great slaughter that ensued upon his entry there
And when Theodosius was prospering in this manner, the report of all that he
was doing reached Marcian the king. And Juvenalis returned, having with him
Count Dorotheus and an army; for the purpose of taking Theodosius, and making
him a prisoner, and deposing all the bishops whom he had made in his district,
and punishing24 the monks and the people, and
expelling them in consequence of their insolence and rashness in setting up
Theodosius as bishop in Jerusalem. But, by the desire of the queen, Peter the
Iberian alone was to be spared; even though he should not consent to hold
communion with the other bishops.
And when Juvenalis arrived at Neapolis, he found a large number of monks
there; and at first he tried to seduce them, simple men as they were, and
single-minded, whose arms and helmet were the true faith and works of righteousness. These he endeavoured to persuade to hold communion with himself.
And when they turned away from this proposal with disgust, unless he would
anathematise the violent transactions of Chalcedon; he then said, "It is
the king's will."
And they still refused. Whereupon he gave orders to the Romans and the
Samaritans, who smote and killed these monks, while they were singing psalms and
saying, "O God, the heathen are come into Thine inheritance, and they have
defiled Thy holy temple; and behold they are making Jerusalem a waste
And some of the Romans were overcome with pity, and wept. But some of them,
along with the Samaritans, killed many of the monks, whose blood also was poured
out upon the ground.
The sixth chapter tells about a certain blind Samaritan who drew near with
faith, and smeared his eyes with the blood of those that were slain; and his
sight was restored
There was a certain blind Samaritan who deceived his own guide, and said,
"Since mine eyes cannot see the blood of the slaughter of these Christians,
so that I may delight myself in it; bring me near and I shall feel it." And
when the guide brought him near and caused him to feel it, he dipped his hands
in the blood. And he prostrated himself upon the ground; and he wept, with
prayer and supplication, that he might be a sharer in their martyrdom. Then he
arose, and smeared his eyes, and lifted up his hands to heaven; and his eyes
were opened, and he received his sight.
And all who were witnesses of this miracle, were astonished and believed in
God. And the blind man also believed, and was baptized.
But the party who administered the king's orders, laid hold upon the surviving believers, and expelled them from the whole district.
The seventh chapter relates how our lord appeared to Peter the Iberian, of
Gaza; and told him that he must depart along with those who were expelled
But they say that Peter the Illustrious was at rest, being left undisturbed
by all, both on account of the king's orders, and the loving care of the queen
But he saw the Lord in a vision, saying to him indignantly, "How now,
Peter! Am I being expelled in My believing servants, and art thou remaining
quiet and at rest?" Then Peter repented and obeyed, and he arose and left
Gaza; and he joined those who were expelled, and departed with them.
The eighth chapter tells about a certain zealous monk, named Solomon; who
acted cunningly, and went in to juvenalis, as if he desired to be blessed by
him, and threw a basketful of dust upon his head, and reproached him
And Juvenalis, having by means of the armed force of the Romans expelled the
believers and the monks who were in the country district, arrived at Jerusalem
and sat upon the throne. And he paid no regard at all to his promises, nor to
the slaughter which had occurred upon his entry there, nor to the falsehood of
Then a certain monk, Solomon by name, was stirred in his spirit; and in this
honourable garb of chastity, and as if desiring to be blessed by the chief
priest himself, acted cunningly, and filled a basket with dust and ashes, and
placed it under his armpit, and drew near to Juvenalis. And the latter was glad
when the monk came in to him. And Solomon, being received by him, said to him,
"Let my lord bless me."
And, as the Roman guard permitted him to draw near and come close to
Juvenalis, he took out the basket of dust and emptied it on his head, saying,
"Shame upon thee, shame upon thee, liar and persecutor! "And when the
Roman guard were about to strike him, Juvenalis would not allow it. And he was
not enraged, but was rather moved to penitence by this, and shook the dust from
his head. So they only put out the monk from his presence. And he ordered that
money for his expenses should be given to him, and that he should leave
his country. The monk, however, refused the money, but left the country.
The ninth chapter tells how Theodosius, being sought for by the Roman army,
was taken and imprisoned in a house containing lime; where at length he died
But Theodosius, when he was sought for by the king's orders through the whole
province, assumed the garb of a Roman, having on his head hair and a helmet; and
he went about confirming and encouraging the believers. At length, however, when
he arrived at the parts about Sidon, he was taken and delivered up to the Romans
by one of his own friends.
And the Nestorian party were so enraged against him, because he had been
going about through the whole world, and exposing and anathematising the false doctrine of Nestorius, that they went up
to the king, and persuaded him to grant that the man should be given into their
charge and keeping. And they took him and imprisoned him in a small house,
belonging to the monks, in which there was quicklime.
And these followers of Nestorius used to go to him in troops, and dispute
with him, hoping that under pressure of great affliction he would change his
mind, and agree to their will. And he prevailed over them all and repulsed them;
and as they departed from him ashamed and confounded, he said, "Even
though I am imprisoned and thereby prevented from going about in the different
places, according to my former custom; yet as long as the breath is in my
nostrils, the word of God shall not be imprisoned in me; but it shall preach
that which is true and right in the ears of the hearers."
But the Eutychian party also imagined that he would agree with them; and they
came together to him, and entered into discusssion with him. And in like manner,
contrary to their expectation, he showed them to be in agreement with
Valentinus, and Manes, and Marcion; and that their heresy was a wicked one,
worse even than that of Paul of Samosata, and Apollinaris, and Nestorius. And so they, in their turn, departed from him, being condemned by him.
And because they laid one affliction after another upon him, his soul also
continued steadfast in the good fight.
While there he met with some writings of John the Rhetorician from
Alexandria, which were full of false doctrine and very defective, and it is a
heresy; and he exposed the man and anathematised him. And having finished his
course, and contended in the fight, and kept his faith, at length he died. And
departing from the prison, he went to be with Christ our Lord. And he left the
example of courage to the believers.
The tenth chapter gives a record of the heresy of John the Rhetorician of
Alexandria; and how it was rejected and anathematised
John was an adherent of Palladius the Alexandrian sophist, and was second to
him; and for that reason he was called the Rhetorician; because that next to
sophistry comes rhetoric, and therefore by that name the philosopher is
This man, in the days of Proterius who succeeded Dioscorus, saw that the
whole city of Alexandria hated Proterius, some in consequence of their zeal for
the faith, and others because they had been plundered and persecuted by him,
with the object of making them agree to the Synod and accept the Tome. He then
sought to ingratiate himself with the people, and to present a fine appearance,
and to collect money for himself, and to be celebrated with this empty glory.
And not having read the Holy Scriptures, and not understanding the meaning of
their mysteries, and not having exercised himself in the writings of the ancient
doctors of the holy Church, and not knowing what he was saying, or that about
which he was contending, he was puffed up to write a sort of proof that, after
the manner of a seed, God the Word was wrapped up in the body; and that He
suffered in His own Nature, if indeed He suffered at all. But he denied that the
Word was united to a human body; and he would not confess the natures from which
One Christ appeared. But he prepared and collected words, saying, "It can
by no means be called a nature, as indeed without the seed of a man in the
Virgin the Incarnation took place." And he said, "Therefore Christ was
neither by her nor from her." And he did not agree with the doctors of the
Church, who declare that the human
nature was united to God the Word, and that He became man.
And with vain words such as these he used to chatter; and he also wrote
books. And in these he was self-contradictory; sometimes agreeing with
Apollinaris, sometimes with Eutyches; and again, stating what was quite new.
And because he was in doubt about the subject of his writings, lest they should
be reviled,27 he did not subscribe his books with
his own name. But at one time he wrote the name of Theodosius, the bishop of
Jerusalem, upon one; and again, the name of Peter the Iberian upon another; that
even the believers might be deceived by them and accept them.
But they say, that on one occasion, Peter the Iberian met with one of them,
which had been written in his own name, in a certain monastery; and when he took
it and read it he was full of indignation, and he anathematised the man who
wrote it. And not there alone, but also in Alexandria, and in Palestine, and in
Syria, both he and Theodosius anathematised the writings of this man.
The eleventh chapter tells how John the Silentiarius was sent by the king,
after the death of Dioscorus at Gangra, to exhort the Alexandrians to be
united to Proterius
But when the report of the death of Dioscorus reached the Alexandrians, there
was great trouble and sorrow. And after his death, on account of the love that
they had for him, they proclaimed him as a living man, and his name was set in
the Diptych. But let no man even of those, whose endeavour it is to revile what
is not done in exact order, find fault.
But the believing party were desirous of appointing a bishop instead of
Dioscorus. However, they were afraid of the threats of Marcian the king; for he was sending letters in every direction,
and fulminations against all who would not agree to the Synod and receive the
Tome. For so it was, that when he heard of the men of Alexandria, and of their
intention to appoint a bishop for themselves after the death of Dioscorus, he
sent John, the chief of the Silentiarii, with a letter from himself exhorting
the Alexandrians to be united to Proterius.
And this John was of the same mind as the king, and he was an astute man. And
when he came and saw the crowd, the numbers of monks arrayed in chastity, and
possessing readiness of speech in defence of the faith, and also the strong body
of the common people who were believers, with whom he had to deal, he was
astounded, and said, "I am ready, if the Lord will, to inform the king and
to plead with him on your behalf." And he received from them a petition—
which gave information concerning their faith; and concerning all that happened
to them at the hands of Proterius; and concerning the impious conduct of the
man, and his wickedness, and the Church property which he expended upon
vanity—written at length in words which I omit to reproduce here, lest I
should be tedious to the reader.
And when John returned to the king and told him about these matters, he said
to him, "We sent you, indeed, to persuade and exhort the Egyptians to obey
our will: but you have returned to us, not according as we wished, since we find
you an Egyptian." However, when he perceived the things that were written
about Proterius, in the petition which the monks sent, he blamed the pride and
the craftiness of the man. And while he was occupied with this matter, he died,
having reigned six years and a half.
But Morian28 also, who reigned four years along
with him, died.
And after him, Anthemius, and Severus, and Olybrius received the kingdom. And
one year after, Leo the First was associated with them. So that the lives of
these four made up seven years.
The twelfth chapter tells about Anthemius, and Severus, and Olybrius, and
Leo; who reigned together and in succession, seven years
When Anthemius had reigned five years he was killed by Ricimer. And Severus,
having reigned one year with him, died. And Olybrius, who reigned after Severus
along with Anthemius for one year, died. And Leo the First also died, having
reigned with Anthemius for three years, and two years after.
In the first year of Leo indeed, Antioch was overturned by the earthquakes
which occurred; and there was also a great fire. And in the second year of his
reign, Sulifos, the Gothic tyrant, was killed. And in the third year of his
reign, Aspar the general and his sons were killed.
But there is in this third Book and in its chapters, which are written above,
a period of thirteen and a half years. And it is made up in the following
manner:—Of Marcian and Morian six years and a half; and of Anthemius, and
Severus, and Olybrius, and Leo the First, who reigned in succession and
together, seven years.
And this period begins from the third year of the three hundred and fifth
Olympiad, and it ends in the three hundred and eighth Olympiad.
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