Early Church Fathers
49 [In front of the larger churches there was generally a street, or open space, where a market was held on the festival of the Martyr to whom the church was dedicated. Regard was also had, in this arrangement, to architectural effect, the object being that nothing should interfere with the view of the front of the church. Vide Valesius in loc.-Bag.]
50 Some idea of various features of this building may be gathered from the cuts and descriptions of other basilicas in Fergusson, History of Architecture, 1 (1874), 400 sq.; Lübke, Geschickte der Architektur, 1 (Lpg. 1875), 229 sq.; Langl.'s series of Bilder zur Geschichte, &c.
51 Compare Prolegomena, p. 411.
52 Compare Wordsworth, Helena, in Smith and Wace, Dict. 2 (1880), 881 sq. That she was made empress is shown also by the coins. Cf. coins in Eckhel.
53 [Ps. cxxxi. 7. Septuagint.-Bag.] Engl. Vers. Ps. cxxxii. 7, "We will worship at his footstool."
54 [Literally, beneath the earth. It seems to have been characteristic of the age of Eusebius to invest the more prominent circumstances connected with the Lord's life on earth with a degree of romance and mystery equally inconsistent with Scripture and with probability. It is obvious that Scripture furnishes no authority for the caves either of the nativity or ascension. See ch. 41, supra.-Bag.] Compare discussion by Andrews, Cave of the Nativity in his Life of our Lord (N. Y.), 77-83.
55 [Alluding probably, to the discourse in Matt. xxiv., delivered by our Lord to the disciples on the Mount of Olives.-Bag.]
56 According to some apocryphal accounts Constantine owed his conversion to his mother (compare the apocryphal letters mentioned under Writings, in the Prolegomena), but Eusebius, below (ch. 47), seems to reverse the fact.
57 [These words seem to savor of Origen's doctrine, to which Eusebius was much addicted. Origen believed that, in the resurrection, bodies would be changed into souls, and souls into angels, according to the testimony of Jerome. See Valesius in loc.-Bag.]
58 The date of Helena's death is usually placed in 327 or 328. Compare Wordsworth, l.c. Since she was eighty years old at the time of her death she must have been about twenty-five when Constantine was born.
59 Compare note above. It is said (Wordsworth) that while silver and copper coins have been found with her name, none of gold have yet come to light.
60 Perhaps the largest "panel." The restored church of St. Paul, outside the walls at Rome, has a paneled ceiling with a very large central panel.
61 [Nicomedia, where Constantine had besieged Licinius, and compelled him to surrender; in memory of which event he built this church.-Bag.]
62 This doctrine, which appears again and again in Eusebius and in Constantine, has a curiously interesting bearing at present theological controversies in America, and England for that matter. It may be called the doctrine of the "eternal Christ," as over against the doctrine of the "essential Christ," or that which seems to make his existence begin with his incarnation-the "historical Christ." He had historical existence from the beginning, both as the indwelling and as the objective, and one might venture to think that advocates of these two mews could find a meeting-ground, or solution of difficulty at least, in this phrase which represents him who was in the beginning with God and is and ever shall be, who has made all things which have been made, and is in all parts of the universe and the world, among Jews and Gentiles.
63 [The English version in this passage (Gen. xviii. 1), and others, has "plains," though the Septuagint and ancient interpreters generally render it, as here, by "oak," some by "terebinth" (turpentine tree), the Vulgate by "convallis."-Bag.] The Revised Version (1881-1885) has "oaks."
64 The writer of this history says the letter was addressed to him, while it is really to Macarius. On this ground the Eusebian authorship of the book has been challenged, but of course Eusebius is among "the rest of the bishops."
65 [Eutropia, mother of his empress Fausta.-Bag.]
66 [These objects of idolatrous worship were probably figures intended to represent the angels who had appeared to Abraham.-Bag.] More probably they were some form of images obscenely worshiped.
67 Better "Reverences," and so throughout.
68 [On the coast of Cilicia, near Issus.-Bag.]
69 [By Jupiter, for restoring Hippolytus to life, at Diana's request.-Bag.]
70 Through another reading translated by Val., 1709, Bag., "stolen by impostors." Stroth has "impiously employed for magicians arts."
71 Phil. i. 18. But "is preached," not "let Christ be preached."
72 "Believed to have been Strategus Musonius" (Venables).
73 [Eustathius, bishop of Antioch, whose deposition, on the ground of a charge of immorality, by the partisans of Eusebius of Nicomedia, had occasioned the disturbances alluded to in the text.-Bag.] There is a view that this whole trouble was the result of an intrigue of Eusebius to get the better of Eustathius, who was in a sense a rival. Compare for very vigorous expression of this view, Venables, Eustathius of Antioch, in Smith and Wace, Dict.
74 This is rather literal, and the paraphrase of Molz. may be better, "no foreign bishops."
75 To the various and controverted translations of this passage it may be ventured to add one, "we ourselves desire your judgment to be fortified by good counsels."
76 The other point of view has been alluded to. It seems on the face of it, in this unanimous endorsement by the church, as if Eusebius had had the right of it in his quarrel with Eustathius; but on the other hand, it is to be remembered that this wonderful harmony in the church had come about from the fact that Eustathius and all who sympathized with him had withdrawn, and only the party of Eusebius was left. It would be like a "unanimous" vote in Parliament with all the opposition benches empty. The endorsement of his own party does not count for much.
77 [Alluding to the deposition of Eustathius, who had been charged with the crime of seduction. The reader who consults the original of this chapter, especially the latter part of it, may judge of the difficulty of eliciting any tolerable sense from an obscure. and possibly corrupted, text.-Bag.] The translator (Bag.) shows ingenuity in this extracting of the general sense from the involved Greek of the writing of Constantine or the translation as it supposably is. But the very fact of the obscurity shown in this and in his oration alike is conclusive against any thought that the literary work ascribed to Constantine was written by Eusebius.