Early Church Fathers
98 Nectarius died in Sept. 397, and John Chrysostom was appointed in Feb. 398. cf. Soc. vi. 2 and Soz. viii. 2.
"The only difficulty lay with Chrysostom himself and the people of Antioch. The double danger of a decided `nolo episcopari0' on Chrysostom's part, and of a public commotion when the Antiocheans heard of the intention of robbing them of their favourite preacher was overcome by stratagem. Asterius, the Comes Orientis, in accordance with instructions received from Eutropius, induced Chrysostom to accompany him to a martyr's chapel outside the city walls. There he was apprehended by the officers of the government, and conveyed to Papae, the first post station on the road to Constantinople. His remonstrances were unheeded; his enquiries met with obstinate silence. Placed in a public chariot, and hurried on under a military escort from stage to stage, the 800 miles traversed with the utmost dispatch, the future bishop reached his imperial see a closely guarded prisoner. However unwelcome the dignity thrust on him was, Chrysostom, knowing that resistance was useless, felt it more dignified to submit without further struggle."
"Chrysostom was consecrated February 26th a.d. 398, in the presence of a vast multitude assembled not only to witness the ceremony but also to listen to the inaugural sermon of one of whose eloquence they had heard so much. This `sermo enthronisticus0' is lost." Dict. Christ. Biog. s. v. "Chrysostom."
99 Elpidius, possibly a kind of domestic chaplain (suskhnoj) to Meletius, was afterwards a warm friend and advocate of Chrysostom. In 406 he was deposed and imprisoned for three years, and not restored till 414.
100 Vide note on p. 115.
101 Marcellus was bishop of Apamea.
102 Succeeded his brother Marcellus in 398. cf. note on p. 128 and Relig. Hist. 3.
103 Soc. vi. 3; Soz. viii, 2.
104 Vide p. 159.
105 Vide p. 128.
106 Of Ancyra cf. Soz. vi, 18; and viii, 30.
107 Valesius points out that those commentators have been in error who have supposed Theodoretus to be referring here to ecclesiastical divisions and officers.
Chrysostom is here distinctly described as asserting and exercising a jurisdiction over the civil "dioeceses" of Pontica, Asia, and Thrace. But the quasi patriarchate was at this time only honorary. Only so late as at the recent council at Constantinople (381) had its bishop, previously under the metropolitan of Perinthus, been declared to rank next after the bishop of Rome, the metropolitans of Alexandria and Antioch standing next, but it was not till the Council of Chalcedon that the "dioeceses" of Pontus, Asia, and Thrace were formally subjected to the see of Constantinople.
108 The imperial edict for the destruction of the Phoenician Temples was obtained in 399.
109 The Church of St. Paul. Hom. xii. pp. 512-526.
110 i.e. at Cyrus.
111 II. Cor. xi. 28.
112 The three great officials, Aurelianus, Saturninus, and the Count John had already surrendered themselves to the arrogant Goth, and their lives had only been spared at the entreaty of Chrysostom.
113 Matt. vii. 6.
114 It is not clear where the mission of Chrysostom to Gainas should be placed. Gainas attacked the capital by sea and by land, but his Goths were massacred in their own church, and he was repulsed. He was finally defeated and slain in Jan. 401.
115 The foes of Chrysostom were
(i) The empress Eudoxia, jealous of his power;
(ii) The great ladies on whose toilettes of artifice and extravagant licentiousness he had poured his scorn; among them being Marsa, Castricia, and Eugraphia;
(iii) The baser clergy whom his simplicity of life shamed, notably Acacius of Beroea, whose hostility is traced by Palladius to the meagre hospitality of the archiepiscopal palace at Constantinople, when the hungry guest exclaimed "egw autw artuw xutran"-"I'll pepper a pot for him!" (Pall. 49.) and Theophilus of Alexandria, who had never forgiven his elevation to the see, and Gerontius of Nicomedia whom he had deposed.
116 i.e. at the suburb of Chalcedon known as "the Oak." The charges included his calling the Empress Jezebel, and eating a lozenge after the Holy Communion. Pallad. 66.
117 For three days the people withstood his removal. At last he slipped out by a postern, and, when a nod would have roused rebellion, submitted to exile. But he was only deported a very little way.
118 Eudoxia was the daughter of Banto, a Frankish general. Philostorgius (xi. 6), says that she "ou kata thn tou androj diekeito nwqeian, all: enhn auth tou barbarikou qrasouj ouk oligon.
119 The proceedings of "the Oak" were declared null and void, and the bishop was formally reinstated. 403.
120 Theodoret omits the second offence to Eudoxia - his invectives on the dedication of her silver statue in front of St. Sophia in Sept. 403. (Soc. vi. 18. Soz. viii. 20) "Once again Herodias runs wild; once again she dances; once again she is in a hurry to get the head of John on a charger." Or does the description of Herodias, and not Salome, as dancing, indicate that the calumnious sentence was not really uttered by Chrysostom, but said to have been uttered by informers whose knowledge of the Gospels was incomplete?
The discourse "in decollationem Baptistoe Joannis" is in Migne Vol. viii. 485, but it is generally rejected as spurious.
The circumstances of the deposition will be found in Palladius, and in Chrysostom's Ep. ad Innocent. The edict was issued June 5, 404. Cucusus (cf. p. ii. 4) is on the borders of Cilicia and Armenia Minor. Gibbon says the three years spent here were the "most glorious of his life," so great was the influence he wielded.
In the winter of 405 he was driven with other fugitives from Cucusus through fear of Isaurian banditti, and fled some 60 miles to Arabissus. Early in 406 he returned. Eudoxia was dead (_ Oct. 4. 404) but other enemies were impatient at the old man's resistance to hardship. An Edict was procured transferring the exile to Pityus, in the N.E. corner of the Black Sea (now Soukoum in Transcaucasia) but Chrysostom's strength was unequal to the cruel hardships of the journey. Some five miles from Comana in Pontus (Tokat), clothed in white robes, he expired in the chapel of the martyred bishop Basiliskus, Sept. 14. 407. Basiliskus was martyred in 312.
121 Atticus (Bp. of Constantinople 405-426) was forced by fear alike of the mob and the Emperor to consent to the restitution. His letters to Peter and Aedesius, deacon of Cyril of Alexandria, and Cyril's reply, (Niceph. xiv. 26-27) are interesting. Cyril "would as soon put the name of Judas on the rolls as that of Chrysostom." Dict. Christ. Biog. i. 209.
122 Cyril occupied the Episcopal throne of Alexandria from 412 to 444. Theodoretus could not be expected to allude to the withdrawal of the Roman legions from Britain in 401, or the release of Britoins from their allegiance by Honorius in 410. The sack of Rome by the Goths in the latter year might have however claimed a passing notice.
123 Of the five Johns more or less well known as bishop of Jerusalem this was the second-from 386 to 417. He is chiefly known to us from the severe criticisms of Jerome.
124 Bp. from 413 to 421.
125 Palladius (Dial. 143 et Seqq.) describes Porphyrius as a monster of frivolity, iniquity, and bitterness. It is interesting to hear both sides.
126 Theodoret here uses the word diptuxon. Other words in use were ierai, deltoi and katalogoi. The names engraved on these tablets were recited during the celebration of the Holy Eucharist. e. g. at Carthage in 411 we find it said of Caecilianus: "In ecclesia sumus in qua episcopatum gessit et diem obiit. Ejus nomen ad altare recitamus ejus memorioe communicamus tanquam memorioe fratris." (Dict. Christ. Ant. i. 561. Labbe ii. 1490.) Names were sometimes erased from unworthy motives. A survival of the use obtains in the English Church in the Prayer for the Church Militant, and more specifically in the recitation of names in the Bidding Prayer.
127 Theodosius II. succeeded his father May 1, 408, at the age of eight. The translation of the remains of Chrysostom took place at the beginning of 438. Theodosius died in 450, and the phrase "o nun basileuwn" thus limits the composition of the History. As however Theodoret does not continue his list of bishops of Rome after Caelestinus, who died in 440, we may conclude that the History was written in 438-439. But the mention of Isdigirdes II. in Chap. xxxviii. carries us somewhat further. Possibly the portions of the work were jotted down from time to time.
128 Theodosius II. had four sisters, Flaccilla, Pulcheria, Arcadia, and Marina. Pulcheria was practically empress-regnant for a considerable period. She was only two years older than her brother, but was declared Augusta and empress July 14, 414, at the age of 15 1/2. On his death In 450 she married Marcianus a general. Besides the relics of Chrysostom she translated in 446 those of the martyrs of Sebaste. Soz. ix. 2.
129 "ta qeia logia." This is the common phrase in our author for the Holy Scriptures. According to the interpretation given by Schleiermacher and like theologians to the title of the work of Papias, "logiwn kuriakwn echghseij" and to the passage of Eusebius (Ecc. Hist. iii. 39) in which Papias is quoted as salting that Matthew "Ebraidi dialektw ta logia sunegrayato." Pulcheria and her sisters did not study the Scriptures, but only "the divine discourses," to the exclusion of anything that was not a discourse. cf. Salmon Introduction to the N. T. 4th Ed. pp. 95, 96, and Bp. Lightfoot's Essays in reply to the anonymous author of "Supernatural Religion." cf. Rom. iii. 21, Heb. v. 12, I. Pet. iv. 11, and Clem. ad Cor. liii. "For beloved you know, aye, and well know, the sacred Scriptures, and have pored over the oracles of God."
130 Supposed to be identified with Rogas, Rugilas, or Roas, a prince said by Priscus in his Hist. Goth. to have preceded Attila in the sovereignty of the Huns. cf. Soc. vii, 43.
131 i.e. Rhoesina, or Theodosiopolis in Osrhoena, now Erzeroum.
132 Vararanes V. son of Isdigirdes I. persecuted Christians in the beginning of the 5th c. cf. Soc. vii. 18, 20.
Sapor III. 385-390
Vararanes IV. 390-399.
Isdigirdes I. 399-420.
Vararanes V. 420-440.
Isdigirdes II. 440-457.
133 It is interesting to find in the fifth century an instance of the sacred nomenclature with which we have familiar instances in the "San Josef" and the "Salvador del mundo" of Cape St. Vincent, and the "Santa Anna" and "Santissima Trinidad" of Trafalgar. (Southey, Life of Nelson, Chap iv. and ix.) On the north side of Sebastopol there was an earthwork called "The Twelve Apostles." (Kinglake, Crimea, Vol. iv. p. 48.) St. Thomas was the supposed founder of the church of Edessa.
134 This might have been written before the weaker elements in the character of Theodosius II. produced their most disastrous results. But he was not a satisfactory sovereign, nor a desirable champion of Christendom. In some respects like our Edward the Confessor and Henry VI. he had, in the words of Leo, "the heart of a priest as well as of an emperor." "He had fifteen prime ministers in twenty-five years, the last of whom, the Eunuch Chrysaphius, retained his power for the longest period. a.d. 443-450. During that time the empire was rapidly hurrying to destruction. The Vandals in Africa and the Huns under Attila in Europe were ravaging some of his fairest provinces while the emperor was attending to palace intrigues. ...Chrysaphius made him favourable to Eutyches, and thus largely contributed to the establishment of the monophysite heresy." Dr. Stokes in Dict. Christ. Biog. iv. 966.
135 This paragraph belongs more appropriately to the preceding chapter. The relics of Chrysostom were translated in 438.
136 The accepted order is Innocent I. 402-417; Zosimus 417-418; Boniface I. 418-422; Caelestinus 422-432.
The decision of Honorius in favour of Bonifacius as against Eulalius, both elected by their respective supporters on the death of Zosimus in 418, marks an important point in the interference of temporal princes in the appointments of bishops of Rome. cf. Robertson, i. 498.
137 Prauj = meek, gentle.
138 Apollinarians survived the condemnation of Apollinarius at Constantinople in 381.
The unsoundness, i.e. the denial of the rational soul, and so of the perfect manhood of the Saviour, is discussed in Dial. I.
139 Yezdegerd I. son of Sapor III. Vide note on p. 156.
140 Abdas was bishop of Susa. In Soc. vii. 8 he is "bishop of Persia."
141 The second of the six supreme councillors of Ahuramazda in the scheme of Zarathustra Spitama (Zoroaster) is Ardebehesht, light or lightness of any kind and representing the omnipresence of the good power. Hence sun, moon and stars are symbols of deity and the believer is enjoined to face fire or light in his worship. Temples and altars must be fed with holy fire. In their reverence for fire orthodox Parsees abstained from smoking, but alike of old and today they would deny the charge of worshipping fire in any other sense than as an honoured symbol.