Early Church Fathers
13 1 Tim. i. 19.
14 Mark xii. 29;Matt.xi. 25.
15 Eccl. vii. 29.
16 Rom. i. 25.
17 Prov. xviii. 3.
18 For the following chapters Döllinger, `The Gentile and the Jew,', is a rich mine of illustration. The recently published `Manual of the History of Religions,' by Prof. Chaptepie de la Saussaye (Eng. Tra. pub. by Longmans), summarises the best results of recent research.
19 Wisd. xiv. 12.
20 Constantine was the last Emperor officially deified (D.C.B., I. 649), but even Theodosius is raised to heaven by the courtly Claudian Carm. de III Cons. Honor. 163 sqq.; cf. Gwatkin, p. 54, note.
21 This is probably a reference to the iera anagrafh of Euhemerus, which Christian apologists commonly took as genuine history: see §12, note 1.
22 Cf. de la Saussaye, §51. Isis, as goddess of the earth, corresponded to Demeter; as goddess of the dead, to the Korh (Persephone).
23 The Newtera is a puzzle. The most likely suggestion is that of Montfaucon, who refers it to Cleopatra, who nea !Isij exrhmatize (Plut. Vit. Anton.). He cites also a coin of M. Antony, on which Cleopatra is figured as qea newtera. Several such are given by Vaillant, de Numism. Cleopatr. 189. She was not the first of her name to adopt this style, see Head Hist. Num. pp. 716, 717. The text might be rendered `Isis, both the Maid and the Younger.'
24 Cf. Wisd. xiv. 12 sqq. quoted below.
25 Cf. Greg. Naz. Or. v. 32, p. 168 c, and Dict. G. and R. Geog. I. p. 783a.
26 Plat. Rep. I. ad init.
27 Wisd. xiv. 12 sqq.
28 This explanation of gods as deified men is known as Euhemerism, from Euhemerus, who broached the theory in the third century, b.c. (supra, 10, note 1); but `there were Euhemerists in Greece before Euhemerus' (Jowett's Plato, 2. 101). The Fathers very commonly adopt the theory, for which, however, there are very slight grounds. Such cases as those of Antinous and the Emperors as well as the legends of heroes and demigods, gave it some plausibility (see Döllinger; Gentile and Jew, vol. i. p. 344. Eng. Tr.).
29 Ps. cxv. 5 sqq.
30 Isa. xliv. 9 sqq. (LXX.).
31 Wisd. xiv. 21. Cf. Isa. xlii. 8, and xlviii. 11.
32 fusij is here used in a double sense.
33 By Aristotle, Top. V. ii.-iv. where man is defined as zwonepisthmhj dektikon compare Metaph. I. i. `All men by nature desire to know.'
34 Cf. Orat. iii. 16.
35 This may refer to Maximus of Tyre (Saussaye, §11), or to the lost treatise of `the divine Iamblichus' IIeri agalmatwn, which was considered worth answering by Christian writers as late as the seventh century (Philoponus in Phot. Bibl. Cod. 215).
36 This is in effect the defence of the `Scriptor de Mysteriis' (possibly Iamblichus, see Bernays `2 Abhandlungen' 1880, p. 37): material means of worship are a means of access directly to the lower (or quasi-material) gods, and so indirectly to the higher. Few men can reach the latter without the aid of their manifestation in the lower; parestin aulwj toij enuloij ta aula (v. 23, of. 14).
37 Supra xiii. 3.
38 Hdt. ii. 69; cf. Juv. Sat. xv. 36, `numina vicinorum Odit uterque locus.'This is one of the few places where Athanasius has any Egyptian `local colour' (cf. supra 9 and so). M. Fialon is certainly too imaginative (p. 86 contradicted p. 283), when he sees in the contra Gentes an appreciation of the higher religious principles which the modern science (`toute Francaise') of Egyptology has enabled us to read behind the grotesque features of popular Egyptian poly theism.
39 On human sacrifice see Saussaye, §17, and Robertson Smith, Religion of the Semites, pp. 343 sqq., especially p. 347, note 1, for references to examples near the time of this treatise.
40 Reading eidwleioi" conj. Marr.
41 i.e. among the licentious worshippers the lifeless image is the only one free from vice, although the worshippers credit him with divine attributes, and therefore, according to their superstition, with a licentious lite.
42 Rom. i. 26.
43 Ps. xix. 1.
44 Cf. Orat. i. 25, note 2.