Page images
[blocks in formation]


command abode in his own gardens. There he was in daily vid. suexpectation that he should be visited as it had been shewn 12. him. While he dwelt there, suddenly on the Ides of Sep-Sept. 13. tember, in the consulship of Tuscus and Bassus, there came to him two chief officials"; one the chief gaoler' in the Proconsular court of Galerius, the other marshal of the guard in the same court; they placed him between them in a chariot, and carried him to Sexti, whither the Proconsul had retired for the recovery of his health. By order of the Proconsul he was reserved for hearing on another day; so the blessed Cyprian was privately lodged in the house of the chief gaoler of the court of the most honourable' Galerius Maximus, Proconsul, in the street which is called Saturn's, between the temples of Venus and of Salus. Thither flocked the whole multitude of the brethren; which when holy Cyprian knew, he bade that the young women should be protected, seeing they all continued in the open street before the gate of the officer's house. So on another day, the 18th of the Kalends Sept. 14.

. of October, a great crowd was collected early at Sexti, as the Proconsul commanded. And the same day Cyprian was brought before him as he sat for judgment in the court called Sauciolum. The Proconsul demanded, ' Are you Thascius Cyprianus? Cyprian Bishop answered, I am he.' Galerius

, . ' Maximus Proconsul said, “ The most sacred Emperors have commanded you to conform to the Roman rites.” Cyprian Bishop said, “ I refuse to do so.” Galerius: “ Take heed for

, yourself.” Cyprian; “ Execute the Emperor's orders; in a matter so manifest I may not deliberate.” Galerius, after briefly conferring with his judicial council, with much reluctance pronounced the following sentence.

“ You have long lived sacrilega an irreligious life, and have drawn together a number of men bound by an unlawful association", and professed yourself an


b Principes; they were the chief 17, who says that in the reigns of the officers of the Prætorian court.

Antonines this title was the ordinary and c Strator officii. al. stator vid. Du- legal style of senators. Afterwards it

was given to the governors of provinces. d Equistrator.

& i.e. the criminal court. vid. Ducange, e Sexti, as it is written by Tillemont and Fell in loc. and Lumper, was a place according to h Nefariæ conspirationis. Christisome authorities six miles, according anity was not recognized as a religio to others, four miles from Carthage. licita till the next year, 259, by GalliMorcelli writes it Sextum.

enus. vid. Neander Hist. (Rose) vol. i. f Clarissimi. vid. Gibbon Hist. ch. Sect. i. 2. A.


cange in verb.


PREFACE. open enemy to the gods and the religion of Rome; and the pious, most sacred, and august Emperors, Valerian and Gallienus, and the most noble Cæsar Valerian, have endeavoured in vain to bring you back to conformity with their religious observances;—whereas then you have been apprehended as principal and ringleader in these infamous crimes, you shall be made an example to those whom you have wickedly associated with you: the authority of law shall be ratified in your blood.” He then read the sentence of the court from a written tablet. “It is the will of this court, that Thascius Cyprianus be immediately beheaded.” Cyprian Bishop said, 66 Thanks be to Godi.” After sentence was pronounced, the whole assembled of the brethren cried out, “ We will be beheaded with him.” A great tumult arose among the brethren, and a crowd followed to the place of execution. He was brought forth into the field near Sexti, where having laid aside his upper garment", he kneeled down, and addressed himself in prayer to the Lord. Then stripping himself of his dalmatic, and giving it to the Deacons, he stood in his linen tunic', and awaited the executioner, to whom when he came Cyprian bade five and twenty pieces of gold be given. The brethren meanwhile spread linen cloths and napkins on the ground before him. Being unable to tie the sleeve of his robe at the wrist, Julian Presbyter and Julian Subdeacon performed this office for him. Then the blessed Cyprian covered his eyes with his hands, and so suffered. His body was exposed in a place hard by, to gratify the curiosity of the heathen. But in the course of the night it was removed, and transported with prayers and great pomp with wax tapers and funeral torches to the burying ground of Macrobius Candidianus the Procurator, near the fish ponds in the Mappalian Way. A few days after, Galerius Maximus the Proconsul died.

i Vid. S. Augustin. Serm. 309. §. 6. 1 The tunicle or dalmatic " was used which in several points illustrates and in the earliest ages of the Christian confirms this narrative.

Church. Originally it has no sleeves. k Lacerna or byrrus, a cloke, anci- ... It is said that wide sleeves were ently, of a red colour. Ducange. added ... about the fourth century in Baronius would interpret it of the the West. ... The English Ritual diepiscopal dress of his day ; but the rects it to be used by the assistant passage in the Acts is an addition. vid. ministers in the Holy Communion.” Bingham Antiqu. vi. 4. §. 18.

Palmer's Origines. Appendix §. 4.

[blocks in formation]

Thus suffered the most blessed Martyr Cyprian, on the eighteenth day of the Kalends of October, under Valerian and Sept. 14. Gallienus Emperors; in the kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ, to whom be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Some such notice of St.Cyprian's life and death, as the above, was necessary to introduce the following Treatises; the force of which, as compositions, depends in no small degree on some previous knowledge of the character and history of the writer. They are the words of one who loved Christianity well enough to give up for it at a mature age secular engagements, settled habits and opinions, property, quiet, and at ✓ length life itself. While exhorting to almsgiving, he is already an example of voluntary poverty; if he praises virginity, he has himself embraced the single life; he insists on the nothingness of things earthly, having first chosen contempt and reproach; he denounces the heathen magistrate, with the knowledge that he is braving his power; and he is severe with the Lapsed, because he himself is to be a Martyr. Without going into the details of his theological and ecclesiastical career, these facts are the great outlines of his history, and may suitably and profitably be set against the subjects treated in the following pages, and his mode of treating them. So much is there of pretence in the world; so easy is it to see truths which are hard to practise, so skilful is the intellect in simulating moral greatness, so quick to feel and admire the truth, and so dexterous in expressing and adorning it, that we naturally look out for some assurance, which professions seldom supply, that we are reading what is real and spontaneous, and not a mere semblance of high qualities.

As regards the Translation, for almost the whole of which

[blocks in formation]

the Editors are indebted to the Rev. CHARLES THORNTON, of Christ Church, it need only be stated, that neither the text of Baluzius nor of Fell has been followed implicitly, but, where they differed, one or other has been preferred according to the particular case. An attempt has been made, in one

, portion of the Scripture references, to mark S. Cyprian's variations from the present Vulgate version; but the differences between the latter and his own, though often considerable, are often so small, as to make it a matter of nice judgment when he should be said to agree or disagree with it. It would seem on the whole that the Vulgate and S. Cyprian's version differ from each other most in the Prophets, next in the rest of the Old Testament, and least in the Gospels and Epistles. The Psalms must be excepted from this comparison, in which there is very little difference of translation at all, perhaps from substitution of the Vulgate on the part of transcribers. Next to the Psalms, there is least difference in the books of the Apocrypha, and among these in Ecclesiasticus. This information and other assistance while the Volume has been in the press, have been kindly supplied by two friends of one of the Editors.

J. H. N.

Feast of St. Mark, 1839.


[blocks in formation]
« PreviousContinue »