Church Fathers: Post-Nicene Fathers Vol 12: 32.01.15 Letter CXXIV-CXXXV

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Church Fathers: Post-Nicene Fathers Vol 12: 32.01.15 Letter CXXIV-CXXXV

TOPIC: Post-Nicene Fathers Vol 12 (Other Topics in this Collection)
SUBJECT: 32.01.15 Letter CXXIV-CXXXV

Other Subjects in this Topic:

Letter CXXIV. To the Monks of Palestine.

Leo, the bishop, to the whole body of monks settled throughout Palestine.

I. They Have Possibly Been Misled by a Wrong Translation of His Letter on the Incarnation to Flavian.

The anxious care, which I owe to the whole Church and to all its sons, has ascertained from many sources that some offence has been given to your minds, beloved, through my interpretershyperlink , who being either ignorant, as it appears, or malicious, have made you take some of my statements in a different sense to what I meant, not being capable of turning the Latin into Greek with proper accuracy, although in the explanation of subtle and difficult matters, one who undertakes to discuss them can scarcely satisfy himself even in his own tongue. And yet this has so far been of advantage to me, that by your disapproving of what the catholic Faith rejects, we know you are greater friends to the true than to the false: and that you quite properly refuse to believe what I myself also abhor, in accordance with ancient doctrinehyperlink . For although my letter addressed to bishop Flavian, of holy memory, is of itself sufficiently explicit, and stands in no need either of correction or explanation, yet other of my writings harmonize with that letter, and in them my position will be found similarly set forth. For necessity was laid upon me to argue against the heretics who have thrown many of Christ's peoples into confusion, both before our most merciful princes and the holy synodal Council, and the church of Constantinople, and thus I have laid down what we ought to think and feel on the Incarnation of the Word according to the teaching of the Gospel and Apostles, and in nothing have I departed from the creed of the holy Fathers: because the Faith is one, true, unique, catholic, and to it nothing can be added, nothing taken away: though Nestorius first, and now Eutyches, have endeavoured to assail it from an opposite standpoint, but with similar disloyalty, and have tried to impose on the Church of God two contradictory heresies, which has led to their both being deservedly condemned by the disciples of the Truth; because the false view which they both held in different ways was exceedingly mad and sacrilegious.

II. Eutyches, Who Confounds the Persons, is as Much to Be Rejected as Nestorius, Who Separates Themhyperlink .

Nestorius, therefore, must be anathematized for believing the Blessed Virgin Mary to be mother of His manhood only, whereby he made the person of His flesh one thing, and that of His Godhead another, and did not recognize the one Christ in the Word of God and in the flesh, but spoke of the Son of God as separate and distinct from the son of man: although, without losing that unchangeable essence which belongs to Him together with the Father and the Holy Spirit from all eternity and without respect of time, the "Word became flesh" within the Virgin's womb in such wise that by that one conception and one parturition she was at the same time, in virtue of the union of the two substances, both handmaid and mother of the Lord. This Elizabeth also knew, as Luke the evangelist declares, when she said: "Whence is this to me that the mother of my Lord should come to mehyperlink ?" But Eutyches also must be stricken with the same anathema, who, becoming entangled in the treacherous errors of the old heretics, has chosen the third dogma of Apollinarishyperlink : so that he denies the reality of his human flesh and Soul, and maintains the whole of our Lord Jesus Christ to be of one nature, as if the Godhead of the Word had turned itself into flesh and soul: and as if to be conceived and born, to be nursed and grow, to be crucified and die, to be buried and rise again, and to ascend into heaven and to sit on the Father's right hand, from whence He shall come to judge the living and the dead-as if all those things belonged to that essence only which admits of none of them without the reality of the flesh: seeing that the nature of the Only-begotten is the nature of the Father, the nature of the Holy Spirit, and that the undivided unity and consubstantial equality of the eternal Trinity is at once impassible and unchangeable. But ifhyperlink this heretic withdraws from the perverse views of Apollinaris, lest he be proved to hold that the Godhead is passiblehyperlink and mortal: and yet dares to pronounce the nature of the Incarnate Word that is of the Word made Flesh one, he undoubtedly crosses over into the mad view of Manichaeushyperlink and Marcionhyperlink , and believes that the man Jesus Christ, the mediator between God and men, did all things in an unreal way, and had not a human body, but that a phantom-like apparition presented itself to the beholders' eyes.

III. The Acknowledgment of Our Nature in Christ is Necessary to Orthodoxy.

As these iniquitous lies were once rejected by the catholic Faith, and such men's blasphemies condemned by the unanimous votes of the blessed Fathers throughout the world, whoever these are that are so blinded and strange to the light of truth as to deny the presence of human, that is our, nature in the Word of God from the time of the Incarnation, they must show on what ground they claim the name of Christian, and in what way they harmonize with the true Gospel, if the child-bearing of the blessed Virgin produced either the flesh without the Godhead or the Godhead without the flesh. For as it cannot be denied that "the Word became flesh and dwelt in ushyperlink ," so it cannot be denied that "God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himselfhyperlink ." But what reconciliation can there be, whereby God might be propitiated for the human race, unless the mediator between God and man took up the cause of all? And in what way could He properly fulfil His mediation, unless He who in the form of God was equal to the Father, were a sharer of our nature also in the form of a slave: so that the one new Man might effect a renewal of the old: and the bond of death fastened on us by one man's wrong-doinghyperlink might be loosened by the death of the one Man who alone owed nothing to death. For the pouring out of the blood of the righteous on behalf of the unrighteous was so powerful in its effecthyperlink , so rich a ransom that, if the whole body of us prisoners only believed in their Redeemer, not one would be held in the tyrant's bonds: since as the Apostle says, "where sin abounded, grace also did much more aboundhyperlink ." And since we, who were born under the imputationhyperlink of sin, have received the power of a new birth unto righteousness, the gift of liberty has become stronger than the debt of slavery.

IV. They Only Benefit by the Blood of Christ Who Truly Share in His Death and Resurrection.

What hope then do they, who deny the reality of the human person in our Saviour's body, leave for themselves in the efficacy of this mystery? Let them say by what sacrifice they have been reconciled, by what blood-shedding brought back. Who is He "who gave Himself for us an offering and a victim to God for a sweet smellhyperlink :" or what sacrifice was ever more hallowed than that which the true High priest placed upon the altar of the cross by the immolation of His own flesh? For although in the sight of the Lord the death of many of His saints has been precioushyperlink , yet no innocent's death was the propitiation of the world. The righteous have received, not given, crowns: and from the endurance of the faithful have arisen examples of patience, not the gift of justification. For their deaths affected themselves alone, and no one has paid off another's debt by his own deathhyperlink : one alone among the sons of men, our Load Jesus Christ, stands out as One in whom all are crucified, all dead, all buried, all raised again. Of them He Himself said "when I am lifted from the earth, I will draw all (things) unto Mehyperlink ." True faith also, that justifies the transgressors and makes them just, is drawn to Him who shared their human natures and wins salvation in Him, in whom alone man finds himself not guilty; and thus is free to glory in the power of Him who in the humiliation of our flesh engaged in conflict with the haughty foe, and shared His victory with those in whose body He had triumphed.

V. The Actions of Christ's Two Natures Must Be Kept Distinct.

Although therefore in our one Lord Jesus Christ, the true Son of God and man, the person of the Word and of the flesh is one, and both beings have their actions in commonhyperlink : yet we must understand the character of the acts themselves, and by the contemplation of sincere faith distinguish those to which the humility of His weakness is brought from those to which His sublime power is inclined: what it is that the flesh without the Word or the Word without the flesh does not do. For instance, without the power of the Word the Virgin would not have conceived nor brought forth: and without the reality of the flesh His infancy would not have laid wrapt in swaddling clothes. Without the power of the Word the Magi would not have adored the Child that a new star had pointed out to them: and without the reality of the flesh that Child would not have been ordered to be carried away into Egypt and withdrawn from Herod's persecution. Without the power of the Word the Father's voice uttered from the sky would not have said, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleasedhyperlink :" and without the reality of the flesh John would not have been able to point to Him and say: "Behold the Lamb of God, behold Him that beareth away the sins of the worldhyperlink ." Without the power of the Word there would have been no restoring of the sick to health, no raising of the dead to life: and without the reality of the flesh He would not have hungered and needed food, nor grown weary and needed rest. Lastly, without the power of the Word, the Lord would not have professed Himself equal to the Father, and without the reality of the flesh He would not also have said that the Father was greater than He: for the catholic Faith upholds and defends both positions, believing the only Son of God to be both Man and the Word according to the distinctive properties of His divine and human substance.

VI. There is No Confusion of the Two Natures in Christhyperlink .

Although therefore from that beginning whereby in the Virgin's womb "the Word became flesh," no sort of division ever arose between the Divine and the human substance, and through all the growth and changes of His body, the actions were of one Person the whole time, yet we do not by any mixing of them up confound those very acts which were done inseparably: and from the character of the acts we perceive what belonged to either form. For neither do His Divine acts affecthyperlink His human, nor His human acts His Divine, since both concur in this way and to this very end that in their operation His twofold qualities be not absorbed the one by the other, nor His individuality doubled. Therefore let those Christian phantom-mongershyperlink tell us, what nature of the Saviour's it was that was fastened to the wood of the Cross, that lay in the tomb, and that on the third day rose in the flesh when the stone was rolled away from the grave: or what kind of body Jesus presented to His disciples' eyes entering when the doors were shut upon them: seeing that to drive away the beholders' disbelief, He required them to inspect with their eyes and to handle with their hands the still open prints of the nails and the flesh wound of His pierced side. But if in spite of the truth being so clear, their persistence in heresy will not abandon their position in the darkness, let them show whence they promise themselves the hope of eternal life, which no one can attain to, save through the mediator between God and man, the man Jesus Christ. For "there is not another name given to men under heaven, in which they must be savedhyperlink ." Neither is there any ransoming of men from captivity, save in His blood, "who gave Himself a ransom for allhyperlink :" who, as the blessed apostle proclaims, "when He was in the form of God, thought it not robbery that He was equal with God; but emptied Himself, receiving the form of a slaves Icing made in the likeness of men, and being found in fashion as a man He humbled Himself, being made obedient even unto death, the death of the cross. For which reason God also exalted Him, and gave Him a name which is above every name: that in the name of Jesus every knee may bow of things in heaven, of things on the earth, and of things under the earth, and that every tongue may confess that the Lord Jesus Christ is in the glory of God the Fatherhyperlink ."

VII. It Was as Being "In Form of a Slave," Not as Son of God That He Was Exalted.

hyperlink Although therefore the Lord Jesus Christ is one, and the true Godhead and true Manhood in Him forms absolutely one and the same person, and the entirety of this union cannot be separated by any division, yet the exaltation wherewith "God exalted Him," and "gave Him a name which excels every name," we understand to belong to that form which needed to be enriched by this increase of gloryhyperlink . Of course "in the form of God" the Son was equal to the Father, and between the Father and the Only-begotten there was no distinction in point of essence, no diversity in point of majesty: nor through the mysteryhyperlink of the Incarnation had the Word been deprived of anything which should be restored Him by the Father's gift. But "the form of a slave" by which the impassible Godhead fulfilled a pledge of mighty loving-kindnesshyperlink , is human weakness which was lifted up into the glory of the divine power, the Godhead and the manhood being right from the Virgin's conception so completely united that without the manhood the divine acts, and without the Godhead the human acts were not performed. For which reason as the Lord of majesty is said to have been crucified, so He who from eternity is equal with God is said to have been exalted. Nor does it matter by which substance Christ is spoken of, since the unity of His person inseparably remaining He is at once both wholly Son of man according to the flesh and wholly Son of God according to His Godhead, which is one with the Father. Whatever therefore Christ received in time, He received in virtue of His manhood, on which are conferred whatsoever it had not. For according to the power of the Word, "all things that the Father hath" the Son also hath indiscriminately, and what "in the form of a slave" He received from the Father, He also Himself gave in the form of the Father. He is in Himself at once both rich and poor; rich, because "in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and God was the Word. This was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him was made nothing:" and poor because "the Word became flesh and dwelt in ushyperlink ." But what is that emptying of Himself, or that poverty except the receiving of the form of a slave by which the majesty of the Word was veiled, and the scheme for man's redemption carried out? For as the original chains of our captivity could not be loosed, unless a man of our race and of our nature appeared who was not under the prejudice of the old debt, and who with his untainted blood might blot out the bond of deathhyperlink , as it had from the beginning been divinely fore-ordained, so it came to pass in the fulness of the appointed time that the promise which had been proclaimed in many ways might reach its long expected fulfilment, and that thus, what had been frequently announced by one testimony after another, might have all doubtfulness removed.

VIII. A Protest Against Their Faithlessness and Inconsistency in This Matter.

And so, as all these heresies have been destroyed, which through the holy devotion of the presiding Fathers have been cut off from the body of the catholic unity, and which deserved to be exiles from Christ, because they have made the Incarnation of the Word, which is the one salvation of those who believe aright, a stone of offence and a stumbling-block to themselves, I am surprised that you, beloved, have any difficulty in discerning the light of the Truth. And since it has been made clear by numerous explanations that the Christian Faith was right in condemning both Nestorius and Eutyches with Dioscorus, and that a man cannot be called a Christian who gives his assent to the blasphemous opinion of either the one or the other, I am grieved that you are, as I hear, doing despite to the teaching of the Gospel and the Apostles by stirring up the various bodies of citizens with seditions, by disturbing the churches, and by inflicting not only insults, but even death, upon priests and bishops, so that you lose sight of your resolves and professionhyperlink through your fury and cruelty. Where is your rule of meekness and quietness? where is the long-suffering of patience? where the tranquillity of peace? where the firm foundation of love and courage of endurance?what evil persuasion has carried you off, what persecution has separated you from the gospel of Christ? or what strange craftiness of the Deceiver has shown itself that, forgetting the prophets and apostles, forgetting the health-giving creed and confession which you pronounced before many witnesses when you received the sacrament of baptism you should give yourselves up to the the Devil's deceits? what effect would "the Clawshyperlink " and other cruel tortures have had on you if the empty comments of heretics have had so much weight in taking the purity of your faith by storm? you think you are acting for the Faith and yet you go against the Faith. You arm yourselves in the name of the Church and yet fight against the Church. Is this what you have learnt from prophets, evangelists, and apostles? to deny the true flesh of Christ, to subject the ,very essence of the Word to suffering and death, to make our nature different from His who repaired it, and to reckon all that the cross uplifted, that the spear pierced, that the stone on the tomb received and gave back, to be only the work: of Divine power, and not also of human humility? It is in reference to this humility that the Apostle says, "For I do not blush for the Gospelhyperlink ," inasmuch as he knew what a slur was cast upon Christians by their enemies. And, therefore, the Lord also made proclamation, saying: "he that shall confess Me before men him will I also confess before My Fatherhyperlink ." For these will not be worthy of the Son and the Father's acknowledgment in whom the flesh of Christ awakens no respect: and they will prove themselves to have gained no virtue from the sign of the crosshyperlink who blush to avow with their lips what they have consented to bear upon their brows.

IX. An Exhortation to Accept the Catholic View of the Incarnation.

Give up, my sons, give up these suggestions of the devil. God's Truth nothing can impair, but the Truth does not save us except in our flesh. For, as the prophet says, "truth is sprung out of the earthhyperlink ," and the Virgin Mary conceived the Word in such wise that she ministered flesh of her substance to be united to Him without the addition of a second person, and without the disappearance of her nature: seeing that He who was in the form of God took the form of a slave in such wise that Christ is one and the same in both forms: God bending Himself to the-weak things of man, and man rising up to the high things of the Godhead, as the Apostle says, "whose are the fathers, and from whom, according to the flesh is Christ, who is above all things God blessed for ever. Amenhyperlink ."


1 It will be remembered that Leo himself knew not a word of the language, which will account for his uncertainty, consequent helplessness, and uneasiness in this and other cases where a knowledge of the language would have served him in excellent stead.

2 I.e. so much good at all events has come from your objection that we know you are strongly opposed to Eutyches, at present my own special abhorrence.

3 The whole of chap. ii. will be found repeated in Ep. clxv, chap. ii.

4 Luke i. 43.

5 Cf. Ep. xxii. chap. 3 "conatus- antiqua impii Valentini "(the adherent of Apollinaris and head of one of the sections af the Apollinarians after his death) "et Apollinaris mala dogmata renovare." The third dogma of Apollinaris was that "Christ's manhood was formed out of a divine substance." Bright, 147.

6 Eutyches had expressly tried to guard himself against this imputation: Ep. xxi. chap. 3, "anathematizans Apollinarium Valentinum, Manem et Nestorium, & c." See Bright's valuable notes 32, 33, 34, and esp. 35, where he shows that "it was polemical rhetoric to say that he was reviving Apollinarian or Valentinian theories."

7 It must be clearly understood that this ugly word is here andelsewhere employed to translate,passibilis (pafhto/j) for no reason, except the necessity of the case: pati and pa/scein are both broader signification than "suffer or its synonyms: they are simply the passive of facere and poiei=n ( pra/ssein) and there is no proper equivalent in ordinary English parlance. This tendency of terms to become more and more narrow and of particular application is constantly meeting and baffling one in translating the Latin and Greek lanquages.

8 Leo elsewhere also makes this hardly justifiable inferencethat Eutychianism is a new form of Docetism as this view was called; chap. vi. below, and Serm. lxv. c. 4 "isti phantasmatici Christiani," also xxviii. 4, and lxiv. 1, 2. That the Manichoeans naturally held Docetic views on the Incarnation is obvious when we remember that their fundamental misconception was that matter is identical with evil.

9 Marcion was the founder of one of the most formidableGnostic sects towards the close of the second century: Tertullian wrote a famous treatise (still extant) against him. Like other Gnostics, his views involved him in Docetism.

10 S. John i. 14.

11 2 Cor. v. 19.

12 Proevaricatio: this is a legal term which is often used of sin (esp. in connexion with Adam's transgression). Its original technical meaning is the action of an advocate who plays into the enemy's hand. In theology the devil (dia/boloj) is man's adversary, and man himself is befooled into collusion with him by breaking God's Law.

13 Potens ad privilegium:privilegium is another legal term signifying technically a bill framed to meet an individual case generally in a detrimental way, such bills being against the spirit of the Roman law: here Leo uses it in a sense more nearly approaching our English idea of "privilege."

14 Rom. v. 20.

15 Sub peccati proeiudicio : yet a third legal term: proeiudicium in Roman law was a semi-formal and anticipatory verdict by the judge before the case came on for final decision in court; in chapter vi. we have the verb proeiudicare.

16 Eph. v. 2.

17 Cf. Ps. cxv. 5.

18 The idea of vicarious death was not unfamiliar to the Greeks and Romans: e.g. Alkestis dying for her husband Admetos. and the fairly numerous examples of "devotion" Of Roman Generals on the battlefield.

19 S. John xii. 32, omnia : with the Vulgate.

20 It is scarcely necessary to point out that the old story of the ' communicatio idiomatum ' is here again discussed: cf the Tome, chapters iv. and v.

21 S. Matt. iii. 17, and Bright's note 5.

22 S. John i. 29. the repetition of the Ecce (behold) is in ccordance with the old Latin versions: cf. Westcott in loc.

23 Considerable portions of this chapter are found repeated word for word in Sermon LXIV. chap. i. and iv.

24 Lat. proeiudicant, see note 3 to chap. iii., above.

25 Isti phantasmatici Christiani, cf. note 5, above.

26 Acts iv. 12.

27 1 Tim. ii. 6.

28 Phil. ii. 6-11.

29 The whole of this chapter is repeated with slight variations in his letter (CLXV.) to Leo the Emperor (chaps. 8 and 10).

30 Quoe ditanda erat tantoe glorificationis augmento acc. to Leo's use of the gerundive, see Tome, chap. i quod... omnium regenerandorum voce depromitur.

31 Here the word is actually mysterium, not, as usual, sacramentum.

32 Sacramentum magnoe pietatis,1 Tim. iii. 16: cf. Bright's note 8.

33 S. John i. 1-3, 14.

34 The reference is to Col. ii. 14.

35 Viz. as monks as well as baptized members of the church.

36 The Unguloe (Claws) were among the numerous instruments with which Christians wrere tortured:cf. Tert. Apol. xii. 57, ungulis deraditis latera christianorum ; Cypr. de lapsis chap. xili. (cum) ungula effoderet, caro me in colluciatione deservuit.

37 Rom. i. 16.

38 S. Matt. x. 32.

39 Viz. in Baptism.

40 Ps . lxxxv. 12.

41 Rom. ix. 5.

Letter CXXV. To Julian, the Bishop, by Count Rodanus.

(Asking him to write quickly, and not keep him in suspense.)

Letter CXXVI. To Marcian Augustus.

(Congratulating him on the restoration of peace in Palestine.)

Letter CXXVII. To Julian, Bishop of Cos.

(About (1) affairs in Palestine, (2) a letter from Proterius, (3) the date of Easter, (4) his reply to the Synod of Chalcedon, (5) the deposition of Aetius.)

Letter CXXVII. To Marcian Augustus.

(Professing readiness to be reconciled to Anatolius if he will abide by the canons and not infringe the prerogatives of others.)

Letter CXXIX. To Proterius, Bishop of Alexandria.

Leo to Proterius, bishop of Alexandria.

I. He Commends His Persistent Loyalty to the Faith.

Your letter, beloved, which our brother and fellow-bishop Nestorius duly brought us, has caused me great joy. For it was seemly that such an epistle should be sent by the head of the church of Alexandria to the Apostolic See, as showed that the Egyptians had from the first learnt from the teaching of the most blessed Apostle Peter through his blessed disciple Markhyperlink , that which it is agreed the Romans have believed, that beside the Lord Jesus Christ "there is no other name given to men under heaven, in which they must be savedhyperlink ." But because "all men have not faithhyperlink " and the crafty Tempter never delights so much in wounding the hearts of men as when he can poison their unwary minds with errors that are opposed to Gospel Truth, we must strive by the mighty teaching of the Holy Ghost to prevent Christian know ledge from being perverted by the devil's falsehoods. And against this danger it behoves the rulers of the churches especially to guard and to avert from the minds of simple folk lies which are coloured by a certain show of truthhyperlink . "For narrow and steep is the way which leads to lifehyperlink ." And they seek to entrap men not so much by watching their actions as by nice distinctions of meaning, corrupting the force of sentences by some very slight addition or alteration, whereby sometimes a statement, which made for salvation, by a subtle change is turned to destruction. But since the Apostle says, "there must be heresies, that they which are approved may be made manifest among youhyperlink ," it tends to tile progress of the whole Church, that, whenever wickedness reveals itself in setting forth wrong opinions, the things which are harmful be not concealed, and that what will inevitably end in ruin may not injure the innocence of others. Wherefore they must put down. their blind wanderings and downfalls to themselves, who with rash obstinacy prefer to glory: in their shame than to accept the offered remedy. You do right, brother, to be displeased at their stubbornness, and we commend. you for holding fast that teaching which has; come down to us from the blessed Apostles and the holy Fathers.

II. Let Him Fortify the Faithful by the Public Reading Aloud of Quotations from the Fathers Bearing on the Question and of the Tome.

For there is no new preaching in the letter which I wrote in reply to Flavian of holy memory, when be consulted me about the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ; for in nothing did I depart from that rule of Faith which was outspokenly maintained by your ancestors and ours. And if Dioscorus had been willing to follow and imitate them, he would have abided in the Body of Christ, having in the works of Athanasiushyperlink of blessed memory the materials for instruction, and in the discourses of Theophilushyperlink and Cyrilhyperlink of holy remembrance the means rather of praise-worthily opposing the already condemned dogma than of choosing to consort with Eutyches in his blasphemy. This therefore, beloved brother, I advise in my anxiety for our common Faith that, because the enemies of Christ's cross lie in watch for all our words and syllables, we give them not the slightest occasion for falsely asserting that we agree with the Nestorian doctrine. And you must so diligently exhort the laity and clergy and all the brotherhood to advance in the Faith as to show that you teach nothing new but instil into all men's breasts those things, which the Fathers of revered memory have with harmony of statement taught, and with which in all things our epistle agrees. And this must be shown not only by your words but also by the actually reading aloud of previous statements, that God's people may know that what the Fathers received from their predecessors and handed on to their descendants, is still instilled into them in the present day. And to this end, when the statements of the aforesaid priests have first been read, then lastly let my writings also be recited, that the ears of the faithful may attest that we preach nothing else than what we received from our forefathers. And because their understandings are but little practised in discerning these things, let them at least learn from the letters of the Fathers, how ancient this evil is, which is now condemned by us in Nestorius as well as in Eutyches, who have both been ashamed to preach the gospel of Christ according to the Lord's own teaching.

III. The Ancient Precedents are to Be Maintained Throughout.

Accordingly, both in the rule of Faith and in the observance of discipline, let the standard of antiquity be maintained throughout, and do thou, beloved, display the firmness of a prudent ruler, that the church of Alexandria may get the benefit of my earnest resistance to the unprincipled ambition of certain people in maintaining its ancient privileges, and of my determination that all metropolitans should retain their dignity undiminished, as you will ascertain from the tenor of my letters, which I have addressed, whether to the holy Synod or to the most Christian Emperor, or to the Bishop of Constantinople; for you will perceive that I have made it my special care to allow no deviation from the rule of Faith in the Lord-churches, nor any diminution of their privileges through any individual's unscrupulousness. And as this is so, hold fast, brother, to the custom of your predecessors, and keep due authority over your comprovincial bishops, who by ancient constitution are subject to the See of Alexandria; so that they resist not ecclesiastical usage, and refuse not to meet together under your presidency, either at fixed times or when any reasonable cause demands it: and that if anything has to be discussed in a general meeting which will be to the benefit of the Church, when the brethren have thus met together, they may unanimously come to some resolution thereupon. For there is nothing which ought to recall them from this obedience, seeing that both for faith and conduct we have such good knowledge of you, brother, that we will not allow you to lose any of your predecessor's authority, nor to be slighted with impunity. Dated March 10th, in the consulship of the illustrious Aetius and Studius (454).


1 S. Mark was the reputed founder of the church of Alexandria. Cf. Letter IX. chap. 1.

2 Acts iv. 12.

3 2 Thess. iii. 2.

4 See chap. ii. and more particularly Lett. CXXX. chap. 3 from which it is evident that the Eutychians had sought to foist upon certain passages in the Tome a Nestorian interpretation.

5 S. Matt. vii. 14.

6 1 Cor. xi. 19.

7 Who as he himself says in the next letter, eidem ecclesioe proefuerunt (CXXX. ii.).

8 Who as he himself says in the next letter, eidem ecclesioe proefuerunt (CXXX. ii.).

9 Who as he himself says in the next letter, eidem ecclesioe proefuerunt (CXXX. ii.).

Letter CXXX. To Marcian Augustus.

(Praising the orthodoxy of Proterius, advocating the public recital by him of passages bearing on the present controversy from the writings of Athanasius and others, and also of the Tome itself in a new Greek translation.)

Letter CXXXI. To Julian, Bishop of Cos.

(Telling him he has received Proterius' letter, and asking for (1) a new Greek translation of the Tome; (2) a report on the Easter difficulty of the next year (455)).

Letter CXXXII. From Anatolius, Bishop of Constantinople, to Leo.

(In which he complains of the intermission in their correspondence, maintains his allegiance to Rome, announces the restitution of Aetius, deprecates the charge of personal ambition, and remits the proceedings of Chalcedon for his approval.)

Letter CXXXIII. From Proterius, Bishop of Alexandria, to Leo.(Upon the Easter Difficulty of 455.)

Letter CXXXIV. To Marcian Augustus.

(Suggesting that Eutyches should be banished to a still remoter place, where he cannot do so much harm by his false teaching.)

Letter Anatolius.

(in Answer to CXXXII.)