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Chapter VIII.—How the Armenians and Persians embraced Christianity.

Subsequently the Christian religion became known to the neighboring tribes and was very greatly disseminated.11551155    This paragraph is regarded by Valesius as spurious. The Armenians, I have understood, were the first to embrace Christianity.11561156    The source of this chapter certainly is not Moses Chorenensis. Tiridates III. reigned a.d. 286–342. At first a persecutor, through Gregory the Illuminator he became a Christian. Yet parts of Armenia were Christianized much earlier. Dionysius bishop of Alexandria wrote a letter on Repentance to the Armenians in the reign of Gallus. Eus. H. E. vi. 46. Cf. Agathangelas, History of Tiridates the Great, and the preaching of Gregory the Illuminator. It is said that Tiridates, then the sovereign of that nation, became a Christian by means of a marvelous Divine sign which was wrought in his own house; and that he issued commands to all the subjects, by a herald, to adopt the same religion.11571157    Here follows in the Greek text a repetition, word for word, of the first two lines of this chapter, which seem to be superfluous, if we do not reject the paragraph above. I think that the beginning of the conversion of the Persians11581158    Soz. is wrong in attributing the conversion of Persia to Armenia. was owing to their intercourse with the Osroenians and Armenians; for it is likely that they would converse with such Divine men and make experience of their virtue.

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