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16. You further write that it was by my letters that you had been informed that the pope Theophilus lately put forth an exposition of the faith which has not yet reached you and you promise to accept whatever he may have written. I am not aware that I ever said this, or that I sent any letters of the sort. But you consent to things of which you are still in uncertainty, and things as to which you do not know what and of what kind they will turn out to be, so that you may avoid speaking of things which you know quite well, and may not be bound by the consent you have given to them. There are two letters of Theophilus,31753175    For the years 401 and 402. See Jerome Letters 96 and 98. a Synodal and a Paschal letter, against Origen and his disciples, and others against Apollinarius and against Origen also, which, within the last two years or thereabouts, I have translated and given to the men who speak our language for the edification of the church. I am not aware that I have translated anything else of his. But, when you say that you assent to the opinion of the pope Theophilus in everything, you must take care not to let your masters and disciples hear you, and not to offend these numerous persons who call me a robber and you a martyr, and also not to provoke the wrath of the man31763176    Isidore, the Origenist monk who was sent to inquire into the quarrel between Jerome and John of Jerusalem. His letter written to John and Rufinus prejudging the case, was brought by mistake to Jerome’s friend Vincentius. See Jerome Against John of Jerusalem c. 37. who wrote letters to you against the bishop Epiphanius, and exhorted you to stand fast in the truth of the faith, and not to change your opinion for any terror. This epistle in its complete form is held by those to whom it was brought. After this you say, after your manner: “I will satisfy you even when you rage against me, as I have in the matter you spoke of before.” But again you say, “What do you want? have you anything more at which you may shoot with the bow of your oratory?” And yet you are indignant if I find fault with your distasteful way of speaking, though you take up the lowest expressions of the Comedians, and in writing on church affairs adopt language fit only for the characters of harlots and their lovers on the stage.


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