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(d) AN OLD ITALIAN (Pseudo-Ambrosian) FORM OF THE APOSTLES' CREED. About A.D. 350.

Credimus in Deum Patrem omnipotentem,

We believe in God the Father Almighty,

sæculorum omnium et creaturarum regem et conditorem.

Ruler and Creator of all ages and creatures.

Et in Jesum Christum, Filium ejus unicum, Dominum nostrum;

And in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord;

qui natus est de Spiritu Sancto et ex Maria Virgine;

who was born of the Holy Ghost and from the Virgin Mary;

qui sub Pontio Pilato crucifixus et sepultus;

who was crucified under Pontius Pilate, and buried;

tertia die resurrexit a mortuis;

on the third day he rose from the dead;

ascendit in cælas;

ascended into the heavens;

sedet ad dexteram Dei Patris;

sitteth on the right hand of God the Father;

inde venturus est judicare vivos et mortuos.

from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.

Et in Spiritum Sanctum;

And in the Holy Ghost;

et sanctam ecclesiam catholicam;

and the holy Catholic Church;

remissionem peccatorum;

the remission of sins;

carnis resurrectionem.

the resurrection of the flesh.




1. This baptismal creed was copied, together with an Exhortatio sancti Ambrosii ad neophytos de Symbolo, by Dr. Caspari from two MSS. in the Vienna Library, and published in the second volume of his Quellen zur Geschichte des Taufsymbols, Vol. II. (1869), pp. 128 sqq. It is inserted in this Exhortation, not in broken fragments, as is usual with ante-Nicene writers, but continuously, with a connecting itaque after credimus (p. 134). The Exhortation was directed against the heresy of Arianism, and borrows an expression ( Deus de Deo, lumen de lumine ) from the Nicene Creed, but makes no allusion to the Pneumatomachian controversy and its settlement in 381. It seems, therefore, to belong to the middle of the fourth century (350–370). Caspari denies the authorship of Ambrose (who was opposed to committing the creed to writing), and is inclined to assign it to Eusebius of Vercelli or Lucifer of Cagliari, in Sardinia, where the symbol may have been in use.

2. The symbol resembles the older Italian forms of Rome, Milan, and Ravenna. With the Roman it omits the articles descendit ad inferna , communionem sanctorum , and vitam æternam; but, unlike the Roman, it has catholicam after ecclesiam , and the peculiar clause sæculorum omnium et creaturarum regem et conditorem. A similar addition occurs in the Symbol of Carthage ( universorum creatorem, regem sæculorum, invisibilem et immortalem ).

3. Other Italian forms of the Western Creed, see in Hahn, pp. 6 sqq.


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