« Prev Panegyric on the Splendor of Affairs. Next »

Chapter IV.—Panegyric on the Splendor of Affairs.

1. A certain one of those of moderate talent,28142814    This person was clearly Eusebius himself (see above, p. 11). Upon the date of this dedicatory service, at which Eusebius delivered the oration given in full in this chapter, see ibid. who had composed a discourse, stepped forward in the presence of many pastors who were assembled as if for a church gathering, and while they attended quietly and decently, he addressed himself as follows to one who was in all things a most excellent bishop and beloved of God,28152815    Paulinus, bishop of Tyre. See above, chap. 1, note 1. through whose zeal the temple in Tyre, which was the most splendid in Phœnicia, had been erected.

Panegyric upon the building of the churches, addressed to Paulinus, Bishop of Tyre.

2. “Friends and priests of God who are clothed in the sacred gown and adorned with the heavenly crown of glory, the inspired unction and the sacerdotal garment of the Holy Spirit; and thou,28162816    i.e. Paulinus. oh pride of God’s new holy temple, endowed by him with the wisdom of age, and yet exhibiting costly works and deeds of youthful and flourishing virtue, to whom God himself, who embraces the entire world, has granted the distinguished honor of building and renewing this earthly house to Christ, his only begotten and first-born Word, and to his holy and divine bride;28172817    Cf. Rev. xxi. 2

3. one might call thee a new Beseleel,28182818    βεσελεήλ, which is the form found in the LXX. The Hebrew is לאֵלְצַבְּ, which the R.V. renders “Bezalel.” See Ex. xxxv. 30 sq. the architect of a divine tabernacle, or Solomon, king of a new and much better Jerusalem, 371or also a new Zerubabel, who added a much greater glory than the former to the temple of God;28192819    See Hag. ii. 9

4. and you also, oh nurslings of the sacred flock of Christ, habitation of good words, school of wisdom, and august and pious auditory of religion:28202820    Eusebius addresses first the assembled clergymen in general, then Paulinus in particular, and finally the people, calling the latter “nurslings,” “habitation,” “school,” “auditory.” The significance of the words as used by him is plain enough, but their collocation is rather remarkable.

5. It was long ago permitted us to raise hymns and songs to God, when we learned from hearing the Divine Scriptures read the marvelous signs of God and the benefits conferred upon men by the Lord’s wondrous deeds, being taught to say ‘Oh God! we have heard with our ears, our fathers have told us the work which thou didst in their days, in days of old.’28212821    Psa. xliv. 1.

6. But now as we no longer perceive the lofty arm28222822    Cf. Ex. vi. 6, et al. and the celestial right hand of our all-gracious God and universal King by hearsay merely or report, but observe so to speak in very deed and with our own eyes that the declarations recorded long ago are faithful and true, it is permitted us to raise a second hymn of triumph and to sing with loud voice, and say, ‘As we have heard, so have we seen; in the city of the Lord of hosts, in the city of our God.’28232823    Psa. xlviii. 8.

7. And in what city but in this newly built and God-constructed one, which is a ‘church of the living God, a pillar and foundation of the truth,’28242824    1 Tim. iii. 15. concerning which also another divine oracle thus proclaims, ‘Glorious things have been spoken of thee, oh city of God.’28252825    Psa. lxxxvii. 3. Since the all-gracious God has brought us together to it, through the grace of his Only-Begotten, let every one of those who have been summoned sing with loud voice and say, ‘I was glad when they said unto me, we shall go unto the house of the Lord,’28262826    Psa. cxxii. 1. and ‘Lord, I have loved the beauty of thy house and the place where thy glory dwelleth.’28272827    Psa. xxvi. 8.

8. And let us not only one by one, but all together, with one spirit and one soul, honor him and cry aloud, saying, ‘Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised in the city of our God, in his holy mountain.’28282828    Psa. xlviii. 1. For he is truly great, and great is his house, lofty and spacious and ‘comely in beauty above the sons of men.’28292829    Psa. xlv. 2. ‘Great is the Lord who alone doeth wonderful things’;28302830    Psa. cxxxvi. 4. ‘great is he who doeth great things and things past finding out, glorious and marvelous things which cannot be numbered’;28312831    Job ix. 10. great is he ‘who changeth times and seasons, who exalteth and debaseth kings’;28322832    Dan. ii. 21. ‘who raiseth up the poor from the earth and lifteth up the needy from the dunghill.’28332833    1 Sam. ii. 8. (Psa. cxiii. 7). ‘He hath put down princes from their thrones and hath exalted them of low degree from the earth. The hungry he hath filled with good things and the arms of the proud he hath broken.’28342834    Luke i. 52, 53.

9. Not only to the faithful, but also to unbelievers, has he confirmed the record of ancient events; he that worketh miracles, he that doeth great things, the Master of all, the Creator of the whole world, the omnipotent, the all-merciful, the one and only God. To him let us sing the new song,28352835    Cf. Psa. xcvi. 1 supplying in thought,28362836    προσυπακούοντες. Eusebius seems to use this rather peculiar expression because the words of song which he suggests are not the words of the “new song” given by the Psalmist, but are taken from other parts of the book. ‘To him who alone doeth great wonders: for his mercy endureth forever’;28372837    Psa. cxxxvi. 4. ‘To him which smote great kings, and slew famous kings: for his mercy endureth forever’;28382838    Ibid. 17. ‘For the Lord remembered us in our low estate and delivered us from our adversaries.’28392839    Ibid. 23, 24.

10. And let us never cease to cry aloud in these words to the Father of the universe. And let us always honor him with our mouth who is the second cause of our benefits, the instructor in divine knowledge, the teacher of the true religion, the destroyer of the impious, the slayer of tyrants, the reformer of life, Jesus, the Saviour of us who were in despair.

11. For he alone, as the only all-gracious Son of an all-gracious Father, in accordance with the purpose of his Father’s benevolence, has willingly put on the nature of us who lay prostrate in corruption, and like some excellent physician, who for the sake of saving them that are ill, examines their sufferings, handles their foul sores, and reaps pain for himself from the miseries of another,28402840    It is remarked by Valesius that these words are taken from some tragic poet. That they are quoted from an ancient writer is clear enough from the Ionic forms which occur (ὁρῇ, ἀλλοτριῇσι, ξυμφορῇσι), and if a few slight changes be made (καμνόντων to καμόντων, ἕνεκεν to εἵνεκεν, μὲν to τὰ, ἐπ᾽ ἀλλοτριῇσι τε to ἀλλοτριῇσι) the words resolve themselves into iambic trimeters:—
   τῆς τῶν καμόντων εἵνεκεν σωτηρίας

   ὁρῇ τὰ δεινὰ, θιγγ€νει δ᾽ ἀηδέων,

   ἀλλοτριῇσι συμφορῇσιν ἰδίας

   καρποῦται λύπας.

   According to Valesius, Gregory Nazianzen in his first Oratio quotes the last verse (καὶ τὸ ἐπ᾽ ἀλλοτρίαις συμφοραῖς ἰδίας καρποῦσθαι λύπας, in which there is no trace of the poetical form) with the remark ὡςžφη τις τῶν παρ᾽ ἐκείνοις σοφῶν; and Valesius adds: “Ad quem locum Elias Cretensis notat verba hæc esse Hippocratis quem Gregorius Nazianzenus sapientis cujusdam nomine designat.” Moreover, Schwegler remarks that the words are taken from Hippocrates. In a note ad locum he says: “Hippocratis medici (cf. Hippocr. de Flat. init. p. 78, ed. Foes) quæ eadem laudantur et ab aliis Scriptoribus, veluti a Luciano in Bis. Accus. c. I. p. 49, ed. Bip. Cf. quæ interpretes adnotaverunt ad Luciani, l.c. Tom. VII. p. 400, ed. Bip.” I have not examined these references, and can therefore form no judgment in the matter.
so us who were not only diseased and afflicted with terrible ulcers and wounds already mortified, but were even lying among the dead, he hath saved for himself from the very jaws of death. For none other of those in heaven had such 372power as without harm28412841    ἀβλαβῶς. The application of the word is not perfectly clear, but the meaning seems to be “without harm to himself,” “unharmed.” “He is the only one able to minister to our salvation without sinking under the weight of the burden, or suffering from his contact with us.” Eusebius is perhaps thinking especially of Christ’s absolute sinlessness and victory over all temptation; perhaps only in a more general way of the great strength needed for such a task, strength possessed by Christ alone in sufficient measure to prevent his own complete exhaustion under the immense task. to minister to the salvation of so many.

12. But he alone having reached our deep corruption, he alone having taken upon himself our labors, he alone having suffered the punishments due for our impieties, having recovered us who were not half dead merely, but were already in tombs and sepulchers, and altogether foul and offensive, saves us, both anciently and now, by his beneficent zeal, beyond the expectation of any one, even of ourselves, and imparts liberally of the Father’s benefits,—he who is the giver of life and light, our great Physician and King and Lord, the Christ of God.

13. For then when the whole human race lay buried in gloomy night and in depths of darkness through the deceitful arts of guilty demons and the power of God-hating spirits, by his simple appearing he loosed once for all the fast-bound cords of our impieties by the rays of his light, even as wax is melted.

14. But when malignant envy and the evil-loving demon well-nigh burst with anger at such grace and kindness, and turned against us all his death-dealing forces, and when, at first, like a dog gone mad which gnashes his teeth at the stones thrown at him, and pours out his rage against his assailants upon the inanimate missiles, he leveled his ferocious madness at the stones of the sanctuaries and at the lifeless material of the houses, and desolated the churches,—at least as he supposed,—and then emitted terrible hissings and snake-like sounds, now by the threats of impious tyrants, and again by the blasphemous edicts of profane rulers, vomiting forth death, moreover, and infecting with his deleterious and soul-destroying poisons the souls captured by him, and almost slaying them by his death-fraught sacrifices of dead idols, and causing every beast in the form of man and every kind of savage to assault us—then, indeed, the ‘Angel of the great Council,’28422842    Cf. Isa. ix. 6 the great Captain28432843    μέγας ἀρχιστρ€τηγος; cf. Josh. v. 13. of God after the mightiest soldiers of his kingdom had displayed sufficient exercise through patience and endurance in everything, suddenly appeared anew, and blotted out and annihilated his enemies and foes, so that they seemed never to have had even a name.

15. But his friends and relatives he raised to the highest glory, in the presence not only of all men, but also of celestial powers, of sun and moon and stars, and of the whole heaven and earth, so that now, as has never happened before, the supreme rulers, conscious of the honor which they have received from him, spit upon the faces of dead idols, trample upon the unhallowed rites of demons, make sport of the ancient delusion handed down from their fathers, and acknowledge only one God, the common benefactor of all, themselves included.

16. And they confess Christ, the Son of God, universal King of all, and proclaim him Saviour on monuments,28442844    This seems to be simply a rhetorical expression of what is recorded in Bk. IX. chap. 9, in regard to the great statue of Constantine with a cross in his hand, erected in Rome after his victory over Maxentius. It is possible that other smaller monuments of a similar kind were erected at the same time. imperishably recording in imperial letters, in the midst of the city which rules over the earth, his righteous deeds and his victories over the impious. Thus Jesus Christ our Saviour is the only one from all eternity who has been acknowledged, even by those highest in the earth, not as a common king among men, but as a trite son of the universal God, and who has been worshiped as very God,28452845    αὐτοθεόν. The exact sense in which Eusebius uses this word is open to dispute. That it asserts the Son to be possessed per se, in and of himself, of absolute deity,—that is, that he is self-existent,—can hardly be maintained, though Valesius does maintain it. The word admits some latitude of meaning, as Heinichen shows (in his edition of Eusebius, III. p. 736 sq., Melet. XX.), and its use does not forbid a belief in the subordination of the Son. In my opinion it clearly indicates a belief in an essential deity of the Son, but not a full and absolute deity. Stein, in his Eusebius, p. 138, remarks: “Eusebius wendet hier dei platonischen Ausdrücke nach dem Vorbilde des Origenes auf das Wesen des Sohnes an. Nach Origines bezeichnen diese Ausdrücke die Absolutheit des Sohnes, nach den Platonikern jedoch bedeuten sie nicht das höchste Wesen. Es ist nun Zweifelhaft, ob Eusebius mit diesen Begriffen den Sinn des Origenes, oder den der Platoniker verknüpft habe.” There can be little doubt, in my opinion, that Eusebius followed Origen so far as he understood him, but that he never carried the essential deity of the Son so far as to cease to think of some kind of an essential subordination. See the discussion of Eusebius’ position, on p. 11 sq. of this volume. I have translated the word αὐτοθεόν “very God,” because there seems to be no other phrase which does not necessarily express more, or less, than Eusebius means by the word. It must be remembered, however, that in using the phrase which is commonly employed to translate the later Nicene ἀληθινὸν θεόν, I do not use it in the full sense thus ordinarily attached to it. and that rightly.

17. For what king that ever lived attained such virtue as to fill the ears and tongues of all men upon earth with his own name? What king, after ordaining such pious and wise laws, has extended them from one end of the earth to the other, so that they are perpetually read in the hearing of all men?

18. Who has abrogated barbarous and savage customs of uncivilized nations by his gentle and most philanthropic laws? Who, being attacked for entire ages by all, has shown such superhuman virtue as to flourish daily, and remain young throughout his life?

19. Who has founded a nation which of old was not even heard of, but which now is not concealed in some corner of the earth, but is spread abroad everywhere under the sun? Who has so fortified his soldiers with the arms of piety that their souls, being firmer than adamant, shine brilliantly in the contests with their opponents?

20. What king prevails to such an extent, and even after death leads on his soldiers, and sets up trophies over his 373enemies, and fills every place, country and city, Greek and barbarian, with his royal dwellings, even divine temples with their consecrated oblations, like this very temple with its superb adornments and votive offerings, which are themselves so truly great and majestic, worthy of wonder and admiration, and clear signs of the sovereignty of our Saviour? For now, too, ‘he spake, and they were made; he commanded, and they were created.’28462846    Psa. xxxiii. 9. For what was there to resist the nod of the universal King and Governor and Word of God himself?28472847    τοῦ παμβασιλέως καὶ πανηγεμόνος καὶ αὐτοῦ θεοῦ λόγου. Valesius translates, Verbi omnium regis ac principis ac per se Dei; Closs, “des Wortes, das der König aller Könige, der oberste Fürst und selbst Gott ist”; Crusè, “The universal King, the universal Prince, and God, the Word himself.” A conception is thus introduced which the clause as it stands, without the repetition of the article with λόγου, seems to me hardly to warrant. At any rate, the rendering which I have adopted seems more accurately to reproduce the original.

21. “A special discourse would be needed accurately to survey and explain all this; and also to describe how great the zeal of the laborers is regarded by him who is celebrated as divine,28482848    θεολογουμένῳ. The use of the word θεολογέω in the sense of speaking of, or celebrating a person as divine, or attributing divinity to a person, was very common among the Fathers, especially in connection with Christ. See Suicer’s Thesaurus, s.v. II. and Bk. V. chap. 28, § 4, above. who looks upon the living temple which we all constitute, and surveys the house, composed of living and moving stones, which is well and surely built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, the chief cornerstone being Jesus Christ himself, who has been rejected not only by the builders of that ancient building which no longer stands, but also by the builders—evil architects of evil works—of the structure, which is composed of the mass of men and still endures.28492849    Eusebius’ reference to these various buildings is somewhat confusing. He speaks first of the Church of Christ, “the living temple which we all constitute”; then of the Jews, “the builders of that ancient temple which no longer stands”; and finally, as it seems, of the heathen, “builders of the structure which still endures and is composed of the mass of men” (τῶν πολλῶν ἀνθρώπων). But the Father has approved him both then and now, and has made him the head of the corner of this our common church.

22. Who that beholds this living temple of the living God formed of ourselves—this greatest and truly divine sanctuary, I say, whose inmost shrines are invisible to the multitude and are truly holy and a holy of holies—would venture to declare it? Who is able even to look within the sacred enclosure, except the great High Priest of all, to whom alone it is permitted to fathom the mysteries of every rational soul?

23. But perhaps it is granted to another, to one only, to be second after him in the same work, namely, to the commander of this army whom the first and great High Priest himself has honored with the second place in this sanctuary, the shepherd of your divine flock who has obtained your people by the allotment and the judgment of the Father, as if he had appointed him his own servant and interpreter, a new Aaron or Melchizedec, made like the Son of God, remaining and continually preserved by him in accordance with the united prayers of all of you.

24. To him therefore alone let it be granted, if not in the first place, at least in the second after the first and greatest High Priest, to observe and supervise the inmost state of your souls,—to him who by experience and length of time has accurately proved each one, and who by his zeal and care has disposed you all in pious conduct and doctrine, and is better able than any one else to give an account, adequate to the facts, of those things which he himself has accomplished with the Divine assistance.

25. As to our first and great High Priest, it is said,28502850    Literally, “it says” (φησί), i.e. “the Scripture says.” ‘Whatsoever he seeth the Father doing those things likewise the Son also doeth.’28512851    John v. 19. So also this one,28522852    i.e. Paulinus. looking up to him as to the first teacher, with pure eyes of the mind, using as archetypes whatsoever things he seeth him doing, produceth images of them, making them so far as is possible in the same likeness, in nothing inferior to that Beseleel, whom God himself ‘filled with the spirit of wisdom and understanding’28532853    Ex. xxxv. 31. and with other technical and scientific knowledge, and called to be the maker of the temple constructed after heavenly types given in symbols.

26. Thus this one also bearing in his own soul the image of the whole Christ, the Word, the Wisdom, the Light, has formed this magnificent temple of the highest God, corresponding to the pattern of the greater as a visible to an invisible, it is impossible to say with what greatness of soul, with what wealth and liberality of mind, and with what emulation on the part of all of you, shown in the magnanimity of the contributors who have ambitiously striven in no way to be left behind by him in the execution of the same purpose. And this place,—for this deserves to be mentioned first of all,—which had been covered with all sorts of rubbish by the artifices of our enemies he did not overlook, nor did he yield to the wickedness of those who had brought about that condition of things, although he might have chosen some other place, for many other sites were available in the city, where he would have had less labor, and been free from trouble.

27. But having first aroused himself to the work, and then strengthened the whole people with zeal, and formed them all into one great body, he fought the first contest. For he thought that this church, which had been 374especially besieged by the enemy, which had first suffered and endured the same persecutions with us and for us, like a mother bereft of her children, should rejoice with us in the signal favor of the all-merciful God.

28. For when the Great Shepherd had driven away the wild animals and wolves and every cruel and savage beast, and, as the divine oracles say, ‘had broken the jaws of the lions,’28542854    Psa. lviii. 6. Eusebius agrees with the LXX, which reads τὰς μύλας τῶν λεόντων. he thought good to collect again her children in the same place, and in the most righteous manner he set up the fold of her flock, ‘to put to shame the enemy and avenger,’28552855    Psa. viii. 2. The LXX has καταλῦσαι instead of Eusebius’ καταισχῦναι and to refute the impious daring of the enemies of God.28562856    Literally, “the God-fighting, daring deeds of the impious” (ταῖς θεομ€χοις τῶν ἀσεβῶν τόλμαις).

29. And now they are not,—the haters of God,—for they never were. After they had troubled and been troubled for a little time, they suffered the fitting punishment, and brought themselves and their friends and their relatives to total destruction, so that the declarations inscribed of old in sacred records have been proved true by facts. In these declarations the divine word truly says among other things the following concerning them:

30. ‘The wicked have drawn out the sword, they have bent their bow, to slay the righteous in heart; let their sword enter into their own heart and their bows be broken.’28572857    Psa. xxxvii. 14, 15. And again: ‘Their memorial is perished with a sound’28582858    Psa. ix. 6. Eusebius agrees with the LXX in reading μετ᾽ ἤχου: “with a sound.” and ‘their name hast thou blotted out forever and ever’;28592859    Ibid. 5. for when they also were in trouble they ‘cried out and there was none to save: unto the Lord, and he heard them not.’28602860    Psa. xviii. 41. But ‘their feet were bound together, and they fell, but we have arisen and stand upright.’28612861    Ibid. xx. 8. And that which was announced beforehand in these words,—‘O Lord, in thy city thou shalt set at naught their image,’28622862    Ibid. lxxiii. 20.—has been shown to be true to the eyes of all.

31. But having waged war like the giants against God,28632863    Cf. Bk. I. chap. 2, § 19, above, and the note on that passage. they died in this way. But she that was desolate and rejected by men received the consummation which we behold in consequence of her patience toward God, so that the prophecy of Isaiah was spoken of her:

32. ‘Rejoice, thirsty desert, let the desert rejoice and blossom as the lily, and the desert places shall blossom and be glad.’28642864    Isa. xxxv. 1. ‘Be strengthened, ye weak hands and feeble knees. Be of good courage, ye feeble-hearted, in your minds; be strong, fear not. Behold our God recompenseth judgment and will recompense, he will come and save us.’28652865    Ibid. 3, 4. ‘For,’ he says, ‘in the wilderness water has broken out, and a pool in thirsty ground, and the dry land shall be watered meadows, and in the thirsty ground there shall be springs of water.’28662866    Ibid. 6, 7.

33. These things which were prophesied long ago have been recorded in sacred books; but no longer are they transmitted to us by hearsay merely, but in facts. This desert, this dry land, this widowed and deserted one, ‘whose gates they cut down with axes like wood in a forest, whom they broke down with hatchet and hammer,’28672867    Psa. lxxiv. 5, 6. whose books also they destroyed,28682868    Diocletian’s first edict included the destruction of the sacred books of the Christians, as well as of their churches. See above, Bk. VIII. chap. 2. ‘burning with fire the sanctuary of God, and profaning unto the ground the habitation of his name,’28692869    Psa. lxxiv. 7. ‘whom all that passed by upon the way plucked, and whose fences they broke down, whom the boar out of the wood ravaged, and on which the savage wild beast fed,’28702870    Ibid. lxxx. 12, 13. now by the wonderful power of Christ, when he wills it, has become like a lily. For at that time also she was chastened at his nod as by a careful father; ‘for whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.’28712871    Heb. xii. 6, with which Eusebius agrees exactly, differing from Prov. iii. 12 in the use of παιδεύει instead of ἐλέγχει.

34. Then after being chastened in a measure, according to the necessities of the case, she is commanded to rejoice anew; and she blossoms as a lily and exhales her divine odor among all men. ‘For,’ it is said, ‘water hath broken out in the wilderness,’28722872    Isa. xxxv. 6. the fountain of the saving bath of divine regeneration.28732873    τῆς θείας τοῦ σωτηρίου λουτροῦ παλιγγενεσίας. Cf. Titus iii. 5. And now she, who a little before was a desert, ‘has become watered meadows, and springs of water have gushed forth in a thirsty land.’28742874    Isa. xxxv. 7. The hands which before were ‘weak’ have become ‘truly strong’;28752875    Ibid. 3. and these works are great and convincing proofs of strong hands. The knees, also, which before were ‘feeble and infirm,’ recovering their wonted strength, are moving straight forward in the path of divine knowledge, and hastening to the kindred flock28762876    τὴν οἰκείαν ποίμνην. of the all-gracious Shepherd.

35. And if there are any whose souls have been stupefied by the threats of the tyrants, not even they are passed by as incurable by the saving Word; but he heals them also and urges them on to receive divine comfort, saying, ‘Be ye comforted, ye who are faint-hearted; be ye strengthened, fear not.’28772877    Isa. xxxv. 4.

36. This our new and excellent Zerubabel, having heard the word which announced beforehand, that she who had been made a desert on account of God should enjoy these things, after the bitter cap375tivity and the abomination of desolation, did not overlook the dead body; but first of all with prayers and supplications propitiated the Father with the common consent of all of you, and invoking the only one that giveth life to the dead as his ally and fellow-worker, raised her that was fallen, after purifying and freeing her from her ills. And he clothed her not with the ancient garment, but with such an one as he had again learned from the sacred oracles, which say clearly, ‘And the latter glory of this house shall be greater than the former.’28782878    Hag. ii. 9.

37. Thus, enclosing a much larger space, he fortified the outer court with a wall surrounding the whole, which should serve as a most secure bulwark for the entire edifice.28792879    The description of the church of Tyre which follows is very valuable, as being the oldest detailed description which we have of a Christian basilica. Eusebius mentions other churches in his Vita Constantini, III. 30–39, 41–43, 48, 50, 51–53, 58, IV. 58, and describes some of them at considerable length. We have a number of descriptions from later sources, but rely for our knowledge of early Christian architecture chiefly upon the extant remains of the edifices themselves. For a very full discussion of the present church, which was an excellent example of an ancient Christian basilica, and for a detailed description of its various parts, see Bingham’s Antiquities, Bk. VIII. chap. 3 sq., and compare also the article Basilika in Kraus’ Real-Encyclopädie der Christ. Alterthümer. The literature on the general subject of early Christian architecture is very extensive. See more particularly the works referred to in the articles in Smith and Cheetham’s Dict. of Christ. Antiq. and in the Encyclop. Britannica; and cf. also Schaff’s Ch. Hist. III. p. 538 sq.

38. And he raised and spread out a great and lofty vestibule toward the rays of the rising sun,28802880    Bingham remarks that the ancient basilicas commonly faced the west, and that therefore the position of this church of Tyre was exceptional; but this is a mistake. It is true that from the fifth century on, the altar almost uniformly occupied the east end of the church, but previous to that time the position observed in the present case was almost universally followed, so that the present building was not at all exceptional in its position. See the article Orientierung in Kraus’ Real-Encyclopädie. Although the common custom was to have the church stand east and west, yet the rule was often neglected, and there exist many notable examples of churches standing north and south, or quite out of line with the points of the compass. and furnished those standing far without the sacred enclosure a full view of those within, almost turning the eyes of those who were strangers to the faith, to the entrances, so that no one could pass by without being impressed by the memory of the former desolation and of the present incredible transformation. His hope was that such an one being impressed by this might be attracted and be induced to enter by the very sight.

39. But when one comes within the gates he does not permit him to enter the sanctuary immediately, with impure and unwashed feet; but leaving as large a space as possible between the temple and the outer entrance, he has surrounded and adorned it with four transverse cloisters, making a quadrangular space with pillars rising on every side, which he has joined with lattice-work screens of wood, rising to a suitable height; and he has left an open space28812881    αἴθριον, the Latin atrium. in the middle, so that the sky can be seen, and the free air bright in the rays of the sun.

40. Here he has placed symbols of sacred purifications, setting up fountains opposite the temple which furnish an abundance of water wherewith those who come within the sanctuary may purify themselves. This is the first halting-place of those who enter; and it furnishes at the same time a beautiful and splendid scene to every one, and to those who still need elementary instruction a fitting station.

41. But passing by this spectacle, he has made open entrances to the temple with many other vestibules within, placing three doors on one side, likewise facing the rays of the sun. The one in the middle, adorned with plates of bronze, iron bound, and beautifully embossed, he has made much higher and broader than the others, as if he were making them guards for it as for a queen.

42. In the same way, arranging the number of vestibules for the corridors on each side of the whole temple, he has made above them various openings into the building, for the purpose of admitting more light, adorning them with very fine wood-carving. But the royal house he has furnished with more beautiful and splendid materials, using unstinted liberality in his disbursements.

43. It seems to me superfluous to describe here in detail the length and breadth of the building, its splendor and its majesty surpassing description, and the brilliant appearance of the work, its lofty pinnacles reaching to the heavens, and the costly cedars of Lebanon above them, which the divine oracle has not omitted to mention, saying, ‘The trees of the Lord shall rejoice and the cedars of Lebanon which he hath planted.’28822882    Psa. civ. 16.

44. Why need I now describe the skillful architectural arrangement and the surpassing beauty of each part, when the testimony of the eye renders instruction through the ear superfluous? For when he had thus completed the temple, he provided it with lofty thrones in honor of those who preside, and in addition with seats arranged in proper order throughout the whole building, and finally placed in the middle28832883    i.e. in the apse, or chancel, not in the middle of the nave, or body of the church. the holy of holies, the altar, and, that it might be inaccessible to the multitude, enclosed it with wooden lattice-work, accurately wrought with artistic carving, presenting a wonderful sight to the beholders.

45. And not even the pavement was neglected by him; for this too he adorned with beautiful marble of every variety. Then finally he passed on to the parts without the temple, providing spacious exedræ and buildings28842884    ἐξέδρας καὶ οἴκους. Large basilicas were always provided with additional rooms, and adjacent buildings, such as baptisteries, diaconica, secretaria, &c., which were used for various ecclesiastical purposes, and which were often of considerable size, so that important synods frequently met in one or another of them. Cf. Bingham, ibid. chap. 7. on each side, which were 376joined to the basilica, and communicated with the entrances to the interior of the structure. These were erected by our most peaceful28852885    The name Solomon (Heb. הׁמׁלשְׁ) means “peaceful.” Solomon, the maker of the temple of God, for those who still needed purification and sprinkling by water and the Holy Spirit, so that the prophecy quoted above is no longer a word merely, but a fact; for now it has also come to pass that in truth ‘the latter glory of this house is greater than the former.’28862886    Hag. ii. 9.

46. For it was necessary and fitting that as her shepherd and Lord had once tasted death for her, and after his suffering had changed that vile body which he assumed in her behalf into a splendid and glorious body, leading the very flesh which had been delivered28872887    λυθεῖσαν, which may mean also “dissolved, decayed.” Crusè translates “dissolved”; Closs, “schon verwesend.” from corruption to incorruption, she too should enjoy the dispensations of the Saviour. For having received from him the promise of much greater things than these, she desires to share uninterruptedly throughout eternity with the choir of the angels of light, in the far greater glory of regeneration,28882888    Cf. Matt. xix. 28. in the resurrection of an incorruptible body, in the palace of God beyond the heavens, with Christ Jesus himself, the universal Benefactor and Saviour.

47. But for the present, she that was formerly widowed and desolate is clothed by the grace of God with these flowers, and is become truly like a lily, as the prophecy says,28892889    See Isa. xxxv. 1 and having received the bridal garment and the crown of beauty, she is taught by Isaiah to dance, and to present her thank-offerings unto God the King in reverent words.

48. Let us hear her saying, ‘My soul shall rejoice in the Lord; for he hath clothed me with a garment of salvation and with a robe of gladness; he hath bedecked me like a bridegroom with a garland, and he hath adorned me like a bride with jewels; and like the earth which bringeth forth her bud, and like a garden which causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth, thus the Lord God hath caused righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations.’28902890    Isa. lxi. 10, 11.

49. In these words she exults. And in similar words the heavenly bridegroom, the Word Jesus Christ himself, answers her. Hear the Lord saying, ‘Fear not because thou hast been put to shame, neither be thou confounded because thou hast been rebuked; for thou shalt forget the former shame, and the reproach of thy widowhood shalt thou remember no more.’28912891    Ibid. liv. 4. ‘Not28922892    The word “not” is omitted in the Hebrew (and consequently in our English versions), but is found in the LXX. as a woman deserted and faint-hearted hath the Lord called thee, nor as a woman hated from her youth, saith thy God. For a small moment have I forsaken thee, but with great mercy will I have mercy upon thee; in a little wrath I hid my face from thee, but with everlasting mercy will I have mercy upon thee, saith the Lord that hath redeemed thee.’28932893    Isa. liv. 6–8.

50. ‘Awake, awake, thou who hast drunk at the hand of the Lord the cup of his fury; for thou hast drunk the cup of ruin, the vessel of my wrath, and hast drained it. And there was none to console thee of all thy sons whom thou didst bring forth, and there was none to take thee by the hand.’28942894    Ibid. li. 17, 18. ‘Behold, I have taken out of thine hand the cup of ruin, the vessel of my fury, and thou shalt no longer drink it. And I will put it into the hands of them that have treated thee unjustly and have humbled thee.’28952895    Ibid. li. 22, 23.

51. ‘Awake, awake, put on thy strength, put on thy glory. Shake off the dust and arise. Sit thee down, loose the bands of thy neck.’28962896    Ibid. lii. 1, 2. ‘Lift up thine eyes round about and behold thy children gathered together; behold they are gathered together and are come to thee. As I live, saith the Lord, thou shalt clothe thee with them all as with an ornament, and gird thyself with them as with the ornaments of a bride. For thy waste and corrupted and ruined places shall now be too narrow by reason of those that inhabit thee, and they that swallow thee up shall be far from thee.

52. For thy sons whom thou hast lost shall say in thine ears, The place is too narrow for me, give place to me that I may dwell. Then shalt thou say in thine heart, Who hath begotten me these? I am childless and a widow, and who hath brought up these for me? I was left alone, and these, where were they for me?’28972897    Ibid. xlix. 18–21.

53. “These are the things which Isaiah foretold; and which were anciently recorded concerning us in sacred books and it was necessary that we should sometime learn their truthfulness by their fulfillment.

54. For when the bridegroom, the Word, addressed such language to his own bride, the sacred and holy Church, this bridesman,28982898    νυμφοστόλος, referring to Paulinus.—when she was desolate and lying like a corpse, bereft of hope in the eyes of men,—in accordance with the united prayers of all of you, as was proper, stretched out your hands and aroused and raised her up at the command of God, the universal King, and at the manifestation of the power of Jesus Christ; and having raised her he established her as he had learned from the description given in the sacred oracles.

55. This 377is indeed a very great wonder, passing all admiration, especially to those who attend only to the outward appearance; but more wonderful than wonders are the archetypes and their mental prototypes and divine models; I mean the reproductions of the inspired and rational building in our souls.

56. This the Divine Son himself created after his own image, imparting to it everywhere and in all respects the likeness of God, an incorruptible nature, incorporeal, rational, free from all earthly matter, a being endowed with its own intelligence; and when he had once called her forth from non-existence into existence, he made her a holy spouse, an all-sacred temple for himself and for the Father. This also he clearly declares and confesses in the following words: ‘I will dwell in them and will walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.’28992899    2 Cor. vi. 16. Such is the perfect and purified soul, so made from the beginning as to bear the image of the celestial Word.

57. But when by the envy and zeal of the malignant demon she became, of her own voluntary choice, sensual and a lover of evil, the Deity left her; and as if bereft of a protector, she became an easy prey and readily accessible to those who had long envied her; and being assailed by the batteries and machines of her invisible enemies and spiritual foes, she suffered a terrible fall, so that not one stone of virtue remained upon another in her, but she lay completely dead upon the ground, entirely divested of her natural ideas of God.

58. “But as she, who had been made in the image of God, thus lay prostrate, it was not that wild boar from the forest which we see that despoiled her, but a certain destroying demon and spiritual wild beasts who deceived her with their passions as with the fiery darts of their own wickedness, and burned the truly divine sanctuary of God with fire, and profaned to the ground the tabernacle of his name. Then burying the miserable one with heaps of earth, they destroyed every hope of deliverance.

59. But that divinely bright and saving Word, her protector, after she had suffered the merited punishment for her sins, again restored her, securing the favor of the all-merciful Father.

60. Having won over first the souls of the highest rulers, he purified, through the agency of those most divinely favored princes, the whole earth from all the impious destroyers, and from the terrible and God-hating tyrants themselves. Then bringing out into the light those who were his friends, who had long before been consecrated to him for life, but in the midst, as it were, of a storm of evils, had been concealed under his shelter, he honored them worthily with the great gifts of the Spirit. And again, by means of them, he cleared out and cleaned with spades and mattocks—the admonitory words of doctrine29002900    ταῖς πληκτικαῖς τῶν μαθημ€των διδασκαλίας—the souls which a little while before had been covered with filth and burdened with every kind of matter and rubbish of impious ordinances.

61. And when he had made the ground of all your minds clean and clear, he finally committed it to this all-wise and God-beloved Ruler, who, being endowed with judgment and prudence, as well as with other gifts, and being able to examine and discriminate accurately the minds of those committed to his charge, from the first day, so to speak, down to the present, has not ceased to build.

62. Now he has supplied the brilliant gold, again the refined and unalloyed silver, and the precious and costly stones in all of you, so that again is fulfilled for you in facts a sacred and mystic prophecy, which says, ‘Behold I make thy stone a carbuncle, and thy foundations of sapphire, and thy battlements of jasper, and thy gates of crystals, and thy wall of chosen stones; and all thy sons shall be taught of God, and thy children shall enjoy complete peace; and in righteousness shalt thou be built.’29012901    Isa. liv. 11–14

63. Building therefore in righteousness, he divided the whole people according to their strength. With some he fortified only the outer enclosure, walling it up with unfeigned faith; such were the great mass of the people who were incapable of bearing a greater structure. Others he permitted to enter the building, commanding them to stand at the door and act as guides for those who should come in; these may be not unfitly compared to the vestibules of the temple. Others he supported by the first pillars which are placed without about the quadrangular hall, initiating them into the first elements of the letter of the four Gospels. Still others he joined together about the basilica on both sides; these are the catechumens who are still advancing and progressing, and are not far separated from the inmost view of divine things granted to the faithful.

64. Taking from among these the pure souls that have been cleansed like gold by divine washing,29022902    θεί& 251· λουτρῷ; i.e. baptism. he then supports them by pillars, much better than those without, made from the inner and mystic teachings of the Scripture, and illumines them29032903    Heinichen, followed by Closs, reads τοὺς μὲν…τοὺς δέ: “Some of them he supports by pillars…others of them he illumines by windows.” But all the mss. read τοὺς μὲn…τοῖς δὲ, which, in view of the general character of Eusebius’ style throughout this oration, we are hardly justified in changing. I have therefore followed Valesius, Burton, and Crusè in retaining the reading of the mss. by windows.

65. Adorning the whole temple with a great vestibule of the glory of the one universal King and only God, and placing 378on either side of the authority of the Father Christ, and the Holy Spirit as second lights, he exhibits abundantly and gloriously throughout the entire building the clearness and splendor of the truth of the rest in all its details. And having selected from every quarter the living and moving and well-prepared stones of the souls, he constructs out of them all the great and royal house, splendid and full of light both within and without; for not only soul and understanding, but their body also is made glorious by the blooming ornament of purity and modesty.

66. And in this temple there are also thrones, and a great number of seats and benches, in all those souls in which sit the Holy Spirit’s gifts, such as were anciently seen by the sacred apostles, and those who were with them, when there ‘appeared unto them tongues parting asunder, like as of fire, and sat upon each one of them.’29042904    Acts ii. 3.

67. But in the leader of all it is reasonable to suppose29052905    ἴσως that Christ himself dwells in his fullness,29062906    αὐτὸς ὅλος ἐγκ€θηται χριστός. and in those that occupy the second rank after him, in proportion as each is able to contain the power of Christ and of the Holy Spirit.29072907    Valesius remarks, “Sic Hieronymus seu quis alius de ordinibus ecclesiæ: in illis esse partes et membra virtutem, in episcopo plenitudinem divinitatis habitare.” From what source the quotation comes I do not know. And the souls of some of those, namely, who are committed to each of them for instruction and care—may be seats for angels.

68. But the great and august and unique altar, what else could this be than the pure holy of holies of the soul of the common priest of all? Standing at the right of it, Jesus himself, the great High Priest of the universe, the Only Begotten of God, receives with bright eye and extended hand the sweet incense from all, and the bloodless and immaterial sacrifices offered in their prayers, and bears them to the heavenly Father and God of the universe. And he himself first worships him, and alone gives to the Father the reverence which is his due, beseeching him also to continue always kind and propitious to us all.

69. “Such is the great temple which the great Creator of the universe, the Word, has built throughout the entire world, making it an intellectual image upon earth of those things which lie above the vault of heaven, so that throughout the whole creation, including rational beings on earth, his Father might be honored and adored.

70. But the region above the heavens, with the models of earthly things which are there, and the so-called Jerusalem above,29082908    Cf. Gal. iv. 26 and the heavenly Mount of Zion, and the supramundane city of the living God, in which innumerable choirs of angels and the Church of the first born, whose names are written in heaven,29092909    Cf. Heb. xii. 22, 23. praise their Maker and the Supreme Ruler of the universe with hymns of praise unutterable and incomprehensible to us,—who that is mortal is able worthily to celebrate this? ‘For eye hath not seen nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of men those things which God hath prepared for them that love him.’29102910    1 Cor. ii. 9.

71. Since we, men, children, and women, small and great, are already in part partakers of these things, let us not cease all together, with one spirit and one soul, to confess and praise the author of such great benefits to us, ‘Who forgiveth all our iniquities, who healeth all our diseases, who redeemeth our life from destruction, who crowneth us with mercy and compassion, who satisfieth our desires with good things.’29112911    Psa. ciii. 3–5. ‘For he hath not dealt with us according to our sins, nor rewarded us according to our iniquities;’29122912    Ibid. 10. ‘for as far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our iniquities from us. Like as a father pitieth his own children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear him.’29132913    Ibid. 12, 13.

72. Rekindling these thoughts in our memories, both now and during all time to come, and contemplating in our mind night and day, in every hour and with every breath, so to speak, the Author and Ruler of the present festival, and of this bright and most splendid day, let us love and adore him with every power of the soul. And now rising, let us beseech him with loud voice to shelter and preserve us to the end in his fold, granting his unbroken and unshaken peace forever, in Christ Jesus our Saviour; through whom be the glory unto him forever and ever.29142914    εἰς τοὺς σύμπαντας αἰ& 242·νας τῶν αἰ& 240·νων. Amen.”

« Prev Panegyric on the Splendor of Affairs. Next »
VIEWNAME is workSection