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• beside these,' says Eusebius, there is extant another 6 sent to Chrysophora, a most faithful sister.' Of these epistles nothing remains, except some fragments in Eusebius,

St. Jerom'sf account of Dionysius contains an enumeration of these letters. And he says, “ he was a man of great

eloquence and industry : and that he flourished under M. • Antoninus and Commodus. He has been called a martyr by some, but withouts any foundation in antiquity.

I shall now put down a few particulars, suitable to our present design, out of the fragments of these epistles preserved by Eusebius.

• The letter to the Athenians,' says Eusebius, 'is' exhortatory to the faith, and a conversation according to the • gospel:' meaning by gospel the doctrine and precepts of the christian religion, or the books of the New Testament, in whole or in part. However, it must be owned these are properly the words of Eusebius.

In this epistle ‘he relatesi moreover,' says Eusebius, • that Dionysius the Areopagite, who was converted to the • faith by the apostle Paul, according to the account given * in the Acts of the Apostles, was appointed the first bishop • of the church of the Athenians.'

How far Dionysius had referred for this to the book of the Acts of the Apostles is doubtful, and cannot be determined from Eusebius. But every one will upon this occasion regret the loss of these epistles.

In the epistle to the Nicomedians,' hek opposeth the • heresy of Marcion, and strenuously asserts and defends • the rule of truth.'

It is highly probable, he here maintained the genuineness and authority of divers books of the New Testament against Marcion, whom rejected some, and mutilated and curtailed others.

In the epistle to the church of Amastris, Eusebius says, he has inserted expositions of the divine scriptures.'

We cannot be positive indeed: but there is no reason to forbid our supposing, here were expositions of the scriptures of the New, as well as of the Old Testament. e Ibid. et 1. 2. cap. 25. p. 68. A.

De Vir. Ill. cap. 27. 8 Vid. Tillemont, Mem. E. T. ii. Denys de Corinthe, ad fin.

Διεγερτικη πιςεως και της κατα το ευαγγελιoν πολιτειας. 1. iv. c. 23. p. 143. D. i P. 144. A.

* Εν η Μαρκιωνος αίρεσιν πολεμων, τω της αληθειας παρισαται κανονι. p. 144. Α. '1 Vid. Vales, in loc.

m Vid. Irenæ. l. 1. cap. 27, [al. 28.] et Tertullian, adv. Marcion.

Γραφων τε θειων εξηγησεις παρατεθειται. ib. Β.

VOL. II.

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Farther,' says Eusebius, “ the same person, speaking of • his own epistles, as having been corrupted, expresseth • himselfo in this manner :

« I have written epistles," says • he," at the desire of the brethren. But the apostles of

. • the devil have filled them with darnel, taking out some things, and adding others : for whom there is a woe reserved. It is not to be wondered, therefore, if some have • attempted to corrupt the scriptures of the Lord, (or the • Dominic scriptures,] since they have attempted thie same thing in writing's not comparable to them.

When he says, “ there is a woe reserved' for those persons, Le Clerc says, he seems to allude to Isa. v. 20, or to Rev. xxii, 18, 19; but of this we cannot be certain.

By 'scriptures of the Lord'he seems to mean the scriptures of the New Testament in general, as containing the doctrine and precepts of the Lord Jesus.

There were soine who endeavoured to corrupt them. He intends, it is likely, in particular, the followers of Marcion. However, the Catholic christians were upon their guard. These heretics, therefore, only attempted this; and it was a vain attempt, without any considerable success. The alterations they made were detected by the vigilance of the sounder part of christians; who, by the numerous copies of most of the books of the New Testament, in the apostolic churches, in almost every part of the world, could without much difficulty discover the frauds attempted to be practised on their sacred writings.

There is another remarkable fragment of this writer in Eusebius, which may deserve to be placed here. Eusebius is speaking of Nero's persecution, and the martyrdoms of St. Peter and St. Paul: And,' says, he, that they both * suffered martyrdom about the same time, Dionysius,

bishop of Corinth, assures us in his epistle to the Romans, • writing in this manner: “So also you, by this your so • suitable admonition, have joined together the plantation • of the Romans and the Corinthians, which was made by

Peter and Paul. For they both coming to our city of • Corinth planted and taught us.

And jn like manner 'going together to Italy, they taught there, and suffered martyrdom about the same time."

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ο Ετι δε και αυτος και περι των ιδιων επιςολων ως ραδιεργηθεισων, ταυτα φησιν" επισολας γαρ αδελφων αξιωσαντων με γραψαι, εγραψα και ταυτας οι το διαβολα αποσολοι ζιζανιων γεγεμικαν" α μεν εξαιρεντες, α δε προσιθεντες οις

kal KELTAL 8 Javpasov apa, El των κυριακων ραδιεργησαι τινες επεβληνται γραφων, όποτε και ταις 8 τοιαυταις επιβεβληκασι. p. 145. C.

p Vid. Hist. É. p. 735. Note 3. 9 Eus. H. E. 1. 2. c. 25. p. 68. A.

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This is all I have to offer at present" from this writer. But from the little that remains of him it may be justly concluded, that his epistles would be of great use to us, if they were now extant; especially considering the traces of eminent virtue that appear in almost every part of his short fragments. He shows a peaceable disposition, in recommending peace and unity to the Lacedemonians. He shows his goodness and candour, in his precept to the Amastrians, that all who recover from any fall, whether of vice or heretical opinion, should be kindly received:' and his judgment and good sense, as well as true virtue, in his admonition to Pinytus, bishop of the Gnossians : ‘not to impose on the brethren the heavy yoke of continence as necessary, but to consider the infirmity of the most.' In a word, it is the character which Eusebius gives hiin, that • he was useful to all by his divine labours, and not only • to the church particularly under his care.' Dionysius was an excellent man.

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CHAP. XIII.

TATIAN.

TATIAN flourished, according toa Cave, about the year 172. In his Oration against the Gentiles, generally reckoned his only remaining work, he has informed us of several things concerning himself. Thatb he was born in Assyria, was originally a heathen, and was converted to christianity by reading the books of the Old Testament, and by reflecting on the corruptions and absurdities of Gentilism; and that he had been a considerable traveller, and seen the world; and afterwards came to Rome, where he farther improved himself in arts and sciences. The Oration itself shows him to be a man of reading, and well acquainted with the Greck learning; which character is also universally allowed him by ancient writers. He mentions Justin Martyr with great respect: and by many ancient christian writers we are well assured that he was his follower; but some while after his death, which happened about the year 165, he went into a great variety of absurd opinions. He is said to be the author of the sect of the Encratites, or Continents; condemned the use of wine; denied the lawfulness of marriage, the reality of Christ's sufferings, the salvation of Adam; embraced the Æons of Valentinus; asserted, with Marcion, that there are two gods. But whatever were his principles in the latter part of his life, he will afford a good proof of the antiquity, and high esteem of the gospels in his time, and be otherwise of considerable use to us.

See hereafter, Ch. XXVIII. Numb. V. VI. See likewise Ch. II. p. 33. a Hist. Lit. Vid. et Tillemont, Mem. Ec. T. 2. Part 3. Les Encratites. Basnage, Ann. 172. sect. 3, 4, &c. Du Pin, Bibl. Fabric. Bibl. Gr. T. vi. b P. 174. B. C.

c P. 165. B. d P. 170. B. C.

c P. 157. D. 158. A.

p. 81, &c.

I shall farther observe briefly the notice that has been taken of him by the ancients. Irenæus' says, he was a follower of Justin, and mentions the heresies he taught after Justin's martyrdom. Clements of Alexandria makes frequent mention of him, and confutes him. Origenh speaks of his Oration to the Greeks as a learned work. Eusebius, in his Chronicle, dates his heresy at the 12th of the emperor Marcus Antoninus, or the year 172. What Eusebius says farther of Tatian will be placed below distinctly. Epiphaniusk has given a particular account of his heresy.

St. Jerom's account of Tatian, in his book' of Illustrious Men, is this : “Tatian, who first taught rhetoric, and gained a great deal of honour thereby, was a follower of Justin Martyr, and flourished in the church as long as he ad* hered to him. But afterwards puffed up with the pride • of eloquence, he founded a new heresy, called that of the · Encratites, which was afterwards improved by Severus. • Tatian wrote an infinite number of books; of which • there is one written against the Gentiles, which is reckoned • the most considerable of all his works. He flourished * under the emperor M. Antoninus Verus, and L. Aurelius • Commodus.'

I shall take no more passages concerning the history of this writer. I proceed to those which will set before us his testimony to the scriptures of the New Testament,

1. Eusebius, in his Ecclesiastical History, having given an account of Tatian, and his opinions, from Irenæus, and then of Severus, and his followers, who had made additions

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* Adv. Hær. 1. i. cap. 28. [al. 30, 31.] 1. iii. cap. 23. [al. 36, &c.]

8 Strom. lib. i. p. 320. B. lib. iii. p. 466. A. B. D. 465. C. ek twv Okodot8 Επιτ. 806. C.

h Cont. Cels. 1. i. p. 14. | Tatianus hæreticus agnoscitur: a quo Encratitæ. Chr. p. 170. k Hær. 26. al. 46.

Cap. 29.

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to some of Tatian's opinions, adds : • But their first leader, • Tatian, composed I know not what harniony and collection • of the gospels, which he called [Dia Tessaron] Of the

Four, which is still in the hands of some. And it is said, that he had the assurance to alter (or explain] some words * of the apostle, as pretending to correct the composition * and order of his style. He left a great number of books:

. • of which, his celebrated discourse against the Gentiles has • been quoted by many; which seems to be the most elegant, and most useful, of all his writings.'

This is a strong proof that there were four, and but four gospels, which were in esteem with christians. It seems that Eusebius had not seen this harmony or collection of Tatian.

Theodoret," who flourished in the fifth century, about 423, speaks of this book in the following manner: · He

[Tatian] composed a gospel which is called Dia Tessaron, • Çof the Four,] leaving out the genealogies, and every • thing that shows the Lord to have been born of the seed • of David according to the flesh: which has been used • not only by those of his sect, but also by them who fol

low the apostolical doctrine; they not perceiving the • fraud of the composition, but simply using it as a com

pendious book. I have also met with above two hundred • of these books, which were in esteem in our churches : all • which I took away, and laid aside in a parcel, and placed • in their room the gospels of the four evangelists.'

Victor Capuanus, a writer of the sixth century, says, that Tatian called his harmony Ala llevte, Of the Five. Whence some learned moderns have inferred, that Tatian used also the Gospel according to the Hebrews. Ittigiuso has shown it, I think, to be very probable, that this Ala IIevte, Of the Five, in Victor, is only an error of the transcribers for Aca Ilavtwv, Of All. Eusebius calls it • Of the

Four,' as does Theodoret. All the fault that Theodoret, who had seen so many copies, finds with this performance is, that Tatian had left out the genealogies.

It is said thatP Ephraim the Syrian, of the fourth cenΓο μεντοι γε προτερος αυτων αρχηγος ο Τατιανος, συναφειαν τινα και συναγωγην οιδ' όπως των ευαγγελιων συνθεις, το δια τεσσαων τ8το προσωνομασεν ο και παρα τισιν εισετι νυν φερεται: τε δε αποκολα φασι τολμησαι τινας αυτον μεταφρασαι φωνας ως επιδιορθαμενον αυτων την της φρασεως ouvraživ. H. E. 1. iv. c. 28. Vid. et cap. 16. de Tatiano. 1 Hæret. Fab. I. i. cap. 20.

• Tho. Ittigii de Hæresiarchis, sect. 2. cap. 12. p. 182.

P Syriacum Tatiani Diatessaron commentariis illustravit Sanctus Ephræmus, testibuz Barsalibæo et Barhebræo, quorum verba retuli. T. i. p. 57, 58. Asseman. Bib. Orient. T. 3. P. i. p. 13.

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