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SermonIndex.net : Christian Books : Chapter VII. Again, in Cæsarea, when the persecution had continued to the fifth year√†

Church History by Eusebius Pamphilius

Chapter VII. Again, in Cæsarea, when the persecution had continued to the fifth year√†

1. Again, in Cæsarea, when the persecution had continued to the fifth year, on the second day of the month Xanthicus, which is the fourth before the Nones of April, on the very Lord's day of our Saviour's resurrection, Theodosia, a virgin from Tyre, a faithful and sedate maiden, not yet eighteen years of age, went up to certain prisoners who were confessing the kingdom of Christ and sitting before the judgment seat, and saluted them, and, as is probable, besought them to remember her when they came before the Lord.

2. Thereupon, as if she had committed a profane and impious act, the soldiers seized her and led her to the governor. And he immediately, like a madman and a wild beast in his anger, tortured her with dreadful and most terrible torments in her sides and breasts, even to the very bones. And as she still breathed, and withal stood with a joyful and beaming countenance, he ordered her thrown into the waves of the sea. Then passing from her to the other confessors, he condemned all of them to the copper mines in Phæno in Palestine.

3. Afterwards on the fifth of the month Dius, on the Nones of November according to the Romans, in the same city, Silvanus (who at that time was a presbyter and confessor, but who shortly after was honored with the episcopate and died a martyr), and those with him, men who had shown the noblest firmness in behalf of religion, were condemned by him to labor in the same copper mines, command being first given that their ankles be disabled with hot irons.

4. At the same time he delivered to the flames a man who was illustrious through numerous other confessions. This was Domninus, who was well known to all in Palestine for his exceeding fearlessness. After this the same judge, who was a cruel contriver of suffering, and an inventor of devices against the doctrine of Christ, planned against the pious punishments that had never been heard of. He condemned three to single pugilistic combat. He delivered to be devoured by wild beasts Auxentius, a grave and holy old man. Others who were in mature life he made eunuchs, and condemned them to the same mines. Yet others, after severe tortures, he cast into prison.

Among these was my dearest friend Pamphilus, who was by reason of every virtue the most illustrious of the martyrs in our time.

5. Urbanus first tested him in rhetorical philosophy and learning; and afterwards endeavored to compel him to sacrifice. But as he saw that he refused and in nowise regarded his threats, being exceedingly angry, he ordered him to be tormented with severest tortures.

6. And when the brutal man, after he had almost satiated himself with these tortures by continuous and prolonged scrapings in his sides, was yet covered with shame before all, he put him also with the confessors in prison.

7. But what recompense for his cruelty to the saints, he who thus abused the martyrs of Christ, shall receive from the Divine judgment, may be easily determined from the preludes to it, in which immediately, and not long after his daring cruelties against Pamphilus, while he yet held the government, the Divine judgment came upon him. For thus suddenly, he who but yesterday was judging on the lofty tribunal, guarded by a band of soldiers, and ruling over the whole nation of Palestine, the associate and dearest friend and table companion of the tyrant himself, was stripped in one night, and overwhelmed with disgrace and shame before those who had formerly admired him as if he were himself an emperor; and he appeared cowardly and unmanly, uttering womanish cries and supplications to all the people whom he had ruled. And Maximinus himself, in reliance upon whose favor Urbanus was formerly so arrogantly insolent, as if he loved him exceedingly for his deeds against us, was set as a harsh and most severe judge in this same Cæsarea to pronounce sentence of death against him, for the great disgrace of the crimes of which he was convicted. Let us say this in passing.

8. A suitable time may come when we shall have leisure to relate the end and the fate of those impious men who especially fought against us, both of Maximinus himself and those with him.

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