Eusebius (23) of Caesarea , also known as Eusebius Pamphili . Of extant sources of our knowledge of Eusebius the most important are the scattered notices in writers of the same or immediately succeeding ages, e.g. Athanasius, Jerome, Socrates, Sozomen, and Theodoret. At a later date some valuable information is contained in the proceedings of the second council of Nicaea (Labbe, Conc. viii. 1144 seq. ed. Colet.), and in the Antirrhetica of the patriarch Nicephorus ( Spicil. Solesm. i. pp. 371 seq.) likewise connected with the Iconoclastic controversy. The primary sources of information, however, for the career of one who was above all a literary man must be sought in his own works. The only edition of them which aims at completeness is in Migne's Patr. Gk. vols. xix.–xxiv. See also the standard works of Cave ( Hist. Lit. i. pp. 175 seq.), Tillemont ( Hist. Eccl. vii. pp. 39 seq., 659 seq., together with scattered notices in his account of the Arians and of the Nicene council in vol. vi.), and Fabricius ( Bibl. Graec. vii. pp. 335 seq. ed. Harles). The most complete monograph is Stein's Eusebius Bischof Von Cäsarea (Würzburg, 1852). There is a useful English trans. of the History in the Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers , by Mr. Giffert; cf. A. C. Headlam, The Editions or MSS. of Eusebius , in Journal of Theol. Studies , 1902, iii. 93-102.
The references in his own works will hardly allow us to place his birth much later than a.d. 260, so that he would be nearly 80 at his death. All notices of his early life are connected with Caesarea; and as it was then usual to prefer a native as bishop, everything favours this as the city of his birth.
Of his parentage and relationships absolutely nothing is known, but here, as a child, he was catechized in that declaration of belief which years afterwards was laid by him before the great council of Nicaea, and adopted by the assembled Fathers as a basis for the creed of the universal church. Here he listened to the Biblical expositions of the learned Dorotheus, thoroughly versed in the Hebrew Scriptures and not unacquainted with Greek literature and philosophy, once the superintendent of the emperor's purple factory at Tyre, but now a presbyter in the church of Caesarea (H. E. vii. 32). Here, in due time, he was himself ordained a presbyter, probably by that bp. Agapius whose wise forethought and untiring assiduity and openhanded benevolence he himself has recorded ( ib. ). Here, above all, he contracted with the saintly student Pamphilus that friendship which was the crown and glory of his life, and which martyrdom itself could not sever. Eusebius owed far more to Pamphilus than the impulse and direction given to his studies. Pamphilus, no mere student recluse, was a man of large heart and bountiful hand, above all things helpful to his friends (Mart. Pal. 11), giving freely to all in want; he multiplied copies of the Scriptures, which he distributed gratuitously (Eus. in Hieron. c. Rufin. i. 9, Op. ii. 465); and to the sympathy of the friend he united the courage of the hero. He had also the power of impressing his own strong convictions on others. Hence, when the great trial of faith came, his house was found to be not only the home of students but the nursery of martyrs. To one like Eusebius, who owed his strength and his weakness alike to a ready susceptibility of impression from those about him, such a friendship was an inestimable blessing. He expressed the strength of his devotion to this friend by adopting his name, being known as "Eusebius of Pamphilus."
Eusebius was in middle life when the last and fiercest persecution broke out. For nearly half a century—a longer period than at any other time since its foundation—the church had enjoyed uninterrupted peace as regards attacks from without. Suddenly and unexpectedly all was changed. The city of Caesarea became a chief centre of persecution. Eusebius tells how he saw the houses of prayer razed to the ground, the holy Scriptures committed to the flames in the market-places, the pastors hiding themselves, and shamefully jeered at when caught by their persecutors (H. E. viii. 2). For seven years the attacks continued. At Tyre also Eusebius saw several Christians torn by wild beasts in the amphitheatre ( ib. 7, 8). Leaving Palestine, he visited Egypt. In no country did the persecution rage more fiercely. Here, in the Thebaid, they perished, ten, twenty, even sixty or a hundred at a time. Eusebius tells how he in these parts witnessed numerous martyrdoms in a single day, some by beheading, others by fire; the executioners relieving each other by relays and the victims eagerly pressing forward to be tortured, clamouring for the honour of martyrdom, and receiving their sentence with joy and laughter ( ib. 9). This visit to Egypt was apparently after the imprisonment and martyrdom of Pamphilus, in the latest and fiercest days of the persecution. It was probably now that Eusebius was imprisoned for his faith. If so, we have the less difficulty in explaining his release, without any stain left on his integrity or his courage.
Not long after the restoration of peace (a.d. 313) Eusebius was unanimously elected to the vacant see of Caesarea. Among the earliest results of the peace was the erection of a magnificent basilica at Tyre under the direction of his friend Paulinus, the bishop. Eusebius was invited to deliver the inaugural address. This address he has preserved and inserted in his History , where, though not mentioned, the orator's name is but thinly concealed (H. E. ix. 4). This oration is a paean of thanksgiving over the restitution of the Church, of which the splendid building at Tyre was at once the firstfruit and the type. The incident must have taken place not later than a.d. 315. For more than 25 years he presided over the church of Caesarea, winning the respect and affection of all. He died bp. of Caesarea.
When the Arian controversy broke out, the sympathies of Eusebius were early enlisted on the side of Arius. If his namesake of Nicomedia may be trusted, he was especially zealous on behalf of the Arian doctrine at this time (Eus. Nicom. in Theod. H. E. i. 5, ἡ τοῦ δεσπότου μου Εὐσεβίου σπουδὴ ἡ ὑπὲρ ἀληθοῦς λόγου . But the testimony of this strong partisan may well be suspected; and the attitude of Eusebius of Caesarea throughout suggests that he was influenced rather by personal associations and the desire to secure liberal treatment for the heresiarch than by any real accordance with his views. Whatever his motives, he wrote to Alexander, bp. of Alexandria, remonstrating with him for deposing Arius and urging that he had misrepresented the opinions of the latter (Labbe, Conc. viii. 1148, ed. Colet). The cause of Arius was taken up also by two neighbouring bishops, Theodotus of Laodicea and Paulinus of Tyre. In a letter addressed to his namesake of Constantinople, Alexander complains of three Syrian bishops, "appointed he knows not how," as having fanned the flame of sedition (Theod. H. E. i. 3); while Arius himself claims "all the bishops in the East," mentioning by name Eusebius of Caesarea with others, as on his side ( ib. i. 4). Accordingly, when he was deposed by a synod convened at Alexandria by Alexander, Arius appealed to Eusebius and others to interpose. A meeting of Syrian bishops decided for his restoration, though wording the decision cautiously. The synod thought that Arius should be allowed to gather his congregation about him as heretofore, but added that he must render obedience to Alexander and entreat to be admitted to communion with him (Soz. H. E. i. 15).
At the council of Nicaea (a.d. 325) Eusebius took a leading part. This prominence he cannot have owed to his bishopric, which, though important, did not rank with the great sees, "the apostolic thrones" (ib. 17) of Rome, Antioch, and Alexandria. But that he was beyond question the most learned man and most famous living writer in the church at this time would suffice to secure him a hearing. Probably, however, his importance was due even more to his close relations with the great emperor, whose entire confidence he enjoyed. He occupied the first seat to the emperor's right ( V. C. iii. 11), and delivered the opening address to Constantine when he took his seat in the council-chamber ( ib. i. prooem., iii. 11; Soz. H. E. i. 19). The speech is unfortunately not preserved.
Eusebius himself has left us an account of his doings with regard to the main object of the council in a letter of explanation to his church at Caesarea. He laid before the council the creed in use in the Caesarean church, which had been handed down from the bishops who preceded him, which he himself had been taught at his baptism, and in which, both as a presbyter and bishop, he had instructed others. The emperor was satisfied with the orthodoxy of this creed, inserting however the single word ὁμοούσιον and giving explanations as to its meaning which set the scruples of Eusebius at rest. The assembled Fathers, taking this as their starting-point, made other important insertions and alterations. Moreover, an anathema was appended directly condemning Arian doctrines. Eusebius took time to consider before subscribing to this revised formula. The three expressions which caused difficulty were: (1) "of the substance of the Father" ( ἐκ τῆς οὐσίας τοῦ πατρός ); (2) "begotten, not made" (γεννηθέντα, οὐ ποιηθέντα ); (3) "of the same substance" (ὁμοούσιον ); and of these he demanded explanations. The explanations were so far satisfactory that for the sake of peace he subscribed to the creed. He had the less scruple in assenting to the final anathema, because the Arian expressions which it condemned were not scriptural, and he considered that "almost all the confusion and disturbance of the churches" had arisen from the use of unscriptural phrases. This letter, he concludes, is written to the Caesareans to explain that he would resist to the last any vital change in the traditional creed of his church, but had subscribed to these alterations, when assured of their innocence, to avoid appearing contentious (ἀφιλονείκως ). See Hort's Two Dissertations , pp. 55 seq.
The settlement of the dispute respecting the time of observing Easter was another important work undertaken by the council. In this also a leading part has been assigned to Eusebius by some modern writers (e.g. Stanley, Eastern Church , p. 182, following Tillemont, H. E. vi. p. 668).
The hopes which Eusebius with others had built upon the decisions of the Nicene council were soon dashed. The final peace of the church seemed as far distant as ever. In three controversies with three distinguished antagonists, Eusebius took a more or less prominent part; and his reputation, whether justly or not, has suffered greatly in consequence.
(i) Synod of Antioch. —Eustathius, bp. of Antioch, was a staunch advocate of the Nicene doctrine and a determined foe of the Arians. He had assailed the tenets of Origen (Socr. H. E. vi. 13), of whom Eusebius was an ardent champion, and had charged Eusebius himself with faithlessness to the doctrines of Nicaea. He was accused in turn of Sabellianism by Eusebius ( ib. i. 23; Soz. H. E. ii. 19). To the historian Socrates the doctrines of the two antagonists seemed practically identical. Nevertheless they were regarded as the two principals in the quarrel (Soz. H. E. ii. 18). A synod, mainly composed of bishops with Arian or semi-Arian sympathies, was assembled at Antioch, a.d. 330 to consider the charge of Sabellianism brought against Eustathius, who was deposed. The see of Antioch thus became vacant. The assembled bishops proposed Eusebius of Caesarea as his successor, and wrote to the emperor on his behalf, but Eusebius declined the honour, alleging the rule of the Church, regarded as an "apostolic tradition," which forbade translations from one see to another; and Euphronius was elected.
(ii) Synods of Caesarea, Tyre, and Jerusalem. —The next stage of the Arian controversy exhibits Eusebius in conflict with a greater than Eustathius. The disgraceful intrigues of the Arians and Meletians against Athanasius, which led to his first exile, are related in our art. Athanasius. It is sufficient to say here that the emperor summoned Athanasius to appear before a gathering of bishops at Caesarea, to meet the charges brought against him. It is stated by Theodoret (H. E. i. 26) that Constantine was induced to name Caesarea by the Arian party, who selected it because the enemies of Athanasius were in a majority there ( ἔνθα δὴ πλείους ἦσαν οἰ δυσμενεῖς ), but the emperor may have given the preference to Caesarea because he reposed the greatest confidence in the moderation (ἐπιείκεια ) of its bishop. Athanasius excused himself from attending, believing that there was a conspiracy against him, and that he would not have fair play there (Festal Letters , p. xvii, Oxf. trans.; Theod. H. E. i. 26; Soz. H. E. ii. 25). This was in 334. Athanasius does not mention this synod in his Apology .
The next year (a.d. 335) Athanasius received a peremptory and angry summons from Constantine to appear before a synod of bishops at Tyre. Theodoret (l.c. ) conjectures (ὡς οἶμαι ) that the place of meeting was changed by the emperor out of deference to the fears of Athanasius, who "looked with suspicion on Caesarea on account of its ruler." Athanasius, or his friends, may indeed have objected to Eusebius as a partisan; for the Egyptian bishops who espoused the cause of Athanasius, addressing the synod of Tyre, allege "the law of God" as forbidding "an enemy to be witness or judge," and shortly afterwards add mysteriously, "ye know why Eusebius of Caesarea has become an enemy since last year" (Athan. Ap 100 Arian. 77, Op. i. p. 153). The scenes at the synod of Tyre form the most picturesque and the most shameful chapter in the Arian controversy. After all allowance for the exaggerations of the Athanasian party, from whom our knowledge is chiefly derived, the proceedings will still remain an undying shame to Eusebius of Nicomedia and his fellow-intriguers. But there is no reason for supposing that Eusebius of Caesarea took any active part in these plots. Athanasius mentions him rarely, and then without any special bitterness. The "Eusebians" ( οἱ περὶ Εὐσέβιον ) are always the adherents of his Nicomedian namesake. But, though probably not participating in, and possibly ignorant of their plots, Eusebius of Caesarea was certainly used as a tool by the more unscrupulous and violent partisan of Arius, and must bear the reproach of a too easy compliance with their actions. The proceedings were cut short by the withdrawal of Athanasius, who suddenly sailed to Constantinople, and appealed in person to the emperor. The synod condemned him by default.
While the bishops at Tyre were in the midst of their session, an urgent summons from the emperor called them to take part in the approaching festival at Jerusalem (Eus. V. C. iv. 41 seq.; Socr. H. E. i. 33 seq.; Soz. H. E. ii. 26; Theod. H. E. i. 29). It was the tricennalia of Constantine. No previous sovereign after Augustus, the founder of the empire, had reigned for thirty years. Constantine had a fondness for magnificent ceremonial, and here was a noble opportunity ( V. C. iv. 40, καιρὸς εὔκαιρος ). The occasion was marked by the dedication of Constantine's new and splendid basilica, built on the site of Calvary. The festival was graced by a series of orations from the principal persons present. In these Eusebius bore a conspicuous part, finding in this dedication festival a far more congenial atmosphere than in the intrigues of the synod at Tyre. He speaks of the assemblage at Tyre as a mere episode of the festival at Jerusalem (ὁδοῦ δὴ πάρεργον ). The emperor, he says, preparing for the celebration of this festival, was anxious to end the quarrels which rent the church. In doing so he was obeying the Lord's injunction, "Be reconciled to thy brother, and then go and offer thy gift" (cf. Soz. i. 26). This view of the emperor's motive is entirely borne out by Constantine's own letter to the synod at Tyre. Eusebius was greatly impressed by the celebration; but Tillemont, who shews strong prejudice against Eusebius throughout, altogether misstates the case in saying that he "compares or even prefers this assembly to the council of Nicaea, striving to exalt it as much as he can, for the sake of effacing the glory of that great council," etc. (vi. p. 284). But Eusebius says distinctly that "after that first council" this was the greatest synod assembled by Constantine (V. C. iv. 47); and so far from shewing any desire to depreciate the council of Nicaea, he cannot find language magnificent enough to sing its glories (iii. 6 seq.).
Arius and Euzoius had presented a confession of faith to the emperor, seeking readmission to the church. The emperor was satisfied that this document was in harmony with the faith of Nicaea, and sent Arius and Euzoius to Jerusalem, requesting the synod to consider their confession of faith and restore them to communion. Arius and his followers were accordingly readmitted at Jerusalem. Of the bishops responsible for this act, some were hostile to Athanasius, others would regard it as an act of pacification. The stress which Eusebius lays on Constantine's desire to secure peace on this, as on all other occasions, suggests that that was a predominant idea in the writer's own mind, though perhaps not unmixed with other influences.
(iii) Synod of Constantinople. —Athanasius had not fled to Constantinople in vain. Constantine desired pacification but was not insensible to justice; and the personal pleadings of Athanasius convinced him that justice had been outraged (Ap 100 Arian. 86). The bishops at the dedication festival had scarcely executed the request, or command, of the emperor's first letter, when they received another written in a very different temper ( ib. ; Socr. H. E. i. 34; Soz. H. E. ii. 27). It was addressed "to the bishops that had assembled at Tyre"; described their proceedings as "tumultuous and stormy"; and summoned them without delay to Constantinople. The leaders of the Eusebian party alone obeyed; the rest retired to their homes. Among those who obeyed was Eusebius of Caesarea. Of the principal events which occurred at Constantinople, the banishment of Athanasius and the death of Arius, we need not speak here. But the proceedings of the synod then held there (a.d. 336) have an important bearing on the literary history of Eusebius. The chief work of the synod was the condemnation of MARCELLUS, bp. of Ancyra, an uncompromising opponent of the Arians. He had written a book in reply to the Arian Asterius "the sophist," in which his zeal against Arian tenets goaded him into expressions that had a rank savour of Sabellianism. The proceedings against him had commenced at Jerusalem and were continued at Constantinople, where he was condemned of Sabellianism, and deposed from his bishopric (Socr. H. E. i. 36; Soz. H. E. ii. 33). Eusebius is especially mentioned as taking part in this synod (Athan. Ap 100 Arian. 87; cf. Eus. c. Marc. ii. 4, p. 115). Not satisfied with this, the dominant party urged Eusebius to undertake a refutation of the heretic. Two works against Marcellus were his response. Eusebius found also more congenial employment during his sojourn at Constantinople. The celebration of the emperor's tricennalia had not yet ended, and Eusebius delivered a panegyric which he afterwards appended to his Life of Constantine . The delivery of this oration may have been the chief motive which induced Eusebius to accompany the Arian bishops to Constantinople. It must have been during this same visit, though on an earlier day, that he delivered before the emperor his discourse on the church of the Holy Sepulchre, probably previously spoken also at the dedication itself. This oration has unfortunately not survived. It does not appear that Eusebius had any personal interview with Constantine before the council of Nicaea. Here, however, he stood high in the emperor's favour, as the prominent position assigned to him shews; and there seems thenceforward no interruption in their cordial relations. The emperor used to enter into familiar conversation with him, relating the most remarkable incidents in his career, such as the miraculous appearance of the cross in the skies (V. C. i. 28), and the protection afforded by that emblem in battle (ii. 9). He corresponded with him on various subjects, on one occasion asking him to see to the execution of fifty copies of the Scriptures for his new capital, and supplying him with the necessary means (iv. 36); and he listened with patience, and even with delight, to the lengthy and elaborate orations which Eusebius delivered from time to time in his presence. Constantine praises his eulogist's gentleness or moderation (iii. 60). Nor was Constantine the only member of the imperial family with whom Eusebius had friendly relations. The empress Constantia, the sister of Constantine and wife of Licinius, wrote to him on a matter of religious interest. In his reply we are especially struck with the frankness of expostulation, almost of rebuke, with which he addresses her ( Spicil. Solesm. i. 383).
The great emperor breathed his last on May 22, a.d. 337; and Eusebius died not later than the close of 339 or the beginning of 340. In Wright's Ancient Syrian Martyrology , which cannot date later than half a century after the event, "the commemoration of Eusebius bp. of Palestine" is placed on May 30. If this represents the day of his death, as probably it does, he must have died in 339, for the notices will hardly allow so late a date in the following year. His literary activity was unabated to the end. Four years at most can have elapsed between his last visit to Constantinople and his death. He must have been nearly 80 years old when the end came. Yet at this advanced age, and within this short period, he composed the Panegyric , the Life of Constantine , the treatise Against Marcellus , and the companion treatise On the Theology of the Church ; probably he had in hand at the same time other unfinished works, such as the Theophania . There are no signs of failing mental vigour in these works. The two doctrinal treatises are perhaps his most forcible and lucid writings. The Panegyric and the Life of Constantine are disfigured by a too luxuriant rhetoric, but in vigour equal any of his earlier works. Of his death itself no record is left. Acacius, his successor, had been his pupil. Though more decidedly Arian in bias, he was a devoted admirer of his master (Soz. H. E. iii. 2). He wrote a Life of Eusebius, and apparently edited some of his works.
Literary Works. —The literary remains of Eusebius are a rich and, excepting the Chronicle and the Ecclesiastical History , a comparatively unexplored mine of study. They may be classed as: A. Historical ; B. Apologetic ; C. Critical and Exegetical ; D. Doctrinal ; E. Orations ; F. Letters .
A. Historical.—(1) Life of Pamphilus. —Eusebius (Mart. Pal. 11), speaking of his friend's martyrdom, refers to this work as follows: "The rest of the triumphs of his virtue, requiring a longer narration, we have already before this given to the world in a separate work in three books, of which his life is the subject." He also refers to it 3 times in his History ( H. E. i. 32, vii. 32, viii. 13). The Life of Pamphilus was thus written before the History , and before the shorter ed. of—
(2) The Martyrs of Palestine. —This work is extant in two forms, a shorter and a longer. The shorter is attached to the History , commonly between the 8th and 9th books.
The longer form is not extant entire in the original Greek. In the Bollandist Acta Sanctorum (Jun. t. i. p. 64) Papebroch pub. for the first time in Greek, from a Paris MS. of the Metaphrast, an account of the martyrdom of Pamphilus and others, professedly "composed by Eusebius Pamphili." It had appeared in a Latin version before. The Greek was reprinted by Fabricius, Hippolytus , ii. p. 217. This is a fuller account of the incidents related in the Mart. Pal. 11 attached to the History. Their common matter is expressed in the same words, or nearly so. Hence one must have been an enlargement or an abridgment of the other.
Nor can it reasonably be doubted that the shorter form of the Palestinian Martyrs is Eusebius's own. It retains those notices of the longer form in which Eusebius speaks in his own person; and, moreover, in the passages peculiar to this shorter form, Eusebius is evidently the speaker. Thus (c. 11) he mentions having already written a special work in three books on the life of Pamphilus; and when recording the death of Silvanus, who had had his eyes put cut (c. 13), mentions his own astonishment when he once heard him reading the Scriptures, as he supposed, from a book in church, but was told that he was blind and was repeating them by heart. Moreover, other incidental notices, inserted from time to time and having no place in the longer form, shew the knowledge of a contemporary and eyewitness.
The longer edition seems to be the original form. It is an independent work, apparently written not very long after the events. It betrays no other motive than to inform and edify the readers, more especially the Christians of Caesarea and Palestine, to whom it is immediately addressed. "our city of Caesarea" is an expression occurring several times (pp. 4. twice, 25, 30). "This our country," "this our city," are analogous phrases (pp. 8, 13).
In the shorter form the case is different. The writer does not localize himself in the same way. It is always "the city," never "this city," of Caesarea. The appeal to the Caesareans in recounting the miracle is left out (c. 4). The hortatory beginning and ending are omitted, and the didactic portions abridged or excised. The shorter form thus appears to be part of a larger work, in which the sufferings of the martyrs were set off against the deaths of the persecutors. The object would thus be the vindication of God's righteousness. This idea appears several times elsewhere in Eusebius, and he may have desired to embody it in a separate treatise.
(3) Collection of Ancient Martyrdoms. —Of this work Eusebius was not the author, but merely, as the title suggests and as the notices require, the compiler and editor. The narratives of martyrdoms were, in the eyes of Eusebius, not only valuable as history but instructive as lessons (H. E. v. praef.). Hence he took pains to preserve authentic records of them, himself undertaking to record those of his own country, Palestine, at this time; while he left to others in different parts of the world to relate those "quae ipsi miserrima viderunt," declaring that only thus could strict accuracy be attained ( H. E. viii. 13, with the whole context). But he was anxious also to preserve the records of past persecutions. Hence this collection of Maytyrologies . The epithet "ancient" (ἀρχαῖα ) must be regarded as relative, applying to all prior to the "persecution of his own time" (ὁ καθ᾿ ἡμᾶς διωγμός , according to his favourite expression). He himself refers to this collection for the martyrdom of Polycarp and others at Smyrna under Antoninus Pius A.D. 155 or 156 (iv. 15), for the documents relating to the sufferers in Gaul under M. Aurelius A.D. 177 (v. 1, seq.), and for the defence of Apollonius under Commodus A.D. 180-185 (v. 21). But it would probably comprise any martyrdoms which occurred before the long peace that preceded the outbreak of the last persecution under Diocletian.
[(4.) Chronicle. —This work may be described in words suggested by the author's own account of it at the beginning of his Eclogae Propheticae , as "chronological tables, to which is prefixed an epitome of universal history drawn from various sources." The epitome occupies the first book, the tables the second. The tables exhibit in parallel columns the successions of the rulers of different nations, so that contemporary monarchs can be seen at a glance. Notes mark the years of the more remarkable historical events, these notes constituting an epitome of history. The interest which Christians felt in the study of comparative chronology arose from heathen opponents contrasting the antiquity of their rites with the novelty of the Christian religion. Christian apologists retorted by proving that the Grecian legislators and philosophers were very much later than the Hebrew legislator and later than the prophets who had testified of Christ and taught a religion of which Christianity was the legitimate continuation. In the Praeparatio Evangelica (x. 9) Eusebius urges this, quoting largely from preceding writers who had proved the antiquity of the Jews, e.g. Josephus, Tatian, Clement of Alexandria, and especially Africanus. This last writer had made the synchronisms between sacred and profane history his special study, and his chronological work, now lost, gave Eusebius the model and, to a great extent, the materials for his own Chronicle .
The Greek of Eusebius's own work has been lost, and until recent times it was only known through the use made of it by successors, particularly Jerome, who translated it into Latin, enlarging the notices of Roman history and continuing it to his own time. In 1606 Scaliger published an edition of the Chronicle , in which he attempted to restore the Greek of Eusebius, collecting from Syncellus, Cedrenus, and other Greek chronologers, notices which he believed himself able, mainly by the help of Jerome's translation, to identify as copied from Eusebius; but his restoration of the first book, where he had but little guidance from Jerome, did not inspire confidence, and has been proved untrustworthy. An Armenian trans. of the Chronicle , pub. in 1818, enables us now to state the contents of bk. i.
After pleading that early Greek and even Hebrew chronology present many difficulties, Eusebius, in the first section, gives a sketch of Chaldee and Assyrian history, subjoining a table of Assyrian, Median, Lydian, and Persian kings, ending with the Darius conquered by Alexander. The authors he uses are Alexander Polyhistor, and, as known through him, Berosus; Abydenus, Josephus, Castor, Diodorus, and Cephalion. He notes the coincidences of these writers with Hebrew history and suggests that the incredible lengths assigned to reigns in the early Chaldee history may be reduced if the "sari," said to be periods of 3,600 years, were in reality far shorter periods, and in like manner, following Africanus, that the Egyptian years may be in reality but months. An alternative suggestion in this first book is that some Egyptian dynasties may have been, not consecutive, but synchronous. The second section treats of Hebrew chronology, the secular authorities used being Josephus and Africanus. Eusebius notices the chronological difference between the Heb., LXX., and Samaritan texts, and conjectures that the Hebrews, to justify by patriarchal example their love of early marriages, systematically shortened the intervals between the birth of each patriarch and that of his first son. He gives other arguments which decide him in favour of the LXX, especi