Friday, July 18, 2014


PACIAN OF BARCELONA (circa. 310-391 C.E.): “ declare your agreement with the Phrygians. But, most illustrious Lord, so manifold and so diverse is the error of these very men, that in them we have not only to overthrow their peculiar fancies against penance, but to cut off the heads, as it were, of some Lernaean monster. And, in the first place, they rely on more founders than one, for I suppose Blastus the Greek is of them; Theodotus also AND --- ( PRAXEAS ) --- WERE ONCE TEACHERS OF YOUR PARTY, THEMSELVES ALSO PHRYGIANS OF SOME CELEBRITY, who falsely say they are inspired of Leucius, boast that they are instructed by Proculus. FOLLOWING MONTANUS, AND MAXIMILLA, AND PRISCILLA, how manifold controversies have they raised concerning the day of Easter, the Paraclete, Apostles, Prophets, and many other disputes, as this also concerning the Catholic name, the pardon of penance...” - (Chapter 2, Epistle I, “On the Catholic Name,” Pages 317-327, “The Extant Works of S. Pacian, Library of Fathers of the Holy Catholic Church 17,” Translated by the Rev. C. H. Collyns, M.A., Student of Christ Church 1842.)
PACIAN OF BARCELONA (circa. 310-391 C.E.): “...Who therefore, must first be refuted through my letter? Even if you wish it, these pages will not be able to hold just the mere names of all these heretics,{4} unless by your own writings, which in every way are condemnatory of penance, ( you declare that you have shared the veiws of the Phrygians ).{5} But, dear Sir, so manifold and diverse is the error alone of these individuals [= the Montantists] that among them [= the Montantists] we have not only to strike against that belief which they [= the Montantists] hold against penance, but also to cut off the heads, as it were, of some Lernaen creature.{6} [Section 2.] First of all, they [= the Montantist's] rely on several authorites, for, I think, Blastus the Greek [= mentioned by Irenaeus] is one of them ; Theodotus also, AND PRAXAES WERE ONCE [= accounts for Praxaes departure] TEACHERS OF [= accounts for Tertullians ferocity] YOUR GROUP. [= the Montantist's] THEY THEMESELVES, [= Praxaes included] ALSO PHRYGIANS [= the Montantist's] OF SOME NOTERIETY [= accounts for Tertullians defence and attack] who falsely allege that they [= the Montantist's] are inspired by Leucius, boast that they are instructed by Proculus. And having followed Montanus, Maximilla, and Priscilla, what numerous controversies have they [= the Montantist's] roused concerning the day of Easter, the Paraclete, the apostles, the prophets, and many other things, – as for example, the appelation “Catholic” and the forgiveness of penance...” - (Chapter 2, Sections 1-2, Epistle I, [To Sympronian] “On the Catholic Name,” Page 18, “Pacian of Barcelona,” in: “The Fathers of the Church,” Iberian Fathers, Volume 3, Pacaian of Barcelona – Orosius of Braga,” Translated by Craig L. Hanson, 1999.)
[PERSONAL NOTE]: Comments in highlighting added by me.
[FOOTNOTE 3]: Another, earlier name for the Montantists. Such writers as Eusebius of Caesarea and Epiphanius of Salamis used the phrase: “...heresy of Gk., ( KATA ) the Phyges...” to designate this heretical movement ; hence “...Cataphrygians...”. Its birthplace was the region between Mysia and Phrygia in Asia Minor.
[FOOTNOTE 4]: Peyot here conjectures a gap in the text. Rubio Fernandez notes such in his critical apparatus, but maintains the text. Either interpretation is possible.
[FOOTNOTE 5]: Again, the Montantists are meant. Also, Pacian here as elsewhere in his letters purposely links Sympronian and his Novationist colleagues with the Montantists.
[FOOTNOTE 6]: A reference to the mythological Lernaen Hydra, a multiheaded serpentine monster disposed of by Heracles in the course of his Labors. The Hydra's mortal heads were believed to regenerate themselves and multiply when cut off.

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