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barians. The perpetual correspondence of the Latin clergy, the frequent pilgrimages to Itome and Jerusalem, and the growing authority of the popes, cemented the union of the Christian republic, and gradually produced the similar manners, and common jurisprudence, which have distinguished, from the rest of mankind, the independent, and even hostile, nations of modern Europe. But the operation of these causes was checked and retarded by the unfortunate accident, which infused a deadly poison into the cup of Salvation. Whatever might be the early sentiments of Ulphilas, his connections with the empire and the church were formed during the reign of Arianism. The apostle of the Goths subscribed the creed of Itimini; professed with freedom, and perhaps with sincerity, that the SoN was not equal, or consubstantial to the FATHER; * communicated these errors to the clergy and people; and infected the Barbaric world with a heresy,” which the great Theodosius proscribed and extinguished among the Romans. The temper and understanding of the new proselytes were not adapted to metaphysical subtilties; but they strenuously maintained, what they had piously received, as the pure and genuine doctrines of Christianity. The advantage of preaching and expounding the Scriptures in the Teutonic language promoted the apostolic labors of Ulphilas and his successors; and they ordained a competent number of bishops and presbyters for the instruction of the kindred tribes. The Ostrogoths, the Burgundians, the Suevi, and the Wandals, who had listened to the eloquence of the Latin clergy,” preferred the more intelligible lessons of their domestic teachers; and Arianism was adopted as the national faith of the warlike converts, who were seated on the ruins of the Western empire. This irreconcilable difference of religion was a perpetual source of jealousy and hatred ; and the reproach of Darbarian was imbittered by the more odious epithet of Heretic. The heroes of the North, who had submitted, with some reluctance, to believe that all their ancestors were in hell,” were astonished and exasperated to learn, that they themselves had only changed the mode of their eternal condemnation. Instead of the smooth applause, which Christian kings are accustomed to expect from their royal prelates, the orthodox bishops and their clergy were in a state of opposition to the Arian courts; and their indiscreet opposition frequently became criminal, and might sometimes be dangerous.” The pulpit, that safe and sacred organ of sedition, resounded with the names of Pharaoh and Holofernes; * the public discontent was inflamed by the hope or promise of a glorious deliverance; and the seditious saints were tempted to promote the accomplishment of their own predictions. Notwithstanding these provocations, the Catholics of Gaul, Spain, and Italy, enjoyed, under the reign of the Arians, the free and peaceful exercise of their religion. Their haughty masters respected the zeal of a numerous people, resolved to die at the foot of their altars; and the example of their devout constancy was admired and imitated by the Barbarians themselves. The conquerors evaded, however, the disgraceful reproach, or confession, of fear, by attributing their toleration to the liberal motives of reason and humanity; and while they affected the language, they imperceptibly imbibed the spirit, of genuine Christianity. The peace of the church was sometimes interrupted. The Catholics were indiscreet, the Barbarians were impatient; and the partial acts of severity or injustice, which had been recommended by the Arian clergy, were exaggerated by the orthodox writers. The guilt of persecution may be imputed ..o Euric, king of the Visigoths; who suspended the exercise of ecclesiastical, or, at least, of episcopal functions; and punished the popular bishops of Aquitain with imprisonment, exile, and confiscation.” But the cruel and absurd so Orosius affirms,in the year 416 (). vii c 41, p. 580), that the Churches of Christ (of the Catholics) were filled with Huns, Suevi, Vandals, o, 83 IRadbod, king of the Frisons, was so much scandalized § this rash declaration of a missionary, that he drew back lis foot after he had entered the baptismal font. §. Fleury, Hist. Eccles, tom. 1x. p. 167. st The epistles of Sidonius, bishop of Clermont, under the Visigoths, and of Avitus, bishop of Vienna, under the Burgundians, explain sometimes in dark hints, the general dispositions of the Catholics. The history of Clovis and Theodoric will suggest some particular facts. 83 Genseric confessed the resemblanco, by the severity with which he punished such indiscreet allusions. Victor Vitensis, 1, 7, § 10. so such are the contemporary complaints of Šidonius, bishop of Clermont (!. vii. c. 6, p. is 2, &c., edit. Širmond). Gregory of Tours, who quotes this epistle (l, enterprise of subduing the minds of a whole people was undertaken by the Vandals alone. Genseric himself, in his early youth, had renounced the orthodox communion; and the apostate could neither grant, nor expect, a sincere forgiveness. He was exasperated to find that the Africans, who had fled before him in the field, still presumed to dispute his will in synods and churches; and his ferocious mind was incapable of fear or of compassion. His Catholic subjects were oppressed by intolerant laws and arbitrary punishments. The language of Genseric was furious and formidable; the knowledge of his intentions might justify the most unfavorable interpretation of his actions; and the Arians were reproached with the frequent executions which stained the palace and the dominions of the tyrant. Arms and ambition were, however, the ruling passions of the monarch of the sea. But Hunneric, his inglorious son, who seemed to inherit only his vices, tormented the Catholics with the same unrelenting fury which had been fatal to his brother, his nephews, and the friends and favorites of his father; and even to the Arian patriarch, who was inhumanly burnt alive in the midst of Carthage. The religious war was preceded and prepared by an insidious truce; persecution was made the serious and important business of the Vandal court; and the loathsome disease which hastened the death of Hunneric, revenged the injuries, without contributing to the deliverance, of the church. The throne of Africa was successively filled by the two nephews of Hunneric; by Gundamund, who reigned about twelve, and by Thrasimund, who governed the nation, about twenty-seven, years. Their administration was hostile and oppressive to the orthodox party. Gundamund appeared to emulate, or even to surpass, the cruelty of his uncle; and, if at length he relented, if he recalled the bishops, and restored the freedom of Athanasian worship, a premature death intercepted the benefits of his tardy clemency. His brother, Thrasimund, was the greatest and most accomplished of the Vandal kings, whom he excelled in beauty, prudence, and magnanimity of soul. But this magnanimous character was degraded by his intolerant zeal and deceitful clemency. Instead of threats and tortures, he employed the gentle, but efficacious, powers of seduction. Wealth, dignity, and the royal favor, were the liberal rewards of apostasy; the Catholics, who had violated the laws, might purchase their pardon by the renunciation of their faith; and whenever Vol. III.-19
* The opinions of Ulphilas and the Goths inclined to semi-Arianism, since the would not say that the Son was a creature, though they held counmunion §. those who maintained that lieresy. Their apostle represented the whole controYersy as a question of trifling moment, which had been raised by the passions of the clergy. Theodoret, l. iv. c. 37.
*The Arianism of the Goths has been imputed to the emperor Valens: “Itaque justo Dei judicio insi eum vivum incenderunt, qui propter eum etiam mortui, witio erroris arsuri sunt.” Orosius, 1. vii. c. 33, p. 554. This cruel sentence is confirmed by Tillemont (Mém. Eccles. tom. vi. pp. 604–610), who coolly observes, “un seul, homme, entraina dans l'enfer un nombre infini de Septentrionaux, &c.” Salvian (de Gubern. Dei, l. v. pp. 150, 151) pities and excuses their voluntary error.
ii, c. 25, in tom. ii. p. 174), extorts an unwarrantable assertion, that of the nine vacancies in Aquitain, some had been produced by episcopal martyrdoms.
Thrasimund meditated any rigorous measure, he patiently waited till the indiscretion of his adversaries furnished him with a specious opportunity. Bigotry was his last sentiment in the hour of death ; and he exacted from his successor a solemn oath, that he would never tolerate the sectaries of Athanasius. But his successor, Hilderic, the gentle son of the savage Hunneric, preferred the duties of humanity and justice to the vain obligation of an impious oath; and his accession was gloriously marked by the restoration of eace and universal freedom. The throne of that virtuous, though feeble monarch, was usurped by his cousin Gelimer, a zealous Arian: but the Vandal kingdom, before he could enjoy or abuse his power, was subverted by the arms of Belisarius; and the orthodox party retaliated the injuries which they had endured.” The passionate declamations of the Catholics, the sole historians of this persecution, cannot afford any distinct series of causes and events; any impartial view of the characters, or counsels; but the most remarkable circumstances that deserve either credit or notice, may be referred to the following heads; I. In the original law, which is still extant,” Hunneric expressly declares (and the declaration appears to be correct), that he had faithfully transcribed the regulations and penalties of the Imperial educts, against the heretical congregations, the clergy, and the people, who dissented from the established religion. If the rights of conscience had been understood, the Catholics must have condemned their past conduct, or acquiesced in their actual sufferings. But they still persisted to refuse the indulgence which they claimed. While they trembled under the lash of persecution, they praised the laudable severity of Hunneric himself, who burnt or banished great numbers of Manichaeans; * and they rejected, with horror, the ignominious compromise, that the disciples of Arius and of Athanasius should enjoy a reciprocal and similar toleration in the
, 90 The original monuments of the Vandal persecution are preserved in the five books of the history of Victor Witensis § Persecutione Vandalicã), a bishop who was exiled by Hunneric; in the Life of St. Fulgentius, who was distinguished in the persecution of Thrasimund (in Biblioth. Max. Patrum. tom. ix. pp. 4-16); and in the first book of the Vandalic War, by the impartial Procopius (c. 7, 8, pp. 196, 197, 198, 199). Dom Ruinart, the last editor of Victor, has illustrated the §§ * with a copious and learned apparatus of notes and supplement. aris, 4). on Victor, iv. 2, p. 65. Hunneric refuses the name of Catholics to the Homoousians. He describes, as the veri Divinae. Majestatis cultores, his own party, who professed the faith, confirmed by more than a thousand bishops, in the synods of Rimini and Seleucia. * Victor, ii. 1, pp. 21, 22: Laudabilior * * * widebatur. In the MSS. which emit this word, the passage is unintelligible. See Ruinart, Not. p. 164.
territories of the Romans, and in those of the Vandals.” II. The practice of a conference, which the Catholics had so frequently used to insult and punish their obstinate antagonists, was retorted against themselves.” At the command of Hunneric, four hundred and sixty-six orthodox bishops assembled at Carthage; but when they were admitted into the hall of audience, they had the mortification of beholding the Arian Cyrila exalted on the patriarchal throne. The disputants were separated, after the mutual and ordinary reproaches of noise and silence, of delay and precipitation, of military force and of popular clamor. One martyr and one confessor were selected among the Catholic bishops; twenty-eight escaped by flight, and eighty-eight by conformity; forty-six were sent into Corsica to cut timber for the royal navy; and three hundred and two were banished to the different parts of Africa, exposed to the insults of their enemies, and carefully deprived of all the temporal and spiritual comforts of life.” The hardships of ten years' exile must have reduced their numbers; and if they had complied with the law of Thrasimund, which prohibited any episcopal consecrations, the orthodox church of Africa must have expired with the lives of its actual members. They disobeyed, and their disobedience was punished by a second exile of two hundred and twenty bishops into Sardinia; where they languished fifteen years, till the accession of the gracious Hilderic.” The two islands were judiciously chosen by the malice of their Arian tyrants. Seneca, from his own experience, has deplored and exaggerated the miserable state of Corsica,” and the plenty of Sardinia was
* Victor, ii. 2, pp. 22, 23. The clergy of Carthage called these conditions periculosse, and they seem, indeed, to have been proposed as a snare to entrap the Catholic bishops. - to see the narrative of this conference, and the treatment of the bishops, in Victor, ii. 13–18, pp. 35-42, and the whole fourth book, pp. 63-171; The third book, pp. 42-62, is entirely filled by their o or confession of faith. . . to see the list of the African bishops, in Victor, pp. 117-140, and Ruinart's notes, pp. 215-397. The schismatic name of Dongtits frequently occurs, and they appear to have adopted (like our fanatics of the last age) the pious appellations of Deodatus, Deogratias, Quidvultdeus, Habetdeum, &c." - o, Fulgent. Vit. c. 16:29. Thrasimund affected the praise of moderation and learning; and Fulgentius addressed three books of controversy to the Arian tyrant, whom he styles piissime Iter. Biblioth. Maxim. Patrum, tom, i. p. 41. Öniy sixty bishops are mentioned as exiles, in the life of Fulgentius; they are increased to one hundred and twenty by Victor Tunnunensis, and Isidore; but the number of two hundred and twenty is specified in the Historia Miscella, and a short authentic chronicle of the times. See Ruinart, pp. 570-571. 97 see the base and insipid epigrams of the Stoic, who could not support exile with more fortitude than Övid. Corsica might not produce corn, wine, or oil; but it could not be destitute of grass, water, and even fire.
* These names appear to have been Antroduced by the Domatists.- M.