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Nicene and Ante-Nicene Fathers, Ser. II, Vol. IV:
Apology to the Emperor. (Apologia Ad Constantium.): Challenge to the accusers as to the alleged letter.

Early Church Fathers  Index     

11. Challenge to the accusers as to the alleged letter.

Now I have already called upon God, and His Word, the Only-begotten Son our Lord Jesus Christ, to witness for me, that I have never written to that man, nor received letters from him. And as to my accuser, give me leave to ask him a few short questions concerning this charge also. How did he come to the knowledge of this matter? Will he say that he has got copies of the letter? for this is what the Arians laboured to prove. Now in the first place, even if he can shew writing resembling mine, the thing is not yet certain; for there are forgers, who have often imitated the hand 1318 even of you who are Emperors. And the resemblance will not prove the genuineness of the letter, unless my customary amanuensis shall testify in its favour. I would then again ask my accusers, Who provided you with these copies? and whence were they obtained? I had my writers 1319 , and he his servants, who received his letters from the bearers, and gave them into his hand. My assistants are forthcoming; vouchsafe to summon the others (for they are most probably still living), and enquire concerning these letters. Search into the matter, as though Truth were the partner of your throne. She is the defence of Kings, and especially of Christian Kings; with her you will reign most securely, for holy Scripture says, ‘Mercy and truth preserve the king, and they will encircle his throne in righteousness 1320 .’ And the wise Zorobabel gained a victory over the others by setting forth the power of Truth, and all the people cried out, ‘Great is the truth, and mighty above all things 1321 .’


Footnotes

242:1318

Apol. Ar. 45.

242:1319

Vid. Rom. xvi. 22. Lucian is spoken of as the amanuensis of the Confessors who wrote to S. Cyprian, Ep. 16. Ed. Ben. Jader perhaps of Ep. 80. [Epp. 23, 79, Hartel.] S. Jerome was either secretary or amanuensis to Pope Damasus, vid. Ep. ad Ageruch. (123. n. 10. Ed. Vallars.) vid. Lami de Erud. 24, Ap. p. 258.

242:1320

Prov. xx. 28.

242:1321

1 Esdr. iv. 41.


Next: Truth the defence of Thrones.

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