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Nicene and Ante-Nicene Fathers, Ser. II, Vol. VII:
Select Letters of Saint Gregory Nazianzen.: Letter XXIII

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Ep. XXIII.

Do not be surprized if I ask of you a great favour; for it is from a great man that I am asking it, and the request must be measured by him of whom it is made; for it is equally absurd to ask great things from a small man, and small things from a great man, the one being unseasonable, and the other mean.  I therefore present to you with my own hand my most precious son Amphilochius, a man so famous (even beyond his years) for his gentlemanly bearing, that I myself, though an old man, and a Priest, and your friend, would be quite content to be as much esteemed.  What wonder is it if he was cheated by a man’s pretended friendship, and did not suspect the swindle?  For not being himself a rogue, he did not suspect roguery, but thought that correction of language rather than of character was what was wanted, and therefore entered into partnership with him in business.  What blame can attach to him for this with honest men?  Do not then allow wickedness to get the better of virtue; and do not dishonour my grey hairs, but do honour to my testimony, and add your kindness to my benedictions, which are perhaps of some account with God before Whom we stand.


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