Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol VIII:Early Church Fathers Index Previous Next
Memoirs of Edessa And Other Ancient Syriac Documents.: Part IX
Martyrdom of our apostles.
After the death of Abgar, the kingdom of Armenia was divided between two: Ananoun, Abgars son, reigned at Edessa, and his sisters son, Sanadroug, in Armenia. What took place in their time has been previously told by others: the apostles arrival in Armenia, the conversion of Sanadroug and his apostasy for fear of the Armenian satraps, and the martyrdom of the apostle and his companions in the canton of Chavarchan, now called Ardaz, and the stone opening to receive the body of the apostle, and the removal of this body by his disciples, his burial in the plain, and the martyrdom of the kings daughter, Santoukhd, near the road, and the apparition of the remains of the two saints, and their removal to the rocks—all circumstances related by others, as we have said, a long time before us: we have not thought it important to repeat them here. In the same way also what is related of the martyrdom at Edessa of Attæus, a disciple of the apostle, a martyrdom ordered by Abgars son, has been told by others before us.
The prince who reigned after the death of his father, did not inherit his fathers virtues: he opened the temples of the idols, and embraced the religion of the heathen. He sent word to Attæus: “Make me a head-dress of cloth interwoven with gold, like those you formerly used to make for my father.” He received this answer from Attæus: “My hands shall not make a head-dress for an unworthy prince, who does not worship Christ the living God.”
Immediately the king ordered one of his armed men to cut off Attæus feet. The soldier went, and, seeing the holy man seated in the chair of the teacher, cut off his legs with his sword, and immediately the saint gave up the ghost. We mention this cursorily, as a fact related by others a long while ago. There came then into Armenia the Apostle Bartholomew, who suffered martyrdom among us in the town of Arepan. As to Simon, who was sent unto Persia, I cannot relate with certainty what he did, nor where he suffered martyrdom. It is said that one Simon, an apostle, was martyred at Veriospore. Is this true, or why did the saint come to this place? I do not know; I have only mentioned this circumstance that you may know I spare no pains to tell you all that is necessary.
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