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An Ecclesiastical History To The 20th Year Of The Reign Of Constantine by Eusebius

Copy of an Epistle in which the Emperor commands that the prelates of the churches should be exempt from performing service in political matters

“HEALTH to thee, most esteemed Anulinus. As it appears from many circumstances, that when the religion was despised, in which the highest reverence of the heavenly majesty is observed, that our public affairs were beset with great dangers, and that this religion, when legally adopted and observed, afforded the greatest prosperity to the Roman name, and distinguished felicity to all men, as it has been granted by the divine beneficence, we have resolved that those men who gave their services with becoming sanctity, and the observance of this law, to the performance of divine worship, should receive the recompence for their labours, O most esteemed Anulinus; wherefore it is my will that these men, within the province entrusted to thee, in the catholic church, over which Cæcilianus presides, who give their services to this holy religion, and whom they commonly call clergy, shall be held totally free, and exempt from all public offices, to the end that they may not by any error or sacrilegious deviation be drawn away from the service due to the Divinity, but rather may devote themselves to their proper law without any molestation. So that, whilst they exhibit the greatest possible reverence to the Deity, it appears the greatest good will be conferred on the state. Farewell, most esteemed and beloved Anulinus.”








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