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In this period the unanimity which prevailed for the first three centuries is somewhat broken, especially by Jerome. The doubts which arose in this age concerning the deuterocanonical books prevailed more especially in the East. We find, however, that not one of the Fathers of this epoch, excepting Jerome, rejected the deuterocanonical books. Their opposition to them never passed beyond a mere doubt concerning them. We find, also, in this period, many in the East and in the West, who defend a canon identical with the Canon of Trent. Lastly, we find that the very men who give a list of the Jewish books, evince an inclination to the Christian and enlarged Canon. Thus, we see, that the practical tradition of the Church was so powerful that it overcame in the life of the Church the doubts of individual men and isolated churches.

As we come down from the first ages of the Church the patristic data multiply, and, hence, we could not set forth here every particular writers views and use of Holy Scripture. Neither is such now necessary. No one will deny that in this period Jerome is the only positive opponent of the deuterocanonical books. All likewise recognize that the most and the greatest of the Fathers of this epoch received these books as divine Scripture. Many adduce here the authority of the Council of Nice, 325. They believe that in that council there was formulated a catalogue of books which included the deuterocanonical Scripture. The proofs for the assertion of this are so feeble that we pretermit it here as worthless to establish our theory.

The Council of Hippo A. D. 393, the Council of Carthage A. D. 397, and the second Council of Carthage in 419 A. D. officially promulgated canons of Scripture which included all the deuterocanonical books.

Council of Hippo, Can. 36:

The Synod defines that besides the canonical Scriptures nothing be read in the Church under the name of divine Scripture. The Canonical Scriptures are: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Josue, Judges, Ruth, four books of Kings (Regnorum), Paralipomena two books, Job, the Davidic Psalter, the five books of Solomon, the twelve (minor) Prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, Ezechiel, Tobias, Judith, Esther, Ezra two books, Maccabees two books. The first Council of Carthage, 397 A. D., confirms the same canon.

The second Council of Carthage, 419 A. D., has the following: It is decreed that nothing but the canonical Scriptures may be read under the name of divine Scripture. The canonical Scriptures are the following: Of the Old Testament, Genesis, … Job, the Psalter, five books of Solomon, the Prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, (Ezekiel is wanting) the Twelve (minor) Prophets, Tobias, Judith, Esther, two books of Ezra, two books of Maccabees.… This decree shall be made known to our brother and fellow priest Boniface, the Bishop of Rome, or even to the other bishops for its confirmation; for we have received from the Fathers, that thus (the Scriptures) should be read in the Church.

Some have found it strange that the three African Councils were held at such short intervals. The reason of the repetitions of the Canon seems to be the fact that Catholic thought had been disturbed in those days by Jerome, who in his Prologus Galeatus to the Books of Kings, rejected out of the Canon the deuterocanonical books, A. D. 390. Repeatedly in his subsequent labors, he inveighs against the deuterocanonical books and fragments, and it was to retain the Catholics faithful to their old traditions that these three councils repeat their Canons in such quick succession.

No doubt can reasonably exist regarding St. Augustines attitude towards the deuterocanonical Scriptures. He was an important factor in the three councils just mentioned; and repeatedly in his works he declares himself clearly for the deuterocanonical books. It would be a long and needless task to set forth Augustines use of deuterocanonical Scripture. It will not be contradicted by any patristic scholar that Augustine held in equal veneration the protocanonical and deuterocanonical books. He gives his views of Scripture and a complete canon in the Enchiridion of Christian Doctrine, Book II. VIII.:

But let us now go back to consider the third step here mentioned, for it is about it that I have set myself to speak and reason as the Lord shall grant me wisdom. The most skillful interpreter of the sacred writings, then, will be he who in the first place has read them all and retained them in his knowledge, if not yet with full understanding, still with such knowledge as reading gives—those of them, at least, that are called canonical. For we will read the others with greater safety when built up in the belief of the truth, so that they will not take first possession of a weak mind, nor, cheating it with dangerous falsehoods and delusions, fill it with prejudices adverse to a sound understanding. Now, in regard to the canonical Scriptures, he must follow the judgment of the greater number of Catholic Churches; and among these, of course, a high place must be given to such as have been thought worthy to be the seat of an Apostle and to receive epistles. Accordingly, among the canonical Scriptures he will judge according to the following standards: to prefer those that are received by all the Catholic Churches to those which some do not receive. Among those, again, which are not received by all, he will prefer such as have the sanction of the greater number and those of greater authority, to such as are held by the smaller number and those of less authority. If, however, he shall find that some books are held by the greater number of churches, and others by the churches of greater authority (though this is not a very likely thing to happen), I think, that in such a case, the authority on the two sides is to be looked upon as equal. Now the whole Canon of Scripture on which we say this judgment is to be exercised is contained in the following books:—Five books of Moses, that is: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy; one book of Joshua the son of Nun; one of Judges; one short book called Ruth, which seems rather to belong to the beginning of Kings; next, four books of Kings and two of Chronicles—these last not following one another, but running parallel, so to speak, and going over the same ground. The books now mentioned are history, which contains a connected narrative of the times, and follows the order of the events. There are other books which seem to follow no regular order, and are connected neither with the order of the preceding books nor with one another, such as Job, and Tobias, and Esther, and Judith, and the two books of Maccabees and the two of Ezra, which last look more like a sequel to the continuous regular history which terminates with the books of Kings and Chronicles. Next are the Prophets, in which there is one book of the Psalms of David; and three books of Solomon, viz.: Proverbs, Song of Songs, and Ecclesiastes. For two books, one called Wisdom and the other Ecclesiasticus, are ascribed to Solomon from a certain resemblance of style, but the most likely opinion is that they were written by Jesus, the son of Sirach. Still they are to be reckoned among the prophetical books, since they have attained recognition as being authoritative. The remainder are the books which are strictly called the Prophets: twelve separate books of the Prophets which are connected with one another, and having never been disjoined, are reckoned as one book; the names of these prophets are as follows:—Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micha, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi; then there are the four greater Prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, Ezekiel. The authority of the Old Testament is contained within the limits of these forty-four books. That of the New Testament, again, is contained within the following:—Four books of the Gospel, according to Matthew, according to Mark, according to Luke, according to John; fourteen epistles of the Apostle Paul—one to the Romans, two to the Corinthians, one to the Galatians, to the Ephesians, to the Philippians, two to the Thessalonians, one to the Colossians, two to Timothy, one to Titus, to Philemon, to the Hebrews; two of Peter, three of John, one of Jude, and one of James; one book of the Acts of the Apostles, and one of the Revelation of John.

St. Augustines practical use of the deuterocanonical books may be judged from his De Civitate Dei and Contra Manichaeos taken as specimens. In the former work, he has fifteen quotations from Wisdom, fourteen from Ecclesiasticus, two from Baruch, Judith, and Tobias respectively, and one from the Benedicite of Daniel. In his work against the Manicheans he has twenty-three quotations from Wisdom, six from Ecclesiasticus, two from Tobias, one from Baruch and one from the Maccabees. In his work Contra Faustum XXXIII. 9, he promulgates the Catholic criterion of the canonical Scriptures: I admonish briefly you, who hold the execrable error (of the Manicheans), if ye wish to follow the authority of that Scripture which is to be preferred to all others, that ye follow that Scripture which from the time of Christ, through the dispensations of the Apostles, and of the Bishops, who succeeded them in their sees by certain succession, has come down even to our day, preserved throughout the whole earth, approved and explained. Chemnitz, objected against Augustines authority for the deuterocanonical Scripture, citing a passage from his Contra Gaudentium, XXXI. 38: And indeed the Scripture which is called the Maccabees the Jews have not, as they have the Law, the Prophets, and the Psalms, to which the Lord bears testimony as to his witnesses saying: That all things must needs be fulfilled which are written in the Law of Moses, and in the Prophets, and in the Psalms concerning me (Luke 24:44); but it (Maccabees) is received by the Church not unprofitably, if it be soberly read or heard. This is a direct testimony that the Church, to whom Augustine directed all who would receive the genuine Scripture, had received and sanctioned a book not contained in the Jewish Canon, and that such book was not without profit to readers and hearers. Later on in the same chapter he explains what he means by the restrictive clause: if it be soberly read or heard. For we should not, he says, assenting approve all things that we read in the Scriptures that men did, even though they be praised by the testimony of God; but we should consider and discern, using the judgment not of our own authority, but of the divine and holy Scriptures, which does not permit us to approve or imitate all the deeds of those to whom it bears a good and excellent testimony. Augustines words restrict not the authority of Maccabees beneath divine Scripture, but regulate its use. The same words might have been applied by him to the Gospel of Matthew.

There are sometimes alleged against us the words of Augustine which occur Lib. Retract. X. 3: Thus also I appear not to have rightly called the words prophetic in which it is written: Quid superbit terra et cinis? Eccli. 10:9, since they are not written in the book of one whom we certainly know to have been a prophet. We believe that it is not the intention of Augustine here to throw doubt on Ecclesiasticus, but to be accurate in drawing a distinction between prophets and hagiographers. Such subtlety leaves intact a books divinity.

In the first book of his De Predestinatione Sanctorum XIV. against the Pelagians, who rejected the book of Wisdom, Augustine argues thus: These things being so, there should not be rejected a sentence from the book of Wisdom, which has merited to be read by the order of lectors in the Church of Christ for so many years (tam longa annositate), and which has merited to be listened to with the veneration of divine authority by all Christians, from bishops to the extreme lay faithful penitents and catechumens. Iterum ibidem: But those who wish to be taught by the works of the Fathers (Tractatorum) must needs prefer the book of Wisdom to all the Fathers; for the celebrated Fathers nearest in time to the Apostles preferred it to their own opinions; and they, using it as an authority, believed that they were making use of nothing short of a divine testimony.

It is evident, that with Augustine, the condition of all the deuterocanonical books was the same; hence by applying this testimony to the entire collection we have not alone the view of Augustine, but a succinct statement of the belief and usage of the Church from the Apostles to his own day.

A document which sets forth the official attitude towards the deuterocanonical Scripture in this age is the Decree of Pope Gelasius, A. D. 492–A. D. 496.

Nunc vero de Scripturis divinis agendum est quid universalis recipiat Ecclesia, vel quid vitare debeat. Incipit ordo Veteris Testamenti, Genesis liber I. Exodi liber I. Levitici liber I. Numeri liber I. Deuteronomii liber I. Jesu Nave liber I. Judicum liber I. Ruth liber I. Regum libri IV. Paralipomenon libri II. Psalmorum CL. liber I. Salomonis libri III. Proverbia liber I. Ecclesiastes liber I. Cantici Canticorum liber I. Item Sapientiœ liber I. Ecclesiastici liber I. Item ordo Prophetarum: Esaiæ liber I. Jeremiæ liber I. cum Chinoth, id est, Lamentationibus suis, Ezechielis liber I. Danielis liber I. Osea liber I. Amos liber I. Michaeæ liber I. Joel liber I. Abdiæ liber I. Jonæ liber I. Nahum liber I. Abbacuc liber I. Aggæi liber I. Zachariæ liber I. Malachi liber I. Item ordo historiarum: Job liber I. ab aliis omissus. Tobiœ liber I. Hesdræ libri II. Hesther liber I. Judith liber I. Machabæorum libri II.

In the year 405, St. Exuperius, Bishop of Toulouse (†417) wrote to Pope Innocent I. asking among other things what books should be received in the Canon of Holy Scripture. The Pontiff responds: The subjoined brief will show what books should be received into the Canon of Holy Scripture. These are therefore (the books) concerning which thou hast wished the admonition of a longed for voice. The five books of Moses.… The book of Jesus, son of Nave, one book of Judges, the four books of Kings and Ruth, sixteen books of Prophets, five books of Solomon, the Psalter; also of historical books, one book of Job, one of Tobias, one of Esther, one of Judith, two of Maccabees, two of Ezra and two of Paralipomenon. In all these canons Baruch is considered an integral part of Jeremiah. The canons of Gelasius and Innocent are not ex cathedra definitions, but plain statements of the belief and usages of the Church from her central authority.

The testimony of the fourth and fifth centuries to the divinity of the deuterocanonical Scriptures is evinced in the four great codices of that period: the Vatican and Sinaitic of the fourth century, and the Alexandrian and Codex of St. Ephrem of the fifth century. An accurate description of these codices will be given in the course of our treatise. Suffice it to say here that they all make no discrimination between the protocanonical and deuterocanonical books.

The Ethiopian version of Scripture, made in the fourth century, and the Armenian version, made in the beginning of the fifth century, contain all the books canonized by the Council of Trent. At what time the deuterocanonical books were placed in the Syriac translation known as the Peshito is not known, but they were there in the time of St. Ephrem (†379), as we shall see in the course of the present work; hence, we may add the testimony of the Syriac Peshito to the data for the deuterocanonical books.

Sacred archæology also affords proofs for the divinity of the deuterocanonical books. In the Catacombs, we find frequent representations from the deuterocanonical books, proving that those books were a part of the deposit of faith of the Church of the Martyrs. The recent researches in subterranean Rome have clearly demonstrated this proof, as can be seen in the works of Vincenzi (Sessio IV. Conc. Trid.); Malou (Lecture de la Bible II. 144); Garrucci (Storia dell Arte Christiana), and others. The constant and universal tradition and usage of the first three centuries are corroborated in the fourth and fifth century by the express declarations and praxis of Fathers, by solemn decrees of Councils and Popes, and by the preserved evidences of the practical life of the Church.

The adversaries of the deuterocanonical books bring against us the authority of the Fathers who have edited canons in which the deuterocanonical books find no place. Preeminent for age and authority among these is St. Athanasius, the decus orthodoxiæ.

We reproduce here the entire quotation from which the opposition of Athanasius is inferred: Since many have indeed tried to place in order those books which are called Apocrypha, and mix them with the divinely inspired Scripture which we have received upon certain testimony as the Fathers handed down to us, who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word, it has seemed good to me also, the brethren exhorting, to compute in the Canon, as I have learned, from the beginning, and in order, the books that have been handed down and are believed to be divine, that everyone that has been seduced may convict the seducers, and he who has persevered incorrupt may joyously remember these. The books of the Old Testament are in number twenty-two; for so many, as I have heard, are the elements (of speech) with the Hebrews. In this order, and by these names, they are severally enumerated: The first is Genesis, then Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua son of Nun, Judges and Ruth follow; then the four books of Kings, of which the first and second are considered as one, and, in like manner, the third and fourth. Following these the two books of Paralipomenon are also considered as one, as also the first and second of Ezra. Then come the book of Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, the Canticle of Canticles and Job; then the Prophets, of whom twelve are considered as one book. Then Isaiah, Jeremiah and with him Baruch, the Lamentations, and the Epistle; then follow Ezechiel and Daniel, thus far the books of the Old Testament.

After enumerating the complete Canon of the New Testament, he continues: These are the fountains of salvation, so that who thirsts may be filled by their discourses; in these alone, the Christian doctrine is taught. Let no one add to them or take anything from them. But for greater accuracy, I deem it necessary to add this also, that there are, forsooth, other books besides these, which, indeed, are not placed in the Canon, but which the Fathers decreed should be read to those who have lately come into the fold, and seek to be catechized, and who study to learn the Christian doctrine. (These are): The Wisdom of Solomon and the Wisdom of Sirach (Ecclesiasticus), Esther, Judith, Tobias, the so-called Doctrine of the Apostles, and Pastor. Therefore, while the former are in the Canon, and these latter are read, there is no mention of the Apocrypha, which are the figment of heretics who arbitrarily write books, to which they assign dates, that by the specious semblance of antiquity they may find occasion to deceive the simple. [Ep. Fest. 29.]

To judge rightly St. Athanasius attitude towards Holy Scripture, we must recall what has been said respecting Meliton. We must readily admit that in these ages a distinction was made between the two classes of books, but it did not deny divine inspiration to the deuterocanonical works. A greater dignity was given by some Fathers to the books that had come down to the Church from the Jews; but these same Fathers testify to the veneration in which the deuterocanonical works were held by the Church, and to the part they played in the life of the faithful. It must also be borne in mind that Athanasius flourished in Alexandria the fertile source of Apocrypha, and in his zeal to repel the inventions of heretics he was most conservative in treating the Canon. His location of Esther among the deuterocanonical books is unique, and was probably caused by the sanguinary character of the book, which also led some Jews to doubt of its divine inspiration.

His omission of Maccabees seems to be an oversight since he adverts to their history in his writings. We do not seek to establish that the status of the two classes of books was the same with Athanasius; but we judge it evident from his writings that he venerated these same books as divine, although not equal in extrinsic authority to the books officially handed down from the Jews. The testimony of Athanasius that the Fathers of the Church had decreed that these books should be read in the Church manifests clearly the Churchs attitude towards these books; and the following passages taken from the writings of Athanasius show how deeply he also had drunk from these founts.

Sap. 14:12.

              Athanas. Oratio Contra Gentes, 9.

Initium enim fornicationis est exquisitio idolorum: et adinventio illorum corruptio vitæ est—.

              —quod et Dei sapientia his verbis declarat: Initium fornicationis est exquisitio idolorum.

Sap. 14:12–21.


Initium fornicationis, etc.

              Hæc … jam olim Scriptura his verbis complexa est: Initium fornicationis, etc. Pergit usque ad Vers. 21.

Sap. 14:21.

              Ibid. 17.

Et hæc fuit vitæ humanæ deceptio: quoniam aut affectui, aut regibus deservientes homines, incommunicabile nomen lapidibus et lignis imposuerunt.

              —sed cum incommunicabile, ut loquitur Scriptura, Dei nomen et honorem iis qui non dii sed mortales homines fuere ascribere studuerunt—.

Sap. 13:5.

              Ibid. 44.

a magnitudine enim speciei, et creaturæ cognoscibiliter poterit Creator horum videri.

              Ex magnitudine et pulchritudine rerum creatarum convenienter Creator conspicitur.

Sap. 6:19.

              S. Athanas. De Incarnatione Dei, 4.

Cura ergo disciplinæ dilectio est: et dilectio custodia legum illius est: custoditio autem legum consummatio incorruptionis est—.

              —sicuti Sapientia ait: Observatio legum confirmatio est incorruptionis.

Sap. 2:23, 24.


Quoniam Deus creavit hominem inexterminabilem, et ad imaginem similitudinis suæ fecit illum. Invidia autem diaboli mors introivit in orbem terrarum—.

              —ut et Sapientia his verbis testatur: Deus creavit hominem ut incorruptus esset, et imaginem propriæ æternitatis; invidia autem diaboli mors introivit in mundum.

Sap. 1:11.

              Ath. Apolog. et Contra Arianos, 3.

Custodite ergo vos a murmuratione, quæ nihil prodest, et a detractione parcite linguæ, quoniam sermo obscurus in vacuum non ibit: os autem, quod mentitur, occidit animam.

              —nec timeant illud quod in Sacris Litteris scriptum est … Os quod mentitur occidit animam.

Tob. 12:7.

              Ibid. 11.

Sacramentum regis abscondere, etc.

              —cum oporteat, ut scriptum est: Sacramentum regis abscondere.

This quotation is not made use of by Athanasius, but is found in an apologetic treatise directed to him by a synod held at Alexandria, of the bishops of Egypt, Thebais, Libya and Pentapolis. It is thus the testimony of the East to the divinity of the deuterocanonical works.

In the letter of St. Alexander of Alexandria to his colaborer we find the following:

Eccli. 30:4.

              Ibid. 66.

Mortuus est pater ejus, et quasi non est mortuus: similem enim reliquit sibi post se.

              Mortuus est enim, ait quodam in loco S. Scriptura, pater ejus et quasi non est mortuus.

Baruch 3:12.

              St. Ath. De Decretis Synod. Nicenæ, 12.

Dereliquisti fontem sapientiæ—.

              Verbum item Israelem objurgans ait: Dereliquisti fontem sapientiæ.


              Ibid. 15.

              Hujus porro sapientiæ fontem esse Deum nos docet Baruch, ubi videlicet redarguitur Israel fontem sapientiæ dereliquisse.

Sap. 7:25.

              S. Ath. De Sententia Dionysii, 15.

Vapor est enim virtutis Dei, etc.

              —congruenter rursum Christus vapor dictus est: Est enim, inquit, vapor virtutis Dei.

Eccli. 15:9.

              Idem, Epist. ad Episcopos Ægypti et Libyæ, 3.

Non est speciosa laus in ore peccatoris.

              Non est speciosa laus in ore peccatoris.

Sap. 1:11.

              Idem Apolog. ad Const. Imp. 5.

(Already quoted.)

              Nam os quod mentitur occidit animam.

Tob. 4:19.

              Ibid. 17.

Consilium semper a sapiente perquire.

              Scriptum est: Ab omni sapiente consilium accipe.

Sap. 3:5.

              Idem, Apolog. De Fuga Sua. 19.

In paucis vexati, in multis bene disponentur, quoniam Deus tentavit eos, et invenit illos dignos se.

              Nam sicut aurum in fornace probatos, ut ait Sapientia, invenit illos Dominus dignos se.

Sap. 2:21.

              Ibid. 71.

Hæc cogitaverunt, et erraverunt: excæcavit enim illos malitia eorum.

              In his itaque eorum mentem excæcavit malitia.

Eccl. 19:26.

              Idem, Contra Arianos Orat. I. 4.

Ex visu cognoscitur vir, et ab occurso faciei cognoscitur sensatus.

              —sapientia ait: Ex verbis suis cognoscitur vir.

Baruch 4:20–22.

              Ibid. 12.

Exui me stola pacis, indui autem me sacco obsecrationis, et clamabo ad Altissimum in diebus meis. Ego enim speravi in æternum, salutem vestram et venit mihi gaudium a sancto, etc.

              Susanna quoque aiebat: Deus sempiterne. Baruch item scripsit: Clamabo ad Deum sempiternum in diebus meis. Et paulo post: Ego enim speravi in sempiternum salutem vestram et venit mihi gaudium a sancto.

Dan. 13:42.

              Ibid. 13.

Exclamavit autem voce magna Susanna, et dixit: Deus æterne, qui absconditorum es cognitor, qui nosti omnia antequam fiant.

              Et apud Dan.: Exclamavit voce magna Susanna et dixit: Deus æterne, qui absconditorum es cognitor, qui nosti omnia antequam fiant.

Baruch 3:12.

              Ibid. 19.

Dereliquisti fontem sapientiæ—.

              —item apud Baruch scriptum est: Dereliquistis fontem sapientiæ.

Eccli. 24:12.

              Idem Contra Arianos, Orat. II. 4.

Tunc præcepit, et dixit mihi Creator omnium: et qui creavit me, requievit in tabernaculo meo.—

              —vel si ipse de seipso ait: Dominus creavit me.

Sap. 13:5.

              Ibid. 32.

a magnitudine enim speciei et creaturæ, cognoscibiliter poterit Creator horum videri.

              Siquidem ex magnitudine et pulchritudine rerum creatarum, illarum Creator convenienter conspicitur.

Judith 13:15.

              Ibid. 35.

non enim quasi homo, sic Deus comminabitur, neque sicut filius hominis ad iracundiam inflammabitur.

              Deus autem non ut homo est, quemadmodum testatur Scriptura.

Baruch 3:12.

              Ibid. 42.

(Oft quoted.)

              (Oft quoted.)

Sap. 9:2.

              Ibid. 45.

et sapientia tua constituisti hominem, ut dominaretur creaturæ, quæ a te facta est—.

              Et in libro Sapientiæ legitur: Et sapientia tua constituisti hominem ut dominaretur creaturis quæ a te factæ sunt.

Baruch 3:36.

              Ibid. 49.

Hic est Deus noster, et non æstimabitur alius adversus eum.

              Et Baruch: Hic est Deus noster, non æstimabitur alius adversus eum.

Sap. 6:26.

              Ibid. 79.

Multitudo autem sapientum sanitas est orbis terrarum: et rex sapiens stabilimentum populi est.

              Vel si nulla est sapientia, cur multitudo sapientum in Scriptura memoratur?

Eccli. 1:10.


Et effudit illam super omnia opera sua, et super omnem carnem secundum datum suum et præbuit illam diligentibus se.

              —ut hisce verbis testatur filius Sirach: Effudit illam in omnia opera sua cum omni carne, secundum donationem suam, et præbuit illam diligentibus se.

Dan. 14:4.

              Idem Contra Arianos, Orat. III. 30.

Qui respondens, ait ei: Quia non colo idola manufacta, sed viventem Deum, qui creavit cælum, et terram, et habet potestatem omnis carnis.

              Item Daniel Astyagi dixit: Ego idola manufacta non colo, sed Deum viventem qui cœlum et terram creavit, et in omnem carnem dominatum habet.

Dan. 13:45.

              S. Athanas. Epist. I. ad Serapionem, 5.

Cumque duceretur ad mortem, suscitavit Dominus spiritum sanctum pueri junioris, cujus nomen Daniel—.

              Et apud Danielem: Suscitavit Deus Spiritum pueri junioris cujus nomen Daniel, et exclamavit voce magna: Mundus ego sum a sanguine hujus.

Baruch 3:1.

              Ibid. 7.

Et nunc, Domine omnipotens, Deus Israel, anima in angustiis, et spiritus anxius clamat ad te.

Dan. 3:86.

Benedicite spiritus, et animæ justorum, Domino; laudate et superexaltate eum in sæcula.

              Baruch item his verbis precatur: Anima in angustiis et spiritus anxius clamat ad te, et in Hymno trium Puerorum. Benedicte spiritus et animæ justorum Domino.

Baruch 3:10, 12.

              Ibid. 19.

Quid est, Israel, quod in terra inimicorum es? Dereliquisti fontem sapientiæ.

              Et iterum apud Baruch: Quid est Israel, quod in terra inimicorum es? dereliquisti fontem sapientiæ.

Sap. 1:5.

              Ibid. 26.

Spiritus enim sanctus disciplinæ effugiet fictum, et auferet se a cogitationibus, quæ sunt sine intellectu.

              Spiritus sanctus, inquit, disciplinæ fugiet dolum, et auferet se a cogitationibus quæ sunt sine intellectu.

Sap. 12:1.

              Ibid. 25.

O quam bonus et suavis est, Domine, spiritus tuus in omnibus!

              —iterum in Sapientia legitur: Tuus enim incorruptus spiritus est in omnibus.

Dan. 3:57.

              Idem, Epist. II. ad Serap. 6.

Benedicite omnia opera Domini Domino, etc.

              Benedicite omnia opera Domini Domino.

Sap. 1:7.

              Idem, Epist. III. ad Serap. 4.

Quoniam spiritus Domini replevit orbem terrarum, etc.

              Ita enim scriptum est: Spiritus Domini replevit orbem terrarum.

Dan. 14:4.

              Idem, Epist. IV. ad Serap. 21.

Qui respondens, ait ei: Quia non colo idola manufacta, sed viventem Deum, qui creavit cœlum, et terram et habet potestatem omnis carnis.

              Ita quoque Daniel libere Darium affatus est: Non veneror idola manufacta, sed viventem Deum qui creavit cœlum et terram, et habet potestatem omnis carnis.

Eccli. 1:32.

              S. Ath. Vita S. Antonii, 28.

exsecratio autem peccatori, cultura Dei.

              —nam exsecratio peccatori est pietas erga Deum.

Dan. 13:42.

              Ibid. 31.

Exclamavit autem voce magna Susanna, et dixit: Deus æterne, qui absconditorum es cognitor, qui nosti omnia antequam fiant.

              —solusque Deus novit omnia antequam fiant.

Baruch 3:36–38.

              St. Athan. De Incarnat. et contra Arianos (In fine).

Hic est Deus noster, et non æstimabitur alius adversus eum. Hic adinvenit omnem viam disciplinæ, et tradidit illam Jacob puero suo, et Israel dilecto suo. Post hæc in terris visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

              —quemadmodum et Jeremias dicit: Hic est Deus noster, et non æstimabitur alius adversus eum. Hic adinvenit omnem viam scientiæ, et tradidit illam Jacob puero suo et Israel dilecto suo. Post hæc in terris visus est et cum hominibus conversatus est.

Sap. 2:24.

              St. Athanas. Contra Apollinarium, Lib. I. 7.

Invidia autem diaboli mors introivit in orbem terrarum—.

              Invidia autem diaboli mors intravit in mundum.

Ibid. 15.

Repetit idem.

Dan. 3:57–62; 88.

              St. Ath. De Trinitate et S. Spiritu, 2.

              Tres quoque sancti martyres, Ananias, Azarias, et Misæl, in fornace ignis positi in terra Chaldæorum, cum admirabiliter Deus calorem ignis ad temperatum refrigerium convertisset, universam creaturam adhortantes secum laudare Deum sic incipiunt: Benedicite, etc. Citat majorem partem Cantici Trium Puerorum.

Baruch 3:12.

              Ibid. 19.

(Already quoted.)

              (Already quoted.)

Baruch 3:12, 13.

              Ibid. 20.

Derelinquisti fontem sapientiæ; nam si in via Dei ambulasses, habitasses utique in pace sempiterna.

              dicit: Dereliquisti fontem sapientiæ; viam Domini si fuisses ingressus, utique habitares in pace in æternum tempus.

Sap. 5:3.


dicentes intra se, pœnitentiam agentes, et præ angustia spiritus gementes: Hi sunt quos habuimus aliquando in derisum, et in similitudinem improperii.

              St. Ath. Sermo Major De Fide, 28.

Hic est quem habuimus aliquando in derisionem—.

Eccli. 38:9.

              St. Ath. Fragment De Amuletis.

Fili, in tua infirmitate ne despicias te ipsum, sed ora Dominum, et ipse curabit te.

              —cœlesti sapientiæ obsequens dicenti: Fili, in tempore infirmitatis tuæ ne despicias, sed ora Dominum, et ipse curabit te.

Eccli. 15:9.

              Idem, Epist. VII. 4.

(Already quoted.)

              (Already quoted.)

Dan. 3:50.

              Idem, Epist. X. 3.

(Already quoted.)

              (Already quoted.)

Sap. 7:27.

              Ibid. 4.

Et cum sit una, omnia potest: et in se permanens omnia innovat, et per nationes in animas sanctas se transfert, amicos Dei et prophetas constituit.

              —prout de Sapientia testatur Salomon quæ cum una sit, omnia potest, et in se manens omnia renovat, et cum ad sanctas animas accedet, tunc Dei amatores et prophetas efficit.

Sap. 2:12.

              Idem. Epist. XI. 5.

Circumveniamus ergo justum, quoniam inutilis est nobis, etc.

              Circumveniamus justum, quia nobis minime placet.

Eccli. 27:29.


Et qui foveam fodit, incidet in eam, etc.

              Qui foveam proximo suo fodit in eamdem incidet.

Sap. 2:12.

              Idem, Epist. XIX.

(Already quoted.)

              (Already quoted.)

Dan. 12.

              Idem, Epist. ad Marcellinum, 9.

              Spiritu edoctus quisque sermonem administrat ita ut … aliquando historias præscribant ut Daniel Susannæ—.

Eccli. 15:9.

              Ibid. 29.

(Already quoted.)

              (Already quoted.)

Baruch 2:35.

              S. Ath. Expositio in Ps. LXXVII. 10.

Et statuam illis testamentum alterum sempiternum, ut sim illis in Deum, et ipsi erunt mihi in populum, etc.

              Novam Evangelii traditionem dicit atque illud: Ecce dies venit, et disponam cum eis testamentum novum.

Eccli. 2:1.

              Idem, in Ps. CXVII.

Fili, accedens ad servitutem Dei, sta in justitia, et timore, et præpara animam tuam ad tentationem.

              —juxta illud: Accedis ad serviendum Domino, præpara animam tuam ad tentationem.

              Idem, Ps. CXVIII. 60.

              Repetit idem.

Eccli. 18:6.

              Ibidem 96.

Cum consummaverit homo, tunc incipiet, etc.

              juxta illud: Cum consummatur homo, tunc incipit.

Baruch 3:38.

              St. Ath. De Titulis Psalmorum, De Ps. LXXVII. 137.

Post hæc in terris visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

              Et in terra visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est. (Repetit idem in Ps. XCIII.)

Dan. 13:20.

              St. Athan, Fragmenta in Math.

Ecce, ostia pomarii clausa sunt, et nemo nos videt et nos in concupiscentia tui sumus, etc.

              Eodem quoque modo senes duo cum Susannæ dixissent: Ecce in concupiscentia tui sumus—.

Eccli. 23:22.


Anima calida quasi ignis ardens non extinguetur, donec aliquid glutiat.

              —juxta Sapientiæ verbum: Anima calida est ut ignis accensus.

Dan. 13.


              Daniel vero lascivos senes sycophantiæ causa a se damnatos juxta legem Moysis ultus est.

Eccli. 6:36.

              Ibid. De Falsis Prophetis.

Et si videris sensatum, evigila ad eum, et gradus ostiorum illius exterat pes tuus.

              Si videris sapientem aliquem, ex consilio Sapientiæ, mane vigila ad illum, stationes portarum ejus terat pes tuus, ut ab eo ediscas legis umbras et gratiarum dona.

Eccli. 43:7.

              Ibid. De Lunaticis.

A luna signum diei festi, etc.

              —Sapientia ita loquente: A luna, signum diei festi.

Maccab. Passim.

              Expositio in Ps. LXXVIII.

              Carnes sanctorum tuorum bestiis terrœ. Quomodo enim sancti non fuerunt quorum sanguis effusus est pro legis observantia, ex quorum erant numero Maccabæi?

No man can say that St. Athanasius simply considered these books as pious productions, somewhat like to our Imitation of Christ. Quoting a text from Judith, as we have seen above, Contra Arianos II. 38, he explicitly adds ut testatur Scriptura.

His insertion of Pastor and the Doctrina Apostolorum among the books of the second canon is a critical error of his own, and not warranted by the usage of the Church. Canonicity and divinity were not in the mind of Athanasius convertible terms. There had been no official promulgation of a canon, and hence he applied the term to the list of books which of old had received the sanction of the Synagogue. We feel warranted, then, in saying that as a witness of tradition in his practical use of Scripture the weight of Athanasius authority is with us, while, in his capacity of critic, he accords to the deuterocanonical books in general a veneration which the Church never gave to any but divine books.

We omit the Synopsis Scripturæ, formerly falsely ascribed to Athanasius, since it covers the same ground as the testimony already quoted.

Another Father whose authority is invoked against us is St. Cyril of Jerusalem.

The testimony upon which his authority is invoked against us is found in his fourth Cathechesis, Chapters 33, 35, and 36. The following excerpts will illustrate his position:

Studiously also learn from the Church what are the books of the Old Testament, and what of the New. Read to me nothing of the Apocrypha. For thou, who art ignorant of those books which are recognized and received by all, why dost thou wretchedly lose thy labor about those which are doubtful and controverted? Read the divine Scriptures, the twenty-two books of the Old Testament, which the seventy-two interpreters translated … Read these twenty-two books, and have naught to do with the Apocrypha. These alone studiously meditate and handle, which we also read in the Church with certain confidence. Much more prudent and more pious were the Apostles and the ancient bishops, the rectors of the Church, who handed them down. Thou, therefore, being a child of the Church, overstep not the established laws. Continuing, he gives the same canon as that of Athanasius, except that he conjoins Ruth with Judges, and includes Esther, thus preserving the number twenty-two. And he adds: But let all the other (books) he held outside (the canon) in a second (inferior order). And whatever are not read in the churches, do thou not read these even privately.

In truthfully weighing this testimony, we find in the first sentence the adoption of our criterion of inspiration: Studiously also learn from the Church what are the books of the Old Testament, and what of the New. In the enunciation of this eternal verity, Cyril spoke in the name of the whole Church. It was always believed, and always will be believed by those of the faith of Christ, that it was the province of the Church to regulate the code of Scripture. This every Father believed and taught. Neither does Cyril characterize as apocryphal the deuterocanonical books. He considered them doubtful and of an inferior rank, and hence, exhorts the catechumens to make use of those concerning which there was no doubt. In forbidding the converts to read privately the books which were not read in the Church, he tacitly allows such private reading of the deuterocanonical books. The spirit of the Church at Jerusalem was extremely conservative, tinged with Judaism. Naturally for such the books which the Synagogue did not recognize would be regarded with some disfavor. Cyril was influenced by the trend of religious thought reigning at Jerusalem. He sacrificed nothing by his strict views on the canon. The protocanonical books are the most useful; the Church had not defined the Canon; and Cyril safeguarded the rights of the Church by bidding everyone go to her for the Canon. The protocanonical and deuterocanonical books were not made absolutely equal until the decree of the Council of Trent. The Fathers considered the latter as useful, edifying, and most of the Fathers considered them of divine origin, but they, in general, accorded them a less dignity and veneration than that given the protocanonical books. The slight doubt that reigned in some churches regarding their divine origin induced Cyril to place them in an inferior rank. In the uncertainty of religious thought of his time, he judged it better that the neophytes should devote their study to the absolutely certain sources of divine truth. Were Cyril alive to-day, he would learn from the Church to receive the complete Canon.

In his practical use of Scripture, Cyril follows the usage of the Church, and often quotes the deuterocanonical books, as the following examples will show.

Dan. 3:27, 29.

              Catech. II. XVI.

quia justus es in omnibus quæ fecisti nobis, et universa opera tua vera, et viæ tuæ rectæ, et omnia judicia tua vera. Peccavimus, et inique egimus, etc.

              —illicque pro malorum remedio dicebant: Justus es, Domine, in omnibus quæ fecisti nobis: peccavimus enim et inique egimus.

Eccli. 3:22.

              Catech. VI. 4.

Altiora te ne quæsieris, et fortiora te ne scrutatus fueris: sed quæ præcepit tibi Deus, illa cogita semper, et in pluribus operibus ejus ne fueris curiosus.

              Profundiora te ne quæsieris, et fortiora te ne investiges: quæ tibi præcepta sunt, ea mente agita.

Sap. 13:2.

              Ibid. 8.

sed aut ignem, aut spiritum, aut citatum aërem, aut gyrum stellarum, aut nimiam aquam, aut solem et lunam, rectores orbis terrarum deos putaverunt.

              Deum nonnulli ignem esse senserunt.

Sap. 13:5.

              Catech. IX. 2.

a magnitudine enim speciei et creaturæ, cognoscibiliter poterit creator horum videri.

              juxta Salomonem qui ait: nam ex magnitudine et pulchritudine creaturarum, proportione servata, Procreator earum conspicitur.

Eccli. 43:2.

              Ibid. 6.

Sol in aspectu annuntians in exitu, vas admirabile opus excelsi.

              —nonne admirari oportet eum qui in solis fabricam inspexerit? nam modici vasis apparens vim ingentem complectitur; ab oriente apparens et in occidentem usque lumen emittens.

Sap. 13:5.

              Ibid. 16.

magnitudine enim speciei et creaturæ, cognoscibiliter poterit Creator horum videri.

              —et ex his quæ dicta lectaque sunt, quæque ipse reperire aut cogitare poteris, ex magnitudine et pulchritudine creaturarum, proportione servata, Auctorem earum conspicias.

Baruch 3:36–38.

              Catech. XI. 15.

Hic est Deus noster, et non æstimabitur alius adversus eum. Hic adinvenit omnem viam disciplinæ, et tradidit illam Jacob puero suo, et Israel dilecto suo. Post hæc in terris visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

              —audi Prophetam dicentem: Hic est Deus noster, non reputabitur alius adversus eum. Invenit omnem viam scientiæ, et dedit eam Jacob puero suo, et Israel dilecto a se. Post hæc in terra visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

Eccli. 2:22.

              Ibid. 19.

(Already quoted.)

              Ne extollas te ipsum, ne cadas. Quæ tibi mandata sunt ea sola meditare.

Sap. 2:24.

              Catech. XII. 5.

Invidia autem diaboli mors introivit in orbem terrarum—.

              At maximum hoc opificiorum Dei in paradiso choros agens inde diaboli ejecit invidia.

Eccli. 4:36.

              Catech. XIII. 8.

Non sit porrecta manus tua ad accipiendum, et ad dandum collecta.

              Nec enim ad accipiendum tantum porrecta, verum etiam ad operandum prompta tibi sit manus.

Dan. 14:35.

              Catech. XIV. 25.

Et apprehendit eum Angelus Domini in vertice ejus, et portavit eum capillo capitis sui.

              Si enim Habacuc ab angelo translatus est, per comam sui capitis portatus, etc.

Sap. 6:17.

              Catech. XVI. 19.

Quoniam dignos se ipsa circuit quærens, et in viis ostendit se illis hilariter, et in omni providentia occurrit illis.

              —tantum illi ostia aperiamus; circumit enim quœrens dignos.

Dan. 13:42–45.

              Ibid. 31.

Exclamavit autem voce magna Susanna, et dixit: Deus æterne, qui absconditorum es cognitor, qui nosti omnia, antequam fiant, tu scis, quoniam falsum testimonium tulerunt contra me, et ecce, morior, cum nihil horum fecerim, quæ isti malitiose composuerunt adversum me. Exaudivit autem Dominus vocem ejus. Cumque duceretur ad mortem, suscitavit Dominus spiritum sanctum pueri junioris, cujus nomen Daniel—

              Idem (Spiritus Sanctus) sapientem effecit Danielis animam ut seniorum judex esset adolescens. Damnata fuerat casta Susanna tamquam impudica; vindex nullus; quis enim eam a principibus eripuisset? Ad mortem ducebatur, in manibus lictorum jam erat … scriptum est enim: Suscitavit Deus Spiritum sanctum in puero juvenculo.

Eccli. 34:9.

              Catech. XXIII. Mystagogia, V. 17.

Qui non est tentatus, quid scit?

              —et quomodo alicubi dictum est: Vir non tentatus, non est probatus.

We must admit that Cyrils use of deuterocanonical Scripture is more restricted than that of other writers, but it is sufficient to show how the general belief and usage of the Church overcame the critical views of the individual. The force of such general acceptance of the Church may easily be judged from this alone, that in the very catecheses in which he recommends to the catechumens the use of only the protocanonical books, he himself employs the deuterocanonical books as divine Scripture.

There is also alleged against us the authority of Epiphanius.

The passage upon which his opposition to the deuterocanonical works is founded, occurs in the fourth chapter of the treatise on Weights and Measures. In this chapter he endeavors to make the number of canonical books of the Old Testament accord with the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet. Of course, he only enumerates the books of the Jewish Canon. The closing words of the chapter are: Regarding the two books that are written in verse, that is, the Wisdom of Solomon, which is called Panaretus, and the book of Jesus the Son of Sirach, the grandson of Jesus, who wrote this book of Wisdom in Hebrew, which his grandson Jesus translated into Greek, although they are useful and profitable, they are by no means placed in the Canon of Scripture. Hence, they were not placed in the Ark of the testament. The obscurity and lack of critical acumen of the writer appear in this short extract. It is evident that he supposes that the divine books of the Jews were placed in the Ark of the covenant, whereas only the Decalogue was therein placed. The term canonical with Epiphanius, signified the official approbation by the Synagogue. Being a native of Palestine, his mind was in a measure tinged by Judaizing theories. In his day, the deuterocanonical books were not officially canonized by any universal authority. They had the sanction of usage and the veneration of the Church, but this did not make them equal in extrinsic authority to the books that Jew and Christian had always considered divine. Although Epiphanius speaks only of Wisdom and Ecclesiasticus his words equally apply to the other deuterocanonical books, since their history has always been the same. The reason that Tobias, Judith and Maccabees receive no recognition from Cyril and Epiphanius is most probably that they are not so useful to impart dogmatic truths. Cornely and others think that Epiphanius, in giving in this place the restricted Jewish Canon, tacitly infers the existence of an enlarged Christian Canon. We fail to find this opinion credible. Everything seems to demonstrate that the canonization spoken of in those days was simply the official sanction of the Synagogue. This was the one and only Canon that these Fathers recognized, but in excluding the other books from it they did not deny them divinity, although many accorded them an inferior dignity. All the books were read; all were venerated by the faithful; but the books of the first Canon had the external sanction of the Synagogue, which raised them theoretically above the others. It was only in the Council of Trent, that the official declaration of the Church made the two classes perfectly equal. Now, such official declaration being wanting, it is not strange that these Fathers, theoretically treating the question should not place these books in the Canon. Neither is it strange that individuals should have doubted concerning the divinity of these books. It shows the need of the Magisterium of the Church, which entered at the appropriate time, and took away all doubt by her authoritative voice.

That Epiphanius, at least, considered Wisdom and Ecclesiasticus as divine Scripture appears from the following passage from Adversus Hæreses, Hæres. LXXVI. 5: For if thou wert begotten of the Holy Ghost, and taught by the Apostles and Prophets, this shouldst thou do: Examine all the sacred codices from Genesis to the times of Esther, which are twenty-seven books of the Old Testament, and are enumerated as twenty-two; then the four Holy Gospels … the Books of Wisdom, that of Solomon, and of the Son of Sirach, and in fine all the books of Scripture. Hence, Epiphanius, as it were, made two classes of the Old Testament Scriptures; the books canonized by the Jews, and those adopted and used by the Church as Holy Writ. In favor of the former was the authority of the Synagogue; while all used and venerated the latter, as, individuals, they did not feel warranted in according them a prerogative that the Church had not yet given.

Epiphanius use of the deuterocanonical books will appear from the following passages:

Eccli. 7:1.

              Adversus Hæreses, Lib. I. Hæres. XXIV. 6.

Noli facere mala, et non te apprehendent.

              —quemadmodum Scriptura testatur: Qui quærunt mala, mala eos apprehendent.

Sap. 3:14.

              Ibid. Hæres. XXVI. 15.

et spado, qui non operatus est per manus suas iniquitatem, etc.

              Ad hæc alio in loco Spiritus Sanctus … hoc modo vaticinatus est: Beata sterilis incoinquinata, quæ nescivit torum in delicto, et spado, qui non operatus est manibus suis iniquitatem.

Maccab. 1:1

              Ibid. Hæres. XXX. 25.

              Quæ causa est cur in Maccabæorum libris scriptum sit: —e Cittiensium terra genus quodam esse propagatum.

Dan. 13:42.

              Ibid. 31.

Exclamavit autem voce magna Susanna, et dixit: Deus æterne, qui absconditorum es cognitor, qui nosti omnia antequam fiant—.

              Novit enim omnia Deus antequam fiant, ut est Scriptum.

Eccli. 13:20.

              Ibid.Hæres. XXXII. 8.

Omnis caro ad similem sibi conjungetur, et omnis homo simili sui sociabitur.

              Quoniam avis omnis secundum genus suum congregatur, et omnis homo simili sui sociabitur ait Scriptura.

Eccli. 43:26.

              Ibid.Hæres. XLII. 9.

Qui navigant mare, enarrent pericula ejus; et audientes auribus nostris admirabimur.

              —ut hæc in nobis vera sit Scripturæ sententia: Qui navigant mare, virtutes Domini narrant.

Eccli. 14:5.

              Ibid. Hæres. XLII. Refut. 70.

Qui sibi nequam est, cui alii bonus erit?

              Quis seipsum in præceps impellit, impletque quod scriptum est: Qui sibi nequam est, cui bonus erit?

Sap. 7:2.

              Ibid. Lib. II. Hæres. II. 29.

Decem mensium tempore coagulatus sum in sanguine, etc.

              In quo ad Salomonis dictum illud allusisse videntur: Decem mensium spatio concretus in sanguine.

Baruch 3:36–38.

              Ibid. Hæres. LVII. 2.

Hic est Deus noster, et non æstimabitur alius adversus eum. Hic adinvenit omnem viam disciplinæ et tradidit illam Jacob puero suo et Israel dilecto suo. Post hæc in terris visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

              —ut Scriptura declarat: Hic est Deus tuus: non reputabitur alius ad ipsum. Invenit omnem viam scientiæ et dedit illam Jacob puero suo, et Israel dilecto suo. Post hæc in terra visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

Baruch 3:36.

              Ibid. 9.

(Already quoted.)

              Scriptum est, inquit: Iste Deus est noster, et non æstimabitur alius.

Eccli. 20:2.

              Ibid. Hæres. LVIII. 4.

Concupiscentia spadonis devirginabit juvenculam—.

              —a Sapiente dicitur: Concupiscentia spadonis devirginabit juvenculam.

Eccli. 27:2.

              Ibid. Hæres. LIX. 7.

Sicut in medio compaginis lapidum palus figitur sic et inter medium venditionis et emptionis angustiabitur peccatum.

              Atque ut palus, inquit, inter duos lapides conteritur, sic peccatum in medio ejus qui emit et vendit.

Sap. 1:13.

              Ibid. Hæres. LXIV. 19.

Quoniam Deus mortem non fecit, nec lætatur in perditione vivorum.

              Deus enim mortem non fecit, nec delectatur in perditione viventium. Invidia vero diaboli mors introivit in mundum, ut per Salomonem Sapientia testatur.

Sap. 1:14.

              Ibid. Hæres. LXIV. 31.

Creavit enim, ut essent omnia: et sanabiles fecit nationes orbis terrarum: et non est in illis medicamentum exterminii, nec inferorum regnum in terra.

              —id quod Sapientia confirmat his verbis: Creavit enim ut essent omnia Deus; et salutares sunt mundi generationes. Nec est in illis medicamentum exitii.

Sap. 2:23.

              Ibid. 34.

Quoniam Deus creavit hominem inexterminabilem, et ad imaginem similitudinis suæ fecit illum.

              Creavit enim, ait Sapientia, hominem in incorruptione; ad imaginem æternitatis suæ fecit illum.

Sap. 3:1–4.

              Ibid. 36.

Justorum autem animæ in manu Dei sunt, et non tanget illos tormentum mortis. Visi sunt oculis insipientium mori: et æstimata est afflictio exitus illorum: et quod a nobis est iter, exterminium: illi autem sunt in pace. Et si coram hominibus tormenta passi sunt, spes illorum immortalitate plena est.

              Idem vero per Salomonem in eo libro qui Sapientia inscribitur ostendit ubi: Justorum, inquit, animæ in manu Dei sunt, et non tanget illos tormentum. Visi sunt oculis insipientum mori, et æstimata est afflictio exitus illorum, et quod a nobis est iter, exterminium. Illi autem sunt in pace, et spes illorum immortalitate plena est.

Sap. 7:2.

              Ibid. 39.

decem mensium tempore coagulatus sum in sanguine, ex semine hominis, et delectamento somni conveniente.

              —Christi corpus non ex voluntate viri, ac voluptate somnique congressione in iniquitatibus esse susceptum.

Eccli. 10:13.


Cum enim morietur homo, hæreditabit serpentes, et bestias, et vermes.

              Quam ob causam sapiens ille Sirach ita pronuntiat: Cum enim morietur homo, hæreditabit serpentes, et bestias, et vermes.

Sap. 3:4–6.

              Ibid. 48.

Et si coram hominibus tormenta passi sunt, spes illorum immortalitate plena est. In paucis vexati, in multis bene disponentur: quoniam Deus tentavit eos, et invenit illos dignos se. Tamquam aurum in fornace probavit illos, et quasi holocausti hostiam accepit illos, et in tempore erit respectus illorum.

              Quam vero consentanea iis de martyribus a Salomone pronuntiata sint, attendite. Neque enim aliarum Scripturarum testimonio caremus. Deus, inquit, tentavit eos, et invenit eos dignosse. Tamquam aurum in fornace probavit illos; et sicut holocaustum suavitatis accepit illos; et in tempore visitationis illorum, etc. Cum antea dixisset: Et si coram hominibus tormenta passi sunt, spes illorum immortalitate plena est. In paucis correpti magna beneficia consequentur.

Sap. 1:4.

              Ibid. 54.

quoniam in malevolam animam non introibit sapientia, nec habitabit in corpore subdito peccatis.

              Præterea Salomon: In malevolam, inquit, animam non introibit sapientia, nec habitabit in corpore obnoxio peccato.

Sap. 4:12.

              Ibid. Hæres. LXV. 1.

Fascinatio enim nugacitatis obscurat bona, et inconstantia concupiscentiæ transvertit sensum sine malitia.

              Nam in illo Scripturœ dictum illud impletur: Fascinatio enim nugacitatis obscurat bona, et inconstantia concupiscentiæ transvertit mentem sine malitia.

Sap. 4:8–12.

              Ibid. Hæres. LXVII. 4.

Senectus enim venerabilis est non diuturna etc.

              Hic igitur: Senectus, inquit, venerabilis non longæva, etc.

Sap. 4:13, 14.


Consummatus in brevi, explevit tempora multa, placita enim erat Deo anima illius: propter hoc properavit educere illum de medio iniquitatum; populi autem videntes, et non intelligentes, nec ponentes in præcordiis talia.—

              Ut autem de pueris loqui illum appareat statim adjicit: Consummatus in brevi (quasi dicat: mortuus juvenis) implevit tempora multa. Placita enim erat Domino anima illius: propterea festinavit eum educere de medio malitiæ.

Baruch 3:36.

              Ibid. Hæres. LXIX. 31.

Hic est Deus noster, et non æstimabitur alius adversus eum.

              Alter cum ipso minime comparabitur.

Ibid. 37.


Hic adinvenit omnem viam disciplinæ, et tradidit illam Jacob puero suo, et Israel dilecto suo.

              Quid porro? Ut de Filio sermonem esse cognoscas, deinceps ista subjecit: Invenit omnem viam scientiæ et dedit illam.

Ibid. 38.


Post hæc in terris visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

              Tum postea: In terra visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

Ibid. 37, 38.

              Ibid. 53.

Ibid. 38.

              Ibid. 55.

Esther 13:9.

              Ibid. Lib. III. Hæres. LXX. 7.

et dixit: Domine, Domine, rex omnipotens, in ditione enim tua cuncta sunt posita, et non est, qui possit tuæ resistere voluntati, si decreveris salvare Israel.

              Sed et illud proinde certum, posse illum quæ velit efficere: Nullus est enim qui ejus voluntati resistat.

Baruch 3:37, 38.

              Ibid. Hæres. LXXI.3.

              Qui invenit omnem viam scientiæ. Exstitisse vero divina Scriptura non dubitat. Nam quæ sequuntur ante illum exstitisse declarant. Velut quod omnem viam scientiæ reperisse dicatur, deinde in terris visus esse.

Sap. 1:7.

              Ibid. Hæres. LXXIV.

Quoniam spiritus Domini replevit orbem terrarum: et hoc, quod continet omnia, scientiam habet vocis.

              Spiritus enim Domini replevit orbem terrarum.

Eccli. 14:5.

              Ibid. Hæres. LXXVI. Confut. VIII.

Qui sibi nequam est, cui alii bonus erit? et non jucundabitur in bonis suis.

              Ecquis igitur illius miserebitur, qui sibi ipsi malus, nemini alteri bonus est?

Sap. 9:14.

              Ibid. LXXVI. Confut. XXXI.

Cogitationes enim mortalium timidæ, et incertæ providentiæ nostræ—.

              —siquidem divina majestas, Patris inquam et Filii et Spiritus Sancti, angelorum mentes omnes longo intervallo superat, nedum hominum quorum timidœ cogitationes.

Baruch, 3:38.

              St. Epiph. Expositio Fidei XVI.

Post hæc in terris visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

              —ac denique verus ut appareret Filius, et illud Propheta vaticinium expleret: Et post hæc enim in terra visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

The frequency with which this passage is quoted by the Fathers manifests that they considered it a classic text to prove the Incarnation.

Sap. 14:20.

              St. Epiph. Ancoratus II.

Initium enim fornicationis est exquisitio idolorum—.

              Initium quippe fornicationis est exquisitio idolorum, ut ait Scriptura.

Eccli. 3:22.

              Ibid. XII.

Altiora te ne quæsieris, et fortiora te ne scrutatus fueris: sed quæ præcepit tibi Deus, illa cogita semper, et in pluribus operibus ejus ne fueris curiosus.

              Etenim cum nos Scriptura reprehendit his verbis: Quæ præcepta tibi sunt, hæc cogita; neque arcanis et occultis tibi opus est: et altiora te ne quæsieris, ac profundiora te ne inquiras.

Dan. 3:57.

              Ibid. XXIV.

Benedicite omnia opera Domini Domino—.

              —et creaturas a Creatore discernentes, hunc in modum (tres pueri in fornace) locuti sunt: Benedicite omnia opera Domini Domino.

He repeats this passage and other portions of the Canticle in the twenty-fourth and twenty-fifth Chapters.

Sap 10:21

              Ibid. XXXI.

quoniam sapientia aperuit os mutorum, et linguas infantium fecit disertas.

              —quique balbutientium linguam disertam præstitit, etc.

Sap. 8:2

              Ibid. XLII.

Hanc amavi, et exquisivi a juventute mea, et quæsivi sponsam mihi eam assumere, et amator factus sum formæ illius.

              Ad hæc Salomon aliam quamdam sapientiam appellat: Amavi, inquit, pulchritudinem ejus et eam mihi sponsam duxi.

Baruch 3:38.

              Ibid. LXXVIII.

Post hæc in terris visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

              Christus autem Deus e cœlo, verbum e Maria caro factum est hominemque suscepit, et nobiscum, ut ait Scriptura, versatus est.

Esther 13:9.

              Ibid. XCVI.

(Already quoted.)

              (Already quoted.)

Sap. 2:23.

              St. Epiph. Epist. ad Joan. Episcopum Hieros. Cap. VI.

Quoniam Deus creavit hominem inexterminabilem, et ad imaginem similitudinis suæ fecit illum.

              Dicit enim (Salomon) in Sapientia quæ titulo ejus inscribitur: Creavit Deus incorruptum hominem, et imaginem suæ proprietatis dedit ei.

Here, in the clearest terms, Epiphanius makes known that his exclusion of a book from the list of those called canonical, was not equivalent to denying it the authority of divine Scripture. He certainly believed that he was quoting the revealed word, when he introduces these passages in the solemn formulæ, ut ait Scriptura, Scriptum est, etc. Neither did he quote these passages at random, not adverting to the fact that they were not in the Canon. He often specifies the book, and speaks of the authors. We believe that had the other deuterocanonical books been equally serviceable for dogmatic argument, he would have drawn also from them as from Scriptural sources. At least, our adversaries must admit that Epiphanius is a staunch supporter of the divinity of at least three deuterocanonical books, and also of the deuterocanonical fragments of Daniel, and that his exclusion of the deuterocanonical books from the list then termed canonical, cannot be construed to signify noninspiration of the same.

Among the adversaries of the deuterocanonical books is placed Gregory Nazianzenus.

Two passages in Gregorys works form the basis of his pretended opposition to the deuterocanonical books. The first passage occurs in Carmen I. 13:

Accipe a me selectum hunc, amice, numerum,

Sunt quidem historici libri omnes duodecim,

Antiquioris Hebraicæ sapientiæ:

Primus Genesis, deinde Exodus et Leviticus;

Postea Numeri, tum Deuteronomium,

Deinde Josue et Judices: Ruth octavus est.

Nonus decimusque liber, res gestæ Regum,

Et Paralipomena; Esdram habes ultimo loco.

Quinque versibus scripti sunt, quorum primus Job,

Postea David, tum Salomonis tres,

Ecclesiastes, Canticum, et Proverbia.

Similiter quinque Spiritus prophetici;

Ac uno quidem continentur libri duodecim:

Osee, et Amos, et Micheas tertius;

Deinde Joel, postea Jonas, Abdias,

Nahum, Habacuc et Sophonias,

Aggæus, deinde Zacharias, Malachias,

Uno hi continentur libro: secundo Isaias,

Tertio qui vocatus est Jeremias ab infantia,

Quarto Ezechiel, quinto Danielis gratia.

Veteres quidem numeravi duos et viginti libros

Hebræorum elementorum numero respondentes.

After enumerating in succession all the books of the New Testament, excepting the Apocalypse, he concludes:

Si quid est extra hunc numerum non est ex germanis Scripturis.

In the celebrated Carmen ad Seleucum, a Canon occurs differing from the foregoing only in this, that he admits in it Esther, which did not appear in the first Carmen, and also the Apocalypse with the qualification:

Apocalypsim autem Johannis

Quidam vero admittunt, pars vero major

Spuriam asserunt.

Basing their judgment on this difference in the Canons, and on the testimony of some codices, some have denied to Gregory the authorship of the Carmen ad Seleucum, and have attributed it to Amphilochius, Bishop of Iconium (344–394), the friend of Gregory, called by him the irreproachable pontiff, the angel, and hero of truth. The opinion rests principally on the authority of Combefis, the editor of Amphilochius works, and in my judgment has little foundation. I see no good reason for denying to Gregory this Carmen, since the presence of Esther and the Apocalypse therein would simply show that Gregory, in endeavoring to follow the trend of religious thought, could not be consistent in excluding books which the Church considered divine.

Gregory concludes his canon in the Carmen ad Seleucum with these words:

His certissimus

Canon tibi sit divinarum Scripturarum.

It would seem, at first sight, that these testimonies manifest a certain opposition to the deuterocanonical books. However, in the Carmen ad Seleucum, 252–257, Gregory declares that he allows to the deuterocanonical books a sort of middle place between uninspired and inspired Scripture:

Non omnis liber pro certo habendus

Qui venerandum Scripturæ nomen præfert.

Sunt enim, sunt (ut nonnunquam fit) inscripti falsi nominis

Libri: nonnulli quidem intermedii sunt ac vicini,

Ut ita dixerim, veritatis doctrinœ;

Alii vero spurii et magnopere periculosi.

Gregory accorded to the deuterocanonical books a middle rank. He made a distinction much like that made of old by the Jews in assigning an inferior degree of inspiration to the products of the Filia vocis. This was an erroneous explanation of a fact. The fact was that these books bore the name of divine Scripture; they entered into the deposit of faith of the Church; the faithful learned them by memory; Gregory himself, as we shall see by numerous passages from his writings, had drunk deeply from these fountains.

On the other hand, they were not in the official list of the Synagogue. This alone was sufficient to cast such doubt upon them with the extremely conservative Cappadocian school, of which Gregory is a representative exponent, that they stopped short of inserting them in the Canon; at the same time they honored them as sources of divine truth.

The other Cappadocian Fathers, Basil, Gregory of Nyssa and Cæsarius, frequently cite Wisdom and Ecclesiasticus, as they are the books most fitted for dogmatic argument.

Basil quotes Judith:

Judith 9:4.

              Lib. De Spiritu Sancto VIII. 19.

Tu enim fecisti priora, et illa post illa cogitasti, et hoc factum est quod ipse voluisti.

              Sicuti Judith: Cogitasti, inquit, et præsto fuerunt omnia quæ cogitasti.

2 Maccab. 7:1.

              Epist. VI. ad Nectarii uxorem, 1.

Contigit autem et septem fratres una cum matre sua apprehensos compelli a rege edere contra fas carnes porcinas, flagris, et taureis cruciatos.

              Maccabæorum mater septem filiorum mortem conspexit, nec ingemuit, nec ignobiles lacrymas effudit, sed gratias agens Deo quod videret eos igne et ferro et acerbissimis verberibus e vinculis carnis exsolvi, Deo quidem probata fuit, celebris vero habita est apud homines.

How deeply Gregory had been influenced by the practical usage of the Church can be learned from the following collated passages:

Dan. 13:5.

              St. Greg. Naz. Orat. II. 64.

Et constituti sunt de populo duo senes judices in illo anno: de quibus locutus est Dominus: Quia egressa est iniquitas de Babylone, a senioribus judicibus, qui videbantur regere populum.

              —nempe quod egressa est iniquitas ex Babylone a senioribus judicibus qui populum regere videbantur.

Eccli. 3:11.

              Ibid. 96.

Benedictio patris firmat domos filiorum—.

              Benedictio enim Patris firmat domos filiorum.

Sap. 5:15.

              Orat. V. 28.

quoniam spes impii tamquam lanugo est, quæ a vento tollitur, etc.

              —tamquam lanugo quæ a vento disjicitur—.

Sap. 16:13.

              Ibid. 29.

Tu es enim, Domine, qui vitæ et mortis habes potestatem, et deducis ad portas mortis, et reducis.—

              Ecquis novit num Deus qui solvit compeditos, gravemque et humis vergentem a portis mortis in altum subvehit—.

Eccli. 38:16.

              Orat. VII. 1.

Fili, in mortuum produc lacrymas, et quasi dira passus, incipe plorare, etc.

              Super mortuum plora, et quasi dira passus, incipe plorare.

Sap. 3:15.

              Ibid. 14.

Bonorum enim laborum gloriosus est fructus, etc.

              Bonorum enim laborum gloriosus est fructus.

Sap. 5:10, 11.

              Ibid. 19.

et tamquam navis, quæ pertransit fluctuantem aquam: cujus, cum præterierit, non est vestigium invenire, neque semitam carinæ illius in fluctibus: aut tamquam avis, quæ transvolat in aëre, cujus nullum invenitur argumentum itineris, etc.

              Insomnium sumus, minime consistens, spectrum quoddam, quod teneri non potest, avis prætereuntis volatus, navis in mari vestigium non habens, pulvis, vapor, ros matutinus, flos momento nascens et momento marcescens.

Sap. 1:4.

              Orat. IX. 2.

quoniam in malevolam animam non introibit sapientia, nec habitabit in corpore subdito peccatis.

              In malignam enim animam non ingressuram sapientiam recte dictum est.

Eccli. 6:14, 15.

              Orat. XI. 1.

Amicus fidelis, protectio fortis: qui autem invenit illum, invenit thesaurum. Amico fideli nulla est comparatio, et non est digna ponderatio auri et argenti contra bonitatem fidei illius.

              Amico fideli nulla est comparatio; nec ulla est digna ponderatio contra bonitatem illius. Amicus fidelis, protectio fortis.

Eccli. 1:2.

              Orat. XIV. 30.

Arenam maris, et pluviæ guttas, et dies sæculi quis dinumeravit? Altitudinem cœli, et latitudinem terræ, et profundum abyssi quis dimensus est?

              Sed quis arenam maris et pluviæ guttas et abyssi profunditatem metiri … queat?

The fifteenth oration of St. Gregory is in praise of the Maccabees, whose feast the Church celebrated in his day. Frequently in the course of the oration he adverts to data taken from the first and second Books of Maccabees. The very fact that he composed such an oration shows clearly that he recognized the books. Cornelys animadversion here that Gregory has in mind only the fourth book, is erroneous. [Cornely, Introduc. Gen. p. 98, note 18.] Gregory in the second paragraph speaks of a book, qui rationem perturbationibus animi imperare docet, which evidently refers to the apocryphal fourth book of Maccabees, but this would only show that he united the fourth with the others in collecting his argument. Most of the data of the oration are taken from the first and second Books of Maccabees.

Eccli. 11:30.

              Orat. XVI. 3.

Ante mortem ne laudes hominem quemquam, quoniam in filiis suis agnoscitur vir.

              Nam si, ut ego cum Salomone sentio, hominem ante mortem beatum prædicare non oportet.

Baruch 2:12.

              Ibid. 12.

peccavimus, impie egimus, inique gessimus, Domine Deus noster, in omnibus justitiis tuis.

              —adjungam: Peccavimus, inique egimus, impietatem fecimus.

Dan. 14:33.

              Orat. XVIII. 30.

Dixitque angelus Domini ad Habacuc: Fer prandium, quod habes, in Babylonem Danieli, qui est in lacu leonum.

              —aut per prophetam in sublime raptum satians, ut Danielem, antea cum fame in lacu premeretur.

Sap. 11:21.

              Orat. XXIV. 1.

Sed et sine his uno spiritu poterant occidi persecutionem passi ab ipsis factis suis, et dispersi per spiritum virtutis tuæ: sed omnia in mensura, et numero et pondere disposuisti.

              —atque ut hinc initium ducamus, quam commode, pulchrisque Dei mensuris, qui omnia cum pondere et mensura constituit ac moderatur, etc.

Dan. 13.

              Ibid. 10.

              (Deus) qui et Susannam mortis periculo liberavit, et Theclam servavit; illam a sævis senioribus, hanc a tyranno ipsius proco et a matri adhuc crudeliori.

Sap. 1:7.

              Orat. XXVIII. 8.

Quoniam spiritus Domini replevit orbem terrarum, et hoc, quod continet omnia, scientiam habet vocis.

              —ait Scriptura … Spiritus Domini replevit orbem terrarum.

Orat. XXIX. 17. He calls the Son of God Imago bonitatis, evidently assuming the phrase from Wisdom, 7:26.

Baruch 3:36–38.

              Orat. XXX. 13.

Hic est Deus noster, et non æstimabitur alius adversus eum.

Post hæc in terris visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

              Hic Deus tuus, et non æstimabitur alius præter eum. Et paucis interjectis: Post hæc in terra visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

Sap. 7:22.

              Orat. XXXI. 29.

Est enim in illa spiritus intelligentiæ, sanctus, unicus, multiplex, subtilis, disertus, mobilis, etc.

              Spiritus intelligens, multiplex, apertus, clarus, incontaminatus, minimeque impeditus, etc.

Sap. 1:4.

              Orat. XXXII. 12.

Quoniam in malevolam animam non introibit sapientia, nec habitabit in corpore subdito peccatis.

              —quoniam in malevolam animam non introibit sapientia.

Sap. 3:11.

              Ibid. 20.

Sapientiam enim, et disciplinam qui abjicit, infelix est: et vacua est spes illorum, et labores sine fructu, et inutilia opera eorum.

              —ac Deus faxit ne quid unquam huic occupationi prævertendum ducam, ne alioqui ab ipsa Sapientia miser appeller, ut sapientiam et eruditionem spernens ac pro nihilo ducens.

Eccli. 5:14.

              Ibid. 21.

Si est tibi intellectus, responde proximo: sin autem, sit manus tua super os tuum, ne capiaris in verbo indisciplinato, et confundaris.

              Si est tibi sermo prudentiæ, inquit ille, nec quisquam prohibebit: sin minus, hæreat vinculum labiis tuis.

Eccli. 7:15.


Noli verbosus esse in multitudine presbyterorum.

              Noli celer esse in verbis, admonet Sapiens.

Eccli. 11:27.

              Orat XXXV. 3.

In die bonorum ne immemor sis malorum, et in die malorum ne immemor sis bonorum.—

              In die enim lætitiæ, inquit, malorum oblivio est.

Dan. 13:5.

              Orat. XXXVI. 3.

Et constituti sunt de populo duo senes judices in illo anno, de quibus locutus est Dominus: Quia egressa est iniquitas de Babylone a senioribus judicibus, qui videbantur regere populum.

              —juxta Danielem egressa est iniquitas a senioribus Babylonicis, qui Israelem regere existimabantur.

Dan. 13:42.

              Ibid. 7.

Exclamavit autem voce magna Susanna, et dixit: Deus æterne, qui absconditorum es cognitor, qui nosti omnia antequam fiant.

              —imo non videor, sed perspicuus atque manifestus sum ei qui omnia priusquam oriantur novit.

Eccli. 3:11.

              Orat. XXXVII. 6.

Benedictio patris firmat domos filiorum: maledictio autem matris eradicat fundamenta.

              Item alio loco: Benedictio patris firmat domos filiorum; maledictio autem matris eradicat fundamenta.

Eccli. 3:12.

              Ibid. 18.

Ne glorieris in contumelia patris, etc.

              Quod si hoc etiam probas: Fili, ne glorieris de ignominia patris.

Eccli. 1:16.

              Orat. XXXIX. 8.

Initium sapientiæ, timor Domini, et cum fidelibus in vulva concreatus est, cum electis feminis graditur, et cum justis et fidelibus agnoscitur.

              Unde Salomon nobis legem statuit: Principium sapientiæ, inquit, posside sapientiam. Quidnam vocat hoc principium sapientiæ? Timorem.

Sap. 3:7.

              Orat. XL. 6.

Fulgebunt justi, et tamquam scintillæ in arundineto discurrent.

              —quo tempore nimirum justi fulgebunt sicut sol.

Eccli. 32:3.

              Ibid. 18.

ut læteris propter illos, et ornamentum gratiæ accipias coronam, et dignationem consequaris corrogationis.

              Honore eum complectere ut te ornet, capitique tuo gratiarum coronam nectat.

Sap. 4:8.

              Orat. XLIII. 23.

Senectus enim venerabilis est non diuturna, neque annorum numero computata: cani autem sunt sensus hominis.

              Quis prudentia perinde canus erat, etiam ante canitiem? Quandoquidem hac re senectutem Salomon quoque definivit.

2 Maccab. 7:1.

              Ibid. 74.

Contigit autem et septem fratres una cum matre sua apprehensos compelli a rege edere contra fas carnes porcinas, flagris, et taureis cruciatos.

              Mitto septem Maccabæorum dimicationem qui cum sacerdote et matre in sanguine atque omnis generis tormentis consummati sunt.

Sap. 2:24.

              Orat. XLIV. 4.

Invidia autem diaboli mors introivit, etc.

              Quoniam autem invidia diaboli mors in mundum introivit, etc.

The reference to Judith 5:6, in Orat. XLV. 15: quod et semen Chaldaicum sublatum atque oppressum Scriptura vocat, is somewhat uncertain.

Eccli. 3:11.

              St. Greg. Epist. LXI.

Benedictio patris firmat domos filiorum: maledictio autem matris eradicat fundamenta.

              Ita fiet ut ab ea non modo pecunias habeatis, sed maternam etiam benedictionem, filiorum domos fulcientem, consequamini.

Baruch 3:38.

              Epist. CII.

Post hæc in terris visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

              —atque ad hæc verba confugientes: Post hæc in terra visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

Eccli. 4:32.

              Epist. CLXXVIII.

Noli resistere contra faciem potentis, nec coneris contra ictum fluvii.

              Porro non esse vi cohibendum fluminis cursum, parœmia quoque ipsa docet.

Ecclli. 31:32.

              Epist. CLXXXI.

Æqua vita hominibus vinum in sobrietate: si bibas illud moderate, eris sobrius.

              Sin autem tibi præstantiore monitore opus est, illud quidem monet Salomon ut cum consilio vinum bibas, ne mundi hujus temulentia et vertigine agaris.

These references leave no doubt that Gregory believed that he was there quoting divine Scripture. The whole Church used them, committed them to memory, proved and illustrated their dogmas by them. This influence was so powerful that even the most conservative came under it, and as we shall see, even those who wished to turn the tide of this tradition were inconsistent. Another Oriental authority of this period that is objected against us is the sixtieth canon of the Council of Laodicea. This canon explicitly defines that the books to be read in the Church are those which we now comprehend in the protocanonical class. The date of the Council of Laodicea is uncertain, but it is generally believed to have been celebrated about the middle of the fourth century. Some have doubted the genuineness of the sixtieth canon [Herbst, Vincenzi, Malou, Danko], but as it is recognized by Hefele, Conciliengesch. I. p. 749–751, we shall not base our treatment of it upon its doubtful character. Admitting all its claims, it simply establishes that some bishops of Phrygia in a particular council refused to allow to be read publicly in the Church any book excepting those that were absolutely certain. We are not endeavoring to prove that the position of protocanonical and deuterocanonical books were equal in the early ages of the Church. Their equality was wrought by the Council of Trent. What we wish to show is that these books were known to the early Christians, venerated by them, committed to memory by them, and considered by them as the inspired word of God.

The Council in Trullo, which the Greeks hold to be ecumenical, received the Canons of the Council of Laodicea, but, as they also received the Canons of the Council of Carthage, they evidently intended that the decree concerning the canonical Scriptures should be modified in accordance with the complete Canon of the Council of Carthage.

The Greeks also in the Council in Trullo received various Apocryphal documents of the fifth century called the Canons of the Apostles. The eighty-fifth canon of this collection is sometimes cited against us, as it does not contain any of the deuterocanonical books, save the books of Maccabees. This canon can have no weight, since it embraces three books of Maccabees, two epistles of St. Clement of Rome, and the eight books of the Constitutiones Apostolorum.

The Council in Trullo in receiving this Canon could not have excluded the Canon of the Council of Carthage, whose decrees and canons it ratified. In fact, the Council in Trullo expressly stated that the Constitutiones Apost. were adulterated, and hence not to be read. It seems, however, due to this canon that the Greeks, even to this day, recognize as canonical three books of Maccabees.

We can scarcely expect the guiding hand of the Holy Ghost in the members who composed the Council in Trullo.

One who candidly examines the data here presented must admit that the Oriental Church during the fourth and fifth centuries recognized and used the deuterocanonical books as divine Scripture.

Turning now from the East to the West, we meet the first objection taken from the writings of St. Hilary. The objection is found in the fifteenth paragraph of his Prologue on the Book of Psalms. After seeking mystic reasons for the number eight in the Scriptures, he proceeds as follows:

And this is the cause that the law of the Old Testament is divided into twenty-two books, that they might agree with the number of letters. These books are arranged according to the traditions of the ancients, so that five are of Moses, the sixth is of Jesus Nave, the seventh is Judges and Ruth, the first and second of Kings form the eighth; the third and fourth (of Kings) form the ninth; the two books of Paralipomenon form the tenth; the discourses of the days of Ezra form the eleventh; the book of Psalms, the twelfth; Solomons proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and the Canticle of Canticles form the thirteenth, fourteenth and fifteenth; the twelve Prophets form the sixteenth; while Isaiah, then Jeremiah, the Lamentations and the Epistle, Daniel, Ezechiel, Job, and Esther complete the number of twenty-two books. Hilary gives only the protocanonical works, and then continues:

To some it has seemed good to add Tobias and Judith, and thus constitute twenty-four books according to the Greek alphabet, etc.

We see here an excessive mysticism impelling a man to reject or admit a book for the sole purpose of completing a mystic number. This tendency had been brought into patristic thought by Origen and the Alexandrian school. Hilary does not reject the deuterocanonical books, but considers the protocanonical as forming a class by themselves. Hilarys weak, unsubstantial arguments are attributable to the man impressed by the spirit of his age. The great current of tradition was greater than any one man, and drew Hilary with it, so that we find him ranking the deuterocanonical books on an equal footing with the others, as the following quotations will show:

Eccli. 1:33.

              St. Hilary Prol. in Ps. 20.

Fili, concupiscens sapientiam, conserva justitiam, et Deus præbebit illam tibi.

              —secundum id quod dictum est: Desiderasti sapientiam? Serva mandata, et Dominus præstabit tibi eandem.

Eccli. 11:30.

              Tract. in XIV. Ps. 14.

Ante mortem ne laudes hominem quemquam, quoniam in filiis suis agnoscitur vir.

              Idcirco apud Salomonem omnis laus in exitu canitur.

Dan. 13:56.

              Tract. in LII. Ps. 19.

Et, amoto eo, jussit venire alium, et dixit ei: Semen Chanaan, et non Juda, etc.

              Sed et Daniel presbyteros condemnans ita dicit: Non semen Abraham, sed semen Chanaan, et non Juda.

Eccli. 1:16.

              Tract. in Ps. LXVI. 9.

Initium sapientiæ, timor Domini, etc.

              Et per Salomonem: Initium sapientiæ timor Domini est.

Baruch 3:38.

              Tract. in Ps. LXVIII. 19.

Post hæc in terris visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

              —postea in terris visus sit, et inter homines conversatus sit.

Sap. 17:1.

              Tract. in Ps. CXVIII. 8.

Magna sunt enim judicia tua, Domine, et inenarrabilia, etc.

              —et rursum propheta: Magna enim sunt judicia tua, et inenarrabilia.

Sap. 7:27.

              Ibid. Littera V. 9.

Et cum sit una, omnia potest: et in se permanens, omnia innovat, et per nationes in animas sanctas se transfert: amicos Dei et prophetas constituit.

              Si Apostoli docent, prior ille docuit: Constituit enim Sapientia amicos Dei et prophetas.

Sap. 1:7.

              Ibid. Littera XIX. 8.

Quoniam spiritus Domini replevit orbem terrarum, etc.

2 Maccab. 6:18 7:1. et seqq.

              Et Spiritus Dei, secundum Prophetam, replevit orbem terrarum.

              Tract. in Ps. CXXV. 4.

              Testes sunt mihi tres pueri inter flammas cantantes (Dan. 3:24 et seqq.), testis Daniel in fame leonum prophetæ prandio saturatus (Dan. 14:35); testis Eleazar inter jura dominorum patriis suis legibus liber; testes cum matre sua martyres septem, Deo gratias inter nova mortis tormenta referentes.

Judith 16:3.

              Tract. in Ps. CXXV. 6.

Dominus conterens bella, Dominus nomen est illi.

              —et cantantes ex Lege: Dominus conterens bella, Dominus nomen est illi.

Certainly Hilary denied not inspiration to a book which he honored by the august name of the Law.

Sap. 8:2.

              Tract. in Ps. CXXVIII. 9.

Hanc amavi, et exquisivi a juventute mea, et quæsivi sponsam mihi eam assumere, et amator factus sum formæ illius.

              Salomon itaque ait: Quæsivi sapientiam sponsam adducere mihi ipsi.

Ibid. 3.


Generositatem illius glorificat contubernium habens Dei: sed et omnium Dominus dilexit illam—.

              —hujus sponsæ suæ opes memorat dicens: Honestatem glorificat convictum Dei habens, et omnium Dominus dilexit eam.

Ibid. 8.


Et si multitudinem scientiæ, desiderat quis, scit præterita, et de futuris æstimat, etc.

              —et si multam quis cognitionem desiderat, novit et quæ a principio sunt, et quæ futura sunt conspicit.

Ibid. 2.


(Already quoted.)

              —de qua et rursum ait: Judicavi igitur hanc adducere ad convivendum mecum, et amator factus sum pulchritudinis ejus.

Tob. 12:12.

              Tract. in Ps. CXXIX. 7.

Quando orabas cum lacrymis et sepeliebas mortuos, et derelinquebas prandium tuum, et mortuos abscondebas per diem in domo tua, et nocte sepeliebas eos, ego obtuli orationem tuam Domino.

              Sunt, secundum Raphael ad Tobiam loquentem, angeli assistentes ante claritatem Dei, et orationes deprecantium ad Deum deferentes.

2 Maccab. 6:21.

              Tract. in Ps. CXXXIV. 25.

Hi autem, qui astabant, iniqua miseratione commoti, propter antiquam viri amicitiam, tollentes eum secreto, rogabant afferri carnes, quibus vesci ei licebat, ut simularetur manducasse, sicut rex imperaverat de sacrificii carnibus—.

              Sanctus etiam Eleazar, cum a principibus populi sui degustare ementitum sacrificium cogeretur, gloriam martyrii sub hac eadem voce consummat, sciens, etc.

Sap. 1:7.

              Tract. in Ps. CXXXV. 11.

Quoniam spiritus Domini replevit orbem terrarum, etc.

              —docet propheta dicens: Spiritus Dei replevit orbem terrarum.

Eccli. 28:28, 29.

              Tract. in Ps. CXL. 5.

Sepi aures tuas spinis, linguam nequam noli audire, et ori tuo facito ostia, et seras. Aurum tuum et argentum tuum confla, et verbis tuis facito stateram, et frenos ori tuo rectos—.

              —ita monemur: Ecce circumvalla possessionem tuam spinis; argentum et aurum tuum constitue, et ori tuo fac ostium, et seram, et verbis tuis jugum et mensuram.

Sap. 2:12, 13.

              Tract, de Ps. XLI. 12.

Circumveniamus ergo justum, quoniam inutilis est nobis, et contrarius est operibus nostris, … et filium Dei se nominat.

              Vox cataractæ fuit: Opprimamus justum, quia inutilis est nobis, et contrarius est operibus nostris, et filium Dei se nominat.

Sap. 13:5.

              De Trinitate Lib. I. 7.

a magnitudine enim speciei et creaturæ, cognoscibiliter poterit Creator horum videri.

              —hunc de Deo pulcherrimæ sententiæ modum propheticis vocibus apprehendit: De magnitudine enim operum et pulchritudine creaturarum consequenter generationum Conditor conspicitur.

Dan. 13:42.

              Ibid. Lib. IV. 8.

Exclamavit autem voce magna Susanna, et dixit: Deus æterne, qui absconditorum es cognitor, qui nosti omnia, antequam fiant—.

              —sicut beata Susanna dicit: Deus æterne, absconditorum cognitor, sciens omnia ante generationem eorum.

2 Maccab. 7:28.

              Ibid. 16.

Peto, nate, ut aspicias ad cœlum et terram, et ad omnia quæ in eis sunt, et intelligas, quia ex nihilo fecit illa Deus, et hominum genus—.

              Omnia enim secundum Prophetam facta ex nihilo sunt.

2 Maccab. 7:9.

              Lib. Contra Const. Imp. 6.

et in ultimo spiritu constitutus, sic ait: Tu quidem, scelestissime, in præsenti vita nos perdis: sed Rex mundi defunctos nos pro suis legibus in æternæ vitæ resurrectione suscitabit.

              —sciat a martyre esse dictum regi Antiocho: Tu quidem, iniquus, de presenti vita nos perdis, sed Rex mundi defunctos nos pro suis legibus in æternam vitam in resurrectione suscitabit.

Eccli. 21:1.

              Ex Operibus Historicis Frag. III. 24.

Fili, peccasti? non adjicias iterum: sed et de pristinis deprecare, ut tibi dimittentur.

              Nec Dominum audiunt dicentem: Peccasti? quiesce.

Sap. 2:23.

              Epistola VIII.

Quoniam Deus creavit hominem inexterminabilem, etc.

              Salomon clamat dicens: Deus condidit hominem ad immortalitatem.

Sap. 6:8.

              Ibid. IX.

Non enim subtrahet personam cujusquam Deus, nec verebitur magnitudinem cujusquam; quoniam pusillum et magnum ipse fecit, et æqualiter cura est illi de omnibus.

              Clamat Propheta dicens: Et pauperem et divitem ego feci, et pro omnibus æqualis cura est mihi.

Hilary has here explicitly canonized every deuterocanonical book. He sought the mystic number in the books that the Hebrews received, not with the view to exclude the others from divine inspiration but only classifying the Scriptures of the Old Testament in two general categories which existed down to the time of the Council of Trent.

The next objection which is urged against us is taken from the fragmentary writing of Rufinus. The objection is taken from the Commentarius in Symbolum Apostolorum 36–38: And therefore it seems apposite to clearly enumerate, as we have received from the testimonies of the Fathers, the books of the Old and New Testaments, which, according to the tradition of the ancients, are believed to be inspired by the Holy Ghost, and delivered to the Church. Then follows a list of only the protocanonical works. Continuing, he says: It is to be known, however, that there are other books which have been called by the Fathers not canonical but ecclesiastical. Such are the Wisdom which is called of Solomon, and the other Wisdom which is called of the Son of Sirach, which book in the Latin tongue is called by the general term of Ecclesiasticus, by which term not the author but the quality of the Scripture is designated. Of the same order are the books of Tobias and Judith and the books of Maccabees, and in the New Testament the book which is called the Pastor of Hermas, and the Two Ways or Choice of Peter. All these books, they (the Fathers) wished to be read in the churches, but not to be used for the confirmation of dogma.

The testimony of Rufinus well illustrates the position of the deuterocanonical books in that age. The Church, as the divine institution of Christ, used them, and the faithful drew their spiritual teaching from them. At the same time, some of the Fathers induced a scientific distinction between them and the books of the first canon. This scientific distinction was purely a critical judgment of the Fathers, and was not aimed at denying to these books divine inspiration. There had been no decree of the Church, and these books had not as much extrinsically in their favor as the others. The extremely conservative spirit of the Fathers was content to use them as divine Scripture in their practical use of Scripture; while, in drawing up official lists of Scriptures, they hesitated to make them equal with the books which the Church had received from the Synagogue. In the growth and development of doctrine, this hesitancy has been excluded by the vital power in the Church. In the few writings of Rufinus which remain to us, we find the following quotations of deuterocanonical Scripture:

Eccli 34:9.

              Benedictio Gad 3.

Qui non est tentatus, quid scit? Vir in multis expertus, cogitabit multa; et qui multa didicit, enarrabit intellectum.

              —ita enim Scriptura dicit: Qui non est tentatus, non est probabilis.

Eccli. 11:30.

              Benedictio Joseph 3.

Ante mortem ne laudes hominem quemquam, quoniam in filiis suis agnoscitur vir.

              —sed et sanctæ Scripturæ sententia est: Ne laudaveris quemquam ante obitum.

Baruch 3:36–38.

              Comment. in Symbolum Apost. 5.

Hic est Deus noster, et non æstimabitur alius adversus eum. Hic adinvenit omnem viam disciplinæ, et tradidit illam Jacob puero suo, et Israel dilecto suo. Post hæc in terris visus est, et cum hominibus conversatus est.

              Quod et Propheta prædixerat ubi ait: Hic Deus noster, non reputabitur alter ad eum. Invenit omnem viam disciplinæ, et dedit eam Jacob puero suo et Israel dilecto suo; post hæc in terris visus est et inter homines conversatus est.

Sap. 3:7.

              Ibid. 46.

Fulgebunt justi, et tamquam scintillæ in arundineto discurrent.

              —non erit difficile credere etiam illa quæ Prophetæ prædixerant: Quod justi scilicet fulgebunt sicut sol, et sicut splendor firmamenti in regno Dei.

Certainly the man who quoted these lines believed that he was employing Holy Scripture.

In his Apologia Contra Hieronymum, Lib. II. from the thirty-second to the thirty-seventh paragraph, Rufinus bitterly inveighs against St. Jerome for having dared to cut off the deuterocanonical books. Hence in justice and right, Rufinus must be considered in every way favorable to the deuterocanonical works. We now come to the Achilles of our adversaries, St. Jerome, a man more versed in the Scriptures than any other of the Fathers up to his day. He has in many places, in no dubious terms, expressed his opposition to the deuterocanonical books. As Jerome is inseparably linked with the Latin Vulgate, we deem it not amiss to insert here an abstract of his life.

Jerome was born about the year 342 at Stridon, on the borders of Dalmatia and Pannonia, in the midst of a semibarbaric population [De viris illustribus, cap. CXXXV.] His parents, however, were wealthy Christians, and in a letter to Theophilus, the Patriarch of Alexandria, he testified to the pious care which from his earliest childhood had nourished him with the milk of the Catholic doctrine. [Epist. LXXII. ad Theophilum, 2.] He was called Eusebius after his father, for Hieronymus or Heirome was merely a surname, or what in Latin is termed cognomen. His mothers name we do not know. Besides an aunt, Castorina, who seems to have shown him small affection, [Epist. XIII. ad Castorinam Materteram] Jerome had a sister, a cause of many anxieties, and one brother, Paulinian, whom he later took with him to Palestine from Rome.

The young Dalmatian began his studies at Stridon, and at the age of eighteen he went with Bonosus, a friend of his childhood, to continue them at Rome, where he attended the lessons of Donatus, the grammarian, and possibly those of Victorinus, whose humble and courageous conversion has been immortalized in the Confessions of St. Augustine. [Confession, lib. VIII., cap. 11.]

Reading, in which his eager soul found its outlet (he tells us himself that he studied Prophyrys Introduction, Alexander of Aphrodisias Commentaries upon Aristotle, and Platos Dialogues), completed his masters teaching; and his passion for books, which he confesses were indispensable to him, enabled him to acquire, at the cost of the most arduous labor, that is by copying them with his own hand, an extensive library. [Epist. XXII ad Eustochium, 30.] Thus was Jerome unconsciously preparing himself for the great works which were to fill his life.

He was as yet only a catechumen, for in those early centuries they frequently waited until the perilous ways of youth had been safely traversed before conferring baptism, and the Christian initiation was sometimes deferred from reasons of prudence. To know, however, that this prudence was liable to terrible mistakes one has only to recall the anguish of Gregory Nazianzen and of Satirus, St. Ambroses brother, who both, when overtaken by a tempest at sea, were terrified at the thought of dying unbaptized. It was especially the fear of the restraints imposed by the Christian life which deferred for years the baptism of many, and we are told by St. Augustine that the deviations of the unbaptized were freely excused by a spirit of general tolerance. [Confession, lib. I., cap. XI.]

More fortunate in this respect than the son of Monica, Jerome, as he wrote to Theophilus of Alexandria, never fell into error. He used often to interrupt his studies in order to visit the basilicas of the saints or to descend into the catacombs, and when an old man he thus described these pilgrimages in his Commentaries upon Ezekiel. In my youth, when I was studying literature in Rome, it was my custom to visit on Sundays, with some companions of my own age and tastes, the tombs of the martyrs and apostles. I often wandered into those subterranean galleries whose walls on either side preserve the relics of the dead, and where the darkness is so intense that one might almost believe that the words of the prophet had been fulfilled: Let them go down alive into hell. A gleam of light shining through a narrow aperture, rather than a window, scarcely affected the awful obscurity, and the little band, shrouded in darkness and able only to proceed one step at a time, would recall this verse of Virgils Everywhere horror and even the very silence appal me. [Comment, in Ezech., lib. XII., CXL.]

In his youth Jerome witnessed the attempts made by Julian to restore paganism, and he saw also the utter failure in which they resulted. While I was attending the schools of the grammarians, he wrote, when every town was stained with the blood of idolatrous sacrifices, suddenly at the very height of the persecution Julians death was announced to us. How, exclaimed a pagan, and not unreasonably, do the Christians say that theirs is a patient and a merciful God? There is nothing more terrible, nothing more swift than His wrath. He could not even for an instant defer His vengeance. [Comment in Habacuc. Lib. II. cap. III.]

The faith which had so early been instilled into Jerome and which was so precious to him, did not, however, shield him from the seductions of Rome, but unlike Augustine, who wrote the humble confession of his protracted sins, he only alludes to his in passing. You know, he wrote Chromatius, how slippery are those pathways of youth where I succumbed. In a letter to Heliodorus, whom he wished to take with him into the desert, and whom he rebuked for his delay, he was more explicit: Why linger in the world, thou who hast already chosen solitude? If I give thee this advice it is not as if my ship and my cargo were undamaged, not as if I were ignorant of the deep, but rather as one shipwrecked and just cast up upon the shore, in feeble tones I warn the navigators of their peril. [Epist. XIV. ad Heliodorum, 6.]

There is another difference between Augustine and Jerome worthy of notice. It is evident that after the supreme struggles of which Augustine has given us a dramatic account he experienced no further aggression of the vanquished foe. The luring voices which made one final effort to woo him to excess were silenced, and no doubt remained so forever, for after his conversion Augustine seems to have inhabited serene heights inaccessible to any disturbing memories of the past; but Jerome, who was by nature more ardent and perhaps less gentle than the son of Monica, could not forget so quickly. Beguiling visions followed him to the desert of Chalcis, and he succeeded in exorcising them only through ceaseless work and penances.

From Rome the young Dalmatian, with Bonosus, passed into Gaul and repaired to Trèves, where Valentinian I. then resided, and it was in Gaul that Jerome determined to renounce the world which had so wounded him and devote himself to the service of Jesus Christ. He accordingly returned to Rome and was baptized there by Liberius. This Pope having died on the twenty-fourth of September 366, Jeromes baptism could not have taken place at a later date. Leaving Rome he started for Aquileia, where religious studies and monastic discipline flourished, and which was at that time an important town and the capital of its native province.

His stay at Aquileia was only the first halt in a life of travel. From that time forth trials beset him. He was already beginning, says Tillemont, to make enemies whose persecutions were sufficiently violent to oblige him to move from place to place, and serious enough to reach the ears of the Pope Damasus. [Memoirs, etc., St. Jerome. Article IV.] One of his adversaries was the Bishop Lupicinus. Finally he determined to go to the East and, following Baronius example, before leaving the Western Hemisphere he paid a visit to his native town and there bade farewell to his own people forever. He did not attempt to conceal the painful effort the breaking of these family ties cost him. Whenever the impress of your familiar hands recalls your dear faces to me, then am I no longer where I am, or rather you are there with me. [Epist. VII. ad Chromatium Jovinum et Eusebium.] The man who sent such a message, a message perhaps more touching than well expressed, to those from whom he was separated, the man who appreciated so keenly the bonds of friendship, was certainly not insensible to those of blood. Full do I know, he wrote to Heliodorus, what fetters hold thee back. My heart is not of stone nor my bowels of iron, I was not begotten by rocks nor suckled by the tigresses of Hyrcania; I also have gone through the anguish which thou dreadest. [Epist. XIV. ad Heliodorum, 3.] Jerome probably had as travelling companions this same Heliodorus, and also Innocentius and Hylas, whom we again meet at his side in the East when, as Tillemont, who translated the works of the Saints, tells: He set out carrying with him the library he had collected in Rome, travelled over many provinces, passed through Thrace, Pontus and Bithynia, crossed the whole of Galatia and Cappadocia, suffered the intolerable heat of Cilicia … and finally in Syria found the peace which he sought as a safe harbor after shipwreck.

Before retiring into the desert, however, he spent a few days at Antioch with Evagrius, a priest of that city, whom Jerome had known in Italy, whither he had gone to lay the discords in his Church before the Western bishops, and who on his return became the guide and sponsor of Jerome and his companions in Antioch.

Jerome, inflamed with an ardor for study which never cooled, wished to hear the men most learned in the Scriptures, and especially Apollinaris, Bishop of Laodicea, who at that period had not yet fallen into his later notorious heresy. It was probably about this time that Jerome knew the hermit Malchus, but it was not until long after that he related his wonderful history, which Lafontaine has translated into graceful verse.

Jerome, however, had left Aquileia, not for Antioch, but bound for the wilderness. He plunged into the heart of the desert of Chalcis, where, under burning skies and amid vast tracts of sand out of which sprang here and there a few scattered convents, he had gone to seek repentance, and where he found fresh sorrows awaiting him. Heliodorus returned to the West, and Jeromes friendship for Innocent and Hylas was ruthlessly severed by their death. But the memories of his libertine youth, which troubled the peace of his soul and threatened to sully a chastity so dearly bought, caused him a still keener grief than the loss of his friends, and he has left us a description of his anguish, of his almost desperate but finally victorious struggles, in pages of striking eloquence and immortal beauty. How often, he wrote, buried in this vast wilderness, scorched by the rays of the sun, have I imagined myself in the midst of the pleasures of Rome. I sat alone because my heart was filled with exceeding bitterness. My limbs were covered with unsightly sackcloth, and my blackened skin gave me the appearance of an Ethiopian. I wept and groaned daily, and if in spite of my struggles sleep overcame me, the bones in my emaciated body, which sank to the naked earth, barely clave together. I do not mention my nourishment or drink, for in this desert even the sick monks scarcely dare touch fresh water, and to eat cooked food would be considered an excess. And I, who, through the fear of hell, had condemned myself to this prison inhabited by scorpions and serpents, imagined myself transported into the midst of the dances of the young Roman maidens. My face was pallid with fasting, my body cold as ice, yet my soul burned with sensual emotion and in flesh already dead only the fire of the passions was still capable of kindling. Debarred from all help I threw myself at the feet of Jesus, watered them with my tears, wiped them with my hair, and strove to subdue my rebellious flesh by weeks of abstinence. I do not blush to own to my misery, rather do I weep that I am no longer as I once was. I remember having often spent the entire day and night in crying aloud and in beating my breast, until, at the command of God, who rules the tempest, peace crept back into my soul. I even dreaded my cell as if it had been an accomplice to my thoughts. Angry with myself I penetrated alone further into the desert, and if I discovered any dark valley, any rugged mountain, any rock of difficult access, it was the spot I fixed upon to pray in, and to make into a prison for my wretched body. God is witness that sometimes, after having long fixed my eyes upon heaven and after copious weeping, I believed myself transported among the choir of angels. Then in a trusting and joyful ecstasy I sang unto the Lord: We pursue Thee by the scent of Thy perfumes. [Epist. XXII. ad Eustochium, 7.]

In order to subdue his flesh and curb his imagination, Jerome had recourse to other means besides corporal punishment. When I was young, he wrote, although buried in the desert, I could not conquer my burning passions and ardent nature, and in spite of my body being exhausted by perpetual fasts my brain was on fire with evil thoughts. Finally, as a last resource, I put myself under the tutelage of a certain monk, a Jew who had become a Christian, and, forsaking the ingenious precepts of Quintilian, the floods of eloquence poured forth by Cicero, the grave utterances of Fronto, and the tender words of Pliny, I began to learn the Hebrew alphabet, and to study this language of hissing and harsh-sounding words. I who have suffered so much, and with me those who at that time shared my life, can alone testify to the efforts I wasted, the difficulties I went through, and how often I despairingly interrupted my studies, which a dogged determination to learn made me afterwards resume; and I give thanks unto God that from such a bitter sowing I am now able to gather such sweet fruit. [Epist. CXXV. ad Rusticum monachum, 12.]

It was probably at this period, that is in 374, that the mysterious dream of which Jerome has left us a dramatic account came to him. Imbued with the works of classic antiquity, he cherished a love for them. Miserable wretch, he wrote, I fasted before reading Cicero; after nights spent in vigil, after tears wrung from me by the memory of my sins, I would take up Plautus, and when, on coming to my senses, I read the Prophets, their speech seemed to me uncouth and unfinished. Blind, I blamed the light instead of condemning my own eyes. A vision cured him, for a while at least, of this passion. Towards the middle of Lent (probably the Lent of 375), while Satan was thus mocking me, I was seized with a fever which, finding my body exhausted by want of rest, consumed it to such an extent that my bones barely clave together. My body was becoming cold, a faint remnant of warmth however still enabled my heart to beat. They were preparing my funeral obsequies, when suddenly my soul was caught up from me and carried before the Tribunal of the Supreme Judge. The light was so dazzling, those who surrounded Him shed such a blaze of splendor, that, falling back upon the ground, I dared not gaze aloft. They asked me who I was and I answered a Christian. Thou liest, said the Judge, thou are a Ciceronian and not a Christian, for where thy treasure is, there is thy heart also. I was silent; and whilst the blows rained down upon me, for the Judge had commanded that I should be scourged, suffering even more from the torment of my bitter remorse, I repeated to myself this verse on the Psalms: Who will render thee glory in hell? Then I cried out weeping: Have pity on me, Lord, have pity. This cry rang out in the midst of the blows, and at last those who were present, throwing themselves at the feet of the Judge, entreated Him to have mercy upon my youth, to grant me time to work out my repentance, and to punish me severely if I should again peruse a pagan book. I, who, to escape from the terrible straits in which I found myself would have promised far more, swore to Him and said, calling His name to witness: Lord, if hereafter I harbor or read any secular books, may I be treated as if I had renounced Thee. After this oath I was released and I returned to earth. Those present were astonished to see me reopen my eyes, which were bathed in such a flood of tears that my grief convinced the most sceptical. That it was not one of those vain dreams by which we are deceived, I attest the Tribunal before which I lay prostrate and the sentence which so appalled me. Please God that I may never again be submitted to such an ordeal. When I awoke my shoulders were bruised and I could still feel the blows. From that moment I studied religious books with far more ardor than I had ever read profane ones. [Epist. XXII. ad Eustochium, 30.]

Did Jerome abide by this oath throughout his life? Although making allowances for the saints vigorous memory, to which reminiscences of Terence, Lucretius, Cicero, Virgil and Seneca were continually recurring (Augustine, at Hippo, preserved the memory of his classical education in the same tenacious manner), we have reason to believe that Jerome more than once opened the works of these pagan authors whom he had renounced. To Rufinus, whose insidious hatred accused him of the crime of perjury, he replied that the keeping of a promise made in a dream could not be exacted of him. However, even if Jerome did not deem himself irrevocably bound by his pledge, he applied himself more and more to the study of the Bible, and his classical reading and recollections were exclusively devoted to defending and embellishing the truth. This is what he pointed out in a celebrated letter to Magnus, the orator, in which, with skilful and weighty arguments he cited the example of all his predecessors, reminding him that according to Deuteronomy the Israelite must needs cut the nails and hair of his slave before marrying her. Is it astonishing that profane literature should have seduced me by the grace of its language and by the beauty of its form, or that I should wish to convert a slave and a captive into a daughter of Israel? If I come across anything dead, any passage breathing idolatry, sensuality, error, or evil passions, I suppress it, and from my alliance with a stainless spouse are born servants of the true God; thus do I increase the family of Christ. [Epist. LXX. ad Magnum, oratorem urbis Romæ, 2.]

The questions of discipline and dogma which were agitating the Church of Antioch, disturbed Jerome afresh in his retreat. Four bishops were contending for the Patriarchal See of the East. In 361, after the death of Eustathius, the intrepid champion of the Nicene faith, the Arians and many Catholics had agreed to elect Meletius of Sebaste, whose orthodoxy, already attested at the time of Constantines persecution, asserted itself at Antioch from the very first, with the result of alienating the Arians, who chose Euzoïus as their leader. Those Catholics, however, who were most devoted to Eustathius glorious memory, refused to give their support to a bishop who had counted Arians among his electors. Towards the end of 379 Lucifer of Cagliari, on his return from the exile to which he had been banished by the son of Constantine, appointed the priest Paulinus, who was recognized by Alexandria and the West, as Bishop to the Eustathians. At the beginning of 376, to support his heresy in introducing the Bishop of Laodicea into Antioch, Apollinaris had the audacity to assign the government of this great Church to his disciple Vitalis, whom he had consecrated. Quite outside of all this, the inhabitants of Antioch and of the monasteries at Chalcis were discussing whether they should recognize in God three hypostases or three persons. In the theological language of to-day the two terms are synonymous, but in the fourth century they were not considered so by all. At Antioch the Meletians preferred the term hypostasis to that of person, as being more explicit against the heresy of Sabellius; the partisans of Paulinus, on the other hand, conforming themselves to the Latin custom which understood hypostasis and substance to be synonymous, considered it an Arian impiety to say that in God there were three hypostases. Urged by the monks amongst whom he lived to pronounce upon the legitimate vicar and the orthodox expression, Jerome addressed himself in two famous letters to Pope Damasus. Certainly these letters are sufficient proof that he disliked the word hypostasis, which seemed to him equivocal or erroneous. Meletius too, the champion of this word, was especially displeasing to him, and his sympathies were entirely drawn towards Paulinus, the patriarch favored by Latin Christianity. Upon these points he asked the judgment of the Roman Pontiff, which he valued above everything, and to which he was willing to submit. I thought, he wrote, Damasus, that I ought to consult the Apostolic See and the Roman Faith which St. Paul the Apostle extolled. I crave spiritual nourishment from the Church where I received the baptismal robe.… You are the light of the world, the salt of the earth, in your possession are the vessels of silver and gold, elsewhere are the vessels of clay and of wood destined for the iron rod which shall shatter them, and for the eternal fires which shall consume them.

In terms which succeeding centuries have freely quoted Jerome proclaimed the Roman pre-eminence and the obligation imposed upon all to conform to it. I know that on that stone the Church was built; he who eats of the Paschal Lamb outside of its walls is an impious man. He who has not sought refuge in the Ark of Noah will be overtaken by the deluge. He then asked Damasus to inform him which vicar he was to follow and which term he was to employ. I do not know Vitalis, I repudiate Meletius, I ignore Paulinus. Whoever reaps not with thee, scatters; whoever belongs not to Christ belongs to Antichrist. It is evident that Jerome could not accept the term hypostasis with enthusiasm; he declares as much in bitter, almost haughty tone; nevertheless he was willing to accept it should Damasus pronounce its usage to be legitimate. I pray you decide this matter for me, and I will not shrink from saying that there are three hypostases in God.… I implore your Holiness by the crucified Lord, by the consubstantial Trinity, to write and authorize me either to suppress or use this word. [Epist. XV. ad Damasum papam.]

Jerome left Chalcis, probably driven from the desert by some foolish persecution, and joined Evagrius in Antioch, where Paulinus compelled him to enter the priesthood; but so strong was his love of solitude, so jealous was he of his liberty that he stipulated that his ordination should not bind him to any one particular church. By a peculiarity which the Jansenists willingly proposed as a model, Jerome never ascended to the altar. In virtue of this liberty which was justly dear to him, he contended, in a dialogue written at Antioch, against the heterodox rigorism of Lucifer of Cagliari, the bishop who had consecrated his friend Paulinus.

Towards 380 we meet the indefatigable traveller at Constantinople, where St. Gregory of Nazianzus, placed against his will upon the episcopal throne of that town, was reestablishing the true faith in the hearts of a people who for forty years had been given over to Arianism, and with poetic and touching eloquence was distributing the treasures of his irreproachable doctrine among them. It was to the tuition of such a master that Jerome submitted himself, and in after years he took pleasure in evoking his reminiscences of him, and in repeating his lessons.

In 381, Jerome left Constantinople and passing through Greece came to Rome.

Jerome arrived in Rome accompanied by two Eastern bishops, Paulinus to whom he adhered, and Epiphanius of Salamis. Important work, illustrious friendships, struggles, and also bitter trials, awaited him in the capital of the Christian world. At the Council which Damasus convoked Jerome gave evidence of his erudition and of the soundness of his doctrine in defending, with the authority of St. Anthanasius a name ascribed to Christ (homo dominicus), the orthodoxy of which was contested by the Apollinarists. The Pope, impressed by the talent he was well fitted to appreciate, made Jerome his secretary, empowered him to reply in his name to the inquiries of the Synods, and often referred to the wisdom of the learned exegete on his own account. Further, Damasus forcibly influenced the whole life of his collaborator. Pope Damasus had seen Jeromes tendency to omnivorous reading, and he roused him from this beguiling torpor by urging him to useful work. At his request Jerome translated two of Origens Homilies on the Song of Solomon, and began to translate the treatise upon the Holy Ghost by Didymus, the blind sage of Alexandria. Was it St. Ambroses work on the same subject which Jerome criticized in such severe terms in his Preface? (Nihil ibi dialecticum, nihil virile atque districtum … sed totum flaccidum, molle.…) Rufinus in his Invectives pretended that it was, but the Benedictines who edited the Bishop of Milans work, disputed this assertion, which Tillemont, however, seems inclined to believe. [Memoirs, etc., St. Ambrose, note XI.] From the pen of such a censor as Jerome the harshest criticisms are by no means surprising, and this was especially a criticism of a literary order.

Damasus exacted a task of still greater importance from Jerome. The Gospel had at an early date been translated into Latin for the benefit of Western Christianity, but the primitive version, the ancient Itala, had suffered in the manuscripts in circulation corrections and also innumerable alterations and additions. Moreover, through the need of a concordance, in order to make the copy already owned as complete as possible, the various narratives of the Evangelists were frequently united in a single text. Alarmed at the danger introduced by these divergencies, Damasus entreated Jerome to revise the New Testament according to the original Greek. Jerome, who was by nature intolerant of contradiction, had no illusions as to the criticism to which this task would expose him. He was about to disturb old ways of thought, and possibly startle timid consciences; nevertheless, strong in the support afforded him by the Pope, he began and successfully terminated the work demanded of him, suppressed the interpolations, re-established the inverted sequence of the sacred text, and presented this meritorious achievement to Damasus, having added to it the ten canons or tables of concordance translated from Greek into Latin, in which Eusebius of Cæsarea, and also Ammonius of Alexandria, had shown what was special to each Evangelist and what was common to all four.

Jerome undertook another revision, that of the Psalter. The translation current in the Latin Church had been made from the Greek text of the Septuagint, but owing to the numerous alterations which had crept into the manuscript copies, it was incorrect in many places. From the Hieronymian revision sprang the Psalterium Romanum, which was in use in Rome up to the reign of St. Pius V., and to which the Venite Exultemus in the Invitatory and the passages of the Psalms cited in the missal still belong. This first work was in its turn soon altered by the copyists, and at the urgent desire of St. Paula, Jerome decided to make a second revision, which this time he based upon Origens Hexapla. This was the Psalterium Gallicanum (anno 389), so called because it was first adopted in Gaul.… The Gallican Psalter is the one inserted in our Vulgate and used in our Breviary. Somewhat later, about 392, he translated the Psalms from the Hebrew.

These works, and the austerity of Jeromes life while accomplishing them, drew much attention upon the secretary of Pope Damasus, and won him many illustrious and priceless friendships.

In a palace on the Aventine, some noble-hearted women of earnest faith, gathered together and confronted the paganism which was still general, and the immorality of an all too large number of Christians, with the humble and courageous exhibition of their virtue. The mistress of this noble dwelling was Marcella, who had consecrated her premature and irrevocable widowhood to God, to the poor, and to the study of holy works. With her were also her mother, Albina, Asella, whose meekness was extolled by Palladius the historian of St. John Chrysostom; Furia, the heiress of the Camilli, Fabiola, who, although less strong in righteousness than her pious comrades, eventually atoned for the sins of her youth by penance and charity, Lea, the widow and Principia.

We must especially mention three women who were more cherished by Jerome than all the others, and whose names are closely linked with his in history, namely Paula and two of her daughters, Blesilla and Eustochium.

It is unnecessary here to give an account of Paulas early history. By her mother she was authentically connected with the Scipios and the Gracchi, and her father, Rogatus, a wealthy proprietor of Nicopolis, claimed descent from Agamemnon, the king of kings. At the age of thirty-five, after the death of her husband, Julius Toxotius, a reputed descendant of Æneas, for in the genealogy of patrician Rome legend blends easily with history, Paula was inspired by Marcellas example to adopt the ascetic life, in which she soon equalled her heroic friend. Her eldest daughter, Blesilla, left a widow after seven months of marriage, re-entered the narrow path from which the world had momentarily tempted her, and died in the flower of her youth, lamented in pathetic accents by Jerome.

Eustochium, another of Paulas daughters, was reserved for a longer career than Blesilla, the tenderly-mourned. She followed her mother to the East, where she succeeded her in the direction of the convents in Palestine, and, always calm, always invincible to temptation, she retained Jerome as consoler and guide until the end.

The love of the Scriptures glowed in the hearts of these Christian women who, in order to acquire a deeper knowledge of the holy books, resolutely began the study of Greek and Hebrew. In these researches, where the knowledge of truth and not the elusive joys of vainglory were sought, they were directed by Jerome; and Marcella, whose guest he had become, outstripped all her companions in this arduous pursuit. Later on, the recluse of Bethlehem, in his Commentary on the Epistle to the Ephesians, wrote of her: Whenever I picture to myself her ardor for study, her vivacity of mind and her application, I blame my idleness, I who, retreated in this wilderness, with the manger whither the shepherds came in haste to adore the wailing Christ-child constantly before mine eyes, am unable to accomplish what a noble woman accomplishes in the hour she snatches from the cares of a large circle and the government of her household.

Jerome was reproached for teaching only women. He answered what too often, alas, the priest of the present day would have the right to reply: If men questioned me more about the Scriptures I would speak less to women. He added: I rejoice, I am filled with enthusiasm, when in Babylon I meet Daniel, Ananias, Azarias, and Misael. [Epist. LXV. ad Principiam virginem, 2.] He found Daniel, Ananias, Azarias, and Misael in a few chosen friends who frequented the Aventine and attended the religious school. They were Pammachius, Marcellas cousin, who was to marry Paulina, Paulas second daughter; Oceanus, a learned man who later visited Jerome at Bethlehem; Marcellinus, who in Africa, in the time of Augustine, was the most conscientious of magistrates; and Domnion, a priest advanced in years, the praises of whose charity were sung by all.

In spite of the austere sweetness of these friendships, in spite of the substantial support which the protection of Damasus secured for him, Jerome did not taste peace in Rome. Was peace, however, what he sought? Jerome surely did not shrink from contention. He had defended the incomparable benefits of perfect chastity against Helvidius, a contemner of the dogma of the perpetual virginity of Mary, and, without denying the legitimacy of marriage, he pointed out its drawbacks, I was about to say its evils. He encouraged young girls, for whom honorable or brilliant marriages were in contemplation, in their desire to lead a monastic life, and at the sight of the Roman virgins who, through his advice, thus renounced their families, there were many who would readily have accused him of murder, more especially after the death of Blesilla, whom he was reported to have killed by dint of the fasts he imposed upon her. That was not the only grudge harbored against him. He denounced with eloquent indignation and inexhaustible fervor the licentiousness, avarice, intemperance and hypocrisy which had crept in among the priests and the monks at Rome and it may easily be imagined that those stung by his powerful satire, and those who recognized themselves or were recognized by others in his portraits, became incensed, and that anger and resentment broke out against him on every side. Calumny soon came to the aid of spite, and at the expense of all justice as well as truth the relations between Paula and her spiritual director were incriminated. The death of Damasus, which took place on the 11th of December 384, deprived Jerome of his protector, excluded him from the Apostolic Chancery, and completed his severance from Rome. His thoughts turned once more to the desert, but this time it was the Biblical desert in which he wished permanently to establish himself, and he left Rome forever, taking with him his brother Paulinian, the priest Vincent, and a few monks. From Ostia, on the point of embarking, he wrote a letter to Asella, in which his affectionate and saddened soul reveals itself. If I believed myself capable of thanking thee worthily, he wrote, I should be incensed. But God can reward thy saintly soul for me for the good thou has done me. As to me, I am unworthy of it, and I never had any right to hope or even to wish that thou wouldest grant me in Jesus Christ so great an affection. And even if certain persons believe me to be a vile wretch overwhelmed by the weight of my sins—in comparison to my sins that is but little—yet thou art right in letting thy heart distinguish for thee between the righteous and the unrighteous.… Jerome then proceeded to exonerate himself from the calumnies which had assailed him and invoked the memory and testimony of Asella and of all those who lived on the Aventine. Many a time have I been surrounded by a flock of virgins, and to the best of my ability expounded the divine books to several of them. Study creates assiduity, assiduity familiarity, and familiarity a mutual understanding. Call upon those virgins to answer if they have ever had any thought from me other than those one should receive from a Christian. Have I ever taken money from any of them? Have I not always repulsed every gift large or small? Has my neighbors lucre ever soiled my hand? Have I ever uttered a dubious word or cast too bold a glance?

Jerome journeyed to Rhegium thence to Cyprus, and thence to Antioch; St. Paula leaving Rome forever joined him here. She brought with her her daughter Eustochium and a band of Roman virgins who had consecrated themselves to God. In the middle of winter St. Jerome and St. Paula and her companions set out for the Holy Land.

In praef. 2 ad Paralip. he describes the finis of this journey: As those who have seen Athens better understand Grecian history; and as he, who has traveled from Troas through Leucadia and the Acroceraunian mountains to Sicily, and thence to the mouth of the Tiber, will better understand the third book of Virgil, thus a man will more clearly understand the Scriptures, if he shall have seen Judæa with his own eyes, and shall have examined the memorials of the old cities, and the names of places whether unchanged or changed. Hence we took the pains to undergo this labor with most learned Hebrews, that we might journey through the country of which all the churches of Christ speak. Coming to Cæsarea, Jerome came upon the Hexapla of Origen, and from this copied all the books of the Old Testament. He descended into Egypt and listened at Alexandria to Didymus, the celebrated teacher of Scripture: My head was now sprinkled with gray hairs, he says, and seemed more fit for the master than the disciple; but I went to Alexandria, I heard Didymus, and for many things, am thankful to him.

Jerome now returned to Palestine and established himself at Bethlehem, where, out of the wreck of his inheritance, consisting of farms partially destroyed by the barbarians, which Paulinian was commissioned to sell, and with the aid of Paulas bounty, he erected a monastery which he fortified with a tower of refuge. He selected for his cell a cave close to the one where our Lord was born. Paula, meanwhile, after having built some temporary cells, was engaged in constructing convents, and her indefatigable charity endowed as a hospice for pilgrims the hamlet where, as Jerome observed, Mary and Joseph had been without shelter.

In Palestine Jerome was once more thrown with Rufinus, a friend of his youth, who had left Rome in 371 and after six years spent in Egypt had settled at Jerusalem not far from the widow Melania, celebrated for her austere sacrifices and her continual journeys. The intimacy which absence had interrupted without destroying, was renewed between the two friends. Jerome used even to have the manuscripts of secular literature needed for his disciples copied by monks belonging to the convent of the Olive Trees, which Rufinus directed.

The early days of Jeromes sojourn in Bethlehem were most serene; everything charmed and satisfied him, and a tremor of joyous admiration, a breath of spring, one might almost say, seems to vibrate through the pages which he wrote or inspired during that period. The most illustrious Gauls congregate here, and no sooner has the Briton, so remote from our world, made any progress in piety, than he abandons his early setting sun to seek a land which he knows only by reputation, and through the Scriptures. And what of the Armenians, the Persians, the nations of India and Ethiopia; of Egypt herself, so rich in monks, of Pontus, Cappadocia, Cœlesyria and Mesopotamia? All these Eastern countries send us hordes of monks … they throng here and set us the example of every virtue. The languages differ, but the religion is the same, and one can count as many different choirs singing the psalms as there are nations. Yet in all this—and this is the triumph of Christianity—there is no vainglory, none prides himself upon his chastity; if they quarrel it is as to who shall be the humblest, for the last is here counted first.… They do not judge one another, for fear of being judged by the Saviour, and slander, so prevalent in many districts where they malign each other outrageously, is here completely unknown. Here is no luxury, no sensuality.… Either Jerome or Paula closes this description with a few lines of idyllic grace. In this land of Christs all is simplicity, and except when the Psalms are being sung all is silence. Wherever you may go you hear the laborer, with his hand upon the plough, murmuring Alleluia. The reaper, with the sweat pouring from his brow, finds relaxation in singing the Psalms, and the vintager recites some passage from David while pruning his vines. They are, so to speak, the love songs of the country; the shepherds lilt, the laborers accompaniment. [Epist. XLVI.—Paulæ et Eustochii ad Marcellam, 9, 10, 11.]

These peaceful years were also years of toil for Jerome. The direction of the convents which had sprung up about the cave of Bethlehem, the active correspondence he maintained with his friends in the outer world, even the grammatical instruction he gave to the young men, which brought back to him those secular works of antiquity he had vainly striven to hate or to forget, would have been sufficient in themselves to fill his life. They were, however, but a minor portion of his work. He had undertaken the study of the Scriptures at the advice of Damasus, but the Providential attraction which also drew him to them, was continually stronger and surer. Everything seemed to lead him to the Bible.

Sulpicius Severus, who spent six months with him at Bethlehem, thus describes his life: He is wholly absorbed in reading, he takes no rest by day or by night; he is ever reading or writing something. Jerome was a man of great physical endurance. His literary activity at Bethlehem may be compared to that of Origen. He translated the book of Tobias in a single night, and even, when ill, he dictated from his couch to an amanuensis.

To perfect his knowledge of Hebrew, he employed a Jew to teach him, and, as this preceptor feared the fanaticism of his race, the lessons were given by night. Jerome speaks of these things in his Epist. ad Pammachius, 84, 3: With most great labor, and great price did I have Baranina by night as preceptor. He feared the Jews, and was to me another Nicodemus. Coupled with this, he assiduously studied the Fathers and writers of the Church. Villarsi declares that no one, Greek or Latin, read more authors than Jerome. In the year 389 Jerome began the great work of his life, a translation of the protocanonical books of the Old Testament from the original Hebrew. He was not able to devote all his time to the great work, but it was the chief object of his labors for fifteen years. He also translated the deuterocanonical books of Tobias and Judith from Chaldean exemplars. This translation of Jerome forms our Vulgate, concerning which we shall speak later. His translation of the Psalter from the Hebrew was not received into the Vulgate; its place was occupied by the Psalter which he revised from the Hexaplar text of Origen at Cæsarea.

A long and painful ordeal was about to disturb what St. Augustine called the peaceful joy which Jerome tasted in his work. It arose from the most unexpected quarter, his adversary being no other than Rufinus, with whom he engaged in a fratricidal conflict over the writings of Origen.

Jerome had first met Rufinus at Aquileia, and they had contracted one of those friendships which seem eternal. It was to this friend of his youth, who had left him to visit the Egyptian Thebaides, that Jerome, isolated in the desert of Chalcis, wrote from a bed of sickness: Oh! if the Lord Jesus Christ would grant that I might suddenly be transported to thy side as was Philip to the minister of Candacia, and Habakkuk to Daniel, how tenderly would I clasp thee in my arms! He closed this letter with the following words, which subsequent events so cruelly belied: I beseech thee, let not thy heart lose sight, as have thine eyes, of a friend so long sought, with such difficulty found, and so hard to retain! Let others gloat over their gold! Friendship is an incomparable possession, a priceless treasure, but the friendship which can perish has never been a true one. [Epist. III. ad Rufinum monachum.]

This last is a somewhat bold assertion, and one which fails to take into account the inconstancy of the human heart which is liable to take back what it once gave in all sincerity. St. Augustine, who was the most devoted and faithful of friends, the mere mention of whose name recalls those of so many beings dear to him whose lives were inseparably interwoven with his own, in speaking of this rupture between Rufinus and Jerome has deplored in touching accents the frailty which undermines or menaces our affections. What hearts will hereafter dare open themselves to one another; is there any friend to whom one may freely unbosom oneself; where is the friend one does not fear some day to count an enemy, if this rupture which we deplore could have taken place between Jerome and Rufinus? Oh! wretched plight of mankind, and worthy of pity! How can we put faith in what we see in our friends souls when we cannot foresee what may change them? Yet why lament thus over others when we do not know what we may be ourselves? Man barely and imperfectly knows what he is to-day; he has no conception of what he may be to-morrow. [Epist. CX. inter Epist. Hieronymi, 6.]

A famous writing of Origens gave rise to a stormy quarrel and an irrevocable rupture between the two friends. It was curious that the timid writer, who took exception to the most legitimate of Jeromes innovations and behind whose watchful orthodoxy lurked a conservative and moody spirit of distrust, should have been the champion of the brilliant and audacious Alexandrian, who seems to us one of the most dazzling and in certain respects one of the most sympathetic personalities of the Christian school of Alexandria.

Jerome had proclaimed Origen the master of the Churches after the apostles. But he tells us that he praised Origen as an interpreter, not as a dogmatist. [Epist. LXXXIV ad Pam.] This is an awkward apology. A false dogmatist can not be a good interpreter. The fact of the matter seems to be that Jerome himself was deceived by the views of Origen. The vehemence and intolerance of Jeromes nature can be gleaned from the following passage, Epist. XXXIII. 4. It was written concerning the condemnation of Origen: Rome consents to his condemnation; it brings together its senate against him, not because of the novelty of his doctrines, not because of heresy, as the dogs who are mad against him now pretend, but because they could not bear the glory of his eloquence and his knowledge, and because when he spoke they were made to appear as mutes.

A few years later he abused Rufinus in a similar manner because he sustained the defense of Origen. Like violent changes of opinion characterize his whole life. His judgments are not uniform and consistent, and this is to be taken into account when adducing him as an authority.

Rufinus died in Sicily in 410, and Jerome thus speaks of his death in the opening chapter of his Commentary on Ezechiel: The scorpion lies underground between Enceladus and Porphyrion, and the hydra of many heads has at last ceased to hiss against me. Tantæne animis cœlestibus iræ?

Rufinus also was a bitter foe. Anyone who has read his Apology, his Invectives against Jerome, for such is the name which has clung to this work, will be fully persuaded of this. He devoted three years to this work, says Amédée Thierry, which appeared fragment by fragment; he divided it into two books to which he later added a supplement. He had a double aim, first to exonerate himself from the crime of heresy by casting upon Jerome the accusation directed towards himself, and then to dishonor Jerome and to throw odium on his name by personal imputations, lamenting the while being forced to such measures. [St. Jerome, Lib. IV.] Indeed no pamphlet has ever been composed with more cunning hatred, nor has ever struck the adversary more surely. According to him, Jerome was the enemy of mankind; a traducer of the faithful, whose customs he had calumniated in his book upon Virginity, at the risk of justifying and even magnifying the calumnies of the pagans; a traducer of the works of Ambrose the great bishop; a traducer of Rome, the capital of the Christian world; and a traducer of all authors, either Greek or Latin, who had preceded him. One grievance which Rufinus put forward with malignant insistence, was the important part the pagan authors played in Jeromes works and in his thoughts. In vain had Jerome after a famous vision sworn never to reopen any secular book. Peruse his writings and see if there is a single page which does not point to his having again become a Ciceronian, and in which he does not speak of Our Cicero, Our Homer, Our Virgil; he even boasts of having read the works of Pythagoras, which according to the erudite are no longer in existence. In almost all his works quotations from secular authors are far more numerous and lengthy than those from the Prophets and Apostles. Even when writing to women or maidens, who in our holy books seek only subjects for edification, he intersperses his letters with quotations from Horace, Cicero or Virgil. [Rufinus Apol. Lib. sec. 7.]

A controversy arose between St. Jerome and St. Augustine between the years 395 and 405. The origin of the controversy was St. Jeromes commentary of Galatians II. 11–14.

I have read, Augustine wrote Jerome, a commentary upon the Epistles of St. Paul which is ascribed to you, and I came across the passage in the Epistle to the Galatians, where the Apostle Peter is reproved for the deception into which he had been drawn. I confess with no small sorrow that in it you, even you, or the author of this writing whosoever he may be, have defended the cause of untruth. I consider it a fatal error to believe it possible to find anything in the Scriptures which is untrue, in other words, to believe that the men to whom we are indebted for the sacred works could have inserted therein any falsehood. Once admit any officious untruth in the Holy books, then, in accordance with this pernicious principle, in order to escape from a moral which imposes too much restraint upon us, or from dogmas which are beyond our comprehension, we may attribute any part of these works to the artifice of an author who has not told the truth. Having pursued his urgent argument pointed by illustrations from the Bible, Augustine, scarcely hoping that his request would be acceded to, demanded an explanation which would dispel his doubts. In conclusion he claimed a fraternally severe criticism of which he had just given an example, for those of his works which Profuturus was to offer to Jerome.

Meanwhile Profuturus, who had been made Bishop of Cirta in Numidia, instead of starting for Palestine took possession of his see, where he very shortly died. The letter, therefore, which had been given to him never reached its destination, but unfortunately fell into indiscreet hands, and the copies of it which were circulated in Dalmatia and Italy, encouraged Jeromes enemies in their criticisms. Augustine had also been raised to the episcopacy in 395, and amid new cares and duties had no doubt forgotten not only his letter, but the commentary which had provoked it, when a note which the deacon Presidius brought him from Jerome, recalled them to his mind. As Jeromes missive did not in any way answer the questions Augustine had put to him, the latter thinking that his letter had gone astray wrote another, which was longer but not less peremptory and no less aggressive. After having again tried to demonstrate the dangers of the Hieronymian explanation, Augustine exhorted the aged historian to a courageous retraction of it, reminding him of the fable of Stesichorus who, struck with blindness by the demi-gods Castor and Pollux for having decried the chastity and beauty of Helen in a satire, did not recover his sight until he had sung the praises of the grace and virtue he had outraged, upon his lyre.

I implore you, he wrote Jerome, gird yourself with a sincere and Christian severity, correct and amend your work, and so to speak sing its recantation. The truth of Christians is incomparably more beautiful than the Helen of the Greeks, for it indeed, have our martyrs fought more bravely against the Sodom of their century, than did the Greek heroes against Troy. I do not urge you to this disavowal, so that you may recover your mental sight, for God forbid that I should think that you had lost it, yet suffer me to tell you that through I know not what inadvertency you have turned aside your eyes, sound and far-sighted though they may be, and have failed to see the disastrous consequences of a system which would admit that one of the authors of our sacred books, could once, in some part of his work, have conscientiously and piously lied. [Epist. LXVII. Augustini ad Hieronymum, inter Epistolas Hieronymi, 7.]

The man, by name Paul, to whom this letter had been confided, overcome by his terror of the sea, did not embark for Palestine, and another messenger chosen by Augustine also failed to deliver the missive to Jerome. The letter, however, spread abroad, and with it a report that Augustine had composed and sent to Rome a book against Jerome. The deacon Sisinius, a friend of the hermit, found Augustines letter, together with some other writings by the same doctor, on an island in the Adriatic, and lost no time in sending it to its destination.

This certainly was enough to rouse a soul less ardent, and a writer less harassed by envy, or less surrounded by admirers quick to take alarm and even to be angered at all criticisms directed against their master; yet Jerome controlled himself and refrained from answering. He explained his silence in the letters which later he wrote to the Bishop of Hippo. It seems that, although he unmistakably recognized Augustines familiar style and manner of argument, the material evidences of authenticity were wanting. Besides which, the veteran soldier of orthodoxy shrank from opening hostilities with a bishop of his own communion whom he had loved before even knowing him, and who had sought him in friendship; one, who already illustrious, was to continue his Scriptural works, and one in whom he gladly welcomed a legitimate heir.

When at last Augustine heard of the pain his letters, divulged in such an unaccountable manner, had caused in the solitude of Bethlehem, he wrote to Jerome: A rumor has reached me which I have difficulty in believing, yet why should I not mention it to you? It has been reported to me that some brothers, I know not whom, have given you to understand that I have written a book against you, and that I have sent it to Rome. Rest assured that this is false; God is witness that I have written no book against you (the book in question was the letter, or letters, of which Jeromes enemies had taken a perfidious advantage). If there be anything in my works contrary to your views, know or believe that it was written not to antagonize you, but to explain what seemed to me the truth. Point out to me anything in my writings which could offend you; I will receive your counsels as from one brother to another, glad to make any corrections, glad also of such a token of your affection. I ask and entreat this of you. Then followed one of those effusions in which Augustines soul so often found its outlet. Oh, why, if I may not live with you, may I not at least live in your vicinity, and hold sweet and frequent intercourse with you. But since that has not been granted me, consent at least to uphold and draw closer the ties which render us present to one another in the Lord; disdain not the letters which I will sometimes write you. [Ep. ci. Augustini ad Hieronymum, 2, 3.]

Sincere and touching as were the tones of this letter, it failed to disarm Jerome, who did not think it sufficiently explicit. Moreover the advice, and even the appeals, which it contained offended the somewhat proud susceptibility of the aged Biblical student. After evincing his doubts, which we have already mentioned, upon the authenticity of Augustines letter, he proceeded to add these words: God forbid that I should dare to censure the works of your Beatitude; let it suffice me to defend my own, without criticising those of others. Your wisdom knows full well that every man is wedded to his own opinion, and that it were childish boasting to imitate the youths of old who, by slandering famous men, sought to become famous themselves. Neither am I foolish enough to be offended by the divergences which exist between your explanation and mine. You yourself are not hurt at my holding different opinions. But where our friends have really the right to reprove us is when not perceiving our own wallet, as Persius says, we look at that of another.

I have still one thing to ask of you, which is that you should love one who loves you, and that being young, you challenge not an aged man upon the battlefield of the Scriptures. We too have had our day, and we have run our race to the best of our abilities, and now that it has come to be your turn to do likewise, and that you are making great strides, we have a right to rest. To follow your example in quoting the poets, remember Dares and Entellus, think also of the proverb which says, As the ox grows weary he plants his foot more firmly. I dictate these lines with sadness; would to God I might embrace you, and that in brotherly intercourse we might have instructed one another.… Think of me, saintly and venerable pontiff! See how much I love you, I who, although challenged, have been unwilling to reply, and who do not yet resign myself to ascribe to you what in another I should blame.

To this letter, which was brought him by the subdeacon Asterius, Augustine made a modest and touching answer. He vindicated himself of having, so to speak, defied the aged athlete upon the field of the Scriptures, and merely asked to be enlightened. Far be it from me that I should take offence, if by sound reasons you will and can prove to me that you understand the Epistle to the Galatians or any other like part of the Scriptures better than I. Far from resenting it, I should deem it a privilege to be instructed or corrected by you. But, beloved brother, you would not think that your answer could have hurt me had you not thought that I had been the first to wound you. My best course is to acknowledge my fault, and to confess that I offended you in writing that letter which I cannot disown. If I offended you, I conjure you by the meekness of Jesus Christ do not render me evil for evil by offending me in your turn. Now, to dissimulate what you find to alter or correct in my writings or my discourses would be to offend me.… Reprove me with charity if you deem me in the wrong, innocent though I may be, or treat me with the tenderness of a father if you think me worthy of your affection.… Innocent, I will receive your reproaches in a spirit of gratitude; guilty, I will acknowledge both your benevolence and my own error.

The unbiased judge of this controversy must feel that St. Augustine was entirely right in his criticism and that Augustines magnanimity and meekness prevented a bitter controversy. St. Jerome manifests here that sensitiveness to crticism which was a prominent characteristic in him. Jerome died at Bethlehem, according to the Chronicle of Prosper, in the year 420, and was interred close to the Grotto of the Nativity of Our Saviour. His body was afterwards brought to the Church of St. Maria Maggiore in Rome.

His sanctity and austerity is of the kind that awes rather than attracts, and is provocative of admiration rather than of imitation. For this reason he has been looked at with cool, temperate eyes; and since, moreover, he has so fully written himself down for us, there is little difficulty in discerning the broad outlines of his personality.

A strange, strong man, strenuous and intense even to the verge of ferocity, as was the fashion of his day with the the champions of orthodoxy. In him is exemplified the sort of antagonism that exists between delicacy of perception and strength of execution, and renders their equal development so rare in one and the same character. With great capacity in both directions, St. Jerome seems alternately to sacrifice one of these interests to the other. In his zealous self-hatred it never occurred to him apparently that the difficulties he was contending with were more probably the effect of mental strain and nervous exhaustion than of an overplus of animal energy, and therefore were rather augmented than alleviated by his violent methods. In the feverish vision of his judgment before Christs tribunal—embodying no doubt the state of his conscience at the time—the whole apparatus of secular learning by which he himself was subsequently enabled to become so acute an exponent and defender of the faith, and which the later Church blessed, sanctified, and consecrated to the service of religion, was condemned without qualification as repugnant to Christianity; even as the body and all natural affections were indiscriminately condemned as inimical to virtue and sanctity.

It is mainly to the gigantic force of his intellect, to his stupenduous power of work, to his prodigious scholarship—as scholarship went in those days—that he owes his prominence in the history of Christianity. When we think of what he did, and did single-handed, for Scriptural criticism and exegesis: how he created order and coherence where previously there had been wild chaos and confusion, how he expanded and applied the critical principles then in vogue as far as the material to hand would permit we cannot help wondering what he would do, what he would be allowed to do, were he among us now, and were he master—as doubtless he would be—of the rich harvest of learning and information that has been accumulating during the intervening centuries.

Jeromes attitude towards the deuterocanonical books was not consistent. At times he bitterly attacks them, as in the following passages.

In his celebrated Prologus Galeatus, after the enumeration of the protocanonical books, he continues: Whatever is outside of these is to be placed among the Apocrypha. Therefore the Wisdom which is commonly ascribed to Solomon, and the book of Jesus the son of Sirach, Judith, Tobias, and Pastor are not in the Canon. The first Book of Maccabees I found in Hebrew, the second is originally Greek, as appears from the diction.

Again in the Preface to Ezra: What is not received by them, (the Hebrews) and what is not of the twenty-four Ancients (the protocanonical books) is to be repulsed far from one.

In his Preface to the Books of Solomon: There exist also Panaretus, the book of Jesus the Son of Sirach, and another of the pseudepigrapha which is called the Wisdom of Solomon. The first I found in Hebrew, not called Ecclesiasticus, as with the Latins, but Parables: the second is nowhere with the Hebrews, and the very style savors of Greek eloquence, and some of the old writers have ascribed it to Philo the Jew. As, therefore, the Church reads Judith, Tobias, and the books of Maccabees, but does not hold them canonical, thus let her read these two volumes for the edification of the people, not for the confirmation of ecclesiastical dogmas.

In his Praef. in Esther: To this book the received Latin version has added various ragged patches of words, adding the things which might be suggested by the theme. Here is an evident condemnation of the deuterocanonical fragments of Esther.

Writing to Laeta, Epist. 107, 12, on the mode of instructing her daughter, he says: Let her shun all Apocrypha (the deuterocanonical books), and if ever she should read them, not for confirmation of dogmas, but out of reverence for the words, let her know that they are not of those who appear in the titles, and that there are many false things intermingled in them, and that one has need of great prudence to seek the gold in the slime. In his Commentary on Daniel, although he comments the deuterocanonical fragments, he is inclined to think that they are fables of Greek origin. It does not increase our esteem of Jeromes critique to find that one cause of his doubt of the fragments is that in the fourteenth chapter, first verse, the King of Babylon is said to cry out with a loud voice; whereas Jerome had maintained that only the saints are said in Scripture to cry out with a loud voice.

In his prologue to Daniel, he justifies himself for having fixed an obelus to the fragments of Daniel, alleging that Origen, and Eusebius, and Apollinaris and other churchwriters and doctors of Greece declare that these visions have no place with the Hebrews, and that they needed not to respond to Porphyrius in defense of those things to which the Holy Scriptures gave no authority.

In his prologue to Jeremiah he declares that he has omitted the book of Baruch, and the pseudepigraphic Epistle of Jeremiah, setting at naught the rage of his calumniators. We have no wish to minimize Jeromes opposition to the deuterocanonical books. At times it was pronounced and violent. But he could, at most, only be termed a violent doubter. He never was calm and constant in his rejection of those books. The fact that, in such strange opposition, he was at variance with all his contemporaries, made him waver, and we find more quotations from deuterocanonical Scripture in Jerome, than in any other writer yet quoted. Oft when opposed by his adversaries for his Scriptural views he vented his resentment upon the books themselves. Then, when asked by a friend, he would calmly discuss the merits of these same writings. He translated Tobias from the Chaldaic at the instance of Chromatius and Heliodorus, the bishops, judging it better to displease the Pharisees, in order to grant the requests of the bishops. Praef. in Lib. Tob.

In Jeromes mind there was ever a conflict between two principles. By conviction and education he was a Christian, moulded by Christian tradition. His higher studies had made him in a certain sense a Jew. The weird quaint beauty of the Hebrew tongue, the deeper insight into the substance of the Old Law which only Hebraists can have, the conviction that of all the Christian writers of his time, he alone knew Hebrew, made him look with disfavor upon the books which the Jews rejected. It is an evidence in favor of the deuterocanonical books that they retained their place in the list of Scripture after the many tests to which they were subjected. The genius of Jerome was not able to draw even one Father to entertain his views on the deuterocanonical works. He fluctuated between his reverence for the Christian tradition, and his respect for the Synagogue till his death, and contradicted himself many times in his views on the books in question.

Dan. 13:61

              St. Jerome, Epist. I. 9.

Et consurrexerunt adversus duos presbyteros (convicerat enim eos Daniel ex ore suo falsum dixisse testimonium) feceruntque eis sicut male egerant adversus proximum.

              Nunc Susanna nobilis fide omnium subeat mentibus, quæ iniquo damnata judicio, Spiritu Sancto puerum replente, salvata est. Ecce non dispar in utraque misericordia Domini. Illa liberata per judicem, ne iret ad gladium; hæc a judice damnata, absoluta per gladium est.

Dan. 14:35

              Epist. III. 1.

Et apprehendit eum Angelus Domini in vertice ejus, et portavit eum capillo capitis sui, posuitque eum in Babylone supra lacum in impetu spiritus sui.

              O si nunc mihi Dominus Jesus Christus.… Habacuc ad Danielem translationem concederet!

Sap. 1:11.

              Epist. XIV. 6.

Custodite ergo vos a murmuratione, que nihil prodest, et a detractione parcite linguae, quoniam sermo obscurus in vacuum non ibit: os autem, quod mentitur, occidit animam.

              Os autem quod mentitur occidit animam.

Sap. 6:7.

              Ibid. 9

Exiguo enim conceditur misericordia; potentes autem potenter tormenta patientur.

              Potenter potentes tormenta patientur.

Dan. 13:51.


Et dixit ad eos Daniel; Separate illos ab invicem procul, et dijudicabo eos.

              Presbyteros puer Daniel judicat.

Judith 12:10.

              Epist. XXII. 21.

et percussit bis in cervicem, et abscidit caput ejus, et abstulit conopeum ejus a columnis, evolvit corpus ejus truncum etc.

              Tune Holofernis caput Judith continens amputavit.

Esther 14:11.

              Epist: XLVIII. 14

Ne tradas, Domine, sceptrum tuum his, qui non sunt, etc.

              Ne tradas, inquit Esther, hereditatem his qui non sunt, idolis scilicet et dæmonibus.

Sap. 2:23.

              Epist. LI. 6

Quoniam Deus creavit hominem inexterminabilem, et ad imaginem similitudinis suæ fecit illum.

              Dicit enim (Salomon) in Sapientia quæ titulo ejus inscribitur: Creavit Deus incorruptum hominem, et imaginem suæ proprietatis dedit ei.

Judith 8:6, et 13:9, 10

              Epist. LIV. 16.

              Legimus in Judith (si cui tamen placet volumen recippere) viduam confectam jejuniis et habitu lugubri sordidatam, quæ non lugebat mortuum virum sed squalore corporis, Sponsi quærebat adventum. Video armatam gladio manum cruentam dexteram. Recognosco caput Holophernis de mediis hostibus reportatum.

Eccli. 25:12.

              Epist. LVII. 1.

Beatus, qui invenit amicum verum, et qui enarrat justitiam auri audienti.

              Legerat enim (Paulus) illud Jesu: Beatus qui in aures loquitur audientis.

Certainly Jerome does not wish to say that Paul committed to memory Apocryphal Scripture.

Eccli. 3:33.

              Epist. LXVI. 5.

Ignem ardentem extinguit aqua, et eleemosyna resistit peccatis—.

              —sciens scriptum; Sicut aqua extinguit ignem; ita eleemosyna peccatum.

Eccli. 4:25.

              Ibid. 5.

Est enim confusio adducens peccatum, et est confusio adducens gloriam et gratiam.

              Est confusio quæ ducit ad mortem, et est confusio quæ ducit ad vitam.

Eccli. 11:27.

              Epist. LXXVII. 6.

In die bonorum ne immemor sis malorum: et in die malorum ne immemor sis bonorum …—.

              —scilicet in die bona malorum non oblita est.

Sap. 4:11.

              Epist. LXXIX. 2.

raptus est ne malitia mutaret intellectum ejus, aut ne fictio deciperet animam illius.

              Raptus est ne malitia mutaret men tem ejus, quia placita erat Deo anima illius.

Sap. 4:8.

              Ibid. 6.

Senectus enim venerabilis est non diuturna, neque annorum numero computata: cani autem sunt sensus hominis.

              Cani enim hominis sapientia ejus.

Sap. 1:7.

              Epist. XCVIII. 13.

Quoniam spiritus Domini replevit orbem terrarum, etc.

              Et alibi legimus: Spiritus Domini replevit orbem terrarum. Quod nunquam Scriptura memoraret nisi irrationabilia quæque et inanima illius nomine complerentur.

Sap. 8:2.

              Ibid. 19.

Hanc amavi, et exquisivi a juventute mea et quæsivi sponsam mihi eam assumere, et amator factus sum formæ illius.

              —et in illius perseverantes amore cantabimus, Amator fui pulchritudinis ejus.

A testimony that can be joined with those of Jerome is that of Theophilus, Bishop of Alexandria, which was translated by Jerome. It is designated as Epist. C. in Mignes Works of Jerome. In the ninth paragraph Theophilus speaks of the Maccabees as follows:

II. Maccab. Passim.


              Quid memorem insignes Maccabæorum victorias? qui, ne illicitis carnibus vescerentur et communes tangerent cibos, corpora obtulere cruciatibus: totiusque orbis in ecclesiis Christi laudibus prædicantur, fortiores poenis, ardentiores quibus comburebantur ignibus.

Could the universal Church give such honor to Apocryphal martyrs?

Sap. 9:15.

              Epist. CVIII. 22.

corpus enim, quod corrumpitur, aggravat animam, et terrena inhabitatio deprimit sensum multa cogitantem.

              Si non erit sublata diversitate sexus eadem corpora non resurgent: Aggrava etnim terrena inhabitatio sensum multa cogitantem.

Eccli. 22:6.

              Epist. CXVIII. 1.

Musica in luctu importuna narratio.

              Divina Scriptura loquitur: Musica in luctu, intempestiva narratio.

If words can express thoughts, the man who penned these lines believed that he was quoting the inspired word of God.

Eccli. 27:28

              Epist. CXXV. 19.

Qui in altum mittit lapidem, super caput ejus cadet; et plaga dolosa dolosi dividet vulnera.

              Et alibi: Qui mittit in altum lapidem, recidet in caput ejus.

Esther 14:16.

              Epist. CXXX. 4.

Tu scis necessitatem meam, quod abominer signum superbiæ et gloriæ meæ, quod est super caput meum in diebus ostentationis meæ, et detester illud quasi pannum menstruatæ, etc.

              Oderat ornatum suum et cum Esther loquebatur ad Dominum: Tu nosti quod oderim insigne capitis mei, et tantæ ducam immunditiæ velut pannum menstruatæ.

Eccli. 4:28.

              Epist. CXLVIII. 2.

nec retineas verbum in tempore salutis.

              —illud mecum Scripturæ reputans: Tempus tacendi, et tempus loquendi. Et iterum: Ne retineas verbum in tempore salutis.

Eccli. 28:28.

              Ibid. 16.

Sepi aures tuas spinis, linguam nequam noli audire, et ori tuo facito ostia et seras.

              Noli. inquit Scriptura, consentaneus esse, etc. Et alibi: Sepi aures tuas spinis, et noli audire linguam nequam.

Eccli. 28:29–30.

              Ibid. 18.

Aurum tuum et argentum tuum confla, et verbis tuis facito stateram, et frenos ori tuo rectos: et attende, ne forte labaris in lingua—.

              Unde Scriptura dicit: Argentum et aurum tuum confla, et verbis tuis facito stateram et frenos ori tuo rectos: et attende ne forte labaris lingua.

Eccli. 3:20.

              Ibid. 20.

Quanto magnus es, humilia te in omnibus, et coram Deo invenies gratiam—.

              Unde Scriptura dicit: Quanto magnus es; humilia te in omnibus, et coram Deo invenies gratiam.

Eccli. 10:10.

              St. Jerome Interpretatio Lib. Didymi, 10.

Quoniam a Deo profecta est sapientia, etc.

              Dominus, inquit, dabit sapientiam, et a facie ejus sapientia et intellectus procedit.

Sap. 6:26.

              Ibid. 21.

Multitudo autem sapientium sanitas est orbis terrarum; et rex sapiens stabilimentum populi est.

              Multitudo quippe sapientium, salus mundi.

Tob. 4:16.

              Ibid. 39.

Quod ab alio oderis fieri tibi, etc.

              Quod tibi non vis fieri, etc.

Sap. 11:27.

              Ibid. 46.

Parcis autem omnibus, quoniam tua sunt, Domine, qui amas animas.

              —juxta illud quod alibi scribitur: Parces autem omnibus, Domine amator animarum, quia tuæ sunt, neque enim odies quos fecisti.

Dan. 13 Passim.

              Adversus Jovinian, 25.

              Erat igitur Daniel adhuc puer, et notus populo vel propter interpretationem somniorum regis vel propter Susannæ liberationem et occisionem presbyterorum.

Sap. 6:7.

              Adversus Jov. Lib. II. 25.

Exiguo enim conceditur misericordia; potentes autem potenter tormenta patientur.

              —quanto majoris criminis, tanto majoris et pœnæ. Potentes enim potenter tormenta patientur.

Sap. 1:4–5.

              Apologia Adversus Rufinum 17.

Quoniam in malevolam animam non introibit sapientia, nec habitabit in corpore subdito peccatis. Spiritus enim sanctus disciplinæ effugiet fictum, et auferet se a cogitationibus, quæ sunt sine intellectu, et corripietur a superveniente iniquitate.

              Loquitur et Sapientia quam sub nomine Salomonis legimus: In malevolam animam nunquam intrabit sapientia, nec habitabit in corpore subdito peccatis. Spiritus enim Sanctus eruditionis fugiet dolum et recedet a cogitationibus stultis.

Sap. 1:11.

              Adversus Rufinum Lib. III. 26.

Custodite ergo vos a murmuratione, quæ nihil prodest, et a detractione parcite linguæ, quoniam sermo obscurus in vacuum non ibit: os autem, quod mentitur occidit animam.

              Os quod mentitur occidit animam.

Eccli. 3:22.

              Adversus Pelagianos Lib. I. 33.

Altiora te ne quæsieris, et fortiora tene scrutatus fueris, etc.

              Respondet stultæ interrogationi tuæ liber Sapientiæ: Altiora te ne quæsieris, et fortiora te ne scrutatus fueris.

2 Maccab. 5. Passim.

              Adversus Pelagianos Lib. II. 30.

              Antiochus Epiphanius rex crudelissimus subvertit altare, ipsamque justitiam fecit conculcari, quia concessum erat a Domino, causasque reddit propter peccata plurima.

Tob. 12:7.

              Comment. in Eccles. Cap. VIII.

Etenim sacramentum regis abscondere bonum est, etc.

              Et hoc est quod in libro Tobiæ scribitur: Mysterium regis abscondere bonum est.

Eccli. 1:33.

              Ibid. Cap. IX.

Fili, concupiscens sapientiam, conserva justitiam, et Deus præbebit illam tibi.

              Dato nobis itaque præcepto quod dicit: Desiderasti sapientiam, serva mandata, et Dominus ministrabit tibi eam.

Eccli. 27:29.

              Ibid. Cap. X.

Et qui foveam fodit, incidet in eam: et qui statuit lapidem proximo, offendet in eo: et qui laqueum alii ponit, peribit in illo.

              Siquidem et alibi ipse Salomon ait: Qui statuit laqueum, capietur in illo.

Sap. 6:7.

              Comment. in Isaiam, Cap. I. Vers. 24.

(Oft quoted.)

              —de quibus scriptum est: potentes potenter tormenta patientur. (Oft quoted.)

Sap. 2:12.

              Ibid. Lib. II. Cap. III. Vers. 1.

Circumveniamus ergo justum, quoniam inutilis est nobis etc.

              —cogitastis consilium pessimum dic entes: Alligemus justum, quia inutilis est nobis.

Dan. 13. Passim.

              Ibid. Vers. 2.

              Et inveteratos dierum malorum duos presbyteros juxta Theodotionem in Danielis principio legimus.

Sap. 4:8.


Senectus enim venerabilis est non diuturna, neque annorum numero computata: cani autem sunt sensus hominis.

              —de qua scriptum est: Canities hominum, prudentia est.

              Ibid. Vers. 3.

              Unde et illud in nostris libris legimus: Amici tibi sint plurimi, consiliarius autem unus de mille.

Eccli. 7:6.

              Ibid. Vers. 7.

Noli quærere fieri judex, nisi valeas virtute irrumpere iniquitates, etc.

              —aliudque mandatum: Ne quæras judex fieri: ne forte non possis auferre iniquitates.

Eccli. 11:30.

              Ibid. Vers. 12.

Ante mortem ne laudes hominem quemquam, quoniam in filiis suis agnoscitur vir.

              —nec prævenit sententiam judicis sui, dicente Scripturœ sancta: Ne beatum dicas quemquam hominem ante mortem.

Eccli. 13:1.

              Ibid. Lib. III. Cap. VI. Ver. 5.

Qui tetigerit picem, inquinabitur ab ea, etc.

              Ex quo ostenditur noxium esse vivere cum peccatoribus: Qui enim tangit picem, inquinabitur ab ea.

Esther. Passim.

              Ibid. Lib. V. Cap. XIV. Vers. 2.

              Potest et in Assueri temporibus intelligi, quando, occiso Holopherne, hostilis ab Israel est cæsus exercitus.

Dan. 13:56.

              Ibid. Lib. VII. Cap. XXIII. Vers. 12.

Et amoto eo, jussit venire alium et dixit ei: Semen Chanaan, et non Juda, species decepit te, etc.

              Unde et ad senem adulterum dicitur: Semen Chanaan et non Juda, species decepit te.

Sap. 4:8.

              Ibid. Lib. VIII. Cap. XXIV. Vers. 21.

(Oft quoted.)

              (Oft quoted.)

Eccli. 1:33.

              Ibid. Cap. XXVI. Vers. 4.

(Oft quoted.)

              Unde et in alio loco scribitur: Desiderasti sapientiam, serva mandata, et Dominus tribuet tibi eam.

Sap. 6:7.

              Ibid. Lib. IX. Cap. XVIII. Vers. 23. et. seqq.

(Oft quoted.)

              (Oft quoted.)

Sap. 9:6.

              Ibid. Cap. XXIX. Vers. 15, 16.

Nam et si quis erit consummatus inter filios hominum, si ab illo abfuerit sapientia tua, in nihilum computabitur.

              —cum scriptum sit de Dei Sapientia: Si enim quis perfectus fuerit in filiis hominum absque tua sapientia, in nihil reputabitur.

Eccli. 10:9.

              Ibid. Lib. XIV. Præf.

Avaro autem nihil est scelestius. Quid superbit terra et cinis?

              De quo scribitur: Quid gloriatur terra et cinis?

Sap. 13:13, 14.

              Ibid. Lib. XV. Cap. LVI. Vers. 4, 5.

Maledicta creatura eorum, quoniam felix est sterilis, et incoinquinata, quæ nescivit thorum in delicto, habebit fructum in respectione animarum sanctarum: et spado, qui non operatus est per manus suas iniquitatem, nec cogitavit adversus Deum nequissima: dabitur enim illi fidei donum electum, et sors in templo Dei acceptissima.

              Qui sint eunuchi supra diximus.… quibus loquitur et Sapientia quæ titulo Salomonis inscribitur: Beata sterilis immaculata quæ, non cognovit stratum in delicto; habebit fructum in visitatione animarum. Et eunuchus qui non est operatus manu iniquitatem, neque cogitavit contra Dominum mala. Dabitur enim fidei ejus electa gratia et pars in templo Domini delectabilis.

Sap 1:1.

              Ibid. Cap. LVI. Vers. 10–12.

Diligite justitiam, qui judicatis terram. Sentite de Domino in bonitate, etc.

              —et audiamus Scripturam monentem: Sapite de Domino in bonitate.

Eccli. 25:12.

              Ibid. Lib. XVI. Præf.

beatus, qui invenit amicum verum, et qui enarrat justitiam auri audienti—.

              Ac ne a profanis tantum sumere videor exemplum, nimirum hoc illud est aliis verbis Propheta demonstrat: Beatus qui in aures loquitur audientium.

Sap. 1:4.

              Ibid. Vers. 15.

Quoniam in malevolam animam non introibit sapientia, nec habitabit in corpore subdito peccatis.

              Et quomodo in perversam animam non ingreditur sapientia, neque habitabit in corpore subdito peccatis.

Sap. 1:5.

              Ibid. Lib. XVII. Cap. LXIII. Vers. 10.

Spiritus enim Sanctus disciplinæ effugiet fictum, et auferet se a cogitationibus, etc.

              De quo et in Sapientia reperimus quæ nomine Salomonis scribitur: Sanctus enim Spiritus disciplinæ fugiet dolum, et recedet a cogitationibus stultis.

Eccli. 16:18.

              Ibid. Vers. 15.

Ecce cœlum, et cœli cœlorum, abyssus, et universa terra, quæ in eis sunt, in conspectu illius commovebuntur.

              Denique Salomon qui ædificavit domum Dei, ad eum precans loquitur: Cœli cœlorum et terra non sufficiunt tibi.

Esther. 14:16.

              Ibid. Lib. XVII. Cap. LXIV. Vers. 6.

Tu scis necessitatem meam, quod abominer signum superbiæ et gloriæ meæ, quod est super caput meum in diebus ostentationis meæ, et detester illud quasi pannum menstruatæ, et non portem in diebus silentii mei—.

              —cui et Esther diadema suum quod erat regiæ potestatis insigne comparat quod nequaquam voluntate sed necessitate portabat: Tu scis necessitatem meam: quoniam detestor signum superbiæ meæ, quod est super caput meum in diebus ostensionis meæ: abominor illud sicut pannum menstruum: nec porto in diebus quietis.

Esther 14:11.

              Ibid. Lib. XVIII. Cap. LXV. Vers. 3.

Ne tradas, Domine, sceptrum trum his, qui non sunt, etc.

              Unde et Esther loquitur ad Dominum: Ne tradas hæreditatem tuam his qui non sunt.

Eccli. 11:27, 29.

              Ibid. Vers. 17, 18.

In die bonorum ne immemor sis malorum, et in die malorum ne immemor sis bonorum. Malitia horæ oblivionem facit luxuriæ magnæ, et in fine hominis denudatio operum illius.

              —juxta illud quod scriptum est: In die bona, oblivio malorum, et alibi: Afflictio horæ oblivionem facit deliciarum.

Sap. 6:7.

              Ibid. Vers. 20.

(Oft quoted.)

              (Oft quoted.)


              Comment. in Jerem. Lib. III. Cap. XII. Vers. 13.

Sap. 1:4.

              Ibid. Lib. IV. Cap. XVIII. Vers. 18.

(Already quoted).

              —dicente Scriptura: In perversam animam non intrabit Sapientia.

Eccli. 22:11.

              Ibid. Cap. XXI. Vers. 14.

Modicum plora supra mortuum, quoniam requievit.

              —juxta illud quod scriptum est: Mors viro requies cui clausit Deus viam suam.

The same quotation appears in the twenty-third Chapter, fifth and following verses.

Sap. 8:2.

              Ibid. Lib. V. Cap. XXIX. Vers. 1 et seqq.

Hanc amavi, et exquisivi a juventute mea, et quæsivi sponsam mihi eam assumere, et amator factus sum formæ illius.

              Et in alio loco (scribit Salomon): Hanc exquisivi sponsam accipere mihi, et amator factus sum decoris ejus.

Dan. 13:56, 57.

              Ibid. Cap. XXIX. Vers. 21 et seqq.

Et amoto eo, jussit venire alium, et dixit ei: Semen Chanaan, et non Juda, species decepit te, et concupiscentia subvertit cor tuum: sic faciebatis filiabus Isræl, et illæ timentes loquebantur vobis, sed filia Juda non sustinuit iniquitatem vestram.

              —quorum uni loquitur Daniel: Inveterate dierum malorum. Et alteri: Semen Chanaan et non Juda, species decepit te, et concupiscentia subvertit cor tuum. Sic faciebatis filiabus Isræl et illæ metuentes loquebantur vobiscum, sed non filia Juda sustinuit iniquitatem vestram.

Eccli. 22:6.

              Comment. in Ezechiel, Præf.

Musica in luctu importuna narratio, etc.

              —nec putavi illam sententiam negligendam: Musica in luctu, importuna narratio.

Sap. 6:7.

              Ibid. Lib. II. Cap. V. Vers. 8, 9.

Dan. 13:32.

              Ibid Cap. VI. Vers. 9, 10.

At iniqui illi jusserunt ut discooperiretur (erat enim cooperta) ut vel sic satiarentur decore ejus.

              Quam ob causam et in Daniele duo presbyteri præceperunt revelari Susannam ut nudati corporis decore fruerentur.

Dan. 13:56.

              Ibid. Lib. IV. Cap. XVI. Vers. 3.

(Oft quoted.)

              Mirabilis Daniel qui ad presbyterum delinquentem, et adulterio jungentem homicidium puer ausus est dicere: Semen Chanaan et non Juda, species decepit te.

Sap. 7:22.

              Ibid. Vers. 10.

est enim in illa spiritus intelligentiæ, sanctus, unicus, multiplex, subtilis, disertus, mobilis, incoinquinatus, certus, suavis, amans bonum, acutus, quem nihil vetat, benefaciens—.

              Nam et in libro Sapientiæ qui a quibusdam Salomonis inscribitur, spiritus sapientiæ unigenitus et multiplex tenuis et mutabilis appellatur.

In the fifth book Jerome quotes frequently the sentence of Wisdom 6:7: Potentes potenter tormenta patientur.

Eccli. 15:9.

              Lib. V. Cap. XVI. Vers. 59, et seqq.

Non est speciosa laus in ore peccatoris.

              Non est pulchra laudatio in ore peccatoris.

Eccli. 3:22.

              Ibid. Lib. VI. Cap. XVIII Vers. 6. et seqq.

Altiora te ne quæsieris, et fortiora te ne scrutatus fueris: sed quæ præcepit tibi Deus, illa cogita semper, et in pluribus operibus ejus ne fueris curiosus.

              Sed et illud quod alibi dicitur: Majora te non requiras, et fortiora te non scruteris.

Eccli. 32:1.


Rectorem te posuerunt? noli extolli: esto in illis quasi unus ex ipsis.

              De quibus scriptum est; Principem te constituerunt? ne eleveris: esto inter eos quasi unus ex ipsis.

Eccli. 10:9.


Avaro autem nihil est scelestius. Quid superbit terra et cinis?

              —cui illud convenit: Quid gloriatur terra et cinis?

Esther 14:11.

              Ibid. Lib. VIII. Cap. XXVII. Vers. 19.

Ne tradas, Domine, sceptrum tuum his, qui non sunt, etc.

              Unde et Esther contra idola loquens: Ne tradas, inquit, sceptrum tuum his qui non sunt.

The same quotation occurs again in the thirty-third verse of the same chapter of the commentary.

Sap. 6:7.

              Ibid. Lib. IX. Cap. XXIX. Vers. 8. et seqq,

Exiguo enim conceditur misericordia: potentes autem potenter tormenta patientur.


Eccli. 1:2.

              Ibid. Cap. XXX. Vers. 20 et seqq.

Arenam maris, et pluviæ guttas, et dies sæculi quis dinumeravit? Altitudinem cæli, et latitudinem terræ, et profundum abyssi quis dimensus est?

              Et in alio loco: Abyssum et sapientiam quis investigabit?

Eccli. 27:29.

              Ibid. Lib. X. Cap. XXXII. Vers. 17. et seqq.

Et qui foveam fodit, incidet in eam, etc.

              Qui enim fodit foveam incidet in eam.

Eccli. 20:32.

              Ibid. Cap. XXXIII. Vers. 1 et seqq.

Sapientia absconsa et thesaurus invisus: quæ utilitas in utrisque?

              De magistris negligentibus Salomon loquitur: Sapientia abscondita, et thesaurus occultus, quæ utilitas in utrisque?

Eccli. 7:6.

              Ibid. Lib. XI. Cap. XXXIV 1.

Noli quærere fieri judex, nisi valeas virtute irrumpere iniquitates: ne forte extimescas faciem potentis, et ponas scandalum in æquitate tua.

              Unde magnopere cavendum est et observanda illa præcepta: Ne quæras judex fieri, ne forte non possis auferre iniquitates, et iterum: quanto major es, tanto magis te humilia, et in conspectu Domini invenies gratiam. Et rursum Ducem te constituerunt, ne eleveris: sed esto inter eos quasi unus ex illis.

Eccli. 3:29.


Cor nequam gravabitur in doloribus, et peccator adjiciet ad peccandum.


Eccli. 32:1.


Rectorem te posuerunt? noli extolli: esto in illis quasi unus ex ipsis.


Eccli. 1:2.

              Ibid. Lib. XIII. Cap. XLIII. Vers. 13. et seqq.

(Already quoted.)

              Scriptum est: Abyssum et sapientiam quis investigabit?

Eccli. 32:1.

              Ibid. Cap. XLV. 9.

(Already quoted.)


Eccli. 28:29.

              Ibid. Vers. 10 et seqq.

et verbis tuis facito stateram, et frenos ori tuo rectos.

              —dicente Scriptura: Sermonibus tuis facies stateram et appendiculum.

Sap. 1:4.

              Comment. in Daniel, Cap. II. Vers. 21.

(Already quoted.)

              In perversam autem animam non introibit sapientia.

In this same chapter he inveighs against the deuterocanonical fragments of Daniel. In the twenty-third verse he says: And observe that Daniel is of the sons of Juda, not a priest as the fable of Bel declares. Coming to the Canticle of the youths in the fiery furnace, he prefaces his commentary on it as follows: Hitherto the Hebrews read: what follows even to the end of the Canticle of the three youths is not contained in Hebrew; concerning which, lest we may seem to have passed it by, a few words are to be said. He then proceeds to comment it in the same manner as the other portions of the book.

I. et II. Maccab. Passim.

              Ibid. Cap. VIII. Vers. 14.

              Legamus Maccabæorum libros et Josephi historiam.

              Ibid. Cap. XI. Vers. 34, 35.

              Lege Maccabæorum libros.

              Ibid. Cap. XII. Vers. 1 et seqq.

              Ponit quoque historiam de Maccabæis in qua dicitur multos Judæorum sub Mathathia et Juda Maccabæo ad eremum confugisse, et latuisse in speluncis et in cavernis petrarum, et post victoriam processisse.

Sap. 4:8.

              Comment. in Osee Lib. II. Cap. VII. 8, 10.

(Oft quoted.)

              (Oft quoted.)

Sap. 3:13.

              Ibid. Cap. X. Vers. 14.

Maledicta creatura eorum, quoniam felix est sterilis, et incoinquinata, quæ nescivit thorum in delicto, etc.

              Beata sterilis immaculata quæ non cognovit cubile in peccato.

Sap. 3:16.


Filii autem adulterorum in inconsummatione erunt, et ab iniquo thoro semen exterminabitur.

              Ex iniquo enim concubitu semen peribit.

He quotes again Sap. 6:7. in Lib. III. Cap. XI. Vers. 8 and 9.

Dan. 13:56.

              Ibid. Cap. XII. Vers. 7, 8.

Et, amoto eo, jussit venire alium, et dixit ei: Semen Chanaan et non Juda, species decepit te, et concupiscentia subvertit cor tuum—.

              Semen Chanaan et non Juda, species decepit te.

Eccli. 16:19.

              Comment. in Amos, Lib. II. Cap. IV. Vers. 12, 13.

montes simul, et colles, et fundamenta terræ; cum conspexerit illa Deus, tremore concutientur.

              Iste est qui firmat tonitruum, sive montes confirmat, ad cujus vocem cœlorum cardines et terræ fundamenta quatiuntur.

In Lib. III. Cap. VI. Vers. 7 et seqq., he quotes again Sap. 6:7.

Ibid. Vers. 12 he repeats Esther 14:2.

Eccli. 15:9.

              Ibid. Cap. V. Vers. 25.

Non est speciosa laus in ore peccatoris.

              —quia non est pulchra laudatio in ore peccatoris.

Tob. 14:5–6 (juxta LXX.)

              In Jonam, Prologus.

Magnopere autem senuit: et vocavit filium suum et filios ejus, et dixit ei: fili, accipe filios tuos: ecce senui, et ad exeundum e vita sum: abi in Mediam, fili, quoniam credidi quæcumque locutus est Jonas Propheta de Ninive quia subvertetur.

              Liber quoque Tobiæ, licet non habeatur in Canone, tamen quia usurpatur ab Ecclesiasticis viris, tale quid memorat, dicente Tobia ad filium suum: Fili, ecce senui, et in eo sum ut revertar de vita mea: tolle filios meos, et vade in Mediam; fili, scio enim quæ locutus est Jonas propheta de Ninive, quoniam subvertetur.

When Jerome speaks of the Canon, he evidently means the collection of the Jews. He clearly testifies here that tradition favored Tobias, although it was not received by the Jews, and he is disposed to give a certain reverence to the book on account of its use by the Fathers.

Judith 16:3.

              Comment. in Michæam, Lib. I. Cap. II. Vers. 6, 8.

Dominus conterens bella, Dominus nomen est illi.

              Recedente autem pace et auxilio Dei, quia restiterant Domino, de quo dicitur: Dominus conterens bella, Dominus nomen ei.

Eccli. 20:31.

              Ibid. Cap. III. Vers. 9 et seqq.

Xenia et dona excæcant oculos judicum, et quasi mutus in ore avertit correptiones eorum.

              Munera excæcant oculos etiam Sapientium, et quasi frenum in ore avertunt increpationem.

Eccli. 6:7.

              Ibid. Lib. II. Cap. VII. Vers. 5, 7.

Si possides amicum, in tentatione posside eum, etc.

              Unde dicitur: Si habes amicum, in tentatione posside eum.

Eccli. 4:25.

              Ibid. Vers. 14 et seqq.

Est enim confusio adducens peccatum, et est confusio adducens gloriam et gratiam.

              —et erunt in confusione quæ ducit ad vitam.

In Nahum, Cap. III. Vers. 8 seqq., he quotes again the oft-quoted sentence from Dan. 13:56.

Dan. 14:35.

              Prologus in Habacuc.

Et apprehendit eum Angelus Domini in vertice ejus, et portavit eum capillo capitis sui, posuitque eum in Babylone supra lacum in impetu spiritus sui.

              —Daniel docere te poterit, ad quem in lacum leonum Habacuc cum prandio mittitur.

Eccli. 1:2.

              Comment. in Habacuc, Lib. I. Cap. III. Vers. 11, seqq.

(Already quoted.)

              Et pulchre opinationem phantasiæ altitudinem vocat juxta Jesum filium Sirach, qui ait: Abyssum et sapientiam quis investigabit?

Eccli. 20:32.

              Comment. in Sophoniam, Cap. II. Vers. 3, 4.

Sapientia absconsa et thesaurus invisus: quæ utilitas in utrisque?

              —hoc est, alios doceant: Sapientia enim abscondita et thesaurus non comparens, quæ utilitas in ambobus?

Dan. 13:56.

              Ibid. Vers. 8 et seqq.

Et, amoto eo, jussit venire alium, et dixit ei: Semen Chanaan, et non Juda, etc.

              Et ad presbyteros cupientes sub figura Susannæ Ecclesiæ corrumpere castitatem dicat Daniel: Hoc est judicium Dei, Semen Chanaan et non Juda.

Sap. 6:7.

              Ibid. Cap. III. Vers. 8, 9.

(Oft quoted.)


Eccli. 27:28.

              Ibid.Vers. 19, 20.

Qui in altum mittit lapidem, super caput ejus cadet: et plaga dolosa dolosi dividet vulnera.

              —et de Jesu filio Sirach testimonium proferamus: Qui mittit lapidem in excelsum, super caput suum mittit.

Judith. Passim.

              Comment. in Haggai, Cap. I. Vers. 5, 6.

              Similiter qui penitus non bibit, siti peribit, sicut et in Judith (si quis tamen vult librum recipere mulieris) et parvuli siti perierunt.

Eccli. 4:10.

              Comment. in Zachariam, Lib. II. Cap. VII. Vers. 8 et seqq.

In judicando esto pupillis misericors ut pater, et pro viro matri illorum—.

              Viduam quoque et pupillum de quibus nobis præceptum est: Esto pupillis pater, et pro viro matri eorum, judicans pupillum et justificans viduam.

Sap. 1:2.

              Ibid. Cap. VIII. Vers. 21, 22.

quoniam invenitur ab his qui non tentant illum: apparet autem eis, qui fidem habent in illum—.

              Appropinquat enim Dominus his qui non tentant eum, et ostendit faciem suam his qui non sunt increduli.

Sap. 9:15.

              Ibid. Cap. IX. Vers. 15, 16.

Corpus enim, quod corrumpitur aggravat animam, et terrena inhabitatio deprimit sensum multa cogitantem.

              —quia aggravat terrena habitatio sensum multa curantem.

Maccab. Passim.

              Ibid. Cap. X. Vers. 1. et seqq.

              Ita felicitas Maccabæorum tempore promissa est, quando sancti lapides elevati sunt super terram, etc.

Sap. 1:14.

              Ibid. Lib. III. Cap. XII. Vers 9.

Creavit enim, ut essent omnia: et sanabiles fecit nationes orbis terrarum: et non est in illis medicamentum exterminii, nec inferorum regnum in terra.

              Unde in Sapientia quæ Salomonis inscribitur (si cui tamen placet librum recipere) scriptum reperimus: Creavit ut essent omnia, et salutares generationes mundi, et non erit eis venenum mortiferum.

Sap. 9:16–18.


Quæ autem in cælis sunt quis investigabit? Sensum autem tuum quis sciet, nisi tu dederis sapientiam, et miseris spiritum sanctum tuum de altissimis: et sic correctæ sint semitæ eorum, qui sunt in terris, et quæ tibi placent didicerint homines?

              Et in supradicto volumine continetur: Quæ in cœlo sunt quis investigabit? nisi quod tu dedisti sapientiam, et Spiritum Sanctum misisti de excelsis, et sic correctæ sunt semitæ eorum qui versantur in terra; et quæ tibi placent eruditi sunt homines.

Sap. 4:8.

              Ibid. Cap. XIV. Vers. 9.

Senectus enim venerabilis est non diuturna, neque annorum numero computata: cani autem sunt sensus hominis.

              —de quo scriptum est: Cani hominis sapientia ejus.

Sap. 6:7.

              Comment. in Malach. Cap. II. Vers. 1, 2.

(Already quoted.)


Eccli. 25:12.

              Ibid. Cap. III. Vers. 7. et seqq.

Beatus, qui invenit amicum verum, et qui enarrat justitiam auri audienti.

              —et consequetur illud de quo scriptum est: Beatus qui in aures loquitur audientium.

Sap. 6:7.

              Comment. in Evang. Math. Lib. I. Cap. V. Vers. 13.

(Oft quoted.)

              (Oft quoted.)

Sap. 1:6.

              Ibid. Cap. VI. Vers. 7.

Benignus est enim spiritus sapientiæ, et non liberabit maledicum a labiis suis, quoniam renum illius testis est Deus, et cordis illius scrutator est verus, et linguæ ejus auditor.

              Deus enim non verborum sed cordis auditor est.

Judith 5.

              Ibid. Cap. VIII. Vers. 18.

Tob. 4:16.

              Ibid. Lib. III. Cap. XXI. Vers. 28.

Quod ab alio oderis fieri tibi, vide, ne tu aliquando alteri facias.

              —hoc est: Quod tibi non vis fieri, alteri ne feceris.

Sap. 12:1.

              Comment. in Epist. ad. Galatas Lib. I. Cap. III. 2.

O quam bonus et suavis est, Domine, spiritus tuus in omnibus.

              —de quo (Spiritu Sancto) alibi scribitur: Incorruptus Spiritus est in omnibus.

2 Maccab. 6 et 7. Passim.

              Ibid. Lib. II Cap. III. 14.

              Eleazarus quoque nonagenarius sub Antiocho rege Syriæ, et cum septem filiis gloriosa mater, utrum maledictos eos æstimaturi fuerint, an omni laude dignissimos?

Sap. 11:25.

              Comment. in Epist. ad Ephesios Lib. I. Cap. I. 6.

Diligis enim omnia quæ sunt, et nihil odisti eorum quæ fecisti: nec enim odiens aliquid constituisti, aut fecisti.

              Dicitur quippe ad Deum: Diligis omnia, et nihil abjicis eorum quæ fecisti. Neque enim odio quid habens condidisti.

Sap. 9:15.

              Ibid. Lib. II. Cap. IV. 2.

corpus enim, quod corrumpitur, aggravat animam, et terrena inhabitatio deprimit sensum multa cogitantem.

              Corruptibile enim corpus aggravat animam, et terrenum hoc tabernaculum sensum opprimit multa curantem.

Eccli. 27:12.

              Ibid. 4.

Homo sanctus in sapientia manet sicut sol; nam stultus sicut luna mutatur.

              —neque in morem stulti quasi luna mutetur.

Sap. 6:7.

              Ibid. Lib. III. Cap. V. 30.

(Already quoted.)


Sap. 1:11.

              Breviarium in Psalmos, Ps. 4.

Custodite ergo vos a murmuratione, quæ nihil prodest, et a detractione parcite linguæ, quoniam sermo obscurus in vacuum non ibit: os autem, quod mentitur, occidit animam.

              Os enim quod mentitur occidit animam.

Sap. 7:27.

              Ibid. Ps. 9.

Et cum sit una, omnia potest, et in se permanens omnia innovat, et per nationes in animas sanctas se transfert; amicos Dei et prophetas constituit.

              Et alibi (ipse Deus ait): Anima justi sedes sapientiæ.

Eccli. 1:16.

              Ibid. Ps. 33.

Initium, sapientiæ timor Domini, etc.

              Ut illud: Initium sapientiæ, timor Domini.

Maccab. Passim.


              Filii Maccabæorum vel modo unusquisque sanctus clamaverunt, et illos et modo unumquemque ex omnibus tribulationibus liberat.

Eccli. 27:12.

              Ibid. Ps. 67.

Homo sanctus in sapientia manet sicut sol; nam stultus sicut luna mutatur.

              Insipiens enim sicut luna mutatur.

Eccli. 14:18.

              Ibid. Ps. 83.

Omnis caro sicut foenum veterascet, et sicut folium fructificans in arbore viridi.

              Illa autem caro de qua dicitur: Omnis caro foenum, non desiderat Dominum.

Eccli. 10:9.

              Ibid. Ps. 112.

Avaro autem nihil est scelestius. Quid superbit terra et cinis?

              Quia de terra et putredine peccatorum nostrorum erexit nos, ut illud: Quid superbis, pulvis et terra?—fiat nobis illud quod scriptum est: Sicut glacies in sereno solvuntur peccata tua.

Eccli. 3:17.


et in justitia ædificatur tibi, et in die tribulationis commemorabitur tui, et sicut in sereno glacies solventur peccata tua.


Sap. 1:11.

              Ibid. Ps. 119.

(Already quoted.)

              —nostras interficimus animas quod mentimur: Os enim quod mentitur occidit animam.

Sap. 8:2.

              Liber De Expositione Psalmorum, Ps. 127.

Hanc amavi, et exquisivi a juventute mea, et quæsivi sponsam mihi eam assumere, et amator factus sum formæ illius.

              Dicit Salomon quia voluerit sapientiam ducere scilicet sponsam.

These are the quotations which a cursory examination of Jeromes works reveals. We see in them that he quoted with great frequency the deuterocanonical books as divine Scripture.

Three causes are usually assigned for the doubts that prevailed among some Fathers concerning the deuterocanonical books.

1.—Disputations between Jew and Christian were frequent in those days. The chief intellectual adversaries of the Church during the fourth and fifth centuries, were Jews, and the works of the Fathers of this period are filled with refutations of their attacks. As the Jews rejected the deuterocanonical books, the Fathers were obliged to draw Scriptural materials from the protocanonical writings. Hence, gradually these were preferred in authority to the deuterocanonical books; and, as they furnished all that was needed from a source accepted by both sides, the deuterocanonical works were often given a secondary place, and sometimes left out altogether.

2.—A second cause is found in Origens critical edition of the Hexapla. In this work, which we shall describe more fully in the progress of this work, Origen compared the Septuagint text with the Hebrew and other Greek texts, then existing, marking the passages which were in the Septuagint, and not found in the Hebrew by an ὀβελός. Copies made from this text, reproducing the diacritic points, soon filled the East. Now the Alexandrian grammarians were wont to use the ὀβελός, to denote a spurious passage. Origens intention was evidently not to brand these books and fragments as spurious, but the error arose in the East especially to distrust what was denoted by this sign.

3.—Finally, the fourth and fifth centuries were an age fertile in heresies, apocryphal productions, absurd fables, and fictitious revelations, and in their caution against what was spurious, the Fathers sometimes erred in slowness to receive those books which have in their favor all the evidence that is necessary, and that we have a right to expect. It was by them judged safer to refuse the quality of canonicity to an inspired book, than, by excessive credulity, to approve an Apocryphal work. These causes operated principally in the East, and thence the most of the opposition came. The status of the deuterocanonical books might be compared to the growth of a healthy tree. It lost now and then a branch, in whose stead it acquired new ones, and grew to perfection because there was in it a Divine vigor, which came not from the branches, nor was impaired by their occasional dropping off. There never was any conflict between the Fathers on this point, for in practice, they were a unit. The lists they drew up were mere disciplinary opinions, which never entered to change their practical use of the Scripture.

We find at first the most doubt in the East. This line of thought was brought into the West by Jerome; and while the doubt gradually passed away in the East, we find the influence of Jerome, in the subsequent centuries, engendering some doubts in the minds of Fathers and theologians of the Westen Catholic world. We shall pass in brief review the centuries from the fifth down to the Council of Trent.

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