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A History Of The Church In Nine Books by Sozomen

IT is obvious that the capture of so great a city as Rome must have been attended with many remarkable circumstances; I shall therefore now proceed to the narration of such events as seem worthy of a place in ecclesiastical history. I shall recount a pious action performed by a barbarian, and record the fortitude and chastity of a Roman lady. The barbarian and the lady were both Christians, but belonged to different sects, the former being an Arian, and the latter a zealous follower of the Nicene doctrines. The lady was very beautiful, and the barbarian above mentioned, who was a young man and a soldier in the army of Alaric, was dazzled by her extreme loveliness, and attempted to offer her violence. As she, however, exerted all her strength, and resisted his designs, he drew his sword and threatened to slay her: but he was restrained by the passion which he entertained towards her, and merely inflicted a slight wound on her neck. The blood flowed in abundance, and the lady meekly waited to receive her death-blow, for she preferred death to the violation of her chastity and duty towards her husband. The barbarian redoubled his efforts, but finding that they availed nothing, he was at length struck with wonder and admiration at her chastity; he conducted her to the church of Peter the Apostle, and gave six pieces of gold to the officers who were guarding the church, commanding them to take care of her, and to restore her in safety to her husband.








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