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A History Of The Church In Nine Books by Sozomen

THE church having been in this manner spread throughout the whole Roman world, religion was introduced even among the barbarians themselves. The tribes on both sides of the Rhine had embraced Christianity, as likewise the Celts and the Gauls who dwelt upon the most distant shores of the ocean; the Goths, too, and the tribes who formerly dwelt on both sides of the Danube, had long been converted to Christianity, and were distinguished by their superiority in manners and customs. All the barbarians had professed to hold the Christian doctrines in honour, from the time of the wars between the Romans and foreign tribes, under the government of Gallus and the emperors who succeeded him. For when a multitude collected out of various nations passed over from Thrace into Asia, and when other barbarians colonised the boundaries of the Roman empire, many priests of Christ who had been taken captive, dwelt among these tribes; and during their residence among them healed the sick, and cleansed those who were possessed of demons, by the name of Christ, and by calling on the Son of God; moreover they led a holy and blameless life, and excited envy by their virtues. The barbarians, amazed at the exemplary conduct and wonderful works of these holy men, thought that it would be prudent on their part, and pleasing to the Deity, if they imitated their example: and accordingly, like them, they rendered homage to the Supreme Being. After having been thus practically taught, they received further instruction, were baptized, and admitted into the church.








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