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The Lausiac History Of Palladius by Palladius Of Galatia

[1] IN another very old book inscribed with the name of Hippolytus, a disciple of the apostles, I found this story. There lived in the city of Corinth a high-born and most beautiful virgin who was practising asceticism with a view to (a vow of) virginity. As the time for it approached, they denounced her to the pagan who was the magistrate then, at the time of the persecutors, that is, as one who blasphemed both the times and the emperors and spoke ill of the idols. At the same time also those who traffic in such things were praising her beauty. [2] So the magistrate, being erotic, received the denunciation gladly, like a horse pricking up his ears. And when after setting every device into operation he failed to persuade the woman, then, furious with her, he did not hand her over to punishment or torture, but put her in a brothel and commanded the man who kept the women: “Take her, and pay me three pieces of money a day as her hire.” But he, to earn the requisite sum, intended to hand her over to all comers. So when those who hunt women in this way like so many hawks knew of it they visited this perdition-shop, and paying the tariff talked to her the language of seduction. [3] But she besought them with entreaties, saying: “I have a sore which is offensive, and I fear that you will hate me; give me a few days and you will get the chance of having me for nothing.” So she besought God with petitions in those days. Wherefore also God beholding her chastity inspired a certain young man in the employ of the magister officiorum, fair in character and appearance, with a burning, zeal for martyrdom. And having gone off with all outward appearance of lust he came late at night to the keeper of the women and gave him five coins and said to him: “Allow me to spend this night with her.” [4] So he went in to the private chamber and said to her: “Get up, save yourself.” And he made her take off her clothes and put his own on her, both the vests and cloak and all his masculine apparel, and said to her: “Veil yourself with the ends of the cloak and go out.” And so she sealed herself (with the holy sign) and went out and was preserved uncorrupted and undefiled. Next day, therefore, the deed was known. The young official was arrested and thrown to the wild beasts, in order that by him the demon might be put to shame, in that he became a martyr in two senses, both for his own sake and for the sake of that blessed one.








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