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initium ; et tamen volens coæternum Patri Filium confiteri, apud illum fuisse, antequàm de illo nasceretur, existimat ; hoc est, semper eum fuisse, veruntamen semper eum Filium non fuisse, sed ex quo de illo natus est, Filium esse cæpisse (Hær. 50).
However, this subject should be treated at greater length than I can allow it here.
THE CONFESSIONS AT SIRMIUM.
(Vide supra, p. 332.)
1. A.D. 351. Confession against Photinus
(First Sirmian Council). This Confession was published at a Council of Eastern Bishops (Coustant. in Hil. p. 1174, Note I), and was drawn up by the whole body, Hil. de Syn. 37 (according to Sirmond. Diatr. 1. Sirm. p. 366, Petavius de Trin. 1. 9. § 8. Animadv. in Epiph. p. 318 init., and Coustant. in Hil. 1. c.); or by Basil of Ancyra (as Valesius conjectures in Soz. iv. 22, and Larroquanus, de Liberio, p. 147); or by Mark of Arethusa, Socr. ii. 30, but Socrates, it is considered, confuses together the dates of the different Confessions, and this ascription is part of his mistake (vide Vales. in loc., Coustant. in Hil. de Syn. I. c., Petav. Animad. in Epiph. 1. c.). It was written in Greek.
Till Petavius, Socrates was generally followed in ascribing all three Sirmian Confessions to this one Council, though at the same time he was generally considered mistaken as to the
year. E. g. Baronius places them all in 357. Sirmond defended Baronius against Petavius (though in Facund. x. 6; Note c, he agrees with Petavius); and, assigning the third Confession to 359, adopted the improbable conjecture of two Councils, the one Catholic and the other Arian, held at Sirmium at the same time, putting forth respectively the first and second Creeds, somewhat after the manner of the contemporary rival Councils of Sardica. Pagi, Natalis
i From the Oxford Translation of Athanasius, p. 160.
Alexander, Valesius, de Marca, Tillemont, S. Basnage, Montfaucon, Coustant, Larroquanus agree with Petavius in placing the Council, at which Photinus was deposed and the Confession published, in A.D. 351. Mansi dates it at 358.
Gothofred considers that there were two or three successive Councils at Sirmium, between A.D. 357 and 359 (in Philostorg. Index, pp. 74, 75; Dissert. pp. 200. 211-214). Petavius, and Tillemont, speak of three Councils or Conferences held in A.D. 351. 357, and 359. Mansi, of three in 358, 359 ; Zaccaria (Dissert. 8) makes in all five, 349 (in which Photinus was condemned), 351; 357 (in which Hosius lapsed); 357 (following Valesius and Pagi); and 359. Mamachi makes three, 351. 357. 359; Basnage four, 351. 357, 358, 359.
This was the Confession which Pope Liberius signed, according to Baronius, Natalis Alexander, and Coustant in Hil. Note n. pp. 1335—1337, and as Tillemont thinks probable. Zaccaria says it is the general opinion, in which he is willing to concur (p. 18).
It would appear (Ath. Tr. p. 114, b.) that Photinus was condemned at Antioch in the Macrostich, A.D. 345 ; at Sardica, 347; at Milan, 348; and at his own See, Sirmium, 351, if not there, in 349 also ;-however, as this is an intricate point on which there is considerable difference of opinion among critics, it may be advisable to state here the dates of his condemnation as they are determined by various writers.
Petavius (de Photino Hæretico, 1) enumerates in all five condemnations:-1. at Constantinople, A.D. 336, when Marcellus was deposed. 2. At Sardica, A.D. 347. 3. At Milan, A.D. 347. 4. At Sirmium, A.D. 349. 5. At Sirmium, when he was deposed, A.D. 351. Of these the 4th and 5th were first brought to light by Petavius, who omits mention of the Macrostich in 345.
Petavius is followed by Natalis Alexander, Montfaucon (vit. Athan.), and Tillemont; and by De Marca (Diss. de
temp. Syn. Sirm.) and S. Basnage (Annales), and Valesius (in Theod. Hist. ii. 16. p. 23; Socr. ii. 20), as regards the Council of Milan, except that Valesius places it with Sirmond in 346 ; but for the Council of Sirmium in 349, they substitute a Council of Rome of the same date, while De Marca considers Photinus condemned again in the Eusebian Council of Milan in 355. De la Roque, on the other hand (Larroquan. Dissert. de Photino Hær.), considers that Photinus was condemned, 1. in the Macrostich, 344 . 2. At Sardica, 347. 3. At Milan, 348. 4. At Sirmium, 350. 5. At Sirmium, 351. Zaccaria, besides 345 and 347; at Milan, 347; at Sirmium, 349 ; at Sirmium again, 351, when he was deposed.
Petavius seems to stand alone in assigning to the Council of Constantinople, 336, his first condemnation.
2. A.D. 357. The Blasphemy of Potamius and Hosius
Hilary calls it by the above title, de Syn. 11; vide also Soz. iv. 12, p. 554. He seems also to mean it by the blasphemia Ursacii et Valentis, contr. Const. 26.
This Confession was the first overt act of disunion between Arians and Semi-Arians.
Sirmond, De Marca, and Valesius (in Socr. ii. 30), after Phæbadius, think it put forth by a Council; rather, at a Conference of a few leading Arians about Constantius, who seems to have been present; e.g. Ursacius, Valens, and Germinius. Soz. iv. 12. Vide also Hil. Fragm. vi. 7.
It was written in Latin, Socr. ii. 30. Potamius wrote very barbarous Latin, judging from the Tract ascribed to him in Dacher. Spicileg. t. 3. p. 299, unless it be a translation from the Greek, vide also Galland. Bibl. t. v. p. 96. Petavius thinks the Creed not written, but merely subscribed by Potamius (de Trin. i. 9. $ 8); and Coustant (in Hil. p. 1155, Note f) that it was written by Ursacius, Valens, and Potamius. It is remarkable that the Greek in Athanasius is clearer than the original.
This at first sight is the Creed which Liberius signed, because S. Hilary speaks of the latter as “perfidia Ariana," Fragm. 6. Blondel (Prim. dans l'Eglise, p. 484), Larroquanus, &c., are of this opinion. And the Roman Breviary, Ed. Ven. 1482, and Ed. Par. 1543, in the Service for S. Eusebius of Rome, August. 14, says that “ Pope Liberius consented to the Arian misbelief,” Launnoi, Ep. v. 9. c. 13. Auxilius says the same, Ibid. vi. 14. Animadv. 5. n. 18. Petavius grants that it must be this, if any of the three Sirmian (Animadv. in Epiph. p. 316), but we shall see his own opinion presently. Zaccaria says that Hosius signed it, but not Liberius (Diss. 8. p. 20, Diss. 7). Zaccaria seems also to consider that there was another Council or Conference at Sirmium this same year, and it was at this Conference that Liberius subscribed “formulæ, quæ contra Photinum Sirmii edita fuerat, primæ scilicet Sirmiensi, in unum cum Antiochensi (against Paul of Samosata, also the creed of the Dedication) libellum conjectæ." Vide infra. He says he subscribed it “iterum,” the first time being in Berrhæa.
3. D.A. 357. The foregoing interpolated. A creed was sent into the East in Hosius's name, Epiph. Hær. 73. 14. Soz. iv. 15, p. 558, of an Anomaan character, which the “blasphemia was not. And St. Hilary may allude to this when he speaks of the “ deliramenta Osii, et incrementa Ursacii et Valentis,” contr. Const. 23. An Anomoean Council of Antioch under Eudoxius of this date, makes acknowledgments to Ursacius, Valens, and Germinius, Soz. iv. 12 fin. as being agents in the Arianizing of the West.
Petavius and Tillemont consider this Confession to be the “ blasphemia” interpolated. Petavius throws out a further conjecture, which seems gratuitous, that the whole