Persecutions Under The Arian Heretics





The author of the Arian heresy was Arius, a native of Lybia, and a

priest of Alexandria, who, in A. D. 318, began to publish his errors. He

was condemned by a council of Lybian and Egyptian bishops, and that

sentence was confirmed by the council of Nice, A. D. 325. After the

death of Constantine the Great, the Arians found means to ingratiate

themselves into the favour of the emperor Constantinus, his son and

successor in the east; and hence a persecution was raised against the

orthodox bishops and clergy. The celebrated Athanasius, and other

bishops, were banished, and their sees filled with Arians.



In Egypt and Lybia, thirty bishops were martyred, and many other

christians cruelly tormented; and, A. D. 386, George, the Arian bishop

of Alexandria, under the authority of the emperor, began a persecution

in that city and its environs, and carried it on with the most infernal

severity. He was assisted in his diabolical malice by Catophonius,

governor of Egypt; Sebastian, general of the Egyptian forces; Faustinus

the treasurer; and Herachus, a Roman officer.



The persecution now raged in such a manner, that the clergy were driven

from Alexandria, their churches were shut, and the severities practised

by the Arian heretics were as great as those that had been practised by

the pagan idolaters. If a man, accused of being a christian, made his

escape, then his whole family were massacred, and his effects

confiscated.





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