The Council Of Serd1ca

1. Chapter VII.

2. Socrates, HE 2.20.6. The explicit evidence for the date of the Council of Serdica is either erroneous or ambiguous. Socrates, HE 2.20.4 (followed by Sozomenus, HE 3.12.7) alleges that it took place in the eleventh year after the death of Constantine in the consular year 347—which is impossible. The Festal Index points to either 342 or 343 (15), while a historical fragment in Cod. Ver. LX (58), fol. 71*, has the notice: 'congregata est synodus consolatu Constantini et Consrantini aput Serdicam.' Schwartz, Ges. Sehr. 3 (1959), 11, 55/6, 325-334, argued that the correct date is 342 and emended the date accordingly to 'consolatu Constantii 111 et Constantis II,' while H.-G. Opitz subsequently printed this emendation in his edition of the fragment in EOMIA 1.637. But the notice could relate to the summoning of a council by Constans rather than to the gathering of the bishops at Serdica: see Simonetti, Crisi (1975), 167 n. 12.

For varied and converging arguments in favor of 343 (the date assumed throughout the present work), see H. Hess, The Canons of the Council of Serdica, A.D. 343: A Landmark in the Early Development of Canon Law (Oxford, 1958), 140-144; Piétri, Roma (1976), 212/3 n. 3; T. D. Barnes, 'Emperor and Bishops, A.D. 324-344: Some Problems,' A)AH 3 (1978), 53-76, at 67-69; L. W. Barnard, 'The Council of Serdica: Some Problems Reassessed,' Annuarium Historiae Conciliorum 12 (1980), 1-25. However, Schwartz's date of 342 continues to find advocates: see, recently, M. Richard, 'Le comput paschal par octaétéris,' Le Muséon 87 (1974), 307-339, at 318-327; Brennecke, Hilarius (1984), 25-29; T. G. Elliott, 'The Date of the Council of Serdica,' Ancient History Bulletin 2 (1988), 65-72. There seems to be no ancient evidence that the council met in the sweltering heat of late summer, as asserted by L. W. Barnard, o.e. 18 ('perhaps in late August').

4. For the forms 'Ossius' and 'Serdica' (rather than 'Osius' and 'Sardica'), see EOMIA 1.532/3.

5. Athanasius is customarily believed, as by K. Baus, in History of the Churchy ed. H. Jedin and J. Dolan, trans. A. Biggs 2 (New York, 1980), 37, 82.

6. L. W. Barnard, The Site of the Council of Serdica,' Studia Patrística 17.1 (1982), 9-13, reprinted together with the first part of the article cited in n. 2 as 'The Council of Serdica—-Two Questions,' Ancient Bulgaria, ed. A. G. Poulter 2 (Nottingham, 1983), 215-231.

7. CSEL 65.119.5-120.6. On the four extant texts of this western synodical letter of the Council of Serdica, see below n. 30. In the present chapter references are normally given to Feder's base text in CSEL 65.103-126 (the version from Hilary).

8. CSEL 65.58.14-19; Index 15, cf. H. Hess, Canons (1958), 17/8.

10. The eastern bishops reckoned their own number at eighty (CSEL 65.58.26). That is clearly a rounded figure: Sabinus of Heraclea gave the exact number as seventy-six (Socrates, HE 2.20.5, repeated without the name of the source by Sozomenus, HE 3.12.7), which appears to be confirmed by the surviving list of signatories, even though it actually contains only seventy-three names {CSEL 65.74-78, cf. Feder, Studien II [1910], 70-93).

11. Feder, Studien II (1910), 18-62, cf. H. Hess, Canons (1958), 9. The lists of signatories to the western synodical letter and to the Serdican canons preserved in collections of canon law contain, respectively, sixty-one and fifty-nine names (CSEL 65.132-139; EOMIA 1.545-559).

12. CSEL 65.48.12-16. On Eutychius and Fortunatus, see Feder, Studien II (1910), 113-115. Desiderius seems to be otherwise unknown.

13. CSEL 65.60.16/7,109.7-112.2, 140.4-7. In 60.17 the primary manuscript has de hanc with a line of deletion drawn through the two words. Feder prints de hinc as the start of a new sentence, but the whole passage will run far better if one reads: 'immensa autem confluxerat ad Sardicam multitudo sceleratorum omnium ac perditorum adventantium de Constantinopoli, de Alexandria, de [hlAnc<yra> ...'

19. CSEL 65.58.8-13, 61.9-12, 66.6/7. The letter names one of the four councils in question as the Council of Constantinople in 336, which Cyriacus of Naissus also attended (51.15-19), and one of the other three should be the Council of Tyre in 335: the remaining two will be councils which condemned Marcellus after his return in 337, but the council which condemned Paul can only be the Council of Constantinople which replaced him with Eusebius of Nicomedia in the autumn of 337 (Chapter IV, at nn. 8-10).

23. CSEL 65.57.18-20: 'adhuc cum esset episcopus Athanasius, Asclepam depositum sua sententia ipse damnavit.' If the text is sound, that must mean that Athanasius accepted the deposition of Asclepas when he became bishop of Alexandria. There is perhaps a possibility that the original Greek of the eastern synodical letter had 'when Athanasius was [not yet] bishop'—and referred to an action taken by him as a delegate or envoy of Alexander. The fact that Asclepas was deposed 'ante decern et septem annos' (56.19) implies that he was condemned by the Council of Antioch in 327 presided over by Eusebius of Caesarea, which tried and deposed Eustathius of Antioch: see A)AH 3 (1978), 59/60.

25. CSEL 65.63.23-64.5. A later passage names the excommunicated allies of the exiles as Julius, Ossius, Protogenes, Gaudentius, and Maximinus (65.31-66.5).

28. CSEL 65.72.4-73.5, cf. Athanasius, Sy«. 25.5b, 26.11. My translation deliberately conflates the various versions.

30. CSEL 65.103.5-104.4. The letter survives in three other versions: (1) Cod. Ver. LX (58), fols. 81r-88r, which is edited separately in EOMIA 1.645-653, appears to be a retroversion from Greek rather than the original Latin: see E. Schwartz, 'Der griechische Text der Kanones von Serdika,' ZNW 30 (1931), 1-35; I. Gelzer, 'Das Rundschreiben der Synode von Serdica,' ZNW 40 (1941), 1-24; (2) Athanasius, Apoi c. Ar. 44-49, contains a list of signatories which adds the names of more than two hundred bishops who subscribed their names after 343; (3) Theodoretus, HE 2.8.1-54, like (1), contains a significant passage not in the other two versions (see below, at nn. 35—41).

34. Athanasius, Apol. c. Ar. 42-50, quotes a Greek version of the Latin text printed in CSEL 65.103-126, followed by a list of two hundred and eighty-three subscriptions, including the priests Archidamus and Philoxenus, who subscribed on behalf of Julius of Rome in second place after Ossius who presided (not in the Latin subscriptions preserved from Hilary [CSEL 65.132-139)). The same work claims that more than three hundred bishops subscribed (Apoi. c. Ar. 1.2).

35. For a critical text, see now M. Tetz, 'Ante omnia de sancta fide et de integritate veritatis: Glaubensfragen auf der Synode von Serdica,' ZNW 76 (1985), 243-269, at 252-254. The theological statement is preserved only in the versions of the letter in Theodoretus, HE 2.8.1-52, and Cod. Vet LX (58), fols. 81'-88' (EOMIA 1.645-653).

36. Kelly, Creeds3 (1972), 277. On its theological content, see also F. Loofs, Das Glaubensbekenntnis der Homousianer von Sardica (Abhandlungen der königlichen preussischen Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Berlin, Philosophisch-historische Klasse 1909, Abhandlung 1), 11-39; M. Tetz, ZNW 76 (1985), 255-266.

38. As S. G. Hall, 'The Creed of Serdica,' Studio Patrística 19 (1989), 173-182.

40. Tomus ad Antiochenos 5.1.

41. EOMIA 1.644, reedited by M. Tetz, ZNW 76 (1985), 247/8.

42. CSEL 65.107.8: 'Athanasium et Marcellum, Asclepium, et alios'; 122.5-8: 'carissimos quidem fratres et coepiscopos nostros Athanasium Alexandriae et Marcellum Ancyro-Galatiae et Asclepium Gazae et eos qui cum ipsis erant ministrantes deo innocentes et puros pronuntiavimus.'

43. CSEL 65.134 No. 19, cf. Feder, Studien II (1910), 32/3.

44. CSEL 65.55.10/1: 'Paulo Constantinopolitanae civitatis quondam episcopo.'

45. As is often assumed: for example, A. Lippold, 'Paulus 29,' RE, Supp. 10 (1965), 510-520; Hanson, Search (1988), 293-306.

47. Socrates, HE 2.20.12. Photius in the ninth cenrury knew from hagiographical sources that Paul was at Serdica as well as vindicated by the council, and he plausibly states that Ossius on his return to Spain held a council at Corduba to confirm the decisions of the Council of Serdica [Bibliotheca 257,476 a 20/1; 258,481 b 40/1; Homily 16.6/7, pp. 158/9 Laourda, cf. C. Mango, The Homilies of Photius, Patriarch of Constantinople (Cambridge, Mass., 1958], 238, 271 n. 33). The even later Synodicon vetus 43-50 also correctly states that the cases of Paul and Athanasi as were linked in the 340s.

48. CSEL 65.126-131.

49. The letters of Athanasius to the clergy of Alexandria and to the churches of the Mareotis (EOMIA 1.654-656, 659) and of the council to the churches of the Mareotis (EOMIA 1.657/8) refer to the reading of letters from the addressees at sessions of the council.

50. Apcl. c. Ar. 37-41, with Opitz's important textual note on 118.19ff.

53. The Paschal cycle in Cod. Ver. LX (58), fols. 79v-80v, published in E. Schwartz, Christliche und jüdische Ostertafeln (Abhandlungen der königlichen Gesellschaft der Wissenschaften zu Göttingen, Philologisch-historische Klasse, N.F. 8.6, 1905), 122/3; EOMIA 1.641-643 includes a list of the dates at which a Jewish community, probably in Asia Minor or Syria, observed Passover from 328 to 343—a further proof, were one needed, that the council met later than the spring of 343, cf. T. C. G. Thornton, 'Problematical Passovers: Difficulties for Diaspora Jews and Early Christians in Determining Passover Dates during the First Three Centuries A.D.,' Studia Patristica 20 (1989), 402-408, at 405 n. 14.

54. F. Maassen, Geschichte der Quellen und der Literatur des canonischen Rechts im Abendland 1 (Graz, 1870), 50-65, 420-721; H. Hess, Canons (1958), 151-158.

55. C. Munier, Concilia Africae A. 34S-A. 52S (CCL 149, 1974), 6: 'nam et memini concilii Sardicensis similiter statutum.'

57. For the various versions of the text, see CPG 8553, 8554; on the date and nature of the council, 'The Date of the Council of Gangra,'/rS, N.S. 40 (1989), 121-124.

58. See H. Hess, Canons (1958), 138, Table B. (For obvious practical reasons 1 have followed the numbering of the canons used by Hess, who gives a concordance to other systems in his Canons (1958], 137, Table A.)

59. H. Hess, Canons (1958), 71-136, devotes a separate chapter to each of these topics, which consider in order the following canons: (i) 1,2,3a, 14,15,16,18-21; (ii) 5,6,13; (iii) 3c, 4,7,17; (iv) 8,10b, 9,10a, 11,12. On the complicated third canon and ecclesiastical appeals, see also Girardet, 'Appellatio: Ein Kapitel kirchlicher Rechtsgeschichte in den Kanones des vierten Jahrhunderts,' Historia 23 (1974), 98-127; Kaisergericht (1975), 120-132; H. C. Brennecke, 'Rom und der dritte Kanon von Serdika (342),' Zeitschrift der Savigny Stiftung für Rechtsgeschichte, Kanonistische Abteilung 69 (1983), 15-45.

61. Canons 3c, 4, 7, cf. H. Hess, Canons (1958), 109-127.

62. Canons 8-12, cf. H. Hess, Canons (1958), 128-136.

63. For the evidence and bibliography, see now J. L. Maier, Le dossier du Donatisme 1 (Texte und Untersuchungen 134, 1987), 198-254.

64. W. H. C. Frend, The Donatist Church (Oxford, 1952), 177-187.

65. CSEL 65.129.15-130.3; Apol c. Ar. 39.1; EOMIA 1.657.

66. CSEL 65.181-184 (probably not complete). This document, traditionally known as Hilary's Liber I ad Constantium, was first correctly identified by A. Wilmart, 'VAd Constantium liber primus de S. Hilaire de Poitiers et les Fragments historiques,' Revue bénédictine 24 (1907), 149-179, 291-317, cf. Feder, Studien í (1910), 133-151.

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