Page:Historical Works of Venerable Bede vol. 2.djvu/334

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The Sixth Age

Marcus is made first Gentile bishop of Jerusalem; fifteen Jewish bishops having presided nearly 107 years from the Lord's passion.

A.M. 4112 [161].

Antonius Pius receives from Justin his defence of Christianity.
[A.D. 139.]
Antoninus, surnamed the Pious, with his sons Aurelius and Lucius, reigned 22 years and 3 months. Justin the philosopher delivered to him a book on Christianity, and brought him to regard the Christians with favour. This man, not long after, shed his blood for Christ, under Pius, bishop of Rome, when Crescens the Cynic stirred up a persecution. A pastor named Hermes wrote a book, which gives the command of an angel that Easter should be kept on the Lord's day. Polycarp, disciple of St John.Polycarp, by coming St. John. to Rome, delivered from the infection of heresy many who had been latterly corrupted by the doctrines of Valentine and Cerdon.

A.M. 4131 [180].

Aureiius and VersusMarcus Antoniuus Verus, with his brother Lucius Aurelius Commodus, reigned 18 years and 1 month. These first exercised a joint administration, there having been up to this period only one Augustus at a time: they made war against the Parthians with wonderful valour and succcss. Martydom of Polycard and Pionius Polvcarp and Pionius bore their martyrdom during a persccution in Asia; in Gaul, too, very many nobly shed their blood for Christ. Not long after, in punishment of wickedness, a pestilence devastated many provinces far and wide, and especially Italy and Rome. His brother Commodus having died, Antoninus associated his son Commodus with him in the empire. Melito Asianus, bishop of Sardis, delivered to the Emperor Lucius, Antoninus an Apology for the Christians.Lucius King of Britan, baptized. Lucius, a King of Britain, in a letter to Eleutherus, bishop of Rome, requests to be made a Christian.[1] Apollinaris
  1. Sec Bede's Ecclesiastical History, B. I. Chap. IV.