Page:Tracts for the Times Vol 1.djvu/480

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being given on purpose to shew forth our Martyrs. And Maturus, and Sanctus, again went through, in the Amphitheatre, every torture, as if they had absolutely suffered nothing before. Rather, as having now in several combats foiled the Adversary, and engaged in the contest for the very crown, they supported again the courses of scourging usually inflicted there, and the dragging about by the beasts, and whatever else the mad populace shouted and demanded on this side and that, to have done to them; and above all, the iron seat, on which their bodies, being scorched, choked them with the smell. But their persecutors did not cease even with this; but were yet more outrageous, wishing to overcome their patience. And even thus they could hear nothing from Sanctus, beyond the words of confession he had been accustomed to use from the first. These then, their life holding out long through a severe conflict, were at last put to death; being by themselves, throughout that day, a spectacle to the world, instead of all the variety of single combats. But Blandina, hung up on a cross, was placed to be devoured by the beasts that were turned in. She, thus visibly hanging in the figure of a Cross, and engaged in earnest prayer, wrought great readiness in those who underwent the conflict; since they saw, in the midst of their suflferings, even with the outward eye, in their sister, Him who was crucified for them, to persuade those who believe in Him, that every one who hath suffered for the glory of Christ, hath for ever communion with the Living God. And, none of the beasts having at that time touched her, she was taken down from the cross, and carried up again to the prison, to be kept for another conflict; that, by conquering in yet more encounters, she might bring inexorable condemnation on the crooked Serpent; and, though by nature little, weak, and easily to be despised, yet having put on Christ, the great and invincible Champion, she might encourage the brethren; having overpowered the Adversary in many combats, and having won in the contest the incorruptible crown.

Next Attalus himself, being much called for by the multitude, (for he was a well-known man,) came in prepared for the combat by a good conscience, since he was truly exercised in the Christian discipline, and had always been amongst us a witness of the truth. He was led all round the Amphitheatre, with a tablet carried before him, on which was written in Latin, "This is Atta-