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Let the pious and godly Christian Epigrams take precedence, even if the pagans are displeased.

1.—Inscribed on the Tabernacle of Saint Sophia

The images[1] that the heretics took down from here our pious sovereigns replaced.

2.—Inscribed on the Apse of Blachernae

The divine Justin, the husband of Sophia, to vliom Christ granted the gift of restoring everything, and glory in war, finding that the temple of the V^irgin Mother was tottering, took the decayed part to pieces and built it up again securely.

3.—On the Same

This lovely temple shining with beauty the earlier Justin built to the Mother of God. A later Justin during his reign endowed it with more than its former splendour.

4.—On the Temple of St. John the Baptist ("the Forerunner") in the property of Studius

Studius built this fair house to John the great servant of Christ, and quickly gained the reward of his work by obtaining the consular fasces.

5.—On the Church of St. Thomas the Apostle in the property of Amantius

This house thou didst make for God, Amantius, in the middle of the sea, combating the swirling waves. Nor south nor north wind shall shake thy holy house, guarded as it is by this divine temple. May thy days be many; for thou by invading the sea hast made New Rome more glorious.

6.—On the Church of St. Theodore in the land of Sphoracius

Sphoracius having escaped from a fire built this temple to the Martyr.

7.—On the Same

Sphoracius, Antolius thy nephew rejoiced in repaying during thy life thy kindness in bringing him up, and now thou art dead ever pays thee grateful honour; so that he found for thee a new honour, and laid thee in the temple thou thyself didst build.

8.—On the Church of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul near St. Sergius in the property of Hormisdas

Honouring the King of Kings, Christ, with his works, Justinian built this glorious temple to Peter

and Paul, for by giving honour to His servants a man offereth great glory to the King Himself. Here is profit for the soul and for the eyes. Let each get what he hath need of by his prayers, and take joy in looking at the beauty and splendour of the house.

9.—On the Church of St. Michael in Bothreptus

And this celebrated work too is the fruit of thy toil, skilled Gerradius. For thou didst reveal to us anew the lovely temple of the captain of the angelic host.

10.—On the Church of the Holy Martyr Polyeuctus

Eudocia the empress, eager to honour God, first built here a temple of Polyeuctus the servant of God. But she did not make it as great and beautiful as it is, not from any economy or lack of possessions—what doth a queen lack?—but because her prophetic soul told her that she should leave a family well knowing how better to adorn it. Whence Juliana, the glory of her blessed parents, inheriting their royal blood in the fourth generation, did not defeat the hopes of the Queen, the mother of a noble race, but raised this from a small temple to its present size and beauty, increasing the glory of her many-sceptred ancestors; for all that she made, she made more magnificent than they, holding the true faith of a mind devoted to Christ. Who hath not heard of Juliana, how in her pious care she glorified even her parents by fair-fashioned works? All alone by her righteous toil she built a worthy house to immortal Polyeuctus, for she had ever studied to give blameless gifts to all athletes of the Heavenly King. Every country cries,

every city, that she made her parents more glorious by better works. Where do we not find that Juliana hath raised splendid temples to the Saints? Where do we not see the signs of the pious hand of thee alone? What place hath not learnt that thy mind is full of piety? The inhabitants of the whole world sing thy works, which are eternally remembered. For the works of piety are not hidden; oblivion doth not quench the labours of beneficent virtue. Not even thyself knoweth how many houses dedicated to God thy hand hath made; for thou alone, I ween, didst build innumerable temples all over the world, ever fearing the servants of God in Heaven. Following by her good works all the footsteps of her parents she made the fame of her race immortal, always walking in the whole path of piety. Therefore, all ye servants of the Heavenly King to whom she gave gifts or built temples, preserve her gladly with her son and his daughters, and may the immeasurable glory of the most beneficent family survive as long as the Sun drives his burning chariot.

At the Entrance of the same Church, outside the Narthex[2] towards the Apse

What quire is sufficient to chant the works of Juliana, who after Constantine, the adorner of his Rome, and after the holy golden light of Theodosius, and after so many royal ancestors, in a few years accomplished a work worthy of her race, yea, more than worthy? She alone did violence

to Time and surpassed the wisdom of renowned Solomon by raising a habitation for God, whose glitering and elaborate beauty the ages cannot celebrate—how it rises from its deep-rooted foundations, running up from the ground and aspiring to the stars of heaven, and how from east to west it extends itself glittering with unspeakable brightness in the sunlight on both its sides! On either side of its aisle columns standing on firm columns support the rays of the golden dome, while on each side arched recesses scattered on the dome reproduce the ever-revolving light of the moon. The opposite walls in innumerable paths are clothed in marvellous metallic veins of colour, like flowery meadows which Nature made to flower in the depth of the rock, and hid their glory, keeping them for the House of God, to be the gift of Juliana, so that she might produce a divine work, following in her toil the stainless dictates of her heart. What singer of skilful works shall now hasten to the west,[3] armed with a hundred eyes, and read aright the various devices on the walls, gazing on the circle of the shining house, one story set on another? There you may see a marvellous creation of the holy pencils above the centre of the porch, the wise Constantine, how escaping from the idols he quenched the impious fury of the heathen and found the light of the Trinity by cleansing his limbs in water. Such is the labour that Juliana, after a countless swarm of labours, accomplished for the souls of her parents, and for her own life, and for that of those who are and shall be.

11.—On the Church of the Saints Cosmas and Damian[4] in the district of Basiliscus

I, thy servant Sophia, O Christ, offer this gift to thy servants. Receive thine own, and to my emperor Justin give in payment therefor victory on victory over diseases and the barbarians.

12.—On St. Euphemia of Olyhrius

I am the House of the Trinity, and three generations built me. First Eudoxia, the daughter of Theodosius, having escaped from war and the barbarians, erected and dedicated me to God in acknowledgement of her rescue from distress. Next her daughter Placidia with her most blessed husband adorned me. Thirdly, if perchance my beauty was at all deficient in splendour, munificent Juliana invested me with it in memory of her parents, and bestowed the height of glory on her mother and father and her mother's illustrious mother by augmenting my former adornment. Thus was I made.

13.—In the same Church, inside the Gallery

I had loveliness before, but now in addition to my former beauty I have acquired greater splendour.


Thus did Juliana, after her mother and grandmother, scrape off my coat of old age, and I have new bloom.


There was then something more beautful than beauty, since my fabric, even formerly of world-wide celebrity, was advanced to a beauty greater than its former splendour by Juliana, so that now it rivals the stars.


Juliana had the Martyr herself, the Patroness of the church, to inspire and help the artificers. For never would she have accomplished otherwise so vast and beautiful a work, full of heavenly splendour.


No longer dost thou marvel at the glory of them who are passed away: by their art they did not leave a fame so great as is the glory of wise Juliana, who by her work surpassed the skilled design of her ancestors.

18.—On an Uncertain Object[5]

I am the good circle of good Agathonike ...... and she dedicated me to the immaculate Martyr Trophimus.


To the Saviour

O Thou Who guardest the wise womb of the everflowing fire, Who art enthroned on the revolving necessity of the Universe, Christ, vivifying Source of the divinely appointed life, first begotten Voice of God the ineffable Father, Who, after the burden of Thy Mother's pangs and the self-accomplished birth from a marriage without bridegroom, didst arrest the heterodox rage of the Syrian race, and dissolve the falsely named rites of empty idols, and then didst ascend the seven-zoned belt of heaven seated on the unspeakable angelic wings, have mercy on me, venerated Rye of God, the Maker of all things. Keeper of life. Saviour of men. Lord of Eternity.

20.—By the Same

To the Lord Christ

Newly revealed. Lord of the sky, born of old time, new-born Son, ever existing and pre-existing, highest and last, Christ, coeval with Thy immortal Father, in all ways like Him.

21.—To the Same

Child, old man, born before the ages, eoeval with the Father.

22.—To the Same

All-wise Word of the heavenly Father, Lord of the world, Who didst honour the race of mankind by Thy image, grant us Thy grace and Thy help that bestoweth blessings; for the eyes of all look to Thee in hope.

23.—[By Marinus] To the Same

Son, co-eternal with the immortal Father, Lord of all, who rulest over all things in Heaven, in Sea, and on Earth, give to Thy servant Marinus who wrote this book the grace of eloquence and wisdom of speech.

24.—To the Same

Enthroned with Thy Father and the good Spirit and like unto Them without beginning, King of all that is, was, and shall be, give Thy grace unto him who wrote this, that by Thy precepts he may walk rightly in the path of his life.

25.—To the Same

Christ, Wisdom of God, Ruler and Governor of the world. Creator of old of our human stock, vouchsafe to me to run the race of life in the way of Thy commandments.

26.—To the Same

Son of God, who rulest on high, eternal Light that lighteneth, give me Tiiy grace now and after and ever, for that is the root of all for him to whom Thou shalt grant it in such manner as is best.

27.—To the Same

Almighty Son of God, Christ, without beginning and existing before all. Who dost make to gush forth fountains of salvation for all mankind, listen to the prayers of Thy Virgin Mother, and grant us Thy grace in word and deed.

28.— [By Marinus.] To the Same

Christ, Wisdom of God, endow with the grace of eloquence and make skilled in wisdom of speech Marinus, who wrote this volume with his own hand, a medicine for folly and guide to right diction.

29.—To the Same

Shed, O Christ, Thy grace on my works. Christ shall be the helper of even my works. May Christ stretch out a helping hand to my labour. Christ, send me Thy help full of blessing. Christ, Thyself give Thy grace to my work.

30.—To the Same

Blessed Christ, eternal Light of men, Hope of all, give good to them who are in need of it, and keep away evil.

31.—To the Most Holy Mother of God

O Queen, holding in thy arms thy almighty Child, the Son of God, before Whom the angels tremble, and making Him merciful in mind to men, guard Him and keep therewith the whole world safe from trouble.

32.—To the Archangel Michael

Here is kept the divine help for wretched men, afflicted in mind or body. For vexing trouble at once is put to flight, Michael, by thy name, thy image, or thy house.


On an Image of the Archangel

How daring it is to picture the incorporeal I But yet the image leads us up to spiritual recollection of celestial beings.


On another on the Island of Plate

Greatly daring was the wax that formed the image of the invisible Prince of the Angels, incorporeal in the essence of his form. But yet it is not without grace; for a man looking at the image directs his mind to a higher contemplation. No

longer has he a confused veneration, but imprinting the image in himself he fears him as if he were present. The eyes stir up the deptlus of the spirit, and Art can convey by colours the prayers of the soul.

35.—By the Same

On the Archangel in the Sosthenium

Aemilianus of Caria and John with him, Rufinus of Alexandria and Agathias of Asia[6] having completed the fourth year of their legal studies, O Archangel, dedicated to thee, O Blessed One, thy painted image, praying that their future may be happy. Make thyself manifest in thy direction of their hopes.

36.—By the Same

On a picture of Theodorus the Illustrious and twice Proconsul, in which he is shown receiving the insignia of office from the Archangel in Ephesus

Forgive us, O Archangel, for picturing thee, for thy face is invisible; this is but an offering of men. For by thy grace Theodorus hath his girdle of a Magister, and twice won for his prize the Proconsular chair. The picture testifies to his gratitude, for in return he expressed the image of thy beauty in colours.

37.—On the Birth of Christ

Trumpets! Lightnings! The earth trembles! but into the Virgin's womb thou didst descend with noiseless tread.

38.—On the Same

The manger is Heaven, yea, greater than Heaven. Heaven is the handiwork of this child.

39.—On the Shepherds and Angels

One dance, one song for men and angels, for man and God are become one.

40.—On the Birth of Christ

The manger is Heaven, yea, greater than Heaven, for He whom it received is the King of the Heavenly ones.

41.—On the Magi

No longer do the Magi bring presents to Fire and the Sun ; for this Child made Sun and Fire.

42.—On Bethlehem

Receive Him, Bethlehem, Him who, as the good prophet foretold, would come from thee to be the Ruler of all peoples.

43.—On Rachel

Why mournest thou, Rachel, shedding bitter tears? Because I see my children slain I shed tears.

44.—On the Annunciation

Hail, Maiden, full of grace, most blessed, Bride immaculate, thou shalt have in thy womb a Son conceived without a father.

45.—On the Visitation

The prophet, while yet in the womb, saw and showed by leaping that thy child was God, and his Mother gave praise.

46.—On the Presentation

Old man, receive the child who was born before Adam, who will deliver thee from this life and bring thee to eternal life.

47.—On the Baptism

From the immortal Father the most mighty Spirit came, when the Son was being baptized in the waters of Jordan.

48.—On the Transfiguration

Adam was . . .

49.—On Lazarus

Christ said "Come here," and Lazarus left Hades, recovering the breath in his dry nostrils.

50.—On the Same, in Ephesus

He made the Soul, and likewise fashioned the body. He brings back Lazarus from the dead into the 'light.

51—On the Same

It was the fourth day, and Lazarus awoke from the tomb.

52.—On Palm Sunday

Hail, daughter of Zion, aid look on Clirist the King seated on a foal and going swiftly to his Passion.

53.—On Easter

Christ abolished the lamb of the law, and provided an immortal sacrifice, Himself the priest and Himself the victim.

54.—On the Crucifixion

O passion, O cross, O blood that purgeth of the passions, cleanse my soul from all wickedness.

55.—On the Same

He said that the Virgin[7] should be the Virgin's Son, another Himself: Have mercy on us, Lord of pure virginity.

56.—On the Resurrection

Christ being God took away all the dead from Hell, and left Hell the destroyer alone and soulless.

57.—On the Lamb of God

On the threshold of my soul is the saving blood of the Lamb. Away, Destroyer, come not near.

58.—On Gideon’s Fleece

One fleece has dew; it gave dew to the bowl; the same fleece is dewless. Hide hidden things in thy mind.

59.—On Moses and Pharaoh's Daughter

An Egyptian woman, a hidden child, and water near by. These things are types of the Word only to the pious.

60.—On the Same when he stretched forth his hands to discomfit Amalek[8]

Why dost thou, Moses, stretch forth thy hands in the form of a cross? By this type perish both Amaleks.

61.—On the Same

Defend thy Gentile wife by the Well,[9] Moses, because thou art the type of the infallible bridegroom.

62.—On the Ark passing over Jordan

The stream yielded to the golden Ark. Have mercy on us, O Christ; the Ark is a type of thy baptism here.

63.—On Hagar

Hagar, too, is of the Gentiles. But what is the angel, what is the fountain?[10] I, too, am of the Gentiles, therefore I know these things.

64.—On the Seventy Palms and Twelve Hells[11]

Know that the seventy palms and twelve wells of water are types of the number of Christ's disciples.

65.—On Abraham

Abraham takes his son to be sacrificed to God. Be merciful! What sacrifice doth the mind see of which this picture is a type?

66.—On Melchisedech giving Wine and Bread to Abraham

"King Melchisedech, priest, who art thou that givest bread and wine?" "A type of truth."

67.—On Abraham receiving God

Here hath God only the form of a man, but later He in truth attained a human nature.

68.—On Jacob blessing Isaac

His hands have smell for the Spirit, and skin for the Letter. The mind that seeth God is pleasing to a father.

69.—On Rebecca

Only begotten bridegroom, thy Gentile bride, loving thee, leapt down from the height of an unclean body.[12]

70.—On the Same

The lady Rebecca was wooed not far from the water, because she is the type of a Gentile bride.

71.—On the Shunamite

The prayer of Elisha, O Shunamite, twice gave thee thy son, first from thy womb, and next from the dead.

72.— On Elijah's Mantle

This skin foretells the Lamb of God, who shall be baptized here for the life of all men.

73.—On David being Anointed

I know in my heart, but fear to utter, whose father this David was called, whom thou seest anointed here.

74.—On the Blind Man

The name of the pool is Sent, but dost thou understand who is sent by whom, so that thou mayest have a perfect view?

75.—On the Samaritan Woman

No type, but a God and bridegroom here saves his Gentile bride, whom he saw beside the water.

76.—On the Wedding

God truly made wine, but the mystery of the miracle thou understandest if the spirit of Christ possesses thee.

77.—On the Widow who fed Elijah

The cruse of oil and the barrel of meal overflow because the widow has firm faith.

78.—On Peter the Apostle

Peter is the high-priest of all the high-priests of God, having received this oflice by the voice of God.

79.—On Paul the Apostle

Paul, having seen face to face the divine light of Heaven, filled all the Earth with infinite light.

80.—On John the Apostle

John the Divine high-priest of Ephesus, was the first who said from God that the Word was God.

81.—On the Same

John first heard the Word speak and himself said that the Word was God.

82.—On the Same

John, having reached the house of heavenly wisdom in which God is well pleased, said that the Word was God.

83.—On Matthew

Matthew wrote in his pages, after leaving the house of the publican, all the high marvels of the Incarnation of God.

84.—On Luke

Luke wove skillfully into the vitals of the volume the deeds of Christ which brought about eternal life.

85.—On Mark

Night no longer covers the people of Egypt, as its name signifies, since it received the light of the voice of Mark.

86.—On St. Basil

Basil had for his lot the virginity and wisdom of John, having in this a like lot with Gregory.

87.—On St. Polycarp

This is the merciful Polycarp who occupied a high priest's throne, and won truly a martyr's crown.

88.—0n St. Dionysius

Thou who didst sing the hierarchic ranks of the heavenly companies and didst bring to light the mystic meaning of visible types, lightest the torch, pleasing to God, of oracles wise unto life.

89.—On St. Nicholas

Polycarp has Nicholas near him because the hands of both were ever most prompt to deeds of mercy.


On Cyrus and Joannes

To the holy martyrs, Cyrus, a past master in the art of healing, and Joannes, did Sophronius, as a slight return for his escape from a soul-distressing complaint of the eyes, dedicate this book.

91.—On the Emperor Justinian, in Ephesus

By the command of Christ did John crown Justinian and admirable Theodora.


In Cacsarea in the Church of St. Basil

While Christ once slept on the ship a natural sleep, the sea was disturbed by stormy winds, and

the sailors cried out in fear, "Wake, Saviour, and help us who are perishing." Then the Lord arose and bade the winds and waves be still, and it was so; and by the miracle those present understood His divine nature.

93.—In the same Church

As thou lookest on the image of the four lifegiving Virtues, stir thy mind to willing toil; for the labour of piety can draw us to a life that knows not old age.

94.—On the Death of the Holy Virgin

The disciples, their hearts uplifted by the divine command, came calling to each other in glittering robes to the house of the immaculate and blameless woman, some from the East, some from the West, others from the South, and others came from the North, seeking to inter the body of Her, the world's saviour.

95.—In Ephesus

To thee, O blessed one, from thee, I give the spoils thou gavest me in war.

96.—On a Sceptre

Worthy Amantius obtained this dignity, because he was faithful to the Emperor and delighted Christ by his fear of God.

97.—In Melite

I am the celebrated temple of the Emperor Justin. The Consul Tiieodorus, the strong, thrice a Prefect, dedicated me to the l^nperor and his son Justinian, the general of the whole army.

98.—In the same Place

Thou seest the famous work of the Emperor Justin and of Justinian, the mighty general, glittering with the lustre of vast store of minerals. This was made by famous Theodorus, who, glorifying the city, thrice protected it by his consular office.

99.—On the Pillar of Holy Daniel on the Bosphorus

Midmost of earth and heaven stands a man, dreading not the winds that blow from all quarters . . . both feet firmly planted on the column. He is nourished by ambrosial hunger and painless thirst, ever preaching the Son of the Immaculate Mother.

100.—On Xilns the Great Hermit

The stream of the river Nile can water the earth and the word of the monk Nilus can delight the mind.


On a Persian mage who became a Christian and suffered Martyrdom

I, Isbozetes, was formerly a mage among the Persians, my hope resting on pernicious fraud. When my city was in flames 1 came to help, and a servant of all-powerful Christ came too. He extinguished the force of the fire, but none the less, though I was worsted I gained a more divine victory.

102.—On our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ the Son of God}} O Thou who art beyond all things (for how can I celebrate Thee more), how shall I tell Thy name Who art supreme above all? How shall I sing Thee in words, Whom no words can comprehend?

103.—On the Lintel of a House in Cyzicus which was saved from Fire

Bloodthirsty Momus,[13] thy own bitter arrow slew thee, for God delivered me, this wealthy house, from thy fury.

104.—On the Chest containing the Relics of the Holy Martyr Acacius and of King Alexander

Here lie the bodies, discovered one happy day, of the Martyr Acacius and the priest Alexander.

105.—On Eudocia the Ji ife of King Theodosius

The wise mistress of the world, inflamed by pious love, cometh as a servant, and she who is worshipped by all mankind worshippeth the tomb of One. For He who gave her a husband and a throne, died as a Man but lives a God. Below He played the man, but above He was as He was.

106.—In the Golden Hall of Mazarinus (after the Restoration of Images)

The light of Truth hath shone forth again, and blunts the eyes of the false teachers. Piety hath

increased and Error is fallen; Faith flourisheth and Grace groweth. For behold, Christ pictured again shines above the imperial throne and overthrows the dark heresies. And above the entrance, like a holy door, is imaged the guardian Virgin. The Emperor and the Patriarch, as victorious over Error, are pictured near with their fellow-workers, and all around, as sentries of the house, are angels, disciples, martyrs, priests: whence we call this now the Christotriclinium (the hall of Christ) instead of by its former name Chrysotriclinium (the Golden Hall), since it has the throne of the Lord Christ and of his Mother, and the images of the Apostles and of Michael, author of wisdom.

107.—On the Same

O Emperor Michael, as preserving the bright preciousncss of the ancient image, and as conqueror of all fleshly stains, thou dost picture the Lord in colours too, establishing by deed the word of dogma.

108.—On Adam (Anonymous)

Not without wisdom was Adam so called, for the four letters represent the four quarters of the earth. The Alpha he has from Anatole (the East), the Delta from Dysis (the West), the second Alpha is from Arctus (the North) and the Mu from Mesembria (the South).


In the Church of the Holy Virgin at the Fountain

Basilius, Leo, and Constantine redecorate the ruined church of the Virgin.

110.—In the same Church on the picture of the Ascension in the Dome

Ascending from Earth, O Saviour, to Thy Father's throne, Thou showest Thy Mother's house to be a spiritual source of higher gifts.

111.—In the same Church on the Crucifixion

Dead Hell vomits up the dead, being purged by the flesh of the Lord.

112.—In the same Church on the Transfiguration

Christ on Tabor, shining brighter than light, hath done away with the shadow of the old Law.

113.—In the same Church on the Presentation

The Boy now seen in the old man's arms is the ancient Creator of Time.

114.—In the same Church on the Salutation

The Lord saying "Hail" to the women presages the salvation of the world.

115.—On the Virgin

A Virgin bore a Son; after a Son she was a Virgin.

116.—On the Saviour

Blessed Christ, immortal Light of men. Son of God, receive gifts of crystal and sardonyx, incorruptible Son of a Virgin, Son of God, gifts of crystal and sardonyx.

117.—0n the Blind Man

The blind, whose eyes were closed from birth, saw; for Christ came, the Grace that is all eyes.


Our wicked enemy raised a tempest of passions, rousing the sea with his winds; whence he tosses and submerges and floods the cargo of our ship the soul. But, do thou, O Christ, calm and stiller of tempest, anchoring us safely in thy harbour, show our sins dry and this our enemy soaked with disaster.

119.—The Argument, an eloquent Apology, of a Homeric Cento

The book of Patricius, the God-fearing priest, who performed a great task, composing from the works of Homer a glorious song of splendid verses, announcing the deeds of the invincible God; how He came to the company of men and took human form, and was hidden when an infant in the blameless womb of a Virgin, He whom the infinite universe cannot hold; and how He sucked from the breast of the Virgin, once great with child from God, the stream of maiden milk it spouted; how Herod, in his folly

seeking the death of the immortal God, slew the still tender babes; how John washed Him in the waters of the river; how He took to Him His twelve excellent companions; the limbs of how many He made whole, driving out loathly diseases, and darkness of sight, and how He stayed the running stream of blood in the weeping woman who touched His raiment; and how many victims of the cruel fates He brought back to the light from the dark pit; and how He left us memorials of His holy Passion; how by the hands of men He was tortured by cruel bonds, by His own will, for no mortal man could war with God who ruleth on high, unless He Himself decreed it; how He died and burst the iron gates of Hell and led thence into Heaven by the immaculate command of His Father the faithful spirits, having arisen on the third morn, the primal offspring of the Father who hath no beginning.

120.—In Blachernae, in the Church of the Virgin

If thou seekest the dread throne of God on Earth, marvel as thou gazest on the house of the Virgin. For she who beareth God in her arms, beareth Him to the glory of this place. Here they who are set up to rule over the Earth believe that their sceptres are rendered victorious. Here the Patriarch, ever wakeful, averts many catastrophes in the world. The barbarians, attacking the city, on only seeing Her at the head of the army bent at once their stubborn necks.

121.—In the same Church

The house of the Virgin, like her Son, was destined to become a second gate of God. An ark hath appeared holier than that of old, not containing the tables written by God's hand but having received within it God himself. Here are fountains of purification from the flesh, here is redemption of errors of the soul. There is no evil circumstance, but from Her gusheth a miraculous gift to cure it. Here, when She overthrew the foe, She destroyed them by water, not by the spear. She hath not one method of defeat alone, who bore Christ and putteth the barbarians to flight.


On the Virgin and Child

This is she who bore a child and remained a Virgin. Wonder not thereat, for the Child is God, who consented to put on flesh.


On the Rock of Calvary

Thrice-blessed rock, who didst receive the blood that issued from God, the fiery children of Heaven guard thee around, and Kings inhabitants of the Earth, sing thy praise.

  1. Here and below of course = icons, pictures.
  2. i.e. vestibule.
  3. i.e. the west façade.
  4. Physicians, called Ἀνάργυροι because they refused fees from sick folk who were willing to become Christians.
  5. The epigram is imperfect.
  6. The province, a limited part of Asia Minor, excluding Caria.
  7. St. John the Divine.
  8. Exod. xvii. 11.
  9. Exod. ii. 17.
  10. Gen. xvi. 7.
  11. Exod. xv. 27.
  12. The camel. Gen. xxiv. 64.
  13. Probably = Satan.