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How was the strength of the empire employed ?

More in preserving than in extending the empire. Mention a few of the events between the days of Commodus

and of Augustulus, A.D. 180—476. 1. The rise of the second Persian Empire; the Sassan

nidæ; A.D. 226. 2. The appearance of the Goths. — They crossed the

Danube, A.D. 250, and then for the first time forced

their way into the empire. 3. The reign of Aurelian; 270—275. Palmyra, Zenobia,

Longinus. 4. Various changes in the empire under Diocletian ;

A.D. 284. 5. Constantine makes Byzantium the capital ; about A.D.

330. 6. Division of the empire between the three sons of Con

stantine; A.D. 337. 7. Julian's vain attempt to destroy Christianity; 360--363. 8. Valentinian, Emperor of the West; 364-375. Valens, Emperor of the East, 364—378. “Here begins the season of impetuous decline. The western

empire was then loosened from its foundations, and

the sea of Barbarians closed around it on every side.” 9. The brief re-union of the empire by Theodosius, A.D.

Pagan temples were destroyed by him; 381.
“The genius of Rome expired with Theodosius."
10. The final division of the e:npire; A.D. 395.
Honorius, Emperor of the West. Stilicho.

Arcadius, Emperor of the East. Rufinus, Eutropius. What year is remarkable for the passing of the Rhine by the

swarms of the north ?
A.D. 407. The fall of the empire beyond the Alps.

Mention the leading powers that pressed on the empire, and

overthrew it. 1. The Visigoths under Alaric: Rome taken A.D. 410. Vandals in Spain, 415. Vandalusia ; now Andalusia. In Africa: Genseric, 439. 2. The Huns, under Attila, (“the scourge of God,") in

vade Italy, 452. 3. The Vandals, under Genseric, sack Rome, 455. 4. The Heruli, under Odoacer, dethrone Romulus Mo

myllus Augustulus, A.D. 476. 5. The Lombards, ,under Alboin, seize part of Italy, A.D.

572. Pavia their capital. At what point are we now arrived ?

We are come to the close of Ancient History. We briefly review the whole Roman History.-Into how many

successive parts did we divide it, from the forms of

the government ? Into three; the Regal, Consular, and Imperial periods. What did we call the Regal period ?

i. The Infancy of Rome. How did we speak of the Consular period ?

We viewed it in three successive portions. What did we call the first of them?

ii. The vigorous Youth of Rome. What did we call the second of them ?

üi. The Manhood of Rome. What did we call the third of them ?

iv. The time of Civil Discord. Might not the Imperial period be divided ?

Yes; into two parts.
Mention each of them.

v. From Augustus to Constantine.
vi. From Constantine to Augustulus.

We have then, six periods: briefly characterize each.

i. and ii. Struggling, rising, growing, strong.
iii. Ambitious, victorious, a large empire.
iv. Vicious, contentious, self-destroying.
v. Splendid, vicious, hardly supporting itself, threatened

with evils. vi. Declining, rent asunder, tottering, subverted. What was the world at the close of Ancient History? A moral and political chaos: all was full of convulsion,

confusion, and change: but yet there were the seeds

of light and life in the mass—a leaven from above. What has been viewed as the time of greatest calamity and

affliction in Europe ? The time that elapsed from the death of Theodosius the

Great to the establishment of the Lombards in Italy: a time of war, pestilence, and famine : A.D. 395— 572

177 years.


From Augustus to Augustulus (see page 287) we may reckon 476 years.

We here take a view of Church History during that period; only noticing a few prominent or leading particulars; beginning with A.D. 64.

First Century.


64. First Persecution ; Nero emperor. 66. The Jewish war begins: Christians retire to Pella. 70. Destruction of Jerusalem : Titus. 81. Gnosticism prevailed; a mixture of oriental and Platonic

philosophy, and in some cases) of Judaism, with

certain elements of Christianity. Christian virtue flourished both in theory and practice;

the source or foundation of it being a simple and lively faith in Christ the Saviour of the world.

95. Second Persecution: Domitian. 96. Menander; Docetæ. --Cerinthus, a Judaizing gnostic. 100. Death of St. John about this time.

Second Century.

107. Third Persecution: Trajan. Ignatius, martyr. 111. Epistle of Pliny to Trajan, &c., about Christians.

Fasting on certain days became usual. 117. Fourth Persecution : Adrian. 129. Age of scriptural doctrine, simple worship, pure morals,

and martyrdom. Causes of corruption; An attempt 1. To unite Christianity with Judaism: Ebionites, Naza


2. To engraft oriental philosophy upon the Gospel : Gnos

tics, Manichees. 3. To incorporate a system of will-worship and asceticism:

Montanists. 4. To bring down revelation to human reason: Anti

trinitarians. 132. Justin Martyr fl. : 140. Celsus fl. 150. Gnosticism at its height. 157. Rise of the Montanists. 163. Fifth Persecution : Marcus Aurelius. 165. Justin Martyr put to death; 167, Polycarp. 170. Apologetic age. 176. Irenæus, Bishop of Lyons. 180. Christians are now divided into two classes, the Faithful

and Catechumens. 188. Christian writers began to attack the errors of paganism, 196. Victor, Bishop of Rome, excommunicates the Churches

of Asia Minor.—The Church of Carthage rises into eminence; Tertullian fl.

Churches had been planted in Italy, Spain, Gaul, and

Britain ; in Thrace, Scythia, Germany, and Sarmatia;
In Alexandria, Carthage, and on the N. coast of Africa;
In Arabia, Persia, Bactria, Asia Minor, &c.
The Doctrines of the Gospel began to be corrupted; and

the tone of morality in the Church was lowered.

Third Century.

101. The sixth Persecution : Severus.

We have seen the acts and sufferings of the Church :
We are now to notice the acts, errors, and disputes of

the clergy. 204. At this time flourished Tertullian, Origen, and Clemens. Ammonius Saccas, at Alexandria, founded 200-235,

the Eclectic Philosophy, or Later Platonism : he tried to unite the Platonic and Aristotelian systems,

and to blend this compound with Christianity. 215. Superstitious veneration for sacred ordinances. 222. First traces of Churches or distinct buildings for Christian

worship. Several were erected about this time. 231. Christian Churches or congregations now existed in every

province and city of the Roman Empire. 232. The bold speculations of Origen.—Progress of Montanism. 235. Seventh Persecution : aimed chiefly at the heads of the

Church. 240. Foundation of the doctrine of Purgatory laid by Origen.

-Multiplication of rites and ceremonies. 249. Eighth Persecution : Decius. Cyprian flies from Car

thage. 250. Rise of Monachism: Paul the Hermit, of Thebes, and

others retire to the deserts of Egypt from the Decian

persecution. 252. “The unity of the Church” advocated by Origen.

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