English Translation: Decrees of the Ecumenical Councils,
ed. Norman P. Tanner S.J.

 Theodosius 1.
4th cent. Silver Coin

1.CREED;      2. CANONS;     3. LETTER of the BISHOPS




[Compare with the CREED of NICĆA]

(so-called Nicene ) Creed

Ἔχθεσις τῶν
ρν́ πατέρων

Expositio fidei CL patrum

WE believe in one God the Father all-powerful, maker of heaven and of earth, and of all things both seen and unseen.   Πιστεύομεν εἰς ἕνα θεὸν πατέρα παντοκράτορα͵ ποιητὴν οὐρανοῦ τε καὶ γῆς͵ ὁρατῶν τε πάντων καὶ ἀοράτων. Credimus in unum deum patrem omnipotentem, factorem caeli et terrae, visibilium omnium et invisibilium;
And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten from the Father before all the ages, καὶ εἰς ἕνα κύριον Ἰησοῦν Χριστόν͵ τὸν υἱὸν τοῦ θεοῦ τὸν μονογενῆ͵ τὸν ἐκ τοῦ πατρὸς γεννηθέντα πρὸ πάντων τῶν αἰώνων͵ et in unum dominum Iesum Christum filium dei unigenitum, ex patre natum ante omnia saecula,

[Lat. God from God]

  deum ex deo,

[Gr. that is, of the same substance as the Father]

[τουτέστιν ἐκ τῆς οὐσίας τοῦ πατρός  
light from light, true God from true God, begotten not made,  φῶς ἐκ φωτός͵ θεὸν ἀληθινὸν ἐκ θεοῦ ἀληθινοῦ͵ γεννηθέντα οὐ ποιηθέντα͵ lumen ex lumine, deum verum ex deo vero, natum non factum,
consubstantial with the Father, ὁμοούσιον τῷ πατρί͵ omousion patri,

[Lat. that is, of the same substance as the Father]

  [hoc est eiusdem cum patre substantiae,]
through whom all things came to be;  δι΄ οὗ τὰ πάντα ἐγένετο͵ τ per quem omnia facta sunt,

[Gr. things in the heavens and on earth]

[ά τε ἐν τοῖς οὐρανοῖς καὶ τὰ ἐν τῇ γῇ· ]  
for us humans and for our salvation he came down from the heavens and became incarnate from the holy Spirit and the virgin Mary, τὸν δι΄ ἡμᾶς τοὺς ἀνθρώπους καὶ διὰ τὴν ἡμετέραν σωτηρίαν κατελθόντα ἐκ τῶν οὐρανῶν καὶ σαρκωθέντα ἐκ πνεύματος ἁγίου καὶ Μαρίας τῆς παρθένου qui propter nos homines et nostram salutem descendit et incarnatus est de spiritu sancto et Maria virgine
became human and was crucified on our behalf under Pontius Pilate; καὶ ἐνανθρωπήσαντα͵ σταυρωθέντα τε ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν ἐπὶ Ποντίου Πιλάτου humanatus est et crucifixus pro nobis est sub Pontio Pilato
he suffered and was buried and rose up on the third day καὶ παθόντα καὶ ταφέντα͵ καὶ ἀναστάντα τῇ τρίτῃ ἡμέρᾳ et sepultus et tertia die resurrexit
in accordance with the scriptures; κατὰ τὰς γραφὰς  
and he went up into the heavens and is seated at the Father’s right hand; he is coming again with glory to judge the living and the dead; καὶ ἀνελθόντα εἰς τοὺς οὐρανοὺς καὶ καθεζόμενον ἐκ δεξιῶν τοῦ πατρός͵ καὶ πάλιν ἐρχόμενον μετὰ δόξης κρῖναι ζῶντας καὶ νεκρούς͵ et ascendit in caelis et sedit ad dexteram patris et iterum venturus cum gloria iudicare vivos et mortuos,
his kingdom will have no end. οὗ τῆς βασιλείας οὐκ ἔσται τέλος. cuius regni non erit finis;
And in the Spirit, the holy, the lordly and life-giving one, proceeding forth from the Father, co-worshipped and co-glorified with Father and Son, the one who spoke through the prophets; καὶ εἰς τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον͵ τὸ κύριον καὶ ζωοποιόν͵ τὸ ἐκ τοῦ πατρὸς ἐκπορευόμενον͵ τὸ σὺν πατρὶ καὶ υἱῷ συμπροσκυνούμενον καὶ συνδοξαζόμενον͵ τὸ λαλῆσαν διὰ τῶν προφητῶν· et in spiritum sanctum, dominum et vivificatorem, ex patre procedentem, cum patre et filio coadorandum et conglorificandum, qui locutus est per prophetas;
in one, holy, catholic and apostolic church. We confess one baptism for the forgiving of sins. εἰς μίαν ἁγίαν καθολικὴν καὶ ἀποστολικὴν ἐκκλησίαν· ὁμολογοῦμεν ἓν βάπτισμα εἰς ἄφεσιν ἁμαρτιῶν͵ in unam catholicam et apostolicam ecclesiam; confitemur unum baptisma in remissionem peccatorum
We look forward to a resurrection of the dead and life in the age to come. προσδοκῶμεν ἀνάστασιν νεκρῶν καὶ ζωὴν τοῦ μέλλοντος αἰῶνος. et expectamus resurrectionem mortuorum et vitam futuri saeculi.
Amen. ἀμήν. amen.





English based on Tanner.  Greek: V. Beneevič, Iohannis Scholastici synagoga L titulorum. Munich: Verlag der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1937: 3-156.




1. THE profession of faith of the holy fathers who gathered in Nicaea in Bithynia is not to be abrogated, but it is to remain in force. Every heresy is to be anathematized and in particular that of the Eunomians or Anomoeans, that of the Arians or Eudoxians, that of the Semi-Arians or Pneumatomachi, that of the Sabellians that of the Marcellians, that of the Photinians and that of the Apollinarians.

αʹ. Μὴ ἀθετεῖσθαι τὴν πίστιν  τῶν ἁγίων τιηʹ πατέρων τῶν ἐν Νικαίᾳ τῆς Βιθυνίας συνελθόντων, ἀλλὰ μένειν ἐκείνην κυρίαν, καὶ ἀναθεματισθῆναι πᾶσαν αἵρεσιν, καὶ ἰδικῶς τὴν τῶν Εὐνομιανῶν ἤγουν Ἀνομοίων, καὶ τὴν τῶν Ἀρειανῶν εἴτ’ οὖν Εὐδοξιανῶν, καὶ τὴν τῶν Ἡμιαρείων εἴτ’ οὖν Πνευματομάχων, καὶ τὴν Σαβελλιανῶν, καὶ τὴν Μαρκιανῶν, καὶ τὴν Μαρκελλινιανῶν καὶ τὴν Φωτεινιανῶν, καὶ τὴν Ἀπολιναριανῶν. Non rescindendam fidem patrum trecentorum decem et octo, qui apud Nicaeam Bythiniae convenerunt, sed manere eam firmam et stabilem, anathematizandum omnem haeresem, et specialiter eunomianorum vel anomianorum et arianorum vel eudoxianorum et machedonianorum vel Spiritui sancto resistentium et sabellianorum et marcellianorum et photinianorum et apollinarianorum.







2. DIOCESAN bishops are not to intrude in churches beyond their own boundaries nor are they to confuse the churches: but in accordance with the canons, the bishop of Alexandria is to administer affairs in Egypt only; βʹ. Τοὺς ὑπὲρ διοίκησιν ἐπισκόπους ταῖς ὑπερορίοις ἐκκλησίαις μὴ ἐπιβαίνειν μηδὲ συγχέειν τὰς ἐκκλησίας, ἀλλὰ κατὰ (15) τοὺς κανόνας τὸν μὲν Ἀλεξανδρείας ἐπίσκοπον τὰ ἐν Αἰγύπτῳ μόνον οἰκονομεῖν, Qui sunt super dioecesin episcopi, nequaquam ad ecclesias, quae sunt extra terminos sibi praefixos, accedant nec eas hac praesumptione confundant, sed iuxta canones Alexandrinus antistes quae sunt in Aegypto regat solummodo.
the bishops of the East are to manage the East alone (whilst safeguarding the privileges granted to the church of the Antiochenes in the Nicene canons); and the bishops of the Asian diocese are to manage only Asian affairs; τοὺς δὲ τῆς Ἀνατολῆς ἐπισκόπους τὴν Ἀνατολὴν μόνην διοικεῖν, φυλαττομένων τῶν ἐν τοῖς κανόσι τοῖς κατὰ Νίκαιαν πρεσβείων τῇ Ἀντιοχέων ἐκκλησίᾳ, καὶ τοὺς τῆς Ἀσιανῆς διοικήσεως ἐπισκόπους τὰ κατὰ τὴν Ἀσιανὴν μόνον οἰκονομεῖν, Et orientis episcopi orientem tantum gubernent servatis privilegiis, quae Nicaenis canonibus ecclesiae Anthiocenae tributa sunt. Asianae quoque dioeceseos episcopi ea solum quae sunt diocesi Asiana dispensent.
and those in Pontus only the affairs of Pontus; and those in Thrace only Thracian affairs. καὶ τοὺς τῆς Ποντικῆς τὰ τῆς Ποντικῆς μόνον, καὶ τοὺς τῆς Θρᾳκικῆς τὰ τῆς Θρᾳκικῆς μόνον, Necnon et Ponti episcopi ea tantum quae sunt in Ponto, et Thraciarum, quae in Thraciis sunt, gubernent.
Unless invited bishops are not to go outside their diocese to perform an ordination or any other ecclesiastical business. ἀκλήτους δὲ ἐπισκόπους ὑπὲρ διοίκησιν μὴ ἐπιβαίνειν ἐπὶ χειροτονίᾳ ἤ τισιν ἄλλαις οἰκονομίαις ἐκκλησιαστικαῖς. Non vocati autem episcopi ultra suam diocesim non accedant propter ordinationes faciendas vel propter alias dispensationes ecclesiasticas.
If the letter of the canon about dioceses is kept, it is clear that the provincial synod will manage affairs in each province, as was decreed at Nicaea. φυλαττομένου δὲ τοῦ γεγραμμένου περὶ τῶν διοικήσεων κανόνος εὔδηλον, ὡς τὰ καθ’ (5) ἑκάστην ἐπαρχίαν ἡ τῆς ἐπαρχίας σύνοδος διοικήσει κατὰ τὰ ἐν Νικαίᾳ ὡρισμένα. Servata vero quae scripta est de gubernationibus regula manifestum est, quod illa, quae sunt per unamquamque provinciam, provinciae synodus dispenset, sicut Nicaeno constat decretum esse concilio.
 But the churches of God among barbarian peoples must be administered in accordance with the custom in force at the time of the fathers. τὰς δὲ ἐν τοῖς βαρβαρικοῖς ἔθνεσι τοῦ θεοῦ ἐκκλησίας οἰκονομεῖσθαι χρὴ κατὰ τὴν κρατήσασαν ἐπὶ τῶν πατέρων συνήθειαν.

 Ecclesias autem Dei in barbaricis gentibus constitutas gubernari convenit iuxta consuetudinem, quae est patribus instituta.







3. BECAUSE it is new Rome, the bishop of Constantinople is to enjoy the privileges of honor after the bishop of Rome. γʹ. Τὸν μέντοι Κωνσταντινουπόλεως ἐπίσκοπον ἔχειν τὰ πρεσβεῖα τῆς τιμῆς μετὰ τὸν Ῥώμης ἐπίσκοπον διὰ τὸ εἶναι αὐτὴν νέαν Ῥώμην Verumtamen Constantinopolitanus episcopus habeat honoris primatum praeter Romanum episcopum, propterea quod urbs ipsa sit iunior Roma.







4. REGARDING Maximus the Cynic and the disorder which surrounded him in Constantinople: he never became, nor is he, a bishop; nor are those ordained by him clerics of any rank whatsoever. Everything that was done both to him and by him is to be held invalid. δʹ. Περὶ Μαξίμου τοῦ Κυνικοῦ καὶ τῆς κατ’ αὐτὸν ἀταξίας τῆς ἐν Κωνσταντινουπόλει γενομένης, ὥστε μήτε Μάξιμον ἐπίσκοπον γενέσθαι ἢ εἶναι, μήτε τοὺς παρ’ αὐτοῦ χειροτονηθέντας ἐν οἱῳδήποτε βαθμῷ κλήρου, πάντων καὶ τῶν περὶ αὐτὸν καὶ τῶν παρ’ αὐτοῦ γενομένων ἀκυρωθέντων. De Maximo cynico et eius inordinata constitutione, quae Constantinopoli facta est, placuit neque Maximum episcopum fuisse vel esse nec eos, qui ab ipso in quolibet gradu clerici sunt ordinati, cum omnia, quae ab eodem perpetrata sunt, in irritum deducta esse videantur.







The so-called “Canons 5-6 are not from the Council of Constantinople I held in 381, but rather from a Synod held there in 382.





5. REGARDING the Tome of the Westerns: we have also recognized those in Antioch who confess a single Godhead of Father and Son and holy Spirit. εʹ. Περὶ τοῦ τόμου τῶν δυτικῶν καὶ τοὺς ἐν Ἀντιοχείᾳ ἀπεδεξάμεθα τοὺς μίαν ὁμολογοῦντας πατρὸς καὶ υἱοῦ καὶ ἁγίου πνεύματος τὴν θεότητα. De libello occidentalium: etiam eos suscipimus qui Antiochiae unam Patris et Filii et Spiritus sancti deitatem confitentur.

[This tome has not survived; it probably defended Paul of Antioch]








6. THERE are many who are bent on confusing and overturning the good order of the church and so fabricate, out of hatred and a wish to slander, certain accusations against orthodox bishops in charge of churches. ϛʹ. Ἐπειδὴ πολλοὶ τὴν ἐκκλησιαστικὴν εὐταξίαν συγχεῖν καὶ ἀνατρέπειν βουλόμενοι, φιλέχθρως καὶ συκοφαντικῶς αἰτίας τινὰς κατὰ τῶν οἰκονομούντων τὰς ἐκκλησίας ὀρθοδόξων ἐπισκόπων συμπλάσσουσιν, Quoniam multi ecclesiasticum ordinem confundere et subvertere volentes, inimice et sycophantice adversus orthodoxos episcopos, qui ecclesias administrant,
Their intention is none other than to blacken priests’ reputations and to stir up trouble among peace-loving laity. For this reason the sacred synod of bishops assembled at Constantinople has decided not to admit accusers without prior examination, and not to allow everyone to bring accusations against church administrators — but without excluding everyone. οὐδὲν ἕτερον ἢ χραίνειν τὰς τῶν ἱερέων ὑπολήψεις καὶ ταραχὰς τῶν εἰρηνευόντων λαῶν κατασκευάζειν ἐπιχειροῦντες, τούτου ἕνεκεν ἤρεσε τῇ ἁγίᾳ συνόδῳ τῶν ἐν Κωνσταντινουπόλει  συνδραμόντων ἐπισκόπων μὴ ἀνεξετάστως προσίεσθαι τοὺς κατηγόρους, μηδὲ πᾶσιν ἐπιτρέπεσθαι τὰς κατηγορίας ποιεῖσθαι κατὰ τῶν οἰκονομούντων τὰς ἐκκλησίας, μηδὲ μὴν πάντας ἀποκλείειν, accusationes quasdam confingunt, nihil aliud quam sacerdotum bonam existimationem contaminare et in pace degentium populorum tumultus concitare conantes; ea de causa placuit sanctae synodo episcoporum qui Constantinopoli convenerunt, nec sine discussione admittere accusatores, nec omnibus eorum, qui ecclesias administrant, accusationes permittere, nec omnes excludere;
So if someone brings a private (that is a personal) complaint against the bishop on the grounds that he has been defrauded or in some other way unjustly dealt with by him, in the case of this kind of accusation neither the character nor the religion of the accuser will be subject to examination. ἀλλ’ εἰ μέν τις οἰκείαν τινὰ μέμψιν, τοῦτ’ ἔστιν ἰδιωτικήν, ἐπαγάγοι τῷ ἐπισκόπῳ, ὡς πλεονεκτηθεὶς ἢ ἄλλο τι παρὰ τὸ δίκαιον παρ’ αὐτοῦ πεπονθώς, ἐπὶ τῶν τοιούτων κατηγοριῶν μὴ ἐξετάζεσθαι μήτε τὸ πρόσωπον τοῦ κατηγόρου μήτε τὴν θρησκείαν· sed si quis propriam quidem querelam, id est privatam, intendat episcopo, ut detrimento aliquo, vel iniuria aliqua ab ipso affectus, in eiusmodi accusationibus nec accusatoris personam, nec religionem examinari.
It is wholly essential both that the bishop should have a clear conscience and that the one who alleges that he has been wronged, whatever his religion may be, should get justice. χρὴ γὰρ παντὶ τρόπῳ τό τε συνειδὸς τοῦ ἐπισκόπου ἐλεύθερον εἶναι καὶ τὸν ἀδικεῖσθαι λέγοντα, οἵας ἂν εἴη θρησκείας, τῶν δικαίων τυγχάνειν. Oportet enim episcopi conscientiam esse omnibus modis liberam, et eum qui sibi iniuriam factam esse dicit, cuiuscumque sit religionis, ius suum consequi.
But if the charge brought against the bishop is of an ecclesiastical kind, then the characters of those making it should be examined, in the first place to stop heretics bringing charges against orthodox bishops in matters of an ecclesiastical kind.

εἰ δὲ ἐκκλησιαστικὸν εἴη τὸ ἐπιφερόμενον ἔγκλημα τῷ ἐπισκόπῳ, τότε δοκιμάζεσθαι χρὴ τῶν κατηγορούντων τὰ πρόσωπα, ἵνα πρῶτον μὲν αἱρετικοῖς μὴ ἐξῇ κατηγορίας κατὰ τῶν ὀρθοδόξων ἐπισκόπων ὑπὲρ ἐκκλησιαστικῶν πραγμάτων ποιεῖσθαι

Si autem sit crimen ecclesiasticum, quod episcopo intenditur, tunc examinari personas accusatorum; ut primum quidem haereticis non liceat orthodoxos episcopos pro rebus ecclesiasticis accusare;
(We define “heretics” as those who have been previously banned from the church and also those later anathematized by ourselves: and in addition those who claim to confess a faith that is sound, but who have seceded and hold assemblies in rivalry with the bishops who are in communion with us.) (αἱρετικοὺς δὲ λέγομεν τούς τε πάλαι τῆς ἐκκλησίας ἀποκηρυχθέντας καὶ τοὺς μετὰ ταῦτα ὑφ’ ἡμῶν ἀναθεματισθέντας, πρὸς δὲ τούτοις καὶ τοὺς τὴν πίστιν μὲν τὴν ὑγιῆ προσποιουμένους ὁμολογεῖν, ἀποσχίσαντας δὲ καὶ ἀντισυνάγοντας τοῖς κοινωνικοῖς ἡμῶν ἐπισκόποις). (haereticos autem dicimus et qui olim ab ecclesia abdicati sunt, et qui sunt postea a nobis anathematizati; ad haec autem et eos, qui se sanam quidem fidem confiteri prae se ferunt, avulsi autem sunt et abscissi et adversus canonicos nostros episcopos congregationem faciunt).
In the second place, persons previously condemned and expelled from the church for whatever reason, or those excommunicated either from the clerical or lay rank, are not to be permitted to accuse a bishop until they have first purged their own crime. ἔπειτα δὲ καὶ εἴ τινες τῶν ἀπὸ τῆς ἐκκλησίας ἐπὶ αἰτίαις τισὶ προκατεγνωσμένοι εἶεν καὶ ἀποβεβλημένοι ἢ ἀκοινώνητοι εἴτε ἀπὸ κλήρου εἴτε ἀπὸ λαϊκοῦ τάγματος, μηδὲ τούτοις ἐξεῖναι κατηγορεῖν ἐπισκόπου, πρὶν ἂν τὸ οἰκεῖον (20) ἔγκλημα πρότερον ἀποδύσωνται. Praeterea autem et si aliqui eorum ab ecclesia ob aliquas causas prius condemnati et eiecti vel excommunicati fuerint, sive ex clero, sive ex laicorum ordine, nec eis licere episcopum accusare, priusquam proprium crimen absterserint.
Similarly, those who are already accused are not permitted to accuse a bishop or other clerics until they have proved their own innocence of the crimes with which they are charged. ὁμοίως δὲ καὶ τοὺς ὑπὸ κατηγορίαν προλαβοῦσαν ὄντας μὴ πρότερον εἶναι δεκτοὺς εἰς ἐπισκόπου κατηγορίαν ἢ ἑτέρων κληρικῶν, πρὶν ἂν ἀθῴους ἑαυτοὺς τῶν ἐπαχθέντων αὐτοῖς ἀποδείξωσιν ἐγκλημάτων. Similiter autem et eos, qui prius rei facti accusati que, non prius ad episcopi vel aliorum clericorum accusationem admitti, quam se obiectorum sibi criminum insontes ostenderint.
But if persons who are neither heretics nor excommunicates, nor such as have been previously condemned or accused of some transgression or other, claim that they have some ecclesiastical charge to make against the bishop, the sacred synod commands that such persons should first lay the accusations before all the bishops of the province and prove before them the crimes committed by the bishop in the case. εἰ μέντοι τινὲς μήτε αἱρετικοὶ μήτε ἀκοινώνητοι εἶεν μήτε προκατεγνωσμένοι ἢ προκατηγορημένοι ἐπί τισι πλημμελήμασι, λέγοιεν δὲ ἔχειν τινὰ ἐκκλησιαστικὴν κατὰ τοῦ ἐπισκόπου κατηγορίαν, τούτους κελεύει ἡ ἁγία σύνοδος πρῶτον μὲν ἐπὶ τῶν τῆς ἐπαρχίας πάντων ἐπισκόπων ἐνίστασθαι τὰς κατηγορίας καὶ ἐπ’ αὐτῶν ἐλέγχειν τὰ ἐγκλήματα τοῦ ἐν αἰτίαις τισὶν ἐπισκόπου. Sed si nonnulli nec haeretici, nec excommunicati fuerint, nec prius damnati, vel aliquorum criminum accusati, dicant autem se habere aliquas adversus episcopum criminationes, eos iubet sancta synodus primum quidem apud provinciae episcopos accusationem persequi et apud eos probare crimina episcopi, qui aliquarum rerum accusatur;
If it emerges that the bishops of the province are not able to correct the crimes laid at the bishop’s door, then a higher synod of the bishops of that diocese, convoked to hear this case, must be approached, and the accusers are not to lay their accusations before it until they have given a written promise to submit to equal penalties should they be found guilty of making false accusations against the accused bishop, when the matter is investigated. εἰ δὲ συμβῇ ἀδυνατῆσαι τοὺς ἐπαρχεώτας πρὸς διόρθωσιν τῶν ἐπιφερομένων ἐγκλημάτων τῷ ἐπισκόπῳ, τότε αὐτοὺς προσιέναι μείζονι συνόδῳ τῶν τῆς διοικήσεως ἐπισκόπων ἐκείνης, ὑπὲρ τῆς αἰτίας ταύτης συγκαλουμένων, καὶ μὴ πρότερον ἐνίστασθαι τὴν κατηγορίαν, πρὶν ἐγγράφως αὐτοὺς ἴσον αὐτοῖς ὑποτιμήσασθαι κίνδυνον, εἴπερ ἐν τῇ τῶν πραγμάτων ἐξετάσει συκοφαντοῦντες τὸν κατηγορούμενον ἐπίσκοπον ἐλεγχθεῖεν. quod si evenerit ut provinciales episcopi crimina quae episcopo intentata sunt, corrigere non possint, tunc ipsos accedere ad maiorem synodum dioecesis illius episcoporum, pro causa convocatorum; et accusationem non prius intendere, quam in scriptis aequale periculum sibi statuant, si quidem in rebus examinandis accusatum episcopum calumniari convicti fuerint.
If anyone shows contempt of the prescriptions regarding the above matters and presumes to bother either the ears of the emperor or the courts of the secular authorities, or to dishonor all the diocesan bishops and trouble an ecumenical synod, there is to be no question whatever of allowing such a person to bring accusations forward, because he has made a mockery of the canons and violated the good order of the church. εἰ δέ τις καταφρονήσας τῶν κατὰ τὰ προδηλωθέντα δεδογμένων τολμήσειεν ἢ βασιλικὰς ἐνοχλεῖν ἀκοὰς ἢ κοσμικῶν ἀρχόντων δικαστήρια ἢ οἰκουμενικὴν σύνοδον ταράσσειν, πάντας ἀτιμάσας τοὺς τῆς (10) διοικήσεως ἐπισκόπους, τὸν τοιοῦτον τὸ παράπαν εἰς κατηγορίαν μὴ εἶναι δεκτόν, ὡς καθυβρίσαντα τοὺς κανόνας καὶ τὴν ἐκκλησιαστικὴν λυμηνάμενον εὐταξίαν.

Si quis autem iis, quae, ut prius declaratum est, decreta fuerunt, contemptis, ausus fuerit vel imperatoris aures molestia afficere, vel saecularium principum iudicia vel universalem synodum perturbare, neglectis dioecesis episcopis, eum nullo modo esse ad accusationem admittendum, ut qui canonibus iniuriam fecerit et ecclesiasticum ordinem everterit.







 The so-called Canon 7 is even later than canons 5-6 (i.e. after 382) and describes the practices used in receiving converts from heretical sects.

7. THOSE who embrace orthodoxy and join the number of those who are being saved from the heretics, we receive in the following regular and customary manner: Eos qui rectae fidei adiiciuntur, et parti eorum qui ex haereticis servantur, recipimus, secundum subjectam hic consequentiam et consuetudinem.
Arians, Macedonians, Sabbatians, Novatians, those who call themselves Cathars and Aristae, Quartodeciman or Tetradites, Apollinarians — these we receive when they hand in statements and anathematize every heresy which is not of the same mind as the holy, catholic and apostolic church of God. They are first sealed or anointed with holy chrism on the forehead, eyes, nostrils, mouth and ears.

Arianos quidem, et Macedonianos, et Sabbatianos, et Novatianos, qui dicunt se ipsos Catharos et Aristeros (hoc est, mundos, vel sinistros), et Tessaradecatitas, sive Tetraditas, et Apollinaristas recipimus, dantes quidem libellos, et omnem haeresim anathematizantes, quae non sentit ut sancta Dei catholica et apostolica ecclesia; et signatos, sive unctos primum sancto chrismate et frontem et oculos et nares et os et aures.

As we seal them we say: “Seal of the gift of the holy Spirit”. Et eos signantes dicimus: Signaculum doni Spiritus Sancti.
But Eunomians, who are baptized in a single immersion, Montanists (called Phrygians here), Sabellians, who teach the identity of Father and Son and make certain other difficulties, and all other sects — since there are many here, not least those who originate in the country of the Galatians — we receive all who wish to leave them and embrace orthodoxy as we do Greeks. Atqui Eunomianos, qui in unam demersionem baptizantur, et Montanistas, qui hic dicuntur Phryges, et Sabellianos, qui eumdem esse Patrem et Filium opinantur, utrumque simul confundentes, et alia gravia et indigna faciunt, et alias omnes haereses (quoniam hic multi sunt haeretici, et maxime qui ex Galatarum regione veniunt) quicumque ex his rectae fidei adscribi volunt, ut Graecos admittimus:
On the first day we make Christians of them, on the second catechumens, on the third we exorcize them by breathing three times into their faces and their ears, et primo quidem die ipsos Christianos facimus; secundo catechumenos; deinde tertio exorcizamus sive adiuramus ipsos, ter simul in faciem eorum et aures insufflando.
and thus we catechize them and make them spend time in the church and listen to the scriptures; and then we baptise them. Et sic eos catechizamus sive initiamus, et curamus ut longo tempore versentur in ecclesia, et audiant scripturas; et tunc eos baptizamus.


  4. LEtter to the Egyptians

3. LETTER of the BISHOPS  [Synod of 382] 


Engl. tr. based on Tanner; Greek [T]: L. Parmentier and F. Scheidweiler, Theodoret. Kirchengeschichte, 2nd edn. (Die griechischen christlichen Schriftsteller 44. Berlin: Akademie Verlag, 1954): pp. 289-294.  Latin [C] Cassiodorus, Historia tripartita IX, 14 (CSEL 71, 510-516)



 Ἐπιστολὴ τῶν ἐν Κωνσταντινουπόλει συνεληλυθότων ἐπισκόπων

Epistula Constantinopolitani concilii ad papam Damasum et occidentales episcopos

 Namely the synod of Constantinople in 382

TO the most honoured lords and most reverend brethren and fellow-ministers, Damasus, Ambrose, Britton, Valerian, Acholius, Anemius, Basil, and the rest of the holy bishops who met in the great city of Rome: the sacred synod of orthodox bishops who met in the great city of Constantinople sends greetings in the Lord. Κυρίοις τιμιωτάτοις καὶ εὐλαβεστάτοις ἀδελφοῖς καὶ συλλει τουργοῖς͵ Δαμάσῳ͵ Ἀμβροσίῳ͵ Βρίττωνι͵ Οὐαλεριανῷ͵ Ἀχολίῳ͵ Ἀνεμίῳ͵ Βασιλείῳ καὶ τοῖς λοιποῖς ἁγίοις ἐπισκόποις τοῖς συνελη λυθόσιν ἐν τῇ μεγαλοπόλει Ρώμῃ͵ ἡ ἁγία σύνοδος τῶν ὀρθοδόξων ἐπισκόπων τῶν συνεληλυθότων ἐν τῇ μεγαλοπόλει Κωνσταντινου πόλει͵ ἐν κυρίῳ χαίρειν. Dominis honorabilibus atque venerandis fratribus et comministris Damaso, Ambrosio, Brittonio, Valeriano, Acholio, Basilio et reliquis sanctis episcopis in maxima Roma collectis, sancta synodus orthodoxorum episcoporum congregatorum in maxima civitate Constantinopoli, in Domino salutem.




2. It may well be unnecessary to instruct your reverence by describing the many sufferings that have been brought upon us under Arian domination, as if you did not know already.

Τὸ μὲν ὡς ἀγνοοῦσαν διδάσκειν τὴν ὑμετέραν εὐλάβειαν καὶ δι ηγεῖσθαι τῶν παθημάτων τὸ πλῆθος τῶν ἐπαχθέντων ἡμῖν παρὰ τῆς τῶν Ἀρειανῶν δυναστείας͵ περιττὸν ἴσως.

[C2] Velut ignoranti vestrae reverentiae insinuare atque narrare multitudinem passionum ab ariana potentia nobis saepius illatarum, forsitan supervacuum est.




3. Nor do we imagine that your piety considers our affairs so trivial that you need to learn what you must be suffering along with us. Nor were the storms which beset us such as to escape your notice on grounds of insignificance. [T2] οὔτε γὰρ οὕτω πάρ εργον τὰ καθ΄ ἡμᾶς κρίνειν τὴν ὑμετέραν ἡγούμεθα θεοσέβειαν ὡς δεῖσθαι τοῦ μαθεῖν ταῦτα οἷς ἐχρῆν συναλγεῖν͵ οὔτε τοιοῦτοί τινες οἱ περισχόντες ἡμᾶς χειμῶνες ὡς λανθάνειν ὑπὸ σμικρότητος· [C3] Non enim ita negligere vestram credimus sanctitatem, ut adhuc egeatis discere, quos certum est condolere. Sed neque tales nos constrinxere tempestates, ut pro sui parvitate latere potuissent.
The period of persecution is still recent and ensures that the memory remains fresh not only among those who have suffered but also among those who have through love made the lot of those who suffered their own. ὅ τε χρόνος τῶν διωγμῶν νεαρός͵ ἔναυλον ἔτι φυλάττων τὴν μνήμην οὐ τοῖς πεπονθόσι μόνον͵ ἀλλὰ καὶ τοῖς δι΄ ἀγάπην τὰ τῶν πεπονθό των οἰκειουμένοις. Neque tempus persecutionis est novum; sed adhuc memoriam servat antiquam, non solum in his qui passi sunt, sed etiam in eis qui participes sunt illorum quorum proprias indicant passiones.




4. It was barely yesterday or the day before that some were freed from the bonds of exile and returned to their own churches through a thousand tribulations. The remains of others who died in exile were brought back. [T3] χθὲς γὰρ ὡς εἰπεῖν ἔτι καὶ πρώην οἱ μὲν τῶν τῆς ἐξορίας λυθέντες δεσμῶν εἰς τὰς ἑαυτῶν ἐκκλησίας διὰ μυρίων ἐπανήκασι θλίψεων͵ τῶν δὲ καὶ τελειωθέντων ἐν ταῖς ἐξορίαις ἐπανε κομίσθη τὰ λείψανα. [C4] Hesterno enim, ut ita dicamus, aut hodie exsiliorum vinculis resoluti, post innumeras tribulationes ad ecclesias proprias sunt reversi. Aliorum vero in exsilio defunctorum funera revocata sunt.




5. Even after their return from exile some experienced a ferment of hatred from the heretics and underwent a more cruel fate in their own land than they did abroad, by being stoned to death by them in the manner of the blessed Stephen. Others were torn to shreds by various tortures and still carry around on their bodies the marks of Christ’s wounds and bruises. [T4] τινὲς δὲ καὶ μετὰ τὴν τῆς ἐξορίας ἐπάνοδον͵ ἔτι βράζοντι τῷ τῶν αἱρετικῶν περιπεσόντες θυμῷ͵ πικρότερα τῶν ἐπὶ τῆς ἀλλοτρίας ἐπὶ τῆς οἰκείας ὑπέμειναν͵ λίθοις παρ΄ αὐτῶν τελειωθέντες κατὰ τὸν μακάριον Στέφανον· ἄλλοι διαφόροις κατα ξανθέντες αἰκίαις ἔτι τὰ στίγματα τοῦ Χριστοῦ καὶ τοὺς μώλω 290 πας ἐν τῷ σώματι περιφέρουσι.

[C5] Quidam vero etiam ab exsilio remeantes, et ferventi haereticorum furore detenti, amariora quam in exsilio in propriis sunt perpessi, lapidibus ab eis obruti, sicuti beatus Stephanus.  Alii diversis macerati sunt suppliciis, adhuc stigmata Christi et vulnera in suo corpore circumferre noscuntur.




6. Who could number the financial penalties, the fines imposed on cities, the confiscations of individual property, the plots, the outrages, the imprisonments? Indeed all our afflictions increased beyond number: perhaps because we were paying the just penalty for our sins; perhaps also because a loving God was disciplining us by means of the great number of our sufferings. [T5] χρημάτων δὲ ζημίας καὶ προστιμή σεις πόλεων͵ καὶ τὰς τῶν καθ΄ ἕνα δημεύσεις καὶ συσκευὰς καὶ ὕβρεις καὶ δεσμωτήρια τίς ἂν ἐξαριθμήσασθαι δύναιτο; πᾶσαι γὰρ ὄντως ἐφ΄ ἡμᾶς αἱ θλίψεις ἐπληθύνθησαν ὑπὲρ ἀριθμόν͵ ἴσως μὲν ἐπειδὴ δίκας ἁμαρτημάτων ἐτίναμεν͵ ἴσως δὲ καὶ τοῦ φιλανθρώπου θεοῦ διὰ τοῦ πλήθους τῶν παθημάτων ἡμᾶς γυμνάζοντος.

[C6] Pecuniarum vero dispendia, honoris ademptiones, singulorum que confiscationes et machinamina, iniurias atque vincula, quis numerare valebit ad singula? Omnes enim tribulationes vere super nos multiplicatae sunt ultra numerum. Iuste quidem, quoniam valde peccavimus.

  Aut certe clemens Dominus passionum multitudine nos voluit exercere.




7. So thanks be to God for this. He has instructed his own servants through the weight of their afflictions, and in accordance with his numerous mercies he has brought us back again to a place of refreshment.

Τούτων μὲν οὖν τῷ θεῷ χάρις͵ ὃς καὶ διὰ τοσούτων θλίψεων τοὺς ἑαυτοῦ δούλους ἐπαίδευσε͵ καὶ κατὰ τὸ πλῆθος τῶν οἰκτιρμῶν αὐτοῦ πάλιν ἐξήγαγεν ἡμᾶς εἰς ἀναψυχήν.

[C7] Propter haec itaque gratias Deo referimus: quia et per tantas tribulationes servos corripit suos, et secundum multitudinem miserationum suarum deduxit nos rursus ad refrigerium.




8. The restoration of the churches demanded prolonged attention, much time and hard work from us if the body of the church which had been weak for so long was to be cured completely by gradual treatment and brought back to its original soundness in religion. [T6] ἡμῖν δὲ μακρᾶς μὲν ἔδει σχολῆς καὶ πολλοῦ χρόνου καὶ πόνου πρὸς τὴν τῶν ἐκκλησιῶν ἐπανόρθωσιν͵ ἵν΄ ὥσπερ ἐκ μακρᾶς ἀρρωστίας ταῖς κατὰ μικρὸν ἐπι μελείαις τὸ σῶμα τῆς ἐκκλησίας ἐκνοσηλεύοντες͵ πρὸς τὴν ἀρχαίαν τῆς εὐσεβείας ὑγίειαν ἐπαναγάγωμεν. [C8] Nobis itaque tempus et labor maximus necessarius fuit, quatenus emendatio proveniret ecclesiarum; ut, tanquam pro longa aegritudine, diligentia paulatim adhibita, priscam pietatis redderet sanitatem.




9. We may seem on the whole to be free from violent persecutions and to be at the moment recovering the churches which have long been in the grip of the heretics. But in fact we are oppressed by wolves who even after expulsion from the fold go on ravaging the flocks up and down dale, making so bold as to hold rival assemblies, activating popular uprisings and stopping at nothing which might harm the churches. As we have said, this made us take a longer time over our affairs. [T7]καὶ γὰρ εἰ τὰ μάλιστα δοκοῦ μεν τῆς τῶν διωγμῶν ἀπηλλάχθαι σφοδρότητος καὶ τὰς ἐκκλησίας χρονίως παρὰ τῶν αἱρετικῶν κατασχεθείσας ἀρτίως ἀνακομίζεσθαι͵ πλὴν ἀλλὰ βαρεῖς ἡμῖν οἱ λύκοι καὶ μετὰ τὸ τῆς μάνδρας ἐξωσθῆναι κατὰ τὰς νάπας τὰ ποίμνια διαρπάζοντες͵ ἀντισυνάξεις τολμῶντες͵ δήμων κινοῦντες ἐπαναστάσεις͵ ὀκνοῦντες οὐδὲν εἰς τὴν τῶν ἐκκλη σιῶν βλάβην. [T8] ἦν μὲν οὖν͵ ὅπερ εἰρήκαμεν͵ ἀναγκαῖον πλείονα ἡμᾶς προσασχοληθῆναι χρόνον. [C9]  Hoc etenim modo putabimur persecutionibus acerrimis liberari, et ecclesias, longo tempore ab haereticis detenta, denuo reparare.  Verumtamen graves adhuc nobis sunt lupi, qui postquam de caulis expulsi sunt, ex ipsis pascuis oves abripiunt: collectas facere contendentes, populos commoventes, et in nullo segnes ad ecclesiae laesionem. Erat itaque, sicut diximus, necessarium huic operi tempus.




10. But now you have shown your brotherly love for us by convoking a synod in Rome, in accordance with God’s will, and inviting us to it, by means of a letter from your most God-beloved emperor, as if we were limbs of your very own, so that whereas in the past we were condemned to suffer alone, you should not now reign in isolation from us, given the complete agreement of the emperors in matters of religion. Rather, according to the word of the apostle, we should reign along with you’. So it was our intention that if it were possible we should all leave our churches together and indulge our desires rather than attend to their needs. Ἐπειδὴ μέντοι τὴν ἀδελφικὴν περὶ ἡμᾶς ἀγάπην ἐπιδεικνύμενοι͵ σύνοδον ἐπὶ τῆς Ρώμης θεοῦ βουλήσει συγκροτοῦντες καὶ ἡμᾶς ὡς οἰκεῖα μέλη προσεκαλέσασθε διὰ τῶν τοῦ θεοφιλεστάτου βασιλέως 291 γραμμάτων͵ ἵν΄ ἐπειδὴ τότε τὰς θλίψεις μόνοι κατεδικάσθημεν͵ νῦν ἐν τῇ τῶν αὐτοκρατόρων περὶ τὴν εὐσέβειαν συμφωνίᾳ μὴ χωρὶς ἡμῶν βασιλεύσητε͵ ἀλλὰ καὶ ἡμεῖς ὑμῖν κατὰ τὴν ἀποστολικὴν φωνὴν συμβασιλεύσωμεν͵ εὐχὴ μὲν ἦν ἡμῖν͵ εἰ δυνατόν͵ ἅπασιν ἀθρόως καταλιποῦσι τὰς ἐκκλησίας͵ τῷ πόθῳ ἢ τῇ χρείᾳ χαρίσα σθαι.

[C10] Quia tamen fraternam circa nos charitatem ministrantes, synodum in Romana urbe Dei voluntate fecistis, et nos illic tanquam membra propria, litteris Deo amabilis principis evocastis; ut quoniam tunc ad tribulationes soli sumus addicti, nunc sub imperatorum pia concordia non sine nobis regnaretis; sed etiam nos vobis cum, secundum apostolicam vocem, conregnaremus.

Oratio quidem nostra fuit, si esset possibile ut omnes nostras simul relinquentes ecclesias, desiderio utili iungeremur.




11. But who will give us wings as of a dove, so we shall fly and come to rest with you? This course would leave the churches entirely exposed, just as they are beginning their renewal; and it is completely out of the question for the majority. [T9 ] τίς γὰρ ἡμῖν δώσει πτέρυγας ὡσεὶ περιστερᾶς͵ καὶ πετασθησόμεθα καὶ πρὸς ὑμᾶς καταπαύσομεν; ἐπειδὴ δὲ τοῦτο παντελῶς ἐγύμνου τὰς ἐκκλησίας ἄρτι τῆς ἀνανεώσεως ἀρχομένας καὶ τὸ πρᾶγμα παντάπασιν ἦν τοῖς πολλοῖς ἀδύνατον

[C11] Quis enim nobis dabit pennas sicut columbae, ut volemus, et apud vos requiescamus? Sed quoniam hoc omnino nudabat ecclesias, requie nuper inchoata, res que nimis erat plurimis impossibilis:

As a consequence of last year’s letter sent by your reverence after the synod of Aquileia to our most God-beloved emperor Theodosius, we came together in Constantinople. (συνδεδραμή κειμεν γὰρ εἰς τὴν Κωνσταντινούπολιν ἐκ τῶν πέρυσι γραμμάτων τῶν παρὰ τῆς ὑμετέρας τιμιότητος μετὰ τὴν ἐν Ἀκυληΐᾳ σύνοδον πρὸς τὸν θεοφιλέστατον βασιλέα Θεοδόσιον ἐπισταλθέντων͵ πρὸς μόνην ταύτην τὴν ἀποδημίαν τὴν μέχρι Κωνσταν-τινουπόλεως παρασκευασάμενοι͵ quia concurreramus in urbem Constan-tinopolitanam causa litterarum ad nos praeterito anno directarum a vestra charitate post Aquileiense concilium ad Deo amabilem imperatorem Theodosium, propter hanc solummodo causam usque ad Constantinopolim properati,
We were equipped only for this stay in Constantinople and the bishops who remained in the provinces gave their agreement to this synod alone. We foresaw no need for a longer absence, nor did we hear of it in advance at all, before we gathered in Constantinople. καὶ περὶ ταύτης μόνης τῆς συνόδου τῶν ἐν ταῖς ἐπαρχίαις μεινάντων ἐπισκόπων συγκατάθεσιν ἐπαγόμενοι͵ μείζονος δὲ ἀποδημίας μήτε προσδοκήσαντες χρείαν μήτε προακούσαντες ὅλως πρὶν ἐν Κωνσταν-τινουπόλει συνελθεῖν͵ et de hac tantummodo synodo ferentes consensum episcoporum qui per provincias permansere. Maioris vero profectionis neque speravimus opus, neque praeaudivimus omnino, antequam Constantinopolim veniremus.

On top of this the tightness of the schedule proposed allowed no opportunity to prepare for a longer absence, nor to brief all the bishops in the provinces who are in communion with us and to get their agreement.

πρὸς δὲ τούτοις καὶ τῆς προθεσμίας διὰ στενότητα μήτε πρὸς παρασκευὴν μακροτέρας ἀπο δημίας ἐνδιδούσης καιρὸν μήτε πάντας τοὺς ἐν ταῖς ἐπαρχίαις κοι νωνικοὺς ἐπισκόπους ὑπομνησθῆναι καὶ τὰς παρ΄ αὐτῶν συγκατα θέσεις λαβεῖν)͵

Super haec autem induciarum angusto tempore faciente, neque praeparare nos valentes ad longam profectionem, neque universos communicatores nostros, in provinciis positos commonere, et eorum consensum sumere praevaluimus.

Since these considerations, and many more besides, prevented most of us from coming, we have done the next best thing both to set matters straight and to make your love for us appreciated: we have managed to convince our most venerable and reverend brethren and fellow-ministers, Bishops Cyriacus, Eusebius and Priscian to be willing to undertake the wearisome journey to you. ἐπειδὴ ταῦτα καὶ πολλὰ πρὸς τούτοις ἕτερα τὴν τῶν πλειόνων ἄφιξιν διεκώλυσεν͵ ὃ δεύτερον ἦν͵ εἴς τε τὴν τῶν πραγ μάτων ἐπανόρθωσιν καὶ τὴν τῆς ὑμετέρας περὶ ἡμᾶς ἀγάπης ἀπόδειξιν͵ τοῦτο πεποιήκαμεν͵ τοὺς αἰδεσιμωτάτους καὶ τιμιωτάτους ἀδελφοὺς καὶ συλλειτουργοὺς ἡμῶν ἐπισκόπους͵ Κυριακόν͵ Εὐσέβιον 292 καὶ Πρισκιανὸν προθύμως καμεῖν ἄχρις ὑμῶν δυσωπήσαντες· Quoniam igitur haec et alia multa plurimorum adventum prohibere videbantur, quod erat secundum effectum rerum, et vestrae circa nos charitatis ostensionem, hoc egimus: reverendissimos atque charissimos fratres et comministros nostros episcopos Cyriacum, Eusebium et Priscianum usque ad vos laborare alacriter exorantes,
Through them we wish to show that our intentions are peaceful and have unity as their goal. We also want to make clear that what we are zealously seeking is sound faith. δι΄ ὧν καὶ τὴν ἡμετέραν προαίρεσιν εἰρηνικὴν οὖσαν καὶ σκοπὸν ἑνώσεως ἔχουσαν ἐπιδείκνυμεν͵ καὶ τὸν ζῆλον ἡμῶν τὸν ὑπὲρ τῆς ὑγιοῦς πί στεως φανερὸν ποιοῦμεν.  per quos et nostram voluntatem pacificam et intentionem habentem unitatis ostendimus, zelum que nostrum quem pro saluberrima fide gerimus, indicamus.




12. What we have undergone — persecutions, afflictions, imperial threats, cruelty from officials, and whatever other trial at the hands of heretics — we have put up with for the sake of the gospel faith established by the 318 fathers at Nicaea in Bithynia.

[T10 ] Ἡμεῖς γὰρ εἴτε διωγμούς͵ εἴτε θλίψεις͵ εἴτε βασιλείους ἀπειλάς͵ εἴτε τὰς τῶν ἀρχόντων ὠμότητας͵ εἴτε τινὰ πειρασμὸν ἕτερον παρὰ τῶν αἱρετικῶν ὑπεμείναμεν͵ ὑπὲρ τῆς εὐαγγελικῆς πίστεως τῆς ἐν Νικαίᾳ τῆς Βιθυνίας παρὰ τῶν τιη πατέρων κυρωθείσης ὑπέστημεν.

[C12] Nos etenim persecutiones, sive tribulationes, sive minas imperiales, sive crudelitates iudicum, sive quaslibet alias tentationes haereticorum, libenter sustinuimus pro evangelica fide, quae in Nicaea Bithyniae a trecentis decem et octo patribus roborata dignoscitur.





13. You, we and all who are not bent on subverting the word of the true faith should give this [creed] our approval. It is the most ancient and is consistent with our baptism. [T11] ταύτην γὰρ καὶ ὑμῖν καὶ ἡμῖν καὶ πᾶσι τοῖς μὴ διαστρέφουσι τὸν λόγον τῆς ἀληθοῦς πίστεως συναρέσκειν  δεῖ [ἣν μόλις ποτὲ] πρεσβυτάτην τε οὖσαν καὶ ἀκόλουθον τῷ βαπτίσματι͵ [C13] Hanc enim et vobis, et nobis, et omnibus qui non subvertunt verbum verae fidei, complacere confidimus, quam scimus antiquissimam exsistere,
It tells us how to believe in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit: καὶ διδάσκουσαν ἡμᾶς πιστεύειν εἰς τὸ ὄνομα τοῦ πατρὸς καὶ τοῦ υἱοῦ καὶ τοῦ ἁγίου πνεύματος͵ et sequacem baptismatis, docentem que nos credere in nomine Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus sancti.
believing also, of course, that the Father, the Son and the holy Spirit have a single Godhead and power and substance, [ousias /substantiam] a dignity deserving the same honour and a co-eternal sovereignty, δηλαδὴ θεότητος καὶ δυνάμεως καὶ οὐσίας μιᾶς τοῦ πα τρὸς καὶ τοῦ υἱοῦ καὶ τοῦ ἁγίου πνεύματος πιστευομένης͵ ὁμοτίμου τε τῆς ἀξίας καὶ συναϊδίου τῆς βασιλείας͵   Divinitatem quippe, et virtutem, atque substantiam unam Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus sancti credimus, et aequalem honorem ac dignitatem, et imperium coaeternum,
in three most perfect hypostases, [hypostasin /subsistentis]  or three perfect persons [prosopois /personis]. ἐν τρισὶ τελειοτάταις ὑποστάσεσιν͵ ἤγουν τρισὶ τελείοις προσώποις͵ in tribus perfectissimis subsistentiis, seu tribus perfectis personis;
So there is no place for Sabellius’s diseased theory in which the hypostases are confused and thus their proper characteristics destroyed. ὡς μήτε τὴν Σαβελλίου νόσον χώραν λαβεῖν συγχεομένων τῶν ὑποστάσεων εἴτ΄ οὖν τῶν ἰδιοτήτων ἀναιρουμένων͵ ut neque sabellini languor habeat locum confusione subsistentiarum aut peremptione proprietatum;
Nor may the blasphemy of Eunomians and Arians and Pneumatomachi prevail, with its division of substance or of nature or of Godhead, and its introduction of some nature which was produced subsequently, or was created, or was of a different substance, into the uncreated and consubstantial and co-eternal Trinity. μήτε μὴν τὴν Εὐνομιανῶν καὶ Ἀρειανῶν καὶ Πνευματομάχων βλασφημίαν ἰσχύειν͵ τῆς οὐσίας ἢ τῆς φύσεως ἢ τῆς θεότητος τεμνομένης καὶ τῇ ἀκτίστῳ καὶ ὁμοουσίῳ καὶ συναϊδίῳ τριάδι μεταγενεστέρας τινὸς ἢ κτιστῆς ἢ ἑτεροουσίου φύσεως ἐπαγο μένης. neque eunomianorum, et arianorum, et pneumatomachorum, id est Spiritui resistentium, blasphemia praevaleat; substantia videlicet secundum illos, aut natura, aut divinitate divisa, et increatae consubstantiali, et coaeternae Trinitati postrema quaedam vel creata, vel alterius substantiae natura detur.




14. And we preserve undistorted the accounts of the Lord’s taking of humanity, accepting as we do that the economy of his flesh was not soulless nor mindless nor imperfect. To sum up, we know that he was before the ages fully God the Word, and that in the last days he became fully man for the sake of our salvation. [T12] καὶ τὸν τῆς ἐνανθρωπήσεως δὲ τοῦ κυρίου λόγον ἀδιάστροφον σώζομεν͵ οὔτε ἄψυχον οὔτε ἄνουν ἢ ἀτελῆ τὴν τῆς σαρκὸς οἰκονο 293 μίαν παραδεχόμενοι͵ ὅλον δὲ εἰδότες τέλειον μὲν πρὸ αἰώνων ὄντα θεὸν λόγον͵ τέλειον δὲ ἄνθρωπον ἐπ΄ ἐσχάτων τῶν ἡμερῶν διὰ τὴν ἡμετέραν σωτηρίαν γενόμενον. [C14] Inhumanationis vero Christi sermonem sine aliqua violatione servamus, neque sine anima, neque sine mente, aut imperfectam carnis dispensationem suscipientes; sed totum scientes perfectum quidem ante saecula exsistere Dei Verbum, perfectum vero hominem in novissimo dierum propter nostram salutem factum.




15. So much, in summary, for the faith which is openly preached by us. You can take even more heart concerning these matters if you think fit to consult the tome that was issued in Antioch by the synod which met there as well as the one issued last year in Constantinople by the ecumenical synod. In these documents we confessed the faith in broader terms and we have issued a written condemnation of the heresies which have recently erupted. [T13] Τὰ μὲν οὖν κατὰ τὴν πίστιν τὴν παρ΄ ἡμῶν ἀνυποστόλως κη ρυττομένην ὡς ἐν κεφαλαίῳ τοιαῦτα· περὶ ὧν καὶ ἐπὶ πλεῖον ψυχα γωγηθῆναι δυνήσεσθε͵ τῷ τε ἐν Ἀντιοχείᾳ τόμῳ παρὰ τῆς ἐκεῖ συνελ θούσης συνόδου γεγενημένῳ καταξιώσαντες ἐντυχεῖν καὶ τῷ πέ ρυσιν ἐν Κωνσταντινουπόλει παρὰ τῆς οἰκουμενικῆς ἐκτεθέντι συνό δου͵ ἐν οἷς πλατύτερον τὴν πίστιν ὡμολογήσαμεν καὶ τῶν ἔναγχος καινοτομηθεισῶν αἱρέσεων ἀναθεματισμὸν ἔγγραφον πεποιήκαμεν. [C15] Igitur quae de fide a nobis aperte praedicantur, velut in summa haec esse noscuntur: de quibus amplius instrui poteritis, si et tomum in Antiochia factum a synodo ibi constituta dignemini legere, et quod anno superiori in Constantinopoli ab universali synodo cognoscitur esse prolatum: in quibus latius fidem professi sumus, et contra novitates haeresum nuper exortas anathemata ex scripto protulimus.




16. With regard to particular forms of administration in the churches, ancient custom, as you know, has been in force, along with the regulation of the saintly fathers at Nicaea, that in each province those of the province, and with them-should the former so desire — their neighbours, should conduct ordinations as need might arise. Accordingly, as you are aware, the rest of the churches are administered, and the priests [hieres/sacerdotes = bishops] of the most prominent churches have been appointed, by us. [T14] Περὶ δὲ τῶν οἰκονομιῶν τῶν κατὰ μέρος ἐν ταῖς ἐκκλησίαις παλαιός τε͵ ὡς ἴστε͵ θεσμὸς κεκράτηκε καὶ τῶν ἐν Νικαίᾳ ἁγίων πατέρων ὅρος͵ καθ΄ ἑκάστην ἐπαρχίαν τοὺς τῆς ἐπαρχίας καί͵ εἴπερ ἐκεῖνοι βούλοιντο͵ σὺν αὐτοῖς τοὺς ὁμόρους πρὸς τὸ συμφέρον ποι εῖσθαι τὰς χειροτονίας· [T15] οἷς ἀκολούθως τάς τε λοιπὰς ἐκκλησίας παρ΄ ἡμῖν οἰκονομεῖσθαι γινώσκετε καὶ τῶν ἐπισημοτάτων ἐκκλησιῶν ἀναδεδεῖχθαι τοὺς ἱερεῖς. [C16] De dispensationibus autem particularibus ecclesiarum antiqua, sicuti nostis, sanctio tenuit, et definitio sanctorum patrum in Nicaea convenientium: secundum unamquamque provinciam, et si pontifices voluerint, ut cum eis vicini propter utilitatem celebrent ordinationes; quibus rebus consequenter et caeteras ecclesias apud nos aedificari cognoscite, et insignium ecclesiarum haec approbasse sacerdotes.

17. Hence at the ecumenical council by common agreement and in the presence of the most God-beloved emperor Theodosius and all the clergy, and with the approval of the whole city, we have ordained the most venerable and God-beloved Nectarius as bishop of the church newly set up, as one might say, in Constantinople — a church which by God’s mercy we just recently snatched from the blasphemy of the heretics as from the lion’s jaws.

ὅθεν τῆς μὲν ἐν Κωνσταντινουπόλει νεο παγοῦς͵ ὡς ἂν εἴποι τις͵ ἐκκλησίας͵ ἣν ὥσπερ ἐκ στόματος λέον τος τῆς τῶν αἱρετικῶν βλασφημίας ὑπόγυον ἐξηρπάσαμεν διὰ τῶν οἰκτιρμῶν τοῦ θεοῦ͵ τὸν αἰδεσιμώτατον καὶ θεοφιλέστατον Νε κτάριον ἐπίσκοπον κεχειροτονήκαμεν ἐπὶ τῆς οἰκουμενικῆς συνόδου μετὰ κοινῆς ὁμονοίας͵ ὑπ΄ ὄψεσι καὶ τοῦ θεοφιλεστάτου βασιλέως Θεοδοσίου παντός τε τοῦ κλήρου καὶ πάσης ἐπιψηφιζομένης τῆς πόλεως. τ

[C17] Porro Constantinopolitanae urbis novellam, ut ita dicamus, ecclesiam, velut ex ore leonis haereticis suffossam blasphemiis abstraximus; et per misericordias Dei reverendissimum et Deo amabilem Nectarium episcopum ordinavimus coram universali concilio cum communi concordia, sub aspectu etiam Deo amabilis imperatoris Theodosii, universi que cleri, cuncta decernente pariter civitate.

18. Over the most ancient and truly apostolic church at Antioch in Syria, where first the precious name of “Christians” came into use, the provincial bishops and those of the diocese of the East came together and canonically ordained the most venerable and God-beloved Flavian as bishop with the consent of the whole church, as though it would give the man due honour with a single voice. The synod as a whole also accepted that this ordination was legal. [T16]  ῆς δὲ πρεσβυτάτης καὶ ὄντως ἀποστολικῆς ἐκκλησίας τῆς ἐν Ἀντιοχείᾳ τῆς Συρίας͵ ἐν ᾗ πρώτῃ τὸ τίμιον τῶν Χριστιανῶν ἐχρημάτισεν ὄνομα͵ τὸν αἰδεσιμώτατον καὶ θεοφιλέστατον ἐπίσκοπον Φλαβιανὸν οἵ τε τῆς ἐπαρχίας καὶ τῆς ἀνατολικῆς διοικήσεως συν 294 δραμόντες κανονικῶς ἐχειροτόνησαν͵ πάσης συμψήφου τῆς ἐκκλησίας ὥσπερ διὰ μιᾶς φωνῆς τὸν ἄνδρα τιμησάσης· ἥνπερ ἔνθεσμον χειροτονίαν ἐδέξατο καὶ τὸ τῆς συνόδου κοινόν.

[C18] In seniore autem et vere apostolica ecclesia Antiochiae Syriae, in qua prius venerabile christianorum appellatum est nomen, reverendissimum et Deo amabilem episcopum Flavianum, de universa provincia et orientali dioecesi concurrentes, regulariter ordinarunt, omni ecclesia pariter decernente, et quasi sub una voce hunc honorante virum.

  Quam ordinationem, tanquam legalem suscepit commune concilium.


19. We wish to inform you that the most venerable and God-beloved Cyril is bishop of the church in Jerusalem, the mother of all the churches. He was canonically ordained some time ago by those of the province and at various times he has valiantly combated the Arians. [T17] τῆς δέ γε μητρὸς ἁπα σῶν τῶν ἐκκλησιῶν τῆς ἐν Ἱεροσολύμοις τὸν αἰδεσιμώτατον καὶ θεοφιλέστατον Κύριλλον ἐπίσκοπον εἶναι γνωρίζομεν͵ κανονικῶς τε παρὰ τῶν τῆς ἐπαρχίας χειροτονηθέντα πάλαι καὶ πλεῖστα πρὸς τοὺς Ἀρειανοὺς ἐν διαφόροις χρόνοις ἀθλήσαντα. [C19] In matre vero cunctarum ecclesiarum Hierosolymis constituta, reverendissimum et Deo amabilem Cyrillum episcopum esse significamus; qui regulariter olim a provincialibus ordinatus, plurima propter arianos diversis temporibus certamina passus est.
20. We exhort your reverence to join us in rejoicing at what we have legally and canonically enacted. Let spiritual love link us together, and let the fear of the Lord suppress all human prejudice and put the building up of the churches before individual attachment or favour. Οἷς ὡς ἐνθέσμως καὶ κανονικῶς παρ΄ ἡμῖν κεκρατηκόσι καὶ τὴν ὑμετέραν συγχαίρειν παρακαλοῦμεν εὐλάβειαν͵ τῆς πνευματικῆς μεσι τευούσης ἀγάπης καὶ τοῦ κυριακοῦ φόβου πᾶσαν μὲν καταστέλλοντος ἀνθρωπίνην προσπάθειαν͵ [C20] His igitur tam legaliter et canonice apud nos gestis, etiam vestram reverentiam congaudere deposcimus, spirituali intercedente dilectione, et timore dominico, per quae humana removetur offensio et ecclesiarum aedificatio praeponitur universis.
21. In this way, with the account of the faith agreed between us and with Christian love established among us, we shall cease to declare what was condemned by the apostles, “I belong to Paul, I to Apollo, I to Cephas”; but we shall all be seen to belong to Christ, who has not been divided up among us; and with God’s good favour, we shall keep the body of the church undivided, and shall come before the judgment-seat of the Lord with confidence τὴν δὲ τῶν ἐκκλησιῶν οἰκοδομὴν προτι μοτέραν ποιοῦντος τῆς πρὸς τὸν καθ΄ ἕνα συνηθείας ἢ χάριτος. [T18] οὕτω γὰρ τοῦ τε τῆς πίστεως συμφωνηθέντος λόγου καὶ τῆς Χρι στιανικῆς κυρωθείσης ἐν ἡμῖν ἀγάπης͵ παυσόμεθα λέγοντες τὸ παρὰ τῶν ἀποστόλων κατεγνωσμένον· ἐγὼ μέν εἰμι Παύλου͵ ἐγὼ δὲ Ἀπολλώ͵ ἐγὼ δὲ Κηφᾶ͵ πάντες δὲ Χριστοῦ φανέντες͵ ὃς ἐν ἡμῖν οὐ μεμέρισται͵ θεοῦ καταξιοῦντος͵ ἄσχιστον τὸ σῶμα τῆς ἐκκλησίας τηρήσομεν καὶ τῷ βήματι τοῦ κυρίου μετὰ παρρησίας παραστησόμεθα. [C21] Sic etenim verbo fidei concordante, et christiana in nobis charitate firmata, cessavimus dicere quod reprehendebat Apostolus: Ego quidem sum Pauli, ego vero Apollo, ego autem Cephae; dum omnes videlicet appareamus Christi, qui in nobis divisus non est. Et si sine schismate corpus ecclesiae, Deo adiuvante, servemus, cum fiducia ante Domini tribunal astabimus.


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