Refutation of All Heresies  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

The Refutation of All Heresies is a compendious Christian polemical work of the early third century, now generally attributed to Hippolytus of Rome. Most of it was recovered in 1842 in a manuscript at Mount Athos, but the complete text is not known. It catalogues both pagan beliefs and 33 gnostic Christian systems deemed heretical, making it a major source of information on contemporary opponents of Catholic orthodoxy.

The first chapter, a synopsis of Greek philosophy, circulated separately in several manuscripts and was known as the Philosophoumena (Template:Lang-grc-gre "philosophical teachings"), a title which some extend to the whole work. The book was long thought to have been written by Origen.

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BOOK I (continued) :









BOOK II ? 65












2. PERATiE I46





i. The Text, its Discovery, Publication and Editions

The story of the discovery of the book here translated so resembles a romance as to appear like a flower in the dry and dusty field of patristic lore. A short treatise called Phiiosop/iumena, or " Philosophizings, " had long been known, four early copies of it being in existence in the Papal and other libraries of Rome, Florence and Turin. The superscriptions of these texts and a note in the margin of one of them caused the treatise to be attributed to Origen, and its Editio princeps is that published in 1701 at Leipzig by Fabricius with notes by the learned Gronovius. As will be seen later, it is by itself of no great importance to modern scholars, as it throws no new light on the history or nature of Greek philosophy, while it is mainly com- piled from some of those epitomes of philosophic opinion current in the early centuries of our era, of which the works of Diogenes Laertius and Aetius are the best known. In the year 1840, however, Mynoides Mynas, a learned Greek, was sent by Abel Villemain, then Minister of Public Instruction in the Government of Louis Philippe, on a voyage of discovery to the monasteries of Mt. Athos, whence he returned with, among other things, the MS. of the last seven books contained in these volumes. This proved on investigation to be Books IV to X inclusive of the original work of which the text published by Fabricius was Book I, and therefore left only Books II and III to be accounted for. The pagination of the MS. shows that the two missing books never formed part of it ; but the author's


remarks at the end of Books I and IX, and the beginning of Books V and X 1 lead one to conclude that if they ever existed they must have dealt with the Mysteries and secret rites of the Egyptians, or rather of the Alexandrian Greeks, 2 with the theologies and cosmogonies of the Persians and Chaldseans, and with the magical practices and incantations of the Babylonians. Deeply interesting as these would have been from the archaeological and anthropological standpoint, we perhaps need not deplore their loss over- much. The few references made to them in the remainder of the work go to show that here too the author had no very profound acquaintance with, or first-hand knowledge of, his subject, and that the scanty information that he had succeeded in collecting regarding it was only thrown in by him as an additional support for his main thesis. This last, which is steadily kept in view throughout the book, is that the peculiar tenets and practices of the Gnostics and other heretics of his time were not derived from any misinterpre- tuion of the Scriptures, but were a sort of amalgam of those current among the heathen with the opinions held by the philosophers 8 as to the origin of all things.

The same reproach of scanty information cannot be brought against the books discovered by Mynas. Book IYffour pages at the beginning of which have perished, deals with the arts of divination as practised by the arithmo- mancers, astrologers, magicians and other charlatans who infested Rome in the first three centuries of our era; and the author's account, which the corruption of the text makes rather difficult to follow, yet gives us a new and unexpected insight into the impostures and juggleries by which they managed to bewilder their dupes. Books V to IX deal in detail with the opinions of the heretics them- selves, and differ from the accounts of earlier heresiologists by quoting at some length from the once extensive Gnostic

1 pp. 63, 117, 119; Vol. II, 148, 150 infra.

2 Hippolytus, like all Greek writers of his age, must have been entirely ignorant of the Egyptian religion of Pharaonic times, which was then extinct. The only " Egyptian " Mysteries of which he could have known anything were those of the Alexandrian Triad, Osiris, Isis, and Horus, for which see the translator's Forerunners and Rivals of Christianity, Cambridge, 1915, I, c. 2.

3 The pre-Christian origins of Gnosticism and its relations with Christianity are fully dealt with in the work quoted in the last note.


literature, of which well-nigh the whole has been lost to us. 1 Thus, our author gives us excerpts from a work called the Great Announcement, attributed by him to Simon Magus, from another called Proastii used by the sect of the Peratae, from the Paraphrase of Seth in favour with the Sethiani, from the Baruch of one Justinus, a heresiarch hitherto unknown to us, and from a work by an anonymous writer belonging to the Naassenes or Ophites, which is mainly a Gnostic explanation of the hymns used in the worship of Cybele. 2 Besides these, there are long extracts from Basil- id ian and Valentinian works which may be by the founders of those sects, and which certainly give us a more extended insight into their doctrines than we before possessed ; while Book X contains what purports to be a summary of the whole work.

This, however, does not exhaust the new information put at our disposal by Mynas' discovery. In the course of an account of the heresy of Noetus, who refused to admit any difference between the First and Second Persons of the Trinity, our author suddenly develops a violent attack on one Callistus, a high officer of the Church, whom he describes as a runaway slave who had made away with his master's money, had stolen that deposited with him by widows and others belonging to the Church, and had been condemned to the mines by the Prefect of the City, to be released only by the grace of Commodus' concubine, Marcia. 3 He further accuses Callistus of leaning towards the heresy of Noetus, and of encouraging laxity of manners in the Church by permitting the marriage and re-marriage of bishops and priests, and concubinage among the un- married women. The heaviness of this charge lies in the fact that this Callistus can hardly be any other than the Saint and Martyr of that name, who succeeded Zephyrinus

1 Save for a few sentences quoted in patristic writings, the only \ 1? extant Gnostic works are the Coptic collection in the British Museum .-*"* and the Bodleian at Oxford, known as the Pistis Sophia and the Bruce \\/ Papyrus respectively. There are said to be some other fragments of Coptic MSS. of Gnostic origin in Berlin which have not yet been published.

2 An account by the present writer of this worship in Roman times is! q. given in the Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society for October 1917,1 *" PP- 6 95 K I S

3 II, pp. 125 ff. infra,


in the Chair of St. Peter about the year 218, and whose name is familiar to all visitors to modern Rome from the cemetery which still bears it, and over which the work before us says he had been set by his predecessor. 1 The explanation of these charges will be discussed when we consider the authorship of the book, but for the present it may be noticed that they throw an entirely unexpected light upon the inner history of the Primitive Church.

These facts, however, were not immediately patent. The MS., written as appears from the colophon by one Michael in an extremely crabbed hand of the fourteenth century, is full of erasures and interlineations, and has several serious lacunae. 2 Hence it would probably have remained unnoticed in the Bibliotheque Royale of Paris to which it was consigned, had it not there met the eye of Be'nigne Emmanuel Miller, a French scholar and archaeologist who had devoted his life to the study and decipherment of ancient Greek MSS. By his care and the generosity of the University Press, the MS. was transcribed and published in 1851 at Oxford, but without either Intro- duction or explanatory notes, although the suggested emendations in the text were all carefully noted at the foot of every page. 3 These omissions were repaired by the German scholars F. G. Schneidewin and Ludwig Duncker, who in 1856-1859 published at Gottingen an amended text with full critical and explanatory notes, and a Latin version. 4 The completion of this publication was delayed by the death of Schneidewin, which occurred before he had time to go further than Book VII, and was followed by the appearance at Paris in i860 of a similar text and translation by the Abbe Cruice, then Rector of a college at Rome, who had given, as he tells us in his Prolegomena, many years to the study of the work. 5 As his edition embodies all the best features of that of Duncker and Schneidewin, together with the fruits of much good and

1 II, p. 124 infra.

2 The facsimile of a page of the MS. is given in Bishop Wordsworth's Hippolytus and the Church of Rome, London, 1880.

3 B. E. Miller, Origenis Philosophumena sive Omnium Haresium Rcfutatio, Oxford, 1 851.

4 L. Duncker and F. G. Schneidewin, Philosophumena, etc. Gottingen, 1856-1859.

5 P. M. Cruice, Philosophumena, etc, Paris, i860.


careful work of his own, and a Latin version incomparably superior in clearness and terseness to the German editors', it is the one mainly used in the following pages. An English translation by the Rev. J. H. Macmahon, the translator for Bonn's series of a great part of the works of Aristotle, also appeared in 1868 in Messrs. Clark's Ante- Nicene Library. Little fault can be found with it on the score of verbal accuracy ; but fifty years ago the relics of Gnosticism had not received the attention that has since been bestowed upon them, and the translator, perhaps in consequence, did little to help the general reader to an understanding of the author's meaning.

2. The Authorship of the Work

Even before Mynas' discovery, doubts had been cast on the attribution of the Philosophumena to Origen. The fact that the author in his Proicmium speaks of himself as a successor of the Apostles, a sharer in the grace of high priesthood, and a guardian of the Church, 1 had already led several learned writers in the eighteenth century to point out that Origen, who was never even a bishop, could not possibly be the author, and Epiphanius, Didymus of Alex- andria, and Aetius were among the names to which it was assigned. Immediately upon the publication of Miller's text, this controversy was revived, and naturally became coloured by the religious and political opinions of its protagonists. Jacobi in a German theological journal was the first to declare that it must have been written by Hippolytus, a contemporary of Callistus, 2 and this proved to be like the letting out of waters. The dogma of Papal Infallibility was already in the air, and the opportunity was at once seized by the Baron von Bunsen, then Prussian Ambassador at the Court of St. James', to do what he could to defeat its promulgation. In his Hippolytus and his Age \ (1852), he asserted his belief in Jacobi's theory, and drew from the abuse of Callistus in Book IX of the newly dis- covered text, the conclusion that even in the third century the Primacy of the Bishops of Rome was effectively denied.

1 P- 34 infra.

2 Deutsche Zeitschrift fiir Christliche Wissenschaft umi Christliches leben, 1852.


The celebrated Christopher Wordsworth, Bishop of Lincoln, followed with a scholarly study in which, while rejecting von Bunsen's conclusion, he admitted his main premises ; and Dr. Dollinger, who was later to prove the chief opponent of Papal claims, appeared a little later with a work on the same side. Against these were to be found none who ventured to defend the supposed authorship of Origen, but many who did not believe that the work was rightly attributed to Hippolytus. Among the Germans, Fessler and Baur pronounced for Caius, a presbyter to whom Photius in the ninth century gave the curious title of " Bishop of Gentiles, " as author ; of the Italians, de Rossi assigned it to Tertullian and Armellini to Novatian ; of the French, the Abbe Jallabert in a doctoral thesis voted for Tertullian ; while Cruice, who was afterwards to translate the work, thought its author must be either Caius or Ter- tullian. 1 Fortunately there is now no reason to re-open the controversy, which one may conclude has come to an end by the death of Lipsius, the last serious opponent of the Hippolytan authorship. Mgr. Duchesne, who may in such a matter be supposed to speak with the voice of the majority of the learned of his own communion, in his Histoire Ancienne de PJ^g/ise 2 accepts the view that Hippolytus was the author of the Philosophnme?ia, and thinks that he became reconciled to the Church under the persecution of Maximin. 3 We may, therefore, take it that Hippolytus' authorship is now admitted on all sides.

A few words must be said as to what is known of this

Hippolytus. A Saint and Martyr of that name appears

  • in the Roman Calendar, and a seated statue of him was

\!\ discovered in Rome in the sixteenth century inscribed on

t/ \ the back of the chair with a list of works, one of which

1 References to nearly all the contributions to this controversy are correctly given in the Prolegomena to Cruice's edition, pp. x fif. An English translation of Dr. Dollinger's Hippolytus unci Kallistus was published by Plummer, Edinburgh, 1876, and brings the contro- versy up to date. Cf. also the Bibliography in Salmon's article " Hippolytus Romanus " in Smith and Wace's Dictionary of Christian Biography (hereafter quoted as D.C.B.).

2 See the English translation : Early History of the Christian Church, London, 1 909, I, pp. 227 ff.

3 This is confirmed by Dom. Chapman in the Catholic Encyclopedia, s. vv. "Hippolytus," " Callistus."


is claimed in our text as written by its author. 1 He is first mentioned by Eusebius, who describes him as the " Bishop of another Church " than that of Bostra, of which he has been speaking ; 2 then by Theodoret, who calls him the "holy Hippolytus, bishop and martyr"; 3 and finally by Prudentius, who says that lie became a Novatianist, but on his way to martyrdom returned to the bosom of the Church and entreated his followers to do the same. 4 We have many writings, mostly fragmentary, attributed to him, including among others one on the Paschal cycle which is referred to on the statue just mentioned, a tract against Noetus used later by Epiphanius, and others on Anti- christ, Daniel, and the Apocalypse, all of which show a markedly chiliastic tendency. In the MSS. in which some of these occur, he is spoken of as " Bishop of Rome," and this seems to have been his usual title among Greek writers, although he is in other places called " Archbishop," and by other titles. From these and other facts, Dollinger comes to the conclusion that he was really nn anti-pope or schismatic bishop who set himself up against the authority of Callistus, and this, too, is accepted by Mgr. Duchesne, who agrees with 1 )ollinger that the schism created by him lasted through the primacies of Callistus' successors, Urbanus and Pontianus, and only ceased when this last was exiled together with Hippolytus to the mines of: Sardinia. 5 Though the evidence on which this is based is not very strong, it is a very reasonable account of the whole matter ; and it becomes more probable if we choose \ to believe for which, however, there is no distinct evidence ] ,p that Hippolytus was the head of the Greek-speaking community of Christians at Rome, while his enemy Callistus presided over the more numerous Latins. In that case, * the schism would be more likely to be forgotten in time of persecution, and would have less chance of survival than the more serious ones of a later age; while it would satisfactorily account for the conduct of the Imperial

1 The statue and its inscription are also reproduced by Bishop Words- worth in the work above quoted.

1 Hist. Eccks., VI, c. 20. 3 Haer. Fab., Ill, I.

4 Perisleph II. For the chronological difficulty that this involves see Salmon, D.C.B., s.v. " Hippolytus Romanus."

5 Duchesne, op. cit., p. 233.


authorities in sending the heads of both communities into penal servitude at the same time. By doing so, Maximin or his pagan advisers doubtless considered they were dealing the yet adolescent Church a double blow.

3. The Credibility of Hippolytus

Assuming, then, that our author was Hippolytus, schis- matic Bishop of Rome from about 218 to 235, we must next see what faith is to be attached to his statements. This question was first raised by the late Dr. George Salmon, Provost of Trinity College, Dublin, who was throughout his life a zealous student of Gnosticism and of the history of the Church during the early centuries. While working through our text he was so struck by the repetition in the account of four different sects of the simile about the magnet drawing iron to itself and the amber the straws, as to excogitate a theory that Hippolytus must have been imposed upon by a forger who had sold him a number of documents purporting to be the secret books of the heretics, but in reality written by the forger himself. 1 This theory was afterwards adopted by the late Heinrich Stahelin, who published a treatise in which he attempted to show in the laborious German way, by a comparison of nearly all the different passages in it which present any similarity of diction, that the whole document was suspect. 2 The differ- ent passages on which he relies will be dealt with in the notes as they occur, and it may be sufficient to mention here the opinion of M. Eugene de Faye, the latest writer on the point, that the theory of Salmon and Stahelin goes a long way beyond the facts. 3 As M. de Faye points out, the different documents quoted in the work differ so greatly from one another both in style and contents, that to have invented or concocted them would have required a forger of almost superhuman skill and learning. To which it may be added that the mere repetition of the phrases that Stahelin has collated with such diligence would be the very

1 "The Cross-references in the Philosophumena," Hermathena, Dublin, No. XI, 1885, pp. 389 ff.

2 " Die Gnostischen Quellen Hippolyts" in Gebhardt and Har- nack's Texte und Untersuc hut/gen, VI, (1890).

3 Introduction d P Etude du Gnosticisme, Paris, 1 903, p. 68 ; Gnostiques et Gnosticisme, Paris, 1913, p. 167.


thing that the least skilful forger would most studiously avoid, and that it could hardly fail to put the most credu- lous purchaser on his guard. It is also the case that some at least of the phrases of whose repetition Salmon and Stahelin complain can be shown to have come, not from the Gnostic author quoted, but from Hippolytus himself, and that others are to be found in the Gnostic works which have come down to us in Coptic dress. 1 These Coptic documents, as the present writer has shown elsewhere, 2 are so intimately linked together that all must be taken to have issued from the same school. They could not have been known to Hippolytus or he would certainly have quoted them in the work before us ; nor to the supposed forger, or he would have made greater use of them. We must, therefore, suppose that, in the passages which they and our text have in common, both they and it are drawing from a common source which can hardly be anything else than the genuine writings of earlier heretics. We must, therefore, agree with M. de Faye that the Salmon-Stahelin theory of forgery must be rejected.

If, however, we turn from this to such statements of Hippolytus as we can check from other sources, we find many reasons for doubting not indeed the good faith of him or his informants, but the accuracy of one or other of them. Thus, in his account of the tenets of the philoso- phers, he repeatedly alters or misunderstands his authorities, as when he says that Thales supposed water to be the end as it had been the beginning of the Universe, 3 or that "Zaratas," as he calls Zoroaster, said that light was the father and darkness the mother of beings, 4 which statements are directly at variance with what we know otherwise of the opinions of these teachers. So, too, in Book I, he makes Empedocles say that all things consist of fire, and will be resolved into fire, while in Book VII, he says that Empe- docles declared the elements of the cosmos to be six in

1 The theory that all existing things come from an "indivisible point " which our text gives as that of Simon Magus and of Basilides reappears in the Brace Papyrus. Basilides' remark about only I in iooo and 2 in 10,000 being fit for the higher mysteries is repeated verbatim in the Pistis Sophia, p. 354, Copt. Cf. Forerunners, II, 172, 292, n. 1.

2 Scottish Review, Vol. XXIT, No. 43 (July 1893).

3 V- 35 infra. * p. 39 infra.


number, whereof fire, one of the two instruments which alter and arrange it, is only one. 1 Again, in Book IX, he says that he has already expounded the opinions of Heraclitus, and then sets to work to describe as his a perfectly different set of tenets from that which he has assigned to him in Book I ; while in Book X he ascribes to Heraclitus yet another opinion. 2 Or we may take as an example the system of arithmomancy or divination by the " Pythagorean number" whereby, he says, its professors claim to predict the winner of a contest by juggling with the numerical values of the letters in the competitors' names, and then gives instances, some of which do and others do not work out according to tlie rule he lays down. So, too, in his unacknowledged quotations from Sextus Empiricus, he so garbles his text as to make it unintelligible to us were we not able to restore it from Sextus' own words. So, again, in his account of the sleight-of-hand and other stage tricks, whereby he says, no doubt with truth, the magicians used to deceive those who consulted them, his account is so carelessly written or copied that it is only by means of much reading between the lines that it can be understood, and even then it recounts many more marvels than it explains. 3 Some of this inaccuracy may possibly be due to mistakes in copying and re-copying by scribes who did not understand what they were writing ; but when all is said there is left a sum of blunders which can only be attributed to great carelessness on the part of the author. Yet, as if to show that he could take pains if he liked, the quota- tions from Scripture are on the whole correctly transcribed and show very few variations from the received versions. Consequently when such variations do occur (they are noted later whenever met with), we must suppose them to be not the work of Hippolytus, but of the heretics from whom he quotes, who must, therefore, have taken liberties with the New Testament similar to those of Marcion.

1 p. 41 ; IT, p. 83 infra. 2 II, pp. 1 19, 151 infra.

3 For the arithmomancy see p. 83 ff. infra; the borrowings from Sextus begin on p. 70, the tricks of the magicians on p. 92. For other mistakes, see the quotation about the Furies in II, p. 23, which he ascribes to Pythagoras, but which is certainly from Heraclitus (as Plutarch tells us), and the Categories of Aristotle which a few pages earlier are also assigned to Pythagoras. His treatment of Josephus will be dealt with in its place.


Where, also, he copies Irenreus with or without acknowledg- ment, his copy is extremely faithful, and agrees with the Latin version of the model more closely than the Greek of Epiphanius. It would seem, therefore, that our author's statements, although in no sense unworthy of belief, yet require in many cases strict examination before they can be unhesitatingly accepted. 1

4. The Composition of the Work

In these circumstances, and in view of the manifest dis- crepancies between statements in the earlier part of the text and what purports to be their repetition in the later, the question has naturally arisen as to whether the document before us was written for publication in its present form. It is never referred to or quoted by name by any later author, and although the argument from silence has generally proved a broken reed in such cases, there are here some circumstances which seem to give it unusual strength. It was certainly no reluctance to call in evidence the work of a schismatic or heretical writer which led to the work being ignored, for Epiphanius, a century and a half later, classes Hippolytus with Irenreus and Clement of Alexandria as one from whose writings he has obtained information, 2 and Theodoret, while making use still later of certain passages which coincide with great closeness with some in Book X of our text, 3 admits, as has been said, Hippolytus' claim to both episcopacy and martyrdom. But the passages in Theodoret which seem to show borrowing from Hippo- lytus, although possibly, are not necessarily from the work before us. The author of this tells us in Book I that he has " aforetime " 4 expounded the tenets of the heretics "within measure," and without revealing all their mysteries, and it might, therefore, be from some such earlier work that both Epiphanius and Theodoret have borrowed. Some writers, including Salmon, 5 have thought that this earlier work of our author is to be found in the anonymous tractate Adversus Omnes Hcereses usually appended to Tertullian's

1 This is especially the case with the story of Callntus, as to which see II, pp. 124 ff. infra.

2 Haer. xxxi., p. 205, Oehler. 3 Haeret. fab. I, 17-24.

4 71-aAcu. 6 In D.C.B., art. cit. supra.



works. 1 Yet this tractate, which is extremely short, con- tains nothing that can be twisted into the words common to our text and to Theodoret, and we might, therefore, assert with confidence that it was from our text that Theodoret copied them but for the fact that he nowhere indicates their origin. This might be only another case of the unacknow- ledged borrowing much in fashion in his time, were it not that Theodoret has already spoken of Hippolytus in the eulogistic terms quoted above, and would therefore, one would think, have been glad to give as his informant such respectable authority. As he did not do so, we may per- haps accept the conclusion drawn by Cruice with much skill in a study published shortly after the appearance of Miller's text, 2 and say with him that Theodoret did not know that the passages in question were to be found in any work of Hippolytus. In this case, as the statements in Book IX forbid us to suppose that our text was published anonymously or pseudonymously, the natural inference is that both Hippolytus and Theodoret drew from a common source.

What this source was likely to have been there can be little doubt. Our author speaks more than once of " the blessed elder Irenaeus," who has, he says, refuted the heretic Marcus with much vigour, and he implies that the energy and power displayed by Irenaeus in such matters have shortened his own work with regard to the Valentinian school generally. 3 Photius, also, writing as has been said in the ninth century, mentions a work of Hippolytus against heresies admittedly owing much to Irenaeus'" instruction. The passage runs thus :

"A booklet of Hippolytus has been read. Now Hippolytus was a disciple of Irenaeus. But it (i.e. the booklet) was the compilation against 32 heresies making (the) Dositheans the beginning (of them) and comprising (those) up to Noetus and the Noetians. And he says that these heresies were subjected to

1 See Oehler's edition of Tertullian's works, IT, 75 1 fT. The parallel passages are set out in convenient form in Bishop Wordsworth's book before quoted.

  • litudes sur de nouveaux documents historiques empruntis a Pouvrage

recemmet deconvert des Philosophumena, Paris, 1853.

3 If, PP- 43, 47 infra.


refutations by Irenceus in conversation 1 (or in lectures). Of which refutations making also a synopsis, he says he compiled this book. The phrasing however is clear, reverent and unaffected, although he does not observe the Attic style. But he says some other things lacking in accuracy, and that the Epistle to the Hebrews was not by the Apostle Paul."

These words have been held by Salmon and others to describe the tractate Adversus Omnes Hcereses. Yet this tractate contains not thirty-two heresies, but twenty-seven, and begins with Simon Magus to end with the Praxeas against whom Tertullian wrote. It also notices another heretic named Blastus, who, like Praxeas, is mentioned neither by Irenoeus nor by our author, nor does it say anything about Noetus or the Apostle Paul. It does indeed mention at the outset " Dositheus the Samaritan," but only to say that the author proposes to keep silence concerning both him and the Jews, and "to turn to those who have wished to make heresy from the Gospel," the very first of whom, he says, is Simon Magus. 2 As for refutations, the tractate contains nothing lesembling one, which has forced the supporters of the theory to assume that they were omitted for brevity's sake. Nor does it in the least agree with our text in its description of the tenets and practices of heresies which the two docu- ments treat of in common, such as Simon, Basilides, the Sethiani and others, and the differences are too great to be accounted for by supposing that the author of the later text was merely incorporating in it newer information. 3

On the other hand, Photius' description agrees fairly well with our text, which contains thirty-one heresies all told, or thirty-two if we include, as the author asks us to do, that im- puted by him to Callistus. Of these, that of Noetus is the

1 S/j.i\ovvTos Elprfuatov. For the whole quotation, see Photius, Bibliotheca, 121 (Bekker's ed.).

2 Tertullian (Oehler's ed.), II, 751. St. Jerome in quoling this passage says the heretics have mangled the Gospel.

3 Thus the tractate makes Simon Magus call his Helena Sophia, and says that Basilides named his Supreme God Abraxas. It knows nothing of the God-who-isnot and the three Sonhoods of our text : and it gives an entirely different account of the Sethians, whom it calls Sethita?, and says that they identified Christ with Seth. In this heresy, too, it intro- duces Sophia, and makes her the author of the Flood.


twenty-eighth, and is followed by those of the Elchesaites, Essenes, Pharisees and Sadducees only. These four last are all much earlier in date than any mentioned in the rest of the work, and three of them appeared to the author of the tractate last quoted as not heresies at all, while the fourth is not de- scribed by him, and there is no reason immediately apparent why in any case they should be put after and not before the post-Christian ones. The early part of the summary of Jewish beliefs in Book X is torn away, and may have contained a notice of Dositheus, whose name occurs in Eusebius and other writers, 1 as a predecessor of Simon Magus and one who did not believe in the inspiration of the Jewish Prophets. The natural place in chronological order for these Jewish and Samaritan sects would, therefore, be at the head rather than at the tail of the list, and if we may venture to put them there and to restore to the catalogue the name of Dositheus, we should have our thirty-two heresies, beginning with Dositheus and ending with Noetus. We will return later to the reason why Photius should call our text a Biblidarion or " booklet."

Are there now any reasons for thinking that our text is founded on such a synopsis of lectures as Photius says Hippolytus made ? A fairly cogent one is the inconvenient and awkward division of the books, which often seem as if they had been arranged to occupy equal periods of time in delivery. Another is the unnecessary and tedious intro- ductions and recapitulations with which the descriptions of particular philosophies, charlatanic practices, and here- sies begin and end, and which seem as if they were only put in for the sake of arresting or holding the attention of an audience addressed verbally. Thus, in the account of Simon Magus' heresy, our author begins with a long-winded story of a Libyan who taught parrots to proclaim his own divinity, the only bearing of which upon the story of Simon is that Hippolytus asserts, like Justin Martyr, that Simon wished his followers to take him for the Supreme Being. 2 So, too, he begins the succeeding book with the age-worn tale of Ulysses and the Sirens 3 by way of introduction to the tenets of Basilides, with which it has no connection

1 Euseb., Hist. Eccles. IV, c. 22. He is quoting Hegesippus. See also Origen contra Celsum, VI, c. 11.

2 II, p. 3 injra. 3 II, pp. 61 ff. infra.


whatever. This was evidently intended to attract the attention of an audience so as to induce them to give more j heed to the somewhat intricate details which follow. In other cases, he puts at the beginning or end of a book a more or less detailed summary of those which preceded it, lest, as he states in one instance, his hearers should have forgotten what he has before said. 1 These are the usual artifices of a lecturer, but a more salient example is perhaps those ends of chapters giving indications of what is to follow immediately, which can hardly be anything else than announcements in advance of the subject of the next lecture. Thus, at the end of Book I, he promises to explain the mystic rites 2 a promise which is for us unful- filled in the absence of Books II and III ; at the end of Book IV, he tells us that he will deal with the disciples of Simon and Valentinus 3 ; at that of Book VII, that he will do the same with the Docetaj 4 ; and at that of Book VIII that he will "pass on" to the heresy of Noetus. 5 In none of these cases does he more than mention the first of the heresies to be treated of in the succeeding book, which the reader could find out for himself by turning over the page, or rather by casting his eye a little further down the roll.

Again, there are repetitions in our text excusable in a lecturer who does not, if he is wise, expect his hearers to have at their fingers' ends all that he has said in former lectures, and who may even find that he can best root things in their memory by saying them over and over again ; but quite unpardonable in a writer who can refer his readers more profitably to his former statements. Yet, we find our author in Book I giving us the supposed teach- ing of Pythagoras as to the monad being a male member, the dyad a female and so on up to the decad, which is supposed to be perfect. 6 This is gone through all over again in Book IV with reference to the art of arithmetic 7 and again in Book VI where it is made a sort of shoeing- horn to the Valentinian heresy. 8 The same may be

1 pp. 103, 119; II, pp. 1, 57, 148, 149 infra. 2 p. 66 infra.

3 p. 117 infra. 4 II, p. 97 infra. 5 II, p. 1 16 infra.

6 p. 37 infra. 7 p. 115 infra.

8 II, p. 20. In II, p. 49, it is mentioned in connection with the heresy of Marcus, and on p. 104 the same theory is attributed to the " Egyptians."


said of the " Categories n or accidents of substance which Hippolytus in one place attributes to Pythagoras, but which are identical with those set out by Aristotle in the Organon. He gives them rightly to Aristotle in Book I, but makes them the invention of the Pythagoreans in Book VI only to return them to Aristotle in Book VII. 1 Here again is a mistake such as a lecturer might make by a slip of the tongue, but not a writer with any pretensions to care or seriousness.

Beyond this, there is some little direct evidence of a lecture origin for our text. In his comments on the system of Justinus, which he connects with the Ophites, our author says: "Though I have met with many heresies, O beloved, I have met with none viler in evil than this." The word " beloved " is here in the plural, and would be the phrase used by a Greek-speaking person in a lecture to a class or group of disciples or catechumens. 2 I do not think there is any instance of its use in a book. In another place he says that his " discourse " has proved useful, not only for refuting heretics, but for combating the prevalent belief in astrology ; 3 and although the word might be employed by other authors with regard to writings, yet it is not likely to have been used in that sense by Hippolytus, who every- where possible refers to his former " books." There is, therefore, a good deal of reason for supposing that some part of this work first saw the light as spoken and not as written words.

What this part is may be difficult to define with great exactness j but there are abundant signs that the work as we have it was not written all at one time. In Book I, the author expresses his intention of assigning every heresy to the speculations of some particular philosopher or philosophic school. 4 So far from doing so, however, he only compares Valentinus with Pythagoras and Plato, Basilides with Aristotle, Cerdo and Marcion with Em- pedocles, Hermogenes with Socrates, and Noetus with Heraclitus, leaving all the Ophite teachers, Satornilus,

1 p. 66 ; II, pp. 21, 64 infra.

2 a707T7jTo(, p. 113 and p. 180 infra. It also occurs on p. 125 of Vol. II in the same connection.

3 \6yos, pp. 107 and 120 infra. He uses the word in the same sense on p. 113. * p. 35 infra,


Carpocrates, Cerinthus and other founders of schools without a single philosopher attached to them. At the end of Book IV, moreover, he draws attention more than once to certain supposed resemblances in the views linked with the name of Pythagoras, to those underlying the nomen- clature of the Simonian and Valentinian heresies, and concludes with the words that he must proceed to the doctrines of these last. 1 Before he does so, however, Book V is interposed and is entirely taken up with the Ophites, or worshippers of the Serpent, to whom he does not attempt to assign a philosophic origin. In Book yi he carries out his promise in Book IV by going at lengtH into the doctrines of Simon, Valentinus and the followers of this last, and in Book VII he takes us in like manner through those of Basilides, Menander, Marcion and his successors, Carpocrates, Cerinthus and many others of the less-known heresiarchs. Book VIII deals in the same way with a sect that he calls the Docetae, Monoimus the Arabian, Tatian, Hermogenes and some others. In the case of the Ophite teachers, Simon, and Basilides, he gives us, as has been said, extracts from documents which are entirely new to us, and were certainly not used by Irenceus, while he adds to the list of heresies described by his predecessor, the sects of the Docetae, Monoimus and the Quartodecimans. In all the other heresies so far, he follows Irenaeus' account almost word for word, and with such closeness as enables us to restore in great part the missing Greek text of that Father. With Book IX, how- ever, there comes a change. Mindful of the intention expressed in Book I, he here begins with a summary of the teaching of Heraclitus the Obscure, which no one has yet professed to understand, and then sets to work to deduce from it the heresy of Noetus. This gives him the op- portunity for the virulent attack on his rival Callistus, to whom he ascribes a modification of Noetus' heresy, and he next, as has been said, plunges into a description of the sect of the Elchesaites, then only lately come to Rome, and quotes from Josephus without acknowledgment and with some garbling the account by this last of the division of the Jews into the three sects of Pharisees, Sadducees and Essenes. Noetus' heresy was what was known as Patripassian, from its


involving the admission that th e Fath er suffered upon the Cross, and although he manages to see Gnostic elements in that of the Elchesaites, there can be little doubt that these last-named heretics/' whose main tenet was the prescrip- tion of frequent baptism for all sins and diseases, were connected with the pre-Christian sect of Hemerobaptists, Mogtasilah or "Washers" who are at once pre-Christian, and still to be found near the Tigris between Baghdad and Basra. Why he should have added to these the doctrines of the Jews is uncertain, as the obvious place for this would have been, as has been said, at the beginning of the volume : 1 but a possible explanation is that he was here resuming a course of instruction by lectures that he had before abandoned, and was therefore in some sort obliged to spin it out to a certain length.

Book X seems at first sight likely to solve many of the questions which every reader who has got so far is compelled to ask. It begins, in accordance with the habit just noted, with the statement that the author has now worked through "the Labyrinth of Heresies" and that the teachings of truth are to be found neither in the philo- sophies of the Greeks, the secret mysteries of the Egyptians, the formulas of the Chaldaeans or astrologers, nor the ravings of Babylonian magic. 2 This links it with fair closeness to the reference in Book IV to the ideas of the Persians, Babylonians, Egyptians and Chaldneans, only the first-named nation being here omitted from the text. It then goes on to say that " having brought together the opinions 3 of all the wise men among the Greeks in four books and those of the heresiarchs in five," he will make a summary of them. It will be noted that this is in complete contradiction to the supposition that the missing Books II and III contained the doctrines of the Babylonians, as he now says that they comprised those of the Greeks only. The summary which

1 Pseudo-Hieronymus, Isidorus Hispalensis, and Honorius Augusto- dunensis, like Epiphanius, begin their catalogues of heresies with the Jewish and Samaritan sects. Philastrius leads off with the Ophites and Sethians whom he declares to be pre-Christian, and then goes on to Dositheus, and the Jewish "heresies" before coming to Simon Magus. Pseudo-Augustine and Prtedestinatus begin with Simon Magus and include no pre-Christian sects. See Oehler, Corpus Hareseologicus, Berlin, 1866, t. i.

2 II, p. 150 infra. 3 Zoyara, p. cit.


follows might have been expected to make this confusion clear, but unfortunately it does nothing of the kind. It does indeed give so good an abstract of what has been said in Books V to IX inclusive regarding the chief heresiarchs, that in one or two places it enables us to correct doubtful phrases and to fill in gaps left in earlier books. There is omitted from the summary, however, all mention of the heresies of Marcus, Satornilus, Menander, Carpocrates, the Nicolaitans, Docetre, Quartodecimans, Encratites and the Jewish sects, and the list of omissions will probably be thought too long to be accounted for on the ground of mere carelessness. But when the summarizer deals with the earlier books, the discrepancy between the summary and the documents summarized is much more startling. Among the philosophers, he omits to summarize the opinions of Pythagoras, Empedocles, Ecphantus, Hippo, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, the Stoics, Academics, Brach- mans, or Druids, while he does mention those of Hippasus, Ocellus Lucanus, Heraclides of Pontus and Asclepiades, who were not named in any of the texts of Book I which have come down to us. As for the tenets and practices of the Persians, Egyptians and others, supposed on the strength of the statement at the beginning of Book V to have been narrated in Books II and III, nothing further is here said concerning them, and, by the little table of contents with which Book X like the others is prefaced, it will appear that nothing was intended to be said. For this last omission it might be possible to assign plausible reasons if it stood alone ; but when it is coupled with the variations between summary and original as regards Book I, the only inference that meets all the facts is that the summarizer did not have the first four books under his eyes.

This has led some critics to conclude that the summary is by another hand. There is nothing in the literary manners of the age to compel us to reject this supposition, and similar cases have been quoted. The evidence of style is, however, against it, and it is unlikely that if the summarizer were any other person than Hippolytus, he would have taken up Hippolytus' personal quarrel against Callistus. Yet in the text of Book X before us the charge of heresy against Callistus is repeated, although perhaps with less


asperity than in Book IX, the accusations against his morals being omitted. Nor is it easy to dissociate from Hippolytus the really eloquent appeal to men of all nations to escape the terrors of Tartarus and gain an immortality of bliss by becoming converted to the Doctrine of Truth with which the Book ends, after an excursion into Hebrew Chronology, a subject which always had great fascination for Hippolytus. Although the matter is not beyond doubt, it would appear, therefore, that the summary, like the rest of the book, is by Hippolytus' own hand.

In these circumstances there is but one theory that in the opinion of the present writer will reconcile all the conflicting facts. This is that the, foundation of our text is the synopsis that Hippolytus made, as Photius tells us, after receiving instruction from Irenaeus ; that those notes were, as Hippoly- tus himself says, " set forth " by him possibly in the form of lectures, equally possibly in writing, but in any case a long time before our text was compiled ; and that when his rivalry with Callistus became acute, he thought of republish- ing these discourses and bringing them up to date by adding to them the Noetian and other non-Gnostic heresies which were then making headway among the Christian community, together with the facts about the divinatory and magical tricks which had come to his knowledge during his long stay in Rome. We may next conjecture that, after the greater part of his book was written, chance threw in his way the documents belonging to the Naassene and other Ophite sects, which went back to the earliest days of Christianity and were probably in Hippolytus' time on the verge of extinction. 1 He had before determined to omit these sects as of slight importance, 2 but now perceiving the interest of the new documents, he hastily incorporated them in his book immediately after his account of the magicians, so that they might appear as what he with some truth said they were, to wit, the fount and source of all later Gnosticism. To do this, he had to displace the account of the Jewish and Samaritan sects with which all the heresiologists of the time thought it necessary to begin their histories. He

1 So Origen, Cont. Ce/s., VI, 24, speaks of "the very insignificant sect called Ophites."

2 II, p. 116 infra, where he says that he did not think them worth refuting.


probably felt the less reluctance in doing so, because the usual mention of these sects as "heresies" in some sort contradicted his pet theory, which was that the Gnostic tenets were not a mere perversion of Christian teaching, but were derived from philosophic theories of the creation of things, and from the mystic rites.

Next let us suppose that at the close of his life, when he was perhaps hiding from Maximin's inquisitors, or even when he was at the Sardinian mines, he thought of pre- serving his work for posterity by re-writing it such copies as he had left behind him in Rome having been doubtless seized by the Imperial authorities. 1 Not having the material that he had before used then at his disposal, he had to make the best summary that he could from memory, and in the course of this found that the contents of the Books I, II, and III the material for which he had drawn in the first instance from Irenaeus had more or less escaped him. He was probably able to recall some part of Book I by the help of heathen works like those of Diogenes Laertius, Aetius, or perhaps that Alcinous whose summary of Plato's doctrines seem to have been formerly used by him. 2 The Ophite and other Gnostic heresies he remembers sufficiently to make his summary of their doctrines more easy, although he omits from the list heresiarchs like Marcus, Satornilus and Menander, about whom he had never had any exclusive information, and he now puts Justinus after instead of before Basilides. Finally, he remembered the Jewish sects which he had once intended to include, and being perhaps able to command, even in the mines, the work of a Romanized but unconverted Jew like Josephus, took from it such facts as seemed useful for his purpose as an introduction to the chronological speculation which had once formed his favourite study. With this summary as his guide he continued, it may be, to warn the companions in adversity to whom he tells us he had " become an adviser," against the perils of heresy, and to appeal to his unconverted listeners with what his former translator calls not unfitly " a noble specimen of patristic eloquence." That he died in the mines is most probable, not only from his advanced age

1 For the search made both by pagan and Christian inquisitors for their opponents' books, see Forerunners, II, 12, a See n. on p. 51 infra.


at the time of exile and the consequent unlikelihood that he would be able to withstand the pestilential climate, but also from the record of his body having been "deposited" in the Catacombs on the same day with that of his fellow- Pope and martyr Pontianus. 1 Yet the persecution of Maximin, though sharp, was short, and on the death of the tyrant after a reign of barely three years, there is no reason why the transcript of Book X should not have reached Rome, where there is some reason to think it was known from its opening words as " the Labyrinth." Later it was probably appended to Books IV to IX of Hippolytus' better known work, and the whole copied for the use of those officials who had to enquire into heresy. To them, Books II and III would be useless, and they probably thought it inexpedient to perpetuate any greater knowledge than was necessary for their better suppression, of the unclean mysteries of either pagan or Gnostic. As for Book I, besides being harmless, it had possibly by that time become too firmly connected with the name of Origen for its attribution to this other sufferer in the Maxirriinian persecution to be disturbed in later times.

It only remains to see how this theory fits in with the remarks of Photius given above. It is fairly evident that Photius is speaking from recollection only, and that the words do not suggest that he had Hippolytus' actual work before him when writing, while he throughout speaks of it in the past tense as one might speak of a document which has long since perished, although some memory of its contents have been preserved. If this were so, we might be prepared to take Photius' description as not necessarily accurate in every detail j yet, as we have it, it is almost a perfect description of our text. The 32 heresies, as we have shown above, appear in our text as in Photius' docu- ment. Our text contains not only the large excerpts from Irenaeus which we might expect from Photius' account of its inception, but also the " refutations " which do not appear in the Adversus Omnes Hareses. It extends " up to," as Photius says, Noetus and the Noetians, and although it does not contain any mention of Dositheus or the Dositheans, this may have been given in the part which has

1 Cf. Salmon in D.C.B. } s.v. "Hippolytus Romanus,"


been cut out of Book X. 1 If that were the case, or if Photius has made any mistake in the matter, as one might easily do when we consider that all the early heresiologies begin with Jewish and Samaritan sects, the only real discrepancy between our text and Photius' description of Hippolytus' work is in the matter of length. But it is by no means certain that Photius ever saw the whole work put together, and it is plain that he had never seen or had forgotten the first four books dealing with the philosophers, the mysteries and the charlatans. Without these, and without the summary, Books V to IX do not work out to more than 70,000 words in all, and this might well seem a mere " booklet " to a man then engaged in the compilation of his huge Bibliotheca. Whether, then, Hippolytus did or did not reduce to writing the exposition of heresies which he made in his youth, it seems probable that all certain trace of this exposition is lost. It is certainly not to be recognized in pseudo-Tertullian's Adversus Omnes Htereses, and the work of Hippolytus recorded by Photius was probably a copy of our text in a more or less complete form.

5. The Style of the Work

Photius' remark that Hippolytus did not keep to the Attic style is an understatement of the case with regard to our text. Jacobi, its first critic, was so struck by the number of " Latinisms " that he found in it as to conjecture that it is nothing but a Greek translation of a Latin original. 2 This is so unlikely as to be well-nigh impossible if Hippo- lytus were indeed the author; and no motive for such translation can be imagined unless it were made at a fairly late period. In that case, we should expect to find it full of words and expressions used only in Byzantine times when the Greek language had become debased by Slav and Oriental admixtures. This, however, is not the case with our text, and only one distinctly Byzantine phrase has

1 Hippolytus' denial of the Pauline authorship of the Epistle to the Ilehrews probably appeared in some work other than our text. Or it may have been cut out by the scribe as offensive to orthodoxy.

2 A flagrant case is to be found in p. 81 Cr. where n (P) has, accord- ing to Schneidevvin, been written for R, a mistake that could only be made by one used to Roman letters. Cf. Serpens and serviens, p. 487 Cr.


rewarded a careful search. 1 On the other hand neologisms are not rare, especially in Book X, 2 and everything goes to show the truth of Cruice's remark that the author was evidently not a trained writer. This is by no means incon- sistent with the theory that the whole work is by Hippolytus, and is the more probable if we conclude that it was origin- ally spoken instead of written.

This is confirmed when we look into the construction of the author's sentences. They are drawn out by a succession of relative clauses to an extent very rare among even late Greek writers, more than one sentence covering 20 or 30 lines of the printed page without a full stop, while the usual rules as to the place and order of the words are often neglected. Another peculiarity of style is the constant piling up of several similes or tropes where only one would suffice, which is very distinctly marked in the passages whenever the author is speaking for long in his own person and without quoting the words of another. In all these we seem to be listening to the words of a fluent but rather laborious orator. Thus in Book I he compares the joy that he expects to find in his work to that of an athlete gaining the crown, of a merchant selling his goods after a long voyage, of a husbandsman with his hardly won crops, and of a despised prophet seeing his predictions fulfilled. 3 So in Book V, after mentioning a book by Orpheus called Bacchica otherwise unknown, he goes on to speak of " the mystic rite of Celeus and Triptolemus and Demeter and Core and Dionysus in Eleusis, 4 when any practised writer would have said the Eleusinian mysteries simply. A similar piling up of imagery is found in Book VIII, where he speaks of the seed of the fig-tree as " a refuge for the terror-stricken, a shelter for the naked, a veil for modesty, and the sought-for produce to which the Lord came in search of fruit three times and found none." 5 But it is naturally in the phrases of the pastoral address with which Book X ends that the most salient examples occur. Thus,

1 afore for acp'ou, p. 453 Cr.

2 e.g. cpvj-ioyoviKi) (p. 9 Cr. ) noniaral (p. 86), lxG^^6\\a (p. 103), apxavBpuiros (p. 153)1 airpovoriros (p. 176), K\e\piAoyos (p. 370), irpcoro- yevercipa (p. 489), kuti5iottoiov/j. vos (p. 500), aSicTTaicTos (p. 51 1 ), rapra- pov X os (p. 523).

3 P- 35 infra. 4 p. 166 infra. 5 II, p. 99 infra.


the unconverted are told that by being instructed in the knowledge of the true God, they will escape the imminent menace of the judgment fire, and the unillumined vision of gloomy Tartarus, and the burning of the everlasting shore of the Gehenna of fire, and the eye of the Tartaruchian angels in eternal punishment, and the worm that ever coils as if for food round the body whence it was bred, 1 or, as he might have said in one word, the horrors of hell.

Less distinctive than this, although equally noticeable, is the play of words which is here frequently .employed. This is not unknown among other ecclesiastical writers of the time, and seems to have struck Charles Kingsley when, fresh from a perusal of St. Augustine, he describes him as " by a sheer mistranslation " twisting one of the Psalms to mean what it never meant in the writer's mind, and what it never could mean, and then punning on the Latin version. 2 Hippolytus when writing in his own person makes but moderate use of this figure. Sometimes he does so legitimately enough, as when he speaks of the Gnostics initiating a convert into their systems and delivering to him " the perfection of wickedness " the word used for perfection having the mystic or technical meaning of initi- ation as well as the more ordinary one of completion 3 ; or when he says that the measurements of stellar distances by Ptolemy have led to the construction of measureless 11 heresies." 4 At others he consciously puns on the double meaning of a word, as when he says that those who venture upon orgies are not far from the wrath (opyrj) of God. 5 Sometimes, again, he is led away by a merely accidental similarity of sounds as when he tries to connect the name of the Docetae, which he knows is taken from SokciV, " to seem," with " the beam ( Sokos ) in the eye " of the Sermon on the Mount. 6 He makes a second and more obvious pun on the same word later when he says that the Docetae do more than seem to be mad ; but he is most shameless when he derives " prophet " from 7rpo<cuWi/ instead of 7rpo<>7/u 7 a perversion which one can hardly imagine entering into the head of any one with the most modest acquaintance with Greek grammar.

1 II, pp. 177 ff. 2 See Augustine's sermon in Hypatia.

3 p. 33 infra. 4 p. 83 infra. 5 II, p. 2 infra.

6 II, p. 99 infra. 7 II, p. 175 infra.


But these puns, bad as they are, are venial compared with some of the authors from whom he quotes. None can equal in this respect the efforts of the Naassene author, whose plays upon words and audacious derivations might put to the blush those in the Cratylus. Adamas and Adam, Corybas and Kopvcprj (the head), Geryon and Trjpvovrjv ("flowing from earth "), Mesopotamia and "a river from the middle," Papas and 7rae, nave ("Cease ! cease ! "), AiVoXo? ("goat herd") and del 7ro\C>v ("ever turning") naas ("serpent") and vaos ("temple "), Euphrates and ev<peuVei (" he rejoices ") are but a few of the terrible puns he perpetrates. 1 The Peratic author is more sober in this respect, and yet he, of perhaps Hippolytus for him, derives the name of the sect from -nzpav ("to pass beyond"), 2 although Theodoret with more plausibility would take it from the nationality of its teacher Euphrates the Peratic or Mede ; and the chapter on the Sethians does not contain a single pun. Yet that on Justinus makes up for this by deriving the name of the god Priapus from irpioiroiiu, a word made up for the occasion. 3 "The great Gnostics of Hadrian's time," viz. : Basilides, Marcion and Valentinus, seem to have had souls above such puerilities ; but the Docetic author resumes the habit with a specially daring parallel between Baros ("a bush") and fidros (Hera's robe or " mist ") 4 and Monoimus the Arab follows suit with a sort of jingle between the Decalogue and the St/can-A^yo? or ten plagues of Egypt, which would hardly have occurred to any one without the Semitic taste for assonance. 5 Of the less-quoted writers there is no occasion to speak, because there are either no extracts from their works given in our text or they are too short for us to judge from them whether they, too, were given to punning.

Apart from such comparatively small matters, however, the difference in style between the several Gnostic writers here quoted is well marked. Nothing can be more singular at first sight than the way in which the Naassene author expresses himself. It seems to the reader on the first perusal of his lucubrations as if the writer had made up his mind to follow no train of thought beyond the limits of a single sentence. Beginning with the idea of the First Man,

1 See pp. 122, 133, 134, 135, 137, 142, 143 infra.

2 p. 154 infra. 3 p. 178 infra. 4 II, p. 102. 5 II, p. 109.


which we find running like a thread through so many Eastern creeds, from that of the Cabalists among the Jews to the Manichseans who perhaps took it directly from its primitive source in Babylon, 1 he immediately turns from this to declare the tripartite division of the universe and everything it contains, including the souls and natures of men, and to inculcate the strictest asceticism. Yet all this is written round, so to speak, a hymn to Attis which he declares relates to the Mysteries of the Mother with several allusions to the most secret rites of the Eleusinian Demeter and, as it would appear, of those of the Greek Isis. The Peratic author, on the other hand, also teaches a tripartite division of things and souls, but draws his proofs not from the same mystic sources as the Naassene but from what Hippolytus declares to be the system of the astrologers. This system, which is not even hinted at in any avowedly astrological work, is that the stars are the cause of* all that happens here below, and that we can only escape from their sway into one of the two worlds lying above ours by the help of Christ, here called the Perfect Serpent, existing as an intermediary between the Father of All and Matter. Yet this doctrine, which we can also read without much forcing of the text into the rhapsody of the Naassene, is stated with all the precision and sobriety of a scientific proposition, and is as entirely free from the fervour and breathlessness of the last-named writer as it is from his perpetual allusions to the Greek and especially to the Alexandrian and Anatolian mythology. 2 Both these again are perfectly different in style from the " Sethian " author from whom Hippolytus gives us long extracts, and who seems to have trusted mainly to an imagery which is entirely opposed to all Western conventions of modesty. 3 Yet all three aver the strongest belief in the Divinity and Divine Mission of Jesus, whom they identify with the Good Serpent, which was according to many modern authors the chief material object of adoration in every heathen temple in

1 See Forerunners ', I, lxi ff.

2 This applies to the chief Peratic author quoted. The long cata- logue connecting personages in the Greek mythology with particular stars is, as is said later, by another hand, and is introduced by a bombastic utterance like that attributed to Simon Magus.

3 Hippolytus attributes it to the Orphics ; but see de Faye for another explanation.



Asia Minor. 1 They are, therefore, rightly numbered by Hippolytus among the Ophite heresies, and seem to be founded upon traditions current throughout Western Asia which even now are not perhaps quite extinct. Yet each of the three authors quoted in our text writes in a perfectly different style from his two fellow heresiarchs, and this alone is sufficient to remove all doubt as to the genuineness of the document.

These three Ophite chapters are taken first because in our text they begin the heresiology strictly so called. 2 As has been said, the present writer believes them to be an interpolation made at the last moment by the author, and by no means the most valuable, though they are perhaps the most curious part of the book. They resemble much, however, in thought the quotations in our text attributed to Simon Magus, and although the ideas apparent in them differ in material points, yet there seems to be between the two sets of documents a kind of family likeness in the occasional use of bombastic language and unclean imagery. But when we turn from these to the extracts from the works attributed to Valentinus and Basilides which Hippolytus gives us, a change is immediately apparent. Here we have dignity of language corresponding to dignity of thought, and in the case of Valentinus especially the diction is quite equal to the passages from the discourses of that most eloquent heretic quoted by Clement of Alexandria. We feel on reading them that we have indeed travelled from the Orontes to the Tiber, and the difference in style should by itself convince the most sceptical critic at once of the good faith of our careless author and of the authenticity of the sources from which he has collected his information.

6. The Value of the Work

What interest has a work such as this of Hippolytus for us at the present day? In the first place it preserves for us many precious relics of a literature which before its dis- covery seemed lost for ever. The pagan hymn to Attis

i Forerunners, II, 49.

2 Justinus is left out of the account because he does not seem to have been an Ophite at all. The Serpent in his system is entirely evil, and therefore not an object of worship, and his sect is probably much later than the other three in the same book.


and the Gnostic one on the Divine Mission of Jesus, both appearing in Book V, are finds of the highest value for the study of the religious beliefs of the early centuries of our Era, and with these go many fragments of hardly less im- portance, including the Pindaric ode in the same book. Not less useful or less unexpected are the revelations in the same book of the true meaning of the syncretistic worship of Attis and Cybele, and the disclosure here made of the supreme mystery of the Eleusinian rites, which we now know for the first time culminated in the representation of a divine marriage and of the subsequent birth of an infant god, coupled with the symbolical display of an " ear of corn reaped in silence." For the study of classical antiquity as well as for the science of religions such facts are of the highest value.

But all this will for most of us yield in interest to the picture which our text gives us of the struggles of Christi- anity against its external and internal foes during the first three centuries. So far from this period having been one of quiet growth and development for the infant Church, we see her in Hippolytus' pages exposed not only to fierce if sporadic persecution from pagan emperors, but also to the steady and persistent rivalry of scores of competing schools led by some of the greatest minds of the age, and all com- bining some of the main tenets of Christianity with the relics of heathenism. We now know, too, that she was not always able to present an unbroken front to these violent or insidious assailants. In the highest seats of the Church, as we now learn for the first time, there were divisions on matters of faith which anticipated in some measure those which nearly rent her in twain after the promulgation of the Creed of Nicaea. Such a schism as that between the churches of Hippolytus and Callistus must have given many an opportunity to those foes who were in some sort of her own household ; while round the contest, like the irregular auxiliaries of a regular army, swarmed a crowd of wonder-workers, diviners, and other exploiters of the public credulity, of whose doings we have before gained some insight from writers like Lucian and Apuleius, but whose methods and practices are for the first time fully described by Hippolytus.

The conversion of the whole Empire under Constantine


broke once for all the power of these enemies of the Church. Schisms were still to occur, but grievous as they were, they happily proved impotent to destroy the essential unity of Christendom. The heathen faiths and the Gnostic sects derived from them were soon to wither like plants that had no root, and both they and the charlatans whose doings our author details were relentlessly hunted down by the State which had once given them shelter : while if the means used for this purpose were not such as the purer Christian ethics would now approve, we must remember that these means would probably have proved ineffective had not Christian teaching already destroyed the hold of these older beliefs on the seething populations of the Empire. That the adolescent Church should thus have been enabled to triumph over all her enemies may seem to many a better proof of her divine guidance than the miraculous powers once attributed to her. We may not all of us be able to believe that a rainstorm put out the fire on which Thekla was to be burned alive, or that the crocodiles in the tank in the arena into which she was cast were struck by lightning and floated to the surface dead. 1 Still less can we credit that the portraits of St. Theodore and other military saints left their place in the palace of the Queen of Persia and walked about in human form. 2 Such stories are for the most of us either pious fables composed for edification or half-forgotten records of natural events seen through the mist of exaggeration and misrepresentation common in the Oriental mind. But that the Church which began like a grain of mustard seed should in so short a time come to overshadow the whole civilized world may well seem when we consider the difficulties in her way a greater miracle than any of those recorded in the Apocryphal Gospels and Acts ; and the full extent of these difficulties we should not have known save for Mynas' discovery of our text.

1 Acts of Paul and Thekla, passim.

a E. A. T. Wallis Budge, Miscellaneous Coptic Texts in Dialect of Upper Egypt, London, 19 1 5, pp. 579 ff.



These are the contents 2 of the First Part 3 of the Refu- P- i, tation of all Heresies ; Craice.

What were the tenets of the natural philosophers and who these were ; and what those of the ethicists and who these were; and what those of the dialecticians and who the dialecticians were.

1 As has been said in the Introduction (p. I supra) four early codices of the First Book exist, the texts being known from the libraries where they are to be found as the Medicean, the Turin, the Ottobonian and the Barberine respectively. That published by Miller was a copy of the Medicean codex already put into print by Fabricius, but was carefully worked over by Roeper, Scott and others who like Gronovius, Wolf and Delarue, collated it with the other three codices. The different readings are, I think, all noted by Cruice in his edition of i860, but are not of great importance, and I have only noticed them here when they make any serious change in the meaning of the passage. Hermann Diels has again revised the text in his Doxographi Grctci, Berlin, 1879, with a result that Salmon {D.C.B. s.v. "Hippolytus Romanus") declares to be "thoroughly satisfac- tory," and the reading of this part of our text may now, perhaps, be regarded as settled. Only the opening and concluding paragraphs are of much value for our present purpose, the account of philosophic opinions which lies between being, as has been already said, a compilation of compilations, and not distinguished by any special insight into the ideas of the authors summarized, with the works of most of whom Hippolytus had probably but slight acquaintance. An excep- tion should perhaps be made in the case of Aristotle, as it is probable that Hippolytus, like other students of his time, was trained in Aristotle's dialectic and analytic system for the purpose of disputation. But this will be better discussed in connection with Book VII.

rdSe evecTTiv v rf} irpuiTT} rod Kara iraawv alp4aewv i\4yxov. This formula is repeated at the head of Books V-X with the alteration of the number only.

3 The word missing after irpxTT] was probably /j.epib'i, the only likely word which would agree with the feminine adjective. It would be appropriate enough if the theory of the -division of the work into spoken lectures be correct. The French and German editors alike translate in libro primo.



Now the natural philosophers mentioned are Thales, Pythagoras, Empedocles, Heraclitus, Anaximander, Anaximenes, Anaxagoras, Archelaus, Parmenides, Leucippus, Democritus, Xenophanes, Ecphantus, and p. 2 . Hippo. The ethicists are Socrates, pupil of Archelaus the physicist and Plato, pupil of Socrates. These mingled together the three kinds of philosophy. The dialecticians are Aristotle, pupil of Plato and the founder of dialectics, and the Stoics Chrysippus and Zeno.

Epicurus, however, maintained an opinion almost exactly contrary to all these. So did Pyrrho the Academic x who asserts the incomprehensibility of all things. There are also the Brachmans 2 among the Indians, the Druids among the Celts, and Hesiod.


No fable made famous by the Greeks is to be neglected. For even those opinions of theirs which lack consistency are believed through the extravagant madness of the heretics, who, from hiding in silence their own unspeakable mysteries, are supposed by many to worship God. Whose opinions also we aforetime set forth within measure, not displaying them in detail but refuting them in the rough, 3 as we did not hold it fit to bring their unspeakable deeds to light. This we did that, as we set forth their tenets by hints only, they, becoming ashamed lest by telling outright their secrets we should prove them to be godless, might abate somewhat from their unreasoned purpose and unlawful enterprise. 4 But since I see that they have not been put to shame by our clemency, and have not con- sidered God's long-suffering under their blasphemies, I am

1 There seems no reason for numbering Pyrrho of Elis among the members of the Academy, Old or New. Diogenes Laertius, from whose account of his doctrines Hippolytus seems to have derived the dogma of incomprehensibility which he here attributes to Pyrrho, makes him the founder of the Sceptics. He was a contemporary of Alexander the Great, and probably died before Arcesilaus founded the New Academy in 280 B.C.

2 Mr. Macmahon here reads "Brahmins." Their habits appear more like those of Yogis or Sanya<ns.

3 aSpofiepws : in contradistinction to Kara Xenrhv just above.

4 aXoyiarov yj>w/j.r)s Ka\ adefiirov i-mx^^P'ho'^^s. The Turin MS. transposes the adjectives.


forced, in order that they may either be shamed into repentance, or remaining as they are may be rightly judged, to proceed to show their ineffable mysteries which they impart to those candidates for initiation who are thoroughly trustworthy. Yet they do not previously avow them, unless they have enslaved such a one by keeping him long in suspense and preparing him by blasphemy against the true God, 1 and they see him longing for the jugglery of the disclosure. And then, when they have proved him to be bound fast by iniquity, 2 they initiate him and impart to him the perfection of evil things, 3 first binding him by oath neither to tell nor to impart them to any one unless he too has been enslaved in the same way. Yet from him to whom they have been only communicated, no oath is longer necessary. For whoso has submitted to learn and to p. 4. receive their final mysteries will by the act itself and by his own conscience be bound not to utter them to others. For were he to declare to any man such an offence, he would neither be reckoned longer among men, nor thought worthy any more to behold the light. Which things also are such an offence that even the dumb animals do not attempt them, as we shall say in its place. 4 But since the argument compels us to enter into tlje case very deeply, we do not think fit to hold our peace, but setting forth in detail the. opinions of all, we shall keep silence on none. And it seems good to us to spare no labour even if thereby the tale be lengthened. For we shall leave behind us no small help to the life of men against further error, when all see clearly the hidden and unspeakable orgies of which

1 irpbs rdv uutccs @ebv. The phrase is used frequently hereafter, particularly in Book X.

2 Cf. the "bond of iniquity" in St. Peter's speech to Simon Magus, Acts viii. 23.

3 rb rf\eiov twv Kanuv. reXeiov being a mystic word for final or complete initiation.

4 a /cat Ta a\oya k. t. A.. Schneidewin and Cruice both read tl ko.1, Roeper et simply, others el on. The first seems the best reading ; but none of the suggestions is quite satisfactory. The promise to say what it was that even the dumb animals would not have done is unfulfilled. It cannot have involved any theological question, but probably refers to the obscene sacrament of the Pistis Sophia, the Bruce Papyrus and Huysmans' La-Bas. Yet Hippolytus does not again refer to it, and of all the heretics in our text, the Simonians are the only ones accused of celebrating it, even by Epiphanius.


the heretics are the stewards and which they impart only to the initiated. But none other will refute these things than the Holy Spirit handed down in the Church which the Apostles having first received did distribute to those who rightly believed. Whose successors we chance to be and partakers of the same grace of high priesthood 1 and of p. 5. teaching and accounted guardians of the Church. Where- fore we close not our eyes nor abstain from straight speech ; but neither do we tire in working with our whole soul and body worthily to return worthy service to the beneficent God. Nor do we make full return save that we slacken not in that which is entrusted to us ; but we fill full the measures of our opportunity and without envy communicate to all whatsoever the Holy Spirit shall provide. Thus we not only bring into the open by refutation the affairs of the enemy ; 2 but also whatever the truth has received by the Father's grace and ministered to men. These things we preach 3 as one who is not ashamed, both interpreting them by discourse and making them to bear witness by writings.

In order then, as we have said by anticipation, that we may show these men to be godless alike in purpose, character and deed, and from what source their schemes have come and because they have in their attempts taken nothing from the Holy Scriptures, nor is it from guarding the succession of any saint that they have been hurried into p. 6. these things, but their theories 4 take their origin from the wisdom of the Greeks, from philosophizing opinions, 5 from would-be mysteries and from wandering astrologers it seems then proper that we first set forth the tenets of the philosophers of the Greeks and point out to our readers 6 which of them are the oldest and most reverent towards

1 'Apxteparela- A neologism. This is the passage relied upon to show that our author was a bishop.

2 aWorpta = foreign. Cruice has aliena. But it is here evidently contrasted with the " things of the truth " in the next sentence.

3 KypvaaojAsv.

4 ra do^aC6fieva, lit., u matters of opinion."

8 lit Soy/j.a.TU}v (pt\o<ro(povfx4v(i}v. The context shows, that here, and probably elsewhere in the book, the phrase is used contemptuously.

6 tois ivTvyx&vovaiv. As in Polybius, the word can be translated in this sense throughout. Yet as meaning " those who fall in with this " it is as applicable to spoken as to written words.


the Divinity. 1 Then, that we should match 2 each heresy with a particular opinion so as to show how the protagonist of the heresy, meeting with these schemes, gained advantage by seizing their principles and being driven on from them to worse things constructed his own system. 3 Now the undertaking is full of toil and requires much research. But we shall not be found wanting. For at the last it will give us much joy, as with the athlete who has won the crown with much labour, or the merchant who has gained profit after great tossing of the sea, or the husbandman who gets the benefit of his crops from the sweat of his brow, or the prophet who after reproaches and insults sees his predictions come to pass. 4 We will therefore begin by declaring which of the Greeks first made demonstration of natural philosophy. For of them especially have the protagonists of the heretics become the plagiarists, as we shall afterwards show by setting them side by side. And p. when we have restored to each of these pioneers his own, we shall put the heresiarchs beside them naked and unseemly. 5

1 . Thales.

It is said that Thales the Milesian, one of the seven sages, was the first to take in hand natural philosophy. 6 He said that the beginning and end of the universe was water ; 7 for that from its solidification and redissolution all things have been constructed and that all are borne about by it. And that from it also come earthquakes and the turnings about

1 rb Oelov. Both here and in Book X our author shows a preference for this phrase instead of the more usual 6 eos.

2 (Tvfx&dWu}.

3 86y/xa.

4 to. kaAr)0evTa airo,8aivovra. Note the piling up of similes natural in a spoken peroration.

5 yvfxvovs kcu aaxVfJ-ovas, nudos et turpes, Cr. Stripped of originality seems to be the threat intended.

6 <pi\o<ro<piav <pv(TiK7)v. What we should now call Physics,

7 rb Trap is the phrase here and elsewhere used for the universe or "whole" of Nature, and includes Chaos or unformed Matter. The k6(T[xos or ordered world is only part of the universe. Diog. Laert, I, vit. Thales, c. 6, says merely that Thales thought water to be the apxh or beginning of all things. As this is confirmed by all other Greek writers who have quoted him, we may take the further statement here attributed to him as the mistake of Hippolytus or of the compiler he is copying.


of the stars and the motions of the winds. 1 And that all things are formed and flow in accordance with the nature of the first cause of generation ; but that the Divinity is that which has neither beginning nor end. 2 Thales, having devoted himself to the system of the stars and to an enquiry into them, became for the Greeks the first who was responsible for this branch of learning. And he, gazing upon the heavens and saying that he was apprehending p. 8. with care the things above, fell into a well ; whereupon a certain servant maid of the name of Thratta 3 laughed at him and said : "While intent on beholding things in heaven, he does not see what is at his feet." And he lived about the time of Croesus.

2. Pythagoras.

And not far from this time there flourished another philosophy founded by Pythagoras, who some say was a Samian. They call it the Italic because Pythagoras, fleeing from Polycrates, the tyrant of Samos, took up his abode in a city of Italy and there spent his life. Whose successors in the school did not differ much from him in judgment. And he, after having enquired into physics, combined with it astronomy, geometry and music. 4 And thus he showed that unity is God, 5 and after curiously studying the nature of number, he said that the cosmos makes melody and was put together by harmony, and he first reduced the move- ment of the seven stars 6 to rhythm and melody. Wonder- ing, however, at the arrangement of the universals, 7 he

1 alpwv in text. Roeper suggests &<TTpwu, "stars."

2 So Clement of Alexandria, Stromateis, V, c. 14, and Diog. Laert., I. vit. cit., c. 9.

3 Diog. Laert., I, vit. cit., c. 8, makes his derider an old woman. Qparra is not a proper name, but means a Thracian woman, as Hippo- lytus should have known.

4 Roeper adds ko\ apid/xeroc^p, apparently in view of the speculations about the monad.

6 Aristotle in his Metaphysica, Bk. I, c. 5, attributes the first use of this dogma to Xenophanes.

6 By these are meant the planets, including therein the Sun and Moon. Cf. Sextus Empiricus, Adversus Astrologos, p. 343 (Cod.) passim.

7 ra o\a = entities which must needs differ from one another in kind. The phrase is thus used by Plato, Aristotle and all the neo- Platonic writers.


expected his disciples to keep silence as to the first things p. 9- learned by them, as if they were mystae of the universe coming into the cosmos. Thereafter when it seemed that they had partaken sufficiently of the schooling of the dis- courses, and could themselves philosophize about stars and Nature, he, having judged them purified, bade them speak. He divided the disciples into two classes, and called these Esoterics and those Exoterics. To the first-named he en- trusted the more complete teaching, to the others the more restricted. He applied himself 1 to magic 2 also, as they say, and himself invented a philosophy of the origin of Nature, 3 based upon certain numbers and measures, saying that the origin of the arithmetical philosophy comprised this method by synthesis. The first number became a principle which is one, illimitable, incomprehensible, and contains within itself all the numbers that can come to infinity by multiplication. 4 But the first unit was by hypothesis the origin of numbers, the which is a male monad begetting like a father all the other numbers. In the second place is the dyad, a female number, and the same is called even by the arithmeticians. In the third place is the triad, a male p. 10. number, and it has been called odd by the arithmeticians' decree. After all these is the tetrad, a female number, and this is also called even, because it is female. There- fore all the numbers derived from the genus 5 (now the illimitable genus is "number") are four, from which was constructed, according to them, the perfect number, the decad. For the 1, 2, 3, 4 become 10 if for each number its appropriate name be substantially kept. 6 This decad

1 icp-q^/aro, attigit, Cr. Frequent in Pindar.

2 So Timon in the Silli, as quoted by Diog. Laert., VIII, vii. Pyth., c. 20.

3 (pvaioyoviK^v. The Barberine MS. has (pvatoyvw/xouiK^v, evidently inserted by some scribe who connected it with the absurd system of metoposcopy described in Book IV.

4 Kara rb -TrArjdos, wniltitudine, Cr.

5 For definitions and examples of this term see Aristot., Metaphys., IV. c. 28.

6 I cannot trace Hippolytus' authority for attributing these neo- Pythagorean puerilities to Pythagoras himself. Diog. Laert., Aristotle and the rest represent him as saying only that the monad was the beginning of everything, and that from this and the undefined dyad numbers proceed. The general reader may be recommended to Mr. Alfred Williams Benn's statement in The Philosophy of Greece (Lond.,


Pythagoras said was a sacred Tetractys, a source of ever- lasting Nature containing roots within itself, and that from the same number all the numbers have their beginning. For the n and the 12 and the rest share the beginning of their being from the 10. The four divisions of the same decad, the perfect number, are called number, monad, 1 square 2 and cube. The conjunctions and minglings of p. 11. which make for the birth of increase and complete naturally the fruitful number. For when the square is multiplied 3 by itself, it becomes a square squared ; when into the cube, the square cubed ; when the cube is multiplied by the cube, it becomes a cube cubed. So that all the numbers from which comes the birth of things which are, are seven ; to wit : number, monad, square, cube, square of square, cube of square and cube of cube.

He declared also that the soul is immortal and that there is a change from one body to another. 4 Wherefore he said that he himself had been before Trojan times Aethalides, 5 and that in the Trojan era he was Euphorbus, and after that Hermotimus the Samian, after which Pyrrho of Delos, and fifthly Pythagoras. But Diodorus the Eretrian and Aristoxenus the writer on music 6 say that Pythagoras

1898), pp. 78 ff. that "the Greeks did not think of numbers as pure abstractions, but in the most literal sense as figures, that is to say, limited portions of space."

1 Macmahon thinks "number" and "monad" should here be transposed, as Pythagoras considered according to him the monad as " the highest generalization of number and a conception in abstraction." Yet the monad was not the highest abstraction of current (Greek) philosophy. See Edwin Hatch, Itiftuence of Greek Ideas upon the Christian Church (Hibbert Lectures), Lond., 1890, p. 255.

2 dvva/xis is here used like our own mathematical expression "power." Why Hippolytus should associate it especially with the power of 2 does not appear. By Greek mathematicians it seems rather to be applied to the square root.

3 Kvki<r6fi, involvit, Cr. It cannot here mean "cubed." Another' mistake occurs in the same sentence, where it is said that the square multiplied by the cube is a cube. The sentence is fortunately repeated with the needful correction in Book IV, p. 116 infra. Macmahon gives the proper notation as (a 2 ) 2 = a 4 , (a 2 ) 3 = a 6 , (a 3 ) 3 =a*.

4 fieTevaw/xaTaj-is. The phrase which is here correctly used through- out, but which has somehow slipped into English as metempsychosis.

6 So Diog. Laert., VIII, vit. Pyth., c. 4.

6 Diodorus of Eretria is not otherwise known. Aristoxenus is mentioned by Cicero, Qucest. Tuscu/an, I, 18, as a writer on music.


went to visit Zaratas * the Chaldaean : and Zaratas explained to him that there are from the beginning two causes of things that are, a father and mother : and that the father is light and the mother, darkness : and the divisions of the light are hot, dry, light (in weight) and swift ; but those of the darkness cold, moist, heavy and slow. From these the whole cosmos was constructed, to wit : from a female and p. 12. a male : and that the nature of the cosmos 2 is according to musical harmony, wherefore the sun makes his journey rhythmically. And about the things which come into being from the earth and cosmos, they say Zaratas spoke thus : there are two demons, 3 a heavenly one and an earthly. Of these the earthly one sent on high a thing born from the earth which is water j but that the heavenly fire partook of the air, hot and cold. Wherefore, he says, none of these things destroys or pollutes the soul, for the same are the substance of all. And it is said that Pythagoras ordered that beans should not be eaten, because Zaratas said that at the be- ginning and formation of all things when the earth was still being constructed and put together, the bean was produced. And he says that a proof of this is, that if one chews a bean to pulp and puts it in the sun for some time (for this plays a direct part in the matter), it will give out the smell of human seed. And he says that another proof is even clearer. If when the bean is in flower, we take the bean and its blossom, put it into ajar, anoint this, bury it in earth, p. 13. and in a few days dig it up, we shall see it at first having the form of a woman's pudenda and afterwards on close examin- ation a child's head growing with it.

Pythagoras perished at Crotona in Italy having been burned along with his disciples. And he had this custom that when any one came to him as a disciple, he had to sell

1 That is, of course, Zoroaster. The account here given of his doctrines does not agree with what we know of them from other sources. The minimum date for his activity (700 B.c). makes it impossible for him to have been a contemporary of Pythagoras. See the translator's Forerunners and Rivals of Christianity, I, p. 126; II, p. 232.

2 Reading with Roeper r^v K6a-fiov <pvaiu ko.1. Cruice has rbv KdtTfxov (pucriv Kara, "that the cosmos is a nature according to," etc.

3 Sai^oves, spirits or daemons in the Greek sense, not necessarily evil. But Aetius, de Placit. rhilosoph. ap. Diels Doxogr. 306, makes Pythagoras use the word as equivalent to rb k<xk6v. Cf. pp. 52, 92 infra.


his possessions and deposit the money under seal with Pythagoras, and remain silent sometimes for three and some- times for five years while he was learning. But on being again set free, he mixed with the others and remained a disciple and took his meals along with them. But if he did not, he took back what belonged to him and was cast out. Now the Esoterics were called Pythagoreans and the others Pythagorists. And of his disciples who escaped the burning were Lysis and Archippus and Zamolxis, Pytha- goras' house-slave, who is said to have taught the Druids among the Celts to cultivate the Pythagorean philosophy. And they say that Pythagoras learned numbers and measures from the Egyptians, and being struck with the plausible, imposing and with difficulty disclosed wisdom of the priests, p. 14. he imitated them also in enjoining silence and, lodging his disciples in cells, made them lead a solitary life. 1

3. About Empedodes.

But Empedocles, born after these men, also said many things about the nature of demons, and how they being very many go about managing things upon the earth. He said that the beginning of the universe was Strife and Friendship and that the intellectual fire of the monad is God, and that all things were constructed from fire and will be resolved into fire. 2 In which opinion the Stoics also nearly agree, since they expect an ecpyrosis. But most of all he accepted the change into different bodies, saying :

"For truly a boy I became, and a maiden, And bush, and bird of prey, and fish, A wanderer from the salt sea." 3

1 Hippolytus like nearly every other writer of his time here confuses the Egyptians with the Alexandrian Greeks. It was these last and not the subjects of the Pharaohs who were given to mathematics and geometry, of which sciences they laid the foundations on which we have since built. Certain devotees of the Alexandrian god Serapis also shut themselves up in cells of the Serapeum, which they could hardly have done in any temple in Pharaonic times. See Forerunners, I, 79 Hippolytus gives a much more elaborate and detailed account of Pythagorean teaching in Book VI, II, pp. 20 ff. infra.

2 Diog. Laert., VIII, vit. Heradit., c. 6, attributes this opinion to Heraclitus.

3 This verse appears in Diog. Laert., VIII, vit. Empedocles, c. 6.


He declared that all souls transmigrated into all living p. 15. things. 1 For Pythagoras the teacher of these men said he himself had been Euphorbus who fought at Ilion, and claimed to recognize the shield. 2 This of Empedocles.

4. About Heraditus.

But Heraclitus of Ephesus, a physicist, bewailed all things, accusing the ignorance of all life and of all men, and pitying the life of mortals. For he claimed that he knew all things and other men nothing. 3 And he also made statements nearly in accord with Empedocles, as he said that Discord and Friendship were the beginning of all things, and that the intellectual fire was God and that all things were borne in upon one another and did not stand still. And like Empedocles he said that every place of ours was filled with evil things, and that these come as far as the moon extending from the place surrounding the earth, but go no further, since the whole place above the moon is very pure. 4 Thus, too, it seemed to Heraclitus.

And after these came other physicists whose opinions we p- 16. do not think it needful to declare as they are in no way incongruous with those aforesaid. But since the school was by no means small, and many physicists afterwards sprang from these, all discoursing in different fashion on the nature of the universe, it seems also fit to us, now that we have set forth the philosophy derived from Pythagoras, to return in order of succession to the opinions of those who adhered to Thales, and after recounting the same to come to the ethical and logical philosophies, whereof Socrates founded the ethical and Aristotle the dialectic.

1 So Diog. Laert., ubi. cit.

2 This sentence seems to have got out of place. It should probably follow that on Lysis and Archippus, etc., on the last page. The story of the shield is told by Diog. Laert., VIII, vit. Pyth., c. 4, and by Ovid, Mriamorph., XV, 162 ff. For more about Empedocles see Book VII, II, pp. 82 ff. infra.

3 Diog. Laert., VIII, vit.Heraclit., from whom Hippolytus is probably quoting, says that in his boyhood, Heraclitus used to say, he knew nothing, in his manhood everything. Has Hippolytus garbled this ?

4 There is nothing of this in what Hippolytus, Diogenes Laertir.s or any other author extant gives as Empedocles' opinions, ra. ko.k.6. seems to be equivalent to 8a.ifj.oves, as suggested in n. on p. 39 supra. Hippo- lytus returns to Heraclitus' opinions in Book IX, II, pp. 119 ff, infra.


5. About Anaximander.

Now Anaximander was a hearer of Thales. He was Anaximander of Miletus, son of Praxiades. 1 He said that the beginning of the things that are was a certain nature of the Boundless from which came into being the heavens and the ordered worlds 2 t within them. And that this principle is eternal and grows not old and encompasses all the ordered worlds. And he says time is limited by birth,

p. 17- substance, 3 and death. He said that the Boundless is a principle and element of the things that are and was the first to call it by the name of principle. But that there is an eternal movement towards Him wherein it happens that the heavens are born.' And that the earth is a heavenly body 4 supported by nothing, but remaining in its place by reason of its equal distance from everything. And that its form is a watery cylinder 5 like a stone pillar ; and that we tread on one of its surfaces, but that there is another opposite to it. And that the stars are a circle of fire distinct from the fire in the cosmos, but surrounded by air. And that certain fiery exhalations exist in those places where the stars appear, and by the obstruction of these exhalations come the eclipses. And that the moon appears sometimes waxing and sometimes waning through the obstruction or closing of her paths. And that the circle of the sun is 27 times greater than that of the moon and that the sun is in the highest place in the heavens and the circles of the fixed

p. 18. stars in the lowest. And that the animals came into being in moisture evaporated by the sun. And that mankind was at the beginning very like another animal, to wit, a fish. And that winds come from the separation and condensation of the subtler atoms of the air 6 and rain from the earth giving back under the sun's heat what it gets from the clouds, 7

1 So Diog. Laert., II, vit. Anaximander, c. I, verbatim.

2 k6<t/j.oi. He therefore believed in a plurality of worlds.

3 ovaia. It may here mean essence or being. A good discussion of the changes in the meaning of the word and its successors, vwoaTaais and TTpoawrrou, is to be found in Hatch, op. cit., pp. 275-278.

4 fxerecapov, a phenomenon in the heavens, but also something hung up or suspended.

5 GTpoyyvXov, used by Thcophrastus for logs of timber.

6 Lit., "from the separation of the finest atoms of the nir and from their movement when crowded together."

7 So Roeper. Cruice agrees.


and lightnings from the severance of the clouds by the winds falling upon them. He was born in the 3rd year of the 42nd Olympiad. 1

6. About Anaximenes.

Anaximenes, who was also a Milesian, the son of Eurys- tratus, said that the beginning was a boundless air from which what was, is, and shall be and gods and divine things came into being, while the rest came from their descend- ants. But that the condition of the air is such that when it is all over alike 2 it is invisible to the eye, but it is made perceptible by cold and heat, by damp and by motion. And that it is ever-moving, for whatever is changeable 3 changes not unless it be moved. For it appears different when condensed and rarefied. For when it diffuses into greater rarity fire is produced ; but when again halfway condensed into air, a cloud is formed from the air's p. 19. compression ; and when still further condensed, water, and when condensed to the full, earth; and when to the very highest degree, stones. And that consequently the great rulers of formation are contraries, to wit, heat and cold. And that the earth is a flat surface borne up on the air in the same way as the sun and moon and the other stars. 4 For all fiery things are carried through the air laterally. 5 And that the stars are produced from the earth by reason of the mist which rises from it and which when rarefied becomes fire, and from this ascending fire 6 the stars are constructed. And that there are earth-like natures in the stars' place carried about with them. But he says that the

1 A. W. Benn, op.cit., p. 51, gives a readable account of Anaximander's speculations in physics. Diels, op. cit., pp. 132, 133 shows in an excellently clear conspectus of parallel passages the different authors from whom Hippolytus took the statements in our text regarding the Ionians. The majority are to be found in Simplicius' commentaries on Aristotle, Simplicius' source being, according to Diels, the fragments of Theophrastus' book on physics. Next in order come Plutarch's Stromaia and Aetius' De Placitis Philosophorum, many passages being common to both.

2 bfxaXwTaros, aeqtiabilis, Cr., "homogeneous."

3 Lit., " whatever changes."

4 Planets. See n. on p. 36 supra.

5 Sib. ttAcLtos. Cruice translates ob latitudinem, Macmahon " through expanse of space."

1 ^6T (i>pi(6/j.evov. See n. on p. 42 supra.



stars do not move under the earth, as others assume, but round the earth : asa cap is turned on one's head, and that the sun is hidden, not because it is under the earth, but because it is hidden by the earth's higher parts, and by reason of its greater distance from us. And because of their great distance, the stars give out no heat. And that p. 20. winds are produced when the air after condensation escapes rarefied ; but that when it collects and is thus condensed 2 to the full, it becomes clouds and thus changes into water. Also that hail is produced when the water brought down from the clouds is frozen ; and snow when the same clouds are wetter when freezing. And lightning come when the clouds are forced apart by the strength of the winds j for when thus driven apart, there is a brilliant and fiery flash. Also that a rainbow is produced by the solar rays falling upon solidified air, and an earthquake from the earth's increasing in size by heating and cooling. This then Anaximenes. He flourished about the 1st year of the 58th Olympiad. 3

7. About Anaxagoras.

After him was Anaxagoras of Clazomene, son of Hegesi- bulus. He said that the beginning of the universe was mind and matter, mind being the creator and matter that which came unto being. 4 For that when all things were together, mind came and arranged them. He says, however, that the material principles are boundless, even the smallest of them. And that all things partake of movement, being p. 21. moved by mind, and that like things come together. And that the things in heaven were set in order by their circular motion. 5 That therefore what was dense and moist and dark and cold and everything heavy came together in the middle,

1 So Diog. Laert., II, vit. Anaxim., c. 1. This is the feature of Anaxi- menes' teaching which seems to have most impressed the Greeks.

2 TraxvOevra.

3 Diog. Laert., ubi cit., puts Anaximander in the 58th Olympiad (548 B.C.) and Anaximenes in the 63rd. This is more probable than the dates in our text. For Anaximenes' sources, mostly Aetius and Theo- phrastus, see Diels' conspectus mentioned in n. on p. 43 supra.

4 tV Se v\r]v yivofiV7]v, fieri materiam, Cr.

5 rrjs iyKVKXtov KivhaecDS. Macmahon says "orbicular," but it means if anything centripetal and centrifugal, as appears in next sentence.


and from the compacting of this the earth was established ; x but that the opposites, to wit, the hot, the brilliant and the light were drawn off to the distant aether. Also that the earth is flat in shape and remains suspended 2 through its great size, and from there being no void and because the air which is strongest bears (up) the upheld earth. And that the sea exists from the moisture on the earth and the waters in it evaporating and then condensing in a hollow place ; 3 and that the sea is supposed to have come into being by this and from the rivers flowing into it. And the rivers, too, are established by the rains and the waters within the earth ; for the earth is hollow and holds water in its cavities. But that the Nile increases in summer when the snows from the northern parts are carried down into it. And that the sun and moon and all the stars are burning stones and are carried about by the rotation of the aether. And that below p. 22. the stars are the sun and moon and certain bodies not seen by us whirled round together. And that the heat of the stars is not felt by us because of their great distance from the earth ; but yet their heat is not like that of the sun from their occupying a colder region. Also that the moon is below the sun and nearer to us ; and that the size of the sun is greater than that of the Peloponnesus. And that the moon has no light of her own, but only one from the sun. And that the revolution of the stars takes place under the earth. Also that the moon is eclipsed when the earth stands in her way, and sometimes the stars which are below the moon, 4 and the sun when the moon stands in his way during new moons. And that both the sun and moon make turnings (solstices) when driven back by the air ; but that the moon turns often through not being able to master the cold. He was the first to determine the facts about eclipses and renewals of light. 5 And he said that the moon was like the

1 vtto(tt?)vcu. Hippolytus seems most frequently to use the word in this sense.

2 fxtTtwpov. See n. on p. 42 supra.

3 rd re eV avrrj vSara i^arixiaQivra . . . viroaravra ovtus yeyovevat. I propose to fill the lacuna with /ecu irvKPwdevra eV icolAcp. For a description of this cavity see the Phcedo of Plato, c. 138. I do not understand Roeper's suggested emendation as given by Cruice.

4 There must be some mistake here. lie has just said that the sun and moon are below the stars.

6 (pooTio-fiol, illuminationes, Cr. So Macmahon. It clearly means here "shinings forth again," or "lightings up."


earth and had within it plains and ravines. And that the Milky Way was the reflection of the light of the stars which are not lighted up by the sun. And that the shooting stars P- 23. are as it were sparks which glance off from the movement of the pole. And that winds are produced by the rarefaction of the air by the sun and by their drying up as they get towards the pole and are borne away from it. And that thunderstorms are produced by heat falling upon the clouds. And that earthquakes come from the upper air falling upon that under the earth ; for when this last is moved, the earth upheld by it is shaken. And that animals at the beginning were produced from water, but thereafter from one another, and that males are born when the seed secreted from the right parts of the body adheres to the right parts of the womb and females when the opposite occurs. He flourished in the 1st year of the 88th Olympiad, about which time they say Plato was born. 1 They say also that Anaxa- goras came to have a knowledge of the future.

8. About Archelaus. Archelaus was of Athenian race and the son of Apollo- dorus. He like Anaxagoras asserted the mixed nature of matter and agreed with him as to the beginning of things. But he said that a certain mixture 2 was directly inherent in mind, and that the source of movement is the separation from one another of heat and cold and that the p. 24. heat is moved and the cold remains undisturbed. Also that water when heated flows to the middle of the universe wherein heated air and earth are produced, of which one is borne aloft while the other remains below. And that the earth remains fixed and exists because of this and abides in the middle of the universe, of which, so to speak, it forms no part and which is delivered from the conflagration. 3 The first result of which burning is the nature of the stars, the

1 Diog. Laert. quotes from Apollodorus' Chronica that Anaxa- goras died in the 1st year of the 78th Olympiad, or ten years before Plato's birth. For Hippolytus' sources for his teaching, mainly Diog. Laert. , Aetius and Theophrastus, see Diels, ubi cit.

2 /jujfxa, not ^I|ts. But of what could the creative mind be com- pounded before anything else had come into being?

3 4k rrjs Trvpwa-eus. Does he mean the heated air, and why should the earth form no part of the universe ? Something is probably omitted here.


greatest whereof is the sun and the second the moon while of the others some are greater and some smaller. And he says that the heaven is arched over us x and has made the air transparent and the earth dry. For that at first it was a pool ; since it was lofty at the horizon, but hollow in the middle. And he brings forward as a proof of this hollowness, that the sun does not rise and set at the same time for all parts as must happen if the earth were level. And as to animals, he says that the earth first became heated in the lower part when the hot and cold mingled and man 2 and the other animals appeared. And all things were unlike one another and had the same diet, being nourished on p. 25. mud. And this endured for a little, but at last generation from one another arose, and man became distinct from the other animals and set up chiefs, laws, arts, cities and the rest. And he says that mind is inborn in all animals alike. For that every body is supplied with 3 mind, some more slowly and some quicker than the others.

Natural philosophy lasted then from Thales up to Arche- laus. Of this last Socrates was a hearer. But there are also many others putting forward different tenets concerning the Divine and the nature of the universe, whose opinions if we wished to set them all out would take a great mass of books. But it would be best, after having recalled by name those of them who are, so to speak, the chorus-leaders of all who philosophized in later times and who have furnished starting-points for systems, to hasten on to what follows. 4

9. About Parmenides.

For truly Parmenides also supposed the universe to p. 2 6. be eternal and ungenerated and spherical in form. 5 Nor did

1 'EirLKAidrjj/ai, de super incumbere, Cr., "inclined at an angle, Macmahon. Evidently Archelaus imagined a concave heaven fitting over the earth like a dish cover or an upturned boat or coracle. This was the Babylonian theory. Cf. Maspero, Hist. anc nne de f Orient dassique, Paris, 1895, I> P- 543> ant l illustration. Many of the Ionian ideas about physics doubtless come from the same source.

2 Reading, as Cruice suggests, koX avdpuirovs for nal uvo^oia. So Diog. Laert., II, vit. Archel., c. 17.

3 xp^ (Ta<T ^ al f uttj Cr., "employed," Macmahon.

4 A fair specimen of Hippolytus' verbose and inflated style.

5 No other philosopher has yet been quoted as saying that the earth was spherical.


he avoid the common opinion making fire and earth the principles of the universe, the earth as matter, but the fire as cause and creator. [He said that the ordered world would be destroyed, but in what way, he did not say.] 1 But he said that the universe was eternal and ungenerated and spherical in form and all over alike, bearing no impress and immoveable and with definite limits.

10. About Leucippus.

But Leucippus, a companion of Zeno, did not keep to the same opinion (as Parmenides), but says that all things are boundless and ever- moving and that birth and change are unceasing. And he says that fulness and the void are elements. And he says also that the ordered worlds came into being thus : when many bodies were crowded together p. 27. and flowed from the ambient 2 into a great void, on coming into contact with one another, those of like fashion and similar form coalesced, and from their intertwining yet others were generated and increased and diminished by a certain necessity. But what that necessity may be he did not define.

n. About Democritus.

But Democritus was an acquaintance of Leucippus. This was Democritus of Abdera, son of Damasippus, 3 who met with many Gymnosophists among the Indians and with priests and astrologers 4 in Egypt and with Magi in Babylon. But he speaks like Leucippus about elements, to wit, fulness and void, saying that the full is that which is but the void that which is not, and he said this because things are ever moving in the void. He said also that the ordered worlds are boundless and differ in size, and that in some there is neither sun nor moon, but that in others both are

1 This sentence is said to have been interpolated.

2 4k rod irepiexovTos, " from the surrounding (aether)." An expression much used by writers on astrology and generally translated "ambient."

3 Diog. Laert., IX, vit. Dem., c. 1, says either Damasippus or Hegesis- tratus or Athenocritus.

4 It is doubtful whether astrology was known in Egypt before the Alexandrian age. Diog. Laert., vit. cit., quotes from Amisthenes that Democritus studied mathematics there, and astrology was looked on by the Romans as a branch of mathematics. Cf. Sextus Empiricus, ubi cit., supra.


greater than with us, and in yet others more in number. And that the intervals between the ordered worlds are p. 28 unequal, here more and there less, and that some increase, others flourish and others decay, and here they come into being and there they are eclipsed. 1 But that they are destroyed by colliding with one another. And that some ordered worlds are bare of animals and plants and of all water. And that in our cosmos the earth came into being first of the stars and that the moon is the lowest of the stars, and then comes the sun and then the fixed stars : but that the planets are not all at the same height. And he laughed at every- thing, as if all things among men deserved laughter.

12. About Xenophanes.

But Xenophanes of Colophon was the son of Ortho- menes. 2 He survived until the time of Cyrus. He first declared the incomprehensibility of all things, 3 saying thus :

Although anyone should speak most definitely He nevertheless does not know, and it is a guess 4 which occurs about all things.

But he says that nothing is generated, or perishes or is p. 29. moved, and that the universe which is one is beyond change. But he says that God is eternal, and one and alike on every side, and finite and spherical in form, and conscious 5 in all His parts. And that the sun is born every day from the gathering together of small particles of fire and that the earth is boundless and surrounded neither by air nor by heaven. And that there are boundless (innumerable) suns and moons and that all things are from the earth. He said that the sea is salt because of the many compounds which

1 koX ttj fxev yeveaOai, ttj 5e fc&fffrrc*?*

2 So Apollodorus. Diog. Laert., IX, vit. Xenofhan., c. 1, says of Dexius.

3 Diog. Laert., ubi cit., says Sotion of Alexandria is the authority for this, but that he was mistaken. Hippolytus says later in Book I (p. 59 infra) that Pyrrho was the first to assert the incomprehensibility' of everything. If, as Sotion asserted, Xenophanes was a contemporary of Anaximander, he must have died two centuries before Pyrrho was born.

4 Sokos 5'eTrl iraai tctvcto*, scd in omnibus opinio est, Cr. Yet Mkos is surely a " guess."

5 CuV0T]Tt/C(fa.


together flow into it. But Metrodorus said it was thanks to its trickling through the earth that the sea becomes salt. And Xenophanes opines that there was once a mixture of earth with the sea, and that in time it was freed from moisture, asserting in proof of this that shells are found in the centre of the land and on mountains, and that in the stone- quarries of Syracuse were found the impress of a fish and of seals, and in Paros the cast of an anchor below the surface of the rock 1 and in Malta layers of all sea-things. And he says that these came when all things were of old time buried in mud, and that the impress of them dried in the mud ; but p. 30. that all men were destroyed when the earth being cast into the sea became mud, 'and that it again began to bring forth and that this catastrophe happened to all the ordered worlds. 2

13. About Ecphantus.

A certain Ecphantus, a Syracusan, said that a true knowledge of the things that are could not be got. But he defines, as he thinks, that the first bodies are indivisible and that there are three differences 3 between them, to wit, size, shape and power. And the number of them is limited and not boundless ; but that these bodies are moved neither by weight nor by impact, but by a divine power which he calls p. 31. Nous and Psyche. Now the pattern of this is the cosmos, wherefore it has become spherical in form by Divine power. And that the earth in the midst of the cosmos is moved round its own centre from west to east. 4

14. About Hippo.

But Hippo of Rhegium 5 said that the principles were cold, like water, and heat, like fire. And that the fire came from the water, and, overcoming the power of its parent, constructed the cosmos. But he said that the soul was sometimes brain and sometimes water ; for the seed also

1 eV t< (3d6ei rod \ldov, "deep down in the stone." Perhaps the earliest mention of fossils.

2 Is this a survival of the Babylonian legends of the Flood ?

3 irapaWayyas, differentias , Cr. Perhaps " alternations."

4 The whole of this section on Ecphantus is corrupt. He is not alluded to again in the book.

5 Hippo is mentioned by Iamblichus in his life of Pythagoras.


seems to us to be from moisture and from it he says the soul is born.

These things, then, we seem to have sufficiently set forth. Wherefore, as we have now separately run through the opinions of the physicists, it seems fitting that we return to Socrates and Plato, who most especially preferred (the study of) ethics.

15. About Socrates.

Now Socrates became a hearer of Archelaus the physi- cist, and giving great honour to the maxim "Know thyself" and having established a large school, held Plato to be the most competent of all his disciples. He left no writings behind him ; but Plato being impressed with all his p# wisdom x established the teaching combining physics, ethics and dialectics. But what Plato laid down is this :

16. About Plato.

Plato makes the principles of the universe to be God, matter and (the) model. He says that God is the maker and orderer of this universe and its Providence. 2 That matter is that which underlies all things, which matter he calls a recipient and a nurse. 3 From which, after it had been set in order, came the four elements of which the cosmos is constructed, to wit, fire, air, earth and water, 4 whence in turn all the other so-called compound things, viz., animals and plants have been constructed. But the model is the thought of God which Plato also calls ideas, to which giving heed as to an image in the soul, 5 God fashioned 6 all

1 a-jro/na^d/xepos, " been sealed with," or tl copied." Cf. Diog. Laert., II, vit. Socrates, c. 12.

2 irpovbov^vov avrov. The ro'Se rb irav of the line above shows that Plato did not mean that the forethought extended to other worlds than this.

3 This expression, like many others in this epitome of Plato's doctrines, is found in the Ets to. tov U\drwpos Elaaywyr) of Alcinous, who flourished in Roman times. The best edition still seems to be Bishop Poll's, Oxford, 1667. Alcinous' work was, as will appear, the main source from which Hippolytus drew his account of Plato's doctrines.

4 "Alcinous, op. ci'L, c. 12.

5 Ibid., cc. 9, 12.

6 iSrifxiovpyei. Not created ex nihilo, but made out of existing material as an architect makes a house.


p. 33. things. He said that God was without body or form and could only be comprehended by wise men ; but that matter is potentially body, but not yet actively. For that being itself without form or quality, it receives forms and qualities to become body. 1 That matter, therefore, is a principle and the same is coeval with God, and the cosmos is un- begotten. For, he says, it constructed itself out of itself. 2 And in all ways it is like the unbegotten and is imperishable. But in so far as body 3 is assumed to be composed of many qualities and ideas, it is so far begotten and perishable. But some Platonists mixed together the two opinions making up some such parable as this : to wit, that, as a wagon can remain undestroyed for ever if repaired part by part, as even though the parts perish every time, the wagon remains complete ; so, the cosmos, although it perish part by part, is yet reconstructed and compensated for the parts taken away, and remains eternal.

Some again say that Plato declared God to be one, unbegotten and imperishable, as he says in the Laivs :

P- 34- " God, therefore, as the old story goes, holds the beginning and end and middle of all things that are." 4 Thus he shows Him to be one through His containing all things. But others say that Plato thought that there are many gods without limitation 5 when he said, "God of gods, of whom I am the fashioner and father." 6 And yet others that he thinks them subject to limitation when he says: "Great Zeus, indeed, driving his winged chariot in heaven ; " 7 and when he gives the pedigree 8 of the children of Uranos and Ge. Others again that he maintained the gods to be originated and that because they were originated they ought to perish utterly, but that by the will of God they remain imperishable as he says in the passage before quoted, " God of gods, of whom I am the fashioner and father, and who are formed by my will indissoluble." So that if He wished them to be dissolved, dissolved they would easily be. But he accepts the nature of demons, and says some are good, and some bad.

1 Alcinous, op. cit., cc. 8, 10

2 e| avTov (rweo-Tdvai avrov. So Cruice. Macmahon reads with Roe per avrr\s for avrov, " the world was made out of it" (?'. e. matter).

3 The body of the cosmos is evidently meant. Cf. Alcinous, c. 12.

4 de Legg, IV, 7. 5 aopiaroos. 6 Timccus, c. 16. 7 Phcedrus, c. 166. 8 yevzaAoyfi.


And some say that he declared the soul to be un- originated and imperishable x when he says : " All soul is immortal for that which is ever moving is immortal," and when he shows that it is self-moving and the beginning of movement. But others say that he makes it originated but imperishable 2 through God's will ; and yet others composite and originated and perishable. For he also supposes that there is a mixing-bowl for it, 3 and that it has a splendid p. 35. body, but that everything originated must of necessity perish. But those who say that the soul is immortal are partly corroborated by those words wherein he says that there are judgments after death, and courts of justice in the house of Hades, and that the good meet with a good reward and that the wicked are subjected to punishments. 4 Some therefore say that he also admits a change of bodies and the transfer of different pre-determined souls into other bodies according to the merit of each ; and that after certain definite peregrinations they are again sent into this ordered world to give themselves another trial of their own choice. Others, however, say not, but that they obtain a place according to each one's deserts. And they call to witness that he says some souls are with Zeus, but that others of good men are going round with other gods, and that others abide in everlasting punishments, (that is), so many as in this life have wrought evil and unjust deeds. 5

And they say that he declared some conditions to be without intermediates, some with intermediates and some p. 36. to be intermediates. Waking and sleep are without inter- mediates and so are all states like these. But there are those with intermediates like good and bad ; and inter- mediates like grey which is between black and white or some other colour. 6 And they say that he declares the

1 Alcinous, c. 25. 2 P/ucdrus, cc. 51, 52.

3 For this see the Ttmieus, c. 17.

4 This sentence is corrupt throughout, and there are at least three readings which can be given to it. I have taken that which makes the smallest alteration in Cruice's text.

5 Phitdo, c. 43.

6 I do not think this can be found in any writings of Plato that have come down to us. Hippolytus probably took it from Aristotle, to whom he also attributes it ; but I cannot find it in this writer either. A passage in Arist., Nicomachean Ethics , Book II, c. 6, is the nearest to it.


things concerning the soul to be alone supremely good, but those of the body or external to it to be no longer supremely good, but only said to be so. And that these last are very often named intermediates also j for they can be used both well and ill. He says therefore that the virtues are extremes as to honour, but means as to sub- stance. 1 For there is nothing more honourable than virtue ; but that which goes beyond or falls short of these virtues ends in vice. For instance, he says that these are the four virtues, to wit, Prudence, Temperance, Justice, and Fortitude, and that there follow on each of these two vices of excess and deficiency respectively. Thus on Prudence follow thoughtlessness by deficiency and cunning by excess ; on Temperance, intemperance by deficiency and sluggishness by excess; on Justice, over-modesty by deficiency and greediness by excess ; and on Fortitude, p. 37. cowardice by deficiency and foolhardiness by excess. 2 And these virtues when inborn in a man operate for his perfection and give him happiness. But he says that happiness is likeness to God as far as possible. And that any one is like God when he becomes holy and just with intention. For this he supposes to be the aim of the highest wisdom and virtue. 3 But he says that the virtues follow one another in turn and are of one kind, and never oppose one another ; but that the vices are many-shaped and sometimes follow and sometimes oppose one another. 4 He says, again, that there is destiny, not indeed that all things are according to destiny, but that we have some choice, as he says in these words : " The blame is on the chooser: God is blameless," and again, "This is a law of Adrasteia." And if he thus affirms the part of destiny, he knew also that something was in our choice. 5 But he says that transgressions are involuntary. For to the most beauti- ful thing in us, which is the soul, none would admit

1 So Alcinous, c. 29. The other statements in this sentence seem to be Aristotle's rather than Plato's, Cf. Diog. Laert., V, vit. Arist., c. 13, where he describes the good things of the soul, the body and of external things respectively.

2 Alcinous, cc. 28, 29. 3 Ibid., c. 27. 4 Ibid., c. 29.

5 Ibid., c. 26. The passage about the choice [of virtue] is in the Republic, X, 617 C. Hippolytus had evidently not read the original, which says that according as a man does or does not choose virtue, so he will have more or less of it,


something evil, that is, injustice ; but that by ignorance and mistaking the good, thinking to do something fine, they arrive at the evil. 1 And his explanation on this is most p. 38. clear in the Republic, where he says : " And again do you dare to say that vice is disgraceful and hateful to God? How then does any one choose such an evil ? He does it, you would say, who is overcome by the pleasures (of sense). Therefore this also is an involuntary action, if to overcome be a voluntary one. So that from all reasoning, reason proves injustice to be involuntary." But some one objects to him about this : " Why then are men punished if they transgress involuntarily?" He answers: "So that they may be the more speedily freed from vice by undergoing correction." 2 For that to undergo correction is not bad but good, if there- by comes purification from vices, and that the rest of mankind hearing of it will not transgress, but will be on their guard against such error. 3 He says, however, that the nature of evil comes not by God nor has it any special nature of its own ; but it comes into being by contrariety and by following upon the good, either as excess or deficiency as we have before said about the virtues. 4 Now Plato, as we have said above, bringing together the three divisions p. 39- of general philosophy, thus philosophized.

17. About Aristotle.

Aristotle, who was a hearer of this last, turned philosophy into a science and reasoned more strictly, affirming that the elements of all things are substance and accident. 5 He said that there is one substance underlying all things, but

1 Alcinous, c. 30.

2 This passage is not in the Republic, but in the Clitopho, as to Plato's authorship of which there are doubts. Cruice quotes the Greek text from Roeper in a note on p. 38 of his text.

3 Alcinous, c. 30. 4 Ibid., c. 29.

5 " Substance" (ovaia) and "accident " (crvixfSelST}K6s) are defined by Aristotle in the Metaphysica, Bk. IV, cc. 8, 9 respectively. The defi- nitions in no way bear the interpretation that Hippolytus here puts on them. In the Categories, which, whether by Aristotle or not, are not referred to by him in any of his extant works, it is said (c. 4) that " of things in complex enunciated, each signifies either Substance or Quantity, or Quality or Relation, or Where or When, or Position, or Possession, or Action, or Passion." It is from this that Hippolytus probably took the statement in our text. The illustrations are in part found in Metaphysica, c. 4.


nine accidents, which are Quantity, Quality, Relation, the Where, the When, Possession, Position, Action and Passion. And that therefore Substance was such as God, man and every one of the things which can fall under the like defi- nition : but that as regards the accidents, Quality is seen in expressions like white or black ; Quantity in " 2 cubits or 3 cubits long or broad " ; Relation in " father " or " son " ; the Where in such as "Athens" or "Megara"; the When in such as " in the Xth Olympiad " ; for Possession in such as " to have acquired wealth " ; Action in such as " to write and generally to do anything " ; and Passion in such as " to be struck." He also assumes that some things have means and that others have npt, as we have said also about Plato.

p. 40. And he is in accord with Plato about most things save in the opinion about the soul. For Plato thinks it immortal ; but Aristotle that it remains behind after this life and that it is lost in the fifth Body which is assumed to exist along with the other four, to wit, fire, earth, water and air, but is more subtle than they and like a spirit. 1 Again whereas Plato said that the only good things were those which concerned the soul and that these sufficed for happiness, Aristotle brings in a triad of benefits and says that the sage is not perfect unless there are at his command the good things of the body and those external to it. Which things are Beauty, Strength, Keenness of Sense and Com- pleteness; while the externals are Wealth, High Birth, Glory, Power, Peace, and Friendship ; but that the inner things about the soul are, as Plato thought : Prudence, Temperance, Justice and Fortitude. 2 Also Aristotle says that evil things exist, and come by contrariety to the good, and are below the place about the moon, but not above it.

Again, he says that the soul of the whole ordered world is eternal, but that the soul of man vanishes as we have said

p. 41. above. Now, he philosophized while delivering discourses in the Lyceum ; but Zeno in the Painted Porch. And Zeno's followers got their name from the place, i. e. they were called Stoics from the Stoa; but those of Aristotle from their mode of study. For their enquiries were con-

1 The famous " Quintessence." So Aetius, De Plac. Phil., Bk. I, c. 1, 38. But see Diog. Laert. in next note.

2 This is practically verbatim from Diog. Laert., V, vit. ArisL, c 13.


ducted while walking about in the Lyceum, wherefore they were called Peripatetics. This then Aristotle. 1

18. About the Stoics.

The Stoics themselves also added to philosophy by the increased use of syllogisms, 2 and included it nearly all in definitions, Chrysippus and Zeno being here agreed in opinion. Who also supposed that God was the beginning of all things, and was the purest body, and that His providence extends through all things. 3 They say posi- tively, however, that existence is everywhere according to destiny using some such simile as this : viz. that, as a dog tied to a cart, if he wishes to follow it, is both drawn along by it and follows of his own accord, doing at the same time what he wills and what he must by a compulsion like that p. 42. of destiny. 4 But if he does not wish to follow he is wholly compelled. And they say that it is the same indeed with men. For even if they do not wish to follow, they will be wholly compelled to come to what has been foredoomed. And they say that the soul remains after death, and that

1 Hippolytus gives as is usual with him a more detailed account of Aristotle's doctrines on these points later. (See Book VII, II, pp. 62 ff. infra.) He there admits that he cannot say exactly what was Aristotle's doctrine about the soul. He also refers to hooks of Aristotle on Providence and the like which, teste Cruice, no longer exist. Cf. Macmahon's note on same page (p. 272 of Clark's edition).

2 iwl rb (ToK\oyi<niKwTepov t)jv <pi\o(To(piav TjH^ffav. Syltogisticcc artis expolitione philosophiam locufletarunt.

3 Prof. Arnold in his lucid book on Roman Stoicism (Cambridge, 191 1, p. 219, n. 4) quotes this as a genuine Stoic doctrine. But Diog. Laert., VII, vit. Zeno, c. 68, represents Zeno, Cleanthes, Chry- sippus, Archedemus and Posidonius as agreeing that principles and elements differ from one another in being respectively indestructible and destroyed, and because elements are bodies while principles have none. For the Stoic idea of God, see op. cit., c. 70. So Cicero, De Natnra Deorum, Bk. I, cc. 8, 18, makes Zeno say that the cosmos is God, but in the Academics, II, 41 that Aether is the Supreme God, with which doctrine, he says, nearly all Stoics agree. Perhaps Hip- polytus is here quoting Clement of Alexandria, Sfromateis, VI, 71, who says that the Stoics dare to make the God of all things "a corporeal spirit." For the Stoic doctrine of Providence, see Diog. Laert., vit. Zeno, c. 70.

4 tcoiqjv kolI rb avTej*ov(riov fiera ttjs aidyKTjs olov ttjs i/j.apfj.4vris. Tb QLvre^ovcriov is the recognized expression for free will. Note the difference between avaytci), "compulsion," and elfiap/devr], "destiny." For the Stoic doctrine of Fate, see Diog. Laert., vit. cit., c. 74.


it is a body x and is born from the cooling of the air of the ambient, whence it is called Psyche. 2 But they admit that there is a change of bodies for souls which have been marked out for it. 3 And they expect that there will be a conflagration and purification of this cosmos, some saying that it will be total but others partial, and that it will be purified part by part. And they call this approximate destruction and the birth of another cosmos therefrom, catharsis* And they suppose that all things are bodies, and that one body passes through another ; but that there is a resurrection 5 and that all things are filled full and that there is no void. Thus also the Stoics.

19. Aboiit Epicurus.

p. 43. But Epicurus held an opinion almost the opposite of all others. He supposed that the beginnings of the universals were atoms and a void ; that the void was as it were the place of the things that will be ; but that the atoms were matter, from which all things are. And that from the concourse of the atoms both God and all the elements came into being and that in them were all animals and other things, so that nothing is produced or constructed unless it be from the atoms. And he said that the atoms were the most subtle of things, and that in them there could be no point, nor mark nor any division whatever ; wherefore he called them atoms. 6 And although he admits God to be eternal and imperishable, he says that he cares for no one and that in short there is no providence nor destiny, but all things come into being automatically. For

1 Diog. Laert., ubi cit., c. 84.

2 From ipvis, " cooling " a bad pun.

15 It is extremely doubtful whether the metempsychosis ever formed part of Stoic doctrine.

4 Zeno and Cleanthes both accepted the ecpyrosis. See Diog. Laert., ubi cit., c. 70. The same author says that Panretius said that the cosmos was imperishable.

5 (rcDyua Sia adofiaTos /xev x^P 6 ^, corpusque per corpus viigrare, Cr. Macmahon inserts a "not" in the sentence, but without authority. The Stoic resurrection assumed that in the new world created out of the ashes of the old, individuals would take the same place as in this last. See Arnold, op. cit. y p. 193 for authorities.

6 aro/xoi, " that cannot be cut." The rest of this sentence is taken from Diog. Laert., X, vit. Epicur., c. 24, and is quoted there from Epicurus' treatise on Nature.


(jod is seated in the metacosmic spaces, as he calls them. For he held that there was a certain dwelling-place of God outside the cosmos called the metacosmia, and that He took His pleasure and rested in supreme delight j and that p. 44 He neither had anything to do Himself nor provided for others. In consequence of which Epicurus made a theory about wise men, saying that the end of all wisdom is pleasure. But different people take the name of pleasure differently. For some understood by it the desires, but others the pleasure that comes by virtue. But he held that the souls of men were destroyed with their bodies as they are born with them. For that these souls are blood, which having come forth or being changed, the whole man is destroyed. Whence it follows that there are no judgments nor courts of justice in the House of Hades, so that whatever any one may do in this life and escapes notice, he is in no way called to account for it. 1 Thus then Epicurus.

20. About (the) Academics.

But another sect of philosophers was called Academic, from their holding their discussions in the Academy, whose p. 45. founder was Pyrrho, after whom they were called Pyrrho- nian philosophers. He first introduced the dogma of the incomprehensibility of all things, so that he might argue on either side of the question, but assert nothing dogmati- cally. For he said that there is nothing grasped by the mind or perceived by the senses which is true, but that it only appears to men to be so. And that all substance is flowing and changing and never remains in the same state. Now some of the Academics say that we ought not to make dogmatic assertions about the principle of any- thing, but simply argue about it and let it be ; while others favoured more the " no preference " 2 adage, saying that fire was not fire rather than anything else. For they did not assert what it is, but only what sort of a thing it is. 3

1 With the exception of the Deity's seat in the intercosmic spaces and the idea that the souls of men consist of blood - , all the above opinions of Epicurus are to be found in Diog. Laert., X, vit. Epic.

2 ov /xaWov, " not rather."

3 See n. on p. 49 supra. The doctrines here given are those of the Sceptics, and are to be found in Diog. Laert., IX, vit. Pyrrho^



21. About (the) Brachmans among the Indians.

The Indians have also a sect of philosophizes in the Brachmans x who propose to themselves an independent life and abstain from all things which have had life and from

p. 46. meats prepared by fire. They are content with fruits 2 but do not gather even these, but live on those fallen on the earth and drink the water of the river Tagabena. 3 But they spend their lives naked, saying that the body has been made by God as a garment to the soul. They say that God is light ; not such light as one sees, nor like the sun and fire, but that it is to them the Divine Word, not that which is articulated, but that which comes from know- ledge, whereby the hidden mysteries of nature are seen by the wise. But this light which they say is (the) Word, the God, they declare that they themselves as Brachmans alone know, because they alone put away vain thinking which is the last tunic of the soul. They scorn death ; but are ever naming God in their own tongue, as we have said above, and send up hymns to Him. But neither are there women among them, nor do they beget children. 4 Those, however, who have desired a life like theirs, after they

p. 47- have crossed over to the opposite bank of the river, 5 remain there always and never return but they also are called Brachmans. Yet they do not pass their life in the same way ; for there are women in the country, from whom those dwelling there are begotten and beget. But they say that this Word, which they style God, is corporeal, girt with the

c. 79 ff. and in Sextus Empiricus, Hyp. Pyr>ho, J, 209 ft. Diog. Laert. quotes from Ascanius of Abdera that Pyrrho introduced the dogma of incomprehensibility, and Hippolytus seems to have copied this with- out noticing that he has said the same thing about Xenophanes.

1 Diog. Laert., I, Prooem., c. I, mentions both Gymnosophists and Druids, but if he ever gave any account of their teaching it must be in the part of the book which is lost. Clem. Alex., Stro??iateis, I, c. 15, describes the two classes of Gymnosophists as Sarmanse and Brachmans. The Sarmanse or Samancei (Shamans ?) seem the nearer of the two to the Brachmans of our text.

2 aicpoSpvoi, hard-shelled fruit such as acorns or chestnuts.

3 Roeper suggests the Ganges.

4 Megasthenes, for whom see Strabo V, 712, differs from Hippolytus in making the abstinence of the Gymnosophists endure for thirty-seven years only.

6 Nothing has yet been said about any bank.


body outside Himself, as if one should wear a garment of sheepskins ; but that the body which is worn, when taken off, appears visible to the eye. 1 But the Brachmans declare that there is war in the body worn by them [and they consider their body full of warring elements] against which body as if arrayed against foes, they fight as we have before made plain. And they say that all men are captives to their own congenital enemies, to wit, the belly and genitals, greediness, wrath, joy, grief, desire and the like. But that he alone goes to God who has triumphed 2 over these. Wherefore the Brachmans make Dandamis, to whom Alexander of Macedon paid a visit, divine 3 as one who had won the war in the body. But they accuse Calanus of having impiously fallen away from their philo- sophy. But the Brachmans putting away the body, like fish who have leaped from the water into pure air, behold p. 48. the Sun. 4

2 2 . About the Druids among the Celts.

The Druids among the Celts enquired with the greatest minuteness into the Pythagorean philosophy, Zamolxis, Pythagoras' slave, a Thracian by race, being for them the author of this discipline. He after Pythagoras' death travelled into their country and became as far as they were concerned the founder of this philosophy. 5 The

1 The whole of this sentence is corrupt. Macmahon following Roeper would read: "This discourse whom they name God they affirm to be incorporeal, but enveloped in a body outside himself, just as if one carried a covering of sheepskin to have it seen ; but having stripped off the body in which he is enveloped, he no longer appears visibly to the naked eye."

2 iyeipas rp6iraiov, lit., " raised a trophy."

3 deo\oyov(Ti. Eusebius, Pmp. Ev., uses the word in this sense. For the Dandamis and Calanus stories, see Arrian, Anabasis, Bk. VII, cc. 2, 3.

4 This is quite unintelligible as it stands. It probably means that the Brachmans worship the light of which the Sun is the garment, and that they think they are united with it when temporarily freed from the body. Is he confusing them on the one hand with the Yogis, whose burial trick is referred to later in connection with Simon Magus, and on the other with some Zoroastrian or fire-worshipping sect of Central Asia?

5 ts . . . ejcet xwpT)(Tas dtrios tovtols ravTrjs ttjs cpiKocro(pias e'-ye- vcto. Does the e'/ce? mean Galatia, whose inhabitants were Celts by origin? Hippolytus has probably copied the sentence without under- standing it.


Celts glorify the Druids as prophets and as knowing the future because they foretell to them some things by the ciphers and numbers of the Pythagoric art. On the principles of which same art we shall not be silent, since some men have ventured to introduce heresies constructed from them. Druids, however, also make use of magic arts.

p. 49. 23. About Hesiod ?-

But Hesiod the poet says that he ; too, heard thus from the Muses about Nature. The Muses, however, are the daughters of Zeus! For Zeus having from excess of desire companied with Mnemosyne for nine days and nights consecutively, she conceived these nine in her single womb, receiving one every night. Now Hesiod invokes the nine Muses from Pieria, that is from Olympus, and prays them to teach him : 2

How first the gods and earth became ; The rivers and th' immeasureable sea High-raging in its foam : the glittering stars ; The wide-impending heaven ; . . . Say how their treasures, 3 how their honours each Allotted shared ; how first they held abode On many-caved Olympus : this declare p. 50. Ye Muses ! dwellers of the heavenly mount

From the beginning ; say who first arose ?

" First Chaos was, next ample-bosomed Earth, The seat eternal and immoveable Of deathless gods, who still the Olympian height Snow-topt inhabit. Third in hollow depth Of the vast ground, expanded wide above '*

The gloomy Tartarus. Love then arose Most beauteous of immortals : he at once Of every god and every mortal man Unnerves the limbs ; dissolves the wiser breast By reason steel'd, and quells the very soul.

" From Chaos, Erebus and sable Night . . .

1 Hesiod is treated by Aristotle, Metaphysica, Bk. II, c. 15, as one who philosophizes, which perhaps accounts for the introduction of his name here.

2 Sidaxdwat, ut se edocerent, Cr. So Macmahon. The context, however, plainly requires that it is Hesiod and not the Muse who is to- be taught. The rendering of poetry into prose is seldom satisfactory, so I have ventured to give here the version of Elton, which is as close to- the original as it is poetic in form.

3 ws <TTe<pavov daaaavTo.


From Night arose the Sunshine and the Day * Whom she with dark embrace of Erebus Commingling bore.

"Her first-born Earth produced Of like immensity, 2 the starry Heaven : That he might sheltering compass her around On every side, and be for evermore To the blest gods a mansion unremoved.

"Next the high hills arose, the pleasant haunts Of goddess-nymphs, who dwell among the glens Of mountains. With no aid of tender love

Gave she to birth the sterile Sea, high-swol'n p. 51.

In raging foam ; and Heaven-embraced, anon She teemed with Ocean, rolling in deep whirls His vast abyss of waters

"Crceus then, Coeus, Hyperion and Iapetus, Themis and Thea rose ; Mnemosyne And Rhea ; Phoebe diademed with gold, And love-inspiring Tethys ; and of these, Youngest in birth, the wily Kronos came. The sternest of her sons ; and he abhorred The sire that gave him life

" Then brought she forth The Cyclops haughty of spirit."

And he enumerates all the other Giants descended from Kronos. But last he tells how Zeus was born from Rhea.

All these men, then, declared, as we have set forth, their opinions about the nature and birth of the universe. But they all, departing from the Divine for lower things, busied themselves about the substance of the things that are. So that when struck with the grandeurs of creation and think- ing that these were the Divine, each of them preferred before the rest a different part of what was created. But they discovered not the God and fashioner of them.

The opinions therefore of those among the Greeks who have undertaken to philosophize, I think I have suffici- p. 52. ently set forth. Starting from which opinions the heretics have made the attempts we shall shortly narrate. It seems fitting, however, that we, first making public the mystic rites, 3 should also declare whatever things certain men

1 Aldrjp re Kal 'H/xep-q. One would prefer to keep the word "Aether," which is hardly " sunshine."

- l<xov eauTfj.

3 ret jjLvariKa. The expression generally used for Mysteries such as those of Eleusis. Either he employs it here to include the tricks


have superfluously fancied about stars or magnitudes ; for truly those who have taken their starting-points from these notions are deemed by the many to speak prodigies. Thereafter, we shall make plain consecutively the vain opinions 1 invented by them. 2

of the magicians described in Book IV, or he did not mean to describe these last when the sentence was written, but to go instead straight from the astrologers to the heresies. The last alternative seems the more probable.

1 aSpavri, infirm as, Cr.

2 The main question which arises on this First Book of our text is, What were the sources from which Hippolytus drew the opinions he here summarizes? Diel$, who has taken much pains over the matter, thinks that his chief source was the epitome that Sotion of Alexandria made from Heraclides. As we have seen, however, Diogenes Laertius is responsible for a fair number of Hippolytus' statements, especially concerning the opinions of those to whom he gives little space. Certain phrases seem taken directly from Theophrastus or from whatever author it was that Simplicius used in his commentaries on Aristotle, and the likeness between Alcinous' summary of Plato's doctrines and those of our author is too close to be accidental. It therefore seems most probable that Hippolytus did not confine himself to any one source, but borrowed from several. This would, after all, be the natural course for a lecturer as distinguished from a writer to adopt, and goes some way therefore towards confirming the theory as to the origin of the book stated in the Introduction.



(These are entirely missing, no trace of them having been found attached to any of the four codices of Book I or to the present text of Books IV to X. We know that such books must have once existed, as at the end of Book IV (p. 117 infra) the author tells us that all the famous opinions of earthly philosophy have been included by him in the preceding four books, of which as has been said only Books I and IV have come down to us.

Our only ground for conjecture as to the contents of Books II and III is to be found in Hippolytus' statement at the end of Book I, that he will first make public the mystic rites l and then the fancies of certain philosophers as to stars and magnitudes. As the promise in the last words of the sentence seems to be fulfilled in Book IV, where he gives not only the method of the astrologers of his time, but also the calculations of the Greek astronomers as to the relative distances of the heavenly bodies, it may be presumed that this was preceded and not followed by a description of the Mysteries more elaborate and fuller than the casual allusions to them which appear in Book V. So, too, in Chap. 5 of the same Book IV, which he himself describes in the heading as a "Recapitulation" of what has gone before, he refers to certain dogmas of the Persians and the Babylonians as to the nature of God, which have certainly not been mentioned in any other part of the book which has come down to us. So, again, at the beginning of Book X, which purports to be a summary of the whole work, he tells us that having now gone through the "labyrinth of heresies," it will be shown that the Truth is not derived from " the wisdom (philosophy) of the Greeks, the secret mysteries of the Egyptians, 2 the fallacies of the

1 TO. /XVCTTlKa..

2 AlyvTTTiwv Soyfiara . . . ws apprjTa 5t5a^0ets,



astrologers, or the demon-inspired ravings of the Babylon- ians." The Greek philosophy and astrological fallacies are dealt with at sufficient length in Books I and IV respectively, but nothing of importance is said in these or elsewhere in the work as to the mysteries of the " Egyptians," by whom he probably means the worshippers of the Alexandrian divinities, and nothing at all as to Babylonian demonolatry or magic. It is quite true that he follows this up immedi- ately by the statement that he has included the tenets of all the wise men among the Greeks in four books, and the doctrines of the heretics in five ; but it has been explained in the Introduction (pp. 18 ff. supra) that there are reasons why the summarizer's recollection of the earlier books may not be verbally accurate, nor does he say that the description of the philosophic and heretical teachings exhausted the contents of the first four books. On the whole, therefore, Cruice appears to be justified in his conclusion that the missing books contained an account of the "Egyptian" Mysteries and of "the sacred sciences of the Babylonians.") 1

1 M. Adhemar d'Ales in his work La Thiologie de St. Hippolyte, Paris, 1906, argues that the existing text of Book IV contains large fragments of the missing Books II and III. His argument is chiefly founded on the supposed excessive length of Book IV, although as a fact Book V is in Cruice's pagination some 20 pages longer than this and Book VI, 10. Apart from this, it seems very doubtful if any author would describe the anthmomantic and arithmetical nonsense in Book IV as either ixvcttlko. or doy/xara &ppr\ra, and it is certain that he cannot be alluding, when he speaks of the BalSv\wvioov aKoyiarcp fxavia 5t iv (epyi) as SaL/nouwv KaraTrXayels, to the jugglery in the same book, which he there attributes not to the agency of demons but to the tricks of charlatans.



(The first pages of this book have been torn away from the MS., and we are therefore deprived of the small Table of Contents which the author has prefixed to the other seven. From the headings of the various chapters it may be reproduced in substance thus :

1. The "Chaldreans" or Astrologers, and the celestial measurements of the Greek astronomers.

2. The Mathematicians or those who profess to divine by the numerical equivalents of the letters in proper names.

3. The Metoposcopists or those who connect the form of the body and the disposition of the mind with the Zodiacal sign rising at birth.

4. The Magicians and the tricks by which they read sealed letters, perform divinations, produce apparitions of gods and demons, and work other wonders.

5. Recapitulation of the ideas of Greek and Barbarian on the nature of God, and the views of the " Egyptians " or neo-Pythagoreans as to the mysteries of number.

6. The star-diviners or those who find religious meaning in the grouping of the constellations as described by Aratus.

7. The Pythagorean doctrine of number and its relation to the heresies of Simon Magus and Valentinus.)

[1. About Astrologers y\ p. 5

. . . (And they (i.e. the Chaldaeans) declare there are

1 This is the beginning of the Mt. Athos MS., the first pages having disappeared. With regard to the first chapter trspl aarpoXoyav, Cruice, following therein Miller, points out that nearly the whole of it has been taken from Book V with the same title of Sextus Empiricus' work, Ylphs Madrj/xaTiKovs, and also that the copying is so faulty that to



"terms 1 of the stars in each zodiacal sign extending frorh one given part) 2 to [another given part in which some particular star has most power. About which there is no mere chance difference] among them [as appears from their

make sense it is necessary to restore the text in many places from that of Sextus. Sextus' book begins, as did doubtless that of Hippolytus, with a description of the divisions of the zodiac, the cardinal points (Ascendant, Mid-heaven, Descendant, and Anti-Meridian), the cadent and succeedent houses, the use of the clepsydra or water-clock, the planets and their "dignities," " exaltations" and "falls," and finally, their "terms," with a description of which our text begins. It is, perhaps, a pity that Miller did not restore the whole of the missing part from Sextus Empiricus ; but the last-named author is not very clear, and the reader who wishes to go further into the matter and to acquire some knowledge of astrological jargon is recommended to consult also James Wilson's Complete Dictionary of Astrology, reprinted at Boston, U.S.A., in 1885, or, if he prefers a more learned work, M. Bouche-Leclercq's U Astrologie Grecque, Paris, 1899. But it may be said here that the astrologers of the early centuries made their pre- dictions from a " theme," or geniture, which was in effect a map of the heavens at the moment of birth, and showed the ecliptic or sun's path through the zodiacal signs divided into twelve "houses," to each of which a certain significance was attached. The foundation of this was the horoscope or sign rising above the horizon at the birth, from which they were able to calculate the other three cardinal points given above, the cadent houses being those four which go just before the cardinal points and the four succeedents those which follow after them. The places of the planets, including in that term the sun and moon, in the ecliptic were then calculated and their symbols placed in the houses indicated. From this figure the judgment or prediction was made, but a great mass of absurd and contradictory tradition existed as to the influence of the planets on the life, fortune, and disposition of the native, which was supposed to depend largely on their places in the theme both in relation to the earth and to each other.

1 Bouche-Leclercq, op. cz't., p. 206, rightly defines these terms as fractions of signs separated by internal boundaries and distributed in each sign among the five planets. Cf. J. Firmicus Maternus, Mathescos, II, 6, and Cicero, De Divinatione, 40. Wilson, op. cit., s.h.v., says they are certain degrees in a sign, supposed to possess the power of altering the nature of a planet to that of the planet in the term of which it is posited. All the authors quoted say that the astrologers could not agree upon the extent or position of the various " terms," and that in particular the "Chaldoeans" and the "Egyptians" were hopelessly at variance upon the point.

2 In the translation I have distinguished Miller's additions to the text from Sextus Empiricus' by enclosing them in square brackets, reserving the round brackets for my own additions from the same source, which I have purposely made as few as possible. So with other alterations.


tables]. But they say that the stars are guarded 1 [when they are midway between two other stars] in zodiacal succession. For instance, if [a certain star should occupy the first part] of a zodiacal sign and another [the last parts, and a third those of the middle, the one in the middle is said to be guarded] by those occupying the parts at the extremities. [And they say that the stars behold one another and are in accord with one another] when they appear triangularly or quadrangularly. Now those form a triangular figure 2 and behold one another which have an interval of p. 54. three zodiacal signs between them and a square those which have one of two signs. . . .

( 3 Such then seems to be the character of the Chaldsean method. And in that which has been handed down it remains easy to understand and follow the contradictions noted. And some indeed try to teach a rougher way as if earthly things have no sympathy 4 at all with the heavenly ones. For thus they say, that the ambient 5 is not united as is the human body, so that according to the condition) of the head the lower parts [suffer with it and the head with the lower] parts, and earthly things should suffer along with those above the moon. But there is a certain difference and want of sympathy between them as they have not one and [the] same unity.

2. Making use of these statements, Euphrates the Peratic and Akembes the Carystian 6 and the rest of the band of these people, miscalling the word of Truth, declare that there is a war of aeons and a falling-away of good powers to

1 8opv<f>opela6ai, lit., "have spear-bearers." "Stars" in Sextus Empiricus nearly always means planet?.

2 This is the famous "trine" figure or aspect of modern astrologers. Its influence is supposed to be good ; that of the square next described, the reverse.

3 Hippolytus here omits a long disquisition by Sextus on the position of the planets and the Chaldrean system. Where the text resumes the quotation it is in such a way as to alter the sense completely ; wherefore I have restored the sentence preceding from Sextus.

4 ao/jL-rrda-xei, " suffer with."

5 rb irepiexov. The term used by astrologers to denote the whole X'ther surrounding the stars or, in other words, the whole disposition of the heavens. " Ambient " is its equivalent in modern astrology.

6 This is an anticipation of the Peratic heresy to which a chapter in Book V (pp. 146 fif. infra) is devoted. 'A/ce^^s is there spelt KeA#^s, but 'A/ce^/Srys is restored in Book X and is copied by Theodoret. " Peratic " is thought by Salmon (D.C.B., s.h.v.) to mean " Mede."


the bad, calling them Toparchs and Proastii 1 and many other names. All which heresy undertaken by them, I shall set forth and refute when we come to the discussion concerning them. But now, lest any one should deem trust- worthy and unfailing the rules laid down 2 by the Chaldasans

p. 55 for the astrological art, we shall not shrink from briefly setting forth their refutation and pointing out that their art is vain and rather deceives and destroys the soul which may hope for vain things than helps it. In which matters we do not hold out any expertness in the art, but only that drawn from knowledge of the practical words. 3 Those who, having been trained in this science, become pupils of the Chaldaeans and who having changed the names only, have imparted mysteries as if they were strange and wonderful to men, have constructed a heresy out of this. But since they consider the astrologers' art a mighty one and making use of the witness of the Chaldaeans wish to get their own systems believed because of them, we shall now prove that the astrological art as it appears to-day is unfounded, and then that the Peratic heresy is to be put aside as a branch growing from a root which does not hold. 4

3 5 Now the beginning and as it were the basis of the affair is the establishment of the horoscope. From this the rest of the cardinal points, and the cadents and succeedents and the trines and the squares 6 and the configuration of the stars in them are known, from all which things the pre-

p 56. dictions are made. Wherefore if the horoscope be taken away, of necessity neither the midheaven nor the descendant nor the anti-meridian is known. But the whole Chaldaic system vanishes if these are not disclosed. [And how the zodiacal sign ascending is to be discovered is taught in divers ways. For in order that this may be apprehended,

1 "Toparch" means simply " ruler of a place." Proastius {irpoacxTios) generally the dweller in a suburb. Here it probably means the powers in some part of the heavens which is near to a place or constellation without actually forming part of it.

2 vevofiKTixiva. Cf. vei>o/j.i(T/j.4vws, "in the established manner," Callistratus, Ecphr., 897.

3 rws irpanTiKwv \6ywv, or, perhaps," of the systems used."

4 dava-rarov, lit., 'not holding together," punningly used as epithet for both the art and the heresy.

5 What follows to the concluding paragraph of Chap. 7 is taken nearly verbatim from Sextus Empiricus.

6 For these terms see n. on p. 67 supra.


it is necessary first of all that the birth of 4he child falling under consideration be carefully taken, and secondly that the signalling of the time 1 be unerring, and thirdly that the rising in the heaven of the ascending sign be observed with the greatest care. For at the birth 2 the rising of the sign ascending in the heaven must be closely watched, since the Chaldaeans determining that which ascends, on its rising make that disposition of the stars which they call the Theme, 3 from which they declare their predictions. But neither is it possible to take the birth of those falling under consideration, as I shall show, nor is the time established unerringly, nor is the ascending sign ascertained with care. p. 57. How baseless the system of the Chaldaeans is, we will now say. It is necessary before determining the birth of those falling under consideration, to inquire whether they take it from the deposition of the seed and its conception or from the bringing forth. And if we should attempt to take it from the conception, the accurate account of this is hard to grasp, the time being short and naturally so. For we cannot say whether conception takes place simultaneously with the transfer of the seed or not. For this may happen as quick as thought, as the tallow put into heated pots sticks fast at once, or it may take place after some time. 4 For there being a distance from the mouth of the womb to the other extremity, where conceptions are said by doctors to take place, it is natural that nature depositing the seed should take some time to accomplish this distance. Therefore the Chaldaeans being ignorant of the exact length of time will never discover exactly the time of conception, the seed being sometimes shot straight forward and falling in those places of the p. 5S. womb fitted by nature for conception, and sometimes falling broadcast to be only brought into place by the power of the womb itself. And it cannot be known when the first of these things happens and when the second, nor how much

1 wpocn<6iriov seems here put for wpotTKoire'iov = horologium, or clock.

2 d7roTe|is, "the bringing-forth " is the word used by Sextus throughout. As Sextus was a medical man it is probably the technical term corres- ponding to our "parturition." Miller reads anoraks which does not seem appropriate.

3 SidOefxa. See n. on p. 67 supra.

4 I have here followed Sextus' division of the sentence. Cruice translates (Treap, farina aqua sabacfa, for which I can see no justification. Macmahon here follows him.


time is spent in one sort of conception and how much in the other. But if we are ignorant of these things, the accurate discovery of the nature of the conception vanishes. 1 Nor if, as some physiologists say, seed being first seethed and altered in the womb then goes forward to its gaping vessels as the seeds of the earth go to the earth ; why then, those who do not know the length of time taken by this change will not know either the moment of conception. And again, as women differ from one another in energy and other causes of action in other parts of the body, so do they differ in the energy of the womb, some conceiving quicker and others slower. And this is not unexpected, since if we compare them, they are seen now to be good conceivers and now not at all so'. This being so, it is impossible to say with exactness when the seed deposited is secured, so that from this time the Chaldeans may establish the horoscope 2 of the birth, p. 59. 4. For this reason it is impossible to establish the horo- scope from the conception ; nor can it be done from the bringing forth. For in the first place, it is very hard to say when the bringing forth is : whether it is when the child begins to incline towards the fresh air or when it projects a little, or when it is brought down altogether to the ground. But in none of these cases is it possible to define the time of birth accurately. 3 For from presence of mind and suitableness of body, and through preference of places and the expertness of the midwife and endless other causes, the time is not always the same when, the mem- branes being ruptured, the infant inclines forward, or when p. 60. it projects a little, or when it falls to the ground. But it is different with different women. Which, again, the Chald- eans being unable to measure definitely and accurately, they are prevented from determining as they should the hour of the bringing forth.

That the Chaldeans, therefore, while asserting that they know the sign ascending at the time of birth, do not know it, is plain from the facts. And that there is no means either of unerringly observing the time, 4 is easy to be

1 Restoring from Sextus oXx^Tai for iiprai.

2 wpo<TK6irov, "the ascending sign." So Sextus.

3 Restoring from Sextus i<p' eKaarov for v endo-rcp; rbv atcpifirj for rb &Kptj8es and omitting KaraAafieaOai.

4 See n. on p. 74 infra.


judged. For when they say that the person sitting by the woman in labour at the bringing forth signifies the same to the Chaldsean who is looking upon the stars from a high place by means of the gong, 1 and that this last gazing upon the heaven notes down the sign then rising, we shall show that as the bringing forth happens at no defined time, 2 it is not possible either to signify the same by the gong. For even if it be granted that the actual bringing forth can be ascertained, yet the time cannot be signified accurately. For the sound of the gong, being capable of divisions by perception into much and more time," it happens that it is carried (late) to the high place. And the proof of this is p. 61. what is noticed when trees are felled a long way off. 4 For the sound of the stroke is heard a pretty long time after the fall of the axe, so as to reach the listener later. And from this cause it is impossible for the Chaldeans to obtain accurately the time of the rising sign and that which is in truth on the ascendant. 5 And indeed not only does more time pass after the birth before he who sits beside the woman in labour, strikes the gong, and again after the stroke before it is heard by him upon the high place, but also before he can look about and see in which sign is the moon and in which is each of the other stars. It seems inevitable then that there must be a great change in the disposition of the stars, 6 [from the movement of the Pole being whirled along with indescribable swiftness] before the hour of him who has been born as it is seen in heaven can be observed carefully. 7

5. Thus the art according to the Chaldajans has been p. 62. shown to be baseless. But if any one should fancy that by

1 Sextus has described earlier (p. 342, Fabricius) the whole process of warning the astrologer of the moment of birth by striking a metal disc, which I have called " gong."

2 aOfJlCTTOU Tvyxavov(TT)s.

3 eV TvAeiovt XP^ V V fi & crvx^V nphs al(rQr)<xiv Zvvafievov jxtpi^arBai, viajori et longiori temporis spatio ad aurium sensum dividalur, Cr.j "with proportionate delay," Macmahon. I do not understand how cither his or Cruice's construction is arrived at.

4 Sextus has "on the hills."

5 wpoffKoirovvTos might mean " which marks the hour."

6 (paivGrat . . . aWoiSrepou . . . 8idde/j.a.

7 qitam diligentcr observari possit in coelo nativilas, Cr., (before) " the nativity can be carefully observed in the sky."


enquiries, the geniture * of the enquirer is to be learned, we may know that not in this way either can it be arrived at with certainty. For if such great care in the practice of the art is necessary, and yet as we have shown they do not arrive at accuracy, how can an unskilled person take accurately the time of birth, so that the Chaldaean on learn- ing it may set up the horoscope truthfully? 2 But neither by inspection of the horizon will the star ascending appear the same everywhere, but sometimes the cadent sign will be considered the ascendant and sometimes the succeedent, according as the coming in view of the places is higher or lower. So that in this respect the prediction will not appear accurate, many people being born all over the world at the same hour, while every observer will see the stars differently. But vain also is the customary taking of the time by water-jars. 3 For the pierced jar will not give the same flow when full as when nearly empty, while according to 63. the theory of these people the Pole itself is borne along in one impulse with equal speed. But if they answer to this that they do not take the time accurately but as it chances in common use, 4 they will be refuted merely by the starry influences themselves. 5 For those who have been born at the same time have not lived the same life ; but some for example have reigned as kings while others have grown old in chains. None at any rate of the many throughout the inhabited world at the same time as Alexander of Macedon were like unto him, and none to Plato the philosopher. So that if the Chaldaean observes carefully the time in common use, he will not be able to say 6 if he who is born at that time will be fortunate. For many at any rate born

1 y&eais. The word in Greek astrological works has the same mean- ing as " geniture " or " nativity" in modern astrological jargon. Iden- tical with " theme."

2 The whole of this sentence is corrupt, and the scrihe was probably taking down something from Sextus which was read to him without his understanding it. I have given what seems to be the sense of the passage.

3 vSpiai, Sextus (p. 342, Fabr.), has described the clepsydra or water-clock and its defects as a measurer of time.

4 eV 7rAaT6t.

5 ra anorexia par a. A technical expression for the results or influence on sublunary things of the position of the heavenly bodies. Cf. Bouche- Leclercq, op. cit., p. 328, n. T.

6 Sextus adds irayiois, " positively."


at that time, will be unfortunate, so that the likeness between the genitures is vain.

Having therefore refuted in so many different ways the vain speculation of the Chaldaeans, we shall not omit this, that their prognostications lead to impossibility. For if he who is born under the point of Sagittarius' arrow must be slain, as the astrologers 1 say, how was it that so many barbarians who fought against the Greeks at Marathon or p. 64 Salamis were killed at the same time? For there was not at any rate the same horoscope for all. And again, if he who is born under the urn of Aquarius will be shipwrecked, how was it that some of the Greeks returning from Troy were sunk together in the furrows of the Eubcean sea ? For it is incredible that all these differing much from one another in age should all have been born under Aquarius' urn. For it cannot be said often that because of one who was destined to perish by sea, all those in the ship should be destroyed along with him. For why should the destiny of this one prevail over that of all, and yet that not all should be saved because of one who was destined to die on land?

6. But since also they make a theory about the influence of the zodiacal signs to which they say the things brought forth are likened, we shall not omit this. For example, they say that he who is born under Leo will be courageous, 2 and he who is born under Virgo straight-haired, pale-com- plexioned, childless and bashful. But these things and p . 65 those like them deserve laughter rather than serious con- sideration. 3 For according to them an Ethiopian can be born under Virgo, and if so they allow he will be white, straight-haired and the rest. But I imagine that the ancients gave the names of the lower animals to the stars rather because of arbitrariness 4 than from natural likeness of shape. For what likeness to a bear have the seven stars which stand separate from one another? Or to the head of a dragon those five of which Aratus says :

1 oi ixaQr)ixaTiKoi. The only passage in our text where Hippolytus uses the word in this sense. He seems to have taken it from Sextus' title Kara rbv /madr^fxaTiicbv \6you.

2 A play of words upon Aeu and av$pe7os.

3 (nrorSf/s. Hippolytus inserts an unnecessary ov before the word. See Sextus, p. 355.

iKeiwcrews VOL. I.


Two hold the temples, two the eyes, and one beneath Marks the chin point of the monster dread.

(Aratus, Phaivomena, vv. 56, 57.)

7. That these things are not worthy of so much labour is thus proved to the right-thinkers aforesaid, and to those who give no heed to the inflated talk of the Chaldeans, who with assurance of indemnity make kings to disappear

p. 66. and incite private persons to dare great deeds. 1 But if he who has given way to evil fails, he who has been deceived does not become a teacher to all whose minds the Chald- seans wish to lead endlessly astray by their failures. For they constrain the minds of their pupils when they say that the same configuration of the stars cannot occur otherwise than by the return of the Great Year in 7777 years. 2 How then can human observation agree 3 in so many ages upon one geniture? And this not once but many times, since the destruction of the cosmos as some say will interrupt the observation, or its gradual transformation will cause to disappear entirely the continuity of historical tradition. 4 ] The Chaldaic art must be refuted by more arguments, although we have been recalling it to memory on account of other matters and not for its own sake. But since we have before said that we will omit none of the opinions current among the Gentiles, 5 by reason of the many- voiced craft of the heresies, let us see what they say also who have

p. 67. dared to speculate about magnitudes. Who, recognizing the variety of the work of most of them, when another has been utterly deceived in a different manner and has been yet held in high esteem, have dared to say something yet more grandiose than he, so that they may be yet more glorified by those who have already glorified their petty frauds. These men postulate circles and triangular and square measures doubly and triply. 6 There is much

1 Does this refer to Otho's encouragement by the astrologer Ptolemy to rebel against Galba? See Tacitus, Hist., I, 22. The sentence does not appear in Sextus.

2 Sextus says 9977 years.

3 (]>6d<ri avvSpaiuelu, "arrive at concurrence with." Sextus answers the question in the negative.

4 Here the quotations from Sextus end. \

5 Trap' fdpeai ' ' among the nations. " A curious expression \n the mouth of a Greek, although natural to a Jew.

6 Is this an allusion to trigonometry ? The rest of the sentence, as


theory about this, but it is not necessary for what lies before us.

8. 1 reckon it enough therefore to declare the marvels described by them. Wherefore I shall employ their epitomes, 1 as they call them, and then turn to other things. They say this : 2 he who fashioned the universe, gave rule to the revolution of the Same and Like, for that alone he left undivided ; but the inner motion he divided 6 times and made 7 unequal circles divided by intervals in ratios of 2 and 3, 3 of each, and bade the circles revolve in directions opposite to one another 3 of them to revolve at equal pace, and 4 with a velocity unlike that of the 3, but in due proportion. 3 And he says that rule was given to the p. orbit of the 7, not only because it embraces the orbit of the Other, i. e., the Wanderers ; but because it has so much rule, i. e. y so much power, that it carries along with it the Wanderers to the opposite positions, bearing them from West to East and from East to West by its own strength. And he says that the same orbit was allowed to be one and undivided, first because the orbits of all the fixed stars are equal in time and not divided into greater and lesser times. 4 And next because they all have the same appear- ance, 5 which is that of the outermost orbit, while the Wanderers are divided into more and different kinds of movements and into unequal distances from the Earth. And he says that the Other orbit has been cut in 6 places into 7 circles according to ratio. 6 For as many cuts as

will presently be seen, refers to Plato's Ti7ticcus. Cf. also Timccus the Locrian, c. 5.

1 Aib rots iiriTOjiois xP r l (T i-l J - V05 - -^ n indication that Ilippolytus' knowledge of Plato was not first-hand.

2 The passage which follows is from the Timaus, XII, where Plato describes how the \ World-maker set in motion two concentric circles revolving different ways, the external called the Same and Like, and the internal the Other, or Different.

3 This seems to be generally accepted as Plato's meaning. Jowett says the three are the orbits of the Sun, Venus and Mercury, the four those of the Moon, Saturn, Mars and Jupiter. The Wanderers are of course the planets.

4 i. e., swifter and slower. 5 iiriQavcla.

G Perhaps the following extract from the pseudo-Timceus the Locrian, now generally accepted as a summary of the second century, may make this clearer. After explaining that the cosmos and its parts are divided into "the Same " and " the Different," he says : " The first of these


7 milosophUmena

there are of each, so many segments are there plus a monad. For example if one cut be made, 1 there are 2 segments ; if 2 cuts, 3 segments ; and so, if a thing be cut 6 times there

p. 69. will be 7 segments. And he says that the intervals between them are arranged alternately in ratios of 2 and 3, 3 of each, which he has proved with regard to the constitution of the soul also, as to the 7 numbers. For 3 among them, viz., 2, 4, 8, are doubles from the monad onwards and 3 of them, viz., 3, 9, 27 [triples] 2 . . . But the diameter of the Earth is 80,008 stadia and its perimeter 2 50, 543. 3 And the distance from the Earth's surface to the circle of the Moon, Aristarchus of Samos writes as ... 4 stadia but Apollonius as 5,000,000 and Archimedes as 5,544,130. And Archimedes says that from the Moon's circle to that of the Sun is 50,262,065 stadia; from this to the circle of Aphrodite 20,272,065; and from this to the circle of Hermes 50,817,165; and from the same to the circle of

p. 7- the Fiery One 5 40,541,108; and from this to the circle of Zeus 20,275,065 ; but from this to the circle of Kronos, 40,372,065; and from this to the Zodiac and the last periphery 20,082,005 stadia.

9. The differences from one another of the circles and the spheres in height are also given by Archimedes. He takes the perimeter of the Zodiac at 447,310,000 stadia, so that a straight line from the centre of the Earth to its extreme surface is the sixth part of the said number, and from the surface of the Earth on which we walk to the Zodiac is exactly one-sixth of the said number less 40,000

leads from without all that are within them, along the general move- ment from East to West. But the latter, belonging to the Different, lead from within the parts that are carried along from West to East, nnd are self-moved, and they are whirled round and along, as it may happen, by the movement of the Same which possesses in the Cosmos a superior power. Now the movement of the Different, being divided according to a harmonical proportion, takes the form of 7 circles," and he then goes on to describe the orbits of the planets.

1 Lit., "if one section be severed."

2 Cf. Plato, Tinuzus, c. 12.

3 A palpable mistake. As Cruice points out, if the Earth's diameter is as said in the text, its perimeter must be 251,768 stadia, which is not far from the 252,000 stadia assigned to it by Eratosthenes.

4 Lacuna? in both these sentences.

5 The common Greek name for the planet Ares or Mars V 6 )


stadia which is the distance from the centre of the Earth to its surface. And from the circle of Kronos to the Earth, he says, the interval is 2,226,912,711 stadia; and from the circle of the Fiery One to the Earth, 132,418,581 ; and from p. 71. the Sun to the Earth, 121,604,454; from the Shining One to the Earth, 526,882,259; and from Aphrodite to the Earth, 50,815, 160. 1

10. And about the Moon we have before spoken. The distances and depths 2 of the spheres are thus given by Archimedes, but Hipparchus speaks differently about them, and Apollonius the mathematician differently again. But it is enough for us in following the Platonic theory to think of the intervals between the Wanderers as in ratios of 2 and 3. For thus is kept alive the theory of the harmonious construction of the universe in accordant ratios 3 by the same distances. But the numbers set out by Archimedes and the ratios quoted by the others concerning the distances, if they are not in accordant ratios, that is in those called by Plato twofold and threefold, but are found to be outside p. 72. the chords, 4 would not keep alive the theory of the harmo- nious construction of the universe. For it is neither probable nor possible that their distances should have no ratio to one another, that is, should be outside the chords and enhar- monic scales. Except perhaps the Moon alone, from her waning and the shadows of the Earth, as to which planet alone you may trust Archimedes, that is to say for the distance of the Moon from the Earth. And it will be easy for those who accept this calculation to ascertain the number and the other distances according to the Platonic method by doubling and tripling as Plato demands. 5 If

1 All these numbers are hopelessly corrupt in the text and the scribe varies the notation repeatedly. I have given the figures as finally settled by Cruice and his predecessors. The Shining One is the planet Hermes or Mercury (^).

/3a077, " depths " ; rather height if we consider the orbits of the planets as concentric and fitting into one another like jugglers' caps or the skins of an onion.

! eV \6yois a-ufKpwvois. Cruice would read tSuois for \6yois on the

strength of what Pliny, Hist. Nat., II, 20, says about Pythagoras having taught that the intervals between the planets' orbits were musical tones. He seems to mean the gamut or chromatic scale as contrasted with the enharmonic.

4 See last note.

5 See note on p. 81 infra as to what this doubling and tripling means.


then, according to Archimedes, the Moon is distant from the Earth 5,544,130 stadia, it will be easy by increasing these numbers in ratios of 2 and 3 to find her distance from the rest by taking one fraction of the number of stadia by which the Moon is distant from the Earth.

But since the rest of the numbers stated by Archimedes about the distance of the Wanderers are not in accordant ratios, it is easy to know how they stand in regard to one

p. 73. another and in what ratios they have been observed to be. But that the same are not in harmony and accord 1 when they are parts of the cosmos established by harmony is impossible. So then, as the first number (of stadia) by which the Moon is distant from the Earth is 5,544,130, the second number by which the Sun is distant from the Moon being 50,262,065, it is in ratio more than ninefold ; and the number of the interval above this being 20,272,065 is in ratio less than one-half. And the number of the interval above this being 50,815,108 is in ratio more than twofold. And the number of the interval above this being 40,541,108 is in ratio more than one and a quarter. 2 And the number of the interval above this being 20,275,065 is in ratio more than half. And the number of the highest interval above this being 40,372,065 is in ratio less than twofold. 3

n. These same ratios indeed the more than ninefold,

p. 74. less than half, more than twofold, less than one and a quarter, more than half, less than half and less than twofold are outside all harmonies and from them no enharmonic nor accordant system can come to pass. But the whole cosmos and its parts throughout are put together in an enharmonic and accordant manner. But the enharmonic and accordant



2 iiriTcrdpTCf, superquarta, Cr. , I + \ ; see Liddell and Scott, quot- ing Nicomachus Gerasenus Arithmeticus.

3 It is not easy to see from this confused statement whether it is the system of Plato or Archimedes at which Hippolytus is aiming. The one, however, that it most resembles is that of the neo-Pythagoreans, of which the following table is given in M. Bieourdan's excellent work on L Astronomie : Evolution des /dee's et des Me'tkodes, Paris 191 1, p. 49 : Planets ....$$ $ f O S V- k Fixed stars intones. . . . 1 | J ll 1 $ i |

in thousands oH , , , Qn w ~ .,

stadia j I26 6 3 6 3 l8 9 I26 6 3

Absolute dis-^j

tances in thou- V o 126 189 253 44 1 567 630 6^3 756

sands of stadia j


ratios are kept alive as we have said before by the twofold and threefold intervals. If then we deem Archimedes worthy of faith on the distance given above, i.e., that from the Moon to the Earth, it is easy to find the rest by increas- ing it in the ratios of 2 and 3. Let the distance from the Earth to the Moon be, according to Archimedes, 5,544,130 stadia. The double of this will be the number of stadia by which the Sun is distant from the Moon, viz., 11,088,260. But from the Earth the Sun is distant 16,632,390 stadia and Aphrodite indeed from the Sun 16,632,390 stadia, but from the Earth 33,264,780. Ares indeed is distant from Aphrodite 22,176,520 stadia but from the Earth 105,338,470. But Zeus is distant from Ares 44,353,040 stadia, but from the Earth 149,691,510. Kronos is distant from Zeus p. 75 40,691,510 stadia, but from the Earth 293,383,o2o. 1

1 The object of all these figures is apparently to piove that those of Archimedes are wrong and that the Platonic theory said, one does not know with what truth, to have been inherited from Pythagoras, viz., that the intervals between the orbits of the different bodies of the cosmos are arranged like the notes on a musical scale is to be preferred. This was perhaps to be expected from a Churchman as favouring the doctrine of creation by design. It is difficult at first sight to see how the figures in the text bear out Hippolytus' contention, inasmuch as the distances here given of the seven planets (including therein the Sun and Moon) from the Earth proceed in an irregular kind of arithmetical pro- gression ranging from one to fifty-four, the distance from the Earth to the Moon which Hippolytus accepts from Archimedes as correct being taken as unity. Thus, let us call this unit of distance x, and we have the table which follows :

Table I {of distances)

Distance of Earth ( ) from ]) = 5,544, 130 stadia or x



,, = 16,632,390




5, 9 = 33.264,7^0

,, 6x

5 5

$ = 55.441, 3

,, IO.#

5 > 55

55 5 5

<? = 105,338,470 y. = 149,691,510 ,, h =299,383,020

19^ 27 x 54-*

But let us


e the figures given in the text for the intervals between

the Earth and

the seven " planets" arranged in

the same order, and

again taking

the Earth

to Moon distance as unity,

we have :

Table II {of intervals)


il between

6 and )) = 5,554, 130 stadia or x

I 5


]) ,, = 11,088,260


55 55



5 5


$ = 16,632,390

9 $ = 22,176,520 $ $ = 49,897,170


4X(2 2 )

9x(3 2 )



6 n = 44,353,040

8^r(2 3 )



V- h = 1495691,510

,, 27*(3 3 )


12. Who will not wonder at so much activity of mind produced by so great labour ? It seems that this Ptolemy x who busies himself with these matters is not without his use to me. This only grieves me that as one but lately born he was not serviceable to the sons of the giants, 2 who, being ignorant of these measurements, thought they were near high heaven and began to make a useless tower. Had he been at hand to explain these measurements to them they would not have ventured on the foolishness. But if any one thinks he can disbelieve this let him take the measurements and be convinced ; for one cannot have for the unbelieving a more manifold proof than this. O puffing-up of vainly- toiling soul and unbelieving belief, when Ptolemy is con- sidered wise in everything by those trained in the like wisdom ! 3

This agrees almost entirely with the theory which M. Bigourdan in the work mentioned in the last note has worked out as the Platonic theory of the distances of the different planets from the Earth, "the supposed centre of their movements" (p. 228). Thus:

Planets D ? $ 6 % h

Distances 1 2 3 4 8 9 27 which distances are, in his own words, " les termes enchevetres de deux progressions geometriques ayant respectivement pour raison 2 et 3, savoir I, 2, 4, 8 I, 3, 9, 27 ; on voit que l'unite est, commechez Pytha- gore, la distance de la Terre a la Lune." This conclusion is amply borne out by Hippolytus' figures, which, as given in Table II above, show a regular progression from 2 and 3 to 2 s and 3 2 , then to 2 3 and 3*, which explains what our author means by increasing the Earth to the Moon distance, Kara to SLirhdaiov nal rpiirXaaiov. The only discrepancy between this and M. Bigourdan's table is that he has transposed the distances between $ and $ \i respectively ; but as I do not know the details of the calculation on which he bases his figures, I am unable to say whether the mistake is his or Hippolytus'.

1 Are we to conclude from this that these last calculations are those of Claudius Ptolemy, the author of the Almagest ? He has certainly not been mentioned before, but his fame was so great that Hippolytus may have been certain that the allusion would be understood by his audience. Ptolemy lived, perhaps, into the last quarter of the second century.

2 Genesis vi. 4. The subject seems to have had irresistible fascina- tion for Christian converts of Asiatic blood, whether orthodox or heretic. Manes also wrote a book upon the Giants, cf. Kessler, Mani, Berlin, 1899, pp. 191 ff.

3 Hippolytus seems to have been entirely ignorant that the calcula- tions he derides were anything but mere guess-work. They were not only singularly accurate considering the imperfection of the observations


13. Certain men in part intent on these things as judging them mighty and worthy of argument have constructed p. 76. measureless x and boundless heresies Among whom is one Colarbasus, 2 who undertakes to set forth religion by measures and numbers. And there are others whom we shall likewise point out when we begin to speak of those who give heed to Pythagorean reckoning as if it were power- ful and neglect the true philosophy for numbers and elements, thus making vain divinations. Collecting whose words, certain men have led astray the uneducated, pre- tending to know the future and when they chance to divine one thing aright are not ashamed of their many failures, but make a boast of their one success. Nor shall I pass over their unwise wisdom, but when I have set forth their attempts to establish a religion from these sources, I shall refute them as being disciples of a school inconsistent and full of trickery.

2. Of Mathematicians?

Those then who fancy that they can divine by means of p. 77. ciphers 4 and numbers, elements 5 and names, make the foundation of their attempted system to be this. They pretend that every number has a root : in the thousands as many units as there are thousands. For example, the

at the disposal of their author, but have also been of the greatest use lo science as laying the foundation of all future astronomy.

1 afiiTpovs. Another pun on their measurements.

2 Nothing definite is known of this Colarbasus or his supposed astro- logical heresy. The accounts given of him by Irenams and Epiphanius describe him as holding tenets identical with those of Marcus. Hort, following Baur, believes that he never existed, and that his name is simply a Greek corruption of Qol ajda, " the Voice of the Four." See D.C.B., s.h.v.

3 -Kepi ixaO-q^aTiKtov. The article is omitted ; but he must mean the students and not the study. This is curious, because Mathcmaticus in the Rome of Hippolytus must have meant astrologer and nothing else, and what follows has nothing to do with astrology. Rather is it what was called in the Renaissance Arithmomancy. Cruice refers us to Athanasius Kircher's Arithmologia on the subject. Cornelius Agrippa, De sanitate et incertitudine Scienlarttm, writes of it as "The Pythagorean lot," and it is described in Caspar Peucer's De praeipiiis Divinationum generibus, 1604.

4 tyrjcpoi, lit., pebbles, i.e. counters.

5 (TToix^a : letters as the component parts or elements of words.


root of 6000 is 6 units, of 7000, 7 units, of 8000, 8 units, and with the rest in the same way. In the hundreds as many hundreds as there are, so the same number of units is the root of them. For example, in 700 there are 7 hundreds : 7 units is their root. In 600 there are 6 hundreds : 6 units is their root. In the same way in the decads : of 80 the root is 8 units, of 40, 4 units, of 10, 1 unit. In the units, the units themselves are the root ; for instance, the unit of the 9 is 9, of the 8, 8, of the 7, 7. Thus then*must we do with the com- ponent parts [of names]. For each element is arranged according to some number. For example, the Nu consists of 50 units ; but of 50 units the root is 5, and of the letter

p. 78. Nu the root is 5. Let it be granted that from the name we may take certain 1 of it's roots. For example, from the name Agamemnon there comes from the Alpha one unit, from the Gamma 3 units, from the other Alpha 1 unit, from the Mu 4 units, from the Epsilon 5 units, from the Mu 4 units, from the Nu 5 units, from the Omega 8 units, from the Nu 5 units, which together in one row will be 1,3,1,4,5,4,5,8,5. These added together make 36 units. Again they take the roots of these and they become 3 for the 30, but 6 itself for the 6. Then the 3 and the 6 added together make 9, but the root of 9 is 9. Therefore the name Agamemnon ends in the root 9.

Let the same be done with another name, viz., Hector. The name Hector contains five elements, Epsilon, Kappa, Tau, Omega and Rho. 2 The roots of these are 5, 2,3,8, 1 ; these added together make 19 units. Again, the root of the 10 is 1, of the 9, 9, which added together make 10. The root of the 10 is one unit. Therefore the name of Hector when counted up 3 has made as its root one unit.

p. 79. But it is easier to work this way. Divide by 9 the roots ascertained from the elements, as we have just found 19 units from the name Hector, and read the remaining root. For example, if I divide the 19 by 9, there remains a unit, for twice 9 is 18, and the remainder is a unit. For if I subtract 18 from the 19, the remainder is a unit. Again, of

1 Reading with the text nvas for Cruice'

s riva.

2 In the text the Kappa and Tau are written at full length numbers in the usual Greek notation, a proof that the scribe writing from dictation and not copying MS,

3 tyrjcpiffdhv.

the other was here


the name Patroclus 1 these numbers 8, 1, 3 1, 7, 2, 3, 7, 2 are the roots ; added together they make 34 units. The remainder of these units is 7, viz., 3 from the 30 and 4 from the 4. Therefore 7 units are the root of the name Patroclus. Those then who reckon by the rule of 9 take the 9th part of the number collected from the roots and describe the remainder as the sum of the roots ; but those who reckon by the rule of 7 take the 7th part. For example, in the name Patroclus the aggregate of the roots is 34 units. This divided into sevens makes 4 sevens, which are 28 ; the remainder is 6 units. He says that by the rule of 7, 6 is p. 80. the root of the name Patroclus. 2 If, however, it be 43, the 7th part, he says, is 42, for 7 times 6 is 42, and the remainder is 1. Therefore the root from the 43 by the rule of 7 becomes a unit. But we must take notice of what happens if the given number when divided has no remainder, 3 as for example, if from one name, after adding together the roots, I find, e.g., 36 units. But 36 divided by 9 is exactly 4 enneads (for 9 times 4 is 36 and nothing over). Thus, he says the 9 itself is plainly the root. If again we divide the number 45 we find 9 and no remainder (for 9 times 5 is 45 and nothing over), in such cases we say the root is 9. And in the same way with the rule of 7 : if, e.g.t we divide 28 by 7 we shall have nothing over (for 7 times 4 is 28 and nothing left), [and] they say the root is 7. Yet when he reckons up the names and finds the same letter twice, he counts it only once. For example, the name Patroclus has the Alpha twice and the Omicron twice/ p. Si. therefore he counts the Alpha only once and the Omicron only once. According to this, then, the roots will be 8, 3, 1, 7, 2, 3, 2, and added together make 2 7, 5 and the root of the name by the rule of 9 will be the 9 itself and by that of 7, 6.

In the same way Sarpedon, when counted, makes by the

1 The name is spelt TldrpoicXos.

J So that the "root " may be either 7 or 6 according as you use the " rule of 9 " or of 7. A i-eductio ad absiirdum.

3 iau airapricrr], " is even or complete."

4 I omit the Rho, which in the Codex precedes the Alpha. Cruice suggests it is put for IT.

5 They do not, but make 26. Cruice adds an Alpha between the 8 and the 3 ; but in any case the rule just enunciated is brpken by the reckoning in of two 2's,


rule of 9, 2 units ; but Patroclus makes 9 : Patroclus conquers. For when one number is odd and the other even, the odd conquers if it be the greater. But again if there were an 8, which is even, and a 5, which is odd, the 8 conquers, for it is greater. But if there are two numbers, for example, both even or both odd, the lesser conquers. But how does Sarpedon by the rule of 9 make 2 units ? The element Omega is omitted ; for when there are in a name the elements Omega and Eta, they omit the Omega

p. 82 and use one element. For they say that they both have the same power, but are not to be counted twice, as has been said above. Again, Ajax (Atas) 1 makes 4 units, and Hector by the rule of 9 only one. But the 4 is even while the unit is odd. And since we have said that in such cases the greater conquers, Ajax is the victor. Take again Alex- andres 2 and Menelaus. Alexandros has an individual 3 name [Paris]. The name Paris makes by the rule of 9, 4 ; Menelaus by the same rule 9, and the 9 conquers the 4. For it has been said that when one is odd and the other even, the greater conquers, but when both are even or both odd, the lesser. Take again Amycus and Polydeuces. Amycus makes by the rule of 9, 2 units, and Polydeuces 7 : Polydeuces conquers. Ajax and Odysseus contended together in the funereal games. Ajax makes by the rule of 9, 4 units, and Odysseus by the same rule 8. 4 Is there not (here) then some epithet of Odysseus and not his individual name, for he conquered ? According to the numbers Ajax conquers, but tradition says Odysseus. Or take again Achilles and Hector. Achilles by the rule of 9 makes 4 ;

p. 83. Hector 1 ; Achilles conquers. Take again Achilles and Asteropa^us. Achilles makes 4, Asteropseus 3 ; 5 Achilles

1 Afas. A = i, 1=10= I, a=i (omitted), s=200=2. 1 + 1 + 2=4.

2 The Homeric name for Paris.

3 Kvpiov oi'ofia as opposed to fAsrcupophv vvojxa, a name transferred from one to another, or family name.

4 Not 8 but 4. = 70 = 7, 5 = 4, v = 400 = 4,o-= 200 = 2, e = 5 (with duplicate omitted) = 22, which divided by 9 leaves 4, or by 7, only 1. The next sentence and a similar remark at the last sentence but one pf the chapter are probably by a commentator or scribe and have slipped into the text by accident. Oddly enough, nothing is said as to what happens if the "roots " are equal, as they seem to be in this case.

5 Another mistake. A = I, a 200 = 2, r = 300 = 3, e = 5, p 3= 100 = 1, o = 70 = 7, 7r = 80 = 8, 1 = 10 = 1 (with duplicates, pmitted) = 28, which divided by 9 leaves 1, or by 7, o = 7.


conquers. Take again Euphorbus and Menelaus. Menelaus has 9 units, Euphorbus 8 ; Menelaus conquers.

But some say that by the rule of 7, they use only the vowels, and others that they put the vowels, semi-vowels and consonants by themselves, and interpret each column separately. But yet others do not use the usual numbers, but different ones. Thus, for example, they will not have Pi to have as a root 8 units, but 5 and the element Xi as a root 4 units ; and turning about every way, they discover nothing sane. When, however, certain competitors contend a second time, 1 they take away the first element, and when a third, the two first elements of each, and counting up the rest, they interpret them.

2. I should think that the design of the arithmeticians p. 84 has been plainly set forth, who deem that by numbers and names they can judge life. And I notice that, as they have time to spare and have been trained in counting, they have wished by means of the art handed down to them by children to proclaim themselves well-approved diviners, and, measuring the letters topsy-turvy, have strayed into nonsense. For when they fail to hit the mark, they say in propounding the difficulty that the name in question is not a family name but an epithet ; as also they plead as a subter- fuge in the case of Ajax and Odysseus. Who that founds his tenets on this wonderful philosophy and wishes to be called heresiarch, will not be glorified ?

3. Of Divination by Metoposcopy?

1. But since there is another and more profound art among the all-wise investigators of the Greeks, whose dis- ciples the heretics profess themselves because of the use they make of their opinions for their own designs, as we shall show before long, 'we shall not keep silence about this.

1 orai/ fievroi SevrepSv Tiues aywvltwvTau. Quum zero quidam ilcrum decertant de Humeri's, Cr. But the allusion is almost certainly to two charioteers or combatants meeting in successive contests. Half the divination and magic of the early centuries refers to the affairs of the circus, and the text has nothing about de nuvieris.

1 Lit., inspection of the forehead (or face), or what Lavater called physiognomy. The word was known to Ben Jonson, who uses it in his Alchymist. "By a rule, Captain. In metoposcopy, which I do work by. A certain star in the forehead which you see not," etc.


This is the divination or rather madness by metoposcopy.

p. 85. There are those who refer to the stars the forms of the types and patterns x and natures of men, summing them up by their births under certain stars. This is what they say : Those born under Aries will be like this, to wit, long-headed, red-haired, with eyebrows joined together, narrow forehead, sea-green eyes, hanging cheeks, long nose, expanded nostrils, thin lips, pointed chin, and wide mouth. They will partake, he says, of such a disposition as this : forethinking, versatile, cowardly, provident, easy-going, gentle, inquisitive, concealing their desires, equipped for everything, ruling more by judgment than by strength, laughing at the present, skilled writers, faithful, lovers of strife, provoking to controversy, given to desire, lovers of boys, understanding, turning from their own homes, dis-

p. S6. pleased with everything, litigious, madmen in their cups, contemptuous, casting away somewhat every year, useful in friendship by their goodness. Most often they die in a foreign land. 2

2. Those born under Taurus will be of this type : round- headed, coarse-haired, with broad forehead, oblong eyes and great eyebrows if dark ; if fair, thin veins, sanguine complexion, large and heavy eyelids, great ears, round mouth, thick nose, widely-open nostrils, thick lips. They are strong in their upper limbs, but are sluggish from the hips downwards from their birth. The same are of a dis- position pleasing, understanding, naturally clever, religious, just, rustical, agreeable, laborious 3 after twelve years old, easily irritated, leisurely. Their appetite is small, they are quickly satisfied, wishing for many things, provident, thrifty towards themselves, liberal towards others ; as a class they are sorrowful, useless in friendship, useful because of their minds, enduring ills.

p. 87. 3. The type of these under Gemini : red-faced, not too

1 tSeor.

2 I have not thought it worth while to set down the various readings suggested by the different editors and translators for these "forms and qualities." The whole of this chapter is taken from Ptolemy's Tetrabiblos, and was corrupted by every copyist. The common type suggested with eyebrows meeting over the nose is plainly Alexandrian, as we know from the portraits on mummy-cases in Ptolemaic times.

3 Koiriaral. The dictionaries give "grave-digger," which makes no sense.


tall in stature, even-limbed, eyes black and beady, 1 cheeks drawn downwards, coarse mouth, eyebrows joined together. They rule all that they have, are rich at the last, niggardly, thrifty of their own, profuse in the affairs of Venus, reason- able, musical, cheats. The same are said (by other writers) to be of this disposition : learned, understanding, inquisitive, self-assertive, given to desire, thrifty with their own, liberal, gentle, prudent, crafty, wishing for many things, calculators, litigious, untimely, not lucky. They are beloved by women, are traders, but not very useful in friendship.

4. The type of those under Cancer : not great in stature, p. 88. blue-black hair, reddish complexion, small mouth, round head, narrow forehead, greenish eyes, sufficiently beautiful, limbs slightly irregular. Their disposition : evil, crafty, skilled in plots, insatiable, thrifty, ungraced, servile, un- helpful, forgetful. They neither give back what is another's

nor demand back their own ; useful in friendship.

5. The type of those under Leo : round head, reddish hair, large wrinkled forehead, thick ears, stiff-necked, pnrtly bald, fiery complexion, green-gray eyes, large jaws, coarse mouth, heavy upper limbs, great breast, lower parts small. Their disposition is : self-assertive, immoderate, self-pleasers, wrathful, courageous, scornful, arrogant, never deliberating, no talkers, indolent, addicted to custom, given up to the things of Venus, fornicators, shameless, wanting in faith, importunate for favour, audacious, niggardly, rapacious, celebrated, helpful to the community, useless in friendship.

6. The type of those under Virgo : with fair countenance, p. 89. eyes not great but charming, with dark eyebrows close together, vivacious and swimming. 2 But they are slight in body, fair to see, with hair beautifully thick, large forehead, prominent nose. Their disposition is : quick at learning, moderate, thoughtful, playful, erudite, slow of speech, plan- ning many things, importunate for favour, observing all things and naturally good disciples. They master what they learn, are moderate, contemptuous, lovers of boys, addicted to custom, of great soul, scornful, careless of affairs, giving heed to teaching, better in others' affairs than in their own ; useful for friendship.

1 d<(>9a\iu.oTs fieXacriv ws TjAet^^eVots, "eyes black as if oiled." Not a bad description of the eyes of a certain type of Levantine. 8 The text has KoAvjxfiuHTiv, which must refer to the eyes.


7. The type of those under Libra : with thin bristling hair, reddish and not very long, narrow wrinkled forehead, beautiful eyebrows close together, fair eyes with black pupils, broad but small ears, bent head, wide mouth. Their disposition is : understanding, honouring the gods, talkative to one another, traders, laborious, not keeping

p. 9- what they get, cheats, not loving to take pains in business, 1 truthful, free of tongue, doers of good, unlearned, cheats, addicted to custom, careless, unsafe to treat unjustly. 2 They are scornful, derisive, sharp, illustrious, eavesdroppers, and nothing succeeds with them. Useful for friendship.

8. The type of those under Scorpio : with maidenly countenance, well shaped and pale, 3 dark hair, well-formed eyes, forehead not wide and pointed nose, ears small and close (to the head), wrinkled forehead, scanty eyebrows, drawn-in cheeks. Their disposition is : crafty, sedulous, cheats, imparting their own plans to none, double-souled, ill-doers, contemptuous, given to fornication, gentle, quick at learning. Useless for friendship.

9. The type of those under Sagittarius : great in stature, square forehead, medium eyebrows joined together, hair

p. 91. abundant, bristling and reddish. Their disposition is : gracious as those who have been well brought up, simple, doers of good, lovers of boys, addicted to custom, laborious, loving and beloved, cheerful in their cups, clean, pas- sionate, careless, wicked, useless for friendship, scornful, great-souled, insolent, somewhat servile, 4 useful to the community.

10. The type of those under Capricorn : with reddish body, bristling, greyish hair, 5 round mouth, eyes like an eagle, eyebrows close together, smooth forehead, inclined to baldness, the lower parts of the body the stronger. Their disposition is : lovers of wisdom, scornful and laugh- ing at the present, passionate, forgiving, beautiful, doers of good, lovers of musical practice, angry in their cups, jocose, addicted to custom, talkers, lovers of boys, cheerful, friendly, beloved, provokers of strife, useful to the community.

1 Yet he twice calls them \pevcrTai, or " cheats."

2 Miller thinks this last characteristic interpolated.

3 Reading Aeu/c&J for o.Avk$, "salt," which seems impossible.

4 Reading viroSovAtoi for virodovAoi.

5 Is any one born with grey hair ?


ii. The type of those under Aquarius : square in stature, small mouth, narrow small, fierce eyes.. (Their disposition) is : commanding, ungracious, sharp, seeking the easy path, useful for friendship and to the community. Yet they live p. 92. on chance affairs and lose their means of gain. Their disposition is : x reserved, modest, addicted to custom, fornicators, niggards, painstaking in business, turbulent, clean, well-disposed, beautiful, with great eyebrows. Often they are in small circumstances and work at (several) different trades. If they do good to any, no one gives them thanks.

12. The type of those under Pisces : medium stature, with narrow foreheads like fishes, thick hair. They often become grey quickly. Their disposition is : great-souled, simple, passionate, thrifty, talkative. They will be sleepy at an early age, they want to do business by themselves, illustrious, venturesome, envious, litigious, changing their place of abode, beloved, fond of dancing. 2 Useful for friendship.

13. Since we have set forth their wonderful wisdom, and have not concealed their much-laboured art of divination by intelligence, 3 neither shall we be silent on the folly into which their mistakes in these matters lead them. For how p 9 -\ feeble are they in finding a parallel between the names of

the stars and the forms and dispositions of men ? For we know that those who at the outset chanced upon the stars, naming them according to their own fancy, called them by names for the purpose of easily and clearly recognizing them. For what likeness is there in these names to the appearance of the Zodiacal signs, or what similar nature of working and activity, so that any one born under Leo should be thought courageous, 4 or he who is born

1 ol avrol (pvcrecos. A similar phrase has just occurred under the same sign : a proof of the utter corruption of the text.

- opxy\<TTai in codex. Probably a mistake for ets Koivuviav evxpyorot, " useful to the community."

3 St' e-mvoias ; probably a sarcasm.

4 It is hardly necessary to point out the futility of this astrology, its base being the theory that the earth is the centre of the universe. Nearly all the characteristics given above have, however, less to do with the stars than with those supposed to distinguish the different animals named. This is really sympathetic magic, or what was later called "the signatures of things."



under Virgo moderate, or under Cancer bad, and those under l . . .

4. The Magicia?is?

(The gap here caused by the mutilation of the MS. was probably filled by a description of the mode of divination by enquiry of a spirit or daemon which was generally made in writing, as Lucian describes in his account of the im- posture of Alexander of Abonoteichos. The MS. proceeds.) . . . And he (i.e., the magician) taking some paper, orders the enquirer to write down what it is he wishes to enquire of the daemons. 3 Then he having folded up the paper and given it to the boy, 4 sends it away to be burned so that the smoke carrying the letters may go hence to the daemons. But while the boy is doing what he is commanded, he first tears off equal parts of the paper, and on some other parts p. 94- of it, he pretends that the daemons write in Hebrew letters. Then having offered up the Egyptian magicians' incense called Cyphi, 5 he scatters these pieces of paper over the offering. But what the enquirer may have chanced to write having been put on the coals is burned. Then, seeming to be inspired by a god, the magician rushes into the inner chamber 6 with a loud and discordant cry unintelligible to all. ' But he bids all present to enter and cry aloud, invoking Phren 7 or some other daemon. When the

1 A lacuna in the text here extending to the opening words of the next chapter.

2 Richard Ganschinietz, in a study on Hippolytus' Kapital gegen die Magier appearing in Gebhardi's and Harnack's Texte und Untersuch- ungen, dritte Reihe Bd. 9, Leipzig, 1913, says it is not doubtful that Hippolytus took this chapter from Celsus' book Kara iiayoov, which he discovers in Origen's work against the last-named author. He assumes that Lucian of Samosata in his 'AXe^avSpos -// yevd6/>Tis borrowed from the same source.

3 twv Sai/xovccv, a demonibus, Cr. But the word Sal/xuv is hardly ever used in classic or N.T. Greek for a devil or evil spirit, generally called daifxSviov. Aai/Aoov here and elsewhere in this chapter plainly means a god of lesser rank or spirit. Cf. Plutarch de Is. et Os., cc. 25-30.

4 t< 7tcu51, the magician's assistant necessary in all operations re- quiring confederacy or hypnotism.

6 For the composition of this see Plutarch, op. cit., c. 81.

6 6 fxvx^s. Often used for the women's chamber or gynaeceum.

7 Clearly the Egyptian sun-god Ra or Re, the Phi in front being the Coptic definite article. It is a curious instance of the undying nature of any superstition that in the magical ceremonies of the extant Parisian


spectators have entered and are standing by, he flings the boy on a couch and reads to him many things, sometimes in the Greek tongue, sometimes in the Hebrew, which are the incantations usual among magicians. And having made libation, he begins the sacrifice. And he having put cop- peras 1 in the libation bowl 2 and when the drug is dis- solved sprinkling with it the paper which had forsooth been discharged of writing, he compels the hidden and concealed letters again to come to light, whereby he learns what the enquirer has written.

And if one writes with copperas and fumigates it with a p. 95- powdered gall-nut, the hidden letters will become clear. Also if one writes (with milk) and the paper is burned and the ash sprinkled on the letters written with the milk, they will be manifest. 3 And urine and garum 4 also and juice of the spurge and of the fig will have the same effect.

But when he has thus learned the enquiry, he thinks beforehand in what fashion he need reply. Then he bids the spectators come inside bearing laurel-branches and shaking them 5 and crying aloud invocations to the daemon Phren. For truly it is fitting that he should be invoked by them and worthy that they should demand from daemons what they do not wish to provide on their own account, seeing that they have lost their brains. 6 But the confusion of the noise and the riot prevents them following what the magician is thought to do in secret. What this is, it is time to say.

sect of Vintrasists, Ammon-Ra, the Theban form of this god, is invoked apparently with some idea that he is a devil. See Jules Bois' Le Satanisme et la Magie, Paris, 1895.

1 x a *> K <*- v 0V i sulphate of iron, which, mixed with tincture or de- coction of nut-galls, makes writing ink. Our own word copperas is an exact translation.

2 <pia\i). A broad flat pan used for sacrificial purposes.

3 There is some muddle here, probably due to Ilippolytus not having any practical acquaintance with the tricks described. The smoke of nut-galls would hardly make the writing visible. On the other hand, letters written in milk will turn brown if exposed to the fire without the application of any ash.

4 A sauce made of brine and small fish.

5 See the roughly-drawn vignettes usual in magic papyri, .o. Parthey, 7.wei griechische Zauberpapyri, Berlin, 1866, p. 155 ; Karl Wessely, Griechische Zauberpapyri von Paris und London, Vienna, 1 888, p. 118.

6 ras <pp4vas. One of Ilippolytus' puns.


Now it is very dark at this point. For he says that it is impossible for mortal nature to behold the things of the gods, for it is enough to talk with them. But having made the boy lie down on his face, with two of those little writing tablets on which are written in Hebrew letters

p. 96. forsooth 1 such things as names of daemons, on each side of him, he says (the god) will convey the rest into the boy's ears. But this is necessary to him, in order that he may apply to the boy's ears a certain implement whereby he can signify to him all that he wishes. And first he rings 2 (a gong) so that the boy may be frightened, and secondly he makes a humming noise, and then thirdly he speaks through the implement what he wishes the boy to say, and watches carefully the effect of the act. Thereafter he makes the spectators keep silence, but bids the boy repeat what he has heard from the daemons. But the implement which is applied to the ears is a natural one, to wit, the wind-pipe of the long-necked cranes or storks or swans. If none of these is at hand, the art has other means at its disposal.

p. 97. For certain brass pipes, fitting one into the other and ending in a point are well suited to the purpose through which anything the magician wishes' may be spoken into the ears. And these things the boy hearing utters when bidden in a fearful way, as if they were spoken by daemons. And if one wraps a wet hide round a rod and having dried it and bringing the edges together fastens them closely, and then taking out the rod, makes the hide into the form of a pipe, it has the same effect. And if none of these things is at hand, he takes a book and, drawing out from the inside as much as he requires, pulls it out lengthways and acts in the same way. 3

But if he knows beforehand that any one present will ask a question, he is better prepared for everything. And if he has learned the question beforehand he writes it out with the drug (aforesaid) and as being prepared is thought more adept for having skilfully written what was about to be

1 Hebrew was used in these ceremonies, because they were largely in the hands of the Jews. See Forerunners and Rivals of Christianity, II, pp. 33, 34, for references.

2 7?x 6 '- Particularly appropriate to the striking of a metal disc.

3 The book of course was a long roll of parchment, the inner coils of which could be drawn out as described.


asked. But if he does not know, he guesses at it, and exhibits some roundabout phrase of double and various meaning, so that the answer of the oracle being meaningless will do for many things at the beginning, but at the end of the events will be thought a prediction of what has happened. Then having filled a bowl with water, he puts at the bottom p. 98. of it the paper with apparently nothing written on it, but at the same time putting in the copperas. For thus there floats to the surface the paper bearing the answer which he has written. To the boy also there often come fearful fancies ; for truly the magician strikes blows in abundance to terrify him. For, again casting incense into the fire, he acts in this fashion. Having covered a lump of the so- called quarried salts 1 with Tyrrhenian wax and cutting in halves the lump of incense, he puts between them a lump of the salt and again sticking them together throws them on the burning coals and so leaves them. But when the incense is burnt, the salts leaping up produce an illusion as if some strange and wonderful thing were happening. But indigo black 2 put in the incense produces a blood-red flame as we have before said. 3 And he makes a liquid like blood by mixing wax with rouge and as I have said, putting the wax in the incense. And he makes the coals to move by putting under them stypteria 4 cut in pieces, and when it melts and swells up like bubbles, the coals are moved.

2. And they exhibit eggs different (from natural ones) in p. 99. this way. Having bored a hole in the apex at each end

and having extracted the white, and again plunged the egg in boiling water, put in either red earth from Sinope 5 or writing ink. But stop up the holes with pounded eggshell made into a paste with the juice of a fig.

3. This is the way they make sheep cut off their own

1 opvKTuv aXuv. Cruice translates fossil salts. Does he mean rock- salt ?

2 rb IvBiKbv n4\ai>. Either indigo dye or pepper. Cayenne pepper put in the flame might have a startling effect on the audience.

3 Where?

4 Said to be an astringent earth made from rock-alum, and con- taining both alum and vitriol. Known to Hippocrates.

5 Red lead or vermilion ? The idea seems to be to frighten the dupe by the supposed prodigy of a hen laying eggs which have red or black inside them instead of white. .


heads. Secretly anointing the sheep's throat with a caustic drug, he fixes near the beast a sword and leaves it there. But the sheep, being anxious to scratch himself, leans (heavily) on the knife, rubs himself along it, kills himself and must needs almost cut off his head. And the drug is bryony and marsh salt and squills in equal parts mixed together. So that he may not be seen to have the drug with him, he carries a horn box made double, the visible part of which holds frankincense and the invisible the drug. And he also puts quicksilver into the ears of the animal that is to die. But this is a death-dealing drug.

4. But if one stops up the ears of goats with salve, they say they will shortly (lie because prevented from breathing.

p. 100. For they say that this is with them the way in which the intaken air is breathed forth. And they say that a ram dies if one should bend him backwards against the sun. 1 But they make a house catch fire by anointing it with the ichor of a certain animal called dactylus ; 2 and this is very useful because of sea-water. And there is a sea-foam heated in an earthen jar with sweet substances, which if you apply to it a lighted lamp catches fire and is inflamed, but does not burn at all if poured on the head. But if you sprinkle it with melted gum, it catches fire much better ; and it does better still if you also add sulphur to it.

5. Thunder is produced in very many ways. For very many large stones rolled from a height over wooden planks and falling upon sheets of brass make a noise very like thunder. And they coil a slender cord round the thin

p. 101. board on which the wool-carders press cloth, and then spin the board by whisking away the string when the whirring of it makes the sound of thunder. These tricks they play thus ; but there are others which I shall set forth which those who play them also consider great. Putting a cauldron full of pitch upon burning coals, when it boils they plunge their hands in it and are not burned ; and further they tread with naked feet upon coals of fire and are not burned. And also putting a pyramid of stone upon the altar, they make

1 Pliny, Nat. Hist., VIII, c. 75, says the sheep is compelled when it feeds to turn away from the sun by reason of the weakness of its head. This is probably the story which Hippolytus or the author has exaggerated. Something is omitted from the text.

2 Seal or porpoise oil ?


it burn and from its mouth it pours forth much smoke and fire. Then laying a linen cloth upon a pan of water and casting upon it many burning coals, the linen remains un- burnt. And having made darkness in the house, the magician claims to make gods or daemons enter in, and if one some- how asks that Esculapius shall be displayed he makes invocation, saying thus :

" Apollo's son, once dead and again undying ! I call on thee to come as a helper to my libations.

Who erst the myriad tribes of fleeting dead p. 102.

In the ever-mournful caves of wide Tartarus Swimming the stream hard to cross and the rising tide, Fatal to all mortal men alike,

Or wailing by the shore and bemoaning inexorable things These thyself did rescue from gloomy Persephoneia. Whether thou dost haunt the seat of holy Thrace Or lovely Pergamum or beyond these Ionian Epidaurus Hither, O blessed one, the prince of magicians calls thee to be present here." x

6. But when he has made an end of this mockery a fiery Esculapius appears on the floor. Then having put in the midst a bowl of water, 2 he invokes all the gods and they are at hand. For if the spectator lean over and gaze into the bowl, he will see all the gods and Artemis leading on her baying hounds. But we shall not hesitate to tell the p. 103. story of these things and how they undertake them. For the magician plunges his hands in the cauldron of pitch which appears to be boiling ; but he throws into it vinegar and soda 3 and moist pitch and heats the cauldron gently. And the vinegar having mingled with the soda, on getting a little hot, moves the pitch so as to bring bubbles to the surface and gives the appearance of boiling only. But the magician has washed his hands many times in sea-water, thanks to which it does not burn him much if it be really boiling. And if he has after washing them anointed his

1 Hymns like these are to be found in the two collections of magic papyri quoted in n. on p. 93 supra.

2 He tells us how this trick is performed on p. 100 infra. Lecanomancy or divination by the bowl was generally performed by means of a hypnotized boy, as described in Lane's Modem Egyptians. This, however, is a more elaborate process dependent on fraud.

3 Reading udrpou for virpov. It was common in Egypt, and saltpetre would not have the same effect, which seems to depend on the expulsion of carbonic acid.


hands with myrtle-juice and soda and myrrh 1 mixed with vinegar he is not burned (at all). But the feet are not burned if he anoints them with icthyokolla and salamander. 2 And this is the true cause of the pyramid flaming like a torch, although it is of stone. A paste of Cretan earth 3 is moulded into the shape of a pyramid, but the colour is like a milk-white stone, in this fashion. He has soaked the piece of earth in much oil, has put it on the coals, and when heated, has again soaked it and heated it a second and third time and many a time afterwards, whereby he so prepares p. 104 j t t | iat j t w ju burn even if plunged in water ; for it holds much oil within itself. But the altar catches fire when the magician is making libation, because it contains freshly- burned lime instead of ashes and finely-powdered frankin- cense and much . . . and of ... of anointed torches and self-flowing and hollow nutshells having fire within them. 4 But he also sends forth smoke from his mouth after a brief delay by putting fire into a nutshell and wrapping it in tow and blowing it in his mouth. 5 The linen cloth laid on the bowl of water whereon he puts the coals is not burned, because of the sea-water underneath, and its being itself steeped in sea- water and then anointed with white of egg and a solution of alum. And if also one mixes with this the juice of ever- greens and vinegar and a long time beforehand anoint it copiously with these, after being dipped in the drug it remains altogether incombustible. 6

1 /jLvpaivri. Cruice suggests /j.d\8r], a mixture of wax and pitch, which hardly seems indicated. Storax is the ointment recommended by. eighteenth-century conjurers. Water is all that is needful.

2 ixdvoKSWa. Presumably fish-glue. Macmahon suggests isinglass. The salamander, the use of which is to be sought in sympathetic magic, was no doubt calcined and used in powder. (TKoXoireuSpLou, "milli- pede" and crno\6Trevl>piov, "hart's tongue fern" are the alternative readings suggested. Fern-oil is said to be good for burns.

3 Probably chalk or gypsum.

4 ajxoppvTuv KrjKiSwv re kcvwv. KiJkis here evidently means any sort of nut-shell. But how can it be "self-flowing"? Miller's suggested <popvrhv makes no better sense.

5 The lion-headed figure of the Mithraic worship is shown thus setting light to an altar in Cumont's Textes et Monuments de Mithra, II, p. 196, fig. 22. A similar figure with an opening at the back of the head to admit the " wind-pipe" described in the text shows how this was effected. See the same author's Les Mysteres de Mithra, Brussels, 1913, p. 235, figs. 26, 27.

6 The solution of alum would be effective without any other


7. Since then we have briefly set forth what can be done with the teachings which they suppose to be secret, we have displayed their easy system according to Gnosis. 1 Nor do p- 105. we wish to keep silence as to this necessary point, that is, how they unseal letters and again restore them with the same seals (apparently intact). Melting pitch, resin, sulphur and also bitumen in equal parts, and moulding it into the form of a seal impression, they keep it by them. But when the opportunity for unsealing a letter 2 arrives, they moisten the tongue with oil, lick the seal, and warming the drug before a slow fire press the seal upon it and leave it there until it is altogether set, when they use it after the manner of a signet. But they say also that wax with pine resin has the same effect and so also 2 parts of mastic with 1 of bitumen. And sulphur alone does fairly well and powdered gypsum diluted with water and gum. 3 This certainly does most beautifully for sealing molten, lead. And the effect of Tyrrhenian wax and shavings of resin and pitch, bitumen, p. 106. mastic and powdered marble in equal parts all melted together, is better than that of the other (compounds) of which I have spoken, but that of the gypsum is no worse. Thus then they undertake to break the seals when seeking to learn what is written within them. These contrivances I shrank from setting out in the book, 4 seeing that some ill- doer taking hints from them 5 might attempt (to practise) them. But now the care of many young men capable of salvation has persuaded me to teach and declare them for the sake of protection (against them). For as one person will use them for the teaching of evil, so another by learning them will be protected (against them) and the very magicians, corruptors of life as they are, will be ashamed to practise the art. But learning that the same (tricks) have been taught beforehand, they will perhaps be hindered in their perverse foolishness. In order, however, that the seal may not be broken in this way, let any one seal with swine's fat and mix hairs with the wax. 6

1 That is, not by guesswork. Another pun.

2 The letter was of course in the form of a writing-tablet bound about with silk or cord, to which the seal was attached.

3 This would make something like plaster of Paris.

4 This book or the former one. Lucian describes the same process in his Alexander, which he dedicates to Celsus ; v. n. on p. 92 supra.

5 acpop/xas \af}u>v, "taking them as starting-points."

6 Ciuice suggests that this sentence has either got out of place


8. Nor shall I be silent about their lecanomancy 1 which is an imposture. For having prepared some closed chamber p. 107. and having painted its ceiling with cyanus, they put into it for the purpose certain utensils of cyanus 2 and fix them upright. But in the midst a bowl filled with water is set on the earth, which with the reflection of the cyanus falling upon it shows like the sky. But there is a certain hidden opening in the floor over which is set the bowl, the bottom of which is glass, but is itself made of stone. But there is underneath a secret chamber in which those in the farce 3 assembling present the dressed-up forms of the gods and daemons which the magician wishes to display. Behold- ing whom from above the deceived person is confounded by the magicians' trickery and for the rest believes every- thing which (the officiator) tells him. And (this last) makes (the figure of) the daemon burn by drawing on the wall the figure he wishes, and then secretly anointing it with a drug compounded in this way . . . 4 with Laconian and Zacyn- thian bitumen. Then as if inspired by Phcebus, he brings the lamp near the wall, and the drug having caught light is on fire.

But he manages that a fiery Hecate should appear to be flying through the air thus : Having hidden an accomplice in what place he wills, and taking the dupes on one side, he prevails on them by saying that he will show them the p. 108. fiery daemon riding through the air. To whom he announces that when they see the flame in the air, they must quickly save their eyes by falling down and hiding their faces until he shall call them. And having thus instructed them, on a moonless night, he declaims these verses :

Infernal and earthly and heavenly Bombo, 5 come.

Goddess of waysides, of cross-roads, lightbearer, nightwalker,

or is an addition by an annotator. Probably an after-thought of Hippolytus'.

1 See n. on p. 97 sut>ra.

2 Kvavos. A dark-blue substance which some think steel, others lapis^lazuli.

3 o-v/jLircuKrai, playfellows." Here, as elsewhere in. the text, accomplices or confederates.

4 Several words missing here, perhaps by intention. It would be interesting to know if the " drug" was any preparation of phosphorus.

5 Should be Baubo,. a synonym of Hecate in the hymn to that goddess published by Miller, Melanges de Litt. Grecque, Paris, 1868, pp. 442 ff.


Hater of the light, lover and companion of the night, Who rejoicest in the baying of hounds and in purple blood ; Who dost stalk among corpses and the tombs of the dead Thirsty for blood, who bringest fear to mortals Gorgo and Mormo and Mene and many-formed one. Come thou propitious to our libations I 1

9. While he speaks thus, fire is seen borne through the air, and the spectators terrified by the strangeness of the sight, cover their eyes and cast themselves in silence on the earth. But the greatness of the art contains this device.

The accomplice, hidden as I have said, when he hears the p. 109. incantation drawing to a close, holding a hawk or kite wrapped about with tow, sets fire to it and lets it go. And the bird scared by the flame is carried into the height and makes very speedy flight. Seeing which, the fools hide themselves as if they had beheld something divine. But the winged one whirled about by the fire, is borne whither it may chance and burns down now houses and now farm- buildings. Such is the prescience of the magicians.

10. But they show the moon and stars appearing on the ceiling in this way. Having previously arranged in the centre part of the ceiling a mirror, and having placed a bowl filled with water in a corresponding position in the middle of the earthen floor, but a lamp showing dimly 2 has been placed between them and above the bowl, he thus produces the appearance of the moon from the reflection by means of the mirror. But often the magician hangs aloft 3 near the ceiling a drum on end, the same being kept covered by the accomplice by some cloth so that it may not show before its time j and a lamp having been put behind it, when he makes the agreed signal to the accomplice, the last-named takes away so much of the covering as will give a counterfeit of the moon in her form p. no. at that time. 4 But he anoints the transparent parts of the drum with cinnabar and gum . . . 5 And having cut

1 Most of the epithets and names here used are to be found in the hymn quoted in the last note. The goddess is there identified not only with Artemis and Persephone, but with the Sumerian Eris-ki-gal. lady of hell.

2 A sort of magic lantern ? kclto-ktpov, which I have translated mirror, /night be a lens. One is said to have been found in Assyria.

3 ir6ppw6ev. Better, perhaps, iropporeOev.

4 Full moon, or half, or quarter, as the case may be.

' 5 Schneidewin seems to be right in suggesting a lacuna here.


off the neck and bottom of a glass flask, he puts a lamp within and places around it somewhat of the things neces- sary for the figures shining through, which one of the accom- plices has concealed on high. After receiving the signal, this last lets* fall the contrivances from the receptacle hung aloft, so that the moon appears to have been sent down from heaven. And the like effect is produced by means of jars in glass-like forms. 1 And it is by means of the jar that the trick is played within doors. For an altar having been set up, the jar containing a lighted lamp stands behind it ; but there being many more lamps (about), this nowise appears. When therefore the enchanter invokes the moon, he orders all the lamps to be put out, but one is left dim and then the light from the jar is reflected on to the ceiling and gives the illusion of the moon to the spectators, the p. in. mouth of the jar being kept covered for the time which seems to be required that the image of the crescent moon may be shown on the ceiling.

ii. But the scales of fishes or of the " hippurus " 2 make stars seem to be when they are moistened with water and gum and stuck upon the ceiling here and there.

12. And they create the illusion of an earthquake, so that everything appears to be moving, ichneumon's dung being burned upon coal with magnetic iron ore 3 . . .

13. But they display a liver appearing to bear an inscription. On his left hand (the magician) writes what he wishes, adapting it to the enquiry, and the letters are written with nut-galls and strong vinegar. Then taking up the liver, which rests in his left hand, he makes some delay, and it receives the impression and is thought to have been inscribed.

14. And having placed a skull on the earth, they make it speak in this fashion. It is made out of the omentum of

p. 112. an ox, 4 moulded with Tyrrhenian wax and gypsum and when it is made and covered with the membrane, it shows

1 eV vaXcoSecri tvitois. Schneidewin suggests ronois unreasonably. Many alabaster jars are nearly transparent.

2 Cf. Aristotle, De Hist. Animal, V, 10, 2. Said to be Coryphcena hippurus.

3 The hiatus leaves us in doubt how this operated. Perhaps it liberated free ammonia.

4 Reading iiriirXoov fioetov instead of, with Cruice, iir'nrXzov fSuXov, " filled with clay."


the semblance of a skull. The which seems to speak by the use of the implement and in the way we have before explained in the case of the boys. Having prepared the windpipe of a crane or some such long-necked bird and putting it secretly into the skull, the accomplice speaks what (the magician) wishes. And when he wants it to vanish, he appears to offer incense and putting round it a quantity of coals the wax receiving the heat of which melts, and thus the skull is thought to have become invisible. 1

15. These and ten thousand such are the works of the magicians, which, by the suitableness of the verses and of the belief-inspiring acts 'performed, beguile the fancy of the thoughtless. The heresiarchs struck with the arts of these (magicians) imitate them, handing down some of their doctrines in secrecy and darkness, but paraphrasing others as if they were their own. Thanks to this, as we wish to remind the public, we have been the more anxious to leave behind us no place for those who wish to go astray. But we have been led away not without reason into certain secrets of the magicians which were not altogether necessary for the subject, 2 but which were p. 113 thought useful as a safeguard against the rascally and inconsistent art of the magicians. Since, now, as far as one can guess, a we have set forth the opinions of all, having bestowed much care on making it clear that the things which the heresiarchs have introduced into religion as new are vain and spurious, and probably are not even among themselves thought worthy of discussion, it seems proper to us to recall briefly and summarily what has been before said.

5. Recapitulation.

1. Among all the philosophers and theologists 4 who are enquiring into the matter throughout the inhabited world,

1 agaves, " unapparent. "

8 a.Tn)vexQtu*.ev. An admission that this chapter was an after- thought.

3 a>s ei/fairai, icrri, ut patet, Cr.

4 8eo\6yoi. It does not mean "theologians" in our sense, but narrator of stories about the gods. Orpheus is always considered a 0eo\6yos.


there is no agreement concerning God, as to what He is or whence (He came). 1 For some say that He is fire, some spirit, some water, others earth. But every one of these elements contains something inferior and some of them are defeated by the others. But this has happened to the world's sages, which indeed is plain to those who think,

p. 1 14. that in view of the greatness of creation, they are puzzled as to the substance of the things which are, deeming them too great for it to be possible for them to have received birth from another. Nor yet do they represent the universe itself taken collectively 2 to be God. But in speculation about God every one thought of something which he preferred among visible things as the Cause. And thus gazing upon the things produced by God and on those which are least in comparison with His exceeding greatness, but not being capable of extending their mind to the real God, they declared these things to be divine.

The Persians, however, deeming that they were further within the truth (than the rest) said that God was a shining light comprised in air. But the Babylonians said that dark- ness was God, which appears to be the sequence of the other opinion ; for day follows night and night day. 3

2. But the Egyptians, deeming themselves older than all, have subjected the power of God to ciphers, 4 and calculating the intervals of the fates by Divine inspiration 5 said that God

p. 115. was a monad both indivisible and itself begetting itself, and that from this (monad) all things were made. For it, they say, being unbegotten, begets the numbers after it ; for example, the monad added to itself begets the dyad, and added in the like way the triad and tetrad up to the decad, which is the beginning and the end of the numbers. So

1 7ro5o7roy. Not, as Cruice translates, quale, which would be better expressed by the irolov of Aristotle.

2 rb crvfiirav avrb.

3 It is fairly certain that Hippolytus in this "Recapitulation" must here be summarizing the missing Books II and III. He has said nothing in any part of the work that has come down to us about the Persian theology, and in Book I he calls Zaratas or Zoroaster a Chaldaean and not a Persian.

4 ^>-i](pois virefiaXov kcu are supplied by Schneidewin in the place of three words rubbed out.

5 Reading with Schneidewin jxoipwv for /j.vpwv and eTwrvolas for


that the monad becomes the first and tenth through the decad being of equal power and being reckoned as a monad, and the same being decupled becomes a hecatontad and again is a monad, and the hecatontad when decupled will make a chiliad, and it again will be a monad. And thus also the chiliads if decupled will complete the myriad and likewise will be a monad. But the numbers akin to the monad by indivisible comparison are ascertained to be 3> 5? 7> 9- 1 There is, however, also a more natural affinity of another number with the monad which is that by the opera- tion of the spiral of 6 circles 2 of the dyad according to the even placing and separation of the numbers. But the kin- p. 116. dred number is of the 4 and 8. And these receiving added virtue from numbers of the monad, advanced up to the four elements, I mean spirit and fire, water and earth. And having created from these the masculo-feminine cosmos, 3 he prepared and arranged two elements in the upper hemi- sphere, (to wit) spirit and fire, and he called this the beneficent hemisphere of the monad and the ascending and the masculine. For the monad, being subtle, flies to the most subtle and purest part of the aether. The two other elements being denser, he assigns to the dyad (to wit) earth and water, and he calls this the descending hemisphere and feminine and maleficent. And again the two upper elements when compounded with themselves have in themselves the male and the female for the fruitfulness and increase of the universals. And the fire is masculine, but the spirit feminine : and again the water is masculine and the earth feminine. 4 And thus from the beginning the fire lived with

1 By indivisible comparison (avyKpiats) he seems to imply that these numbers cannot be divided except by I. Hence Cruice would omit 9 as being divisible by 3. Perhaps he means " like indivisibility."

2 Cruice suggests that this was an astronomical instrument and quotes CI. Ptolemy, Harmon, I, 2, in support.

3 Why should the cosmos be masculo-feminine ? The Valentinians said the same thing about their Sophia, who was, as I have said elsewhere {Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, Oct. 1917), a personification of the Earth. The idea seems to go hack to Sumerian times. Cf. Forerun iters, II, 45, n. I, and Mr. S. Langclon, Tammuz and 1 slit ar, Oxford, 1914, pp. 7, 43 and 115.

4 The worshippers of the Greek Isis declared Isis to be the earth and Osiris water. See Forerunners, I, 73, for references. If Ilippolytus is here recapitulating Books II and III, it is probable that the lacuna was occupied with some reference to the Alexandrian deities and their


the spirit and the water with the earth. For as the power of the spirit is the fire, so also (the power) of the earth is the water. . . .

p. 117. And the same elements counted and resolved by sub- traction of the enneads, 1 properly end some in the male number, others in the female. But again the ennead is subtracted for this cause, because the 360 degrees of the whole circle consist of enneads, and hence the 4 quarters of the cosmos are (each) circumscribed by 90 complete degrees. But the light is associated with the monad and the darkness with the dyad, and naturally life with the light and death with the dyad, and justice with life and injustice with death. Whence everything engendered among the male numbers is benefic, and (everything engendered) among the female numbers is malefic. For example, they reckon that the monad so that we may begin from this becomes 361, which ends in a monad, the ennead (s) being subtracted. Reckon in the same way : the dyad becomes 605 ; subtract the enneads, it ends in a dyad and each is (thus) carried back to its own. 2

3. With the monad, then, as it is benefic, there are

p. 118. associated names which end in the uneven number, 3 and they say that they are ascending and male and benefic when observed ; but that those which end in an even number are considered descending and female and malefic. For they say that nature consists of opposites, to wit, good and bad, as right and left, light and darkness, night and day, life and death. And they say this besides : that they have calculated the name of God and that it results in a pentad [or in an ennead], 4 which is uneven and which written down and wrapped about the sick works cures. And thus a certain plant (whose name) ends in this number when tied on in the same way is effective by the like reckoning of the

connection with the arithmetical speculations of the Neo- Pythagoreans. Could this be substantiated, we should not need to look further for the origin of the Simonian and Valentihian heresies.

1 ipr)(pi(6/j.eva /cat ava\vo/j.eva, sitpputata et diversa, Cr. The process seems to be that called earlier (p. 85 supra) the rule of 9.

2 361 -f 9 = 40 + I ; 605 -r 9 = 67 + 2.

3 airepi^vyov, lit., "unyoked."

4 tls iwdSa here appears in the text apparently as an alternative reading. Cruice suggests u with an ennead deducted."


number. But a doctor also cures the sick by a like calcu- lation. But if the calculation be contrary, he does not make cures easily. Those who give heed to these numbers count all numbers like it which have the same meaning, some according to the vowels alone, others according to the total p. 11;. of the numbers. 1 Such is the wisdom of the Egyptians, whereby, while glorifying the Divine, they think they under- stand it.

6. Of the Divination by Astronomy?

We seem then to have set forth these things also sufficiently. But since I consider that not one tenet of this earthy and grovelling wisdom has been passed over, I perceive that our care with regard to the same things has not been useless. For we see that our discourse has been of great use not only for the refutation of heresies, but also against those who magnify these things. 3 Those who happen to notice the mani- fold care taken by us will both wonder at our zeal and will neither despise our painstaking nor denounce Christians as fools when they see what themselves have foolishly believed. And besides this, the discourse will timely instruct those lovers of learning who give heed to the truth, making them more wise to easily overthrow those who have dared to mislead them for they will have learned not only the prin- ciples of the heresies, but also the so-called opinions of the sages. Not being unacquainted with which, they will not p. 120. be confused by them as are the unlearned, nor misled by some who exercise a certain power, but will keep a watch upon those who go astray.

2. Having therefore sufficiently set forth (our) opinions, it remains for us to proceed to the subject aforesaid, when,

1 Meaning that some reckon the numerical value of all the letters in a name, others that of the vowels only.

1 What follows has nothing to do with divination, but treats of the celestial map as a symbolical representation of the Christian scheme of salvation. Ilippolytus condemns the notion as a "heresy," but if so, its place ought to be in Book V. It is doubtful from what author or teacher he derived his account of it ; but all the quotations from Aratus' Phenomena which he gives are to be found in Cicero, De Natara Deorum, 41, where they make, as they do not here, a connected story.

{ One of the passages favouring the conjecture that the book was

originally in the form of lectures.



after we have proved what we arranged concerning the heresies, and have forced the heresiarchs to restore to every- one his own, we shall exhibit (these heresiarchs) stripped (of all originality) and by denouncing the folly of their dupes we shall persuade them to return again to the precious haven of the truth. But in order that what has been said may appear more clearly to the readers, 1 it seems to us well to state the conclusions of Aratus as to the disposition of the stars in the heaven. For there are some who by liken- ing them to the words of the Scriptures turn them into allegories and seek to divert the minds of those who listen to them by leading them with persuasive words whither they wish, and pointing out to them strange marvels like those of the transfers to the stars 2 alleged by them. They who while gazing upon the outlandish wonder are caught by their admiration for trifles are like the bird called the owl, 3 whose example it will be well to narrate in view of what follows. Now this animal presents no very different appear- ance from that of the eagle whether in size or shape ; but it is caught in this way. The bird-catcher, when he sees a flock alighting anywhere, claps his hands, pretends to dance, and thus gradually draws near to the birds ; but they, struck by the unwonted sight, become blind to everything else. Others of the party, however, who are ready on the ground coming behind the birds easily capture them while they are staring at the dancer. Wherefore I ask that no one who is struck by the wonders of whose who interpret the heaven shall be taken in like the owl. For the dancing and non- sense of such (interpreters) is trickery and not truth. Now Aratus speaks thus :

" Many and like are they, going hither and thither,

Daily they wheel in heaven always and ever [that is, all the stars] Yet none changes his abode 4 ever so little : but with perfect exactness

1 ol iurvyxdvovTs, legentibus, Cr. It may just as easily mean "those who come across this."

2 " Catasterisms " was the technical term for these transfers, of which the Conia Berenices is the best-known example. Cf. Bouche-Leclercq, op. cit., p. 23.

3 The long-eared owl [strix otus). According to /Elian it had a reputation for stupidity, and was therefore a type of the easy dupe, Athenaius, Deipnosophistiv, IX, 44, 45, tells a similar story to that in the text about the bustard.

4 Reading fxeTavdao-erai for fieraviaaeTai or ficraveio-irai.


Ever the Pole is fixed, and holds the earth in the midst of all As equipoise of all, and around it leads Heaven itself.' - '

(Aratas, FJua:., vv. 45, 46.)

3. He says that the stars in heaven are irokias, that is, p. 122 turning, 1 because of their going about ceaselessly from East to West and from West to East in a spherical figure. But he says there is coiled round the Bears themselves, like the stream of some river, a great marvel of a terrible dragon, and this it is, he says, that the Devil in the (Book of) Job says to God : " I have been walking to and fro under heaven and going round about," 2 that is, turning hither and thither and inspecting what is happening. For they consider that the Dragon is set below the Arctic Pole, from this highest pole gazing upon all things and beholding all things, so that none of those that are done shall escape him. For though all the stars in the heaven can set, this Pole alone never sets, but rising high above the horizon inspects all things and beholds all things, and nothing of what is done, he says, can escape him.

" Where (most) Settings and risings mingle wilh one another."

(Aratus, Plum., v. 61.)

he says, indeed, that his head is set. For over against the p. 123. rising and setting of the two hemispheres lies the head of Draco, so that, he says, nothing escapes him immediately either of things in the West or of things in the East, but the Beast knows all things at once. And there over against the very head of Draco is the form of a man made visible by reason of the stars, which Aratus calls " a wearied image," and like one in toil ; but he names it the " Kneeler." 3 Now Aratus says that he does not know what this toil is and this marvel which turns in heaven. But the heretics, wishing to found their own tenets on the story of the stars, and giving their minds very carefully to these things, say

1 a-TpeiTTovs, vohentes, Cr. An attempt to pun on iroAos, the Pole.

2 Job i. 7. The Book of Job according to some writers comes from an Essene school, which may give us some clue to the origin of these ideas. The Enochian literature to which the same tendency is assigned is full of speculations about the heavenly bodies. See Forerunners, I, p. 159, for references.

3 6 'ey yovaatv. Aratus calls this constellation 6 iv y6vaffi Kadv/xevos, Cicero Engonasis, Ovid Gemmixas, Vitruvius, Manilius and J. Firmicus Maternus, Ingeniailus.


that the Kneeler is Adam, as Moses said, according to the decree of God guarding the head of the Dragon and the Dragon (guarding) his heel. 1 For thus says Aratus :

" Holding the sole of the right foot of winding Draco."

{PJncu., vv. 63-65.)

4. But he says there are placed on either side of him (I mean the Kneeler) Lyra and Corona ; but that he bends the knee and stretches forth both hands as if making con- p. 124. fession of sin. 2 And that the lyre is a musical instrument fashioned by the Logos in extreme infancy. But that Hermes is called among the Greeks Logos. And Aratus says about the fashioning of the lyre :

" which, while he was yet in his cradle Hermes bored and said it was to be called lyre."

{P/ucn., v. 268.)

It is seven-stringed, and indicates by its seven strings the entire harmony and constitution with which the cosmos is suitably provided. For in six days the earth came into being and there was rest on the seventh. If, then, he says, 3 Adam making confession and guarding the head of the Beast accord- ing to God's decree, will imitate the lyre, that is, will follow the word of God, which is to obey the Law, he will attain the Crown lying beside it. But if he takes no heed, he will be carried dqwnwards along with the Beast below him, and will have his lot, he says, with the Beast. But the Kneeler seems to stretch forth his hands on either side and here to p 125 g ras P tne I-V r e and there the Crown [and this is to make con- fession], 4 as is to be seen from the very posture. But the

1 A perversion of the " it shall bruise thy head and thou shall bruise his heel," of Genesis iii. 15.

2 From his attitude the Kneeler resembles the figure of Atlas sup- porting the world, who as Omophorus plays a great part in Manichrean mythology. Cumont derives this from a Babylonian original, for which and his connection with Mithraic cosmogony see his Rechei ches sur le ManichiisirUy Brussels, 1908, I, p. 70, figs. 1 and 2. The constellation is now known as Hercules.

3 Hippolytus here evidently quotes not from Aratus, but from some unnamed Gnostic or heretic writer, whom Cruice thinks must have been a Jew. Yet he was plainly a Christian, as appears from _ his remarks about the " Second Creation." An Ebionite writer might have preserved many Essene superstitions.

4 Cruice, following Roeper, says these words have slipped in from an earlier page.


Crown is plotted against and at the same time drawn away by another Beast, Draco the Less, who is the offspring of the one which is guarded by the foot of the Kneeler. But (another) man stands firmly grasping with both hands the Serpent, and draws him backwards from the Crown, and does not permit the Beast to forcibly seize it. Him Aratus calls Serpent-holder, 1 because he restrains the rage of the Serpent striving to come at the Crown. But he, he says, who in the shape of man forbids the Beast to come at the Crown is Logos, who has mercy upon him who is plotted against by Draco and his offspring at once.

And these Bears, he says, are two hebdomads, being made up of seven stars each, and are images of the two creations. For the First Creation, he says, is that according to Adam in his labours who is seen as the Kneeler. But the Second Creation is that according to Christ whereby we are born again. He is the Serpent-holder fighting the Beast and p. i 2 ( preventing him from coming at the Crown prepared for man. But Helica 2 is the Great Bear, he says, the symbol of the great creation, whereby Greeks sail, that is by which they are taught, and borne onwards by the waves of life they follow it, such a creation being a certain revolution 3 or schooling or wisdom, leading back again those who follow such (to the point whence they started). For the name Helica seems to be a certain turning and circling back to the same positon. But there is also another Lesser Bear, as it were an image of the Second Creation created by God. For few, he says, are they who travel by this narrow way. For they say that Cynosura is narrow, by which, Aratus says, the Sidonians navigate. 4 But Aratus in turn says the Sidonians are Phoenicians on account of the wisdom of the Phoenicians being wonderful. But they say that the Greeks are Phoenicians who removed from the Red Sea to the land

1 cxpiovxos. The " Ophiuchus huge" of Milton or Anguitenens.

2 'EAi/ctj. So Aratus and Apollonius Rhodius. Said to be so called from its perpetually revolving. Cruice remarks on this sentence that it does not seem to have been written by a Greek, and quotes Epiphanius as to the addiction of the Pharisees to astrology. But see last note but one.

3 kKiKi]. A pun quite in Hippolytus' manner.

4 irpbs i)v . . . vavriWovrai. Cruice and Macmahon alike translate this " towards which," but Aratus clearly means " steer by " both here and earlier.


p. 127.- where they now dwell. For thus it seemed to Herodotus. 1 But this Bear he says is Cynosura, the Second Creation, the small, the narrow way and not Helica. For she leads not backwards, but guides those who follow her forwards to the straight way, being the (tail) of the dog. For the 'Logos is the Dog (Cyon) who at the same time guards and protects the sheep against the plans of the wolves, and also chases the wild beasts from creation and slays them, and who begets all things. For Cyon, they say, indeed means the begetter. 2 Hence, they say, Aratus, speaking of the rising of Canis, says thus :

"But when the Dog 'rises, no longer do the crops play false."

(Phccn. v. 332.)

This is what he means : Plants that have been planted in the earth up to the rising of the Dog-star take no root, but yet grow leaves and appear to beholders as if they will bear fruit and are alive, but have no life from the root in them. But when the rising of the Dog-star occurs, the living plants are distinguished by Canis from the dead, for p. 128. he withers entirely those which have not taken root. This Cyon, he says then, being a certain Divine Logos has been established judge of quick and dead, and as Cyon is seen to be the star of the plants, so the Logos, he says, is for the heavenly plants, that is for men. For some such cause as this, then, the Second Creation Cynosura stands in heaven as the image of the rational 3 creature. But between the two creations Draco is extended below, hindering the things of the great creation from coming to the lesser, and watching those things which are fixed in the great creation like the Kneeler lest they see how and in what way every one is fixed in the little creation. But Draco is himself watched as to the head, he says, by Ophiuchus. The same, he says, is fixed as an image in heaven, being a certain philosophy for those who can see.

But if this is not clear, through another image, he says,

1 Herodotus I, 1. He does not say, however, that the Greeks were Phoenicians.

2 Rather the conceiver, from uvea, to conceive. ywva.<a is used of the mother by Aristotle, De Gen. Animal. , 3, 5, 6.

3 \oyiKr}s.


creation teaches us to philosophize, about which Aratus speaks thus :

"Nor of Ionian 1 Cepheus are we the miserable race."

(P/icen. v. 353. )

But near Draco, he says, are Cepheus and Cassiopeia and p. 129. Andromeda and Perseus, great letters of 2 the creation to those who can see. For he says that Cepheus is Adam, Cassiopeia Eve, Andromeda the soul of both, Perseus the winged offspring of Zeus and Cetus the plotting Beast. Not to any other of these comes Perseus the slayer of the Beast, but to Andromeda alone. From which Beast, he says, the Logos Perseus, taking her to himself, delivers Andromeda who had been given in chains to the Beast. But Perseus is the winged axis which extends to both poles through the middle of the earth and makes the cosmos revolve. But the spirit which is in the Cosmos is Cycnus, 3 the bird which is near the Bears, a musical animal, symbol of the Divine Spirit, because only when it is near the limits of life, its nature is to sing, and, as one escaping with good hope from this evil creation it sends up songs of praise to God. But crabs and bulls and lions and rams and goats and kids and all the other animals who are named in heaven on p. 130. account of the stars are, he says, images and paradigms whence the changeable nature receives the patterns 4 and becomes full of such animals. 5

Making use of these discourses, they think to deceive as many as give heed to the astrologers, seeking therefrom to set up a religion which appears very different from their assumptions. 6 Wherefore, O beloved, 7 let us shun the trifle-admiring way of the owl. For these things and those

1 Reading Ia<ra5os for Cruice's IacriSoo. The text is said to have els aiSao.

2 ypdfxfiara, elementa, Cr. But I think the allusion is to the story they contain for those who can read them.

3 The Swan. 4 ras \8eas

5 If Hippolytus' words are here correctly transcribed, the "heretic " quoted seems to have two inconsistent ideas about the stars. One is that the constellations are types or allegories of what takes place in man's soul ; the other, that they are the patterns after which the creatures of this world were made. This last is Mithraic rather than Christian.

6 rrjs tovtujv i>-no\r)\l/o)s, ab horum cogitationibiis, Cr.

7 aycnr^Toi. The word generally used in a sermon.


like them are dancing and not truth. For the stars do not reveal these things ; but men on their own account and for the better distinguishing of certain stars (from the rest) gave them names so that they might be a mark to them. For what likeness have the stars strewn about the heaven to a bear, or a lion, or kids, or a water-carrier, or Cepheus, or Andromeda, or to the Shades named in Hades for many of these persons and the names of the stars alike came into existence long after the stars themselves so that the P 131. heretics being struck with the wonder should thus labour by such discourses to establish their own doctrines ? x

7. Of -the Arithmetical Art. 2

Seeing, however, that nearly all heresy has discovered by the art of arithmetic measures of hebdomads and certain projections of /Eons, each tearing the art to pieces in different ways and only changing the names, but of these (men) Pythagoras came to be teacher who first transmitted to the Greeks such numbers from Egypt it seems good not to pass over this, but after briefly pointing it out to proceed to the demonstration of the objects of our enquiries. These men were arithmeticians and geometricians to whom especially it seems Pythagoras first supplied the principles (of their arts). And they took the first beginnings (of things), discovered apparently by reason alone, from the

1 This also reads like a peroration.

2 In this chapter Hippolytus for the first time sets himself seriously to prove the thesis which he has before asserted, i. e., that all the Gnostic systems are derived from the teachings of the Greek philosophers. His mode of doing so is to compare the elaborate systems of Aeons or emanations of deity imagined by heresiarchs like Simon Magus and Valentinus to the views attributed by him to Pythagoras which make all nature to spring from one indivisible point. Whether Pythagoras ever held such views may be doubted and we have no means of checking Hippolytus' always loose statements on this point ; but something like them appears in the Iheaeletus of Plato where arithmetic and geometry seem to be connected by talk about oblong as well as square numbers and the construction of solids from them. If we imagine with the Greeks (see n. on p. 37 supra) that numbers are not abstract things, but actual portions of space, there is indeed a strong likeness between the ideas of the later Platonists as to the construction of the world by means of numbers and those attributed to the Gnostic teachers as to its emanation from God. Whether these last really held the views thus attributed to them is another matter. Cf. Forerunners, II, pp. 99.. 100.


numbers which can always proceed to infinity by multipli- cation and the figures (produced by it). For the beginning of geometry, as may be seen, is an indivisible point ; but from that point the generation of the infinite figures from the point 1 is discovered by the art. For the point when p. 13^ extended 2 in length becomes after extension a line having a point as its limit : 3 and a line when extended in breadth produces a superficies and the limits of the superficies are lines : and a superficies extended in depth becomes a (solid) body : 4 and when this solid is in existence, the nature of the great body is thus wholly founded from the smallest point. And this is what Simon says thus : " The little will be great, being as it were a point ; but the great will be boundless," 5 in imitation of that geometrical point. But the beginning of arithmetic, which includes by combination philosophy, is 6 a number which is boundless and incompre- hensible, containing within itself all the numbers capable of coming to infinity by multitude. But the beginning of the numbers becomes by hypostasis the first monad, which is a male unit begetting as does a father all the other numbers. Second comes the dyad, a female number, and the same is called even by the arithmeticians. Third comes the triad, a male number ; this also has been ordained to be called odd by the arithmeticians. After all these comes the tetrad, a female number, and this same is also called even, because p. 133. it is female. Therefore all the numbers taken from the genus are four but the boundless genus is number where- from is constructed their perfect number, the decad. For

1 airb rod cr7]/j.eiov seems to be repeated needlessly.

2 pvtv, " flowing out."

3 irepos (xovo-a a-n/ui.e'iou. Surely it has two limits a point at each end.

4 aw/j-a. In the next sentence he uses the proper word arepeov.

5 This is, I suppose, quoted from the 'Airotydais peyaAii attributed to Simon, as he speaks afterwards (II, p. 9 infra) of the small becoming great, " as it is written in the Apophasis, if it . . . come into being from the indivisible point. But the great will be in the boundless aeon," etc.

What follows from this point down to the end of the paragraph is an almost verbatim transcript of the passage in Book I (pp. 37 ff. supra), where it is given as the teaching of Pythagoras. The only substantial differences are : that hypostasis is written for hypothesis in the second sentence of the passage ; the Tetractys is no longer said to be the "source" of eternal nature ; and the 1 1, 12, etc., are now said to take, and not "share" their beginning from tfce 10,


i, 2, 3, 4 become io, as has before been shown, if the name which is proper to each of the numbers be substanti- ally kept. This is the sacred Tetractys according to Pytha- goras which contains within itself the roots of eternal nature, that is, all the other numbers. For the n, 12 and the rest take the principle of birth from the 10. Of this decad, the perfect number, the four parts are called : number, monad, square and cube. The conjunctions and minglings of which are for the birth of increase, they completing naturally the fruitful number. For when this square is multiplied into itself, it becomes a square squared ; but when a square into a cube, it becomes a square cubed j but when a cube into a cube, it becomes a cube cubed. So that all the numbers are seven, in order that the birth of the existing numbers

p. 134. may come from a hebdomad, which is number, monad, square, cube, square of a square, cube of a square, cube of a cube.

Of this hebdomad Simon and Valentinus, having altered the names, recount prodigies, hastening to base upon it their own systems. 1 For Simon calls (it) thus : Mind, Thought, Name, Voice, Reasoning, Desire and He who has Stood, Stands and will Stand : and Valentinus : Mind, Truth, Word, Life, Man, Church and the Father who is counted with them. According to these (ideas) of those trained in the arithmetic philosophy, which they admired as something unknowable by the crowd, and in pursuance of them, they constructed the heresies excogitated by them.

Now there are some also who try to construct hebdomads from the healing art, being struck by the dissection of the brain, saying that the substance, power of paternity, and divinity of the universe can be learned from its constitution.

p. 135. For the brain, being the ruling part of the whole body rests calm and unmoved, containing within itself the breath. 2 Now such a story is not incredible, but a long way from their attempted theory. For the brain when dissected has within it what is called the chamber, on each side of which are the membranes which they call wings, gently moved by the

1 vTTodeaiv eavTOis eurevOev ax^^cravTes, suis dogmatibus fwidamen- hem posuerunt, Cr.

2 to irvedfia. Cruice translates this by spiritum, and is followed by Macmahon. I think, however, he means the breath, it being the idea of the ancients that the arteries were air-vessels.


breath, and again driving the breath into the cerebellum. 1 And the breath, passing through a certain reed-like vein, travels to the pineal gland. 2 Near this lies the mouth of the cerebellum which receives the breath passing through and gives it up to the so-called spinal marrow. 3 From this the whole body gets a share of pneumatic (force), all the arteries being dependent like branches on this vein, the extremity of which finishes in the genital veins. Whence also the seeds proceeding from the brain through the loins are secreted. But the shape of the cerebellum is like the head of a dragon ; concerning which there is much talk among those of the Gnosis falsely so called, as we have shown. But there are other six pairs (of vessels) growing from the brain, which making their way round the head and finishing within it, connect the bodies together. But the seventh (goes) from the cerebellum to the lower parts of the p. 136. rest of the body, as we have said.

And about this there is much talk since Simon and Valentinus have found in it hints which they have taken, although they do not admit it, being first cheats and then heretics. Since then it seems that we have sufficiently set out these things, and that all the apparent dogmas of earthly philosophy have been included in (these) four books, 4 it seems fitting to proceed to their disciples or rather to their plagiarists.

The Fourth Book of Philosophumena 5

1 irapeyKe<pa\is. 2 Koovdpiov. 3 vwriouov (xoeXov.

1 It is at any rate plain from this that the missing Books II and III at one time existed.

5 These words appear in the MS. at the foot of this Book.



p. 137. 1. These are the contents of the 5th (book) of the Refutation of all Heresies.

2. What the Naassenes say who call themselves Gnostics, and that they profess those opinions which the philosophers of the Greeks and the transmitters of the Mysteries first laid down, starting wherefrom they have constructed heresies.

3. And what things the Peratae imagine, and that their doctrine is not framed from the Holy Scriptures but from the astrological (art).

4. What is the system according to the Sithians, and that they have patched together their doctrine by plagiarizing from those wise men according to the Greeks, (to wit) Musaeus and Linus and Orpheus.

5. What Justinus imagined and that his doctrine is not framed from the Holy Scriptures, but from the marvellous tales of Herodotus the historiographer.

1. Naassenes. 1

p. 138. 6. I consider that the tenets concerning the Divine and the fashioning of the cosmos (held by) all those who are

1 In this chapter, Hippolytus treats of what is probably a late form of the Ophite heresy, certainly one of the first to enter intorivalry with the Catholic Church. For its doctrines and practices, the reader must be referred to the chapter on the Ophites in the translator's Fore- runners and Rivals of Christianity, vol. II ; but it may be said here that it seems to have sprung from a combination of the corrupt Judaism then practised in Asia Minor with the Pagan myths or legends prevalent all over Western Asia, which may someday be traced back to the Sumerians and the earliest civilization of which we have any record. Yet the Ophites admitted the truth of the Gospel narrative, and asserted the existence of a Supreme Being endowed with the attributes of both sexes and manifesting Himself to man by means of a Deity called His son, who was nevertheless identified with both the masculine and feminine aspects of his Father. This triad, which the Ophites called,



deemed philosophers by Greeks and Barbarians have been very painfully set forth in the four books before this. Whose

the First Man, the Second Man, and the First Woman or Holy Spirit, 1 \n they represented as creating the planetary worlds as well as the " world j of form," by the intermediary of an inferior power called Sophia or Wisdom and her son Jaldabaoth, who is expressly stated to be the God ' of the Jews.

All this we knew before the discovery of our text from the statements ofheresiologistslike St. Irenreus and Epiphanius ; but Hippolytus goes further than any other author by connecting these Ophite theories with | L the worship of the Mother of the Gods or Cybele, the form under which the triune deity of Western Asia was best known in Europe. The un- named Naassene or Ophite author from whom he quotes without inter- mission throughout the chapter, seems to have got hold of a hymn to Attis used in the festivals of Cybele, in which Attis is, after the synergistic fash- ion of post- Alexandrian paganism, identified with the Syrian Adonis, the Egyptian Osiris, the Greek Dionysos and Hermes, and the Samothrac- ian or Cabiric gods Adamna and Corybas ; and the chapter is in substance a commentary on this hymn, the order of the lines of which it follows closely. This commentary tries to explain or "interpret" the different myths there referred to by passages from the Old and New Testaments and from the Greek poets dragged in against their manifest sense and in the wildest fashion. Most of these supposed allusions, indeed, can only be justified by the most outrageous play upon words, and it may be truly said that not a single one of them when naturally construed bears the slightest reference to the matter in hand. Yet they serve not only to elucidate the Ophite beliefs, but give, as it were accidentally, much information as to the scenes enacted in the Elcusin- ian and other heathen mysteries which was before lacking. The author also quotes two hymns used apparently in the Ophite worship which are not only the sole relics of a once extensive literature, but are a great deal better evidence as to Gnostic tenets than his own loose and equivo- cal statements.

As the legend of Attis and Cybele may not be familiar to all, it may be well to give a brief abstract of it as found in Pausanias, Diodorus Siculus, Ovid, and the Christian writer Arnobius. Cybele, called also Agdistis, Rhea, Ge, or the Great Mother, was said to have been born from a rock accidentally fecundated by Zeus. On her first appearance she was hermaphrodite, but on the gods depriving her of her virility it passed into an almond-tree. The fruit of this was plucked by the virgin daughter of the river Sangarios, who, placing it in her bosom, became by it the mother of Attis, fairest of mankind. Attis at his birth was exposed on the river-bank, but was rescued, brought up as a goatherd, and was later chosen as a husband by the king's daughter. At the marri- age feast, Cybele, fired bv jealousy, broke into the palace and, according to one version of the story, emasculated Attis who died of the hurt. Then Cybele repented and prayed to Zeus to restore him to life, which prayer was granted by making him a god. The ceremonies of the Megalesia celebrating the Death and Resurrection of Attis as held in Rome during the late Republic and early Empire, and their likeness to the


curious arts I have not neglected, so that I have under- taken for the readers no chance labour, exhorting many to love of learning and certainty of knowledge about the truth. Now therefore there remains to hasten on to the refutation of the heresies, with which intent 1 also we have set forth the things aforesaid. From which philosophers the heresiarchs have taken hints in common 2 and patching like cobblers the mistakes of the ancients on to their own thoughts, have offered them as new to those they can deceive, as we shall prove in (the books) which follow. For the rest, it is time to approach the subjects laid down before, but to begin with those who have dared to sing the praises of the Serpent, nvho is in fact the cause of the error, through certain systems invented by his action. Therefore

j\ 139. the priests and chiefs of the doctrine were the first who were called Naassenes, being thus named in the Hebrew tongue : for the Serpent is called Naas. 3 Afterwards they called themselves Gnostics alleging that they alone knew the depths. 4 Separating themselves from which persons, many men have made the heresy, which is really one, a much divided affair, describing the same things according to vary- ing opinions, as this discourse will argue as it proceeds.

These men worship as the beginning of all things, according to their own statement, a Man and a Son of Man. But this Man is masculo-feminine 5 and is called by them Adamas; 6 and hymns to him are many and various. And

p. 14c. the hymns, to cut it short, are repeated by them somehow like this :

" From thee a father, and through thee a mother, the two deathless names, parents of Aeons, O thou citizen of heaven, Man of great name ! " 7

Easter rites of the Christian Church are desciibed in the Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society for October 191 7.

1 ( ov) x<*p iv , "thanks to which."

2 jueTe'xto tcls acpopfias, a phrase frequent in Plato.

i C'rU 4 Cf. Rev. ii. 24. 5 apatvoOyXvs.

6 Cruice thinks the name derived from the Adam Cad m on of the Jewish Cabala. But Adamas "the unsubdued" is an epithet of Hades who was equated with Dionysos, the analogue of Attis. Cf. Irenaeus, I, 1.

7 Salmon and Stahelein in maintaining their theory that Hippolytus' documents were contemporary forgeiies make the point that something like this hymn is repeated later in the account of Monoimus the Arabian's heresy. The likeness is not very close. Cf. II, p. 107 infra.


But they divide him like Geryon into three parts. For there is of him, they say, the intellectual (part), the psychic and the earthly ; and they consider that the knowledge of him is the beginning of the capacity to know God, speaking thus: The beginning of perfection is the knowledge of man, but the knowledge of God is completed perfection." But all these things, he says, the intellectual, and the psychic and the earthly, proceeded and came down together into one man, Jesus who was born of Mary ; * and there spoke together, he says, in the same way, these three men each of them from his own substance to his own. " For there are three kinds of universals 2 according to them (to wit) the angelic, 3 the psychic and the earthly ; and three churches, the angelic, the psychic and the earthly ; but their names are : Chosen, Called, Captive. 4

7. These are the heads of the very many discourses which p. 141. they say James the brother of the Lord handed down to Mariamne. 8 So then, that the impious may no longer speak falsely either of Mariamne, or of James, or of his Saviour, we will come to the Mysteries, whence comes their fable, both the Barbarian and the Greek, and we shall see how these men collecting together the hidden and ineffable mysteries of the nations 6 and speaking falsely of Christ, lead astray those who have not seen the Gentiles' secret rites. For since the Man Adamas is their foundation, and they say there has been written of him "Who shall declare his generation?" 7 learn ye how, taking from the nations in turn p. 142. the undiscoverable and distinguished 8 generation of the Man, they apply this to Christ.

1 Origen {cont. Celsnm, VI, 30) says the Ophites used to curse the nnrae of Christ. Hence Origen cannot be the author of the Philosophumena. \

2 to o\a. I am doubtful whether he is here using the word in its .philosophic or Aristotelian sense as "entities necessarily differing from one another in kind," or as " things of the universe." On the whole the former construction seems here to be right.

' ' That which has been sent " ?

4 Doubtless as being still confined in matter.

5 Both Origen and Celsus knew of this Mariamne, after whom a sect is said to have been named. See Orig. cont. Cels., VI, 30.

8 t<Jv sdvwv. The usual expression for Gentiles or Ooyim.

7 Isa. liii. 8.

8 Sidcpopou. Miller reads a8td(f>opoi> : "undistinguished."


"For earth, say the Greeks, was the first to give forth man, thus bearing a goodly gift. For she wished to be the mother not of plants without feeling and wild beasts without sense, but of a gentle and God-loving animal. But hard it is, he says, to discover whether Alalcomeneus of the Boeotians came forth upon the p. 143. Cephisian shore as the first of men, or whether (the

first men) were the Id?ean Curetes, a divine race, or the Phrygian Corybantes whom the Sun saw first shooting up like trees, or whether Arcadia brought forth Pelasgus earlier than the Moon, or Eleusis Diaulus dweller in the Rarian field, or Lemnos gave birth to Cabirus,- fair child of ineffable orgies, or Pallene to Alcyon, eldest of the Giants. But the Libyans say Iarbas the first-born crept forth from the parched field to pluck Zeus' sweet acorn. So also, he says that the Nile of the Egyptians, making fat the mud which unto this day begets life, gave forth living bodies made flesh with moist heat." 1

But the Assyrians say that fish-eating 2 Oannes (the first man) was born among them and the Chaldaeans (say the same thing about) Adam ; and they assert that he was the man whom the earth brought forth alone, and that he lay breathless, motionless (and) unmoved like unto a statue being the image of him on high who is praised in song as the man Adamas ; but that he was produced by many p. 144. powers about whom in turn there is much talk. 3

In order then that the Great Man 4 on high, from whom,

1 This hymn is in metre and is said to be from a lost Pindaric ode. It lias been restored by Bergk, the restoration being given in the notes to Cruice's text, p. 142, and it was translated into English verse by the late Professor Conington. Cf. Forerunners, II, p. 54, n. 6.

2 IxOvocpdyov. Doubtless a mistake for lxvo<p6pov. The Oannes of Berossus' story wore a fish on his back.

3 Adam the protoplast according to the Ophites {Ireneeus, I, xviii, p. 197, Harvey) and Epiphanius {Hcrr. xxxvii, c. 4, p. 501, Oehler) was made by Jaldabaoth and his six sons. The same story was current among the followers of Saturninus {Irenccns, I, xviii, p. 197, Harvey) and other Gnostic sects, who agree with the text as to his helplessness when first created, and its cause.

4 So in the Bruce Papyrus, " Jen," which name I have suggested is an abbreviation of Jehovah, is called "the great Man, King of the great Aeon of light." See Forerunners t II, 193.


as they say, "every fatherhood 1 named on earth and in the heavens ' ; is framed, might be completely held fast, there was given to him also a soul, so that through the soul he might suffer, and that the enslaved "image of the great and most beautiful and Perfect Man " for thus they call him might be punished. 2 Wherefore again they ask what is the soul and of what kind is its nature that coming to the man and moving 3 him it should enslave and punish the image of the Perfect Man. But they ask this, not from the Scriptures, but from the mystic rites. And they say that the soul is very hard to find and to comprehend, since it does not stay in the same shape or form, nor is it always in one and the same state, so that one might describe it by a type or comprehend it in substance. 4 But these various changes of the soul they hold to be set down in the Gospel inscribed to the Egyptians.

They doubt then, as do all other men of the nations, whether the soul is from the pre-existent, or from the self- begotten, or from the poured-forth Chaos. 5 And first p. 145. they betake themselves to the mysteries of the Assyrians 6 to understand the triple division of the Man; for the Assyrians were the first to think the soul tripartite and yet one. For every nature, they say, longs for the soul, but each in a different way. For soul is the cause of all things that are, and all things which are nourished and increase, he says, require soul. For nothing like nurture or increase, he says, can occur unless soul be present. And even the

1 Eph. iii. 15. Cf. ihe address of Jesus to His Father in the last document of the Pi s'.is Sophia, Forerunners, II, p. 180, n. 4.

2 Why is he to be punished ? In the Manicfuxan story (for which sec Forerunners, II, pp. 292 ff.) the First Man is taken prisoner by the powers of darkness. Both this and that in the text are doubtless survivals of some legend current throughout Western Asia at a very early date. Cf. Bousset's Hauplprobleme der Gnosis, Leipzig, 1907, c. 4, Der Urmensch.

3 So the cryptogram in the Pistis Sophia professes to give "the word by which the Perfect Man is moved." Forerunners, II, 188, n. 2.

4 ov<ria : perhaps "essence" or "being." It is the word for which hypostasis was later substituted according to Hatch. See his Hibbert Lectures, pp. 269 ff.

5 So Miller, Cruice, and Schneidewin. I should be inclined to read (pdos, " light," as in the Naassene hymn at the end of this chapter. ' No Gnostic sect can have taught that the soul came from Chaos.

6 This, as always at this period, means "Syrians." See Maury, Rev. ArcheoL, Iviii, p. 242.



stones, he says, are animated, 1 for they have the power of increase, and no increase can come without nourishment. For by addition increase the things which increase and the addition is the nourishment of that which is nourished. 2 Therefore every nature he says, of things in heaven, and on earth, and below the earth, longs for a soul. But the Assy- rians call such a thing 3 Adonis or Endymion or (Attis) ; and when it is invoked as Adonis Aphrodite loves and longs after the soul of such name. And Aphrodite is generation 4 accord- ing to them. But when Persephone or Core loves Adonis 5 there is a certain mortal soul separated from Aphrodite p. 146. (that is from generation). 6 And if Selene should come to desire of Endyrnion 7 and to love of his beauty, the nature of the sublime ones, he says, also requires soul. But if, he says, the Mother of the Gods castrate Attis, 8 and she holds this loved one, the blessed nature of the hypercosmic and eternal ones on high recalls to her, he says, the masculine power of the soul. 9 For, says he, the Man is masculo-feminine. According to this argument of theirs, then, the so-called 10 intercourse of woman with man is by (the teaching of) their school shown to be an utterly wicked and defiling thing. For Attis is castrated, he says, that is, he has changed over from the earthly parts of the lower creation to the eternal substance on high, where, he says, there is neither male nor female, 11 but a new creature, 12

1 fyrpvxoi. lie is punning on the likeness between this and \pvxv, "soul."

2 And between "nourished" and "reared."

3 rb toiovtov. Not (pvtris or ^/vx'h. At this point the author begins his commentary on the Hymn of ihe Mysteries of Cybele, for which see p. 141 infra.

4 y4ve<Tts, perhaps "birth."

6 An allusion to the myth which makes Aphrodite and Persephone share the company of Adonis between them.

6 These words are added in the margin.

7 A prominent feature in the imposture of Alexander of Abonoteichus. See Lucian's Pseudomantis, passim.

8 In the better-known story Attis castrates himself; but this version explains the allusion in the hymn on p. 141 infra.

9 i. e. restores to her the virility of which they had deprived her when she was hermaphrodite. Seen, on p. 119 supra.

10 \c\tyij,4v7). Miller and Schneidewin read SeSaiy/ncuT], "open," or " displayed."

11 Gal. iii. 28. So Clemens Romanus, Ep. ii. 12 ; Clem. Alex. Strom. i III, 13. Cf. Fistis Sophia, p. 378 (Copt).

12 2 Cor. v. 17 ; Gal. vi. 15.


a new Man, who is masculo-feminine. What they mean by " on high " I will show in its appropriate place when I come to it. But they say it bears witness to what they say that Rhea is not simply one (goddess) but, so to speak, the whole creature. 1 And this they say is made quite clear by p. 147. the saying : " For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made by Him, in truth, His eternal power and godhead, so that they are without excuse. Since when they knew Him as God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful, but foolishness deceived their hearts. For thinking themselves wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into the likenesses of an image of corruptible man and of birds and of fourfooted and creeping things. Wherefore God gave them up to passions of dishonour. For even their women changed their natural use to that which is against nature." 2 And what the natural use is according to them, we shall see later. " Likewise, also the males leaving the natural use of the female burned in their lust one toward another males among males working unseemliness." 3 But unseemliness is according to them the first and blessed and unformed substance which is the cause of all the forms of things which are formed. "And receiving in themselves the p. 148. recompense of their error which is meet." 4 For in these words, which Paul has spoken, they say is comprised their whole secret and the ineffable mystery of the blessed pleasure. For the promise of baptism 5 is not anything else according to them than the leading to unfading pleasure him who is baptized according to them in living water and anointed with silent 6 ointment.

1 i. e. masculo-feminine. That Rhea, Cybele an 1 Ge are but different names of the earth-goddess, see Maury, Kel de la Grece Antique, I, 78 ff. For their androgyne character, scqJ.R.A.S. for Oct. 1917.

2 Rom i. 20 ft. The text omits several sentences to be found in the A.V.

3 Ibid., v. 27. 4 Ibia., v. 28.

5 iirayyzXla tov \ovrpov, pollicetur Us qui lavanltir, Cr. But "the font " is the regular patrislic expression for the rite.

6 The text has &\Ay, "other," which makes no sense. Cruice, following Schneidewin, alters it to a\d\cp on the strength of p. 144 infra, and renders it ineffabilis ; but dAciAos cannot mean anything but "dumb" or "silent." That baptism in the early heretical sects was


And they say that not only do the mysteries of the Assyrians bear witness to their saying, but also those of the Phrygians concerning the blessed nature, hitherto hidden and yet at the same time displayed, of those who were and are and shall be, which, he says, is the kingdom of the heavens sought for w r ithin man. 1 Concerning which nature they have explicitly made tradition in the Gospel inscribed according to Thomas, 2 saying thus:' "Whoso seeks me shall find me in children from seven years (up- wards). For there in the fourteenth year I who am hidden

p. 149. am made manifest." This, however, is the saying not of Christ but of Hippocrates, who says : "At seven years old, a boy is half a father." Whence they who place the primordial nature of the universals in the primordial seed having heard the Hippocratian (adage) that a boy of seven years old is half a father, say that in fourteen years according to Thomas it will be manifest. This is their ineffable and mystical saying. 3

They say then that the Egyptians, who are admitted to be the most ancient of all men after the Phrygians and the first at once to impart to all men the initiations and secret rites 4 of the gods, and to have proclaimed forms and activities, have the holy and august and for those who are not initiated unutterable mysteries of Isis. And these are nothing else than the -pudendum of Osiris which was snatched away and sought for by her of the seven stoles and black

p. 150. garments. 5 But they say Osiris is water. And the seven- stoled nature which has about it and is equipped with seven ethereal stoles for thus they allegorically call the wandering stars is like mutable generation 6 and shows

followed by a "chrism" or anointing, see Forerunners, II, 129, n. 2 ; ibid., 192.

1 Luke xvii. 21.

2 This does not appear in the severely expurgated fragments of the Gospel of Thomas which have come down to us. Epiphanius {Hcer. xxxvii.) includes this gospel in a list of works especially favoured by the Ophites.

3 \6yos, Cr. disciplina, Macmahon, "Logos." But see Arnold, Roman Stoicism, p. 161.

4 opyia. In Hippolytus it always has this meaning.

5 Isis. See Forerunners, I, p. 34.

6 7] neraPXriT)] yheois. The expression is repeated in the account of Simon Magus' heresy (II, p. 13 infra) and refers to the transmigration of souls.


that the creation is transformed by the Ineffable and Un- portrayable * and Incomprehensible and Formless One. And this is what is said in the Scripture : "The just shall fall seven times and rise again." 2 For these falls, he says, are the turnings about of the stars when moved by him who moves all things. They say, then, about the substance of the seed which is the cause of all things that are, that it belongs to none of these but begets and creates all things that are, speaking thus : " I become what I wish, and I am what I am ; wherefore I say that it is the immoveable that moves all things. For it remains what it is, creating all things and nothing comes into being from begotten things." 3 lie says that this alone is good and that it is of this that the Saviour spoke when he said : " Why callest thou me good ? There is one good, my Father who is in the heavens, Who makes the sun to rise upon the just and the unjust, and rains upon the holy and the sinners." 4 And who are the p. 151. holy upon whom He rains and who the sinful we shall see with other things later on. And this is the great secret and the unknowable mystery concealed and revealed by the Egyptians. For Osiris, he says, is in the temple in front of Isis, whose pudendum stands exposed looking upwards from below, and wearing as a crown all its fruits of begotten things. 5 And they say not only does such a thing stand in the most holy temples, but is made known to all like a light not set under a bushel but placed on a candlestick making its announcement on the housetops in all the streets and p. 152. highways and near all dwellings being set before them as some limit and term. 6 For they call this the bringer of luck, not knowing what they say.

And this mystery the Greeks who have taken it over from the Egyptians keep unto this day. For we see, he says, the (images) of Hermes in such a form honoured among

1 aue^iKovia-Tos, "He of whom no image can be made."

2 I'rov. xxiv. 16.

3 Some qualification like " originally " or " at the beginning " seems wanting. Cf. Arnold, op. cit.> n. on p. 58 supra.

4 Matt. v. 45.

5 He has apparently mistaken Min of Coptos or Nesi-Amsu for Osiris who is, I think, never represented thus. At Denderah, he is supine.

6 The "terms" of Hermes which Alcibiades and his friends mutilated.


them. And they say that they especially honour Cyllenius the Eloquent. For Hermes is the Word who, being the interpreter and fashioner x of what has been, is, and will be, stands honoured among them carved into some such form which is the pudendum of a man straining from the things below to those on high. And that this 1 that is, such a Hermes is, he says, a leader of souls and a sender forth of them, and a cause of souls, did not escape the poets of the nations who speak thus :

" Cyllenian Hermes called forth the souls Of the suitors."

(Homer, Odyssey, XXIV, I.)

p. 153 Not of the suitors of Penelope, he says, O unhappy ones, but of those awakened from sleep and recalled to consciousness

"From such honour and from such enduring bliss."

(Empedocles, 355, Stiirz.)

that is, from the blessed Man on high or from the arch-man Adamas, as they think, they have been brought down here into the form of clay that they may be made slaves to the fashioner of this creation, Jaldabaoth, a fiery god, a fourtli number. 2 For thus they call the demiurge and father of the world of form.

11 But he hoi ils in his hands the rod Fair and golden, wherewith he lulls to sleep the eyes of men, Whomso he will, while others he awakens from sleep."

{Odyssey, XXIV, 3 ft.)

This, he says, is he who has authority over life and death of whom he says it is written : "Thou shalt rule them with a rod of iron." 3 But the poet wishing to adorn the incom- p. 154. prehensible (part) 4 of the blessed nature of the Word, makes his rod not iron but golden. And he charms to sleep the eyes of the dead, he says, and again awakens those

1 Bnfiiovpy6s. Here as always the "architect," or he who creates not.r nihilo, but from existing material.

2 For this name which is said by all the early heresiologists to mean "the God of the Jews," see Forerunners, II, 46, n. 3. He is called a " fiery God" apparently from Dent. iv. 24, and a fourtli number, either because in the Ophite theogoftvy he comes next after the Supreme Triad of Father, Son, and Mother or, more probably, from his name covering the Tetragrammaton, or name of God in four letters. 3 Ps. ii. 9.

4 Cr. supplies " virtutem " ; but the adjective is in the neuter.


sleepers who are stirred out of sleep and become suitors. Of these, he says, the Scripture spoke : " Awake thou that sleepest, and arise and Christ shall shine upon thee." 1 This is the Christ, he says, who in all begotten things is the Son of Man, impressed (with the image) by the Logos of whom no image can be made. 2 This, he says, is the great and unspeakable mystery of the Eleusinians " Hye Cye" 3 seeing that all things are set under him, and this is the saying : " Their sound went forth into all the earth," 4 just as

11 Hermes waved the rod and they followed gibbering."

(Homer, Odyssey, XXIV, 5-7.)

still meaning the souls as the poet shows, saying figuratively :

"And even as bats flit gibbering in the secret recesses Of a wondrous cave when one has fallen down out of the rock From the cluster. . . . "

{Ibid, XXIV, $seg.)

Out of the rock, he says, is said of Adamas. This, he says, p. 155. is Adamas, " the corner-stone which has become the head of the corner." 5 For in the head is the impressed brain of the substance from which every fatherhood is impressed. 6 "Which Adamas," he says, "I place at the foundation of Zion." 7 Allegorically, he says, he means the image of the Man. But that Adamas is placed within the teeth, as Homer says, "the hedge of teeth," 8 that is, the wall and stockade within which is the inner man, who has fallen from Adamas the arch-man 9 on high who is (the rock) "cut without cutting hands" 10 and brought down into the image

1 Eph. v. 14.

2 Kex a P aKTr IP l(r l x * V0S "irk T v ax a P aKTr lpi <TT0V h-Ayov. These expres- sions repeated up to the end of the chapter are most difficult to render in English. The allusion is clearly to a coin stamped with the image of a king. Afterwards I translate axo-paKT-qpiaros by " unportrayable, for brevity's sake.

3 The famous words which tradition assigns to the Eleusinian Mysteries. One version is " Rain ! conceive ! " and probably refers to the fecundation or tillage of the earth. Cf. Plutarch, de Is. et Os., c. xxxiv.

4 Rom. x. 18. 6 Ps. cxviii, 22. Cf. Isa. xxviii. 16. 6 See n. on p. 123 supra. 7 Isa. xxviii. 16.

8 Something U here omitted before 6d6vTes. Cf. Iliad, IV, 350.

9 apxavOpoinros, a curious expression meaning evidently First Man. It appears nowhere but in this chapter of the Philosophumena.

^ Dan. ii. 45, "cut from the mountain without hands."


of oblivion, 1 the earthly and clayey. And he says that the souls follow him, the Word, gibbering.

Even so the souls gibbered as they fared together, But he went before,

that is, he led them,

Gracious Hermes led them adown the dark ways."

{Odyssey, XXIV, 9 ft)

p. 156. that is, he says, into eternal countries remote from all evil. For whence, says he, did they come ?

" By Ocean's flood they came and the Leucadian cliff And by the Still's gates and the land of dreams."

( Odyssey \ ubi tit. )

This he says is Ocean, "source of gods and source of men" 2 ever ebbing and flowing now forth and now back. But when he says Ocean flows forth there is birth of men, but when back to the wall and stockade and the Leucadian rock there is birth of gods. This he says is that which is written: "I have said ye are all gods and sons of the Highest ; if you hasten to flee from Egypt and win across the Red Sea into the desert," that is from the mixture below to the Jerusalem above who is the Mother of (all) living. " But if ye return again to Egypt," that is to the mixture below, p 157- "ye shall die as men." 3 For deathly, says he, is all birth below, but deathless that which is born above ; for it is born of water alone and the spirit, spiritual not fleshly. This, he says, is that which is written : " That which is born of the flesh is flesh and that which is born of the spirit is spirit." 4 This is, according to them, the spiritual birth. This, he says, is the great Jordan which flowing forth pre- vented the sons of Israel from coming out of the land of Egypt or rather, from the mixture below ; for Egypt is the body according to them until Joshua 5 turned it and made it flow back towards its source.

1 The Power called Adonaeus or Adon-ai by the Ophites is also addressed as A^0tj, " oblivion," in the "defence" made to him by the ascending soul. See Origen, cont Cels. VI, c. 30 ff. or Forerunners, II, 72.

2 A compound of //tad, XIV, 201 and 246.

3 Ps. lxxxii. 6 ; Luke vi. 35 ; John x. 34 ; Gal. iv. 26,

4 John ii', 6, 5 Joshua iii, 16,


8. Following up these and such-like (words) the most wonderful Gnostics having invented a new art of grammar 1 imagine that their own prophet Homer unspeakably 2 fore- showed 3 these things and they mock at those who not being initiated in the Holy Scriptures are led together into such designs. But they say : whoso says all things were framed from one, errs ; but whoso says from three speaks the truth and gives an exposition of (the things of) the universe. For one, he says, is the blessed nature of the Blessed Man above, Adamas, and one is the mortal (nature) below, and one is the kingless race begotten on high, where, p. 158. he says, is Mariam the sought-for one, and Jothor the great wise one, and Sephora the seer, 4 and Moses whose genera- tion was not in Egypt for there were children born to him in Midian and this, he says, was not forgotten by the poets :

" In three lots were all things divided and each drew a domain of his own." {Iliad, XV, 169.)

For sublime things, he says, must needs be spoken, but they are spoken everywhere, lest " hearing they should not hear and seeing they should see not." 5 For if, he says, the sublime things were not spoken, the cosmos could not have been framed. These are the three ponderous words : Caulacau, Saulasau, Zeesar. 6 Caulacau the one on high, Adamas, Saulasau, the mortal nature below, Zeesar the p- 159- Jordan which flows back on its source. This is, he says, the masculo-feminine Man who is in all things, whom the ignorant call the triple-bodied Geryon as if Geryon were "flowing from Earth " 7 and the Greeks usually "the

1 So the Cabbalists call one of their word-juggling processes gematria, which is said to be a corruption of ypa^fj-ania.

2 app_7]Tws, i.e., "by implication, or "not in words."

3 Play upon irpocpaivu and irpo(priT7]s.

1 Mariam was Moses' aunt, Sephora his wife, and Jothor Sephora's father, according to some fragments of Ezekiel quoted by Eusebius. So Cruice.

"' Matt. xiii. 13.

6 Isa. xxviii. 10. In A.V., " Precept upon precept ; line upon line ; here a little, there a little." Irenoeus (I, xix, 3, I, p. 201, Harvey) says, Caulacau is the name in which the Saviour descended according to Basil ides, and the word seems to have been used in this sense by other Gnostic sects. See Forerunners, II, 94, n. 3.

7 in y?is piovra !


heavenly horn of Men " x because he has mingled and com- pounded all things with all. "For all things, he says, were made through him and apart from him not one thing was made. That which was in him is life." 2 This, he says is the life, the unspeakable family of perfect men which was not known to the former generation. But the "noth- ing " which came into being apart from him is the world of form ; for it came without him by the 3rd and 4th. 3 This, he says, is the cup Condy in which the king drinking, divineth. This, he says, is that which was hidden among the fair grains of Benjamin. And the Greeks also say the same with raving lips :

" Bring water, bring wine, O boy Intoxicate me, plunge me into sleep. The cup tells me P- 160. What I must become.'" 4

{Anacreon, XXVI, 25, 26.)

It was enough, he says, that only this should be known to men that Anacreon's cup spoke mutely an unspeakable mystery. For mute, he says, was Anacreon's cup which says Anacrcon, tells him with mute speech what he must become, that is spiritual not fleshly, if he hears the hidden mystery in silence. And this is the water in those fair nuptials which Jesus changed by making wine. This, he says, is the mighty and true beginning of the signs which Jesus did in Cana in Galilee and made known the kingdom of the heavens. This, he says, is the kingdom of the heavens within us, as a treasure as the leaven hidden within three measures of meal. 5 p. 161. This is, he says, the great and unspeakable mystery of the Samothracians which is allowed to be known to us alone who are perfect. For the Samothracians explicitly hand down in the mysteries celebrated by them that Adam is the Arch-man. And in the temple of the Samothracians stand two statues of naked men having both hands stretched

1 A direct quotation from the Hymn of the Great Mysteries given later, p. 141 injra. Also a pun between nepapw/jit and tcepas.

2 John 1. 34. 3' f-

3 Sophia, the third person of the Ophite Triad and Jaldabaoth her son.

4 Something omitted after "cup."

n rpia adra. A Jewish measure equivalent to i| tnodius. Cf Matt. xiii. 33.


forth to heaven and their pudenda turned upwards like that of Hermes on (Mt.) Cyllene. But the aforesaid statues are the images of the Arch-man and of the re-born spiritual one in all things of one substance l with that man. This, he says, is what was spoken by the Saviour : " Unless ye drink my blood and eat my flesh, ye shall not enter . into the kingdom of the heavens ; but even though, He says, ye drink the cup which I drink when I go forth you will not be able to enter there." 2 For He knew, he says, from which nature each of His disciples was, and that each of them was compelled to come to his own special nature. For from the twelve tribes, he says, He chose twelve disciples, 3 and by them He spake to every tribe. Whence, p. 162 he says, all could not have heard the preachings of the twelve disciples, nor, had they heard them could they have been received. For the things which are not according to 4 nature are with them natural.

This, he says, the Thracians who dwell about Mt. Haemus and like them the Phrygians call Corybas, 5 because although he takes the beginning of his descent from the head on high and from the Unportrayable one and passes through all the sources of underlying things, we know not how and in what fashion he comes. This, he says, is the saying : " We have heard his voice, but we have not seen his shape." For, he says, the voice of him who is set apart and has been impressed with the ima<j;e 7 is heard, but no one has seen what is the shape which has come down from on high from the Unportrayable One. But it is in the earthly form and no one is aware of it. This, he says, is the God who dwells in the flood according to the Psalter and "who speaks aloud and cries from many . waters." 8 " Many waters," he says, is the ^manifold generation of mortal men, wherefrom he shouts and cries aloud to the Unportrayable Man : " Deliver my only p. 163.

1 The famous 6/j.oovcrios.

- A compound of John vi. 53 and Mk. x. 38.

A Madras, " disciples," not apostles.

4 The Kara may mean either ' against " or " according to " nature.

5 For this Coryhas and his murder by Ins two brothers see Clem. Alex., Protrept., II. A pun here follows between Corybas and Kopv<pri, " head."

6 John v. 3. 7 KexapaKTripur/jLevos. 8 Ps. xxix. 3, 10.


begotten from the lions ! " l In answer to this, he says, is the saying : " Thou art my son, O Israel. Fear not. If thou passest through the rivers they shall not overwhelm thee; if through the fire, it shall not bum thee." 2 By rivers is meant, he says, the moist essence of generation, and by fire the rage and desire for generation. " Thou art mine. Be not afraid." And again he speaks: "If a mother forget her children and pities them not nor gives them suck, yet will I not forget thee." 3 Adamas, he says, speaks to his own men : " But although a woman shall forget these things, yet will I not forget you. I have graven you on my hands." 4 But concerning his ascension, that is, the being born again^ that he may be born spiritual, not fleshly, he says, the Scripture speaks : " Lift up the gates, ye rulers, and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors, and the

p. 164. King of Glory shall enter in." 5 That is the wonder of wonders. " For who," he says, " is this King of Glory ? A worm and not a man, a reproach of man and an object of contempt for the people. This is the King of Glory, he who is mighty in battle." 6 But he means the war which is in the body, because the (outward) form is made from warring elements, he says, as it is written : " Remember the war which is in the body." 7 The same entrance and the same gate, he says, Jacob saw w r hen journeying to Mesopotamia for Mesopotamia, he says, is the flow of the great Ocean flowing forth from the middle part 8 of the Perfect Man and he wondered at the heavenly gate, saying : " How terrible is this place ! It is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of Heaven." 9 Wherefore, he says, the saying of Jesus : " I am the true gate." 10 Now He who says this is, he says, the Perfect

p. 165. Man who, has been impressed above (with the image) of the Unportrayable one. Therefore he says, the perfect

1 Ps. xxii. 20, A. V., " My darling from the power of the dog."

2 Isa. xci. 8 ; xliii. 1, 2.

3 Ibid., xlix. 15 ; slightly altered.

4 Ibid., xlix. 16.

5 Ps. xxiv. 7. A.V. omits "rulers" or archons.

6 Ps. xxiv. 8 ; xxii. 6.

7 Job xl. 2.

8 A pun like that on Geryon or Corybas.

9 Gen. xxviii. 17.

10 John x. 7, 9, "I am the door."


man will not be saved unless born again by entering in through this gate.

But this same one, he says, the Phrygians * call also Papas, because he set at rest that which had been moved irregularly and discordantly before his coming. For the name of Papa, he says, is (taken from) all things in heaven, on earth, and below the earth, saying : " Make to cease ! make to cease ! 2 the discord of the cosmos and make peace for those that are afar off," 3 that is, for the material and earthly, and also " for those that are anigh," that is, for the spiritual and understanding perfect men. But the Phrygians say that the same one is also a "corpse," having been buried in the body as in a monument or tomb. 4 This, he says, is the saying : " Ye are whited sepulchres filled within with dead men's bones," 5 that is, there is not within you the living Man. And again, he says, "the dead shall leap forth from their graves," 6 that is, the spiritual man, not the fleshly, shall be born again from the bodies of the earthly. This, he says, is the resurrection which comes through the gate of the heavens, through which if they do not enter, all p. 166. remain dead. And the same Phrygians, he says again, say that this same one is by reason of the change a god. For he becomes God when he arises from the dead and enters into heaven through the same gate. This gate, he says, Paul the Apostle knew, having set it ajar in mystery and declaring that he " was caught up by an angel and came unto a second and third heaven into Paradise itself and beheld what he beheld, and heard ineffable words which it is not lawful for man to utter." 7 These are, he says, the mysteries called ineffable by all " which (we also speak) not in the words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, comparing spiritual things with spiritual ; but the natural 8 man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness unto him " ; 9 and these, he

1 i. e. the worshippers of Cybele. For Attis' name of Pappas, see Graillot, Le Culte de Cybele, p. 15. It seems to mean " leather."

2 wave, -rrave ! ! ! 3 Eph. ii. 1 7.

4 This was an Orphic doctrine. See Forerunners, I, 127, n. I for authorities.

5 Matt xxiii. 27. 6 1 Cor. xv. 52.

7 2 Cor. xii. 3, 4. A.V. omits "second heaven" and the sights seen.

8 \pvxiKbs 5e avQpccTTos. The " natural man" of the A.V. 8 1 Cor. ii. 13, 14,


says, are the ineffable mysteries of the Spirit which we alone behold. Concerning them, he says, the Saviour spake : " No man shall come unto me unless my heavenly Father draw some one (unto me)." 1 For very hard it is, he says, to receive and take this great and ineffable mystery. And

p. 167. again, he says, the Saviour spake : " Not every one who sayeth unto me, Lord ! Lord ! shall enter into the kingdom of the heavens, but he who doeth the will of my Father who is in the heavens." 2 Of which (will) he says, they must be doers and not hearers only to enter into the kingdom of the heavens. And again, says he, He spake: "The publicans and the harlots go before you into the kingdom of the heavens." 3 For the publicans, he says, are those who receive the taxes of market- wares, and we are the tax- gatherers "upon whom the ends of the aeons have come down." 4 For the "ends," he says, are the seeds sown in the cosmos by the Unportrayable One, 5 whereby the whole cosmos is completed ; 6 for by them also it began to be. And this, he says, is the saying : " The sower went forth to sow, and some (seed) fell on the wayside and was trodden under foot, and some upon stony (parts) and sprang up ; and, because it had no root, he says, it withered and died. But some fell, he says, upon the fair and goodly earth and brought forth some a hundredfold, and some sixty and some thirty.

p. 168. He that hath ears to hear, let him bear." 7 This is, he says, that no one becomes a hearer of these mysteries save only the perfect Gnostics. This, he says, is the fair and goodly earth of which Moses spake : " I will bring you to a fair and goodly land, to a land flowing with milk and honey." 8 This, he says, is the honey and the milk, tasting which the perfect become kingless and partakers of the fulness. 9 The same, he says, is the Pleroma, whereby all things that are

1 John vi. 44, "draw him unto me." 2 Matt. vii. 21,

3 Matt. xxi. 31, "Kingdom of God."

4 1 Cor. x. 11. A pun on tcAt?, " taxes," and T6A77, " ends."

5 Cf. the Stoic doctrine of \6yoi atrep/aaTiKot, Arnold, l\oman Stoicism, p. 161.

6 Lit., " brought to an end."

7 A condensation of Matt. xiii. 3-9.

8 Deut. xxxi. 20.

9 i. e. become united with the Godhead. The newly-baptized were given milk and honey. Cf. Hatch, Hibbert Lectures, above quoted, p. 300.


begotten by the unbegotten have come into being and are filled.

But the same one is called by the Phrygians *' unfruitful." For he is unfruitful when he is fleshly and performs the desire of the flesh. This, he says, is the saying: "Every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is cut down and cast into the fire." 1 For these fruits, he says, are only the rational, the living man who enter by the third gate. 2 They say, indeed : " Ye who eat dead things and make living ones, what will ye make if ye eat living things ? " 3 For they say that words 4 and thoughts and men are living things cast down by that Unportrayable One into the form, below. This, he says, is what he means: "Throw not P- i9- your holy things to the dogs nor pearls to the swine," B saying that the intercourse of woman with man is the work of dogs and swine.

But this same one, he says, the Phrygians call goatherd, not because, he says, he feeds goats and he-goats, as the psychic man calls them, but because, he says, he is Aipolos, that is, he who is ever revolving 6 and turning about and driving the whole cosmos in its circumvolution. For to revolve is to turn about and to change the position of things, whence, he says, the two centres of the heaven men call Poles. And the poet says :

"What unerring ancient of the sea turns hither The Immortal Egyptian Proteus."

{Odyssey, IV, 384.)

He 7 is not betrayed (by Eidothea), he says, but turns himself about, as it were, and goes to and fro. He says, too, that cities wherein we dwell are called 7ro'A.ei9, because we turn and go about in them. Thus, he says, the p. 170, Phrygians call him Aipolos, who turns everything always in every direction and changes it into what it should be. But the Phrygians also call the same one "of many fruits," because (the Naassene writer) says, "the children of the

1 Matt. iii. io.

2 This "third gate" is evidently baptism. For the reason see Forerunners, II, p. 73, n. 2.

3 This seems to be a quotation from the Naassene author.

4 Perhaps an allusion to the \6yot (nrepfiariKoi. 5 Matt. vii. 6.

6 The derivation to be tolerable should be *atir6\os !

7 i, e. Proteus.


desolate are more in number than those of her who has a husband " ; : that is, the deathless things which are born again and ever remain are many, if few are those which are born (once) ; but all the things of the flesh, he says, are corruptible, even if those which are born are many. Where- fore, he says, Rachel mourned for her children and would not be comforted when mourning over them, for she knew, he says, that they were not. 2 And Jeremiah wails for the Jerusalem below, not the city in Phoenicia, 3 but the mortal generation below. For Jeremiah, he says, also knew the Perfect Man who has been born again of water and the spirit and is not fleshly. The same Jeremiah indeed said : " He is a man, and who shall know him ? " 4 Thus, he says, the knowledge of the 'Perfect Man is very deep and hard to comprehend. For the beginning of perfection, he says, is the knowledge of man ; but the knowledge of God is com- pleted perfection.

P- 17 ! The Phrygians also say, however, that he is a "green ear of corn reaped " ; and following the Phrygians, the Athenians when initiating (any one) into the Eleusinian (Mysteries) also show to those who have been made epopts the mighty and wonderful and most perfect mystery for an epopt 5 there a green ear of corn reaped in silence. 6 And this ear of corn is also for the Athenians the great and perfect spark of light from the Unportrayable One ; just as the hierophant himself, not indeed castrated like Attis, but rendered a eunuch by hemlock, and cut off from all fleshly generation, celebrating by night at Eleusis the great and ineffable mysteries beside a huge fire, cries aloud and makes proclamation, saying : " August Brimo has brought forth a holy son, Brimos," that is, the strong (has given birth) to the strong. 7 For august is, he says, the generation which is spiritual or heavenly or sublime, and strong is that which is thus generated. For the mystery is called Eleusis or Anacterion : " Eleusis," he says, because we spiritual ones

P- x 72. came on high rushing from the Adamas below. s For

1 Gal. iv. 27. 2 Je> em. xxxi. 15.

3 The mistake in geography shows that Hippolytus was not a Jew.

4 Jerem. xviii. 9. 5 iiroTrnxlu . . . ^.var-hpiov.

6 This is in effect the first real information we have as to the final secret of the Eleusinian Mysteries.

7 Hesychius also translates Brimos by lirx^pSs.

8 Hades or Pluto.


eleusesthai, he says is to come, but anactoreion the return on high. This, he says, is what they who have been initiated into the mysteries of the Eleusinians say. But it is a regulation that those who have been initiated into the Lesser Mysteries should moreover be initiated into the Great. For greater destinies obtain greater portions. 1 But the Lesser Mysteries, he says, are those of Persephone below and of the way leading thither, which is wide and broad and bears the dead to Persephone, and the poet says :

" But under her is a straight and rugged road Hollow and muddy, but the best to lead To the delightful grove of much-reverenced Aphrodite." 2

These, he says, are the Lesser Mysteries, those of fleshly generation, after being initiated into which men ought to cease (from the small) and be initiated into the great and p. 173. heavenly ones. For those who have obtained greater destinies, he says, receive greater portions. For this, he says, is the gate of heaven and this the house of God where the good God dwells alone, 3 into which will not enter, he says, any unpurified, any psychic or fleshly one ; but it is kept for the spiritual only, where those who are must cast aside 4 their garments and all become bridegrooms, having come to maturity through the virgin spirit. 5 For this is the virgin who bears in her womb and conceives and gives birth to a son not psychic or corporeal, but the blessed Aeon of Aeons. Concerning these things, he says, the Saviour expressly spake: "Narrow and straitened is the way that leads to life and few are those who enter into it;

1 Schleiermacher attributes this saying to Ileraclitus. 1 Mcineke {ap. Cr. ) attributes these lines to Par men id t?.

3 Cf. Justinus later, p. 175 infra.

4 Schneidewin and Cruice both read AajSetV, " receive " (their vestures) [ox $a\siv.

5 Cr. translates air-qpaevw/iivovs, exuta virilitafc ; but it seems to be a participle of airappev6oj = airav8p6u). The idea that the Gnostic pneumatics or spirituals would finally be united in marriage with the angels or ^0701 <Tirep/j.aTiKoi was current in Gnosticism. See Fore- runners, II, I IO. The "virgin spirit" was probably that Barbelo whom Irenseos, I, 26, if. (pp. 221 ff., Harvey), describes under that name as reverenced by the " Barbeliotae or Naassenes" ; in any case, probably, some analogue of the earth-goddess, ever bringing forth and yet ever a virgin.



but wide and broad is the way leading to destruction and many are they who pass along it." x

9. But the Phrygians further say that the Father of the

p 174. universals is Amygdalus, not a tree, he says, but that pre- existent almond 2 which containing within itself the perfect fruit (and) as if pulsating and stirring in the depth, tore asunder its breasts and gave birth to its own invisible and unnameable and ineffable boy of whom we are speaking. 3 For " Amyxai " is as if to burst and cut asunder, 4 as he says, in the case of inflamed bodies having within them any gathering, the surgeons who cut them open call them " amychas." Thus, he says, the Phrygians call the almond from whom the invisible one proceeded and was born, and through whom all things came into being and apart from whom nothing came into being.

But the Phrygians say that he who was thence born is a piper, because that which was born is a melodious spirit. For God, he says, is a Spirit, wherefore neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem shall the true worshippers prostrate them- selves, but in spirit. 5 For spiritual, he says, is the prostration of the perfect, not fleshly. But the Spirit, he says, (is) there where both the Father and the Son are named, being

P- l 75- there born from this (Son and from) the Father. 6 This, he says, is the many-named, myriad-eyed 7 incomprehensible One for whom every nature yearns, but each, in a different way. This, he says, is the Word 8 of God, which is, he says, the word of announcement of the great Power. Wherefore it will be sealed and hidden and concealed, lying in the habitation wherein the root of the universals 9 is established, that is 10 (the root) of Aeons, Powers,

1 Matt. vii. 13, 14. The A.V. has etWpxoA"" for dtepxofiai.

2 See n. on p. 119 supra. 3 i.e. Attis.

4 a/iiWo) is rather to " scratch/* or " scarify," than as in the text.

5 Cf. John iv. 21.

c Cruice's restoration. Schneidewin's would read: "The Spirit is there where also the Father is named, and the Son is there born from the Father."

7 Cf. Ezekiel x. 12. e prj/xa, not \6yos.

9 Here we see the interpretation put by Hippolytus on the Aris- totelian Ta o\a.

10 6e/u.\i6w. The whole of this sentence singularly resembles that in the Great Announcement ascribed to Simon Magus, for which see II, p. 12 infra.


Thoughts, Gods, Angels, Emissary Spirits, things which are, things which are not, things begotten, things un- begotten, things incomprehensible, things comprehensible, years, months, days, hours (and) of an Indivisible Point, 1 from which what is least begins to increase successively. The Point, he says, being nothing and consisting of nothing (and) being indivisible will become of itself a certain magni- tude incomprehensible by thought. 2 It, he says, is the kingdom of the heavens, the grain of mustard seed, the Indivisible Point inherent to the body which none knoweth, he says, save the spiritual alone. This, he says, is the saying : "There are no tongues nor speech where their voice is not heard." 3 P- 176.

Thus they hastily declare that the things which are said and are done by all men are to be understood in their way, imagining that all things become spiritual. Whence they also say that not even they who exhibit (in the) theatres say or do anything not comprehende4 in advance. 4 So for example, he says, when the populace have assembled in the theatres 5 some one makes entrance clad in a notable robe bearing a cithara and singing to it. Thus he speaks chanting the Great Mysteries 6 (but) not knowing what he is saying :

" Whether thou art the offspring of Kronos, or of blessed Zeus, Or of mighty Rhea, Hail Attis, the sad mutilation of Rhea. 7 The Assyrians call thee the muchdonged-for Adonis, Egypt names thee Osiris, heavenly horn of the Moon. 8 p. 177.

1 This idea of the Indivisible Point, which recurs in several Gnostic writings, including those of Simon and Basilides, seems founded on the mathematical axiom that the line and therefore all solid bodies spring from the point, which itself has "neither parts nor magnitude."

9 'Etrivoia. This also is used by Simon as the equivalent oCEvuoia.

3 Ps. xix. 3.

4 airpovo7)Tws, Cr., sine numine qnidquam ; Macmahon, " without premeditation."

5 Performances in the theatres formed part of the Megalesia or Festival of the Great Mother.

6 I should be inclined to read t>)s MeyaATjs fivcrr-hpta, ** Mysteries of the Great Mother."

7 An allusion to the variant of the Cybele legend which makes her the emasculate* of Attis.

8 So Conington, who translated the hymns into English verse, and Schneidewin. Ilippolytus, however, evidently gave this invocation to the Greeks. See p. 132 supra.


The Greeks Sophia, 1 the Samothracians, the revered Adamna,

The Thessalians, Corybas, and the Phrygians

Sometimes Papas, now the dead, or a god,

Or the unfruitful one, or goatherd,

Or the green ear of corn reaped,

Or he to whom the flowering almond-tree gave birth

As a pipe-playing man." 2

This, he says, is the many-formed Attis to whom they sing praises, saying :

" I will hymn Attis, son of Rhea, not making quiver with a buzzing sound, nor with the cadence of the Idtean Curetes' flutes, but I will mingle (with the hymn) the Phoebun music of the lyre. Evohe, Evan, for (thou art) Bacchus, (thou art) Pan, (thou art the) shepherd of white stars."

For such and such-like words they frequent the so-called Mysteries of the great Mother, thinking especially that by means of what is enacted there, they perceive the whole mystery. For they get no advantage from what is acted there except that they are not castrated. They merely perfect the work of the castrated; 3 for they give most pointed and careful instructions to abstain as if castrated from intercourse with women. But the rest of the work as p. 17S. we have said many times, they perform like the castrated. But they worship none other than the Naas, calling them- selves Naassenes. But Naas is the serpent, from whom he says, all temples under heaven are called naos from the Naas ; and that to that Naas alone is dedicated every holy place and every initiation and every mystery, and generally that no initiation can be found under heaven in which there is not a naos and the Naas within it, whence it has come to be called a naos. But they say that the serpent is the watery substance, as did Thales of Miletos 4 and that no being, in short, of immortals or mortals, of those with souls or of those without souls, can be made without him. And that all things are set under him, and that he is good and

1 8' ocpiav, according to Schneidewin's restoration (for which see p. 176 Cr.), seems better sense, if w ? e can suppose that the Sabazian serpent was so called.

2 The whole hymn with the next fragment is given as restored to metrical form where quoted in last note.

3 That is of the Ga//i, or eunuch-priests of Attis and Cybele.

4 Thales only said, so far as we know, that water was the beginning of all things.


contains all things within him as in the horn of the one- horned bull 1 (so as) to contribute beauty and bloom to all things according to their own nature and kind, as if he had passed through all "as if he went forth from Edem and cut himself into four heads." 2

But this Edem, they say, is the brain, as it were bound and enlaced in the surrounding coverings as in the heavens ; p. 179- and they consider man as far as the head alone to be Paradise. Therefore "the river that came forth from Eden " that is from the brain they think " is separated into four heads and the name of the first river is called Phison ; this it is which encompasses all the land of ' Havilat. There is gold and the gold of that land is good, and there is bdellium and the onyx stone." 3 This, he says, (is the) eye, bearing witness by its honour (among the other features) and its colours to the saying : " But the name of the second river is Gihon ; this it is which encompasses all the land of Ethiopia." This, he says, is the hearing, being somewhat like a labyrinth. "And the name of the third is Tigris ; this it is which goes about over against the Assy- rians." This, he says, is the smell which makes use of the swiftest current of the flood. And it goes about over against the Assyrians because in inspiration the breath drawn in from the outer air is sharper and stronger than the respired breath. For this is the nature of respiration. "The fourth river is Euphrates." This they say, is the mouth, which is the seat of prayer and the entrance of food, which gladdens 4 and nourishes and characterizes 5 the p. 180. spiritual perfect man. This, he says, is the water above the firmament concerning which, he says, the Saviour spake: "If thou knewest who it is that asks thou would have asked of him, and he would have given thee to drink living rushing water. 6 To this water, he says, comes every

1 The cornucopia : horn ot the goat (not bull) Amalthea seems to have been intended. I see no likeness between this and the passage in Deut. xxxiii. 17, to which Macmahon refers it.

2 Gen. ii. 10.

3 This and the three following quotations are from Gen. ii. 10-14 and follow the Septuagint version.

1 Play upon Euphrates and eixppaluei, "rejoices."

5 x a P aKT Vpi^ 1 - "Stamps" would be more correct, but singularly incongruous' with water.

6 John iv. 10. No substantial difference from A.V.


nature to choose its own substances. 1 and from this water goes forth to every nature that which is proper to it, he says, more (certainly) than iron to the magnet, gold to the spine of the sea-falcon and husks to amber. 2 But if any- one, he says, is blind from birth, and has not beheld the true light which lightens every man who cometh into the world, 3 let him recover his sight again through us, and behold how as it were through some Paradise full of all plants and seeds, the water flows among them. Let him see, too, that from one and the same water the olive-tree chooses and draws to itself oil, and the vine wine, and each of the other plants (that which is) according to its kind.

p. 181 But that Man, he says, is without honour in the world, and much honoured [in heaven, being betrayed] by those who know not to those who know him not, and accounted like a drop which falleth from a vessel. 4 But we are, he says, the spiritual who have chosen out of the living water, the Euphrates flowing through the midst of Babylon, that which is ours, entering in through the true gate which is Jesus the blessed. And we alone of all men are Christians, whom the mystery in the third gate has made perfect, and have been anointed 5 there with silent ointment from the horn like David and not from the earthen vessel, he says, like Saul, 6 who abode with the evil spirit of fleshly desire.

10. These things, then, we have set forth as a few out of many : for the undertakings of folly which are nonsensical and madlike are innumerable. But since we have expounded to the best of our ability their unknowable gnosis, we have thought it right to add this also. This psalm has been concocted by them, whereby they seem to hymn all the

p. 182. mysteries of their error thus : 7

1 ovffiai, but not in the theological sense.

2 This simile, repeated often later, has been the chief support of Salmon and Stahelin's forgery theory. Yet Clement of Alexandria (Book VII, c. 2, Stromateis) also uses it, and the turning of swords into ploughshares and spears into pruning-hooks appears in Micah iv. 3, as well as in Isaiah ii. 4, without arguing a common origin.

3 John I. 9. 4 Isn. xl. 15.

5 Play upon x? l H^ VQl > "anointed," and xP L<TTiaV0 ' 1 '

6 1 Sam. x. I ; xvi. 13, 14.

7 The hymn which follows is so corrupt that Schneidewin declared it beyond hope of restoration. Miller shows that the original metre was anapaestic, the number of feet diminishing regularly from 6 to 4 He


The generic law of the universe was the primordial mind ;

But the second was the poured-fbrth light 1 of the First-born :

And the third toiling soul received the Law as its portion.

Whence clothed in watery shape,

The loved one subject to toil (and) death,

Now having lordship, she beholds the light, P- 183.

Now cast forth to piteous state, she weeps.

Now she weeps (and now) rejoices ;

Now laments (and now) is judged ;

Now is judged (and now) is dying.

Now no outlet is left or she wandering

The labyrinth of woes has entered. 2

But Jesus said : Father, behold !

A strife of woes upon Earth

From thy breath has fallen,

But she seeks to flee malignant chaos.

And knows not how to win through it,

For this cause send me, O Father,

Holding seals I will go down, p. i$a

Through entire aeons I will pass,

All mysteries I will disclose ;

The forms of the gods I will display ;

The secrets of the holy way

Called Gnosis, I will hand down.

These things the Naassenes attempt, calling themselves Gnostics. 3 But since the error is many-headed and truly

likens this to that of the hymns of Synesius and the Tragopodagra of Lucian.

1 Reading <pdos for x* os -

2 This seems (o correspond with the Ophite description of Sophia or the third Person of their Triad in Chaos. Cf. Irenieus, I> 28.

3 The source of this chapter on the Naassenes is so far undiscover- able. Contrary to his usual practice, here mentions the name of no heretical author as he does in the following chapters of this Book. It is probable, therefore, that he may have taken down his account of "Naassene" doctrines from the lips of some convert, which would account for the extreme wildness of the quotations and to the incoherence with which he jumps about from one subject to another. This would also account for the heresy here described being far more Christian in tone than the other forms of Ophitism which follow it in the text, and the quotations from Scripture, especially the N.T., being more numerous and on the whole more apposite than in the succeeding chapters. The style, such as it is, is maintained throughout and its continuity should perhaps forbid us to see in it a plurality of authors. Little prominence in it is given to the Serpent which gives its name to the sect, although it is here said that he is good, and this seems to point to the Naassene being more familiar with the Western than with the Eastern forms of Cybele- worship.


of diverse shape like the fabled Hydra, we, having struck off its heads at one blow by refutation, (and) using the rod of Truth, will utterly destroy the beast. For the remaining heresies differ little from this, they all being linked together by one spirit of error. But since they by changing the words and the names wish the heads of the serpent to be many, we shall not thus fail to refute them thoroughly as they will.

2. Peratce}

12. There is also indeed a certain other (heresy), the Peratic, the blasphemy of whose (followers) against Christ has for many years evaded (us). Whose secret mysteries it now seems fitting for us to bring into the open. They suppose the cosmos to be one, divided into three parts. But of this triple division, one part according to them is, as it were, a single principle like a great source 2 which may be

1 No mention of this sect is made by Irenreus or Epiphanius, and Theodoret's statements concerning it correspond so closely with those of our text as to make it certain either that they were drawn from it or that both he and llippolytus drew from a common source. Yet Clement of Alexandria knew of the Peratics (see Stromateis VII, 16), and Origen [cont. Cels. VI, 28) speaks of the Ophites generally as boasting Euphrates as their founder. The name given to them in our text is said by Clement [ttbi cit.) to be a place-name, and the better opinion seems to be that it means " Mede" or one who lives on the further side of the Euphrates. The main point of their doctrine seems to be the great prominence given in it to the Serpent, whom they call the Son, and make an intermediate power between the Father of All and Matter. In this they are perhaps following the lead of some of the Grreco- Oriental worships like that of Sabazius, one of the many forms of Attis, or that of Dionysos whose symbol was the serpent. The proof of their doctrines, however, they sought for not, like the Naassenes, in the mystic

rites, but in a kind of astral theology which looked for religious truths in the grouping of the stars ; and it was in pursuit of this that they identified the Saviour Serpent with the constellation Draco. Yet they were ostensibly Christians, being apparently perfectly willing to accept the historical Christ as their great intermediary. Their attitude to Judaism is more difficult to grasp because, while they quoted freely "from the Old Testament, they apparently considered its God as an evil, or at all events, an unnecessarily harsh, power, in which they anticipated Manes and probably Marcion. Had we more of their writings we should probably find in them the embodiment of a good deal of early Babylonian tradition, to which most of these astrological heresies paid great attention.

2 irrjyr).


cut by the mind into boundless sections. And the first and p. 186. chiefest section according to them is the triad and (the one part of it) 1 is called Perfect Good and Fatherly Greatness. 2 But the second part of this triad of theirs is, as it were, a certain boundless multitude of powers which have come into being from themselves, while the third is (the world of) form. And the first is unbegotten and is good ; and the second is good (and) self-begotten, while the third is be- gotten. 3 Whence they say expressly that there are three Gods, three /ogoi, three minds, and three men. For they assign to each part of the world of the divided divisibility, gods and logoi and minds and men and the rest. But they say that from on high, from the unbegottenness and the first section of the cosmos, when the cosmos had already been brought to completion, there came down through causes which we shall declare later 4 in the days of Herod a certain triple-bodied and triple-powered :> man called Christ, con- taining within Himself all the compounds 6 and powers from the three parts of the cosmos. And this, he says is the p. 1S7. saying : "The whole Pleroma was pleased to dwell within Him bodily and the whole godhead" of the Triad thus divided "is in Him." 7 For, he says that there were brought down from the two overlying worlds, (to wit) the unbegotten and the self-begotten, unto this world in which we are, seeds of all powers. But what is the manner of their descent we shall see later. 8 Then he says that Christ was brought down from on high from the unbegottenness so

1 to fxku eV /j.epos. Cruice thinks these words should bo added here instead of in the description of the "great source" just above. See Book X, II, p. 481 infra.

- Probably " Great Father."

A This is entirely contradictory of Ilippolytus' own statement later ot their doctrine that the universe consists of Father, Son, and Matter. AvToyev-fjs, for which avToyevvyros is substituted a page later, is the last epithet to be applied to a sou. Is it a mistake for ^ovoyiw^Tos, "only begotten." For the three worlds, see the Naassene author also, p. 121 supra.

4 The cause assigned a little later is the salvation of the three worlds.

5 rptivvaixos probably means with powers from all three worlds. The phrase is frequent in the Fist is Sophia.

(TvynpiiAara, concrctioncs, Cr. and Macmahon. It might mean " decrees" and is used in the Septuagint version of Daniel for " inter- pretations " of dreams.

7 Coloss. i. 19, and ii. 9. 8 From the starry influences?


that through His descent all the threefold divisions should be saved. For the things, he says, brought down below shall ascend through Him ; but those which take counsel together against those brought down from above shall be banished and after they have been punished shall be rooted out. This, he says, is the saying : " The Son of Man came not into the world to destroy the world, but that the world through Him might be saved." l He calls " the world," he says, the two overlying portions, (to wit) the unbegotten and the self-begotten. When the Scripture says : " Lest ye be judged with the world," 2 he says, it means the third part of the cosmos (to wit) that of form. For the third part p. 188. which he calls the world must be destroyed, but the two overlying ones preserved from destruction. 3

13. Let us first learn, then, how they who have taken this teaching from the astrologers insult Christ, working destruction for those who follow them in such error. For the astrologers, having declared the cosmos to be one, divided it 4 into the twelve fixed parts of the Zodiacal signs, and call the cosmos of the fixed Zodiacal signs one un- wandering world. But the other, they say, is the world of the planets alike in power and in position and in number which exists as far as the Moon. 5 And that one world receives from the other a certain power and communion, and that things below partake of things above. But so that what is said shall be made plain, I will use in part the very words of the astrologers, 6 recalling to the readers what was said before in the place where we set forth the whole art of astrology. Their doctrines then are these : From the emanation of the stars the genitures of things

1 John iii. 17. * I. Cor. xi- 32.

3 But see n. 4 on last page and text three sentences earlier.

4 It was not the world, but the Zodiac that the astrologers divided into dodecatemories. See Bouche-Leclercq, VAstrologie Gr., passim.

6 There must be some mistake here. The planetary world, according to the astronomy of the time, only began at the Moon.

6 The words which follow, down to the end of this paragraph, with the exception of one sentence, are taken, not from the astrologers, but from their opponent Sextus Empiricus. They correspond to pp. 339 ff. of the Leipzig edition of Sextus and the restorations from this are shown by round brackets. The whole passage doubtless once formed the beginning of Book IV of our text, the opening words of which they repeat. For the probable cause of this needless repetition see the Introduction, p. 20 supra.


below are influenced. For the Chaldeans, scrutinizing the heavens with great care, said that (the seven stars) p. 189. account for the active causes of everything which happens to us j but that the degrees of the Zodiacal circle work with them. (Then they divide the Zodiacal circle into) 12 parts, and each Zodiacal sign into 30 degrees and each degree into 60 minutes ; for these they call the least and the undivided. And they call some of the Zodiacal signs male and others female, some bicorporal and others not, some tropical and others firm. Then there are male or female according as they have a nature co-operating in the begetting of males (or females). Moved by which, I think 1 the Pythagoricians 2 call the monad male, the dyad female, and the triad again .male and in like manner the rest of the odd and even numbers. And some dividing each sign into dodecatemories employ nearly the same plan. For example, in Aries they call the p. 190 first dodecatemory Aries and masculine, its second Taurus and feminine, and its third Gemini and masculine, and so on with the other parts. And they say that Gemini and Sagittarius which stands opposite to it and Virgo and Pisces are bicorporal signs, but the others not. And in like manner, those signs are tropical in which the Sun turns about and makes the turnings of the ambient, as, for example, the sign Aries and its opposite Libra, Capricorn and Cancer. For in Aries, the spring turning occurs, in Capricorn the winter, in Cancer the summer and in Libra the autumn. These things also and the system concerning them we have briefly set forth in the book before this, whence the lover of learning can learn how Euphrates the Peratic and Celbes the Carystian, the founders of the heresy, altering only the names, have really set down like things, having also paid immoderate attention to the art. For the astrologers also say that there are "terms " of the p. 191, stars in which they deem the ruling stars to have greater power. For example in some (they do evil), but in others good, of which they call these malefic and those benefic. And they say that (the Planets) behold one another and are in harmony with one another as they appear in trine (or

1 Sextus' comment, not Hippolytus'.

2 The personal followers of Pythagoras were called Pythagorics, those who later gave a general assent to his doctrines Pythagoreans.


square). Now the stars beholding one another are figured in trine when they have a space of three signs between them, but in square if they have two. And as in the man the lower parts suffer with the head and the head suffers with the lower parts, thus do the things on earth p. 192. with those above the Moon. But (yet) there is a certain difference and want of sympathy between them since they have not one and the same unity.

This alliance and difference of the stars, although a Chaldrean (doctrine), those of whom we have spoken before have taken as their own and have falsified the name of truth. (For they) announce as the utterance of Christ a strife of aeons and a falling-away of good powers to the bad, and proclaim reconciliations of good and wicked. 1 Then they invoke Toparchs and Proastii, 2 making for themselves also very many other names which are not obvious but systematize unsystematically the whole idea of the astrologers about the stars. As they have thus laid the foundation of an enormous 'error they shall be completely refuted by our appropriate arrangement. For I shall set side by side with the aforesaid Chaldaic art of the astrologers some of the doctrines of the Peratics, from which comparison it will be p. 193. understood how the words of the Peratics are avowedly those of the astrologers, but not of Christ.

14. It seems well then to use for comparison a certain one of the books 3 magnified by them wherein it is said : " I am a voice of awaking from sleep in the aeon of the

1 An echo of a tradition which seems widespread in Asia. In the Pistis Sophia it is said that half the signs of the Zodiac rebelled against the order to give up "the purity of their light" and joined the wicked Adamas, while the other half remained faithful under the rule of Jabraoth. Cf. Rev. xii. 7, and the Babylonian legend of the assault of the seven evil spirits on the Moon.

2 "Toparch" = ruler of a place. Proastius, "suburban," or a dweller in the environs of a town. It here probably means the ruler of a part of the heavens near or under the influence of a planet.

3 The bombastic phrases which follow seem to have been much corrupted and to have been translated from some language other than Greek. Nvuroxpoos and vSaToxpoos are not, I think, met with elsewhere, and the genders are much confused throughout the whole quotation, Poseidon being made a female deity and Isis a male one. The more outlandish names have some likeness to the " Munichuaphor," "Chre- maor," etc., of the Pistis Sophia. There seems some logical connection between the name of the powers and those born under them, the lovers being assigned to Eros, and so on.


night, (and) now I begin to lay bare the power from Chaos. The power is the mud of the. abyss, which raises the mire of the imperishable watery void, the whole power of the convulsion, pale as water, ever-moving, bearing with it the stationary, holding back those that tremble, setting free those that approach, relieving those that sigh, bringing down those that increase, a faithful steward of the traces of the winds, taking advantage of the things thrown up by the twelve eyes of the Law, 1 showing a seal to the power which p. 194 arranges by itself the onrushing unseen water which is called Thalassa. 2 Ignorance has called this power Kronos guarded with chains since he bound together the maze of the dense and cloudy and unknown and dark Tartarus. There are born after the image of this (power) Cepheus, Prometheus, Iapetus. 3 (The) power to whom Thalassa is entrusted is masculo-feminine, who traces back the hissing (water) from the twelve mouths of the twelve pipes and after preparing distributes it. (This power) is small and reduces the bois- terous restraining rising (of the sea) and seals up the ways of her paths, so that nothing should declare war or suffer change. The Typhonic daughter of this (power) is the faithful guard of all sorts of waters. Her name is Chorzar. Ignorance calls her Poseidon, after whose likeness came Glaucus, Melicertes, Io, 4 Nebroe. He that is encircled with the 12- angled pyramid 5 and darkens the gate into the pyramid with divers colours and perfects the whole blackness (i this p. 195. one is called Core 7 whose 5 ministers are: first Ou, 2nd

1 Cruice points out that "eyes" are here probably written for "wells," tbe Hebrew for both being the same, and refers us to the twelve wells of Elim in Exod. xv. 27.

2 Schneidewin here quotes from Berossos the well-known passage about the woman Omoroca, Thalalth, or Thalassa, who presided over the chaos of waters and its monstrous inhabitants. See Cory's Ancient Fragments) p. 25. The name has been generally taken to cover that of Tiamat whom Bel-Merodach defeated. See Rogers, Religion of Babylonia and Assyria, p. 107.

3 All Titans, like Kronos himself.

4 Macmahon reads here Ino, but this name appears later.

5 There is some confusion here. The Platonists, following Philolaos, attributed singular properties to the twelve-angled figure made out of pentagons and declared it to have been the model after which the Zodiac was made.

G vvKToxpoos. It seems to be a translation of the Latin nocticolor. 7 So the Codex. Schneidewin and Cruice would read Kpuvos, but that name has already occurred.


Aoai, 3rd Ouo, 4th Ouoab, 5th . . . Other faithful stewards there are of his toparchy of day and night who rest in their authority. Ignorance has called them the wandering stars on which hangs perishable birth. StewarJ of the rising of the wind 1 is Carphasemocheir (and second) Eccabaccara, but ignorance calls these Curetes. (The) third ruler of the winds is Ariel 2 after whose image came ^Kolus (and) Briares. And ruler of the 12-houred night (is) Soclas 3 whom ignor- ance has called Osiris. After his likeness there were born Admetus, Medea, Hellen, Aethusa. Ruler of the 12-houred day-time is Euno. He is steward of the rising of the first- blessed 4 and aatherial (goddess) whom ignorance calls Isis. The sign of this (ruler) -is the Dogstar 5 after whose image were born Ptolemy son of Arsinoe, Didyme, Cleopatra, Olympias. (The) right hand power of God is she whom 9 6 - ignorance calls Rhea, after whose image were born Attis, Mygdon, 6 Oenone. The left-hand power has authority over nurture whom ignorance calls Demeter. Her name is Bena. After the likeness of this (god) were born Celeus, Tripto- lemus, Misyr, 7 Praxidice. (The) right-hand power has authority over seasons. Ignorance calls this (god) Mena after whose image were born, Bumegas, 8 Ostanes, Hermes Trismegistus, Curites, Zodarion, Petosiris, Berosos, Astram- psychos, Zoroaster. (The) left-hand power of fire. Ignor- ance calls him Hephaestus after whose image were born Erichthonius, Achilleus, Capaneus, Phaethon, Meleager,

1 Here again Schneidewin would read cmttcjos, "star " ; but the next sentence makes it plain that it is the wind which is meant.

2 Ariel is in one of the later documents of the Pistis Sophia made one of the torturers in hell.

3 Probably Saclan or Asaqlan whom the Manichoeans made the Son of the King of Darkness and the husband of the Nebrod or Nebroe mentioned above.

4 TrpcoroKafxapov. Macmahon translates it the "star Protocamarus," for which I can see no authority. It seems to me to be an inversion of TrpwTOfiaKdpos, " first-blest," very likely to happen in turning a Semitic language into Greek and back again.

6 The dogstar, Sothis, or Sirius, was identified with Isis.

6 Mvyhoov. In a magic spell, Pluto, who has many analogies with Attis, is saluted as " Huesemigadon," perhaps " Hye, Cye, Mygdon." Has this Mygdon any analogy with amygdalon the almond ?

7 Qy. Mise, the hermaphrodite Dionysos?

8 Bov/Atyas, "great ox"? All the other names which follow are those of magicians or diviners.


Tydeus, Enceladus, Raphael, Suriel, 1 Omphale. Three middle powers suspended in air (are) causes of birth. Ignorance calls them Fates, after whose image were born (the) house of Priam, (the) house of Laius, Ino, Autonoe, Agave, Athamas, Procne (the) Danaids, the Peliades. A masculo-feminine power there is ever childlike, who grows not old, (the) cause of beauty, of pleasure, of prime, of yearning, of desire, whom ignorance calls Eros, after whose image were born Paris, Narcissus, Ganymede, Endymion, p. 197. Tithonus, Icarius, Leda, Amymone, Thetis, (the) Hesperides, Jason, Leander, Hero." These are the Proastii up to Aether. For thus he inscribes the book.

15. The heresy of the Peratre, it has been made easily apparent to all, has been adapted from the (art) of the astrologers with a change of names alone. And their other books include the same method, if any one cared to go through them. For, as I have said, they think the un- begotten and overlying things to be the causes of .birth of the begotten, and that our world, which they call that of form, came into being by emanation, and that all those stars together which are beheld in the heaven become the causes of birth in this world, they changing their names as is to be seen from a comparison of the Proastii. And secondly after the same fashion indeed, as they say that the world came into being from the emanation of her 2 on high, thus they say that things here have their birth and death and are governed by the emanation from the stars. Since then the astrologers p. 198. know the Ascendant and Midheaven and the Descendant and the Anti-meridian, and as the stars sometimes move differently from the perpetual turning of the universe, and at other times there are other succeedents to the cardinal point and (other) cadents from the cardinal points, (the Perat?e) treating the ordinance of the astrologers as an allegory, picture the cardinal points as it were God and monad and lord of all generation, and the succeedent as the left hand and the cadent the right. When therefore any one reading their writings finds a power spoken of by them as right or left, let him refer to the centre, the succeedent

1 Two of the seven "angels of the presence." Their appearance in a list mainly of Greek heroes is inexplicable.

2 rrjs &vw. Perhaps we should insert 8uud/xws, "the Power on High."


and the cadent, and he will clearly perceive that their whole system of practice has been established on astrological teaching.

1 6. But they call themselves Peratas, thinking that nothing which has its foundations in generation can escape the fate determined from birth for the begotten. For if anything, he says, is begotten it also perishes wholly, as it seemed also p. 199. to the Sibyl. 1 But, he says, we alone who know the com- pulsion of birth and the paths whereby man enters into the world and have been carefully instructed we alone can pass through 2 and escape destruction. But water, he says, is destruction, and never, he says, did the world perish quicker than by water. But the water which rolls -around the Proastii is, they say, Kronos. For such a power, he says, is of the colour of water and this power, that is Kronos, none of those who have been founded in generation can escape. For Kronos is set as a cause over every birth so that it shall be subject to destruction 3 and no birth could occur in which Kronos is not an impediment. This, he says is what the poets say and the gods (themselves) also fear :

Let earth be witness thereto and wide heaven above And the water of Styx that flows below.

The greatest of oaths and most terrible to the blessed gods.

(Homer, Odyssey, vv. iS4ff.)

But not only do the poets say this, he says, but also the wisest of the Greeks, whereof Heraclitus is one, who says, p. 200. " For water becomes death to souls." 4

This death (the Peratic) says seizes the Egyptians in the Red Sea with their chariots. And all the ignorant, he says, are Egyptians and this he says is the going out from Egypt (that is) from the body. For they think the body little Egypt (and) that it crosses over the Red Sea, that is, the water of destruction which is Kronos, and that it is beyond the Red Sea, that is birth, and comes into the desert, that is,

1 See Sibyll. Orac, III. But the Sibyl says the exact opposite. Cf. Charles, Apocrypha and Psttedepigrapha of the 0.7'., II, 377.

2 -rrtpao-ai. The derivation is too much even for Theodoret, who says that the name of the sect is taken from "Euphrates the Peratic" (or Mede).

3 So modern astrologers make him the "greater malefic."

4 A fragment from Heraclitus according to Schleienr.acher.


outside generation where are together the gc h o destruction and the god of salvation. But the gods c. le^ ction, h. says, are the stars which bring upon thos co ng into being the necessity of mutable generation. 1 'e, 3 said, Moses called the serpents of the desert which bi ^d use to perish those who think they have crossed thi < d u.a. Therefore, he says, to those sons of Israel who were bitten in the desert, Moses displayed the true and perfect serpent, those who believed on which were not bitten in the desert, that is, by the Powers. None then, he says, can save and p. 201. set free those brought forth from the land of Egypt, that is, from the body and from this world, save only he perfect serpent, the full of the full. 1 He who hopes on this, he says, is not destroyed by the serpents of the desert, that is, by the gods of generation. It is written, he says, in a book of Moses. 2 This serpent, he says, is the Power which followed Moses, the rod which was turned into a serpent. And the serpents of the magicians who withstood the power of Moses in Egypt were the gods of destruction ; but the rod of Moses overthrew them all and caused them to perish.

This universal serpent, he says, is the wise word of Eve. This, he says, is the mystery of Edem, this the river flowing out of Edem, this the mark which was set on Cain so that all that found him should not kill him. This, he says, is (that) Cain whose sacrifice was not accepted by the god of this world ; but he accepted the bloody sacrifice of Abel, for the lord of this world delights in blood. 3 He it is, he says, who in the last days appeared in man's shape in the time of Herod, born after the image of Joseph who was p. 202. sold from the hand of his brethren and to whom alone belonged the coat of many colours. This, he says, is he after the image of Esau whose garment was blessed when he was not present, who did not receive, he says, the blind man's blessing, but became rich elsewhere taking nothing from the blind one, whose face Jacob saw as a man might

1 So the Pistis Sophia speaks repeatedly of "the Pleroma of all Plcromas."

2 Many magical books bore the name of Moses. See Forerunners, II, 46, and n.

3 Is this why one Ophite sect was called the Cainites ? The hostility here shown to the God of the Jews is common to many other sects such as that of Saturninus, of Marcion and later of Manes. Cf. forerunners, II, under these names.



see the face of God. Concerning whom he says, it is written that : " Nebrod was a giant hunting before the Lord." 1 There are, he says, as many counterparts of him as there were serpents seen in the desert biting the sons of Israel, from which that perfect one that Moses set up delivered those that were bitten. This, he says, is the saying : " And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up." 2 After his likeness was the brazen serpent in the desert which Moses set up. The similitude of this alone is always seen in the heaven in light. This he says is the mighty beginning about which it is written. About this he says is the saying : " In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and p. 203. the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made by Him and without Him nothing was. That which was in Him was life." 3 And in Him, he says, Eve came into being (and) Eve is life. She, he says is Eve, mother of all living 4 (the) nature common (to all), that is, to gods, angels, immortals, mortals, irrational beings, and rational ones; for, he says, "to all" speaking collect- ively. And if the eyes of any are blessed, he says, he will see when he looks upward to heaven the fair image of the serpent in the great summit 5 of heaven turning about and becoming the source of all movement of all present things. And (the beholder) will know that without Him there is nothing framed of heavenly or of earthly things or of things below the earth neither night, nor moon, nor fruits, nor generation, nor wealth, nor wayfaring, nor generally is there anything of things which are that He does not point out. In this, he says, is the great wonder beheld in the heavens by those who can see.

For against this summit (that is) the head which is the most difficult of all things to be believed by those who know it not,

p. 204. "The setting and rising mingle with one another."

(Aratus, P/iain., v. 62.)

1 Gen. x. 9. Nimrod, who is sometimes identified with the hero' Gilgames, plays a large part in all this Eastern tradition.

2 John iii. 13, 14. 3 Ibid., i. 1-4.

4 For this identification of Eve with the Mother of Life or Great Goddess of Asia, see Forerunners, II, 300, and 11.

5 &icpav. Cruice and Macmahon hoth read a^X - ^ "beginning," but see ravrrfv tV &Kpav later.


This it is concerning which ignorance speaks.:

"The Dragon winds, great wonder of dread portent."

{Ibid., v. 46.)

and on either side of him Corona and Lyra are ranged and above, by the very top of his head, a piteous man, the Kneeler, is seen

" Holding the sole of the right foot of winding Draco."

(//., v. 70.)

And in the rear of the Kneeler is the imperfect serpent grasped with both hands by Ophiuchus and prevented from touching the Crown lying by the Perfect Serpent. 1

1 7 . This is the variegated wisdom of the Peratic heresy, which is difficult to describe completely, it being so tangled through having been framed from the art of astrology. So far as it was possible, therefore, we have set forth all its force in few words. But in order to expound their whole mind in epitome we think it right to add this : According to them the universe is Father, Son and Matter. 2 Of these three every one contains within himself boundless p. 205. powers. Now midway between Matter and the Father sits the Son, the Word, the Serpent, ever moving himself towards the immoveable Father and towards Matter (which itself) is moved. And sometimes he turns himself towards the Father and receives the powers in his own person, 3 and when he has thus received them he turns towards Matter ; and Matter being without quality and formless takes pattern from the forms 4 which the Son has taken as patterns from the Father. But the Son takes pattern from the Father unspeakably and silently and unchangeably, that is, as Moses says the colours of the (sheep) that longed, 5 flowed from the rods set up in the drinking-places. In such a way

1 All this is, of course, quite different to the meaning assigned to these stars by the unnamed heretics of Book IV.

2 If we could be sure that Hippolytus was here summarizing fairly Ophite doctrines, it would appear that the Ophites rejected the Platonic theory that matter was essentially evil. What is here said presents a curious likeness to Stoic doctrines of the universe, as of man's being. Hippolytus, however, never quotes a Stoic author and seems throughout to ignore Stoicism save in Book I.

3 irp6<ru)Trot>. The word used to denote the "character" or part or a person on the stage.

4 iSe'cu. So throughout this passage. 5 Gen. xxx. 37 ff.


also did the powers flow from the Son to Matter according to the yearning of the power which (flowed) from the rods upon the things conceived. But the difference and unlike- ness of the colours which flowed from the rods through the waters into the sheep is, he says, the difference of corruptible and incorruptible birth. Or rather, as a painter while taking nothing from the animals (he paints), yet transfers with his pencil to the drawing-tablet all their forms, thus the Son by his own power transfers to Matter the

p. 206. types x of the Father. All things that are here are therefore the Father's types and nothing else. For if any one, he says has strength enough to comprehend from the things here that he is a type from the Father on high transferred hither and made into a body, as in the conception from the rod, he becomes white, 2 (and) wholly of one substance 3 with the Father who is in the heavens, and returns thither. But if he does not light upon this doctrine, nor discover the necessity of birth, like an abortion brought forth in a night he perishes in a night. Therefore, says he, when the Saviour speaks of " Your Father who is in heaven " 4 He means him from whom the Son takes the types and transfers them hither. And when He says " Your father is a manslayer from the beginning " 5 he means the Ruler and Fashioner of Matter who receiving the types distributed by the Son has produced children here. Who is a manslayer from the beginning because his work makes for corruption and death. 6 None therefore, he says, can be saved nor

p. 207. return (on high) save by the Son who is the Serpent. For as he brought from on high the Father's types, so he again carries up from here those of them who have been awakened and have become types of the Father, transferring them thither from here as hypostatized from the Unhypostatized 7 One. This, he says, is the saying "I am the Door." But he transfers them, he says (as the light of vision) 8 to those

1 x a P aKT VP es - See n. on p. 143 supra.

2 Not " ring-straked" like Jacob's sheep. z bjxoovaios.

4 Matt. vii. n. Note the change of "Your " for " Our."

5 John viii. 44.

6 Here agaiti he dwells upon the supposed evil nature of the Demiurge.

7 Or as Macmahon translates, " the substantial from the Unsub- stantial one."

s A lacuna in the text is thus filled by Cruice.


whose eyelids are closed, as the naphtha draws everywhere the fire to itself or rather as the magnet the iron but nothing else, or as the sea-hawk's spine the gold but nothing else, or as again (as) the chaff is drawn by the amber. 1 Thus, he says, the perfect and consubstantial race which has been made the image * J (of the Father) but nought else is again led from the world by the Serpent, just as it was sent down here by him.

For the proof of this they bring forward the anatomy of the brain, likening the cerebrum to the Father from its immobility, and the cerebellum to the Son from its being moved and existing in serpent form. Which (last) they imagine ineffably and without giving any sign to attract p. 208. through the pineal gland the spiritual and life-giving substance emanating from the Blessed One. 3 Receiving which the cerebellum, as the Son silently transfers the forms to Matter, spreads abroad the seeds and genera of things born after the flesh, to the spinal marrow. By the use of this simile, they seem to introduce cleverly their ineffable mysteries handed down in silence which it is not lawful for us to utter. Nevertheless they will easily be comprehended from what I have said.

18. But since I think I have set forth clearly the Peratic heresy and by many words have made plain what bad escaped (notice), and since it has mixed up everything with everything concealing its own peculiar poison, it seems right to proceed no further with the charge, the opinions laid down by them being sufficient accusation against them. 4

1 Again this simile is not necessarily by the Peratic author, but seems to be introduced by Hippolytus. For the supposed conduct of naphtha in the presence of fire, see Plutarch, vit Alex.

2 i^eiKovKTixevov. A different metaphor from the "type." We shall meet with this one frequently in the work attributed to Simon Magus.

3 The text has 4k Kafxaplov. Here Schneidewin agrees that the proper reading is (xaKapiov, there being no reason why any " life-giving substance" should exist in the brain-pan. He thus confirms the reading in n. on p. 152 supra.

4 This chapter on the Peratre is evidently drawn from more sources than one. The author's first statement of their doctrines, which occupies pp. 146-149 sztpra, represents probably his first impression of them and contains at least one glaring contradiction, duly noted in its place. Then comes a long extract from Sextus Empiricus which is to all appearance a repetition of the earliest part of Book IV, only pardonable


3. The Sethiani. p 209. 19. Let us see then what the Sethians say. 1 They are

if it be allowed that the present Book was delivered in lecture form. There follows a quotation longer and more sustained than any other in the whole work from a Peratic book which he says was called Proastii, with a bombastic prelude much resembling the language of Simon Magus' Great Announcement in Book VI, followed by a catalogue of starry " influences " which reads much as if it were taken from some astrological manual. There follows in its turn a dissertation on the Ophite Serpent showing how this object of their adoration, identified with the Brazen Serpent of Exodus, was made to prefigure or typify in the most incongruous manner many personages in the Old and New Testaments, including Christ Himself. After this he announces an "epitome" of the Peratic doctrine which turns out to be perfectly different from anything before said, divides the universe, which he has previously said the Peratics divided into unbegotten, self-begotten and begotten, into a new triad of Father, Son {i.e. Serpent), and Matter, and gives a fairly consistent statement of the Peratic scheme of salvation based on this hypothesis. One can only suppose here that this last is an afterthought added when revising the book and inspired by some fresh evidence of Peratic beliefs probably coloured by Stoic or Marcionite doctrine. In those parts of the chapter which appear to have been taken from genuinely Peratic sources, the reference to some Western Asiatic tradition concerning cosmogony and the proto- plasts and differing considerably from the narrative of Genesis, is plainly apparent.

1 This chapter is the most difficult of the whole book to account for, with the doubtful exception of the much later one on the Doceta;. A sect of Sethians is mentioned by Irenrcus, who does not attempt to separate their doctrines from those of the Ophites. Pseudo-Tertullian in his tractate Against All Heresies also connects with the Ophites a sect called Sethites or Sethoites, the main dogma he attributes to them ( being an attempt to identify Christ with the Seth of Genesis. Epiph- anius follows this last author in this identification and calls them Sethians, but does not expressly connect them with the Ophites, makes them an Egyptian sect, and does not attribute to them serpent-worship. The sectaries of this chapter are called in the rubric Sithiani, altered to Sethiani in the Summary of Book X, and the name is not necessarily connected with that of the Patriarch. In the Bruce Papyrus, a Power, good but subordinate to the Supreme God, is mentioned, called "the Sitheus," which may possibly, by analogy with the late- Egyptian Si- Osiris and Si-Ammon, be construed " Son of God." Of their doctrines ^ little can be made from Hippolytus' brief but confused description. Their division of the cosmos into three parts does not seem to differ much from that of the Peratre, although they make a sharper distinction than this last between the world of light and that of darkness, which has led Salmon (D.C.B. s.v., Ophites) to conjecture for them a Zoro- astrian origin. This is unlikely, and more attention is due to Hippo- lytus' own statement that they derived their doctrines from Musseus,


of opinion * that there are three definite principles of the universals, and that each of the principles contains bound- less powers. But what they mean by powers let him judge who hears them speak thus : Everything which you under- stand by your mind or which you pass by unthought of, is formed by nature to become each of these principles, as in the soul of man every art which is taught. For example, he says, that a boy will become a piper if he spend some time with a piper, or a geometrician if he does so with a geome- trician, or a grammarian with a grammarian, or a carpenter with a carpenter, and to one in close contact with other trades it will happen in the same way. But the substance of the principles, he says, are light and darkness; and between them there is uncontaminated spirit. But the spirit which is set between the darkness below and the light on high, is not breath like a gust of wind or some little breeze which can be perceived, but resembles some faint p. perfume of balsam or of incense artificially compounded, as a power penetrating by force of a fragrance inconceivable and better than can be said in speech. But since the light is above and the darkness below and the spirit as has been said between them, the light naturally shines like a ray of the sun on high on the underlying darkness, and again the

Linus, and Orpheus. In Forerunners it is sought to show that the Orphic teaching was one of the foundations on which the fabric of Gnosticism was reared, and the image of the earth as a matrix was certainly familiar to the Greeks, who made Delphi its bfx<pa\6s or navel. Hence the imagery of the text, offensive as it is to our ideas, would not have been so to them, and Epiphanius (Nar. t XXXVIII, p. 510, Oehl.) knew of several writings, /coxa ttjs 'To-repas, or the Womb, which he says the sister sect of Cainites called the maker of heaven and earth. In this case, we need not take the story in the text about the generation by the bad or good serpent as necessarily referring to the In- carnation. One of the scenes in the Mysteries of Attis-Sabazius, and perhaps of those of Eleusis also, seems to have shown the seduction by Zeus in serpent-form of his virgin daughter Persephone and the birth therefrom of the Saviour Dionysos who was but his father re-born. This story of the fecundation of the earth-goddess by a higher power in serpent shape seems to have been present in all the religions of Western Asia, and was therefore extremely likely to be caught hold of by an early form of Gnosticism. In no other respect does this so-called " Sethian " heresy seem to have anything in common with Christianity, and it may therefore represent a pre-Christian form of Ophitism. The serpent in it is, iperhaps, neither bad nor good. 1 Tovrots 5o/ce?, " it seems to them,"


fragrance of the spirit having the middle place spreads abroad and is borne in all directions, as we observe the fragrance of the incense burnt in the fire carried everywhere. And such being the power of the triply divided, the power of the spirit and of the light together is in the darkness which is ranged below them. But the darkness is a fearful water, into which the light with the spirit is drawn down and transformed into such a nature (as the water). 1 And the darkness is not witless, but prudent completely, and knows that if the light be taken from the darkness, the darkness remains desolate, viewless, without light,

p. 211. powerless, idle, and strengthless. Wherefore with all its sense and wit it is forced to detain within itself the brilliance and spark of the light with the fragrance of the spirit. And an image of their nature is to be seen in the face of man, (to wit) the pupil of the eye dark from the underlying fluids, (and) lighted up by (the) spirit. As then the darkness seeks after the brilliance, that it may hold the spark as a slave and may see, so do the light and the spirit seek after their own power, and make haste to raise up and take back to themselves their powers which have been mingled with the underlying dark and fearful water. 2 But all the powers of the three principles being everywhere boundless in number are each of them wise and understanding as regards its own substance, and the countless multitude of them being wise and understanding, whenever they remain by themselves are all at rest. But if one power draws near to another, the unlikeness of (the things in) juxtaposition effects a certain movement and activity formed from the movement, by the coming together and juxtaposition of the meeting

p. 212. powers. For the coming together of the powers comes to pass like some impression of a seal struck by close conjunction for the sealing of the substances brought up (to it). 3 Since then the powers of the three principles are boundless in number and the conjunctions of the boundless powers (also) boundless, there must needs be produced

1 Cruice and Macmahon both translate this "into the same nature with the spirit."

2 This anxiety of the higher powers to redeem from matter darkness or chaos, the scintilla of their own being which has slipped into it, is the theme of all Gnosticism from the Ophites to the Pistis Sophia and the Manichaean writings. See Forentnners, II, passim.

3 Or " the substances brought up to the sealer."


images of boundless seals. Now these images are the forms * of the different animals.

From the first great conjunction then of the three principles came into being a certain great form of a seal, (to wit) heaven and earth. And heaven and earth are planned very like a matrix having the navel 2 in the midst. And if, he says, one wishes to have this design under his eyes, let him examine with skill the pregnant womb of any animal he pleases, and he will discover the type of heaven and earth and of all those things between which lie un- changeably below. And the appearance of heaven and earth became by the first conjunction such as to be like a womb. But again between heaven and earth boundless conjunctions of powers have occurred. And each con- junction wrought and stamped 3 nothing else than a seal of heaven and earth like a womb. But within this (the earth) p. 213 there grew from the boundless seals boundless multitudes of different animals. And into all this infinity which is under heaven there was scattered and distributed among the different animals, together with the light, the fragrance of the spirit from on high.

Then there came into being from the water the first-born 4 principle (to wit) a wind violent and turbulent and the cause of all generation. For making some agitation in the waters it raises waves in them. But the motion of the waves as if it were some impregnating impulse is a be- ginning of generation of man or beast when it is driven onward swollen by the impulse of the spirit. But when this wave has been raised from the water and made preg- nant in the natural way, and has received within itself the feminine power of reproduction, it retains the light scattered from on high together with the fragrance of the spirit that is mind given shape in the different species. 5 Which p. 214. (mind) is a perfect God, who is brought down from the unbegotten light on high and from the spirit into man's nature as into a temple, by the force of nature and the

1 ibecu. And so throughout.

2 Schneidewin, Cruice, and Macmahon would here and elsewhere rend 6 <pa\\bs. But see the next sentence about pregnancy.

3 ^ervTTODffev, "struck off."

4 7rpa>T oyovos. The others were " unbegotten " like the highest world of the Peratae and Naassenes.

5 uSeaiy.


movement of the wind. It has been engendered from the water (and) commingled and mixed with the bodies as if it were (the) salt of the things which are and a light of the dark- ness struggling to be freed from the bodies and not able to find deliverance and its way out. For some smallest spark from the light (has been mingled) with the fragrance from above (i. e. from the spirit), like a ray (making composition of things dissolved and) solution of things compounded as, he says, is said in a psalm. 1 Therefore every thought and care of the light on high is how and in what way the mind may be set free from the death of the wicked and dark body (and) from the Father of that which is below, who is the wind which raised the waves in agitation and disorder

p. 215. and has begotten Nous his own perfect son, not being his own (son) as to substance. 2 For he was a ray from on high from that perfect light overpowered in the dark and fearful bitter and polluted water, which (ray) is the shining spirit borne above the water. When then the waves (raised from the) waters [have received within themselves the feminine power of reproduction, they detain in 3 ] the different species, like some womb, (the light) scattered (from on high), (with the fragrance of the spirit) as is seen in all animals.

But the wind at once violent and turbulent is borne along like the hissing of a serpent. First then from the wind, that is from the serpent, came the principle of generation in the way aforesaid, 4 all things having received the principle of generation at the same time. When then the light and the spirit were received into the unpurined

p. 216. and much suffering disordered womb, the serpent, the wind of the darkness, the first-born of the waters entering in, begets man, and the unpurified womb neither loves nor recognizes any other form (but the serpent's). 5 Then the

1 Is this Ps. xxix. 3, 10 already quoted by the Naassene author? Cf. p. 133 supra.

2 This idea of a divine son superior to his father is common to the whole Orphic cosmogony and leads to the dethroning of Uranus by Kronos, Kronos by Zeus and finally of Zeus by Dionysos. It is met with again in Basilides (see Book VII infra).

3 A lacuna here which Cruice thus fills.

4 This has not been previously described. Is the narrative of the Fall alluded to?

6 Cruice and Macmahou would translate "any other than man's."


perfect Word of the light on high, having been made like the beast, the serpent, entered into the unpurified womb, beguiling it by its likeness to the beast, so that it might loose the bands which encircle the Perfect Mind which was begotten in the impurity of the womb by the first-born of the water, (to wit) the serpent, the beast. This, he says, is the form of the slave l and this the need for the descent of the Word of God into the womb of a Virgin. But it is not enough, he says, that the Perfect Man, the Word, has entered into the womb of a virgin and has loosed the pangs which were in that darkness. But in truth after entering into the foul mysteries of the womb, He was washed 2 and drank of the cup of living bubbling water, which he must needs drink who was about to do off the slave-like form and do on a heavenly garment.

20. This is what the champions of the Sethianian doctrines p. 217. say, to put it shortly. But their system is made up of sayings by physicists and of words spoken in respect of other matters, which they transfer to their own system and explain as we have said. And they say that Moses also supported their theory when he said " Darkness, gloom and whirlwind." These, he says, are the three words. Or when he says that there were three born in Paradise, Adam, Eve (and the) Serpent ; or when he says three (others), Cain, Abel (and) Seth ; and yet again three, Shem, Ham (and) Japhet; or when he speaks of three patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac, (and) Jacob ; or when he says that there existed three days before the Sun and Moon ; or when he says that there are three laws (the) prohibitive, (the) per- missive and the punitive. And a prohibitive law is; " From every tree in Paradise thou mayest eat the fruit, but of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, eat not." But in this saying: "Go forth from thine own land, and from thy kindred and (thou shalt come) hither into a land which I shall show thee." This law he says is permissive for he who chooses may go forth and he who chooses may remain. But the law is punitive which says " Thou shalt not commit

1 Phil. ii. 7. The only quotation from the N.T. other than that from Matt, used by the Sethians, if it be not, as I believe it is, the inter- polation of Hippolytus.

2 aire\ov(raTo. Yet it may refer to baptism which preceded initiation in nearly all the secret rites of the Pagan gods. Cf. Forerunners, I, c. 2.


adultery, thou shalt not steal, thou shalt not murder " for to each of these sins there is a penalty. 1

p. 218. But the whole teaching of their system is taken from the ancient theologists Musaeus, Linus and he who most especially makes known the initiations and mysteries (to wit), Orpheus. For their discourse about the womb is also that of Orpheus j and the phallus, which is virility, is thus explicitly mentioned in the Bacchica of Orpheus. 2 And these things were made the subject of initiation and were handed down to men, before the initiatory rite of Celeus, Triptolemus, Demeter, Core and Dionysos in Eleusis, at Phlium in Attica. For earlier than the Eleusinian Mysteries are the secret rites of the so-called Great (Mother) in Phlium. For there is in that (town) a porch, and on the porch to this day is en- graved the representation of all the words spoken (in them).

p. 219. Many things are engraved on that porch concerning which Plutarch also makes discourse in his ten books against Empedocles. And on the doors is engraved a certain old man grey-haired, winged, having his pudendum stretched forth, pursuing a fleeing woman of a blue colour. And there is written over the Old man " Phaos ruentes " and over the woman " Pereephicola." But "phaos ruentes" seems to be the light according to the theory of the Sethians and the "phicola" the dark water, while between them is at an interval the harmony of the spirit. And the name of " Phaos ruentes " denotes the rushing below of the light as they say from on high. So that we may reasonably say that the Sethians celebrate among themselves (rites) in some degree akin to the Phliasian Mysteries of the Great (Mother). 3 And to the triple division of things the poet seems to bear witness when he says :

1 The whole of this paragraph reads like an interpolation, or rather as something which had got out of its place. The statement about the physicists is directly at variance with the opening of the next which attributes the Sethian teaching to the Orphics. The triads he quotes are all of three '-.'good" powers and therefore would belong much more appropriately to the system of the Perata?. The quotation from Deut. iv. n, he attributes to several other heresiarchs.

2 The codex has 6fx^a\6s for 6 <pa\\bs which is Schneidewin's emenda- tion. No book attributed to Orpheus called "Bacchica" has come down to us, but the Rape of Persephone was a favourite theme with Orphic poets. Cf. Abel's Orphica, pp. 209-219.

3 This is not improbable ; but Hippolytus gives us no evidence that this is the case, as Plutarch, from whom he quotes, certainly did not


"And in three lots were all things divided And each drew his own domain.

(Homer, //., XV, 189. 1 )

that is each of the threefold divisions has taken power. And, as for the underlying dark water below, that the light p. 220. has plunged into it and that the spark borne down (into it) ought to be restored and taken on high from it, the all-wise Sethians seem to have here borrowed from Homer when he says :

" Let earth be witness and wide heaven above And the water of Styx that flows below The greatest oath and most terrible to the blessed gods." 2

(//. XV, 36-3S.)

That is, the gods, according to Homer, think water some- thing ill-omened and frightful, wherefore the theory of the Sethians says it is frightful to the Nous.

21. This is what they say and other things like it in endless writings. And they persuade those who are their disciples to read the theory of Composition and Mixture ;: which is studied by many others and by Andronicus the Peripatetic. The Sethians then say that the theory about Composition and Mixture is to be framed after this fashion : The light ray from on high has been compounded and the very small spark has been lightly mingled 4 in the dark p. 221. waters below, and (these two) have united and exist in one mass as one odour (results) from the many kinds of incense on the fire. And the expert who has as his test an acute sense of smell ought to delicately distinguish from the sole smell of the incense the different kinds of it set on the fire ; as (for example) if it be storax and myrrh and frankincense or if anything else be mixed with it. And they make use of other comparisons, as when they say that if brass has been mixed with gold, a certain process 5 has been discovered which separates the gold from the brass. And in like

connect the frescoes of Phlium in the Peloponnesus (not Attica as he says) with the Sethians, nor does the light in their story desire the water.

1 This too is a stock quotation which has already done duty for the Naassene author. Cf. p. 131 supra.

So has this with the " Peratic." Cf. p. 154 supra.


manner if tin or brass or anything of the same kind be found mixed with silver, these by some better process of alloy are also separated. But even now any one distinguishes water mixed with wine. Thus, he says, if all things are mingled together they are distinguished. And truly, he says, learn from the animals. For when the animal is dead each (of its parts) is separated (from the rest) and thus when dissolved, the animal disappears. This he says is the saying : "I come not to bring peace upon the earth but a sword" 1 that is to cut in twain and separate the things

p. 222. which have been compounded together. For each of the compounds is cut in twain and separated when it lights on its proper place. For as there is one place of composition for all the animals, so there has been set up one place of dissolution, which no man knoweth, he says, save only we who are born again, spiritual not fleshly, whose citizenship is in the heavens above.

With these insinuations they corrupt their hearers, both when they misuse words, turning good sayings into bad as they wish, and when they conceal their own iniquity by what comparisons they choose. All things then, he says, which are compounds have their own peculiar place and run towards their own kindred things as the iron to the magnet, the straw to the amber, and the gold to the sea-hawk's spine. 2 And thus the (ray) of light which was mingled with the water having received from teaching and learning (the knowledge of) its own proper place hastens to the Word come from on high in slave-like form and becomes with the Word a Word where the Word is, more (quickly) than the iron (flies) to the magnet.

p. 223. And that these things are so, he says, and that all com- pounded things are separated at their proper places, learn (thus) : There is among the Persians in the city Ampa near the Tigris a well, and near this well and above it has been built a cistern having three outlets. From which well if one draws, and takes up in a jar what is drawn from the well whatever it is and pours it into the cistern hard by ;

1 Matt. x. 34.

2 This again seems to be Hippolytus' own repetition of a simile which he met with in the Naassene author and which so pleased him that he made use of it in his account of the Peratic heresy as well as here. Cf. pp. 144 and 159 supra.


when it comes to the outlets and is received from each outlet in one vessel, it separates itself. And in the first outlet is exhibited an incrustation * of salt, and in the second bitumen, and in the third oil. But the oil is black, as he says Herodotus also recounts, 2 has a heavy odour and the Persians call it rhadinace. This simile of the well, say the Sethians, suffices for the truth of their proposition better than all that has been said above.

22. The opinion of the Sethians seems to us to have been made tolerably plain. But if any one wishes to learn the whole of their system let him read the book inscribed Paraphrase (of) Seth ; for all their secrets he will find there enshrined. 3 But since we have set forth the things of the Sethians 4 let us see also what Justinus thinks. P- 22 4

4. Justinus. 5

23. Justinus, being utterly opposed to every teaching of

1 a\as irr)yvv/.ievov.

2 Herodotus VI, 20, mentions the City of Ampe, but says nothing there about the well which is described in c. 119 as at Ardericca in Cissia.

3 The title of the book is given in the text as Uapdcppavts 2t)0, which is a well-nigh impossible phrase.

4 On the whole it may be said that this is the most suspect of all the chapters in the Philosophumena, and that, if ever Hippolytus was deceived into purchasing forged documents according to Salmon and Stahelin's theory, one of them appears here. Much of it is mere verbiage as when, after having identified Mind or Nous with the fragrance of the spirit, he again explains that it is a ray of light sent from the perfect light, or when he explains the difference between the three different kinds of law. The quotations too are seldom new, nearly all of them appearing in other chapters and are, if it were possible, more than usually inapposite, while almost the only new one is inaccurate. The sentence about the Paraphrase (of) Seth, if" that is the actual title of the book, does not suggest that Hippolytus is quoting from that work, nor does the phrase, "he says," occur with anything like the frequency of its use in e.g., the Naassene chapter. On the whole, then, it seems probable that in this Hippolytus was not copying or extracting from any written document, but was writing down, to the best of his recollec- tion the statements of some convert who professed to be able to reveal its teaching. It is significant in this respect that when the summary in Book X had to be made, the summarizer makes no attempt to abbreviate the statement of the supposed tenets of the Sethians, but merely copies out the part of the chapter in which they are described, entirely omitting the stories of the frescoed porch at Phlium and the oil-well at Ampa.

5 Nothing is known of this Justinus, whose name is not mentioned


the Holy Scriptures, and also to the writing or speech x of the blessed Evangelists, since the Word taught his disciples saying : "Go not into the way of the Gentiles" 2 which is plainly : Give no heed to the vain teaching of the Gentiles seeks to bring back his hearers to the marvel-mongering of the Greeks and what is taught by it. He sets out word for word and in detail the fabulous tales of the Greeks, but

by any other patristic writer, and there is no sure means of fixing his date. Macmahon, relying apparently on the last sentence of the chapter, would make him a predecessor of Simon Magus, and therefore contemporary with the Apostles' first preaching. This is extremely unlikely, and Salmon on the other hand {D.C.B., s.v., "Justinus the Gnostic") considers his heresy should be referred to "the latest stage of Gnosticism " which, if taken literally, would make it long posterior to Hippolytus. The source of his doctrine is equally obscure ; for although Hippolytus classes him with the Ophites, the serpent in his system is certainly not good and plays as hostile a part towards man as the serpent of Genesis, while his supreme Triad of the Good Being, an intermediate power ignorant of the existence of his superior, and the Earth, differs in all essential respects from the Ophite Trinity of the First and Second Man and First Woman. Yet the names of the world- creating angels and devils here given, bear a singular likeness to those which Theodore bar Khoni in his Book of Scholia attributes to the Ophites and also to those mentioned by Origen as appearing on the Ophite Diagram. On the other hand, there are many likenesses not only of ideas but of language between the system of Justinus and that of Marcion, who also taught the existence of a Supreme and Benevolent God and of a lower one, harsh, but just, who was the unwitting author of the evil which is in the world. This, indeed, leaves out of the account the third or female power ; but an Armenian account of Marcion's doctrines attributes to him belief in a female power also, called Ilyle or Matter and the spouse of the Just God of the Law, with whom her relations are pretty much as described in the text. Justinus, however, was not like Marcion a believing Christian ; for he makes his Saviour the son of Joseph and Mary and the mere mouthpiece of the subaltern angel Baruch, while his account of the Crucifixion differs materially from that of Marcion. The obscene stories he tells about the protoplasts also appear in much later Manichsean documents and seem to be drawn from the Babylonian tradition of which the loves of the angels in the Book of Enoch are probably also a survival. It is therefore not improbable that Justinus, the Book of Enoch, the Ophites, and perhaps Marcion, alike derived their tenets on these points from heathen myths of the marriage of Heaven and Earth, which may possibly be traced back to early Babylonian theories of cosmogony. Cf. Forerunners , II, cc. 8 and 11, passim.

1 Hippolytus, like the Gnostic writers, seems to know of an oral as well as a written tradition from the Evangelists.

2 Matt. x. 5. In the A.V. as here, to Mvk), " the nations."


neither teaches first hand x nor hands down his own com- plete mystery unless he has bound the dupe by an oath. Thereafter he explains the myth for the purpose of winning souls, 2 so that those who read the numberless follies of the books shall have the fables as consolation 3 as if one tramping along a road and coming across an inn should see fit to rest and so that when they have again turned to the full study of the things read, they may not detest them p. 225. until, being led on by the rush of the crowd, they have plunged into the offence artfully contrived by him, having first bound them by fearful oaths neither to utter nor to abandon his teaching and compelling them to accept it. Thus he delivers to them the mysteries impiously sought out by him, using as aforesaid the Greek myths and partly corrupted books according to what they indicate of the aforesaid heresies. For they all, drawn by one spirit, are led into a deep pit (of error) but each narrates and mythologizes the same things differently. But they all call themselves especially Gnostics, as if they alone had drunk in the knowledge of the perfect and good.

24. But swear, says Justinus, if you wish to know the things "which eye hath not seen nor ear heard, nor have they entered into the heart of man," 4 (that is) Him who is good above all things, the Highest, to keep the ineffable secrets of the teaching. For our Father also, when he saw the Good One and was perfected by him, kept silence as to the secrets 5 and swore as it is written: "The Lord s ware p. 226. and will not repent." 6 Having then thus sealed up these (secrets), he turns their minds to many myths through a quantity (of books), and thus leads to the Good One, per- fecting the mystae by unspoken mysteries. But we shall not travel through more (of his works). We shall give as a sample the ineffable things from one book of his, it being one which he clearly thinks of high repute. It is inscribed Baruch. 1 We shall disclose one myth set forth in it by him

1 Trp6repov 8<5a|as or "at first teaches."

2 tyvxaywyias X^P IU ' 1 ne reader must again be reminded that while thtt^vxv of the Greeks was what we should call "mind," the irv^vixa is spirit, answeiing more to our word "soul."

3 irapafxvdiov, a play upon fxvdos.

4 I Cor. ii. 9.

8 Lit., "guarded the secrets of silence."

6 Ps. ex. 4. 7 "The Blessed."



out of many, it being also in Herodotus. Having trans- formed x this, he tells it to his hearers as new, the whole system of his teaching being made up out of it.

25. Now Herodotus 2 says that Heracles when driving Geryon's oxen from Erytheia 3 came to Scythia and being wearied by the way lay down to sleep in some desert place for a short time. While he was asleep his horse disappeared, mounted on which he had made his long journey. 4 On waking he made search over most of the desert in the attempt to find his horse. He entirely misses the horse,

p. 227. b u t finding a certain semi-virgin girl 5 in the desert, he asks her if she had seen the horse anywhere. The girl said that she had seen it, but would not at first show it to him unless Heracles would go .with her to have connection with her. But Herodotus says that the upper part of the girl as far as the groin was that of a virgin, but that the whole body below the groin had in some sort the frightful appearance of a viper. But Heracles, being in a hurry to find his horse yielded to the beast. For he knew her and made her pregnant, and foretold to her after connection that she had in her womb three sons by him who would be famous. 6 And he bade her when they were born to give them the names Agathyrsus, Gelonus, and Scytha. And taking the horse from the beast- like girl as his reward, he went away with his oxen. But after this, there is a long story in Herodotus. 7 Let us dismiss it at present. But we will explain something of what Justinus teaches when he turns this myth into (one of) the generation of the things of the universe.

26. This he says : There were three unbegotten prin- ciples of the universals, 8 two male and one female. And

p. 228. of the male, one is called the Good One, he alone being thus called, and he has foreknowledge of the universals. And the second is the Father of all begotten things, not

1 TrapanAdorei, "given it another form." As a fact, Justinus' quotation from Herodotus is singularly accurate, save as afterwards noted.

2 Herodotus, IV, 8-10.

3 An island near Cadiz. The codex has 'EpvOpas, "the Red Sea."

4 In Herodotus it is mares and a chariot.

5 ut^ondpOevos. A neologism.

6 In Herodotus the prophecy is given by the girl.

7 To explain the origin of the Scythian nation.

8 Or perhaps, as above, " the things of the universe."


having foreknowledge and being (unknowable and) * in- visible. But the female is without foreknowledge, passionate, two-minded, two-bodied, in all things resembling Hero- dotus' myth, a virgin to the groin and a viper below, as says Justinus. And this maiden is called Edem and Israel. These, he says, are the principles of the universals, their roots and sources, by which all things came into being, beside which nothing was. Then the Father without fore- knowledge, beholding the semi-virgin, who was Edem, came to desire of her. This Father, he says, is called Elohim. 2 Not less did Edem desire Elohim, and desire brought them together into one favour of love. And the Father from such congress begot on Edem twelve angels of his own. And the names of these angels of the Father are : .Michael, Amen, Baruch, Gabriel, Esaddaeus. 3 . . . And the names of the angels of the Mother which Edem created are likewise set down. These are : Babel, Achamoth, Naas, Bel, Belias, Satan, Sael, Adonaios, Kavithan, Pharaoh, Karkamenos, p. 229. Lathen. 4 Of these twenty-four angels the paternal ones join with the Father and do everything in accordance with his will, but the maternal angels (side) with the Mother, Edem. And he says that Paradise is the multitude of these angels taken

1 Supplied from the summary in Book X. So the Pistis Sophia has a Power never otherwise described but not benevolent who is called "the great unseen Forefather," and seems to rule over material things.

2 There is nothing to show that Hippolytus or Justinus knew this to be a plural.

3 Seven names are missing from the text. Of the five given, Michael, Amen and Gabriel are given in the chapter on the Ophites in Theodore bar Khoni's Book of Scholia as the first angels created by God, the name of Baruch being replaced by that of " the great Yah." " Esaddaeus" is probably El Shaddai, who is said in the same book to be the angel sent to give the Law to the Jews and to have treacherously persuaded them to worship himself.

4 Of these twelve names, Babel is written in bar Khoni as Babylon and said to be masculo-feminine, Achamoth is the Hebrew nODPI, Chochmah, Sophia, or Wisdom whom most Gnostics called the Mother of Life, Naas is the Serpent as is explained in the chapter on the Naassenes, Bel, Baal or the Chaldrean Bel, for Belias we should probably read Beliar, the devil of works like the Asccnsio Isaiae, Kavithan should probably be Leviathan, Adonaios is the Hebrew Adonai, or the Lord, while Sael, Karkamenos and Lathen cannot be identified. Pharaoh and " Samiel," a homonym of Satan, appear in bar Khoni's list of angels who rule one or other of the ten heavens, and Adonaios and Leviathan in the Ophite Diagram described by Celsus. Cf. Forerunners, II, pp. 70 ff.


together; concerning which Moses says: "God planted a Paradise in Edem towards the East," * that is, towards the face of Edem that Edem might ever behold Paradise, that is, the angels. And the angels of this Paradise are alle- gorically called trees, 2 and Baruch, the third angel of the Father, is the Tree of Life, and Naas, the third angel of the Mother is the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. 3 For thus, he says, the (words) of Moses ought to be inter- preted, saying : Moses declared them covertly, because all do not come to the truth.

But he says also when Paradise was produced from the mutual pleasure of Elohim and Edem, the angels of Elohim taking (dust) from the fairest earth, that is, not from the beast-like parts of Edem, but from the man-like and culti- vated regions of the earth above the groin, create man. But from the beast-like parts, he says, the wild beasts and p. 230. other animals are produced. Now they made man as a symbol of their 4 unity and good-will and placed in him the powers of each, Edem (supplying) the soul and Elohim the spirit. 5 And there thus came into being a certain seal, as it were and actual memorial of love and an everlasting sign of the marriage of Elohim and Edem, (to wit) a man who is Adam. And in like manner also, Eve came into being as Moses has written, an image and a sign and a seal to be for ever preserved of Edem. And there was likewise placed in Eve the image, a soul from Edem but a spirit from Elohim. And commands were given to them, " Increase and multiply and replenish the earth," 6 that is Edem, for so he would have it written. For the whole of her own power Edem brought to Elohim as it were some dowry in marriage Whence, he says, in imitation of that first marriage, women unto this day bring freely to their husbands in obedience to a certain divine and ancestral law (a dowry) which is that of Edem to Elohim.

But when heaven and earth and the things which were

1 Gen. ii. 8.

2 So a Chinese Manichsean treatise lately discovered (see Fore- runners, II, p. 352) speaks of demons inhabiting the soul as "trees."

3 v\ov tuv etSeVat yvwcriv k.t.A., " the Tree of seeing Knowledge," etc.

4 The context shows that it is the unity, etc., of Elohim and Edem that is referred to.

6 Cf. n, 911 p. 177 supra. c Gen. i. 28.


therein had been created as it is written by Moses, the twelve angels of the Mother were divided into four author- ities, and each quarter, he says, is called a river, (to wit) Phison and Gihon, Tigris and Euphrates, as Moses says : These twelve angels visiting the four parts encompass and p. 231 arrange the world, having a certain satrapial * power over the world by the authority of Edem. But they abide not always in their own places, but as it were in a circular dance, they go about exchanging place for place, and at certain times and intervals giving up the places assigned to them. When Phison has rule over the places, famine, distress and affliction come to pass in that part of the world, for miserly is the array of these angels. And in like manner in each of the quarters according to the nature and power of each, come evil times and troops of diseases. And evermore the flow of evil according to the rule of the quarters, as if they were rivers, by the will of Edem goes unceasingly about the world.

But from some such cause as this did the necessity of evil come about. 2 When Elohim had built and fashioned the world from mutual pleasure, he wished to go up to the d. 232. highest parts of heaven and to see whether any of the things of creation lacked aught. And he took* his own angels with him, for he was (by nature) one who bears upward, and left below Edem, for she being earth did not wish to follow her spouse on high. Then Elohim coming to the upper limit of heaven and beholding a light better than that which himself had fashioned, said : u Open unto me the gates that I may enter in and acknowledge the Lord : For I thought that I was the Lord." 3 And a voice from the light answered him, saying : " This is the gate of the Lord (and) the just enter through it." And straightway the gate was opened, and the Father entered without his angels into the presence of the Good One and saw ' ' what eye has not seen nor ear heard, nor has it entered into the heart of man." Then the Good One says to him, "Sit thou on my

1 Macmahon, "viceregal"; but the "satrap" shows from which country the story comes.

2 Thus the Armenian version of Marcion's theology (for which see Forerunners, II, p. 217, n. 2) makes the "God of the Law's" with- drawal from Hyle or Matter, and his retirement to a higher heaven, the cause of all man's woes.

3 Cf. Ps. cxvii. 19, 20 ; but the likeness is not exact.


right hand." x But the Father says to the Good One : " Suffer me, O Lord, to overturn the world which I have made ; for my spirit is bound in men and I wish to recover it." Then says the Good One to him: "While with me thou canst do no evil ; for thou and Edem made the world from mutual pleasure. Let therefore Edem hold creation

p. 233. while she will ; 2 but do thou abide with me." Then Edem knowing that she had been abandoned by Elohim was grieved, and sat beside her own angels and adorned herself gloriously lest haply Elohim coming to desire of her should descend to her.

But since Elohim being ruled by the Good One did not come down to Edem, she gave command to Babel, who is Aphrodite, to bring about fornication and dissolutions of marriage among men, in order that as she was separated from Elohim, so also might the (spirit) of Elohim which is in men be tortured, (and) grieved by such separations and might suffer the same things as she did on being abandoned. And Edem gave great power to her third angel Naas, 3 that he might punish with all punishments the spirit of Elohim which is in men, so that through the spirit Elohim might be punished for having left his spouse contrary to their vows. The Father Elohim seeing this sent forth his third angel Baruch to the help of the spirit which is in men.

p. 234. Then Baruch came again and stood in the midst of the angels for the angels are Paradise in the midst of which he stood and gave commandment to the man : " From every tree which is in Paradise freely eat, but from (the tree) of Knowledge of Good and Evil eat not," 4 which tree is Naas. That is to say : Obey the eleven other angels of Edem for the eleven have passions, but have no transgres- sion. But Naas had transgression, for he went in unto Eve and beguiled her and committed adultery with her, which is a breach of the Law. And he went in also unto Adam and used him as a boy which is also a breach of the Law. 5 Thence came adultery and sodomy.

1 Ps. ex. 1.

2 Lit., " until she wishes it not."

3 "Serpent." See n. on p. 173 supra.

4 Gen. ii. 16, 17.

5 That these stories about the protoplasts endured into Manichaean times, see M. Cumont's La Cosmogonic Manicheenne, Appendix I,


From that time vices bore sway over men, and the good things came from a single source, the Father. For he, having gone up to the presence of the Good One showed the way to those who wished to go on high ; but his having withdrawn from Edem made a source of ills to the spirit of the Father which is in men. Therefore Baruch was sent to p. 235. Moses, and through him spoke to the sons of Israel that he might turn them towards the Good One. But the third * (angel Naas) by means of the soul which came from Edem to Moses as also to all men, darkened the commandments of Baruch and made them listen to his own. Therefore the soul is arrayed against the spirit and the spirit against the soul. 2 For the soul is Edem and the spirit Elohim, each of them being in all mankind, both females and males. Again after this, Baruch was sent to the Prophets, so that by their means the spirit which dwells in man might hearken and flee from Edem and the device of wickedness 3 as the Father Elohim had fled. And in like manner and by the same contrivance, Naas by the soul which inhabits man along with the spirit of the Father seduced the Prophets, and they were all led astray and did not follow the words of Baruch which Elohim had commanded.

In the sequel, Elohim chose Heracles as a prophet out of p. 236. the uncircumcision and sent him that he might fight against the twelve angels of the creation of the wicked ones. These are the twelve contests of Heracles which he fought in their order from the first to the last against the lion, the bear, the wild boar, 4 and the rest. For these are the names of the nations which have been changed, they say, by the action of the angels of the Mother. But when he seemed to have prevailed, Omphale, who is Babel or Aphrodite 5 becomes connected with him and leads astray Heracles, strips him of his power (which is) the commands of Baruch which Elohim commanded, and puts other clothes on him, her own robe, which is the power of Edem who is below.

1 Here again a power is referred to by its number instead of its name, as with the Naassene author. 2 Gal. v. 17.

3 tV irhatnv tV irovrjpdv, malam fictione?n, Cr. Yet we have been told nothing of any deceit by Edem towards her partner.

4 The Ophite Diagram, and bar Khoni's authority both figure the powers hostile to man as taking the shapes of these animals.

5 So one of the latest documents of the Pistis Sophia calls the planet Aphrodite by a />/a-name ; which in that case is Bubastis.


And thus the power of prophecy 1 of Heracles and his works become imperfect.

Last of all in the days of Herod the king, Baruch is again sent below by Elohim and coming to Nazareth finds Jesus, the son of Joseph and Mary, 2 a boy of twelve years old, feeding sheep, and teaches Him all things from the beginning which came about from Edem and Elohim and the things

P- 2 37- which shall be hereafter, and he said: "All the prophets before thee were led astray. Strive, therefore, O Jesus, Son of Man, that thou be not led astray, but preach this word unto men. And proclaim to them the things touching the Father and the Good One, and go on high to the Good One and sit there with Elohim the Father of us all." And Jesus hearkened to the angel, saying: "Lord, I will do all (these) things," and He preached. Then Naas wished to lead astray this one also (but Jesus did not wish to hearken to him) 3 for He remained faithful to Baruch. Then Naas, angered because he could not lead Him astray, made Him to be crucified. But He, leaving the body of Edem on the Cross, went on high to the Good One. But He said to Edem: "Woman, receive thy Son," 4 that is the natural and earthly man, and commending 5 the spirit into the hands of the Father went on high to the presence of the Good One.

But the Good*. One is Priapus, who before anything was, was created. Whence he is called Priapus because he previously made 6 all things. W T herefore he says he is set up before every temple 7 being honoured by the whole creation and in the streets bears the blossoms of creation on his head, that is the fruits of creation of which he is the

p. 238. cause having first made the creation which before did not exist. When therefore you hear men say that a swan came

1 irpo(f)7]Teia.

2 If these words are to be taken literally, Justinus was the only heretic of early date who denied His divinity, and this would distinguish him finally from Marcion. But the words are not inconsistent with the Adoptionist view.

3 These words are Miller's suggestion. 4 John xix. 26.

5 irapade/xevos. So Luke xxiii. 46.

6 iTTpioTroiyac. The derivation is absurd and the word if it had any meaning would be something like "made like a saw." irpoizoUa) would make the pun at which he seems to have been striving.

7 This was not the case, the statues of Priapus being placed in gardens. The whole passage seems to have been interpolated by some one ignorant of Greek and of Greek customs, or mythology,


upon Leda and begot children from her, the swan is Elohim and Leda is Edem. And when men say that an eagle came upon Ganymede, the eagle is Naas and Ganymede is Adam. And when they say that the gold came upon Danae and begot children from her, the gold is Elohim and Danae is Edem. And likewise they making parallels in the same way teach all such words as bring in myths. When then the Prophets say : " Hear O Heaven and give ear O Earth, the Lord has spoken," x Heaven means, he says, the spirit which is in man from Elohim and Earth the soul which is in man (together) with the spirit, and the Lord means Baruch, and Israel, Edem. For Edem is also called Israel the spouse of Elohim. "Israel," he says, "knew me not; for if she had known that I was with the Good One, she would not have punished the spirit which is in man through the Father's ignorance."

27. Afterwards ... is written also the oath in the first book which is inscribed Baruch which those swear who are p. 239. about to hear these mysteries and to be perfected 2 by the Good One. Which oath, he says, our Father Elohim swore when in the presence of the Good One and having sworn did not repent, touching which, he says, it is written : " The Lord sware and did not repent." This is that oath : " I swear by Him who is above all, the Good One, to preserve these mysteries and to utter them to none, nor to turn away from the Good One to creation." And when he has sworn that oath he enters into the presence of the Good One and sees "what eye hath not seen nor ear heard and it has not entered into the heart of man," and he drinks from the living water, which is their font, as they think, the well of living, sparkling water. For there is a distinction, he says, between water and water ; and there is the water below the firmament of the bad creation, wherein are baptized 3 the earthly and natural men, and there is the living water above the firmament of the Good One in which Elohim was p. 240. baptized and having been baptized did not repent. And when the prophet declares, he says, to take unto himself a wife of whoredom because the earth whoring has committed

1 fca. i. 2.

2 TeAeTo-flas or " initiated." In any case a mystical word.

3 Lit., " washed " ; but the context shows that it is baptism which is in question. It played an important part not only in all these here- tical sects but in heathen " mysteries" like those of Isis and Mithras.


whoredom from behind the Lord, 1 that is Edem from Elohim. In these words, he says, the prophet speaks clearly the whole mystery, but he was not hearkened to by the wickedness of Naas. In that same fashion also they hand down other prophetic sayings in many books. But pre-eminent among them is the book inscribed Baruch in which he who reads will know the whole management of their myth.

Now, though I have met with many heresies, beloved, I have met with none worse than this. But truly, as the saying is, we ought, imitating his Heracles, to cleanse the Augean dunghill or rather trench, having fallen into which his followers will never be washed clean nor indeed be able to come up out of it.

28. Since then we have set forth the designs of Justinus the Gnostic falsely so called, it seems fitting to set forth also p. 241. in the succeeding books the tenets of the heresies which follow him 2 and to leave none of them unrefuted ; the things said by them being quite sufficient when exposed to make an example of them, if and only their hidden and unspeakable (mysteries) would leap to light into which the senseless are hardly and with much toil initiated. 3 Let us see now what Simon says.

1 Hosea i. 2. The A.V. has " departing from the Lord." Here we have Edem clearly identified with the Earth goddess which is the key to the whole of Justinus' story.

2 reus e|?js . . . rds roov olkovKovQuiv alpzaeuv. Macmahon, follow- ing Cruice, translates as above. It may well be, however, that the " heresies which follow " only mean which follow in the book.

3 There is no reason to doubt Hippolytus' assertion that this chapter is compiled from a book called Baruch in which Justinus set forth his own doctrines. The narrative therein is, unlike that of the earlier chapters, perfectly coherent and plain, and the author's use of the historical present gives it a dramatic form which is lacking from the oratio obliqua formerly employed. Solecisms like the omission of the article are also rare, and the very long sentences in which Hippo- lytus seems to have delighted do not appear except in those passages where he is speaking in his own person. Whether from this or from some other cause, moreover, the transcription of it seems to have given less difficulty to the scribe Michael than some of the other chapters, and there is therefore far less need to constantly restore the text as in the case of the quotations from Sextus Empiricus. On the whole, therefore, we may assume that, as we have it, it is a genuine summary of Justinus* doctrines taken from a work by his own hand.



  • Miroslav Marcovich, ed., Refutatio Omnium Haeresium, Walter de Gruyter, 1986.

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