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cusing it of heresy, this holy solitary expressly declared, in the very letter in question, that "there is no other faith but that of the Roman Church, that this Church never espoused the cause of any heretic, and that he himself con"tinued indivisibly attached to the Chair of St. "Peter *." Other less important errors into which Dr. Ledwich falls in the above quoted passage, but which shew his inaccuracy, are the following. The letter was not addressed to Boniface III. but to Boniface IV t.-It was not in this, but in a former letter to the Pope, that Columban requested to be left to his national observance of Easter: a singular petition, this from a pious abbot to an heretical prelate, with whom he is supposed to break off communion! The letter in question was not written from Luxieu, in Burgundy, but from Bobbio, in Italy. St. Columban was not expelled from the former place in consequence of the freedom of his letter to the Pope, or of any other kind of "clerical resentment §;" but in consequence of the resentment of a libidinous King, Theodoric, and an ambitious Princess, Brunehault, whose crimes he was obliged to reprove ||.


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Bibliotheca Petrum, tom. xii.

† Dom. Cellier. Hist. des Auteurs Sacr. tom. xvii. p. 489.

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§ I hope the Rev. Dr. L. will not manifest any of this "clerical "resentment" at the present exposure of his numerous gross


|| Mabillon Annal. Bened. t. ii.

Our antiquary, on various occasions, shews the greatest earnestness to derive the religion of his native island from oriental rather than from Roman missionaries. But if he had any proofs, or plausible arguments, which he has not, that the fact were as he wishes it to be, this would not help his cause, in as much as the Greek and the Latin churches professed and maintained an unity of faith and ecclesiastical government, the most essential part of which was the spiritual supremacy of the See of Rome, during all the ages in question; namely, from the beginning of the Church down to the oriental Greek schism, in the year 866. Hence the most illustrious prelates and patriarchs, as St. Athanasius of Alexandria, SS. Chrysostom and Flavian, of Constantinople, &c. appealed to the Bishop of Rome for the time being, as to the acknowledged head of the Universal Church, against the injuries they received from other prelates in conformity with the abovementioned canons of the General Council of Sardica*, and by so doing met with the redress they sought for. What man of learning now can, without indignation, look upon the following passage of Dr. Ledwich's book, in which, endeavouring to prove a religious conformity, in the second century, between the churches of these islands and those of Asia, and their common opposition to that of Rome, he writes thus concerning St. Irenæus, who was a Greek by

* Can. iii. and Can. viii.

birth, and had conversed with St. Polycarp, the disciple of St. John the Evangelist, but who then was Bishop of Lyons in France: "Irenæus, "in the second century, loudly complains of "Roman innovations, that the schismatics at "Rome had corrupted the sincere law of the "Church, which led to the greatest impieties. "These opinions, adds he, the Presbyters who "lived before our times, who were also the disciples of the apostles, did in no wise deliver! "I who saw and heard the blessed Polycarp, am "able to protest in the presence of God, that if "that apostolic presbyter had heard these things, "he would have stopped his ears, and cried out, "according to his custom: Good God! for "what times hast thou reserved me, that I "should suffer such things. He would have "fled from the place where he was sitting "or standing, should he have heard these things*."


To say nothing of the alterations and mutilations † which Dr. Ledwich is guilty of in translating this passage from the Greek, I affirm that he here knowingly and deliberately imposes upon the public in a point of the utmost importance. For he knows that what Eusebius quotes from the work of St. Irenæus, now lost, does not re

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* Antiq. p. 56, and in Index.

+ Amongst other omissions Dr. L. suppresses the circumstance that Florinus, the innovator in question, was himself an Asiatic priest.


gård the Church of Rome itsself, but certain schismatics called Blastus and Florinus, who were cut off from its communion, and degraded from the priestly office on account of their errors. The former taught, amongst other errors, that of the Quartodecimans concerning the time of keeping Easter, which error Dr. Ledwich so frequently preconizes; the latter was a Valentinian heretc, and a precursor of Manes, in denying that God created whatever evil there is found in the world. It was against the latter innovator that St. Irenæus exerted himself with so much force, reminding him of the time when they were joint hearers of the holy Bishop of Symrna, St. Polycarp, and affirming that if the master of the latter, St. John the Evangelist, were alive, and heard such doctrines as Florinus taught, he would express his indignation against them in the terms above quoted §. As to the Church itself of Rome, so far from representing it as schismatical, St. Irenæus, as Eusebius himself testifies, openly exhibits it as the standard of truth, and the depository of apostolical traditions; enumerating, for that purpose, the succession of its bishops, from St. Peter down to


Φλωρῖνος πρενβυτερίου της εκκλησίας ἀποπεςών. Euseb. Εccl. Hist. l. v. c. 15. Tertul, Præscrip. c. 53.

Tertul. Præscrip. c. 53.

Euseb. Eccl. Hist. 1. v. c. 20.

§ Ibid.

his contemporary Pope, St. Eleutherius *, being the same who sent missionaries for the conversion of Lucius and his British subjects †. The passage quoted by Eusebius, and here referred to, is taken from a work of St. Irenæus still in existence, in which this celebrated Greek doctor, the ornament of the second century, says many things still more energetic § in defence of tradition, of the authority of the Church and of the apostolic see, than the passage alluded to. It is possible Dr. Ledwich may not have seen this well-known work of St. Irenæus, but he must have been perfectly conscious he was shamefully misrepresenting this father's meaning in the passage which he quoted from Eusebius.

With respect to the bestowing of palls by Cardinal Paparo in the name of Pope Eugenius III. A. D. 1152, upon which Dr. Ledwich and other writers so much harp, it was not in fact, nor was it considered any subjection of the Church of Ireland to that of Rome. On the contrary, it was a dignity and an immunity from foreign

* Τῇ ἀυτῇ τάξει (τῶν ἐπὶ ῥώμης ἐπισκοπευσάντων) καὶ τῷ ἀυτῇ διδάχῃ ἡ τὲ ἀπο τῶν ἀποστόλων ἐν τῇ ἐκκλησίᾳ παράδοσις, καὶ τὸ τῆς ἀληθείας κήρυγμα κατήντησεν εις ἡμᾶς. Ibid. c. vi. + Bede Eccl. Hist. 1. i. c. 4, &c.

Contra Hæres.

"Adhanc ecclesiam (Romanam) PROPTER POTIOREM "PRINCIPALITATEM necesse est omnem convenire ecclesiam," &c. Contra Hæres. 1. iii. c. 3.


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