Reference: CPG 5940/8620
Incipit: Ὁρκίζω τὸν λαμβάνοντα τόδε τὸ χαρτίον
Date: Spring 429
Greek Text: ACO
Latin Text: ACO 1.3:18-20
Other Ancient Versions:
English Translations: FCC: I. Duff and G. Thompson Price; CE 95-97

Eusebius was a lay lawyer in Constantinople at the time this tract was written; later he became bishop of Doryleum. He wrote this short tract to attack Nestorius by comparing his teachings with those of the third-century heretic Paul of Samosata. McGuckin pictures Eusebius carrying it around the city on a placard (St. Cyril, p. 32), while Wessel sees it being posted like “a public decree” (“Nestorius, Mary, and Controversy”, p. 21). It appears that the author did try to take it to each church in the city and encourage that additional copies be given by its recipients to their clergy (1-2). The tract is best dated (as McGuckin and Wessel do) to early 429, shortly after Nestorius’s sermon on Mary (CPG 5716). We have added section numbers. Sections 11-13 are not found in the Greek but only in the Latin. 11-12 are included in the translation of Price (document 1 in The Council of Ephesus of 431, pp. 95-97.

The Greek and Latin texts below are adapted from the ACO; the English translation was done by I. Duff and G. Thompson for our website.

1. Διαμαρτυρία προτεθεῖσα ἐν δημοσίῳ κατὰ τῶν κληρικῶν Κωνσταντινουπόλεως καὶ κατὰ ἐκκλησίαν ἐμφανισθεῖσα ὡς ὅτι ὁμόφρων ἐστὶ Νεστόριος Παύλου τοῦ Σαμοσατέως τοῦ ἀναθεματισθέντος πρὸ ἐτῶν ρξ ὑπὸ τῶν ὀρθοδόξων ἐπισκόπων. 1. A public testimonial intended for the clergy of Constantinople and to be displayed in each church, showing that Nestorius has the same ideas as Paul of Samosata, who was condemned 160 years ago by the orthodox bishops. 1. Contestatio proposita in publico contra clericos Constantinopolitanos et in ecclesia insinuata quia sectator esset Nestorius Pauli Samosateni anathematizati ante annos CLX ab orthodoxis episcopis.
2. Ὁρκίζω τὸν λαμβάνοντα τόδε τὸ χαρτίον κατὰ τῆς ἁγίας τριάδος ὥστε φανερὸν αὐτὸ ποιῆσαι ἐπισκόποις πρεσβυτέροις διακόνοις ἀναγνώσταις λαικοῖς οἰκοῦσι Κωνσταντινούπολιν ἔτι τε καὶ τὸ ἴσον αὐτοῖς ἐκδοῦναι πρὸς ἔλεγχον τοῦ αἱρετικοῦ Νεστορίου ὅτι ὁμόφρων ἐστὶ τοῦ ἀναθεματισθέντος Παύλου τοῦ Σαμοσατέως πρὸ ἐτῶν ἑκατὸν ἑξήκοντα ὑπὸ τῶν ὀρθοδόξων πατέρων ἐπισκόπων. 2. I adjure by the Holy Trinity anyone who receives this tract to make it known to the bishops, elders, deacons, readers, and laity residing in Constantinople, and they should also hand it on to them, in order to censure the heretic Nestorius, for he has the same ideas as Paul of Samosata who was condemned one hundred sixty years ago by the orthodox fathers and bishops. 2. Coniuro accipientem hanc chartam per sanctam trinitatem ut eam palam faciat episcopis presbyteris diaconibus lectoribus laicis habitantibus Constantinopolim, insuper etiam exemplar eius praebeat ad conuictionem haeretici Nestorii, quia similia sapit anathematizato Paulo Samosateno ante annos CLX ab orthodoxis episcopis.
3. Ἔστι δὲ τὰ παρ᾽ ὁποτέρων εἰρημένα οὕτως·Παῦλος εἶπε· “Μαρία τὸν λόγον οὐκ ἔτεκε.”Νεστόριος συμφώνως εἴπεν· “Οὐκ ἔτεκεν, ὦ βέλτιστε, Μαρία τὴν θεότητα.” 3. This is what these have said respectively: Paul said, “Mary did not give birth to the Word.” Nestorius said in agreement, “Mary did not give birth to the deity, O excellent one.” 3. Sunt uero quae ab utrisque dicta sunt, haec: Paulus dixit: “Maria uerbum non genuit.” Nestorius consone dixit: “Non genuit, o optime, Maria diuinitatem.”
4. Παῦλος· “Οὐδὲ γὰρ ἦν πρὸ αἰώνων.” Νεστόριος· “Καὶ μητέρα χρονικὴν τῇ δημιουργῷ τῶν χρόνων ἐφιστῶσι θεότητι.” 4. Paul: “For she was not before the ages.” Nestorius: “And they attribute a temporal mother to the creator of time and the deity.” 4. Paulus dixit: “Nec enim fuit ante saecula.” Nestorius dixit: “Et matrem temporalem opifici temporum assignant diuinitati.”
5. Παῦλος· “Μαρία τὸν λόγον ὑπεδέξατο καὶ οὔκ ἐστι πρεσβυτέρα τοῦ λόγου.” Νεστόριος· “Πῶς οὖν Μαρία τὸν ἑαυτῆς ἀρχαιότερον ἔτεκεν;” 5. Paul: “Mary received the Word as a guest and is not older than the Word.” Nestorius: “How then did Mary give birth to something older than herself?” 5. Paulus dixit: “Maria uerbum suscepit et non est senior uerbo.” Nestorius dixit: “Quomodo ergo Maria se antiquiorem peperit?”
6. Παῦλος· “Μαρία ἔτεκεν ἄνθρωπον ἡμῖν ἴσον.” Νεστόριος· “Ἄνθρωπος ὁ τεχθεὶς ἐκ παρθένου.” 6. Paul: “Mary gave birth to a human equal to us.” Nestorius: “The one born of a virgin was a human.” 6. Paulus dixit: “Maria peperit hominem nobis aequalem.” Nestorius dixit: “Homo qui natus est ex uirgine.”
7. Παῦλος· “Κρείττονα δὲ κατὰ πάντα, ἐπειδὴ ἐκ πνεύματος ἁγίου καὶ ἐξ ἐπαγγελιῶν καὶ ἐκ τῶν γεγραμμένων ἡ ἐπ᾽ αὐτῷ χάρις.” Νεστόριος· “Τεθέαμαι γάρ φήσι, τὸ πνεῦμα καταβαῖνον ὡσεὶ περιστερὰν καὶ μένον ἐπ’ αὐτόν, τὸ τὴν ἀνάληψιν αὐτῷ χαρισάμενον (Ἐντειλάμενος, φησί, τοῖς ἀποστόλοις οὗς ἐξελέξατο, διὰ πνεύματος ἁγίου ἀνελήφθη), τοῦτο δὴ τὸ τηλικαύτην Χριστῷ χαρισάμενον δόξαν.” 7. Paul: “He was superior in every respect since the grace which came upon him was from the Holy Spirit, according to both the promises and the scriptures.” Nestorius: “For it says, ‘I have seen the Spirit descending like a dove and remaining on him’ [John 1:32], and the Spirit granted the ascension to him (for it says, ‘After he gave commands to the apostles whom he had chosen, he was taken up by the Holy Spirit’ [Acts 1:2] 1 ). Indeed, it was he who gave such great glory to Christ.” 7. Paulus dixit: “Meliorem uero per omnia, quoniam et ex spiritu sancto et ex promissionibus et ex scripturis in eo gratia erat.” Nestorius dixit: “Vidi, enim inquit, spiritum descendentem quasi columbam et manentem super eum, illum qui ascensionem ei donauit (Mandans, inquit, apostolis quos elegit, per spiritum sanctum assumptus est), hunc uidelicet qui tantam ei donauit gloriam.”
8. Παῦλος· “… ἵνα μήτε ὁ ἐκ Δαυὶδ χρισθεὶς ἀλλότριος ᾖ τῆς σοφίας μήτε ἡ σοφία ἐν ἄλλῳ οὕτως οἰκῇ. καὶ γὰρ ἐν τοῖς προφήταις ἦν, μᾶλλον δὲ ἐν Μωσεῖ, καὶ ἐν πολλοῖς κυρίοις, μᾶλλον δὲ ἐν Χριστῷ ὡς ἐν ναῷ.” καὶ ἀλλαχοῦ λέγει ἄλλον εἶναι τὸν Ἰησοῦν Χριστὸν καὶ ἄλλον τὸν λόγον. Νεστόριος· “Μὴ ἐγχωρεῖ τὸν πρὸ πάντων τῶν αἰώνων γεννηθέντα ἄλλο ἅπαξ γεννηθῆναι, καὶ ταῦτα θεότητι;” 8. Paul: “…that the one from David’s line that was anointed was not a stranger to wisdom, nor did wisdom thus dwell in another. For it was also in the prophets, especially in Moses, and among many lords, and especially in Christ as in a temple.” And elsewhere he says that Jesus Christ is one person, and the Word another. Nestorius: “Surely it is not possible that the one who had been born before all ages was born more than once, and that in his deity?” 8. Paulus dixit: “Ut neque qui ex Dauid unctus est, alienus sit a sapientia neque sapientia in alio sic habitet. etenim in prophetis erat, magis autem in Moyse, et in multis dominis, potius autem in Christo tamquam in templo.” Et alibi dicit alium esse Iesum Christum et alium uerbum. Nestorius dixit: “Numquid possibile est eum qui ante omnia saecula natus est, aliud semel nasci, et hoc secundum deitatem?”
9. Ἰδοὺ δέδεικται σαφῶς λέγων ὁ παραβάτης· “Οὐκ ἐτέχθη ἀπὸ Μαρίας ὁ γεννηθεὶς ἐκ τοῦ πατρός·” ἰδοὺ συναινεῖ τῷ αἱρετικῷ Παύλῳ τῷ λέγοντι ἄλλον εἶναι τὸν λόγον καὶ ἄλλον τὸν Ἰησοῦν Χριστόν, καὶ οὔκ ἐστιν εἷς ὡς ἡ ὀρθοδοξία κηρύττει. διὰ τοῦτο ἐσημειωσάμην σοι, ὦ ζηλωτὰ τῆς ἁγίας πίστεως, καὶ μέρος τοῦ μαθήματος τῆς ἐκκλησίας Ἀντιοχέων, ἐξ ἧς καὶ τὴν τῶν Χριστιανῶν ἐπίκλησιν ἐν πρώτοις ἔσχομεν, ὅτι οὐκ οἶδεν ἄλλον καὶ ἄλλον υἱὸν τοῦ θεοῦ, ἀλλ᾽ ἕνα τὸν πρὸ πάντων αἰώνων γεννηθέντα θεὸν ἐκ θεοῦ ἀπὸ τοῦ πατρός, ὁμοούσιον τῷ πατρὶ καὶ τὸν αὐτὸν ἐπὶ Αὐγούστου Καίσαρος ἐκ Μαρίας τῆς παρθένου γεννηθέντα. 9. Look how the transgressor has been shown to say clearly, “The one born of Mary is not the one begotten of the Father.” See how he agrees with the heretic Paul in saying that the Word is one person, and Jesus Christ another, and that they are not one as orthodox teaching declares. For this reason, I have written to you, O zealot for the holy faith and sharer in the teaching of the church of Antioch from which also we first received the name ‘Christians;’ for it does not recognize the Son of God to be one person and a different one, but only one—the one God, begotten of God the Father before all ages, of the same essence as the Father, born of the Virgin Mary during the reign of Caesar Augustus. 9. Ecce ostensus est aperte dicens transgressor: “Non est natus de Maria qui natus est ex patre;” ecce consentit haeretico Paulo dicenti alium esse uerbum et alium Iesum Christum, et non esse unum, sicut recta praedicat fides. propterea designaui tibi, O zilota sanctae fidei, et partem mathematis ecclesiae Antiochenae, ex qua etiam Christianorum uocabulum in primis habemus, quia non nouit alium et alium filium dei, sed unum, qui ante omnia saecula natus est, deum ex deo, a patre consubstantialem patri et eundem sub Augusto Caesare ex Maria natum.
10. Ἔχει γὰρ ῥητῶς· “… θεὸν ἀληθινὸν ἐκ θεοῦ ἀληθινοῦ, ὁμοούσιον τῷ πατρί, δι᾿ οὗ καὶ οἱ αἰῶνες κατηρτίσθησαν καὶ τὰ πάντα ἐγένετο, τὸν δι᾿ ἡμᾶς ἐλθόντα καὶ γεννηθέντα ἐκ Μαρίας τῆς ἁγίας παρθένου καὶ σταυρωθέντα ἐπὶ Ποντίου Πιλάτου” καὶ τὰ ἑξῆς τοῦ συμβόλου. 10. For it precisely states, “… true God from true God, of the same essence as the Father, through whom both the ages were put in order and all things were made, who for our sake came and was born of the holy Virgin Mary and was crucified in the time of Pontius Pilate,” and the rest of the creed. 10. Habet enim expressim: “Deum uerum ex deo uero, consubstantialem patri, per quem et saecula creata sunt et omnia facta sunt, qui propter nos uenit et natus est ex Maria sancta uirgine et crucifixus sub Pontio Pilato” et reliqua symboli.
11. The blessed Eustathius, bishop of the same Antioch and one of the 318 bishops at the holy and great council, agrees with this. He says the following: “For he was not only man but also God, just as the prophet Jeremiah says, ‘He is our God; no other will be counted beside him. He discovered the entire path of instruction and gave it to Jacob his son and to Israel his beloved. After this he appeared on the earth and associated with men.’ 2 When did he associate with men, if it was not when he was born of a virgin among them, and became an infant and grew with them, and ate and drank with them, and the rest?” 11. Concordat autem his et beatus Eustathius, qui fuit episcopus Antiochiae, unus existens ex trecentis decem et octo episcopis in sancto magnoque concilio, dicens ita: “Quia non solum homo, sed etiam deus est, sicut et Hieremias dicit propheta: Hic deus noster, non reputabitur alter praeter eum. Adinuenit omnem uiam disciplinae et dedit eam Iacob puero suo et Israhel dilecto suo. Post haec in terra apparuit et cum hominibus conuersatus est. Quando igitur conuersatus est cum hominibus, nisi quando natus est cum eis ex uirgine et cum his infans et concreuit et concomedit et conbibit et alia?”
12. Therefore if anyone dares to say that the only-begotten born of the Father before all things is one Son and the one born of the Virgin Mary another, and not the same one Lord Jesus Christ, let him be anathema. 12. Si quis ergo praesumpserit dicere alium esse filium eum qui ante omnia unigenitum, qui de patre natus est, et alium ex Maria uirgine natum, et non eundem unum dominum Iesum Christum, sit anathema.
13. This testimonial was posted publicly in Constantinople while Nestorius was still holding the see of that same city and teaching wickedly. 13. Haec contestatio proposita est Constantinopolim in publico, adhuc tenente Nestorio sedem eiusdem Constantinopolis et male docente.

Further Bibliography

T. Graumann, Die Kirche der Väter: Vätertheologie und Väterbeweis in den Kirchen des Ostens bis zum Konzil von Ephesus (431). BzHT 118. Tübingen, 2002: 309-313.

M. Tetz, “Zum Streit zwischen Orthodoxie und Häresie an der Wende des 4. zum 5. Jahrhundert,” Evangelische Theologie 21(1961):354-368.

  1. Nestorius has rearranged the text of this passage to support the point he is trying to prove.
  2. Baruch 3:36-38

No Responses yet