Ecc viii 2.) This was the nineteenth year of the reign of Diocletian
in Dystrus (which the Romans call March), when the feast of the Saviour's
passion was near at hand, and royal edicts were published everywhere,
commanding that the churches Should be razed to the ground, the Scriptures
destroyed by fire, those who held positions of honor degraded, and the
household servants, if they persisted in the Christian profession, be
deprived of their liberty.
was the first decree against us. But issuing Other decrees not long
after, the Emperor commanded that all the rulers of the churches in
every place should be first put in prison and afterwards compelled by
every device to offer sacrifice.
Ecc. viii 6.) Then as the first decrees were followed by others commanding
that those in prison should be set free, if they would sacrifice, but
that those who refused should be tormented with countless tortures;
who could again at that time count the multitude of .martyrs throughout
each province, and especially throughout Africa and among the race of
the Moors, in Thebais and throughout Egypt, from which having already
gone into other cities and, provinces, they became illustrious in their
Pal. ch. 3.) During the second year the war against us increased greatly.
Urbanus was then governor of the province and edicts were first issued
to him, in which it was commanded that all the people throughout the
city should sacrifice and pour out libations to the idols.
Pal. ch. 4.)...For in the second attack upon us by Maximinus, in the
third year of the persecution against us edicts of the tyrant were issued
for the first time that all the people should offer sacrifice and that
the that the rulers of the city should see to this diligently and zealously.
Heralds went through the whole city of Caesaream by the orders of the
governor, summoning men, women and children to the temples of the idols,
and in addition the chiliarchs were calling upon each one by name from
Pal. ch. 9). All at once decrees of Maximinus again got abroad against
everywhere throughout the province. The governors, and in addition the
military prefects, incited by edicts, letters and and public ordinances
the magistrates, together with generals and the city clerks in all the
cities, to fulfill the imperial edicts which commanded that the altars
of the idols should be rebuilt with all zeal and that all the men, together
with the women and children, even infants at the breast, should offer
sacrifice and pour out libations; and these urged them anxiously, carefully
to make the people taste of the sacrifices ; and that the viands in
the market should be polluted by the libations of the sacrifices ; and
that watches should be stationed before the baths, so as to defile those
who washed in these with the all-abominable sacrifices.
Hist. Ecc., Book VIII, ch. 2, ch. 6 at end, and De Mart. Palest. ch-
3, ch. 4, and ch. 9 (ed. Dindorf, Vol. IV, p. 351, 357, 386, 390, 402).
translated in University of Pennsylvania. Dept. of History: Translations
and Reprints from the Original Sources of European history, (Philadelphia,
University of Pennsylvania Press [1897?-1907?]), Vol 4:, 1, pp. 26-28.