Chapter VII.—High Priests of Rome and of Constantinople; Restoration of Paul after Eusebius; the Slaughter of Hermogenes, a General of the Army; Constantius came from Antioch and removed Paul, and was wrathfully disposed toward the City; he allowed Macedonius to be in Doubt, and returned to Antioch.
Thus were the schemes of those who upheld various heresies in opposition to truth successfully carried into execution; and thus did they depose those bishops who strenuously maintained throughout the East the supremacy of the doctrines of the Nicæan Council. These heretics had taken possession of the most important sees, such as Alexandria in Egypt, Antioch in Syria, and the imperial city of the Hellespont, and they held all the persuaded bishops in subjection. The ruler of the Church at Rome and all the priests of the West regarded these deeds as a personal insult; for they had accorded from the beginning with all the decisions in the vote made by those convened at Nice, nor did they now cease from that way of thinking. On the arrival of Athanasius, they received him p. 287 kindly, and espoused his cause among themselves. Irritated at this interference, Eusebius wrote to Julius, exhorting him to constitute himself a judge of the decrees that had been enacted against Athanasius by the council of Tyre. 1236 But before he had been able to ascertain the sentiments of Julius, and, indeed, not long after the council of Antioch, Eusebius died. Immediately upon this event, those citizens of Constantinople who maintained the doctrines of the Nicæan Council, conducted Paul to the church. At the same time those of the opposing multitude seized this occasion and came together in another church, among whom were the adherents of Theognis, bishop of Nicæa, of Theodore, bishop of Heraclea, and others of the same party who chanced to be present, and they ordained Macedonius bishop of Constantinople. This excited frequent seditions in the city which assumed all the appearance of a war, for the people fell upon one another, and many perished. The city was filled with tumult, so that the emperor, who was then at Antioch, on hearing of what had occurred, was moved to wrath, and issued a decree for the expulsion of Paul. Hermogenes, general of the cavalry, endeavored to put this edict of the emperors into execution; for having been sent to Thrace, he had, on the journey, to pass by Constantinople, and he thought, by means of his army, to eject Paul from the church by force. But the people, instead of yielding, met him with open resistance, and while the soldiers, in order to carry out the orders they had received, attempted still greater violence, the insurgents entered the house of Hermogenes, set fire to it, killed him, and attaching a cord to his body, dragged it through the city. 1237 The emperor had no sooner received this intelligence than he took horse for Constantinople, in order to punish the people. But he spared them when he saw them coming to meet him with tears and supplications. He deprived the city of about half of the corn which his father, Constantine, had granted them annually out of the public treasury from the tributes of Egypt, probably from the idea that luxury and excess made the populace idle and disposed to sedition. He turned his anger against Paul and commanded his expulsion from the city. He manifested great displeasure against Macedonius also, because he was the occasion of the murder of the general and of other individuals and also, because he had been ordained without first obtaining his sanction. He, however, returned to Antioch, without having either confirmed or dissolved his ordination. Meanwhile the zealots of the Arian tenets deposed Gregory, because he was indifferent in the support of their doctrines, and had moreover incurred the ill-will of the Alexandrians on account of the calamities which had befallen the city at his entrance, especially the conflagration of the church. They elected George, a native of Cappadocia, in his stead; 1238 this new bishop was admired on account of his activity and his zeal in support of the Arian dogma.
Soc. ii. 11–14; Athan. Apol. cont. Arian. 22.287:1237
Cf. Am. Marcel. xiv. 10. 2.287:1238
Soc. ii. 14. Cf. Philost. iii. 3.