No 30 An historical account
of two notable corruptions of Scripture,
in a Letter to a Friend.


Since the discourses of some late writers have raised in you a curiosity, of knowing the truth of that text of Scripture concerning the testimony of the three in heaven 1 Iohn 5.7: I have here sent you an account of what the reading has been in all ages, & by {what} steps it has been changed, so far as I can hitherto determine by records. And I have done it the more freely because to you who understand the many abuses which they of the Roman Church have put upon the world, it will scarce be ungratefull to be convinced of one more than is commonly believed. For althô the more learned & {clear} sighted men (as Luther, Erasmus, Bullinger Grotius & some others) could not dissemble their knowledge, yet the generality are fond of the place for its making against heresy. But whilst we exclaim against the pious frauds of the Roman Church, & make it a part of our religion to detect & renounce all things of that kind: we must acknowledge it a greater crime in us to favour such practises, then in the Papists we so much blame on that account. For they act according to their religion but we contrary to ours. In the eastern nations, & for a long time in the western the faith subsisted without this text & it is rather a danger to religion then an advantage to make it now lean upon a bruised reed. There cannot be better service done to the truth then to purge it of things spurious: & therefore knowing your prudence & calmnesse of temper, I am confident I shal not offend you by telling you my mind plainly: especially since 'tis no article of faith, no point of discipline, nothing but a criticism concerning a text of scripture which I am going to write about.

The history of the corruption in short is this. First some of the Latines interpreted the spirit water & blood of the Father, Son & Holy ghost to prove them one. Then Ierome for the same end inserted the Trinity in expres words into his Version. Out of him the Africans {began to allege} it against the Vandals about 64 years after his death. Afterwards the Latines noted his variations in the margins of their books & thence it began at length to creep into the text in transcribing, & that chiefly in the twelft & following Centuries when revived by the Schoolmen. And when printing came it crept <2r> out of the Latine into the printed Greek against the authority of all the greek MSS & ancient Versions, & from the Venetian presses it went soon after into Grece. Now the truth of this history will appear by considering the arguments on both sides.

The arguments alleged for the testimony of the three in heaven are the authorities of Cyprian, Athanasius & Ierome, & of many greek manuscripts & almost all the Latine ones.

Cyprians words run thus. a.[1] The Lord saith, I and the Father am one, & again of the Father & Son & Holy Ghost it is written. And these three are one. The Socinians here deale too injuriously with Cyprian while they would have this place corrupted: for Cyprian in another place repeats almost the same thing b[2] If, saith he, [one baptized amongst hereticks] be made the temple of God, tell me I pray of what God? . . . . If of the Holy ghost, since these three are one, how can the Holy ghost be reconciled to him who is the enemy of either the Father or the Son. These places of Cyprian being in my opinion genuine seem so apposite to prove the testimony of the three in heaven, that I should never have suspected a mistake in it could I but have reconciled it with the ignorance I meet with of this reading in the next age amongst the Latines of both Afric & Europe as well as amongst the Greeks. For had it been in Cyprian's Bible, the Latines of the next age when all the world was engaged in disputing about the Trinity & all arguments that could be thought of were diligently sought out & daily brought upon the stage, could never have been ignorant of a text, which in our age now the dispute is over is chiefly insisted upon. In reconciling this difficulty I consider therefore that the only words of the text quoted by Cyprian in both places are, And these three are one: which words may belong to the eighth verse as well as to the seventh. ffor c[3] Eucherius Bishop of Lion in France & contemporary to S. Austin, reading the text without the seventh verse tells us that many then understood the Spirit, the Water & the Blood to signify the Trinity. And d[4] S. Austin <3r> is one of those many as you may see in his third book against Maximus, where he tells us that the Spirit is the Father, for God is a spirit, the water the Holy Ghost, for he is the water which Christ gives to them that thirst, & the blood the Son for the Word was made flesh. Now if it was the opinion of many in the western Churches of those times that the spirit, the water & the blood signified the Father, the Son, & the Holy Ghost, its plain that the testimony of the three in heaven in expresse words was not yet crept into their books, {&} even without this testimony it was obvious for Cyprian or any man else of that opinion to say of the Father & Son & Holy Ghost: it is written And these three are one. And that this was Cyprian's meaning, e[5] Facundus, an African Bishop in the sixt Century is my author. For he tells us expresly that Cyprian in the above mentioned place understood it so, interpreting the water, spirit & blood to be the Father, Son & Holy Ghost & thence affirming that Iohn said of the Father, Son & Holy Ghost, These three are one. This at least may be gathered from this passage of Facundus, that some in those early ages interpreted Cyprian after this manner. Nor do I understand how any of those many who took the spirit water & blood for a type of the Trinity, or any man else who was ignorant of the testimony of the three in heaven (as the Churches in the times of the Arian controversy generally were) could understand him otherwise. And even Cyprian's own words do plainly make for this interpretation. For he does not say, the Father, the Word & the Holy Ghost as 'tis now in the seventh verse, but the Father & Son & Holy Ghost as 'tis in Baptism, the place from whence they used at first to derive the Trinity. If it be pretended that the words cited by Cyprian are taken out of the seventh verse rather then out of the eighth because he reads not Hi tres in unum sunt but hi tres unum sunt I answer that the Latines generally read hi tres unum sunt as well in the eighth verse as in the seventh as you may see in the newly cited places of S. Austin & Facundus, & those of Ambrose, Pope Leo, Beda & Cassiodorus which follow, & in the present Vulgar Latine. So then the testimony of Cyprian respects the eighth, or at least is as applicable to that verse as to the seventh, & therefore is of no force for proving the truth of the seventh: but on the contrary for disproving it we have here the testimonies of Facundus, S. Austin, Eucherius & those many others whom Eucherius mentions. {For} if those of that age had met with it in their books they would <5r> never have understood the spirit the water & the blood to be the three persons of the Trinity in order to prove them one God.

And what is said of the testimony of Tertullian & Cyprian may be much more said of that in the feigned disputation of Athanasius with Arius at Nice. For there the words cited are only καὶ ὁι τρεις τοἕν ἐισιν these three are one, & they are taken out of the seventh verse without naming the persons of the Trinity before them. # < insertion from f 4v > # For the Greeks interpreted the spirit water & blood of the Trinity as well as the Latines, as is manifest by the annotations they made on this text in the margins of some of their manuscripts. For a[6] Father Simon informs us that one of the MSS in the Library of the King of ffrance marked Num. 2247 over against these words [7] Ὅτι ρεις ἐισιν δι μαρτυρουντες ἐν τη γ{ο} τὸ πνευμα καὶ τὸ ὕδωρ καί τὸ ἁιμα For there are three that beare record [in earth] the spirit the water & the blood: there is this remark τουτέστι τὸ πνευμα τὸ ἅγιον καὶ ὁ πατὴρ καὶ ἀυτὸς ἑαντου That is, the holy Ghost & the Father & he of himself. And in the same copy over against these words καί {&} τρεις ἐις τὸ ἕν ἐισι & these three are one this note is added. τουτὲστι μία θεότης ἑις θεός. That is, one Deity one God. This MS is about 500 years old. Also in the margin of one of the MSS in Mons Colberts Library Num. 871, as the same Father tells us there is the like remark. For besides these words ἐις θεος μία θεοτης One God, one Godhead; there are added μαρτυρία του θεου του πατρὸς καὶ του ἁγίου πνεύματος The testimony of God the father & of the Holy Ghost. These marginal notes sufficiently shew how the Greeks used to apply this text to the Trinity & by consequence how the author of that disputation is to be understood. But I should tell you also that that Disputation was not writ by Athanasius but by a later Author & therefore as a spurious piece uses not to be insisted upon. < text from f 5r resumes > And besides, this disputation was not writ by Athanasius but by a later Author, & therfore as a spurious piece uses not to be much insisted upon.

Now this mystical application of the spirit water & blood to signify the Trinity, seems to me to have given occasion to some body either fraudulently to insert the testimony of the three in heaven in expresse words into the text for proving the Trinity, or else to note it in the margin of his book by way of interpretation, whence it might afterwards creep into the text in transcribing. And the first upon record that inserted it is Ierome, if the f[8] Preface to the Canonical Epistles which pass under his name are his. For whilst he composed not a new Translation of the new Testament but only corrected the ancient Vulgar Latine (as learned men think) & amongst his emendations ( writen perhaps at first in the margin of his book) he inserted this testimony {and complains} in the said Preface how he was thereupon accused by some of the Latines for falsifying the scripture, & makes answer that former Latine Translators had much erred from the faith in putting only the spirit water & blood in their edition & omitting the testimony of the three in heaven whereby the Catholick faith is established by this defense he seems to say that he corrected the vulgar latine Translation by the original Greek, & this is the great testimony which the Text relies upon.

But whilst he confesses it was not in the Latine before, & accuses former Translators of falsifying the scriptures in omitting it, he satisfies us that it has crept into the Latine since his time, & so cuts off all the authority of the present Vulgar Latine for justifying it. And whilst he was accused by his contemporaries of falsifying the scriptures in inserting it, this accusation also confirms that he altered the public reading. For had the reading been dubious before he made it so, no man would have charged him with falsification for following either part. Also whilst upon this accusation he recommends the alteration by its usefulnesse for establishing the catholic faith, this renders it the more suspected by discovering both the designe of his making it, & the ground of his hoping for successe. However seing he was thus accused by his contemporaries, it gives us just occasion to examin the businesse between him & his accusers. And so he being called to the barr, we are not to lay stresse upon his own testimony for himself, (for no man is a witnesse in his own cause,) but laying aside all prejudice <6r> we ought according to the ordinary rules of justice to examin the businesse between him & his accusers by other witnesses.

They that have been conversant in his writings observe a strange liberty he takes in asserting things. Many notable instances of this he has left us in composing those very fabulous lives of Paul & Hilarion, not to mention what he has written upon other occasions. Whence Erasmus said of him that he was in affirming things g[9] frequently violent & impudent & often contrary to himself. But I accuse him not. It's possible he might be sometimes imposed upon or through inadvertency commit a mistake. Yet since his contemporaries accused him, it's just we should lay aside the prejudice of his great name & hear the cause impartially between them

Now the witnesses between them are partly the ancient Translators of the scriptures into various languages, partly the writers of his own age & of the ages next before & after him & partly the scribes who have copied out the greek Manuscripts of the scriptures in all ages. And all three are against him. For by the unanimous evidence of all these, it will appear that the testimony of the three in heaven was wanting in the Greek Manuscripts from whence Ierome, or whoever was the author of that Preface to the Canonical Epistles, pretends to have borrowed it.

The ancient Interpreters which I cite as witnesses against him are chiefly the Authors of the ancient Vulgar Latin of the Syriac & of the Ethiopic versions. For as he tells us that the Latines omitted the testimony of the three in heaven in their version before his time, so in the Syriac & Ethiopic Versions (both which by Walton's account of them are much ancienter then Ierome's time, being the Versions which the oriental & Ethiopic nations received from the beginning & generally used as the Latines did the vulgar Latine) that testimony is wanting to this day: & the authors of these three most ancient most famous & most received versions by omitting it are concurrent witnesses that they found it wanting in the original greek Manuscripts of their times. Tis wanting also in other ancient versions, as in the Egyptian Arabic published in Walton's Polyglott, in k[10] the Armenian used ever since Chrysostom's age by the Armenian nations & in the Illyrican of Cyrillus used in Rascia, Bul <7r> garia Moldavia Ruscia Muscovy & other countries which use the Sclavonick tongue. In a l[11] copy of this version printed at Ostrobe in Volkinia in the year 1581, I have seen it wanting, & one m[12] Camillus relates the same thing out of ancient manuscripts of this Version seen by him. Father Simon n[13] notes it wanting also in a certain Version of the French Church, which (saith he) is at least a thousand years old & which was published by F. {Mabillon} a Benedictine Monck. Nor do I know of any Version wherein it's extant except the modern vulgar Latin & such modern versions of the western nations as have been influenced by it. So then by the unanimous consent of all the ancient & faithful Interpreters we have hitherto met with (who doubtless made use of the best Manuscripts they could get) the testimony of the three in heaven was not anciently in the Greek.

And that it was neither in the ancient Versions nor in the Greek but was wholy unknown to the first Churches is most certain by an argument hinted above, namely that in all that vehement universal & lasting controversy about the Trinity in Ieromes time & both before & long enough after it: this text of the three in heaven was never thought of. Tis now in every bodies mouth & acccounted the main text for the business & would have been so then had it been in their books & yet it is not once to be met with in all the Disputes, Epistles, Orations & other writings of the Greeks & Latines (Alexander of Alexandria, Athanasius the Council of Sardica, Basil, Nazianzen, Nyssen, Epiphanius, Chrysostom, Cyril, Theodoret, Hilary, Ambrose, Austin, Victorinus Afer, Philastrius Brixiensis, Phæbadius Agennensis, Gregorius Bæticus, Faustinus Diaconus, Paschasius, Arnobius junior, Cerealis & others) in the times of those controversies; no not in Ierome himself if his version & Preface to the Canonical epistles be excepted. The writings of those times were very many & copious & there is no argument or text of scripture to this purpose which they do not urge again & again. That of Iohn's Gospel, I & the father am one is every where inculcated but this of the three in heaven & their being one is no where to be met with till at length when the ignorant ages came on it began by degrees to creep into the Latine copies out of Ierome's Version. So far are they from citing the testimony of the three in heaven, that on the contrary as often as they have occasion to mention the place they omit it, & that as well after Ierome's age as in & before it. For Hesychius <8r> cites the place thus. [14] Audi Ioannem dicentem tria sunt qui testimonium præbent & tres unum sunt, spiritus et sanguis et aqua. The words in terra he omits, which is never done but in copies where the testimony of the three in heaven is wanting. Cassiodorus, or who ever was the author of the latin Version of the discourse of Clemens Alexandrinus on these Epistles of St Iohn, reads it thus. [15] Quia tres sunt qui testificantur spiritus et aqua et sanguis et hi tres unum sunt. Beda in his commentary on the place reads it thus: Et spiritus est qui testificatur quoniam Christus est veritas. Quoniam tres sunt qui testimonium dant in terra spiritus aqua et sanguis & tres unum sunt. Si testimonium. &c But here the words in terra so far as I can gather by his commentary on this text have been inserted by some later hand. The author of the first Epistle ascribed to Pope Eusebius reads it as Beda doth, omitting only the words in terra. And if the authority of Popes be valuable, Pope Leo the great, in his tenth Epistle thus cites the place. Et spiritus est qui testificatur, quoniam spiritus est veritas. Quia tres sunt qui testimonium dant, spiritus et aqua et sanguis et hi tres unum sunt. Ambrose in the sixt Chapter of his first book de spiritu sancto disputing for the unity of the three persons, saith, Hi tres unum sunt Ioannes dixit, Aqua sanguis et spiritus. Vnum in mysterio non in natura. This is all he could find of the text while he was disputing about the Trinity, & therefore he proves the unity of the persons by the mystical unity of the spirit water & blood, interpreting these of the Trinity with Cyprian & others. Yea in the 11th chapter of his third book, he fully recites the Text thus. [16]Per aquam et sanguinem venit Christus Iesus non solum in aqua sed in aqua et sanguine: et spiritus testimonium quoniam spiritus est veritas. Quia tres sunt testes spiritus aqua et sanguis, et hi tres unum sunt in Christo Iesu. The like readings of ffacundus, Eucherius & S. Austin you have in the places cited above. These are the Latines as late or later then Ierome. ffor Ierome did not prevail with the Churches of his own times to receive the testimony of the three in heaven. And for them to know his Version & not receive this testimony was in effect to condemn it.

And as for the Greeks, Cyril of Alexandria reads the text without this testimony in the 14th book of his The <9r> saurus chap. 5, & again in his first book de fide ad Reginas a little after the middle. And so doth Oecumenius a later Greek in his commentary on this place of S. Iohn's Epistle. Also Didymus Alexandrinus in his commentary on the same place reads the spirit water & blood without mentioning the three in heaven, & so he doth in his book of the Holy Ghost where he seems to omit nothing that he could find for his purpose: & so doth Gregory Nazianzen in his 37th Oration concerning the Holy Ghost, & also Nicetas in his Commentary on Gregory Nazianzen's 44th Oration. And here it is further observable that the Eusebians contended that the Father Son & Holy Ghost were not to be connumerated because things of a different kind, & Nazianzen & Nicetas answer that they might be connumerated because St Iohn connumerates three things not consubstantial, the spirit the water & the blood. By the objection of the Eusebians it appears that the testimony of the three in heaven was not in their books, & by the answer of the Catholicks it is as evident that it was not in theirs. ffor while they answer by instancing in the spirit water & blood they could not have missed of the ffather Word & Holy Ghost had they been connumerated & called one in the words immediately before; & to answer by instancing in these would have been far more to the purpose because the very thing in question. In like manner the Eunomians in disputing against the Catholicks objected that the Holy Ghost is no where in scripture conjoyned with the ffather & Son except in baptism, which is as much as to say that the testimony of the three in heaven was not in their books: & S. Basil[17] whilst he is very diligent in returning an answer to them, & perplexes himself in citing places which are nothing to the purpose, does not produce this text of the three in heaven, thô the most obvious & only proper place had it been then in the scriptures, & therefore he knew nothing of it. The Objection of the Eunomians & answer of the Catholicks sufficiently shews that it was in the books of neither party. Besides all this, the 10th Epistle * < insertion from f 8v > * Insert this at the bottom of the next page. epistle * of Pope Leo mentioned above, was that very famous Epistle to Flavian Patriarch of Constantinople against Eutyches, which went about through all the Churches both Eastern & western, being translated into Greek & sent about in the East by Flavian. It was generally applauded in the West, & read in the Councel of Chalcedon, & there solemnly approved & subscribed by all the Bishops. And in this Epistle the text was thus cited. Et spiritus est qui testificatur quoniam Christus est veritas: Quia tres sunt qui testimonium dant, spiritus et aqua et sanguis et hi tres unum sunt. And by putting πνευμα (according to the greek reading) for Christus which is still the vulgar Latine, it was thus translated by the Greeks. Καὶ τὸ πνευμά ἐστιν τὸ μαρτυρουν ἐπειδὴ τὸ πνευμά ἐστιν ἡ ἀλήθεια. Τρεις γαρ ἐισιν ὁι μαρτυρουντες τὸ πνευμα καὶ τὸ ὕδωρ καὶ τὸ ἁιμα καὶ ὁι τρεις τὸ ἓν ἐισι. So then we have this reading quoted by the Pope, owned in the West & solemnly subscribed in the East by the fourth general Council. & therefore it continued the public received reading in both east & west till after the age of that Council.

< text from f 9r resumes > <10r>

So then the testimony of the three in heaven, which in the times of those controversies would have been in every bodies mouth had it been in their books, was wholy unknown to the Churches of those ages. All that they could find in their books was the testimony of the water the spirit & the blood. Will you now say that the testimony of the three in heaven was rased out of their books by the prevailing Arians? Yes truly those Arians were crafty Knaves that could conspire so cunningly & slyly all the world over at once (as at the word of Mithridates) in the latter end of the reign of the Emperor Constantius to get all men's books into their hands & correct them without being perceived: Ay & Conjurers too, to do it without leaving any blot or chasm in the books, whereby the knavery might be suspected & discovered; & to wipe even the memory of it out of all men's brains, so that neither Athanasius nor any body else could afterwards remember that they had ever seen it in their books before, & out of their own too so that when they turned to the consubstantial faith, as they generally did in the West soon after the death of Constantius, they could remember no more of it then any body else. Well then it was out of their books in Ierom's age when he pretends it was in which is the point we were to prove; & when any body can shew that it was in before, it may be pertinent to consider that point also: but till then we are only to enquire how since it was out, it came into the copies now extant. For they that without proof accuse hereticks of corrupting books, & upon that pretense correct them at their pleasure without the authority of ancient manuscripts, (as some learned men in the fourth & fift Centuries used to do,) are ffalsaries by their own confession, & need no other confutation. And therefore if this reading was once out, we are bound in justice to beleive it was out from the beginning, unlesse the rasing of it out can be proved by some better argument then that of pretense & clamour.

Will you now say that Ierome followed some Copy different from what the Greeks were acquainted with? This is to overthrow the authority of his Version by making him depart from the received Greek: & besides it is contrary to what he himself seems to represent. ffor in blaming, not the vulgar greek copies, but the Latine Interpreters which were before him as if they had varied from the received Greek, he represents that <11r> he followed it. He does not excuse & justify himself for receding from the received Greek to follow a private copy, but accuses former Interpreters as if in leaving out the testimony of the three in heaven they had not followed the received Greek as he did. And therefore since the Greeks knew nothing of this testimony, the authority of his Version sinks: & that the rather because he was then accused of corrupting the text & could not perswade either the Greeks or Latines of those times to receive his reading. For the Latines received it not till many years after his death, & the Greeks not till this present age when the Venetians sent it amongst them in printed books: & their not receiving it was to approve the accusation.

The authority of this Version being thus far discust, it remains that we consider the authority of the Manuscripts wherein we now read the testimony of the three in heaven. And by the best enquiry that I have been able to make it is wanting in the manuscripts of all Languages but the Latine. ffor as we have shewed that the Ethiopic, Syriac, Arabic, Armenian & Sclavonian Versions still in use in the several eastern nations Ethiopia, Egypt, Syria, Mesopotamia, Armenia, Moscovy & some others are strangers to this reading & that it was anciently wanting also in the French : so I am told by those who have been in Turkey that it is wanting to this day in the Greek manuscripts of those parts as well as in the manuscripts which have been brought from thence into the west; & that the Greeks now they have got it in print from the Venetians, when their manuscripts are objected against it, pretend that the Arians rased it out. A reading to be found in no manuscripts but the Latine, & not in the Latine before Ierome's age as Ierome himself confesses, can be but of little authority, & this authority sinks because we have already proved the reading spurious by shewing that it was heretofore unknown both to the western & eastern churches in the times of the great controversies about the Trinity. But however for further satisfaction we shall now give you an account of the Latin & Greek manuscripts, & shew first how in the dark ages it crept into the Latine manuscripts out of Ierome's Version & then how it lately crept out of the Latine into the printed Greek without the authority of MSS.: those who first published it in Greek having never yet so much as seen it in any Greek manuscript.

That the Vulgar Latin now in use is mixed of the old Vulgar Latine & of Ierome's Version together is the received opinion. Few of these Manuscripts are above 400 or 500 years old. The latest generally have the testimony of the three in heaven; the oldest of all usually want it: which shews that it has crept in by degrees. Erasmus notes it wanting in three very ancient ones, one of which was in the Popes Library at Rome, the other two at Bruges, & adds that in another MS belonging to the bishop of the Minorites in Antwerp the testimony of the three in heaven was {noted} in the margin in {a newer} <12r> hand. Peter Cholinus notes in the margin of his Latine Edition of the scriptures printed A.C. 1543 & 1544 that it was wanting in the most ancient manuscript of the Tigurine Library. Dr Burnet has lately in the first Letter of his Travells noted it wanting in five other ancient ones kept at {one} of {illeg} about a 1000 years {old} & the other four about 800. Fr Simon has noted it wanting in five others in the Libraries of the King of Fr{ance} Monr Colbert & the Benedictines of the Abby of St Germans. An ancient & diligent collator of manuscripts cited by Lucas Brugensis by the name of Epanorthotes notes in general that it was wanting in the ancient latine manuscripts. Lucas himself collating many Latine ones notes it wanting in only five, that is in the few old ones he had, his manuscripts being almost all of them new ones. [18]ffor he praises the Codex Lobiensis written A.C. 1084 & the Codex Tornacensis written A.C. 1105, as most ancient & venerable for antiquity, & used others much more new, of which a great number was easily had, such as was the Codex Buslidianus written A.C. 1432, that is but eight years before the invention of printing. The Lateran Council collected under Innocent the third. A.C. 1215 can. 2, mentions Ioachim the Abbot quoting the text in these words Quoniam In canonica Ioannis Epistola legitur Quia tres sunt qui testimonium dant in cælo Pater et Verbum et Spiritus, et hi tres unum sunt; statimque subjungitur, et tres sunt qui testimonium dant in terra spiritus aqua et sanguis, et tres unum sunt: sicut in codicibus quibusdam invenitur. This was writ by Ioachim a[19] in the Papacy of Alexander the 3d that is in or before the year 1180 & therefore this reading was then got but into some books. ffor the words sicut in codicibus quibusdam invenitur refer as well to the first words of Ioachim Quoniam in canonica Ioannis epistola legitur as to the next statimque subjungitur, & more to the first then to the next, because the first part of the citation was then but in some books as appears by ancient manuscripts, but the second part was in almost all, the words tres unum sunt being in all the books which wanted the testimony of the three in heaven & in most of those which had it, thô afterwards left out in many when branded by the schoolmen for Arian.

But to go to the original of the corruption, [20] Gregory the great writes that Ierome's version was in use in his time, & therefore no wonder if the testimony of the three in heaven began to be cited out of it before. Eugenius Bishop of Carthage in the seventh year of Hunneric King of the Vandals A.C. 484, in the summary of his faith exhibited to that King, cited it the first of any man so far as I can find. A while after ffulgentius, another African Bishop disputing against the same Vandals cited it again, & backt it with the forementioned place of Cyprian applied to the testimony of the three in heaven. And so its probable that by that abused authority of Cyprian it began first in Afric in the disputes with the ignorant Vandals to get some credit, & thence at length crept into Europe. It occurs also frequently in Vigilius Tapsensis another African Bishop contemporary to Fulgentius. In its defense some allege earlier writers, namely the first Epistle of Pope Hyginus, the first Epistle of Pope Iohn II, the book of Idacius Clarus against Varimadus & the book de unita Deitate Trinitatis ascribed to Athanasius. But Chiffletius who published the works of Victor Vitensis & Vigilius Tapsensis, sufficiently proves the book against <13r> Varimadus to be this Vigilius's & erroneously ascribed to Idacius. To the same Vigilius he asserts also the book de unita Deitate Trinitatis. Certainly Athanasius was not its Author. All the Epistle of Hyginus except the beginning & end, & the first part of the Epistle of Pope Iohn wherein the testimony of the three in heaven is cited, are nothing else then fragments of the book against Varimadus described word for word by some forger of Decretal Epistles, as may appear by comparing them. So then Eugenius is the first upon record that quotes it.

But thô he set it on foot among the Africans, yet I cannot find that it became of authority in Europe before the revival of learning in the 12th and 13th Centuries. In those ages S. Bernard, the Schoolmen, Ioachim & the Lateran Council spread it abroad & Scribes began generally to insert it into the text: but in such Latine manuscripts & European writers as are ancienter then those times, it is seldome to be met with.

Now that it was inserted into the Vulgar Latin out of Ierom's Version is manifest by the manner how the Vulgar Latin & that Version came to be mixed. For 'tis agreed that the Latines, after Ierome's Version began to be in use, noted out of it his corrections of the Vulgar Latine in the Margins of their books & these the transcribers afterwards inserted into the text. By this means the old Latine has been so generally corrected that it is no where to be found sincere. Tis Ierome that we now read & not the old Vulgar Latine, & what wonder if in Ierome we read the testimony of the three in heaven? For who that inserted the rest of Ierome into the text would leave out such a passage for the Trinity as this has been taken to be?

But to put the question out of dispute there are footsteps of the insertion still remaining. For in some old Manuscripts it has been found noted in the margin, in others the various readings are such as ought to arise by transcribing it out of the margin into the text. I shall only mention the three following varieties. Of the MSS which have not the testimony of the three in heaven some have the words in terra in the eighth verse but the most want it. Which seems to proceed from hence that some before they allowed so great an addition to the text as the testimony of the three in heaven, noted only in terra in the margins of their books to be inserted into the testimony of the spirit, water & blood. Of the MSS which have the testimony of the three in heaven some in the eighth verse have hi tres unum sunt others not. The reason of which seems to be that of those who noted this testimony in the margin, some blotted out et hi tres unum sunt in the eighth verse according to Ierome & others did not. And lastly the testimony of the three in heaven is in most books set before the testimony of the three in earth, in some set after. So Erasmus notes two old books in which it is set after, Lucas Brugensis a third & Hesselius (if I misremember not) a fourth: & so Vigilius Tapsensis lib. adv. Varimadum c. 5, sets it after. Which seems to proceed from hence that it was sometimes so noted in the margin that the Reader or transcriber knew not whether it were to come before or after. Now these discords in the Latine manuscripts as they detract from the authority of the manuscripts, so they confirm to us that the old <14r> vulgar latin has in these things been tampered with, & corrected by Ieromes version.

In the next place I am to shew how & when the testimony of the three in heaven crept out of the Latine into the Greek. Those who first printed the greek Testament did generally in following their manuscripts omit the testimony of the three in heaven except in Spain. For it was omitted in the first & second editions of Erasmus A.C. 1516, & 1519; in the a[21] Edition of ffrancis Asulan printed at Venice by Aldus A.C. 1518; in that of Nich. Gerbelius printed at Haganau 1521, & a little after in that of Wolfius Cephalius printed at Strasburge A.C. 1524, & again 1526; in the Badian edition, as Erasmus notes, & in that of Simon Cholinæus at Paris A.C. 1534. At the same time it was omitted in some editions of other western languages as in the Saxon & German editions of Luther & the Latine Tigurine editions of Peter Cholins A.C. 1543 & 1544. The first edition in greek which has the testimony of the three in heaven was that of Cardinal Ximenes printed at Complutum in Spain A.C. 1515, but not published before the year 1521. The Cardinal in his edition used the assistance of several Divines which he called together to Complutum, there founding an Vniversity A.C. 1517, or a little before. Two of those Divines were Antonius Nebrissensis & Stunica. For Stunica then resided at Complutum, & b[22] in the Preface to a treatise he wrote against Erasmus gives this testimony of himself, that he had spent some years in reading the holy scriptures in Hebrew Greek & Latin & had diligently collated the Hebrew & Greek exemplars with the Latine copies. This book displeasing the Cardinal was not printed till after his death, & then it came forth at Complutum, A.C. 1521. The year before one Lee an Englishman writ also against Erasmus, & both Stunica & Lee amongst other things reprehended him for omitting the testimony of the three in heaven. Afterwards Erasmus finding the Spaniards & some others of the Roman Church in a heat against him printed this testimony in his third edition A.C. 1522, representing that in his former editions he had printed the text as he found it in his Manuscripts, but {now} there being found in England one Manuscript which had the testimony of the three in heaven, he had inserted it according to that manuscript for avoiding the calumnies <15r> raised against him. And so it continued in his two following editions: And at length Robert Stephens A.C. 1550 reprinted Erasmus's edition with some few alterations & various lections taken out of the Complutensian edition & 15 greek Manuscripts which he named after the numeral letters α, β, γ, δ, ε &c putting α for the Complutensian edition & β, γ, δ, ε &c for the Manuscripts in order & noting in the margin that the testimony of the three in heaven was wanting in the seven Manuscripts δ, ε, ζ, θ, ι, ια, ιγ. Whence Beza[23] tells us that he had read it in the rest. His words are: Legit Hieronymus, legit Erasmus in Britannico codice et in Complutensi editione. Legimus et nos in nonnullis Roberti nostri veteribus libris. And this is the original & authority of the printed editions. For these are the editions ever since followed by all the West & of late years propagated by the Venetian Presses into Grece: & nothing further that I know of has been discovered in any manuscript in favour of these editions.

[24] Now to pull off the vizzard, I cannot but in the first place extreamly complain of Beza's want of modesty & caution in expressing himself. In the Preface to his annotations describing what helps he had in composing his first edition, he tells us that he had the Annotations of Valla, Stapulensis & Erasmus, & the writings of the ancients & moderns collated by himself, & out of Stephen's library the exemplar which Stephens had collated with about 25 manuscripts almost all of which were printed. He should have said 17: for that number he puts in other places & in his Annotations cites no more. So then he had the collations of two more Manuscripts then Stephens has given us in print. And this was all his furniture. The original manuscripts he does not here pretend to have, nor could he have them. ffor they were not Stephen's manuscripts but belonged to several Libraries in France & Italy. The Manuscript β Stephens himself never saw but had only various lections collected out of it by his friends in Italy. The manuscripts γ, δ, ε, στ, ζ, η, ι, ιε were not Stephens's but belonged to the Library of the King of France to whom Stephens was Printer. The other six books θ, ια, ιβ, ιγ, ιδ, ιστ Stephens had not out of his own Library but borrowed them for a time from several places to collate, his friends studying to furnish the designe of his edition. And yet Beza in his Annotations <16r> when he would favour any Text takes the collations of Stephens in such a manner as if he had the very original manuscripts at Geneva before his eyes. And were Stephens does not cite various lections there he reccons that in the text of Stephens collated book he read all the Manuscripts. So in Marc. 6.11 when Stephens notes a certain period to be wanting in the manuscript copies β and η Beza saith, Hæc periodus in omnibus exemplaribus græcis legitur exceptis secundo et octavo In Act. 13.33 because Stephens had noted no various lection Beza affirms of the greek text, Ita scriptum invenimus in omnibus vetustis codicibus. In 1 Iohn. 4.3. where Stephens is silent Beza speaks: sic legitur in omnibus Græcis exemplaribus, quæ quidem mihi inspicere licuit. In Iames 1.2 where Stephens is again silent Beza tells us of the word μόνον Ego in omnibus nostris vetustis libris inveni. And so where Stephens in the margin had noted the testimony of the three in heaven to be wanting in seven manuscripts he thinks that in reading the text of Stephens's collated book he reads it in the rest & so tells us. Legimus et nos in nonnullis Roberti Stephani codicibus. Thus he did in the first edition of his Annotations. Afterwards when he had got two real manuscripts, the Claromontan & that which at length he presented to the Vniversity of Cambridge, (in both which the Canonical Epistles are wanting) in the epistle to his fourth edition in recconing up the books he then used, he puts only these two & the 17 of Stephens, & in his fift edition he writes summarily that he used nineteen manuscripts, joyning with those two real ones the collations of Stephens as if in those he had 17 others: which sufficiently explains his way of speaking in his Annotations. But whilst he had not the manuscripts themselves to read with his own eyes, it was too hard & unwarrantable a way of speaking to tell us, Legimus et nos in nonnullis Roberti Stephani codicibus & therefore in his later editions he corrects himself & tells us only that the reading doth extare in nonnullis Stephani veteribus libris. Thus Beza argues from Stephens book of collations: And the same inference has been made by Lucas Brugensis & others ever since from Stephens's forementioned edition of that book. ffor say they Stephens' had fifteen manuscripts in all & found the testimony of the three in heaven wanting but in seven, & therefore it was in the other eight, & so being <17r> found in the greater part of his manuscripts has the authority of manuscripts on its side. Thus they argue & this is the great argument by which the printed Greek has hitherto been justified.

But if they please to consider the business a little better they will find themselves very much mistaken. ffor thô Stephens had fifteen manuscripts in all, yet all of them did not contein all the Greek Testament. Four of them noted γ, στ, ιβ, ιδ had each of them the four Gospels only. Two noted β, η conteined only the Gospels & Acts of the Apostles. One noted ιστ conteined the Apocalyps only. One noted ιε had only the Apocalyps with St Pauls epistles to the Corinthians Galathians Ephesians Philippians & Colossians. The other seven noted δ, ε, ζ, θ, ι, ια, ιγ conteined both St Pauls Epistles & the Canonical ones besides some other books: namely the Manuscript ζ conteined the Epistles & Gospels, the manuscript ι, ια ιγ the Epistles & Acts of the Apostles & the manuscripts δ, ε, θ the Epistles Gospels & Acts. And this any one may gather by noting what manuscripts the various lections are cited out of in every book of the new Testament. ffor in the various lections of the canonical Epistles & those to the Thessalonians Timothy Titus & the Hebrews are found these seven manuscripts, δ, ε, ζ, θ, ι, ια, ιγ every where cited, & no more then these. The same also & no more are cited in the Epistles to the Thessalonians Timothy Titus & the Hebrews, one numeral error (whether of the scribe or Typographer) excepted. Stephens therefore did collect various Lections of the Epistles out of only these seven manuscripts δ, ε, ζ, θ, ι, ια ιγ & in all these seven he found the testimony of the three in heaven to be wanting as you may see noted in the margin of his edition.

And that this testimony was wanting ✝ < insertion from f 15v > ✝ And that this testimony was wanting in all Stephen's Manuscripts is apparent also by its being generally wanting in the MSS which are now extant in France. For Father Simon c[25] tells us that after diligent search in the Library of the King of France & in that also of Monsieur Colbert, he could not find it in any one manuscript tho he consulted seven MSS in the Kings Library & one in Colbert's. And because Stephen had some of his various lections from Italy I will add that a Gentleman who in his travells had consulted twelve MSS in several Libraries in Italy, assured me that he found it wanting in them all. One of the twelve was that most ancient & most famous MS in the Popes library written in Capital letters.

< text from f 17r resumes >

So then the authority of the printed books rests only upon the authority of the editions of Erasmus & Cardinal Ximenes. But seing Erasmus omitted it in his two first editions & inserted it unwillingly against the authority of his manuscripts in his three last, the authority of these three can be none at all. When Lee upon Erasmus's putting forth his second edition fell foule upon him for leaving out the testimony of the three in heaven, a[26] Erasmus answered that he had consulted <18r> more then seven Greek Manuscripts & found it wanting in them all, & that if he could have found it but in any one manuscript he would have followed that in favour of the Latine. Hence notice was sent to Erasmus out of England that it was in a manuscript there; & thereupon b[27] to avoyd their calumnies (as he saith,) he printed it in his following editions notwithstanding that he suspected that manuscript to be a new one corrected by the latine. But since upon enquiry c[28] I cannot learn that they in England ever heard of any such manuscript but from Erasmus, & since he was only told of such a manuscript in the time of the controversy between him & Lee & never saw it himself: I cannot forbear to suspect that it was nothing but a trick put upon him by some of the Popish Clergy, to try if he would make good what he had offered of printing the testimony of the three in heaven by the authority of any one greek copy, & thereby to get it into his edition. Greek manuscripts of the scriptures are things of value & do not use to be thrown away, & such a manuscript for the testimony of the three in heaven would have made a greater noise then the rest have done against it. Let those who have such a manuscript at length tell us where it is.

So also let them who insist upon the edition of Cardinal Ximenes tell us by what Manuscript he printed this testimony, or at least where any such manuscript of good note is to be seen. ffor till then I must take the liberty to beleive that he printed nothing else then a translation out of the Latine, & that for these reasons.

First because in the Preface to his edition of the new Testament we are told that this Testament was printed after Manuscripts taken out of the Popes Library, & these the Cardinal only a[29] borrowed thence & therefore returned them back so soon as his edition was finished: & Caryophilus some time after by the Popes command collating the Vatican manuscripts found the testimony of the three in heaven wanting in them all. I do not say but that the Cardinal had other manuscripts, but these were the chief & the only ones he thought worth the while to tell his Reader of.

Secondly I startle at the marginal note in this place of the Cardinals edition. ffor it is besides the use of <19r> this edition to put notes in the margin of the greek text. I have not found it done above thrice in all this edition of the new Testament, & therefore there must be something extraordinary in it; & that in respect of the Greek because tis in the margin of this text. In 1 Cor. 15 there is noted in this margin a notable variation in the greek reading. In Matt. 6.13 where they in their edition recede from the greek copies & correct it by the Latine, they make a marginal note to justify their doing so. And so here where the testimony of the three in heaven is generally wanting in the greek copies, they make a third marginal note to secure themselves from being blamed for printing it. Now in such a case as this is there is no question but that they would make the best defense they could, & yet they do not tell of any various lections in their greek manuscripts nor produce any one greek manuscript on their side, but run to the authority of Thomas Aquinas. The greek manuscripts have the text thus: For there are three that bear record, the spirit the water & the blood, & these three are one. In many of the latine manuscripts the words these three are one are here omitted & put only at the end of the testimony of the three in heaven before that of the spirit water & blood: in others they are put after both testimonies. In the Complutensian edition they follow the former copies & justify their doing so by the authority of Thomas Aquinas. a[30] Thomas, say they, "in treating of the three which bear witness in heaven teaches that the words these three are one are subjoyned for insinuating the unity of the essence of the three persons: And whereas one Ioachim interpreted this unity to be only in love & consent, it being thus said of the spirit water & blood in some copies that these three are one; Thomas replied that this last clause is not extant in the true copies but was added by the Arians for perverting the sense." Thus far this Annotation. Now this plainly respects the latine copies (for Thomas understood not Greek) & therefore part of the designe of this annotation is to set right <20r> the Latine reading. But this is not the main designe, for so the annotation should have been set in the margin of the Latin Version. It's being set in the margin of the Greek text shews that it's main designe is to justify the greek by the Latine thus rectified & confirmed. Now to make Thomas thus in a few words do all the work was very artificial, & in Spain where Thomas is of Apostolic authority might pass for a very judicious & substantial defense of the printed Greek: but to us Thomas Aquinas is no Apostle; we are seeking for the authority of greek manuscripts.

A third reason why I conceive the Complutensian Greek to have been in this place a translation from the Latine is because Stunica, who, as I told you, was one of the Divines employed by the Cardinal in this Edition & at that very time wrote against Erasmus, when in his Objections he comes to this text of the testimony of the three in heaven, he cites not one Greek Manuscript for it against Erasmus, but argues wholy from the authority of the Latine. On the contrary he sets down by way of concession, the common reading of the greek Manuscripts (his own & others,) in these words Ὅτι τρεις ἐισιν ὁι μαρτυρουντες τὸ πνευμα καὶ τὸ ὑδωρ καὶ τὸ ἁιμα καὶ ὁι τρεις ἐις τὸ ἕν ἐισι, & then he condemns them all together without exception & justifies the Latine against them by the authority of Ierom. b[31] Know, saith he, that in this place the greek Manuscripts are most evidently corrupted, but ours (that is the Latin ones) contein the truth it self as they are translated from the first original. Which is manifest by the Prologue of S. Ierome upon the Epistles, &c And this Prologue (which he goes on to cite at length & of which we gave you an account above) is all he urges in favour of the testimony of the three in heaven. In other places of scripture where he had greek Manuscripts on his side, he produces them readily. So in 1 Thes. 2.7. Ita quidem legitur, saith he, in græcis codicibus quos ego viderim. In Iames 1.1 he saith, Sciendum in omnibus græcis codicibus πορείας hic legi per ei dipthongum. In 1 Thes. 5.23. he saith, cùm in græcis exemplaribus quotquot sunt ὁλόκληρον et in Latinis integet hic legatur per nemine discrepante, nescio cur Erasmus dixerit &c. In Phil 4.9 Siquidem in omnibus, saith he, græcis codicibus ταυτα λογίζεσθε hic legitur – neque græci sunt libri qui πραττέτε hoc loco neque latini qui agite, nisi mendosos utriusque linguæ codices cùm hæc commentaretur Erasmus perlegit. After this manner does Stunica produce the manuscripts used in the Complutensian edition when they make for him & here he produces them too but 'tis for Erasmus against himself. Know, saith he, that in this place the greek manuscripts are most evidently corrupted. In other places if he hath but one manuscript on his side, he produces it magnificently enough, as the Codex Rhodiensis in his discourse upon 2 Cor. 2.3 Iames 1.22. 2 Pet. 2.2. & other texts: here he produces all the Manuscripts against himself without excepting so much as one. And hence Erasmus in his answer to Stunica gloried in the consent of the Spanish manuscripts with his own, & Sanctus <21r> Caranza (another of the Complutensian Divines) in his defense of Stunica written presently after, had nothing to reply in this point. Neither could Sepulueda or the Spanish Moncks who next undertook the controversy find any one greek manuscript which here made against Erasmus. Nor had Marchio Velesius better successe, thô on that occasion he collated 16 greek manuscripts, eight whereof belonged to the King of Spain's library & the other eight to other libraries in Spain, & did it on purpose to collect out of them whatever he could meet with in favour of the present vulgar Latine. Neither did the reprinting of the Complutensian Bible by Arias Montanus, produce the notice of any such manuscript, tho on that occasion many Manuscripts as well greek as latine fetcht from Complutum & other places were collated by Arias, Lucas Brugensis, Canter & others. So then to summe up the argument, the Complutensian Divines did sometimes correct the greek by the Latine without the authority of any one greek Manuscript, as appears by their practise in Mat. 6.13, & therefore their printing the testimony of the three in heaven is no evidence that they did it by a manuscript. But on the contrary for want of one they contented themselves with the authority of Thomas Aquinas, & Stunica confest they had none. Nor has all the zeal for this text been able since to discover one either in Spain or any where else.

And now you may understand whence it is that the Complutensian edition & the reading of the pretended English manuscript set down by Erasmus in his Annotations, differ so much from one another. ffor the Complutensian has the text thus Ὅτι τρεις ἐισιν ὁι μαρτυρουν τες ἐν τωι ὀυρανωι, ὁ παττὴρ ὁ λόγος καὶ τὸ ἅγιον πνευμα καὶ ὁι τρεις εις τὸ ἕν ἐισι καὶ τρεις ἐισιν ὁι μαρτυρουντες ἐπὶ της γης τὸ πνευμα καὶ τὸ ὕδωρ καὶ τὸ αἱμα. The pretended English Manuscript thus Ὅτι τρεις ἐισὶν ὁι μαρτυρουντες ἐν τωι ὀυρανωι, πατὴρ, λόγος καὶ πνευμα, καὶ ὁυτοι ὁι τρεις ἕν ἐισιν. Καὶ τρεις ἐισὶν μαρτυρουντες ἐν τηι γηι πνευμα καὶ ὕδωρ καὶ ἁιμα. The differences are too great to spring from the bare errors of scribes & arise rather from the various translation of the place out of Latin into Greek by two several persons.

But whilst these two readings by their discord confute one another, the readings of the real Greek manuscripts by their agreement confirm one another as much. For Caryophilus who by the command of Pope Vrban the 8th collated the Vatican & other manuscripts borrowed out of the principal Libraries in Rome, found one common reading in them all without the testimony of the three in heaven as you may see in those his Collations printed anno 1673 by Peter Possinus in the end of his Catena of the Greek Fathers upon Mark. He met with eight manuscripts in all upon the Epistles & notes their reading thus. 1 Ioan. 5.7 MSS octo (omnes nempe) legunt, Ὅτι τρεις ἐισιν ὁι μαρτυρουντες, τὸ πνευμα καὶ τὸ ὕδωρ καὶ τὸ ἁιμα, καὶ ὁι τρεις ἐις τὸ ἕν ἐισι: Porro totus septimus versus hujus capitis desideratur in octo MSS codd græcis &c. Thus Caryophilus.

The very same reading Erasmus in his Annotations on this place gives us of all his manuscripts which were more then seven & so doth Stephens of all his seven without noting any various lections in <22r> them. Only the comma which in Stephen's Edition is (surely by mistake) set after οὐρανωι, is to be put in it's right place. The very same reading does Stunica also in his book against Erasmus note out of the Manuscripts he had seen in Spain, as was shewed above: nor does Velesius in his collation of the sixteen Spanish manuscripts note any various lections in this text. The same reading exactly have also the manuscripts in England, namely that most ancient & most famous one in the Kings Library which was conveyed thither from Egypt through Greece & published in Walton's Polyglott Bible & the four at Oxford, vizt that in New College, & that in Magdalen College (both very old) & two in Lincoln College, & five other ancient ones lately brought out of Turkey by Mr Covel & collated by Dr Mills. The very same reading have also the three Manuscripts of Monsieur Petavius Gachon a Senator of Paris, whose various lections collected by his son Iohn Gachon, were printed in the Oxford edition of the new Testament A.C. 1675. The same reading without any variation is published by Francis Asulan in his edition printed A.C. 1518 by Aldus at Venice out of the Manuscripts of those parts. The same reading Oecumenius six hundred years ago found in the Manuscripts of Greece as you may see in the text of his Commentary on this Epistle of Iohn. The same reading also Cyril of Alexandria met with in the manuscripts of Egypt above eleven hundred years ago, as you may see in his citations of the text, both in his Thesaurus lib. 14 c. 5, & in his first book de fide ad Reginas: excepting that in the latter of these two citations the particle ἐις is omitted & μαρτυρουσι written for ὁι μαρτυρουντες. And that the very same reading was also in the manuscripts of the first ages may be gathered from the conformity of this reading to all the ancient Versions.

It may seem by what has been hitherto said that this Testimony is not to be found in Greek Manuscripts. a[32] Epanorthotes whom Lucas Brugensis describes to be an ancient accurate full & industrious Collator of Manuscripts, found it wanting in all those he met with. Epanorthotes, saith Lucas, deesse hæc eadem Græcis libris et antiquis Latinis annotat. Nor have other collators made a further discovery to this day. Lee, Stunica & the rest in England, Spain, fflanders, ffrance & Italy who conspired against Erasmus could find nothing in the manuscripts of those parts against him If {those} be excepted which once appeared to {certain men here} in England but could never since be seen. After the disputes of those times, c[34] Hesselius about the year 1565 Professor of Divinity at Lovain, in his Commentary on this place ingeniously confesses it wanting in all the greek manuscripts then known except two, the <23r> one in Spain the other in England, meaning those by which the Complutensian Divines & Erasmus printed it: which two we have shewed to be none at all, unlesse some Annius dug up one in England.. Since that time nothing further has been produced besides the imaginary books of the dreaming Beza. And yet I will not say but that it may be hereafter found in some Greek copies. For in the times of the holy war the Latines had much to do in the East. They were long united to the Greek Church: They made Latine Patriarchs of Ierusalem & Antioch; they reigned at Constantinople over the Greeks from the year 1204 for above 50 years together, & during this their Kingdom in the year 1215 was assembled the Lateran Council consisting of 415 Bishops Greeks & Latines together, & therein the testimony of the three in heaven was quoted out of some of the Latine manuscripts as we told you above. All which might occasion some Greeks as well as Latines to note it in the Margins of their books & thence insert it into the text in transcribing. For this is most certain that some greek manuscripts have been corrected by the Latine ones. Such a book d[35] Erasmus tells us he once met with, & that there was such another in the Popes Library. He suspected also that Boook in England out of which he printed the testimony of the three in heaven to be of the same kind, tho I rather think 'twas none at all unless some Italians of that age were at the pains to transcribe one or two of St Paul's Epistles. Such another book was one of those out of which Velesius collected his various lections. Whence Mariana into whose hands the manuscript boook of those Lections fell, tells us that for that reason in his annotations on the new Testament he used those lections but sparingly & cautiously. And that Velesius did meet with such a corrected manuscript appears by the Lections themselves. For in Apoc. 18.17, where the Greek reads ἐπὶ τόπον & the Latine translates in locum & by the error of one letter in lacum, as the books now have it: some Grecian here has corrected his book by the Latine & written ἐπὶ λίμνην as tis in the lections of Velesius taken out of this manuscript. Again in Apoc 9.11 where the Latine translator in expounding the names Abaddon & Apollyon adds, Et latine habens nomen exterminans, Velesius notes the reading in his Greek Copy to be ρὡμαιστὶ ἔχων ὄνομα ἐξτέρμινανς: which certainly is a translation of the Latine. Again in Apoc. 21.12 where the Greek has ἀγγέλους, and some ancient Latine copies angelos, but the <24r> far greater part of the Latine copies at present angulos Velesius {in} his MS reads γωνίας. So in Apoc 19.6 where the Greek is ὄχλου πολλου & the Latine turbæ magnæ & in later copies tubæ magnæ, Velesius in his MS reads σάλπιγγος μεγάλης. In Heb. 13.2 for ἔλαθον latuerunt & in later copies placuerunt Velesius reads ἤρεσαν: & in 1 Pet. 3.8, for τὸ δὲ τέλος In fine & by error In fide Velesius reads ἐν τη πίστει δὲ. These & such like instances put the thing out of dispute. Now tho Velesius found not the testimony of the three in heaven in this Manuscript, & Erasmus tells us he never saw it in any greek manuscript, & by consequence not in that corrected one which fell into his hands: yet it may have crept out of the Latine into some other books not yet taken notice of, & even in some MSS which in other places have not been corrected by the Latine, it may possibly have been inserted by some of the Greek Bishops of the Lateran Council where the testimony of the three in heaven was read. And therefore he that shall hereafter meet with it in any book, ought first before he insists upon the authority of that book, to examin whether it hath not been corrected by the Latine, & whether it be ancienter then the Lateran Councel & empire of the Latines in Greece. ffor if it be liable to either of those two exceptions it can signify nothing to produce it.

Having given you the history of the controversy, I shal now confirm all that I have said from the sense of the text it self. ffor without the testimony of the three in heaven the sense is good & easy, as you may see by the following paraphrase inserted into the text in a different character.

[36]Who is he that overcometh the world but he that beleiveth that Iesus Christ is the Son of God, that son spoken of in the Psalmes where he saith Thou art my son this day have I begotten thee. This is he that after the Iews had long expected him, came first in a mortal body by baptism of water and then in an immortal one by shedding his blood upon the crosse & rising again from the dead: not by water only but by water & blood: being the son of God as well a[37] by his resurrection from the dead as b[38] by his supernatural birth of the Virgin: and it is the spirit also that together with the water & blood beareth witnesse of the truth of his coming, because the spirit is truth, & so a fit & unexceptionable witnesse. For there are three that bear record of his coming, the Spirit which he promised to send, & which was since shed forth upon us in the form of cloven tongues & in various gifts, the baptism of water wherein God testified this is my beloved son, and the shedding of his blood accompanied with his resurrection whereby he became the most faithful martyr or witnesse of this truth. And these three, the Spirit, the baptism & the passion of Christ agree in witnessing one & the same thing (namely that the Son of God is come,) & therefore their evidence is strong. For the Law requires but two consenting witnesses, & here we have three. And if wee receive the witness of men the threefold witnesse of God which he bare of his Son, by declaring at his baptism This is my beloved Son, by raising him from the dead, & by pouring out his spirit on us, is greater & therefore ought to be more readily received.

Thus is the sense plain & natural & the argument full & strong, but if you insert the testimony of the three in heaven you interrupt & spoil it. ffor the whole designe of the Apostle being here to prove to men by witnesses the truth of Christs coming, I would ask how the testimony of the three in heaven makes to this purpose. <25r> If their testimony be not given to men how does it prove to them the truth of Christs coming? If it be, how is the testimony in heaven distinguished from that in earth? Tis the same Spirit which witnesses in heaven & in earth. If in both cases it witnesses to us men, wherein lies the difference between its witnessing in heaven & its witnessing in earth? If in the first case it does not witnesse to men, to whom does it witnesse, & to what purpose? & how does its witnessing make to the designe of Iohn's discourse? Let them make good sense of it who are able: for my part I can make none. If it be said that we are not to determin what's scripture & what not by our private judgments, I confesse it in places not controverted: but in disputable places I love to take up with what I can best understand. Tis the temper of the hot & superstitious part of mankind in matters of religion ever to be fond of mysteries, & for that reason to like best what they understand least. Such men may use the Apostle Iohn as they please: but I have that honour for him as to beleive he wrote good sense, & therefore take that sense to be his which is the best: especially since I am defended in it by so great authority. For I have on my side the authority of the fourth generall Council, & (so far as I know) of all the Churches in all ages except the modern Latines & such others as have lately been influenced by them, & that also of all the old Versions & greek manuscripts & ancient Latine ones; & nothing against me but the authority of Ierome, & the credulity & heat of his followers. For to tell us of other manuscripts without ever letting us know in what Libraries they were to be seen; to pretend MSS which since their first discovery could never be heard of, nor were then seen by persons whose names & credit we know, is plainly to impose upon the learned world, & ought not to passe any longer for fair dealing. The Spaniards tell us plainly that they followed the Latine, & by the authority of Thomas left out the clause and these three are one in the 8th verse as inserted by the Arians: & yet S. Ambrose, S. Austin, Eucherius & other Latines in the Arian age gathered the unity of the Deity from this clause, & the omission of it is now by printing it acknowledged to be b[39] an erroneous correction. The pretended Manuscript in England wanted the same clause & therefore if there was any such MS it was a corrected one like the Spanish Edition & the manuscript of Velesius. Erasmus who printed the triple testimony in heaven by that English MS, never saw it, d[40] tells us it was a new one, suspected its sincerity & accused it publickly in his writings on several occasions for several years together: & yet his adversaries in England never answered his accusation, never endeavoured to satisfy him & the world about it, did not so much as let us know where the record might be consulted for confuting him: but on the contrary when they had got the Trinity into his Edition, threw by their MS (if they had one) as an Almanack out of date. And can such shuffling dealings satisfy considering men? Let Manuscripts at length be produced, & freely exposed to the sight of the learned world, but let such MSS be produced as are of authority; or else let it be confest that whilst Ierome pretended to correct the Latin by the Greek, the Latines have corrected both the Latin & the Greek by the sole authority of Ierome.


What the Latines have done to this text the Greeks have done to that of S. Paul 1 Tim. 3.16. For by changing Ο in ΟΣ & both into ΘΣ (the abbreviation of Θεὸς) they now read Great is the mystery of godlinesse God manifested in the flesh: whereas all the Churches for the first four or five hundred years, & the authors of all the ancient Versions, Ierome as well as the rest, read, Great is the mystery of godliness which was manifested in the flesh. For this is the common reading of the Ethiopic, Syriac & Latine Versions to this day, Ierome's manuscripts having given him no occasion to correct the old Vulgar Latine in this place. Grotius adds the Arabic, but the Egyptian Arabic Version has Θεὸς, & so has the above mentioned Sclavonian Version of Cyrillus. For these two Versions were made long after the sixt Century wherein the corruption began. With the ancienter Versions agree the writers of the first five Centuries both Greeks & Latines. For they in all their discourses to prove the Deity of the Son, never allege this text (that I can find,) as they would all have done, & some of them frequently, had they read God manifested in the flesh, & therefore they read Ὃ. Tertullian adversus Praxeam & Cyprian adversus Iudæos industriously cite all the places where Christ is called God, but have nothing of this. Alexander of Alexandria, Athanasius, the Bishops of the Council of Sardica, Epiphanius, Basil, Gregory Nazianzen, Gregory Nyssen, Chrysostom, Cyril of Ierusalem, Cyril of Alexandria, Cassian; Also Hilary, Lucifer, Ierome, Ambrose, Austin, Phœbadius, Victorinus Afer, Faustinus Diaconus, Pope Leo the great, Arnobius junior, Cereatis, Vigilius Tapsensis, Fulgentius wrote all of them in the fourth & fift Centuries for the Deity of the Son & incarnation of God, & some of them largely & in several Tracts; & yet I cannot find that they ever allege this text to prove it excepting that a[41] G. Nyssen once urges it, if the passage crept not into him out of some marginal {annotation}. In all the times of the hot & lasting Arian controversy it never came into play, thô now those disputes are over they that read God manifested in the flesh think it one of the most obvious & pertinent texts for the businesse.

The Churches therefore of those ages were all strangers to this reading: for on the contrary their writers as often as they have any occasion to cite the reading then in use discover that it was Ὃ. For thô they <27r> cite it not to prove the Deity of the Son, yet in their Commentaries & sometimes in other discourses they produce it. And particularly Hilary lib 11 de Trinitate & Ambrose, or whoever of his contemporaries was the author of the Commentary on the Epistles, reads Ὃ; & so doth S. Austin in Genesin ad litteram lib 5, & Beda in his commentary on this text where he cites the reading of S. Austin, & the Author of the Commentary on the Epistles ascribed to Ierome. So also do Primasius & Sedulius in their Commentaries on this text, & Victorinus Afer lib 1 adversus Arium, & Idacius Clarus or rather Vigilius Tapsensis lib. 3. adversus Varimadum cap. 12. & Fulgentius cap. 2 de incarnatione. And so did Pope Leo the great Epist 20 ad Flavianum & Pope Gregory the great lib 34 Moral. cap 7 . These ancient Latines all cite the text after this manner Great is the mystery of godlinesse which was manifested in the flesh, as the latine MSS of S. Pauls Epistles generally have it to this day; & therefore it cannot be doubted but that this hath been the constant public reading of the Latine Churches from the beginning. So also one of the Arians in a Homily printed in Fulgentius's works reads Ὃ & interprets it of the son of God who was born of the Father ante sæcula & of the Virgin in novissimo tempore: & Fulgentius in his answer to this Homily found no fault with the citation, but on the contrary in his first book ad Trasimundum, chap. 6, seems to have read & understood the text after the same manner with other Latines.

Now for the Greeks, I find indeed that they have changed the ancient reading of the text not only in the MSS of S. Pauls Epistles but also in other authors, & yet there are still remaining sufficient instances among them of what the reading was at first. So in Chrysostom's Commentary on this Epistle they have now gotten θεὸς into the text & yet by considering the Commentary it self I am satisfied that he read ὃ. For he neither in this Commentary nor any where else infers the Deity of Christ from this text nor expounds it as they do who read θεὸς, but with the Latines & others who read ὃ understands by it Christ incarnate, or as he expresses it Man made God & God made man, & so leaves it at liberty to be taken for either God or Man. And accordingly in one place of his commentary he saith ἐφανερώθη ἐν σαρκὶ ὁ δημιουργὸς, in another place Ἄνθρωπος ὤφθη ἀναμάρτητος, ἄνθρωπος ἀναλήφθη, ἐκηρύχθη ἐν κόσμωι, μεθ᾽ ἡμων ειδον ἀυτὸν ὁι ἄγγελοι. Man appeared without sin. Man was received up, was preached in the world, was seen <28r> amongst us by Angels. Instead of ὃ ἐφανηρώθη ἐν σαρκι, εδικαιώθη ἐν πνέυματι, he saith Man appeared without sin, making man the nominative case to these & all the verbs which follow: which certainly he would not have done had θεὸς been their nominative case expresly in his text. He might properly put man for ὃ but not for θεὸς Neither could he have put ἀναμάρτητος for ἐδικαιώθη if he had read in his text ἐδικαιώθη: for what man of common sense would say that God was made sinlesse in or through the spirit. But what I have said of Chrysostom will be more evident when I shall have shewed you how afterwards in the time of the Nestorian controversy, all parties read ὃ or ὃς without any dispute raised about the reading, & how the Greeks have since corrupted the text in Cyrills writings, & changed ὃ & ὃς into θεὸς as they have done in Chrysostom's.

And first that the Nestorians read ὃ is evident by some fragments of the Orations or Homilies of Nestorius sent by him to the Pope & cited by Arnobius junior in the second book of the Conflict with Serapion. For there to shew what was the opinion of Nestorius & how he defended it, he cites two of his Orations in these words. Non peperit sanctissima Maria Deitatem, nam quod natum est de carne caro est. Non peperit creatura creatorem sed peperit hominem Deitatis ministrum. Non ædificavit Deum Verbum Spiritus sanctus: quod ex ipsa natum est de spiritu sancto est. Deo itaque Verbo templum ex Virgine ædificavit. Et paulo post. Qui per se natus est Deus in utero [scil. ante Luciferum] Deus est. Et paulo post. Θεοτόκου formam in Deo honoramus. Et in alia prædicatione: Spiritum divina separat natura qui humanitatem ejus creavit. Quicquid ex Maria natum est de spiritu sancto est, qui et secundum justiciam replevit quod creatum est, hoc quod manifestatum est in carne justificatum est in spiritu. Which last words in the language wherein Nestorius wrote those Homilies are ὃ ἐφανερώθη ἐν σαρκὶ, ἐδικαιώθη ἐν πνεύματι.. Here you see Nestorius reads ὃ expresly, & not only so but absolutely excludes God from being understood by it: arguing that the Virgin was not θεοτόκος because that thing which was manifested in the flesh, was justified in the spirit, or (as he expounds it) replenished by the spirit in righteousnes; & calling that thing which was manifested in the flesh a creature. Spiritus, saith he, secundum justiciam replevit [hoc] quod creatum est, [nempe] hoc quod manifestatum est in carne, justificatum est in spiritu.

And now whilst he read the text after this manner & urged it thus against the Deity of Christ, one would <29r> expect that if this had not been the received public reading in the greek churches his adversaries would have fallen foul upon him & exclaimed against him for falsifying the text & blasphemously saying it was a created thing which the scripture calls God manifested in the flesh. And such an accusation as this would surely have made as great a noise as any thing else in the controversy. And yet I meet with nothing of this kind in history. His adversaries do not so much as tell him that Θεὸς was in the text. They were so far from raising any controversy about the reading that they do not in the least correct him for it but on the contrary they themselves in their answers to his writings read ὃ as he did & only laboured by various disputations to put another sense upon the text: as I find by Cassian & Cyril the two principal who at that time wrote against him.

Iohn Cassian was Chrysostom's scholar & his Deacon & Legate to the Pope & after the banishment of Chrysostome retired from Constantinople into Syria & Egypt where he lived a monastic life for some time & then ended his days in France. At that time therefore when Nestorius, who was Patriarch of Constantinople broached his opinion & Cyril the Patriarch of Alexandria opposed him, Nestorius sent a Legacy to Rome with copies of his Orations to let the Pope understand the controversy: & thereupon Leo the great, who was then Archdeacon of the Church of Rome & afterwards Pope, put Cassian (then in France) upon writing his book De incarnatione Domini against Nestorius. He wrote it therefore in the year 430, as Baronius also reccons: for he wrote it before the condemnation of Nestorius in the Council of Ephesus, as appears by the book it self. This book is now extant only in latine: but considering that his designe in writing was to stir up the greek Church against Nestorius, & that for making the greater impression upon them he quotes greek Fathers at the end of his book, & concludes with an exhortation to the Citizens of Constantinople, telling them that what he wrote for, he had received from his master Chrysostom, I am satisfied that he wrote it originally in greek. His other books were in both languages, for Photius saw them in eloquent Greek; & its more likely that they had their Authors eloquent language from their Author & the Latine from one of the Latines where he lived, then that the contrary should be true. Now in this treatise lib 7 c 18, when he comes to consider the passage of Nestorius about this text, of which we gave you an account above out of Arnobius: he returns <30r> this answer to it. Iamprimum enim hoc ais [Nestorj] quia justicia repleverit quod creatum est; et hoc Apostolico vis testimonio comprobare quod dicat, Apparuit in carne justificatus est in spiritu: utrumque falso sensu et furioso spiritu loqueris. Quia ut hoc quod a spiritu vis eum repletum esse justicia, ideo ponis ut ostendas ejus vacuitatem cui præstitam esse asseris justiciæ ad impletionem. Et hoc quod super hac re Apostolico testimonio uteris divini testimonij ordinem rationemque furoris. Non enim ita ab Apostolo positum est ut tu id truncatum vitiatumque posuisti. Quid enim Apostolus ait? Et manifestè magnum est pietatis sacramentum quod manifestatum est in carne justificatum est in spiritu. Vides ergo quod mysterium pietatis vel sacramentum justificatum Apostolus prædicavit. Thus far Cassian, not only reading Ὃ but confuting Nestorius by that reading. For whereas Nestorius said it was a creature which was justified, Cassian tells him that if he had read the whole text he would have found that it was the mystery of godlinesse. Vides ergo, saith he, quod mysterium pietatis justificatum Apostolus prædicavit. He does not say Deum justificatum Apostolus prædificavit, (as he would certainly have done had that been in his Bible,) but mysterium, & so makes mysterium or, which is all one, it's relative quod the nominative case to the verbs which follow. In another part of this Treatise lib 5. c 12 Cassian cites & interprets this text as follows. Et manifestè magnum est pietatis sacramentum quod manifestatum est in carne &c. Quid ergo magnum est illud sacramentum quod manifestatum est in carne? Deus scilicet natus in carne, Deus visus in corpore, qui utique sicut palam est assumptus est in gloria. So you see, Nestorius & Cassian agree in reading ὃ but differ in interpreting it; the one restraining it to a creature by reason of its being justified, the other restraining it to God by reason of its being a great mystery & assumed in glory.

In like manner Cyril the grand adversary of Nestorius in his three books de fide ad Imperatorem et Reginas written against him in the beginning of that contro <31r> versy, did not reprehend him as if he had cited the text falsly, but only complained of his misinterpreting it; telling him that he did not understand the great mystery of godlinesse, & that it was (not a created thing as he thought) but the word or son of God, & arguing for this interpretation from the circumstances of the text. And first in his book de fide ad Imperatorem sect. 7, he has this passage πλανασθε μὴ ἐιδότες τὰς γραφάς μήτε μὴν τὸ μέγα της ἐυσεβείας μυστήριον, τουτέστι Χριστόν ὃς ἐφανερωθη ἐν σαρκὶ ἐδικαιώθη ἐν πνεύματι &c. Ye erre, saith he, not knowing the scriptures nor the great mystery of godlinesse, that is Christ, who was manifested in the flesh, justified in the spirit. By this citation its plain that he read Ὃ, using one of those MSS which by understanding Χριστὸν for μυστήριον turned Ὃ into ὃς, & by way of interpretation {insert}ing τουτέστι Χριστὸν which in those MSS was to be understood: unless you will say that he turned Θεὸς into ὅς, which is very hard. For had Θεὸς been in his text he would not have said μυστήριον τουτέστι Χριστόν ὃς ἐφανερώθη, but μυστήριον Θεὸς, τουτέστι Χριστὸς, ἐφανερώθη, putting Χριστὸς not for μυστήριον but for θεὸς. For Χριστὸς & Θεὸς are more plainly equipollent then Χριστος & μυστήριον, & in making Χριστὸς & μστήριον equipollent he makes μυστήριον the nominative case to εφανερώθη & therefore reads them joyned in his text by the article ὃς. Had he read Θεὸς he would never have left out that authentic & demonstrative word & by way of interpretation for μυτήριον θεὸς written Χριστόν ὃς; for this was not to argue against Nestorius but to spoile the argument which lay before him. Neither would he have gone on as he does within a few lines after to recite the same text, putting λογὸς by way of interpretation for μστήριόν & to propound it as his bare opinion that the Word or son of God was here to be understood by this mystery, & to dispute for this his opinion (as needing proof) out of other texts of scripture, as he does after this manner.[42] Moreover, saith he, in my opinion, that mystery of godlines is nothing else then he that came to us from the Father, the Word, who was manifested in the flesh. ffor in taking the form of a servant, he was born of the holy God-bearing Virgin &c. And then after many other things he at length in sect 23 & 24 concludes that this divine mystery is above our understanding, & that the only begotten <32r> who is God & according to the scriptures the Lord of all things, appeared to us was seen on earth & became a man. This he makes not the text it self, but the interpretation thereof & from the preceding disputation concludes it to be genuine. < insertion from f 32v > And all this is further confirmed by Photius who in his Commentary {upon} the Epistles (not yet published) relates that Cyril in the 12 chapt of his Scholiums, read ὃς ἐφανερώθη &c. And consonant to this reading is Cyrills commentary upon the text in his explanation of the second of {the} twelve anathematas, where he puts the question Quid est igitur quod dicit. Apparuit in carne? And explains it by saying hoc est, Dei Patris Verbum caro factum est, & concludes that it is hence that we call him God & man. Whereas had Θεὸς been in the text it would have needed no interpretation, nor would he have put λογὸς for θεὸς in order to prove that God was manifested in the flesh.]

< text from f 32r resumes >

Again in the first of his two treatises de fide ad Reginas neare the end he cites the text & argues thus against the interpretation of Nestorius. Who is it, saith he, that is manifested in the flesh? Is it not fully evident that it is the Word of God the ffather? ffor so will that be a great mystery of godliness [a[43] which was] manifested in the flesh. He was seen of Angels ascending into heaven: he was preached to the Gentiles by the holy Apostles: he was believed on in the world: but this not as a mere man but as God born in the flesh & after our manner.

So also in his second book de fide ad Reginas, sect. 33 he cites the place again & then argues upon it against the opinion of Nestorius after this manner. If the Word being God be said to become a man & yet continue what he was before without losing his Deity, the mystery of godlinesse is without doubt a very great one: but if Christ be a mere man joyned with God only in the parity of dignity & power (for this is maintained by some unlearned men) how is he manifested in the flesh? Is it not plain that every man is in the flesh & cannot otherwise bee seen by any body? How then was he said to be seen of the holy Angels? For do they not also see us? What was there therefore new or extraordinary in Christ if the Angels saw him such a man as we are & nothing more? &c Thus Cyril goes on to give his reasons why that which was manifested in the flesh was not a mere created man, as Nestorius interpreted but the eternal Word or Son of God: all which would have been very superfluous & impertinent if God had then been expresly in the Text.

Seing therefore Nestorius alleged the text to prove that it was a created thing which was manifested in the flesh, & Cyril in confuting him did not answer that it was God expresly in the text nor raise any debate about the reading, but only put another interpretation upon the text then Nestorius had done: arguing with Cassian that in the text it was not a mere man as Nestorius contended, but the great mystery of godliness, & by consequence Christ or God, the Son, which was manifested in <33r> the flesh, & labouring by divers other arguments to prove this interpretation: its evident beyond all cavil that Cyril was a stranger to θεὸς now got into the text & read ὃ or ὃς as Nestorius & Cassian did.

And yet in his books ad Reginas & his other writings, wherever he quotes this text the Greeks have since corrected it by their corrected MSS of S. Pauls Epistles & written Θεὸς instead of ὃ. Whence if you would truly understand the Nestorian {history} you must read ὃ or ὃς for θεὸς in all Cyrills citations of this text.

Now {if} Cyril read ὃ or ὃς , & in his explanation of the twelve Chapters or Articles quoted this text in the second Article & this explanation was recited by him in the Council of Ephesus[44] & approved by the Council with an anathema at the end of every Article: it's manifest that this Council allowed the reading ὃς or ὃ & by consequence that ὃς or ὃ was the authentic public uncontroverted reading till after the times of this Council. For if Nestorius & Cyril the Patriarchs of Constantinople & Alexandria & heads of the two parties in this controversy read ὃς or ὃ & their writings went about amongst the eastern Churches & were canvased by the Bishops & Clergy without any dispute raised about the reading, & if Cyril read ὃς by the approbation of the Council it self: I think the conclusion we make of its being then the general uncontroverted reading must needs be granted us. And if the authority of one of the four first general Councils make any thing for the truth of the reading, we have that into the bargain.

Yet whilst the Nestorian controversy brought the text into play, & the two parties ran the interpretation into extremes, the one disputing that ὃ or ὃς was a creature, the other that it was the word of God: the prevalence of the latter party made it passe for the orthodox opinion that ὃ or ὃς was God, & so gave occasion to the Greeks henceforward to change the language of Christ into that of God, & say in their expositions of the text that God was manifested in the flesh (as I find Theodoret doth,) & at length to write God in the text it self, the easy change of Ο or ΟΣ into ΘΣ inviting them to do it; and after this was become the orthodox authentic reading, to set right the text in Chrysostom, Cyril, Theodoret & wherever else they found it (in their opinion) corrupted by hereticks.

And the man that first began thus to alter the <34r> sacred text was Macedonius the Patriarch of Constantinople in the beginning of the sixt Century. For the Emperor Anastasius banished him for corrupting it. At that time the Greek Church had been long divided about the Council of Chalcedon; many who allowed the condemnation of Eutyches rejecting the Councel by reason of its decreeing by the influence of the Bishop of Rome's letter against Eutyches, that Christ subsisted not only ex duabus naturis which Eutyches allowed but also in duabus naturis which language was new to the Greeks & by a great part of that Church taken for Nestorianism. For they understood that as the body & soul made the nature of man so God & Man made the nature of Christ, assigning a nature to the Person of Christ as well as to all other things, & not considering that in all compounds the several parts have also their several natures. Hence each party endeavoured to render the other suspected of heresy, as if they that were for the Council secretly favoured the Nestorians & they that were against it the Eutychians. ffor one party in maintaining two distinct natures in Christ were thought to deny the nature of one person with Nestorius, & the other party in opposing two distinct natures in him were thought to deny the truth of one of the natures with Eutyches. Both parties therefore to cleare themselves of those imputations anathematized both those heresies & therefore whilst they thus differed in their modes of speaking they agreed in their sence as Evagrius well observes. But the Bishops of Rome & Alexandria being engaged against one another & for a long time distracting the East by these disputes: at length the Emperor Zeno to quiet his Empire & perhaps to secure it from the encroachment of the Bishop of Rome a[45] who by this verbal contest aspired to the name & authority of universal Bishop, sent about an Henoticum or pacificatory Decree wherein he anathematized both Nestorius & Eutyches with their followers on the one hand & abrogated the Popes letter & the Councell on the other: & his successor Anastasius for the same end laboured to have this Decree signed by all the Bishops. And Macedonius at first subscribed it, but afterwards heading those who stood up for the Councel, b[46] was for corrupting the scriptures in favour of his opinion & such other things as were laid to his charge deposed & c[47] banished A.C. 512. But his own party (which at length prevailed) defended him as if opprest by calumnies & so received that reading for genuine which he had put about among them. For how ready all parties are to receive what they reccon on their side, Ierome well knew, when he recommended the testimony of the three in heaven by its usefulnesse, & we have a notable instance of it in the last age when the churches both eastern & western received this testimony in a moment in their greek Testaments, & still continue with great zeal & passion to defend it for the ancient reading against the authority of all the greek Manuscripts.

But now I have told you the original of the corruption I <35r> must tell you my Author, & he is Liberatus Archdeacon of the Church of Carthage who lived in that very age. For in his Breviary. which he wrote in the year 535 or soon after & collected (as he saith in his Preface) out of greek records, a[48] he delivers it in these words. Hoc tempore Macedonius Constantinopolitanus Episcopus ab Imperatore Anastasio dicitur expulsus tanquam Evangelia falsaret et maxime illud Apostoli dictum: Quia apparuit in carne, justificatum est in spiritu. Hunc enim mutasse ubi habet Qui …. hoc est …….. monosyllabum græcum, litera mutata in …… vertisse et fecisse ……. id est, Vt esset Deus, apparuit per carnem. Tanquam Nestorianus ergo culpatus expellitur per Saverum Monachum.[49] The greek letters here omitted are in the second edition of Surius & in those of the Councels thus inserted: ubi habet οσ hoc est qui monosyllabum græcum littera mutata ο in ω vertisse et fecisse ὡς, id est Vt esset Deus, apparuit per carnem. But this interpolation was surely made by conjecture. ffor if Θεὸς was in the sacred text before the corruption, then ὁς or ὃ was not in & so could not be changed into ὡς: but if Θεὸς was not in it could not be brought in by this change. The interpolation therefore is inconsistent & spurious & seems to have been occasioned by straining to make out Nestorianism here: the scribes for that end d[50] referring the words ut esset to the sacred text & then the Interpolator writing ὡς for ut whereas they should have referred ut esset to the words of Liberatus thus distinguished from the sacred text. id est ut esset, Deus apparuit per carnem: I had rather therefore wave the conjecture of this Interpolator & fill up the lacunæ by the authority of an ancient Author Hincmarus – who above 800 years ago c[51] related the fact out of Liberatus after this manner. Quidam ipsas scripturas verbis illicitis imposturaverunt, sicut Macedonius Constantinopolitanus episcopus. Qui ab Anastasio Imperatore ideo a civitate expulsus legitur quoniam falsavit Evangelia, et illum Apostoli locum ubi dicit Quod apparuit in carne justificatum est in spiritu per cognationem græcarum literarum Ο et Θ hoc modo mutando falsavit. Vbi enim habuit Qui hoc est ΟΣ, monosyllabum græcum littera mutata Ο in Θ mutavit & fecit ΘΣ, id est ut esset, Deus apparuit per carnem. Quapropter tanquam Nestorianus fuit expulsus. He was banished therefore for changing the ancient reading (which in some MSS was ΟΣ as these authors have it, & in others Ο,) into ΘΣ. But whereas he is here represented a Nestorian for doing this, the meaning is that he was banished for corrupting the text in favour of the doctrine of two natures in Christ, which his enemies accounted Nestorianism tho it was not really so. Nestorius held only a humane nature in Christ <36r> & that God the Word dwelt in this nature as the spirit {illeg} & therefore interpreted it of the {illeg} This {illeg} Macedonius anathematized & {maintained two} natures in Christ, & for proving this corrupted the text {illeg} Christ into two {illeg} Macedonius accounted Nestorianism {illeg} respect the Nestorian faith that they banished him {as a} Nestorian for corrupting the text tho he was not really {illeg}.

But whilst he is said to be banished as a Nestorian for this, without explaining what is there meant by a Nestorian, it looks like a trickish way of speaking used by his friends to ridicule the proceedings against him as inconsistent, & perhaps to invert the crime of falsation as if a Nestorian would rather change ΘΣ into Ο. For they that read history with judgment will too often meet with such trickish reports & even in the very story of Macedonius I meet with some other reports of the same kind. For Macedonius having in his keeping the original Acts of the Council of Chalcedon signed by that Emperor under whom it was called & refusing to deliver this book to the Emperor Anastasius: some to make this Emperor perjured distorted the story as if at his coming to the crown he had promised under his hand & oath that he would not act against the Council of Chalcedon, & represented his subscribed promise to be the book which Macedonius refused to deliver back to him. Macedonius had got his Bishopric by being against the Council of Chalcedon, & a[52] had subscribed the Henoticum of Zeno in which that Council was anathematized: & this being objected against him, his friends to stifle the accusation make a contrary story of the Emperor as if when he came to the crown he had done as much in behalf of the Council. # Another & & < insertion from f 35v > # Another report was d[53] that the people of Alexandria & all Egypt great & small, free & bond, Priests & Monks excepting only strangers, became about this time possessed with evil spirits & being deprived of humane speech barked day & night like doggs so that they were afterward bound with iron chains & drawn to church that they might recover their health. For they all eat their hands and arms. And then an Angel appeared to some of the people saying that this happened to them because they anathematized the Council of Chalcedon, & threatning that they should do so no more. < text from f 36r resumes > Again we are told in b[54] history that the adversaries of Macedonius produced certain boys in judgment to accuse both him & themselves of Sodomy: but when they found his genitals were cut off, they betook themselves to other arts for deposing him. If you can beleive that an Eunuch had the beard & voice of another man & that in a solemn Council the great Patriarch of the East was thus accused & thus acquitted & yet deposed: you must acknowledge that there were many Bishops among the Greeks who would not stick at as ill & shamelesse things as corrupting the scriptures. But if all this be a sham invented to discredit the Council: the need of such shams adds credit to their proceedings in condemning him for a falsary.


This Council (if I mistake not)set first {illeg} being that Council which Theodorus calls a company of {illeg} wretches & Nicephorus a convention of Hereticks assembled {against} Macedonius {illeg} d[55] {illeg} adding to the thrice holy this {illeg} Who art crucified for us the people fell into a {illeg} & afterward when Macedonius came to be accused they fell into a greater tumult crying out. The time of persecution is at hand, let no man desert the Father, meaning Macedonius. In this tumult (which was said to be stirred up by the Clergy of Constantinople) many parts of the City were burnt & the nobles & Emperor brought unto the greatest danger, insomuch that the Emperor was forced to profer the resignation of his Empire before he could quiet the multitude. Then seing that if Macedonius were judged the people would defend him he caused him to be carried by force in the night to Chalcedon & thence into banishment, as Theodorus writes. Whence I gather that the Council removed also to Chalcedon to avoyd the tumult & finish their proceedings there. For the story of his being accused in judgment by boys Nicephorus places after this tumult & all agree that he was condemned, & the Monks of Palestine in an Epistle recorded by Evagrius say that Xeraias & Dioscorus joyned with many Bishops banished him. When his condemnation was sent him signed by the Emperor he asked whether they that condemned him received the Council of Chalcedon, & when they that brought him the sentence denyed it he replied, If Arians & Macedonians had sent me a book of condemnation could I receive it? So that it seems he stood upon the illegality of the Council. The next day one Timothy was made Bishop of Constantinople & he e[56] sent about the condemnation of Macedonius to all the absent Bishops to be subscribed. Whence I think it will easily be granted that he was condemned as a falsary by the greatest part of the eastern Empire & by consequence that the genuine reading was till then by the Churches of that Empire accounted ὃ. For had not the public reading then been ὃ there could have been no colour for pretending that he changed it into θΣ.

About six years after Anastasius dyed & his successors Iustin & Iustinian set up the authority of the Council of Chalcedon again together with that of the Pope over the eastern Churches as universal Bishop. And from that time the friends of Macedonius prevailing, its probable that in opposition to the Hereticks which condemned him & for promoting & establishing the doctrine of two natures <38r> in Christ they received & spread the reading ΘΣ. But as for the authority of the Pope, that fell again with Rome in the Gothick wars & slept till Phocas revived it.

# I told you in – – < insertion from f 37v > # {illeg} men & idiots {illeg} written amisse. For this I gather from an {illeg}ical report of this {illeg}nd put about in the West & thus recorded by Victor Tunnensis in his Chronicle. Messala V. {Cons.} Consantinopoli jubente Anastasio Imperatore sancta Evangelia tanquam ab idiotis Evangelistis composita reprehenduntur et {illeg}endantur . That is In the Consulship of Messala the holy Gospels by this command of the Emperor Anastasius were censured & {condemned} at Constantinople as if written by Evangelists which {illeg} Here Victor errs in the year. For Messala was {Consul in} 506 that is six years before the banishment of Macedonius. But victor is very uncertain in the years: for he places the banishment of Macedonius in the Consulship of Avisanus A.C. 502 & the above-mentioned tumult about the trisagium in the Consulship of Protus A.C. 513: whereas all these things happened in a year For it's plain by this Chronicle that the scriptures were examined & corrected about this time by a Council at Constantinople by the order of Anastasius & I meet with no other Council to which this character can {illeg} besides that which deposed Macedonius. Now that they should censure & correct the Gospels as if written by Idiots is too plainly ironical to be true history & therefore must be an {abusive} report invented & put about to ridicule & shame the Council & to propagate the corruptions of Macedonius as the gen{neral} {& Apo}stolick reading of the scripture which the Council had rashly corrected.

< text from f 38r resumes >

So then the falsation was set on foot in the beginning of the sixt Century & is now of about 1200 years standing & therefore since it lay but in a lettter & so was more easily spread in the greek MSS then the testimony of the three in heaven in the Latine ones, we need not wonder if the old reading be scarce to be met with in any greek MSS now extant: & yet it is in some. For thô Beza tells us that all the greek MSS read Θεὸς yet I must tell Beza's Readers that all his MSS read ὃ. For he had no other MSS on the Epistles besides the Claromontan, & in this MS, as Morinus by ocular inspection a[57] has since informed us, the ancient reading was Ο, but yet in another hand & with other ink, the letter Θ has been written out of the line & the letter Ο thickened to make a Σ appear. Which instance shews sufficiently by whom the ancient reading has been changed. Velesius also read ὃ in one of the Spanish MSS, & so did the author of the Oxford edition of the new Testament A.C. 1675 in the MS of Lincoln College library which is the oldest of the Oxford MSS. The b[58] Alexandria MS & one of Colberts & Cyril c. 12 scholiorum (teste Photio MS com. in epistolas) read ΟΣ. So then there are some ancient greek MSS which read ὃ & others ος: but I do not hear of any Latine ones either ancient or modern which read Θεὸς.

And besides to read Θεὸς makes the sense obscure & difficult. For how can it properly be said that God was justified in the spirit? But to read ὃ, & interpret it of Christ as the ancient Christians did without restraining it to his divinity, makes the sense very easy. For the promised & long expected Messias, the hope of Israel is to us the great mystery of godlinesse, & this mystery was at length manifested to the Iews from the time of his baptism, & justified to be the person whom they expected.

I have now given you an account of the corruption of the text, the summ of which is this. The difference between the greek & the ancient Versions puts it past dispute that either the Greeks have corrupted their MSS or the Latines Syrians & Ethiopians their Versions, & it's more reasonable to lay the fault upon the Greeks then upon the other three for these considerations. It was easier for one nation to do it then for three to conspire. It was easier to change a letter or two in the Greek then six words in the latine. In the Greek the sense is obscure in the Versions clear. It was agreable to the interest of the Greeks to make the change but against the interest of the three nations to do it, & men are never false <39r> to their interests. The greek reading was unknown in the times of the Arian controversy, but that of the Versions then in use amongst both Greeks & Latines. Some greek MSS render the greek reading dubious: but those of the Versions hitherto collated agree. There are no signes of corruption in the Versions hitherto discovered but in the Greek we have shewed you particularly when, on what occasion & by whome the text was corrupted.

I know not whether it be worth the while to tell you that in the printed works of Athanasius there is an Epistle De incarnatione Verbi which reads Θεὸς. For this Epistle relates to the Nestorian heresy & so was written by a much later author then Athanasius, & may also possibly have been since corrected (like the works of Chrysostom & Cyril) by the corrected text of S. Paul's Epistles. I have had so short a time to run my eye over Authors, that I cannot tell whether upon further search, more passages about this falsation may not hereafter occur pertinent to the argument. But if there should I presume it will not be difficult now the falsation is thus far laid open, to know what construction to put upon them & how to apply them.

You see what freedome I have used in this discourse, & I hope you will interpret it candidly. ffor if the ancient Churches in debating & deciding the greatest mysteries of religion, knew nothing of these two texts: I understand not why we should be so fond of them now the debates are over. And whilst it's the character of an honest man to be pleased, & of a man of interest to be troubled at the detection of frauds, & of both to run most into those passions when the detection is made plainest: I hope this letter will to one of your integrity prove so much the more acceptable, as it makes a further discovery then you have hitherto met with in Commentators.


After the fourth Paragraph ending with these words – –––[in order to prove them one God,] add this Paragraph

These passages in Cyprian may receive further light by a like passage in Tertullian, from whence Cyprian seems to have borrowed them. For tis well known that Cyprian (tho otherwise a prudent man) was a great admirer of Tertullians writings & read them frequently, calling Tertullian his Master. The passage is this. a[59] The connexion of the Father in the Son & of the Son in the Paraclete makes three cohering one from another, which three are one (one thing, not one person:) as it is said, I & the Father are one; denoting the unity of substance, not the singularity of number. Here you see Tertullian says not the father word & holy spirit as the text now has it, but the Father Son & Paraclete, nor cites any thing more of the text then these words; which three are one. Tho this his treatise against Praxeas be wholy spent in discoursing about the Trinity & all texts of scripture are cited to prove it, & this text of Iohn as we now read it would have been one of the most obvious & apposite to have been cited at large, yet Tertullian could find no more words in it for his purpose then These three are one. These therefore he interprets – – These he interprets of the Trinity & enforces the interpretation by that other text I and the Father are one, as if the phrase was of the same importance in both places. So then this interpretation seems to have been invented by the Montanists for giving countenance to their Trinity. ffor Tertullian was a Montanist when he wrote this: & its most likely that so corrupt & forct an interpretation had it's rise amongst a sect of men accustomed to make bold with the scriptures. Cyprian being used to it in his Master's writings, it seems from thence to have dropt into his. For this may be gathered from the likeness between their citations. And by the disciples of these two great men it seems to have been propagated amongst those many Latines who (as Eucherius tells us) received it in the next age, understanding the Trinity by the spirit, water & blood. For how without the countenance of some such author an in <41r> terpretation so corrupt & strained should come to be received in that age so generally, I do not understand.

In the last Paragraph but four, after the words [& two in Lincoln College] strike out the words [& five other ancient ones lately brought out of Turkey by Mr Covel & collated by Dr Mills] & instead thereof write [& four or five other ancient ones lately collated at Oxford in order to a new impression of the Greek Testament as I am informed

[1] a. Dicit Dominus Ego et Pater {unum} sumus, et iterum de Patre et {Filio} et Spiritu sancti scriptum est {hi} tres unum sunt. Cyprian de {illeg} Eccles.]

[2] b Si templum Dei factus est quæro cujus Dei? – Si spiritus sancti cùm tres unum sint quomodo spiritus sanctus placatus ei esse potest qui {aut} Patris aut Filij inimicus est. Cyp{rian} Epist 73 ad Iubaianum.

[3] c. Eucherius reads the text thus. Tria sunt quæ testimonium perhibent aqua, sanguis & spiritus: & then adds this interpretation. Plures hic ipsam interpretatione mystica intelligunt Trinitatem, eo quod perfecta ipsa perhibeat testimonium Christo: Aquâ Patrem indicans quia ipse de se dicit. Me dereliquerunt fontem aquæ vivæ; sanguine Christum demonstrans utique per passionis cruorem; spiritu verò sanctum spiritum manifestans. Eucher. De Quæst. N. Testi

[4] d Sane fallite nolo in Epistola Ioannis Apostoli, ubi ait, Tres sunt testes, Spiritus aqua et sanguis et tres unum sunt: ne fortè dicas spiritum et aquam et sanguinem diversas esse substantias et tamen dictum esse tres unum sunt. Propter hoc admonui te ne fallaris. Hæc enim sunt in quibus {illeg} sint sed quid ostendunt {illeg} attenditur ––– Si vero {illeg} <3r> {illeg} Iesus aquam datumus {illeg}ientibus, ait Evangelista, {illeg} {autem} dixit de spiritu quem accepturi erant credentes in {eum} D. Augustini cont. Maximum cap. 22.

[5] e Facundus in the beginning of his book to the Emperor Iustinian, prò defensione trium capitulorum Concilij Chalcedonensis first recites the text after the manner of Cyprian but more distinctly in these words; Nam Ioannes Apostolus in Epistola {suâ} de patre et filio et spiritu sancto sic dicit: Tres sunt qui testimonium dant in terra. Spiritus, Aqua et Sanguis, et hi tres unum sunt in spiritu significantes Patrem Ioan 4.21 – – – – in aqua spiritum sanctum Ioan. 7.37 – – – in sanguine verò filium. And a little after he thus confirms this interpretation by Cyprians authority saying: aut si forsan ipsi qui de Verbo contendunt eo quod dixit tres sunt qui testificantur in terra spiritus aqua et sanguis et hi tres unum sunt, Trinitatem nolunt intelligi, secundum ipsa verba quæ possint pro Apostolo Ioanne respondeant. Numquid hi tres qui in terra testificari et qui unum esse dicuntur possunt spiritus et aquæ et sanguinis dici? Quod tamen Ioannis Apostoli testimonium {illeg} <4r> scripsit, de patre, {filio et spiritu} sancto dictum intelligit. {illeg} Dicit Dominus Ego et Pater unum sumus; et iterum de Patre filio et spiritu sancto scriptum est. Et hi tres unum sunt. Facund. l. 1. p. 16. ex edit. Sirmondi Parisijs 1629.]

[6] a. Hist. N. Test.

[7] {illeg}

[8] f The whole Preface runs thus. Incipit Prologus in Epistolas canonicas. Non ita est ordo apud Græcos, qui integre sapiunt fidemus rectam sectantur, epistolarum septem, quæ canonicæ noncupantur, sicut in Latinis codicibus invenitur: Vt quia Petrus est primus in ordine Apostolorum primæ sint etiam ejus Epistola in ordine cæterarum; sed sicut Evangelistas dudum at veritatis lineam correximus ita has proprio ordini Deo juvante reddidimus. Est enim una earum prima Iacobi, duæ Petri, tres Ioannis et Iudæ una. Quæ si sicut ab his digestæ sunt, ita quoque ab Interpretibus fideliter in Latinam verterentur eloquium, nec ambiguitates legentibus: facerent nec {ser}monum sese varietatis {illeg} pugnarent, illo præcip{illeg} non de unitate Trinitatis {in} prima Ioannis epistola, positum legimus. In qua etiam ab infidelibus translatoribus multum erratum esse a fideo veritate comperimus, trium tantummodo vocabula, hoc est aquæ sanguinis et spiritus in ipsa sua editione ponentibus, et Patris Verbique ac Spiritus sancti testimonium omittentibus: quo maxime et fides catholica coloratur et Patris ac ffilij {ac} Spiritus sancti una divinitate {illeg} substantia comprobatur {illeg}

[9] g Sæpenumero violentus parumque impuden{illeg} sæpe varius {parum} sibi constans. Erasm. Annot. in Ioan. 5.7. Vide etiam {illeg} Erasmus contra {illeg} in h.l. de Hieronymo fusius dixit.

[10] k. Codex Armenianus ante 400 annos {illeg}

[11] {illeg}

[12] m Testimonium {trium} in cælo non est in antiquissimis Illyiricorum & Ruthenorum codicibus quorum unum exemplum a sexcentis fere annis manu scriptum, jam pridem apud Illustrissimum Gabrielem Chineum terræ {Banticæ} Dominum vidi et legi: alterum manibus {illeg}teritur, fide et antiquitate sua nobile. Camillus de Antichristo lib. 2. cap. 2. pag. 156.

[13] n Crit. Hist. N. Test. lib. 1, part. 2, c. 18.

[14] Hesych.ad {illeg} l. 2. c. 8. part {illeg}

[15] Cassiod. in Bibl. S. Patr. edit. Paris. 1589.

[16] See also Ambrose in Luc 22.10 & his book de ijs qui mysterijs initiantur, cap. 4.]

[17] Basil. lib. 5 adv. Eunom. sub finem

[18] Lucas Brug. in calce annot.

[19] a Matth. Paris Hist. an. 1179.

[20] See Walton's Proleg. 10. § 5.

[21] a In editis exemplaribus nonnullis non legi, ut in Aldina et Badien{se} editione. Addo ut in Græco Testam{ento} Gerbelij Hagano 1521 nec in Colinæi Parisijs edito. Gomarus in h. l.

[22] b Cùm præsertim si quisquam alius et {illeg} quoque de his verbis nostro quodam jure judicium ferre possumus. Qui non paucos annos in S. Scripturis Vet. et N. Testamen{illeg} Hebraicè Græcè et Latinè perlegendis consumpserimus, et Hebraica Græcaque ipsa divinarum. {illeg}

[23] Beza in h. l.

[24] Non desunt qui Bezam minus audacem fuisse judicant dum a recepta lectione sæpius sine necessitate recedit, et unius, interdum nullis codicis auctoritate, fretus Prætorianam exercet potestatem ex conjecturis mutando et interpolando textum sacrum pro lubitu. Walton Prolegom. 4.915 in Bib. Polygl.

[25] c Crit. Hist. N. Test. cap. 18.

[26] {illeg}

[27] b. Ex hoc igitur codice Britannico posuimus quod in {illeg} dicebatur deesse, {illeg} cui sit ansa calumniandi. Quanquam et hoc suspicor ad Latinorum codices fuisse castigat. Posteaquam enim {Græcam} concordiam {inierant} cum ecclesia Romana, studuerunt et hac in parte cum Romanis consentire Erasm. Annot. in h.l. Edit. 3a & sequ.

[28] c. Versiculus 1 Ioh. 5.7 in Syriaca, ut et vetustissimis Græcis exemplaribus, nostro Alexandrino alijsque MSS Græcis quos contulimus, non reperitur. Walton Prolegom. 14. § 23. Bib. Pol.

[29] a Accivit {illeg}

[30] a The marginal note is this. Sanctus Thomas in expositione secundæ decreta{illeg} de summa Trinitate & fide catholica tractans in passum contra Abbatem Ioachim, viz. Tres sunt qui testimonium dant in cælo; patre verbum et spiritus sanctus, {dicat} ad litteram verba sequent{ia:} Et ad insinuandam unitatem trium personarum subditum, hi tres unum sunt: Quandoquidem dicitur propter essentiæ unitatem. Sed hoc Ioachim perversè trahere volens ad unitatem charitatis & con{sensu} inducebat consequentem auctoritatem. Nam subditur {illeg} Et tres sunt qui testimonium dant in terra s. spiritus, aqua et sanguis. Et in quibusdam libris additur: et hi tres unum sunt. Sed hoc in {illeg} exemplaribus non habetur sed dicitur esse apposita ab hæreticis Arianis ad pervertendum intellectum sanum auctoritatis {illeg} de unitate essentiæ trium personarum. Hac beatus Thomas ubi supra.

[31] b Sciendum est hoc loco gr Codices apertissimè esse corruptos, nostros verò veritatem ipsam ut a prima origine traducti sunt, continere. Quod ex Prologo B. Hieronymi super Epistolas manifeste apparet. Ait enim: Quæ si sic ut ab eis digestæ sunt ita quoque ab interpretibus fideliter in latinum verterentur eloquium &c. Hæc Stunica in h. l. Ejus {littera} extat in Criticorum Vol. 9.

[32] a Habuimus ab {Hieromo} id quod maximi facit MS Bibl. correctorius incerto auctore quem Epanorthotem aut Correctorem fere vocat magna diligentia ac fide contextum, secuto uti oportet antiquos nostræ editionis codices, eosque cum Hebræis Græcis et {Poetis} patrum commentarijs sedulo collatos: qui {illeg} ad Gen. 8.7 latinus a nobis descriptus est. Hæc Lucas, qui ad Gen. 8.7 dicit librum multis annis scriptum et pluribus forte compositum dein loco ex eo citato pergit. Ad quæ dici quin possit? An quod libro findendam non sit? Non hæc {licet} qui {illeg}: quæ namque a nostri seculi scriptoribus ea MSS codicibus collectæ sunt variæ lectiones omnes propemodum in eo comperrimus et ad fontes fideliter examin{illeg} deprehendimus. Scripsit hac Lucas anno 1579 {illeg} sequitur Correctoriam {illeg} disputationes Erasmus testibus in cælo elaborat{illeg} esse.

[33] The contents of this note are only visible in the diplomatic transcript because they were deleted on the original manuscript

[34] c. {illeg} <23r> cato patris ac verbi {ac} spiritus sancti. {illeg} codices aliter legentis describendo sic pergit. Nostro tempore duo Græci codices manuscripti reperti sunt, unus in Anglia & alter in Hispania: quorum uterque hoc loco testimonium habet Patris Verbi et Spiritu sancti.

[35] d Hic obiter illud incidit admonendum esse Græcorum quosdam novi Testamenti codices ad Latinorum exemplaria emendatos. Id factum est in fœdere Græcorum cum Romana Ecclesia: quod fœdus testatur Bulla quæ dicitur aurea. Visum est enim et hoc ad firmandam concordiam pertinere. Et nos olim in hujusmodi codicem incidimus, et talis adhuc dicitur adservari, in Bibliotheca Pontificia. Verum ex his corrigere nostros est {Lesbia} ut aiunt admovere regulam. Erasm. ad Lectorem edit. 5ta N.T.

[36] Citations in the text of Scripture

[37] a Acts 13.33.

[38] b Luc. 1.35.

[39] b καθὼς γέ{γραντα} ὅτι τὸ ὕδωρ καὶ τὸ ἁιμα καὶ τὸ πνευμα; ὁι τρεις τὸ έν ἐισιν Dionys. Alexand. Resp ad Pauli Samosatensis Quæst. 4.

[40] d. Erasm. advers. Monach. Hisp. in articulo de Trinitate.

[41] a Oratio {illeg}

[42] {illeg}

[43] a Codex græcus hoc loco jam legit ΘΣ pro ΟΣ sensu perturbato.

[44] Concil. Ephes. part. sub initio.

[45] a Vide Baronium ann 451 § 149, 150, 151.

[46] b Evagr. l 3. c. 22. Theodorus Lector l {illeg} Marcellus Chron.

[47] c. {Theosius} was {illeg} in the year of Antioch 963 as Evagrius notes, & Macedonius banished the same year or the year {before}.

[48] a Liberat. Brev. cap. 19.

[49] Vide Baronium an. 510. sect 9.

[50] d. NB. In Hincmarus Opusc 33, c 22, the words ut esset are in like manner referred to the sacred text & some body to make out the sense has in their stead added ut appareret to the words of Liberatus & written ut appareret, ut esset Deus, &c. But the words ut appareret not being in Liberatus must be struck out & supplied by setting the comma after ut esset to part these words from the sacred text.

[51] c Hincmar. opusc. 33. cap. 18.

[52] a Vide annotationes Valesij in Evag. l {3} c. 31.

[53] d Victor {Tunnensis} in Chronico

[54] b Evagr. l. 3. c. 82.

[55] Theodorus l. 2 Nicephorus l 16. c 26. {Eusebius} l. 3 c. 44.

[56] e Theophanus p. 135.

[57] a Alia manu {illeg}

[58] b Alia menu atramento {illeg} <38v> antiquus tum conspicua esset ut usque nunc per medium lineæ crassiori alio atramento superinductæ cerni possit, quid opus esset ut a lineâ illâ superinductâ incrassaretur: sin olim tam evanida esset ut cerni vix posset mirum est quod ejus ductus et vestigia satis certa per medium lituræ illius superinductæ etiamnum appareant. Doceant verba evanida alijs in locis atramento novo incrassata fuisse vel futeantur ΟΣ hic mutatum in ΘΣ

[59] a Connexus Patris in filio et filij in Paracleto tres {efficit} cohærentes alterum ex altero: qui tres unum sunt (non unus:) quomodo dictum est Ego et Pater unum sumus; ad substantiæ unitatem non ad numeri singularitatem. Tertul. adv. Pra. c. 25.

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