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Actes and Monumentes of the Church.

had sacrificed. Furthermore, other there were whyche stoutly withstood them, denying with a loud voyce that they had done no such sacrifice. Of whom some sayde, they were Christians, and gloryed in the profession of that name: some cryed saying, that neyther they had, nor would euer be partakers of that idolatry. And those being bouffeted on the face and mouth with the hands of the soldiours, were made to holde their peace, and so thrust out with violence. And if the sayntes dyd seeme neuer so litle, to do what the enemies would haue them, they were made much of. Albeit all this purpose of the aduersary, did nothingn preuayle, agaynst the holye and constant seruauntes of Christ. Notwithstanding, of the weake sorte innumerable there were, which for feare & infirmitye fel and gaue ouer, euen at the first brunt.

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MarginaliaThe noble courage and constancie of a christian Martyr.At the first comming downe of these edictes into Nicomedia, there chaunced a deede to be done, much worthy of note and memory, of a Christian, being a noble man borne, which moued by the zeale of God, after the proclamation made at Nicomedia was set vp, by & by ranne and tooke downe the same, and openly tare and rent it in peeces, not fearing the presence of the twoo Emperours, then being in the Citie. For which act he was put to a most bitter death, which death hee wyth great fayth and constancye endured euen to the last gaspe. Euseb. lib. 8. cap. 3. &. 5.

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After this the furious rage of the malignant Emperours, being let loose against the sayntes of Christ proceeded more and more, making hauocke of Gods people, throughout al quarters of the world. First Dioclesian, which had purposed with hymselfe to subuert the whole Christian religion, executed his tyrannye in the East, and Maximianus in the west. But wyly Dioclesian began very subtilly: MarginaliaPersecutiō first beginnyng in the Emperours campe.for he put the matter first in practise in his owne campe, among whō the Marshal of the field, as Euseb. lib. 8. cap. 4. affirmeth: put the Christiā soldiours to this choyse, whether they woulde obey the Emperours commaundement in that maner of sacrifice he commaunded, and so both to keepe their offices, and leade their bandes, or els to laye awaye from them their armour and weapons. MarginaliaNotable religion and fayth in soldiours.Whereunto the Christen men couragiously answered, that they were not onelye ready to lay away their armour and weapons, but also to suffer death if it should with tyrannye be enforced vnto them, rather then they would obey the wycked decrees and commaundementes of the Emperour.

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There might a man haue sene verye manye whych were desirous to liue a simple and poore life: and which regarded no estimation and honour in comparison of true pietie and godlynes. And this was no more but a subtyl and wily flatterie in the beginning, to offer them to be at their own liberty, whether they wuld wyllingly abiure their professiō or not: as also this was an other, that in the beginning of the persecution, there were but a few tormented with punishment, but afterwarde by litle & litle he began more manifestlye to brast out into persecution: It can hardlye be expressed with woordes what number of Martyrs, and what bloud was shedde throughe all cities and regions for the name of Christ. Euseb. in his. 8. booke, and. 7. chap. sayth that he hymselfe knew, the worthy Martyrs that wer in Palestina. MarginaliaMartyrs of Tyre in Phoenicia.But in Tire of Phenicia he declareth in the same place a marueylous martyrdome made, wher certayne Christians being geuen to most cruell wylde beastes, were preserued without hurt of them, to the great admiracion of the beholders, and those Lions, Beares, and Lybardes (kept hungry for that purpose) had no desyre to deuour them: which notwithstanding most vehemently raged agaynste those by whom they were brought into the stage, and stoode as they thought without daunger of thē, suche were first deuoured. But the Christiā martyrs, because they coulde not be hurt of the beastes, be-ing slayne with the sword, were afterward throwne into the sea. At that time were martyred Tyrannion byshop of Tyre, Zenobius, B. of Sidon: But Syluanus the bishop of Gazensis with. 39. other were slaine in the mettal mynes of Phenicia. MarginaliaPamphilus byshop of Cesarea Martyr.Pamphilius the Elder of Cesarea, being the glorye of that congregation, died a most worthy martyr, whose both life and most cōmendable martyrdom, Eusebius often tymes declareth in his. 8. booke, and. 13. chap. in so much þt he hath writen þe same in a boke by it self. MarginaliaMartyrs of Syria.In Syria al þe chief teachers of the congregation were fyrst committed to prison, as a most heauy and cruel spectacle to behold, as also the byshops, Elders, and Deacons, which al were estemed as menquellers and perpetratours of most wicked factes. Euseb. lib. 8. cap. 6. MarginaliaTirānion Martyr.
Zenobius a phisition martyr.
After that we reade of an other, whose name was Tirannion, which was made meate for the fishes of the sea, and of Zenobius, which was a verye good Phisition, which also was slayne with bricke bats in the same place. Euseb. lib. 8. cap. 13.

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Furthermore he maketh mencion in the same place of others which were not tormented to death, but euery day terrified & feared wtout ceasing: Of some others that were brought to the sacrifices, and commaunded to do sacrifice, which woulde rather thrust their ryght hand into the fire, then touche the prophane or wycked sacrifice. Also of some others that before they were apprehended, would cast downe them selues from steepe places, least that being taken they should commit anye thing against their profession. MarginaliaTwo Vyrgines wyth theyr Mother martyrs.Also of two virgins very fayre and proper, with their mother also which had studiously brought them vp, euen from their infancy in all godlynes, being long sought for, and at the last found, and straightly kept by their keepers, whilest they made their excuse to do þt which nature required, threw them selues downe headlong into a ryuer. MarginaliaTwo other maydens sisters martyrs.Also of other twoo yong maydens being sisters, and of a worshipful stock, and indued with many goodly vertues, wer cast of the persecutours into the sea. And these thinges were done at Antioche as Eusebius in his. 8. booke, and. 13. chap. affirmeth. MarginaliaSyluanus byshop of Emissa martyr.But Syluanus the bishop of Emissa that notable martyr together with certayn others wer thrown to the wylde beastes. Euseb. lib. 8. cap. 13.

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MarginaliaMartyrs of Mesopotamia.Diuers and sundry tormentes were the Christians in Mesopotamia molested with, where they were hanged vp by the feete, and their heads downwardes, and with the smoke of a smal fire strangled. MarginaliaMartyrs of Capadocia.And also in Capadocia, wher the Martyrs had their legs broken. Euseb. lib. cap. 12.

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MarginaliaMartyrs of Tarsus.
Tharatus,
Probus,
Andronicus martirs
Henricus de Efordia maketh mention of the Martyrs of Tarsus in Cilicia as Tharatus, Probus, and Andronicus: MarginaliaMartyrs of Pontus.But yet the Martyrs in the regions of Pōtus suffered farre more passing and sharper tormentes, wherof I wyl hereafter make mention Eusebius. ibidē. MarginaliaMartyrs of NicomediaYet outragious was the beginning of the persecution which þe Emperor made in Nicomedia in Bithinia, as afore is sayd, where he refrayned not from the slaughter and death of the children of Emperours, neither yet from slaughter of the most chiefest princes of his court, whom a litle before he made as much of, as if they had bene his own childrē. MarginaliaPersecutiō in Nicomedia exceeding Peter a most valiāt & constant martyr.Such an other was Peter, which amongest diuers and sundry tormentes, among whom he being naked was lyfted vp, his whole bodye beyng beaten with whips and torne, that a man might see the bare bones, and after they had mingled viniger & salte together, they poured it vpon the most tender partes of his bodie, and lastly rosted at a soft fire, as a man wold rost flesh to eate, as a victorious martyr ended hys lyfe. MarginaliaDorothe9
Gorgoni9
Martyrs.
Dorotheus and Gorgonius being in great autoritye & office vnder the Emperour, after diuers torments wer strangled with an halter, which both being of the priuy chamber to him, when they sawe and behelde the greuous punishment of Peter their houshold companion:

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