Selections from Bayle's Dictionary

By Pierre Bayle; E. A. Beller et al. | Go to book overview

SELECTIONS FROM BAYLE'S DICTIONARY

Abdas , A Bishop in Persia, in the time of Theodosius the younger, was, thro' his inconsiderate Zeal, the Cause of a very terrible Persecution, which was raised against the Christians, who enjoy'd a full Liberty of Conscience in Persia, when this Bishop took the Liberty to pull down one of the Temples, where the Persians worshipped the Fire. The Magi made their Complaints to the King,A who sent for Abdas, and, after a mild Rebuke, ordered him to rebuild the Temple.

['Twas Isdegerdes, if we rely upon Theodoret;1 but, ac- cording to Socrates,2 the Persecution began under Varanes, Son and Successor of Isdegerdes. Baronius3 dares not determine which of the two is in the right.]

A

Abdas refused to do it, though that Prince declared to him, that, in case of his Disobedience, he would cause all the Christian Churches to be pulled down. Which Threat he executed4; and all the Christians were delivered up to the Mercy of his Clergy,B who, being angry at the Toleration that had been granted them, fell upon them with great Fury.

[So I call the Magi, who, amongst other things, took care of Religion. It was their business to prevent all manner of Innovation in Religious Matters. Theodoret5 compares them to a Whirlwind, which raises the Waves of the Sea. The Tempest continu'd more than thirty Years, being rais'd by the Magi, as so many Whirlwinds; such was their Function in the Storm that tossed so violently the Church of Persia. Socrates6 tells us, that they made use of several Impostures to put a

B

____________________
1
Theod. Hist. Eccles. 1.7 c.39.
2
Socrat. Hist. Eccl. I. 7. c.18.
3
Baron, ad ann. 420.
4
Ex Theodoret Eccles. Hist. 1.5 c.39.
5
Theod. Hist. Eccles. 1.5. c.39.
6
Socrat. 1.7 c.8.

-3-

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Selections from Bayle's Dictionary
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Introduction vii
  • Editorial Notes xxxiii
  • ABDAS 3
  • ADAM 8
  • ANABAPTISTS 26
  • AUGUSTIN 49
  • BERNARD 77
  • CASTILE 83
  • CONSTANCE 93
  • DAVID 96
  • Hobbes 125
  • JAPAN 142
  • KNUZEN 153
  • MANICHEES 157
  • POQUELIN 183
  • PYRRHO 202
  • REMOND 225
  • RUGGERI 241
  • SARAH 262
  • SPINOZA 291
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