Pope Leo Confronts Attila the Hum

EUTYCHES: (c.378-454), archimandrite [abbot] of a monastery in Constantinople, so opposed Nestorius' emphasis on the distinction of natures, that he declared the incarnate Christ had only one [divine] nature (physis), and that Christ's humanity is not consubstantial with ours. 

With the help of Pope Leo the Great the Council declared:

CHRIST has TWO NATURES (physeis/naturae) in ONE PERSON (hypostasis/persona) without confusion, without change, without division, without separation;

Tome of Leo





     Surprised as we were at the late arrival of your charity’s letter, we read it and examined the account of what the bishops had done. We now see what scandal against the integrity of the faith had reared its head among you. What had previously been kept secret now became clearly revealed to us.


Eutyches, who was considered a man of honour because he had the title of priest, is shown to be very rash and extremely ignorant. What the prophet said can be applied to him: He did not want to understand and do good: he plotted evil in his bed. What can be worse than to have an irreligious mind and to pay no heed to those who are wiser and more learned?

Quibus Eutyches, qui presbyterii nomine honorabilis videbatur, multum inprudens et nimis inperitus ostenditur, ut etiam de ipso dictum sit a propheta: noluit intellegere ut bene ageret; iniquitatem meditatus est in cubili suo. Quid autem iniquius quam impia sapere et sapientioribus doctoribus que non cedere?

The people who fall into this folly are those in whom knowledge of the truth is blocked by a kind of dimness. They do not refer to

Sed in hanc insipientiam cadunt qui cum ad cognoscendam veritatem aliquo inpediuntur obscuro,

     * the sayings of the prophets, nor to

non ad propheticas voces,

     * the letters of the apostles, nor even to

non ad apostolicas litteras

     * the authoritative words of the gospels,

nec ad evangelicas auctoritates,

     but to themselves. By not being pupils of the truth, they turn out to be masters of error.

sed ad semet ipsos recurrunt et ideo magistri erroris existunt, quia veritatis discipuli non fuerunt.

A man who has not the most elementary understanding even of the creed itself can have learnt nothing from the sacred texts of the New and Old Testaments. This old man has not yet taken to heart what is pronounced by every baptismal candidate the world over!

Quam enim eruditionem de sacris novi et veteris testamenti paginis adquisivit qui ne ipsius quidem symboli initia conprehendit et quod per totum mundum omnium regenerandorum voce depromitur, istius adhuc senis corde non capitur?

     He had no idea how he ought to think about the incarnation of the Word of God; and he had no desire to acquire the light of understanding by working through the length and breadth of the holy scriptures. So at least he should have listened carefully and accepted the common and undivided creed by which the whole body of the faithful confess that they believe in

Nesciens igitur quid deberet de verbi dei incarnatione sentire, nec volens ad promerendum lumen intellegentiae in sanctarum scripturarum latitudine laborare illam saltem communem et indiscretam confessionem sollicito recepisset auditu, qua fidelium universitas profitetur credere se

     1. God the Father almighty and in

in deum patrem omnipotentem

     2. Jesus Christ his only Son, our Lord,

et in Iesum Christum filium eius unicum, dominum nostrum,

     3. who was born of the holy Spirit and the virgin Mary.

qui natus est de spiritu sancto et Maria virgine,

     These three statements wreck the tricks of nearly every heretic.

quibus tribus sententiis omnium fere haereticorum machinae destruuntur.

When God is believed to be both almighty and Father, the Son is clearly proved to be co-eternal with him, in no way different from the Father, since he was born God from God, almighty from the Almighty, co-eternal from the Eternal, not later in time, not lower in power, not unlike in glory, not distinct in being. The same eternal, only-begotten of the eternal begetter was born of the holy Spirit and the virgin Mary. His birth in time in no way subtracts from or adds to that divine and eternal birth of his: but its whole purpose is to restore humanity, who had been deceived, so that it might defeat death and, by its power, destroy the devil who held the power of death.

Cum enim deus et omnipotens et pater creditur, consempiternus eidem filius demonstratur, in nullo a patre differens, quia de deo deus, de omnipotente omnipotens, de aeterno natus est coaeternus, non posterior tempore, non inferior potestate, non dissimilis gloria, non divisus essentia. Idem vero sempiterni genitoris unigenitus sempiternus natus est de spiritu sancto et Maria virgine, quae nativitas temporalis illi nativitati divinae et sempiternae nihil minuit, nihil contulit, sed totam se reparando homini, qui erat deceptus, inpendit, ut et mortem vinceret et diabolum, qui mortis habebat imperium, sua virtute destrueret.

Overcoming the originator of sin and death would be beyond us, had not he whom sin could not defile, nor could death hold down, taken up our nature and made it his own. He was conceived from the holy Spirit inside the womb of the virgin mother. Her virginity was as untouched in giving him birth as it was in conceiving him.

Non enim superare possemus peccati et mortis auctorem, nisi naturam nostram ille susciperet et suam faceret quem nec peccatum contaminare nec mors potuit detinere. Conceptus quippe est de spiritu sancto intra uterum virginis matris, quae illum ita salva virginitate edidit quemadmodum salva virginitate concepit.

     But if it was beyond Eutyches to derive sound understanding from this, the purest source of the christian faith, because the brightness of manifest truth had been darkened by his own peculiar blindness, then he should have subjected himself to the teaching of the gospels. When Matthew says, The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, son of David, son of Abraham, Eutyches should have looked up the further development in the apostolic preaching. When he read in the letter to the Romans, Paul, the servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle, set apart for God’s gospel, which he had formerly promised through his prophets in the holy writings which refer to his Son, who was made for him of David’s seed according to the flesh, he should have paid deep and devout attention to the prophetic texts. And when he discovered God making the promise to Abraham that in your seed shall all nations be blessed, he should have followed the apostle, in order to eliminate any doubt about the identity of this seed, when he says, The promises were spoken to Abraham and his seed .

Sed si de hoc Christianae fidei fonte purissimo sincerum intellectum haurire non poterat, quia splendorem perspicuae veritatis obcaecatione sibi propria tenebrarat, doctrinae se evangelicae subdidisset et dicente Matthaeo liber generationis Iesu Christi filii David filii Habraham, apostolicae quoque praedicationis expetisset instructum et legens in epistula ad Romanos Paulus servus Christi Iesu, vocatus apostolus segregatus in evangelium dei quod ante promiserat per prophetas suos in scripturis sanctis de filio suo, qui factus est ei ex semine David secundum carnem ad propheticas paginas piam sollicitudinem contulisset et inveniens promissionem dei ad Habraham dicentis in semine tuo benedicentur omnes gentes, ne de huius seminis proprietate dubitaret, secutus fuisset apostolum dicentem Habrahae dictae sunt promissiones et semini eius.

He does not say “to his seeds”--as if referring to a multiplicity--but to a single one, “and to thy seed “ which is Christ. His inward ear should also have heard Isaiah preaching Behold, a virgin will receive in the womb and will bear a son, and they will call his name Emmanuel, which is translated “God is with us”. With faith he should have read the same prophet’s words, A child is born to us, a son is given to us. His power is on his shoulders. They will call his name “Angel of great counsel, mighty God, prince of peace, father of the world to come”. Then he would not deceive people by saying that the Word was made flesh in the sense that he emerged from the virgin’s womb having a human form but not having the reality of his mother’s body.

Non dicit: et seminibus, quasi in multis sed quasi in uno: et semini tuo, quod est Christus; Esaiae quoque praedicationem interiore adprehendisset auditu dicentis ecce virgo in utero accipiet et pariet filium et vocabunt nomen eius Emmanuhel, quod est interpretatum nobis cum deus eiusdem que prophetae fideliter verba legisset puer natus est nobis, filius datus est nobis, cuius potestas super humeros eius, et vocabunt nomen eius magni consilii angelus, deus fortis, princeps pacis, pater futuri saeculi, nec frustratorie loquens ita verbum diceret carnem factum, ut editus utero virginis Christus haberet formam hominis et non haberet materni corporis veritatem.

     Or was it perhaps that he thought that our lord Jesus Christ did not have our nature because the angel who was sent to the blessed Mary said, The holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the most High will overshadow you, and so that which will be born holy out of you will be called Son of God, as if it was because the conception by the virgin was worked by God that the flesh of the one conceived did not share the nature of her who conceived it? But uniquely wondrous and wondrously unique as that act of generation was, it is not to be understood as though the proper character of its kind was taken away by the sheer novelty of its creation.

An forte ideo putavit dominum Iesum Christum non nostrae esse naturae, quia missus ad beatam Mariam angelus ait: spiritus sanctus superveniet in te et virtus altissimi obumbrabit tibi ideo que quod nascetur ex te sanctum, vocabitur filius dei, ut quia conceptus virginis divini fuit operis, non de natura concipientis fuerit caro concepti? sed non ita intellegenda est illa generatio singulariter mirabilis et mirabiliter singularis, ut per novitatem creationis proprietas remota sit generis.


It was the holy Spirit that made the virgin pregnant, but the reality of the body derived from body. As Wisdom built a house for herself, the Word was made flesh and dwelt amongst us: that is, in that flesh which he derived from human kind and which he animated with the spirit of a rational life.

Fecunditatem virginis spiritus sanctus dedit, veritas autem corporis sumpta de corpore est, et aedificante sibi sapientia domum verbum caro factum est et habitavit in nobis, hoc est in ea carne quam sumpsit ex homine et quam spiritu vitae rationalis animavit.





     So the proper character of both natures was maintained and came together in a single person. Salva igitur proprietate utriusque naturae et in unam coeunte personam





 Lowliness was taken up by majesty, weakness by strength, mortality by eternity. To pay off the debt of our state, invulnerable nature was united to a nature that could suffer; so that in a way that corresponded to the remedies we needed, one and the same mediator between God and humanity the man Christ Jesus, could both on the one hand die and on the other be incapable of death. Thus was true God born in the undiminished and perfect nature of a true man, complete in what is his and complete in what is ours.

suscepta est a maiestate humilitas, a virtute infirmitas, ab aeternitate mortalitas, et ad resolvendum conditionis nostrae debitum natura inviolabilis naturae est unita passibili, ut quod nostris remediis congruebat, unus atque idem mediator dei et hominum homo Christus Iesus et mori posset ex uno et mori non posset ex altero.

In integra ergo veri hominis perfecta que natura verus natus est deus, totus in suis, totus in nostris.


By “ours” we mean what the Creator established in us from the beginning and what he took upon himself to restore. There was in the Saviour no trace of the things which the Deceiver brought upon us, and to which deceived humanity gave admittance.

Nostra autem dicimus quae in nobis ab initio creator condidit et quae reparanda suscepit; nam illa quae deceptor intulit et homo deceptus admisit, nullum habuerunt in salvatore vestigium.

His subjection to human weaknesses in common with us did not mean that he shared our sins.

Nec quia communionem humanarum subiit infirmitatum, ideo nostrorum fuit particeps delictorum.

He took on the form of a servant without the defilement of sin, thereby enhancing the human and not diminishing the divine. For that self-emptying whereby the Invisible rendered himself visible, and the Creator and Lord of all things chose to join the ranks of mortals, spelled no failure of power: it was an act of merciful favour.

Adsumpsit formam servi sine sorde peccati, humana augens, divina non minuens, quia exinanitio illa qua se invisibilis visibilem praebuit et creator ac dominus omnium rerum unus voluit esse mortalium, inclinatio fuit miserationis, non defectio potestatis.

So the one who retained the form of God when he made humanity, was made man in the form of a servant. Each nature kept its proper character without loss; and just as the form of God does not take away the form of a servant, so the form of a servant does not detract from the form of God.

Proinde qui manens in forma dei fecit hominem, in forma servi factus est homo; tenet enim sine defectu proprietatem suam utraque natura et sicut formam servi dei forma non adimit, ita formam dei servi forma non minuit.

     It was the devil’s boast that humanity had been deceived by his trickery and so had lost the gifts God had given it; and that it had been stripped of the endowment of immortality and so was subject to the harsh sentence of death. He also boasted that, sunk as he was in evil, he himself derived some consolation from having a partner in crime; and that God had been forced by the principle of justice to alter his verdict on humanity, which he had created in such an honourable state. All this called for the realisation of a secret plan whereby the unalterable God, whose will is indistinguishable from his goodness, might bring the original realisation of his kindness towards us to completion by means of a more hidden mystery, and whereby humanity, which had been led into a state of sin by the craftiness of the devil, might be prevented from perishing contrary to the purpose of God.

Nam quia gloriabatur diabolus hominem sua fraude deceptum divinis caruisse muneribus et inmortalitatis dote nudatum duram mortis subisse sententiam se que in malis suis quoddam de praevaricatoris consortio invenisse solatium, deum quoque iustitiae exigente ratione erga hominem, quem tanto honore condiderat, propriam mutasse sententiam, opus fuit secreti dispensatione consilii, ut incommutabilis deus, cuius voluntas non potest sua benignitate privari, primam erga nos pietatis suae dispensationem sacramento occultiore conpleret et homo diabolicae iniquitatis versutia actus in culpam contra dei propositum non periret.

     So without leaving his Father’s glory behind, the Son of God comes down from his heavenly throne and enters the depths of our world, born in an unprecedented order by an unprecedented kind of birth. In an unprecedented order, because one who is invisible at his own level was made visible at ours. The ungraspable willed to be grasped.

Ingreditur ergo haec mundi infima filius dei de caelesti sede descendens et a paterna gloria non recedens novo ordine, nova nativitate generatus, novo ordine, quia invisibilis in suis visibilis est factus in nostris, inconprehensibilis voluit conprehendi,

Whilst remaining pre-existent, he begins to exist in time. The Lord of the universe veiled his measureless majesty and took on a servant’s form. The God who knew no suffering did not despise becoming a suffering man, and, deathless as he is, to be subject to the laws of death. By an unprecedented kind of birth, because it was inviolable virginity which supplied the material flesh without experiencing sexual desire.

ante tempora manens esse coepit ex tempore, universitatis dominus servilem formam obumbrata maiestatis suae immensitate suscepit, inpassibilis deus non dedignatus est homo esse passibilis et inmortalis mortis legibus subiacere; nova autem nativitate generatus, quia inviolata virginitas concupiscentiam nescivit, carnis materiam ministravit.

What was taken from the mother of the Lord was the nature without the guilt. And the fact that the birth was miraculous does not imply that in the lord Jesus Christ, born from the virgin’s womb, the nature is different from ours.

Adsumpta est de matre domini natura, non culpa, nec in domino Iesu Christo ex utero virginis genito, quia nativitas est mirabilis, ideo nostri est natura dissimilis.

The same one is true God and true man.

Qui enim verus est deus, idem verus est homo.

There is nothing unreal about this oneness, since both the lowliness of the man and the grandeur of the divinity are in mutual relation.

Et nullum est in hac unitate mendacium, dum in invicem sunt et humilitas hominis et altitudo deitatis.

As God is not changed by showing mercy, neither is humanity devoured by the dignity received.

Sicut enim deus non mutatur miseratione, ita homo non consumitur dignitate.

The activity of each form is what is proper to it in communion with the other: that is, the Word performs what belongs to the Word, and the flesh accomplishes what belongs to the flesh.

Agit enim utraque forma cum alterius communione quod proprium est, verbo scilicet operante quod verbi est, et carne exequente quod carnis est.

One of these performs brilliant miracles the other sustains acts of violence.

Unum horum coruscat miraculis, aliud subcumbit iniuriis.

As the Word does not lose its glory which is equal to that of the Father, so neither does the flesh leave the nature of its kind behind. We must say this again and again: one and the same is truly Son of God and truly son of man. God, by the fact that in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God; man, by the fact that the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us. God, by the fact that all things were made through him, and nothing was made without him, man, by the fact that he was made of a woman, made under the law.

Et sicut verbum ab aequalitate paternae gloriae non recedit, ita caro naturam nostri generis non relinquit; unus enim idem que est, quod saepe dicendum est, vere dei filius et vere hominis filius, deus per id quod in principio erat verbum et verbum erat apud deum et deus erat verbum, homo per id quod verbum caro factum est et habitavit in nobis; deus per id quod omnia per ipsum facta sunt et sine ipso factum est nihil, homo per id quod factus est ex muliere, factus sub lege.

The birth of flesh reveals human nature; birth from a virgin is a proof of divine power. A lowly cradle manifests the infancy of the child; angels’ voices announce the greatness of the most High.

Nativitas carnis manifestatio est humanae naturae, partus virginis divinae est virtutis indicium; infantia parvuli ostenditur humilitate cunarum, magnitudo altissimi declaratur vocibus angelorum.

Herod evilly strives to kill one who was like a human being at the earliest stage the Magi rejoice to adore on bended knee one who is the Lord of all.

Similis est rudimentis hominum quem Herodes impie molitur occidere, sed dominus est omnium quem magi gaudent suppliciter adorare.

And when he came to be baptised by his precursor John, the Father’s voice spoke thunder from heaven, to ensure that he did not go unnoticed because the divinity was concealed by the veil of flesh: This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Iam cum ad praecursoris sui Iohannis baptismum venit, ne lateret quod carnis velamine divinitas tegeretur, vox patris de caelo intonans dixit: hic est filius meus dilectus, in quo mihi bene conplacui.

Accordingly, the same one whom the devil craftily tempts as a man, the angels dutifully wait on as God.

Quem itaque sicut hominem diabolica temptat astutia, eidem sicut deo angelica famulantur officia.

Hunger, thirst, weariness, sleep are patently human. But to satisfy five thousand people with five loaves; to dispense living water to the Samaritan woman, a drink of which will stop her being thirsty ever again; to walk on the surface of the sea with feet that do not sink; to rebuke the storm and level the mounting waves; there can be no doubt these are divine.

Esurire sitire lassescere atque dormire evidenter humanum est, sed quinque panibus quinque milia hominum satiare et largiri Samaritanae aquam vivam, cuius haustus bibenti praestet ne ultra iam sitiat, supra dorsum maris plantis non desidentibus ambulare et elationes fluctuum increpata tempestate consternere sine ambiguitate divinum est.

So, if I may pass over many instances, it does not belong to the same nature to weep out of deep-felt pity for a dead friend, and to call him back to life again at the word of command, once the mound had been removed from the four-dayold grave; or to hang on the cross and, with day changed into night, to make the elements tremble; or to be pierced by nails and to open the gates of paradise for the believing thief. Likewise, it does not belong to the same nature to say I and the Father are one, and to say The Father is greater than I.

Sicut ergo, ut multa praeteream, non eiusdem naturae est flere miserationis affectu amicum mortuum et eundem remoto quadriduanae aggere sepulturae ad vocis imperium excitare redivivum aut ligno pendere et in noctem luce conversa omnia elementa tremefacere aut clavis transfixum esse et paradisi portas fidei latronis aperire, ita non eiusdem naturae est dicere ego et pater unum sumus et dicere pater maior me est.

For although there is in the Lord Jesus Christ a single person who is of God and of man, the insults shared by both have their source in one thing, and the glory that is shared in another.

Quamvis enim in domino Iesu Christo dei et hominis una persona sit, aliud tamen est unde in utroque communis est contumelia, aliud unde communis est gloria.

For it is from us that he gets a humanity which is less than the Father; it is from the Father that he gets a divinity which is equal to the Father.

De nostro enim illi est minor patre humanitas, de patre illi est aequalis cum patre divinitas.

So it is on account of this oneness of the person, which must be understood in both natures, that we both read that the son of man came down from heaven, when the Son of God took flesh from the virgin from whom he was born, and again that the Son of God is said to have been crucified and buried, since he suffered these things not in the divinity itself whereby the Only-begotten is co-eternal and consubstantial with the Father, but in the weakness of the human nature.

Propter hanc ergo unitatem personae in utraque natura intellegendam et filius hominis legitur descendisse de caelo, cum filius dei carnem de ea virgine de qua est natus, adsumpserit, et rursum filius dei crucifixus dicitur ac sepultus, cum haec non in divinitate ipsa qua unigenitus consempiternus et consubstantialis est patri, sed in naturae humanae sit infirmitate perpessus.

That is why in the creed, too, we all confess that the only-begotten Son of God was crucified and was buried, following what the apostle said, If they had known, they would never have crucified the Lord of majesty.

Unde unigenitum filium dei crucifixum et sepultum omnes etiam in symbolo confitemur secundum illud apostoli si enim cognovissent, numquam dominum maiestatis crucifixissent.

And when our Lord and Saviour himself was questioning his disciples and instructing their faith, he says, Who do people say 1, the son of man, am? And when they had displayed a variety of other people’s opinions, he says, Who do you say I am ? --in other words, I who am the son of man and whom you behold in the form of a servant and in real flesh: Who do you say I am? Whereupon the blessed Peter, inspired by God and making a confession that would benefit all future peoples, says, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. He thoroughly deserved to be declared “blessed” by the Lord. He derived the stability of both his goodness and his name from the original Rock, for when the Father revealed it to him, he confessed that the same one is both the Son of God and also the Christ. Accepting one of these truths without the other was no help to salvation; and to have believed that the Lord Jesus Christ was either only God and not man, or solely man and not God, was equally dangerous.

Cum autem ipse dominus noster atque salvator fidem discipulorum suis interrogationibus erudiret: quem me, inquit, dicunt homines esse filium hominis? cum que illi diversas aliorum opiniones retexuissent, vos, ait, quem me dicitis esse? me utique, qui sum filius hominis et quem in forma servi atque in veritate carnis aspicitis, quem esse me dicitis? ubi beatus Petrus divinitus inspiratus et confessione sua omnibus gentibus profuturus: tu es, inquit, Christus filius dei vivi, nec inmerito beatus est pronuntiatus a domino et a principali petra soliditatem et virtutis traxit et nominis qui per revelationem patris eundem et dei filium est confessus et Christum, quia unum horum sine alio receptum non proderat ad salutem et aequalis erat periculi dominum Iesum Christum aut deum tantummodo sine homine aut sine deo solum hominem credidisse.

After the Lord’s resurrection--which was certainly the resurrection of a real body, since the one brought back to life is none other than the one who had been crucified and had died--the whole point of the forty-day delay was to make our faith completely sound and to cleanse it of all darkness.

Post resurrectionem vero domini, quae utique veri corporis fuit, quia non alter est resuscitatus quam qui fuerat crucifixus et mortuus, quid aliud quadraginta dierum mora gestum est quam ut fidei nostrae integritas ab omni caligine mundaretur?

Hence he talked to his disciples and lived and ate with them, and let himself be touched attentively and carefully by those who were in the grip of doubt; he would go in among his disciples when the doors were locked, and impart the holy Spirit by breathing on them, and open up the secrets of the holy scriptures after enlightening their understanding; again, he would point out the wound in his side, the holes made by the nails, and all the signs of the suffering he had just recently undergone, saying, Look at my hands and feet--it is I. Feel and see, because a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have. All this was so that it would be recognised that the proper character of the divine and of the human nature went on existing inseparable in him; and so that we would realise that the Word is not the same thing as the flesh, but in such a way that we would confess belief in the one Son of God as being both Word and flesh.

Conloquens enim cum discipulis suis et cohabitans atque convescens et pertractari se diligenti curioso que contactu ab eis quos dubietas perstringebat, admittens ideo et clausis ad discipulos ianuis introibat et flatu suo dabat spiritum sanctum et donato intellegentiae lumine sanctarum scripturarum occulta pandebat et rursus idem vulnus lateris, fixuras clavorum et omnia recentissimae passionis signa monstrabat dicens: videte manus meas et pedes quia ego sum; palpate et videte quia spiritus carnem et ossa non habet sicut me videtis habere, ut agnosceretur in eo proprietas divinae humanae que naturae individua permanere et ita sciremus verbum non hoc esse quod carnem, ut unum dei filium et verbum confiteremur et carnem.

This Eutyches must be judged to be extremely destitute of this mystery of the faith. Neither the humility of the mortal life nor the glory of the resurrection has made him recognise our nature in the only-begotten of God. Nor has even the statement of the blessed apostle and evangelist John put fear into him: Every spirit which confesses that Jesus Christ came in the flesh is from God, and every spirit which puts Jesus asunder is not from God, and this is Antichrist.

Quo fidei sacramento Eutyches iste nimium aestimandus est vacuus, qui naturam nostram in unigenito dei nec per humilitatem mortalitatis nec per gloriam resurrectionis agnovit nec sententiam beati apostoli et evangelistae Iohannis expavit dicentis omnis spiritus qui confitetur Iesum Christum in carne venisse, ex deo est et omnis spiritus qui solvit Iesum, ex deo non est, et hic est antichristus.

But what does putting Jesus as under consist in if not in separating his human nature from him, and in voiding, through the most barefaced fictions, the one mystery by which we have been saved?

Quid autem est solvere Iesum nisi humanam ab eo separare naturam et sacramentum per quod unum salvati sumus, inpudentissimis vacuare figmentis?

Once in the dark about the nature of Christ’s body, it follows that the same blindness leads him into raving folly about his suffering too.

Caligans vero circa naturam corporis Christi, necesse est ut etiam in passione eius eadem obcaecatione desipiat.

If he does not think that the Lord’s cross was unreal and if he has no doubt that the suffering undergone for the world’s salvation was real, then let him acknowledge the flesh of the one whose death he believes in.

Nam si crucem domini non putat falsam et susceptum pro mundi salute supplicium verum fuisse non dubitat, cuius credit mortem, agnoscat et carnem.

And let him not deny that a man whom he knows to have been subject to suffering had our kind of body, for to deny the reality of the flesh is also to deny the bodily suffering.

Nec diffiteatur nostri corporis hominem quem cognoscit fuisse passibilem, quoniam negatio verae carnis negatio est etiam corporeae passionis.

So if he accepts the christian faith and does not turn a deaf ear to the preaching of the gospel, let him consider what nature it was that hung, pierced with nails, on the wood of the cross. With the side of the crucified one laid open by the soldier’s spear, let him identify the source from which blood and water flowed, to bathe the church of God with both font and cup.

Si ergo Christianam suscipit fidem et a praedicatione evangelii suum non avertit auditum, videat quae natura transfixa clavis pependerit in crucis ligno et aperto per militis lanceam latere crucifixi intellegat unde sanguis et aqua fluxerit, ut ecclesia dei et lavacro rigaretur et poculo.

Let him heed what the blessed apostle Peter preaches, that sanctification by the Spirit is effected by the sprinkling of Christ’s blood; and let him not skip over the same apostle’s words, knowing that you have been redeemed from the empty way of life you inherited from your fathers, not with corruptible gold and silver but by the precious blood of Jesus Christ, as of a lamb without stain or spot.

Audiat beatum Petrum apostolum praedicantem quod sanctificatio spiritus per aspersionem fiat sanguinis Christi, nec transitorie legat eiusdem apostoli verba dicentis; scientes quod non corruptibilibus argento et auro redempti estis de vana vestra conversatione paternae traditionis, sed pretioso sanguine quasi agni incontaminati et immaculati Iesu Christi.

Nor should he withstand the testimony of blessed John the apostle: and the blood of Jesus, the Son of God, purifies us from every sin; and again, This is the victory which conquers the world, our faith.

Beati quoque Iohannis apostoli testimonio non resistat dicentis: et sanguis Iesu filii dei emundat nos ab omni peccato et iterum: haec est victoria quae vincit mundum, fides nostra.

Who is there who conquers the world save one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God ?

Quis est qui vincit mundum nisi qui credit quoniam Iesus est filius dei?

It is he, Jesus Christ who has come through water and blood, not in water only, but in water and blood. And because the Spirit is truth, it is the Spirit who testifies. For there are three who give testimony--Spirit and water and blood. And the three are one. In other words, the Spirit of sanctification and the blood of redemption and the water of baptism. These three are one and remain indivisible. None of them is separable from its link with the others. The reason is that it is by this faith that the catholic church lives and grows, by believing that neither the humanity is without true divinity nor the divinity without true humanity.

Hic est qui venit per aquam et sanguinem Iesus Christus, non in aqua solum, sed in aqua et sanguine, et spiritus est qui testificatur, quoniam spiritus est veritas, quia tres sunt qui testimonium dant, spiritus et aqua et sanguis, et tres unum sunt, spiritus utique sanctificationis et sanguis redemptionis et aqua baptismatis, quae tria unum sunt et individua manent nihil que eorum a sui connexione seiungitur, quia catholica ecclesia hac fide vivit, hac proficit, ut nec sine vera divinitate humanitas nec sine vera credatur humanitate divinitas.

When you cross-examined Eutyches and he replied, “I confess that our Lord was of two natures before the union, but I confess one nature after the union”, I am amazed that such an absurd and corrupt declaration of faith was not very severely censured by the judges; and that an extremely foolish statement was disregarded, as if nothing whatever offensive had been heard. It is just as wicked to say that the only-begotten Son of God was of two natures before the incarnation as it is abominable to claim that there was a single nature in him after the Word was made flesh.

Cum autem ad interlocutionem examinis vestri Eutyches responderit dicens: confiteor ex duabus naturis fuisse dominum nostrum ante adunationem, post vero adunationem unam naturam confiteor, miror tam absurdam tam que perversam professionem nulla iudicantium increpatione reprehensam et sermonem nimis insipientem ita omissum quasi nihil quod offenderet esset auditum, cum tam impie duarum naturarum ante incarnationem unigenitus dei filius fuisse dicatur quam nefarie postquam verbum caro factum est, natura in eo singularis asseritur.

Eutyches must not suppose that what he said was either correct or tolerable just because no clear statement of yours refuted it. So we remind you, dearest brother, of your charity’s responsibility to see to it that if through God’s merciful inspiration the case is ever settled, the rash and ignorant fellow is also purged of what is blighting his mind.

Quod ne Eutyches ideo vel recte vel tolerabiliter aestimet dictum, quia nulla vestra est sententia confutatum, dilectionis tuae diligentiam commonemus, frater karissime, ut si per inspirationem misericordiae dei ad satisfactionem causa perducitur, inprudentia hominis inperiti etiam ab hac sensus sui peste purgetur.

As the minutes have made clear, he made a good start at abandoning his opinion when, under pressure from your statement, he professed to say what he had not previously said, and to find satisfaction in the faith to which he had previously been a stranger. But when he had refused to be party to the anathematising of his wicked doctrine, your fraternity would have realised that he was persisting in his false belief and that he deserved a verdict of condemnation.

Qui quidem, sicut gestorum ordo patefecit, bene coeperat a sua persuasione discedere, cum vestra sententia coartatus profiteretur se dicere quod ante non dixerat, et ei fidei adquiescere cuius prius fuisset alienus; sed cum anathematizando impio dogmati noluisset praebere consensum, intellexit eum fraternitas vestra in sua manere perfidia dignum que esse qui iudicium condemnationis exciperet.

If he is honestly and suitably sorry about this, and acknowledges even at this late stage how rightly episcopal authority was set in motion, or if, to make full amends, he condemns every wrong thought he had by word of mouth and by his actual signature, then no amount of mercy towards one who has reformed is excessive. Our Lord, the true and good shepherd who laid down his life for his sheep, and who came not to destroy but to save the souls of men and women, wants us to be imitators of his goodness, so that whilst justice represses sinners, mercy does not reject the converted.

De quo si fideliter atque utiliter dolet et quam recte mota sit episcopalis auctoritas, vel sero cognoscit vel si ad satisfactionis plenitudinem omnia quae ab eo male sunt sensa, viva voce et praesenti subscriptione damnaverit, non erit reprehensibilis erga correctum quantacumque miseratio, quia dominus noster verus et bonus pastor qui animam suam posuit pro ovibus suis et qui venit animas hominum salvare, non perdere, imitatores nos suae vult esse pietatis, ut peccantes quidem iustitia coerceat, conversos autem misericordia non repellat.

The defence of the true faith is never so productive as when false opinion is condemned even by its adherents.

Tunc enim demum fructuosissime fides vera defenditur, quando etiam a sectatoribus suis opinio falsa damnatur.

In place of ourself, we have arranged for our brothers, Bishop Julius and the priest Renatus of the church of St Clement, and also my son, the deacon Hilary, to ensure a good and faithful conclusion to the whole case.To their company we have added our notary Dulcitius, of proven loyalty to us. We trust that with God’s help he who has fallen into error might condemn the wickedness of his own mind and find salvation.

Ad omnem vero causam pie ac fideliter exequendam fratres nostros Iulium episcopum et Renatum presbyterum tituli sancti Clementis, sed et filium meum Hilarum diaconum vice nostra direximus, quibus Dulcitium notarium nostrum, cuius nobis fides est probata, sociavimus, confidentes affuturum divinitatis auxilium ut is qui erraverat, damnata sensus sui pravitate salvetur.

God keep you safe, dearest brother.

Deus te incolumen custodiat, frater karissime.


Definition of the Faith





     The sacred and great and universal synod by God’s grace and by decree of your most religious and Christ-loving emperors Valentinian Augustus and Marcian Augustus assembled in Chalcedon, metropolis of the province of Bithynia, in the shrine of the saintly and triumphant martyr Euphemia, issues the following decrees.

   Ἡ ἁγία καὶ μεγάλη καὶ οἰκουμενικὴ σύνοδος ἡ κατὰ θεοῦ χάριν καὶ θέσπισμα τῶν εὐσεβεστάτων καὶ φιλοχρίστων ἡμῶν βασιλέων Οὐαλεντινιανοῦ καὶ Μαρκιανοῦ αὐγούστων συναχθεῖσα ἐν τῆι Χαλκηδονέων μητροπόλει τῆς Βιθυνῶν ἐπαρχίας ἐν τῶι μαρτυρίωι τῆς ἁγίας καὶ καλλινίκου μάρτυρος Εὐφημίας ὥρισεν τὰ ὑποτεταγμένα

     In establishing his disciples in the knowledge of the faith, our lord and saviour Christ said: “My peace I give you, my peace I leave to you”‘, so that no one should disagree with his neighbour regarding religious doctrines but that the proclamation of the truth would be uniformly presented. But the evil one never stops trying to smother the seeds of religion with his own tares and is for ever inventing some novelty or other against the truth; so the Master, exercising his usual care for the human race, roused this religious and most faithful emperor to zealous action, and summoned to himself the leaders of the priesthood from everywhere, so that through the working of the grace of Christ, the master of all of us, every injurious falsehood might be staved off from the sheep of Christ and they might be fattened on fresh growths of the truth.

 Ὁ κύριος ἡμῶν καὶ σωτὴρ ὁ Χριστὸς τῆς πίστεως τὴν γνῶσιν τοῖς μαθηταῖς βεβαιῶν ἔφη· <εἰρήνην τὴν ἐμὴν δίδωμι ὑμῖν, εἰρήνην τὴν ἐμὴν ἀφίημι ὑμῖν,> ὥστε μηδένα πρὸς τὸν πλησίον διαφωνεῖν ἐν τοῖς δόγμασι τῆς εὐσεβείας, ἀλλ' ἐπίσης τὸ τῆς ἀληθείας ἐπιδείκνυσθαι κήρυγμα. ἐπειδὴ δὲ οὐ παύεται διὰ τῶν ἑαυτοῦ ζιζανίων ὁ πονηρὸς τοῖς τῆς εὐσεβείας ἐπιφυόμενος σπέρμασι καί τι καινὸν κατὰ τῆς ἀληθείας ἐφευρίσκων ἀεί, διὰ τοῦτο συνήθως ὁ δεσπότης προνοούμενος τοῦ ἀνθρωπίνου γένους τὸν εὐσεβῆ τοῦτον καὶ πιστότατον πρὸς ζῆλον ἀνέστησε βασιλέα καὶ τοὺς ἁπανταχῆι τῆς ἱερωσύνης πρὸς ἑαυτὸν ἀρχηγοὺς συνεκάλεσεν, ὥστε τῆς χάριτος τοῦ πάντων ἡμῶν δεσπότου Χριστοῦ ἐνεργούσης πᾶσαν μὲν τοῦ ψεύδους τῶν τοῦ Χριστοῦ προβάτων ἀποσείσασθαι λύμην, τοῖς δὲ τῆς ἀληθείας αὐτὴν καταπιαίνειν βλαστήμασιν.

     This is in fact what we have done. We have driven off erroneous doctrines by our collective resolution and we have renewed the unerring creed of the fathers. We have proclaimed to all the creed of the 318; and we have made our own those fathers who accepted this agreed statement of religion -- the 150 who later met in great Constantinople and themselves set their seal to the same creed.

ὃ δὴ καὶ πεποιήκαμεν κοινῆι ψήφωι τὰ τῆς πλάνης ἀπελάσαντες δόγματα, τὴν δὲ ἀπλανῆ τῶν πατέρων ἀνανεωσάμενοι πίστιν, τὸ τῶν ˉτˉιˉη σύμβολον τοῖς πᾶσι κηρύξαντες καὶ ὡς οἰκείους τοὺς τοῦτο τῆς εὐσεβείας τὸ σύνθεμα δεξαμένους πατέρας ἐπιγραψάμενοι, οἵπερ εἰσὶν οἱ μετὰ ταῦτα ἐν τῆι μεγάληι Κωνσταντινουπόλει συνελθόντες ˉρˉν καὶ αὐτοὶ τὴν αὐτὴν    2,1,2.127 ἐπισφραγισάμενοι πίστιν.

     Therefore, whilst we also stand by

ὁρίζομεν τοίνυν

     * the decisions and all the formulas relating to the creed from the sacred synod which took place formerly at Ephesus,

τὴν τάξιν καὶ τοὺς περὶ τῆς πίστεως ἅπαντας τύπους φυλάττοντες καὶ ἡμεῖς τῆς κατ' Ἔφεσον πάλαι γεγενημένης ἁγίας συνόδου,

     o whose leaders of most holy memory were Celestine of Rome and Cyril of Alexandria

ἧς ἡγεμόνες οἱ ἁγιώτατοι τὴν μνήμην Κελεστῖνος ὁ τῆς Ῥωμαίων καὶ Κύριλλος ὁ τῆς Ἀλεξανδρέων ἐτύγχανον,

     we decree that

προλάμπειν μὲν

     * pre-eminence belongs to the exposition of the right and spotless creed of the 318 saintly and blessed fathers who were assembled at Nicaea when Constantine of pious memory was emperor: and that

τῆς ὀρθῆς καὶ ἀμωμήτου πίστεως τὴν ἔκθεσιν τῶν ˉτˉιˉη ἁγίων καὶ μακαρίων πατέρων τῶν ἐν Νικαίαι ἐπὶ τοῦ τῆς εὐσεβοῦς μνήμης Κωνσταντίνου τοῦ γενομένου βασιλέως συναχθέντων.

     * those decrees also remain in force which were issued in Constantinople by the 150 holy fathers in order to destroy the heresies then rife and to confirm this same catholic and apostolic creed.

κρατεῖν δὲ καὶ τὰ παρὰ τῶν ˉρˉν ἁγίων πατέρων ἐν Κωνσταντινουπόλει ὁρισθέντα πρὸς ἀναίρεσιν μὲν τῶν τότε φυεισῶν αἱρέσεων, βεβαίωσιν δὲ τῆς αὐτῆς καθολικῆς καὶ ἀποστολικῆς ἡμῶν πίστεως.  

     o The creed of the 318 fathers at Nicaea.

Τὸ σύμβολον τῶν ἐν Νικαίαι ˉτˉιˉη πατέρων  


Πιστεύομεν εἰς ἕνα θεὸν πατέρα παντοκράτορα, ποιητὴν οὐρανοῦ καὶ γῆς ὁρατῶν τε πάντων καὶ ἀοράτων· καὶ εἰς ἕνα κύριον Ἰησοῦν Χριστὸν τὸν υἱὸν τοῦ θεοῦ τὸν μονογενῆ, τὸν ἐκ τοῦ πατρὸς γεννηθέντα πρὸ πάντων τῶν αἰώνων, θεὸν ἀληθινὸν ἐκ θεοῦ ἀληθινοῦ, γεννηθέντα οὐ ποιηθέντα, ὁμοούσιον τῶι πατρί, δι' οὗ τὰ πάντα ἐγένετο, τὸν δι' ἡμᾶς τοὺς ἀνθρώπους καὶ διὰ τὴν ἡμετέραν σωτηρίαν κατελθόντα καὶ σαρκωθέντα καὶ ἐνανθρωπήσαντα καὶ παθόντα καὶ ἀναστάντα τῆι τρίτηι ἡμέραι καὶ ἀνελθόντα εἰς τοὺς οὐρανοὺς καὶ ἐρχόμενον κρῖναι ζῶντας καὶ νεκρούς· καὶ εἰς τὸ ἅγιον πνεῦμα.  


Τοὺς δὲ λέγοντας "ἦν ποτε ὅτε οὐκ ἦν" καὶ "πρὶν γεννηθῆναι οὐκ ἦν" καὶ ὅτι ἐξ οὐκ ὄντων ἐγένετο ἢ ἐξ ἑτέρας ὑποστάσεως ἢ οὐσίας φάσκοντας εἶναι ἢ τρεπτὸν ἢ ἀλλοιωτὸν τὸν υἱὸν τοῦ θεοῦ, τούτους ἀναθεματίζει ἡ καθολικὴ καὶ ἀποστολικὴ ἐκκλησία.   

     o And the same of the 150 saintly fathers assembled in Constantinople.

2,1,2.128   Καὶ τὸ αὐτὸ τῶν ˉρˉν ἁγίων πατέρων τῶν ἐν Κωνσταντινουπόλει συναχθέντων


   Πιστεύομεν εἰς ἕνα θεὸν πατέρα παντοκράτορα, ποιητὴν οὐρανοῦ καὶ γῆς ὁρατῶν τε πάντων καὶ ἀοράτων· καὶ εἰς ἕνα κύριον Ἰησοῦν Χριστὸν τὸν υἱὸν τοῦ θεοῦ τὸν μονογενῆ, τὸν ἐκ τοῦ πατρὸς γεννηθέντα πρὸ πάντων τῶν αἰώνων, θεὸν ἀληθινὸν ἐκ θεοῦ ἀληθινοῦ, γεννηθέντα οὐ ποιηθέντα, ὁμοούσιον τῶι πατρί, δι' οὗ τὰ πάντα ἐγένετο, τὸν δι' ἡμᾶς τοὺς ἀνθρώπους καὶ διὰ τὴν ἡμετέραν σωτηρίαν κατελθόντα καὶ σαρκωθέντα ἐκ πνεύματος ἁγίου καὶ Μαρίας τῆς παρθένου καὶ ἐνανθρωπήσαντα σταυρωθέντα τε ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν ἐπὶ Ποντίου Πιλάτου καὶ ταφέντα καὶ ἀναστάντα τῆι τρίτηι ἡμέραι καὶ ἀνελθόντα εἰς τοὺς οὐρανοὺς καὶ καθεζόμενον ἐν δεξιᾶι τοῦ πατρὸς καὶ πάλιν ἐρχόμενον μετὰ δόξης κρῖναι ζῶντας καὶ νεκρούς, οὗ τῆς βασιλείας οὐκ ἔσται τέλος· καὶ εἰς τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον, τὸ κύριον καὶ ζωοποιόν, τὸ ἐκ τοῦ πατρὸς ἐκπορευόμενον, τὸ σὺν πατρὶ καὶ υἱῶι προσκυνούμενον καὶ συνδοξαζόμενον, τὸ λαλῆσαν διὰ τῶν προφητῶν, εἰς μίαν καθολικὴν καὶ ἀποστολικὴν ἐκκλησίαν. ὁμολογοῦμεν ἓν βάπτισμα εἰς ἄφεσιν ἁμαρτιῶν. προσδοκῶμεν ἀνάστασιν νεκρῶν καὶ ζωὴν τοῦ μέλλοντος αἰῶνος. ἀμήν

     This wise and saving creed, the gift of divine grace, was sufficient for a perfect understanding and establishment of religion. For its teaching about the Father and the Son and the holy Spirit is complete, and it sets out the Lord’s becoming human to those who faithfully accept it.

 Ἤρκει μὲν οὖν εἰς ἐντελῆ τῆς εὐσεβείας ἐπίγνωσίν τε καὶ βεβαίωσιν τὸ σοφὸν καὶ σωτήριον τοῦτο τῆς θείας χάριτος σύμβολον· περί τε γὰρ τοῦ πατρὸς καὶ τοῦ υἱοῦ καὶ τοῦ ἁγίου πνεύματος ἐκδιδάσκει τὸ τέλειον καὶ τοῦ κυρίου τὴν ἐνανθρώπησιν τοῖς πιστῶς δεχομένοις παρίστησιν.

     But there are those who are trying to ruin the proclamation of the truth, and through their private heresies they have spawned novel formulas:

ἀλλ' ἐπειδήπερ οἱ τῆς ἀληθείας ἀθετεῖν ἐπιχειροῦντες τὸ κήρυγμα διὰ τῶν οἰκείων αἱρέσεων τὰς κενοφωνίας ἀπέτεκον,

     * some by daring to corrupt the mystery of the Lord’s economy on our behalf, and refusing to apply the word “God-bearer” to the Virgin; and

οἳ μὲν τὸ τῆς δι' ἡμᾶς τοῦ κυρίου οἰκονομίας μυστήριον παραφθείρειν τολμήσαντες καὶ τὴν θεοτόκος ἐπὶ τῆς παρθένου φωνὴν ἀπαρνούμενοι,

     * others by introducing a confusion and mixture, and mindlessly imagining that there is a single nature of the flesh and the divinity, and fantastically supposing that in the confusion the divine nature of the Only-begotten is passible.

οἳ δὲ σύγχυσιν καὶ κρᾶσιν εἰσάγοντες καὶ μίαν εἶναι φύσιν τῆς σαρκὸς καὶ τῆς θεότητος ἀνοήτως ἀναπλάττοντες καὶ παθητὴν τοῦ μονογενοῦς τὴν θείαν φύσιν τῆι συγχύσει τερατευόμενοι,

     Therefore this sacred and great and universal synod, now in session, in its desire to exclude all their tricks against the truth, and teaching what has been unshakeable in the proclamation from the beginning,

διὰ τοῦτο πᾶσαν αὐτοῖς ἀποκλεῖσαι κατὰ τῆς ἀληθείας μηχανὴν βουλομένη ἡ παροῦσα νῦν αὕτη ἁγία καὶ μεγάλη καὶ οἰκουμενικὴ σύνοδος τὸ τοῦ κηρύγματος ἄνωθεν ἀσάλευτον ἐκδιδάσκουσα

     * decrees that the creed of the 318 fathers is, above all else, to remain inviolate. And because of those who oppose the holy Spirit, it

ὥρισεν προηγουμένως    2,1,2.129 τῶν ˉτˉιˉη ἁγίων πατέρων τὴν πίστιν μένειν ἀπαρεγχείρητον. καὶ διὰ μὲν τοὺς τῶι πνεύματι τῶι ἁγίωι μαχομένους

     * ratifies the teaching about the being of the holy Spirit handed down by the 150 saintly fathers who met some time later in the imperial city

τὴν χρόνοις ὕστερον παρὰ τῶν ἐπὶ τῆς βασιλευούσης πόλεως ˉρˉν συνελθόντων πατέρων περὶ τῆς τοῦ πνεύματος οὐσίας παραδοθεῖσαν διδασκαλίαν κυροῖ,

     o -- the teaching they made known to all,

ἣν ἐκεῖνοι πᾶσιν ἐγνώρισαν

     * not introducing anything left out by their predecessors, but clarifying their ideas about the holy Spirit by the use of scriptural testimonies against those who were trying to do away with his sovereignty.

οὐχ ὥς τι λεῖπον τοῖς προλαβοῦσιν ἐπεισάγοντες, ἀλλὰ τὴν περὶ τοῦ ἁγίου πνεύματος αὐτῶν ἔννοιαν κατὰ τῶν τὴν αὐτοῦ δεσποτείαν ἀθετεῖν πειρωμένων γραφικαῖς μαρτυρίαις τρανώσαντες·

     And because of those who are attempting to corrupt the mystery of the economy and are shamelessly and foolishly asserting that he who was born of the holy virgin Mary was a mere man, it has accepted

διὰ δὲ τοὺς τὸ τῆς οἰκονομίας παραφθείρειν ἐπιχειροῦντας μυστήριον καὶ ψιλὸν ἄνθρωπον εἶναι τὸν ἐκ τῆς ἁγίας παρθένου τεχθέντα Μαρίας ἀναιδῶς ληρωιδοῦντας

o     the synodical letters of the blessed Cyril, [already accepted by the Council of Ephesus] pastor of the church in Alexandria, to Nestorius and to the Orientals, as being well-suited to refuting Nestorius’s mad folly and to providing an interpretation for those who in their religious zeal might desire understanding of the saving creed.

o        τὰς τοῦ μακαρίου Κυρίλλου τοῦ τῆς Ἀλεξανδρέων ἐκκλησίας γενομένου ποιμένος συνοδικὰς ἐπιστολὰς πρός τε Νεστόριον καὶ πρὸς τοὺς τῆς Ἀνατολῆς ἁρμοδίας οὔσας ἐδέξατο εἰς ἔλεγχον μὲν τῆς Νεστορίου φρενοβλαβείας, ἑρμηνείαν δὲ τῶν εὐσεβεῖ ζήλωι τοῦ σωτηρίου συμβόλου ποθούντων τὴν ἔννοιαν,

o     To these it has suitably added, against false believers and for the establishment of orthodox doctrines the letter of the primate of greatest and older Rome, the most blessed and most saintly Archbishop Leo, written to the sainted Archbishop Flavian to put down Eutyches’s evil-mindedness, because it is in agreement with great Peter’s confession and represents a support we have in common.

o        αἷς καὶ τὴν ἐπιστολὴν τοῦ τῆς μεγίστης καὶ πρεσβυτέρας Ῥώμης προέδρου τοῦ μακαριωτάτου καὶ ἁγιωτάτου ἀρχιεπισκόπου Λέοντος τὴν γραφεῖσαν πρὸς τὸν ἐν ἁγίοις ἀρχιεπίσκοπον  Φλαβιανὸν ἐπ' ἀναιρέσει τῆς Εὐτυχοῦς κακονοίας ἅτε δὴ τῆι τοῦ μεγάλου Πέτρου ὁμολογίαι συμβαίνουσαν καὶ κοινήν τινα στήλην ὑπάρχουσαν κατὰ τῶν κακοδοξούντων εἰκότως συνήρμοσεν πρὸς τὴν τῶν ὀρθῶν δογμάτων βεβαίωσιν.

     It is opposed to those who attempt to tear apart the mystery of the economy into a duality of sons; and

τοῖς τε γὰρ εἰς υἱῶν δυάδα τὸ τῆς οἰκονομίας διασπᾶν ἐπιχειροῦσι μυστήριον παρατάττεται καὶ

o     it expels from the assembly of the priests those who dare to say that the divinity of the Only-begotten is passible, and

o        τοὺς παθητὴν τοῦ μονογενοῦς λέγειν τολμῶντας τὴν θεότητα τοῦ τῶν ἱερέων ἀπωθεῖται συλλόγου καὶ

o     it stands opposed to those who imagine a mixture or confusion between the two natures of Christ; and

o        τοῖς ἐπὶ τῶν δύο φύσεων τοῦ Χριστοῦ κρᾶσιν ἢ σύγχυσιν ἐπινοοῦσιν ἀνθίσταται καὶ

o     it expels those who have the mad idea that the servant-form he took from us is of a heavenly or some other kind of being; and

o        τοὺς οὐράνιον ἢ ἑτέρας τινὸς ὑπάρχειν οὐσίας τὴν ἐξ ἡμῶν ληφθεῖσαν αὐτῶι τοῦ δούλου μορφὴν παραπαίοντας ἐξελαύνει καὶ

o     it anathematises those who concoct two natures of the Lord before the union but imagine a single one after the union.

o        τοὺς δύο μὲν πρὸ τῆς ἑνώσεως φύσεις τοῦ κυρίου μυθεύοντας, μίαν δὲ μετὰ τὴν ἕνωσιν ἀναπλάττοντας ἀναθεματίζει.  





So we all with one voice, following the saintly fathers, teach the confession of one and the same Son, our Lord Jesus Christ: the same perfect in divinity and perfect in humanity,

̔Επόμενοι τοίνυν τοῖς ἁγίοις πατράσιν ἕνα καὶ τὸν αὐτὸν ὁμολογεῖν υἱὸν τὸν κύριον ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦν Χριστὸν συμφώνως ἅπαντες ἐκδιδάσκομεν, τέλειον τὸν αὐτὸν ἐν θεότητι καὶ τέλειον τὸν αὐτὸν ἐν ἀνθρωπότητι,

the same truly God and truly man, of a rational soul and a body;

θεὸν ἀληθῶς καὶ ἄνθρωπον ἀληθῶς τὸν αὐτὸν ἐκ ψυχῆς λογικῆς καὶ σώματος

consubstantial with the Father as regards his divinity, and the same consubstantial with us as regards his humanity; like us in all respects except for sin; begotten before the ages from the Father as regards his divinity, and in the last days the same for us and for our salvation from Mary, the virgin God-bearer as regards his humanity; one and the same Christ, Son, Lord, only-begotten,

, ὁμοούσιον τῶι πατρὶ κατὰ τὴν θεότητα καὶ ὁμοούσιον ἡμῖν τὸν αὐτὸν κατὰ τὴν ἀνθρωπότητα, κατὰ πάντα ὅμοιον ἡμῖν χωρὶς ἁμαρτίας, πρὸ αἰώνων μὲν ἐκ τοῦ πατρὸς γεννηθέντα κατὰ τὴν θεότητα, ἐπ' ἐσχάτων δὲ τῶν ἡμερῶν τὸν αὐτὸν δι' ἡμᾶς καὶ διὰ τὴν ἡμετέραν σωτηρίαν ἐκ Μαρίας τῆς παρθένου τῆς θεοτόκου κατὰ τὴν ἀνθρωπότητα, ἕνα καὶ τὸν αὐτὸν Χριστὸν υἱὸν κύριον μονογενῆ,

acknowledged in two natures ἐν δύο φύσεσιν
which undergo  

no confusion,


no change,


no division,


no separation;

ἀχωρίστως γνωριζόμενον,



at no point was the difference between the natures taken away through the union, but rather the property of both natures is preserved and comes together into

οὐδαμοῦ τῆς τῶν φύσεων διαφορᾶς ἀνηιρημένης διὰ τὴν ἕνωσιν, σωιζομένης δὲ μᾶλλον τῆς ἰδιότητος ἑκατέρας φύσεως

a single person [prosopon]

καὶ εἰς ἓν πρόσωπον

and a single subsistent being [hypostasis];

καὶ μίαν ὑπόστασιν συντρεχούσης,

he is not parted or divided into two persons [prosopa] ,

οὐκ εἰς δύο πρόσωπα130 μεριζόμενον ἢ διαιρούμενον,

but is one and the same only-begotten Son, God, Word, Lord Jesus Christ, just as the prophets taught from the beginning about him, and as the Lord Jesus Christ himself instructed us, and as the creed of the fathers handed it down to us.

ἀλλ' ἕνα καὶ τὸν αὐτὸν υἱὸν μονογενῆ θεὸν λόγον κύριον Ἰησοῦν  Χριστόν, καθάπερ ἄνωθεν οἱ προφῆται περὶ αὐτοῦ καὶ αὐτὸς ἡμᾶς Ἰησοῦς Χριστὸς ἐξεπαίδευσεν καὶ τὸ τῶν πατέρων ἡμῖν παραδέδωκε σύμβολον.  

     Since we have formulated these things with all possible accuracy and attention, the sacred and universal synod decreed that no one is permitted to produce, or even to write down or compose, any other creed or to think or teach otherwise. As for those who dare either to compose another creed or even to promulgate or teach or hand down another creed for those who wish to convert to a recognition of the truth from Hellenism or from Judaism, or from any kind of heresy at all: if they be bishops or clerics, the bishops are to be deposed from the episcopacy and the clerics from the clergy; if they be monks or layfolk, they are to be anathematised.

Τούτων τοίνυν μετὰ πάσης πανταχόθεν ἀκριβείας τε καὶ ἐμμελείας παρ' ἡμῶν διατυπωθέντων ὥρισεν ἡ ἁγία καὶ οἰκουμενικὴ σύνοδος ἑτέραν πίστιν μηδενὶ ἐξεῖναι προφέρειν ἢ γοῦν συγγράφειν ἢ συντιθέναι ἢ φρονεῖν ἢ διδάσκειν ἑτέρως, τοὺς δὲ τολμῶντας ἢ συντιθέναι πίστιν ἑτέραν ἢ γοῦν προκομίζειν ἢ διδάσκειν ἢ παραδιδόναι ἕτερον σύμβολον τοῖς ἐθέλουσιν ἐπιστρέφειν εἰς ἐπίγνωσιν τῆς ἀληθείας ἐξ Ἑλληνισμοῦ ἢ ἐξ Ἰουδαισμοῦ ἢ γοῦν ἐξ αἱρέσεως οἵας δήποτε οὖν, τούτους, εἰ μὲν εἶεν ἐπίσκοποι ἢ κληρικοί, ἀλλοτρίους εἶναι τοὺς ἐπισκόπους τῆς ἐπισκοπῆς καὶ τοὺς κληρικοὺς τοῦ κλήρου· εἰ δὲ μονάζοντες ἢ λαικοὶ εἶεν, ἀναθεματίζεσθαι.  







1. We have deemed it right that the canons hitherto issued by the saintly fathers at each and every synod should remain in force.

1. Τοὺς παρὰ τῶν ἁγίων πατέρων καθ΄ ἑκάστην σύνοδον ἄχρι τοῦ νῦν ἐκτεθέντας κανόνας κρατεῖν ἐδικαιώσαμεν.

2. If any bishop performs an ordination for money and puts the unsaleable grace on sale, and ordains for money a bishop, a chorepiscopus, a presbyter or a deacon or some other of those numbered among the clergy; or appoints a manager, a legal officer or a warden for money, or any other ecclesiastic at all for personal sordid gain; led him who has attempted this and been convicted stand to lose his personal rank; and let the person ordained profit nothing from the ordination or appointment he has bought; but let him be removed from the dignity or responsibility which he got for money. And if anyone appears to have acted even as a go-between in such disgraceful and unlawful dealings, let him too, if he is a cleric, be demoted from his personal rank, and if he is a lay person or a monk, let him be anathematised.

2. Εἴ τις ἐπίσκοπος ἐπὶ χρήμασι χειροτονίαν ποιήσαιτο καὶ εἰς πρᾶσιν καταγάγοι τὴν ἄπρατον χάριν καὶ χειροτονήσοι ἐπὶ χρήμασιν ἐπίσκοπον ἢ χωρεπίσκοπον ἢ πρεσβύ τερον ἢ διάκονον ἢ ἕτερόν τινα τῶν ἐν τῶι κλήρωι καταριθμουμένων ἢ προβάλοιτο ἐπὶ χρήμασιν ἢ οἰκονόμον ἢ ἔκδικον ἢ παραμονάριον ἢ ὅλως τινὰ τοῦ κανόνος δι΄ αἰσχρο κέρδειαν οἰκείαν͵ ὁ τοῦτο ἐπιχειρήσας ἐλεγχθεὶς κινδυνευέτω περὶ τὸν οἰκεῖον βαθμὸν καὶ ὁ χειροτονούμενος μηδὲν ἐκ τῆς κατ΄ ἐμπορίαν ὠφελείσθω χειροτονίας ἢ προβολῆς͵ ἀλλ΄ ἔστω ἀλλότριος τῆς ἀξίας ἢ τοῦ φροντίσματος οὗπερ ἐπὶ χρήμασιν ἔτυχεν. εἰ δέ τις καὶ μεσιτεύων φανείη τοῖς οὕτως αἰσχροῖς καὶ ἀθεμίτοις λήμμασιν͵ καὶ οὗτος εἰ μὲν κληρι κὸς εἴη͵ τοῦ οἰκείου ἐκπιπτέτω βαθμοῦ· εἰ δὲ λαικὸς ἢ μονάζων͵ ἀναθεματιζέσθω.

3. It has come to the notice of the sacred synod that some of those enrolled in the clergy are, for sordid gain, acting as hired managers of other people’s property, and are involving themselves in worldly business, neglecting the service of God, frequenting the houses of worldly persons and taking over the handling of property out of avarice. So the sacred and great synod has decreed that in future no one, whether a bishop, a cleric or a monk, should either manage property or involve himself as an administrator of worldly business, unless he is legally and unavoidably summoned to take care of minors, or the local bishop appoints him to attend, out of fear of the Lord, to ecclesiastical business or to orphans and unprovided widows and persons in special need of ecclesiastical support. If in future anyone attempts to transgress these decrees, he must be subject to ecclesiastical penalties.

3. ῏Ηλθεν εἰς τὴν ἁγίαν σύνοδον ὅτι τῶν ἐν τῶι κλήρωι κατειλεγμένων τινὲς δι΄ αἰσχρο κέρδειαν οἰκείαν ἀλλοτρίων κτημάτων γίνονται μισθωταὶ καὶ πράγματα κοσμικὰ ἐργολαβοῦσι͵ τῆς μὲν τοῦ θεοῦ λειτουργίας καταραθυμοῦντες͵ τοὺς δὲ τῶν κοσμικῶν ὑποτρέ χοντες οἴκους καὶ οὐσιῶν χειρισμοὺς ἀναδεχόμενοι διὰ φιλαργυρίαν. ὥρισεν τοίνυν ἡ ἁγία καὶ μεγάλη σύνοδος μηδένα τοῦ λοιποῦ μὴ ἐπίσκοπον μὴ κληρικὸν μὴ μονάζοντα ἢ μισθοῦσθαι κτήματα ἢ πραγμάτων ἐπεισάγειν ἑαυτὸν κοσμικαῖς διοικήσεσι πλὴν εἰ μή που ἐκ νόμων καλοῖτο εἰς ἀφηλίκων ἀπαραίτητον ἐπιτροπὴν ἢ ὁ τῆς πόλεως ἐπίσκοπος ἐκκλησιαστικῶν ἐπιτρέψοι φροντίζειν πραγμάτων ἢ ὀρφανῶν καὶ χηρῶν ἀπρονοήτων καὶ τῶν προσώπων τῶν μάλιστα τῆς ἐκκλησιαστικῆς δεομένων βοηθείας διὰ τὸν φόβον τοῦ κυρίου. εἰ δέ τις παραβαίνειν τὰ ὡρισμένα τοῦ λοιποῦ ἐπιχειρήσοι͵ ὁ τοιοῦτος ἐκκλησιαστικοῖς ὑποκείσθω ἐπιτιμίοις.

4. Those who truly and sincerely live the monastic life should be accorded appropriate recognition. But since there are some who don the monastic habit and meddle with the churches and in civil matters, and circulate indiscriminately in the cities and even are involved in founding monasteries for themselves, it has been decided that no one is to build or found a monastery or oratory anywhere against the will of the local bishop; and that monks of each city and region are to be subject to the bishop, are to foster peace and quiet, and attend solely to fasting and prayer, staying set apart in their places. They are not to abandon their own monasteries and interfere, or take part, in ecclesiastical or secular business unless they are perhaps assigned to do so by the local bishop because of some urgent necessity. No slave is to be taken into the monasteries to become a monk against the will of his own master. We have decreed that anyone who transgresses this decision of ours is to be excommunicated, lest God’s name be blasphemed. However, it is for the local bishop to exercise the care and attention that the monasteries need.

4. Οἱ ἀληθῶς καὶ εἰλικρινῶς τὸν μονήρη μετιόντες βίον τῆς προσηκούσης ἀξιούσθωσαν τιμῆς· ἐπειδὴ δὲ τινὲς τῶι μοναχικῶι κεχρημένοι προσχήματι τάς τε ἐκκλησίας καὶ τὰ πολιτικὰ διαταράττουσι πράγματα περιιόντες ἀδιαφόρως ἐν ταῖς πόλεσιν͵ οὐ μὴν ἀλλὰ καὶ μοναστήρια ἑαυτοῖς συνιστᾶν ἐπιτηδεύοντες͵ ἔδοξεν μηδένα μὲν μηδαμοῦ οἰκοδομεῖν μηδὲ συνιστᾶν μοναστήριον ἢ εὐκτήριον οἶκον παρὰ γνώμην τοῦ τῆς πόλεως ἐπισκόπου͵ τοὺς δὲ καθ΄ ἑκάστην πόλιν καὶ χώραν μονάζοντας ὑποτετάχθαι τῶι ἐπισκόπωι καὶ τὴν ἡσυχίαν ἀσπάζεσθαι καὶ προσέχειν μόνηι τῆι νηστείαι καὶ τῆι προσευχῆι͵ ἐν οἷς τόποις ἀπετάξαντο͵ προσκαρτεροῦντας͵ μήτε δὲ ἐκκλησιαστικοῖς μήτε βιωτικοῖς παρενοχλεῖν πράγμασιν ἢ ἐπικοινωνεῖν καταλιμπάνοντας τὰ ἴδια μοναστήρια͵ εἰ μή ποτε ἄρα ἐπιτρα πεῖεν διὰ χρείαν ἀναγκαίαν ὑπὸ τοῦ τῆς πόλεως ἐπισκόπου. μηδένα δὲ προσδέχεσθαι ἐν τοῖς μοναστηρίοις δοῦλον ἐπὶ τῶι μονάσαι παρὰ γνώμην τοῦ ἰδίου δεσπότου. τὸν δὲ παραβαίνοντα τοῦτον ἡμῶν τὸν ὅρον ὡρίσαμεν ἀκοινώνητον εἶναι͵ ἵνα μὴ τὸ ὄνομα τοῦ θεοῦ βλασφημῆται͵ τὸν μέντοι ἐπίσκοπον τῆς πόλεως χρὴ τὴν δέουσαν πρόνοιαν ποιεῖσθαι τῶν μοναστηρίων.

5. In the matter of bishops or clerics who move from city to city, it has been decided that the canons issued by the holy fathers concerning them should retain their proper force.

5.  Περὶ δὲ τῶν μεταβαινόντων ἀπὸ πόλεως εἰς πόλιν ἐπισκόπων ἢ κληρικῶν ἔδοξε τοὺς περὶ τούτων τεθέντας κανόνας παρὰ τῶν ἁγίων πατέρων ἔχειν τὴν ἰδίαν ἰσχύν.

6. No one, whether presbyter or deacon or anyone at all who belongs to the ecclesiastical order, is to be ordained without title, unless the one ordained is specially assigned to a city or village church or to a martyr’s shrine or a monastery. The sacred synod has decreed that the ordination of those ordained without title is null, and that they cannot operate anywhere, because of the presumption of the one who ordained them.

6. Μηδένα δὲ ἀπολελυμένως χειροτονεῖσθαι μήτε πρεσβύτερον μήτε διάκονον μήτε ὅλως τινὰ τῶν ἐν τῶι ἐκκλησιαστικῶι τάγματι͵ εἰ μὴ ἰδικῶς ἐν ἐκκλησίαι πόλεως ἢ κώμης ἢ μαρτυρίωι ἢ μοναστηρίωι ὁ χειροτονούμενος ἐπικηρύττοιτο. τοὺς δὲ ἀπολύτως χειροτονουμένους ὥρισεν ἡ ἁγία σύνοδος ἄκυρον ἔχειν τὴν τοιαύτην χειροθεσίαν καὶ μηδαμοῦ δύνασθαι ἐνεργεῖν ἐφ΄ ὕβρει τοῦ χειροτονήσαντος.

7. We decree that those who have once joined the ranks of the clergy or have become monks are not to depart on military service or for secular office. Those who dare do this, and do not repent and return to what, in God, they previously chose, are to be anathematised.

7. Τοὺς ἅπαξ ἐν κλήρωι τεταγμένους ἢ καὶ μονάσαντας ὡρίσαμεν μήτε ἐπὶ στρατείαν μήτε ἐπὶ ἀξίαν κοσμικὴν ἔρχεσθαι͵ ἢ τοῦτο τολμῶντας καὶ μὴ μεταμελομένους ὥστε ἐπιστρέψαι ἐπὶ τοῦτο ὃ διὰ θεὸν πρότερον εἵλοντο͵ ἀναθεματίζεσθαι.

8. Clerics in charge of almshouses and monasteries and martyrs’ shrines are, in accordance with the tradition of the holy fathers, to remain under the jurisdiction of the bishop in each city. They are not to be self-willed and rebellious towards their own bishop. Those who dare to break a rule of this kind in any way whatever, and are not obedient to their own bishop, are, if they are clerics, to be subject to the canonical penalties; and if they are monks or layfolk they are to be made excommunicate.

8. Οἱ κληρικοὶ τῶν πτωχείων καὶ μοναστηρίων καὶ μαρτυρίων ὑπὸ τῶν ἐν ἑκάστηι πόλει ἐπισκόπων τὴν ἐξουσίαν κατὰ τὴν τῶν ἁγίων πατέρων παράδοσιν διαμενέτωσαν καὶ μὴ κατὰ αὐθάδειαν ἀφηνιάτωσαν τοῦ ἰδίου ἐπισκόπου. οἱ δὲ τολμῶντες ἀνατρέπειν τὴν τοιαύτην διατύπωσιν καθ΄ οἷον δήποτε τρόπον καὶ μὴ ὑποταττόμενοι τῶι ἰδίωι ἐπι σκόπωι εἰ μὲν εἶεν κληρικοί͵ τοῖς τῶν κανόνων ὑποκείσθωσαν ἐπιτιμίοις· εἰ δὲ μονάζοντες ἢ λαικοί͵ ἔστωσαν ἀκοινώνητοι.

9. If any cleric has a case to bring against a cleric, let him not leave his own bishop and take himself off to the secular courts, but let him first air the problem before his own bishop, or at least, with the permission of the bishop himself, before those whom both parties are willing to see act as arbiters of their lawsuit. If anyone acts in a contrary fashion, let him be subject to canonical penalties. If a cleric has a case to bring either against his own or against another bishop, let him bring the case to the synod of the province. If a bishop or a cleric is in dispute with the metropolitan of the same province, let him engage either the exarch of the diocese or the see of imperial Constantinople, and let him bring his case before him.

9. Εἴ τις κληρικὸς πρὸς κληρικὸν πρᾶγμα ἔχοι͵ μὴ καταλιμπανέτω τὸν οἰκεῖον ἐπί σκοπον καὶ ἐπὶ κοσμικὰ δικαστήρια κατατρεχέτω͵ ἀλλὰ πρότερον τὴν ὑπόθεσιν γυμνα ζέτω παρὰ τῶι ἰδίωι ἐπισκόπωι ἢ γοῦν γνώμηι αὐτοῦ τοῦ ἐπισκόπου παρ΄ οἷς ἂν τὰ ἀμφότερα μέρη βούληται͵ τὰ τῆς δίκης συγκροτείσθω. εἰ δέ τις παρὰ ταῦτα ποιήσοι͵ κανονικοῖς ἐπιτιμίοις ὑποκείσθω. εἰ δὲ καὶ κληρικὸς ἔχοι πρᾶγμα πρὸς τὸν ἴδιον ἢ καὶ πρὸς ἕτερον ἐπίσκοπον͵ παρὰ τῆι συνόδωι τῆς ἐπαρχίας δικαζέσθω. εἰ δὲ πρὸς τὸν τῆς αὐτῆς ἐπαρχίας μητροπολίτην ἐπίσκοπος ἢ κληρικὸς ἀμφισβητοίη͵ καταλαμβανέτω ἢ τὸν ἔξαρχον τῆς διοικήσεως ἢ τὸν τῆς βασιλευούσης Κωνσταντινουπόλεως θρόνον καὶ ἐπ΄ αὐτῶι δικαζέσθω.

10. A cleric is not allowed to be appointed to churches in two cities at the same time: to the one where he was originally ordained, and to another more important one to which he has betaken himself out of desire to increase a baseless reputation. Those who do this are to be sent back to their own church in which they were ordained at the beginning, and only there are they to serve. But if some have already been transferred from one church to another, they are not to take part in any of the affairs of their former church, or of the martyrs’ shrines or almshouses or hospices that come under it. The sacred synod has decreed that those who, subsequent to this decree of this great and universal synod, dare to do anything that is now forbidden are to lose their personal rank.

10. Μὴ ἐξεῖναι κληρικὸν ἐν δύο πόλεων κατὰ τὸ αὐτὸ καταλέγεσθαι ἐκκλησίαις͵ ἐν ἧι τε τὴν ἀρχὴν ἐχειροτονήθη καὶ ἐν ἧι προσέφυγεν ὡς μείζονι δῆθεν διὰ δόξης κενῆς ἐπι θυμίαν· τοὺς δέ γε τοῦτο ποιοῦντας ἀποκαθίστασθαι τῆι ἰδίαι ἐκκλησίαι͵ ἐν ἧι ἐξ ἀρχῆς ἐχειροτονήθησαν͵ καὶ ἐκεῖ μόνον λειτουργεῖν. εἰ μέντοι ἤδη τις μετετέθη ἐξ ἄλλης εἰς ἄλλην ἐκκλησίαν͵ μηδὲν τοῖς τῆς προτέρας ἐκκλησίας ἤτοι τῶν ὑπ΄ αὐτὴν μαρτυρίων ἢ πτωχείων ἢ ξενοδοχείων ἐπικοινωνεῖν πράγμασι. τοὺς δέ γε τολμῶντας μετὰ τὸν ὅρον τῆς μεγάλης καὶ οἰκουμενικῆς ταύτης συνόδου πράττειν τι τῶν νῦν ἀπηγορευμένων ὥρισεν ἡ ἁγία σύνοδος ἐκπίπτειν τοῦ οἰκείου βαθμοῦ.

11. We have decreed that, subject to examination, all paupers and needy persons are to travel with ecclesiastical letters or letters of peace only, and not of commendation, since it befits only reputable persons to be provided with letters of commendation.

11. Πάντας τοὺς πένητας καὶ δεομένους ἐπικουρίας μετὰ δοκιμασίας ἐπιστολίοις εἴτ΄ οὖν εἰρηνικοῖς ἐκκλησιαστικοῖς μόνοις ὁδεύειν ὡρίσαμεν καὶ μὴ συστατικοῖς διὰ τὸ τὰς συστατικὰς ἐπιστολὰς προσήκειν τοῖς οὖσιν ἐν ὑπολήψει μόνοις παρέχεσθαι προσώποις.

12. It has come to our notice that, contrary to the ecclesiastical regulations, some have made approaches to the civil authorities and have divided one province into two by official mandate, with the result that there are two metropolitans in the same province. The sacred synod therefore decrees that in future no bishop should dare do such a thing, since he who attempts it stands to lose his proper station. Such places as have already been honoured by imperial writ with the title of metropolis must treat it simply as honorary, and that goes also for the bishop who is in charge of the church there, without prejudice of course to the proper rights of the real metropolis.

12. ῏Ηλθεν εἰς ἡμᾶς ὡς τινὲς παρὰ τοὺς ἐκκλησιαστικοὺς θεσμοὺς προσδραμόντες δυνα στείαις διὰ πραγματικῶν τὴν μίαν ἐπαρχίαν εἰς δύο κατέτεμον͵ ὡς ἐκ τούτου δύο μητρο πολίτας εἶναι ἐν τῆι αὐτῆι ἐπαρχίαι. ὥρισε τοίνυν ἡ ἁγία σύνοδος τοῦ λοιποῦ μηδὲν τοιοῦτο τολμᾶσθαι παρὰ ἐπισκόπου͵ ἐπεὶ τὸν τοῦτο ἐπιχειροῦντα ἐκπίπτειν τοῦ οἰκείου βαθμοῦ. ὅσαι δὲ ἤδη πόλεις διὰ γραμμάτων βασιλικῶν τῶι τῆς μητροπόλεως ἐτι μήθησαν ὀνόματι͵ μόνης ἀπολαυέτωσαν τῆς τιμῆς καὶ ὁ τὴν ἐκκλησίαν αὐτῆς διοικῶν ἐπίσκοπος͵ δηλονότι σωιζομένων τῆι κατὰ ἀλήθειαν μητροπόλει τῶν οἰκείων δικαίων.

13. Foreign clerics and readers without letters of commendation from their own bishop are absolutely forbidden to serve in another city.

13.  Ξένους κληρικοὺς καὶ ἀναγνώστας ἐν ἑτέραι πόλει δίχα συστατικῶν γραμμάτων τοῦ ἰδίου ἐπισκόπου μηδ΄ ὅλως μηδαμοῦ λειτουργεῖν.

14. Since in certain provinces readers and cantors have been allowed to marry, the sacred synod decrees that none of them is permitted to marry a wife of heterodox views. If those thus married have already had children, and if they have already had the children baptised among heretics, they are to bring them into the communion of the catholic church. If they have not been baptised, they may no longer have them baptised among heretics; nor indeed marry them to a heretic or a Jew or a Greek, unless of course the person who is to be married to the orthodox party promises to convert to the orthodox faith. If anyone transgresses this decree of the sacred synod, let him be subject to canonical penalty.

14. Ἐπειδὴ ἔν τισιν ἐπαρχίαις συγκεχώρηται τοῖς ἀναγνώσταις καὶ ψάλταις γαμεῖν͵ ὥρισεν ἡ ἁγία σύνοδος μὴ ἐξεῖναι τινὰ αὐτῶν ἑτερόδοξον γυναῖκα λαμβάνειν· τοὺς δὲ ἤδη ἐκ τοιούτων γάμων παιδοποιήσαντας͵ εἰ μὲν ἔφθασαν βαπτίσαι τὰ ἐξ αὐτῶν τε χθέντα παρὰ τοῖς αἱρετικοῖς͵ προσάγειν αὐτὰ τῆι κοινωνίαι τῆς καθολικῆς ἐκκλησίας· μὴ βαπτισθέντα δὲ μὴ δύνασθαι ἔτι βαπτίζειν αὐτὰ παρὰ τοῖς αἱρετικοῖς μήτε μὴν συνά πτειν πρὸς γάμον αἱρετικῶι ἢ Ἰουδαίωι ἢ Ἕλληνι͵ εἰ μὴ ἄρα ἐπαγγέλλοιτο μετατί θεσθαι εἰς τὴν ὀρθόδοξον πίστιν τὸ συναπτόμενον πρόσωπον τῶι ὀρθοδόξωι. εἰ δέ τις τοῦτον τὸν ὅρον παραβαίη τῆς ἁγίας συνόδου͵ κανονικῶι ὑποκείσθω ἐπιτιμίωι.

15. Woman Deacon to be 40 or older and celibate  

15. No woman under forty years of age is to be ordained a deacon, and then only after close scrutiny. If after receiving ordination and spending some time in the ministry she despises God’s grace and gets married, such a person is to be anathematised along with her spouse.

15. Διάκονον μὴ χειροτονεῖσθαι γυναῖκα πρὸ ἐτῶν τεσσαράκοντα καὶ ταύτην μετὰ ἀκριβοῦς δοκιμασίας. εἰ δέ γε δεξαμένη τὴν χειροθεσίαν καὶ χρόνον τινὰ παραμείνασα τῆι λειτουργίαι ἑαυτὴν ἐπιδῶι γάμωι ὑβρίσασα τὴν τοῦ θεοῦ χάριν͵ ἡ τοιαύτη ἀνα θεματιζέσθω μετὰ τοῦ αὐτῆι συναφθέντος.

16. It is not permitted for a virgin who has dedicated herself to the Lord God, or similarly for a monk, to contract marriage. If it is discovered that they have done so, let them be made excommunicate. However, we have decreed that the local bishop should have discretion to deal humanely with them.

16. Παρθένον ἑαυτὴν ἀναθεῖσαν τῶι δεσπότηι θεῶι͵ ὡσαύτως δὲ καὶ μονάζοντα μὴ ἐξεῖναι γάμωι προσομιλεῖν· εἰ δέ γε εὑρεθεῖεν τοῦτο ποιοῦντες͵ ἔστωσαν ἀκοινώνητοι. ὡρίσαμεν δὲ ἔχειν τὴν αὐθεντίαν τῆς ἐπ΄ αὐτοῖς φιλανθρωπίας τὸν κατὰ τὸν τόπον ἐπί σκοπον.

17. Rural or country parishes belonging to a church are to stay firmly tied to the bishops who have possession of them, and especially if they have continually and peacefully administered them over a thirty-year period. If, however, within the thirty years any dispute about them has arisen, or should arise, those who are claiming to be wronged are permitted to bring the case before the provincial synod. If there are any who are wronged by their own metropolitan, let their case be judged either by the exarch of the diocese or by the see of Constantinople, as has already been said. If any city has been newly erected, or is erected hereafter, by imperial decree, let the arrangement of ecclesiastical parishes conform to the civil and public regulations.

17. Τὰς καθ΄ ἑκάστην ἐκκλησίαν ἀγροικικὰς παροικίας ἢ ἐγχωρίους μένειν ἀπαρασαλεύ τους παρὰ τοῖς κατέχουσιν αὐτὰς ἐπισκόποις καὶ μάλιστα εἰ τριακονταετῆ χρόνον ταύτας ἀβιάστως διακατέχοντες ὠικονόμησαν. εἰ δὲ ἐντὸς τῶν τριάκοντα ἐτῶν γεγένηταί τις ἢ γένοιτο περὶ αὐτῶν ἀμφισβήτησις͵ ἐξεῖναι τοῖς λέγουσιν ἠδικῆσθαι περὶ τούτων κινεῖν παρὰ τῆι συνόδωι τῆς ἐπαρχίας. εἰ δέ τις ἀδικοῖτο παρὰ τοῦ ἰδίου μητροπολίτου͵ παρὰ τῶι ἐξάρχωι τῆς διοικήσεως ἢ τῶι Κωνσταντινουπόλεως θρόνωι δικαζέσθω͵ καθὰ προείρηται. εἰ δέ τις ἐκ βασιλικῆς ἐξουσίας ἐκαινίσθη πόλις ἢ αὖθις καινισθείη͵ τοῖς πολιτικοῖς καὶ δημοσίοις τύποις καὶ τῶν ἐκκλησιαστικῶν παροικιῶν ἡ τάξις ἀκολουθείτω.

18. The crime of conspiracy or secret association is entirely prohibited even by the laws of the land; so all the more properly is this forbidden in the church of God. So if any clerics or monks are found to be either forming a conspiracy or a secret society or hatching plots against bishops or fellow clergy, let them lose their personal rank completely.

18. Τὸ τῆς συνωμοσίας ἢ φρατρίας ἔγκλημα καὶ παρὰ τῶν ἔξω νόμων πάντηι κεκώλυ ται· πολλῶι δὴ μᾶλλον ἐν τῆι τοῦ θεοῦ ἐκκλησίαι τοῦτο γίνεσθαι ἀπαγορεύειν προσήκει. εἴ τινες τοίνυν [ἢ] κληρικοὶ ἢ μονάζοντες εὑρεθεῖεν συνομνύμενοι ἢ φρατριάζοντες ἢ κατα σκευὰς τυρεύοντες ἐπισκόποις ἢ συγκληρικοῖς͵ ἐκπιπτέτωσαν πάντηι τοῦ οἰκείου βαθμοῦ.

19. We have heard that in the provinces the synods of bishops prescribed by canon law are not taking place, and that as a result many ecclesiastical matters that need putting right are being neglected. So the sacred synod decrees that in accordance with the canons of the fathers, the bishops in each province are to foregather twice a year at a place approved by the bishop of the metropolis and put any matters arising to rights. Bishops failing to attend who enjoy good health and are free from all unavoidable and necessary engagements, but stay at home in their own cities, are to be fraternally rebuked.

19.῏Ηλθεν εἰς ἡμετέρας ἀκοὰς ὡς ἐν ταῖς ἐπαρχίαις αἱ κεκανονισμέναι σύνοδοι τῶν ἐπισκόπων οὐ γίνονται καὶ ἐκ τούτου πολλὰ παραμελεῖται τῶν διορθώσεως δεομένων ἐκκλησιαστικῶν πραγμάτων. ὥρισεν τοίνυν ἡ ἁγία σύνοδος κατὰ τοὺς τῶν ἁγίων πατέρων κανόνας δὶς τοῦ ἐνιαυτοῦ ἐπὶ τὸ αὐτὸ συντρέχειν καθ΄ ἑκάστην ἐπαρχίαν τοὺς ἐπισκόπους ἔνθα ἂν ὁ τῆς μητροπόλεως ἐπίσκοπος δοκιμάσηι͵ καὶ διορθοῦν ἕκαστα τὰ ἀνακύπτοντα· τοὺς δὲ μὴ συνιόντας ἐπισκόπους ἐνδημοῦντας ταῖς ἑαυτῶν πόλεσιν καὶ ταῦτα ἐν ὑγείαι διάγοντας καὶ πάσης ἀπαραιτήτου καὶ ἀναγκαίας ἀσχολίας ὄντας ἐλευ θέρους ἀδελφικῶς ἐπιπλήττεσθαι.

20. As we have already decreed, clerics who are serving a church are not permitted to join a church in another city, but are to be content with the one in which they were originally authorised to minister, apart from those who have been displaced from their own country and been forced to move to another church. If subsequent to this decision any bishop receives a cleric who belongs to another bishop, it is decreed that both the received and the receiver are to be excommunicate until such time as the cleric who has moved returns to his own church.

20. Κληρικοὺς εἰς ἐκκλησίαν τελοῦντας͵ καθὼς ἤδη ὡρίσαμεν͵ μὴ ἐξεῖναι εἰς ἄλλης πόλεως τάττεσθαι ἐκκλησίαν͵ ἀλλὰ στέργειν ἐκείνην ἐν ἧι λειτουργεῖν ἐξ ἀρχῆς ἠξιώθησαν͵ ἐκτὸς ἐκείνων οἵτινες ἀπολέσαντες τὰς ἰδίας πατρίδας ἀπὸ ἀνάγκης εἰς ἄλλην ἐκκλησίαν μετῆλθον. εἰ δέ τις ἐπίσκοπος μετὰ τὸν ὅρον τοῦτον ἄλλωι ἐπισκόπωι προσήκοντα δέξηται κληρικόν͵ ἔδοξεν ἀκοινώνητον εἶναι καὶ τὸν δεχθέντα καὶ τὸν δεξάμενον͵ ἕως ἂν ὁ μεταστὰς κληρικὸς εἰς τὴν ἰδίαν ἐπανέλθηι ἐκκλησίαν.

21. Clerics or layfolk who bring allegations against bishops or clerics are not to be admitted to make their charges without more ado and before any examination, but their reputation must first be investigated.

21.  Κληρικοὺς ἢ λαικοὺς κατηγοροῦντας ἐπισκόπων ἢ κληρικῶν ἁπλῶς καὶ ἀδοκιμάστως μὴ προσδέχεσθαι εἰς κατηγορίαν͵ εἰ μὴ πρότερον ἐξετασθῆι αὐτῶν ἡ ὑπόληψις.

22. It is not permitted for clerics, following the death of their own bishop, to seize the things that belong to him, as has been forbidden even by earlier canons. Those who do this risk losing their personal rank.

22. Μὴ ἐξεῖναι κληρικοῖς μετὰ θάνατον τοῦ ἰδίου ἐπισκόπου διαρπάζειν τὰ διαφέροντα αὐτῶι πράγματα͵ καθὼς καὶ τοῖς πάλαι κανόσιν ἀπηγόρευται͵ ἢ τοὺς τοῦτο ποιοῦντας κινδυνεύειν εἰς τοὺς ἰδίους βαθμούς.

23. It has come to the notice of the sacred synod that certain clerics and monks who have no employment from their own bishop and have sometimes even been excommunicated by him, are frequenting imperial Constantinople and spending long periods there causing disturbances, upsetting the ecclesiastical establishment and ruining people’s homes. So the sacred synod decrees that such people are first to be warned by the public attorney of the most holy Constantinopolitan church to get out of the imperial city; and if they shamelessly persist in the same kinds of behaviour, they are to be expelled by the same public attorney even against their will, and are to betake themselves to their own places.

23.῏Ηλθεν εἰς ἀκοὰς τῆς ἁγίας συνόδου ὡς κληρικοί τινες καὶ μονάζοντες μηδὲν ἐγκε χειρισμένοι ὑπὸ τοῦ ἰδίου ἐπισκόπου͵ ἔστι δὲ ὅτε καὶ ἀκοινώνητοι γενόμενοι παρ΄ αὐτοῦ͵ καταλαμβάνοντες τὴν βασιλεύουσαν Κωνσταντινούπολιν ἐπὶ πολὺ ἐν αὐτῆι διατρίβουσιν ταραχὰς ἐμποιοῦντες καὶ θορυβοῦντες τὴν ἐκκλησιαστικὴν κατάστασιν ἀνατρέπουσί τε οἴκους τινῶν. ὥρισεν τοίνυν ἡ ἁγία σύνοδος τοὺς τοιούτους ὑπομιμνήσκεσθαι μὲν πρότερον διὰ τοῦ ἐκδίκου τῆς κατὰ Κωνσταντινούπολιν ἁγιωτάτης ἐκκλησίας ἐπὶ τῶι ἐξελθεῖν τῆς βασιλευούσης πόλεως͵ εἰ δὲ τοῖς αὐτοῖς πράγμασιν ἐπιμένοιεν ἀναισχυν τοῦντες͵ καὶ ἄκοντας αὐτοὺς διὰ τοῦ αὐτοῦ ἐκδίκου ἐκβάλλεσθαι καὶ τοὺς ἰδίους κατα λαμβάνειν τόπους.

24. Monasteries once consecrated in accordance with the will of the bishop are to remain monasteries in perpetuity, and the effects which belong to them are reserved to the monastery, and they must not be turned into secular hostelries. Those who allow this to happen are to be subject to the canonical penalties.

24. Τὰ ἅπαξ καθιερωθέντα μοναστήρια κατὰ γνώμην ἐπισκόπου μένειν εἰς τὸ διηνεκὲς μοναστήρια καὶ τὰ προσήκοντα αὐτοῖς πράγματα φυλάττεσθαι τῶι μοναστηρίωι καὶ μηκέτι δύνασθαι γίνεσθαι ταῦτα κοσμικὰ καταγώγια· τοὺς δὲ συγχωροῦντας τοῦτο γίνεσθαι ὑποκεῖσθαι τοῖς ἐκ τῶν κανόνων ἐπιτιμίοις.

25. According to our information, certain metropolitans are neglecting the flocks entrusted to them and are delaying the ordination of bishops, so the sacred synod has decided that the ordination of bishops should take place within three months, unless the period of delay has been caused to be extended by some unavoidable necessity. If a metropolitan fails to do this, he is to be subject to ecclesiastical penalties. The income of the widowed church is to be kept safe by the administrator of the said church.

25. Ἐπειδὴ δὲ τινὲς τῶν μητροπολιτῶν͵ ὡς περιηχήθημεν͵ ἀμελοῦσι τῶν ἐγκεχειρισ μένων αὐτοῖς ποιμνίων καὶ ἀναβάλλονται τὰς χειροτονίας τῶν ἐπισκόπων͵ ἔδοξε τῆι ἁγίαι συνόδωι ἐντὸς τριῶν μηνῶν γίνεσθαι τὰς χειροτονίας τῶν ἐπισκόπων͵ εἰ μή ποτε ἄρα ἀπαραίτητος ἀνάγκη παρασκευάσηι ἐπιταθῆναι τὸν τῆς ἀναβολῆς χρόνον. εἰ δὲ μὴ τοῦτο ποιήσηι͵ ὑποκεῖσθαι αὐτὸν ἐκκλησιαστικῶι ἐπιτιμίωι· τὴν μέντοι πρόσοδον τῆς χηρευούσης ἐκκλησίας σώαν παρὰ τῶι οἰκονόμωι τῆς αὐτῆς ἐκκλησίας φυλάττεσθαι.

26. According to our information, in some churches the bishops handle church business without administrators; so it has been decided that every church which has a bishop is also to have an administrator, drawn from its own clergy, to administer ecclesiastical matters according to the mind of the bishop concerned so that the church’s administration may not go unaudited, and that consequently the church’s property is not dispersed and the episcopate not exposed to serious criticism. If he does not comply with this, he is to be subject to the divine canons.

26. Ἐπειδὴ ἐν τισὶν ἐκκλησίαις͵ ὡς περιηχήθημεν͵ δίχα οἰκονόμων οἱ ἐπίσκοποι τὰ ἐκκλησιαστικὰ χειρίζουσι πράγματα͵ ἔδοξε πᾶσαν ἐκκλησίαν ἐπίσκοπον ἔχουσαν καὶ οἰκονόμον ἔχειν ἐκ τοῦ ἰδίου κλήρου οἰκονομοῦντα τὰ ἐκκλησιαστικὰ κατὰ γνώμην τοῦ ἰδίου ἐπισκόπου͵ ὥστε μὴ ἀμάρτυρον εἶναι τὴν οἰκονομίαν τῆς ἐκκλησίας καὶ ἐκ τούτου σκορπίζεσθαι τὰ τῆς αὐτῆς ἐκκλησίας πράγματα καὶ λοιδορίαν τῆι ἱερωσύνηι προστρί βεσθαι· εἰ δὲ μὴ τοῦτο ποιήσηι͵ ὑποκεῖσθαι αὐτὸν τοῖς θείοις κανόσιν.

27. The sacred synod decrees that those who carry off girls under pretext of cohabitation, or who are accomplices or co-operate with those who carry them off, are to lose their personal rank if they are clerics, and are to be anathematised if they are monks or layfolk.

27. Τοὺς ἁρπάζοντας γυναῖκας ἐπ΄ ὀνόματι συνοικεσίου ἢ συμπράττοντας ἢ συναι νοῦντας τοῖς ἁρπάζουσιν ὥρισεν ἡ ἁγία σύνοδος͵ εἰ μὲν κληρικοὶ εἶεν͵ ἐκπίπτειν τοῦ οἰκείου βαθμοῦ· εἰ δὲ λαικοί͵ ἀναθεματίζεσθαι [αὐτούς].

[passed by the council at the 16th session but rejected by the Pope]


28. FOLLOWING in every way the decrees of the holy fathers and recognising the canon which has recently been read out--the canon of the 150 most devout bishops who assembled in the time of the great Theodosius of pious memory, then emperor, in imperial Constantinople, new Rome -- we issue the same decree and resolution concerning the prerogatives of the most holy church of the same Constantinople, new Rome.

28. Πανταχοῦ τοῖς τῶν ἁγίων πατέρων ὅροις ἑπόμενοι καὶ τὸν ἀρτίως ἀναγνωσθέντα κανόνα τῶν ρν θεοφιλεστάτων ἐπισκόπων τῶν συναχθέντων ἐπὶ τοῦ εὐσεβοῦς τὴν μνήμην μεγάλου Θεοδοσίου τοῦ γενομένου βασιλέως ἐν τῆι βασιλίδι Κωνσταντινουπόλει νέαι Ρώμηι γνωρίζοντες͵ τὰ αὐτὰ καὶ ἡμεῖς ὁρίζομέν τε καὶ ψηφιζόμεθα περὶ τῶν πρεσβείων τῆς ἁγιωτάτης ἐκκλησίας τῆς αὐτῆς Κωνσταντινουπόλεως νέας Ρώμης.

The fathers rightly accorded prerogatives to the see of older Rome, since that is an imperial city; and moved by the same purpose the 150 most devout bishops apportioned equal prerogatives to the most holy see of new Rome, reasonably judging that the city which is honoured by the imperial power and senate and enjoying privileges equalling older imperial Rome, should also be elevated to her level in ecclesiastical affairs and take second place after her. καὶ γὰρ τῶι θρόνωι τῆς πρεσβυτέρας Ρώμης διὰ τὸ βασιλεύειν τὴν πόλιν ἐκείνην οἱ πατέρες εἰκότως ἀποδεδώκασι τὰ πρεσβεῖα καὶ τῶι αὐτῶι σκοπῶι κινούμενοι οἱ ρν θεοφιλέστατοι ἐπί σκοποι τὰ ἴσα πρεσβεῖα ἀπένειμαν τῶι τῆς νέας Ρώμης ἁγιωτάτωι θρόνωι͵ εὐλόγως κρίναντες τὴν βασιλείαι καὶ συγκλήτωι τιμηθεῖσαν πόλιν καὶ τῶν ἴσων ἀπολαύουσαν πρεσβείων τῆι πρεσβυτέραι βασιλίδι Ρώμηι καὶ ἐν τοῖς ἐκκλησιαστικοῖς ὡς ἐκείνην μεγαλύνεσθαι πράγμασιν δευτέραν μετ΄ ἐκείνην ὑπάρχουσαν
The metropolitans of the dioceses of Pontus, Asia and Thrace, but only these, as well as the bishops of these dioceses who work among non-Greeks, are to be ordained by the aforesaid most holy see of the most holy church in Constantinople. That is, each metropolitan of the aforesaid dioceses along with the bishops of the province ordain the bishops of the province, as has been declared in the divine canons; but the metropolitans of the aforesaid dioceses, as has been said, are to be ordained by the archbishop of Constantinople, once agreement has been reached by vote in the usual way and has been reported to him. καὶ ὥστε τοὺς τῆς Ποντικῆς καὶ τῆς Ἀσιανῆς καὶ τῆς Θραικικῆς διοικήσεως μητροπολίτας μόνους͵ ἔτι δὲ καὶ τοὺς ἐν τοῖς βαρβαρικοῖς ἐπισκόπους τῶν προειρημένων διοικήσεων χειροτονεῖσθαι ὑπὸ τοῦ προειρημένου ἁγιωτάτου θρόνου τῆς κατὰ Κωνσταντινούπολιν ἁγιωτάτης ἐκκλησίας͵ δηλαδὴ ἑκάστου μητροπολίτου τῶν προειρημένων διοικήσεων μετὰ τῶν τῆς ἐπαρχίας ἐπισκόπων χειροτονοῦντος τοὺς τῆς ἐπαρχίας ἐπισκόπους͵ καθὼς τοῖς θείοις κανόσι διηγόρευται· χειροτονεῖσθαι δὲ καθὼς εἴρηται͵ τοὺς μητροπολίτας τῶν προειρημένων διοικήσεων παρὰ τοῦ Κωνσταντινουπόλεως ἀρχιεπισκόπου ψηφισμάτων συμφώνων κατὰ τὸ ἔθος γινομένων καὶ ἐπ΄ αὐτὸν ἀναφερομένων.



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