Imágenes de páginas

merable men who have afterwards made a figure in the world? And, secondly, here is an imitation of Pythagoras, of whom the same is said by the ' writers of his life.

Again : Jesus ascended to heaven : nor would Philostratus, says Huet, have his Apollonius interior to him in that respect.'

Nevertheless here is no resemblance at all; nor can there be any. According to all the gospels, Jesus was publicly crucified at Jerusalem : and it was in all the ancient creeds received by all catholic Christians in general, that Jesus suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead • and buried: the third day he rose again from the dead, and ascended into heaven.' But Philostratus did not know, when, or where, or how Apollonius died, nor at what age : how is it possible then that there should be here any resemblance ? • Concerning the manner of his · death, if indeed he died, there are various reports. But Damis says nothing_Nor does • Damis inform us of his age: but some say he lived to be eighty years old, others more than • ninety, some more than an hundred. Some say he died at Ephesus, others say he died at

Lindus, others at Crete, and that having gone into the temple there, he disappeared in a won• derful manner : and that there were heard virgins singing this ode : “ Come from the earth, · Come to heaven, come.” So writes Philostratus.

Surely this is all uncertainty, and nothing to be depended upon; as “Huet himself, and other learned men of the best note, have acknowledged.

But though this is all uncertainty, and here is no resemblance of Jesus Christ, here is an imitation of the writers of the life of Pythagoras; who either give no account of his death, or say, there are different accounts in several authors of the manner of his death. And some said he . died in the eightieth year of his age, others in the ninetieth year; and some said he lived to be almost an hundred, others, that'he reached to the hundred and fifth year of his age.

Upon the whole, I do not see any reason to believe, that Philostratus had read any of our gospels, or any other of the books of the New Testament, or that he any where makes any references to the history of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Before I proceed any farther, I would just observe here, that Photius has two articles concerning this work of Philostratus, entitled, The Life of Apollonius Tyanæus: one of which is a general account of the work; the other is a copious abridgment of all the eight books of it: but I do not recollect, that he any where hints it to have been his design to oppose Apollonius to Jesus. However, in the first article he gives the true character of it, representing it to be extremely 'fabulous.

Jerom " likewise has given a particular account of Philostratus's eight books of the Life of



p. 662.

a Πυθαλορα δ' εκ παιδων εις τασαν μαθησιν οντος ευφυες" κ. λ.

i 'Om xaloy τεσσαρων ειων λεξείαι εζηκεναι τον Porph. de Vit. Pyth. num. i. Vid. et Diog. Laërt. lib. viii. Tlubadopar. Anon. de Vit. Pythag. Ap. Phot. cod. 259. sect. 2. et Jambl. de Vit. Pythag. num. 9, 10.

p. 1313. et apud Kusteri Jamblichum. p.56. ” Jesus ascendit in cælum : nec hac parte inferiorem esse * Phot. Cod. 44. p. 29. et 241. p. 996. Apollonium suum voluit Philostratus. Huet. ib num. iv. 1 Ταυλα μεν περι εαυτ8 αναπλαίει. p. 29. lin. 51.

Παραπλησια τετοις ανοιας μεσα, και εθερα πλεισα, τεραιευ• Περι γαρ τροπο καθ' ον ελελευία, εινε ελελευθα, πλειος μεν σαμενος. Εν οκτω δε λογοις η σασα αυθω της ματαιοπονιας 20:01. Aauide de rdey ElprioPhilost. I. viii. cap. 29, 30. σπεδη και αναλωθαι. p. 32. in.

nec uspiam postea comparuisse. Quæ quam incon- Apollonius (sive ille magus, ut vulgus loquitur, sive phicinne et absurde conficta sint, clarissime patefaciant ea, quæ losophus, ut Pythagorici tradunt) intravit Persas, per transia Philostrato præmissa sunt. Nam quo ætatis anno decesserit vit Caucasum, Albanos, Scythas, Massagetas, opulentissima Apollonius, ignorari ait,--discrepantes quoque esse de loco Indiæ regna penetravit ; et ad extremum latissimo Physon obitùs ipsius sententias, Ephesi aliis, aliis Lindi, aliis in Creta amne transmisso, pervenit ad Brachmanas, ut Jarcam in interiise narrantibus, sepulcrum vero ejus nullibi gentium re- throno fedentem aureo, et de Tantal: fonte potantem, inter periri. Huet. ib. p. 662.

paucos discipulos, de naturâ, de moribus, ac siderum cursu Quando, et quo mortis genere obierit, incertissimum est. audiret docentem. Inde per Elamitas, Babylonios, Chaldæos, Philostratus ipse hic nibil explorati scire profitetur. Quare Medos, Assyrios, Parthos, Syros, Phænices, Arabes, Palæstijusto confidentiores habendi sunt, qui in tempore mortis ejus nos, reversus Alexandriam, perrexit Æthiopiam, ut Gymno. constituendo elaborarunt. &c. &c. Moshem ubi supr. sect. 4. sophistas, et famosissimam Solis mensam videret in fabulo. | Vid. Diog. Laërt. lib. viii, segm. 39, 40, 41.

Invenit ille vir ubique quod disceret, et semper proficiens, * Ο γεν Πυθα τορας, ως μεν Ηρακλειδης φησιν, ογδοηκονle7ης semper se melior fieret. ' Scripsit super hoc plenissime octo ετελευλα ως δε οι πλειος, εθη βιες εννενηκονία. Ιd. voluminibus Philostratus. Hieron. ad Paulin. ep. 50. al. 103. Segmı. 44.

T. iv. P. 2. p. 568. h-το σανία βιωσανlα ετη εύγυς των εκατον. Jambl. Vit. Pyth. cap. 30. num. 265.


Apollonius, whom, as he says, the vulgar called a magician, the Pythagoræans a philosopher : but he gives not any hint, that Philostratus had designed to set up Apollonius in opposition to our Saviour.

And beside that every thing is uncertain, and nothing related in a credible manner and upon good authority, as was formerly shewn; the things ascribed to Apollonius by Philostratus are not so extraordinary as some imagine. Some “ cures of dæmoniacs, and others, are inserted after a sort in this history of Apollonius, but not one instance of a miraculous resurrection is asserted by him. Something of this kind he attempts in one place; but after all, it was not certain to those who were present that the young woman was dead; nor does Philostratus affirm it: for there were, it seems, some signs of life in the person who had been supposed by some to be dead. Upon which story Eusebius has made good remarks : who says, “as it was not credited by Phi* fostratus himself, we need not much mind it: for in reasoning about it, he supposeth, that • there were some remains of life, the maid still breathing, and having a dew of sweat

upon her face : and moreover, as this is said to have happened at Rome, if it had been • true, it would undoubtedly have come to the knowledge of the emperor Domitian and his • courtiers, and to the philosopher Euphrates, then at Rome, and would have been parti• cularly taken notice of, either in favour of Apollonius, or to his disadvantage : neither of • which happened.'

Of this Eusebius takes notice again afterwards, saying: “ As for the young woman brought * to life from the dead, or rather still breathing, having in her symptoms of life, according to • the historian himself, it cannot be reckoned a miracle: nor, as before said, would so great a • work have been buried in silence, if it had been performed at Rome itself, where the emperor « then was.'

Some will ask here, how then it came to pass, that many heathen people were disposed to equal Apollonius to Jesus, or even to prefer him before our Lord! I answer, the reason was, that they were willing to lay hold of any thing that offered to save the sinking cause of polytheism, and the rites belonging to it: as shipwrecked men catch at every twig or straw that comes in their way to save themselves from drowning.

This observation may be illustrated and confirmed by an argument of Origen with Celsus.

Now,' says "Origen, let us observe some of the strange things alleged by Celsus, which, though in themselves incredible, are believed by him, if we may credit his word. Such are • the stories which he alleges, first concerning “Aristeas of Proconnesus, who after he had won

derfully disappeared from the eyes of men, was afterwards seen again, and visited many parts • of the world, and related the wonderful things he had seen.” • Afterwards' he insists upon • the history of Clazomenius,“ of whom it is said, that his soul often left the body, and wan• dered about without the body.” • He also speaks of Cleomedes of Astipyléa, letting us thereby • know, that he was not unacquainted with the Grecian histories. Who,” as he says, “ when • shut

up in a chest held it fast: nevertheless, when it was opened he was not found in it, having • escaped by some divine power.”

If Celsus, an Epicurean, when arguing against the Christians, could lay hold of such things, and speak of them as true, what might not other prejudiced and ignorant men do? For these things must have been looked upon as fabulous by all wise men, when they had no particular interest to serve. Plutarch having related how Proculus said and swore, that he had seen Ro


a L. iii. cap. 38, 39. 1. iv. c. 20.

4 Το γαρ της αναζιωσασης κορης, ειτ' εμπνες υπηρχε, L. iv. cap. 45.

σπινθηρα ψυχης καλα τον συγγραφεα, και ικμαδα επι τα • Το γε μην επι της Ρωμαιων πολεως μεία ταυλα κοριον, προσωπο φερεσαν, περιαιρεθεον της θαυματοποιιας. Ου γαρ 7. δη μέλα θαναλον επι δεύθεραν ζωην η/αεν, απιςοταθην και αν, ως και προσθεν εφην, σιωπη το τηλικείον παρεδόθη επ' αυλης αυλω δοξαν τω Φιλοςρατω παραιτηθεον. Εν δισαίμα μενθοι Ρωμης, βασιλεως επι παρονος γεμενημενον. Ιb. p. 534. D. αμφιβαλλει, μη αρα σπινθηρ της ψυχης ενυπαρχων τη παιδι, Ιδωμεν δε και α μεία ταυλα λεει ο Κελσος παραλιθεμενος τες θεραπευονίας ελεληθει. Λεγεσθαι γαρ φησιν ως ψεκαζοι απο ισοριων παραδοξα, και καθ' αυλα μεν απιςοις εoικόλα, υπ' μεν ο ζευς, η δε αλμιζοι απο το προσωπε. Και γαρ δη ει αληθως αυτ8 απιςεμενα, οσον γε επι τη λεξει αυτό, Conur. Cels. αυλο τοιον και επι της Ρωμης επεπρακίο, εκ αν ελεληθει βασιλεα 1. iii. n. 26. p. 125. τε πρωτον, και τες μετ' αυλον απανίας υπαρχες, μαλισα δε f Ib. num. 32. p. 129. τον φιλοσοφον Ευφραίην εχωριαζονία κατ' εκεινο καιρό, και επι 6 Ib. num. 33. p. 130. 'Pacers 812Tpıbovla. Cont. Hierocl. p. 530. VOL. IV.

2 M

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mulus after he was dead, goes on : This is like some of the Grecian fables of Aristéas the • Proconnesian, and Cleomedes the Astypaleian. For they say, that Aristéas died in a fuller's work-house ; and his friends coming to him, his body vanished; and that some presently after coming from a journey, said they met him travelling to Croton. And that Cleomedes, being • an extraordinary strong man, and withal crazed, committed many desperate freaks. At last, • in a certain school-house striking a pillar that sustained the roof with his fist, broke it in the • middle, so the house fell and destroyed the children in it, and being pursued he fled into a great chest, and shutting to the lid, held it so fast, that many men with all their strength could not force it open. Afterwards breaking the chest to pieces, they found no man in itMany such improbabilities do your fabulous writers relate.' So says Plutarch.

As Celsus, and possibly some others, for want of better laid hold of old Greek stories to oppose to the miracles of Jesus, and the Jewish prophets : so many heathens in latter times might endeavour to improve the history of Apollonius in opposition to Jesus and his followers : though Philostratus had no such thing in view, no more than the first inventers of the old fabulous stories among the Greeks.

One thing here offers itself to our observation, for shewing the temper of the heathen people in this point, which therefore cannot be omitted.

For in the time of Augustine many heathen people, and those of no small consideration, ascribed not only to Apollonius, but to Apuleius of Madaura likewise, many miracles.

Says b Mr. Bayle, nothing can more sensibly demonstrate the absurd credulity of the Pagans, than • their saying that Apuleius had done so great a number of miracles, that they equalled, or even surpassed those of Jesus Christ. Undoubtedly there were many people who took for true history all that he relates in his Golden Ass; though himself published that book as a Romance, or a Milesian fable, as he calls it in the introduction. And as the same author goes on : • It could not be easily believed that any had formed such a notion, were it not that it is attested by men of good credit : and that the great prelate Augustine was earnestly entreated * to confute it. Nay,' says Bayle, these pretended miracles were talked of long before Au* gustine: for Lactantius' wonders, that the author of whom he is speaking did not join

Apueleius with Apollonius of Tyana; for of him also many wonderful things are related. So Mr. Bayle.

And I think it does appear from Lactantius, that in his time many wonderful things were ascribed to Apuleius, and believed by some ; but, as it seems, they were mean and vulgar people only. For which reason Hierocles, of whom he speaks, did not bring them into his argument against the Christians; he was wiser than to do it. But things were altered before the time of Augustine : the Christian religion had made farther progress in the world, and the necessities of the heathen people were increased ; and they now added the miracles of Apuleius to those of Apollonius to strengthen their cause, though there was no ground for either. It is manifest from the letter of Marcellinus to Augustine, that the works then ascribed to Apuleius and others, were a real and weighty objection against Christianity in the minds of some heathen people of note, and who were well disposed to it: with how little reason we can now easily discern. But such cases as these are continually happening in this world of ours, owing to want of careful and impartial examination, the great source of ignorance and error in all sorts of people

We have now finished our digression, and return to Philostratus.

Apollonius pretended to know the thoughts of men, and to foresee futurities : nevertheless as Tillemont: observes, • he composed a very long apology for himself with a design to deliver

• Εοικε μεν ταυτα τοις υφ' “Ελληνων, περι τε Αρισεε, τα dem suum nobis, et Apuleium, aliosque magicæ artis homiπροκοννησια, και Κλεομηδες το Ατυπαλαιεως μυθολοδεμενοις. nes in medium proferunt, quorum majora contendunt extiPlutarch. sub fin. Vit. Rom.

tisse miracula. Marcellin. ad Augustin. ep. 136. [al. 4.) Tom. b Apulée.

ii. ed. Bened. < Ut ego tibi sermone isto Milesio varias fabulas conseram. | Voluit ostendere Apollonium vel paria vel etiam majora Apul. in prol. Asini Aurei.

fecisse. Mirum, quod Apuleium prætermisit, cujus solent et d Apulée, note (L).

multa et mira memorari. Lactant. Div. Inst. lib. v.cap. 3. precator accesserim, ut ad ea vigilantius respondere & Tillem. H. E. Tom. ii. P. i. p. 220, 221. Brux. digneris, in quibus nihil amplius Dominum, quam alii homi- Philost. de Vit. Apoll. 1. viii. cap. 7. p. 327-353. nes facere potuerunt, gessisse mentiuntur. Apollonium siqui

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in all ages.


it to Domitian; but his pretended prophetic spirit did not advertise him, that Domitian would not give him time to pronounce it, and that the pains he was at in composing it would be useless.'

A man o who had lost an eye came to a temple of Æsculapius, where also Apollonius was, hoping to have his eye restored to him : but understanding that his affliction was the punishment of his intemperance, the priest and Apollonius agreed to dismiss him as a profane wretch unworthy of cure. May it not be reasonably suspected, that the cure was above their ability ?

We are indebted to Eusebius for his account of the work of Hierocles, and for his remarks upon Philostratus : nevertheless it is somewhat unhappy for us, that he did not transcribe at length that passage of Hierocles, where he enumerated the wonderful works ascribed to Apollonius : that passage might have enabled us to judge better for ourselves, and to form a distinct notion of Hierocles's argument, and what were the actions of Apollonius upon which he chiefly relied. However, as we still have the work of Philostratus, we can be assured, that nothing more than human was credibly related of him; and I have endeavoured to supply the above mentioned defect by divers quotations and observations ; to which I shall add a few more, though to some they may appear unnecessary.

· A'plague broke out at Ephesus ; and no remedy offering,' says Philostratus, “they sent messengers to Apollonius at Smyrna, who presently came to them: and gathering together all the Ephesians in general, he bid them be easy, for he would stop the plague that very day. Having thus said, he invited the people of every age to the theatre, where now stands the statue in memory of their deliverance. Here was seen an old man in the shape of a beggar, • winking with his eyes, and a scrip by his side, where he put pieces of bread, with ragged • clothes, and sorrowful face. He bid the Ephesians to surround him, and to throw stones at • that enemy of the gods. The Ephesians wondered at what he said, and thought it inhuman to • kill a stranger who earnestly importuned their mercy. But he renewed his orders to the

Ephesians, and that they should not let him escape. Some then began to attack him. Where• upon he, who before seemed to wink, looked fierce with eyes full of fire; whereby the Ephe. • sians perceived it to be a dæmon. They therefore went on casting stones at him, till they had • raised a great heap upon him. Soon after Apollonius directed them to remove the stones, that

they might discern the wild beast which they had killed. When that was done, the person « whom they thought they had killed was vanished : but a dog, in shape like to a mastiff

, in size equal to a very great lion, appeared overwhelmed with stones, and foaming after the manner • of mad dogs : which is the form of the averting statue. Moreover, a statue of Hercules stands • in the place where this spectre was stoned.'

There is no need of remarks upon so silly a story of our great rhetorician: justly does Eusebius say, that Philostratus's accounts of Apollonius's miracles are inconsistent, cousaiz, and therefore altogether incredible.

But it was necessary that some miracle of this kind should be ascribed to Apollonius, in order to make out a resemblance with Pythagoras, of whom, among other things, are mentioned the sudden removals of plagues.

However, I shall observe a few more passages in this work of Philostratus.

• When Damis first met Apollonius in Assyria, he said, he believed he could be of use • to him, as he knew the road to Babylon, and understood the languages of those barbarians,

the Armenians, the Medes, the Persians, the Cadusians. Apollonius answered, “ My friend, • I understand them all, though I have learned none of them.” At which Damis was much

surprized. But Apollonius proceeded : “ Do not wonder at that, my friend, that I know all • the languages of men : for I know their secret thoughts." Damis then worshipped him, considering him as a dæmon, and continued with him improving in wisdom.'

Upon' which Eusebius observes, that according to Philostratus, Apollonius was a very

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· Vit. Apoll. I. i. cap. 10.

και λοιμων αποτροπαι συν ταχει. Janubl. Vit. PyEsla nalanese ano mpwla afgajLevos TA Contr. tbag. cap. 28. num.135. Hier. p. 512. D.

• Vit. Ap. 1. i. cap. 19. p. 23. Vit, Ap. l. 4. cap. 10.

Contr. Hierocl. p. 518. $ Philost. 1. i. cap. 7.

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• forward child, taking learning very well, and having a good memory: and that at the fourteenth * year of his age he was carried by his father to Tarsus, to be there instructed by Euthydemus • the Phoenician, who was a good rhetorician. Where he was also instructed in the philosophy • of Plato, and Chrysippus, and the Peripatetics, not neglecting entirely that of Epicurus : but • the Pythagoræan doctrine he most approved. In all these things,' says Eusebius, this man was • instructed, who is said to have learned no language, and to have known the thoughts of men by a divine power.' A just observation.

I shall now take another passage from the first book of the Life of Apollonius. · That my • history might be the more complete,' says Philostratus, “I once intended to omit nothing related .by Damis, and to give a particular account of what passed among the barbarians : but my de• sign leads me to higher and more wonderful things." Two things, however, there are which • cannot be omitted: one is the fortitude of Apollonius in travelling among barbarous people, * whose country abounds with robbers, as having never been under the Roman government: the • other is his wisdom, whereby, after the manner of the Arabians, he attained to the knowledge

of the languages of brute animals. This he learned among the Arabians; for this science is * common among the Arabians : and they attend to the voices of birds with the same respect as they do to oracles.'

But what is there wonderful in all this? The celebrated fortitude is merely human; and the interpretation of the language of brutes is all conjecture; and any man who undertakes it may ascribe what meaning he pleases to their sounds, without being confuted by any. Nevertheless, such pretensions can expose men to laughter only.

Upon which Eusebius remarks after this manner : · So that to all the forementioned • masters must be added the wise men of Arabia, who taught him the art of divination, and * enabled him to understand, that sparrows by chirping call others to partake of food with * them; an observation delivered by him with the admiration of many. And in like manner • when in his journey to Assyria he espied a lioness just dying with eight whelps, by the same • learning he understood how long he should stay with the Persians.'

I shall here refer such readers as are curious, and have leisure, to some chapters of Porphyry • in his work concerning Abstinence from the flesh of animals : where he speaks of some men having attained to the skill of understanding the languages of animals, and then of animals understanding each others languages.

The story of the lioness to which Eusebius refers, as it stands in Philostratus, is to this purpose : • AsApollonius and Damis were travelling, a lioness was killed near them in hunting, * which was of an uncommon size, and when opened had eight whelps. Apollonius therefore, • after observing the wild beasts, and after having meditated a good while, said: “O Damis, • the time of our stay with the king will be a year and eight months; for he will not let us go • sooner; nor will it be easy for us to leave him before that time. From the whelps the number • of the months is to be concluded, as the lioness herself denotes a year.

Wonderful mystery, truly!

This story brings to my mind what is said by Laërtius' of Empedocles, “ an ancient Pythagoræan philosopher; who, when the Etesian winds were very violent at Agrigentum, so as to * destroy the fruits of the earth, he ordered some asses to be flayed: and having made bottles of • their skins, they were placed at the tops of the hills for stopping the winds: and the effect * being answerable, he obtained the name of Averter of winds.

Menage, in his notes, says, nothing & more silly could possibly be invented.' But yet it is mentioned with tokens of approbation and credit by Porphyryh and Jamblichus 'in their Lives of Pythagoras, and by Philostratus“ in his Life of Apollonius: and, indeed, I think it as likely a method for stopping a plague, as that taken by Apollonius at Ephesus before inentioned.


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