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DIDACHE

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Originally appearing in Volume V02, Page 183 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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DIDACHE.) Apostolical Constitutions.—For the various collections of these ecclesiastical regulations—the Syriac Didascalia, Ecclesiastical Canons of the Holy Apostles, &c.—see separate article. (c) EPISTLES.—The Abgar Epistles.—These epistles are found in Eusebius (H.E. i. 3), who translated them frdm the Syriac. They are two in number, and purport to be a petition of Abgar Uchomo, king of Edessa, to Christ to visit Edessa, and Christ's answer, promising after his ascension to send one of his disciples, who should " cure thee of thy disease, and give eternal life and peace to thee and all thy people." Lipsius thinks that these letters were manufactured about the year 200. (See Diet. Christ. Biog. iv. 878-881, with the literature there mentioned.) The above correspondence, which appears also in Syriac, is inwoven with the legend of Addai or Thaddaeus. The best critical edition of the Greek text will be found in Lipsius, Acta Apostolorum Apocrypha, 1891, pp. 279-283. (See also ABGAR.) Epistle of Barnabas.—The special object of this epistle was to guard its readers against the danger of relapsing into Judaism. The date is placed by some scholars as early as 70-79, by others as late as the early years of the emperor Hadrian, 117. The text has been edited by Hilgenfeld in 1877, Gebhardt and Harnack in 1878, and Funk in 1887 and 1901. In these works will be found full bibliographies. (See further BARNABAS.) Epistle of Clement.—The object of this epistle is the restoration of harmony to the church of Corinth, which had been vexed by internal discussions. The epistle may be safely ascribed to the years 95-96. The writer was in all probability the bishop of Rome of that name. He is named an apostle and his work was reckoned as canonical by Clement of Alexandria (Strom. iv. 17. 105), and as late as the time of Eusebius (H.E. iii. 16) it was still read in some of the churches. Critical editions have been published by Gebhardt and Harnack, Patr. Apost. Op., 1876, and in the smaller form in 1900, Lightfoot2, 1890, Funk2, 1901. The Syriac version has been edited by Kennet, Epp. of St Clement to the Corinthians in Syriac, 1899, and the Old Latin version by Morin, S. Clementis Romani ad Corinthios epistulae versio Latina antiquissima, 1894. " Clement's" and Ep. to the Corinthians.—This so-called letter of Clement is not mentioned by any writer before Eusebius (H.E. iii. 38. 4). It is not a letter but really a homily written in Rome about the middle of the 2nd century. The writer is a Gentile. Some of his citations are derived from the Gospel to the Egyptians. Clement's Epistles on Virginity.—These two letters are pre-served only in Syriac which is a translation from the Greek. They are first referred to by Epiphanius and next by Jerome. Critics have assigned them to the middle of the 2nd century. They have been edited by Beelen, Louvain, 1856. Clement's Epistles to James.—On these two letters which are found in the Clementine Homilies, see Smith's Dict. of Christian Biography, i. 559, 570, and Lehmann's monograph, Die Clementischen Schriften, Gotha, 1867, in which references will be found to other sources of information. Epistles of Ignatius.—There are two collections of letters bearing the name of Ignatius, who was martyred between 1o5 and 117. The first consists of seven letters addressed by Ignatius to the Ephesians, Magnesians, Trallians, Romans, Philadelphians, Smyrnaeans and to Polycarp. The second collection consists of the preceding extensively interpolated, and six others of Mary to Ignatius, of Ignatius to Mary, to the Tarsians, Antiochians, Philippians and Hero, a deacon of Antioch. The latter collection is a pseudepigraph written in the 4th century or the beginning of the 5th. The authenticity of the first collection also has been denied, but the evidence appears to be against this contention. The literature is overwhelming in its extent. See Zahn, Patr. A post. Op., 1876; Funk2, Die apostol. Voter, 1901; Lightfoot2, Apostolic Fathers, 1889. Epistle of Polycarp.—The genuineness of this epistle stands or falls with that of the Ignatian epistles. See article in Smith's Dictionary of Christian Biography, iv. 423-431; Lightfoot, A postolic Fathers, 1. 629-702; also POLYCARP. Pauline Epistles to the Laodiceans and the Alexandrians.—The first of these is found only in Latin. This, according to Lightfoot (see Colossians8, 272-298) and Zahn, is a translation from the Greek. Such an epistle is mentioned in the Muratorian canon. See Zahn, op. cit. ii. 566-585. The Epistle to the Alexandrians is mentioned only in the Muratorian canon (see Zahn ii. 586-592). For the Third Epistle of Paid to the Corinthians, and Epistle from the Corinthians to Paul, see under " Acts of Paul " above. (R. H. C.)
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