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E07836: Prosper of Aquitaine, in his Chronicle, states that *Constantius (former vicarius, and 'confessor' of Rome, S02869), who had become a 'servant of Christ', became a confessor through persecution by the Pelagians, in Rome around 418. Written in Latin in Gaul or Rome, in the mid 5th c.

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posted on 29.11.2019, 00:00 by Bryan
Prosper of Aquitaine, Chronicle 1264-5

CCCXCI
Honorio XII et Theodosio VIII
Hoc tempore Constantius servus Christi ex vicario Romae habitans et Pelagianis pro gratia dei devotissime renitens factione eorundem multa pertulit, quae illum sanctis confessoribus sociaverunt.

'391 [years since the Crucifixion]
[Consulship of] Honorius for the twelfth time and Theodosius [II] for the eighth time [= AD 418]
At this time Constantius, a servant of Christ after being a Vicarius, living in Rome and struggling devoutly against the Pelagians in the cause of God's grace, suffered many things from their faction, which united him with the holy confessors.'

Text: Mommsen 1892, 468. Translation: David Lambert.

History

Evidence ID

E07836

Saint Name

Constantius, former vicarius, and 'confessor' of Rome, c. 418 : S02869

Saint Name in Source

Constantius

Type of Evidence

Literary - Other narrative texts (including Histories)

Language

Latin

Evidence not before

430

Evidence not after

455

Activity not before

418

Activity not after

418

Place of Evidence - Region

Gaul and Frankish kingdoms Rome and region

Place of evidence - City name in other Language(s)

Tours Tours Toronica urbs Prisciniacensim vicus Pressigny Turonorum civitas Ceratensis vicus Céré Rome Rome Roma Ῥώμη Rhōmē

Cult Activities - Protagonists in Cult and Narratives

Officials Heretics Other lay individuals/ people

Source

Prosper of Aquitaine (ob. after 455) was active from the 420s to the 450s, producing religious polemics, collections of documents, theological treatises, poetry, and chronography. Prosper was originally from southern Gaul, and is known to have been living in Marseille in the late 420s. The once generally accepted belief that he subsequently moved to Rome, and even became an adviser to Pope Leo the Great, has been increasingly disputed in recent scholarship (for differing perspectives, see Markus 1986; Hwang 2009, 187-198; Salzman 2015); it is clear from his works, however, that he visited Rome, had contacts with the papacy, and had access to papal documents. Prosper first compiled his Chronicle in 433, and added continuations in 445 and 455. Like most late antique Latin chroniclers, Prosper began the original part of his Chronicle at the point where Jerome's Chronicle ended, in the late 370s (Prosper, Chron. 1166; p. 460 in Mommsen's ediition), but instead of simply appending his continuation to a text of Jerome's work, he produced his own version, which is shorter than the original but also contains additions by Prosper (we have not included separate entries for items in Prosper's Chronicle which simply reproduce entries in the Chronicle of Jerome). Prosper dates events in his Chronicle both by years since the Crucifixion and by consular years. For a detailed overview of Prosper's Chronicle, see Muhlberger 1990, 55-135.

Discussion

In spite of the fact that he had been a Vicarius (vicar), a very senior post in the imperial administration, there seems to be no evidence for Constantius (PLRE II, 'Constantius 3') except this entry in Prosper's Chronicle. Prosper's description of him as a 'servant of Christ' implies that he was a layperson living a religious life informally. The nature of the persecution he supposedly suffered from Pelagians, severe enough to make him a confessor in Prosper's eyes, is unknown.

Bibliography

Edition: Mommsen, T., Prosperi Tironis epitoma de chronicon, in: Chronica Minora saec. IV. V. VI. VII., vol. 1 (Monumenta Germaniae Historica: Auctores Antiquissimi 9; Berlin: Apud Weidmannos, 1892), 385-485. Further reading: Hwang, A.Y., Intrepid Lover of Perfect Grace: The Life and Thought of Prosper of Aquitaine (Washington: CUA Press, 2009). Markus, R.A., "Chronicle and Theology: Prosper of Aquitaine," in: C. Holdsworth and T.P. Wiseman (eds.), The Inheritance of Historiography: 350-950 (Exeter: Exeter University Publications, 1986), 31-43. Muhlberger, S., The Fifth-Century Chroniclers: Prosper, Hydatius, and the Gallic Chronicler of 452 (Leeds: Francis Cairns, 1990). Salzman, M.R., "Reconsidering a Relationship: Pope Leo of Rome and Prosper of Aquitaine," in. G. Dunn (ed.), The Bishop of Rome in Late Antiquity (Farnham: Ashgate, 2015), 109-125.

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