An Alternate Theory of
The Historical Integrity of Eusebius of Caesarea
Web Publication by Mountain Man Graphics, Australia
This Eusebian Fiction Postulate is deemed reasonable on the basis of an agglomerated series of opinions concerning Eusebius. This list of quotations is by no means complete, but should for the moment serve to substantiate the need to invoke the postulate.
Essentially the following compendium of opinion should be used to establish a rough gauge upon the measure, and the tolerance, of historical integrity in the historical literature authored by Eusebius.
I am always interested in expanding this list with relevant quotations, and electronic messages may be sent to Arius at the domain name of this site.
MOUNTAIN MAN GRAPHICS
Quotes upon Eusebian Integrity
‘Truth, O Stranger, is a noble and an enduring thing;
it seems, however, not easy to persuade men of it.’
Now, as we propose to write the details of what has taken place in the churches since his time to our own day, we begin with the narration of the particulars which he has left out, and we shall not be solicitous to display a parade of words, but to lay before the reader what we have been able to collect from documents, and what we have heard from those who were familiar with the facts as they told them. And since it has an important bearing on the matter in hand, it will be proper to enter into a brief account of Constantine's conversion to Christianity, making a beginning with this event.
Church History (Socrates Scholasticus), Book I
Chapter 1. Introduction to the Work.
"Of the Objection and Defense of Eusebius two books have been read; also other two, which although differing in some respects from the former two, are in other respects the same with regard to both diction and thought. But he presents certain difficulties with regard to our blameless religion as having originated with the Greeks. These he correctly solves, although not in all cases. But as regards his diction, it is by no means either pleasing or brilliant. The man is indeed very learned, although as regards shrewdness of mind and firmness of character, as well as accuracy in doctrine, he is deficient.
For also in many places in these books it is plain to be seen that he blasphemes against the Son, calling him a second cause, and general-in-chief, and other terms which have had their origin in the Arian madness. It seems that he flourished in the time of Constantine the Great. He was also an ardent admirer of the excellences of the holy martyr Pamphilus, for which cause some say that he took from him the surname Pamphili.
Photius, Bibliotheca (chap. 13).
"There has been read the work of Eusebius Pamphili In praise of the great emperor Constantine, consisting of four books. In this is contained the whole life of the man, starting with his very boyhood, also whatever deeds of his belong to ecclesiastical history, until he departed from life at the age of sixty-four. Eusebius is, however, even in this work, like himself in diction, except that his discourse has risen to a somewhat more than usual brilliancy, and that sometimes he has made use of more flowery expressions than he is wont. However, of pleasantness and beauty of expression there is little, as indeed is the case in his other works. He inserts, moreover, in this work of his in four books very many passages from the whole decalogue of his Ecclesiastical History. He says that Constantine the Great himself also was baptized in Nicomedia, he having put off his baptism until then, because he desired to be baptized in the Jordan. Who baptized him he does not clearly show.
However, as to the heresy of Arius, he does not definitely state whether he holds that opinion, or whether he has changed; or even whether Arius held correct or incorrect views, although he ought to have made mention of these things, because the synod occupied an important place among the deeds of Constantine the Great, and it again demands a detailed account of them. But he does state that a ‘controversy’ arose between Arius and Alexander (this is the name he cunningly gives to the heresy), and that the God-fearing prince was very much grieved at this controversy, and strove by epistles and through Hosius, who was then bishop of Cordova, to bring back the dissenting parties into peace and concord, they having laid aside the strife existing between them with regard to such questions; and that when he could not persuade them to do this he convoked a synod from all quarters, and that it dissolved into peace the strife that had arisen.
These things, however, are not described accurately or clearly; it would seem then that he is ashamed, as it were, and does not wish to make public the vote cast against Arius in the Synod, and the just retribution of those who were his companions in impiety and who were cast out together with him. Finally, he does not even mention the terrible fate which was inflicted by God upon Arius in the sight of all. None of these things he brings to the light, nor has he drawn up an account of the Synod and the things that were done in it. Whence, also, when about to write a narrative concerning the divine Eustathius, he does not even mention his name, nor what things were threatened and executed against him; but referring these things also to sedition and tumult, he again speaks of the calmness of the bishops, who having been convened in Antioch by the zeal and cooperation of the Emperor, changed the sedition and tumult into peace. Likewise as to what things were maliciously contrived against the ever-conquering Athanasius, when he set about making his history cover these things, he says that Alexandria again was filled with sedition and tumult, and that this was calmed by the coming of the bishops, who had the imperial aid.
But he by no means makes it clear who was the leader of the sedition, what sort of sedition it was, or by what means the strife was settled. He also keeps up almost the same mode of dissimulating in his account of the contentions existing among bishops with respect to doctrines, and their disagreements on other matters.
Photius, Bibliotheca (chap. 127).
The most bitter of his theological adversaries
were forced to confess their obligations to him,
and to speak of his work with respect.
It is only necessary to reflect for a moment
what a blank would be left in our knowledge
of this most important chapter in all human history,
if the narrative of Eusebius were blotted out,
and we shall appreciate the enormous debt
of gratitude which we owe to him.
The little light which glimmered over the earliest
history of Christianity in medieval times
came ultimately from Eusebius alone,
coloured and distorted in its passage
through various media.
"not until the mass of inventions
labelled 'Eusebius' shall be exposed,
can the pretended references to Christians
in Pagan writers of the first three centuries
be recognized for the forgeries they are."
Though it has in it nothing divine,
by making full use of that part of the soul
which loves fable and is childish and foolish,
it has induced men to believe
that the monstrous tale is truth."
...[and, a little later ..]...
"The wretched Eusebius will have it
that poems in hexameters are to be found even among them,
and sets up a claim that the study of logic exists among the Hebrews,
since he has heard among the Hellenes the word they use for logic."
 Erik Peterson, Der Monotheismus als politisches
Problem (Munich, 1951 ), p. 91;
 Henri Grégoire, "L'authenticité et l'historicité de la Vita Constantini attribuée ê Eusèbe de Césarée," Bulletin de l'Académie Royale de Belgique, Classe des Lettres, 39 ( 1953 ): 462-479, quoted in T. D. Barnes, Constantine and Eusebius (Cambridge, Mass., 1981 ), p. 401;
 Arnaldo Momigliano, "Pagan and Christian Historiography in the Fourth Century," in The Conflict between Paganism and Christianity in the Fourth Century, ed. A. Momigliano (Oxford, 1963 ), p. 85;
 Robert Markus, "The Roman Empire in Early Christian Historiography," The Downside Review 81 ( 1963 ): 343;
 Charles N. Cochrane, Christianity and Classical Culture (1940; reprint, Oxford, 1966 ), p. 183;
 Hendrik Berkhof, Die Theologie des Eusebius von Caesarea (Amsterdam, 1939 ), pp. 21-22;
 Hans Eger, "Kaiser und Kirche in der Geschichtstheologie Eusebs von Cäsarea", Zeitschrift für die neutestamentliche Wissenschaft 38 ( 1939 ): 115;
 Per Beskow, Rex Gloriae. The Kingship of Christ in the Early Church (Uppsala, 1962 ), p. 318;
 J. M. Sansterre, "Eusèbe de Césarée et la naissance de la théorie 'césaropapiste,'" Byzantion 42 ( 1972 ): 593
It is obvious that these are not, in the main, neutral descriptions. Much traditional scholarship, sometimes with barely sup- pressed disdain, has regarded Eusebius as one who risked his orthodoxy and perhaps his character because of his zeal for the Constantinian establishment. Scholars have often observed, for example, that his literary works in defense of the new order depict Constantine and his reign in eschatological terms that rival and even supplant the Incarnation and Parousia in salvation history.
To be sure, this assessment relies on abundant documentation: in the Life of Constantine and in the Tricennial Oration, delivered on the thirtieth anniversary of Constantine's reign, as well as in other books, Eusebius gave an enthusiastic Christian endorsement
Religion and Politics in the Writings of Eusebius:
Reassessing the First "Court Theologian"
--- MICHAEL J. HOLLERICH
Assistant professor of religious studies
in Santa Clara University, Santa Clara, California.
The first Christian scholar to engage in researching and writing a complete history of the Christian church, Eusebius of Caesarea, reveals the embarrassing complexity of the development of the Christian canon, despite his concerted attempt to cover this with a pro-orthodox account.
Two things must be known:
first, Eusebius was either a liar or hopelessly credulous
(see note. 6), and either way not a very good historian;
second, Eusebius rewrote his History of the Church at least five times
(cf. M 202, n. 29), in order to accommodate changing events, including
the ever-important Council of Nicea ...
Richard Carrier: The Formation of the New Testament Canon