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came to destroy--renounced his station, resigned his honours and fortunes, became a zealous preacher among the Paulicians, and at last sealed his testimony with his blood. *
During a period of one hundred and fifty years, these Christian churches seem to have been almost incessantly subjected to persecution, which they supported with Christian meekness and patience; and if the acts of their martyrdom, their preaching and their lives were distinctly recorded, I see no reason to doubt, that we should find in them the genuine successors of the Christians of the first two centuries. And in this as well as former instances, the blood of the martyrs was the seed of the church. A succession of teachers and churches arose, and a person named Sergius, who had laboured among them in the ministry of the gospel thirtyseven years, is acknowledged, even by their vilest calumniators, to have been a most exemplary Christian. The persecution had, however, some intermissions, until at length Theodora, the Greek empress, exerted herself against them, beyond all her predecessors. She sent inquisitors throughout all Asia Minor in search of these sectaries, and is computed to have killed by the gibbet, by fire, and by the sword, A HUNDRED THOUSAND PERSONS. Such was the state of things at the commencement of the ninth century. +
“ Thrice hail, ye faithful shepherds of the fold,
Hypocrisy, a poem by the Rev. C. Colton, part i. p. 156. + It has been already stated that we derive all our information cou. cerning the Paulicians, through the medium of their adversaries, the writers belonging to the Catholic church. It should not, therefore, sur. prise us to find them imputing the worst of principles and practice to a class of men whom they uniformly deery as heretics. Mosheim says, that of the two accounts of Photius and Peter Siculus, he gives the preference for candour and fairness to that of the latter-and yet I find Mr. Gibboc acknowledging, that “the six capital errors of the Paulicians are defined by Peter Siculus with much prejudice and passion.” (DECLINE and Fall, vol. x. ch. 54.) One of their imputed errors is, that they rejected the whole of the Old Testament writings; a charge which was also brought, by the writers of the Catholic school, against the Waldenses and others, with equal regard to truth and justice. But this calumuy is easily accounted for. The advocates of Popery, to support their usurpations and innovations in the kingdom of Christ, were driven to the Old Testament for authority, adducing the kingdom of David for their example. And when their adversaries rebutted the argumeut, insisting that the paralle did not hold, for that the kingdom of Christ, which is not of this world, is a very different state of things from the kingdom of David, their oppa nents accused them of giving up the divine authority of the Old Testament. Upon similar principles, it is not difficult to vindicate the Paulicians from the other charges brought against them; but to do that would requre more room than can be here allotted to the subject.
A VIEW OF THE STATE OF THE CHRISTIAN PROFESSION
FROM THE BEGINNING OF THE NINTH TO THE END OF THE TWELFTH CENTURY.
A concise description of the vallies of Piedmont, and of
the Pyrenees; with some account of the life and doctrine of Claude, bishop of Turin.
The principality of Piedmont,* derives its name from the circumstance of its being situated at the foot of the Alps--a prodigious range of mountains, the highest indeed in Europe, and which divide Italy from France, Switzerland, and Germany. It is bounded on the east by the duchies of Milan and Montferrat; on the south by the county of Nice and the territory of Genoa; on the west by France; and on the north by Savoy. In former times it constituted a part of Lombardy, but more recently has been subject to the king of Sardinia, who takes up his residence at Turin, the capital of the province, and one of the finest cities in Europe. It is an extensive tract of rich and fruitful vallies, rmbosomed in mountains which are encircled again with mountains higher than they, intersected with deep and rapid rivers,
• The term “ Piedmont” is derived from two Latin words, viz. Pede montium," at the foot of the mountains."
and exhibiting, in strong contrast, the beauty and plenty of Paradise, in sight of frightful precipices, wide lakes of ice, and stupendous mountains of never-wasting snow. The whole country is an interchange of hill and dale; mountain and valley-traversed with four principal rivers, viz. the Po, the Tanaro, the Stura, and the Dora, besides about eight and twenty rivulets great and small, which, winding their courses in different directions, contribute to the fertility of the vallies, and make them resemble a watered garden.
The principal vallies are Aosta and Susa on the north -Stura on the south-and in the interior of the country, Lucerna, Angrogna, Raccapiatta, Pramol, Perosa, and S. Martino. The valley of Clusone, or Pragela, as it is often called, was in ancient times a part of the province of Dauphiny in France, and has been, from the days of Hannibal, the ordinary rout of the French and other armies, when marching into Italy. Angrogna, Pramol, and S. Martino are strongly fortified by nature on account of their many difficult passes and bulwarks of rocks and mountains; as if the allwise Creator, says Sir Samuel Morland,* had, from the beginning, designed that place as a cabinet, wherein to put some inestimable jewel, or in which to reserve many thousand souls, which shonld not bow the knee before Baal.
Several of these vallies are described by our geographers as being remarkably rich and fruitful-as fertile and pleasant as any part of Italy. In the mountains are mines of gold, silver, brass, and iron; the rivers abound with a variety of exquisite fish; the forests and the fields with game; while the soil yields every thing necessary to the enjoyment of human life,--abundance of cora, rice, wine, fruits, hemp, and cattle. Throughout the
History of the Churches of Piedmont, p. 5
whole territory, except on the tops of the mountains, there is to be found great plenty of fruits, especially of chesnuts, which the inhabitants gather in immense quantities, and after drying them in an oven or upon a kiln, they manufacture from them an excellent kind of biscuit, which in France they call marroons, and where they are in high estimation as a species of confectionary. They first of all string them, as they do their beads or chaplets, and then hang them up in some humid place for their better preservation. As the bread made from the chesnut constitutes a considerable part of the food of the inhabitants of Piedmont, it is a common practice among them, after reserving what may be necessary for their own sustenance, to sell or exchange the surplus with the inhabitants of the plain for corn or other commodities.
In the patriarchal age of the world, when the people of the east had parcelled out the country into many separate states, some savage and others civilized, it is said of the Hebrews, that they went from one nation to another; from one kingdom to another penple. In the middle ages, the same spirit prevailed over the west. Petty chiefs assumed independence, and formed a vast number of separate kingdoms. Reputed heretics, like the ancient Israelites, emigrated from place to place, taking up their abode only where they could enjoy the privileges of religious liberty.
The Pyrenean mountains, which separate France and Spain, extend from the Mediterranean sea to the Atlantic ocean, that is, at least two hundred miles, and in breadth at several places more than one hundred. The surface is, as may naturally be expected, wonderfully diversified. Hills rise upon hills, and mountains over mountains, soma bare of verdure, and others crowned with forest cork trees, oak, beech, chesnuts, and evertravellers of taste pass over them, they are