Heliodorus of Emesa

Heliodorus of Emesa in Syria, flourished in the latter part of the 4th century after Christ. He was the author of the celebrated romance entitled AEthiopia, or account of the love and adventures of Theogenes and Chariclea, the oldest and best of the Greek romances, and the model of many subsequent ones. This was written in early life, and afterwards Heliodorus became a Christian, and was made bishop of Tricca, in Sicily, where he introduced the regulation that every married priest should, upon his ordination, separate from his wife or be deposed (Socrates, Hist. Eccles. 5, 22). Nicephorus states (Hist. Eccles. 12, 34) that a provincial synod, because of the injurious tendency of the Ethiopica upon the minds of the young, decreed that Heliodorus should either condemn and disown it, or resign his bishopric. This statement is generally rejected as improbable, since it is made by no other author, and the Aithiopica contains nothing of a corruptive tendency. The best edition of the Greek text is that by Coraes (Paris, 1804,2 vols. 8vo). — Smith, Dict. Grk. and Rom. Biog. and Mythology, 2, 373; Dunlop, Hist. of Fiction (London, 1845, 1 vol. 8vo), p. 18-24; Photius, Cod. 73; Herzog, Real-Encyklopädie, 5, 699. (J. W. M.)

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