Paul of Emesa

Paul Of Emesa, an Eastern prelate of note, who flourished in the first half of the 5th century, was among the bishops who, at the General Council of Ephesus (A.D. 431), united with patriarch John of Antioch in supporting the cause of Nestorius. When negotiations were in progress for a reconciliation between John and the Oriental bishops with Cyril of Alexandria, Paul was sent by John to Cyril, but the latter would by no means comply with the solicitations of John until his messenger Paul had delivered some homilies before him, and presented to him a confession of faith, in which the term θεοτόκος was applied to the Virgin Mary, and had joined in anathematizing Nestorius. Having satisfied Cyril in these points, Paul concluded the negotiations successfully. The few facts known of the life of Paul are given by Tillemont, Memoires, vol. 14, and by Christianus Lupus, in his Scholia et Note ad varior. PP. Epistolas, forming the second volume of the work cited below. Paul wrote, Libellus quem (s. Libelli quos) Paulus Episcopus Emesenus Cyrillo Archiepiscopo Alexandrice obtulit, a Joanne Antiocheno Episcopo missus: — Homilia Pauli Episcopi Emesseni . . . de Nativitate Domini et Salvatoris nostri Jesu Christi, et quod beata Virgo Maria sit Dei Genitrix, et quod non duos, sed unum Filiun et Dominum Christum dicamus, etc.: — Ejusdem Pauli Homilia . . . in Christi Domini et Salvatoris nostri Nativitatem. These pieces are given in the Concilia, vol. iii, col. 1090, 1095, 1098, ed. Labbe: — Epistola Pauli Emeseni Episcopi ad Anatholium Magistrum Militie, given in a Latin version in the Ad Ephesinum Concilium variorum Patrum Epistoloe of Christianus Lupus (Louvain, 1682, 4to), Ep. 107.

This Paul of Emesa is to be distinguished from a predecessor of the same name, who was present at the Council of Seleuceia (A.D. 359), and adhered to the party of Acacius (Le Quien, Oriens Christianus, vol. ii, col. 839, but he does not give his authority); but who seems afterwards, under the emperor Jovian, to have united himself with the orthodox (Socrates, Hist. Eccles. 3:25; 4:12; Sozomen, Hist. Eccles. 6:4, 12), and to have acted with them possibly at the Synod of Antioch (A.D. 363), certainly at that of Syana (A.D. 367 or 368). Gennadius (De Viris Illustribus, c. 31) mentions "Paulus Episcopus," he does not say of what see, as having written a little book on repentance (De Punitentia Libellus), in which he cautions the penitent against such an excess of sorrow as might lead to despair. We have no means of identifying this Paul. The period occupied by the writers enumerated by Geuuadius includes that in which Paul of Emesa flourished; and as he was the most eminent prelate of the time of his name, he may possibly be the writer named by Gennadius.

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