Revised, with Notes, by the Rev. A. C. Zenos, D.D.
Professor of New Testament Exegesis in the Theological Seminary at Hartford, Conn.
Under the editorial supervision of Philip Schaff, D.D., LL.D., Professor of Church History in the Union Theological Semimary, New York, and Henry Wace, D.D., Principal of King's College, London
Published in 1886 by Philip Schaff, New York: Christian Literature Publishing Co.
Introduction.The commission with which you charged us, O holy man of God, Theodore, we have executed in the five foregoing books; in which to the best of our ability, we have comprised the history of the Church from the time of Constantine. Notice, however, that we have been by no means studious of style; for we considered that had we showed too great fastidiousness about elegance of expression we might have defeated the object in view.  But even supposing our purpose could still have been accomplished, we were wholly precluded from the exercise of that discretionary power of which ancient historians seem to have so largely availed themselves, whereby any one of them imagined himself quite at liberty to amplify or curtail matters of fact. Moreover, refined composition would by no means be edifying to the masses and illiterate men, who are intent merely on knowing the facts, and not on admiring beauty of diction. In order therefore not to render my production unprofitable to both classes of readers,--to the learned on the one hand, because no elaboration of language could satisfy them to rank it with the magniloquence of the writers of antiquity, and to the unlearned on the other, because they could not understand the facts, should they be clouded by a parade of words,--we have purposely adopted a style, divested indeed of all affectation of sublimity, but at the same time clear and perspicuous.
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