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before his quarrel with Licinius, that is to say, between a. d. 312 and 315. The text is corrupt and mutilated, and the statements which it contains must be received with a certain degree of caution in consequence of the declamatory tone in which they are delivered, and the high colouring and trimming employed throughout to suit the particular design proposed. But notwithstanding these drawbacks, the treatise is extremely valuable on account of the light which it sheds on many obscure passages of ecclesiastical and civil history, and is peculiarly famous as containing a contemporary record of the alleged vision of Constantine before the battle of the Milvian bridge, in consequence of which he ordered the soldiers to engrave upon their shields the well-known monogram representing the cross together with the initial letters of the name of Christ (c. 44).
This piece is altogether wanting in the earlier editions of Lactantius, and was first brought to light by Stephen Baluze, who printed it at Paris in his Miscellanea (vol. ii., 1679) from a very ancient MS. in the Bibliotheca Colbertina, bearing simply the inscription Lucn cecilii incipit liber ad donatum confessorem de mortibus persecutorum. Baluze entertained no doubt that
he had discovered the tract of Lactantius quoted by Hieronymus as De Persecutione Librum Unum, an opinion corroborated by the name prefixed [lactantius], by the date, by the dedication to Donatus, apparently the same person with the Do-natus addressed in the discourse De Ira Dei^ and by the general resemblance in style and expression, a series of considerations no one of which would be in itself conclusive, but which when combined form a strong chain of circumstantial evidence. Le Nourry, however, sought to prove that the production in question must be assigned to some unknown L. Caecilius altogether different from Lactantius, and published it at Paris in 1710 as " Lucii Cecilii Liber ad Donatum Confessorem de Mortibus Persecutorum hactenus Lucio Caecilio Firmiano Lactantio adscriptus, ad Colbertinum codicem denuo emendatus," to which is prefixed an elaborate dissertation. His ideas have been adopted to a certain extent by Pfaff, Walch, Le Clerc, Lardner, and Gibbon, and controverted by Heumann and others. Although the question cannot be considered as settled, and indeed does not admit of being absolutely determined, the best modern critics seem upon the whole disposed to acquiesce in the original hypothesis of Baluze.
The most complete edition of the De Mortibus Persecutorum in a separate form, is that published at Utrecht in 1693, under the inspection of Bauldri, with a very copious collection of notes, forming one of the series of Variorum Classics in 8vo. Other editions are enumerated in the account given of the works of lactantius. [W. R.]
SEX. CAECI'LIUS. A Roman jurist of this name is occasionally cited in the Corpus Juris, and is suspected by some authors to be distinct from and earlier than Africanus. [africanus, sex. caecilius.] In support of this opinion, not to mention the corrupt passage of Lampridius (Alex. Sev. 68), they urge that there is no proof, that the Sex. Caecilius Africanus to whom Julianus returned an answer upon a legal question (Dig. 35. tit. 3. s. 3. § 4) was identical with Africanus. He may have been a private person, and distinct from the jurists Sex. Caecilius and Africanus. This incon-
elusive .passage is the only connecting link between Africanus and Sex. Caecilius, for elsewhere in the Digest the name Africanus always appears alone. Africanus was probably rather later (say they) than Julianus, whom he occasionally cites (e. g» Dig. 12. tit. 6. s. 38; Dig. 19. tit. 1. s. 45, pr.). On the other hand, Caecilius (they proceed) appears to be anterior to Africanus, for he is cited by Javolenus (Dig. 24. tit. 1. s. 64), who was the master of Julianus. (Dig. 40. tit. 2. s. 5.) Again, Sex. Caecilius is represented by Gellius as conversing with Favorinus, and is spoken of in the Noctes Atticae as a person deceased. " Sextus Caecilius, in disciplina juris atque legibus populi Romani noscendis interpretandisque scientia, usu, auctoritateque illustri fuit" (Gell. xx. 1, pr.) Now Favorinus is known to have flourished in the reign of Hadrian, and Gellius to have completed the Noctes Atticae before the death of Antoninus Pius. (a. d. 161.) The passage in Gellius which would make the conversation take place nearly 700 years after the laws of the Twelve Tables were enacted, must be, if not a false reading, an error or exaggeration ; for at most little more than 600 years could have elapsed from a. u. c. 300 in the lifetime of Gellius. If 600 be read for 700, the scene would be brought at furthest to a period not far from the commencement (a. d. 138) of the reign of Antoninus Pius.
These arguments are not sufficient to destroy the probability arising from Dig. 35. tit. 3. s. 3. § 4, that Sex. Caecilius and Africanus are one person. In Dig. 24. tit. 1. s. 64, some have proposed to read Caelius instead of Caecilius, and thus get rid of the passage which is the principal ground for assigning an earlier date to Sex. Caecilius ; but this mode of cutting the knot, though it is assisted by fair critical analogies, is unnecessary, for Javolenus, as we learn from Capitolinus (Anton. Pius, 12), was living in the reign of Antoninus Pius, and a contemporary of Javolenus and Julianus might easily cite the younger, and be cited by the elder of the two. The pupil in the master's lifetime may have acquired greater authority than the master.
To assist the inquirer in investigating this question—one of the most difficult and celebrated in the biography of Roman jurists—we subjoin a list of the passages in the Corpus Juris where Caecilius or Caecilius Sextus is cited: — Caecilius: Dig. 15. tit. 2. s. 1. § 7 ; 21. tit. 1. s. 14. § 3 (al. Caelius) j 21. tit. 1. s. 14. § 10; 24. tit. 1. s. 64 ; 35. tit. 2. s. 36. § 4 ; 48. tit. 5. s. 2. § 5 ; Cod. 7. tit. 7. s. 1, pr. Sex. Caecilius : Dig. 24. tit. 1. s. 2 ; 33. tit. 9. s. 3. § 9 (qu. Sex. Aelius; compare Gell. iv. 1); 35. tit. 1. s. 71, pr.; 40. tit. 9. s. 12. § 2; 40. tit. 9. 12. § 6; 48. tit. 5. s. 13. § 1.
A jurist of the name Sextus is thrice quoted by Ulpian in the Digest (29. tit. 5. s. 1. § 27 ; 30. tit. un. s. 32, pr.; 42. tit. 4. s. 7. § 17). Whether this Sextus be identical with Sex. Caecilius must be a matter of doubt. There may have been a Sextus, known, like Gaius, by a single name* There are, moreover, several jurists with the prae-nomen Sextus named in the Digest, e. g. Sex. Aelius, Sex. Pedius, Sex. Pomponius. That there were two jurists named Pomponius has been inferred from Dig. 28. tit. 5. s, 41, where Pomponius appears to quote Sex. Pomponius. From this and from the other passages where Sex. Pomponius is named in full (Dig. 24. tit. 3. s. 44 ; 29. tit. 2.