The Ancient Library

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nouneed authentic, differ materially from each other in sense as well as in words.

The Old Testament, or the Canon Hebraicae Veritatis, was anciently divided into three orders, Primus Ordoy Legis, comprehending the Penta­teuch ; Secundus Ordo, Propltetarum, Joshua, Judges, Samuel, I. and II., Kings, I. and II., Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and the Twelve Minor Pro­phets ; Tertius Ordo^ Hagiographorum, Job, Psalms, Proverhs, Ecclesiastes, Solomon's Song, Daniel, Verba Dierum, or Chronicles I. and II., Ezra, and Esther; to which are sometimes added a fourth oreta,, including the books of the Apocrypha. In like manner the New Testament was divided into the Ordo Evangelieus,, containing Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John ; and Orda Apostolicus, contain­ing the remainder, from the Acts to the Apoca­lypse.

vol. XI,

The lost works of Jerome are divided by Val-larsi into two classes: I. Those which unques­tionably existed at one period ; II. Those of which the existence at any time is very doubtful. To the first class belong,—

1. Interpretatio vetus SS. V. T. ex Graeco rwv LXX. emendata, of which we have already spoken in our account of the history of the Vulgate. 2. Evangelium junta Hebraeos, written in the Chal-daean dialect, but in Hebrew characters. Jerome obtained a copy of this from some Nazareans living at Beroea in Syria, probably at the time when he himself was in the wastes of Chalcis, and trans­lated it into Greek and Latin. Some suppose that this was the Gospel according to St. Matthew in its original form, but this does not seem to have been the opinion of Jerome himself (Comment, in Mattli. xii. 13, de Viris III. 2, 3). 3. Specimen Commentarii in Abdiam, composed in early youth while dwelling in solitude in the Syrian desert, and revised after a lapse of thirty years. 4. Com­mentarii in Psalmos, not to be confounded with the confessedly spurious Breviarium in Psalmos. The extent of this work, whether it comprehended the whole of the Psalms, or was confined to a few only, is absolutely unknown. Tillemont has conjec­tured that it consisted of extracts from homilies of Origen on the entire Psalter. 5. Commentarioli in Psalmos, frequently referred to under this title in the first book against Rufinus. 6. Versio Latina Libri Grigeniani Ilepl *Apx£v. A few fragments are to be found in Ep. 124, ad Avitum. (See Ed. Bened. vol. v. p. 255.) 7. Versio Libri TJieopJiili Episcopi Akxandrini in S. Joannem Chrysostomum. A very few fragments remain. 8. Epistolae. We find allusions to many letters which have altogether disappeared. A catalogue of them, with all the information attainable, will be found in Vallarsi.

To the second class belong,—

1. Quaestzones Hebraicae in Vetus Testamentum, different from those upon Genesis. Jerome certainly intended to compose such a work, and even refers to it several times, especially in his geographical work on Palestine, but there seems good reason to believe that it was never finished. 2. Commen­tarii breviores in XII. P'roplietas ^Tro/uLvrt/jLara dicti. Different from those now existing. The belief that such a work existed is-founded upon a passage in Epist. 49, addressed to Pammachius. 3. Libri XIV. in Jeremiam, in which he is supposed to have completed his unfinished commentary upon Je-



remiah. (See Cassiodor. Tnstit. c. 3.) 4. Alexandri Aphrodisei Commentarii Latine conversi. (See Ep* 50, ad Domnionem.) 5. Liber ad Abundantium (or, Antium). No allusion is to be found to this piece in any ancient author except Cassiodorus (Instit. c. 2). 6. De Similitudine Carnei Peccati contra Manichaeos'. Designated as a short and very elegant work of Hieronymus by Agobardus (adv. Fel. c. 39.) For full information with regard to these consult the dissertations of Vallarsi.

Having given a full list of the genuine and lost works of Jerome, it is unnecessary to add a cata­logue of those which have from time to time been erroneously ascribed to his pen, and which found their way into the earlier editions. Many of these. are collected in the fifth volume of the Benedictine edition, while Vallarsi has placed some as appen­dices among the. genuine works, and thrown the rest together into the second and third parts of his eleventh volume.

Jerome was pronounced by the voice of antiquity the most learned and eloquent among the Latin fathers, and this judgment has been confirmed by the most eminent scholars of modern times. His profound knowledge of the Latin, Greek, and Hebrew languages ; his familiarity with ancient history and philosophy, his personal acquaintance with the manners and scenery of the East, enabled him to illustrate with great force and truth many of the darkest passages in Scripture. But not­withstanding all these advantages, his commentaries must be employed with the greatest caution. The impetuosity of his temperament induced him eagerly to seize upon any striking idea suggested by his own fancy or by the works or conversation of his contemporaries, and to pour forth with in­cautious haste a mass of imposing but crude con­ceptions. Hence we can detect many glaring inconsistencies, many palpable contradictions, many grievous errors.. The dreamy reveries of Origen are mixed up with the fantastic fables of Jewish tradition, and the plainest texts obscured by a cloudy veil of allegory and mysticism. Nor, while we admire his uncompromising boldness and energy in advocating a good cause, can we cease to regret the total absence of gentleness, meekness, and Christian charity, which characterises all his con­troversial encounters. However resolute he may have been in struggling against the lusts of the flesh, he never seems to have considered it a duty to curb the fiery promptings of a violent temper. He appears to have regarded his opponents with all the acrimony of envenomed personal hostility, and gives vent to his fury ?'n the bitterest invective. Nor were these denunciations by any means in proportion to the real importance of the question in debate; it was chiefly when any of his own favourite tenets were impugned, or when his own individual influence was threatened, that his wrath became ungovernable. -Perhaps the most intem>-perate of all his polemical discourses is the attack upon Vigilantius, who had not attempted to assail any of the vital principles of'the faith, or to advo­cate any dangerous heresy, but who had sought to check the rapid progress of corruption; ":

The phraseology of Jerome is exceedingly pure, bearing ample testimony to the diligence with which he must have studied the choicest models. No one can read the Vulgate without being struck by the contrast which it presents in the classic simplicity of its language to the degenerate affecta-

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