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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. I. B.C. 4004 to A.D. 1066.

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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER
The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. I. B.C. 4004 to A.D. 1066.
page 188



a.d. 303. the tenth persecution of the christians. 179 A.D. 300. Galenas Maximian, after he had already fought two battles against Narses, was defeated in the third conflict, and, having lost his army, fled to Diocletian. A.D. 301. Ambrosius flourished, and taught rhetoric in Africa, and published some admirable volumes against the Gentiles. A.D. 302. Marceline was elected to the papal chair at Rome, and occupied it four years and six months. The same year, Cœlus, duke of Caercolun, that is of Colchester, rose in insurrection against Asclepiodotus, king of Britain, and in a pitched battle slew him, and obtained his kingdom. But the Romans sentConstantius, a senator who had subdued Spain and many other countries for them, that he might reduce Britain to obedience to the Romans. But when Cœlus, king of the Britons, heard of his arrival, he was afraid to fight with him, ae the report of his wisdom and courage made him out invincible. When, therefore, Constantius had arrived in the island, Cœlus sent ambassadors to him, and asked for peace, and promised submission. And Constantius agreed to his requests, and demanded nothing more than the accustomed tribute. But when peace had been made and hostages given, at the end of the month Cœlus died. Then Constantius obtained the crown, and united with himself in marriage Helena, the daughter of king Cœlus, a virgin of great beauty, and most perfectly accomplished in all liberal arts and musical instruments. For her father had no other child to enjoy the throne of the kingdom after him, on which account he had taken care that she should be thoroughly accomplished, so that she might be able to rule the kingdom with honour and tranquillity after his death. And Constantius had a son by her, and called him Constantine. A.D. 303. Which was the twenty-first year of the reign of Diocletian, a terrible persecution of the Christians was commenced, being the tenth since the time of Nero ; in which Christianity was almost destroyed throughout the whole world. For Diocletian in the east, and Maximian Herculeus in the west, ordered the churches to be destroyed, and the Christians slain. An edict was likewise issued, thataU the churches throughout the whole world should be levelled with the ground, and the sacred Scriptures burnt in the fire, in the middle of the market place, andati those who presided over the different churches


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