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Chapter XXVII.—Recapitulation Continued.

“But while I was waiting outside for them, I began to notice this woman, and to wonder in what part of her body she was disabled, that she did not seek her living by the labour of her hands, but submitted to the shame of beggary.  I therefore asked of her the reason of it.  She confessed that she was sprung of a noble race, and was married to a no less noble husband, ‘whose brother,’ said she, ‘being inflamed by unlawful love towards me, desired to defile his brother’s bed.  This I abhorring, and yet not daring to tell my husband of so great wickedness, lest I should stir up war between the brothers, and bring disgrace upon the family, judged it better to depart from my country with my two twin sons, leaving the younger boy to be a comfort to his father.  And that this might be done with an honourable appearance, I thought good to feign a dream, and to tell my husband that there stood by me in a vision a certain deity, who told me to set out from the city immediately with my two twins, and remain until he should instruct me to return.’  She told me that her husband, when he heard this, believed her, and sent her to Athens, with the twin children to be educated there; but that they were driven by a terrible tempest upon that island, where, when the ship had gone to pieces, she was lifted by a wave upon a rock, and delayed killing herself only for this, ‘until,’ said she, ‘I could embrace at least the dead limbs of my unfortunate sons, and commit them to burial.  But when the day dawned, and crowds had assembled, they took pity upon me, and threw a garment over me.  But I, miserable, entreated them with many tears, to search if they could find anywhere the bodies of my unfortunate sons.  And I, tearing all my body with my teeth, with wailing and howlings cried out constantly, Unhappy woman that I am, where is my Faustus? where my Faustinus?’”

Next: Chapter XXVIII