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Chapter XXI.—The date of the martyrdom.

Now, the blessed Polycarp suffered martyrdom on the second day of the month Xanthicus just begun, 476 the seventh day before the Kalends of May, on the great Sabbath, at the eighth hour. 477 He was taken by Herod, Philip the Trallian being high priest, 478 Statius Quadratus being proconsul, but Jesus Christ being King for ever, to whom be glory, honour, majesty, and an everlasting throne, from generation to generation. Amen.



The translation is here very doubtful. Wake renders the words μηνὸς ἱσταμένου, “of the present month.”


Great obscurity hangs over the chronology here indicated. According to Usher, the Smyrnæans began the month Xanthicus on the 25th of March. But the seventh day before the Kalends of May is the 25th of April. Some, therefore, read ᾽Απριλλίων instead of Μαίων. The great Sabbath is that before the passover. The “eighth hour” may correspond either to our 8 a.m. or 2 p.m.


Called before (chap. xii.) Asiarch.

Next: Chapter XXII.—Salutation.