Epistles of Cyprian


Read by David Ronald

Little is known of the early history of Thascius Cyprian (born probably about 200 A.D.) until the period of his intimacy with the Carthaginian presbyter Cæcilius, which led to his conversion A.D. 246. That he was born of respectable parentage, and highly educated for the profession of a rhetorician, is all that can be said with any degree of certainty. At his baptism he assumed the name of his friend Cæcilius, and devoted him self, with all the energies of an ardent and vigorous mind, to the study and practice of Christianity. His ordination and his elevation to the episcopate rapidly followed his conversion. With some resistance on his own part, and not without great objections on the part of older presbyters, who saw themselves superseded by his promotion, the popular urgency constrained him to accept the office of bishop of Carthage [A.D. 248], which he held until his martyrdom [A.D. 258]. The writings of Cyprian, apart from their intrinsic worth, have a very considerable historical interest and value, as illustrating the social and religious feelings and usages that then prevailed among the members of the Christian community. Nothing can enable us more vividly to realize the intense convictions-the high-strained enthusiasm which formed the common level of the Christian experience, than does the indignation with which the prelate denounces the evasions of those who dared not confess, the lapses of those who shrank from martyrdom. Living in the atmosphere of persecution, and often in the immediate presence of a lingering death, the professors of Christianity were nerved up to a wonderful contempt of suffering and of worldly enjoyment, and saw every event that occurred around them in the glow of their excited imagination; so that many circumstances were sincerely believed and honestly recorded, which will not be for a moment received as true by the calm and critical reader. The account given by Cyprian in his treatise on the Lapsed may serve as an illustration, p. 368, vol. i. Of this Dean Milman observes: "In what a high wrought state of enthusiasm must men have been, who could relate and believe such statements as miraculous!" -Summary by Robert Ernest Wallis. As with all historical texts, the language used in this volume should be interpreted within the context of the entire work and the cultural context of its publication. - David Ronald (13 hr 58 min)

Chapters

The Life and Passion of Cyprian, Bishop and Martyr by Pontius the Deacon 48:11 Read by David Ronald
To Donatus [AD 246] 33:21 Read by David Ronald
To the Carthaginian clergy from the clergy of Rome, about Cyprian's retirement … 6:48 Read by David Ronald
To the presbyters and deacons abiding at Rome [AD 250] 2:51 Read by David Ronald
To the presbyters and deacons of Carthage [AD 250] 3:30 Read by David Ronald
To the same [AD 250] 8:24 Read by David Ronald
To Rogatianus the presbyter, and the other confessors [AD 250] 10:28 Read by David Ronald
To the clergy, concerning prayer to God [AD 250] 15:35 Read by David Ronald
To the Martyrs and confessors [AD 250] 11:04 Read by David Ronald
To the clergy, concerning granting peace to the lapsed prematurely, without the… 7:16 Read by David Ronald
To the martyrs and confessors who sought that peace should be granted to the la… 7:51 Read by David Ronald
To his people [AD 250] 5:16 Read by David Ronald
To the clergy, concerning the lapsed and catechumens, that they should not be l… 3:48 Read by David Ronald
To the clergy, concerning those who were in haste to receive peace [AD 250] 4:09 Read by David Ronald
To the presbyters and deacons assembled at Rome [AD 250] 5:40 Read by David Ronald
To Moyses and Maximus, and the rest of the confessors [AD 250] 8:57 Read by David Ronald
The confessors to Cyprian [AD 250] 1:00 Read by David Ronald
To the presbyters and deacons about the foregoing and following letters [AD 250] 2:41 Read by David Ronald
Caldonius to Cyprian [AD 250] 2:21 Read by David Ronald
Cyprian to Caldonius [AD 250] 2:37 Read by David Ronald
Celerinus to Lucian [AD 250] 7:50 Read by David Ronald
Lucian to Celerinus [AD 250] 5:28 Read by David Ronald
To the clergy at Rome, concerning the confessors, and the forwardness of Lucian… 8:06 Read by David Ronald
To the clergy, on the letters sent to Rome; and about the appointment of Saturu… 2:21 Read by David Ronald
To Moyses and Maximus and the rest of the confessors [AD 250] 5:18 Read by David Ronald
Moyses, Maximus, Nicostratus, and the other confessors, in reply [AD 250] 16:36 Read by David Ronald
Cyprian to the lapsed [AD 250] 4:40 Read by David Ronald
To the presbyters and deacons [AD 250] 5:03 Read by David Ronald
To the presbyters and deacons abiding at Rome [AD 250] 1:54 Read by David Ronald
The presbyters and deacons abiding at Rome to Cyprian [AD 250] 8:42 Read by David Ronald
The Roman clergy to Cyprian [AD 250] 16:08 Read by David Ronald
To the Carthaginian clergy, about the letters sent to Rome and received thence … 2:19 Read by David Ronald
To the clergy and people about the ordination of Aurelius as a reader [AD 250] 4:50 Read by David Ronald
To the same about the ordination of Celerinus as a reader [AD 250] 9:14 Read by David Ronald
To the same about the ordination of Numidicus as presbyter [AD 250] 2:49 Read by David Ronald
To the clergy, concerning the case of the poor and strangers [AD 250] 2:19 Read by David Ronald
To the clergy, bidding them show every kindness to the confessors in prison [AD… 5:02 Read by David Ronald
To Caldonius, Herculanus, and others, about the Excommunication of Felicissimus… 5:09 Read by David Ronald
Caldonius, Herculanus, and others, on the Excommunication of Felicissimus with … 1:14 Read by David Ronald
To the people, concerning five schismatic presbyters of the faction of Feliciss… 14:01 Read by David Ronald
To Cornelius on his refusal to receive Novatian's ordination [AD 251] 4:35 Read by David Ronald
To Cornelius about Cyprian's approval of his ordination, and concerning Felicis… 8:29 Read by David Ronald
To the same on his having sent letters to the confessors whom Novatian had sedu… 1:40 Read by David Ronald
To the Roman confessors, urging their return to unity [AD 251] 2:58 Read by David Ronald
To Cornelius, concerning Polycarp the Adrumetine [AD 251] 5:01 Read by David Ronald
Cornelius to Cyprian on the return of the confessors to unity [AD 251] 7:25 Read by David Ronald
Cyprian to Cornelius, congratulating him on the return of the confessors from s… 3:56 Read by David Ronald
Cornelius to Cyprian, concerning the faction of Novatian with his party [AD 251] 2:01 Read by David Ronald
Cyprian's answer to Cornelius concerning the crimes of Novatus [AD 251] 8:20 Read by David Ronald
Maximus and the other confessors to Cyprian about their return from schism [AD … 1:19 Read by David Ronald
Cyprian to the confessors, congratulating them on their return from schism [AD … 5:50 Read by David Ronald
To Antonianus about Cornelius and Novatian [AD 252] 43:54 Read by David Ronald
To Fortunatus and his other colleagues concerning those who had been overcome b… 5:02 Read by David Ronald
To Cornelius, concerning granting peace to the lapsed [AD 252] 11:42 Read by David Ronald
To Cornelius, concerning Fortunatus and Felicissimus, or against the heretics [… 46:46 Read by David Ronald
To the people of Thibaris, exhorting to martyrdom [AD 252] 20:45 Read by David Ronald
To Cornelius in exile, concerning his confession [AD 252] 8:48 Read by David Ronald
To Lucius, bishop of Rome, returned from banishment [AD 252] 6:25 Read by David Ronald
To Fidus on the baptism of infants [AD 253] 8:23 Read by David Ronald
To the Numidian bishops on the redemption of their brethren from captivity amon… 7:17 Read by David Ronald
To Euchratius about an actor [probably AD 249] 3:44 Read by David Ronald
To Pomponius, concerning some virgins [probably AD 249] 10:53 Read by David Ronald
To Caecilius on the sacrament of the cup of the Lord [AD 253] 28:16 Read by David Ronald
To Epictetus and the congregation at Assurae, concerning Fortunatianus, formerl… 9:22 Read by David Ronald
To Rogatianus, concerning the deacon who contended against the bishop [AD 249 o… 7:12 Read by David Ronald
To the clergy and people at Furni, about Victor, who had made the presbyter Fau… 4:41 Read by David Ronald
To Pope Stephanus, concerning Marcion of Arles, who had joined himself to Novat… 9:30 Read by David Ronald
To the clergy and people abiding in Spain, concerning Basilides and Martial [AD… 17:26 Read by David Ronald
To Florentius Pupianus, on calumniators [AD 254] 15:03 Read by David Ronald
To Januarius and other Numidian bishops on baptizing heretics [AD 255] 8:57 Read by David Ronald
To Quintus, concerning the baptism of heretics [AD 255] 7:17 Read by David Ronald
To Pope Stephen, concerning a council [AD 255] 7:05 Read by David Ronald
To Jubaianus, concerning the baptism of heretics [AD 256] 36:30 Read by David Ronald
To Pompey, against the epistle of Stephen about the baptism of heretics [AD 256] 24:56 Read by David Ronald
Firmilian, bishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia, to Cyprian, against the letter of … 45:54 Read by David Ronald
To Magnus on baptizing the Novatians, and those who obtain grace on a sick-bed … 30:00 Read by David Ronald
Cyprian to Nemesianus, and other martyrs in the mines [AD 257] 13:35 Read by David Ronald
Reply of Nemesianus and others to Cyprian [AD 257] 4:48 Read by David Ronald
Reply of Lucius and the rest to the same [AD 257] 4:03 Read by David Ronald
Reply to Felix and the rest of the martyrs to the same [AD 257] 1:51 Read by David Ronald
Cyprian to Sergius Rogatianus and the other confessors in prison [AD 250 or AD … 9:02 Read by David Ronald
To Successus on the tidings of the persecution brought from Rome [AD 258] 3:36 Read by David Ronald
To his clergy and people, concerning his retirement a little before his martyrd… 3:41 Read by David Ronald