Reformed Churchmen

We are Confessional Calvinists and a Prayer Book Church-people. In 2012, we remembered the 350th anniversary of the 1662 Book of Common Prayer; also, we remembered the 450th anniversary of John Jewel's sober, scholarly, and Reformed "An Apology of the Church of England." In 2013, we remembered the publication of the "Heidelberg Catechism" and the influence of Reformed theologians in England, including Heinrich Bullinger's Decades. For 2014: Tyndale's NT translation. For 2015, John Roger, Rowland Taylor and Bishop John Hooper's martyrdom, burned at the stakes. Books of the month. December 2014: Alan Jacob's "Book of Common Prayer" at: January 2015: A.F. Pollard's "Thomas Cranmer and the English Reformation: 1489-1556" at: February 2015: Jaspar Ridley's "Thomas Cranmer" at:

Thursday, January 1, 2015

January 199 A.D. Victor—Rome Claims Him as 14th; North African; Reign of Commodus & Septimus Severus; Victor's Arrogance over Easter Controversy; Irenaeus Chides Him; Conflict with Eastern Bishops

January 199 A.D.  Victor—Rome Claims Him as 14th;  North African; Reign of Commodus & Septimus Severus; Victor's Arrogance over Easter Controversy; Irenaeus Chides Him; Conflict with Eastern Bishops

Victor I (died 199) was bishop of Rome or pope; the dates of his tenure are uncertain, but one source states he became pope in 189 and gives the year of his death as 199.[1] He was the first bishop of Rome born in the Roman Province of Africa—probably in Leptis Magna (or Tripolitania). He was later canonized. His feast day is celebrated on 28 July as "St Victor I, Pope and Martyr".[2]

The primary sources vary over the dates assigned to Victor’s episcopate, but indicate it included the last decade of the second century. Eusebius puts his accession in the tenth year of Commodius (i.e. AD 189), which is accepted by Lipsius as the correct date. Jerome’s version of the Chronicle puts his accession in the reign of Pertinax, or the first year of Septimius Severus (i.e. 193), while the Armenian version puts it in the seventh year of Commodus (186). The Liber Pontificalis dates his accession to the consulate of Commodius and Glabrio (i.e. 186), while the Liberian Catalogue, a surviving copy of the source the Liber Pontificalis drew its information for its chronology, is damaged at this point[3] Concerning the duration of his episcopate, Eusebius, in his History, does not state directly the duration of his episcopate, but the Armenian version of Eusebius' Chronicle gives it as twelve years. The Liberian Catalogue gives his episcopate a length of nine years two months and ten days, while the Liber Pontificalis states it was ten years and the same number of months and days; the Felician Catalogue something over ten. Finally, Eusebius in his History (5.28) states Zephyrinus succeeded him "about the ninth year of Severus", (201), while the Liber Pontificalis dates it to the consulate of Laternus and Rufinus (197). Lipsius, considering Victor in connection with his successors, concludes that he held office between nine and ten years, and therefore gives as his dates 189–198 or 199.

According to an anonymous writer quoted by Eusebius, Victor excommunicated Theodotus of Byzantium for teaching that Christ was a mere man.[4] However, he is best known for his role in the Quartodeciman controversy. Prior to his elevation, a difference in dating the celebration of the Christian Passover/Easter between Rome and the bishops of Asia Minor had been tolerated by both the Roman and Eastern churches. The churches in Asia Minor celebrated it on the 14th of the Jewish month of Nisan, the day before Jewish Passover, regardless of what day of the week it fell on, as the Crucifixion had occurred on the Friday before Passover, justifying this as the custom they had learned from the apostles; for this the Latins called them Quartodecimans. Synods were held on the subject in various parts—in Palestine under Theophilus of Caesarea and Narcissus of Jerusalem, in Pontus under Palmas, in Gaul under Irenaeus, in Corinth under its bishop, Bachillus, at Osrhoene in Mesopotamia, and elsewhere—all of which disapproved of this practice and consequently issued by synodical letters declaring that "on the Lord's Day only the mystery of the resurrection of the Lord from the dead was accomplished, and that on that day only we keep the close of the paschal fast" (Eusebius H. E. v. 23). Despite this disapproval, the general feeling was that this divergent tradition Asians was not sufficient grounds for excommunication. Victor alone was intolerant of this difference, and severed ties with these ancient churches, whose bishops included such luminaries as Polycrates of Ephesus;[5] in response he was rebuked by Irenaeus and others, according to Eusebius.


1.       Jump up ^ Kirsch, Johann Peter (1912). "Pope St. Victor I" in The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 15. New York: Robert Appleton Company.

3.       Jump up ^ Raymond D. Davis, The book of Pontiffs (Liber Pontificalis) (Liverpool: University Press, 1989), pp. 6, 94.

4.       Jump up ^ Eusebius Pamphilius: Church History, Life of Constantine, Oration in Praise of Constantine, 5.28

5.       Jump up ^ Eusebius Pamphilius: Church History, Life of Constantine, Oration in Praise of Constantine,5.24


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