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Bible Dictionaries

A Dictionary of Early Christian Biography


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Victorinus ( 4 ), St., of Pettau, bishop and martyr. He was apparently a Greek by birth, and (according to the repeated statement of Cassiodorus) a rhetorician before he became bp. of Pettau (Petavio) in Upper Pannonia. He is believed to have suffered martyrdom in Diocletian's persecution. St. Jerome (our chief authority concerning him) mentions him several times, and with respect even where his criticisms are adverse. He enumerates, among his works (Catal. Script. Eccl. 74) commentaries on Gen., Ex., Lev., Is., Ezek., Hab., Eccles., Cant., Matt., and Rev., besides a treatise "adversus omnes haereses." Jerome occasionally cites the opinion of Victorinus ( in Eccles. iv. 13; in Ezech. xxvi. and elsewhere), but considered him to have been affected by the opinions of the Chiliasts or Millenarians (see Catal. Script. 18, and in Ezech. l.c. ). He also states that he borrowed extensively from Origen. In consequence, perhaps, of his Millennarian tendencies, or of his relations to Origen, his works were classed as "apocrypha" in the Decretum de Libris Recipiendis , which Baronius (ad ann. 303) erroneously refers to a synod held under Gelasius. Little or nothing is left—nothing; indeed, which can be said to be his with any certainty. Poems are attributed to him with no authority better than that of Bede; while the two lines Bede quotes as his were clearly written by some one with a tolerable knowledge of Latin.


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Bibliography Information
Wace, Henry. Entry for 'Victorinus'. A Dictionary of Early Christian Biography. 1911.

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