Lost Wisdom for Sailors

Arius opened his Thalia …

According to faith of God’s elect, God’s prudent ones,
Holy children, rightly dividing, God’s Holy Spirit receiving,
Have I learned this from the partakers of wisdom,
Accomplished, divinely taught, and wise in all things.
Along their track, have I been walking, with like opinions.
I the very famous, the much suffering for God’s glory;
And taught of God, I have acquired wisdom and knowledge.

He is a man inspired with knowledge of God, true to old faith, but he suffers for it. Hah! Though he …

feigns to speak of God, introducing Scripture language, … (he) is on all sides recognised as godless.

Some knowledge! That …

Christ is not very God, but He, as others, was made God by participation, He is a creature and work (of God)

Oh …

who at such blasphemies is not transported!

As for a Thalia on God! And not just any, for he …

made the discovery of one Sotades, a man whom even Gentiles laugh at, …(and) imitated the dissolute and effeminate tone, in writing Thaliæ on his model

Sotades? A byword for the obscene …

A Cretan, a Maroneian, possessed by demons, a writer of iambics. He wrote Farces, that is obscene verses, in Ionic dialect; for even these used to be called Ionic Stories.

For ditties with hidden meaning …

verses which will read backwards like the Sotadean ditties

For street talk …

the style of dialects and mannerisms that was in vogue among the cinaedi. Sotades was the first man to write the talk of the cinaedi; and then Alexander the Aetolian. But though these two men imitated that talk in mere speech, Lysis accompanied it with song; and so did Simus, who was still earlier than he.

Thalia. She’s the muse of the trivial. Light, trite fare …

amid more serious poems, there be any room for the sportive Thalia

But why throw his wretched words of irreligion into dissolute and loose metres?

a man may marvel, that, whereas many have written many treatises and abundant homilies upon the Old Testament and the New, yet in none of them is a Thalia found; nay nor among the more respectable of the Gentiles, but among those only who sing such strains over their cups, amid cheers and jokes, when men are merry, that the rest may laugh.

Oh it’s no marvel …

Arius, after his secession from the church, composed several songs to be sung by sailors, and by millers, and by travellers along the high road, and others of the same kind, which he adapted to certain tunes, as he thought suitable in each separate case, and thus by degrees seduced the minds of the unlearned by the attractiveness of his songs to the adoption of his own impiety.

Ah, godly words warped to seduce the unwise. Dangerous that. Should be banned. And it was …

Victor Constantine Maximus Augustus, to the bishops and people.—… any treatise composed by Arius should be discovered, let it be consigned to the flames, in order that not only his depraved doctrine may be suppressed, but also that no memorial of him may be by any means left. This therefore I decree, that if any one shall be detected in concealing a book compiled by Arius, and shall not instantly bring it forward and burn it, the penalty for this offense shall be death; for immediately after conviction the criminal shall suffer capital punishment. May God preserve you!

Or was it? Later the deluded can be told …

read it themselves, and copy the tone of the writer; at least the mockery which they will encounter from others may instruct them how low they have fallen; and then let them proceed to explain themselves.

I havn’t read but could …

I have not read this book, but I understand that it is of a loose character, resembling in license Sotadus.

Still today, we have nothing but snippets from the inspired Thalia, all preserved in the words of its detractors.

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