2 This, the first of twenty-two letters addressed by Basil to Eusebius of Samosata, has no particular interest. Eusebius, the friend of Basil, Gregory of Nazianzus, and of Melctius, was bishop of Samosata (in Commagene on the Euphrates, now Samsat) from 360 to 373, and was of high character and sound opinions. Theodoret (Ecc. Hist. iv. 15), in mentioning his exile to Thrace in the persecution under Valens, calls him "that unflagging labourer in apostolic work," and speaks warmly of his zeal. Concerning the singular and touching circumstance of his death, vide Theodoret, E.H. v. 4, and my note in the edition of this series, p. 134.

3 Samosata was about two hundred miles distant from Caesarea, as the crow flies.

1 Placed in 368.

2 ie.e on the death of Musonius, bp. of Necoaesarea. Musonius is not named, but he is inferred to be the bishop referred to in Ep. ccx., in which Basil asserts that sound doctrine prevailed in Neocaesarea up to the time of "the blessed Musonius, whose teaching still rings in your ears."

3 Lev. xxvi. 10.

4 i.e. Gregory Thaumaturgus.

5 1 Thess. iv. 13.

6 Phil. iii. 2.

1 Placed in 368.

2 cf. Letters xxiv. and xxv., and note.

3 cf. Phil. i. 23, 24.

4 cf. Ps. cii. 6.

1 Placed in 369.

2 Emmelia. Vide account of Basil's family in the prolegomena.

1 Placed in 369. cf. note on Letter ccxxxvi.

2 Nothing more is known of the Hypatius. Gregory of Nazianzus (Ep. 192) writes to a correspondent of the same name.

1 Placed in 369.

2 i.e. Magister officiorum. Sophronius was a fellow student with Basil at Athens, and a friend of Gregory of Nazianzus. He secured the favour of Valens, who was staying at Caesarea in 365, by conveying him intelligence of the usurpation of Procopius at Constantinople. (Amm. Marc. xxv. 9.) On the circumstance which gave rise to this letter, cf. Greg. Naz., Ep. xviii. Letters lxxvi., xcvi., clxxvii., xlxxx., cxcii., and cclxxii. are addressed to the same correspondent, the last, as it will be seen, indicating a breach in their long friendship.

3 The word Episcopus in this and in the following letter is supposed by Maran to have crept into the text from the margin. Gregory of Nazianzus is referred to , who was not then a bishop. Gregory the Elder, bishop of Nazianzus, was in good circumstances, and had not adopted the monastic life.

4 cf. Letter xxvi. Caesarius died in 368, leaving his brother Gregory as executor.

5 tou/toij. So the mss., but the editors here substituted tou/tw, i.e. Gregory, and similarly the singular in the following words.

1 Placed in 369.

2 cf. Ep. xxxiii., lxxv., cxlvii., clxxviii., ccciv., and also ccxcvi., though the last is also attributed to Greg. Naz. He was an important lay compatriot of Basil. Tillemont was of opinion that the dear brother Gregory referred to in this letter is Gregory of Nyssa; but Maran points out that the events referred to tare the same as those described in Letter xxxii., and supposes the word episcopus to have been inserted by a commentator.

1 Placed in 369.

2 Silvanus, Metropolitan of Tarsus, one of the best of the Semi-Arians (Ath., De synod. 410, died, according to Tillemont, in 373, according to Maran four years earlier, and was succeeded by an Arian; but events did not turn out so diastrously as Basil had anticipated. The majority of the presbyters were true to the Catholic cause, and Basil maintained friendship and intercourse with them. cf. Letters lxvii., cxiii., cxiv.

3 Basil is supposed to have in the meanwhile carried out his previously-expressed intention of paying Eusebius a visit.

1 Placed before 370.

1 Placed before 370.

1 Of the same time as the preceding.

1 This important letter is included as among the works of Gregory of Nyssa, as addressed to Peter, bp. of Sebaste, brother of Basil and Gregory. The Ben. note says "Stylus Basilii fetum esse clamitat." It was moreover, referred to at Chalcedon as Basil's. [Mansi, T. vii. col. 464.]