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Exploring the Possibility our Roman Episcopal List is Corrupt

Posted: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:25 am
by Secret Alias
It is universally acknowledged that a corruptions exist in the early Roman episcopal list. First between 'Cletus' and 'Anicletus':
Most important evidence is furnished by the document entitled the "Liberian Catalogue" — so called from the Pope whose name ends the list. The collection of tracts of which this forms a part was edited (apparently by one Furius Dionysius Philocalus) in 354. The catalogue consists of a list of the Roman bishops from Peter to Liberius, with the length of their respective episcopates, the consular dates, the name of the reigning emperor, and in many cases other details. There is the strongest ground for believing that the earlier part of the catalogue, as far as Pontian (230-35), is the work of Hippolytus of Portus. It is manifest that up to this point the fourth century compiler was making use of a different authority from that which he employs for the subsequent popes: and there is evidence rendering it almost certain that Hippolytus's work "Chronica" contained such a list. The reign of Pontian, moreover, would be the point at which that list would have stopped: for Hippolytus and he were condemned to servitude in the Sardinian mines — a fact which the chronographer makes mention when speaking of Pontian's episcopate. Lightfoot has argued that this list originally contained nothing but the names of the bishops and the duration of their episcopates, the remaining notes being additions by a later hand. The list of popes is identical with that of Irenaeus, save that Anacletus is doubled into Cletus and Anacletus, while Clement appears before, instead of after, these two names. The order of Popes Pius and Anicetus has also been interchanged. There is every reason to regard these differences as due to the errors of copyists.

Another witness is Eusebius. The names and episcopal years of the bishops can be gathered alike from his "History" and his "Chronicle". The notices in the two works; can be shown to be in agreement, notwithstanding certain corruptions in many texts of the "Chronicle". This Eastern list in the hands of Eusebius is seen to have been identical with the Western list of Hippolytus, except that in the East the name of Linus's successor seems to have been given as Anencletus, in the original Western list as Cletus.

The two authorities presuppose the following list: (1) Peter, xxv; (2) Linus, xii; (3) Anencletus [Cletus], xii; (4) Clement, ix; (5) Evarestus, viii; (6) Alexander, x; (7) Sixtus, x; (8) Telesophorus, xi; (9) Hyginus, iv; (10) Pius, xv; (11) Anicetus, xi;, (12) Soter, viii; (13) Eleutherius, xv; (14) Victor, x; (15) Zephyrinus, xviii; (16) Callistus, v; (17) Urban, viii; (18) Pontian, v (Harnack, "Chronologie", I, 152).
Also 'Sixtus' means literally 'sixth' which seems to apply to Xystus. Irenaeus literally calls Xystus "sixth from the apostles." So you have to wonder if this is an actual 'pope' or another corruption.

And finally and most provocatively - Victor and Anicetus. νικητής literally means 'victor.' If Anencletus and Cletus can be understood to be the same, isn't it at all possible that Victor and Anicetus are one and the same?

Re: Exploring the Possibility our Roman Episcopal List is Corrupt

Posted: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:28 am
by Secret Alias
Another wrinkle to consider is the consistent pairing of 'Peter and Paul' as the co-founders of the Roman Church. This seems to hearken back to a Romulus and Remus-like dual episcopacy. Notice that Gauis/Caius during the episcopates of Victor and Zephyrinus, is said to have been elected “Bishop of the Gentiles." Note that Gaius/Caius is the one who tells us of two separate burial places for Peter and Paul. Is this connected to two different churches associated with each burial site?

Were there more than one 'bishops' of Rome for a long time? Consider also two other facts:

1. that Hippolytus was bishop at the same time as Callistus
2. that a Church called the Novatians seems to have existed separately from the main church and had its own list of bishops.

I am certain that the Roman episcopal lineage was much more complex than has previously been recognized.

Re: Exploring the Possibility our Roman Episcopal List is Corrupt

Posted: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:32 am
by Secret Alias
If I was to reconstruct this situation my guess would be that Linus and Clement were associated with Peter and Paul - i.e. separate bishops. Since the Clementine literature associates Peter with Clement I guess this was original. Could Paul have been associated with Linus. Then we have the difficulty where 'Clement' is also identified as the Roman senator that was put to death for being Jewish. Now reconsider that Gaius was 'bishop to the Gentiles.'

If Clement is the same as the senator Clemens we are talking about a very late date for him:
Titus Flavius T. f. T. n. Clemens was a nephew of the Roman Emperor Vespasian. He was the son of Titus Flavius Sabinus, consul suffectus in AD 69, and a brother of Titus Flavius Sabinus, consul in AD 82.[1] The emperors Titus and Domitian were his cousins.

As a child, Clemens was besieged along with his family in the capitol, when the soldiers of his uncle, Vespasian, were approaching Rome. His father was captured and slain by the forces of Vitellius, who burnt the capitol, but the rest of the family escaped.

Clemens' brother was consul with Domitian, shortly after the latter's accession, but the emperor put his cousin to death on the pretext that the herald proclaiming him consul had called him Imperator. In fact, the emperor was more likely motivated by his love for his cousin's wife, Julia Flavia (who, as the daughter of his brother Titus, was also his niece).[2]

Clemens also married one of his cousins, Flavia Domitilla, daughter of Vespasian's daughter, Domitilla, who was thus also a niece of Domitian. They had two sons, whom Domitian intended to succeed him in the empire, renaming one of them Vespasian and the other Domitian. However, in AD 95, when Clemens and the emperor were consuls, Domitian had his cousin put to death.[3]

According to Cassius Dio, Clemens was put to death on a charge of atheism, for which, he adds, many others who went over to the Jewish opinions were executed.[4] This may imply that Clemens had converted to Judaism or Christianity, the former being more likely, and accompanied by circumcision.[5] For the same reason, his wife was banished to Pandataria.[6][7][8]
95 CE as the date of the transition from Clement.

Re: Exploring the Possibility our Roman Episcopal List is Corrupt

Posted: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:40 am
by Secret Alias
And then some other oddities. If there was a Jewish Christian community in Rome some of the Greek names might go back to Hebrew. Example:

Evarestos = Ευαριστος = תודה

תודה is a well known 'disciple' of Jesus in rabbinic literature.

"The Rabbis declare, that Jesus had five disciples, Mathe,” Nake, Nezar, Bone, and Todah (תודה)."

Re: Exploring the Possibility our Roman Episcopal List is Corrupt

Posted: Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:47 am
by Secret Alias
Hyginus = υγιεινος = healthy

Health = שׁלום = peace

Curiously Irenaeus might well be a translation.