Testimonia for Philip of Side

When dealing with a lost text, the comments by other ancient writers who read it are usually included with the fragments as testimonia.  I need to pay attention to these for Philip of Side.

There seem to be three for Philip of Side’s Christian History.  Photius and Socrates HE, book 7, c.27.  I would have thought both should be included.  The critical text of the first is the edition by Rene Henry.  For Socrates it is the GCS NF 1 Socrates Scholasticus, Historia ecclesiastica (1. Aufl. 1995: Günther Christian Hansen).

Apparently Nicephorus Callistus also says something (Hist. eccl., xiv. 29).  

Here are the English translations of what we have.  First Photius:

35. [Philip of Side, Christian History]

Read the work of Philip[1] of Side, entitled a Christian History, beginning with the words “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” He gives an account of the Mosaic history, sometimes brief, sometimes full, although wordy throughout. The first book contains twenty-four volumes, like the twenty-three other books, which we have seen up to the present.[2] His language is diffuse, without urbanity or elegance, and soon palls, or positively disgusts; his aim is rather to display his knowledge than to benefit the reader. Most of the matter has nothing to do with history, and the work might be called a treatise on all kinds of subjects rather than a history, a tasteless effusion. Philip was a contemporary of Sisinnius and Proclus, patriarchs of Constantinople. He frequently attacks the former in his history, because, while both filled the same office[3] and Philip was considered the more eloquent, Sisinnius was elected to the patriarchate.

1 Philip of Side in Pamphylia (fifth century). He was a presbyter in Constantinople, and a friend of John Chrysostom.
2 It originally contained thirty-six books and nearly one thousand volumes.
3 They were both presbyters.

And Socrates:

Chapter XXVI.  Sisinnius is chosen to succeed Atticus.

After the decease of Atticus, there arose a strong contest about the election of a successor, some proposing one person, and some another. One party, they say, was urgent in favor of a presbyter named Philip; another wished to promote Proclus who was also a presbyter; but the general desire of the people was that the bishopric should be conferred on Sisinnius…. The presbyter Philip was so chagrined at the preference of another to himself, that he even introduced the subject into his Christian History, making some very censorious remarks, both about the person ordained and those who had ordained him, and much more severely on the laity. But he said such things as I cannot by any means commit to writing. Since I do not approve of his unadvised action in committing them to writing, I do not deem it unseasonable, however, to give some notice here of him and of his works.

Chapter XXVII. Voluminous Productions of Philip, a Presbyter of Side.

Philip was a native of Side; Side is a city of Pamphylia. From this place also Troilus the sophist came, to whom Philip boasted himself to be nearly related. He was a deacon and thus admitted to the privilege of familiar intercourse with John Chrysostom, the bishop. He labored assiduously in literature, and besides making very considerable literary attainments, formed an extensive collection of books in every branch of knowledge. Affecting the Asiatic style, he became the author of many treatises, attempting among others a refutation of the Emperor Julian’s treatises against the Christians, and compiled a Christian History, which he divided into thirty-six books; each of these books occupied several volumes, so that they amounted altogether to nearly one thousand, and the mere argument of each volume equalled in magnitude the volume itself. This composition he has entitled not an Ecclesiastical, but a Christian History, and has grouped together in it abundance of very heterogeneous materials, wishing to show that he is not ignorant of philosophical and scientific learning: for it contains a medley of geometrical theorems, astronomical speculations, arithmetical calculations, and musical principles, with geographical delineations of islands, mountains, forests, and various other matters of little moment. By forcing such irrelevant details into connection with his subject, he has rendered his work a very loose production, useless alike, in my opinion, to the ignorant and the learned; for the illiterate are incapable of appreciating the loftiness of his diction, and such as are really competent to form a just estimate, condemn his wearisome tautology. But let every one exercise his own judgment concerning these books according to his taste. All I have to add is, that he has confounded the chronological order of the transactions he describes: for after having related what took place in the reign of the Emperor Theodosius, he immediately goes back to the times of the bishop Athanasius; and this sort of thing he does frequently. But enough has been said of Philip: we must now mention what happened under the episcopate of Sisinnius.

I know almost nothing about the Ecclesiastical History of Nicephorus Callistus, tho.  Apparently it is in PG145, PG146 and PG147.

UPDATE:  A reader writes:

I looked over the account of Philip of Side in Nicephorus Callistus (PG 146: 1152-6); it’s nearly identical to Socrates’ account, although I haven’t looked at the Greek of Socrates.


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