Forthcoming: translation of Eusebius’ “Contra Marcellum” and “Ecclesiastical Theology”

We have English translations of a great deal of Patristic literature.  One of the most conspicuous absences, however, has been the five books that Eusebius of Caesarea wrote against Marcellus of Ancyra after the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD.  These are the Contra Marcellum and the Ecclesiastical Theology.

Today I heard from Dr Kelley E. Spoerl of Saint Anselm College, who writes:

I am happy to report that my collaborator, Dr. Markus Vinzent of King’s College, London, and I have signed a contract to have the translation published with the Fathers of the Church series from Catholic University of America Press sometime in 2015 or 2016. The manuscript is now with two expert scholars for review and we expect to make the final revisions and submit before the end of 2014.

Already I have heard from another correspondent, interested in seeing the manuscript.  But of course the publishers will try to prevent any circulation of that, and quite understandably.

It’s good news.  Admittedly the number of people who will be able to access the translation is not nearly what it would be; but at least the thing now exists.  My original correspondence with Dr Spoerl was in 2008 (!) so it has been a long time coming.  Very welcome all the same.

I ought to highlight that a small part of the Ecclesiastical Theology (III 4-6) is available in English in the dissertation of John Mackett, Eusebius of Caesarea’s Theology of the Holy Spirit. Milwaukee, WI : Marquette University,  1990, p.225-244.  This I have seen, and it is mind-boggling – pure theology!

In addition an Italian translation exists: Franzo Migliore, Eusebio di Cesarea: teologia ecclesiastica, Città Nuova, 1998.  Google books preview here.

UPDATE (2020): The complete translation of these two works by Kathy E. Spoerl and Markus Vinzent appeared in 2017: Eusebius of Caesarea: Against Marcellus and On Ecclesiastical Theology, Fathers of the Church 135, Catholic University of America (2017).


16 thoughts on “Forthcoming: translation of Eusebius’ “Contra Marcellum” and “Ecclesiastical Theology”

  1. Rodge,

    A propos, would you know of any English translation of Moralia in Iob by St. Gregory?

    All the best,


  2. A complete English translation of the Moralia in Job was made by the Oxford Movement translators, in several volumes, in the 1840’s. I never had the courage to try to scan it, but it has been done and is online here.

  3. I’m very interested in reading these books. Please let us know when you know more!

  4. Here we are in the middle of 2016. Is there word yet from the publishers about press time for ET? I’m anxious to acquire this book and would like the lastest news on its progress. Thanks. JK

  5. Hello, question: was this translation of Eusebius’ “Contra Marcellum” eventually published? Is it now available and what is the title of the publication? Thank you


  6. You wrote: “a small part of the Ecclesiastical Theology (III 4-6) is available in English in the dissertation of John Mackett, Eusebius of Caesarea’s Theology of the Holy Spirit. Milwaukee, WI : Marquette University, 1990.”

    On which pages exactly is the translation to be found?

  7. Many thanks, Roger. Sorry for being awkward, but I’m writing an article on the trinity and would like to cite this part:

    [start of quote] Certainly the Holy Spirit is distinct from the Father and the Son. The Savior pointed out his uniqueness and called him “the Paraclete,” distinguishing the common element of the equivocal word by the appellation “Paraclete,” since even the angelic powers are spirits. For it is said, “He makes his angels spirits.” But it is impossible to equate any of these with the Paraclete Spirit.

    Wherefore only this spirit has been included in the holy and thrice- blessed Triad. This is not different from the Savior’s explaining to his apostles his sacrament of rebirth for all those from the nations who believe in him. He commanded them to baptize “them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” Of the Father because he has full authority and gives the grace. Of the Son because he ministers to this grace (for “grace and truth came through Jesus Christ”). Of the Holy Spirit, that is, the Paraclete, who is him­self provided according to the di­versity of graces in himself: ‘Tor to one is given a word of wisdom through the Spirit, but to another a word of knowledge according to the same spirit. To another is given faith by the same Spirit” and likewise the things considered with these. [end of quote]

    It is from Ecclesiastical Theology (III 5). Could you possibly let me know the exact page for the above quote (if you have Mackett’s dissertation in front of you)?

  8. Thanks Roger.

    Apologies for the hassle, but I have now purchased “Against Marcellus… by Kelley McCarthy Spoerl” as an ebook at:

    Normally, I wouldn’t have bought the book, but it was only $ 5.00 for the PDF. Therefore, I will use and quote from this book.

    Thanks again for your help.

  9. Yep, and the translation seems to be much better (well, that’s what I think at least).

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