Presbyters Uniwersytet Warszawski
ER 1485
Eusebius, probably the presbyter in Italy originally from Cremona, writes a letter to Bishop Cyril of Alexandria in which he denounces to him a certain Valerianus, slave of the comes Valerius, for diligently supporting Pelagianism, AD 418. Letter 49 in the Collectio Avellana, compiled in the second half of the sixth century.
Letter 49
Eusebius (identified in the letter neither by a title of presbyter nor any other title) addresses a letter to Bishop Cyril of Alexandria. He courteously asks the bishop to deign to read his letter. Then he asks why the see of Alexandria remains in communion with the Pelagians despite the excommunication cast by the late Bishop Innocentius of Rome. In what follows he denounces Valerianus whom he calls a ventriloquist and glutton, the slave of the comes Valerianus (see PLRE vol. 2, Valerianus 3; it is not certain whether he held office in Italy or Africa; Eusebius says only that he owned land near Rimini), as a Pelagianist. Eusebius says that he had already told Cyril about this Valerianus in his previous letter, sent one year earlier. He asks Cyril to sever his communion with the said Valerianus.
(ed. Guenther 1895: 113-115; summarized by M. Szada)


The identification of Eusebius who wrote this letter with the Presbyter Eusebius of Cremona, the friend of Jerome of Stridon is hypothetical (see PCBE Italie, vol. 1, Eusebius 4).
By calling Valerianus a ventriloquist, Eusebius is probably suggesting that he might be possessed by a demon or involved in divination practices (Wisniewski 2005).

Place of event:

  • Italy north of Rome with Corsica and Sardinia
  • East
  • Alexandria

About the source:

Author: Eusebius of Cremona
Title: Collectio Avellana
Origin: Italy north of Rome with Corsica and SardiniaItaly north of Rome with Corsica and Sardinia
Denomination: Catholic/Nicene/Chalcedonian
Collectio Avellana is a collection containing 244 letters issued by emperors, imperial magistrates and popes. The earliest item is dated to AD 367, the latest to AD 553. Hence, the compilator worked most probably in the second half of the 6th century. Two hundred documents of the Collectio are not known from any other collection. The editor of the Collectio, Günther noticed that it can be divided into five thematic parts (Gunther 1896: 3-96; Steinacker 1902: 14-15; Blaudeau 2013: 4) :
1) no. 1-40 is an independent collection making use of the records of the prefecture of the city of Rome concerning two episcopal elections;
2) no. 41-50 that are derived from the records of the bishopric in Carthage, and consist of the letters of Innocentius I and Zosimus;
3) no. 51-55, the late letters of Leo I not known from any other source, regarding the exile of Bishop Timothy II of Alexandria;
4) no. 56-104 the group of letters from the pontificates of Simplicius, Gelasius, Symmachus, John, Agapet, and Vigilius;
5) no. 105-243 the letters from the records of Hormisdas.
The modern name of the collection derives from the codex Vaticanus Latinus 4961 copied in the monastery Sancti Crucis in fonte Avellana that was considered the oldest by the brothers Ballerini who edited the Collectio in 1787.  
O. Guenther ed., Epistolae Imperatorum Pontificum Aliorum Inde ab a. CCCLXVII usque DLIII datae Avellana Quae Dicitur Collectio, Corpus Scriptorum Ecclesiasticorum Latinorum 35/1, 35/2, Prague, Vienna, and Leipzig 1895
R. Wisniewski, "La consultation des possédés dans l'antiquité tardive: pythones, engastrimythoi et arrepticii", Revue des Etudes Augustiniennes 51 (2005), 127-152.


Writing activity - Correspondence
Relation with - Bishop/Monastic superior
Education - Theological interest
Please quote this record referring to its author, database name, number, and, if possible, stable URL: M. Szada, Presbyters in the Late Antique West, ER1485,