bishop of Agen, in Southwestern Gaul, about the middle of the fourth century.
He was an eager champion of orthodoxy, but at the council of Ariminum, in A. D. 359, was entrapped, along with Servatio, a Belgian bishop, by the artifices of the prefect Taurus, into signing an Arian confession of faith, which, upon discovering the fraud, he openly and indignantly abjured.
He subsequently took an active part in the council of Valence, held in A. D. 374, and, as we learn from Jerome, lived to a great age.
One work unquestionably composed by Phoebadius has descended to us, entitled Contra Arianos Liber,
a tract written about A. D. 358, in a clear, animated, and impressive style for the purpose of exposing the errors contained in a document well known in ecclesiastical history as the Second Sirmian Creed,
that is, the Arian Confession of Faith, drawn up by Potamius and Hosius, and adopted by the third council of Sirmium, in 357, in which the word “Consubstantial” is altogether rejected, and it is maintained that the Father is greater than the Son, and that the Son had a beginning.
This essay was discovered by Peter Pithou, and first published at Geneva in 1570, by Beza, in an octavo volume, containing also some pieces by Athanasius, Basil, and Cyril
; it was subsequently printed by Pithou himself, in his Veterum aliquot Galliue Theologorum Scripta, 4to. 1586
, and is contained in almost all the large collections of Fathers. It was edited in a separate form by Barth, 8vo. Francf. 1623
, and appears under its best form in the Bibliotheca Patrum of Galland, vol. v. p. 250, fol. Venet. 1763.
In addition to the above, a Liber de Fide Orthodoxa
and a Libellus Fidei,
both found among the works of Gregory of Nazianzus (Orat.
49.4), the former among the works of Ambrose also (Append. vol. ii. p. 345, ed. Bened.) have, with considerable probability, been ascribed to Phoebadius.
These, as well as the Liber contra Arianos, are included in the volume of Galland referred to above.
See also Galland's Prolegomena,
cap. xv. p. xxiv. (IIieron. de Viris Ill.
108; Schonemann, Bill. Patrtum Lat.
vol. i. cap. 3.11; Bähr, Gescicht. der Röm. Litterat.
suppl. Band. 2te Abtheil. § 63.