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Rhodon

Ῥόδων), called, in the Haeresium Indiculus, extant under the name of Jerome, CORODON, a Christian writer of the second century. He was a native of Proconsular Asia, but appears to have removed to Rome, where he was instructed (μαθητευθεὶς), perhaps converted to Christianity, by Tatian [TATIANUS]. Nothing more is known of his history than that he took an active part against the heretics of his day; being certainly engaged against the Marcionites, with one of whom, Apelles [APELLES], he had a personal discussion; and probably against the Montanists. Jerome places him in the time of Commodus and Severus, i. e. A. D. 180-211.

He wrote:--1. Adversus Marcionem Opus. From this work Eusebius, in his account of Rhodon, has given one or two brief citations. It was addressed to one Callistion, and contained Rhodon's account of his conference with Apelles, which is extracted by Eusebius. According to this account Rhodon silenced his antagonist, and held him up to ridicule. Certainly he appears to have possessed too much of that self-confidence and fondness for reviling which has characterized polemical writers. Marcion is termed by him "the Pontic Wolf." The fragments of this work of Rhodon are valuable as showing the diversity of opinions which prevailed among the Marcionites. 2. Εἰς τὴν ἑξαήμερον ὑπόμνημα, Commentarius in Hexaemeron, which Jerome characterizes as consisting of "elegantes tractatus." 3. Adversum Phrygas (sc. Cataphrygas s. Montanistas) insigne Opus. Jerome thus characterizes a production of Rhodon, perhaps ascribing to him (as some have judged, from a comparison of cc. 37 and 39 of his de Vir. IU.) the work against the Montanists in three books, addressed to Abercius or Abircius Marcelllls, from which Eusebius has given a long citation (H. E. 5.16). The work is, however, ascribed by Rufinus and Nicephorus Callisti, among the older writers, and by Baronius, Baluze, and Le Quien, among the moderns, to Claudius Apollinaris of Hierapolis [APOLLINARIS, No. 1] ; by others to the Apollonius [APOLLONIUS, literary, No. 13] mentioned and cited by Eusebius (Euseb. Hist. Eccl. 5.18), and to whom Tertullian [TERTULLIANUS] replied in his lost work de Ecstasi ; and by Valesius (Not. ad Euseb. H. E. 5.16), Tillemont, Ceillier, and others, to Asterius Urbanus [URBANUS]. The claims of any of these writers to the authorship of the work cited by Eusebius are, we think, feeble. Eusebius, according to some MSS. (for the text is corrupt), cites the author simply as τις, "a certain writer; "and it is quite unaccountable that he should have omitted to mention his name if he had known it; or that he should have omitted all notice of the work in his account of Rhodon just before, if he had believed it to be his. That Jerome ascribed the work to Rhodon is only an inference: he says, in speaking of Miltiades (de Vir. Illustr. c. 39), that he is mentioned by Rhodon; and as a notice of Miltiades occurs in the anonymous citation given by Eusebius, it is supposed that Jerome refers to that citation, and that he therefore supposed it to be forum Rhodon. But it is surely not unlikely that a writer of consideration like Miltiades, who had been engaged in the Montanist controversy, would be mentioned both by the anonymous writer and by Rhodon, in writing on the same side of the dispute. At any rate, if Jerome identified the anonymous writer with Rhodon, it does not appear that such identification was more than a conjecture, which weighs little against the silence of the earlier, and probably better informed Eusebius.

The fragments of the work against Marcion are given in the second volume of Galland's Bibliotheca Patrum, p. 144, and in Routh's Reliquiae Sacrae, vol. i. p. 349, &c.; those from the work against the Montanists in the third volume of Galland, p. 273, under the name of Asterius Urbanus, to whom the editor ascribes them; and in the second volume of Routh, p. 73, &c., anonymously. Rhodon, in his work against the Marcionites, had promised to prepare a work in elucidation of the obscure passages of Scripture, the design of which had been formed by his instructor Tatian: but we have no evidence that Rhodon ever carried his purpose into effect. (Euseb. Hist. Eccl. 5.16, 17 Hieron. de Viris Illustr. cc. 37, 39, 40; Cave, Hist. Litt, ad ann. 188, 189, s. v. Asterius Urbanus and Rhodon, vol. i. p. 85, ed. Oxon. 1740-1743; Fabric. Bibi. Graec. vol. vii. pp. 161, 168; Tillemont, Mémoires, vol. iii. p. 64; Ceillier, Auteurs Sacrés, vol. ii. p. 133; Lardner, Credib. part ii. book 1.28.14; Galland, Biblioth. Patrum, vol. ii. proleg. 100.5, vol. iii. proleg. 100.2.)

[J.C.M]

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