a Latin ecclesiastical writer, respecting whom we possess little authentic information.
The following account of him is given by Gennadius, de Viris Illustribus,
100.24 : "Bachiarius, vir Christianae philosophiae, nudus et expeditus vacare Deo disponens, etiam peregrinationem propter conservandam vitae integritatem elegit. Edidisse dicitur grata opuscula: sed ego ex illis unum tantum de fide libellum
legi, in quo satisfacit Pontifici urbis, adversus querulos et infamatores peregrinationis suae, et indicat, se non timore hominum, sed Dei, peregrinationem suscepisse, et exiens de terra sua cohaeres fieret Abrahamae patriarchae." To this brief account some additions of doubtful authority have been made by later writers. Bishop Bale calls him Bachiarius Maccaeus,
says that he was a native of Great Britain, and a disciple of St. Patrick, and assigns the cruel oppressions under which his country was then groaning as the cause of his voluntary expatriation. Joannes Pitzeus (John Pits), the Roman Catholic chronicler, follows the account of Bale. Aubertus Miraeus (Aubert Lemire) says that Bachiarius was an Irishman, a disciple of St. Patrick, and contemporary with St. Augustin.
These statements rest on no sufficient evidence; for Bale, the source of them all, is an inaccurate and injudicious writer. 1
Schönemann denies that there is any proof, that Bachiarius was a native either of Great Britain or Ireland; and, from the contents of the treatise de Fide,
infers, that the author's country was at the time extensively infested with heresy, from the imputation of which he deemed it necessary to clear himself. Schönemann concurs with Muratori in thinking that this could not be the Pelagian doctrine, to which there is no reference throughout the treatise; and adopts the conclusion of Francis Florius, that the author's country was Spain, and the heresy which he was solicitous to disavow that of the Priscillianists.
This notion agrees very well with the contents of the work de Fide;
but as it is not supported, so far as we are aware, by any positive evidence, we are rather surprised to see it coolly assumed by Neander (Gesch. der Christ. Religion,
&100.2.3, p. 1485) as indubitably true.
and Letter to Januarius
The only surviving works of Bachiarius are the treatise de Fide
, mentioned above, and a letter to a certain Januarius, respecting the re-admission of a monk into the church, who had been excommunicated for seducing a nun.
Other Possible Works
The Objurgatio in Evagrium,
inaccurately ascribed to Jerome, and the Libri Duo de Deitate et Incarnatione Verbi ad Januarium,
improperly classed among the works of Augustin, are regarded by Florius as the productions of Bachiarius.
This, though not intrinsically improbable, wants the confirmation of direct external proof. Possenin, Bale, and Pits attribute other works to Bachiarius, but upon no sufficient grounds.
The works of Bachiarius are included in the fifteenth volume of Le Espana Sayrada of Henry Florez, a voluminous collection in thirty-four volumes quarto, Madrid, 1747-84.
The Epistola ad Januarium de recipiendis Lapsis, or De Reparatione Lapsi, was first published in the Monumenta S. Patrum Orthodoxographa of John James Grynaeus, Basle, 1569. It was included in the Paris editions of de la Bigne's Bibliotheca Patrum, 1575, vol. 1.1589, vol. 3.1654, vol. iii.
; in the Cologne edition, 1618, vol. v.
; and in the Lyon's edition, 1677, vol. vi.
The treatise de Fide was first published in the second volume of Muratori's Anecdota, Milan, 1697, where the text is given from a manuscript of great antiquity, and is accompanied by valuable prolegomena and notes. In 1748, both works were ably edited at Rome by Franciscus Florius, who, besides other illustrative matter, adds two learned dissertations, the first de Haeresi Priscilliana, the second de Scriptis et Doctrina Bachiarii. This edition is reprinted in the ninth volume of Gallandi's Bibliotheca Patrum.
From the scanty remains of this author it is hardly possible to form a very exact judgment of his character, learning, and abilities. So far as may be collected from the above-named treatises, he appears to have possessed an understanding somewhat above mediocrity, and well exercised in the current theological erudition of the Latin church during the fifth century. His spirit and temper seem to have been singularly amiable.