2. Of ARIMATHEA. There is an ancient tradition that Joseph of Arimathea was sent by the apostle Philip to preach the gospel in Britain; and this tradition was gravely urged at the council of Constance, A. D. 1414, in a dispute between the representatives of the French and English churches for the eminence of their respective establishments. Some writers, for instance Bale, have ascribed to Joseph of Arimathea Epistolae quaedam ad Ecclesias Britannoruma ;
but there is great doubt whether any such writings ever existed, and still greater doubt as to their genuineness. (Fabric. Bibl. Gr.
vol. v. p. 59; Cod. Apoeryph. Novi Test.
Pars iii. p. 506; Ittigius, Biblioth. Patrum Apostol. Dissertat.