Page:Early Christianity in Arabia.djvu/86

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short reign of the emperor Philip, Arabia was noted as the mother of a dangerous heresy, which taught that the souls expired and suffered corruption with the body, and that at the general resurrection both would be revived together.[1]

The name of Mavia (Muaviyah), an Arab queen, is celebrated amongst ecclesiastical writers. The Saracens had been for some time, under this queen, the scourge of the Syrian frontier, and their hostilities were only arrested by her conversion; Mavia accepted at the same time the alliance of Rome, and a Christian bishop named Moses, ordained by the primate of Alexandria.[2] In the war with the Goths, who had carried their arms to the walls of Constantinople, the courage of the Saracen auxiliaries was soon after exhibited in the defence of the capital, and the wild hordes who had depopulated the fields of Thrace, were obliged to yield to the no less barbarous bravery of the Arabs, in a sally from one of the gates of the city.[3] The progress of Christianity increased in proportion as the Arabs became more intimately connected with the Romans, the cities and towns were by degrees furnished with Syrian

  1. The Arabian heretics and the Manichæi arose in the third century. Hottinger. Hist. Eccl. tom. i. p. 145.
  2. Theodoret. Ruffinus. Socrates. Pagi, p. 391. The conversion of Mavia took place about A.D. 372; Christianity had been introduced among the southern Saracens before that period. Baronius, tom. v. p. 393.
  3. Socrates, lib. v. c. 1. Sozomen, lib. vii. c. 1. Ammianus, lib. xxxi. c. 16.