Golden Legend – Life of Saint Justin

Here followeth the Life of Saint Justin.

Saint Justin was born in the city of Naples, and his father was called Cryspobachia, and was a right great philosopher, which laboured strongly for the christian religion, insomuch that he composed many fair books, much profitable, as recounteth Saint Jerome and Hugo. He betook to the emperor Antoninus a book which he composed of the christian religion, and so much he laboured toward the said emperor that he had pity and compassion of the christian people, and not only the emperor himself, but also all his children, and all the senators of Rome. And the said emperor made sithe a commandment that no paynim should not be so hardy as have in despite the sign of the very cross. Item Pompey the Trogan, which was of the Spanish nation, composed into forty-four books all the histories that were through all the world from the time and reign of Minim that was king of Assyria, unto the time and reign of the Emperor Caesar, and wrote them in Latin, the which history Saint Justin abbreviated or shorted, and also composed many other books which were too long to rehearse. To him was divinely revealed or told that much he should suffer before his death, for to maintain truth, as it appeareth by a writ or letter, which he sent to the emperor Antoninus, where he saith thus: I shall have enough of persecutions of staves of iron, by them against whom I battle or fight for to maintain the estate of truth, but when that shall be, I then shall have knowledge that they be not philosophers, that is to wit, loving art and science, but that they may be lovers of all vanities, for he is not worthy to be called a philosopher which publicly affirmeth and attesteth that which he knoweth not, and that saith that the christians are without a god, and put in greater error those that already are in error. All the which thing was thus accomplished, so as Saint Jerome recounteth and Eusebius also. For when the said emperor was passed to God from this world, after him reigned two other emperors, the which were named Antonin and Aurelian, that were great persecutors of christian people, and so as Justin persevered in holy living and in holy doctrine he composed the second book for to defend therewith the religion christian. It happed so that many other philosophers were, that great envy had at Justin as much for his holy life and honest conditions whereof he was filled, as for his great science, accused him to the emperor, saying he was christian, and that he would destroy their law. Then was Justin taken, and made to suffer many torments and divers pains, in which because that he constantly reclaimed ever the name of God, they sprinkled and shed his blood by such manner that he rendered and gave his soul to our Lord Jesu Christ with whom he resteth in peace, and shall rest without end in seculorum secula. Amen.