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- Serapis, Volume 6. - 10/10 -


withdraw to the desert of Koizoum and become a recluse. The old man besought her to remain with him, to take charge of her little brother, and not to abandon him and his old wife; for that it was a no less lovely Christian duty to be compassionate and helpful, and cherish the feeble in their old age. His wife added her entreaties and tears; but a sudden chill had gripped Agne's heart; dry-eyed and rigid she resisted their prayers, and took leave of her benefactors and of Papias. Bare-foot and begging her way, she started for the south-east and reached the shores of the Red Sea. There she found the stonemason's widow, emaciated and haggard, with matted hair, evidently dying. Agne remained with her, closed her eyes, and then lived on as Dorothea had lived, in the same cave, till the fame of her sanctity spread far beyond the boundaries of Egypt.

When Papias had grown to man's estate and was installed as steward to Demetrius, he sought his sister many times and tried to persuade her to live with him in his new home; but she never would consent to quit her solitary cell. She would not have exchanged it for a king's palace; for Orpheus appeared to her in nightly visions, radiant with the glories of Heaven; and time was passing and the hour drawing near when she might hope to be with him once more.

The widow Mary, in her later years, made many pilgrimages to holy places and saintly persons, and among others to Agne, the recluse; but she would never be induced to visit Cyrenaica, whither she was frequently invited by her children and grandchildren; some more powerful excitant was needed to prompt her to face the discomforts of a journey.

The old Heathen cults had completely vanished from the Greek capital long before her death. With it died the splendor and the power of the second city in the world; and of all the glories of the city of Serapis nothing now remains but a mighty column--[Known as Pompey's Pillar.]--towering to the skies, the last surviving fragment of the beautiful temple of the sovereign-god whose fall marked so momentous an epoch in the life of the human race. But, like this pillar, outward Beauty--the sense of form that characterized the heathen mind--has survived through the ages. We can gaze up at the one and the other, and wherever the living Truth--the Spirit of Christianity--has informed and penetrated that form of Beauty, the highest hopes of old Eusebius have been realized. Their union is solemnized in Christian Art.

ETEXT EDITOR'S BOOKMARKS:

What have I to care for but my child's happiness? Faith is the true Herb of Grace. The intellect is its foe


Serapis, Volume 6. - 10/10

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