Romans, the things which have recently 1 happened in your city under Urbicus, 2 and the things which are likewise being everywhere unreasonably done by the governors, have compelled me to frame this composition for your sakes, who are men of like passions, and brethren, though ye know it not, and though ye be unwilling to acknowledge it on account of your glorying in what you esteem dignities. 3 For everywhere, whoever is corrected by father, or neighbour, or child, or friend, or brother, or husband, or wife, for a fault, for being hard to move, for loving pleasure and being hard to urge to what is right (except those who have been persuaded that the unjust and intemperate shall be punished in eternal fire, but that the virtuous and those who lived like Christ shall dwell with God in a state that is free from suffering,--we mean, those who have become Christians), and the evil demons, who hate us, and who keep such men as these subject to themselves, and serving them in the capacity of judges, incite them, as rulers actuated by evil spirits, to put us to death. But that the cause of all that has taken place under Urbicus may become quite plain to you, I will relate what has been done.
Literally, "both yesterday and the day before." ↩
[See Grabe's note on the conjecture of Valesius that this prefect was Lollius Urbicus, the historian (vol. i. p. 1. and notes, p. 1).] ↩
[He has addressed them as "Romans," because in this they gloried together,--emperor, senate, soldiers, and citizens.] ↩