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Rev. Alban Butler (1711–73). Volume I: January. The Lives of the Saints. 1866.

January 23

St. Eusebius, Abbot

[Abbot between Antioch and Berœa.]  HIS example was a perpetual and a most moving sermon, and his very countenance inspired all who beheld him with the love of virtue. He took nourishment only once in four days, but would not allow any of his monks to pass above two days without eating. He prescribed them mortifications of each sense in particular, but made perpetual prayer his chief rule, ordering them to implore the divine mercy in their hearts, in whatever labour their hands were employed. While Ammianus, who had resigned to him the government of the abbey, was one day reading aloud, out of the scriptures, for their mutual edification, Eusebius happened to cast his eye on certain labourers in the field where they sat, so as not to give due attention to the lecture: to punish himself for this slight fault, he put on, and wore till his death, for above forty years, a heavy iron collar about his neck, fastened by a stiff chain to a great iron girdle about his middle, so that he could only look downwards under his feet: and he never afterwards stirred out of his cell but by a narrow passage from his cell to the chapel. His sanctity drew many disciples to him. He flourished in the fourth century. See Theodoret Philoth. c. 4. Item Hist. Eccles. l. 4. c. 28.  1