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Eusebius of Caesarea: Demonstratio Evangelica. Tr. W.J. Ferrar (1920) -- Preface to the online edition


THIS translation was published by SPCK in 1920 in two hardback volumes.  It was republished in 1981, and is currently in print in a single volume paperback for $25,  published by Wipf & Stock, March 2001, ISBN: 0927022494; available from various sites online, although not Amazon, e.g. Pentecostal Publishing.

This transcription is not as complete as it might be.  In particular, it omits the bible references, almost all the footnotes, and a certain number of the references to the Greek text.  This is because it has been a struggle to transcribe.

Some months ago, a fellow-enthusiast for scanning patristic material, Peter Kirby, mentioned online that he intended to scan the only English translation of Eusebius' Demonstratio Evangelica. By coincidence, I had just obtained a photocopy of the SPCK edition. As this was a work in which I was interested, I contacted him and offered my help.  He began work on the introduction, while I scanned book 2 and sent it to him.  Neither of us much enjoyed the experience.  The SPCK edition was hard to scan, and manual corrections of the interminable footnotes, and manually incorporating the marginal scripture references and Greek edition codes took forever.  After these, Peter began work on Book 1, while I started on Book 3.  Neither of us ever finished.  Instead, more pressing (and achievable) tasks were undertaken.  However the intention remained, and a 2-inch deep pile of photocopies on the side kept looking at me.

On New Year's Eve 2002, I decided to try to place at least the English  text online.  This could be scanned and proofed and formatted far more quickly, ignoring marginal material, and all the footnotes.  After all, I felt, it is better to have the text only, than nothing.  This I have proceeded to do, completing on the 3rd January 2003.

Naturally I haven't discarded the material done so far.  I reformatted and completed the material scanned by Peter into the standard format I use on these pages.  I found that the book 2 text had actually been lost, but fortunately a proofed but unformatted copy was still on my hard disk.  Likewise I used the material already proofed for book 3.  I scanned book 1 myself, and experimented with marking up the Greek location numbers in Green.  I quickly found this slowed matters to a crawl, and desisted.  Greek text was a problem -- Peter had done his into HTML characters, while mine was a mix of Symbol and SPIonic. [Now converted to unicode -- October 2005].  

All these inconsistencies remain in the scanned text.  I apologise for them.  It would have been possible, but tedious, to remove them.  However, I felt that it was better to include material from footnotes etc which was available, and put up with the incomplete nature of it.  The reader should be aware that, apart from the intro and book 2, the selection of footnotes, scripture references, Greek locations is sporadic, and its absence indicative of nothing but transcription difficulties.

The footnotes are primarily in Greek, and consist of variants in the biblical text, with that of Westcott & Hort.  Other footnotes consist of quotations from Shakespeare, or common-place comments on the fathers.  If you want the extra material, either contact me with an offer of help, or else support the reprint and buy a copy!  The printed text is cheap, and much handier than a pile of print-offs.

I have included the SPCK catalogue of publications for 1920.  It is useful to see a list of all this material, which is now in the public domain, and it probably helps those looking for such things as English translations of the Fathers.  

I am aware that the quality of transcription is probably not all that high.  However, I do not believe that this text will appear online in the foreseeable future, unless these shortcuts are taken.  I hope readers will be understanding; and if you find errors, by all means send them in to me, Roger Pearse.

Roger PEARSE
1st-3rd January 2003


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This text was transcribed by Roger Pearse, Ipswich, UK, 2003.  All material on this page is in the public domain - copy freely.

Early Church Fathers - Additional Texts