On the dating of polycarp
The first was mainly concerned with the lawfulness of celebrating Easter on a weekday. However it was not the custom of the churches in the rest of the world to end it at this point, as they observed the practice, which from Apostolic tradition has prevailed to the present time, of terminating the fast on no other day than on that of the Resurrection of our Saviour. Polycarp, who like the other Asiatics, kept Easter on the fourteenth day of the moon, whatever day of the week that might be, following therein the tradition which he claimed to have derived from St. 150 about this very question, but could not be persuaded by Pope Anicetus to relinquish his Quartodeciman observance.
term=Polycarpus, bishop of Smyrna Henry Wace, "Dictionary of Christian Biography and Literature to the End of the Sixth Century A.
91-143.] The "Great Sabbath"Because the Smyrnaean letter known as the "Martyrdom of Polycarp" states that Polycarp was taken "on the day of the Sabbath" and killed on "the Great Sabbath", some believe that this is evidence that the Smyrnaeans under Polycarp observed the seventh day Sabbath. If so, then the martyrdom would have had to occur between one and two months later as Nisan 14 (the date that Polycarp observed Passover) cannot come before the end of March in any year.
wrote, "..Sabbath or Saturday (for so the word sabbatum is constantly used in the writings of the fathers, when speaking of it as it relates to Christians) was held by them in great veneration, and especially in the Eastern parts honoured with all the public solemnities of religion." [Cave, "Primitive Christianity: or the Religion of the Ancient Christians in the First Ages of the Gospel". Other "Great Sabbaths" (if this is referring to what are commonly considered to be Jewish holy days, though observed by many early professors of Christ) come in the Spring, late summer, or Fall. These conjectures would be at odds with the Biblical evidence that suggests the common practice for Christians was in keeping the first day of the week (see Acts 20:7; .
The question thus debated was therefore primarily whether Easter was to be kept on a Sunday, or whether Christians should observe the Holy Day of the Jews, the fourteenth of Nisan, which might occur on any day of the week.
Those who kept Easter with the Jews were called Quartodecimans or (observants); but even in the time of Pope Victor this usage hardly extended beyond the churches of Asia Minor. with entire unity of judgment." From this and other indications which cannot be specified here (see, e.g.After the pope's strong measures the Quartodecimans seem to have gradually dwindled away. And I myself have undertaken that this decision should meet with the approval of your Sagacities in the hope that your Wisdoms will gladly admit that practice which is observed at once in the city of Rome and in Africa, throughout Italy and in Egypt. Eusebius, "De Paschate" in Schmid, "Osterfestfrage", pp.