But when, in the crusading age, the Greek Church and state were alike in danger from Lat n encroachments, Photius became a national hero, and is at pres nt regarded as little short of a saint.
Both Eusebius and Photius describe the work.
In the time of Photius the poets usually studied at school were Homer, Hesiod, Pindar; certain select plays of Aeschylus (Prometheus, Septem and Persae), Sophocles (Ajax, Electra and Oedipus Tyrannus), and Euripides (Hecuba, Orestes, Phoenissae, and, next to these, Alcestis, Andromache, Hippolytus, Medea, Rhesus, Troades,) also Aristophanes (beginning with the Plutus), Theocritus, Lycophron, and Dionysius Periegetes.
Others, however, have held to its genuineness, because in a Patch-work or Book of Miscellanies the difference of subject is no sound objection, and because Photius seems to have regarded our present eighth book as genuine (Phot.
The fragments in Photius and in the Apology of Pamphilus serve for comparison.
Both it and the original work are lost, with the exception of the excerpts in Photius and Suidas.
The style is better than that of Socrates and Sozomen, as Photius has remarked, but as a contribution to history the work is inferior in importance.
Accomplished men of letters, such as Julius Vestinus and Aelius Dionysius, selected from his writings choice passages for declamation or perusal, of which fragments are incorporated in the miscellany of Photius and the lexicons of Harpocration, Pollux and Suidas.
He was a saint up till the time of Benedict XIV., who read Photius on Clement, believed him, and struck the Alexandrian's name out of the calendar.
He became a close friend of Isidore, succeeded him as head of the school in Athens, and wrote his biography, part of which is preserved in the Bibliotheca of Photius (see appendix to the Didot edition of Diogenes Laertius).