(The ten great). (1) Under Nero, A.D. 64; (2) Domitian, 95; (3) Trajan, 98; (4) Hadrian, 118; (5) Pertinax, 202, chiefly in Egypt; (6) Maximin, 236; (7) Decius, 249; (8) Valerian, 257; (9) Aurelian, 272; (10) Diocletian, 302.
“It would be well if these were the only religious persecutions; but, alas! those on the ether side prove the truth of the Founder. ‘I came not to send peace [on earth]. but a sword’” (Matt. x. 34). Witness the long and relentless pers cutions of the Waldenses and Albigenses, the sixty seven crusades, the wars of Charlemagne against the Saxons, and the thirty years' war of Germany. Witness, again, the persecution of the Guises, the Bartholomew slaughter, the wars of Louis XIV, on the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, the Dragonnades, and the wars against Holland, Witness the bitter rersecutions stirred up by Luther, which spread to England and Scotland. No wars so lasting, so relentless, so bloody as religious wars. It has been no thin red line.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894