Apologists is the title given to a group of the Church Fathers who strove in the second century to defend Christianity against pagan attacks. They tried to explain the principles of religion, showing that Christianity is compatible with good citizenship, contrary to the belief that refusing to worship the emperor constituted a plot against the state. Some of the apologists wrote to defend Christianity from the attacks of the Jews, and they also wrote inviting the heretics to return to the Church.

In the Coptic language, only the work of Melito survived. Melito was a bishop of Sardis in Asia Minor in the beginning of the second century. According to Eusebius of Caesarea, Melito exerted many efforts to defend Christianity before Emperor Marcus Aurelius. Also according to the same author, Clement of Alexandria wrote a book on the Passion of Christ, transmitting to his friends the traditions received from Melito of Sardis. In Coptic, we have his homily on the Passion of Christ.


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