Emerging from Roman synods of the 370s, epistolary exemplars, including the synodal letter Confidimus quidem, provided formulae that healed the schism between Paulinus and Meletius, the two Nicene claimants to the see of Antioch. That the reunion left a scar, which later reopened, all too often detracts from the accomplishment. Already holding communion with most Eastern churches, Meletius explicitly entered communion with Damasus of Rome and the other Western bishops, who had hitherto communicated with Paulinus. Since this union took almost a decade to forge and did not survive the death of Meletius in 381, the synodal formulae for reunion pose delicate problems of great import to Church history.
With special attention to their philological, codicological, canonistic, and historiographical construction, Field sheds important light on these problems as they emerged and evolved in history. Central to this illumination, a critical edition demonstrates how these formulae have survived in the eighth-century Codex Veronensis LX.