The first Armenian writer who notices them is the patriarch Nerses II.
(c. 728) 2 states that Nerses, his predecessor, had chastised the sect, but ineffectually; and that after his death (c. 554) they had continued to lurk in Armenia, where, reinforced by Iconoclasts driven out of Albania of the Caucasus, they had settled in the region of Djirka, probably near Lake Van.
Fifty years later they were numerous in Syria and Cilicia, according to the Armenian bishops Nerses the Graceful and Nerses of Lambron.
Such allegorization meets us already in Origen, Eusebius and other early fathers, and is quite compatible with that use of a material Eucharist which Nerses II.
The Apocalypse was admitted to the canon, according to Conybeare, in the 12th century through the influence of Nerses, who revised an older version traceable to the opening of the 5th century.
Such uniformity of language ' See Nerses of Lambron, Opera Armenice (Venice, 18 47), pp. 74, 75, 101, &c.
Kneeling with a view to adoration of the elements was unheard of in the primitive church, and the Armenian Fathers of the 12th century insist that the sacrament was intended by Christ to be eaten and not gazed at (Nerses, op. cit.
20, in an enumeration of angels, we hear of Narsus, who may be the Neryosang (Armenian Nerses or Narsai) of the Avesta.
None but a scion of a priestly family could become a deacon, elder or bishop. Accordingly the primacy remained in the family of Gregory until about 374, when the king Pap or Bab murdered Nerses, who had been ordained by Eusebius of Caesarea (362-370) and was over-zealous in implanting in Armenia the canons about celibacy, marriage, fasting, hospices and monastic life which Basil had established in Cappadocia.
The line of Gregory was restored in 390 in the person of Isaac or Sahak, son of Nerses, and his patriarchate was the golden age of Armenian literature.
On the death of Nerses the right of saying grace at the royal meals, which was the essence of the catholicate, was transferred by the king, in despite of the Greeks, to the priestly family of Albianus, and thenceforth no Armenian catholicus went to Caesarea for ordination.
As late as 1165 their patriarch Nerses defends the Armenian custom of keeping Christmas on the 6th of January on the express ground that as he was born after the flesh from the Virgin, so he was born by way of baptism from the Jordan.
The same Nerses held that the second Adam, Jesus Christ, received a new body and nature and the sevenfold grace of the Spirit in the Jordan.
Council held by St Nerses on his return from the council of the 150 fathers at Constantinople against Macedonius.
At the beginning of the Armenian era, held by Nerses in Dvin, in the fourth year of his catholicate, in the fourteenth of Chosroes' reign and in the fourteenth of Justinian Caesar.