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Fabian

d.250. Bishop of Rome from 235. Ruling with vigor, he furthered the tendency to a hierarchical structure by dividing Rome into seven ecclesiastical areas with a deacon over each, and a subdeacon to assist. He increased the amount of catacomb property held. He made his opinion known to the African Church with respect to the heresy of Privatus, bishop of Lambesis, and he received correspondence from Origen. He enjoyed considerable favor under the pro-Christian emperor Philip, but when Decius reversed the policy of his predecessor and seized the church leaders, he was the first to be martyred.