This book is the first to tackle the origins and purpose of literary religious apologetic in the first centuries of the Christian era by discussing, on their own terms, texts composed by pagan and Jewish authors as well as Christians. Previous studies of apologetic have focused primarily on the Christian apologists of the second century. These, and other Christian authors, are represented also in this volume but, in addition, experts in the religious history of the pagan world, in Judaism, and in late antique philosophy examine very different literary traditions to see to what extent techniques and motifs were shared across the religious divide. Each contributor has investigated the probable audience, the literary milieu, and the specific social, political, and cultural circumstances which elicited each apologetic text. In many cases these questions lead on to the further issue of the relation between the readers addressed by the author and the actual readers, and the extent to which a defined literary genre of apologetic developed. These studies, ranging in time from the New Testament to the early fourth century, and including novel contributions by specialists in ancient history, Jewish history, ancient philosophy, the New Testament, and patristics, will put the study of ancient religious apologetic on to a new footing.
`The volume offers an interesting glimpse of recent trends in English scholarship on religion in the Roman empire, and that is its strength.' Journal of Jewish Studies, vol. 211, no. 2 `Frede's essays are particularly brilliant and sympathetic, the best among generally excellent articles. Twenty-one pages of exceptionally helpful bibliography conclude the book.' David Armstrong, Religious Studies Review, Vol 27, No 2, April 2001 `a feast' David Armstrong, Religious Studies Review, Vol 27, No 2, April 2001 `As a way of catching up with the latest in research about the apologists of the ancient world, this volume is indispensable' David Armstrong, Religious Studies Review, Vol 27, No 2, April 2001 `This volume is highly recommended to historians of Greek and Roman religions and philosophy, and of Judaism and Christianity in particular.' Sarah Pearce, Reviews in Religion and Theology `A useful introductory surveys key issues in the study of ancient apologetic while a substantial bibliography provides valuable assistance for researchers.' Sarah Pearce, Reviews in Religion and Theology `this authoritative collection' Sarah Pearce, Reviews in Religion and Theology `Michael Frede ... on the topic of 'Eusebius' Apologetic Writings'. Here there is perhaps the fullest and most far-reaching discussion of apologetics within the works of one author, with characteristic insight into the specifics of the problem.' Jason P. Davis, BMCR, 07.07. `the standard of these essays is high.' Jason P. Davis, BMCR, 07.07. `these essays, written by notable specialists ... range from interesting to provocative.' Jason P. Davis, BMCR, 07.07.
Number Of Pages: 328
Published: 1st June 1999
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.38 x 14.81 x 2.74
Weight (kg): 0.48