The publication of this book would not have been possible without the effort of many persons. As the basis of our presentation of Christianity in Lycaonia are inscriptions, we are grateful to those early explorers, e.g. John R.S. Sterrett, William M. Ramsay and his students, and Heinrich Swoboda, who secured inscriptions on monuments of which many are now lost or unreadable. Our interest in the work of these pioneers of epigraphy is due to the work of Stephen Mitchell. Not only was the short review of the Christians in Lycaonia he gave in his magisterial Anatolia (2.58) the impetus to this project, since 2008 he also amicably supported and advised us, sharing his knowledge on the region with us. As careful co-editor of
This project, which we originally planned as a chapter in a work to revise the fourth part of Adolf von Harnack’s Mission und Ausbreitung des Christentums on Asia Minor, grew into a monograph due to the vast material treated here. We were able to take about a thousand inscriptions into account because we could rely on the infrastructure of the Cluster of Excellence “Topoi: The Formation and Transformation of Space and Knowledge” in Berlin. We thank the management of the Cluster, especially the directors Friederike Fless, Gerd Graßhoff and Michael Meyer, and we are grateful to be able to benefit from the élan of the directors of Topoi and of the members of the executive board of the Berliner Antike-Kolleg in developing supportive structures for research into the humanities.
The research was done in Area B of the Cluster “Mechanisms of Control and Social Spaces” in Topoi I and currently in Topoi ii in “Constructing Historical Space”. In our construction of the historical space in which Lycaonian Christianity emerged and which was shaped by its rise, we account for the mechanisms of control and focus on the social space as far as it can be reconstructed (cf. chap. 2). Discussion on key topics of the research cluster, like the authorisation of knowledge or the identity ascribed to people or groups influenced our research, for example on the role of the Bible (see 6.2), Christian leaders (6.4) and name-giving (5.2). We thank the members of the area and the spokesperson Eva Cancik-Kirschbaum for this intellectual climate and their encouragement.
Our research is based on an ever-growing database Inscriptiones Christianae Graecae (
We are tremendously grateful that Topoi enabled Ulrich Huttner to devote his time to prepare the database
Apart from Stephen Mitchell, Christoph Markschies, Klaus Hallof, and Ulrich Huttner, who were part of the Topoi i research group “Diversity of Spaces” and the Topoi ii research group “Personal Authorisation of Knowledge”, we also profited from the advice from Werner Eck, Peter Thonemann, Peter von Möllendorff and Hale Güney. We thank them all for letting us benefit from their expertise. The remaining mistakes are for our account.
The technical demands to present the material in this book are high. The authors are very grateful to Matthias Müller in Berlin who made numerous suggestions to improve the technical style of the book and who monitored our consistency in implementing them, carefully editing our manuscript. Through the years, several student assistants at the Institut für Christentum und Antike in Berlin helped us to get hold of piles of books and stacks of photocopies, checked references and finished the indices. We are very grateful for the help of Nathalie Altnöder, Elina Bernitt, Andrea Brockhaus, Jennifer Krumm, Inga Mergner, and Annemarie Niemann. In the final stages, Jan Bertram compiled the index of personal names, Hannah Clemens, Stefanie Mende, Anselm Müller-Busse, Jasmin Reschka-Zielke, Philipp Sapora, and Anamika Wehen prepared the index of ancient sources and Alexander Städtler of Topoi the maps. The authors thank them and the teaching assistants Geeske Brinkmann (Berlin) and Hi-Cheong Lee (Kiel) who made the concordance of inscriptions and coordinated the compilation of the indices.
The editorial board of
Although we discussed, planned and revised the whole project together, Cilliers Breytenbach wrote chapter 2 and sections 3.1–3.3, 4.1–4.5 and 4.9, 5.1–2 and 5.4, 6.3, 6.4.1–18.104.22.168 and 6.5. Christiane Zimmermann wrote sections 3.4 and 3.5, 4.6–4.8, 5.3, 5.5–6, 6.2, 22.214.171.124, 126.96.36.199–188.8.131.52, 6.4.4–6.4.6 and 6.7. Chapters 1, 7 and section 6.6 and all other subsections were written together. Part of section 6.3.3 is based on a draft by Ulrich Huttner, who also took much of his time to read through our manuscript, discussing various issues with us and safeguarded us from many mistakes. We thank him sincerely.
In writing this book, we took a bold step. Neither of the authors was writing in his or her mother tongue. We are very conscious of the limited way in which we were able to express ourselves in English. With great care David Green edited the language of our manuscript, improving our style and translating sections 3.4, 5.5, 5.6, and 6.7 from German. Remaining errors probably slipped in during our revision. Neither of us is an epigraphist either, we have no special training in Roman history writing. As scholars of early Christian literature, we normally focus on the writings of the first two hundred years, constructing history of primarily the first two centuries. By crossing the boundaries between New Testament Studies, the study of the early Christian churches and non-literary sources, we revitalise a proud tradition of the Theological Faculty in Berlin associated with the famous names of Adolf von Harnack, Adolf Deissmann, and Hans Lietzmann. We humbly follow in these footsteps, knowing that in learning, their generation will always be ahead of us. En route exploring the rise of Christianity in a specific region, we were very aware of the dangers luring on the way. In the introduction (cf. 1.4) we have explained the limitations of this project. When we continue the journey beyond primitive Christianity with the effort to place Lycaonian Christianity from the beginning until the mid-5th century within the context of the early and later Roman Empire, we follow the example of Sir William Ramsay. Like Deissmann and Lietzmann, he focussed a major part of his research on Paul, the apostle to the nations. This book also focusses on Paul and on the impact the gospel he preached made on Lycaonia and adjacent areas. The decision to go from Barnabas’s Cyprus to the Roman colonies in the province of Galatia changed the course of early Christianity. In memory of Paul, this book documents the impact of his foundational work.
Cilliers Breytenbach and Christiane Zimmermann
Berlin and Kiel, 26 September 2017