In The Rebirth of Swimming and Free-diving, John McManamon documents the revival of interest in swimming during the European Renaissance and its conceptualization as an art. Renaissance scholars realized that the ancients considered one truly ignorant who knew “neither letters nor swimming.”
What are the interrelationships between the language of rhetoric and the code of imperial images, from Constantine to Theodosius? How are imperial images shaped by the fact that they were produced and promoted at the behest of the emperor? Nine contributors from Spain, Italy, the U.K. and the Netherlands will guide the reader about these issues by analyzing how imperial power was articulated and manipulated by means of literary strategies and iconographic programmes. The authors scrutinize representations from Constantine to Julian and from the Valentinians to Theodosius by considering material culture and texts as interconnected sources that engaged with and reacted to each other.
Author: Jack Visnjic
Did the ancient Greeks and Romans have a concept of moral duty? Jack Visnjic seeks to settle this long-standing controversy in The Invention of Duty: Stoicism as Deontology. According to the prevailing view, ancient ethical systems lacked any sense of moral obligation and were built instead around notions of virtue and human flourishing. Visnjic argues that, millennia before Kant, the Stoics already developed a robust notion of moral duty as well as a sophisticated deontological ethics. While most writings of the Stoics perished, their concept of duty lived on and eventually came to influence the modern notion. In fact, there are strong indications that Kant’s formulation of a new duty-based morality was inspired by his encounter with Stoic ideas.
Editor / Translator: Oliver Kahl
The Arabic treatise edited and translated here was written in the middle of the 9th century CE by ʿAlī ibn Sahl Rabban aṭ-Ṭabarī, a Christian convert to Islam and one of the most remarkable thinkers of his time. The text can be described as a manual towards the preservation of health, addressed directly to the ʿAbbāsid caliph al-Mutawakkil and his household. It represents not only the oldest extant specimen of its kind, but is also distinguished by its largely non-technical language, as well as by a narrative style that creates an unusual interface with classical Arabic prose literature. The Greek and Indian sources upon which aṭ-Ṭabarī relied testify to the synthetic and inclusive character of early Islamic medicine.
In Exegesis of the Human Heart Andrew J. Summerson explores how Maximus the Confessor uses biblical interpretation to develop an account of human passibility, from fallen human passions to perfected human emotions among the divinized.
This book features Maximus’s role as a creative interpreter of tradition. Maximus inherits Christian thinking on emotion, which revises Stoic and Platonic thought according to biblical categories. Through a close reading of Quaestiones ad Thalassium and a wide selection of Maximus’s works, Andrew J. Summerson shows that Maximus understands human emotion in an exegetical milieu and that Maximus places human emotion at the heart of his soteriology. Christ redeems passibility so the divinized can enjoy perfected emotional activity in the ever-moving repose of eternal life.
Das Leben und Wirken eines westgotischen Bischofs des siebten Jahrhunderts
Author: Stefan Pabst
In Das theologische Profil des Julian von Toledo analysiert Stefan Pabst das Leben und Wirken des westgotischen Bischofs Julian von Toledo (ca. 642–690). Im Anschluss an eine Hinführung zum historischem Umfeld und zur Biographie des Julian werden sämtliche erhaltene Schriften untersucht. Dies betrifft sowohl die die nicht-theologischen als auch die theologischen Werke. Im Zentrum der Analyse steht einerseits die Frage nach der Originalität des Autors. Julian zitiert nämlich intensiv aus den Schriften der Kirchenväter, insbesondere des Augustinus. Andererseits werden die Zielgruppe und die Intention jeder einzelnen Schrift eingehend betrachtet. Abschließend wird so ein theologisches Profil des Julian von Toledo entwickelt, das ihn als einen patristischen, einen pädagogisch-pastoralen und damit als einen spezifisch westgotischen Theologen präsentiert.

In Das theologische Profil des Julian von Toledo Stefan Pabst analyses the life and work of the Visigothic bishop Julian of Toledo (ca. 642–690). After a presentation of Julian's historical environment and biography, all preserved writings are analysed in detail. This includes his non-theological as well as his theological works. While, on the one hand, the analysis focusses on the question of the author’s originality, for Julian quotes extensively from the works of the Church Fathers, Augustine in particular, on the other hand, the author’s addressed audience and the intention of each individual writing are considered in detail as well. As conclusion, Julian’s profile as Theologian is presented: He is a patristic and pedagogical-pastoral theologian and thus a specifically Visigothic theologian.
Experiences of Philology and Replication
Volume Editor: Lucia Raggetti
Traces of Ink. Experiences of Philology and Replication is a collection of original papers exploring the textual and material aspects of inks and ink-making in a number of premodern cultures (Babylonia, the Graeco-Roman world, the Syriac milieu and the Arabo-Islamic tradition). The volume proposes a fresh and interdisciplinary approach to the study of technical traditions, in which new results can be achieved thanks to the close collaboration between philologists and scientists. Replication represents a crucial meeting point between these two parties: a properly edited text informs the experts in the laboratory who, in turn, may shed light on many aspects of the text by recreating the material reality behind it.
br/> Contributors are: Miriam Blanco Cesteros, Michele Cammarosano, Claudia Colini, Vincenzo Damiani, Sara Fani, Matteo Martelli, Ira Rabin, Lucia Raggetti, and Katja Weirauch.