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This volume offers a comprehensive account of a Manichaean community in fourth-century Roman Egypt. The study analyses papyrological material from Kellis, a village in Egypt’s Dakhleh Oasis, and their implications for Manichaeism as a socio-religious movement.

Drawing on social network theory and engaging with current trends in the study of lived ancient religion, Teigen explores how lay families at Kellis cohered as a religious community. Whereas recent scholarship has seen the laity here as largely detached from distinctively Manichaean traditions, he argues that the papyri in fac reveal a community immersed in Manichaean ideas and practices. The book thereby shows how new religious identities were deeply entangled in everyday social life in late antiquity.
In: Vigiliae Christianae
In: Vigiliae Christianae

Abstract

Gregory Thaumaturgus has only occasionally been discussed in relation to early Christian apologetics. The paper provides a new step in this direction by exploring the points of contact between Gregory’s Address to Origen and previous apologetic literature. As the analysis below will indicate, the Address shows parallels with several apologetic texts from the second and early third century, both in terms of content and style. By discussing the apologetic topics and strategies found in the Address, I will argue that Gregory intended to respond, at least indirectly, to some of the main charges raised against Christians by their pagan opponents. Such an approach not only sheds light on the content and purposes of the Address, but also illuminates the historical and literary background against which Gregory wrote his text.

In: Vigiliae Christianae

Abstract

The anonymous church order formerly identified as the Apostolic Tradition and attributed to Hippolytus is now regarded by many scholars as a composite work made up of layers of redaction from around the mid-second to mid-fourth centuries. This essay revises the unsatisfactory attempt to discern such strata in its ordination prayers that was made by Eric Segelberg as long ago as 1975, and argues that their earliest forms are among the oldest material in the so-called Apostolic Tradition, belonging to the first half of the second century.

In: Vigiliae Christianae
Author: Amanda Knight

Abstract

The present essay argues that Augustine’s understanding of the physical mechanism of pain and pleasure bears an analogous relationship to the internal mechanics of his moral psychology. The significance of this analogy is threefold. It corroborates emerging consensus positions regarding Augustine’s moral psychology, including recognizing the significance of Stoic influences as well as construing Augustine’s psychology as monistic; it draws attention to a greater consistency between Augustine’s earlier and later accounts of moral psychology than is typically recognized in scholarship; and it offers a schema that organizes the significant components of Augustine’s moral psychology, like his theory of action, habit, the will, and conversion, in relation to one another within a single conceptual system.

In: Vigiliae Christianae
New Perspectives on Tradition and Transformation
Volume Editors: Albert Geljon and Nienke Vos
Based on the paradigmatic shift in both liturgical and ritual studies, this multidisciplinary volume presents a collection of case studies on rituals in the early Christian world. After a methodological discussion of the new paradigm, it shows how emblematic Christian rituals were influenced by their Greco-Roman and Jewish contexts, undergoing multiple transformations, while themselves affecting developments both within and outside Christianity. Notably, parallel traditions in Judaism and Islam are included in the discussion, highlighting the importance of ongoing reception history. Focusing on the dynamic character of rituals, the new perspectives on ritual traditions pursued here relate to the expanding source material, both textual and material, as well as the development of recent interdisciplinary approaches, including the cognitive science of religion.
In: Vigiliae Christianae