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Author: Pauline Allen

Among the homiletic corpora of late antiquity the 125 surviving homilies of Severus, patriarch of Antioch (512–518), provide us with a rich lode of works on martyrs. This is not surprising, given that Antioch was second only to Rome in the number of martyrs and saints it venerated. Previously I have examined Severus’ treatment of the deaths of two local martyrs, Barlaam/Barlaha and Romanus (in Martyrdom and Persecution in Late Antique Christianity. Festschrift Boudewijn Dehandschutter, ed. J. Leemans, Leuven – Paris – Walpole, MA, 2010, pp. 1–14) and of four martyrs foreign to Antioch, Drosis/Drosina, Julian, Dometius, and Leontius ( Journal of the Australian Early Medieval Association, 5 [2009], pp. 9–20), an examination that proved the quality of the sources which the patriarch used in his preaching. In this paper I intend to carry the discussion further by concentrating on Severus’ treatment of the death of St Babylas in one homily and two hymns, particularly in relation to the treatment accorded to the martyr in John Chrysostom, in order to situate Severus’ homily in the martyrial homiletic tradition and to trace the history of the veneration of this saint in the city of Antioch.

In: Scrinium
Author: Pauline Allen


This study of the mariology of the letters of Augustine is part of an international project investigating the development of the cult of Mary before 431. The study argues that the works of authors before this date need to be considered individually, and that negative, ambiguous, or seemingly contradictory findings, as well as data in which Mary figures abundantly, are all valid. The scant role assigned to Mary in Augustine's letters, where she is mostly a credal commodity, stands in stark contrast to the high mariology found in some of his other works, indicating that genre affects the data. An aggregate score of high mariology in the one author, Augustine in this case, does not mean that this score holds true for all his works. A low score must be also taken into serious consideration, and indeed it can be just as important in understanding the development of the cult of Mary before 431.

In: Vigiliae Christianae
In: The Sixth Century: End or Beginning?
In: Basileia
In: Preaching after Easter: Mid-Pentecost, Ascension, and Pentecost in Late Antiquity
In: Preaching after Easter: Mid-Pentecost, Ascension, and Pentecost in Late Antiquity
In: Preacher and Audience
In: Severus of Antioch
In: Preaching in the Patristic Era
Studies in Early Christian and Byzantine Homiletics
Editors: Cunningham and Pauline Allen
This volume brings together thirteen studies on Greek-speaking preachers and audiences in a period from the beginning of the second century A.D. to the beginning of the tenth century which has largely been neglected in the modern literature.
The chapters represent a collection of case studies of individual preachers or periods of homiletic activity and cover themes including the identity of Greek-speaking preachers, the circumstances of delivery, the different genres of homiletic, the adaptation of the tropes of Classical approaches, the preparation, redaction and transmission of sermons, and the interaction between preacher and audience.
Each chapter is accompanied by a summary bibliography of the most important primary sources and secondary literature.