1st Edition

Carpocrates, Marcellina, and Epiphanes Three Early Christian Teachers of Alexandria and Rome

By M. David Litwa Copyright 2022
    256 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    256 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Carpocrates, Marcellina, and Epiphanes is the definitive study of the early Christian theologian Carpocrates, his son Epiphanes, and the leader of the Carpocratian movement in Rome, Marcellina.

    It contains the first full-length study of and commentary on the fragments of Epiphanes, the earliest reports on Carpocrates and Marcellina, as well as the Epistle to Theodore (containing the so-called Secret Gospel of Mark). Readers also encounter an up-to-date history of research on the Carpocratian movement, and three full profiles of all we can know from the earliest Carpocratian leaders. Written in an accessible style, but based on the most careful historical and linguistic research, this volume is a landmark, helping to redefine the field of early Christian history.

    Carpocrates, Marcellina, and Epiphanes is a welcome addition to the libraries of all students of early Christian theology, researchers investigating early Christian diversity, and scholars of Gnostic, Nag Hammadi and related materials.

    Introduction, 1. Text, translation, and commentary on Epiphanes, On Justice, 2. Commentary on the earliest Carpocrates reports, 3. Carpocratianism in the Epistle to Theodore, Conclusion: Contextualizing Carpocrates, Epiphanes, and Marcellina: An Attempt at a Profile.


    M. David Litwa is Research Fellow in Biblical and Early Christian Studies at the Institute for Religion and Critical Inquiry, Australian Catholic University in Melbourne. Litwa is the author of many books, most recently Posthuman Transformation in Ancient Mediterranean Thought, The Evil Creator: Origins of an Early Christian Idea, and Found Christianities: Remaking the World of the Second Century.

    "'Carpocrates, Marcellina, and Epiphanes: three early Christian teachers of Alexandria and Rome' impressively documents the diversity of Christian schools in the 2nd century… Reconstructing the characters and their theology and thinking from heresiological treatises written many years after the events is a difficult matter. I would at least argue that various interpretations are possible – Litwa has presented a quite convincing one." - Bryn Mawr Classical Review