The Routledge Handbook of Early Christian Philosophy  book cover
1st Edition

The Routledge Handbook of Early Christian Philosophy

Edited By

Mark Edwards

ISBN 9781138685048
Published November 30, 2020 by Routledge
670 Pages

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Book Description

This volume offers the most comprehensive survey available of the philosophical background to the works of early Christian writers and the development of early Christian doctrine.

It examines how the same philosophical questions were approached by Christian and pagan thinkers; the philosophical element in Christian doctrines; the interaction of particular philosophies with Christian thought; and the constructive use of existing philosophies by all Christian thinkers of late antiquity. While most studies of ancient Christian writers and the development of early Christian doctrine make some reference to the philosophic background, this is often of an anecdotal character, and does not enable the reader to determine whether the likenesses are deep or superficial, or how pervasively one particular philosopher may have influenced Christian thought. This volume is designed to provide not only a body of facts more compendious than can be found elsewhere, but the contextual information which will enable readers to judge or clarify the statements that they encounter in works of more limited scope.

With contributions by an international group of experts in both philosophy and Christian thought, this is an invaluable resource for scholars of early Christianity, Late Antiquity and ancient philosophy alike.

Table of Contents

    1. Introduction. Mark Edwards

    Section 1: Themes

    2. Sources of Divine Knowledge

    Peter Van Nuffelen

    3. Nature

    Johannes Zachhuber

    4. Time and Eternity

    Ilaria Ramelli.

    5. Creation in Early Christianity

    George Karamanolis

    6. Providence and Evil

    Dylan Burns

    7. Logic and Religious Language

    Anna Zhyrkova

    8. Ethics

    Teresa Morgan

    9. The Mystical Element

    Andrew Louth

    Section 2: Doctrines

    10. The Trinity

    Giulio Maspero

    11. The Philosophy of the Incarnation

    Dirk Krausmüller

    12. The Philosophy of the Resurrection in Early Christianity

    Sophie Cartwright

    13. Biblical Hermeneutics

    Scot Douglass

    Section 3. Schools

    14. The Presocratics

    David Litwa

    15. Socrates and Plato

    Joseph O’Leary

    16. Aristotle and his School

    Mark Edwards

    17. Stoics and Christians

    Mark Edwards

    18. Epicureans

    Mark Edwards

    19. Cynics and Christians

    Mark Reasoner

    20. Sceptics

    Mark Edwards

    21. Philo of Alexandria

    Mark Edwards

    22. Orpheus, Mithras, Hermes

    Fabienne Jourdan and Mark Edwards

    23. Middle Platonists and Pythagoreans

    Carl Sean O’Brien

    24. Pagan and Christian Philosophy: Plotinus, Iamblichus and Christian Philosophical Practice

    Kevin Corrigan

    25. The Philosophy of the Later Neoplatonists: An Interaction with Christian Thought

    Sarah Klitenic Wear

    Section 4. Individuals

    26. Justin and Athenagoras

    Runar Thorsteinsson

    27. Tatian, Theophilus and Irenaeus of Lyon

    Josef Lössl

    28. Clement of Alexandria

    Matyáš Havrda

    29. Tertullian and Cyprian

    Allen Brent

    30. "Hippolytus" and Epiphanius of Salamis

    Sébastien Morlet

    31. Origen and Philosophy

    Panayiotis Tzamalikos

    32. The Sethians and the Gnostics of Plotinus

    Tuomas Rasimus

    33. Arnobius and Lactantius

    Kristina Meinking

    34. Philosophy in Eusebius and Marcellus

    Aaron Johnson

    35. Arius and Athanasius

    Winrich Löhr

    36. Marius Victorinus

    Chiara Tommasi

    37. Philosophy in Hilary of Poitiers and Ambrose of Milan

    Isabella Image

    38. Eunomius of Cyzicus and Gregory of Nyssa

    Andrew Radde-Gallwitz

    39. Didymus the Blind and Evagrius of Pontus

    Mark Edwards

    40. Synesius of Cyrene: Philosophy and Poetry "Sharing the same Temple"

    Irini Fotini-Viltanioti

    41. Augustine of Hippo

    John Kenney

    42. Cyril of Alexandria

    Christoph Riedweg

    42. Theodoret of Cyrrhus

    Mark Edwards

    43. Boethius: The First Christian Philosopher in the Latin West?

    Thomas Jurgasch

    44. John Philoponus

    Orna Harari

    45. Dionysius the Areopagite

    Mark Edwards

    46. Christian Philosophynin Severus of Antioch and Leontius of Byzantium

    Benjamin Gleede

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    Mark Edwards has been Tutor in Theology at Christ Church, Oxford, and University Lecturer/Associate Professor in Patristics in the Faculty of Theology and Religion in the University of Oxford since 1993. Since 2014, he has held the title of Professor of Early Christian Studies. His books include Origen against Plato (2002), Catholicity and Heresy in the Early Church (2009), Image, Word and God in the Early Christian Centuries (2012), Religions of the Constantinian Empire (2015), and Aristotle and Early Christian Thought (2019).


    "For a modern intellectual culture that distrusts trust and prefers analysis to exegesis, the very notion of early Christian philosophy is apt to be an uncomfortable stretch. But Mark Edwards and company do not retreat to the safe, if vacuous, conjunction: early Christianity and philosophy, as if one were a prosthesis for the other. This volume’s concise forays into a still surprisingly unfamiliar intellectual landscape bring ancient philosophy into the heart of early Christian exegesis. The introduction by Edwards brilliantly articulates the stakes of following along." - James Wetzel, Villanova University, USA

    "This well-conceived collection of studies makes a powerful case that ancient Christians took philosophy seriously and historians of ancient philosophy need to take Christians seriously." – George Boys-Stones, University of Toronto, Canada

    "The Routledge Handbook of Early Christian Philosophy is a much welcome tool for students and researchers alike. Thanks to the excellent work of an international scholarly team of the highest calibre, the volume rightly moves away from the simplistic dualism of 'reason versus faith' that still hinders a sophisticated understanding of Early Christianity’s complex ties to pagan philosophy, and it showcases, in a truly comprehensive fashion, their substantial areas of intersection in the first centuries of our era. The contributors demonstrate that the Christians’ engagement with the tools, tropes, and themes of pagan philosophy was not just considerably more constructive and dynamic than is often recognized, but that this very engagement was also a necessary enterprise for Christians." - Alberto Rigolio, University of Durham, UK

    "This handbook is an important contribution to scholarship on early Christian thought. But that is only half its contribution. It is in equal measure a formidable argument for situating what is usually called ‘early Christian theology’ within the larger domain of ‘ancient philosophy’, most broadly conceived... Edwards is to be commended for bringing together such a substantial collection (in both size and importance) and for producing an edited handbook that sustains a particular (and much needed) thesis about Christianity and ancient philosophy across the whole of the volume." - The Classical Review