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The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Patristics

Ken Parry (Editor)
ISBN: 978-1-118-43870-1
552 pages
June 2015, Wiley-Blackwell
The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Patristics (1118438701) cover image


This comprehensive volume brings together a team of distinguished scholars to create a wide-ranging introduction to patristic authors and their contributions to not only theology and spirituality, but to philosophy, ecclesiology, linguistics, hagiography, liturgics, homiletics, iconology, and other fields.
  • Challenges accepted definitions of patristics and the patristic period – in particular questioning the Western framework in which the field has traditionally been constructed
  • Includes the work of authors who wrote in languages other than Latin and Greek, including those within the Coptic, Armenian, Syriac, and Arabic Christian traditions
  • Examines the reception history of prominent as well as lesser-known figures, debating the role of each, and exploring why many have undergone periods of revived interest
  • Offers synthetic accounts of a number of topics central to patristic studies, including scripture, scholasticism, and the Reformation
  • Demonstrates the continuing role of these writings in enriching and inspiring our understanding of Christianity
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Table of Contents

Preface x

Notes on Contributors xi

Part I Introduction 1

1 The Nature and Scope of Patristics 3
Ken Parry

Part II Collecting the Fathers 13

2 Byzantine Florilegia 15
Alexander Alexakis

3 Modern Patrologies 51
Angelo Di Berardino

Part III Studies in Reception History I: Individual Fathers 69

4 Irenaeus of Lyons 71
Denis Minns

5 Clement of Alexandria 84
Piotr Ashwin?]Siejkowski

6 Origen of Alexandria 98
Mark Edwards

7 Athanasius of Alexandria 111
David M. Gwynn

8 Ephrem of Nisibis 126
Andrew Palmer

9 John Chrysostom 141
Wendy Mayer

10 Augustine of Hippo 155
Kazuhiko Demura

11 Cyril of Alexandria 170
Hans van Loon

12 Shenoute of Atripe 184
Janet Timbie

13 Nestorius of Constantinople 197
George Bevan

14 Dionysius the Areopagite 211
István Perczel

15 Severus of Antioch 226
Youhanna Nessim Youssef

16 Gregory the Great 238
Bronwen Neil

17 Maximos the Confessor 250
Andrew Louth

18 John of Damascus 264
Vassilis Adrahtas

19 Gregory of Narek 278
Abraham Terian

20 Gregory Palamas 293
Marcus Plested

Part IV Studies in Reception History II: Collective Fathers 307

21 The Cappadocian Fathers 309
H. Ashley Hall

22 The Desert Fathers and Mothers 326
John Chryssavgis

23 The Iconophile Fathers 338
Vladimir Baranov

Part V Studies in the Fathers 353

24 Scripture and the Fathers 355
Paul Blowers

25 Hagiography of the Greek Fathers 370
Stephanos Efthymiadis

26 Liturgies and the Fathers 385
Hugh Wybrew

27 Fathers and the Church Councils 400
Richard Price

28 The Fathers and Scholasticism 414
James R. Ginther

29 The Fathers and the Reformation 428
Irena Backus

30 The Fathers in Arabic 442
Alexander Treiger

31 The Greek of the Fathers 456
Klaas Bentein

32 The Latin of the Fathers 471
Carolinne White

33 Reimagining Patristics: Critical Theory as a Lens 487
Kim Haines?]Eitzen

Index 497

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Author Information

Ken Parry is Senior Research Fellow in the Department of Ancient History at Macquarie University, Sydney. He researches and publishes in the fields of late antiquity, Byzantine studies, and Eastern Christianity. He is the founding editor of the series Texts and Studies in Eastern Christianity, and editor of The Blackwell Dictionary of Eastern Christianity (1999), The Blackwell Companion to Eastern Christianity (2007), and co-editor of Byzantium, Its Neighbours and Its Cultures (2014).

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"Undergraduates should have access to at least one of these two resources, and the present compendium is excellent for research." - (CHOICE, 2016) 

This is a welcome addition to the field as it is the first time that a such a volume has sought to give equal weight to both the Eastern and Western Church traditions. It offers a comprehensive and balanced picture by including material  that has long remained obscure because it is primarily known from Arabic, Armenian, Coptic, Ethiopic, Georgian and Syriac sources, rather than privileging the works of more widely known authors utilising Greek and Latin. At a time when many Eastern Christian traditions are increasingly endangered it becomes even more important to bring knowledge of these writings to the forefront of contemporary scholarship.
Emma Loosley, University of Exeter

Ken Parry has led a first class team of experts in producing this excellent Wiley Blackwell Companion to Patristics. It advances on the several fine Patrologies already existing to focus critical attention on the issue of how the patristic mindset was received over the ages. Required reading for all serious theologians and historians.
John A McGuckin, Nielsen Professor of Byzantine Church History

I applaud Ken Parry and his expert collaborators for providing ground-breaking new insights into the lives and writings of a wide representation of Fathers, including those who lived beyond the borders of the Roman and Byzantine Empires. Never have I been so persuasively reminded of the importance and enduring significance of the Fathers for contemporary Christianity. This Companion is an indispensable resource for all who truly want to understand and utilize the rich legacy which the Fathers have left us.
William Tabbernee, Past President, North American Patristics Society 

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