Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Thomas L. Brauch, Review of Studia Patristica. Volume LI

Studia Patristica. Volume LI. Including papers presented at the Conference ‘The Image of the Perfect Christian in Patristic Thought’ at the Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv, Ukraine, under Taras Khomynch, Oleksandra Vakula and Oleh Kindiy in 2009. Edited by A. Brent, T. Khomych, O. Vakula and M. Vinzent. Leuven, Paris and Walpole, MA.: Peeters, 2011. I-XV, 216 pages.
This volume presents selected papers from an international conference held on September 11-12, 2009, at the Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv, Ukraine. The conference was jointly organized by the Departments of Theology of the Ukrainian Catholic University and the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, USA. The topic of the conference was patristic notions of Christian perfection. The presentations discussed all epochs of patristic thought and literature or explored the use of patristic ideas of perfection in modern ecumenical dialogue and church social teachings. Contributors came from the USA, Europe, the Ukraine, and Russia.
            Fourteen papers from this conference appear in this volume. They concern Christian texts and authors from the early Christian through the late Byzantine eras. The presentation is divided chronologically into five sections: the first two centuries (the Didache and the Martyrdom of Polycarp), the third century (Clement of Alexandria and Origen), the fourth century (Gregory of Nazianzus and the Syrian Fathers), the fifth century (Augustine, Leo the Great, and Pseudo-Macarius), and the sixth century and Byzantium (Maximus the Confessor, Theodore the Studite, Gregory Barhebraeus, and Theophanes of Nicaea). Each essay features an abstract, a discussion, and a summary, is documented with footnotes, and varies in length from seven to nineteen pages. This aim of this review is to provide a summary or an idea of the contents of each contribution.
Many patristic authors discussed in these essays see Christian perfection as a process.
In her study (pp. 45-59), Oleksandra Vakula argues that Origen of Alexandria considers Christian perfection to be the return of the individual to God through Christ and the scriptures. Self-knowledge of the logos is the beginning of this process which is continuous and never-ending. The only ‘perfect Christian’ is a ‘disciple of Christ’ who has grown spiritually more than other Christians and who can teach Christ to them. Dariusz Zagórski in his contribution (pp. 63-75) shows that Gregory of Nazianzus carefully outlines in his writings a process for Christian perfection that is based on his own attempt to balance the active and the contemplative lives. This process is divided into three stages: praxis negativa, or the renunciation of sin and false belief about God; praxis positiva, or the practice of virtue; and contemplation of God, which brings union with Him. Although few Christians attain full perfection, Gregory believes that pastoral direction, the sacraments, and charity advance a Christian through the stages of perfection.
            Patristic Syrian commentators also consider Christian perfection to be a process. Sebastian P. Brock in his essay (pp. 77-94) discusses two Syriac authors who describe a process toward Christian perfection: the creator of the late fourth century Book of Steps and the early fifth century author John of Apamea. The first writer provides a bipartite and the second a tripartite system of Christian perfection; both are based on New Testament notions of spirituality. In her contribution (pp. 149-70), Mariya Horyacha presents the method of Pseudo-Macarius which begins with baptism and continues through various degrees by asceticism and by the grace of God. For this Syrian author, Christian perfection involves the creation of a new Adam and ultimately full union with Christ.
            Other Christian authors discussed see Christian perfection as mystical union with God. Herman Teule’s essay (pp. 195-203) argues that Gregory Barhebraeus considers Christian perfection to be based on intimate knowledge of and union with God rather than ascetic preparation. Dimitry Makarov in his study (pp. 205-16) demonstrates that Theophanes of Nicaea believes in a three stage process of union with God: practice, which consists of prayer, the Eucharist, and the exercise of virtue that prepare humans for union with the divine; synergy, which involves a transcendent union with God through divine grace; and interpenetration, which is the everlasting experience of God’s glory. All humans have access to practice and synergy, but the only human to achieve interpenetration in this life is the Theotokos.
            Many contributors to this edited collection discuss an aspect of Christian perfection. In his study (pp. 95-111), Boudewijn Dehandschutter outlines fourth and fifth century Syrian writers’ views on the expulsion of lust from the Christian on his or her way to perfection. For Aphrahat, Ephrem Syrus, and the author of the Book of Degrees, lust should be overcome by a moderate asceticism and by the restoration of the purity that Adam enjoyed before his sin. In her essay (pp. 115-32), Marcela Andoková sets forth the view of Augustine of Hippo as presented in his sermones ad populem that Christian perfection involves toleration of sinners within the Christian community until the Day of Judgment. Krzysztof Tyburowski presents in his paper (pp. 133-47) the importance that Leo the Great gives in his sermons to fasting and almsgiving in attaining Christian perfection. George C. Berthold in his communication (pp. 173-9) explains the role of the Lord’s Prayer in the thought of Maximus the Confessor on Christian perfection. For Maximus, this prayer helps Christians overcome temptation and establish the proper relationship to the Father which ultimately admits humans to the mystery of deification. 
            The author of the first paper in the collection (pp. 3-13), Taras Khomych, finds two aspects of Christian perfection in the Didache. The first, found in Did. 1.4 and 6.2, concerns ethical admonitions, while the second, appearing in Did. 10.5 and 16.2, relates to the holiness of the eschatological community of the faithful. Khlomych contends that this second meaning of perfection should be understood in the sense of John 17:23 that the perfected Christian community represents Restored Israel. Since both aspects of perfection are based on ethical personal behavior and proper relations between community members, the two views of perfection are compatible.
Some of the included essays develop subtle aspects of Christian perfection. Jan M. Kozlowski argues in his contribution (pp. 15-22) that the author of the Martyrdom of Polycarp presents Polycarp as the ideal Christian gymnosophist who, like contemporary Indian gymnosophists, overcame a painful death by fire. This is a variation of the ideal of the martyr as the perfect Christian. For Kozlowski, this presentation is a device to win the text’s pagan readers to Christianity. Oleh Kindiy’s essay (pp. 25-43) examines the views of Clement of Alexandria on Christian service. Through a semantic study, Kindiy establishes two categories of service in Clement’s writings: menial, or regular physical service based on ethical attainment, and theological, which involves biblical vocations such as preaching, the three regular divisions of the church’s ministry between the deacon, priest, and bishop, and a soteriological understanding of Christ’s ministry. For Kindiy, service is an aspect of Christian perfection (p. 25). Thomas Cattoi’s paper (pp. 181-94) outlines Theodore the Studite’s theology of icon veneration. This concerns the understanding of the nature of Christ and the Incarnation upon which the perfection of human nature is based.
These papers are worthy additions to patristic studies. But some stand out as having special interest. Taras Khomych’s description of the eschatological aspect of Christian perfection in the Didache is an important argument for the existence and importance of this aspect of the text that often is not recognized. Oleh Kindiy’s discussion of Clement of Alexandria’s views of service is an original contribution to understanding early Christian notions of service; the essay’s footnote references to Clement and other early Christian topics also make this essay valuable. Sebastian Brock’s paper continues his decades-long research of Syriac literature and culture. The second half of Brock’s contribution discusses imagery found in Syriac sources touching on Christian perfection. A virtue of Boudewijn Dehandschutter’s discussion is its overview of earlier Christian views of lust and the passions with appropriate documentation before the essay’s discussion of Syrian authors’ views. Mariya Horyacha’s essay on Pseudo-Macarius is a well-structured presentation of the identity of the writer (a Syrian ascetic who wrote in Greek c. 375 A.D.) and his views of anthropology, Christian perfection and its attainment, and false notions of Christian perfection. The essay’s footnotes provide excellent bibliography on Pseudo-Macarius and topics associated with him. A particular interest of Herman Teule’s study of Barhebraeus is the author’s argument that the Syrian scholar borrowed from Islamic sources for his notions of mysticism (pp. 196, 202). Thomas Cattoi’s essay on Theodore the Studite and Dimitry Makarov’s essay on Theophanes of Nicaea are good introductions to Middle and Late Byzantine theology. 
Thomas Brauch, Mount Pleasant, MI

Friday, 14 December 2012

PhD studentship “The Fourfold Gospel and its Rivals”

The AHRC-funded project on “The Fourfold Gospel and its Rivals” has a
PhD studentship attached that will provide three years worth of home
fees (or equivalent) and living expenses in 2013-16. The double focus
of the project is on early Christian gospels (canonical and
noncanonical) and on gospel reception in the patristic era, which
should cater for applicants wishing to work primarily in the New
Testament field or in patristics – although some overlap would be
likely. I’d be most grateful if colleagues would draw this opening to
the attention of current or recent students who may be interested in
pursuing a PhD in this area.

The following suggestions illustrate the kind of PhD topic that would
fit the terms of the project, but many others are equally possible:

(1) The Protevangelium of James in its relationship to Matthew and
Luke, and its later historical and theological significance.
(2) Patristic views on gospel origins, from Papias to Augustine.
(3) The relationship between selected “gnostic” gospels (e.g. Mary,
Judas, Philip, etc.) and the canonical ones.
(4) The construction and purpose of either Marcion’s Luke or Tatian’s
(5) Revelatory discourse in John 14-16 and selected “gnostic” gospels.
(6) The role of writing in the transmission of the early Jesus
tradition: how far back does it go?
(7) Tradition, reception, and the “historical Jesus”.
(8) Factors involved in the construction of the four-gospel
(9) The hermeneutical significance of the four gospel collection.
(10) Public responses to publication of newly discovered gospel
literature, c.1890-2012.

Applicants should have a good first degree in theology/religious
studies, a completed or a current MA, and experience in the study of
the Greek New Testament. Applications will be submitted in the normal
way (for which see the Durham Department of Theology and Religion
website), specifying the AHRC project studentship. A detailed research
proposal will not be essential, although it may be an advantage.
Preliminary enquiries may be addressed to Prof Francis Watson
( The closing date for applications for this
position will be Monday, 25 February 2013, and the successful
applicant will be notified in early March.

Saturday, 10 November 2012






Budapest, 7-10 March 2013


Central European University, Budapest, Hungary


An International Conference organized by the

  Department of Medieval Studies, Central European University, Budapest

in cooperation with the University of Pécs and the Hungarian Patristic Society


After a successful conference that focused on the city of Rome in September 2012 (“Pagans and Christians in Late Antique Rome”), we invite papers for a second conference devoted to examining pagan-Christian interactions across the Roman Empire.   This conference seeks to consider new evidence and new approaches to the material and textual remains that bear on the value of these categories in the Roman Empire between the fourth and the sixth centuries.  Did these labels – pagans and Christians - matter in the daily lives of late Romans?  Or are they only relevant in moments of conflict or for historians? To what degree does geography make a difference in assessing the nature of pagan-Christian relations?  And, how does the presence of other religious groups – Jews and heretics, Manichees and schismatics – affect our understanding of pagan-Christian interactions  in different times and places across the empire?


To facilitate a wide-ranging, interdisciplinary conversation, we encourage scholars working in any discipline – history, archaeology, art history, religious studies, classical studies - to submit abstracts for papers that address the issue of pagan-Christian relation across the empire. The organizers are particularly interested in papers that focus on new material evidence, new interpretations of texts or new interpretive paradigms with which to approach relations between pagans and Christians in the fourth - sixth centuries of the Roman Empire. The proceedings of the conference will be published.

Participants whose papers are accepted for presentation will be offered accommodation in Budapest and a field trip along the Danube limes to Pécs, with a visit to the late fourth-century Roman cemetery. We cannot, however, underwrite travel expenses.


Please send proposals of 400 words for 20-minute papers

in English

by 25 November 2012


Marianne Sághy                  Rita Lizzi Testa                   Michele Salzman   

CEU Budapest                                   Università di Perugia       University of California Riverside          


Friday, 9 November 2012

The Eighth Birmingham Colloquium on the Textual Criticism of the New Testament will be held in Birmingham from 4-6 March 2013

The Eighth Birmingham Colloquium on the Textual Criticism of the New Testament will be held in Birmingham from 4-6 March 2013

The general theme is "The Tradition of the New Testament: Treasures New and Old".

Proposals are invited for papers of around 20 minutes. (It may also be possible to accommodate longer presentations.) Suggestions for workshops, presenting work in progress, are also welcome. Titles and short abstracts should be sent to by the end of December 2012 (all submissions will be acknowledged).

A provisional programme and booking form will be made available in early 2013.

David Parker and Hugh Houghton
Institute for Textual Scholarship and Electronic Editing,
School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion
University of Birmingham

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Researcher in Ancient History of Religion

The Max Weber        Center at the University of Erfurt invites applications for the        position of a

Researcher in            Ancient History of Religion 
65 % (26            h/week)

within the          research project „Lived Ancient Religion“ (directed by Prof.          Dr. Jörg Rüpke). The position is to be filled from 1st December 2012          onwards. The initial contract is for two years. The salary is          according to TV-L E 13 (starting from brutto 24855,56 € p.a.).

„Lived            Ancient Religion“ takes a              completely new perspective on the religious history of              Mediterranean antiquity, starting from the individual and              “lived” religion instead of civic religion. “Lived              religion” suggests a set of experiences, of practices              addressed to, and conceptions of the divine, which are              appropriated, expressed, and shared by individuals in              diverse social spaces, from the primary space of the              family to the shared space of public institutions and              trans-local literary communication. The member of the team              we are looking for has to work on the formation of              literary and expert discourse about religion and ritual              (e.g. in the field of divination) and individual              appropriations of such discourses in the Imperial period              and thus to contribute to the analysis of the interaction              of individuals with the agents of traditions and providers              of religious services in the Mediterranean world. The              group's methodological approach is defined through the              notions of religious experience, embodiment, and “culture              in interaction”. For          further information see          The project is financed by the European Research Council.

As a member of the          team, the researcher is obliged to also share into the          research tasks of the team, e.g. in preparing workshops,          conferences, and publications. 
The ideal candidate needs to
 have an excellent MA or comparable degree in              History of Religion, Classical Philology or Ancient              History

 should aim at a doctoral degree based on her or              his research project

 have a very good knowledge of English

 have excellent knowledge of the relevant ancient              language(s)

 have substantial experience in analysing literary              texts

 fulfil the general admissions rules of § 84 Abs.              4 Thüringer Hochschulgesetz.

Any admission to          the doctoral program of the Max Weber Center presupposes the          participation in interdisciplinary colloquia.

For further          information please contact

The University of          Erfurt is an equal opportunity employer and encourage in          particular applications by women. Ceteris paribus seriously          handicapped people will have preference. 

Please send your application with CV, copies of your          final school and university degrees, a copy of your MA thesis,          and an outline of the research project you would like to          pursue puntil 14 October 2012 to

 University of Erfurt • Max Weber Centre • PO Box 900 221 • D-99105 Erfurt • Germany or to

As the University cannot refund any costs incurred by          applying, your applications will not be resent. Please use          photocopies or pdf files.

Tuesday, 24 July 2012


Applications are invited to participate in this workshop, to be held in Oxford, at

the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies at Yarnton Manor, on

January 7-8, 2013.

Please submit your application in English, with a short CV and an abstract (not

more than 500 words) of a research paper to be discussed in the workshop, to

the Registrar of the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies

(, by Friday 14 September 2012.

Bursaries to cover travel expenses and accommodation will be available for

selected participants. Please indicate in your application whether you would

like to be considered for a bursary, including an estimate of your travel


The workshop will be devoted to discussion of the research papers, which will

be circulated to all participants in advance.

Applicants will be informed of the result of their applications on or before

Friday 21 September 2012.

The workshop will be the first in a series, as part of a project on the reception of

Josephus in Jewish culture from the 18
th century to the present. This project, which is

funded by the AHRC, focuses on the ways in which Jews since the middle of the

eighteenth century have built on earlier uses of Josephus’ writings for their own

purposes, examining the reasons for fluctuations of interest over time and in different

places and seeking to understand how such preferences were influenced by

contemporary issues and how they in turn affected them. The project also looks at

the impact of non-Jewish scholarship on Jewish interpretations of Josephus, and the

extent to which Jewish attitudes to Josephus were affected by responses to the


historian as a controversial participant in complex political events and as a moral


In this first workshop, on the reception of Josephus by Jews and Christians before

1750, we hope that the participants will help us to identify the issues in Josephus’

writings which played a key role in the reception of his work in ancient and medieval

times, investigating which themes are specific to specific periods or types of literature

(including translations and adaptations into other languages, notably Latin and

Hebrew) and which remained relevant in later centuries; the reasons why early

modern scholars (both Jewish and Christian) were attracted to Josephus’ writings,

and how their approach differed from earlier reception of Josephus; and the role

played by Josephus in the popular imagination of Jews and Christians throughout

this period.

Topics suitable for paper proposals for the workshop include the Testimonium

Flavianum, patristic uses of Josephus, rabbinic references to Josephus in late

antiquity, the manuscript tradition, Josippon, Azariah de’Rossi, uses of Josephus by

Christian humanists in the early modern period, chronography, early printed editions,

illustrations and artistic representations, and vernacular translations.

Further workshops will address the Jewish reception of Josephus in the 18
th and 19th

centuries in Western Europe (June 17-18, 2013); the Jewish reception of Josephus

in the 19
th and early 20th centuries in Eastern Europe (January 6-7, 2014); and the

Jewish reception of Josephus in the 20
th and 21st centuries (June 16-17, 2014).

We plan to publish a selection of the studies discussed at the four workshops in a

volume, to share the results of the project and to help to define the agenda for future


To apply, and for further information about participation in the workshop and

about bursaries, please contact the Registrar of the Oxford Centre for Hebrew

and Jewish Studies ( before 14 September 2012.

Martin Goodman, Tessa Rajak, Andrea Schatz

Sunday, 22 July 2012


Rome, 20-21 September 2012

Palazzo Falconieri, Accademia d’Ungheria, Via Giulia 1, Roma

Thursday 20 September 2012

9 am – 9: 30 am

Welcome Addresses and Introductory Presentation

Antal Molnár, director of the Hungarian Academy in Rome

Marianne Sághy, Michele R. Salzman, Rita Lizzi Testa conference organizers

9: 30 am – 11 am The Topography of Paganism and Christianity in Late Antique Rome

Laura Acampora (Pontificio Istituto di Archeologia Cristiana, Roma) Pagan Temples and Christian Buildings in Rome between the Fourth and Fifth Century: an Archeological and Topographical Approach

Michael Mulryan - Luke Lavan (University of Kent) The Fate of Temples of Ostia in an Italian Context

Claire Sotinel (Université Paris-Est Créteil Val de Marne) The Urban Prefect and  Christian Building Projects in Rome

11 am -11:30 am Coffee Break

11:30 am – 1 pm Law, Cult, Cultural Memory   

María Victoria Escribano Paño (University of Zaragoza), Pagans and Christians in Fourth-Century Rome: Interpreting the Evidence of Codex Theodosianus XVI

Douglas Boin (Georgetown University) Imperial Cult in Christian Rome:

Towards a More Nuanced Understanding of Fourth and Fifth Century Society

Gitte Lønstrup Dal Santo (Accademia di Danimarca, Roma) Storytelling and Cultural Memory in the Making: Celebrating Pagan and Christian Founders of Rome

1 pm- 3 pm Lunch

3 pm- 4:30 pm Pagan Cults

Kristine Iara (LMU München) Connecting the Remains: Cult Places in Late Antique Rome

Silviu Anghel (EDRIS, Göttingen) Shifting the Ortodoxy: the Changing Face of Pagan Cults in Late Antique Rome

Jonas Bjornebie (Accademia di Norvegia, Roma) Re-Interpreting the Cult of Mithras in Late Antique Rome

4:30 pm – 5 pm Coffee Break

5 pm- 6:30 pm Christianity and the City

Danielle Slootjes (Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen) Christianity and its Influence on Crowd Behavior in Late Antique Rome

Giulia Marconi (Università di Perugia) Pagans, Christians and Young People: Spaces of Education in Fourth-Fifth Century Rome

David Natal (University of Manchester) Symmachus and the Anician Entourage: Famine and Religious Controversy in late Fourth-Century Rome

7 pm Keynote lecture

Michele R. Salzman (University of California Riverside) Pagans and Christians in Constantine's Rome

8 pm Cocktail

Friday 21 September

9 am-10:30 am Conflict and Cohabitation

Robert Chenault (Villamette University) Beyond Pagans and Christians: Politics and Infra-Christian Conflict in the Controversy over the Altar of Victory of Rome

Maijastina Kahlos (Helsinki University)  Artis heu magicis: The Label of Magic in the Fourth-century Conflicts and Disputes

Gaetano Colantuono (Università di Bari) Propter copiam puellarum: Interreligious Marriages among Christians and Pagans in the Late Antiquity

10:30-11 am Coffee Break

11 am – 12:30 pm Looking at the Gods: Reading Divine Images

Alessandra Bravi (Università di Perugia) Divine Images between Decoration and Cult in Fourth-Century Rome

Caroline Michel d’Annoville (University of Grenoble 2) Rome and Imagery in Late Antiquity: Perception and Uses of Statues in the Fourth and Fifth Centuries

Levente Nagy (Pécs University) Hercules the Christian

12:30- 3 pm Lunch

3 pm – 4:30 pm Poetry and Propaganda

Marianne Sághy (CEU Budapest), Christianity as Romanitas:Bishop Damasus’ Reforms   

Dennis E. Trout (University of Missouri) Making Difference: the Carmina contra Paganos and the Invention of Late Roman Paganism

Neil McLynn (Oxford University), Poetry and Pagans in Late Antique Rome: the Case of the Senator ’Converted from the Christian religion to Servitude to the Idols'

4:30 pm – 5 pm Coffee Break

5 pm – 6:30 pm Family Pietas and Cult of the Saints

Francesca Diosono (Università di Perugia) Professiones gentiliciae. The collegia of Rome between paganism and Christianity

Nicola Denzey (Brown University, USA) Reinterpreting ’Pagans’ and ’Christians’  from Rome's Late Antique Mortuary Evidence

Hartwin Brandt (Bamberg University) Paulinus of Nola and the City of Rome

7 pm  

Concluding remarks by Rita Lizzi Testa

8 pm Dinner

Thursday, 5 July 2012

St. Luke’s Scholarships - 4th British Patristic Conference

 The 4th British Patristics Conference

University of Exeter  5 – 7 September 2012

is pleased to announce it will offer ten

St. Luke’s Scholarships

Each scholarship will provide £200 towards conference and travel costs.  Scholarships are available for graduate students and for post-doctoral scholars with no current academic post or source of income.

Please apply to:   Dr Morwenna Ludlow by   Friday 10th August 2012.

Please provide the following details:-

1. Full contact details (email and postal address).

2. Your current institution, degree course and academic supervisor (if applicable).

3. The title of your dissertation/thesis, or a short (one sentence) summary of your current research.

4. Your current funding (for example: are you in receipt of a scholarship? does it cover fees alone, or fees and living expenses? does it provide you with a lump sum to set against fees?)

5. Do you have additional sources of funding or additional demands on your income (e.g. do you have dependents)?

6. Are you able to apply for funding from your current institution to cover the cost of this conference?  Have you applied?  Have you been successful?  If so, how much have you been awarded?

You do not necessarily have to provide figures; however, the clearer the information is, the more easily the committee will be able to make their decision.  Decisions will be made on the basis of our judgment of financial circumstances and how much the applicant will benefit from attending the conference, not on academic merit, so please do not provide an academic cv.  We will not contact your supervisor unless we need to clarify your current academic affiliation and/or funding from your current institution.  All information will be treated absolutely confidentially by the conference committee.  It is a condition of the scholarships that the recipients’ names are sent to the St Luke’s College foundation, but the names will not otherwise be publicised.

Applications which have not arrived by noon on Friday 10th August 2012 will not be considered.

The committee will make their decisions as soon as they can.

The committee is very grateful to the St. Luke’s College Foundation for their generosity in making this award and for providing other funding for the conference.  We are particularly pleased that they were prepared to include the 4th British Patristics Conference in their funding round for the 2012-13 academic year.

Full details about the conference, including programme and booking details can be found at: .                                                                          

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Promotions- und Postdoktoranden-Stipendien / Bursaries

Das Max-Weber-Kolleg für kultur- und sozialwissenschaftliche Studien der Universität Erfurt schreibt zum 1. Oktober 2012 aus:

Promotions- und Postdoktoranden-Stipendien

für Vorhaben aus den Bereichen Soziologie, Religionswissenschaft, Geschichte, Philosophie, Theologie, Rechtswissenschaft oder Wirtschaftswissenschaft im Rahmen des „Weberschen Forschungsprogramms“ des Max-Weber-Kollegs für bis zu drei bzw. zwei Jahre.

Gute Deutsch- und Englischkenntnisse sind für alle Kollegiaten verpflichtend sowie die Bereitschaft zur Teilnahme am interdisziplinären Programm des Kollegs. Nähere Informationen zur inhaltlichen Ausrichtung des Forschungsprogramms sowie zu Voraussetzungen und Bewerbungsmodalitäten finden sich unter

Für Doktoranden mit einem Interesse an antiker Religion verweisen wir auf die auf der Website zu findenden Ausschreibung des Projekts „Lived Ancient Religion“.

Die Universität strebt eine Erhöhung des Anteils von Frauen im wissenschaftlichen Nachwuchs an und fordert qualifizierte Frauen auf, sich zu bewerben.

Bewerbungen einschl. Lebenslauf, Zeugnissen, einem Gutachten eines Hochschullehrers und einem Exemplar der Magister- bzw. Diplomarbeit (für Postdoktoranden: ein Exemplar der Dissertation) sowie einem Exposé des Forschungsvorhabens (ca. 5 Seiten), in dem die Fragestellung, der Forschungsstand, die methodische Herangehensweise und die leitenden Hypothesen dargestellt werden und ein Arbeits- und Zeitplan enthalten ist, sind schriftlich und in digitaler Form (Datei mit max. 2 MB an bis zum 9. Juli 2012 zu richten an: Dekanat, Max-Weber-Kolleg der Universität Erfurt, Am Hügel 1, 99084 Erfurt. Für die Rücksendung der Unterlagen bitten wir, einen adressierten und ausreichend frankierten Briefumschlag beizulegen. Für Rückfragen steht Ihnen Frau Ilona Bode ( zur Verfügung.

Tuesday, 12 June 2012


With sadness I have learned only today that Fr. Cyril Crawford, OSB has passed away on 15 May 2012. He attended the last Oxford Patristic Conference 2011 and read a fascinating and very learned paper on
‘Receptive Potency’ (dektikē dynamis) in Ambigua ad Iohannem 20
of St. Maximus the Confessor
 Having recently edited his paper from which I have learned again so much, we will commemorate him with his contribution being published in the forthcoming Proceedings in Studia Patristica. R.I.P.
His obituary and more details can be found on his monastery's website

Lost Homilies on the Psalms by Origen discovered

Lorenzo Perrone announces wonderful news for the Patristic Community:

Dear Colleagues and Friends,

on the 21st of May, a day after the first severe earthquake since centuries began to shake my region, I was asked an expertise on a Greek manuscript of Munich.
Prof. Anna Meschini Pontani, from Padua University, informed me that Dr. Marina Molin Pradel, who is preparing the new catalogue of the Greek manuscripts of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, wished to submit to my attention a discovery she had made on Holy Thursday. While examining the content of Codex Monacensis Graecus 314 (11th-12th century), an anonymous collection of 29 homilies on the Psalms, she discovered that the manuscript included the Greek text of four of the five homilies of Origen on Psalm 36  (H36Ps I-IV) translated by Rufinus. Moreover, she noticed that the list of the other homilies corresponded to a large extent to that presented by Jerome in his Letter 33 to Paula, the most important group being the series of nine homilies on Psalm 77.

I worked hastily in the following weeks to go through the considerable manuscript (371 folios) and check its content. More and more, albeit still provisionally, I have come to the conclusion that we have to do with a lot of lost homilies of Origen. My conviction is supported, among other things, by the exegetical treatment presented by the homilies, the doctrinal elements they preserve, the stylistic features which are typical of the great Alexandrian. In addition, a few excerpts of these homilies were already known to us under his name in some catenae fragments edited in PG 17 and the «Analecta Sacra» of Pitra, especially with regard to Psalm 77.
Only a thorough examination of the texts transmitted by the Codex Monacensis Graecus 314 will permit to extend with reasonable certainty the attribution to Origen of all the remaining homilies or of part of them, besides the Homilies I-IV on Psalm 36.

I have already begun with the transcription of the manuscript and hope to complete it before the end of the summer, in order to make the texts accessible to scholars. Together with my colleagues Chiara Barilli, Antonio Cacciari and Emanuela Prinzivalli I plan to prepare without delay a critical edition of the homilies.
Marina Molin Pradel will present her discovery and offer some samples of the manuscript in the next issue of «Adamantius», due to be published before the autumn.

A series of initiatives are planned to announce the discovery of the new texts to the scholarly world and to promote their knowledge and study.
On monday the 11th of June the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek will release a public statement about the discovery.
A seminar will take place at Padua University the 25th of June and a day-conference is planned for the 5th of December in Munich at the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek.
Together with the colleagues of the Italian Research Group on Origen and the Alexandrian Tradition we plan a conference in Bologna next February, exactly one year after the one devoted to the prospect of a new edition of Origen’s commentaries on the Psalms, in cooperation with the colleagues of the Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaft.
At the time we were submerged by the snow no less than by the uncomfortable impression of the heavy task still waiting the editors of the catenae fragments. Now, in the middle of renewed quakes, we have been given an unexpected gift that we would like to share with all those who love Origen.

Lorenzo Perrone

«Alma Mater Studiorum» – Università di Bologna
Dipartimento di Filologia Classica e Italianistica
Via Zamboni 32
I-40126 Bologna

5 per mille all'Università di Bologna - C.F.: 80007010376

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Translating Latin and Greek Christian authors - a Grammar School competition in Sicily (Italy), April 2013

As a teacher of Latin and Greek in a grammar school of Sicily (Italy), and I would like to inform you about a project my school has been working on for a long time. In fact, every year we organize a competition regarding translations from Greek or Latin christian works, which involves lots of students from different parts of Italy.

The interesting aspect of this event lies in the opportunity for the best students to test their abilities, but at the same time to confront each other in a friendly context. Indeed, during their stay in Acireale, where our school is located, they can also spend some time together visiting the place and tasting the typical sicilian food.

We would be very glad if you wanted to let your students participate in the next competition which will take place in april 2013, which will certainly give the event an international flavour.

In particular, next year the competition will be focused on a translation of a latin text drawn on one of St. Augustin’s works.

For any details you need, do not hesitate to contact me via e-mail (

Looking forward to your kind reply,
Yours sincerely
Prof. Rocco Schembra
Liceo Classico Statale "Gulli e Pennisi"
95024 Acireale

'Origen and Origenism in the History of Western Thought' - Origeniana Undecima Program 26 - 31 August 2013

26 - 31 August 2013

The theme of the conference is 'Origen and Origenism in the History of Western Thought'. This theme includes a number of sub-themes, such as the reception of Origen and Origenism in philosophy and theology, from the earliest reception in the third and fourth centuries through the Middle Ages to the most recent reception in the 20th century; the philological work on Origen's texts; the use or rejection of Origen's exegetical principles etc.

Call for lectures, papers and workshops

There are open calls for lectures (40 minutes presentation + 20 minutes discussion), short papers (20 minutes presentation + 10 minutes discussion) and workshops (60 minutes which can be doubled).
  • Call for lectures: The deadline for the call for lectures is October 1, 2012. The topic of the lectures should be related to the conference theme. Answers to the call for lectures should include an e-mail attachment with a short abstract of the suggested lecture (½ page). We encourage especially younger scholars to give lectures at the conference.
  • Call for short papers: The deadline for the call for papers is December 1, 2012. It is preferable if the themes of the suggested paper are connected to the theme of the conference, but it is possible to present papers on other topics also, provided the topic is connected to Origen’s work and its reception. Answers to the call for short papers should include an e-mail attachment with a short abstract of the paper (10 lines)
  • Call for themes for workshops: The deadline for the call for workshop themes is December 1, 2012. It is preferable if the themes of the workshops are connected to the theme of the conference, but it is possible to arrange workshops on other topics also, provided the topic is connected to Origen’s work and its reception. Answers to the call for workshop themes should include an e-mail attachment with a short description of the theme and form of the workshop (½ page).

Conference Organiser:

Anders-Christian Jacobsen

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

International Conference - Theological Oracles in Late Antiquity/Theologische Orakel in der Spätantike

International Conference on

Theological Oracles in Late Antiquity /

Internationale Tagung

Theologische Orakel in der Spätantike

    Grüneburgplatz 1, CAS 1.801

18. - 21. Juli 2012

Vorläufiges Programm

Mittwoch, 18. Juli 2012

19 Uhr 30        Gemeinsames Abendessen der Referenten

Donnerstag, 19. Juli 2012

  9 Uhr 00        Eröffnung
  9 Uhr 15        John Turner, Lincoln:
The Chaldean Oracles: A Pretext for the Sethian Apocalypse Allogenes?

10 Uhr 00        Luciana G. Soares Santoprete, Paris:

Oracles Chaldaïques et Gnosticisme : une nouvelle approche numérique

10 Uhr 45        Pause

11 Uhr 15        Pierfranco Beatrice, Padova:                        
So spoke the gods. Oracles and Philosophy
in the Anonymous Commentary on the Parmenides

12 Uhr 00        Adrien Lecerf/Lucia Saudelli, Paris
Sources et principes : universalité et particularité
dans les Oracles chaldaïques selon les néoplatoniciens


12 Uhr  45       Pause


14 Uhr 30        Christoph Helmig, Berlin:

Stellung und Funktion der Chaldäischen Orakel

in Proklos' Platonkommentierung


15 Uhr 15        Michela Zago, Padova:

Gli oracoli porfiriani della "Philosophia": struttura, funzione, significato

16 Uhr 00        Pause

16 Uhr 30        Chiara O. Tommasi Moreschini, Pisa:
La Teosofia di Tubinga
17 Uhr 15        Lucia Maddalena Tissi, Firenze:
Gli oracoli della Teosofia di Tubinga come poesia esametrica tardoantica

Freitag, 20. Juli 2012

  9 Uhr 15       Ilinca Tanaseanu-Doebler, Göttingen:

Zwischen Fiktion und religiöser Praxis: Rituale in theologischen Orakeln

10 Uhr 00        Helmut Seng, Frankfurt:

Theologische Orakel zwischen Metaphysik und Ritual

10 Uhr 45        Pause

11 Uhr 15        Michel Tardieu, Paris

Les oracles théologiques de la Seconde Sophistique.

Une réflexion typologique.

12 Uhr 00        Aude Busine, Bruxelles:                                 

Les Sept Sages comme prophètes du christianisme

12 Uhr 45        Pause

14 Uhr 30        Mariangela Monaca, Messina:

Gli Oracula Sibyllina: la profezia sibillina e l'unicità di Dio

15 Uhr 15        Claudio Moreschini, Pisa:

Gli oracoli teologici nel De Trinitate dello Pseudo Didimo

                        Samstag, 21. Juli 2012

  9 Uhr 15        Rodolfo Buzón, Buenos Aires:

Heidnische und christliche Orakel bei Theodoret:

Einfluss von Plutarch und die Logia Iesou

10 Uhr 00        Jochen Walter, Mainz:

Zum polemischen Potential theologischer Orakel im interreligiösen Konflikt


10 Uhr 45        Pause


11 Uhr 15        Wolfgang Wischmeyer, Wien:

Augustinus und oracula

12 Uhr 00        Giulia Sfameni Gasparro, Messina:

Gli ‘oracoli teologici‘ fra pagani e cristiani: temi e problemi a confronto

12 Uhr 45        Schlussworte

Kontakt:    helmut.seng (at)