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Quid facit cum Horatio Hieronymus? Christian latin poetry and scriptural poetics

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Chapter Summary

The chief products of Jerome's literary Alexandrianism, his scriptural translations and commentaries, are formally and essentially works of prose. A review of current opinions provides the basis for a renewed approach to Jerome's scriptural-exegetical 'poetics'. According to Reinhart Herzog, the first Latin writer to theorize Christian writerly activity was Lactantius. His advocacy of classical rhetoric as a medium for biblical teaching excluded the Bible from the 'literary' domain and, at the same time, opened the way for a new Christian 'literature' that would meet the aesthetic requirements of cultivated Roman readers. This chapter summarizes the opening of Letter 53, and further talks about vulgar Latin poetry and the poet of the Vulgate.

Keywords: Bible; Christian Latin Poetry; Christian literature; Horace; Jerome; Reinhart Herzog; scriptural poetics



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