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The Reception Of Early Christian Texts And Traditions In Late Antiquity Apocryphal Literature

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Chapter Summary

One of the most significant paradigmatic shifts in the study of Christian apocryphal literature has been the recent rediscovery and reappraisal of late antique texts written in the period from the fourth to the sixth century CE, including the Questions of Bartholomew, the Acts of Philip, the Gospel of Nicodemus, the ?orthodox? Apocalypse of Paul, the so-called Gospel of the Savior (also known as the ?Unknown Berlin Gospel?), and the Book of the Cock. The Apocalypse of Paul and the Book of the Cock offer perhaps the best examples of the art of writing. Creative exegesis of the New Testament and reuse of earlier writings and traditions thus became the point of departure for the production of new apocryphal texts?a habit that went far beyond the narrow limits of late antiquity to become the main characteristic of Christian apocryphal hermeneutics.

Keywords: Apocalypse of Paul; Book of the Cock; Christian apocryphal literature; late antiquity; New Testament



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