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The Fallen Trees: Arboreal Metaphors And Polemics With The Divine Body Traditions In The Apocalypse Of Abraham

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Chapter Summary

This chapter explores the possible anti-anthropomorphic tendencies of the first part of the Slavonic apocalypse. It investigates only one polemical portrayal - the account involving the wooden idol Bar-Eshath. The chapter continues to probe the polemical features of the Bar-Eshath account by focusing on the symbolic dimension of his story reflected in chapter six of the Slavonic apocalypse. There, the story of the "fall" of the wooden idol is poetically retold, this time in the mythological language reminiscent of depictions in the Book of Ezekiel and the Book of Daniel, two central biblical writings where the ideology of the divine body comes to its most emphatic, developed articulation. Although the Slavonic text does not elaborate on the nature of Bar-Eshath's "beauties", the passage from Ezekiel describes the Cherub as "the model of perfection" , "perfect in beauty", and decorated with precious stones.

Keywords: Apocalypse of Abraham; demoted Cherub; divine body traditions; Slavonic apocalypse; wooden idol Bar-Eshath



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