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date: 14 December 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter traces the development of early Christian exegetical hymnody, and analyses this hymnody in terms of its relationship to Scripture. The chapter falls into two parts: part one argues that by the fourth century, in response to associations of hymnody with heresy, the scripturally allusive hymnic material of earliest Christianity gave way to a type of hymnody which interacted with Scripture in explicit and concrete ways. Part two traces the Syriac and Greek hymnic traditions that arose in the fourth and fifth centuries, and analyses their exegesis according to two primary categories—performance and rewriting. The chapter concludes by suggesting avenues for future research in the area of comparative Christian and Jewish exegetical hymnody.

Keywords: hymnody, poetry, Syriac literature, Ephrem, Romanos, Narsai, Byzantine literature, exegesis

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