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date: 01 December 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Archaeological materials and research have long informed the study of the Pauline letters. These materials have typically been used to provide a ‘background’ to Paul’s writings, to solve interpretive problems, or to ‘prove’ the veracity of a detail in Paul’s biography, as recorded in canonical Pauline literary sources. This chapter looks at the history of how archaeological research has been used to interpret the Pauline letters and the methodological issues that such interdisciplinary conversations touch upon. It pays particular attention to the perils and the promise of bringing archaeological research into conversation with Pauline studies. It then turns to explore case studies of interdisciplinary research by scholars of early Christianity on four cities connected to the Pauline letters: Thessaloniki, Philippi, Ephesos, and Corinth. These projects point to promising avenues forward for how Pauline studies might engage archaeological work. (N.B. This article is a distilled, adapted, and updated version of Concannon 2013.)

Keywords: Paul, archaeology, Thessaloniki, Philippi, Ephesos, Corinth

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