Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 18 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

While it is difficult to determine with certainty the habits of daily prayer among the majority of early Christians, we can with care determine some structures of time, gesture, and communal boundaries by examining the written records. The chronological and gestural structures of daily prayer show more stability than the theological interpretations of prayer, which Jeremy Penner calls ‘strategies of legitimation’. This chapter will show how strategies of legitimation are ex post facto explanations of pre-established cultural patterns. Christian authorities drew upon biblical precedents and types to impart theological significance to prayer and to standardize private practices of time and ritual gesture. Distinctive Christian identity was fortified through restrictions such as limiting use of the Lord’s Prayer and the kiss of peace to the baptized. More attention is given to popular practice than to ascetical/monastic practice.

Keywords: communal boundaries, daily prayer, gesture, hours, initiation, kiss of peace, Lord’, s prayer, sign of the cross

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.