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: 29 January 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The homily (homilia) is a discourse often delivered within a liturgical context in church, either extempore or in the form of a prepared text, by bishops or priests. Nine types of homily can be identified: exegetical homilies, catechetical and mystagogic homilies, occasional homilies, socio-ethical homilies, polemical homilies, festal homilies, panegyrics and enkomia, monastic catecheses, and theological homilies. Homilies have many different functions that typically influence their structure, level of style, and use of rhetoric, and in Byzantium were preached in many different liturgical contexts, ranging from eucharistic celebrations to morning and evening offices, and vigils. Aside from apostolic authority, other prerequisites for preaching in the church include piety and the ability to deliver a high-style rhetorical oration. This article describes homilies in the Byzantine Empire, the origins of the Christian homily, the development of the homiletic tradition, how Byzantine homilies are transmitted, and the importance of homiletics.

Keywords: homily, Byzantium, panegyrics, homilectics, rhetoric, monastic catecheses, festal homilies, exegetical homilies

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.