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date: 22 September 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The chapter examines three exemplars of Syrian Christianity in the second and early third centuries: Tatian (ca. 120–180), Bar Daysan (154–222), and Julius Africanus (ca. 160–240). To varying degrees, all of them are as much creations of Hellenic high culture as they are representatives of the Church. In developing this argument, the chapter treats these figures in the context of themes familiar to students of the Second Sophistic: (1) attitudes toward Greek paideia; (2) relics and the creation of civic identities; (3) Hellenic court culture; and (4) the encounter of Greek-speaking eastern elites with Rome.

Keywords: Syrian Christianity, Tatian, Julius Africanus, Bar Daysan, Hellenism, Second Sophistic, paideia

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