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The Apostolic Fathers, Volume I: I Clement. II Clement. Ignatius. Polycarp. Didache (Loeb Classical Library) [Hardcover]

By Bart D. Ehrman (Editor) & Bart D. Ehrman (Translator)
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Item description for The Apostolic Fathers, Volume I: I Clement. II Clement. Ignatius. Polycarp. Didache (Loeb Classical Library) by Bart D. Ehrman...

This new Loeb edition of essential texts from the Apostolic Fathers reflects the latest emendations in light of modern idiom and current scholarship. Some of these writings were accorded almost Scriptural authority in the early Church, such as 1 and 2 Clement, the first of which, is a letter addressed to the church at Corinth from the church at Rome. Also included in this volume are the letters of Ignatius, bishop of Antioch, which were written while Ignatius was literally en route to his martyrdom in Rome. Additionally, the volume contains the letter of Polycarp to the Philippians, the famous account of Polycarp's martyrdom, and the Didache, which functioned as an early church manual for religious, worship, and ministry instruction. All of the texts appear in their original Greek and contain a page by page English translation.

Publishers Description

The writings of the Apostolic Fathers give a rich and diverse picture of Christian life and thought in the period immediately after New Testament times. Some of them were accorded almost Scriptural authority in the early Church. This new Loeb edition of these essential texts reflects current idiom and the latest scholarship.

Here are the Letters of Ignatius, bishop of Antioch, among the most famous documents of early Christianity; these letters, addressing core theological questions, were written to a half dozen different congregations while Ignatius was en route to Rome as a prisoner, condemned to die in the wild-beast arena. Also in this collection is a letter to the Philippian church by Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna and friend of Ignatius, as well as an account of Polycarp's martyrdom. There are several kinds of texts in the Apostolic Fathers collection, representing different religious outlooks. The manual called the "Didache" sets forth precepts for religious instruction, worship, and ministry. The Epistle of Barnabas searches the Old Testament, the Jewish Bible, for testimony in support of Christianity and against Judaism. Probably the most widely read in the early Christian centuries was "The Shepherd" of Hermas, a book of revelations that develops a doctrine of repentance.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Loeb Classical Library
Pages   464
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 6.64" Width: 4.52" Height: 0.93"
Weight:   0.7 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Dec 15, 2003
Publisher   Loeb Classical Library
Series  Loeb Classical Library  
ISBN  0674996070  
ISBN13  9780674996076  

Availability  0 units.

More About Bart D. Ehrman

Bart D. Ehrman Bart D. Ehrman is the James A. Gray Distinguished Professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He came to UNC in 1988, after four years of teaching at Rutgers University. At UNC he has served as both the Director of Graduate Studies and the Chair of the Department of Religious Studies.

A graduate of Wheaton College (Illinois), Professor Ehrman received both his Masters of Divinity and Ph.D. from Princeton Theological Seminary, where his 1985 doctoral dissertation was awarded magna cum laude. Since then he has published extensively in the fields of New Testament and Early Christianity, having written or edited twenty-four books, numerous scholarly articles, and dozens of book reviews.

Among his most recent books are a Greek-English edition of the Apostolic Fathers for the Loeb Classical Library (Harvard University Press), an assessment of the newly discovered Gospel of Judas (Oxford University Press), and four New York Times Bestsellers: Jesus Interrupted (an account of scholarly views of the New Testament), God’s Problem (an assessment of the biblical views of suffering), Misquoting Jesus (an overview of the changes found in the surviving copies of the New Testament and of the scribes who produced them) and Forged (discusses why some books in the New Testament are deliberate forgeries). His books have been translated into twenty-seven languages.

Among his fields of scholarly expertise are the historical Jesus, the early Christian apocrypha, the apostolic fathers, and the manuscript tradition of the New Testament.

Professor Ehrman has served as President of the Southeast Region of the Society of Biblical literature, chair of the New Testament textual criticism section of the Society, book review editor of the Journal of Biblical Literature, and editor of the monograph series The New Testament in the Greek Fathers (Scholars Press). He currently serves as co-editor of the series New Testament Tools, Studies, and Documents (E. J. Brill), co-editor-in-chief for the journal Vigiliae Christianae, and on several other editorial boards for journals and monographs in the field.

Professor Ehrman lectures extensively throughout the country. Winner of numerous university awards and grants, he is the recipient of the 2009 J. W. Pope “Spirit of Inquiry” Teaching Award, the 1993 UNC Undergraduate Student Teaching Award, the 1994 Phillip and Ruth Hettleman Prize for Artistic and Scholarly Achievement, and the Bowman and Gordon Gray Award for excellence in teaching.

Professor Ehrman has two children, a daughter, Kelly, and a son, Derek. He is married to Sarah Beckwith (Ph.D., King's College London), Marcello Lotti Professor of English at Duke University. He lives in Durham, North Carolina.

Bart D. Ehrman currently resides in Chapel Hill, in the state of North Carolina. Bart D. Ehrman has an academic affiliation as follows - Department of Religious Studies, The University of North Carolina, Cha.

Bart D. Ehrman has published or released items in the following series...
  1. New Testament in the Greek Fathers
  2. Studies & Documents (Paperback)

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > History
2Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Classics
3Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Classics
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7Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Church History
8Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Criticism & Interpretation > Criticism & Interpretation
10Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Religious Studies > History

Reviews - What do customers think about The Apostolic Fathers, Volume I: I Clement. II Clement. Ignatius. Polycarp. Didache (Loeb Classical Library)?

A contemporary rendition of a set of Christian classics  Aug 12, 2006
How did the New Testament come to be formed? What books were left out? What did some of those books say? These are some of the questions on the minds of many curious people today. Too often, local congregations ignore these questions, to the detriment of the church. But these questions about Christian origins are very, very real in the hearts and minds of many people today.

Now, from one of the most significant writers about Christian origins today comes a completely new edition of the Apostolic Fathers -- the letters of Clement, the letters of Ignatius, the letter of Polycarp, the Martyrdom of Polycarp, the Didache, the Epistle of Barnabas, the fragments of Papias and Quadratus, the Epistle to Diognetus, and the Shepherd of Hermas. These were early Christian writings that are generally attributed to church leaders of the late first and early second centuries CE (and, in most cases, are probably authentic). Clement, for example, was an early leader in Rome (circa 96 CE); Ignatius wrote a number of letters to churches in various cities (circa 110 CE), sort of following in the footsteps of Paul.

This two-volume set replaces the classic edition of the Apostolic Fathers in the Loeb Classical Library edited by Kirsopp Lake nearly a century ago. As with all books in the Loeb Classical Library, the original (in this case, Greek) text is presented on the left-hand pages, and an English translation is presented on the right. The text is extremely readable, and the introductions to each of the books are clear, succinct, and to the point.

Some of these books almost made it into the New Testament! The epistles of Clement are found in some early New Testament manuscripts and were widely read in the early churches. The Shepherd of Hermas may have been the most widely read book by early Christians. Several of these books were probably written before some of books in the New Testament. In an age in which people are asking questions about the origins of Christianity and the authority of the scriptures, it is crucial that we have at least a basic understanding of our early history. In my mind, a decent familiarity with the Apostolic Fathers -- as well as the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Nag Hammadi library -- is essential.

This two-volume set is extremely valuable. Ehrman's critical textual work, his contemporary translations, and his up-to-date introductions are a welcome addition to current literature. The trained scholar will delight in having a new critical edition of the Greek text . . . but an ordinary lay reader could also profit tremendously from reading some of these early Christian writings that were not deemed to be sufficiently close to the first generation of apostles to make the cut into the New Testament.
Greek text is unobjectionable, but the commentary is no longer based on Christian faith  Jul 23, 2006
The Apostolic Fathers, the collection of writings historically ascribed to the generation immediately after the apostles and the writing of the New Testament, have long been available in the Loeb Classical Library in an edition by Kirsopp Lake. A new 2003 edition by Bart Ehrman gives a contemporary translation and strikingly different commentary. This first volume contains the general introduction, the first and second writings of Clement, the letters of Ignatius, the epistle to the Philippians and the martyrdom of Polycarp, and the Didache.

The typesetting is quite different from the Lake edition. The Greek text is now set in ZephGreek, a typeface similar to, though not identical with, that of UBS's Greek New Testament. Those who thought the Greek text of the Lake edition too dark may find this easier on the eyes. However, I was rather unhappy to see that footnotes are now used in lieu of margin notes, which I feel interferes with the smooth flow of text.

Unfortunately, Bart Ehrman's commentary on these writings is very disappointing. Ehrman is one of those contemporary scholars who believes that Christianity was originally a diverse scene of competing and equally valid philosophies, until an orthodox form won out. He suggests that Marcion and other notorious heretics were unfairly condemned, and doesn't view the history of the Church as the maintenance and defence of a tradition handed down by Christ himself but rather mere accident. People who know Ehrman's notorious earlier work such as THE ORTHODOX CORRUPTION OF SCRIPTURE know exactly what to expect in his remarks on the provenance and context of these writings. Here's what he says about the collection: "These are 'Apostolic Fathers' bcause they were written and read by Christians who advocated views roughtly similar to those embraced by the Christians of later times who collected the twenty-seven books of the New Testament into a canon and developed the creedal statements that eventually came to be construed as orthodoxy"

If all you need is the English text, as an Orthodox Christian, I'd recommend the editions of these writings published by church presses. If you want the Greek, find a copy of the earlier Loeb version by Kirsopp Lake, which has a dependable commentary. Still, if all you can get is this, the Greek text is still better than nothing.

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