Shapers of Early Christianity

52 Biographies, A.D. 100–400

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About the Book

In 100 A.D., Christianity was practiced only by a small, oppressed minority. Three hundred years later, Christianity had become one of the world’s major religions. But this change did not happen easily. The imperial government of Rome, intellectual tradition and battles within the church itself influenced the transformation. Every viewpoint had its champions and opponents and whether they were “defenders of the faith” or those whom history later labeled heretics, they were part of the early evolution of Christianity. This volume discusses more than 50 figures who played a role in the transformation from primitive Christianity to early Medieval Catholicism. As it examines the lives and influence of imperial rulers such as Constantine, proponents of the intellectual tradition including Gregory of Neocaesaria and Julius Africanus, and early Bible translators such as Tatian, Origen and Jerome, the work provides a fascinating look at Christian history.

About the Author(s)

Roland H. Worth, Jr., is the author of many books. He lives in Richmond, Virginia.

Bibliographic Details

Roland H. Worth, Jr.
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 201
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012 [2007]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6942-0
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8228-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface      1

Introduction      3

1. SECOND CENTURY CHRISTIANITY

The “Apostolic Fathers” Context      7

Clement of Rome      8

Second Clement      10

Ignatius of Antioch      12

Justin Martyr      15

Hermas      18

Papias      22

Polycarp      23

Melito      27

Bishop Victor of Rome      30

Irenaeus, Bishop of Lyons      32

Perpetua and Felicity      34

Clement of Alexandria      37

2. FAITH AND IMPERIAL GOVERNMENT

Constantine the Great      40

Flavius Julius Constantius      47

Julian the Apostate      49

Thundering Legion      53

Pammachius      54

3. THE CHRISTIAN INTELLECTUAL TRADITION

Julius Africanus      58

Gregory of Neocaesarea      60

Eusebius of Caesarea      62

Faltonia Proba      66

Firmicus Maternus      67

Aurelius Clemens Prudentius      69

Ephraem      71

Epiphanius of Salamis      72

4. BIBLICAL TRANSLATORS AND TEXTUAL SCHOLARS

Tatian      75

Origen      79

Ulfilas      84

Jerome      87

5. DEFENDERS OF ORTHODOXY

Cyprian of Carthage      92

Athanasius      97

Gregory of Nazianzus      103

Basil the Great      105

Ambrose      107

John Chrysostom      111

Hilary of Poitiers      113

Augustine of Hippo      114

6. PROPONENTS OF “HERETICAL” ALTERNATIVES

Marcion      121

Tertullian      125

Valentinus      128

Felicissimus      131

Arius      133

Montanus, Maximilla, and Priscilla      138

Donatus      143

Jovinianus      145

Bonosus      147

7. ALTERNATIVE ROUTES TO HOLINESS

Antony      149

Pachomius      154

Marcellina      158

Paula      160

Chapter Notes      165

Bibliography      181

Index      193

Book Reviews & Awards

“Roland H. Worth, Jr. has provided a succinct overview of the first full three centuries of Christianity…[Worth’s] approach is refreshing and commendable…his biographical format sets his book apart from the more conventional, and often dry, narrative histories…should appeal to many…this book should find a readership in academic and public libraries”—Against the Grain