Authorised Lives in Early Christian Biography: Between Eusebius and Augustine by Michael WilliamsAuthorised Lives in Early Christian Biography: Between Eusebius and Augustine by Michael Williams

Authorised Lives in Early Christian Biography: Between Eusebius and Augustine

byMichael Williams

Paperback | July 14, 2011

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What was distinctive about Christian biography in late antiquity? In this 2008 book, Dr Williams examines a range of biographies of prominent Christians written in the fourth and fifth centuries, and suggests that they share a purpose and function which sets them apart from their non-Christian equivalents. This was an age in which the lives of saints first emerged as a literary phenomenon, and a broad perspective on this developing genre is complemented by close readings of more problematic works such as Eusebius of Caesarea's Life of Constantine and the Confessions of Augustine of Hippo. In including such idiosyncratic examples, the aim is to provide a definition of Christian biography which extends beyond mere hagiography, and which expresses an understanding of the world and the place of individuals within it. It was a world in which lives might be authored by Christians, but could be authorised only by God.
Title:Authorised Lives in Early Christian Biography: Between Eusebius and AugustineFormat:PaperbackDimensions:276 pages, 8.5 × 5.51 × 0.59 inPublished:July 14, 2011Publisher:Cambridge University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0521349524

ISBN - 13:9780521349529

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Table of Contents

Introduction: biography and typology; 1. Constantine: the authorised life; 2. Gregory and Basil: a double life; 3. Antony and Jerome: life on the edge; 4. Augustine: the life of the mind; 5. The end of sacred history; Conclusion: authorised lives.

Editorial Reviews

Review of the hardback: 'Williams is a sure guide to these central texts, and he is surely right to focus on them.' Journal of Ecclesiastical History