This long-term Academy Project produces critical editions of select bible commentaries by late antique Christian authors from Alexandria and Antioch.
Alexandria and Antioch were two of the ancient world’s great cities, but they were also centres of scholarship in which, from the fourth century AD, the same canonical text – the Bible – was interpreted with two very different approaches. The ‘Alexandrian School’ was committed to allegorical exegesis, to the point of disregarding the literal sense altogether, while the ‘Antiochene School’ stressed the literal meaning of the text and was critical of allegoresis in general. Beginning in 2011, the project will edit Bible commentaries and other texts by key authors who can be assigned to one or other of these ‘schools’: Eusebius of Caesarea, Cyril of Alexandria, Hesychius of Jerusalem, Procopius of Gaza, Severian of Gabala and Theodoret of Cyrrhus. Their commentaries and sermons are important in the history of Christianity because of their powerful influence in the mediaeval and early modern periods, but they are also an intriguing branch of ancient literary exegesis, and, as such, are of great interest for literary and historial studies, philology and philosophy.
The editions of this new long-term Academy Project will appear in the historic publication series Griechische Christliche Schriftsteller (‘Greek Christian Writers’, GCS), and the series of monographs Texte und Untersuchungen zur Geschichte der altchristlichen Literatur (‘Texts and Studies in the History of Early Christian Literature’, TU) will also continue as a venue for investigations arising from the work on the editions and for studies of related interest.
This long-term Academy Project is part of the Research Centre for Primary Sources of the Ancient World at the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities.
The Academy research project “The Late Antique Biblical Exegesis of Alexandria and Antioch” is part of the Academies' Programme , a research funding programme co-financed by the German federal government and individual federal states. Coordinated by the Union of the German Academies of Sciences and Humanities , the Programme intends to retrieve and explore our cultural heritage, to make it accessible and highlight its relevance to the present, as well as to preserve it for the future.