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The First Christian Histories: Eusebius, Socrates, Sozomen, Theodoret, and Evagrius

By author: Glenn F. Chesnut
Product Code: P022
ISBN: 9780865542037
Product Format: Paperback
Availability:Not currently available.
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Price: $35.00

First published by Éditions Beauchesne (Paris) in 1977, this hard-to-find, classic study of early Christian historiography is now available in a new edition, significantly revised and enlarged. In this volume Glenn F. Chesnut sets out to explore the intellectual milieu of Eusebius and his successors in order to explain how they wrote a new kind of history. Like all other historians of the Graeco-Roman World, these Christian scholars were acutely conscious of the power of Fortune-“the way in which history was dominated by combinations of forces outside any single human being's prediction or control”-and the often tragic interplay of Fortune and human decisions. They also struggled with the complexity of Fate and the caprice of divine intervention in human affairs. Their world was the revitalized, superficially Christian, deeply pagan Roman Empire with its semidivine emperor. When they rejected Fate and Fortune for the freedom of the human will and when they overthrew divine kingships for a new ideal of Christian monarchy, these first Christian historians shaped the way history would be written for a thousand years and beyond. Their connected account became the primary source for “the truly formative years of Christianity.”
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