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In igne probati: Bijbelse stilering in de Latijnse acta martyrum & passiones van de late oudheid (4de-6de eeuw)

(2014)
Author
Promoter
(UGent) and (UGent)
Organization
Project
G062010N
Abstract
This dissertation presents an overall study of the Latin acts and passions of the martyrs from Late Antiquity (4th-6th c.). Its aim is to gain a better understanding of these texts as literary artefacts. The main interest has been their Biblical stylisation. A corpus of 113 martyrdom accounts that can be dated within the period of the 4th-6th centuries was analysed thoroughly, and all the Biblical echoes and references that could be detected were listed. In this dissertation I give a general overview of the Biblical episodes and figures that appear throughout the different passiones and I discuss the role they play within the individual narratives. That way I want to throw light on this group of texts, which have not received much scholarly interest so far, even though they enjoyed considerable popularity in Late Antiquity and afterwards. The Bible had a profound influence on the formation of the passions of the martyrs. On the one hand Biblical episodes and figures provide literary models for the characters in the passiones, for individual scenes or for the plot line in general. On the other hand the Bible acts as a frame of reference that renders the events in the martyrological narrative meaningful. At the same time the passio contributes to bring the Biblical message up to date and to shape a Christian identity. The Biblical stylisation of the narrative course is clearly visible in the adaptation of Biblical episodes. Often the ordeals of the Christian martyrs mirror events from the Biblical past. Sometimes the hagiographers make the correspondences explicit by means of Biblical exempla, but for the most part the audience of the passio has to discover the echoes himself. In that case the reader or listener must detect catch words or catch phrases that hint at a Biblical model. Another aspect of the Biblical stylisation of the passiones is to be found in the Biblical references that shape characters and their actions. The persecutors and their aggression towards Christians are in agreement with the depiction of the unfaithful in the Bible. The Christians, on the contrary, follow the example of the Biblical faithful and obey God and his commands. Remarkably, in this last case the relevant Biblical precepts are often quoted in the text, so as to explain why a certain behaviour is preferable. Finally, a range of quotations establish the understanding of the supernatural powers: God is the ruler of the cosmos and protects everyone who relies on him, whereas the devil and the forces of evil try to estrange mankind from their creator.
Keywords
hagiography, martyrdom, martyrs, Christianity, Late Antiquity, Biblical stylisation, stylisation biblique, Bijbelse stilering

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Citation

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Chicago
Taveirne, Maarten. 2014. “In Igne Probati: Bijbelse Stilering in De Latijnse Acta Martyrum & Passiones Van De Late Oudheid (4de-6de Eeuw)”. Gent: Universiteit Gent. Faculteit Letteren en Wijsbegeerte.
APA
Taveirne, M. (2014). In igne probati: Bijbelse stilering in de Latijnse acta martyrum & passiones van de late oudheid (4de-6de eeuw). Universiteit Gent. Faculteit Letteren en Wijsbegeerte, Gent.
Vancouver
1.
Taveirne M. In igne probati: Bijbelse stilering in de Latijnse acta martyrum & passiones van de late oudheid (4de-6de eeuw). [Gent]: Universiteit Gent. Faculteit Letteren en Wijsbegeerte; 2014.
MLA
Taveirne, Maarten. “In Igne Probati: Bijbelse Stilering in De Latijnse Acta Martyrum & Passiones Van De Late Oudheid (4de-6de Eeuw).” 2014 : n. pag. Print.
@phdthesis{5768912,
  abstract     = {This dissertation presents an overall study of the Latin acts and passions of the martyrs from Late Antiquity (4th-6th c.). Its aim is to gain a better understanding of these texts as literary artefacts. The main interest has been their Biblical stylisation. A corpus of 113 martyrdom accounts that can be dated within the period of the 4th-6th centuries was analysed thoroughly, and all the Biblical echoes and references that could be detected were listed. In this dissertation I give a general overview of the Biblical episodes and figures that appear throughout the different passiones and I discuss the role they play within the individual narratives. That way I want to throw light on this group of texts, which have not received much scholarly interest so far, even though they enjoyed considerable popularity in Late Antiquity and afterwards.
The Bible had a profound influence on the formation of the passions of the martyrs. On the one hand Biblical episodes and figures provide literary models for the characters in the passiones, for individual scenes or for the plot line in general. On the other hand the Bible acts as a frame of reference that renders the events in the martyrological narrative meaningful. At the same time the passio contributes to bring the Biblical message up to date and to shape a Christian identity.
The Biblical stylisation of the narrative course is clearly visible in the adaptation of Biblical episodes. Often the ordeals of the Christian martyrs mirror events from the Biblical past. Sometimes the hagiographers make the correspondences explicit by means of Biblical exempla, but for the most part the audience of the passio has to discover the echoes himself. In that case the reader or listener must detect catch words or catch phrases that hint at a Biblical model. Another aspect of the Biblical stylisation of the passiones is to be found in the Biblical references that shape characters and their actions. The persecutors and their aggression towards Christians are in agreement with the depiction of the unfaithful in the Bible. The Christians, on the contrary, follow the example of the Biblical faithful and obey God and his commands. Remarkably, in this last case the relevant Biblical precepts are often quoted in the text, so as to explain why a certain behaviour is preferable. Finally, a range of quotations establish the understanding of the supernatural powers: God is the ruler of the cosmos and protects everyone who relies on him, whereas the devil and the forces of evil try to estrange mankind from their creator.},
  author       = {Taveirne, Maarten},
  keyword      = {hagiography,martyrdom,martyrs,Christianity,Late Antiquity,Biblical stylisation,stylisation biblique,Bijbelse stilering},
  language     = {dut},
  pages        = {XV, 356},
  publisher    = {Universiteit Gent. Faculteit Letteren en Wijsbegeerte},
  school       = {Ghent University},
  title        = {In igne probati: Bijbelse stilering in de Latijnse acta martyrum \& passiones van de late oudheid (4de-6de eeuw)},
  year         = {2014},
}