Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online

Get access Subject: Biblical Studies and Early Christianity
General Editors: David G. HUNTER, University of Kentucky, United States, Paul J.J. van GEEST, Tilburg University, Netherlands, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands.

The Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity focuses on the history of early Christian texts, authors, ideas. Its content is intended to bridge the gap between the fields of New Testament studies and patristics, covering the whole period of early Christianity up to 600 CE. The BEEC aims to provide a critical review of the methods used in Early Christian Studies and to update the historiography.

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(2,556 words)

Author(s): Boddens Hosang, F.J. Elizabeth
Between 397 and 694 CE, 17 councils were held in the city of Toledo, which was eventually considered to be the most important diocese of the Visigothic kingdom of Spain and royal residence. The councils are exemplary for the close cooperation between the Visigothic state and church. There was no clear demarcation of jurisdiction. Close collaboration and intertwining of ecclesiastical and political powers was normal at the time. The king declared adherence to the Catholic faith and needed the sup…
Date: 2020-04-14


(1,486 words)

Author(s): Bar-Asher Siegal, Michal
Tosefta is likely derived from the Aramaic for “addition” (root Y.S.F). The term Tosefta appears in rabbinic literature (Rabbi) as a description of an earlier halachic source, alongside other corpora (e.g. b. Meg. 28a), probably referring to a literary genre which included additions to other sources. The term later became affixed to a specific corpus of early tannaitic sources (1st to early 3rd cents. CE), found in mediaeval manuscripts. It is preserved in only two complete manuscripts (in addition to a few smaller fragments):…
Date: 2020-04-14


(1,964 words)

Author(s): Fox, Yaniv
Toulouse (Lat. Tolosa, Tholosa) is situated on the eastern bank of the Garonne River. Evidence of human occupation in the region, dating from the 2nd century BCE at the earliest, has been found close to the ancient city. Toulouse was brought under Roman domination in the late 2nd century BCE and, from the 3rd century CE on, was a civitas capital in the west of the province of Narbonensis prima and an important point on the route between the provincial capital Bordeaux and the Mediterranean.Called oppidum latinum by Pliny the Elder, by the early 2nd century CE, Toulouse was most likely a colonia
Date: 2020-04-14


(3,135 words)

Author(s): Fox, Yaniv
Tours (Lat.: Turoni, civitas Turonum) was a civitas capital in central Gaul, south of the Loire and north of the River Cher, one of its tributaries. Habitation at Tours is attested already in the 1st century CE, when the site was home to a Gaulish settlement, one of several dwellings that are known from the area. From the early 1st century CE onward, an unwalled city by the name of Caesarodunum supplanted the earlier site, where a range of classical buildings including an amphitheater, baths, and temples was later built. The Roman town’s location gave it access to…
Date: 2020-04-14


(3,192 words)

Author(s): Hengstmengel, Joost W.
Even though the ancient world was primarily agrarian, local and interregional trade was widely practiced. In the first centuries of the Common Era, Christians mainly belonged to the middle and lower classes, and included farmers, artisans, and slaves. In due course, (wealthier) merchants and tradesmen must also have joined the church. Tertullian responded to the accusation that those who bear the name of Christians are “unfruitful in business” ( infructuosi in negotiis) by saying that Christians could be found among a wide range of occupations. They practiced agric…
Date: 2020-04-14


(1,629 words)

Author(s): Bass, Alden
Traditor was a term used by African rigorists to identify those who “handed over” scripture during persecution; later, Donatists used the term for all Caecilianists.The nominal traditor – from tradere, “to hand over, betray” – was rare in classical Latin. Tacitus ( Hist. 4.24) and Annaeus Florus ( Epit. 1.17) use it to mean treason against the state.Among early Christians, it was used almost exclusively as an antonomasia for Judas (Mark 14:44; Tert. An. 11.5; Praescr. 3.11; Cyp. Pat. 6).The Crime of BetrayalDuring Diocletian’s persecution (303–305 CE), clergy were ordered to …
Date: 2020-04-14


(5,527 words)

Author(s): Kitzler, Petr
Traducianism is a theory that accounts for a possible origin of the human soul ( anima), maintaining that the soul, germinally contained in bodily sperm, is transmitted through sexual intercourse from the parents to their offspring. Specifically, in a Christian context, it is connected with a view that this transmission is traceable back to the first man, Adam, so that every human soul, possibly including the soul of Eve, is ultimately a sprout or offshoot ( tradux) of the original soul Adam received from God. Sometimes, the distinction is made between the traducianism …
Date: 2020-04-14

Tripartite Tractate

(2,274 words)

Author(s): Thomassen, Einar
The Tripartite Tractate, or Tractatus Tripartitus, is the name given by modern scholars to the fifth tractate of NHC 1 (pp. 51–138), a name suggested by the division of the text into three parts by means of decorative lines at pages 104 and 108 in the Coptic manuscript (Kasser et al., 1973; 1975). It is a long theological treatise whose form and contents correspond to the Valentinian treatises reported by Irenaeus of Lyon and Hippolytus of Rome, though it also displays several unusual features.The Father, the Son, and the PleromaThe first part begins with an account of the transcend…
Date: 2020-04-14