Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online

Get access Subject: Biblical Studies And Early Christianity
General Editors: David G. Hunter, Boston College, United States, Paul J.J. van Geest, Tilburg University, Netherlands, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands.

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 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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(2,356 words)

Author(s): Prinzivalli-Sapienza, Emanuela
Gaius was a Christian writer who lived in Rome at the end of the 2nd century CE. The only details about his life come from Eusebius of Caesarea, who betrays his own great esteem for Gaius. At first he characterizes him as ἐκκλησιαστικὸς ἀνήρ (Eus. Hist. eccl. 2.25.6), an expression that – in Eusebius’ terminology – is used to indicate one’s orthodoxy above all; later he calls him λογιώτατος ( Hist. eccl. 6.203, “very erudite”). Eusebius places him at Rome during Zephyrinus’ pontificate (199–217 CE) and says that Gaius wrote a Dialogue against Proclus, who was the head of the Phrygian …
Date: 2021-12-14


(3,056 words)

Author(s): Salazar-Ortiz, Natalia
Galatia is a highland area comprising the region crossed by the upper courses of the rivers Halys and Sangarius and extending from Paphlagonia to the Lake Tuz in the northern plateau of Central Anatolia, in current Turkey. In Hellenistic era, it was bounded on the north by the kingdom of Pontus, on the east by Cappadocia, Bithynia on the west, and by the kingdom of Pergamum on the south. The Galatian highlands are a monotonous country of bare mountains with small plains between them. Its average…
Date: 2021-12-14


(1,863 words)

Author(s): Ramelli, Ilaria L.E.
Claudius Galen (129–199/216 CE) was an exceptionally prolific Greek polymath, philosopher and physician, an expert in physiology, anatomy, and neurology, and the physician of the emperors Marcus Aurelius and Septimius Severus. He also was well-versed in Greek literature (Lacy, 1966; Rosen, 2013), and from the philosophical viewpoint concentrated on the soul and the soul-body relation issue (Hankinson, 1991; Tieleman, 1996; Dillon, forthcoming). He reports Marcus’ laudatory words about him as both a physician and a philosopher in Gal. Praen. 14.658 (ed. Kühn). The title of…
Date: 2021-12-14


(3,254 words)

Author(s): Sales-Carbonell, Jordina
The territory of Gallaecia was established as a Roman province during the late 3rd century CE and was located in the northwest of the Iberian Peninsula. It broadly corresponded with the current autonomous region of Galicia, and parts of Asturias, Leon, and Zamora (Spain), as well as a small part of northern Portugal. Its main river is the Miño, which crosses the region from north to south and flows into the Atlantic. On its western shore we find Cape Finisterre ( finis terrae), which the Romans considered the westernmost point of the known world.The Galaici were the indigenous people ag…
Date: 2021-12-14


(3,982 words)

Author(s): Ashkenazi, Jacob
The people who lived in the region of northern Palestine, the Galil in Semitic languages, played a significant role in the 1st century CE. During this time, two crucial processes took place within the mainly rural Jewish society of the hilly landscape of northern Palestine: the uprising against Rome that ended in the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem, and the birth of the messianic movement that turned into a world religion. This entry will focus on the dynamics of the human geography of this region in the first six centuries CE, and its implications for the landscape.Geographical and …
Date: 2021-12-14

Galla Placidia

(3,062 words)

Author(s): Dunn, Geoffrey D.
The sole surviving child of Theodosius I (379–395 CE) and his second wife, Flavia Galla, Galla Placidia was, through her maternal line, a member of the Valentinian dynasty, since Flavia Galla was the daughter of Valentinian I (364–375 CE), niece of Valens (364–378 CE), sister of Valentinian II (375–392 CE), and half-sister of Gratian (367–383 CE), through whose wife Placidia was distantly connected with the Constantinian dynasty. This gave her a more impressive lineage than her two half-brothers…
Date: 2021-12-14

Gallican Liturgy

(2,836 words)

Author(s): Rose, Els
The term “Gallican liturgy” in this lemma refers to the  liturgical practices current in early medieval Gaul, also denoted as “the liturgy of Gaul” (Vogel, 1981, 275) or “Old-Gallican liturgy” (Vismans, 1958–1962, vol. II, 778, 2084–2085), the individual character of which gradually waned under the influence of the Carolingian liturgical reforms during the late 8th and the 9th century CE. The individuality of the Gallican liturgy encompasses singular features in the order of Mass, the style of l…
Date: 2021-12-14


(4,019 words)

Author(s): Weigel, Richard
Gallienus (Publius Licinius Egnatius Gallienus; r. 253–268 CE; Church and Empire) was born about 218 CE (Wickert, 1926, 84, 350–352). He was the son of Valerian I and Mariniana and was confirmed by the Roman Senate as Augustus and co-emperor when Valerian was approved in 253 CE. Valerian placed Gallienus in charge of the western provinces when he left Rome to command the armies in the eastern provinces and defend against incursions of the Persians, Goths, and other tribes. Gallienus married Corn…
Date: 2021-12-14


(1,072 words)

Author(s): Zwollo, Laela
Ancient Gangra (today’s Çankırı in Turkey) was the metropolitan see of the province of Paphlagonia in Asia Minor of the eastern Roman Empire. It is most notable for the synod of 13 bishops which convened here in the middle of the 4th century CE and the proclamation of 20 regulations ( horoi: later designated as canons).The primary concern of the council was the new movement of Eustathius and his followers. In all likelihood, the Eustathius referred to here was a monk who was appointed bishop of Sebaste in 356 CE (Socr. Hist. eccl. 2.43; Soz. Hist. eccl. 3.14.31) and in the aftermath of thi…
Date: 2021-12-14

Gaudentius of Brescia

(3,062 words)

Author(s): Lizzi Testa, Rita
What we know of Gaudentius is mainly obtained from two of his homilies. He had been educated in the faith by his predecessor Philastrius (Gaud.  Tract. preface 4; Tract. 16.8), but we do not know if he was already a member of the local church before being elected bishop. Gaudentius obtained the episcopate in a somewhat unusual way. In the discourse that Gaudentius made on the occasion of his consecration, he reports that the people of Brescia had sworn not to elect anyone other than him, and binding to this oath Ambrose of…
Date: 2021-12-14


(6,936 words)

Author(s): Waarden, Joop van
The geographical peculiarities of the land mass of Gaul have influenced its history, and the history of its church, in profound ways. On the other hand, it was history that made it into a coherent entity in the first place ( CAH, vol. X, 464-67; Delaplace & France, 2011, Introduction). Prior to the Roman conquest by Julius Caesar during the years between 59 BCE and 50 BCE, the territory was made up of a variety of tribes and cultures, predominantly Celtic but without a sense of unity. It was Roman imperialism that created Gaul, if only…
Date: 2021-12-14


(3,192 words)

Author(s): Somov, Alexey B.
Gehenna is a term for the place of punishment of the wicked in Judaism and early Christianity. It takes its name from a valley near Jerusalem, which later, due to its evil reputation as the place of idolatrous practices, was transformed into the place of final destiny and punishment of the wicked, that is, to hell.OriginsGreek γέεννα corresponds to Hebrew גֵּי־הִנֹּם / gê-hinnom (the valley of Hinnom; Josh 15:8), the short form of גֵּי(א) בֶן־הִנֹּם/ [ ʾben-hinnom (the valley of the son of Hinnom; Josh 18:16; Jer 7:31), or בְנֵי־הִנֹּםגֵּי/ gê bǝnê-hinnom (the valley of the sons…
Date: 2021-12-14


(7,044 words)

Author(s): Ramelli, Ilaria L.E.
Paul in Gal 3:28 declared that there is no gender difference “in Christ,” a statement that was subject to a variety of interpretations in early Christianity and oftentimes was forgotten. Besides the New Testament and the Genesis accounts of the creation of humanity, Philo of Alexandria, a major figure in Hellenistic Judaism, exerted an enormous influence on early Christian thinkers such as Clement of Alexandria, Origen, Gregory of Nyssa, and others, also with respect to anthropology and the exegesis of the Genesis anthropogony.Philo read Scripture, including the account of th…
Date: 2021-12-14

General abbreviations

(379 words)

ad loc. there, at the specified location ap. in the writings of/as quoted in approx. approximately Arab. Arabic Aram. Aramaic Armen. Armenian b. Babylonian (prefix) b. born bibl. biblical, bibliographic, bibliography Bul. Bulgarian c. circa c./cc. canon/canons cent./cents. century/centuries ch./chs. chapter/chapters cm centimeter(s) col./cols. column/columns comm. commentaded by Comm. Commentary coni. coniecit  Cop. Coptic crit. critical(ly) d. died diff. different from diss. dissertation doc. document DOI Digital Object Identifier e.g. for example/for instance ed. ed…
Date: 2021-12-14


(2,554 words)

Author(s): Jöris, Steffen
In antiquity, the term “Gennesareth” was associated with the large freshwater lake in Galilee that receives its water from the Jordan River. In New Testament times, the name Gennesareth became a toponym that not only refers to the lake, but also includes the surrounding region on its western shore. This toponym depicts the main place of Jesus’ ministry and is sometimes used in the Christian sources to convey theological motifs, especially to highlight the Christological nature of Jesus. However,…
Date: 2021-12-14

Genovefa (Genevieve) of Paris

(1,392 words)

Author(s): Caruso, Matteo
Genovefa (Geneviève) of Paris (420 CE–500 CE) was born in Nanterre, a small village on the outskirts of Paris. The principal source on her life is the Vita Genovefae ( The Life of Genovefa), a hagiographic writing (Hagiography) whose dating was issue of debate among scholars in 19th century and 20th century (see Historiography).According to the Vita Genovefae, Genovefa met German of Auxerre and Lupus of Troyes when she was six years old. German told her she would be consecrated to God and gave her a cross-shaped coin to reinforce her religious vocatio…
Date: 2021-12-14
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