Religion Past and Present

Get access Subject: Religious Studies
Edited by: Hans Dieter Betz, Don S. Browning†, Bernd Janowski and Eberhard Jüngel

Help us improve our service

Religion Past and Present (RPP) Online is the online version of the updated English translation of the 4th edition of the definitive encyclopedia of religion worldwide: the peerless Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart (RGG). This great resource, now at last available in English and Online, Religion Past and Present Online continues the tradition of deep knowledge and authority relied upon by generations of scholars in religious, theological, and biblical studies. Including the latest developments in research, Religion Past and Present Online encompasses a vast range of subjects connected with religion.

Subscriptions: see

Xaverian Brothers and Sisters

(252 words)

Author(s): Eder, Manfred
[German Version] The missionary work of Francis Xavier, the apostle of India and Japan, and his great prestige, have made him the patron of various orders. I. Orders of Men Missionari Saveriani (Societas Xaveriana, SX), founded in Parma in 1895 by Guido Maria Conforti (1865–1935) for missionary work; they began in China in 1898. Today they work primarily in Africa, America, and East Asia. The Missionary Society of St. Francis Xavier (Pilar Fathers, SFX), founded in Goa (India) in 1887, reorganized in 1939 under diocesan law …

Xavier, Francis, Saint

(9 words)

[German Version] Francis Xavier, Saint

Xenia of St. Petersburg, Saint

(149 words)

Author(s): Ivanov, Vladimir
[German Version] (18th to early 19th cent., St. Petersburg), one of the most revered Russian saints of the synodal period. Precise biographical data are lacking, including the dates of her birth and death. ¶ Her fame rests almost exclusively on demonstration of her effective intercession after her death. She lived in St. Petersburg and was married to an imperial chorister. Widowed at the age of 26, she lived the remaining 45 years of her life as a “fool for Christ” (Folly, Holy). After giving away all her possessions, she lived …

Xenophanes of Colophon

(278 words)

Author(s): Hülser, Karlheinz
[German Version] (c. 570 bce, Colophon – c. 475 bce), philosopher and poet. Around 545 Xenophanes emigrated to the West, where he lived as an itinerant rhapsodist. Many surviving quotations come from his Silloi (“Satires”). He attacked the cult of victorious athletes as well as Homer and Hesiod, especially for their portraits of the gods, criticized anthropomorphisms (V), and rejected divination. Conversely he demanded honors for wise individuals like himself, recommended civilized behavior and edification as guidelines for wri…


(5 words)

[German Version] Stranger/Otherness


(178 words)

Author(s): Hülser, Karlheinz
[German Version] (between 430 and 425 bce, Athens – after 355), historian and admirer of Socrates. Xenophon came to know Socrates after 410; after 401 he accompanied various military expeditions, especially Spartan, and was therefore banished. His literary oeuvre comprises historical, ethical, technical, and Socratic works; it was very popular in antiquity and has survived intact. In his historical works, Xenophon in part continued the history of Thucydides, with a predilection for the Spartan way of life. Among the works in the second group, his Polity of the Spartans was a contri…