Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online

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Dormition and Assumption Apocrypha
(3,114 words)

The Dormition and Assumption apocrypha are the earliest texts to relate the events of the end of the Virgin Mary’s life. All of these ancient narratives include a detailed account of Mary’s “Dormition,” that is, her falling asleep (κοίμησις), which is a common euphemism for death in the ancient world. The early Latin texts tend instead to ref…

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Shoemaker, Stephen, “Dormition and Assumption Apocrypha”, in: Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online, General Editor David G. Hunter, Paul J.J. van Geest, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte. Consulted online on 01 December 2023 <>
First published online: 2018

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