Religion Past and Present

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(2,145 words)

[German Version]

I. Terminology – II. Old Testament – III. New Testament– IV. New Testament Apocrypha from Nag Hammadi

I. Terminology

Etymologically, “apocryphal” means “hidden, secret,” while “pseudepigraphal” indicates that a document has been falsely attributed to an author. In the modern period, the usage of both terms has been burdened by confessional preconceptions, since the extent of the canon (Bible) determines what will be called “apocryphal.” Texts like Tob…

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Klauck, Hans-Josef, Satran, David, Bovon, François and Attridge, Harold W., “Apocrypha/Pseudepigrapha”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 22 July 2024 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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