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Origin of the World, On the (NHC II, 5; XIII, 2; OW)
(167 words)

[German Version]

a Gnostic tractate or treatise of the late 3rd or early 4th century, supposed to have been written in Alexandria. It is extant only in a Coptic translation, and belongs to no known school. It is marked by the criteria of ancient rhetoric, and has no title. Following a prologue, it contains long descriptions, especially of primeval times (theogony, cosmogony, events from Gen 1–3), and the end times, viewed apocalyptically. It is based on numerous heterogeneous traditions, including earlier Jewish traditions, refers to other literary works, has affinities to the Hypostas…

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Bethge, Hans-Gebhard, “Origin of the World, On the (NHC II, 5; XIII, 2; OW)”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 26 February 2024 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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