Introduction to Patristic Study by Henry Barclay Swete

Henry Barclay Swete [1835-1917], Patristic StudyIn his foreword H.B. Swete notes that he wrote this book to encourage younger clergy to read the church fathers for themselves and not to rely on second hand information. This brief introduction will be still of value to students of the early church more than a century after it was first published. This title is in the public domain.

Henry Barclay Swete [1835-1917], Patristic Study. London: Longmans, Green & Co., 1902. Hbk. pp.194. [Click to visit the download page]

Contents

  1. Introductory
  2. Fathers of the First Two Centuries
  3. Fathers of the Third Century
  4. Post-Nicene Fathers (Greek and Eastern)
  5. Post-Nicene Fathers (Latin)
  6. Courses and Methods of Patristic Study
  7. Help to Patristic Study

Chapter 1: Introductory

The literary remains of the Apostolic age in the providence of God have become the common property of Christendom. Admitted into the canon of Holy Scripture, translated into the language of every civilised people, circulated by great societies established for that end, the Gospels and Epistles, the Acts and the Apocalypse are in the hands of all Christians who can read their mother tongue. A widely different fate has overtaken the post-Apostolic literature of the Ancient Church. If the names of some of the more eminent ‘Fathers’ are familiar to all educated men, few are attracted to the study of their writings. A grotesque misrepresentation associates the Fathers with dulness and ignorance. It is assumed that the writings which record the history, the life, and the thought of the Christian Church during the centuries which followed the death of St. John are destitute of literary merit or spiritual profit….

Backhouse & Tylor’s Early Church History to the Time of Constantine

Edward Backhouse [1808-1879] & Charles Tylor [1816-1902], Early Church History to the Death of Constantine, 3rd edn. Early Church History to the Death of Constantine was Edward Backhouse’s final work and was completed posthumously by Charles Tylor. Backhouse intended to write church history from the perspective of The Society of Friends (Quakers).

His desire, perhaps not fully allowed to himself, was to find out with what early early teachers stigmatised as heretics he himself could in any way sympathise; what protests against priestly assumptions and ritualistic corruptions had been made in the early ages of the Church.

Thomas Hodgkin [1831-1913], Biographical Preface, p.xiii.

Edward Backhouse [1808-1879] & Charles Tylor [1816-1902], Early Church History to the Death of Constantine, 3rd edn. London: Simpkin, Marshall, Hamilton, Kent & Co. Ltd., 1892. Hbk. pp.333. [Click to download the complete book in PDF]

The book contains a number of photographs and colour plates. This title is in the pubic domain.

Contents

Biographical Preface

Part I to A.D. 200

  1. Promulgation of the Gospel – The New Society- Picture of Heathenism
  2. Nero’s Persecution – Destruction of Jerusalem – Jewish-Christian Church
  3. Domitian and Nerva – The Apostle John – Epistle of Clement of Rome and Letter to Diognetus
  4. Trajan and Pliny – martyrdom of Ignatius – His Epistles
  5. Hadrian – Insurrection of the Jews – Marcus Aurelius – Perseuction and Calumnies
  6. Justin Martyr
  7. The Octavius of Miniucius Felix – Martyrdom of Polycarp
  8. Martyrs of Lyons and Vienne
  9. Ireneus – Gnosticism – The Montanists – Attitude of the Church Towards Dissenters
  10. Worship in the Early Church – The Agape of Lord’s Supper
  11. Baptism – Infant Baptism
  12. Prayer – Almsgiving – Miraculous and Spiritual Gifts – Superstitious Practices
  13. Government of the Church – Maintenance of Ministers – Clergy and Laity – Church Action and Discipline – Places of Worship
  14. Holy Days and Festivals – Marriage – Asceticism – Burial
  15. The Catacombs
  16. Spread of the Gospel – Life ofth Early Christians, its Lights and Shadows
  17. Pagan Animosity and Christian Loyalty – The Philosophers assail the Church
  18. Christians and the Military Service – Slavery – Oaths
  • Appendix to Part I.

Part II – From A.D. 200 to the Death of Constantine, A.D. 337

  1. The Martyrs of Africa – Alexander Severus favours the Christians
  2. Tertullian and Clement of Alexandria
  3. Hippolytus – The Churches have rest – The Decian Persecution – Cyprian – The Lapsed – Gallus and the Pestilence
  4. Origen
  5. Persecution undeer Valerian – Cyprian’s Martyrdom – His Life and Teaching – Novatian
  6. The Emperoprs Gallienus and Aurelian – Dionysius, Bishop of Alexandria, and Gregory Thaumaturgus
  7. The Diocletian Persecution
  8. The Diocletian Persecution (continued – Constantine
  9. The Diocletian Martyrs
  10. Constantine’s Legislation – He Assumes Power over the Church – The Donatists – The Christians Slaughter one another
  11. Manicheism and Sabellianism – The Arian Controversy – The Council of Nicaea
  12. Intolerant Edits of Constantine – He espouses the Arian Cause – Athanasius – Baptism and death of the Emperor – Lactantius
  13. Rapid Growth of Ritualism – Manner of Worship in the Fourth Century – the Eucharist – Baptism
  14. Power of the Bishops – Pretensions of Rome – Paul of Samosata – Maintenance of the Clergy – Tithes – Clerical Dress
  15. The New Age of Art and Splendour – Consecration of Churches – Pictures in Churches – Embroidered Garments – Lighted Tapers – The Catacombs
  16. Prayers for the Dead – Invocation of Saints – Worship of Relics – Fasts and Festivals – Education – Church Buildings
  17. “Fordbidding to Marry” – and “Commanding to abstain from Meats” – The HErmists – Paul – Anthony – Monks and Nuns
  18. The Gospel continues to spread – Armenia – Abyssinia – Britain – Assimilation of the Church to the World – The Magistracy – War – Conclusion
  • Index

 

Justin Martyr – A Dialogue With Trypho

Arthur Lukyn Williams [1853-1943], translator, Justin Martyr. The Dialogue with Trypho
Justin Martyr from Andre Thevet
Only three works of the Second Century Christian apologist Justin Martyr have survived, two apologies and his Dialogue with Trypho, A Jew. In the Dialogue Justin sets out to convince Trypho (probably a fictional character) that Christianity represents the new law for all people. The work was widely used and influenced later Christian writers. I am therefore very pleased to able to make available A. Lukyn Williams translation of this classic work, which is in the public domain.

Arthur Lukyn Williams [1853-1943], translator, Justin Martyr. The Dialogue with Trypho. London: SPCK, 1930. Hbk. pp.301. [Click to download complete book in PDF]

Contents

Preface

Introduction

  1. Justin Martyr, what is known to him?
  2. The Authenticity of the Dialogue
  3. Earlier Efforts to Present Chrsit to the Jews
  4. Trypho the Jew
  5. Justin’s Knowledge of Post-Biblical Judaism
  6. The Contents of the Dialogue
  7. The Practical Value of the Dialogue
  8. Bibliography

Translation and Notes

Indices to Introduction and Notes

  1. General
  2. Holy Scripture and other Early Literature

You will find further resources on Justin Marty on this page.

Preface

The Dialogue touches so many points of interest that it is impossible to consider them all in a popular work like the present. I have therefore restricted myself almost entirely (though not quite) to the primary object of Justin’s treatise, the relation of Christianity to Judaism, in particular to the Judaism of post-Biblical times, endeavouring to illustrate this from Jewish sources.

In such illustrations I have not used the Apocrypha or the Pseudepigraphic writings, partly because these are now readily accessible to the English reader in the Oxford Corpus, and partly because Justin himself appears to have neglected all such books. The Jews with whom he disputed were evidently Palestinians, accustomed to the Hebrew Canon only, and to the arguments of those Jews who carried on the traditions of the Pharisees. It is therefore to the writings of these that we must look for illustrations. Their books indeed, with the exception of one or two portions, are not earlier than, or even contemporary with, Justin, especially in the form in which they have come down to us. [Continue reading]

Introductions to Tertullian, Irenaeus and Justin Martyr by Johnson Thomaskutty

The following short introductions were originally published on Facebook. In order to make them available to a wider audience Dr Thomaskutty has kindly granted permission for them to be republished on earlychurch.org.uk

St. Irenaeus of Lyons, the First Systematic Theologian of the Second Century (Johnson Thomaskutty, Faculty of New Testament, Union Biblical Seminary, Pune, India)

Tertullian, the Father of Latin Western Theology and an Advocate of “Freedom of Religion” (Johnson Thomaskutty, Faculty of New Testament, Union Biblical Seminary, Pune, India)

Francis Watson on Christians, Jews and Scripture in Justin’s Dialogue with Trypho

I have just uploaded the following lecture in PDF:

Prof. Francis Watson, “Have you not read…?” Christians, Jews and Scripture in Justin’s Dialogue with Trypho . The Ethel M. Wood Lecture, University of London, 3 March 2005.

My thanks to Professor Watson for providing me with the text of his lecture, which is published here for the first time.