Early Christian Attitudes Toward Images

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Orthodox Research Institute, 2004 - Religion - 224 pages
For all iconophiles, that is, those who accept the dogma of the Seventh Ecumenical Council, but especially the Orthodox who claim that the icon has a sacramental and mystical character, it is naturally disquieting to hear the claim that the early Christians were aniconic and iconophobic. If this claim is true, the theology and the veneration of the icon are seriously undermined. It is, therefore, natural for iconophiles to attempt to disprove the thesis according to which the early Christians had no images whatsoever (aniconic) because they believed them to be idols (iconophobic). It is equally natural for iconophiles to want to substantiate, as much as this is possible, their deep intuition that the roots of Christian iconography go back to the apostolic age. This study weakens the notion and credibility of the alleged hostility of the early Christians to non-idolatrous images, providing a more balanced evaluation of this question.

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User Review  - davidpwithun - LibraryThing

In Early Christian Attitudes toward Images, Fr. Steven slowly and meticulously picks apart the arguments put forward by modern scholars (most of them Protestants) in support of the hostility theory ... Read full review

Contents

PREFACE
1
THE JEWISH ATTITUDES TOWARD IMAGES
21
THE EARLY CHRISTIAN IMAGES
79
EUSEBIUS OF CÆSAREA AND CHRISTIAN IMAGES
185
Texts in Translation
209
INDEX
217
ABOUT THE AUTHOR 225
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