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Ablution, Initiation, and Baptism

Late Antiquity, Early Judaism, and Early Christianity

Ed. by Hellholm, David / Vegge, Tor / Norderval, Øyvind / Hellholm, Christer

Series:Beihefte zur Zeitschrift für die neutestamentliche Wissenschaft 176

    319,00 € / $447.00 / £290.00*

    eBook (PDF)
    Publication Date:
    July 2011
    Copyright year:
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    • With over 50 articles, the most comprehensive work on the topic to date
    • More than one hundred, mostly color photos and drawings
    • Handbook-like character

    Aims and Scope

    In the web of cultural processes of late antiquity ablution rites and initiation rites were performed in different forms and in different contexts. Such rites existed in Early Judaism and Greco-Roman cults and were also applied in early Christianity under the label “baptism”, however, not as one fixed rite uniformly performed and interpreted. Baptismal rites developed diversely corresponding to the diversity among Christian groups of which some later came to be perceived as heretical.
    Remains of art, architecture and texts from these contexts were discussed in two conferences gathering scholars who are excellent within their respective fields: text studies, studies of rites, archaeology, architecture, history of art, and cultural anthropology. These different fields of research have in recent years generated new knowledge that is relevant for the discussion of ablution and initiation rites and their function in late antiquity. At the same time interests of research have altered in favour of a growing cooperation across discipline borders.
    The present volumes are the outcome of two conferences in Rome 2008 and at Metochi (Lesbos) 2009.

    Supplementary Information


    23.0 x 15.5 cm
    xcvi, 2024 pages
    English, German
    Type of Publication:
    Ablution; Initiation; Baptism; Rite

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    David Hellholm, University of Oslo, Norway; Tor Vegge, University of Agder, Norway; Øyvind Norderval, University of Oslo, Norway; Christer Hellholm, Karlstad, Sweden.


    "Together, the three volumes provide an unparalleled interdisciplinary resource to which scholars will turn for years to come."
    James A. Kelhoffer in: Svensk exegetisk Årbok 81 (2016)

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