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Jewish Law and Early Christian Identity

Jewish Law and Early Christian Identity
Betrothal, Marriage, and Infidelity in the Writings of Ephrem the Syrian

£75.00

  • Publication planned for: January 2020
  • availability: Not yet published - available from January 2020
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108480321

£ 75.00
Hardback

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  • Ephrem, one of the earliest Syriac Christian writers, lived on the eastern outskirts of the Roman Empire during the fourth century. Although he wrote polemical works against Jews and pagans, and identified with post-Nicene Christianity, his writings are also replete with parallels with Jewish traditions and he is the leading figure in an ongoing debate about the Jewish character of Syriac Christianity. This book focuses on early ideas about betrothal, marriage, and sexual relations, including their theological and legal implications, and positions Ephrem at a precise intersection between his Semitic origin and his Christian commitment. Alongside his adoption of customs and legal stances drawn from his Greco-Roman and Christian surroundings, Ephrem sometimes reveals unique legal concepts which are closer to early Palestinian, sectarian positions than to the Roman or Jewish worlds. The book therefore explains naturalistic legal thought in Christian literature and sheds light on the rise of Syriac Christianity.

    • Explores the rise of Syriac Christianity through a focus on marriage, sexual relations and family law
    • Uses sources from three different fields: Roman law, early Christianity and Talmudic literature
    • Translates all primary sources and assumes no specialized knowledge of late antique Syriac Christianity
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    Product details

    • Publication planned for: January 2020
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108480321
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 mm
    • availability: Not yet published - available from January 2020
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction
    1. Creating a primary bond: what is betrothal?
    2. During betrothal: is premarital cohabitation an option?
    3. Creating a marital bond: can rape determine marital status?
    4. Breaking a marital bond: what do fornication and adultery do?
    5. Discussion and conclusions.

  • Author

    Yifat Monnickendam, Tel-Aviv University
    Yifat Monnickendam is a senior lecturer in the Department of Jewish History at Tel Aviv University. Her work focuses on the rise of the Christian legal tradition in its Roman and Jewish context and she has published widely in leading journals.

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