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Born about 200 B.C. in Greece to a politically prominent family, Polybius had his own political career cut short when he was deported to Rome as a hostage. During his exile, he commenced the composition of his Histories, with the original goal of examining Rome's rise to supremacy during the years from 220 to 168 B.C.; later he would extend his investigation down to the aftermath of the Third Punic and Achaean wars, which ended in 146 B.C. Of the original forty books of the Histories, today only the first five survive essentially intact, with most of the remaining books represented by fragments of various lengths. In this volume, David D. Phillips presents a commentary on Polybius' first book. The volume includes the definitive text by Theodor Buttner-Wobst, together with detailed commentary on points of linguistic and historical interest, and an introduction to Polybius' life, the Histories (with special attention to book 1), and Polybian language, style, and tone. An index of Greek words is also provided.
Although scholars continue to address old questions about Polybius, it is clear that they are also turning their attention to aspects of his history that have been inadequately dealt with in the past or have even gone largely unnoticed. Polybius' history is increasingly treated not just as a source of valuable information on the impressive expansion of Roman rule in the Mediterranean world, but also as a complex and nuanced narrative with its own interests and purposes. Moreover, since (apart from Livy's use of Polybius, which has been thoroughly discussed) most studies of Polybius' reception focus on the modern world, especially in relation to the theory of mixed constitutions, finding out more about Polybius' impact on ancient Greek and Roman authors remains a major desideratum. This volume brings together contributions which, in either posing new questions or reformulating old ones, attest both to the ardent scholarly interest currently directed toward Polybius and to the variety of hermeneutical issues raised by his work. Subjects discussed include Polybius' historical ideas, his methods of composition, his views on the role of the historian, his representation of cultural difference, his intertextual affinities, and his reception and influence. Taken together, the papers in this collection attempt to promote a deeper understanding of the qualities and peculiarities of Polybius' history, as well as to offer fresh insights into the interpretation of this important work.
David Moessner proposes a new understanding of the relation of Luke’s second volume to his Gospel to open up a whole new reading of Luke’s foundational contribution to the New Testament. For postmodern readers who find Acts a ‘generic outlier,’ dangling tenuously somewhere between the ‘mainland’ of the evangelists and the ‘Peloponnese’ of Paul—diffused and confused and shunted to the backwaters of the New Testament by these signature corpora—Moessner plunges his readers into the hermeneutical atmosphere of Greek narrative poetics and elaboration of multi-volume works to inhale the rhetorical swells that animate Luke’s first readers in their engagement of his narrative. In this collection of twelve of his essays, re-contextualized and re-organized into five major topical movements, Moessner showcases multiple Hellenistic texts and rhetorical tropes to spotlight the various signals Luke provides his readers of the multiple ways his Acts will follow "all that Jesus began to do and to teach" (Acts 1:1) and, consequently, bring coherence to this dominant block of the New Testament that has long been split apart. By collapsing the world of Jesus into the words and deeds of his followers, Luke re-configures the significance of Israel’s "Christ" and the "Reign" of Israel’s God for all peoples and places to create a new account of ‘Gospel Acts,’ discrete and distinctively different than the "narrative" of the "many" (Luke 1:1). Luke the Historian of Israel’s Legacy combines what no analysis of the Lukan writings has previously accomplished, integrating seamlessly two ‘generically-estranged’ volumes into one new whole from the intent of the one composer. For Luke is the Hellenistic historian and simultaneously ‘biblical’ theologian who arranges the one "plan of God" read from the script of the Jewish scriptures—parts and whole, severally and together—as the saving ‘script’ for the whole world through Israel’s suffering and raised up "Christ," Jesus of Nazareth. In the introductions to each major theme of the essays, this noted scholar of the Lukan writings offers an epitome of the main features of Luke’s theological ‘thought,’ and, in a final Conclusions chapter, weaves together a comprehensive synthesis of this new reading of the whole.
The Hellenistic period (approximately the last three centuries B.C.), with its cultural complexities and enduring legacies, retains a lasting fascination today. Reflecting the vigor and productivity of scholarship directed at this period in the past decade, this collection of original essays is a wide-ranging exploration of current discoveries and questions. The twelve essays emphasize the cultural interaction of Greek and non-Greek societies in the Hellenistic period, in contrast to more conventional focuses on politics, society, or economy. The result of original research by some of the leading scholars in Hellenistic history and culture, this volume is an exemplary illustration of the cultural richness of this period. Paul Cartledge's introduction contains an illuminating introductory overview of current trends in Hellenistic scholarship. The essays themselves range over broad questions of comparative historiography, literature, religion, and the roles of Athens, Rome, and the Jews within the context of the Hellenistic world. The volume is dedicated to Frank Walbank and includes an updated bibliography of his work which has been essential to our understanding of the Hellenistic period.
Highly respected New Testament scholar Craig Keener is known for his meticulous and comprehensive research. This commentary on Acts, his magnum opus, may be the largest and most thoroughly documented Acts commentary available. Useful not only for the study of Acts but also early Christianity, this work sets Acts in its first-century context. In this volume, the first of four, Keener introduces the book of Acts, particularly historical questions related to it, and provides detailed exegesis of its opening chapters. He utilizes an unparalleled range of ancient sources and offers a wealth of fresh insights. This magisterial commentary will be a valuable resource for New Testament professors and students, pastors, Acts scholars, and libraries.
Elizabeth Rawson (1934-1988) was a distinguished specialist in the history, society, and culture of the later Roman Republic and Augustan period. First published between 1971 and 1989, her papers cover the workings of human politics and society, historical and antiquarian thinking at Rome, and literary history. The collection offers an essential contribution to the understanding of the central period of Roman history.
In the first volume of this long-anticipated collection by Moessner and Tiede, seventeen leading scholars of antiquity present an amazing "sea change" of opinion that Luke is indeed the interpreter of Israel. The book represents an unprecedented international consensus that the Hellenistic author Luke composed a carefully crafted narrative in two parts to claim Jesus of Nazareth as Israel's true heritage and enduring legacy to the world. Part One explores the nature of Luke's prologues and his intention to write a narrative of "events brought to fruition," using the narrative conventions and audience expectations of the Greco-Roman milieu. Part Two illuminates the relation of Luke's second "volume" to the first by inquiring about the consistency and coherence of his narrative-thematic strategies in retelling the story of Israel's legacy of "the Christ." Whether Luke completed Acts, the larger role of Paul and, most significantly, the meaning of Israel by the end of Acts are approached from new perspectives and charged with provocative insights. In addition to the volume editors, the contributors include L. Alexander, D. Schmidt, V. Robbins, C. Thornton, R. Pervo, W. Kurz, C. Holladay, G. Sterling, D. Balch, E. Plümacher, Charles H. Talbert, J.H. Hayes, D. Marguerat, M. Wolter, R. Tannehill, and I. H. Marshall. David P. Moessner is Professor of Biblical Theology at the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary.

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