From Library Journal
Focusing primarily on the period from the death of Socrates to Augustine of Hippo, the authors investigate the Greek legacy: the six cases of voluntary death in the Hebrew Bible and later references to these; Josephus, Philo, and early Rabbinic ideas; early Christian ideas of martyrdom and the teachings of Greek Fathers of the Church and Tertullian. They emphasize the voluntariness of martyrdom and the great shift in Christian opinion of voluntary death occasioned by Augustine's absolute condemnation of it, except in the express instance of divine command. Droge and Tabor view their study as important background to today's death-with-dignity issues. This relevance makes the book important for the informed layperson as well as scholars, ethicists, and clergy. Highly recommended for academic and large public libraries.
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