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Plato and Theodoret: The Christian Appropriation of Platonic Philosophy and the Hellenic Intellectual Resistance (Cambridge Classical Studies) 1st Edition
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For Christendom to conquer its opponents, it was necessary to manipulate these and other bits of Platonic vocabulary, to draw close associations between the Platonic and Abrahamic canons, and to thereby acclimate a secular public to religious exclusivism. For educated Christians of late antiquity--Clement, Eusebius, and Augustine--this meant showing that Plato's dialogues harmonized better with a literal interpretation of the Bible than with Neoplatonic paganism.
Their efforts, unsurprisingly, were initially unsuccessful. Neoplatonic paganism was practically *constituted* by Plato scholarship, and the most systematic interpretation of Plato was seldom in accord with Christian scripture. Consequently, Church fathers found themselves needing to appropriate Plato while only being able to do so by deliberately misquoting him.
Niketas Siniossoglou's 270-page "Plato and Theodoret" dissects one of the most extensive and influential of such efforts: Theodoret of Cyrrhus' "Graecarum Affectionum Curatio," or "Cure for the Greek Illness.Read more ›