Born in the Second Century

13. Pliny's Letter Part 4. Greetings from Nowhere.

September 02, 2021 Chris Palmero
Born in the Second Century
13. Pliny's Letter Part 4. Greetings from Nowhere.
Show Notes Chapter Markers

Part four of the grand exposé of Pliny's fake letter about the Christians. Host Chris Palmero continues the close reading and exposes strange elements of this text that are rarely discussed. 

Anyone who listens to this episode can learn about the late origin of the term "Christian," about the baffling lack of any geographical references in Pliny's letter, about how Pliny somehow seems to be the first person in history to successfully distinguish Christians from Jews, about Pliny's very uncharacteristic way of dealing with the problem he's facing, and about how Pliny's Letter borrows copiously from the New Testament and the ancient Christian martyria. It's all part of BORN IN THE SECOND CENTURY's forced march to capture the unassailable fortress of Epistulae 10.96 and 10.97.

Opening reading: A fake letter from the emperor Hadrian to a Roman governor sheds light on how the early Christians forged imperial documents about persecution.

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Reading: HADRIAN, Rescript to Fundanus.
OPENING Remarks.
Close Reading RE-INTRO.
REDCARD: Excessive Length.
REDCARD: Lack of Geographical Reference.
REDCARD: Persecution Trope.
REDCARD: On Precedents.
REDCARD: No Knowledge of Christians.
REDCARD: Use of the Term "Christian."
REDCARD: Christians Fully Distinguished from Jews.
REDCARD: Intertextuality with Acts and the Gospels.
CLOSING Remarks.