Methodology for weighing ancient sources

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
neilgodfrey
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Re: Methodology for weighing ancient sources

Post by neilgodfrey » Wed Dec 31, 2014 7:12 pm

outhouse wrote:
neilgodfrey wrote: Firstly, the evidence is against the likelihood that he is trying to document and persuade others to believe "facts of past events".

.

Where did you dig this gem up?

All evidence points to the well known and established rhetorical prose it was written in.

All the of the NT authors were trained to write in rhetorical prose as the foundation to the text.
Duh. I told you where I "dug it up" and I explained some of the details of the "rhetoric".

outhouse wrote:
neilgodfrey wrote:The authors would identify themselves and their sources.
Not always. This does not help you one way or the other.
Baloney. Tell me the exceptions that supposedly disprove the rule. Since when does "not always" alone decide a question of general practice? Read a bit more widely so you know what you are talking about before saying anything. The only points in common between the gospels and ancient historical works are in superficialities. Why not quote what the scholars say about all of this -- not the apologist ones of course, I mean the real historians of ancient times and literature.

outhouse wrote:
Sometimes they would fabricate claims about their sources in order to persuade readers
Almost always, depending on what the message is. Even Pauls communities personal epistles were written and steeped in rhetoric.
Do you know what "rhetoric" means? The more you use that word -- as here -- the more I doubt you do.

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Leucius Charinus
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Location: memoriae damnatio

Re: Methodology for weighing ancient sources

Post by Leucius Charinus » Wed Jan 07, 2015 12:19 am

When Do Contemporary or Early Sources Matter in Ancient History?
https://adversusapologetica.wordpress.c ... es-matter/
    • One of the most misunderstood methodological issues that surrounds debates over the historical Jesus is the relevance of contemporary or early written sources to reconstructing a reliable biography of Jesus’ life. Very often comparisons are made to other historical figures, such as Alexander the Great, who (allegedly) do not have any contemporary sources for their lives, despite the reliability of our historical information about them. Apologists thus argue that the lack of contemporary sources for Jesus, and the fact that all ancient writings that mention Jesus date to a gap of decades and centuries after his death, do not make the historical Jesus more obscure or less knowable than other famous figures from antiquity.


LC
A "cobbler of fables" [Augustine]; "Leucius is the disciple of the devil" [Decretum Gelasianum]; and his books "should be utterly swept away and burned" [Pope Leo I]; they are the "source and mother of all heresy" [Photius]

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MrMacSon
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Re: Methodology for weighing ancient sources

Post by MrMacSon » Wed Jan 07, 2015 12:46 am

Leucius Charinus wrote:When Do Contemporary or Early Sources Matter in Ancient History?
    • One of the most misunderstood methodological issues that surrounds debates over the historical Jesus is the relevance of contemporary or early written sources to reconstructing a reliable biography of Jesus’ life. Very often comparisons are made to other historical figures, such as Alexander the Great, who (allegedly) do not have any contemporary sources for their lives, despite the reliability of our historical information about them. Apologists thus argue that the lack of contemporary sources for Jesus, and the fact that all ancient writings that mention Jesus date to a gap of decades and centuries after his death, do not make the historical Jesus more obscure or less knowable than other famous figures from antiquity.
    https://adversusapologetica.wordpress.c ... es-matter/
Moreover,
... this mistake is usually made by apologists confusing the earliest extant sources (those that have survived medieval textual transmission) with the earliest sources that were written (and available to subsequent historians) in antiquity. Strobel and Blomberg, for example, thought that Plutarch and Arrian (writing 400 years after Alexander) were the earliest biographers of his life [1], when actually the biographer Callisthenes of Olynthus was an eyewitness contemporary to Alexander, who traveled with him during his campaigns. Callisthenes’ biography is still partially preserved in fragments, which are read, studied, and used for information today by modern historians in edited volumes, such as Felix Jacoby’s Fragments of the Greek Historians. There were also several other contemporary and eyewitness historians who recorded Alexander’s deeds, such as Anaximenes of Lampsacus, Aristobulus of Cassandreia, Eumenesl, and Nearchus, among others.

Moreover, these early biographies would have been available in libraries, such as the Great Library of Alexandria, and could be accessed by later biographers such as Plutarch and Arrian. Were it not for these contemporary written sources, and if there really had been no biography or history written about Alexander for a gap of 400 years after his death, modern historians would be far, far more skeptical of our ability to know the details of Alexander’s life

https://adversusapologetica.wordpress.c ... es-matter/

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