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Document Details :
Title: Eusthathius of Antioch on 'The Witch of Endor' (1 Sam 28)
Subtitle: A Critique of Origen and Exegetical Method
Author(s): VERHEYDEN, Joseph
Journal: Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanienses
Volume: 93 Issue: 1 Date: 2017
The article is a follow-up to an essay that was published in 2016 and deals with Origen’s analysis of the passage of king Saul’s visit to the so-called witch of Endor in 1 Sam 28. The present essay studies the elaborate reply to Origen that Eustathius of Antioch wrote almost a century later. It offers a detailed analysis of the rhetorical strategies used by Eustathius for countering Origen’s provocative thesis on the relation between text, characterisation, and readership. It is argued that Eustathius’ response is purposefully critical of Origen’s position because in his eyes the latter had tackled some of the basic principles of biblical criticism. It turns out, however, that Eustathius is not really a match for Origen overall and that his reply is too often built upon vituperative counter-arguments, although some of his comments that touch upon essential aspects of biblical exegesis are nevertheless still worth considering.