|previous article in this issue||next article in this issue|
Document Details :
Title: Image and Instrument
Subtitle: Conflicting Martyrologies in the Martyrdom of Polycarp and its Literary Latin Translation
Author(s): GLEEDE, Benjamin
Journal: Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanienses
Volume: 98 Issue: 3 Date: 2022
The Martyrdom of Polycarp was translated into Latin three times during antiquity, twice in a literary, once in a literal manner. Alongside the famous and most successful literary translation contained in Rufinus' version of Eusebius' Church history we have an anonymous literary version which at closer inspection shows an even higher degree of theological reflection than its more famous predecessor. Where the Greek original tries to underscore the Christ-conformity of its hero as much as possible, perhaps even to a degree that might compromise Christ's unicity as the archetype, the Latin translator uses every chance to avoid such a misunderstanding and underscore the martyr's inferiority to and dependence upon Christ and grace. Thus, probably the most plausible historical background for this translation would be Augustine's controversy over the issue of martyrdom during the 420s.