Latin Epics of the New Testament: Juvencus, Sedulius, Arator
Latin Epics of the New Testament is about the growth of Christianity, and in particular the challenge of engaging with the Roman intellectual elite and its highly sophisticated Graeco-Roman tradition. In this culture epics like those of Vergil and Lucan were highly valued for their language, their 'heroic' themes, and their Rome-centred ideologies. Roger Green examines each of these epics in detail, showing how the three authors Juvencus, Sedulius, and Arator repackage the New Testament as epic, and try to make a bridge between two very different cultures. He explores the fascinating questions of how these authors exploit epic themes such as gods, heroes, war, and fate, without playing down the very real theological concerns of their times. All these poets were popular in the Middle Ages and later, and are the pioneers of poetry that leads to Renaissance epic and the famous poems of John Milton.
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