The Fathers of the Church: A Comprehensive Introduction

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the fathers of the churchby Hubertus R. Drobner
Hendrickson Publishers. 2007

$44.95
ISBN: 9781565633315
ISBN-13: 9781565633315

Kort resensie deur Coenie Burger

Hendrickson het die Engelssprekende wêreld ‘n guns gedoen met die vertaling van Drobner se gesaghebbende werk uit die Duits. Die boek is reeds in vyf ander tale vertaal en word allerweë as ‘n klassieke inleiding tot die denke van die Vaders van die Kerk beskou. Drobner het probeer om ‘n balans te kry tussen kompaktheid, tegniese en historiese korrektheid en leesbaarheid. Hy dek die hele periode van die NT tot en met die agste eeu met opsommings van die historiese agtergrond en basiese inhou van die vernaamste teoloë van dié tyd se denke asook ‘n bespreking van die bronne self en waar verder gelees kan word oor hulle.

Daar is meer populêr-geskryfde boeke wat makliker lees, maar hierdie bundel; het as hanteerbare gesaghebbende naslaanbron waarskynlik nie gelyke nie.


Good, solid, contemporary introductions to patristic authors and writings are difficult to find in the English-speaking world, and European volumes are expensive. This volume, which is Siegfried Schatzmann’s translation of Lehrbuch der Patrologie, offers English-speaking readers easy access to Hubertus R. Drobner’s traditional introduction to early Christian thought.
Hubertus R. Drobner brings patristics scholarship up to date in this traditional introduction. His work is sufficiently broad to be a useful summary of early Christian history and the expansive strokes of doctrinal debate and development and provides a clear presentation of early Christian thought.
Drobner introduces new materials throughout this recently updated edition of his handbook. A general map and several timetables add to the clarity of the volume.
The Fathers of the Church is valuable in its presentation of contemporary studies and views. Patristics students will benefit from this dependable overview of early Christian texts, and scholars and libraries will appreciate the extensive bibliography, indexes, and other resources.

Reviews
“This is an English translation by Siegfried Schatzmann of the German book Lehrbuch der Patrologie by Hubertus R. Drobner, which was originally published in 1994 with some corrected, revised and additional material added by Drobner and William Harmless, S.J. This book is an introduction and bibliography of the writings of the Fathers of the Church and other early Christian writings. The Fathers and other writers are grouped into historical periods. Each Church Father or writing starts with an introduction into that person or writing, which is then followed by a bibliography of sources in various languages. There are books, journals, and Internet sites provided. There is a supplemental bibliography at the back of the book with a subject index and an index of ancient sources. This book is highly recommended for seminaries and schools of theology due to its price and the amount of information it provides.”
—American Reference Books Annual.
“Good, solid, contemporary introductions to patristic authors and writings are difficult to find in the English-speaking world, and European volumes are expensive. This volume, which is Siegfried Schatzmann’s translation of Lehrbuch der Patrologie, offers English-speaking readers easy access to Hubertus R. Drobner’s traditional introduction to early Christian thought. Hubertus R. Drobner brings patristics scholarship up to date in this traditional introduction. His work is sufficiently broad to be a useful summary of early Christian history and the expansive strokes of doctrinal debate and development and provides a clear presentation of early Christian thought. Drobner introduces new materials throughout this recently updated edition of his handbook. A general map and several timetables add to the clarity of the volume. The Fathers of the Church is valuable in its presentation of contemporary studies and views. Patristics students will benefit from this dependable overview of early Christian texts, and scholars and libraries will appreciate the extensive bibliography, indexes, and other resources.”
—Review of Biblical Literature
“Drobner’s volume is a translation of the 1994 German book, but with additions from subsequent translations in French, etc. Rather than a textbook, it is a rich resource book or “guidebook,” as English editor Harmless labels it. The book is chronologically organized. Within separate historical periods, readers will find focuses on themes, particular church fathers, and the fathers’ various texts. Each focus offers a wealth of bibliographical material. Thankfully, Harmless supplements Drobner’s bibliographical resources with some more current entries. Readers will discover classical research resources, i.e., from the entire 20th century, but not the latest, most up-to-date material. Overall, this is an easy-to-use ready reference for students and scholars alike. Drobner (Univ. of Paderborn, Germany) also provides an effective overview of the salient themes of the early Christian centuries. He offers good, very readable introductions to the various church fathers with respect to their historical context and theological significance. Useful indexes of subjects and of ancient sources again enable quick access for readers with particular research interests. Finally, one of the book’s most distinctive features is the chapter on independent bodies of literature, which offers resources on Syrians, Egyptians, Armenians, and Arabs. This will be an important work for serious students and scholars of early Christianity. Its reasonable price and its comprehensiveness within a single volume mean that it will be valuable in a wide variety of libraries. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Graduate students and above.”
—Choice
“I can highly recommend this book to both teachers and students in schools of theology and seminaries due to its comparatively moderate price and the amount of information provided in just 600 pages. It is certainly more than the mere introduction suggested by its English title. . . I am convinced that this volume will become the normative contemporary source to be first consulted by those seeking further information about the Fathers.”
—Studia Historiae Ecclesiasticae

 

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