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Durham e-Theses
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The Temptation of Eve in Proba's Cento Vergilianus and Milton's Paradise Lost

DOWNEY, VICTORIA,EMMA,LOUISE (2022) The Temptation of Eve in Proba's Cento Vergilianus and Milton's Paradise Lost. Masters thesis, Durham University.



Re-narrations of biblical texts have a long and complex history. In this thesis I shall seek to answer two of the questions posed by the re-narration of biblical narratives. Firstly, I shall address the issue of why Christians have felt it necessary to re-write biblical narratives. I shall then turn my attention to the more interesting issue of how these texts could be, and indeed were, received as authoritative after the closing of the biblical canon. I shall begin by providing an overview of the scholarship so far. The second chapter will then address issues of terminology, genre, and methodology. Chapter three contains the first of my case studies, an analysis of the temptation of Eve in Proba's Cento Vergilianus. This is followed in chapter four by an investigation of the concepts of authorship and scriptural authority in late antiquity, the importance of an apostolic connection for a work's authority, the development of an authorial apostolic succession, and how this led to Proba's text being received as a form of subordinate scripture. Chapter five presents my second case study, Milton's Paradise Lost and is in turn followed by chapter six, which plots the history of literary interpretation as an inspired prophetic activity from its origins in the Jewish literature of the Second Temple period, through the Early Church's authorial apostolic succession, to the re-appropriation of prophetic identity by Protestant Reformers in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Finally, I offer a brief conclusion in which I draw together the various means by which biblical epics have enabled authors to compose scriptural texts after the closing of the biblical canon in order to demonstrate the continuing existence of scripture beyond the Bible, and to call for a re-evaluation of the definition of 'scripture' as a result of these findings.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Award:Master of Arts
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Theology and Religion, Department of
Thesis Date:2022
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:22 Jun 2022 14:38

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