Chapter

Introduction

J. K. Elliott

in The Apocryphal New Testament

Published in print November 2005 | ISBN: 9780198261827
Published online April 2009 |
Introduction

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Included in this section are translations of: The Protevangelium of James The Infancy Gospel of Thomasand translations of extracts from: The Gospel of Pseudo‐Matthew The Arabic Infancy Gospel Arundel 404 The History of Joseph the Carpenter. There then follows a section discussing other infancy narratives listed on p. 118, for which translations have not been given.‘Whenever biographical literature shows gaps, legend generally springs up, in the absence of reliable information, to supply the deficiency.’ These words by Oscar Cullmann translated in Hennecke–Schneemelcher, New Testament Apocrypha (3rd edn., i. 364; 5th edn., i. 415), explain the origin of many of the infancy and birth stories to be found here. Although some collections of apocryphal gospels subdivide the infancy narratives into birth stories and infancy stories (for example, de Santos Otero) it is convenient to group all these gospels under one head. They tell of events in the life of Jesus prior to his public ministry, and of his parentage.

Chapter.  762 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies ; Biblical Studies

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