This chapter discusses Victorinus’ commentary on Galatians in terms of its exegetical techniques and genre. These aspect of his work on Galatians are compared with both Christian and non-Christian commentaries of the third and fourth centuries. His use of prefaces and exegetical techniques, such as paraphrase (including his appropriation of the apostle Paul’s first-person) are examined. Victorinus’ hermeneutical vocabulary provides a key for understanding what he intends by the manner of commentary he denominated commentatio simplex, which is can only somewhat misleadingly be called ‘literal’. Victorinus’ commentaries on Paul with their philosophical excurses have affinities with non-Christian philosophical eisagogic commentaries in their attempt to establish a basic platform as prerequisite for deeper philosophical or theological understanding.
Keywords: early Christian commentaries; prefaces; exegetical techniques; pagan literary criticism; literal interpretation; allegorical interpretation; philosophical excurses; paraphrase; rhetoric
Chapter. 19859 words.
Subjects: Early Christianity
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