Posted by: chuckbumgardner | January 15, 2015

Ancient Perceptions of Women

Here and there, you’ll find collections of texts that set forth what the ancients thought about women. I compiled my own collection, trying to focus particularly on texts that gave contrasting background to 1 Peter 3:7: “Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered” (ESV). My point in the compilation was to see how Peter’s description of woman as both the “weaker vessel” (ἀσθενεστέρῳ σκεύει) and, with their husband, “heirs of the grace of life” (συγκληρονόμοις χάριτος ζωῆς) compared with the thought of his culture’s legacy and contemporary writers. The attached document has quotations from Xenophon (4th c. BC), Plato (4th c. BC), Aristotle (4th c. BC), the Letter of Aristeas (2nd c. BC), Cicero (1st c. BC), the Testament of Reuben (c. 1st c. AD), Musonius Rufus (1st c. AD), Dio Chrysostom (1st c. AD), Philo (1st c. AD), the papyri (1st c. AD), and Josephus (1st c. AD). Interesting reading!

Click here: Ancient Perceptions on Women

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