At the Oxford Patristics Conference

I have been accepted to present a paper on the Great Stemma at the Oxford Patristics Conference which takes place in England August 8-12. The paper will be a short communication delivered during one of the parallel sessions when participants can divide up according to the area that interests them.

Here is my abstract (I think I am allowed to publish this, though the paper itself is under wraps until delivery):

The annotated diagram which spans eight folios of Florence Laurenziana Plutei 20.54, ff 38r-45v is demonstrably Late Antique in origin. This little-studied Latin work, partly published by Wilhelm Neuss and Bonifatius Fischer, presents a genealogy from Adam to Christ. It is also found in a cluster of Spanish bibles and the Apocalypse commentary of Beatus of Liébana. The anonymous author worked entirely from the Vetus Latina rather than from Jerome's Vulgate. We can study how a Late Antique author used complex graphics in place of prose to include a non-canonical figure, Joachim, as father of the Virgin within the genealogy of Christ. He structured the diagram around a timeline based on Eusebius's Chronological Canons. The paper will present a reconstruction of the diagram's archetype, arguing that it was originally a chart displaying synchronisms between scripture and history. It suggests that information graphics were a tool in early Christian literature.

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