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Author Topic: Books on Church History  (Read 1467 times) Average Rating: 0
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akelios
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« on: May 06, 2010, 04:29:57 PM »

Hello,

As you might guess from the title, I'm looking for books on the history of the Orthodox church. I searched through the archives and found several threads with books recommendations for converts, but, as far as I saw, none of them were focused specifically on history.

I did see The Orthodox Church by Kallistos Ware recommended on almost every one of those threads, but I've already read (and thoroughly enjoyed) that one.

If there is a thread just on history books, I've missed it, and I'd love it if someone could point me to it. Otherwise, I'm just looking for ideas of where I can go to expand my historical knowledge.

Thanks,
Amber
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Justin Kissel
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« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2010, 04:33:20 PM »

For some links to some online texts from the early Church historians, there is this thread. As far as actual books, fwiw one popular set among Orthodox Christians is The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine (in five volumes) by Jaroslav Pelikan.
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« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2010, 04:36:24 PM »

As you might guess from the title, I'm looking for books on the history of the Orthodox church.

Is there a particular period you are interested in? Do you want an institutionally approved version of the history, or reflections from outside of the Church? Are you interested in lives of saints, or basically another book akin to His Eminence's?
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akelios
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« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2010, 04:56:03 PM »

Asteriktos,

Thanks for the link to that post! I'll have to bookmark those and check them out.

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akelios
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« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2010, 04:58:46 PM »

Is there a particular period you are interested in? Do you want an institutionally approved version of the history, or reflections from outside of the Church? Are you interested in lives of saints, or basically another book akin to His Eminence's?

Hmmm...I don't really have a particular period in mind, no. I was thinking more of, I guess, an expanded version of Kallistos Ware's work. Something that would go more in depth over the whole (very long) history so that, from a better grasp of that, I might know which specific periods I'd be more interested in.

-Amber
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Carl Kraeff (Second Chance)
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« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2010, 05:02:55 PM »

Hello,

As you might guess from the title, I'm looking for books on the history of the Orthodox church. I searched through the archives and found several threads with books recommendations for converts, but, as far as I saw, none of them were focused specifically on history.

I did see The Orthodox Church by Kallistos Ware recommended on almost every one of those threads, but I've already read (and thoroughly enjoyed) that one.

If there is a thread just on history books, I've missed it, and I'd love it if someone could point me to it. Otherwise, I'm just looking for ideas of where I can go to expand my historical knowledge.

Thanks,
Amber

You cannot go wrong with The Historical Road of Eastern Orthodoxy (1977) by Father Alexander Schmemann of blessed memory.
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akelios
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« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2010, 12:54:21 PM »

You cannot go wrong with The Historical Road of Eastern Orthodoxy (1977) by Father Alexander Schmemann of blessed memory.

That looks very good. Thanks!

-Amber
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jah777
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« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2010, 01:43:41 PM »

You may also wish to go to http://www.holytrinitymission.org/ and select "Textbooks" and scroll down to the "History of the Church" and "History of the Russian Church" sections.  Some of these texts are still in print, others are out of print but could be requested through your local library's Interlibrary Loan program, but all are available from this link electronically.
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pensateomnia
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« Reply #8 on: May 09, 2010, 10:29:01 PM »

Otherwise, I'm just looking for ideas of where I can go to expand my historical knowledge.

No contest: Your next step should be to read Vols 2 through 4 of "The Church in History" series published by St. Vlad's. You'll get a survey style similar to Met. Kallistos' book, but much more in depth, since each volume focuses on a much smaller period of time. Avoid Vol. 1 by Veselin Kesich. Quite weak. It's actually being rewritten by another author, I think. But the others are excellent surveys. Can't be beat, if history is your thing.

Imperial Unity And Christian Divisions: The Church from 450-680 A.D. (Church in History, Vol 2) by John Meyendorff

Greek East And Latin West: The Church AD 681-1071 (The Church in History, Vol 3) by Andrew Louth

The Christian East and the Rise of the Papacy: The Church 1071-1453 A.D (Church History, Vol 4) by Aristeides Papadakis
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« Reply #9 on: May 10, 2010, 09:51:16 AM »

   I want to read the book by Kallistos Ware.   There are also books by David Bentley Hart, who is Western Rite Orthodox (which means somebody from the Anglican tradition that is part of the Antiochians), about the general history of Christianity, he focuses on the east alot and have heard good reviews of his boks (I read his books that is a critique of the Neo-Atheist attack on Christianity and also I am looking into the one on Christianity and aesthetics).
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Shanghaiski
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« Reply #10 on: May 10, 2010, 11:23:21 AM »

Otherwise, I'm just looking for ideas of where I can go to expand my historical knowledge.

No contest: Your next step should be to read Vols 2 through 4 of "The Church in History" series published by St. Vlad's. You'll get a survey style similar to Met. Kallistos' book, but much more in depth, since each volume focuses on a much smaller period of time. Avoid Vol. 1 by Veselin Kesich. Quite weak. It's actually being rewritten by another author, I think. But the others are excellent surveys. Can't be beat, if history is your thing.

Imperial Unity And Christian Divisions: The Church from 450-680 A.D. (Church in History, Vol 2) by John Meyendorff

Greek East And Latin West: The Church AD 681-1071 (The Church in History, Vol 3) by Andrew Louth

The Christian East and the Rise of the Papacy: The Church 1071-1453 A.D (Church History, Vol 4) by Aristeides Papadakis

Amen to that, I say! Also, read Henry Chadwick's "The Early Church" and anything by Sir Steven Runciman.
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ialmisry
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« Reply #11 on: May 10, 2010, 12:18:54 PM »

Have you read Eusebius' Ecclesiastical History.
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« Reply #12 on: May 10, 2010, 12:26:20 PM »

I echo ialmisry's suggestion.  Pick up Paul Maier's translation, as it's a heck of a lot more readable than the Loeb Classical Library edition.
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« Reply #13 on: May 10, 2010, 02:02:05 PM »

I didn't find "Ecclesiastical History" with Paul Maier, just "The Church History." Is there a site where you can link to it so I can find the ISBN?
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