Liberating the liberated – Student dissertation (part 5)

Having explored the socio-political status of former slaves (the apeleutheroi or ‘freedpersons’) and the function of manumission within the Roman world (parts 1, 2, 3 and 4), Isabella Wray begins to address Paul’s use of apeleutheros within the context of the Corinthian community. One of the things that intrigued Isabella is that, although Paul frequently refers to slavery, liberation and being free, he only uses the term apeleutheros once (1 Corinthians 7: 22) – fans of University Challenge will know that a singular instance of a word in a text or corpus is sometimes referred to as a ‘hapax legomenon’.

Isabella Wray

Isabella is a graduand of Newman University  (graduating in October 2017) and we are very grateful for her generosity in allowing us to post excerpts from her BA dissertation. Continue reading

Erastus and Corinth – Student dissertation (part 4)

In his surviving writings, Paul’s preferred term for people who are not slaves appears to be ἐλεύθερος (eleutheros); ‘free’. However, in 1 Corinthians 7:22, Paul uses a more specific term ἀπελεύθερος (apeleutheros), ‘freedman/feedperson’, referring to slaves who had been emancipated through the civic and legal process of manumission. Although it was a relatively common word, Paul only uses it once.  Newman University graduand Isabella Wray explored what may have prompted Paul to use it here and what his readers may have understood by its use.

This excerpt from her dissertation, introduces us to a freedperson who, like Babbius Philinus (see part 2), rose to become an influential figure in Corinthian society. What is particularly intriguing about this person, however, is that he may also have also been a member of the Corinthian church…


Paul’s Liberating Theology in 1 Corinthians 7:21-24: The Freedperson’s Journey to Liberation

BACHELOR OF ARTS (SINGLE HONOURS) DEGREE IN THEOLOGY
SUBMITTED IN PART FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE AWARD OF NEWMAN UNIVERSITY

Isabella Wray

 

2.5 Erastus of Panaeus

(The Erastus Inscription, Corinth museum and archaeological site, 2016. Image: Isabella Wray).
The inscription translates: “Erastus, Procurator and Aedile, laid this pavement at his own expense.”

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