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Human Condition in Hilary of Poitiers: The Will and Original Sin between Origen and Augustine (Isabella Image) Hardcover Book, (Oxford University Press, 2017) 9780198806646
Human Condition in Hilary of Poitiers: The Will and Original Sin between Origen and Augustine (Isabella Image) Hardcover Book, (Oxford University Press, 2017) 9780198806646
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Title: Human Condition in Hilary of Poitiers: The Will and Original Sin between Origen and Augustine

Author: Image, Isabella

Publisher: Oxford University Press; Publication Date: 2017

Hardcover; ISBN: 9780198806646

Volumes: 1; Pages: 256

List Price in Hardcover: $85.00 Our price: $71.99

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While he is more commonly known for his Trinitiarian works and theology, this study assesses mid-fourth-century bishop Hilary of Poitiers' view of the human condition. Isabella Image shows that the Commentary on Psalm 118 is more closely related to Origen's than previously thought. Image explains how his articulations of sin, body and soul, the Fall and the will all parallel or echo Origen's views in this work, but not necessarily in his Matthew Commentary. Hilary has a doctrine of original sin ('sins of our origin', peccata originis), which differs from the individual personal sins and for which we are individually accountable. He also articulates a fallen will which is in thrall to disobedience and needs God's help, something God always gives as long as we show the initiative. Hilary's idea of the fallen will may have developed in tangent with Origen's thought, which uses Stoic ideas on the process of human action in order to articulate the constraints on purely rational responses. Hilary in turn influences Augustine, who writes against the Pelagian bishop Julian of Eclanum citing Hilary as an example of an earlier writer with original sin. Since Hilary is known to have used Origen's work, and Augustine is known to have used Hilary's, Hilary appears to be one of the stepping-stones between these two great giants of the early church as the doctrines of original sin and the fallen will developed.

The Human Condition in Hilary of Poitiers not only identifies Hilary's anthropological thought, but also places it in the current of theological development of the fourth century. It considers reception of Origen in the mid-fourth century, before the criticisms of Epiphanius and the debates in the Egyptian monastic communities. This work also contributes to understanding of the tradition from which Augustine received his doctrine of original sin.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction

Hilary of Poitiers: Life and Afterlife

Hilary's Context: Between Origen and Augustine

Modern Scholarship on Hilary's Theological Anthropology

Methodology: Comparing Hilary's Commentaries

Research Questions

2. Hilary's Commentary on Psalm 118


Jerome on Hilary's Psalm Commentaries

Textual Witnesses to Origen on Psalm 118

Case Study: Ps. 118.17-24 (strophe 'gimel')

Analysis: Hilary's Translation Technique

Adaptation of Theology


3. Body and Soul


Literature Review

Body and Soul in the Psalms Commentaries

Body and Soul in Commentary on Matthew

Hilary's Influences


4. The Human as Imago Dei


Current Scholarship

IImago as Expression of our Creation and Progression

Hilary Adopting Origen? Imago Theology in the Psalms Commentaries

Hilary Rejecting Origen? The Lost Image


5. The Fall


The Fall Narrative

First Cause of the Fall

Some Effects of the Fall


6. Constraint (1): Voluntas


Hilary's Articulations of the Will

Voluntas before Augustine



7. Constraint (2): Thought and Passions


Passions and Emotions

Hilary and Stoic Ideas of Mental Processes


A Difference from Stoic Thought: apatheia


8. Original Sin


The Sinful State: Creation or Fall?

The 'Sins of our Origin'

Transmission by Birth



9. Hilary Between Origen and Augustine


Hilary's Anthropology

Hilary's Usage of Origen

Augustine's Usage of Hilary

Closing Remarks

Appendix I: The 'Anthropological Household' (Hilary, InMt 10.23-24)

Appendix II: Third strophe of Ps118 (gimel: v17-24) Comparison of Commentaries of Origen, Hilary and Ambrose


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