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Current Research Themes and Projects

Scientific Culture in Late Antiquity

This theme explores the phenomenon of scientific culture in Late Antiquity. The focus is on literary, archaeological or other evidence which throws light on the scientific developments of the period, especially in view of the relationships between theoreticians, practitioners, scientists, engineers, industrialists, traders, politicians, religious and military personnel.

The Latin and Syriac Commentary Project

This project explores the roots of modern western and Islamic attitudes to religion, science, and learning. In classical antiquity the main form of scientific writing was the commentary. Its main language was Greek. From the third century CE Greek texts were translated and new commentaries were written in 'new' languages, in particular Latin and Syriac.

Genre and Content in Late-Antique Latin Literature

This theme includes research in a broad range of late-antique Latin literature. It involves a significant number of centre staff, associates and research students, who work with a variety of methodological approaches.

Chinese Nestorian Documents from the Tang Dynasty

This translation project comprises all texts ascribed to the so-called Nestorian church in China during the Tang period. The best known of these texts is certainly the so-called Stele of Xi’an, the Daqin-jingjiao-liuxing-zhongguo-bei 景教流行中國碑, the "Stele of the Transmission of the Brilliant Teaching to the Middle Kingdom", which has been worked on now for centuries and is still used as a main sources for the history of the "Church of the East".

Julian of Aeclanum and the Hirpini in Late Antiquity

The aim of this project is a comprehensive study of Julian of Aeclanum, one of the most interesting figures of late-antique Latin Christianity, within his historical, social, cultural and religious context.

Other Current Themes and Projects:

  • Religious Identity in Late Antiquity
  • The Body, Space and Matter in Late Antiquity
  • Philosophy and Religion in the Second Century
  • Early Christian Epigraphy