Prayer and Incantation on Early Christian Amulets Cover Image

Prayer and Incantation on Early Christian Amulets
Prayer and Incantation on Early Christian Amulets

Authoritative Traditions, Ritual Practices, and Material Objects

Author(s): Joseph E. Sanzo
Subject(s): Christian Theology and Religion, History, Ancient World, Middle Ages, Theology and Religion, History of Religion
Published by: Trivent Publishing
Keywords: Amulet; prayer; magic; religion; materiality; euchê; phylaktêrion.
Summary/Abstract: This chapter examines the manifold ways late antique Christian practitioners (ca. third-seventh centuries) negotiated the boundaries between Christian prayers and traditional amuletic practices. I supplement recent research, which has usefully demonstrated the overlapping characteristics of prayers and incantations, by focusing on the semantic range and principal traits of the term euchê (and its cognates) when it is present on Greek and Coptic amulets and ritual handbooks. The analysis is further augmented by a discussion of how some practitioners diminished or highlighted the material properties of prayers in their apotropaic and curative rituals.

  • Page Range: 99-116
  • Page Count: 18
  • Publication Year: 2020
  • Language: English