Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Chalcedon feels like a guilty pleasure...

Over lunch I browsed the stacks in the Rutherford Library at the University of Alberta. It is one of the reasons I love working on campus. (For those of you who don't know, I am employed by Athabasca University, but work fully integrated into a Government of Alberta branch, helping to protect historic buildings and other cultural landscapes). I came across this new, three-volume, critical edition of The Acts of the Council of Chalcedon. It is beautifully done. I waded in briefly to the first few pages of the proceedings of this Council, and the translation reads elegantly, conjuring up what it must have felt like, eight days before the Ides of October, 451, when the bishops and imperial officials gathered together in the Church of the holy martyr Euphemia. I have to admit, it is almost like a soap opera, with the degree of drama the opening ceremonies of the Council experienced: accusations of murder, threats, and thwarted egos. And in the midst of it, the two Natures of the Incarnate One are revealed. I feel like a fly on the wall. I want to linger.



Blogger Krista said...

It's a pretty incredible set. It is amazing that we have such records of this historical event translated. It is word for word and the few lines you've read to me have been pretty dramatic...I thought it was pretty cool that all the bishops in attendance were listed, over 300 bishops listed and government officials of that time as well. Pretty awesome! Anywhoo, gotta go!

10:57 PM  
Blogger Christopher said...


I'll look it up. I'm in a course this semester that wraps up with readings from Cyril of Alexandria (On the Unity of Christ and Against Nestorius).

Chalcedon is so interesting and so seedy (politically) all at the same time!

5:52 AM  
Blogger papa herman said...

in the spirit of roaming college libraries...

i also enjoy roaming the shelves of college bookstores-- i like to roam the shelves of the required texts for classes; sometimes you can come across a book and it captures your interest.

5:03 PM  

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