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,,Eritis sicut dii' Die Darstellung des paradiesischen Sündenfalls in der spätantiken Heptateuchdichtung (gen. 64 ff.)

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In the Heptateuch paraphrase, probably written in the first half of the fifth century A. D., its anonymous author embellishes the biblical narrative, which describes the temptation of the first humans in Paradise, with a strange detail: Adam and Eve, who before the Fall were blind and swathed in darkness, enjoy an extraordinary experience of light after eating the forbidden fruit, as promised by the devilish snake: The heavens glow with bright light and their eyes shine. This miraculous light, which is not God's gift, but the result of their rebellious and self-willed defiance of divine ordinance, symbolizes the presumptuousness of mankind's progenitors in seeking to equal God. The metaphor of light is borrowed from the philosophic and religious ideas of Neoplatonism and of the mystery cults. These ideas suggest that a God-like status can be achieved through the individual pursuit of knowledge. The Heptateuch poet employs his depiction of the Fall to inveigh against such designs.
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Language: German

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2019

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  • Hermes, founded in 1866 and currently edited by Hans Beck, Marcus Deufert and Martin Hose, is an international, peer-reviewed journal on Greek and Roman antiquity. It focuses on linguistics, literature as well as history. It features original articles in English, German, French and Italian.
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