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The Cambridge Dictionary of Christianity


  • Page extent: 1414 pages
  • Size: 253 x 215 mm
  • Weight: 2.3 kg

Library of Congress

  • Dewey number: 230.003
  • Dewey version: 22
  • LC Classification: BR95 .C24 2010
  • LC Subject headings:
    • Christianity--Dictionaries

Library of Congress Record

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 (ISBN-13: 9780521820967)

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 (Stock level updated: 02:10 GMT, 30 November 2015)


The Cambridge Dictionary of Christianity is an authoritative reference guide that enables students, their teachers, and Christian clergy to reflect critically upon all aspects of Christianity from its origins to the present day. Written by a team of 800 scholars and practitioners from around the world, the volume reflects the plurality of Christianity throughout its history. Key features: • Offers a presentation of the Christian beliefs and practices of all major Christian traditions in each continent and each nation • Highlights the different understandings of Christian beliefs and practices in different historical, cultural, religious, denominational, and secular contexts • Includes entries on methodology and the plurality of approaches that are used in the study of Christianity • Combines several approaches - including anthropological, cultural studies, ecumenical, and interfaith - to each Christian tradition • Respects each Christian tradition, through the self-presentation of Christianity in each country or Christian tradition • Includes clusters of entries on beliefs and practices, each presenting the understanding of a given Christian belief or practice in different historical and contemporary contexts • Demonstrates the relationship and interaction of Christianity with other religious traditions in various parts of the world • Provides a full bibliography on all topics covered in the volume

• A solid quick reference work for Christian clergy, professors and students in Christian seminaries and religious studies departments throughout the world • A web page with a 'for further reading' bibliography, open to the public and tagged to each of the signed entries of the CDC • A presentation of the global history of Christianity, in all parts of the world


Preface; Timeline; Dictionary; Index of selected names.

Prize Winner

A Choice Outstanding Academic Title 2011 - Winner


'The Cambridge Dictionary of Christianity is the most up-to-date treasure-trove addressing the question, What is Christianity? Eight hundred and twenty-eight contributors from around the globe set out to appraise the historical, contemporary, and ecumenical dimensions of the multi-faced Christianity in 134 countries. With its concise articles, the Dictionary serves as a launching pad for an academic study of Christianity at the beginning of the twenty-first century. A unique value of the Dictionary is its restraint from confessional, ethnic, and religious sensitivities. As an indispensable tool for study, it leads us to both admire the old dimensions of Christianity and discover the latest features of its diversity.' Professor Emeritus John Mbiti, University of Bern, Switzerland

'The Cambridge Dictionary of Christianity is an achievement of exceptional value, one that can substantially enrich basic instruction and advanced scholarly research on the formation and development of Christian beliefs and practices in socially and culturally diverse global settings. It provides succinct and accessible accounts of basic Christian doctrines, pivotal biblical texts, central liturgical practices, and patterns of ecclesiastical organization that are constitutive for major Christian traditions, embracing Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Anglican, ecumenical Protestant, and charismatic and evangelical Protestant movements. These traditions are examined, moreover, not simply in European or North American contexts, but with careful attention to their concrete manifestations in African, Asian, and Latin American settings.' Thomas Ogletree, Yale Divinity School

'This volume is the most impressive and comprehensive dictionary on Christianity available to us. Taking a global perspective, the editor brings together the best minds from diverse regions of the world and various disciplinary backgrounds to produce a global account of the Christian heritage and tradition in its historical, cultural, and social contexts. These fascinating and accessible essays taken together probe deeply into the essence, meaning, and functions of the Christian faith in the twenty-one centuries of its existence. This is a significant work for theologians, scholars of religion, church historians, and all those who are interested in the issues of cultural identity, globalization, and interreligious encounters.' Jacob K. Olupona, Harvard University

'This is the reference book I have been waiting for. It is broad in vision and comprehensive in scope, as its contributors represent a variety of Christian perspectives and beliefs. This historical survey from the origins of Christianity to the present provides us with a thick description of the nature of a rich ecumenical religion that is shaped by deep traditions and is ever-changing in the cultures in which it finds its various homes.' Emilie M. Townes, Yale Divinity School

'A wide-ranging and up-to-date view of the state of Christianity worldwide.' Church Times

'This dictionary has been eight years in preparation and the end result is a sizeable achievement both in the clarity of the contributions and in their arrangement.' Contemporary Review

'… adds much detail, texture, and thoughtful analysis … all students of the topic should welcome it and want to read it.' Benedetto Clausi, The Sixteenth Century Journal

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