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  • Print publication year: 1967
  • Online publication date: March 2008

Chapter 10 - Clement of Alexandria

from Part II - PHILO AND THE BEGINNINGS OF CHRISTIAN THOUGHT
Summary
Clement of Alexandria was born probably of pagan parents about the middle of the second century and died probably before 215. He sat at the feet of a succession of Christian teachers, of whom the last was the Alexandrian Pantaenus, a Stoic philosopher converted to Christianity. Clement has two chief theories of the origin of philosophy. First, there is his thesis that the Greeks plagiarized Moses and the prophets. Secondly, Clement affirms that the positive value of philosophy for theology is a simple corollary of the capacity for reason and insight implanted in man by the Creator. Clement's judgement on the problem of transmigration is obscure since his promised discussion never materializes. Clement is sensitive to the criticism that in some degree the New Testament holds out heavenly rewards for virtue and threatens punishment for unrepented sin. He sought to make the Church safe for philosophy and the acceptance of classical literature.
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The Cambridge History of Later Greek and Early Medieval Philosophy
  • Online ISBN: 9781139055147
  • Book DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CHOL9780521040549
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