The socio-economic context of Capernaum’s limestone synagogue and Jewish–Christian relations in the late-ancient town
Keywords:Capernaum in Late Antiquity, Jewish – Christian relations, Ancient synagogues, Christianity in Ancient Palestine
In this article, I consider a set of contextual questions related to the social and economic influences on the construction and use of Capernaum’s great limestone synagogue, and ask what these influences might tell us about Jewish–Christian relations in this village during the fifth and sixth centuries CE. After a survey of current scholarship, I address issues of method and engage in the interpretation of the relevant primary sources, some of which have only very recently been discovered, while others have been overlooked in discussion of the question, or are deserving of reinterpretation. Building upon previous proposals, and in places revising them, I argue that we should see a dynamic interplay at work between local and non-local sources of funding for the synagogue and an intensely interactive and relational setting for the town’s Jews and Christians.
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Copyright (c) 2021 Wally Cirafesi
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