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The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church [Hardcover]

F. L. Cross , E. A. Livingstone
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Book Description

27 Mar 1997
The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, since its first appearance in 1957, has established itself as the indispensable one-volume reference work on all aspects of the Christian Church. This third edition, the first for over twenty years, builds on the unrivalled reputation of the previous editions. Revised and updated, it reflects changes in academic opinion and Church organisation. There is increased coverage of the Eastern Churches, certain issues in moral theology, and developments stemming from the Second Vatican Council. Numerous new entries have been added and the extensive bibliographies have been brought up to date. Readers are provided with over 6,000 authoritative cross-referenced A-Z entries covering all aspects of the subject, including: * Theology - the development of doctrines in different Churches; heretical movements and spirituality and their exponents; history of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation; discoveries of Nag Hammadi and their significance for Gnosticism. * Patristic scholarship - Fathers of the Church on whose work later theology is founded are covered in detail, for example, the problems of Macarius of Egypt and Macarius/Simeon are elucidated; the recently discovered Sermons of St Augustine are listed. * Churches and denominations - the beliefs and structures of both the mainstream and the lesser known denominations, such as Lutherans, Shakers, Amish, Muggletonians, and Wee Frees; lengthy articles on the history of Christianity throughout the world, in countries such as Ireland, Spain, Poland, Canada, New Zealand, Angola, Zaire, the Philippines. * The Church calendar and organisation - feast and saints' days; Sacraments; church services, offices, rites, and practices; canon law including Catholic revision; councils and synods; religious orders. * Biographical entries - these are wide-ranging and include saints, popes, patriarchs, and archbishops; mystics, heretics, and reformers; theologians and philosophers with a summary of their opinions; artists, poets, and musicians whose work has been influenced by Christianity. * New entries - Arator; Liberation Theology; Ludwig Wittgenstein; ordination of women; Christian attitudes to Jews; Christianity in Vietnam; The Quest of the Historical Jesus; the ethics of contraception, procreation, and abortion.


Product details

  • Hardcover: 1824 pages
  • Publisher: OUP Oxford; 3 edition (27 Mar 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 019211655X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0192116550
  • Product Dimensions: 25.5 x 20.2 x 7.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 802,812 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church is an indispensable guide to all aspects of the Christian Church. It contains 6,000 A-Z entries offering unrivalled coverage from theology and the Bible to the church calendar and its organization.

This revision of the Third Edition (1997) features new coverage of recent developments, including the Church of England's new prayer book and ecumenical advances and mergers. Containing new articles on subjects such as Desmond Tutu and updated articles reflecting new understanding on topics like the Holy Sepulchre, the ODCC is a uniquely authoritative and wide-ranging reference book.

Established since its first appearance in 1957 as an essential resource for ordinands, clergy, and members of religious orders; ODCC is an invaluable tool for academics, teachers, and students of church history and theology, as well as for the general reader.

THEOLOGY
- the development of doctrines throughout the ages, with their philosophical background and the different traditions of the major Churches
- spirituality and heresy
- history of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation

PATRISTIC SCHOLARSHIP: Fathers of the Church, on whose work later theology is founded, are covered in detail, for example
- the Nag Hammadi papyri and their significance for our understanding of Gnosticism
- the problems of Marcarius of Egypt and Macarius/Simeon are explored
- the recently discovered sermons of Augustine are mentioned, with their places of publication listed

CHURCHES AND DENOMINATIONS
- the beliefs and structures of both the mainstream and lesser-known denominations such as Amish, Muggletonians, Shakers, and Wee Frees
- lengthy articles on the history of Christianity throughout the world, in countries such as Angola, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the Philippines, Poland, Spain, the United States, Vietnam, and Zaire

THE CHURCH CALENDAR AND ORGANIZATION
- feast and saints' days
- Sacraments
- church services, offices, rites, and practices
- canon law including Catholic revision
- councils and synods
- religious orders

THE BIBLE
- individual Biblical Books
- major figures from Abraham, Moses, and King David to St Paul and the Evangelists
- schools of Biblical criticism and entries on their chief exponents

BIOGRAPHICAL ENTRIES
- these are wide ranging and include saints, popes, patriarchs, and archbishops
- emperors, kings, and other rulers
- mystics, heretics, and reformers
- theologians and philosophers, with a summary of their opinions
- artists, poets, and musicians --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

About the Author


E. A. Livingstone was involved in the first edition and assumed the editorship of the second on the death of F.L. Cross. She has been responsible for the organization of the International Conferences on Patristic Studies from 1971 to 1995 and has edited the proceedings. The late F.L. Cross was the Lady Margaret Professor of Divinity at the University of Oxford from 1944 to 1968.
--This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Second to none 5 Nov 2004
By Kurt Messick HALL OF FAME
Format:Hardcover
'The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church', edited by the late F.L. Cross and E. A. Livingstone, is perhaps the authoritative, one-volume encyclopedia of information on Christianity. With over 480 contributors, from a myriad of denominational backgrounds, this book has a completeness that is unrivalled. Scholars from Anglican, Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian, Roman Catholic and other denominations, as well as Jewish and secular authorities from all over the world, have written or contributed to articles that reflect as best possible an unbiased and authoritative compilation of history, theology, liturgy, scriptural study, art, biographies, denominational and calendrical organisation, and inter-religious attitudes.
The current edition, published in 1997, is the third edition of the ODCC to appear since its was first issued in 1957. It has an unrivalled reputation since first being published by Oxford don and cleric F.L. Cross. After his death, Dr. E.A. Livingstone took the helm to oversee production of the current volume.
There is increased coverage of the Eastern Churches, certain issues in moral theology, and developments stemming from the Second Vatican Council. Numerous new entries have been added and the extensive bibliographies have been brought up to date. Readers are provided with over 6,000 authoritative cross-referenced entries covering all aspects of the subject.
The book is over 1750 pages in length, very much the ready reference rather than the narrative sort, but many of the longer articles provide depth and detail, and articles generally include references for further research at the conclusion.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful 20 Jan 2008
By Origen
Format:Hardcover
It is very difficult to convey the breathtaking quality of this volume. It does justice to almost every subject within its remit. You will find impeccably written articles on a range of subjects and ideas: people and movements; philosophy and theology. There is also an attempt to account for the geographical (and not just chronological) spread of the Christian movement over the past 2000 years. The volume, however, is of course primarily directed towards English and American readers and this is reflected in its choice of issues. There is a primary interest in European and North American Christianity. Perhaps the volume's only deficiency is the lightness of its treatment of 'pre-Christian Israel' and the religion of the Jewish people. Of course, it is the 'dictionary of the Christian church', but it would have been nice to see in some of the individual articles of the volume and in the volume as a whole, a greater deal of attention allocated to 'Hebrew' origins and traditions.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
As is the case with so many other books which have undergone revision in more or less the manner of the Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, it is simple-minded to assume that a new edition renders the prior ones obsolete. Works like this (or, for another stunning example in another field, the various editions of the Grove dictionary of music) are of collaborative authorship, which makes older editions valuable for the writing of the authorities who have contributed to such works over the years and from one edition to another. I can assure one that there is "much gold to mine" in those old editions! Articles which have been dropped from one edition to another (with the result, for some topics that there is even a gap in coverage in later editions) frequently retain their value, as giving divergent and worthy accounts of the same phenomena. In fact, some of the articles in previous editions of the Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church are superior to the articles which appeared in later editions.

The fact that there has been a welcome broadening of interest on the part of the editors beyond the once just-a-bit too highly favoured Anglican, Presbyterian, and Catholic Christian domain, to cover other streams of Christianity more fully than in the past, is commendable, but can leave some aspects and byways (e.g., biography) of those same once highly favoured traditions less fully covered than in previous editions.

If the reader can afford it, he ought to obtain all of the editions of this work. If cannot have them for his personal collection, he assuredly should consult all editions of this ecclesiastical dictionary in libraries.
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