Origen of Alexandria (c. 184 – c. 253)

read by Patricia McGinn
Origen: “For as man consists of body, and soul, and spirit, so in the same  way does Scripture” | First Thoughts






Ancient Sources

  • Epiphanius, circa 374, Ancoratus and Panarion, ed. K. Holl, 3 vols, Leipzig: Hinrichs, 1915–1933.
  • Eusebius, circa 320, Ecclesiastical History (Church History), ed. and trans. K. Lake, 2 vols, Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1926.
  • Gregory Thaumaturgus, Remerciement à Origène (Panegyric), ed. H. Crouzel, Paris: Cerf, 1969.
  • Irenaeus of Lyons, Contre les Heresies, ed. J. Rouseeau and H. Doutrelaeau, 10 vols., Paris: Cerf, 1972–1982.
  • Methodius, circa 300, Werke, ed. N. Bonwetsch, Leipzig: Böhme, 1899.
  • Origen, De Principiis (First Principles; Princ.), ed. P. Koetschau, Leipzig: Hinrichs, 1913; translation G.W. Buttwerworth, London: SPCK 1936; reprinted Gloucester, Mass.: Peter Smith, 1973.
  • Origen, Entretien avec Héraclide (Dialogue with Heraclides), ed. J. Scherer, Paris: Cerf, 1960; translation, R.J. Daly, Westminster: Paulist Press, 1982.
  • Origen, Gegen Celsus (Against Celsus), with Von Gebet (On Prayer) and Ermahunung zum Martyrium (Exhortation to Martyrdom), ed. P. Koetschau, 2 vols, Leipzig: Hinrichs, 1899; translation of Against Celsus, Henry Chadwick, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1953; translations of Exhortation to the Martyrs and On Prayer, R. Greer, Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1988.
  • Origen, Homilien zum Buch Genesis (Genesis Homilies), ed. P. Habermehl, Berlin: De Gruyter, 2012; translation, R. Heine, Washington: Catholic University of America, 1982.
  • Origen, Die Kommentierung des Buches Genesis, ed. K. Metzler, Berlin: De Gruyter 2010.
  • Origen, Homilien/Kommentar zum Hohelied (Homilies on the Song of Songs), ed. W. Baehrens, Leipzig: Hinrichs, 1925; translation, J. Lawson, Westminster: Paulist Press, 1957.
  • Origen, Johanneskommentar (Commentary on John) [CommJohn], ed. E. Preuschen, Leipzig: Hinrichs, 1903; translation, R. Heine, 2 vols., Washington: Catholic University of America, 1993.
  • Origen, Philocalie (Philokalia), 2 vols, ed. E. Junod and M. Harl, Paris: Cerf, 1976 and 1983; translation, G. Lewis, London: T. and T. Clark, 1911.
  • Origen, Römerbriefkommentar (Commentary on Romans), ed. C. Hammond Bammel, 3 vols, Freiburg: Herder, 1996, reprinted Paris: Cerf, 2009–2012; translation, T.P. Scheck, 2 vols., Washington: Catholic University of America, 2001–2.
  • Pamphilus/Eusebius, circa 305, Apologia pro Origene (Apology), ed. G. Röwekamp, Turhout: Brepols, 2005.
  • Philo of Alexandria, ed. and trans. by various hands, 14 vols., Loeb Classical Library, Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.

Scholarly Literature

  • Armstrong, A.H., 1960, “The Background of the Doctrine that ‘the Intelligibles are not outside the Intellect’”, Entretiens Hardt 5: Les Sources de Plotin, Vandoeuvres/Geneva: Fondation Hardt, 393–413.
  • Bammel, C.P., 1989, “Adam in Origen”, in R.D. Williams (ed.), The Making of Orthodoxy: Essays in Honour of Henry Chadwick, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 62–93.
  • Bendinelli, G., 1997, Commentario a Matteo di Origene, Rome: Augustinian Pontifical Institute.
  • Bergjan, S.-P., 2001. “Celsus the Epicurean? The Interpretation of an Argument in Origen, Contra Celsum”, Harvard Theological Review, 94: 179–204.
  • Böhm, T., 2002, “Origenes, Theologe und (Neu)Platöniker?”, Adamantius, 8: 6–23.
  • Chadwick, H., 1959, “Rufinus and the Tura papyrus of Origen’s Commentary on Romans”, Journal of Theological Studies, 10: 10–42.
  • Clark, E., 1992, The Origenist Controversy, Princeton: Princeton University Press.
  • Crouzel, H., 1972, “L’exégèse origénienne de I Cor 3, 11–15 et la purification eschatologique”, in J. Fontanier and C. Kannengiesser (eds), Epektasis. Mélanges offerts au Cardinal Jean Daniélou, Paris: Beauchesne, 273–283.
  • –––, 1973, “A letter from Origen ‘to friends in Alexandria’”, in D. Neiman and M. Schatkin (eds), The Heritage of the Early Church: Essays in Honour of George Vasilievich Florovsky, Rome: Pontifico Istituto Orientale: 135–150.
  • –––, 1980, “La doctrine origénienne du corps resusscité”, Bulletin de Littérature Ecclésiastique, 81: 175–200 and 241–266.
  • Dawson, D., 1992 Allegorical Readers and Cultural Revision in Ancient Alexandria, Berkeley: University of California Press.
  • Dechow, J., 1977, Dogma and Mysticism in Early Christianity, Macon, GA: Mercer University Press.
  • Dillon, J., 1982, “Origen’s Doctrine of the Trinity and some later Neoplatonic Theories”, in D.J. O’Meara (ed., Neoplatonism and Early Christian Thought, Norfolk, Virginia: International Society for Neoplatonic Studies, 19–23.
  • Dorival, G., 2013, “Origen”, in J. Carleton-Paget (ed.), The New Cambridge History of the Bible, vol. 1, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 605–628.
  • Edwards, M.J., 1993, “Ammonius, Teacher of Origen”, Journal of Ecclesiastical History, 44: 169–181.
  • –––, 1997, “Precursors of Origen’s Hermeneutic Theory”, Studia Patristica, 29: 232–237.
  • –––, 1998, “Did Origen Apply the Word Homoousios to the Son?”, Journal of Theological Studies, 49: 658–670.
  • –––, 2000, “Clement of Alexandria and his Doctrine of the Logos”, Vigiliae Christianae, 54: 159–177.
  • –––, 2006, “Nicene Theology and the Second God”, Studia Patristica, 40: 191–195.
  • –––, 2010, “The Fate of the Devil in Origen”, Ephemerides Theologicae Louvanienses, 86: 163–170.
  • Harl, M., 1987, “La pre-existence des âmes dans l’oeuvre d’Origène”, Origeniana Quarta, ed. by L. Lies, Innsbruck: Tyrolia-Verlag, 238–258.
  • Heidl, G., 2003, Origen’s Influence on the Young Augustine, Piscataway, NJ: Gorgias Press.
  • King, C., 2005, Origen on the Song of Songs as the Soul of Scripture, Oxford: Clarendon Press.
  • Layton, R., 2004, Didymus the Blind and his Circle in late Antique Alexandria, Urbana IL: Illinois University Press.
  • Louth, A.W., 2000, Origins of the Christian Mystical Tradition. From Plato to Denys, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Markschies, C., 2007, Origenes und seine Erbe: Gesammelte Studien, Berlin: De Gruyter.
  • Martens, P., 2012, Origen and Scripture, New York: Oxford University Press.
  • McLynn, N., 2004, “What was the Philocalia of Origen?”, Meddelanden frân Collegium Patristicum Lundense 19: 32–43.
  • Neuschäfer, B., 1987, Origenes als Philologe, Basel: Reinhardt.
  • Nygren, A., 1953, Agape and Eros, London: SPCK.
  • Orbe, A., 1991, “Origenes y los monarquianos”, Gregorianum, 72: 39–73.
  • Osborn, E., 2008, Clement of Alexandria, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  • Osborne, C., 1994, Eros Unveiled, Oxford: Clarendon Press.
  • Pace, N., 1990, Ricerche sulla traduzione di Rufino del ‘De Principiis’ di Origene, Pisa: Florence: Nuova Italiana Editrice.
  • Rahner, K., 1979, “The Spiritual Senses according to Origen”, in Rahner, Theological Investigations 16, London: Darton, Longman and Todd: 81–103.
  • Ramelli, I., 2009, “Origen, Patristic Philosophy and Christian Platonism: rethinking the Christanization of Hellenism”, Vigiliae Christianae, 63: 217–263.
  • –––, 2013, The Christian Doctrine of Apokatasis, Leiden: Brill.
  • Rist, J.M., 1964, Eros and Psyche, Toronto: University of Toronto Press.
  • Rizzi, M., 2002, Gregorio il Taumaturgo, Encomio di Origene, Milan: Paoline.
  • Schibli, H.S., 1992, “Origen, Didymus and the Vehicle of the Soul”, Origeniana Quinta, ed. by R.J. Daly, Leuven: Uitgeverij Peeters and Leuven University Press, 381–394.
  • Scott, A.B., 1994, Origen and the Life of the Stars, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Scott, M.S., 2012, Journey Back to God: Origen on the Problem of Evil, New York: Oxford University Press.
  • Smith. A.W., 2012, “Origen (2)”, in S. Hornblower and A. Spawforth (eds), Oxford Classical Dictionary, 4th edition, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1048b.
  • Tzamalikos, P., 2006, Origen: Cosmology and Ontology of Time, Leiden: Brill.
  • –––, 2007, Origen: Philosophy of History and Eschatology, Leiden: Brill.
  • Whittaker, J., 1969, “ΈΠΕΚΕΙΝΑ ΝΟΥ ΚΑΙ ΟΥΣΙΑΣ”, Vigiliae Christianae, 23: 91–104.

Evagrius Ponticus (345-399 AD)

read by Patricia McGinn

Evagrius Ponticus and the Eight Logismoi – Rearview Mirror




  • Epistula fidei. This was probably written around 379 in Constantinople and is possibly Evagrius’ earliest published work.[11][4]: 22 [full citation needed]
  • Rerum monachialum rationes is also an early work, though from the time Evagrius was in Egypt.
  • Tractatus ad Eulogium[12] (= Treatise to the Monk Eulogius / To Eulogius) is also an early work.
  • The Praktikos[13]
  • The Gnostikos[9][14]
  • Kephalaia Gnostica[15] (Problemata Gnostica)
  • De oratione (De oratione caputula = Chapters on Prayer) This consists of a prologue and 153 chapters.
  • Antirrhetikos
  • Institutio ad monachos (Exhortations to Monks)
  • Sentences for Monks
  • Ad virginem (Exhortation to a Virgin)
  • Hypotyposis
  • De diversis malignis cogitationibus
  • De magistris et disciplulis
  • Treatise on Various Evil Thoughts (Capita Cognoscitiva)
  • Protrepticus
  • Paraeneticus
  • The Chapters of the Disciples of Evagrius
  • 62 letters
  • Various scholia also remain, including
    • Scholia on the Psalms
    • Scholia on Proverbs
    • Scholia on Ecclesiastes
    • Scholia on Job
  • Scriptural commentaries
    • Commentary on the Psalms
    • De Seraphim (deals with the vision of Isaiah)
    • De Cherubim (deals with the vision of Ezekiel)
    • Commentary on the Pater Noster
    • Various ascetic treatises: De Justis et Perfectis

Although ascribed to Evagrius, these two works are considered to be of doubtful authenticity.[10]: xvi–lxvii [full citation needed][better source needed]

  • De Malignis Cogitationibus
  • Collections of Sentences