Martyrdom, Idolatry, Liturgy: The Afterlives of the Apocryphal Daniel

“… make use of such ‘para-scriptural’ books, and join the great cloud of Christians who have spoken and sung their own stories within these texts? ”

Team Members/Contributors

Jennie Grillo Duke Divinity School Contact Me

About this sabbatical grant for researchers

The ‘apocryphal’ version of the biblical book of Daniel is a prime example of how non-canonical scriptural texts have shaped Western culture. In what will be the first monograph in English on this text and its afterlife, I ask what are the significant thematic clusters in the book’s history of interpretation, examining its impact on the development of six important constructs: martyrdom, resurrection, visuality, typology, and idolatry. An innovative methodology combines historical work with interpretive work: I trace the history of this book’s reception from earliest Christian frescoes to twentieth-century film and from rabbinic martyrdoms to Anglo-Saxon poetry, while also re-reading the text in the light of contemporary theological and theoretical treatments of the six key thematic areas. I aim to provide students, pastors and scholars with an inviting entry-point into this long-cherished but now little-known part of the Daniel tradition, and also into the riches of two thousand years of biblical interpretation in sermon, song, art and literature.

Image Title Year Type Contributor(s) Other Info
  The Envelope and the Halo: Reading Susanna Allegorically 2018 Journal Article Jennie Grillo
September 13, 2018
  Seeing Silence: Susanna’s Christological Quiet 2018 Journal Article Jennie Grillo