In this engrossing book, Maria Dzielska searches behind the legend to bring us the She takes us back to the Alexandria of Hypatia’s day, with its Library and. In this engrossing book, Maria Dzielska searches behind the legend to bring us the real story of Hypatia’s life and death, and new insight into her colorful world. John Toland. Hypatia or the History of a most beautiful, most virtuous, most learned and in every way accomplished lady, who was torn to pieces by the clergy of.

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During the decline of the Roman Empire, Alexandria Egypt was still a great city of wealth, trade, tolerance, but also a very unstable society that was divided between ethnic, religious and much more social strata that was tearing it apart. This section concludes with an interesting three page essay titled Other Learned Women of Late Antiquity. This slander, leading to Hypatia’s murder was in actuality a Political act.

Hyypatia causes and circumstances of her death at the hands of a Christian mob have been similarly obfuscated by a long series of historians and artists, each with their own agendas. Two of her students became Bishops.

Historians and poets, Victorian novelists and contemporary feminists have seen Hypatia as a symbol—of the waning of classical culture and freedom of inquiry, of the rise of fanatical Christianity, or of sexual freedom. She was painted as a pagan witch and then attacked on the street by a mob lead by a Christian monk. The reader can feel her frustration with more modern writers who have immortalized Hypatia in ways that support their own Allowances should be made.

Hypatia of Alexandria – Maria Dzielska – Google Books

Join Our Mailing List: By using our website you agree to our use of cookies. Unfortunately, Ms Dzielska, in her effort to bring objectivity to Hypatia’s life fails to engage the reader and make us care about her as a unique and interesting person. This book intrigued me with the first chapter and the writing seemed concise and inviting, however, after having dragged myself through the whole book hoping that it was like the first chapter, I would never recommend this to anyone.


The question left most unanswered – why should we care that Hypatia lived at all – was the story I was expecting to read. The result is a splendid example of demythologizing scholarship… [It] deserves to be read by anyone studying ancient gender or her time period [and] is a delight to read, in a translation which is light and natural.

Cyril, in addition to encouraging or enabling the assassination of Hypatia, also worked to rid Alexandria of pagans, battled and then expelled the Jews, and generally comes off as a power hungry monster.

Yet another instance of what happens when a ‘hard-lining’ ecclesiastical minority infringes upon the Rights of others – leading to an iconoclastic destruction of Libraries, Monuments and Religiously-fueled violence including antisemitism.

The author portrays the close circle of her students and provides the context for her public lectures; she concludes with 35 sober pages on the ‘life and death of Hypatia, ‘ interpreting her death as a kind of witch-burning in the transition from pagan Empire to Christian state.

During this period, the civic structure, which has been occupied by practicing Christians for some time, finally found itself dragged under the influence of a single-minded, exclusionary Christian monolith. This volume searches behind the legend to provide a new perspective on Hypatia’s life and death. Contents The Literary Legend ofHypatia l. Plato was very keen on this sort of thing – hence the phrase Platonic Love.


A “period of waning free thought, Natural Reason and Freedom of Inquiry”. They were heavily involved in patronage networks to obtain advantage for other upper-class acquaintances and friends. Table of contents The literary legend of Hypatia; Hypatia and her circle; the life and death of Hypatia; conclusion.

Kathleen Wider – – Hypatia 1 1: When she died in she was of an advanced age, around sixty years old. Aside from a few statements and a paragraph in the final notes, Dzielska hardly mentions it.

Hypatia of Alexandria

The vicious act shocked the city and shamed the early Church. This text suggests that certain versions of Hypatia’s legend have served to distort the true story. So, despite being what one might consider as short it certainly covers plenty, perhaps in a more introductory capacityas I said this is the first book that I’ve have read exclusively pertaining to this particular Late Antique personality. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.

Maria Dzielska, Hypatia of Alexandria – PhilPapers

This is an abbreviated version of a post on my blog titled: She concludes Hypatia was about 65 when she died, in A. Charles Bigg – – G.

This grew, commands were given and then all smiles stopped together. The book as a whole is a model of feminist scholarship in its sorting out of legend from facts. Peter King – manuscript. Two scholars have attempted to pull the pieces together in book form in the last two decades: Moral Controversy in an Aging Society.