Biblical quotation

The Ideological Use of Biblical Motifs and Quotations in the Canon on the Translation of the Relics of St. Clement of Rome

  • Summary/Abstract

    The hymn devoted to the finding and the subsequent translation of the relics of Saint Clement of Rome shows a double interest: it is one of the earliest hymnographical compositions in Old Church Slavonic, and it contains clearly ideological elements. The relics of Saint Clement, third Pope after Saint Peter, played a main role in two important periods of the christianisation of the Slavs: the mission of the byzantine brothers Constantine-Cyril and Methodius in Moravia (863–869), and the baptism of the Rus’ian prince Vladimir in 988. Therefore, the study of the canon on the translation of the relics of Saint Clement can provide us a valuable evidence of the ideological use of biblical motifs and quotations. Several scholars con¬sidered a newly discovered Russian version of the hymn as the work composed by Constantine the Philosopher on the occasion of his finding of the relics in 861. On the contrary, the Russian historian E. V. Uxanova, basing on the ideological use of biblical quotations, came to the conclusion that such hymnographical composition would have a Russian origin, dating from the period of the christianisation of the Kievan Rus’. In this article, we will show how a careful rereading of those biblical motifs and quotations don't allow us to support either of these hypothesis

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