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Mara Bar-Serapion

At a Glance
Letter
Genre:
(2/5) **
Reliability of Dating:
(2/5) **
Length of Text:
Greek
Original Language:
Ancient Translations:
Modern Translations:

Estimated Range of Dating: 73-200 A.D.

Chronological List of Early Christian Writings
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Information on Mara Bar-Serapion

Mara Bar-Serapion wrote anytime between 73 CE and the third century CE.

In a passage in which Mara may be dependent upon Christian informants, Mara Bar-Serapion makes these casual remarks:

What advantage did the Athenians gain from putting Socrates to death? Famine and plague came upon them as a judgment for their crime. What advantage did the men of Samos gain from burning Pythagoras? In a moment their land was covered with sand. What advantage did the Jews gain from executing their wise King? It was just after that their Kingdom was abolished. God justly avenged these three wise men: the Athenians died of hunger; the Samians were overwhelmed by the sea; the Jews, ruined and driven from their land, live in complete dispersion. But Socrates did not die for good; he lived on in the teaching of Plato. Pythagoras did not die for good; he lived on in the statue of Hera. Nor did the wise King die for good; He lived on in the teaching which He had given


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Kirby, Peter. "Mara Bar-Serapion." Early Christian Writings. <http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/mara.html>.