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AGAPE is an open-access database which aims to map the reception of the Greek Church Fathers in print throughout early modern Europe. It represents the main outcome of the four-year FNS Ambizione project The Greek Imprint on Europe: Patristics and Publishing in the Early Swiss Reformation, led by Paolo Sachet and based at the Institut d’histoire de la Réformation, University of Geneva.
In contrast to the Renaissance interest in the pagan antiquity and classical literature, the story of the rediscovery of the Greek Fathers remains, for the most part, untold and understudied. The number of inaccuracies in the regional, national and collective online repertoires available at present means that bibliographical research becomes a time-consuming and largely unrewarding exercise, severely hindering the progress of patristic studies.
To tackle this issue, AGAPE records every edition of Greek patristic works printed in Europe from 1465 to 1600 in the original language, as well as in Latin and vernacular translations. AGAPE refines the available data and substantially improves their level of detail: not only does it link each work to the unique identification number established by the Clavis Patrum Graecorum (CPG), the standard authority in the field, but also thoroughly describes all contents (texts as well as paratext) and strictly relies on the analysis of at least one copy of each edition. Further information on AGAPE's IT features, bibliographical criteria and editorial choices can be found here.
A bibliographical database with an eye to book history and reception studies, AGAPE exploits the relational mode of data and relies on a highly popular open-source database, MySQL. For the server-side, PHP 7 is used together with Zend 1 as framework, while jQuery and Bootstrap are supporting the client-side. All information and entries are freely downloadable in multiple formats, in order to assure legibility, transferability, and durability.
The versatile Greek word ἀγάπη qualifies a selfless, charitable, brotherly form of love as well as the bond between God and mankind and the early-Christian feast in celebration of it. Featuring many times in the New Testament, it was analysed by the Greek and Latin Fathers, debated on in the Eucharistic disputes during the Reformation, and variously adopted by modern theologians and philosophers. In this light, the term fittingly recalls the complex routes of the Jewish-Christian tradition which the database helps elucidate, as well the idea of unbiased sharing which stands behind open-access scientific research in general.
In the words of Chrysostom (hom. XIII on Hebrews, 7:19), “to make men perfect it was of no use”. And this database makes no exception with regard to flaws and perfectibility. We therefore welcome any comments, reports of mistakes and requests for special research needs. Please address your questions at info@agapepatristics.net.
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Editions described in AGAPE: 310 (12%)
(as in ISTC)
16th-c. editions
Estimated number of editions: 2500
We are particularly grateful to:
We are also indebted to the following colleagues for their advice and feedback:
Andreas Ammann (LMU)
Ann Blair (Harvard)
Lucas Burkart (UNIBAS)
Hadrien Dami (IHR, UNIGE)
Claudia Daniotti (Warwick)
Geri Della Rocca de Candal (Oxford)
Cristina Dondi (Oxford)
Nicolas Fornerod (IHR, UNIGE)
Giovanni Gellera (IHR, UNIGE)
Anja-Silvia Goeing (Harvard/UZH)
Anthony Grafton (Princeton)
Sam Kennerley (LMU)
Jill Kraye (Warburg Institute)
Thaddeus Lipinski (Oxford)
Paul-Alexis Mellet (IHR, UNIGE)
Johnathan S. Nathan (Cambridge)
Angela Nuovo (UNIMI)
Maria Cristina Pitassi (IHR, UNIGE)
Jean-Louis Quantin (EPHE)
Bill Sherman (Warburg Institute)
Daniela Solfaroli Camillocci (IHR, UNIGE)
Ueli Zahnd (IHR, UNIGE)
Finally, we wish to express our gratitude to the many libraries which facilitated the physical or online access to their books, especially to the exquisitely patient staff of:
Basel, Universitätsbibliothek
Brussels, Koninklijke Bibliotheek/Bibliothèque royale
Darmstadt, Universitäts- und Landesbibliothek
Florence, Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale
The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek
Milan, Biblioteca Nazionale Braidense
Milan, Veneranda Biblioteca Ambrosiana
Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France
Vatican City, Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana
Vienna, Österreichische Nationalbibliothek
Washington DC, Library of Congress
ANALYTICS (310 editions)
Countries (map view)
by editions
Countries (map view)
by estimated printed sheets