ANOTHER EXCERPT FROM MY FORTHCOMING SCHOLARLY DISCUSSION OF FORGERY AND COUNTERFORGERY, WHERE IN THE INTRODUCTION I CONTINUE MY ANECDOTES OF FORGERIES THAT CONDEMN FORGERIES AND DECEIVERS WHO GET DECEIVED, THIS TIME BY LOOKING AT A CHRISTIAN EXAMPLE (SEE MY EARLIER POST ON THE DUPED HERACLIDES)
This ironic phenomenon has its rough parallels in the later Christian tradition. To begin with, we might look at a work universally recognized as pseudepigraphic, the late fourth-century Apostolic Constitutions, a so-called “church order” allegedly written by none other than the apostles of Jesus (hence its name), but in reality produced by someone simply claiming to be the apostolic band, living three hundred years after they had been laid to rest in their respective tombs.
We will be considering other aspects of this text in a later chapter. For now it is enough to note that the book represents an edited composite of three earlier documents still extant independently, the third-century Didascalia Apostolorum, which makes up books 1-6 of the composite text; the Didache, which is found in book 7; and the Apostolic Tradition, wrongly attributed to Hippolytus, in book 8. Since this author has taken over earlier writings without acknowledgment, he could well be considered a plagiarist by ancient, as well as modern, standards. Consider, for example, the words of Vitruvius:…..
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