Jean Danielou's 'Philo of Alexandria' illuminates the life and work of a key figure in the history of religious thought. Philo of Alexandria was a first-century Hellenistic Jewish philosopher who was born into a wealthy and prominent family in Alexandria, in the Roman province of Egypt. Educated in both Jewish culture and Greek philosophy, Philo believed that literal interpretations of the Hebrew Bible would distort the Jewish people's perceptions of a God too complex to be understood in literal, human terms. He became one of the first religious thinkers to initiate a strong allegorical reading of Scripture. Jean Danielou places Philo's writing in context, detailing the remarkable events of the philosopher's life, including a diplomatic mission to present himself before the Roman Emperor Caligula on behalf of the persecuted Jews of Alexandria. James Colbert's English translation provides a highly accessible introduction to this important figure, a pioneer of biblical commentary whose work has had a lasting influence on Christian theology. It is essential reading for those interested in patristics, exegesis, or the history of religious and philosophical thought.
Philo of Alexandria