Quotes as said by William Turpin in Classics 56:
Pagans and Christians in the Roman Empire
I'll start with some general statements, some of which may actually be true.
Having sat through a faculty meeting on the subject, I can say that the level of intelligence is not high.
Professors of religion are probably nicer that most professors.
Those 2000 years have made a difference.
Come to the ancient world with a preconception of Asia and you'll be wrong.
Im not sure how many people (Gentile converts to Judaism) they thought they needed to sign up to have, as it were, a quorum.
Basically, if you got into print you were rich, educated, and male.
You got a queen, you've really got something.
(Berenice, lover of Titus) who really was a Jewish princess!
The God of the Old Testament is just in a bad mood all the time...though I suppose you could call that straightforward.
The afterlife--its important. And youll know if there is one or there isn't one in 10 minutes.
A Jesuit friend said it changed his life so I looked at it, and it was short and cheap, so I bought it.
The "irritating wiseman" tradition--guys swanning around trying to change things.
3 stages of a hypothetical document is a little more than I can handle.
Well, you've got your baptism, and you've got your wind, but...
You can't walk through a shopping mall and not know about the manger and the shepherds... Thank God for popular culture.
The Romans were OK at figuring out, OK, you're from here but you live there. The Romans could handle that.
It's the immaculate conception defense!
Let's get out there and be irritating!
We don't know what our Lord feels about infringement of copyright, but I bet he'd have something to say about it. Well, there shouldn't have been so many gospels, then.
You only have to care for 45 minutes.
You could probably come up with a good argument for why George Bush should be president...God help us.
The nuder you are the more divine you are, in ancient iconography.
The Romans had trouble with completely naked men.
Its a bit drastic to compare the inhabitants of the Roman world to a pack of dogs, but...
The Jews were let off the hook on account of their religion being old and therefore OK.
Sacrifice means knocking off some critter or something.
Before the portable bird came into use...
In case you haven't learned this about life...or at least about Christians.
A gang of Jesuits--they hang out in Belgium and read saints lives.
So there's the debate over the centrality of Christianity in the early church...
Someone puts a gun to your head and says "Say you're a Democrat." Even the most worthy Republican would say "Rah, rah, Bill Clinton!"
Student--Is this guy a very Christian guy?
Turpin--Well, I don't know about very--he's an Anglican.
I should, in the interests of science, go to a Flyers game.
If they messed with my fingernails, I'd recant in a minute!
Your fingernails are further from God than your soul is.
At the core of it is the death thing.
Did anyone convert to atheism over the weekend?...I don't exactly want you to stand up and testify about how you found atheism.
If youre not going to law school, well, good, but...
(Driving past a Greek Orthodox church) My Jesuit friend said I always want to lean out the window and yell "Filioque, you bastards! Filioque!" Ever since then I've wanted to do that too.
If you've got a tame Christian in your life, ask them to explain the relationship between the father and the son.
You've got a Holy Ghost that you at least try to take seriously--it's really hard to take the Holy Ghost seriously.
I mean, you might name your church after it, but you don't, you know, pray. --on saints
The ancient world's a very grumpy place.
I mean, to the extent that what I just conveyed is knowledge.
Life is too short for the Rough Draft.
Ideas tend to flow onto the old hard drive.
I can actually get really excited about commas, but I feel like a jerk when I do.
[And in honor of commas, a funny student quote:
Doug: Where's the comma?
Turpin: There is no comma.
Doug: That's unfortunate.]
How do you create tubing in the Roman world? Well, you get some ostriches...
I'm much happier with manipulation than I am with, well, belief.
Just because you lose doesn't mean you're not...true.
I'm all for tolerance. I'm definitely pro-tolerance.
Sorry--is that what I meant?
We're all in this together--does anyone know why?
It requires you to have done the reading...which may be the problem with this approach.
I may have left something out, like ethics.
I think I can say, without getting too nervous, that the death of Christ is central to Christianity.
Have you noticed that everyone is shifty about the Resurrection?
Why you would want to mark your borders with phallic symbols always escapes me.
Anyway, class...oh god, where are my notes?!?...This could be painful.
First of all, forget baptism. I don't ever want to hear about baptism again. I don't care what you think about baptism. I don't even care what I think of baptism in my heart of hearts.
There's me, and there's God, and we're really tight.
You got your human, and you got your god...
It is true that no one here knows any facts, but it doesn't follow that no one at the other schools knows how to think.
I don't write 'Tertullian couldn't think his way out of a paper bag,' I write 'Tertullian could not think his way out of a paper bag', because I'm writing formal prose.
You shouldn't kick, rob, steal, harass women, or generally be a pig. Society's pretty good at making that clear. Even the deans are good at making that clear.
Kids from New Jersey don't talk about the autumn!
On a more cheerful note, let's talk about sin.
It's more positive than that, if you can have a positive persecution.
Real world sucks, other world good.
An anonymous writer whose views you're stuck with...
By the 2nd century, if you had a functioning son...and you were emperor...
Only resort to the 'the guy's a moron' thesis as a last resort.
You can see why they'd persecute the author of Revelations just on principle.
I don't know how many hard-core pagans there are in this class.
The resurrection of a cannibalized body is just as possible, just grosser.
Say, a normal, non-insane person...or an emperor.
S--I think Free has a good point...
T--That's my point! Not Free's point!
Remember cannibalism and incest, guys. This is the most interesting moment in the entire course. So enjoy it.
I don't want you to, you know, send me emails from Bali in June.
I realize I shouldn't be judging everyone's feeble morality by my own feeble morality.
This doesn't make a lot of sense, so I'll say it really fast and you can all just ignore it.
Why do we? Because it's here in my notes. Because we have nothing else to talk about.
Do you just wake up on e morning and say, "Gosh, I just cant stand homosexuality and susages?
I will now prove this. Watch this, Free.
As opposed to Canada, which is apparently some small, non-interesting part of 'God's plan'.
I'm sure the British are not part of God's plan.
I don't know about the fat of he-goats. That doesn't sound so good.
It's not a gastronomic gap here.
T: Why are you smirking, Charles?
C: I'm not.
T: Oh, I see.
I'm lurching toward the end of the syllabus.
We're not going to be able to do much with Constantine, but I do want to get him, as it were, well and truly converted.
What's been left out of this class is what you might call feeling.
It sounds like an economist--assume powerful feeling at stage 3.
It's me or Kurth--one of us has to go.
Empire in trouble, persecute Christians
I'm much happier with facts than I am with Foucaultian feminism.
If you had a husband and wife martyr team...
Shes naked, and she's a man! At the same time!
Before we do Foucault, we have to get her to heaven.
Persecuting rich Christians would be a fairly entertaining way of making your living. Reprehensible but...reasonable.
It's perfectly natural to want to be martyred in Carthage.
Ooh, he's really low! That's so cool!
See, I'm a card-carrying sacrificer.
I have no further thoughts at this point. Do you?
Let me encourage you to go on and take a real Ancient History course, as opposed to this one, which is totally bogus.
We don't have any books in Punic, which is probably just as well.
We don't know any of this stuff, so you don't have to learn it, which is good. Saves a lot of time.
Montanism--its one of the cooler heresies.
Everybody knows you can't do anything about education, but it shows you've got the right issues, and soccer moms might vote for you...Am I being too cynical? Is that why you're looking so horrified?
I mean, why shouldn't the Gauls continue human sacrifice? They've been doing it for years.
Isn't it in our sacred books? I mean, it's in Milton.
It only works, of course, if it's right.
I'm sick of pagans, I'm sick of Jews, I'm sick of Christians, and I wish they'd all just shut up and leave me alone.
Armies march, people die--things happen. People get converted to Christianity and thus change the world...things happen. So read it.
We have to talk about conversion some more. Now why do we have to? Because it's in my notes.
On your syllabus it says Gregory of Nazianzen. This is because I was taken over by a space invader.
It's easier to believe in the miracles of the New Testament than the miracles of Gregory Thaumaturgus, isnt it? Of course I think it is--I'm a Protestant.
If you believe in the miracles of Gregory Thaumaturgus you really have to leave the Baptist church, don't you?
This will involve some sweeping generalizations, a couple of slides, and a certain amount of hand wringing.
Lactantius was a professor of Latin rhetoric, thereby making him one of us.
Christians may have had their faults, but they weren't Persians!
Diocletian is the only one who lasted long enough to have what you might call policies.
Antoninus Pius and Marcus Aurelius, you gotta love those guys. I mean, sure, they persecuted Christians from time to time, but they've got those big brown eyes, and those beards...
Don't buy it--it'll just make him richer.
They ate some of it--not the fat of he-goats, though!
Next thing you know, the emperor's a Christian, and a Christian empire, bob's your uncle.
The Christians should do it, and the pagans should just chill.
I am not now going to advocate persecution. I am against persecution.
I mean, do you just wake up in the morning and think 'I hate homosexuality and sausages'?
S--You need to go to the mid-west.
T--No, no, not me!
The British aren't part of Gods plan, that I can be morally and theologically sure of. Okay, they're part of it...but not a big part.
That's one of the things I keep meaning to get around to understanding.
This is all Renaissance, so we don't care.
You get hard-core real politik Germans saying 'Ach, no, he did it for the power.'
When I say 'important' I mean mildly important.
If this is true, which it is since it was in a magazine...
I'm trying to decide if that's a smart question or a dumb question.
I don't see why they couldn't have four persons of the Trinity.
I'd rather read your dreadful meanderings than anyone else's dreadful meanderings.--on plagarism
I'm picturing an hour of what the English call gobbets--disgusting little word.--on our exam
I'm sure all Charlie's beliefs are deeply erroneous.
[In honor of the mention of a student, and the fact that we had one earlier, here's another student quote: How did soothsayers say the sooth? Did they consult gods, or did they consult chickens?...Christianity didn't say anything about lightening.--Nick]
Donatism--my personal favorite early Christian heresy.
When someone has more than one argument, there's a good chance they're making both of them up.
He certainly doesn't talk about the Holy Spirit, but no one ever does.
I couldn't think of a big essay question...so there isn't one.
So if you want to remain anonymous, don't include personal references, like 'as a graduating senior religion major, I think this class was a waste of time.'
"Did anyone convert to atheism over the weekend?...I don't exactly want you to stand up and testify about how you found atheism."
"We don't know what our Lord feels about infringement of copyright, but I bet he'd have something to say about it. Well, there shouldn't have been so many gospels, then."
"I can actually get really excited about commas, but I feel like a jerk when I do."
"We're all in this together--does anyone know why?"
"Anyway, class...oh god, where are my notes?!?...This could be painful."
"I don't write 'Tertullian couldn't think his way out of a paper bag,' I write 'Tertullian could not think his way out of a paper bag', because I'm writing formal prose."
"Let me encourage you to go on and take a real Ancient History course, as opposed to this one, which is totally bogus."
"I'm sick of pagans, I'm sick of Jews, I'm sick of Christians, and I wish they'd all just shut up and leave me alone."
"On your syllabus it says Gregory of Nazianzen. This is because I was taken over by a space invader."
"This will involve some sweeping generalizations, a couple of slides, and a certain amount of hand wringing."
"Antoninus Pius and Marcus Aurelius, you gotta love those guys. I mean, sure, they persecuted Christians from time to time, but they've got those big brown eyes, and those beards..."
On plagiarism: "I'd rather read your dreadful meanderings than anyone else's dreadful meanderings."
Life would be much easier if you didn't have to talk about circumcision at all.
...physically abused, i.e. executed.
Shall we brood en masse?
You don't want to have bipolar dysfunctions. -on taking essay effort too far
Noses kind of get lost in the shuffle. -on statuary
It's clear that some people kind of get turned on by their executions. Like, "I'm finally the center of attention," you know? It was probably especially important for middle children.
Along with fingernails, what I'm most afraid of is crowds.
If you know X is going to heaven, get your butt over to X.
I've never done this before! My hand will not do this!... This hand is a protestant hand.
He's been turned into a donkey, which is about as outer-darkness as you can get.
Empire in trouble? Persecute the Christians.
I would have thought they would have just said, "They're possessed, glory be to God," and just get on with it.
Like, women come visit them in jails, and they, like, have sex and stuff.
I don't have any further thoughts at this point ... do you?
Remember also, before you leave my tender clutches...
I'm trying to decide if that's a smart question or a dumb question.
I don't know how much a fraud I'm supposed to tell you to be to be an academic.