Biographical Dictionary of Christian Theologians

by Patrick W. Carey, ed., Joseph T. Lienhard, ed.

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February 2000


Pages 608
Volumes 1
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics Religion/History
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The last 20 centuries of Christian history have witnessed the emergence of numerous theological traditions. Many of these traditions today have relatively minor significance, while others remain a vibrant part of contemporary religious culture. And while some theologians, such as Martin Luther, Thomas Aquinas, and John Calvin, are relatively well known, others have become more obscure. This reference provides alphabetically arranged entries for more than 450 Christian theologians from antiquity to the close of the twentieth century. Entries are restricted to theologians who died before 1994, when this project was begun. Included are profiles for the most important and representative theologians from the Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant traditions, with special attention to theologians of the English-speaking world.

The volume covers those individuals whose work was primarily in systematic and spiritual theology, or church historians whose work was chiefly theological. Whenever possible, each entry provides basic biographical information, a brief account of the person's education and career, and a summary of the individual's most important contributions to theology. The entries range in length from 250 to 2,000 words, depending on the significance of the theologian's work. Each entry closes with a bibliography of primary and secondary sources, while the volume concludes with a selected, general bibliography.

Table of Contents

PrefaceBiographiesSelected BibliographyIndex



...provides helpful information not found in other one-volume works....The present work is recommended because of its format and the nature and extent of its coverage.—Choice

[a]n absorbing resource for students of theology. The entries are clear-in some cases even pointed-generally functioning as the basic introduction to Christianity's thinkers that the editors intend. Being a dictionary, there can be disconcerting jumps from the nineteeth to the eleventh century, but this is part of the fun of a book like this. The trouble is, one picks it up to inquire after a specific name and immediately becomes absorbrf in the career and theology of someone 700 years away! And so the book serves not only as a handy introduction, but also as a brain teaser. Let the editors be praised.—Theology Today

[L]ibraries with strong collections in Christian theology and history will likely want to acquire this title...—Booklist/Reference Books Bulletin

The editors of this work...together with over 95 other contributors have brought together a marvelous roster of over 450 Christian theologians....The editors and publisher are to be complimented for the marvelous index....This is a very thoughtful reference tool. It is highly recommended for all libraries (public, academic, secondary, college and university). It is essential for all seminary, religion, and theological libraries. All serious, educated students of theology will find this a very helpful tool.—Catholic Library World

[T]his is a very valuable reference work which should be available in all theological libraries.—The Catholic Historical Review

Those who have an interest in the history of Christianity will find much valuable information in a very usable format in the ^IBiographical Dictionary of Christian Theologians.^R—Wisconsin Lutheran Quarterly


The learned authors recruited to write these articles treat their subjects succinctly, clearly, and fairly. It is hard to imagine a better place to begin serious study of Christendom's serious students of God.—Mark A. Noll^LMcManis Professor of Christian Thought^LWheaton College

The ^IDictionary of Christian Theologians^R should quickly become essential reading for theology students in need of an orientation to the life and thought of the great theologians of the CHristian tradition. It also will be a welcome addition to the bookshelf of the established scholar in need of a quick refresher course in an unfamiliar field. Whether for novice or for expert, the ^IDictionary^R will be a sure guide in virtually every area of Christian theology.—John H. Erickson^LProfessor of Canon Law and Church History^LSt. Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary

The ^IBiographical Dictionary of Christian Theologians^R will prove to be a vital resource for anyone engaged in the study of theology....Clear, concise articles and well-focused bibliographies give both the beginning student and the specialist the essential tools to pursue further study. This text can be especially useful in helping graduate students to create a mental map of the terrain of critical figures and texts in the field. The expert contributors combine first-rate scholarship with reliable clarity to produce a text that belongs on the thological reference shelf of every library.—Dennis M. Doyle^LAssociate Professor^LReligious Studies^LUniversity of Dayton

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