Ambrose of Milan
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Saint Aurelius Ambrose (377–397 C.E.) was Bishop of Milan from 374 C.E. until his death in 397 during a time when the Church sought to codify Christian theology in the beginnings of the Roman Empire’s decline. Ambrose thus lived during a time when the ancient world of classical Rome clashed with the new monotheistic religion, and this tension appears throughout Ambrose’s works. Although Christian, Ambrose had considerable familiarity with Roman authors through his training in rhetoric, and his writings demonstrate what could be considered a transference of intellectual tradition and history from classical Rome to the new Christian Church.
Ambrose lived during the reign of the first Christian Roman Emperor, Theodosius, who had been baptized during an illness from which he eventually recovered. As McLynn notes (1994, p. 291), Ambrose took issue with Theodosius’ massacre of his own civilians at Thessalonica, although the confrontation has over the centuries become exaggerated into myth....
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