Stylistic Levels in Hebrews 1.1−4 and John 1.1−18

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This article presents the ancient concept of stylistic levels as a means of approaching the question of how New Testament writings were delivered in antiquity. It is argued that the levels of style affected both composition and delivery and that therefore an analysis of the remaining texts is the first step towards understanding how they were
once delivered. The levels of style are presented and the stylistic features of Heb. 1.1-4 and Jn 1.1-18 are analysed and interpreted within this system. It is seen that the style of New Testament writings can be profitably examined, and aspects of their composition
revealed, with the help of the levels of style. Against many commentators, it is argued that the prologue of John does not contain poetry interspersed with prose passages. Instead, the stylistic intensity is steady at least all the way through Jn 1.1-13.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Religious Studies


  • Levels of style, Gospel of John, Hebrews, orality, performance, rhetoric, style
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-53
JournalJournal for the Study of the New Testament
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Publication categoryResearch

Bibliographic note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: New Testament Studies (015017052)

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