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date: 17 August 2022

Clement of Alexandria (c. 150–c. 215 CE),  

Source:
Dictionary of African Biography
Author(s):
annewies van den hoekannewies van den hoek

Christian philosopher, lived and taught in Alexandria toward the end of the second century. In spite of his topographic nickname, Clement did not originate in Alexandria but was born elsewhere, possibly in Athens, and was of non-Christian origin. He left a considerable body of writing, not all of which survives. His official name, Titus Flavius Clemens, may indicate that his family descended from a freedman of the household of (T.) Flavius Clemens, who was consul in 95 CE. Before coming to Alexandria, Clement traveled around looking for mentors, but the only teacher whom he mentions by name is Pantaenus. According to Eusebius Pantaenus headed a school of sacred learning in Alexandria and Clement was his successor. Other information indicates that Clement left Alexandria in 202–203, perhaps to avoid persecution. He may have gone to Palestine, as some have argued, or to Cappadocia, as tradition has it. Clement displays a keen interest in literature, whether Greek, Jewish, or Christian. From his elegant style and the content of his discourses, it is also clear that both he and his readers must have been members of a highly literate elite.... ...

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