The contribution provides an outline of the development of restrictions of priestly marriage and prohibitions for priests to engage in sexual intercourse in acts of councils between the fourth and seventh centuries. It explains the rise of celibacy – understood as abstaining from marriage as condition for priestly ordination – as product of a ‘monasticization’ of clerical life. Celibacy can be placed in four different frameworks, that of sexuality as symptom of human weakness, that of the ascetic strive against sexual temptation, of ritual purity, and of preventing priests from having legitimate offspring.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Title of host publication||Routledge Resources Online - Medieval Studies|
|Number of pages||6|
|State||Published - May 30 2022|