The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Professor Ilaria Ramelli & her Apokatastasis project

I think the book may NOW be available to purchase directly from Brill. :mrgreen: The site let me put it in my cart (though I currently do not have the funds for such a purchase.) Barnes and Noble, and Amazon do not have it in stock, though Amazon lists a publication date of August 9, 2013.

Is the paper “Augustine and the Doctrine of Universal Restoration” available for download? I found a copy of it at Scribd, but there’s a hefty price to be paid. Any other sources?

I tried to get a copy but she said unfortunately she wasn’t allowed to, as it was being published by someone else. However she gave me a summary: … =29&t=4016

Thanks. Short and pithy, kinda whets one’s appetite for the entire article. :slight_smile:

I’ve had it in my Amazon shopping cart since July, being able to put it there means nothing. :wink:

In fact, I had it in a B&N shopping cart much earlier back in the spring, and it got cancelled after a while when the publisher realized the indexing wasn’t going to be finished in time. I DEFINITELY WANT THE INDEX TO BE GOOD! So I’m okay with the delay, I just want it explained.

Not sure what the explanation for the delay currently is. Perhaps they haven’t sent out review copies yet and are waiting a few more months for actual release?

More likely the book was published in Italian first, and is being laboriously translated to English now: a job I’m entirely happy if they take the time and effort to do right.

(Personally I think it’s going to be hilarious when I get the book and discover 25% of it is in Latin, Greek, Aramaic, Coptic, Syriac, Ethiopian, etc. :laughing: )

My copy has shipped!! :smiley:

:smiley: :smiley: :smiley: :smiley: We’ll be expecting your book review Monday morning, 10 pages, double spaced.

:laughing: Your estimated delivery date is: Friday, October 25, 2013… must be coming by (row?) boat because it’s so heavy!

Or tug boat. :wink:

{checking email}{checking Amazon}


Well, it seems dubious that your copy actually ‘shipped’, except in a reductively metaphorical sense that means less than what it seems to mean and so we shouldn’t base much on that terminology but should appeal to context far removed elsewhere to determine what “shipped” really stands for in this case.

So I feel better now.



In my hands (or on my desk rather because it’s a large book and I’m a puny scholar) rests Dr. Ramelli’s book.

Some very quick initial notes: she includes a sort of afterword “By Way Of Conclusion” where she briefly compares notable medieval and modern Christian universalists with the Patristics. Robin Parry and Thomas Talbott are referenced, Tom at some explicit length. There will apparently be a future book (possibly already released in Italian??) called Universal Salvation, which will cover the historical topic from the medieval through the modern period, which the extended afterword provides a taste of.

She’s also working on a comparative monograph on non-Christian universalism in the early days of the Church, but discusses in this book how the early Patristics explicitly contrasted their beliefs to that of some outside the Church: they didn’t get it from those people. “The doctrine of apokatastasis as the eventual universal salvation is an authentically Christian, or Jewish-Christian, doctrine. Before Christianity, no religion or philosophy had ever maintained it, not even Plato or mystery religions. Outside Christianity, in the Patristic age, only some Neoplatonists, such as Macrobius and Proclus, seem to have maintained it, but only when ‘pagan’ Neoplatonism was a sort of parallel to Christianity, and in any case in a different way from the Patristic doctrine of apokatastasis.” (p.819, my emphasis)

Woweeeeeeee!!! Super excited Jason! I’ll seriously bet you were like a kid on Christmas. What are your plans for reading such a massive tome?

I look forward to your review of the book! I’m envious!


Yes, fellow summoner of the historical tome: you neither shall be disappointed, verily. :mrgreen:

I won’t be able to seriously start reading it until the start of next month, as I’m on schedule to finish out reading a 14 book series of novels and I’m ginning through the final three this month. Some of them are about the size of this book, though, so I’m planning to shoot for a 10 day reading schedule.

i.e., Alex may have more to say about the book sooner than I do.

I’ll throw out another quick tidbit:

  • While thumbing around for a few moments right before leaving work, I noticed a reference to Ireneas (whose name I cannot seem to spell tonight, sorry), which was interesting. Dr. R will apparently argue that the late 2nd century Father of the Ephesian school now famous for going in the direction of annihilation, seemed to think that only the rebel angels would be annihilated, and more-or-less implied that all humans would be saved eventually (though impenitent humans would stay in punishment until they repented). This is news to me, almost on par with Augustine having originally been UR as well as an obvious initial fan of Origen (which I saw a few references to as well, though nothing in detail yet), but I only saw a glimpse so I can’t talk more about it yet.

Jaaaaassssonnnn…must…put…down…14…fantasy …novels…and…read…Ramelli’s…book…immediately. And …give…detailed…summaries…that…you…are…known…for. They…need…you…Jason!!!


That does bring up the question of how much detail (or even how much of a summary) I can legally (or even morally) provide. On one hand, obviously most people are never going to pay what this book costs, so I (and/or Alex and/or whoever else splurged on it) can’t be taking away sales by doing so. But still there are copyright issues involved, and I don’t want to be unfair to the publishers or Dr. R since it’s entirely possible that their print run of such a large (and hardcover) book was so small that they do have to charge this much to compensate for it.

Will ponder…

Meanwhile, I’m extra-glad the book came in, since my relative absence on the forum recently has been due to me spending more time compiling my scriptural and theological notes together on a book. (Which also explains why I haven’t been posting more to my exegetical project series: I’m unsure what the legal ramifications are of doing so. If I end up self-publishing then that won’t be an issue of course.)

The question of the patristics can only be a minor one overall (since on any sane account the patristic universalists were still a minority, if an influential and respected minority – I don’t get the impression Dr. R disagrees with that assessment yet btw, but I may have to revise my impression after reading the book which won’t bother me at all. :mrgreen: ) But the arrival of her book will allow me to produce a quick overview summary and point back to her book for (far) more detail. :slight_smile:

For those lucky enough to have this tome, could I ask for more names, info and quotes of early universalists for the big list after you’ve read it :slight_smile:

Certainly! – I had you specifically in mind for submitting them as I go. :smiley:


I was kidding about the detailed summary part, especially because you can go into quite some detail (thinking your Rob Bell book review). No, I like what you’ve done already, in providing some interesting tidbits, like Irenaeus arguing for at least human UR (too bad for those demons :laughing: ). Which is interesting, because I was looking at some of the Patristic quotes in Hope Beyond Hell this weekend, and the author (Beauchemein) puts an Irenaeus quote in there. He is trying to use Irenaeus to argue for UR, but the quote only seems to say that God will one day end all evil, which could be used in support of Annihilationism. So it will be interesting to see where Ramelli goes with that.

Irenaeus seems to get quoted for all of the major positions on hell. I’d love to see the references that Ramelli believes supports a universalist reading.