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Martyred for the Church : Memorializations of the Effective Deaths of Bishop Martyrs in the Second Century CE / von Justin Buol

In this study, Justin Buol analyzes the writings connected with the deaths of Ignatius of Antioch, Polycarp of Smyrna, and Pothinus of Lyons in light of earlier accounts of the noble deaths of military, political, and religious leaders from Greco-Roman literature and the Bible, which record benefits accruing to a group on account of its leader's death. The author argues that the accounts of these three bishops' martyrdoms draw upon those prior models in order to portray the bishops as dying to unite, protect, and strengthen the Church, oppose false teaching and apostasy, and solidify the teaching role of the episcopal office. Finally, by providing a foundation for Irenaeus to argue for apostolic succession, these second-century bishop martyrs also help form a lasting contribution to the growth of episcopal power.