The Emperor and the Empty Tomb

A fascinating and engaging essay from the LA Review of Books (HT: Matthew Loftus):

When Wilhelm Froehner died in 1925, at the house on the Rue Casimir-Périer where he had lived since the reign of Napoleon III, he left behind among his possessions a curious inscription that might be the oldest surviving artifact of Christianity.

Froehner, sadly, took to his grave all but the most exiguous details about how he came into possession of the stone, putting us at one further remove from being able to grasp its meaning. The Greek text of the Nazareth inscription is easy enough to interpret. But the origin of the stone, and its historical significance, are puzzles that remain both unresolved and tantalizing.


The Emperor and the Empty Tomb: An Ancient Inscription, an Eccentric Scholar, and the Human Need to Touch the Past

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