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Mistah J

LIFELONG VIRGINS

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Yes... They existed... Nobody knew... I give to you - the FAMOUS LIFELONG VIRGINS OF HISTORY:
HISTORICAL FIGURES BELIEVED TO HAVE DIED VIRGINS
VIRGINS AND NON-VIRGINS

:vis:




2014 Mod Edit: The first link doesn't seem to work anymore, but the content can be found here. For future reference:
link 1


the list of 9 for february 11, 2002:
NINE HISTORICAL FIGURES BELIEVED TO HAVE DIED VIRGINS


Valentine's Day Special! if you are without a sweetie this Valentine's Day, take heart: you're not alone. Enjoy the money you will have saved by not having to blow it on chocolate or flowers, and treat yourself to a movie or a dinner or something that will at least get you out of the damn house, blubbering like a baby all night. And remember - some great people never got any action at all, throughout their whole lives! Here are a few of them. (For the sake of argument, I'm going to leave out all the various saints, popes and other religious figures.) By the way, if you're curious, this list is not written in self-defense. Apologies to my parents for breaking the news to them in this awkward way.

  • ISAAC NEWTON. Possibly the most well-documented historical virgin, Newton (who after establishing landmark theories in mathematics and essentially inventing physics spent most of his life trying to calculate the literal end of the world based on Bible passages) was quite proud of his virginity, setting the standard for centuries of math and science geeks.
  • QUEEN ELIZABETH I. Despite being played on-screen by the sexy Cate Blanchett, England's beloved monarch lived up to her title as the "Virgin Queen" - and even with the royal court constantly crawling with spies and gossips, there was no evidence to indicate otherwise.
  • JOSEPH CORNELL. One of the most beloved American artists of the 20th century, and my personal favorite, the legendarily withdrawn Cornell lived with his mother and brother until old age, and is said to have had "some regrets" when, nearing the end of his life, he admitted to never having consummated his numerous crushes on actresses, artists, ballerinas and even local girls. By the way if you have never heard of this great artist, you owe it to yourself todiscover his magical work. OTHER ART VIRGINS: Andy Warhol, Winslow Homer, John Ruskin, Leonardo da Vinci (possibly).
  • FRIEDRICH NIETZSCHE. Proving that most philosophers' output is meant to justify their own insecurities, the famed misanthropist Nietzsche was also painfully shy around women. Though some suspect he was a closet homosexual, there's nothing to indicate that he acted on any of his desires, whatever they truly were. Though he did apparently die of syphilis, biographers believe he caught it not through sex but through a medical infection. OTHER FRUSTRATED PHILOSOPHERS: Rene Descartes, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Immanuel Kant were all rumored lifelong virgins.
  • ANTONI GAUDI. One of the world's greatest architects, and the man single-handedly responsible for making Barcelona such a beautiful city (not to mention tourist destination), the misogynistic and increasingly hermit-like Gaudi avoided sexual contact all his life. Surprising, considering the organic sensuality of his buildings and churches.
  • ADOLF HITLER? Yes, despite endless rumors of kinky fetishes (some say he would hire prostitutes to urinate on him - though obviously a lot of people bear a big-time grudge against this guy), many historians suggest that among his various fixations on "purity" (vegetarianism, disdain for alcohol, something about killing all the Jews, the handicapped and homosexuals) was that of the sexual kind: even his relationship with longtime girlfriend Eva Braun was said to be nonsexual. Who will ever know?
  • LEWIS CARROLL. The good reverend Charles Lutwidge Dodgson - "Lewis Carroll" to scores of literary admirers - avoided the company of grown-up women in favor of, as everybody must know by now, little girls. Due to propriety of the day (thankfully), Carroll had no sexual relations with his young charges, getting his jollies instead by photographing them in the nude. (Most of his photos he demanded be burnt upon his death.) OTHER KIDDIE BOOK AUTHORS WHO DIED VIRGINS: Hans Christian Andersen, J.M. Barrie ("Peter Pan"). Draw your own conclusions.
  • JORGE LUIS BORGES. The treasured Argentinian writer was revealed to have died a virgin, thanks to the gossip of his longtime maid. Borges stayed true to his first love - Mama - until her death, at which point he did marry (very late in life), though his maid insisted it was a chaste marriage. OTHER AUTHORS WHO NEVER GOT ANY: Emily Bronte, Charlotte Bronte, Jane Austen, Henry James, George Bernard Shaw, Jonathan Swift.
  • LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN. Despite the tacky romance of the film Immortal Beloved and rumors that he died of syphilis (the scars on his face are now believed to be from lupus), it's widely accepted now that Beethoven remained a lifelong celibate. OTHER VIRGIN COMPOSERS: Anton Bruckner, Glenn Gould.

link2



Virginity

"Virginity can be lost by a thought."

Nuns, priests, eunuchs, vestal virgins.
The importance of virgin brides in certain cultures.
Abstinence programs.
Virgin Mary, unicorns, other mythological creatures.
The Hymen.
Madonna is like a virgin, but not really.


lifelong virgins

non-virgins

  • Lasse Braun, 8, with a 9-year-old Italian girl.
  • Lord Byron, 9, with the family nurse
  • Billie Holiday, 10, raped by a middle-aged neighbor named Mr. Dick
  • Jerry Lewis, 11, with a stripper procured by his father
  • Milton Berle, 12, with a Broadway dancer in her dressing room
  • Alphonse Daudet, 12
  • Jimi Hendrix, 12
  • John Holmes, 12, with a 36-year-old woman
  • Anthony Kiedis, 12, with 18-year-old redhead Kimberley Smith procured by his father
  • Nelly, 12, with a 15-year-old girl
  • Gillian Anderson, 13, with "a punk guy who has since become a Neo-Nazi. It was awkward, stupid, unadulterated crap."
  • Drew Barrymore, 13
  • Danny Bonaduce, 13, on the set of The Partridge Family, with a David Cassidy fan
  • Annabel Chong, pornstar, 13, with a 28-year-old man
  • Tommy Lee, 13, with the next-door neighbor
  • Dave Navarro, 13
  • Asia Carrera, 14, with a classmate in a parking lot
  • David Duchovny, 14, with a 13-year-old girl
  • Jerry Hall, 14, with a rodeo bullrider who also deflowered her girlfriend
  • James Joyce, 14, with a Dublin prostitute
  • Bret Michaels, 14
  • Evita Peron, 14, with tango singer José Armani
  • The Rock, 14
  • Claude Vorilhon (Rael), 14
  • John Barrymore, 15, deflowered by stepmother
  • Ol Dirty Bastard, 15
  • Aleister Crowley, 15, with an actress in Torquay
  • Veronica Hart, 15, with her 16-year-old boyfriend
  • Dustin Hoffman, 15, in a darkroom with a girl who thought she was with Dustin's older brother
  • Jack London, 15, with a girl named Mamie
  • Traci Lords, 15, with her high school boyfriend
  • Friedrich Nietzsche, 15, with a 30-year-old countess
  • Sunset Thomas, 15, raped by her best friend
  • Christy Canyon, 16
  • Gabriele D'Annunzio, 16, with a Florentine prostitute
  • Vanessa del Rio, 16, in a porno theater with her 18-year-old boyfriend
  • Samantha Fox, 16
  • Al Goldstein, 16, with a prostitute procured by his uncle
  • Jean Harlow, 16, virgin until marriage
  • King Henry VIII, 16, with peasant girls
  • King Louis XVI, 16, with a court seamstress
  • Marilyn Manson, 16
  • W. Somerset Maugham, 16, with 26-year-old Ellingam Brooks
  • Mussolini, 16, with a prostitute
  • Steve-O, 16, with a 16-year-old girl in London
  • Dr. Drew Pinsky, 16, with his first girlfriend
  • Rasputin, 16, seduced by Danilova Kubasova -- wife of a Russian general
  • Leo Tolstoi, 16, with a prostitute
  • Thomas Wolfe, 16, in a bordello
  • Jack Black, 17
  • Giovanni Jacopo Casanova, 17, with Nanetta and Marta Savorgnan
  • Alexandre Dumas, 17
  • Marilu Henner, 17, in a shower
  • Ron Jeremy, 17, in an alley in Littleneck, New Jersey with 16-year-old Margie
  • John F. Kennedy, 17, in a Harlem bordello
  • Ludacris, 17
  • Tim Robbins, 17
  • Annie Sprinkle, 17, with her boyfriend -- a 27-year-old hippie named Van
  • Jon Stewart, 17, in college
  • David Cross, 18, with a prostitute near Times Square
  • Ashlyn Gere, 18, with her boyfriend
  • Nina Hartley, 18
  • Shanna Moakler, 18, in her dad's dental office
  • Napoleon, 18, with a prostitute
  • David Berkowitz, 19, with a Korean prostitute
  • Pamela Des Barres, 19, with Nick St. Nicholas from the band Steppenwolf
  • Linda Lovelace, 19
  • Sarah Silverman, 19
  • James Boswell, 20, with London prostitute Sally Forrester
  • Victor Hugo, 20, virgin until marriage
  • Franz Kafka, 20, with a Czech shopgirl
  • Janeane Garofalo, 21, with her college boyfriend
  • Eddie Izzard, 21
  • Jean-Jacques Rousseau, 21, with 34-year-old Madame de Warens
  • Jessica Hahn, 21, claims to have been a virgin when raped by Jim Bakker
  • Henri Landru, 22, with 16-year-old cousin Marie Remy
  • Bertrand Russell, 22, virgin until marriage
  • Honoré de Balzac, 23, with 45-year-old woman
  • Catherine II of Russia, 23, with one Saltykov
  • André Gide, 23, with a 14-year-old local boy in Tunisia
  • D.H. Lawrence, 23, with a pharmacist's wife
  • Isadora Duncan, 25, with Hungarian actor Oscar Beregi
  • H.G. Wells, 25, with a prostitute
  • George S. Kaufman, 28, virgin until marriage
  • George Bernard Shaw, 29, on his birthday with 44-year-old widow Jenny Patterson
  • Havelock Ellis, 32, virgin until marriage
  • Joseph Goebbels, 33
  • Mary Wollstonecraft, 33, with American writer Gilbert Imlay in a Paris hotel room
  • Mark Twain, 34, virgin until marriage
  • Marie Stopes, birth control advocate, 38, virgin until her second marriage

Timeline

1934
John F. Kennedy, 17, loses his virginity in a Harlem bordello.

1937
Jerry Lewis, 11, deflowered by a stripper procured by his father.

1952
Al Goldstein's uncle arranges for a prostitute to deflower his 16-year-old nephew.

1956
12-year-old John Holmes is deflowered by a 36-year-old woman.

20 Jul 1969
Marilu Henner, 17, loses her virginity in a shower.

1970
Ron Jeremy goes all the way with a neighborhood girl named Margie. "My first screw took place at age 17 in Littleneck in an alley beside a school."

1980
Little Darlings opens in theaters. The movie poster declares: "THE BET IS ON: WHOEVER LOSES HER VIRGINITY FIRST WINS."

4 Nov 1990
Steve-O, 16, loses his virginity with a 16-year-old girl in London.

21 May 1991
During a very special episode of Beverly Hills 90210, Brenda Walsh loses her virginity to Dylan McKay in a hotel room during the spring dance.

25 Sep 1991
Doogie Howser, M.D. loses his virginity on ABC television during prime time.

Dec 1997
Isilay Saygin, Turkish Minister for Women and Family Affairs, tells the Yeni Yuzyil newspaper: "Girls of 12, 13 are falling pregnant. If girls commit suicide because of the virginity tests, they would have committed suicide anyway. I don't think this is really important. Five or three girls, it doesn't matter."

17 Jul 1998
Internet Entertainment Group calls off its upcoming live netcast of two teen virgins having sex. IEG determined that Mike and Diane were pulling a hoax on ourfirsttime.com.

Jan 1999
Former child star Gary Coleman tells Us magazine that he is still a virgin.

9 Jul 1999
American Pie opens in theaters.

18 Oct 2000
Rioting breaks out in Arania Neel, India after a bride flunks her virginity test.

Edited by ithaca

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Interesting lists. Some of my favourite people were on those virgins-for-life lists :D

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I don't think that list is very accurate. Charlotte Bronte died married and pregnant, so ... a virgin? I don't think so.

Mary? She had a bunch of children after Jesus, which I think the Catholic church fully acknowledges and in no way connects with the Holy Spirit.

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Mary? She had a bunch of children after Jesus, which I think the Catholic church fully acknowledges and in no way connects with the Holy Spirit.

The Roman Catholic church does not acknowledge that, although many Protestant churches do. For RCs, Mary remains a virgin perpetually.

And Louis XVI is guilty of perhaps a greater miracle, as he is mentioned on both lists.......

boa

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Eh, well, I was never good at history... :wink:

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Mary? She had a bunch of children after Jesus, which I think the Catholic church fully acknowledges and in no way connects with the Holy Spirit.

The Roman Catholic church does not acknowledge that, although many Protestant churches do. For RCs, Mary remains a virgin perpetually.

And Louis XVI is guilty of perhaps a greater miracle, as he is mentioned on both lists.......

boa

How can they not acknowledge that Mary wasn't forever a virgin? The Bible says Jesus had brothers. I can't think of a way around it.

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If I remember correctly, it's a bit of a translation ambiguity, because the word in those passages is actually closer to "brethren," which at the time the gospels were written could have referred to his relatives in general, and might have been Mary and a bunch of cousins, for all we know. I think there's also a tradition that says they were Joseph's kids from a previous marriage. Myself, I'm not bothered by that detail one way or another.

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hm St. Awdry's not on there, but after she gave up the veil and got married, she still refused sex, and I'm fairly sure she died a virgin (her husband respected her wishes, even though they kinda needed an heir)

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It would rock if they were right about Joseph Cornell and Immanuel Kant. Not sure how reliable the site is, though.

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What do you think about THIS article? smile.gif

2014 Mod Edit: The above link doesn't seem to work anymore, but its content can be found here. For future reference:

“Inking Outside the Box”: Tentative Reflections on What the Ossuary of James Means for the Roman Catholic Doctrine of Mary’s Perpetual Virginity

Click here to access the Addendum: A Response to James Akin of Catholic Answers

The communities of biblical archaeology and New Testament scholarship are reeling with excitement over the recent discovery of what may prove to be the most significant artifact ever to have been found. I’m referring of course to the ossuary (pronounced alternatively, “osh-oo-ary” or “os-yoo-ary”) found recently in the home of an Israeli citizen, who has had possession of it for some fifteen years. An ossuary is an ancient limestone box that (at one time) contained the bones of a deceased person that were salvaged from his/her tomb. Although “boneless” in this case, there is no doubt whose bones the ossuary held; his identification is inscribed in Aramaic on the side of the limestone box: “James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus.”

Why is this so significant? There is little doubt among top scholars—even at this early stage—that not only is this artifact authentic but also very likely refers to none other than James, the brother of Jesus in the New Testament. We are informed about this relationship numerous times in the New Testament. Mark 6:3 identifies James as one of the bothers of Jesus (among four brothers, in addition to some sisters). Though initially unbelievers (John 7:5), Jesus’ brothers came to belief after being eyewitnesses of His resurrection (1 Cor 15:7) and are afterward found in the company of believers (Acts 1:13). James himself eventually reaches a top—if not the top—leadership position in the Jerusalem church (Acts 12:17; 15:13; 21:18; Gal 1:19, cf. 2:9, 12), and writes one of the letters of the New Testament (James 1:1). He is such a prominent member of the church that his own brother Jude identifies himself by means of his relationship to him (Jude 1).

There are many points about this particular ossuary that convinces scholars of its link to the New Testament data. First, ossuaries were used in Israel for only a fifty-year window, between A.D. 20 and 70. This ossuary has been dated at A.D. 63. According to testimony from Josephus, James died in A.D. 62. Both of these dates, of course, fall within the fifty-year window, but more significantly they fall within one year of each other. Hence, if James died in 62, his bones (after decomposition) would have been salvaged a year later and placed in the newly crafted ossuary.

Second, The inscription, while admittedly citing names common to that era, cites these names in biological relationship. That, in itself, narrows the possibilities of identity to only about twenty candidates (this figure according to Andre Lemaire, an expert in ancient inscriptions at France's Practical School of Higher Studies), making it impossible that this refers to just any “James, Joseph, and Jesus.” This particular James was both son of Joseph and brother of Jesus.

Third, and perhaps the most important evidence, is the mention of a brother at all. A person of that era was commonly known by his relationship to his father. A further reference to being the “brother” of x would be used only if x was a well-known figure. That narrows the earlier twenty candidates to a few, perhaps only one or two. Hence, in the view of archaeologists who have examined this artifact, that the ossuary refers to the Biblical James is “very likely” (“Evidence Of Jesus Written In Stone,” Biblical Archaeological Review, http://www.bib-arch.org/bswb_BAR/bswbbar2806f1.html).

Fourth, as we've already mentioned above, whoever this James is he must have died before A.D., 63 (the date the ossuary was created), but not significantly before (otherwise his bones would decay as well). Hence, after all the other evidence has pared the candidate down to, say, two or three total, this last piece of evidence would surely eliminate all but one. Since we know that the biblical James died in A.D. 62, the chances that this refers to anyone other than than him are astronomical.

Moreover, the ossuary shows no signs of tampering, even when subjected to rigorous laboratory examination. According to Lemaire, the artifact has undergone microscopic examination by the Geological Survey (an Israeli government organization), who in turn concluded that there is “no evidence that might detract from the authenticity.” In addition to the fifty-year window of time when ossuaries were used, the inscription itself reflects an Aramaic writing style prominent during that era.

Hence—and so far no one from the world of archaeology has doubted its link to the New Testament James—this represents the most significant finding we have for authentication of the existence of Jesus. While the New Testament documents we currently possess represent accurate copies of the original manuscripts, the earliest fragment we have dates in the early second century. The ossuary represents the oldest artifact (not to say account) we have that mentions the name of Jesus.

But there are theological ramifications as well. In Roman Catholic dogma, Mary remained a virgin her entire life. While it is true that the New Testament refers to the “brothers and sisters of Jesus,” this is most commonly explained in Roman Catholic circles by means of the Hieronymian view of this issue; namely (and motivated by theological assumptions), that “brother” (adelphos) and “sister” (adelphe), in this case, refer to “close relatives.” However, while the LXX (Greek version of the OT) does allow for this meaning, there is no clear example of this meaning in the literature of the New Testament era. Hence, the debate has often focused away from the use of adelphos / adelphe to other relevant points.

However, the ossuary of James sheds new light on the debate. The significance, in this case, is not so much the designation “brother of Jesus” (a designation used in the New Testament as well), as it is on the designation “son of Joseph.” The Hieronymian view asserts that the “holy family” (Joseph, Mary and Jesus) all committed themselves to lifelong virginity. Hence, Mary and Joseph had no children, and any reference to the “brothers” and “sisters” must refer to some other form of close relative, such as “cousin.”

The problem is, the inscription on the ossuary identifies James as the “son of Joseph,” making Joseph the “father” of both James and Jesus. This offers near conclusive evidence that supports the consistent use of the term “brother” in the New Testament era, and weighs heavily against the Hieronymian view of the relationship between Jesus and hisadelphoi in the New Testament.

Indeed, Roman Catholic scholars have already begun to perform damage control. In an interview by Associated Press, Roman Catholic scholar Joseph Fitzmyer has stated that although the writing style on the ossuary “‘fits perfectly’ with other first century examples and admits the joint appearance of these three famous names is ‘striking,’” he nevertheless concludes, “But the big problem is, you have to show me the Jesus in this text is Jesus of Nazareth, and nobody can show that.”

One can almost hear the defiance in Fitzmyer’s statement. Rather than enthusiastically concluding with all other scholars that this ossuary is “very likely” that of James the brother of Jesus in the New Testament, Fitzmyer takes a defensive stance: “you have to show me . . . and nobody can.” Such a knee-jerk response is a bit surprising coming from a scholar the caliber of Fitzmyer. One can easily envision a “so there!” echoing after Fitzmyer’s statement, perhaps edited out of the final copy of the interview! The odds that this could be anyone other than James the brother of Jesus in the New Testament is all but nil.

Yet Fitzmyer, motivated by theological concerns—and no doubt representing the forthcoming response of the Roman Catholic community—chooses to reach a conclusion that is opposite the conclusion of everyone else who has looked at this. Fitzmyer’s reaction is best explained by prior loyalties to Rome. Indeed, he himself has gone on record in his commentary stating “Jerome thought that adelphos could mean ‘cousin,’ but this is almost certainly to be ruled out as the NT meaning” (Fitzmyer, The Gospel According to Luke I-IX. [Ed. by W. Albright and D. Freedman. Garden City, NY, Doubleday, 1981], 724). Hence he concurs with New Testament scholarship in general that the New Testament teaches that Jesus had biological brothers and sisters—yet he believes in Mary’s perpetual virginity against the lexical evidence. He is able to hold these seemingly conflicting beliefs because he denies the historicity of the New Testament accounts (a position that is itself based on dubious principles of redaction criticism). Yet, in a stunning display of scholarly duplicity, when confronted by even stronger evidence—and evidence that affirms the historicity of the gospel accounts—suddenly Fitzmyer reels and chooses to doubt that evidence! If even the moderates are panicked, one wonders what the response of the conservatives will be.

Of course, it is possible (and perhaps probable in light of the strength of this finding) that Roman Catholics will retreat to the Epiphanian view; that is, the view that Joseph had children from a previous marriage. Virtually no one today holds that view, but there may be a mad dash to it in the coming days. Yet this view is extremely exegetically tenuous (there is a good reason that few hold it), has little to commend it, and has almost everything against it.

First, there is absolutely nothing in the context of the “brothers of Jesus” passages that indicates that we should abandon the normal usage of adelphos. There seems to be no instance in which this word is unambiguously used of a stepbrother in any of the literature in the New Testament era. Second, in each case where normal familial terms are used in adoptive families (Moses and Pharaoh’s daughter; Christians and Jesus; Christians and God, etc.) we are clearly informed that the relationship in question is an adoptive relationship. Such is not the case with the brothers of Jesus. Certainly there seems to be no other motivation to adopt this view than to uphold Mary’s perpetual virginity while at the same time avoiding the charge of contradicting the New Testament evidence that Jesus had siblings.

Finally, at the end of the day, neither Matthew nor Luke, in their respective infancy narratives, gives us any hint that this is a subsequent marriage for Joseph (which is what this view requires). It seems best, therefore, to abandon the Epiphanian view from further consideration.

It seems appropriate at this point to reaffirm the view that best fits not only the New Testament evidence, but now the archaeological evidence as well. Both the Hieronymian view and the Epiphanian view have been shown to be deficient on philological grounds; neither can provide evidence contemporary to that of the New Testament writers for their proposed usage of adelphos. In addition, the tradition Roman Catholic (Hieronymian) view now has the weight of archaeological evidence against it.

The strengths of the biblical view (also known as the Helvidian view—the view that the “brothers” of Jesus are his biological siblings, and that Mary had other children) are as follows: First and foremost, the Helvidian view best explains the philological evidence of the usage of adelphos / adelphe, both in the New Testament and in the literature contemporary to the New Testament. Second, these siblings are presented by the New Testament writers as true siblings without the kinds of qualifications that we find in regard to Joseph’s fatherhood of Jesus (e.g., Luke 3:23). Third, this view best accounts for the fact that Mary the mother of Jesus is regularly found in the company of these “brothers” of Jesus. Fourth, this view best preserves the force of those texts that either show Jesus distinguishing between the priority of metaphysical “brothers” over against physical “brothers” (e.g., Mark 3:31-35), or show the tragedy of disbelief even among “his own brothers” (John 7:5).

Fifth, this view has the added strength of being the simplest explanation, for it (1) affirms only what we may naturally and safely infer from the text, and (2) does not speculate about areas for which we have no information. In the case of (1), we read that Mary and Joseph are married, from which we infer that normal marital relations occurred. We further read that Jesus has “brothers” and “sisters” (in texts that place them with his “mother”), from which we infer that these are biological siblings. In the case of (2), this view does not speculate that Mary may have remained a virgin all through her married life, nor that these “brothers” of Jesus may have been cousins rather than siblings; nor that thismay have been a second marriage for Joseph, nor that he may have had children from a prior marriage; nor that he and Mary may have adopted other children, some from whatmay have been his brother and others from what may have been his sister.

Sixth, this view best explains the normal use of heos hou in Matt 1:25 (“he did not know her until she gave birth”; click here and here for other articles on this phrase). Seventh, this view best accounts for the use of the term “firstborn” (prototokos) in Luke 2:7 rather than Luke’s usual term “only born” (monogenes, cf. 7:12, 8:41-42; 9:38). Finally, the Epiphanian view openly contradicts the cherished tradition among the majority of conservative Roman Catholics that Joseph, to be a "worthy" companion and protectorate for Mary, must himself be a lifelong virgin, free of "the stain of carnal commerce." If the Roman Catholic is to retreat to the Epiphanian view, a major paradigm shift will need to take place first in the Roman Catholic mind.

For these reasons, the Helvidian view is to be preferred. It best explains not only the biblical evidence, but now the hard archaeological evidence as well. Although in this early stages of this recent finding we must remain tentative, the evidence appears at this point to be strong. We just may have in our hands the coup de grace of the 1,600 year-old "brothers-equal-cousins" argument initiated by Jerome and promoted by Roman Catholics even today. Only time will tell. But even if Roman Catholics fall back on the Epiphanian view, an exegetical battle will have been won; for we will have demonstrated that we have been right exegetically all along with regard to the Hieronymian view. That speaks well for our exegetical method, and speaks volumes about Roman Catholic exegesis. Our method will have been vindicated; theirs will have been shown to be wanting.

Eric Svendsen, Ph.D.

Addendum: A Response to James Akin of Catholic Answers

James Akin of Catholic Answers has written a piece of his own on the ossuary of James (http://www.catholic.com/library/Burial_Box_of_St_James_Found.asp). In it he concedes the likely authenticity of the artifact, as well as the high probability that it belongs to none other than the biblical "James, the brother of Jesus."

However, he goes on to assert that this poses no threat to the Roman Catholic dogma of Mary's perpetual virginity:

Some non-Catholics were quick to tout the box as evidence against the perpetual virginity of Mary, however this does not follow. The ossuary identifies its James as the son of Joseph and the brother of Jesus, it does not identify him as the son-much less the biological son-of Mary. The only point that Catholic doctrine has established regarding the "brethren of the Lord" is that they are not biological children of Mary.

The purpose of Akin's observation here is to introduce the alternative option for belief in Mary's perpetual virginity:

What relationship they did have with her is a matter of speculation. They may have been Jesus' adoptive brothers, stepbrothers through Joseph, or-according to one popular theory-cousins. As has often been pointed out, Aramaic had no word for "cousin," and so the word for brother was used in its place. This inscription is in Aramaic, and so there would be little surprise if it were being used in that way.

Actually, the "cousins" theory (also known as the Hieronymian view) is ruled out by the inscription, as Akin himself admits when, at the end of the day, he abandons this view in favor of the Epiphanian view:

While the inscription does not establish the brethren of the Lord as biological children of Mary, it does have an impact on which theory may best explain the relationship of the brethren to Jesus. If James "the brother of the Lord" were Jesus' cousin then it would be unlikely for him also to have a father named Joseph. This would diminish the probability of the cousin theory in favor of the idea that this James was a stepbrother or an adoptive brother of Jesus.

Akin here concedes that the Hieronymian view is no longer the best option--or, perhaps an option at all--based on the evidence we now have in the ossuary of James. He goes on to explain the new view he holds; namely, the Epiphanian view:

The stepbrother hypothesis is, in fact, the earliest one on record. It is endorsed by a document known as the Protoevangelium of James, which dates to the year 120, within sixty years of James' death (James died in A.D. 62). According to the Protoevangelium, Joseph was an elderly widower at the time he was betrothed to Mary. He already had a family and thus was willing to become the guardian of a virgin consecrated to God. The stepbrother hypothesis was the most common explanation of the brethren of the Lord until St. Jerome popularized the cousin hypothesis just before the year 400. The stepbrother hypothesis is also supported by the fact that Joseph apparently was significantly older than Mary, as he appears to have died before our Lord's public ministry began.

It is clear that Akin is eager to endorse the Epiphanian view of Mary's Perpetual Virginity, and does so enthusiastically:

Bottom line: If the ossuary of James bar-Joseph is that of James the brother of the Lord, it sheds light on which of the theories Catholics are permitted to hold is most likely the correct one, but it poses does nothing to refute Catholic doctrine. If authentic, as seems probable, it is to be welcomed as further archaeological confirmation of the life of our Lord.

I am certainly pleased that Akin has not done what so many other Roman Catholics have done; denied either its authenticity (as some Roman Catholic fundamentalists have) or its link to the biblical James, Joseph and Jesus (as Fitzmyer has). For that he is to be commended.

However, his conclusions regarding the ramifications surrounding the doctrine of Mary's perpetual virginity, and his ease in adopting the Epiphanian view, are not as neat as he apparently thinks. First, as we've pointed out in the main article, the Epiphanian view has little to commend it (for which click here). Second, the Protevangelium of James (to which Akin appeals) has been characterized by scholars as “a wildly imaginative folk-narrative that is outrageously inaccurate about NT events as well as things Jewish” (J. P. Meier “The Brothers and Sisters of Jesus in Ecumenical Perspective,” Catholic Biblical Quarterly, 54 [1], 1992:16). J. Elliott, The Apocryphal New Testament (Oxford: Clarendon Press; 1993, 51), informs us in his preface to the Protevangelium of James that its historical value is “insignificant,” citing numerous inaccuracies and inconsistencies. H. Graef, Mary: A History of Doctrine and Devotion (Vol. 1. New York: Sheed and Ward; 1964, 36), who is sympathetic to the Roman Catholic view of Mary, notes that this writing betrays “great ignorance of Jewish conditions” and is therefore of “little theological significance.” Even proponents of the Epiphanian view admit that the accounts contained in the Protevangelium of James are “certainly works of imagination, not of historiography” (R. Bauckham, “The Brothers and Sisters of Jesus: An Epiphanian Response to John P. Meier,” Catholic Biblical Quarterly, 56 [4], 1994: 696). Hence, the scholarly consensus over the Protevangelium of James is that it is anything but a reliable document from which we may glean an accurate historical accounting of the lives of Jesus, Mary and Joseph. Akin's use of this document to illustrate an early Marian tradition ignores the fact that that tradition was rejected by the Roman Catholic church, and that the document itself is rejected by all scholars as worthless in ascertaining historical information.

But let us grant for the sake of argument that the Epiphanian view is possible. It is one thing to posit that it is an alternative option for belief in Mary's perpetual virginity. It is quite another thing to posit that it is a Roman Catholic option for belief in Mary's perpetual virginity. The reason the Epiphanian view has long been rejected by Roman Catholics is because that view teaches that Joseph was not a lifelong virgin (not surprisingly, this seems also to be the motivation of Jerome, who clearly viewed virginity as the preferred state). Pope Leo XIII, in his encyclical Quamquam Pluries, mandated devotion to St. Joseph on the basis of his worthy, virginal state:

"We judge it of deep utility for the Christian people, continually to invoke with great piety and trust, together with the Virgin-Mother of God, her chaste Spouse, the Blessed Joseph; and We regard it as most certain that this will be most pleasing to the Virgin herself."

"In truth, the dignity of the Mother of God is so lofty that naught created can rank above it. But as Joseph has been united to the Blessed Virgin by the ties of marriage, it may not be doubted that he approached nearer than any [by means of his chastity] to the eminent dignity by which the Mother of God surpasses so nobly all created natures. For marriage is the most intimate of all unions which from its essence imparts a community of gifts between those that by it are joined together. Thus in giving Joseph the Blessed Virgin as spouse, God appointed him to be not only her life's companion, the witness of her maidenhood, the protector of her honour, but also, by virtue of the conjugal tie, a participator in her sublime dignity."

"Fathers of families find in Joseph the best personification of paternal solicitude and vigilance; spouses a perfect example of love, of peace, and of conjugal fidelity; virgins at the same time find in him the model and protector of virginal integrity."

Interested readers may view the entire document here: http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/leo_xiii/encyclicals/documents/hf_l-xiii_enc_15081889_quamquam-pluries_en.html.

This encyclical does not appear out of thin air, but is based on centuries of Roman Catholic devotion to Joseph, beginning with Jerome but also including Bede and Aquinas. Indeed, there is no question that the perpetual virginity of Joseph--and consequently, the Hieronymian view--has been the dominant and implicit belief of the faithful since the time of Jerome. In the eleventh-century, Peter Damian (a canonized saint of Rome) stated: "If it does not suffice for you that not only the mother is a virgin, there remains the belief of the Church that he who served as the father is also a virgin" (Filas, 99 [emphasis mine]). Aquinas, in dealing with the choice between the Hieronymian view and the Epiphanian view, used no uncertain terms is decrying the Epiphanian view as "false; for if the Lord did not wish his virgin mother to be entrusted to the care of anyone but a virgin [John], how could he have suffered that her spouse was not a virgin, and as such would have persisted?" (Ad Galatas, 1.19). Commenting on the history of devotion to Joseph's perpetual virginity, Father Paul K. Raftery, O.P., concludes: "Both St. Peter Damian’s statement and St. Thomas’ insistence on the falsehood of the apocryphal legend show how fully St. Joseph’s virginity has been accepted into Church teaching" ("Theology for the Laity," The Rosary Light & Life, 54/4, 2001 [emphasis mine]).

Over a century ago, Rev. Fr. Joseph Anthony Patrignani, SJ, in his Devotion to Saint Joseph (a work approved by the Archbishop of New York in 1887), simply assumes Joseph's lifelong virginity to be established church teaching when he writes: "The virginity of Joseph was, it must be confessed, a marvel without example at the time, since he was the first who practiced it in the married state. Thus grace, in uniting two virgins in the persons of Mary and Joseph, added in their hearts a new lustre to that more than Angelic purity which constituted their glory and their merit.” This question of Joseph's virginity is not one of mere piety, but, according to Fr. Lienhard (professor of Theology at Fordham University, and a patristic scholar), is a "doctrinal question" (see his St. Joseph in Early Christianity: Devotion and Theology, 1999). Indeed, even Pope John Paul II assumes Joseph's virginity in his Redemptoris Custos, in which he states: "The Savior began the work of salvation by this virginal and holy union [between Mary and Joseph], wherein is manifested his all-powerful will to purify and sanctify the family--that sanctuary of love and cradle of life." If Joseph had other children from a previous marriage, his bond with Mary could certainly be called "celibate," but just as certainly not "virginal."

Hence, it is debatable whether Roman Catholics are at liberty to adopt the Epiphanian view, since that view affirms that Joseph had other children and denies the explicit anddominant Roman Catholic teachings and beliefs regarding the lifelong virginity of Joseph. It appears, then, that Roman Catholics may be in more of a dilemma than Akin has allowed. On the one hand, if the Roman Catholic is honest and allows himself to be convinced by the archaeological evidence--and by the weight of the scholarly opinion behind that evidence--then he must abandon the Hieronymian view of Mary's perpetual virginity and adopt its only alternative; the Epiphanian view. On the other hand, to adopt the Epiphanian view is to disregard a centuries-old dominant doctrinal position that is sure to call into question the legitimacy of the "ordinary universal magisterium" (i.e., the common and consistent, long-held teachings and beliefs of the bishops and popes), a principle that is used at times to establish infallible teachings in Roman Catholicism. Vatican I states it this way in its "Dogmatic Constitution on the Catholic Faith": "All those things are to be believed with Catholic and divine faith which are contained in the Word of God, written orhanded on, and are proposed by the Church either by a solemn judgment or by its ordinary and universal magisterium as divinely revealed and to be believed as such." Does the lifelong virginity of Joseph qualify for this? It certainly seems to be a teaching that was "handed on" by the "ordinary and universal magisterium," and it is clear that all the Roman Catholic writers cited above share that belief. It remains to be seen how Akin--and other Roman Catholics who have now admitted the weakness of the Hieronymian view--will deal with this issue. Again, time will tell.

Eric Svendsen, Ph.D.

Further Reading:

http://www.bib-arch.org/bswb_BAR/bswbbar2806f1.html

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A60769-2002Oct21.html

http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/leo_xiii/encyclicals/documents/hf_l-xiii_enc_15081889_quamquam-pluries_en.html

Edited by ithaca

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I'm tidying up out the library today, and I'm going to unsticky this thread, as it does not seem to me to always need to be at the top of the forum list.

boa, library mod

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interesting list as many names weren't expected :shock:

it kind is a good list as many can look up to those people who made a difference does have something in common as some of us

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i've heard that it's likely mary had both more boys and girls after jesus, and i've actually known catholics to state this. (i think the whole idea of her perpetual virginhood just got stated by some pope or priest and it takes forever to let go of that.) of course, i don't know greek, but even several catholics i know who do say that she did have other children, and st paul in one of his epistles refers to meeting "the lord's brother" and i don't think that word in the greek would have been ambiguous from what i've heard of people who know it.

i'm SURE isaac newton died a virgin, since he stated that was his greatest accomplishment (he also busted counterfeiters and made sure some of them got hanged!) mathematician paul erdos never had sex. i don't think ludwing wittgenstein did, and mathematician sonya kovalevskly died a virgin i think. (why so many math and logical philosophy people i don't know.)

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i'm SURE isaac newton died a virgin, since he stated that was his greatest accomplishment (he also busted counterfeiters and made sure some of them got hanged!) mathematician paul erdos never had sex. i don't think ludwing wittgenstein did, and mathematician sonya kovalevskly died a virgin i think. (why so many math and logical philosophy people i don't know.)

I don't know either. Maybe it's like that Huxley quote, "An intellectual is someone who has found something more interesting than sex." :?:

Maybe they are more 'rational' than emotional, or maybe they experience intense emotion in a different way (like that thread about sex being an altered state of consciousness and supposedly this altered-state can be overrided by a different "non-sexual" altered-state -- from what I understood).

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on the ossuary article; some other archeologist stumbled on it a while ago, and didn't think much of it, the names being quite common, and the cost of it being fairly outside the range of the income of the family Jesus of Nazareth would have come from (plus, awfully far from Nazareth i think.) though my experience with archeology only comes from the fact that i spent many a "vacation" hauling around rocks and stuff for my dad.

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Mary? She had a bunch of children after Jesus, which I think the Catholic church fully acknowledges and in no way connects with the Holy Spirit.

The Roman Catholic church does not acknowledge that, although many Protestant churches do. For RCs, Mary remains a virgin perpetually.

And Louis XVI is guilty of perhaps a greater miracle, as he is mentioned on both lists.......

boa

How can they not acknowledge that Mary wasn't forever a virgin? The Bible says Jesus had brothers. I can't think of a way around it.

I think that's more a symbolic thing, that she was forever pure of mind and heart.

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I think that's more a symbolic thing, that she was forever pure of mind and heart.

That's a good point - one could take "virgin" in this context to be symbolic of asexuality, which we all know is much less of a barrier for having kids than virginity.

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I Beleive Joan of Arc was a virgin.

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I think that's more a symbolic thing, that she was forever pure of mind and heart.

That's a good point - one could take "virgin" in this context to be symbolic of asexuality, which we all know is much less of a barrier for having kids than virginity.

ROFL

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OTHER AUTHORS WHO NEVER GOT ANY: Emily Bronte, Charlotte Bronte, Jane Austen, Henry James, George Bernard Shaw, Jonathan Swift.

Did anyone else find this in-bold part of the link very tacky...

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OTHER AUTHORS WHO NEVER GOT ANY: Emily Bronte, Charlotte Bronte, Jane Austen, Henry James, George Bernard Shaw, Jonathan Swift.

Did anyone else find this in-bold part of the link very tacky...

I didn't pursue the feeling, but yes, I think I did, now I focus on it. The phrase "Never got any" always rubs me the wrong way. It implies that it's a BAD thing to "not get any," which is entirely too presumptuous.

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FYI, this thread is over a year old, and was started by an individual who was later banned for trollish behavior.

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FYI, this thread is over a year old, and was started by an individual who was later banned for trollish behavior.

FYI, I don't really care. It spawned a relevant discussion.

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Sometimes people miss the year on old threads. I just wanted to point it out, since there's not much point trying to engage the OP about word choice.

If it's encouraging relevant conversation, that's great.

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Sometimes people miss the year on old threads. I just wanted to point it out, since there's not much point trying to engage the OP about word choice.

If it's encouraging relevant conversation, that's great.

lol

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LOL OMG....that is actually funny! Thatnk you for brightening up my day! :)

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Mary? She had a bunch of children after Jesus, which I think the Catholic church fully acknowledges and in no way connects with the Holy Spirit.

The Roman Catholic church does not acknowledge that, although many Protestant churches do. For RCs, Mary remains a virgin perpetually.

And Louis XVI is guilty of perhaps a greater miracle, as he is mentioned on both lists.......

boa

How can they not acknowledge that Mary wasn't forever a virgin? The Bible says Jesus had brothers. I can't think of a way around it.

Doesn't anything even mention the names of the siblings? That is a question for my pastor tomorrow.

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i don't think andy warhol was a virgin upon death. in the philosophy of andy warhol he speaks about his views on sex.

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Christina. G. Rossetti, I think. Though she might have been a lesbian. Still technically a virgin, though. Gerard Manley Hopkins, too. He was probably gay. They were both probably lifelong virgins for religious reasons...though very far from asexual!

I think Kant probably was a virgin when he died. I'd even mark him down as asexual.

It's a little known fact that Marilyn Monroe was hyposexual. She had lots of sex but really didn't enjoy it. Funny for a sex symbol, I think.

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