Mary and the Fathers of the Church, by Luigi Gambero


Mary and the Fathers of the Church: The Blessed Virgin Mary in Patristic Thought by Luigi Gambero

Has anyone ever read this book? Is it thorough? Did you like it?


I have it, very thorough on the Mary passages from the Fathers. More up to date than most scholarship you will find since it was originally completed in Italian in 1991, then translated into English in 1999 for Ignatius Press.

Similar to the 3-volume Jurgens, except only dealing with Marian doctrine, with a short introduction on each Father. Covers everything from the apostolic fathers (very little about Mary there), books like Protoevangelium of James, the 2nd century Fathers (New Eve quotes), all the way to St. John Damascene in 750.

As far as I can tell, all the best and complete quotations on Mary from the Fathers. I am using it and Bishop Ullathorne’s book on the I.C. to verify quotes and translations found in Mariology by Juniper Carol. Although Carol goes even further into the doctors and late medieval theologians (Bernard, Duns Scotus, Aquinas, etc).

My new article on the Immaculate Conception of the Mother of God (unfinished, hopefully done by March 25 – Annunciation day).

I already have one on the Assumption also based on Carol… :thumbsup:

BTW, I also recommend this book to folks, if you haven’t heard of it:

Dwight Longenecker and David Gustafson, Mary: A Catholic-Evangelical Debate (Brazos Press, 2003)

Longenecker is a convert from Anglicanism (he’s been on Journey Home a few times), and Gustafson was his fundamentalist-evangelical friend from Bob Jones Univ. Very lively debate, and they go fairly deep into the Fathers, Church history, theology, etc.

Phil P


I have it. Excelent book.


It makes a good companion to Hilda Graef’s (slightly older) book Mary: a History of Doctrine and Devotion :slight_smile: The two complement one another. Dr. Graef wrote her book in the mid-60s, & IMHO it is a really good one volume survey. It is also very nice to have a book about the world’s most famous woman being written by a woman for a change; the more, the merrier.

Ideally, the one to get is the six volumes of the Corpus Marianum Patristicum :D, in Latin & Greek, which probably costs the earth. But is in soft covers. And is described here, with a lot more Mariological material:
*][/LIST]Or there is the hundred-page article on her in the Bibliotheca Sanctorum, which tells you every last detail you could possibly want to know about every feast, relic, & tradition about every holy person recognised as such by Rome as of 1990 or so. And it has plenty of pictures. It does for Saints etc what the Catholic Encyclopaedia does for the CC as a whole.

And it’s ideal for playing Trivial Pursuit.

Just one catch - the Bibliotheca is in Italian. Still, at least it’s not in some horribly obscure language that only three people in the whole world can read.


Thanks Phil. Very helpful as always. I’ll look forward to the completion of that article.


Thanks Michael! And you too Brother Rich!

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