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Porphyropoles/porphyropolis - The ancient world of Greece and Rome

About Porphyropoles/porphyropolis

Previous Entry Porphyropoles/porphyropolis Mar. 21st, 2011 @ 01:25 pm Next Entry
I have recently been studying the occurrence (or lack thereof) of "gender-neutral" occupations as held in Scripture (both the NT and OT). I happened upon Acts 16:14 wherein Lydia is called a "seller of purple" (porphyropolis). This is evidently the feminine form of the term "porphyropoles". Since there are both masculine and feminine forms of the term in Greek, I am wondering if this occupation was performed by both males and females. If so, there is no indication given that the church disapproved of females being "sellers of purple" and so, this scripture, by implication, may lend (scriptural) support to (or at least not disapproval of) certain gender-neutral occupations.

My questions are: Is there any other evidence (historically?/scripturally?) for other (apparently) gender-neutral occupations among the Jews in the OT and/or among the Christians in the NT? Also, could the masculine form of "porphyropoles" be used also to refer to (only?) women who engaged in such an occupation?
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Date:March 21st, 2011 08:09 pm (UTC)
I can think of nothing to help you - but this sounds awesome. I would love to read a paper on this.
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