Date of this Version
The Routledge Encyclopedia of Ancient Mediterranean Religions
"All laws of men are nourished by one law, the divine law." So wrote the fifth-century Greek philosopher Heraklitos. The concept of "sacred law" on the other hand is likely the remnant of a category first used in 1906 CE to define a particular corpus of Greek inscriptions pertaining to cult practice. It constitutes a subcategory of the vast category-- "all laws of men" -- that includes the intersection of the normative and the divine. Sacred law is not the abstract, pervasive, and diffuse notion of divine sponsorship--however conceived--of state power, or the vast realm captured between the terms "religion and law," but rather covers a subcategory of explicit norms that govern religious cult practice.
Dohrmann, N.B. (2016). Sacred Law. In E. Orlin, L.S. Fried, J. Knust, M. Satlow & M.E. Pregill (Eds.), The Routledge Encyclopedia of Ancient Mediterranean Religions (pp. 527-532). New York: Routledge.
Date Posted: 08 September 2017