Donalson, Malcolm Drew

Dr. Malcolm Donalson is Professor of Foreign Languages and History at The Alabama School of Mathematics and Science. He earned his Ph.D. in Humanities at The Florida State University. He is a member of the North American Patristics Society and the Society for the Study of Christian Spirituality. Dr. Donalson’s books include Jerome’s ‘Chronicon:’ Translation and Historical Commentary (The Edwin Mellen Press, 1996), The Domestic Cat in Roman Civilization (Mellen, 1999), and The Cult of Isis in the Roman Empire: Isis Invicta (Mellen, 2003).

Christian Soldier/Martyrs of the Roman Empire, The First Century to the Fourth Century A.D. (Including a Compendium of Over 200 Soldier/Martyrs with Brief Biographies for Each
2016 0-4955-0524-3
This work addresses the subject of Roman soldiers who, due to difficult circumstances, ended their lives as Christian martyrs. It looks at as a whole at Roman soldiers , whose martyrdoms insured that they were chief agents in the diffusion of the Christian faith throughout the Roman world, exemplifying Tertullian's famous reference to the blood of martyrs as the seed of Christians. Perhaps paradoxically, while these soldiers' martyrdoms provided moving testimony at the of dreadful events, it was their commemoration by the Church that was such a powerful factor in the continuing Christianization of late Roman life and culture.

Chronicle of the Kings of the Visigoths: From Alaric to the Moorish Conquest (395-737 A.d.)
2014 0-7734-3533-6
A crucial and historically indispensable “who’s who” of Visigothic monarchs, this book will provide students, teachers, and researchers alike with essential references and important insights into the culture and history of the Visigoths with concise biographical entries that fill the gap in previous contributions on the subject.

Cult of Isis in the Roman Empire
2002 0-7734-6894-3
This first half of this study examines the chief characteristics of the Isis cult - the goddess herself, her mythology, variegated attributes, appeal, initiation and cultic practices, priests and priestesses, and calendrical observances. Part Two is an historical survey of the cult's progress and setbacks from the cult's introduction into Italy through the reign of Commodus in the late second century C. E. An epilogue takes the story up to its suppression by the Christianizing state. This will be useful work for scholars of religion in the classical world and comparative religion, as well as for those in Roman history and civilization.

Domestic Cat in Roman Civilization
1999 0-7734-8160-5
This study enhances scholarship on animals in the classical world by focusing on the domestic cat in Roman civilization. Beginning with material rudimentary to the Romans' early acquaintance with the cat, is discusses a diverse range of sources for the cat in the Roman period, supported by a number of illustrations. It is a compendium of the available literary sources, drawn from the spheres of religion, mythology, the fable tradition, miscellanea, natural observations, agricultural tracts, etc.. The final chapters include an examination of artistic representations demonstrating a variety of perceptions of the cat, a survey of archaeological discoveries of feline remains, and observations on the cat in Roman life.

History of the Wolf in Western Civilization
2006 0-7734-5693-7
This study of the wolf is primarily that of the wolf of Biblical metaphor and medieval legend, rather than the wolf of reality. Yet, it demonstrates for students and teachers alike how the wolf of reality underwent a long-term ‘demonization’ in western culture, largely as a result of the literary wolf. It accomplishes this first, through a close investigation of the pertinent passages of the Scriptures and select references in the works of the Church Fathers. The study then examines details from two sources with the classical tradition, Aelian’s On the Nature of Animals and select fables of the Aesopian tradition. This is followed by a descriptive survey of later medieval works: the so-called ‘beast epics,’ the Physiologus (in its Christian recension), and the illustrated bestiaries. The book explores evidence for the ‘wicked wolf’ in the early and later Middle Ages. The conclusion cites the continuing wolf terror in Western Europe as exacerbated by the heyday of the werewolf phenomenon and points to hopeful signs for the conservation of the wolf. In all, this work shows how the diabolical wolf – only a symbol in the Gospels – developed, grew much ‘larger than life,’ and persisted through late antiquity (when a new term, luparius, was coined for the hunters of the real wolf) and throughout the Middle Ages; and that the ‘agent of the Devil’ was not at all assisted by the observations of naturalists or encyclopedists like Aelian or Isidore of Seville, nor by the image of the greedy but stupid wolf of Aesop. The book is enhanced by photographs, including eight photos of actual wolves by professional photographers. A very select bibliography provides a starting point for the study of the wolf in western civilization, and includes both patristic and medieval works, along with modern works.

Translation From Latin Into English Of Devirginitate Perpetua Sanctae Mariae: The Perpetual Virginity of Holy Mary by Ildefonsus of Toledo (c. 650 A. D.)
2011 0-7734-1572-6
This English translation provides scholars with a seminal work in the development of the Marian cult in the West. lldefonsus of Toledo's work, including its series of so-called “Ciceronian synonyms” reproves those who would dare to question what for him was a bedrock of Christians' right belief—the perpetual virginity of Christ's Mother.

Translation of Jerome's Chronicon with Historical Commentary
1996 0-7734-2258-7
This translation and commentary will make Jerome's Chronicle available in English for the first time. Moreover, its selective notes will clarify Jerome's often terse references to persons, events and places in the fourth century A.D. The extensive bibliography, of both ancient and modern works, will provide guidance for Jerome's own sources. It will also serve to introduce the reader to many modern works that cover the early chronicle tradition as well as the historical period addressed by Jerome's work, because Jerome's Chronicle is concerned largely with imperial Roman history as well as ecclesiastical history.