Philo’s De mutatione nominum: Sample Commentary, Exegetical Structure, and Its Place in the “Abrahamic Cycle” of the Allegorical Commentary

In addition to providing a sample chapter from the author’s commentary on De mutatione nominum, this paper will present an exegetical skeleton of the entire work and address some perennial questions about the Allegorical Commentary raised by this treatise. In particular, the paper will consider the thematic unity of the entire work, comparing Philo’s exegetical invention in this “middle” treatise (Runia [1987]) with other treatises of this type, including De migratione Abrahami and Gig.-Deus. The paper will then briefly consider what evidence the Abrahamic treatises contribute to the concept of “cycles” (Cazeaux [1989]) or “clusters” (Runia [2015]) within the Allegorical Commentary, particularly, the possibility of an “Abrahamic cycle.”