In the Etruscan, early Roman, and certain other cultures,
the Sybills were holy women who could supposedly read
the future. Perhaps unexpectedly, many of the Fathers
accept them as genuine prophetesses of God, sent to the
Gentiles as the Hebrew prophets were sent to the Jews
(whereas most other pagan oracles they condemned as demonic).
The presence of clearly Judæo-Christian content
in many of the surviving Sybilline prophecies has led
modern skeptics to instead argue that these texts were
altered or forged outright by Christian scribes.
Return to St Pachomius Library.