The University of Groningen is celebrating its 400th Anniversary in 2014. To commemorate that event a special 2-day Colloquium "The Star of Bethlehem: Historical and Astronomical Perspectives", is being held on October 23-24, 2014, in Groningen, The Netherlands. This Colloquium is particularly timely as also 400 years ago, in 1614, Johannes Kepler published his book "De vero anno quo aeternus dei filius humanam naturam in utero benedictae Virginis Mariae assumpsit", on the chronology related to the Star of Bethlehem.
22 specialists in the fields of (the history of) astronomy, ancient history, religion, society and culture, will discuss the various aspects of the Star of Bethlehem. Besides the invited specialists there is room for about 25 guest attendants. All will be able to take part in the group discussions which conclude each of the five meeting sessions (chaired by moderators).
It is the purpose of this international Colloquium to engage with recent theories for the Star of Bethlehem, such as those of Michael Molnar (The Star of Bethlehem - Legacy of the Magi), drawing on the expertise of all relevant related fields of ancient astronomy/astrology and ancient history and religion.
The final papers will be published by Brill Academic Publishers (Leiden/Boston), and will together probably constitute the leading volume on this topic.The unique interdisciplinairy co-hosts are:
- Kapteyn Astronomical Institute
- Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies
- CRASIS: Culture, Religion and Society in Graeco-Roman Antiquity
- University of Groningen (RUG)
- Mulerius Foundation (RUG)
- The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW)
- The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO)
- The Netherlands Research School for Astronomy (NOVA)
- Leiden Kerkhoven Bosscha Foundation (LKBF)