1 Timothy 2:11-12 has been variously understood. One view I recently heard is that it teaches women to be silent not only in church, as is the case in 1 Corinthians 14:34-35, but also in secular matters. After making several contextual arguments for women not to teach with authority, this article concludes:

If we can see I Tim 2:11-12 forbids a woman from teaching a class of men when the topic is the Bible, then we ought to be able to see the non-spiritual parallel: I Tim 2:11-12 also forbids a woman from teaching a class including men when the topic is secular (like a college mathematics class).

Many decades ago the Biblical view presented in this message was accepted by most every Christian. The woman’s liberation movement squelched it. But the Bible hasn’t changed. I close with this point … If verses 9-10 (dressing modestly) applies at the university and in the workplace, why wouldn’t the very next two verses apply there also?

This has caused me to wonder how 1 Timothy 2 was understood historically. Has the context of 1 Timothy 2:11-12 historically been understood as referring to the church, or would it apply, as this article contends, in all settings, sacred or secular?

Note: My question does not pertain to how people in modern times have interpreted the passage; neither is it necessarily about what "silence" means. Rather, I am asking whether, historically, the context of 1 Timothy 2:11-12 was understood as being about the church in particular.

  • I've heard a similar argument carried forward to apply to other spheres where Christian women (it is alleged by some Christian men) should never drive a car when a man is there to drive. It would be viewed as usurping his male authority should his wife or daughter drive the car and he was 'merely' a passenger. This does not pertain to your Q about ancient times, I know, but I bet the principle might have been applied from way back!
    – Anne
    Commented Dec 9, 2022 at 15:25

6 Answers 6


Here is what I could find among the Ante-Nicene fathers.

Tertullian, in his treatise, "On the Veiling of Virgins", writes this (about 204 AD):

Chapter IX.—Veiling Consistent with the Other Rules of Discipline Observed by Virgins and Women in General.

Let us now see whether, as we have shown the arguments drawn from nature and the matter itself to be applicable to the virgin as well (as to other females), so likewise the precepts of ecclesiastical discipline concerning women have an eye to the virgin.

It is not permitted to a woman to speak in the church; [1 Cor. xiv. 34, 35; 1 Tim. ii. 11, 12] but neither (is it permitted her) to teach, nor to baptize, nor to offer, nor to claim to herself a lot in any manly function, not to say (in any) sacerdotal office. Let us inquire whether any of these be lawful to a virgin. If it is not lawful to a virgin, but she is subjected on the self-same terms (as the woman), and the necessity for humility is assigned her together with the woman, whence will this one thing be lawful to her which is not lawful to any and every female? If any is a virgin, and has proposed to sanctify her flesh, what prerogative does she (thereby) earn adverse to her own condition? Is the reason why it is granted her to dispense with the veil, that she may be notable and marked as she enters the church? that she may display the honour of sanctity in the liberty of her head? More worthy distinction could have been conferred on her by according her some prerogative of manly rank or office! I know plainly, that in a certain place a virgin of less than twenty years of age has been placed in the order of widows! whereas if the bishop had been bound to accord her any relief, he might, of course, have done it in some other way without detriment to the respect due to discipline; that such a miracle, not to say monster, should not be pointed at in the church, a virgin-widow! the more portentous indeed, that not even as a widow did she veil her head; denying herself either way; both as virgin, in that she is counted a widow, and as widow, in that she is styled a virgin. But the authority which licenses her sitting in that seat uncovered is the same which allows her to sit there as a virgin: a seat to which (besides the “sixty years” [1 Tim. v. 9] not merely “single-husbanded” (women)—that is, married women—are at length elected, but “mothers” to boot, yes, and “educators of children;” in order, forsooth, that their experimental training in all the affections may, on the one hand, have rendered them capable of readily aiding all others with counsel and comfort, and that, on the other, they may none the less have travelled down the whole course of probation whereby a female can be tested. So true is it, that, on the ground of her position, nothing in the way of public honour is permitted to a virgin.

Among the Treatises of Cyprian, his TREATISE VII, Third Book, section 46 we have this:

46. That a woman ought to be silent in the church.

In the first Epistle of Paul to the Corinthians: “Let women be silent in the church. But if any wish to learn anything, let them ask their husbands at home.” [1 Cor. xiv. 34, 35] Also to Timothy: “Let a woman learn with silence, in all subjection. But I permit not a woman to teach, nor to be set over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve; and Adam was not seduced, but the woman was seduced.” [1 Tim. ii. 11–14.]

This all I could find in the Ante-Nicene fathers.

[Quotes abstracted from, "The Ante-Nicene Fathers: The Writings of the Fathers down to AD 325; Edited by Rev Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson; T&T Clark, Edinburgh, W B Erdmans Publishing, Grand Rapids, Michigan; in 10 volumes; reprinted June 1993.] Also available on-line and free at https://www.holybooks.com/ante-nicene-fathers-vol-i-ix/ ]

  • Thanks for your research. +1 Do either of these sources address secular matters, or are they unclear on such?
    – The Editor
    Commented Dec 8, 2022 at 23:24
  • @TheEditor - I have quoted them in full.
    – Dottard
    Commented Dec 9, 2022 at 7:43
  • I'm awarding the bounty to Epimanes since the bounty's purpose was to provide more quotes, which Epimanes found. However, I'm accepting your answer as it was the hardest for others to improve. Both answers get a +1 from me!
    – The Editor
    Commented Dec 16, 2022 at 1:34

Likewise, my search yields much the same as Dottard's:

2:11 Let a Woman Learn in Quietness

WOMEN RETAIN AUTHORITY IN THE HOME. THEODORE OF MOPSUESTIA: While Paul forbids women teaching in church, he very much wants them to exercise their authority in the home as the teachers of virtue. COMMENTARY ON 1 TIMOTHY.19

SUSTAINING THE VIRTUE OF QUIETNESS. AMBROSE: I think the prohibition in the law against a man wearing female garments refers not so much to clothing as to manners and to our habits and actions, since one act is becoming to a man, another to a woman. Therefore, the apostle, as the interpreter of the law, says, “Let your women keep silence in the churches, for it is not permitted them to speak, but to be submissive, as the law says. But if they wish to learn anything, let them ask their husbands at home.”20 And to Timothy he says, “Let a women learn in quietness21 in all submissiveness. I permit no woman to teach or have authority over men.” How unsightly it is for a man to act like a woman! LETTERS 78.22

Peter Gorday and Thomas C. Oden, “The First Epistle to Timothyn , 9 of Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture ICCS/Accordance electronic ed. (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2000), 165.

I look in vain to find any account from a church father that asserts that addresses a woman speaking in the third estate (out in public society).

  • Congratulations on the bounty award. I'm awarding you the bounty since its purpose was to provide more quotes, which you found. I decided to accept Dottard's answer since it was the hardest to improve, as you pointed out that your searches resulted in much the same findings. Both answers get a +1 from me!
    – The Editor
    Commented Dec 16, 2022 at 1:35

The strongest argument for 1 Timothy 2:11-12 being interpreted for both the church and state interactions can be found in the writings John Chrysostom (c. A.D. 349-407. He writes in his “The Kind of Women Who Ought to Be Taken as Wives.”

Our life is customarily organized into two spheres: public affairs and private matters, both of which were determined by God. To woman is assigned the presidency of the household; to man, all the business of state, the marketplace, the administration of justice, government, the military, and all other such enterprises. A woman is not able to hurl a spear or shoot an arrow, but she can grasp the distaff, weave at the loom; she correctly disposes of all such tasks that pertain to the household. She cannot express her opinion in a legislative assembly, but she can express it at home, and often she is more shrewd about household matters than her husband. She cannot handle state business well, but she can raise children correctly, and children are our principal wealth.

One might argue that what Chrysostom writes is descriptive of how to gender relationships should work in society. In this view, the curse, that fell upon women as the result of the fall, is reflected in Aristotle’s natural observation that “the male is by nature superior and the female inferior, the male ruler and the female [is] subject [to him]” (Pol. 1254.b.13–15). Aristotle also writes that “the male is by nature better fitted to command than the female” (Pol. 1259.b.2–3, b.10). 


If we consider the Bible itself as a "source," there are several principles that connect with 1 Timothy 2:11-12 relative to the role of women in comparison to that of men.

Civil Leadership

No woman in the Bible is ever established by God in a leadership position over His people. There were women leaders. Athaliah was a queen reigning over the people of Israel for a time. But she is depicted as an usurper, the granddaughter of Jezebel, and not one who worshiped or feared God.

Many will object and say that Deborah was a judge. Be careful. Deborah was a prophetess. According to the Biblical record, there is no clear indication that this was either of God's choosing, or of Deborah's own choice, that she judged the people: the people appear to have come to her and made her their judge.

4 And Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lapidoth, she judged Israel at that time. 5And she dwelt under the palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in mount Ephraim: and the children of Israel came up to her for judgment. (Judges 4:5, KJV)


Women were prophetesses. Miriam, Deborah, Huldah, Noadiah, and Anna are specifically named. Prophets are not leaders by virtue of their status as prophet. They simply speak for God. The commands given by a prophet are recognized even by the kings who are their superiors to have originated, not with the prophets themselves, but with God. Even a donkey prophesied, and, of course, donkeys are not to be considered our leaders.


God ordained men as priests. In God's order, there were no priestesses. Priests served as spiritual leaders for the people, and were also their teachers. They established schools and taught the people from them. Samuel's schools were well known. There is no Biblical record of a woman teaching in any of these schools.

Bishops and Deacons

At the death of Christ, the system of Levitical priesthood was ended. A new gospel order was established in the Christian church. Directions were given that bishops (churches today might say "elders") and deacons must be men who ruled well their own households, were married to one wife, etc. (See 1 Timothy 3.) Women are excluded by these specific criteria. The New Testament order maintained male spiritual leadership of the church.


Those who want women as leaders will often look for hooks upon which to hang their opinions. Phebe, mentioned in Romans 16:1 as a servant of the church, variously translated as "minister" or "deaconess", is sometimes used in this unending debate, and more significantly, Junia/Junias of Romans 16:7, whom many claim was a woman, and whom Paul calls an "apostle."

Salute Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen, and my fellow-prisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me. (Romans 16:7, KJV)

But there are considerable difficulties with assuming Junia/Junias was a woman. First, there is that troublesome "kinsmen." Greek scholars may say that even though this is in masculine plural form, that form would also be used to address a mixed group. But more importantly, there is that mention of "my fellow-prisoners" which invites the searching question: "Were women imprisoned with men?"

At the very least, there can be no certainty to the claims that Junias/Junia was indeed a woman. True, if Junia was a woman, and an apostle, it would be precedent-setting. However, it is imprudent and unwise to establish a Biblical doctrine upon mere suggestions, without solid evidence.


Prophets speak. And they speak to groups of people as well as to individuals. Prophetesses, who are speaking at God's bidding, may most certainly do so in the church or anywhere God asks. The prophetic word, however, is not their own--it is God's. It is not the prophet or the prophetess who is teaching via the inspired word, but God Himself.

Joel 2 indicates that women will receive the spirit of prophecy as well as men.

28 And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: 29 And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit. (Joel 2:28-29, KJV)

Inasmuch as a woman may speak for God, as a prophetess, her privilege of speaking in church or in a secular environment cannot be denied based on scripture. Is she teaching? Perhaps. Though we acknowledge the authority behind her inspiration to be that of God (assuming she is a true prophet).

But there is no scripture in support of having a woman as a leader, either in the church or in the civil realm, who is in the position of personally making decisions and having authority. Biblically, this principle holds true of both civil leadership, and spiritual leadership.

NOTE: The Biblical age at which one left childhood and became an adult was 20. There is no scripture that forbids a woman from having authority over children, which would mean having women teach high school students, who are generally under 20, should not conflict with any Biblical passage.

Waggoner's Explanation

There is also an interesting essay on the question published in 1887 (not exactly the days of the first apostles, by any means, but interesting for its historical perspective coming from a pre-women's-suffrage era) by a Mr. Ellet Waggoner. He addresses multiple Biblical texts on the topic, including the passage in 1 Timothy.

The question on the text itself is worthy of consideration, for many good people think that the Bible forbids women to take part in public religious service. 1 Corinthians 14:34, 35, reads as follows:-

“Let your women keep silence in the churches; for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.”

It is worthy of mention that those who are most bitterly opposed to women’s taking part in public service, are inconsistent with their own interpretation of this text. They interpret it to mean that women should never speak in public, either to preach, or to bear testimony in prayer-meeting; yet there is not a church in the land which does not have women singers, and in many of them the singing would greatly languish if it were not for the women. Now it is certain that those who sing do not “keep silence.” We do not think that this is wrong, not a violation of Paul’s injunction; we cite this instance merely for the purpose of showing the inconsistency of those who interpret Paul’s words as prohibiting speaking in meeting, but allowing singing. Now if the injunction to “keep silence” does not prohibit singing, it is reasonable to suppose that it does not prohibit speaking at proper times and in a proper manner, for simple speaking is far more nearly an approach to silence than is ordinary singing.

And this we shall find to be the case, when we consider a few other texts; for we must always let scripture explain scripture. Read the other text to which our correspondent referred, 1 Timothy 2:11, 12: “Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.” This must certainly be considered as parallel to, and explanatory of, 1 Corinthians 14:34, 35. But there is nothing in it which would stop a woman from bearing testimony in social meeting, or even from preaching. Notice that Paul says: “I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over a man,” the idea being of a women’s setting herself up as superior, and assuming authority which does not belong to her. But a simple testimony for Christ is the farthest removed from the assumption of authority, and even the preacher who usurps authority over his hearers, is out of place. The place of the preacher is not to be a lord over God’s heritage, but to act the part of an ambassador for Christ. From the two texts quoted we must conclude that Paul did not mean to prohibit women from witnessing publicly for Christ, but only to have them act with becoming modesty.

This conclusion is made positive by other texts. In 1 Corinthians 11:4, 5, 13, the same apostle says: “Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoureth his head. But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head; for that is even all one as if she were shaven.” “Judge in yourselves; is it comely that a woman pray unto God uncovered?”

In these verses, and the context, the apostle is giving directions for the proper conducting of public worship. Now if in chapter 14 he meant to teach that women should utter no sound in public service, why did he here give directions concerning their praying and speaking in public assemblies? Certainly no directions are needed for the performance of that which is forbidden, and the fact that Paul tells how women should pray and prophesy in public meeting, shows that such action was not forbidden.

To forbid women any of the privileges of the gospel would be utterly at variance with the spirit of the gospel. Says Paul: “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:27, 28. That means that in the gospel plan there is no difference made for race, condition, or sex. A woman stands before God a sinner, just the same as a man; she is responsible for her own sins, and, if saved, must be saved in exactly the same way that a man is. No Christian would think of prohibiting a person from taking part in meeting, on the ground that he is a servant, or because he is of a different nationality from the majority of the members of the church; then no Christian should prevent a person from speaking to the praise of God, because that person is a woman.

To interpret Paul’s language in 1 Corinthians 14:34, 35, as meaning that women should bear no part in public worship is to do violence to the Scriptures which, being inspired, must always and everywhere be harmonious. Thus in Acts 21:8, 9, we read that Philip the evangelist “had four daughters, virgins, which did prophesy.” Paul speaks of Phebe, “a servant of the church which is at Cenchrea” (Romans 16:1), and in Philippians 4:3 bespeaks the care of the church for “those women which labored with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and with other fellow-laborers.” And the mighty and eloquent Apollos was instructed in the way of God by Aquila and his wife Priscilla. Acts 18:2, 24-26.

In the Old Testament we read of “Miriam the prophetess” (Exodus 15:20) by whom the Lord spoke as well as by Moses and Aaron (Numbers 12:1, 2). We read also (Judges 4) of “Deborah, a prophetess” who judged Israel, and whose wisdom and prudence were esteemed so highly that Barak would not go to war without her counsel and her presence. Still later we read of “Huldah the prophetess” (2 Kings 22:14) to whom Josiah sent when he would inquire of the Lord concerning the book of the law which the priest had found. There is something remarkable about this case. At this time Jeremiah had been prophesying for five years, yet the king sent to Huldah instead of to him. Moreover the king’s messengers to the prophetess were, among others, a scribe of the law, and the high priest, whose lips should keep knowledge, and at whose mouth men were accustomed to seek the law. Micah 2:7. Yet it seems that on this occasion no one had the word of the Lord except this woman.

We have considered this matter at this length not only for the satisfaction of our correspondent, but also to meet a very common infidel cavil. There are many men, and more women, of a class who seek to overthrow the divinely-established order of nature, who are accustomed to rail at the apostle Paul as a crusty old bachelor and a misogynist, because of his words to the Corinthians. Hastily assuming that he absolutely forbade women to take any part in public meetings, they think that the present liberty accorded to women is an evidence of the advance which people of the nineteenth century have made over Paul’s antiquated notions. From railing at Paul they naturally come to despise all his writings, and as a natural consequence, they lightly esteem the entire Bible.

But Paul was not crusty, he was not a misogynist, and he was not a bachelor. He was a large-hearted, whole-souled, loving Christian, who treats of the family relation with a knowledge and tenderness not exceeded by any writer who ever lived. Instead of commanding women to say nothing in meetings for the worship of God, he encouraged them even to occupy responsible positions. What he did do was to give instruction that would keep them from being classed with the heathen women who, in their eagerness for notice, divested themselves of that modesty which always characterizes true woman, and which the gospel tends to heighten. (Waggoner, Signs of the Times, May 12, 1887)


It is not clear how 1 Timothy 2:11-12 was understood historically, as the interpretation of this passage has varied over time. Some early Christian writers, such as Chrysostom and Augustine, interpreted the passage as referring to the role of women in the church, specifically in relation to teaching and authority. They understood the passage to prohibit women from teaching or exercising authority over men in the church.

However, other early Christian writers, such as Origen and Jerome, interpreted the passage more broadly, as a general principle applicable to women in all settings. For example, Jerome wrote that the passage teaches that "woman is not to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence." This interpretation suggests that the passage was understood by some early Christian writers to apply not just in the church, but in all settings, both sacred and secular.

Overall, it seems that the interpretation of 1 Timothy 2:11-12 has varied over time, with some writers understanding it as applying specifically to the church and others interpreting it more broadly. It is difficult to say with certainty how the passage was understood historically without further information.

Chrysostom and Augustine interpreted 1 Timothy 2:11-12 as referring specifically to the role of women in the church. In his commentary on 1 Timothy, Chrysostom writes that the passage teaches that "woman is not to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence" in the church. Similarly, in his commentary on 1 Corinthians, Augustine writes that the passage teaches that "women should keep silence in the churches" and that they are not allowed to speak in the church, "but let them be in submission, as the law also says."

Origen's interpretation of the passage can be found in his commentary on 1 Timothy, in which he writes that the passage teaches that "woman is not to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence." Similarly, Jerome's interpretation can be found in his letter to Eustochium, in which he writes that the passage teaches that "woman is not to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence." These and other sources provide insight into how these early Christian writers understood 1 Timothy 2:11-12.


None of those contexts are limited to the religious setting of Church or religious education. It would be preposterous to assume that orderly behaviour is only prescribed within the synagogue or worship meetings, and not in general life. The 1Cor 14 reference is about speaking of women, which is strictly forbidden in the assembly. It applies to all political or social situations. The Corinthian passage is specific about the orderly worship in the assembly, and doesn't indicate the woman's leadership is allowed outside of Church, like there can be a Queen or female governor, or any leader. It should be noted that the NT does not forbid women from evangelism and general teaching or preaching to small groups that includes men. The teaching which is prohibited is of the Rabbinic position or authoritative position. Thus, women were co-workers, co-servants and co-evangelists with Paul. Book of Acts reports with joy that in the last days men and women will be given prophecy, it doesn't say, "women will become Rabbis or teachers of men", that would be a negative sign like the ominous references like the moon will turn into red, the Sun will lose its light, darkness in day, or that men will become lovers of themselves, blasphemers, traitors etc.

1Tim 2:8 I desire that the men in every place pray, lifting up holy hands without anger and doubting. In the same way, that women.....

This site- EarlyChristianWritings - e-Catena will show verse by verse Bible references of the authors. It will be helpful in your study. If you look at the overall writings by Tertullian on this chapter, you will find the answer to your question indirectly, as he has argued for similar things:

  • Some Refinements in Dress and Personal Appearance Lawful, Some Unlawful. Pigments Come Under the Latter Head.

  • Of Dyeing the Hair.

  • Of Elaborate Dressing of the Hair in Other Ways, and Its Bearing Upon Salvation.

  • Men Not Excluded from These Remarks on Personal Adornment.

  • Excess in Dress, as Well as in Personal Culture, to Be Shunned. Arguments Drawn from I Cor. VII.

  • Tertullian Refers Again to the Question of the Origin of All These Ornaments and Embellishments.

  • Christian Women, Further, Have Not the Same Causes for Appearing in Public, and Hence for Dressing in Fine Array as Gentiles. On the Contrary, Their Appearance Should Always Distinguish Them from Such.

Chapter XI.—Christian Women, Further, Have Not the Same Causes for Appearing in Public, and Hence for Dressing in Fine Array as Gentiles. On the Contrary, Their Appearance Should Always Distinguish Them from Such.

Moreover, what causes have you for appearing in public in excessive grandeur, removed as you are from the occasions which call for such exhibitions? For you neither make the circuit of the temples, nor demand (to be present at) public shows, nor have any acquaintance with the holy days of the Gentiles. Now it is for the sake of all these public gatherings, and of much seeing and being seen, that all pomps (of dress) are exhibited before the public eye; either for the purpose of transacting the trade of voluptuousness, or else of inflating “glory.” You, however, have no cause of appearing in public, except such as is serious. [....]

And if the requirements of Gentile friendships and of kindly offices call you, why not go forth clad in your own armour; (and) all the more, in that (you have to go) to such as are strangers to the faith? so that between the handmaids of God and of the devil there may be a difference; so that you may be an example to them, and they may be edified in you; so that (as the apostle says) “God may be magnified in your body.”249 But magnified He is in the body through modesty: of course, too, through attire suitable to modesty. Well, but it is urged by some, “Let not the Name be blasphemed in us,250 if we make any derogatory change from our old style and dress.” Let us, then, not abolish our old vices! let us maintain the same character, if we must maintain the same appearance (as before); and then truly the nations will not blaspheme! A grand blasphemy is that by which it is said, “Ever since she became a Christian, she walks in poorer garb!” Will you fear to appear poorer, from the time that you have been made more wealthy; and fouler,251 from the time when you have been made more clean? Is it according to the decree252 of Gentiles, or according to the decree of God, that it becomes Christians to walk?

The interpretation is that the commands applies to general life, you can be assured of this. I think the detailed interpretation against women's teaching is not found in the ancient times because there was no such debate or disagreement over this, until the last century. The references provided by other answers are also noteworthy. The Jewish as well as the Greek sages like Aristotle are arguing about common sense law or the natural law of how God has created genders for different purposes. Paul has repeatedly appealed to the Genesis account for this argument. I'd also recommend you to study the Jewish sources of ancient interpretations up to the first century, as they are closer to the Christian religion than the later centuries of Gentile Roman writings. Keep in mind that Paul was writing these commands to the Greek and Roman culture, as this unnatural behaviour was too shocking for himself, although common for them.

The Corinth culture was so sexually depraved that "Corinthian girl" was a euphemism for a prostitute.

Usually, the evidence for Corinth’s sexual freedom is that the city was built near two ports so it attracted sailors looking for a good time. In addition, there is usually some reference to the temple of Aphrodite with 2000 prostitutes. While the reputation is deserved, it has little to do with the city that Paul visited – all these sorts of things were true of Greek Corinth, almost 400 years prior to the time of Paul! I cite Jerome Murphy-O’Connor:

Such success inevitably provoked the envy of those less fortunate in their location and less industrious in their habits, and so in the 5th–4th centuries b.c., Athenian writers made Corinth the symbol of commercialized love. Aristophanes coined the verb korinthiazesthai, “to fornicate” (Fr. 354). Philetaerus and Poliochus wrote plays entitled Korinthiastes, “The Whoremonger” (Athenaeus 313c, 559a). Plato used korinthia kore, “a Corinthian girl,” to mean a prostitute (Rest. 404d). These neologisms, however, left no permanent mark on the language, because in reality Corinth was neither better nor worse than its contemporaries. (Murphy-O’Connor, ABD 1:1135).

In the Cyprian treatise, the footnote by the editor says:

In the first Epistle of Paul to the Corinthians: “Let women be silent in the church. But if any wish to learn anything, let them ask their husbands at home.” Footnote: 4424 1 Cor. xiv. 34, 35. [Women might have spiritual gifts, like the daughters of Philip, Acts xxi. 9; but even such are here forbidden to use them in the public worship of the Church.]

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