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Apocrypha

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Apocrypha are texts of uncertain authenticity or writings where the authorship is questioned. In Judeo-Christian theology, the term apocrypha refers to any collection of scriptural texts that falls outside the canon. Given that different denominations have different ideas about what constitutes canonical scripture, there are several different versions of the apocrypha. During sixteenth-century controversies over the biblical canon the word "apocrypha" acquired a negative connotation, and it has become a synonym for "spurious" or "false". This usage usually involves fictitious or legendary accounts that are plausible enough to commonly be considered as truth. For example, Laozi's alleged authorship of the Tao Te Ching, Napolean Bonaparte's self-coronation rather than at the hands of Pope Puis VII, and the Parson Weems account of George Washington and the cherry tree, are all considered apocryphal.



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