"Pseudonymity was a practice of those who did not have enough authority themselves to create sacred texts and so borrowed the name of an earlier illustrious or in this case notorious figure to create the air of an authentic eyewitness document. It needs to be said that this practice was very clearly denounced not only by church fathers like Tertullian and Ireneaus and Hippolytus who tell us about monks and priests being defrocked for dreaming up such documents, but in the wider Greco-Roman world there were plenty of persons who deplored this practice and saw it as a form of deception and fraud. For example, Cicero and Quintilian both complain about people creating documents in their name which they had nothing to do with. There was indeed a moral issue with such documents, then as now. It was not an 'acceptable literary practice of that era' as some might lead [others] to believe." Ben Witherington

See also