Apostolic Fathers

Christian writers of the 1st and 2nd centuries who are known, or are considered, to have had personal relations with some of the Apostles, or to have been so influenced by them that their writings may be held as echoes of genuine Apostolic teaching. The term virtually embraces all the remains of primitive Christian literature antedating the great apologies of the 2nd century and forming the link of tradition that binds these latter writings to those of the New Testament. Chief in importance among the Apostolic Fathers are the three 1st-century bishops

There are also the two 1st-century writers

By extension of the term to comprise the extant extra-canonical literature of the sub-Apostolic age, it is made to include