Sunday, September 14, 2014

New Book on Early Monastic Practices and Coptic Christianity

The Canons of Our Fathers. Monastic Rules of Shenoute by Bentley Layton
From the presentation of the book:
This book is the first publication of a very early collection of Christian monastic rules from Roman Egypt. Designed for the so-called White Monastery Federation, a community of monks and nuns who banded together about 360 CE, the rules are quoted by the great monastic leader Shenoute of Atripe in his writings of the fourth and fifth century. These rules provide new and intimate access to the earliest phases of Christian communal (cenobitic) monasticism.
The Table of Contents:

I: The Nature of the Rules
1: The Historical Context of the Rules
2: The Corpus of Monastic Rules
3: Monastic Life as seen in the Rules
4: Monastic Experience and Monastic Rules
Subject Index to Part I
Index of Rule Numbers cited in Part III
I: Corpus of Monastic Rules
Abbreviations for Libraries and Museums Holding the Coptic Manuscripts
Editorial SignsThe Rules, Edited and Translated
Concordance of Manuscript References and Rule Numbers

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

A New Book on Byzantine Literature: Writing and Reading Byzantine Secular Poetry, 1025-1081

A new volume on middle Byzantine poetry was recently published at Oxford University Press:
Writing and Reading Byzantine Secular Poetry, 1025-1081, by Floris Bernard.

Here is the abstract:
In the mid eleventh century, secular poetry attained a hitherto unseen degree of wit, vividness, and personal involvement, chiefly exemplified in the poetry of Christophoros Mitylenaios, Ioannes Mauropous, and Michael Psellos. This book examines the various social occasions, opportunities, and constraints that motivated and influenced the reading and writing of poetic texts. It critically reconsiders modern assumptions about poetry, focusing instead on Byzantine conceptions of the role of poetry in society. By providing a detailed account of the various media through which poetry was presented to its readers, and by tracing the initial circulation of poems, it takes an interest in the Byzantine reader and his/her reading habits and strategies, addressing aspects of performance and visual representation. The extraordinary social mobility of the time and the importance of education were driving forces behind textual display, and fuelled contests and competitions. Didactic poetry is part of this seething rivalry between teachers, influencing the adoption of unusual metres. Poets developed different self-representative strategies against the background of an unstable elite struggling to find moral justification; the thoughtfully arranged collection of Mauropous in particular bears traces of this. Finally, this study addresses the question of patronage, analysing the discourse employed by poets to secure material rewards, and explaining the social dynamics of dedication. Gift exchange is a medium that underscores the value of their poetry and confirms the exclusive nature of intellectual friendship.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Byzantine Gardens in Monasteries

An interesting and detailed article about a topic good for those who enjoy spending time in a garden:
Byzantine Monastic Horticulture:The Textual Evidence, by A.-M. Talbot
From the introduction:
There is a paucity of evidence on Byzantine gardens, both textual and archaeological. Whenwe turn to monastic horticulture, however, the situation is somewhat less bleak, for bothfoundation documents (typika) and saints’ lives shed occasional light on the gardens, vineyards,and orchards that provided food, drink, and eucharistic wine for the use of the residentmonks or nuns. The surviving textual sources should ideally be supplemented by thefindings of archaeological excavation of actual monastic gardens. Such excavation, whichhas been carried out to date primarily in the late Roman monasteries of Palestine, can onlybe touched upon in this essay, in which I focus on the literary evidence. For the most part Ilimit my observations to those gardens situated in the immediate vicinity of monasteries,rather than to agricultural properties owned by monasteries but located at some distancefrom the monastic complex.

Click here to continue reading 

Friday, August 8, 2014

The translation of the Suda Lexikon, a 10th c Byzantine encyclopedia, completed

The Suda Lexikon, a great source for the study of Classics and of the Byzantine literary culture, dating from the 10th c., the golden age of the Byzantine Empire, is very close to having a complete online English version.
Click here to visit the project webpage

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Loeb Classical Library Is Going Digital

The venerable collection of classical authors will have a digital version in a few months.

Founded by James Loeb in 1911, the mission of Loeb Classical Library® has always been to make Classical Greek and Latin literature accessible to the broadest range of readers. The Digital Loeb Classical Library extends this mission into the twenty-first century. Harvard University Press is honored to renew James Loeb’s vision of accessibility, and presents an interconnected, fully searchable, perpetually growing, virtual library of all that is important in Greek and Latin literature. Epic and lyric poetry; tragedy and comedy; history, travel, philosophy, and oratory; the great medical writers and mathematicians; those Church Fathers who made particular use of pagan culture—in short, our entire Greek and Latin Classical heritage is represented here with up-to-date texts and accurate English translations. More than 520 volumes of Latin, Greek, and English texts are available in a modern and elegant interface, allowing readers to browse, search, bookmark, annotate, and share content with ease.
Click here for more details

The latest issue of Byzantinische Zeitschrift goes online

Latest issue of Byzantinische Zeitschrift to browse here

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

New Byzantine texts added to the Thesaurus Linguae Graecae Project

New Byzantine texts have been added on Thesaurus Linguae Graecae platform. Here is the list:

0082 APOLLONIUS DYSCOLUS Gramm. (2 works)
2042 ORIGENES Theol. (1 work)
2873 EUSTRATIUS Presbyter Scr. Eccl. (1 work)
2921 THEODORUS Spudaeus Scr. Eccl. (1 work)
2938 GERMANUS II Scr. Eccl. (2 works)
2944 LEO VI SAPIENS Imperator Phil., Scr. Eccl. et Poeta (1 work)
3077 MICHAEL I CERULARIUS Scr. Eccl. et Theol. (1 work)
3079 Michael ATTALIATES Hist. (1 work)
3092 Nicephorus BLEMMYDES Phil. et Theol. (4 works)
3169 Joannes VI CANTACUZENUS (2 works)
3191 Theodorus METOCHITES Phil. et Polyhist. (2 works)
3197 Demetrius CYDONES Theol., Transl. et Philol. (1 work)
3213 Prochorus CYDONES Theol. et Transl. (1 work)
3217 Nilus CABASILAS Theol. (2 works)
3248 Joannes CYPARISSIOTES Theol. (1 work)
3257 David DISHYPATUS Theol. (1 work)
3345 CALLISTUS I Patriarcha Scr. Eccl. et Orat. (3 works)
3346 Andreas CHRYSOBERGES Theol. (1 work)
4146 Maximus PLANUDES Polyhist. et Theol. (1 work)
4286 LEXICA SYNTACTICA Lexicogr. (1 work)
4288 LEXICON $AI(MWDEI=N& Lexicogr. (1 work)
4427 MARCUS Monachus Theol. (6 works)
4428 Neophytus PRODROMENUS Lexicogr., Theol. et Phil. (4 works)
4430 JACOBUS Monachus Theol. et Epist. (2 works)
4431 Georgius PELAGONIUS Theol. et Phil. (2 works)
5004 EPIMERISMI Gramm. et Schol. (1 work)

Via TLG website

Sunday, February 2, 2014

CFP: Transformation and adaptation - the reception of Byzantium between the 16th and 21st centuries

Studies on the reception of the classical tradition have recently become an indispensable part of classical studies. Understanding the importance of ancient civilization means also studying how it was used subsequently. Students of the classical tradition research the influence of ancient literature, its use in political discourse, and its manifestations in films, TV series, graphic novels and computer games. A recent flood of publications, including companions, handbooks and dictionaries, now addresses these issues. The Eastern Roman Empire, however, has not been so lucky.
The aim of the conference is to bring together scholars interested in the reception of Byzantine culture in literature, political discourse, pop-culture (games, graphic novels, etc.). We would like to see how Byzantium was used and abused, how Byzantine motifs were transformed and adapted throughout centuries. Amongst the invited speakers are scholars from around the world.
The organisation of the conference is generously supported by the National Programme for the Development of Humanities. The organisers will provide free board and lodging. Transportation, however, remains the responsibility of a participant.
Organizers: Przemysław Marciniak, Katarzyna Warcaba, Jan Kucharski
The deadline for applications: March, 30th 2014.
Abstracts (200 words max) should be sent to the conference secretary: Katarzyna Warcaba ( Authors will be notified of the result by the end of April.

Click here to read more 

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