Middle Ages

Sv. Kliment Ohridski: His Tombstone and its Inscription Scripta & e-Scripta vol. 16-17, 2017 floyd Wed, 07/12/2017 - 21:13

In the Presveta Bogoroditsa Perivlepta church in Ohrid the tombstone of St Kliment Ohridski is preserved. This large stone slab, with several inscriptions from the thirteenth and sixteenth centuries, remained there, while the holy relics of St Kliment have been transferred back to its original place – the church, built by the saint himself (completely rebuilt in 2001–2002). Until recently not much attention has been given to the tombstone. The paper offers a new reading of the main inscription, illustrated by the first contemporary picture and a new drawing made out of it, thus correcting many mistakes in the earlier publications.

History // Language studies // Literature Studies // Cultural history // Middle Ages // South Slavic Languages // Philology //
Comparison of Four Medieval Bulgarian Inscriptions by Letter Frequency Scripta & e-Scripta vol. 16-17, 2017 floyd Wed, 07/12/2017 - 21:09

This article compares the letter frequencies of four old Bulgarian inscriptions: the Samuel inscription of 993, the Samuel inscription of Voden, the Bitola inscription of Ivan Vladislav and the Tărnovo inscription of Ivan Asen II. We establish the proximity of the letter frequencies of these inscriptions and thus obtain an argument in favor of the view that the Voden inscription is a product of the same scribal tradition and orthography, and of the same epoch, to which both Samuel’s of 993 and Bitola’s inscriptions belong. The impressive ‘frequency proximity’ of the Voden and Bitola inscriptions is used to offer the hypothesis that the Samuel Dynasty’s royal administration has had a consistent tradition of writing and orthography.

History // Language studies // Literature Studies // Cultural history // Applied Linguistics // Middle Ages // South Slavic Languages // Philology //
Аріевъ ледъ Scripta & e-Scripta vol. 16-17, 2017 floyd Wed, 07/12/2017 - 21:05
Ares Ice

The paper discusses the translation of Ἄρειος πάγος into Slavonic, which until the late seventeenth century is almost invariably Аріевъ ледъ. It is suggested that although this does not correctly render the original meaning of the Greek, translators (and others, including their Greek contemporaries) did not necessarily perceive place names as literally meaningful. Аріевъ ледъ was thus simply the established Slavonic name for the Areopagus, and known as such to Slavonic writers. The principle place where it occurs is in the Acts of the Apostles, where it is used consistently, and there is a varied body of commentary in Slavonic attached to this passage, which is discussed in detail. The use of the toponym in a number of non-Biblical texts is also traced.

History // Language studies // Literature Studies // Cultural history // Applied Linguistics // Studies of Literature // Middle Ages // South Slavic Languages // Philology // Translation Studies //
The Earliest Slavonic Translation of the Song of Songs from Greek: A Possible Influence from the Vulgate? Scripta & e-Scripta vol. 16-17, 2017 floyd Wed, 07/12/2017 - 21:03

This paper analyzes two translation choices in the earliest Slavonic version (translation from Greek – from the Septuagint – into Old Bulgarian literary language/ Old Church Slavonic) of the Song of Songs that might have been influenced from the Vulgate as supposed by A. A. Alekseev. This paper suggests two other explanations of these choices: influence of the Christian exegesis and specifics of the language of the translation.

History // Language studies // Language and Literature Studies // Cultural history // Studies of Literature // Middle Ages // Eastern Slavic Languages // Philology // Translation Studies //
Byzantines, Bulgarians and Serbs in the Vita of Saint Vladimir in the Gesta Regum Sclavorum Scripta & e-Scripta vol. 16-17, 2017 floyd Wed, 07/12/2017 - 21:01

The Vita of St Ivan Vladimir, the first Serbian saint, is contained in the so- called Chronicle of the Priest of Dioclea, also known as Gesta Regum Sclavorum. The aim of this paper is to examine one of the more interesting aspects of the Vita: the image of the Bulgarians, Serbs and Byzantines during the troubled times of the Byzantine-Bulgarian war of 976–1018. The picture that emerges from the Life of St Ivan Vladimir holds many surprises for the modern reader and is contradictory to our own perceptions of the two protagonists of the era, Samuel and Basil II.

History // Language studies // Language and Literature Studies // Cultural history // Studies of Literature // Middle Ages // Eastern Slavic Languages // Philology // Translation Studies //
The Isaiah Code: Highlights in the History of a Catena in Slavic Tradition Scripta & e-Scripta vol. 16-17, 2017 floyd Wed, 07/12/2017 - 20:59

This study seeks to trace out the structure of the Book of Prophet Isaiah with commentaries and to explore what that structure reveals about the text in some manuscripts of the East Slavonic and South Slavonic traditions. There are three conclusions made as a result of the present study. Firstly, the analysis of the structure and the identification of the readings in Catena Slavonica in Isaiam shows a translation of a catena which occupies an intermediate position between the Catena in Isaiam by John Drungarios and the one by Andrew the Presbyter whichever is the earliest. The CSI resembles both. Secondly, the value of the CSI should not be underestimated, because it includes a translation of scholia by Theodulus whose work is now almost entirely lost. Therefore the CSI could provide new evidence for the content of the lost Byzantine original of Theodulus’ Commentary on Isaiah. Thirdly, the comparison of the numerals in the margin of РНБ F.I.461 with the sequence and number of the biblical pericopes and relevant scholia in the Russian manuscripts clearly and unequivocally demonstrates that although F.I. 461 is the earliest evidence of Preslav translation in a Tărnovo redaction, it is still a single link in the chain of the Slavonic tradition and has a many shortcomings compared to the CSI in the Russian tradition.

History // Language studies // Language and Literature Studies // Cultural history // Studies of Literature // Middle Ages // Eastern Slavic Languages // Philology // Translation Studies //
The Parable of the Unicorn in the Story of Barlaam and Josaphat Scripta & e-Scripta vol. 16-17, 2017 floyd Wed, 07/12/2017 - 20:57

This article offers textological observations on the Parable of the Unicorn, which is an integral part of the medieval Story of Barlaam and Josaphat. For the purpose, manuscripts that contain the entire work are examined, as well as manuscripts which are part of anthologies of compound content. The aim is to verify the correlation between the complete and the singular traditions of the novel’s dissemination, as well as their relations with the Byzantine text.

History // Language studies // Language and Literature Studies // Cultural history // Studies of Literature // Middle Ages // Eastern Slavic Languages // Philology // Translation Studies //
Двойная рецепция при формировании княжеской службы: служба св. Александру Невскому как модель Scripta & e-Scripta vol. 16-17, 2017 floyd Wed, 07/12/2017 - 20:56
A Double Reception in the Formation of a Princely Service: The Service of St Alexander Nevsky as a Model

The Service of St Alexander Nevsky was written by Monk Michael of the Roždestvenskij monastyr’ (Nativity monastery) in Vladimir. He was one of the writers, belonging with the circle of Metropolitan Macarius, who composed princely services (and sometimes vitas) for new Russian saints. Most of the services are compilations of verses and hymns and more or less exact borrowings (and sometimes compositions according to models). In the Service of St Alexander Nevsky, the most refined of Monk Michael’s works, the hymnographer utilized various models to combine them into one canon, thus giving it the colour of an original work. It is important to add that Monk Michael used Slavic translations instead of original Greek texts, a fact proved by textological comparison. The service, dedicated to a saint prince, canonized in the sixteenth century, was the only one included in the Menaion. Together with the especial respect and veneration of the new saint, it was one of the reasons why his service became a model of other princely services. It is worth noting that instead of hymns, originally borrowed for the new service, exactly the adapted hymns to St Alexander were taken as standard for princely services, thus allowing a double reception of the translated hymns. For the purpose of the investigation the author analyzes the services of St Roman of Ugleč, St Daniel of Moscow, the Service of Finding of his Relics including, as well as the service to St Dowmant of Pskov.

History // Language studies // Language and Literature Studies // Cultural history // Studies of Literature // Middle Ages // Eastern Slavic Languages // Philology // Translation Studies //
Chronological Layers in Translated Texts: Observations on a Sticheron of Archangel Michael Scripta & e-Scripta vol. 16-17, 2017 floyd Wed, 07/12/2017 - 20:50

This article discusses the presumable composition of the Service for the Heavenly Bodiless Angelic Powers, which was included in the Old Bulgarian Menaion under the date of 8 November and has no Greek parallel. Taking into account the fact that there are two known kanons of probable Old Bulgarian origin, the author searches in various manuscripts for the rest of the chants that, according to the liturgical rules, might have been part of the service.

History // Language studies // Language and Literature Studies // Cultural history // Studies of Literature // Middle Ages // Bulgarian Literature // South Slavic Languages // Philology // Translation Studies //

Неизвестный пергаментный отрывок кириллического Евангелия апракос полного из библиотеки Духовной семинарии Госианум в Ольштыне

An Unknown Parchment Fragment of the Cyrillic Gospel (Full Lectionary) from the Seminary’s Library in Olsztyn

  • Summary/Abstract

    The author introduces a new (previously unknown) parchment fragment (one leaf) of the Full Gospel lectionary from the Library of the Hosianum Seminary of the Archdiocese of Warmia in Olsztyn (Poland). The article presents a concise description and a general characteristic (with textological analysis) of the fragment along with its publication (with three photos). Cyrillic fragment of the Gospel manuscript, which was used together with Latin one to bind several early printed Latin books, is dated to the end of fourteenth or beginning of fifteenth century, but not later than the year 1420. The article presents also a short history of the Library of the Hosianum Seminary as far as it concerns the history of the Cyrillic Gospel fragment.


Двуязычные индексы в палеославистичной лексикографической традиции как инструмент изучения истории перевода в Slavia Orthodoxa

The Bilingual Indexes in the Paleoslavistic Lexicographical Tradition as a Tool of Studying the History of Translation in Slavia Orthodoxa

К вопросу о переводе агиографического синаксаря (простого пролога) в свете новейших исследований

Towards the Question: When and Where the Simple Prologue Was Translated in the Light of the New Studies

  • Summary/Abstract

    The article examines the current hypotheses about time and place of translation of so-called Simple Prologue (hagiographic Synaxarium) in the Slavonic environment. Special attention is paid to the latest studies in the field. As additional arguments to answer the question are given the data on Russian and South Slavonic (mostly Bulgarian) commemorations in the early version of the Prologue. These data allowed to reject the existing hypotheses and to support the conclusion that the Simple Prologue was translated in the time of Samuil of Bulgaria in Archbishopric of Ohrid at the end of tenth – beginning of eleventh century. The translation was made very soon after the occurrence of Synaxarium in Byzantium and was due to the liturgical necessity.


Reconsidering the Textual Transmission of the Slavonic Quaestiones adAntiochum ducem

  • Summary/Abstract

    The present contribution addresses questions concerning the textual history of the Slavonic translation of the Quaestiones ad Antiochum ducem (CPG 2257) and challenges some of the positions taken by William Veder in his recent edition (2016) of this eratopocritic collection. A selection of key text witnesses (among which the Izbornik of 1076, the Troitskij sbornik and the Laurentian florilegium of 1348) are examined in order to distinguish the different textual layers and to arrive at a better understanding of the text’s transmission history. It is argued that there is no firm proof for the existence of a full corpus of QAD questions in Slavonic prior to the thirteenth century and that the textual tradition of the QAD is marked by progressive expansion and continuous conflation.


The Greek Tradition of Hippolytus’ Commentarii in Danielem and the Slavonic Translation

  • Summary/Abstract

    The article highlights the Greek manuscripts, containing Hippolytus of Rome’s Commentarii in Danielem, the history of their research and their content, as well as the relation among them and the Slavonic translation. The author reveals all Greek and Slavonic sources, known today, and demonstrates how the two versions of the text correspond to each other. The main focus is placed on the cod. Meteoron 573, of the tenth century, proven to be the closest and mostly related to the Slavonic translation. This matter was profoundly revealed by comparison of contents, titles and structure of the texts of both versions, which is briefly presented in this paper.


Multiple Translations and Their Context. Praxis de stratilatis in the Medieval South Slavic Tradition

  • Summary/Abstract

    My paper focuses on the earliest account of St Nicholas of Myra (Praxis de stratilatis) and its adaption in the South Slavic literary tradition. Praxis de stratilatis dates back to the fourth century and it was the only narrative of the saint for more than three centuries. Even after the eight century when the local cult grew and other narratives about the saint appeared Praxis de statilatis remained one of the most authoritative texts in the literature and the art. The text was translated not only once but twice at the dawn of Old Bulgarian literature, probably as early as the tenth century. The appearance of more than one translation is considered as a witness of the specificity of the literature translated from Greek in the Old Bulgarian tradition, on the one hand, and of the needs and attitude of the readership, on the other. Main hypothesis of my paper is that different kinds of manuscripts provoked the double translations of the text. These are, on the one hand, the Panegyricomartyrologia (known as Minejno­Triodni panegyritsi in the Slavic tradition), which are calendar miscellanies consisting of narratives and eulogies for both cycles of feasts – the movable and the immovable, and, on the other hand, the Menologia (known as Čet’i­Minei), consisting of texts only for the immovable feasts. The textual and contextual analysis of the preserved witnesses of both translations of Praxis de stratilatis shows the cultural and literary needs of the readership which turned out to be important for copying and disseminating the translated text.


A Byzantine Epigram in the Pictorial Cycle of Akathistos Hymn for the Virgin from the Narthex of Kremikovtsi Monastery St George (1493)

  • Summary/Abstract

    The research paper presents an unpublished inscription in Greek language from the narthex of the Kremikovtsi Monastery St George near Sofia – an epigram of the famous Byzantine poet Theodoros Prodromos, who lived at the court of the Komnenian Dynasty in the twelfth century. Being part of the scene Flight into Egypt and – more precisely, – being written in the scroll of a female figure – a personification of the city, no parallel of this inscription has been attested so far in post-Byzantine art. The only other scroll like this has been discovered in the church of the Seslavtsi Monastery St Nicholas near Sofia, but the text there is probably just a decorative detail. A complete study of the preserved part of the damaged inscription is conducted, together with a discussion about its linguistic and literary specifics in the context of the high Byzantine poetry and the Biblical exegesis. The aim is to outline and to describe the raison d’être of this religious epigram (ἱερὸν ἐπίγραμμα) as an expressive instrument for direct communication with the audience through its main stylistic feature – the dialogue between the Saviour and the layman, between the divine and the human nature of Christ. The poetical form chosen by Theodoros Prodromos immediately draws the viewers’ attention and it compels them to reflect upon the scene. Theodoros Prodromos’ epigram in the Kremikovtsi Monastery offers an exceptional and significant proof that the connection of Balkan art to the achievements of the Christian culture of the former Byzantine empire was still alive in the fifteenth century.


Re-Reading the Vita Constantini: the Philosopher in Constantinople

The Kievan Manuscript of Synopsis Basilicorum major

The Neapolitan Wall Calendar From a Medieval Slavic Perspective Scripta & e-Scripta vol. 14-15, 2015 floyd Sat, 07/11/2015 - 08:01

This paper examines correspondences between unusual saints’ commemorations in the 9th-century Latin Neapolitan Wall Calendar and medieval Slavic calendars of saints, focusing on the menology to the Bulgarian Apostolus No. 882, the Zograph Trephologion (Draganov Menaion) and Palauzov Menaion, and the menology to the Ohrid Apostol. The analysis is based on data from Archimandrite Sergij’s collation of Slavic and Greek calendars of saints, and from the author’s electronic menology collation, for which Professor David J. Birnbaum developed the digital blueprint.

History // Language studies // Language and Literature Studies // Cultural history // Theoretical Linguistics // Studies of Literature // Middle Ages // Historical Linguistics // Theology and Religion // Comparative Linguistics // 6th to 12th Centuries // Philology // Translation Studies //

Motifs of Bulgarian History in Chronologia Magna and Satyrica Historia by Paulinus of Venice

  • Summary/Abstract

    This paper contains the first publication of printed excerpts related to Bulgarian history from two historical compilations by Paulinus of Venice. Chronologia Magna sive Compendium is presented according to lat. 4939, National library, Paris (14th c.) and Satyrica historia – according to Ms 445, Jagiellonian library, Cracow (15th c.). As the study and analysis of these manuscripts demonstrate, the compendia contain many accounts related to Bulgarian history – from the formation of the Bulgarian state in 681 up to the dynastic marriage of the Latin emperor of Constantinople Henry in 1213. All of the motifs from Bulgarian history, which Paulinus selected and included, are significant and fully aligned with the aims, which he had set himself in the prologue to Satyrica historia. These motifs are not merely a compilation of successes and failures, but are to form a body of well researched information, which will serve to edify posterity, based on the historical experience of the Roman and other kingdoms. Interpreting the evidence in Paulinus’ accounts in light of his stated approach, it appears that after their appearance on the European stage (681) the Bulgarians played the role of the defenders of Christian Europe (717) and the armament of God (811 г., 1205 г.). Their joining the Christian family of the European people is also recounted (865) through the example of the determination and beatitude of the Bulgarian ruler who defended the new faith even against his own son. Additionally, the Bulgarians are described as participants in events related to Byzantine history (705), as well as being adversely affected by the expansion of the unconverted Hungarians (907, 970, 1003). The accounts related by Paulinus are re-workings of earlier sources he was apparently well acquainted with. It can be argued that the present publication identified those sources with significant accuracy. The mistakes in the dating that occur in Paulinus’ compilations are often attributable to him connecting events to significant historical episodes or historical personalities, around which he builds a whole chapter or rubric of the narration. Sometimes the anachronisms are due to the sources he used. The study of the context, in which motifs related to Bulgarian history are placed allowed me to identify the sources of the material and the method of compilation employed by Paulinus of Venice. Last but not least, the analysis of the content of the motifs allowed me to establish that Dandolo mainly used information from Historia satyrica, but perhaps also consulted with Chronologia magna. He included in his chronicle almost all the motifs from the works of Paulinus, with the exception of the chronological note on the death of Nicephorus I Genik and the episode on Walter Senzavohir. Thus, the publication of the fragments from Historia satyrica and Chronologia magna clarified the origin of those passages in the chronicle of Andrea Dandolo about which D. Angelov wrote that they are connected to earlier historiographical sources but their origins are in need of further investigation.


Semantics of the Book’s Macro-Compositional Level? A Visualisation Method of Analysis

  • Summary/Abstract

    The publication opens for discussion an approach to macrostructural analysis of certain calendar miscellanies with selected readings which belong to the Medieval Balkan tradition. The author proposes that the selection of feasts and saints’ commemorations, as well as the order of the corresponding texts might be interpreted as determined by certain overall theme(s) / thematic fields and could be „read“ on the level of the book’s content. This approach was encouraged by the outcomes of a study on the calendar-thematic composition of Damaskenos Studites’s Thesauros and its transformations in Bulgarian literary tradition in the 16th-18th century. Aiming at a search for similar preceding models, the survey makes comparison on macro-compositional level between some panegyrica, such as Mihanović Homiliar and Jagić Zlatoust of the late 13th – early 14th century, the 1358/59 Miscellany of German, and the 16th-century Panegyricon No. 85 from the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. In addition, the study explores the relevancy of a method for visualisation, which can be supportive of a thematic analysis.


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