You are here:Home/Research/ Support for Research/ Fellowships/ Fellowship Reports/ 2012–2013/ Syriac Monastic Anthologies: Reception and Transmission of Syriac and Greek Monastic Literature

Syriac Monastic Anthologies: Reception and Transmission of Syriac and Greek Monastic Literature

Grigory Kessel, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Fellow 2012–2013

While at Dumbarton Oaks, I investigated the circulation of monastic literature in the Christian Syriac milieu. The problem can be summarized as follows: the overwhelming majority of Syriac monastic literature including translations of Greek patristic writings is preserved solely in a particular kind of manuscript that I propose to call anthologies, and which may contain texts in complete or in fragmentary form. A significant number of monastic texts are no longer extant outside anthologies, so that their importance appears to be self-evident. But it has not yet been established how many of these anthologies are still extant, and these manuscripts have not been thoroughly studied. In particular, it is important to reveal if a circulation of texts within such anthologies presupposed certain changes that those texts had to undergo. And if so, what were these changes? I approached the problem from two directions. On the one hand, I described these anthologies; on the other, I familiarized myself with the particularities of the transmission of literature in Late Antiquity and Byzantium.