The Online Critical Pseudepigrapha

This site, edited by Ian Scott of Tyndale Seminary, contains online editions of many Old Testament Pseudepigrapha in various ancient and medieval languages, though the basis for most is Greek, with Latin also well represented. The Introductions to each text are original and helpful, including a description of the manuscript evidence across multiple versions, and an annotated bibliography of print editions designating manuscripts used, which can also be browsed by author or keyword and searched. The currently available electronic texts are often a transcription of an out-of-copyright edition, and sometimes include evidence from multiple manuscripts; eclectic texts taking into account extant versions in Coptic, Syriac, Armenian, Ethiopic, and other languages are planned.

While the Online Critical Pseudepigrapha is still very much a work in progress, it is laudable for its efforts to make widely available the electronic text of these important documents, and thus multiplying possibilities for research. The full texts of widely cited works such as the Lives of Adam and Eve and the Testament of Abraham, which are not yet in Perseus or other open access digital library, can now be employed in DH research, for example corpus analysis with the statistics program R; copyright information varies by text, and a full statement is given here: http://ocp.tyndale.ca/copyright-and-permissions

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Coptic Language Links by Christian Askeland

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This important site collects a number of disparate resources, most of them related to eTexts in various dialects of Coptic, including such classic offline items as the Packard Humanities Institute’s CD 5.3 and 7, with the Sahidic New Testament and the Nag Hammadi Library; as well as the Searchable Sahidic Bible, now in its Beta version, which Askeland is currently developing with Matthias Schulz.  Also included are a comprehensive list of Coptic fonts, organizations, and learning resources on the internet.

https://sites.google.com/site/askelandchristian/copticlinks

TM Magic

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The TM Magic Database, administered by Franziska Naether and Mark Depauw, is the newest addition to Trismegistos, a premier information portal for the ancient world, with a focus on Egypt between 800 BC and AD 800.  In its own words, it collects “metadata of somewhat “dubious” nature: all things “religion”, “ritual”, “magic” and “divination” / “mantike”.”  There are currently 3712 entries.  A quick browse through these records suggests that the initial focus is, broadly speaking, “magic” and “divination,” but material such as Isidorus’s hymns to Isis is also present.  Researchers can search in one or more categories: publication, editor, and inventory, as well as language/script (primarily Demotic, Greek, and Coptic), provenance, nome, and type (genre); the results can be viewed in any available Trismegistos-collaborating database.  As more entries are added, the site will become an increasingly powerful tool for researchers in ancient Egyptian magic.

http://www.trismegistos.org/magic/

 

Byzantium and Islam: A Special/Web Exhibit at the Met

Museums large and small are not only digitizing their inventories; many now also create permanent websites for special exhibitions.  An excellent example of the latter is “Byzantium and Islam: Age of Transition,” at the Met between March 14 and July 8 2012, one of the best presentations of the material culture of later Late Antiquity, which brought the now widespread academic trend of viewing early Islam within its historical context to a wider audience; Continue reading

A Blog on Medieval Nubia: The Medieval Sai Project

This blog, run by the Nubiologists Alexandros Tsakos and Henriette Hafsaas-Tsakos, contains a number of interesting reflections on the medieval Nubian kingdoms, as well as their archaeological work, which is affiliated with the Sai Island Archaeological Mission at the Université Charles-de-Gaulle in Lille.  Their thoughtful posts address major questions of methodology and interpretation in Nubian studies, including the state of the sources, whether in Western museums or endangered sites in modern Sudan.  Both philological and archaeological topics are covered.  The blogs from the field offer a fascinating, vivid portrait of the region.

http://medievalsaiproject.wordpress.com/about/

Apocryphicity by Tony Burke

This important blog on Christian apocrypha was established about six years ago by Tony Burke of York University.  The author posts updates and commentary on recent scholarship about apocryphal literature, as reflected in publications, conferences, and on the web.  Burke, along with Brent Laundau of the University of Oklahoma, is co-editing the two-volume More Christian Apocrypha (forthcoming with Eerdmans, beginning 2013); his site also contains a useful breakdown of many apocryphal texts that will appear in this work, almost all of them highly interesting, but with no English translation and limited bibliography, which is duly provided.

http://www.tonyburke.ca/apocryphicity/

“The Gospel of Jesus’s Wife” and Codex Tchacos Fragments: Digital Images

The Coptic conference in Rome is off to a fast start!  Among the many interesting communications today at the Institutum Patristicum Augustinianum, two concerned fascinating and unpublished apocryphal texts (fragments, unfortunately), digital images of which have graciously been made available online before their print publication, allowing scholars and the interested public to study them immediately.  Professor Karen King of Harvard presented a tiny, poorly-written portion of a manuscript page, owned by a private collector, which features a dialogue between Jesus and his disciples in which he mentions “my wife.” Continue reading