An Arabic Version of the Acts of the Apostles and the Seven Catholic Epistles: From an Eighth and Ninth Century Ms. in the Convent of St. Catharine on Mount Sinai 9781463209308

The variety of Arabic versions of the New Testament is bewildering. In this work, Gibson provides one particular text of

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An Arabic Version of the Acts of the Apostles and the Seven Catholic Epistles: From an Eighth and Ninth Century Ms. in the Convent of St. Catharine on Mount Sinai
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A N ARABIC V E R S I O N OF T H E ACTS OF T H E APOSTLES AND T H E SEVEN CATHOLIC E P I S T L E S

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frontispiece

ACTS XIX.

19 2 —29 2 .

(From a Photograph

by Mrs

JJ

V « ¿ ¿ M . . . J * LIIIII

Gibson.)



• I

STUDIA SINAITICA No. VII. AN

ARABIC

VERSION

OF

T H E A C T S OF T H E

APOSTLES

AND THE

SEVEN

CATHOLIC

EPISTLES

FROM AN EIGHTH OR NINTH CENTURY MS. IN THE CONVENT OF ST CATHARINE ON MOUNT SINAI

WITH

ON T H E

A

TRIUNE

TREATISE

NATURE OF GOD

WITH TRANSLATION, FROM THE SAME CODEX

MARGARET

E D I T E D BY

DUNLOP

GIBSON, M.R.A.S.

GORGIAS PRESS 2003

First Gorgias Press Edition, 2003. The special contents of this edition are copyright €> 2003 by Gorgias Press LLC. All rights reserved under International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. Published in the United States of America by Gorgias Press LLC, New Jersey. This edition is a facsimile reprint of the original edition published by Cambridge University Press, London, 1899.

ISBN 1-59333-046-4

GORGIAS PRESS

46 Orris Ave., Piscataway, NJ 08854 USA www.gorgiaspress.com

Printed and bound simultaneously in the United States of America and Great Britain.

INTRODUCTION. H E Manuscript from which I have edited this text of the Acts of the Apostles and the seven Catholic Epistles as well as the theological treatise which follows them, is numbered 154 in my Catalogue of the Arabic M S S . in the Convent of Saint Catharine on Mount Sinai {Studia

Sinaitica, No. III.).

It was among the first dozen books which

in 1893 the monks, in obedience to the directions of their Archbishop, brought to me out of a little closet at the foot of the staircase leading to the room then assigned for our work 1 . this volume,

UpdgeK

roiv

,

A.irocnoXa)v

/cat

I had already affixed a label to al

KadoXucai

'E7ricrToXai,

and was

busy receiving the second instalment of books, when the late lamented Professor Bensly examined this one.

He became greatly interested in its

style and appearance, and with the permission of the Librarian, Father Galakteon, he carried it to his tent, and gave it to Mrs Burkitt.

She made

a transcription of the " Antilegomena," (II. Peter, II. and III. John, Jude,) and also, I believe, of a portion of the Acts.

My sister, Mrs Lewis, photo-

graphed all the pages containing the Catholic Epistles, but only with partial success, as our dragoman flashed a magnesium light round our tent while we were changing the rolls, and spoilt the results of a whole morning's work. These photographs were amongst the films thus damaged, and though portions of them were legible, Mrs Burkitt did not think they would be of any use to her. On my third visit to the Convent, in 1895, I was convinced, (all the 1

This room has since been improved by two rooms being thrown into it, and the whole has

been furnished with shelves, on which the MSS. are arranged according to their numbers, old boxes and baskets being completely abolished. G.

b

INTRODUCTION.

VI

Arabic books having passed through my hands in 1893,) that this was the most ancient specimen of Arabic calligraphy to be found in the library, and I therefore photographed all the Biblical part of the volume.

I also

transcribed the pages which had become indistinct from pressure against the opposite ones, and from which I could not therefore obtain anything legible by means of the camera.

After my return home, I copied the

distinct pages from my photographs, which this time were very successful. On a fourth visit to the Convent, in 1897, I carefully revised my transcription with the MS., and also photographed the remainder of the volume, so that I got its contents complete excepting a few pages at the end.

Mrs Burkitt put her transcription of the Antilegomena into

the hands of Dr Merx, who edited it in the Zeitschrift for December

fiir

Assyriologie

1897, adding copious notes in the same magazine for

April and September, 1898. It will doubtless be observed that in a few cases my reading of certain words differs from that of Mrs Burkitt and Dr Merx.

I should hesitate

to place my own judgment in opposition to that of so distinguished a scholar as Dr Merx, were it not corroborated in nearly every case by the evidence of my photographs. The Manuscript is on vellum, and measures 18 centimetres by 12^. It is in quires of eight leaves each, but as a number of pages are missing at the beginning as well as at the end, there are only two leaves in the first existing quire.

In its present state it has 142 leaves.

It is divided into

three portions. 1.

The Biblical text, written, according to its colophon, by Moses the

Monk, consisting of the Acts of the Apostles, from Chapter vii. v. 37 to the end of the seven Catholic Epistles. 2.

A short story, which I have called «^Jbtpt StjUs, and four aphorisms.

3.

A theological treatise on the Triune Nature of God, which I have

called

dJJI

It must not be supposed that these titles

are in the manuscript. In 1, the Biblical section, the writing is above the line. 20 lines on most pages, but the number varies a little.

I counted



INTRODUCTION.

T h e quires are numbered in letters of the Greek alphabet, including f. A s the MS. is imperfect at the beginning, commencing with Acts vii. 37, and six leaves are likewise lost from the first existing quire, 7 comes on f. 1 a and on f. 2 b.

The rest go on regularly on quires of eight leaves,

except quire 18, which contains only six.

The last number in the Biblical

section is if on f. 97 a. A fresh numbering commences at the beginning of the Treatise on f. 102 a, where an a can be seen at the foot of the page and also on f. 109 b.

¡3 is visible on f. 117 b, then come 7, S, e, at intervals, shewing

quires of eight leaves each.

This distinctly proves the Treatise to be a

different MS. from all that precedes it. T h e style of calligraphy is very archaic, nearly approaching Kufic. The upper limb of S is so short that it is easily mistaken for ua. 3 and } have also a short upper limb, a confusion of

or

As

with one of

these letters is also possible, if the reader does not observe their connection with the letters following them.

Final ¿3 is sometimes uncommonly like j ,

but * is always boldly and clearly written.

3 does not descend below the

line, and 0 never receives its dots. Punctuation all through the Acts and Epistles as well as the short story and aphorisms which follow them is carried on by means of the little double comma, which our printers have successfully reproduced. stops are like large stars, and are very sparingly used.

I have made few

changes in editing, the principal ones being to substitute Alif for Alif

Full

Maksoureh

where that is the modern usage, and to supply final » with dots

to distinguish it from the pronominal suffix. as is usual in Christian Arabic.

The grammar is very faulty,

T h e indicative is constantly used for the

subjunctive, and forms like « W , «I««-»' are often substituted for « j U I , vij. || eyeveTo] + avra>.

17.

19. 1

A.

13.

O m . r»?? 18. TO)

Kal dyad ovofian.

Kev. || Om. n'9 ìj/iifv. ©eòi>] + TOV 6eXr]/xaTO? avrov. 18. Om. rà prifiara. 20. evayyeXt^ófievot] + avrol*;. 21. 77-oWot] + TOV Xaov. || TOV Kvpiov] ©eòi'. 22. 'ìbcova-07) Sè] "E0Tj Sè Kal rjnovaOrj. || rà wra ¿K/cXi]aia?. [| /cai] + Travi.

+ Kal e\€y%oA)vrj.

4.

I.

|| O m .

v-fadeU.

irpoffirai]

Siérpiftev. iroXhai.

|| fiijfiaros] +

om.

avrov.

icaì.

¿7ré7TXevaav e&)?] + rjXdov.

5.

7rÓÀ.et] + KaXovfte vrj.

8.

'EXv/Lia?] "A7J-ÌCTTOÌ.

9.

eXevaiv....

7ap.

IO.

XIII.

|| rrjv

avrov.

O m . TÒ