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Table of contents :
Contents
Figures and Tables
Abbreviations
Notes on Contributors
Introduction
Part 1 European Traditions and Trajectories before
James Bruce’s “Discovery” and Its Impact
1 Enoch Lost and Found?:
Rethinking Enochic Reception in the Middle Ages
2 The Book of Enoch in Relation to the Premodern
Christian Doctrines of Spiritual Beings
3 Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, Enoch,
and Hermetism
4 Earliest Commentaries on 1 Enoch before Laurence:
Pompeo Sarnelli (1710) and Daniele Manin (1820)
5
Enoch and the Genesis of Freemasonry
6
Blake’s Enoch before the Book of Enoch
7 Enoch in the Tradition of the Church of Jesus Christ
of Latter-Day Saints (Mormonism)
Part 2
Revisiting James Bruce’s “Discovery” and Its Impact
8
James Bruce’s Illusory “Book of Enoch the Prophet”
9
James Bruce and His Copies of Ethiopic Enoch
10 A “Rich and Unparalleled Collection”:
The Afterlives of James Bruce’s Manuscripts and Drawings
11 When Enoch Left Ethiopia:
On Race and Philological (Im)possibilities in the Nineteenth Century
Part 3
Enoch beyond Europe
12 The Reception and Function of 1 Enoch in the
Ethiopian Orthodox Tradition
13 The Archangel Uriel in 1 Enoch and Other
Ethiopian Texts
14 Scales of Creation or Scales of Judgment?:
Variant Readings for Parables of Enoch 41 and 43
15 Heavenly Exiles and Earthly Outcasts: Enochic Concepts of Hermetic Knowledge and Proscribed Lore in Parabiblica Slavica (Fifteenth–Nineteenth Centuries)
16 Enoch as Idrīs in Early Modern Ottoman Sufi Writings:
Two Case Studies
17 Why Enoch Did Not Die: The Soul Construction of Enoch in the Zohar and
Sixteenth-Century Kabbalah
Appendix The Earliest English Translations and Synopses
of Ethiopic Enoch (1770–1820)
Index
Recommend Papers

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Rediscovering Enoch?

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Studia in Veteris Testamenti Pseudepigrapha Series Editors Grant Macaskill Annette Yoshiko Reed

volume 27

The titles published in this series are listed at brill.com/svtp

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Rediscovering Enoch? The Antediluvian Past from the Fifteenth to Nineteenth Centuries

Edited by

Ariel Hessayon Annette Yoshiko Reed Gabriele Boccaccini

LEIDEN | BOSTON

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The Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data is available online at https://catalog.loc.gov LC record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2022057815

Typeface for the Latin, Greek, and Cyrillic scripts: “Brill”. See and download: brill.com/brill-typeface. ISSN 0169-8125 ISBN 978-90-04-52979-3 (hardback) ISBN 978-90-04-53751-4 (e-book) Copyright 2023 by Ariel Hessayon, Annette Yoshiko Reed, and Gabriele Boccaccini. Published by Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands. Koninklijke Brill NV incorporates the imprints Brill, Brill Nijhoff, Brill Hotei, Brill Schöningh, Brill Fink, Brill mentis, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Böhlau, V&R unipress and Wageningen Academic. Koninklijke Brill NV reserves the right to protect this publication against unauthorized use. Requests for re-use and/or translations must be addressed to Koninklijke Brill NV via brill.com or copyright.com. This book is printed on acid-free paper and produced in a sustainable manner.

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Contents List of Figures and Tables ix Abbreviations x Notes on Contributors  xii Introduction 1 Annette Yoshiko Reed, Ariel Hessayon, and Gabriele Boccaccini

Part 1 European Traditions and Trajectories before James Bruce’s “Discovery” and Its Impact 1

Enoch Lost and Found? Rethinking Enochic Reception in the Middle Ages 19 Annette Yoshiko Reed

2

The Book of Enoch in Relation to the Premodern Christian Doctrines of Spiritual Beings 50 Euan Cameron

3

Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, Enoch, and Hermetism 66 Giulio Busi

4

Earliest Commentaries on 1 Enoch before Laurence Pompeo Sarnelli (1710) and Daniele Manin (1820) 76 Gabriele Boccaccini

5

Enoch and the Genesis of Freemasonry 110 Tobias Churton

6

Blake’s Enoch before the Book of Enoch 136 Francis Borchardt

7

Enoch in the Tradition of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormonism) 162 Jared W. Ludlow

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Contents

Part 2 Revisiting James Bruce’s “Discovery” and Its Impact 8

James Bruce’s Illusory “Book of Enoch the Prophet” 183 Ted M. Erho

9

James Bruce and His Copies of Ethiopic Enoch 209 Ariel Hessayon

10

A “Rich and Unparalleled Collection” The Afterlives of James Bruce’s Manuscripts and Drawings 258 Ariel Hessayon

11

When Enoch Left Ethiopia On Race and Philological (Im)possibilities in the Nineteenth Century 276 Elena Dugan

Part 3 Enoch beyond Europe 12

The Reception and Function of 1 Enoch in the Ethiopian Orthodox Tradition 311 Ralph Lee

13

The Archangel Uriel in 1 Enoch and Other Ethiopian Texts 326 Daniel Assefa

14

Scales of Creation or Scales of Judgment? Variant Readings for Parables of Enoch 41 and 43 356 Robert G. Hall

15

Heavenly Exiles and Earthly Outcasts Enochic Concepts of Hermetic Knowledge and Proscribed Lore in Parabiblica Slavica (Fifteenth–Nineteenth Centuries) 375 Florentina Badalanova Geller

16

Enoch as Idrīs in Early Modern Ottoman Sufi Writings 397 Two Case Studies 397 Kameliya Atanasova

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17

Why Enoch Did Not Die The Soul Construction of Enoch in the Zohar and Sixteenth-Century Kabbalah 413 Shaul Magid



Appendix: The Earliest English Translations and Synopses of Ethiopic Enoch (1770–1820) 431 Ariel Hessayon



Index 443

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Figures and Tables Figures 5.1 BL Add. MS 10,302 fol.6v. Reproduced by permission of the British Library 124 5.2 T. Norton, The Ordinall of Alchimy (p. 12) in Theatrum Chemicum Britannicum, ed. E. Ashmole (London, 1652). Public domain, published under a Creative Commons License 125 6.1 William Blake, Enoch, 1806–1807. Lithograph. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York 143 6.2 William Blake, Enoch Walked with God, ca. 1780–1785. Watercolor, ink, pencil, and wash drawing. Cincinnati Art Museum, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA. © Cincinnati Art Museum 146 6.3 William Blake, Enoch/Moses and Aaron Flanked by Angels, 1780–1785. Pencil, ink, and wash drawing. Princeton University Library, Princeton, Rare Books and Special Collections Department 150 12.1 Distribution of quotations from and allusions to 1 Enoch 314

Tables 8.1 Unipartite Ethiopic Enoch manuscripts 194

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Abbreviations References throughout this volume cohere to a shortened form of the SBL Style Sheet. Abbreviations for texts, journals, and book series follow The SBL Handbook of Style (2nd ed.; Atlanta, 2014); for other relevant abbreviatiions pertaining to manuscripts and libraries, see Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch 1, xxvii–xxxviii. In addition, the following abbreviations and short citations are used for major translations and editions of 1 Enoch and other significant works related to the themes of this volume. APOT

R.H. Charles, ed., The Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha of the Old Testament, 2 vols. (Oxford, 1913) BHM A. Jellinek, Bet ha-Midrasch: Sammlung kleiner Midraschim und vermischter Abhandlungen aus der jüdischen Literatur, 6 vols. (Leipzig, 1853–1877) Bruce, Travels J. Bruce, Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile, 5 vols. (Edinburgh, 1790) Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.) J. Bruce, Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile, ed. A. Murray, 7 vols. (2nd ed.; Edinburgh, 1804) Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (3rd ed.) J. Bruce, Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile, ed. A. Murray, 8 vols. (3rd ed.; Edinburgh, 1813) Charles, Book of Enoch R.H. Charles, trans., The Book of Enoch: Translated from Professor Dillmann’s Ethiopic Text (Oxford, 1893) Charles, Book of Enoch (2nd ed.) R.H. Charles, trans., The Book of Enoch or 1 Enoch Translated from the Editor’s Ethiopic (Oxford, 1912) Fabricius, Codex pseudepigraphus VT J.A. Fabricius, Codex pseudepigraphus Veteris Testamenti (Hamburg, 1713); Fabricius, Codicis pseudepigraphi Veteris Testamenti, Volumen alterum accedit Josephi veteris Christiani auctoria Hypomnesticon (Hamburg, 1723) Guide to Early Jewish Texts  A. Kulik, G. Boccaccini, L. DiTommaso, D. Hamidovic, and M. Stone, eds., A Guide to Early Jewish Texts and Traditions in Christian Transmission (Oxford, 2019) Laurence, Book of Enoch R. Laurence, trans., The Book of Enoch, the Prophet: An Apocryphal Production, Supposed to Have Been Lost for Ages; But Discovered at the Close of the Last Century in Abyssinia; Now First Translated from an Ethiopic Ms. in the Bodleian Library (Oxford, 1821) Milik, Books of Enoch J.T. Milik, ed. and trans., The Books of Enoch: Aramaic Fragments of Qumran Cave 4 (Oxford, 1976) Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch 1 G. Nickelsburg, trans., 1 Enoch 1, A Commentary on the Book of 1 Enoch, Chapters 1–36; 81–108 (Hermeneia; Minneapolis, 2001)

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Abbreviations

Nickelsburg/VanderKam, 1 Enoch 2 G. Nickelsburg and J. VanderKam, trans., 1 Enoch 2, A Commentary on the Book of 1 Enoch, Chapters 72–82 (Hermeneia; Minneapolis, 2012) ODNB Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, gen. ed. D. Cannadine (Oxford, 2004–), https://www.oxforddnb.com/ OTP J. Charlesworth, ed., The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha, 2 vols. (Garden City, 1983–1985) Reeves/Reed, Enoch J.C. Reeves and A.Y. Reed, Enoch From Antiquity to the Middle Ages, vol. 1 (Oxford, 2018) Scaliger, Thesaurus temporum J.J. Scaliger, ed., Thesaurus temporum, Eusebii Pamphili Caesareae Palaestinae episcopi, Chronicorum canonum omnimodae historiae libri duo, interprete Hieronymo: ex fide vetustissimorum codicum castigati. Item autores omnes derelicta ab Eusebio & Hieronymo continuantes. Ejusdem Eusebii utriusque partis Chronicorum canonum reliquiae graecae, quae colligi potuerunt … (Leiden, 1606)

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Notes on Contributors Daniel Assefa is a lecturer of philology at Addis Ababa University. He is interested in 1 Enoch, textual criticism of the Geʿez Bible, and Ethiopian biblical hermeneutics. He is the author of L’Apocalypse des animaux (1 Hen 85–90): Une propagande militaire? (2007) and Space and Time in 1 Enoch 1–36: A Narrative Critical Analysis (Ph.D. dissertation, UNISA, 2018). Kameliya Atanasova is a historian of early modern Islam specializing in Ottoman Sufism. She has a Ph.D. in Religious Studies from the University of Pennsylvania and is currently an Assistant Professor of Religion and History at Washington & Lee University. Florentina Badalanova Geller is Senior Researcher at the Royal Anthropological Institute, London. She previously taught at Sofia University and London University and is now Honorary Research Associate at UCL. From 2010–2018, she was Professor in the Topoi Excellence Cluster at the Freie Universität Berlin and since 2007 has been a regular Research Fellow at the Max Planck Institut für Wissenschaftsgeschichte, Berlin. In 2022–2023, she is also a Fellow at the Institut d’études avancées de Paris. Gabriele Boccaccini is Professor of Second Temple Judaism and Christian origins at the University of Michigan. A specialist of Enoch literature and the founding director of the Enoch Seminar, he is author and editor of numerous publications on the subject, including Middle Judaism (1991), Portraits of Middle Judaism in Scholarship and Arts (1993), Beyond the Essene Hypothesis (1998), Roots of Rabbinic Judaism (2002), The Origins of Enochic Judaism (2002), Enoch and Qumran Origins (2005), Enoch and the Messiah Son of Man (2007), The Early Enoch Literature (2007), Enoch and the Mosaic Torah (2009), Enoch and the Synoptic Gospels (2016), and Paul’s Three Paths to Salvation (2020). Francis Borchardt is Associate Professor of Hebrew Bible at NLA University College in Bergen, Norway. His research focuses on Jewish and Christian texts from the Hellenistic and Roman eras. He has particular interests in the production and dissemination of these writings in ancient and modern media.

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Giulio Busi is a Full Professor at the Freie Universität Berlin (Germany), where he directs the Institute of Jewish Studies. He is the author of nearly one hundred publications, including numerous essays and analyses of the kabbalah and Jewish symbols, critical editions of Jewish texts, and studies on the relations between Jewish and Christian culture during the Renaissance. Euan Cameron is Henry Luce III Professor of Reformation Church History at Union Theological Seminary in New York City, with a concurrent position in Columbia University. His publications include The European Reformation (1991; 2nd ed. 2012), Waldenses: Rejections of Holy Church in Medieval Europe (2000), and Enchanted Europe: Superstition, Reason and Religion 1250–1750 (2010). Among works which he has edited are the third volume, covering 1450–1750, of the New Cambridge History of the Bible (2016) and the sixth volume, on biblical interpretation, of The Annotated Luther (2017). Tobias Churton is the author of twenty-five published books, including biographies of William Blake, Elias Ashmole, Aleister Crowley, and G.I. Gurdjieff. A Master’s degree in Theology from Brasenose College, Oxford, led to over a decade’s employment as researcher, director, and producer of religious television for the BBC and Channel 4, including the four-part drama-documentary Gnostics and its Channel 4 book in 1987. In 2005 he was appointed Honorary Fellow, Exeter University, to lecture on Western Esotericism. Elena Dugan teaches in the Department of Religion and Philosophy at Phillips Academy, Andover. She completed her dissertation in Religions of Mediterranean Antiquity at Princeton University in 2021. Her forthcoming monograph explores the manuscript and composition history of 1 Enoch, focusing on the Animal Apocalypse. Ted M. Erho is Cataloger of Ethiopic Manuscripts at the Hill Museum & Manuscript Library (Collegeville, MN, USA) and a research fellow at Ludwig-MaximiliansUniversität München (Munich, Germany). He has published a number of articles on Second Temple Judaism and on Geʿez manuscripts and literature.

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Robert G. Hall long time Elliott Professor of Religion at Hampden-Sydney College in Virginia, is the author of Revealed Histories: Techniques for Ancient Jewish and Christian Historiography (1991). He has also written articles on various ancient Jewish and early Christian documents, especially apocalypses and Pauline epistles. He is currently preparing a commentary on the Ascension of Isaiah. Ariel Hessayon is a Reader in the Department of History at Goldsmiths, University of London. He has written extensively on a variety of early modern topics: antiscripturism, antitrinitarianism, ball games, book burning, communism, environmentalism, esotericism, extra-canonical texts, heresy, crypto-Jews, Judaizing, millenarianism, mysticism, prophecy, and religious radicalism. Ralph Lee has taught at SOAS University of London, Cambridge University, the Institute for Orthodox Christian Studies in Cambridge, and the Oxford Centre for Mission Studies. His research interests are in Ethiopian Christianity, Ethiopian biblical hermeneutics, and more broadly, Christianity in Asia and the Middle East and contemporary trends, as well as the translation of Geʿez texts. He has published on Ethiopian Orthodox theology, Ethiopian biblical textual history, contemporary trends in Ethiopian Christianity, and biblical interpretation, including the interpretation of 1 Enoch within the Christian tradition. Jared Ludlow is Professor of Ancient Scripture and Ancient Near Eastern Studies at Brigham Young University (BYU) where he has taught since 2006, including two years at the BYU Jerusalem Center for Near Eastern Studies. Jared received his Bachelor’s degree from BYU in Near Eastern Studies, his Master’s degree from the University of California Berkeley in Biblical Hebrew, and his Ph.D. in Near Eastern Religions from University of California Berkeley and the Graduate Theological Union. He is the current Publications Director of the BYU Religious Studies Center. Shaul Magid is Professor of Jewish Studies at Dartmouth College. His research spans Lurianic Kabbalah, Hasidism, and American Judaism. His books include Hasidism on the Margins (2003), From Metaphysics to Midrash (2008), American Post-Judaism (2013), Hasidism Incarnate (2014), Piety and Rebellion: Essays in Hasidism (2019), The Bible, the Talmud, and the New Testament: Elijah Zvi

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Soloveitchik’s Commentary to the New Testament (2020), and Meir Kahane: The Public Life and Political Thought of an American Jewish Radical (2021). Annette Yoshiko Reed is Professor of New Testament and Early Christianity at Harvard Divinity School. Her publications include Fallen Angels and the History of Judaism and Christianity: The Reception of Enochic Literature (2005), Jewish-Christianity and the History of Judaism (2018), and Demons, Angels, and Writing in Ancient Judaism (2020). She is the co-author, with John C. Reeves, of Enoch from Antiquity to the Middle Ages (2018).

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Introduction Annette Yoshiko Reed, Ariel Hessayon, and Gabriele Boccaccini The books of Enoch were among the long-lost heritage of ancient Judaism recovered in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.1 What they told of fallen angels, demons, the origins of evil, and the end of the world was popular among ancient Jews, including the first followers of Jesus, and Enochic books were even quoted by Jude and defended by early Christians like Tertullian. Yet the very apocalypticism that made them appealing in the Second Temple period (538 BCE–70 CE) caused their rejection by Rabbis in the second century and by Church Fathers like Athanasius and Augustine in the fourth and fifth. As a result, these writings virtually disappeared from historical view until James Bruce’s 1773 discovery of manuscripts of 1 Enoch in Ethiopia. Bruce’s discovery ushered in a new era of scholarship, marked by the recovery of forgotten forms of apocalyptic thought from Second Temple Judaism and the recognition of their influence on the origins of Christianity. Or, at least, this is the tale that is conventionally told.2 But is it accurate? What was known before Bruce? Where, and by whom? What precisely did Bruce find, and is it apt to describe his acts as “discovery”? What happened in the immediate aftermath? And what might we learn of the early modern reception of Enoch when we look beyond this narrative, broadening our scope beyond Bruce and the scholarly founders of the field of Second Temple Judaism? For instance, what was the image of Enoch among Jewish kabbalists and Christian Hebraists, whose sense of Enochic writings may have been shaped more by 3 Enoch and the Zohar than 1 Enoch? Or in the Slavonic Church, which long knew 2 Enoch? Or in the Ottoman Empire among Muslims for whom Enoch-Idrīs was associated with Hermes, such that his books might encompass Hermetica? And most importantly, how does this era of supposed “discovery” look when seen from the perspective of Ethiopia, where 1 Enoch was never “lost”? These questions are explored in the present volume. It collects and extends the results of our discussions at the 10th Enoch Seminar on “Enoch and Enochic Traditions in the Early Modern Period,” organized by Gabriele Boccaccini with Annette Yoshiko Reed and held on 9–14 June 2019 at Villa La Stella in Florence, 1 The editors would like to thank Oana Capatina for her help in preparing this volume for publication and SVTP series editor Grant Macaskill for shepherding it to completion. 2 See Reed in this volume.

© Annette Yoshiko Reed et al., 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_002

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Italy. In the spirit of the Enoch Seminar, this volume seeks to bring research on Second Temple Judaism further into conversation with research on the multiple geographical and cultural contexts of its reception. In recent years, much has been written about the impact of Enochic texts and traditions on Second Temple Judaism and early Christianity as well as on their transmission and transformation in Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages. What has not yet been done, however, is to extend this line of research forward into the era of the so-called “discovery” of 1 Enoch. It is common to hail Bruce’s Ethiopic Enoch manuscripts, together with Richard Laurence’s 1821 translation of one of them, as milestones in the development of academic scholarship on Second Temple Judaism as we know it today. But little has been done to consider European scholarship on 1 Enoch before Bruce and Laurence, particularly in the wake of the publication of the Syncellus fragments by Scaliger in 1606. In addition, Bruce and his impact have yet to be sufficiently analyzed on their own terms or situated within their own historical and cultural contexts. The aim of the present volume is to begin this task. Towards this aim, we have brought together specialists in antiquity and specialists in early modernity. In addition, this volume seeks to correct the habitual privileging of European Christian trajectories in past accounts of the history of research on the books of Enoch and their reception. Reassessments of Bruce and his manuscripts starkly expose the problems with the conventional narrative summarized above.3 Yet they also open the way for examining other perspectives on Enoch in early modernity—including in European art, philosophy, and esotericism but also among Masons, Mormons, Sufis, Lurianic kabbalists, and Ethiopian and Slavonic Christians.



Enoch is mentioned in passing in Genesis (5:21–24) as a man who lived before the Flood and “walked with God.” Part of what makes his later reception so fascinating, however, is the degree to which it has been shaped by other sources. Genesis makes no mention of Enoch as scribe, let alone as the author of books. But Enoch emerges as a scribal hero already in the most ancient surviving writings associated with him: the Astronomical Book and Book of the Watchers, commonly dated to the fourth/third century BCE, and the Book of Dreams and Epistle of Enoch, commonly dated to the second century BCE. The oldest textual witnesses to these Enochic works are the Aramaic fragments found among the Dead Sea Scrolls, which date from a period well prior 3 See Erho and Hessayon in this volume.

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to the rise of Christianity and thus confirm their Jewish provenance.4 Portions of these four works are also found in late antique and medieval Greek manuscripts, fragments, and excerpts transmitted by Christians—with the Book of the Watchers most heavily attested, consistent with its prominence in Patristic allusions and quotations.5 Even today, however, it remains that the fullest known forms of the Book of the Watchers, Book of Dreams, Astronomical Book, and Epistle of Enoch are the Geʿez versions collected in 1 Enoch, which Bruce’s famed manuscripts first brought to the attention of European scholarship and which reflect a long history of Ethiopian Christian transmission.6 This Ethiopian anthology also includes the Parables of Enoch (1 Enoch 37–71, also called the Similitudes of Enoch or Book of Parables), which is not attested in either Aramaic or Greek.7 The discovery of Aramaic Enoch fragments among the Dead Sea Scrolls revolutionized scholarly research on a number of key elements of Judaism in the Second Temple period—including the emergence of apocalyptic literature, the production of so-called “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha,” the spread 4 4Q201–202, 4Q204–212; Milik, Books of Enoch; S.J. Pfann and P. Alexander, eds., Qumran Cave 4 XXVI: Cryptic Texts and Miscellanea, Part 1 (DJD 36; Oxford, 2000) 95–131; H. Drawnel, The Aramaic Astronomical Book from Qumran: Text, Translation, and Commentary (Oxford, 2011); Drawnel, with É. Puech, Qumran Cave 4: The Aramaic Books of Enoch (Oxford, 2019). In the case of the Astronomical Book, the Ethiopic version differs especially dramatically from what survives of the Aramaic. Notably, other Enoch-related materials were also found among the Dead Sea Scrolls, including an Aramaic version of the Book of the Giants (see 1Q23; 4Q203; 4Q530–531; 6Q8); L.T. Stuckenbruck, The Book of Giants from Qumran: Texts, Translation, and Commentary (TSAJ 63; Tübingen, 1997). 5 I.e., most of the Book of the Watchers in Codex Panopolitanus and the Epistle of Enoch in Chester-Beatty/Michigan Biblical Papyrus XII, as well as some verses corresponding to the Astronomical Book in P.Oxy. 2069 (frg. 3; 1 En 77:7–78:1 + 78:8) and some verses corresponding to the Book of Dreams in P.Oxy. 2069 (frg. 1–2; 1 En 85:10–86:2 + 87:1–3); see further Dugan in this volume. In addition, Greek excerpts from the Book of the Watchers are preserved within the Christian chronographical tradition, on which see Reed in this volume. On the prominence of the Book of the Watchers in Patristic quotations, allusions, etc., see also Reed, Fallen Angels and the History of Judaism and Christianity: The Reception of Enochic Literature (Cambridge, 2005). 6 I.e., the Book of the Watchers in 1 Enoch 1–36; Astronomical Book in 72–82; Book of Dreams in 83–90; and Epistle of Enoch in 91ff. For the Christian contexts that shaped 1 Enoch as an anthology, see M.A. Knibb, “Christian Adoption and Transmission of Jewish Pseudepigrapha: The Case of 1 Enoch,” JSJ 32 (2001) 396–415. For the broader continuum of Jewish and Christian anthological activities surrounding Enoch, see A.Y. Reed, “Categorization, Collection, and the Construction of Continuity: 1 Enoch and 3 Enoch in and beyond ‘Apocalypticism’ and ‘Mysticism,’” MTSR 29 (2017) 268–311. 7 For new perspectives on this puzzling work, taking its Ethiopian forms and contexts seriously, see Dugan and Hall in this volume.

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of Jewish sectarianism, and the articulation of new concerns with demonology and heavenly ascent.8 Perhaps no less revolutionary, however, has been the impetus to reconsider the reception of Enochic texts and traditions in later periods as well. Even prior to Bruce, references to books of Enoch had been collected by European scholars like Johann Albert Fabricius, due in part to the curiosity about them sparked in the wake of Joseph Scaliger’s 1606 print publication of the Greek excerpts from the Book of the Watchers in George Syncellus’ ninthcentury chronography.9 So too after Bruce: the editions and translations based on his Ethiopic Enoch manuscripts featured further catalogues of Enochic quotations, references, and allusions, especially in Greek and Latin. In his 1821 translation, for instance, Laurence adduced such traditions to establish that “the Ethiopic version of the Book of Enoch contains precisely the same work as the Greek version, which was known to the Fathers.”10 Laurence’s catalogue, based on Fabricius, was expanded in turn by R.H. Charles.11 Late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century European scholars also sought out other Enochic writings of possibly pre-Christian Jewish provenance. These included what is now commonly called 2 Enoch, a text known in full from medieval Slavonic manuscripts (also called Book of the Secrets of Enoch), and what is commonly called 3 Enoch, part of the Hekhalot corpus of pre-kabbalistic Jewish mystical writings in Hebrew (also called Sefer Hekhalot).12 Charles himself, for instance, worked with W.R. Morfill to produce an English translation of 2 Enoch from the Slavonic, published in 1896 and later updated with N. Forbes for inclusion alongside 1 Enoch in his 1913 Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha of the Old Testament.13 Inspired by Charles, Hugo Odeberg published an English translation of Sefer Hekhalot under the title “3 Enoch” in 1928, arguing for its

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See further M.E. Stone, “The Book of Enoch and Judaism in the Third Century BCE,” CBQ 40 (1978) 479–92; M. Himmelfarb, Ascent to Heaven in Jewish and Christian Apocalypses (Oxford, 1993); G. Boccaccini and J.J. Collins, eds., The Early Enoch Literature (Leiden, 2007). Scaliger, Thesaurus temporum, 404–6. On Fabricius, see A.Y. Reed, “The Modern Invention of Old Testament Pseudepigrapha,” JTS 60 (2009) 403–36, and on his precedents, see Boccaccini in this volume. Laurence, Book of Enoch, xi–xxiiii, quote at xi—there citing Jude, Ireneaus, Tertullian, etc., and crediting the gathering of these references to Fabricius, Codex Pseudepigraphus VT. E.g., Charles, Book of Enoch (2nd ed.), lxx–ciii. On 2 Enoch, see Badalanova Geller in this volume. R.H. Charles and W.R. Morfill, The Book of the Secrets of Enoch (Oxford, 1896); N. Forbes and R.H. Charles, “2 Enoch, or The Book of the Secrets of Enoch,” APOT 2.425–69.

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isolation from the Hekhalot corpus and its inclusion instead among “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha.”14 Scholarly interest in Enochic reception, however, continued to center on 1 Enoch, not least because of its quotation in the Epistle of Jude. These efforts further intensified in the wake of the 1886 discovery of Codex Panopolitanus, which includes portions of the Book of the Watchers in Greek, as well as the 1892 publication of Latin fragments corresponding to 1 Enoch 106.15 Most influentially, H.J. Lawlor took up the task of assessing evidence for the reception of the books of Enoch in Greek and Latin literature, noting the importance of this evidence both for “use as witnesses to the text of the book current in early times” and for “its history in the Christian Church and the views which were held as to its authenticity and inspiration.”16 Interest in Enochic reception intensified yet again in the wake of the Dead Sea Scrolls—albeit this time with a broader horizon. Milik’s 1976 editio princeps of the Aramaic Enoch fragments included chapters revisiting evidence related to 1 Enoch but also other Enochic books, and in the process, further attended to Jewish and other non-Christian trajectories.17 In the decades that followed, scholars such as William Adler and James VanderKam extended Lawlor’s efforts to map the Christian reception of Enochic texts and traditions,18 while scholars such as Martha Himmelfarb, Philip S. Alexander, and John C. Reeves took 14 H. Odeberg, 3 Enoch, or the Hebrew Book of Enoch (repr.ed.; New York, 1973 [1928]). Note that so-called “3 Enoch” is not an Enochic “book” per se; it is a relatively late unit within the Hekhalot corpus that features Enoch-Metatron but is voiced from the perspective of Rabbi Ishmael. In 1873, A. Jellinek published this unit in Hebrew under the title Sefer Hekhalot (BHM 5.170–90). Odeberg extracted and translated the Enoch-related material from an eighteenth-century Hebrew manuscript of Hekhalot literature (MS Oxford Oppenheimer 556) and presents it as a “pseudepigraphon.” The misleading character of Odeberg’s invention of the title “3 Enoch,” and his argument for interpreting the work as akin to 1 Enoch and 2 Enoch, is stressed already by Gershom Scholem in his review of Odeberg’s book in Orientalistische Literaturzeitung 33 (1930) cols. 193–97. 15 U. Bouriant, “Fragments grecs de Livre d’Enoch,” Mémoires publiés part les membres de la mission archéologique française au Caire 9 (1892) 91–147; M.R. James, Apocrypha Anecdota (Cambridge, 1892) 146–50. 16 H.J. Lawlor, “Early Citations from the Book of Enoch,” JP 25 (1897) 164–225 at 164. 17 Milik, Books of Enoch, 70–138 passim. 18 W. Adler, “Enoch in Early Christian Literature,” SBL Seminar Papers 13 (1978) 271–75; J. VanderKam, “1 Enoch, Enochic Motifs, and Enoch in Early Christian Literature,” in The Jewish Apocalyptic Heritage in Early Christianity, ed. J. VanderKam and W. Adler (CRINT 3.4; Minneapolis, 1996) 33–101. Note also the discussion of their ancient Jewish reception in VanderKam, Enoch: A Man for All Generations (Columbia, SC, 1995); J. Greenfield and M.E. Stone, “The Books of Enoch and the Traditions of Enoch,” Numen 26 (1979) 89–103.

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up the task of tracing their Jewish, Muslim, and Manichaean afterlives.19 This line of research was a major catalyst for the late twentieth-century renaissance of research on the reception of “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha” more broadly.20 The first decades of the twenty-first century have seen the emergence of new collaborative conversations among specialists in Judaism, Christianity, Manichaeism, and Islam, inspiring a wealth of new studies mapping the dynamically interreligious diffusion of Enochica in Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages.21 To our knowledge, the present volume is the first book-length publication to focus on Enochic texts and traditions in the period between the fifteenth and nineteenth centuries.22 To be sure, surveys of the history of research on 19 M. Himmelfarb, “A Report on Enoch in Rabbinic Literature,” SBL Seminar Papers 13 (1978) 259–69; J.C. Reeves, Jewish Lore in Manichaean Cosmogony: Studies in the Book of Giants Traditions (Cincinnati, 1992); P.S. Alexander, “From Son of Adam to Second God: Transformations of the Biblical Enoch,” in Biblical Figures Outside the Bible, ed. M.E. Stone and T.A. Bergren (Harrisburg, PA, 1998) 87–122. 20 I.e., following from earlier insights explored in J.C. Reeves, ed., Tracing the Threads: Studies in the Vitality of Jewish Pseudepigrapha (Atlanta, 1994) as well as in the work of Michael E. Stone, e.g., Apocrypha, Pseudepigrapha, and Armenian Studies, 2 vols. (Leuven, 2006). For synthesis and discussion of more recent lines of research in this area, see the essays in the 2019 Guide to Early Jewish Texts as well as E. Mroczek, The Literary Imagination in Late Antiquity (Oxford, 2016). 21 Reed, Fallen Angels; Reed, “From Asael and Šemihazah to Uzzah, Azzah, and Azael:  3 Enoch 5 (§§7–8) and the Jewish Reception-History of 1 Enoch,” JSQ 8 (2001) 1–32; Reed, “Fallen Angels and the Afterlives of Enochic Traditions in Early Islam,” in Early Islam: The Sectarian Milieu of Late Antiquity, ed. G. Dye (Brussels, 2022) 51–76; P.S. Alexander, “Transformations of Jewish Traditions in Early Islam: The Case of Enoch/ Idris,” in Studies in Islamic and Middle Eastern Texts and Traditions in Memory of Norman Calder, ed. G.R. Hawting, J.A. Mojaddedi, and A. Samely (Oxford, 2001) 11–29; C. Auffarth and L.T. Stuckenbruck, eds., The Fall of the Angels (Leiden, 2004); A. Orlov, The EnochMetatron Tradition (TSAJ 107; Tübingen, 2005); P. Crone, “The Book of Watchers in the Qurʾān,” in Exchange and Transmission across Cultural Boundaries: Philosophy, Mysticism and Science in the Mediterranean World, ed. H. Ben-Shammai, S. Shaked, and S. Stroumsa (Jerusalem, 2013) 16–51; A.K. Harkins, K. Coblentz Bautch, and J.C. Endres, eds., The Fallen Angels Traditions: Second Temple Developments and Reception History (Washington, D.C., 2014) 94–115; J.C. Reeves, “Some Parascriptural Dimensions of the Muslim Tale of Hārūt wa-Mārūt,” JAOS 135 (2015) 817–42; Y. Kiel, “Reimagining Enoch in Sasanian Babylonia in Light of Zoroastrian and Manichaean Traditions,” AJS Review 39 (2015) 407–32; T. Tesei, “The Fall of Iblīs and its Enochic Background,” in Religious Stories in Transformation: Conflict, Revision and Reception, ed. Alberdina Houtman et al. (Leiden, 2016) 66–81; Y. Paz, “Metatron is Not Enoch: Reevaluating the Evolution of an Archangel,” JSJ 50 (2019) 52–100. For synthesis and further references, see Reeves/Reed, Enoch. 22 The concern for Enochic reception in the early modern period is almost wholly unprecedented apart from the work of two of the editors of the present volume: A. Hessayon, “Og King of Bashan, Enoch and the Books of Enoch: Extra-Canonical Texts and Interpretations of Genesis 6:1–4,” in Scripture and Scholarship in Early Modern England, ed. -

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Second Temple Judaism have treated elements of the reception of 1 Enoch in the nineteenth century, and to a lesser extent, the effects of the printing of Syncellus’ Enoch excerpts in the eighteenth century. With a few exceptions, however, these developments have been framed in terms of what they contribute to scholarship today and thus largely decontextualized.23 In what follows, eighteenth- and nineteenth-century scholars are considered in their own cultural contexts, alongside their predecessors and contemporaries—and in a manner not limited to those men whom specialists in Second Temple Judaism celebrate as the founders of the scholarly field. Furthermore, our purview goes well beyond Europe, situating developments critical for the emergence of this field in relation to the reception of Enoch and his books in Ethiopia and beyond. In the process, this volume models an approach to Enochic reception that might serve to enrich research on other “pseudepigrapha” and Second Temple literature as well. The Enoch Seminar, founded by Boccaccini in 2001, has played a major part in seeding the renewed interest in Enochic texts and traditions noted above. Although these bi-annual meetings typically focus on antiquity, questions of reception have increasingly been raised.24 Such discussions paved the way for the focus on reception in the 10th Enoch Seminar, on which the present volume is based.25 No less importantly, however, the past two decades of the Enoch Seminar have cultivated the intellectual culture of collaboration that has made this interdisciplinary conversation possible. Gone is the time when scholars focused only on culling manuscripts for the “original” forms and meanings of a text, skipping over centuries of transformation and transmission so as to celebrate its “rediscovery” by European scholars of the nineteenth century. But also

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A. Hessayon and N. Keene (Aldershot, 2006) 5–40; G. Boccaccini, “Enochic Traditions,” in Guide to Early Jewish Texts, 383–416. Before the studies by Hessayon and Boccaccini, the entire bibliography on the subject was limited to three titles: N. Schmidt, “Traces of Early Acquaintance in Europe with the Book of Enoch,” JAOS 42 (1922) 44–52; G. McColley, “The Book of Enoch and Paradise Lost,” HTR 31 (1938) 21–39; A. Williams, “Milton and the Book of Enoch: An Alternative Hypothesis,” HTR 33 (1940) 291–99. See Reed, “Modern Invention.” Note especially the 5th Enoch Seminar in 2009 in Naples, Italy, on 2 Enoch and the 6th Enoch Seminar in 2011 in Milan, Italy, on 4 Ezra and 2 Baruch. See A. Orlov and G. Boccaccini, eds., New Perspectives on 2 Enoch: No Longer Slavonic Only (Leiden, 2012); M. Henze and G. Boccaccini, eds., Fourth Ezra and Second Baruch: Reconstruction after the Fall (Leiden, 2013). Gabriele Boccaccini and others in the Enoch Seminar were also involved in the international project “Voice of Jacob,” from its start in 2013 to its completion in 2019, culminating with the publication of Guide to Early Jewish Texts. See also G. Boccaccini, Portraits of Middle Judaism in Scholarship and Arts: A Multimedia Catalog from Flavius Josephus to 1991 (Turin, 1992), and note the inclusion of pages on Enochic reception in Boccaccini’s online “4 Enoch” project (http://www.4enoch.org). -

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gone is the model of a lone scholar, guarding the gates of his particular area of specialist expertise. In the spirit of the Enoch Seminar, the present volume seeks to model a collaborative vision of scholarship as a dynamic conversation across different periods, corpora, fields, and locales.



The structure of the present volume is tripartite. The first section deals with traditions and trajectories prior to Bruce’s so-called “discovery” of 1 Enoch and its impact in Europe and North America. The second section reconsiders Bruce, his Ethiopic Enoch manuscripts, and their initial reception. The third section focuses on early modern Enochica beyond Europe, especially but not only in Ethiopia. In opening essay, Annette Yoshiko Reed questions the tropes of medieval “loss” and modern “discovery” common in scholarship on Second Temple Judaism since the eighteenth century. After tracing the place of these tropes in early research on “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha,” Reed revisits the reception of Enochic texts and traditions in the Middle Ages. She points to evidence for the continued literary creativity surrounding Enoch precisely in the era of the supposed suppression and “loss” of the books of Enoch, in part due to the continued circulation of excerpts from the Book of the Watchers in the Christian chronographical tradition. The accessibility of 1 Enoch as a “book,” Reed suggests, is only one small part of the story of the Nachleben of Enochic texts and traditions more broadly. The second essay in this section flips the lens to look at the reception of 1 Enoch from the opposite perspective—namely, the possible reasons for resistance to such a work in the thought world of early modern Europe. Scholarly narratives about textual discovery often assume that the reappearance of a lost book might suffice to make it influential. In “The Book of Enoch in Relation to the Premodern Christian Doctrines of Spiritual Beings,” Euan Cameron cautions against this assumption in the case of 1 Enoch, due to “a formidable body of inherited and shared wisdom about angels, fallen and unfallen, their history, their natures, and how to deal with them”—from Peter Lombard, Thomas Aquinas, and Nicholas of Lyra to Martin Luther, John Calvin, Agostino Steuco, and Girolamo Zanchi. Even despite the connections between Ethiopian and European churches after the Council of Florence (ca. 1440), there was a very large body of theology and biblical exegesis that would have prevented any serious treatment of 1 Enoch by European Christians in the eras prior to Bruce and Laurence.

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In “Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, Enoch, and Hermetism,” Giulio Busi reflects upon one partial exception. Busi cautiously explores the fleeting yet intriguing presence of Enoch in the writings of the Italian Renaissance philosopher Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, with an eye to the link between Enoch and Metatron in particular. In the process, Busi points to Hermetism and Christian Hebraism as possible channels through which older Enochic traditions traveled to Europe. The following essay points to another channel—namely, the excerpts from the Book of the Watchers preserved via the Byzantine chronographer George Syncellus and first published by Scaliger in 1606. Building on his earlier pioneering findings in this area,26 Gabriele Boccaccini recovers two largely neglected Italian commentaries on these Enochic excerpts, written by Pompeo Sarnelli in 1710 and the precocious Daniele Manin in 1820. Surveys of European textual scholarship on 1 Enoch typically point to Laurence’s 1821 work as the very first commentary. These two earlier commentaries reveal the forgotten earlier history of scholarship on the text of 1 Enoch as well as reminding us of Scaliger’s impact in shaping knowledge and curiosity about the books of Enoch across Europe. The final three essays in this section explore different avenues of creativity surrounding Enoch during the period in which books of Enoch were primarily known in Europe and North America through excerpts, quotations, and the imagination of antediluvian books. In “Enoch and the Genesis of Freemasonry,” Tobias Churton argues that “regular” Freemasonry embraced a moralizing, rationalistic, Newtonian celebration of Solomon’s Temple. When it moved away from its more occult roots, the meaning that Enoch may have held for some “old Masons” was lost. In “Blake’s Enoch before the Book of Enoch,” Francis Borchardt examines three images by William Blake that some scholars have suggested contain a visual representation of Enoch. It was during Blake’s lifetime that Ethiopic Enoch manuscripts were becoming accessible in Europe. Yet Blake’s renderings cannot be reduced to acts of textual commentary or representation; rather, as Borchardt shows, Enoch remains foremost an “imaginative locus.” Jared Ludlow explores similarly complex dynamics in “Enoch in the Tradition of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormonism).” Enoch is not mentioned in the Book of Mormon, but he features in the Book of Moses in the Pearl of Great Price and the Doctrine and Covenants, and Joseph Smith elsewhere alludes to Enoch as well. Ludlow surveys these traditions as well as tracing Mormon knowledge of 1 Enoch: although Laurence’s 1821 26 Boccaccini, “Enochic Traditions.”

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translation does not seem to have been known until 1840, for instance, there is ample evidence for interest in Syncellus’ excerpts. The question of the reception of Enoch in the Church of Latter-day Saints, however, cannot be reduced to the question of their awareness of 1 Enoch. Rather, as Ludlow shows, Enoch became a prophetic role model for achieving community righteousness, especially in their richly articulated traditions about Zion. The second section of this volume offers a major reassessment of Bruce and his legacy. This section begins with a groundbreaking essay by Ted Erho, questioning the scholarly habit of treating the four Ethiopic Enoch manuscripts that Bruce brought to Europe as if they were direct windows onto the text as preserved in Ethiopia. In “James Bruce’s Illusory ‘Book of Enoch the Prophet,’” Erho combines careful analysis of Bruce’s Ethiopic manuscripts with consideration of the patterns in other Ethiopian manuscripts of the time. Erho makes a case that Bruce actively commissioned manuscripts, motivated by his desire for the prestige of returning to Europe with “extravagant objects worthy of the most hallowed European halls” but also by his impulse to create manuscripts that matched what was most valued among Europeans at the time—namely, the texts of the Protestant Old Testament and the long-lost book of Enoch quoted by Jude. Far from being simply products of the Ethiopian scribal tradition, the manuscripts that Bruce “discovered” were marked by “egregious meddling,” including in the title (i.e., “the Book of Enoch the Prophet”) and its very representation as “a book.” Bruce’s life and legacy are further examined in two essays by Ariel Hessayon. In “James Bruce and his Copies of Ethiopic Enoch,” Hessayon investigates what happened to the manuscripts that Bruce brought back from his travels, and he considers the fates of the four Ethiopic Enoch manuscripts in unprecedented depth and detail. Hessayon concludes by assessing Bruce’s legacy as well as providing answers to an important question that previous scholars have neglected to ask: Why did no European scholar undertake a complete translation during Bruce’s lifetime? He posits that the reasons lie in part in Bruce’s own dubious reputation and in part in the lack of European expertise in Geʿez at the time; in addition, he notes its “comparably minor benefit in settling theological disputes among Protestants in the English-speaking world.” The following essay picks up the story after Bruce’s death. In “A ‘Rich and Unparalleled Collection’: The Afterlives of James Bruce’s Manuscripts and Drawings,” Hessayon addresses the question of the fate of Bruce’s manuscripts—particularly the two Ethiopic Enoch manuscripts in Britain. Beginning immediately after Bruce’s demise, this piece culminates with the Bodleian Library’s purchase of ninety-six volumes from Bruce’s collections in 1843.

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The final essay in this section, “When Enoch left Ethiopia: On Race and Philological (Im)possibilities in the Nineteenth Century,” considers Bruce and his reception in the context of European images of Ethiopia. Taking the story forward to August Dillmann, R.H. Charles, and George Henry Schodde, Elena Dugan here explores how Enoch—in the sense of a literary work collectively imagined by a community of scholars—became extracted from Ethiopia. She notes that despite disagreement among European scholars during the nineteenth century, the notion that any part of Enoch had been composed in Ethiopia was almost never entertained. This possibility was unthinkable, Dugan argues, because the imagination of Africa foreclosed the possibility of Ethiopians as authors and reduced the effects of the Ethiopian scribal tradition largely to the textual corruption that European scholars claimed to identify and correct. As a result, “Ethiopia and Ethiopan scribal tradition have been unnecessarily and wrongly erased in the study of Ethiopic texts.” Noting the problems in blocking off “the very real possibility of transformation during transmission, or even composition in Ethiopian climes,” Dugan turns to consider how a re-centering of Ethiopia might yield new understandings of the Parables of Enoch, which is only attested in Ethiopian manuscripts. The third and final section looks beyond Europe and North America, exploring early modernity from Ethiopian and Slavonic Christian as well as Jewish and Islamic perspectives. This section begins with three essays on Ethiopia, which illustrate the value of re-centering Ethiopia when analyzing 1 Enoch. In “The Reception and Function of 1 Enoch in the Ethiopian Orthodox Tradition,” Ralph Lee explores some of the theological functions and use of 1 Enoch in the Ethiopian Christian commentarial tradition from after the fourteenth century. Lee begins by considering which parts of 1 Enoch are most often mentioned within classical Ethiopian literature. Drawing attention to the prominence of the Apocalypse of Weeks (93:1–10 + 91:11–17), he then analyzes commentaries spanning from the fifteenth-century Book of Mysteries of Heaven and Earth to the Amharic andəmta commentary committed to writing in the late seventeenth century, demonstrating how its understanding was incorporated into a Christian historical framework. In “The Archangel Uriel in 1 Enoch and Other Ethiopian Texts,” Daniel Assefa turns our attention to the impact of 1 Enoch on Ethiopic hymnology. The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahido Church shares a concern for the veneration of angels with other Orthodox chuches, but Assefa points to the emphasis on Uriel as distinctive, as expressed through hymns, homilies, churches, and his annual feast. Focusing on hymns and homilies written in honor of Uriel, Assefa compares the treatment of this figure in 1 Enoch. He thus illumines an

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on-going process of quotation, allusion, and interpretation of Enochic material in the multiple Ethiopian works that praise the archangel Uriel, spanning from at least the medieval period to the present day. This test-case showcases an interaction with older Enochic traditions that is simultaneously innovative, finding expression in multiple genres and settings. Robert Hall similarly stresses the importance of heeding the creativity of the Ethiopian scribal tradition surrounding 1 Enoch. Although likely based in a fourth- or fifth-century translation from the Greek, the Geʿez text as we know it is itself early modern, in the sense that we encounter it within manuscripts that date from the fourteenth to twentieth centuries. “Whenever we study 1 Enoch,” Hall thus stresses, “we are studying reception history.” In “Scales of Creation or Scales of Judgment? Variant Readings for Parables of Enoch 41 and 43,” he shows how such an approach can open up new understandings of the text. Hall focuses on the manuscript variance in 1 Enoch 41 and 43 in the Parables of Enoch, which is attested only in Ethiopian manuscripts. Hall juxtaposes the approaches in the critical editions and translations produced by scholars like George Nickelsburg with the approaches in the Ethiopian scribal tradition. In the process, he shows how seeing the heavenly scales through the eyes of early modern Ethiopic scribes and understanding these scales as scales of creation and judgment gives coherence to the whole section. The following essay takes a similar approach with regard to 2 Enoch and the enduring significance of its Slavonic scribal and cultural contexts. In “Heavenly Exiles and Earthly Outcasts: Enochic Concepts of Hermetic Knowledge and Proscribed Lore in Parabiblica Slavica (Fifteenth-Nineteenth Centuries),” Florentina Badalanova Geller focuses on narrative templates that engaged with the mythologeme of the fallen angels, as attested in the Slavonic parabiblical tradition and related art and folklore. Traditions from 2 Enoch become creatively blended with indigenous demonological and witchcraft discourses, speaking to the dynamic relationship between Enochic texts and Slavonic traditions about angels, demons, Enoch, and the heavens. The final two essays look to Muslims and Jews in the Ottoman Empire. In “Enoch as Idrīs in Early Modern Ottoman Sufi Writings: Two Case Studies,” Kameliya Atanasova examines the place of Enoch-Idrīs in Sufi thought of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. She begins by surveying the reception of Enochic traditions in Islam, with a focus on the equation of Enoch, Idrīs, and Hermes. Although there are points of continuity with the Second Temple Jewish traditions best known from 1 Enoch, she shows how the Islamic discussion takes on a life of its own, governed by distinct concerns. Atanasova analyzes two texts: Abdullah Bosnevi’s commentary on Ibn ʿArabi’s Fuṣūṣ al-ḥikam and Ismail Hakki Bursevi’s chapter on Idrīs in his treatise the Kitāb al-najāt.

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As with Enoch in early Enochic texts and traditions, Idrīs is here a scholar and astronomer who ascends to heaven. The focus of these texts, however, is on his significance for Sufis; the concern is not so much with any “book of Enoch” known also to Jews or Christians, but more to expand upon the role of Idrīs in the cosmology of thirteenth-century Sufi Muhyī al-dīn Ibn ʿArabī. So too in Lurianic kabbalah, the topic of the final essay of the volume. It may be possible to pinpoint resonances with Second Temple Jewish texts and traditions, but early modern Jewish mystics used Enoch for their own ends. The possible continuities between 1 Enoch, 3 Enoch, and later Jewish mysticism have been a topic of speculation since Gershom Scholem. By contrast, in “Why Enoch Did Not Die: The Soul Construction of Enoch in the Zohar and Sixteenth-Century Kabbalah,” Shaul Magid shows how early modern Jewish mystical traditions about Enoch are shaped by distinct concerns, pertaining especially to immortality, metempsychosis, original sin, and the soul. After surveying the history of the association of Enoch with Metatron, Magid turns to consider the treatment of Enoch-Metatron in the later strata of the Zohar and in the writings of Lurianic kabbalists like Hayyim Vital. Even as Lurianic kabbalists extend earlier Jewish traditions about Enoch, Magid stresses that “more may be going on than simple reception and reproduction.” Like the Sufis considered by Atanasova, “they seem to be asking different questions.” The concern is with Enoch’s soul and the question of his escape from death in relation to the sin and soul of Adam. And thus by the early modern period, the story of Enoch that we know from Second Temple Judaism would have seemed to Jews like “not a particularly Jewish story” at all. In the appendix, Ariel Hessayon reproduces the earliest English translations and synopses of Ethiopic Enoch in the roughly fifty-year period between James Bruce’s acquisition and commissioning of the text and the publication of Richard Laurence’s complete translation. The work of the Prussian-born scholar Carl Gottfried Woide, Bruce, and the Scottish linguist and biographer Alexander Murray is discussed in Hessayon’s contribution to this volume. The appendix thus notes the contribution of other figures, such as the reviewer and translator William Taylor (1765–1836), the Swedenborgian John Augustus Tulk (1756–1845), and Richard Laurence (1760–1838). In 1800, Antoine Isaac Silvestre de Sacy published a partial Latin translation of Ethiopic Enoch that was quickly reprinted with additional notes and an introduction by Friedrich Theodor Rink.27 Less known, however, is William Taylor’s English translation of de Sacy’s Latin version that appeared in The Monthly Magazine in February 1801. Although this piece “Concerning the writings and readings of Jude” appeared 27 F.T. Rink, A.J. Silvestre de Sacy Nachricht das Buch Henoch betreffend (Königsberg, 1801).

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anonymously, Taylor’s identity as the translator is acknowledged in his correspondence with the poet Robert Southey (1774–1843), whose own interest in Enoch and antediluvian history merits further investigation.28 Taylor’s translation was subsequently reprinted in 1812 in a Swedenborgian publication The Intellectual Repository for the New Church by John Augustus Tulk. This is significant because John Augustus’ eldest son Charles Augustus Tulk (1786–1849) became a patron of William Blake about 1816.29 Also included in the appendix, and to our knowledge previously unknown to modern scholarship, is a partial English translation of de Sacy’s Latin version by “W” that appeared in The Orthodox Churchman’s Magazine and Review in January 1806. This too was reprinted, at New York in The Churchman’s Magazine (1808). The final translation included in the appendix is likewise, to our knowledge, previously unknown to modern scholarship. This consists of chapter 14 of Ethiopic Enoch by “Æthiops” and appeared in the Christian Remembrancer in April 1819. A comparison with the relevant chapter in Laurence’s complete translation shows that this was a preliminary English sample some two years before the publication of The Book of Enoch the Prophet in mid-May 1821. Here Laurence indicated that he compared de Sacy’s Latin (misnamed “de Lacy”) with the manuscript available to him in the Bodleian Library. Of particular interest is that Laurence noted that this text consisted of 105 chapters (the same as in his edition) and that he omitted two short clauses from the twelfth and eighteenth verses because they seemed unintelligible (although both verses were afterwards included in his edition). Moreover, Laurence offered an alternative reading of the Ethiopic word barad, which de Sacy had uniformly translated as “hail,” whereas he rendered it as both “snow” and “chrystal” (cf. Ps 51:7, Rev 4:6; 22:1).30



There is much more to do to understand Enochic texts and traditions in the early modern period. In the present volume, we make no claim to comprehensiveness, and we include essays with quite different perspectives. Our aim is not to tell a single story. It is, rather, to begin to create a space for conversation 28 J.W. Robberds, ed., A Memoir of the life and writings of the late William Taylor of Norwich, 2 vols. (London, 1843) 2.91–92, 96–97, 98–99. 29 R.H. Deck, Jr., “New Light on C.A. Tulk, Blake’s 19th Century Patron,” in Blake and Swedenborg: Opposition is True Friendship, ed. H. Bellin and D. Ruhl (West Chester, PA, 1985) 107–19. 30 “Æthiops” [pseud. = Richard Laurence], “On the Book of Enoch,” Christian Remembrancer 4 (April 1819) 263–65.

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between scholars of antiquity and scholars of early modernity on this fascinating topic. In our view, research on Second Temple Judaism can benefit from the more global and interdisciplinary horizons enabled by a focus on reception. Inasmuch as the period between the fifteenth and nineteenth centuries is the very era to which we owe our current concept of “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha”—not to mention the “discovery” and printing of many works now studied under that rubric—it perhaps proves especially pressing for specialists to consider these particular centuries, in conversation with specialists in early modernity. In turn, research on early modernity might be enriched by further insights into the some of the older texts and traditions therein received and reworked. To do so in the case of Enoch—we suggest—it is critical to begin with a more accurate sense of Bruce and his manuscripts, as Erho and Hessayon establish, but also with a sense of what narratives of “discovery” can foreclose—in this case, especially concerning Ethiopia, as Assefa, Dugan, Hall, and Lee richly elucidate. And if there is more to say about 1 Enoch in early modernity, as Boccaccini, Borchardt, Busi, Cameron, and Churton further demonstrate, then all the more so for other Enochic texts and traditions, including 2 Enoch, as Badalanova Geller shows, as well as the Jewish, Islamic, and Mormon trajectories explored by Atanasova, Ludlow, and Magid. Since the nineteenth century, research on the reception of 1 Enoch has served as a crucible for exploring the reception of Second Temple Judaism more broadly. To the degree that this remains the case, this volume also points to the importance of asking questions about textual identity and manuscripts when tracing histories of reception. Scholars such as Liv Lied have called for increased attention to the Christian manuscripts in which so many ostensibly Jewish “pseudepigrapha” are preserved.31 As the present volume makes clear, this is also the case for 1 Enoch, even despite the preservation of portions thereof in unequivocally pre-Christian textual forms (i.e., the Aramaic Enoch fragments). If anything, the example of 1 Enoch shows the importance of extending such attention to the early modern European cultural contexts that shaped the critical editions, translations, and textual anthologies that scholars take for granted. But when we talk about Enochic reception, what precisely is being received? In the essays that follow, the reader will find different answers to this question. Sometimes it is a manuscript. Sometimes it is a text akin to what we now 31 L. Lied, “Early Jewish Literatures in Christian Transmission: Manuscripts, Methods and Ethics,” in Companion to Hellenistic Jewish Literature in Greek, ed. S. Adams and M. Dhont (forthcoming 2023).

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know as 1 Enoch or a portion thereof. Sometimes it is an “Enoch” imagined on the basis of a handful of quotations or excerpts. Or as Erho demonstrates for Bruce, the commissioning of manuscripts might blur the two, intermingling an imagined European construct with Ethiopic scribal tradition. And even when we focus on the Ethiopian manuscripts, as Hall notes, “we can see the Ethiopic version of 1 Enoch only through the eyes of the early modern scribes who have given it to us.” As Borchardt shows in the case of Blake, the book of Enoch could become “a material reality that could be read, translated, and illustrated, but also remain an idea that could be reprised in numerous distinct ways.” And at times, what is received as Enochic reception might pertain more to the reimagination of Enoch himself, transmuted into Metatron, Idrīs, or Hermes and rewritten in the image of philosophers, kabbalists, Sufis, Mormons, or Masons. In each case, however, we might hear some enduring echoes of Second Temple texts and traditions, revived with the power of reimagining the lost wisdom of a distant past ever anew.

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Part 1 European Traditions and Trajectories before James Bruce’s “Discovery” and Its Impact



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Chapter 1

Enoch Lost and Found?

Rethinking Enochic Reception in the Middle Ages Annette Yoshiko Reed Prior to the period of the much-lauded modern “discovery” of 1 Enoch/Ethiopic Enoch, what was known of these and other Enochic writings? Where, how, and by whom? What do we know of the circulation of texts attributed to Enoch, in whole or part, as well as citations and quotations of books of Enoch, whether real or imagined? What was known and lost and forgotten—but also reinvented, revived, and rewritten—of the literary tradition surrounding Enoch from Second Temple times? This essay explores these questions, with the aim of setting the stage for the rest of the volume by reconsidering what was known of Enoch and his books in the Middle Ages. To do so, I first revisit the conventional representation of their history of reception in modern scholarship on Second Temple Judaism. Then, I turn to evidence for their fate in the centuries after their supposed “ban,” with a special focus on Jewish and other medieval trajectories that have been neglected in past research. The tale of Enochic texts and traditions has typically been told as a three-act drama: ancient flourishing, medieval loss, modern recovery. This is consistent with modern scholarly narratives about “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha” more broadly: especially since the early twentieth century, these works have been commonly understood as ancient Jewish texts which are important for understanding Jesus and early Christianity but which were “lost” to the Middle Ages.1 If anything, the fate of 1 Enoch—and the Book of the Watchers in particular—seemed like a parade example of this pattern.2 This text is quoted in the Epistle of Jude (14–15; cf. 1 En 1:9), and it is cited and defended by the 1 See further A.Y. Reed, “The Modern Invention of Old Testament Pseudepigrapha,” JTS 60 (2009) 403–36, esp. 431–33; E. Mroczek, The Literary Imagination in Late Antiquity (Oxford, 2016) 130–32. The irony, of course, is that a number of the writings in such modern collections are actually of Christian provenance and/or preserved only in medieval Christian manuscripts! On this phenomenon, see now L. Lied, Invisible Manuscripts: Textual Scholarship and the Survival of 2 Baruch (Tübingen, 2021). 2 That early quotations tend to correspond to the first 32 chapters of 1 Enoch was noticed already by H.J. Lawlor, “Early Citations from the Book of Enoch,” JP 25 (1897) 186–87. See

© Annette Yoshiko Reed, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_003

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Church Father Tertullian (Cult. fem. 1.3–4; 2.10; Idol. 4.2–3; 15.6). Yet it also appears to be the “book of Enoch” doubted by Augustine (Civ. 15.23; 18.38) as well as the reason for Enoch’s inclusion in fourth-century lists of biblical figures to whom writings have been falsely attributed (Apostolic Constitutions 6.16; Athanasius, Ep. fest. 39).3 Already in his 1821 translation of 1 Enoch/Ethiopic Enoch, Richard Laurence thus depicted the book as having been “irretrievably lost” prior to 1773, when James Bruce brought Ethiopian manuscripts to Europe.4 In the introduction to his 1893 translation, R.H. Charles similarly lauded the critical scholarship on 1 Enoch of his own era as part of the modern recovery of an ancient Jewish book that was critical for understanding Christian origins but had been “under the ban” of late antique ecclesiarchs and “lost to the knowledge of Western Christendom till over a century ago.”5 The dramatization of Bruce’s “discovery” of 1 Enoch did much to contribute to this narrative, both about the book of Enoch in particular and “Old Testament pseudepigrapha” more broadly.6 But it is not entirely accurate, as the present volume makes clear with respect to early modernity. In what follows, I suggest that this narrative may skew our understanding of Enoch and his books in the Middle Ages as well. 1

The Middle Ages in Modern Scholarship on the Lost-and-Found Enoch

The representation of “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha” as lost-and-found books is certainly tantalizing, not least because the scholarly labors of specialists in

3 4

5 6

further A.Y. Reed, Fallen Angels and the History of Judaism and Christianity: The Reception of Enochic Literature (Cambridge, 2005). Reed, Fallen Angels, 102–10, 151–89, 195–205. Laurence, Book of Enoch, iv—there all the more dramatic due to Laurence’s detailed account of an earlier failed search for Ethiopian manuscripts of the book of Enoch (iv–v), after which “every idea that the book in question existed in an Ethiopic version was altogether abandoned, until towards the conclusion of the last century, when our own enterprising countryman, Bruce, not only proved its existence, but brought over with him from Abyssinia three copies of it” (v); cf. G. Boccaccini, “James Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript: Solving the Mystery of the Provenance of the Roman Enoch Manuscript (Vat. et. 71),” JSP 27 (2018) 237–63. Laurence himself claims a part in this discovery inasmuch as he depicts Bruce’s Ethiopic Enoch manuscript in the Bodleian as having “quietly slept there undisturbed to the present day … [until] I have ventured to break in upon its repose” (p. vii). Charles, Book of Enoch, 41, see also 1, 325. For premodern and modern examples of the lost-and-found allure of a variety of writings categorized as “apocrypha” see also A.Y. Reed, “The Afterlives of New Testament Apocrypha,” JBL 134 (2015) 401–25. -

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Second Temple Judaism are thereby cast as the modern recovery of the forgotten Jewish and Christian past. This is the image, for instance, evoked on the first pages of Charles’ 1893 translation of 1 Enoch, wherein he explains its significance as follows: All the writers of the New Testament were familiar with it, and were more or less influenced by it in thought and diction. It is quoted as a genuine production of Enoch by S. Jude, and as Scripture by S. Barnabas. The authors of the Book of Jubilees, the Apocalypse of Baruch, and IV Ezra, laid it under contribution. With the earlier Fathers and Apologists it had all the weight of a canonical book, but toward the close of the third and the beginning of the fourth centuries it began to be discredited, and finally fell under the ban of the Church. Almost the latest reference to it in the Early Church is made by George Syncellus in his Chronography about 800 AD, who has preserved for us some long passages in Greek. The book was then lost sight of till 1773, when an Ethiopic version of it was found in Abyssinia by Bruce. This traveler brought home three copies of it, two old MSS., and a transcript from one of them. From one of these Laurence made the first modern translation of Enoch in 1821.7 The notion that Bruce ended an era in which the book had been “under the ban of the Church” and thereafter “lost sight of” was attenuated already by H.J. Lawlor. In the wake of the discovery in 1886 of a manuscript in Akhmin, Egypt, containing most of the Book of the Watchers in Greek (i.e., Codex Panopolitanus, published in 1892),8 Lawlor pointed to the need for a comprehensive catalogue of Enochic quotations and references. In his article on “Early Citations from the Book of Enoch,” Lawlor did so for materials in Greek and Latin.9 He frames this 1897 article in terms of local trajectories and published a 1904 follow-up pointing to the gap between the proclamations of Church Fathers and other evidence for the popularity of Enochic writings in Egypt in particular (including the very fact of their inclusion in a manuscript like Codex Panopolitanus).10 7

Charles, Book of Enoch, 1–2; compare pp. ix, lxxx–lxxxi in the second edition, published in 1912. 8 M.U. Bouriant, “Fragments grecs de Livre d’Enoch,” Mémoires publiés part les membres de la mission archéologique française au Caire 9 (1892) 91–147. In the same year, M.R. James published Latin fragments corresponding to 1 Enoch 106 in Apocrypha Anecdota (Cambridge, 1892) 146–50. See also Lawlor, “Early Citations,” 175, 224–25. 9 Lawlor, “Early Citations,” 164. 10 Lawlor, “The Book of Enoch in the Egyptian Church,” Hermathena 30 (1904) 178–83. Lawlor connects its continued circulation in Greek in Egypt with its use in Ethiopia already in -

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Nevertheless, it was Charles’ evocation of its “ban” and “loss” that would resonate. When James VanderKam revisited and expanded Lawlor’s catalogue of Greek and Latin evidence for the reception of Enochic texts and traditions in the 1990s, for instance, it was with a focus on their status only up until the age of Augustine and Jerome.11 And it was also this consensus about its fate in Western Christendom that I largely followed in the early 2000s when I took up the question of their Jewish Nachleben.12 Perhaps most influential has been the repetition of a similar narrative in what is arguably the most authoritative English translation of 1 Enoch since Charles: in the first volume of the Hermeneia edition, George Nickelsburg proclaims 1 Enoch to have been “lost to Judaism and Mediterranean Christianity for four hundred years” prior to Joseph Scaliger’s 1606 publication of portions of the chronography of George Syncellus that quote from it, James Bruce’s 1773 “discovery” of manuscripts in Ethiopia, and Silvestre de Sacy’s 1800 publication of portions thereof in Latin translation.13 Whereas Charles evoked a period of “loss” spanning nearly a millennium (i.e., between 800 and 1773), Nickelsburg narrows it down to 400 years. Nickelsburg’s calculation pertains particularly to the Christian chronological tradition in which excerpts from the Book of the Watchers in Greek translation had circulated since at least the fifth century. Among the latest chronographers known to quote these excerpts are George Cedrenus and Michael Syrus, roughly four centuries before the first print publication of the chronological writings of Syncellus in Scaliger’s 1606 Thesaurus temporum, which contain these same excerpts.14 Nickelsburg rightly emphasizes the impact of Scaliger’s publication of these excerpts, even before Bruce. But even if we set aside the ample activity around 1 Enoch in medieval and early modern Ethiopia, it is clear that “lost” is not quite the right term. After all, we have manuscripts of Syncellus and Cedrenus dating from every century before Scaliger—and

11 12 13 14

Lawlor, “Early Citations,” 207. Charles, by contrast, tends to downplay the significance of the Greek, suggesting that Codex Panopolitanus is corrupt and that “the Eth. preserves a more ancient and trustworthy form of text” and speculating “that the Book of Enoch was from the fifth century onward practically a prescribed book and under the ban of the Greek and Latin Churches” such that “it was copied without care” (Book of Enoch, 324). J. VanderKam, “1 Enoch, Enochic Motifs, and Enoch in Early Christian Literature,” in The Jewish Apocalyptic Heritage in Early Christianity, ed. VanderKam and W. Adler (CRINT 3.4; Minneapolis, 1996) 33–101. Reed, Fallen Angels, 2–4. Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch 1, 109. I.e., 1 En 6:1–9:5, 9:1–10:15, 15:8–16:2, 26:9–25, 26:26–27:7 in Syncellus 11.19–13.19, 24.10–27.7; cf. Cedrenus 1.19.2–20.2; Scaliger, Thesaurus temporum, 404–6.

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that is not even to mention our ample evidence for the circulation of other Enochic writings. How, then, did the familiar narrative of the lost-and-found book of Enoch come to be so common? On the most basic level, of course, we might simply note the tendency to frame the past in terms of what we have now that was missing then—in this case: knowledge of 1 Enoch in Europe. To get a fuller sense, it might be useful to look to the very earliest treatments of the reception of book(s) of Enoch. Despite Scaliger’s own dismissiveness, his printing of Syncellus’ Enochic excerpts met with much interest.15 In the seventeenth and eighteenth century, they were reprinted and discussed in multiple forms and settings, in Greek as well as in Latin, French, German, English, and Italian translation.16 It is often noted how its publication thus contributed to the European quest to find the book in Ethiopia. Significantly, for our purposes, it also inspired the first modern efforts to collect and assess the premodern evidence for the reception of Enochic texts and traditions.17 Today, these efforts are best remembered from their culmination in Johann Albert Fabricius’ 1713 Codex pseudepigraphus VT.18 Fabricius there coins the term “pseudepigrapha” as a categorical label for parabiblical writings associated with biblical patriarchs and prophets, and he dismisses all books of this sort as pernicious forgeries.19 In this, he extends his earlier work on what we now call “New Testament Apocrypha” in his 1703 Codex apocryphus NT, although systematically separating the two, in contrast to their treatment in most collections of his time.20 Although often cited as a precedent for early twentieth-century anthologies such as Charles’ Old Testament Apocrypha and 15 Scaliger himself dismissed the book as a Jewish forgery; A. Grafton, Joseph Scaliger: A Study in the History of Classical Scholarship, 2 vols. (Oxford, 1983) 2.685–86. 16 For a comprehensive list, see now G. Boccaccini, “Enochic Traditions,” in Guide to Early Jewish Texts, 399–405; see also Boccaccini in this volume. 17 On the reception of his Enochic excerpts, see A. Hessayon, “Og King of Bashan, Enoch and the Books of Enoch: Extra-Canonical Texts and Interpretations of Genesis 6:1–4,” in Scripture and Scholarship in Early Modern England, ed. A. Hessayon and N. Keene (Aldershot, 2006) 31–40. 18 Fabricius reproduces Syncellus’ Enochic excerpts from Scaliger on 1.179–99 of Codex pseudepigraphus VT, together with Scaliger’s comments on it (1.199–200). 19 I.e., as distinct from “apocrypha”; see further Reed, “Modern Invention,” 424–28. 20 See J.A. Fabricius, Codex apocryphus Novi Testamenti (Hamburg, 1703; 2nd rev.ed., 1719) and discussion in Reed, “Modern Invention,” 408–15; Reed, “Afterlives,” 411–14; I. Backus, “Renaissance Attitudes towards New Testament Apocryphal Writings: Jacques Lefèvre d’Étaples and his Epigones,” Renaissance Quarterly 51 (1998) 1169–97. Contrast, e.g., J.E. Grabe, Spicilegium SS. patrum, ut et haereticorum, seculi post Christum natum, 2 vols. (Oxon, 1698–99).

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Pseudepigrapha, however, Codex pseudepigraphus VT is less a collection of texts than a compilation of references.21 Thus in many ways we can treat it also as a sourcebook of sorts for the reception of what we now call “pseudepigrapha.” Seen from this perspective, what is striking is the lack of any rhetoric of “loss” in Fabricius’ pseudepigraphic collection. If anything, its effect is to evoke the opposite: Fabricius compiles a rather stunningly massive set of ancient, late antique, and medieval references to non-biblical books associated with figures of biblical history, arranged chronologically by figure, from Adam to Antiochus IV. Lorenzo DiTomasso has recently highlighted Fabricius’ debt to books of the time that have been largely forgotten.22 Most notable in this regard is Scipio Sgambati’s 1703 Archiuorum Veteris Testamenti, which similarly treats biblical figures both chronologically and apart from Jesus, Mary, and the apostles.23 Notwithstanding DiTomasso’s insight, however, it remains that Sgambati does not frame his inquiry as a catalogue of false books or forgeries. What Sgambati invokes as his model, rather, is Jerome’s collection of Jewish traditions in Quaestionum hebraicarum liber in Genesim.24 Inasmuch as Archiuorum Veteris Testamenti discusses an eclectic array of related materials within the framework of a chronological structure that follows Genesis, arranged primarily by 21

Even in 1920, e.g., M.R. James stressed that Fabricius was “still unsurpassed”; Lost Apocrypha of the Old Testament (New York, 1920) ix. See further now P. Ahearne-Kroll, “The History of the Study of the Pseudepigrapha,” in The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha: Fifty Years of the Pseudepigrapha Section at the SBL, ed. L. Lied and M. Henze (Atlanta, 2019) 103–32. 22 L. DiTommaso, “The ‘Old Testament Pseudepigrapha’ as Category and Corpus,” in Guide to Early Jewish Texts, 255–58. See now Boccaccini in this volume. 23 S. Sgambati, Archivorum Veteris Testamenti (Naples, 1703). A bit more curious is the case of the 1707 Pseudo-Vetus Testamentum that Fabricius cites under the name of J.A. Schmidt; I was unable to find this book in any American library during research for my 2009 article on Fabricius, as I noted there (“Modern Invention,” 424 n. 71) and thus only described how Fabricius characterizes the work and how it is cited in L. Goldschmidt’s Das Buch Henoch (Berlin, 1892) xxv. Happily, digitization projects in the last decade have ensured that it is now accessible online. As DiTommaso has shown (“Old Testament Pseudepigrapha,” 256), the work in question has Schmidt’s name on the title page but is a dissertation by Christoph Jacob Mölling. Fabricius’ error is puzzling (and to my knowledge, quite uncharacteristic)—although notably he cites only rarely from the work, especially in contrast to his engagement with the other major work he cites as a precedent, namely, Sgambati’s 1703 Archivorum VT. His main reason for citing Pseudo-Vetus Testamentum as precedent may well be its title. 24 Sgambati invokes this work by Jerome explicitly at the very beginning of his “Auctor Lectori” there: “Beatus Hieronymus Hebraicas traditiones ad Genesim, & Palestinae loca spectantes, ideo putavit sedulo colligendas, quod in iis plurima esse animadverteret ad Sacras Literas illustrandas non mediocriter profutura.”

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figures, Sgambati’s structure and choice of titles further evokes Jerome’s De viris illustribus.25 Boccaccini and DiTommasso stress how Sgambati, in contrast to Fabricius, cites Genesis and other biblical sources alongside extrabiblical sources.26 But what is perhaps more striking, in my view, is Sgambati’s inclusion of biblical and parabiblical materials alongside authors like Berossus and Manetho. In this sense, his image of the pre-Sinaitic past is more akin to the Christian chronographical tradition upon which he heavily draws. He includes a section on the Watchers (Egregori, seu Filis Dei), for instance, as well as a section on Enoch. But between them are sections dedicated to Oannes and Thoth, followed by Enosh and Cainan.27 In addition, Sgambati culls the fruits of Christian Hebraism. Even though his section on Enoch centers on Syncellus’ excerpts, in Greek followed by Latin translation,28 it is bracketed by a discussion in which he references, not just Jude, Origen, Tertullian, and Augustine, but also Eupolemus, Bereshit Rabbah, Pirqe Rabbi Eliezer, and the Zohar. His presentation of excerpts from “the book of Enoch” may signal its status as a source that is “lost” in the sense that it is not accessible in full; nevertheless, the scope and plentitude of the collected materials therein evoke a kaleidoscopic wealth of premodern traditions surrounding Enoch as author. Similarly, Fabricius’ Codex pseudepigraphus VT follows biblical chronology and focuses on biblical figures, and his scope is similarly capacious—and, in some ways, even more comprehensive. But he isolates the parabiblical materials, as he had for “New Testament apocrypha” in Codex apocryphus NT, so they are clearly framed as false counterparts to scriptural truth. Fabricius dedicates seven sections to Enoch (§§62–69).29 The first of these is framed in relation to 25 E.g., Archivorum VT is divided into three sections, the last of which bears the title De Viris Illustribus. 26 Boccaccini, “Enochic Traditions,” 404; DiTommaso, “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha,” 256. 27 For the Watchers, see Sgambati, Archivorum VT, 115ff, and see Oannes on pp. 118ff and Thoth on pp. 121ff, engaging Berossus and Manetho respectively. See pp. 122ff for short notices on Enosh and Cainan, which are immediately followed by a lengthy treatment of Enoch (123ff). Sgambati may not wholly extricate biblical history from antiquity, but as DiTommaso notes, he is more selective in this regard than “the universalistic compendia of Vincent Placcius (1674) and Johann Deckherr (1678), which do not distinguish the biblical pseudepigrapha from material associated with classical and medieval history”; “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha,” 256. 28 The section on Enoch there bears the title “Academia Prima sub Henoch” (Sgambati, Archivorum VT, 123–29), and the Greek from Syncellus is there reproduced in full on pp. 129–33, with Latin translation on pp. 134–37, followed by further comments. The importance of these excerpts for his project as a whole is suggested by the multiple times that Sgambati quotes them, as also in his preface (3–4), as well in his section on the Watchers (i.e., “Egregori, seu Filis Dei,” 115–18). 29 Fabricius, Codex pseudepigraphus VT, 1.160–223.

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Jude, and progresses chronologically with the relevant references from Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, Tertullian, Clement of Alexandria, Origen, Anatolius, Jerome, and Augustine.30 Yet he does not structure his survey around any narrative of “ban” or “loss.” It is in this context, in fact, that Fabricius reprints Syncellus’ excerpts from the Book of the Watchers, in parallel Greek with Latin translation, followed by commentary from scholars like Scaliger, John Ernest Grabe, and Hugo Grotius. This is followed by sections cataloguing other references, which include the warning against extrabiblical books attributed to biblical figures in the Apostolic Constitutions but also the positive reference to Enoch therein, as well as references to Enochic writings in sources such as the Zohar and Arabic literature on Enochus Edris (i.e., Idrīs) and in relation to reports about Ethiopia.31 Fabricius includes most of the passages from Church Fathers discussed by later scholars, from Lawlor to the present. In this, he is akin to Sgambati but also representative of what we see as the broad range of scholarly interest in Syncellus’ Enochic excerpts in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth century. Grabe, for instance, reprinted the excerpts at the back of his 1698 Spicilegium SS. patrum as reference for his edition of the Testaments of the 12 Patriarchs, and J.C. Nehring translates them into German as reference for the Sibylline Oracles in his 1719 Neun Bücher Sibyllinischer Prophezeyungen.32 None other than Isaac de Beausobre, moreover, would cite the excerpts (in his case, via Grabe) to discuss Mani’s possible familiarity with “book(s) of Enoch” in his 1739 Histoire critique de Manichée et du manichéisme.33 Unlike its precedents, however, Codex pseudepigraphus VT is structured more like a source-book than a treatise. Accordingly, it could also be culled for many different aims, including those at cross-purposes with Fabricius’ own project and those of his scholarly interlocuters. Among them was the evocation of an allure surrounding Enochic writings as authentically antediluvian—and sometimes precisely with the rhetoric of “ban” and “loss” that later becomes so common. When William Whiston, for instance, turned his attention to parabiblical writings, it was in the context of evoking the possibility of recovering “Authentick 30 Fabricius, Codex pseudepigraphus VT, 1.160–208. 31 See Fabricius, Codex pseudepigraphus VT, 1.208–9 on the Zohar and related materials, as well as pp. 209–15 on Ethiopia and pp. 215–19 on Arabic materials. 32 Grabe, Spicilegium SS. patrum, 1.347–54 (prior to Fabricius and cited by him); J.C. Nehring, Neun Bücher Sibyllinischer Prophezeyungen (Halle, 1719) 441–50 (using Fabricius). 33 I. de Beausobre, Histoire critique de Manichée et du manichéisme (Amsterdam, 1734–39) 1.429.

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Records” suppressed by Athanasius, excluded from the Bible, and thereafter lost to Christendom.34 For this, premodern evidence for the reception-history of the “book(s) of Enoch” proved critical. In his 1727 A Collection of Authentick Records belonging to the Old and New Testament, the excerpts via Syncellus are framed as surviving portions of a lost book and followed by “A dissertation to prove it genuine” in which Whiston draws on the sources collected by Fabricius to argue that it is “Perhaps the oldest sacred Record among Mankind” and “that the Apostles and Companions of the Apostles believed it to be so.”35 Whiston, moreover, couples the claim of authenticity with a theory of why it was lost that he generalizes to other “apocrypha” as well. Echoing Tertullian’s claim that Enoch’s book was “rejected by the Jews” (Cult. fem. 1.3), Whiston suggests that it had been accepted among Christians until “the unbelieving Hebrew Jews, finding the strength of the Evidence contained for Christianity, gradually diminished its Reputation and at length, persuaded the Christians first to doubt of it, and then too reject it: which Rejection yet they could never fully encompass, till Athanasius and his Followers resolved to lay aside this, and all the other Apocryphal Books of the Old and New Testament.”36 Such arguments for its authenticity would be completely dismissed by scholars. Nevertheless, Whiston is exemplary of the popular discourse that set the stage 34 I.e., in W. Whiston, A Collection of Authentick Records belonging to the Old and New Testament, 2 vols. (London, 1727). For the context in relation to Whiston’s publications prior to Codex pseudepigraphus VT, his controversies with Grabe, and the possibility of Fabricius’ knowledge of his work, see Reed, “Modern Invention,” 420–24, 428–29. On Whiston more broadly, and the prophetic beliefs that informed his scholarship, see D. Ruderman, Connecting Covenants: Judaism and the Search for Christian Identity in Eighteenth-Century England (Philadelphia, 2007) 51–53. 35 Whiston, Collection of Authentick Records, 292; see pp. 260–69 for the text and pp. 270–93 for the argument for its authenticity. 36 Whiston, Collection of Authentick Records, 293. Whiston makes this same claim about Athanasius as censor already in Primitive Christianity Reviv’d, 5 vols. (London, 1711–1712) 1.ii—there with appeal especially to what we now call “New Testament Apocrypha.” See also Athanasian Forgeries, Impositions, and Interpolations, Collected Chiefly out of Mr. Whiston’s Writings (London, 1736). What he adds here is the claims that “the Jews had formerly prevailed upon some of the primitive Christians to doubt about this Book of Enoch and the other Books called Apocrypha” (Collection of Authentick Records, 288–89). In this, he echoes the similar claim that Robert Grosseteste made for the Testaments of the 12 Patriarchs, which resonates with the common medieval trope of Jewish suppression of Christian truths; see I. Resnick, “The Falsification of Scripture and Medieval Christian and Jewish Polemics,” Medieval Encounters 2 (1996) 344–80; R. Nisse, “A Romance of the Jewish East: The Ten Lost Tribes and the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs in Medieval Europe,” Medieval Encounters 13 (2007) 499–523.

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for framing Bruce’s finds—less than fifty years later—as the “discovery” of a long-lost book, known to the apostles but suppressed by the Church.37 To be sure, the initial 1800 partial publication of Bruce’s manuscripts, and even the 1821 translation and 1838 transcription by Richard Laurence, did not meet with as much scholarly attention as one might expect—or, at least in comparison with the sharp interest later sparked by scholarly discussions of Apocalyptik.38 In fact, when Laurence’s translation was reprinted in 1883, the anonymous preface bemoans that it had been so overlooked by scholars that it “produced an impression in Germany that the work had been suppressed” even despite “giving mankind the theological fossils through which we, in the clearer light of our generation, may study the Evolution of Christianity.”39 Boccaccini makes a good case that the mid-nineteenth century flourishing of scholarly study on 1 Enoch had awaited its disassociation from “the burden of esoteric speculations.”40 To this, we might add the rise of scholarly interest in Apokalyptik in the second half of the nineteenth century, and the concurrent rise of interest in “pseudepigrapha” of this sort as evidence for the Jewish background of Jesus.41 Just as Ernst Renan speculated as to whether Jesus himself might have read 1 Enoch, so Charles began the preface to his 1893 translation with the assertion that “A knowledge of Enoch is indispensable to New Testament students.”42 Even though its antediluvian provenance was wholly dismissed, something remained of the allure of the recovery of a lost part of the history of Christianity—albeit reframed in terms of the forgotten apocalyptic Jewish background of Christian origins. Not only was 1 Enoch granted a privileged place among “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha” as exemplary of the apocalyptic tradition of ancient Judaism that informed Jesus and Christianity, but its reception-history was held up as exemplary of the medieval losses that modern

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On the broader context, see J.A. Champion, “Apocrypha, Canon and Criticism from Samuel Fisher to John Toland, 1650–1718,” in Judaeo-Christian Intellectual Culture in the Seventeenth Century, ed. A. Coudert et al. (Dordrecht, 1999) 91–117. I.e., especially in and after F. Lücke, Versuch einer vollständigen Einleitung in die Offenbarung Johannis oder Allgemeine Untersuchungen über die apokalyptische Litteratur überhaupt und die Apokalypse des Johannes insbesondere, 2 vols. (2nd ed; Commentar über die Schriften des Evangelisten Johannes 4:1; Bonn, 1852). Quotation on p. vii of the preface to 1883 revised edition of Laurence, Book of Enoch. The initial European reception of 1 Enoch, as Boccaccini has shown, resounded mainly among esoteric circles, albeit marked by some disappointment at its lack of confirmation of the well-known Hermetic image of Enoch; “Enochic Traditions,” 412–13. Reed, “Modern Invention,” 431–34. E. Renan, Vie de Jésus (Paris, 1863) 37; Charles, Book of Enoch, vii.

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scholarship had the power to reverse.43 In the second edition of his translation, in 1912, Charles went so far as to herald Bruce’s 1773 procurement of Ethiopian manuscripts as a moment of discovery that—together with Laurence’s 1821 translation—recovered knowledge of a text that “almost alone represented the advance of the higher theology in Judaism, which culminated in Christianity.”44 For Charles and many of his contemporaries, this lost-and-found “Book of Enoch” emblematized what they saw as the primary value of “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha”—that is, as “practically the only historical memorials of the religious development of Judaism from 200 BC to 100 AD, and particularly the development of that side of Judaism to which historically Christendom in large measure owes its existence”; or, in other words, as witness to the Jewish heritage of Christianity that had been abandoned (if not rejected) by rabbinic Judaism and forgotten (if not suppressed) by the post-Constantinian Church, but newly recovered by modern scholarship.45 The shift is well described by Eva Mroczek: “If Fabricius was presenting the texts as worthless vis-à-vis the canon, Charles was presenting them as a bridge between the testaments, an ‘intertestamental’ library that illustrated the spiritual development from the Old to the New.”46 Charles’ survey of the reception of 1 Enoch is representative in this regard. Considering its impact on Judaism, Patristic literature, and the New Testament (in that order), Charles focuses primarily on what he sees as its extensive influence during the era of Christian origins.47 For Judaism, thus, he emphasizes its impact on other “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha” (e.g., Jubilees, Testaments of the 12 Patriarchs, Assumption of Moses, 2 Baruch, 4 Ezra), while positing that “from the second century AD onwards all knowledge of 1 Enoch vanishes from Jewish literature.”48 In this, he presents the post-70 abandonment of Enochic literature as exemplary of rabbinic Judaism’s rejection of Judaism’s 43 44 45 46 47 48

Including Charles’ APOT but also E. Kautzsch, ed., Die Apocryphen und Pseudepigraphen des Alten Testaments, 2 vols. (Tübingen, 1900). Charles, Book of Enoch (2nd ed.), i. Charles, Book of Enoch (2nd ed.), x. Mroczek, Literary Imagination, 132. Charles, Book of Enoch (2nd ed.), lxx–ciii. Charles, Book of Enoch, 38, repeated verbatim in Charles, Book of Enoch (2nd ed.), lxxix. In the first edition, he adds “with the exception of a few references given by Jellinek,” although depicting these as quite marginal to what he presents as a broader defining pattern within Judaism wherein Second-Temple-era apocalypticism becomes suppressed or displaced by rabbinic legalism. Charles knew 3 Enoch through Jellinek’s partial publication in BHM 5.170–90, and he added a section on the “Hebrew Book of Enoch” to the second edition (lxxix–lxxxi), albeit keeping the same emphasis and concluding that it is dependent instead on 2 Enoch (Book of Enoch, lxxxi). On its modern reception, see my

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“apocalyptic side,” which he claims to be fulfilled in Christianity. In contrast to Sgambati and Fabricius, Charles downplays post-Christian Jewish sources in favor of a narrative about the Jewish rejection of 1 Enoch much more similar to what we hear in Tertullian and Whiston. Similarly, he sets the burden of proof for determining Enochic allusions in the New Testament very low, while setting the burden of proof for later Jewish materials quite high. Among the results, as Gershom Scholem would bemoan, is the “prejudice according to which all the productive energies of early apocalyptic were absorbed only into Christianity.”49 In this, Charles reflects the trends of his time. His treatment of the Jewish afterlives of Enochic texts and traditions, for instance, fits with the approach to Judaism in nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Protestant scholarship, which systematically neglected its post-Christian expressions, including the mystical varieties so celebrated by Christian Hebraism.50 Likewise, his treatment of Patristic references resonates with a Protestant privileging of “origins” that casts the period after Constantine—and thus the Middle Ages—as the age in which the Church lost, suppressed, or corrupted ancient truths.51 Lawlor is an exception to this pattern: he notes different local trajectories, and he collects manuscripts and other evidence for the continued circulation of Enochic materials even after the fifth century. Charles, however, states that “the book fails to secure a single favorable notice” after the fourth century, and he interprets the discussions of Enochic writings by Augustine and in the Apostolic Constitutions as attesting “a ban” that caused the book to “gradually pass out of circulation and knowledge in the Western Church,” so that with the exception of the excerpts preserved via Syncellus “it was lost to the Western Christendom “Categorization, Collection, and the Construction of Continuity: 1 Enoch and 3 Enoch in and beyond ‘Apocalypticism’ and ‘Mysticism,’” MTSR 29 (2017) 268–311. 49 G. Scholem, Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism (3rd ed.; New York, 1961 [1941]) 43. 50 Mroczek, Literary Imagination, 130–32. 51 Especially given the influential character of his work, it is important to note that Charles’ judgement of post-70/rabbinic Judaism is far from tacit—and bears directly on his negative assessment of present-day Jews and Judaism. For instance, he ends his preface to his 1912 translation by expressing his “deep regret that Jewish scholars are still so backward in recognizing the value of this literature for their own history,” stressing his view that “Apocalyptic is the true child of prophecy and became its true representative to the Jews from the unhappy moment that the Law won an absolute autocracy in Judaism” and bemoaning that “Orthodox Judaism … still champions the one-sided Judaism, which came into being after the Fall of Jerusalem in 70 AD, a Judaism lopped in the main of its spiritual and prophetic side and given over all but wholly to a legalistic conception of religion … a barren faith [which] lost its leadership in the spiritual things of the world” (Book of Enoch, vi). On these views in the context of his life and times, see now J.C. VanderKam, R. H. Charles: A Biography (Oxford, 2023).

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until the present century.”52 For Charles, moreover, this loss was not just about one text: it points to the importance of the study of “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha,” as predicated on the promise of recovering those ancient forms of Judaism that informed Christian origins. Charles’ argument was persuasive. Indeed, as Jonas Greenfield and Michael E. Stone note, his publication of 1 Enoch was “a major factor in arousing interest in the Jewish background against which Christianity arose.”53 Accordingly, it is perhaps not surprising that the narrative of the lost-and-found Enoch has remained so trenchant. For scholars of antiquity trained to treat medieval manuscripts as sites for the excavation of “origins,” it might seem natural to frame the Middle Ages in such terms. Since Charles, if not since Whiston, the claim to recover forgotten truths from the ancient past has been part of how we popularize what might otherwise seem arcane topics like Enoch, “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha,” and Second Temple Judaism. But to what degree do such narratives of “loss” actually fit our data, and how might they mislead? And what happens when we widen our lens onto the reception of Enochic texts and traditions, in a manner more akin to Sgambati and Fabricius? 2

Reimagining Enoch’s Books in the Middle Ages

The familiar narrative of the lost-and-found Enoch bears some truth. There is certainly evidence for a fourth-century shift from positive to negative statements about Enochic writings among Church Fathers writing in Greek and Latin. In addition, there is a lack of evidence for the circulation of any full forms of the books in 1 Enoch in medieval and early modern Europe. What is also clear, however, is that these much-cited data-points do not tell the whole story about the afterlives of Enochic texts and traditions. Writing in the fourth century, for instance, Athanasius famously made the case for cordoning off some scriptures as “canonical” in part through constructing a contrasting concept of “apocrypha” (lit. hidden things) as spurious and “heretical,” and he cited the case of books attributed Enoch to do so.54 In 52 Charles, Book of Enoch (2nd ed.), xci. 53 J. Greenfield and M.E. Stone, “The Books of Enoch and the Traditions of Enoch,” Numen 26 (1979) 89–103 at 89. 54 See further D. Brakke, “Canon Formation and Social Conflict in Fourth-Century Egypt,” HTR 87.4 (1994) 395–419; Brakke, “A New Fragment of Athanasius’s Thirty-Ninth Festal Letter: Heresy, Apocrypha, and the Canon,” HTR 103 (2010) 47–66; P. Piovanelli, “Rewriting: The Path from Apocryphal to Heretical,” in Religious Conflict from Early Christianity to the Rise of Islam, ed. W. Mayer and B. Neil (Berlin, 2013) 87–108.

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the same century, the Apostolic Constitutions made a similar point, masking its own pseudepigraphy in part by warning against spurious writings circulating in the name of Enoch, the apostles, and other figures (6.16). At least in some locales, such proclamations seem to have had little effect on the popularity of Enochic writings, as Lawlor established long ago for Egypt.55 In one case, moreover, a late antique Christian author even makes this explicit; Jacob of Edessa (d. 708 CE) defended the authority of “the book of Enoch,” and explained what he thinks Athanasius really meant, as follows: Now many acted foolishly and spoke nonsensically during the time of that holy saint (i.e., Athanasius), each (doing) as he pleased. They were displaying a large number of different secret books and bringing arguments from them which provided support for the deviance of (their) thought. Among all those secret books which they exhibited was also the secret Book of Enoch … Due to their attraction toward and attachment to the secret books, some of which were spurious but others of which were authentic, he forbade and passed sentence on all of them collectively. Among all these books was the Book of Enoch, which is authentic. Athanasius says in one of his epistles, “How can they have a book of Enoch? Literature and writings did not exist prior to the Flood!” … But recognize well and accept as true, O man, that humanity had developed the technology of wine-making then, and they also used letters and produced a book. The Book of Enoch is quoted during the time of the apostles, for Jude the apostle cited it as a proof-text in his catholic epistle (i.e., Jude 14–15). The Book was in existence before the time of Moses: written narratives quoted by the Jews declare this clearly, and there are no deceptions in it! Jacob of Edessa, Epistle 13.1556

Not only did Jacob of Edessa give a different reading of the meaning of its status as “hidden” (i.e., the literal meaning of apocrypha), but he argued for the authenticity of the “book of Enoch” on the basis of “written narratives quoted by the Jews.”57 55 Lawlor, “Book of Enoch in the Egyptian Church.” 56 See further W. Adler, “Introduction,” in Jewish Apocalyptic Heritage, 26. 57 It is unclear what sort of Jewish traditions might be meant by this—i.e., whether ancient Christian-transmitted Jewish materials or those contemporary to Jacob. To the former, it is interesting to note the Syriac Christian preservation of traditions about Enoch via Jubilees is attested by Chronicon ad annum Christi 1234: “This Enoch was the first to learn letters and (to receive) instruction and (obtain) wisdom. He recorded the signs of the

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Furthermore, manuscripts containing works and passages from 1 Enoch are extant from and after the period in which Athanasius, Augustine, et al., impugn their authenticity.58 It is from the fourth century, for instance, we have Chester-Beatty/Michigan Biblical Papyrus XII, which attests the Epistle of Enoch in Greek, as well as P.Oxy. 2069, a tiny Greek papyrus fragment with portions of the Book of the Dreams in Greek, copied together with some verses from the Astronomical Book in Greek.59 From as early as the fifth/sixth century, or as late as the eighth/ninth century, we have Codex Panopolitanus, which contains the Greek of most of the Book of the Watchers.60 In addition, 1 Enoch 106 is attested in Latin in an eighth-century manuscript, which bears a press-mark from the fourteenth or fifteenth century that—as M.R. James suggested—seems to point to its inclusion “in an English monastic library.”61 From other Enochic books too, it is clear that the transmission and production of books associated with Enoch hardly stopped after Athanasius and Augustine. It is well known that 2 Enoch, commonly posited to have originated heavens in a book in order to inform humanity about the variations of the seasons and of the years in accordance with the courses (of the heavenly bodies) and in accordance with (the progression of) their months. He announced the days that (completed) the year and established the number of the months. And everything which has happened and (everything) which will come to be, he beheld in his dream-vision—indeed, (he beheld) everything that will come upon humanity and their (successive) generations until the Day of Judgment. And he was with the angels of God.” Whatever the source of Jacob’s assessment, however, it is notable that he frames it in terms of what he imagines as the literary heritage by Jews of his own time. 58 What has also been further misleading, in this regard, is the interpretation of the Apostolic Constitutions and later lists of “apocrypha” as if akin to modern censorship. The warning in the Apostolic Constitutions that “among the ancients too, some have written biblia apokrupha of Moses, Enoch, Adam, Isaiah, David, Elijah, and of the three patriarchs, pernicious and repugnant to the truth,” e.g., their functions there to support the work’s own pseudepigraphical claim to apostolic status, as made through an argument against “those books which obtain in our [i.e., apostles’] name but are written by the ungodly” (6.16). On modern ideas about censorship and their effects on shifting ideas about “apocrypha,” see further Reed, “Afterlives,” 413–25. 59 R. Chesnutt, “Oxyrhynchus Papyrus 2069 and the Compositional History of 1 Enoch,” JBL 129 (2010) 485–505. 60 G. Nickelsburg, “Two Enochic manuscripts: Unstudied Evidence for Egyptian Christianity,” in Of Scribes and Scrolls: Studies on the Hebrew Bible, Intertestamental Judaism, and Christian Origins Presented to John Strugnell on the Occasion of His Sixtieth Birthday, ed. H. Attridge, J. Collins, and T. Tobin (Lanham, 1990) 251–60; E. Dugan, “Enochic Biography and the Manuscript History of 1 Enoch: The Codex Panopolitanus Book of the Watchers,” JBL 140 (2021) 113–38. 61 James, Apocrypha Anecdota, 147, on BL MS Royal 5.E.13, fols. 79v–80r. For other possible evidence for its circulation in the area, see R.E. Kaske, “Beowulf and the Book of Enoch,” Speculum 46 (1971) 421–43.

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in Greek around the first century, comes down to us in medieval Slavonic manuscripts and has a lively medieval Nachleben in Slavonic folklore.62 Recently, evidence has been posited for its possible circulation in Coptic manuscripts from the eighth or ninth century as well.63 In addition, there is evidence for the production of multiple new works associated with Enoch, especially in Byzantium. It was likely in the eighth or ninth century, for instance, that the Vision of Enoch the Just took form in Greek, as part of the renewed production of apocalyptic literature in the wake of the rise of Islam.64 It is also from around this time that 3 Enoch/Sefer Hekhalot began to take form in Byzantine Palestine; as Klaus Hermann has shown, this Hebrew work belongs “to the late phase of Hekhalot texts in Late Antiquity, reflecting the Byzantine cultural context of the sixth to ninth centuries.”65 Redactional and anthological activity on both of these works, moreover, continued richly into the Middle Ages. The Vision of Enoch the Just was translated into Armenian and survives in medieval manuscripts.66 3 Enoch/Sefer Hekhalot is attested in an eleventh-/twelfth-century Genizah fragment (T.-S. K 21.95.L), and it is among the works of pre-kabbalistic Jewish mysticism collected by the Haside Ashkenaz in medieval Germany.67 Just as our evidence for 2 Enoch cautions us against the assumption that the influence of Enochic texts and traditions is limited only to the materials in 1 Enoch, so our evidence for Vision of Enoch the Just and 3 Enoch/Sefer Hekhalot cautions us against framing their “loss” only in terms of the accessibility of full “books.”68 As noted above, there is ample evidence for the impact 62 See Badalanova Geller in this volume. 63 For the possible Coptic fragments, see J.L. Hagen, “No Longer ‘Slavonic’ Only:  2 Enoch Attested in Coptic from Nubia,” in New Perspectives on 2 Enoch, 7–34. On the Slavonic manuscripts, G. Macaskill, The Slavonic Texts of 2 Enoch (Studia Judaeoslavica 6; Leiden, 2013). Birger Pearson also notes Enoch’s prominence in a fifth-century Coptic apocryphon; “The Pierpont Morgan Fragments of a Coptic Enoch Apocryphon,” in Studies on the Testament of Abraham, ed. G. Nickelsburg (Missoula, 1976) 227–83. 64 A. Hultgård, “The Vision of Enoch the Just and Medieval Apocalypses,” in Apocryphes armeniens, ed. V. Calzolari Bouvier, J.-D. Kaestli, and B. Outtier (Lausanne, 1999) 156–58. 65 K. Herman, “Jewish Mysticism in Byzantium,” in Hekhalot Literature in Context, ed. R.S. Boustan, M. Himmelfarb, and P. Schäfer (Tübingen, 2013) 85–116. 66 Hultgård, “Vision of Enoch”; J. Issaverdens, trans., The Uncanonical Writings of the Old Testament found in the Armenian MSS of the Library of St. Lazarus (Venice, 1934) 237–48. That other Enochic books might have also circulated in Armenian is also suggested by inclusion of a reference to what seems to be yet another Enochic book in the canon list of Mxit‘ar of Aryivank‘. 67 See further Reed, “Categorization.” 68 On the distortions caused by looking back at parabiblical literature with a modern sense of “books,” see Mroczek, Literary Imagination. On the power of even the circulation of

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of excerpts from the Book of the Watchers in the wake of their first appearance in print in 1606. Similarly, the medieval circulation of Enochic quotations and excerpts seems to have had an impact on shaping the imagination of Enoch and his writings. For instance, the text and title of the Vision of Enoch the Just resonate with references to Enoch’s writings in Jude and the Testaments of the 12 Patriarchs.69 In the case of 3 Enoch/Sefer Hekhalot, its limited links to earlier Enochic traditions may have been mediated more specifically through the excerpts of the Book of the Watchers circulating in the Byzantine Christian chronological tradition.70 Before the advent of printing, it was not uncommon for readers to encounter and engage even known texts within collections of excerpts.71 Accordingly, just as it is pressing to heed the dates of our manuscripts when tracing the reception of Enochic texts and traditions, so it is also important to take seriously the survival and circulation of excerpts, quotes, and even titles. As noted above, excerpts from the Book of the Watchers in Greek appear to have entered the chronographical tradition in the fifth century, through the writings of the Alexandrian monks Panodorus and Annianus.72 We know of the circulation of the excerpts via Panodorus in Byzantium from Syncellus in the ninth century and from Cedrenus in the eleventh. In addition, Annianus’ discussion of a “book of Enoch” (cf. 1 Enoch 6) is cited in Syriac by Michael Syrus in the twelfth century and by Bar Hebraeus in the thirteenth century, as well as in the thirteenth-century Armenian adaptation of the former.73 That even a brief

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72 73

titles, see also L. Lied, M.B. Kartzow, and E. Brownsmith, “Books Known Only by Title,” special issue of Studies in Late Antiquity, forthcoming. A.Y. Reed, “Enoch in Armenian Apocrypha,” in The Armenian Apocalyptic Tradition: A Comparative Perspective, ed. K.B. Bardakjian and S. La Porta (SVTP 25; Leiden, 2014) 162. Herman, “Jewish Mysticism”; A.Y. Reed, “From Asael and Šemihazah to Uzzah, Azzah, and Azael: 3 Enoch 5 (§§7–8) and the Jewish Reception-History of 1 Enoch,” JSQ 8 (2001) 1–32; M. Himmelfarb, “Rabbinic and Post-Rabbinic Jewish,” in Guide to Early Jewish Texts, 437–38; cf. Y. Paz, “Metatron is Not Enoch: Reevaluating the Evolution of an Archangel,” JSJ 50 (2019) 87 n. 162. So too even after the advent of printing: Fabricius’ volumes, for instance, stand in this tradition, as does the continued scholarly habit of printing fragments of Eupolemus, Artapanus, Manetho, Berossus et al., extracted and abstracted from the late antique Christian literary settings in which they are quoted. W. Adler, Time Immemorial: Archaic History and its Sources in Christian Chronography from Julius Africanus to George Syncellus (Washington D.C., 1989) 151–57. I.e., Annianus’ testimony to the “Book of Enoch” in Chronicle of Michael Syrus 1.1, 3–4; Chronicle of Bar Hebraeus §3; cf. 1 Enoch 6. For the Armenian adaptation of the Chronicle of Michael Syrus, on which see M.E. Stone, ed. and trans., Armenian Apocrypha Relating to Adam and Eve (Leiden, 1996) 177; A. Schmidt, “Die zweifache armenische Rezension der syrischen Chronik Michaels des Großen,” Muséon 109 (1996) 299–319.

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excerpt could be influential, moreover, is suggested by the reception of the Armenian version of Bar Hebraeus’ Enochic quotation via Annanius. Echoes thereof can be found in the thirteenth-century historical writings of Vardan Arewelc‘i, for instance, as well as in medieval Armenian apocrypha such as Sermon concerning the Flood and Descendants of Adam.74 To frame the reception of 1 Enoch as a narrative of medieval loss and modern rediscovery thus misleads on several fronts. First of all, what we know of surviving books of Enoch are not limited to 1 Enoch but also include other writings, not all of which took form in the Second Temple period—and likely some of which no longer survive. Secondly, even what we call “1 Enoch” was not always received as a single book; the Aramaic Enoch fragments from Qumran confirmed that materials therein emerged as distinct documents, and the evidence of Greek manuscripts attests their circulation separately as well as in manuscripts containing various other texts.75 Thirdly, as romantic it might be to imagine lost-and-found books, it does not do justice to our ample evidence for the impact of the circulation of Enochic excerpts, especially before the advent of printing but even after. Lastly, and perhaps most significantly, it might be worth questioning those narratives of Enochic reception, such as those told by Whiston and Charles, that presume the only story that matters is the one which leads from the apostles to the Church Fathers to modern Europe and North America.76 What looks like a story of “loss” when seen from the perspective of Europe is quite the opposite when seen from the perspective of Ethiopia. But so too even for

74 R.W. Thomson, “The Historical Compilation of Vardan Arewelc‘i,” DOP 43 (1989) 127–38, 144; M.E. Stone, “Some Texts on Enoch in the Armenian Tradition,” in Gazing on the Deep: Ancient Near Eastern and other Studies in Honor of Tsvi Abusch, ed. J. Stackert, B.N. Porter, and D.P. Wright (Bethesda, 2010) 517–30. 75 Reed, “Textual Identity”; M.A. Knibb, “The Book of Enoch or Books of Enoch? The Textual Evidence for 1 Enoch,” in The Early Enoch Literature, ed. G. Boccaccini and J.J. Collins (Leiden, 2007) 21–40. Greenfield and Stone, e.g., stress that “diverse Enochic corpora were current in first century CE Palestine, some containing the Similitudes [i.e., Parables of Enoch] and others containing the Book of the Giants and still others containing material known to us only from random quotations”; “The Enochic Pentateuch and the Date of the Similitudes,” HTR 70 (1977) 51–65 at 63. 76 For counters to this tendency, more broadly, see the articles collected in M.E. Stone, e.g., Apocrypha, Pseudepigrapha, and Armenian Studies, 2 vols. (Leuven, 2006) as well as S. Brock, “Jewish Traditions in Syriac Sources,” JJS 30 (1979) 223–32; J.C. Reeves, ed., Tracing the Threads: Studies in the Vitality of Jewish Pseudepigrapha (Atlanta, 1994); Reeves, Heralds of That Good Realm: Syro-Mesopotamian Gnosis and Jewish Traditions (Leiden, 1996); A. Orlov, From Apocalypticism to Merkabah Mysticism: Studies in the Slavonic Pseudepigrapha (Leiden, 2006).

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Judaism, Manichaeism, and Islam77—as was known already to seventeenthand eighteenth-century European scholars like Sgambati, Fabricius, and de Beausobre. For Charles and others, as noted above, the lack of any evidence for post-70 Jewish transmission of 1 Enoch was deemed to be exemplary of the rabbinic rejection of Enochic and other apocalyptic traditions. When one considers only pre-Talmudic traditions, the data might seem to bear out this hypothesis. The treatment of Enoch in early rabbinic literature is notable in undermining all of the features on which the authorizing of early Enochic literature pivots: Enoch’s righteousness is impugned, he is stressed to have actually died rather than ascended to heaven, and even the notion of fallen angels before the Flood, which is closely associated with the Enochic Book of the Watchers and common across pre-70 Jewish writings, is rejected in favor of euhemeristic interpretations of the “sons of God” of Gen 6:1–4.78 When we expand our purview, however, a different picture emerges. In fact, the eras that are typically treated as the loss of Enochic literature, on the basis of Christian data in Greek and Latin, is precisely the period in which we see a resurgence of interest in Enoch within Jewish literature. Already in the Babylonian Talmud, one finds mention of the names of two Watchers described in the Book of the Watchers (esp. 1 Enoch 6–16), Shemhazai and Azael (b. Niddah 61a; b. Yoma 67b), and these names arise also within contemporaneous Aramaic magical bowls as well. As noted above, moreover, 3 Enoch/Sefer Hekhalot may attest a renewed interest in Enoch as possibly connected to the Jewish “back-borrowing” of Christian-transmitted Jewish texts and traditions.79 Even though 3 Enoch/Sefer Hekhalot is not itself a “book of Enoch” per se, it does depict Enoch-Metatron as a scribe, and as such, can be placed within a 77

See now Reeves/Reed, Enoch; A.K. Harkins, K. Coblentz Bautch, and J.C. Endres, eds., The Fallen Angels Traditions: Second Temple Developments and Reception History (Minneapolis, 2014). 78 M. Himmelfarb, “A Report on Enoch in Rabbinic Literature,” SBL Seminar Papers 13 (1978) 259–69. 79 As noted above, 3 Enoch is not a book attributed to Enoch. There, Enoch-Metatron is a scribe but not an author per se, and our evidence for this work’s premodern reception suggests that it was perceived and received as part of the Hekhalot corpus. The various titles under which it circulates are not centered on Enoch, but rather all on Hekhalot—e.g., as in the comment in a thirteenth-century anthological MS BL Hebr. 746 fol. 108b–109a: “We have received a tradition that Metatron, the Prince of the Presence whose name is like the Name of his Lord, is Enoch b. Yared; thus do they say  … in the Hekhalot”; G. Scholem, Rʾeshit ha-Qabbalah (1150–1250) (Jerusalem, 1948) 252–53. See further Reed, “Categorization,” both for the contents of the MSS of this work and for an assessment of what thus proves misleading about Odeberg’s label “3 Enoch.”

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continuum of a seeming renewal of Jewish interest in Enoch in the eighth and ninth centuries, especially in Palestine and Italy.80 In a striking departure from the denial of Enoch’s exemplarity in early rabbinic literature, medieval Jewish materials mark a return to an earlier Jewish interest in the figure of Enoch, his escape from death, his association with angels, his knowledge of heavenly secrets, and his books. In late midrashim, for instance, one finds renewed interest in Enoch as well as the resurfacing of motifs known from early Enochic literature but absent from the classical rabbinic literature (e.g., fallen angels in Pirqe Rabbi Eliezer; parallels to the Qumran Book of the Giants in Aggadat Bereshit, Chronicle of Yerahmeel, Bereshit Rabbati, etc.).81 As in Second Temple Jewish writings like Jubilees and early Christian writings extending their concerns (e.g., Testaments of the 12 Patriarchs), such interest is seemingly accompanied by an interest in Enoch’s books, as expressed in part through explicit claims to quote them. Jewish references to Enochic books appear in early medieval Jewish magical writings closely aligned with Hekhalot literature (e.g., Havdala de-Rabbi Aqiva; some MSS of Sefer ha-Razim) and later in the Zohar (13th c.) and other kabbalistic works as well as medieval midrashim (e.g., Chronicle of Yerahmeel).82 Within the Havdala de-Rabbi Aqiva,83 for instance, one finds the following quotation: I quote for you a secret [‫ ]רז‬which has been transmitted by the (authority of the) great God who kept him safe from every affliction: “This is the secret [‫]רזא‬, this is the secret, the most awesome of secrets. Do not communicate this most awesome of secrets to the uninitiated, nor should it be recited publicly. A wise man may transmit it to another wise man [‫ ;חכים לחכים ימסור יתיה‬cf. m. Hag. 2.1]. I, Enoch b. Yared, wrote it down [‫ ]אנא חנוך בר ירד כתבית‬in the seventieth year of my youth. Seventy-seven angels came against me. I bound them with their own implements and 80

Yaz has recently revisited early evidence for this resurgence of Jewish interest in Enoch and shown that it does not support past scholarly speculations about its initial Babylonian settings; rather, as “the earliest evidence of the Enoch-Metatron identification, as well as the earliest receptions of 3 Enoch are all to be found in works composed in Palestine and southern Italy during the eighth and ninth centuries”; “Metatron,” 86. 81 See further Reed, Fallen Angels, 233–72. 82 On the figure of Enoch in later strata of the Zohar (i.e., Tikkunei Zohar) and Lurianic Kabbalah, see Magid in this volume. 83 G. Scholem, “Havdala de-Rabbi Aqiva,” in Devils, Demons, and Souls, ed. E. Liebes (Jerusalem, 2004) 145–82; Y. Harari, “Havdala de-Rabbi Akiba,” in The Encyclopedia of Ancient History, ed. R. Bagnall et al. (Malden, 2012) 3084–85. The work is attested in fourteenthcentury manuscripts but dates from several centuries earlier.

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sealed them with their own weapons. I then turned and discerned the secret of the Name, etc.”84 Should we understand this quotation as having its source in an Enochic book that circulated at the time but is now unknown to us? Or was the quotation a literary trope or invention? And might the emphasis on its secrecy, in particular, mark the book as not known, read, and circulating as much as adduced and imagined? The latter seems to be the case in the Zohar, wherein one finds a number of references to the “Book of Enoch” that seem to function primarily to appeal to the trope of primordial books imagined to have existed and/or once been known and now lost and/or still circulated in secret in a manner presumed to be inaccessible to the reader. To be sure, such tropes can coexist with knowledge of actual Enochic writings. In the case of Jubilees (2nd c. BCE), for instance, mention is made of Enoch’s books in a manner that demonstrates familiarity with known books like the Book of the Watchers while also appealing to these writings to construct a notion of the pre-Sinaitic past as a heritage of books from Enoch (there: the first man to write) in a line of authors and tradents linking Noah, Abraham, Jacob, and Levi.85 The case of the Zohar, however, may be more akin to the quotations found in the Testaments of the 12 Patriarchs (ca. 2nd c. CE), wherein one finds much the same sense of a pre-Sinaitic literary heritage as informing the depiction of Jacob’s sons as reading and quoting from Enoch’s writings (T. Dan 5:6; T. Sim. 5:4; T. Levi 14:1, 16:1; T. Jud.18:1; T. Naph. 4:1; T. Benj. 9:1), albeit in a manner that seems to have been a literary invention aimed primarily at establishing how ideas from the Mosaic Torah could have been known in the pre-Sinaitic past. In the Zohar, one finds quotations from the “Book of Enoch” with no counterparts in known Enochic literature, and these are framed in terms of establishing a particular vision of the pre-Sinaitic literary tradition that corresponds with the work’s own concerns. In one passage there, for instance, it is stated that “Jacob possessed the Book of Adam, the Book of Enoch, and the Sefer Yetzirah of Abraham our ancestor” (Zohar 2.275b, ed. Vilna).86 At first sight, 84 Trans. Reeves from Scholem, ed., “Havdala de-Rabbi Aqiva,” 171–72. 85 Jub 4:17–24; P. Grelot, “Hénoch et ses écritures,” RB 82 (1975) 484–88; Reed, Fallen Angels, 87–89. 86 For Enoch as receiving a book from angels upon his entry into Eden, e.g., see Zohar 2.277a–b, 3.10b (ed. Vilna), and for Enoch in relation to the line of transmission of an angelic book from Adam to Abraham, see, e.g., Zohar 1.55b (ed. Vilna): “God signaled to Raphael, and he returned to him (i.e. Adam) that book, and Adam studied it. He bequeathed it to his son Seth, and thus it transpired for all those of his line until it reached Abraham, who gained

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the reference to Sefer Yetzirah (ca. 6th/7th c.?) might seem to support the presumption that some “Book of Enoch” might have been known as well. As in the Testaments of the 12 Patriarchs, however, quotations therefrom seem mainly aimed at claiming an ancient precedent for known writings associated with later figures. Some quotations pertain to the same types of letter-mysticism best known from Sefer Yetzirah,87 for instance, while others use the appeal to the “Book of Enoch” to provide an ancient precedent for a biblical source (e.g., Zohar 3.253b: “I find in the Book of Enoch [‫]אשכחנא בספרא דחנוך‬: ‘Lift, O gates’ [Ps 24:7, 9]) or rabbinic teaching (e.g., Zohar 3.307a: “R. Hamnuna the elder said: everyone who concentrates on this unification every day has rejoicing appointed for them in the upper world … and thus it is in the Book of Enoch”).88 That any such book was imagined to have been widely known in the past, but not known in the reader’s present, also seems presumed in the following statement attributed to R. Shimon ben Yohai: R. Shimʿon said: If I had been in the world when the Holy One, blessed be He, placed the Book of Enoch and the Book of Adam in the world [‫אילו‬ ‫]הוינא שכיח בעלמא כד יהיב קב״ה ספרא דחנוך בעלמא וספרא דאדם אתקיפנא‬, I would have tried to prevent their dissemination among humankind because all the wise ones were not careful in studying them, and they went astray by strange words so as to depart from the authority of the Most High to another power [‫דלא ישתכחון ביני אנשא בגין דלא חיישו כל‬ ‫]חכמאן לאסתכלא בהו וטען במלין אחרנין לאפקאמרשו עלאה לרשו אחרא‬. Now, however, the wise of the world understand these things and keep them secret [‫]והשתא הא חכימי עלמא ידעין מלין וסתמין לון‬ Zohar 1.72b, ed. Vilna; trans. Reeves

There may be reason, however, to resist any simple contrast between references to real and imagined Enochic writings. At times, for instance, second-hand or invented traditions about Enoch’s writings may have themselves been knowledge from it so as to look upon the glory of his Lord, as has been said. So too Enoch was given a book, and he understood from it about the supernal glory.” 87 E.g., Zohar 2.180b, 2.217a, 3.236b (ed. Vilna). 88 Note also the appeal to it to offer alternate readings of biblical sources, e.g., Zohar, Haqadmah, 1.13a: “And this is the meaning of (the verse) ‘let the waters swarm’ (Gen 1:20) in the Book of Enoch: Let the water of the holy seed be imprinted with the mark of the ‘living soul,’ and this mark is the letter yod”; Zohar 2.103b–104a: “And in the Book of Enoch (the verse) ‘and she ceased bearing’ (Gen 29:35) is not said of Leah, but instead it is said of Rachel”; cf. Zohar 2.192b in relation to Ezek 23:20). See Reeves/Reed, Enoch, 321–25, for relevant texts with discussion.

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productive, inspiring the association of known books with Enoch so as to grant them the luster of antiquity and esoteric authority. In some Yemenite manuscripts of Sefer ha-Razim,89 for instance, this Hebrew magical compendium is framed as the record of revelations to Enoch:90 This is the Book of Secrets which was revealed to Enoch b. Yared b. Mahalalel b. Qaynan b. Enosh b. Seth b. Adam [‫זה ספר הרזים שנגלה לחנוך‬ ‫ ]בן ירד בן מהללאל בן קינן בן אנוש בן שת בן אדם‬in the three hundredth year of the life of Yared [‫]שלש מאות שנה לחיי ירד‬. (He was told): “And you will write it very clearly on a sapphire stone [‫”!]ותכתבהו באבן ספיר באר היטיב‬91 Although most of the witnesses to Sefer ha-Razim identify its human recipient as Noah (cf. Asaf ha-Rofe), it is notable that a tenth-century Genizah fragment may presume an Enochic association as well, inasmuch as it also places the revelation in Yared’s three-hundredth year (i.e., prior to the birth of Noah).92 Whether or not the association has early roots, the appeal to Enoch in these two manuscripts reflects an anthological impulse extending from Enoch’s longstanding association with scribalism and instantiating the close connection between Hekhalot and “magical” traditions in particular, but also perhaps reflecting a notion of a primordial literary tradition akin to what is articulated in the Zohar. Not only is Sefer ha-Razim typically found in manuscripts that anthologize “magical” as well as Hekhalot materials (in some cases including 3 Enoch/Sefer Hekhalot), but these particular manuscripts both feature two versions of Sefer ha-Razim copied consecutively, the first of which is attributed to Adam and the second of which to Enoch.93 89 I.e., MS New York Public Library, Jewish Items 40 fol. 5a, line 14 (18th c.) and MS Tel Aviv Gross 42 fol. 153a lines 20–23 (19th c.). On these MSS (designated as NP 40 and TA 42 respectively), see further B. Rebiger and P. Schäfer, eds., Sefer ha-Razim I und II: Das Buch der Geheimnisse I und II, 2 vols. (TSAJ 125, 132; Tübingen, 2009) 1.25, 27. These are among the 23 MSS there consulted, the earliest of which date from the fourteenth century. There are ample Genizah fragments dating to the tenth to twelfth centuries as well (e.g., 47 of which are printed by Rebiger and Schäfer, 1.121–201*). 90 Yuval Harari places its provenance “probably in Egypt or Palestine, during the second third of the first millennium”—i.e., between the fourth and seventh centuries CE; “Sefer Ha-Razim,” in Encyclopedia of Ancient History, 6112–13. 91 Reeves/Reed, Enoch, 84, translating MS TA 42 (fol. 153a lines 20–23) as printed in the synoptic edition of Rebiger and Schäfer, Sefer ha-Razim, 1:4* (§§2–3). 92 I.e., Cambridge University Library MS T.-S. A45.28 fol. 1a lines 1–3; see G3 in Rebiger and Schäfer, Sefer ha-Razim, 1.124*. 93 See, e.g., Zohar 1.37b (ed. Vilna) on the parallel of Adam and Enoch as recipients of books: “R. Abba said: They brought down to Adam the protoplast (from heaven) an actual book, and using it he became knowledgeable about supernal wisdom. That book later reached

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Also intriguing in this regard is Enoch’s association with a book about Eden by Moses de León (ca. 1240–1305; fl. Spain), who claims that “I saw … esoteric books of wisdom (containing) the supernal wisdom of the ancients which recount what they said was in the Book of Enoch,” describing cosmological, ouranological, and angelological knowledge therein, especially pertaining to the firmament and the Garden of Eden.94 Similarly, Menahem ben Benjamin Recanati (1223–1290; fl. Italy) associates a “Book of Enoch” with knowledge about Eden, albeit without any claim to have seen it.95 Just as this association with Eden proves intriguing in light of Second Temple traditions linking Enoch and Eden (e.g., Book of the Watchers; Jubilees), so other medieval Jewish scribes and authors echo his ancient association with astronomy (e.g., Astronomical Book; Pseudo-Eupolemus).96 For instance, a medieval the ‘sons of God’ (Gen 6:1?)—the wise of their generation—and whoever gained the privilege to peruse it learned from it supernal wisdom … At the time when Adam was expelled from the Garden of Eden, he clutched this book, but when he exited from the Garden, it flew away from him … We are thus taught that Enoch also had a book, and that book was from the (same) place as the ‘book of the generations of Adam’ (Gen 5:1). Truly this is a secret of wisdom, for he was removed from the earth … From this (man) was transmitted the book that is called the Book of Enoch.” 94 R. Moses de Leon, Sefer Mishkan ha-ʿEdut in BHM 2.xxxi. After information about the firmament and its cosmological and angelological functions he goes on to state that “they have said in the Book of Enoch, the one known to the ancient sages because it recounts all the features of the Garden … that there are three walls in the Garden, arranged concentrically … Enoch stated that he saw them, but did not learn who they were or what they signified … And this esoteric mystery was revealed in his book for the sages: before Adam the protoplast had been introduced there, the Garden was not empty … Watch and wait for the truth of the matter, for it is all to be found in the Book (of Enoch), and therein are marvelous things” (BHM 2.xxxii). For additional relevant texts, translation, and discussion, see Reeves/Reed, Enoch, 317–21. 95 Menahem b. Benjamin Recanati, Perush Bereshit in BHM 3.197–98; Jellinek, “Hebräische Quellen für das Buch Henoch,” ZDMG 7 (1853) 249: “I have seen where some of the recent kabbalistic sages have written that they have found this esoteric topic [i.e., Garden of Eden] written about together with a number of other marvelous mysteries in the Book of Enoch, the son of Yared, the one whom God took (to heaven). Our Sages of blessed memory have previously mentioned that book in the Zohar.” Recanati is cited already in this regard by Fabricius, Codex pseudepigraphus VT, 208–9—who trusts his witness enough to confirm that the/an Enochic book “exists among the Jews” (208). 96 See references and citations in A.Y. Reed, “Writing Jewish Astronomy in the Early Hellenistic Age: The Enochic Astronomical Book as Aramaic Wisdom and Archival Impulse,” DSD 24 (2017) 1–37; Reed, “2 Enoch and the Trajectories of Jewish Cosmology,” JJTP 2 (2014) 1–24. Notably, this trope was also known to late antique Christians. Eusebius, e.g., quotes Pseudo-Eupolemus in this regard (Praep. Ev. 9.17.8–9) and also preserves a tradition from Anatolius that “the first month according to the Jews occurs around the (vernal) equinox is also proven by the teachings in what is ascribed to Enoch” (Hist. eccl. 7.32.19). Syncellus’ Enochic quotations, moreover, include references to “the archangel Uriel, who

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Hebrew manuscript published by Moses Gaster, which he dates no later than the fourteenth century, claims that: This is the book which the Chaldeans used in their investigations and speculations about divine gnosis [‫זה הספר ששמשו בו הכשדים בבחינתם‬ ‫ … ]ועיונם בחכמת האלהות‬they wrote down these books and produced many writings, but those who arose afterwards did not know how to learn (from) these books until (the angel) Raziel came and revealed the secrets, and after him the first Enoch (revealed them) [‫וכתבו אותם הספרים ועשו‬

‫ספרים הרבה והאחרונים לא ידעו ללמוד באותן הספרים עד שבא רזיאל וגלה הסו־‬ ‫]דות ואחריו חנוך הקדמון‬. Since his time this science has spread throughout the entire world [‫]ומאותה שעה נתפזרה זאת החכמה בכל העולם‬.97

The notion of Enoch as an author of books of astrology is also accepted by Abraham ibn Ezra (1089–ca. 1167; fl. Spain), who makes the following comment on Gen 5:29 (i.e., Lamech’s naming of Noah): Perhaps Enoch discerned via prophecy that Noah would revitalize the world and that it would be through his agency that the curse would be removed from the ground [‫אולי חנוך ראה בדרך נבואה כי נח החיה העולם ועל‬ ‫ … ]ידו סרה הקללה מהאדמה‬or he saw this in his constellation/horoscope, for he [i.e., Enoch] authored many books on many types of learning [‫או‬ ‫]ראה זה במזלו כי ספרים רבים חבר בחכמות רבות‬, and they remain extant today [‫]והם היום נמצאים‬.98 By the twelfth century, the existence of Enochic books was imagined broadly enough—even outside of mystical circles—that the Chronicle of Yerahmeel glosses Gen 5:22 (“And Enoch walked with God”) with the statement that “Many books were written by him.”99 To consider what might have been known of Enoch’s books by medieval Jews, then, is not just to ask whether they knew 1 Enoch or 2 Enoch in whole or part. It is also to ask what they may have read, heard, and wrote about books controls the stars, revealed to Enoch what a month is, and a season, and a year, as it is recorded in the book of this same Enoch.” 97 Codex Or. Gaster 177 ff. 36a–b; M. Gaster, “The Wisdom of the Chaldeans: An Old Hebrew Astrological Text,” Proceedings of the Society of Biblical Archaeology 22 (1900) 329–51 at 347. 98 Abraham Ibn Ezra, Perushey ha-Torah, ed. A. Weiser, 3 vols. (Jerusalem, 1977) 1.174. 99 Chronicles of Yeraḥmeel  §26 (Bodl. MS 2797 Heb. d. 11 fol. 22b), which is preserved in Eleazar ben Asher Ha-Levi’s collection Sefer ha-Zikhronot (ca. 1325); E. Yassif, ed., Sefer ha-Zikronot huʾ Divrey ha-Yamim le-Yeraḥmeʾel (Tel Aviv, 2001) 119.

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associated with Enoch, what they imagined Enoch could have known and written, and what some scribes thus attributed to him. For our purposes, it suffices to note that medieval Jewish readers would have had many reasons to accept the existence of Enochic writings—much like their pre-70/Second-Temple-era counterparts but unlike their late antique rabbinic predecessors. With the former, they seem to share the assumption that such books existed but were secret and thus not widely known or accessible. This same shift, moreover, can be glimpsed in how Christians describe Jewish knowledge of “book(s) of Enoch.” Writing in the third century, Tertullian describes the Enochic book known to Jude as rejected by the Jews. But Jacob of Edessa in the seventh century argues for the existence of such a book precisely on the basis of “written narratives quoted by the Jews [that] declare this clearly” (Epistle 13.15). Likewise, Mxit‘ar of Aryivank‘ in the thirteenth century lists a book “of Enoch” as that “which the Jews hold secretly.”100 When Syncellus voices his own doubts about the excerpts he so famously quotes in the ninth century, moreover, it is specifically because they may have been “adulterated by Jews” (27.11). As noted above, this renewed interest in Enoch and his books forms part of a broader pattern within Jewish literature whereby Second Temple texts and traditions rejected or otherwise not attested in the rabbinic literature of Late Antiquity reemerge anew in post-Talmudic sources.101 This phenomenon remains much noted but still understudied and little understood.102 Nevertheless, it undermines the common scholarly narrative, popularized in part by Charles and other early scholars of 1 Enoch, whereby the apocalyptic creativity of Second Temple Judaism is purported to have been totally abandoned in post-70 Judaism and bears fruit only within Christianity. In some cases, what we see in these medieval Jewish materials may be Second Temple traditions that developed in the interim outside of rabbinic circles and/or within the Jewish magical tradition. Other cases may reflect instances of “back-borrowing” whereby learned Jews in the Middle Ages re-encountered 100 M.E. Stone, “Armenian Canon Lists III: The Lists of Mechitar of Ayrivank‘,” HTR 69 (1976) 290–92. 101 Reed, “From Asael”; Reed, Fallen Angels, 233–72; Yaz, “Metatron”; M. Himmelfarb, “R. Moses the Preacher and the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs,” AJS Review 9 (1984) 55–78; Himmelfarb, “Some Echoes of Jubilees in Medieval Hebrew Literature,” in Tracing the Threads, 115–41; D.J. Halperin and G.D. Newby, “Two Castrated Bulls: A Study in the Haggadah of Kaʿb al-Aḥbār,” JAOS 102 (1982) 631–38; J.C. Reeves, “Exploring the Afterlife of Jewish Pseudepigrapha in Medieval Near Eastern Religious Traditions: Some Initial Soundings,” JSJ 30 (1999) 148–77; R. Adelman, The Return of the Repressed: Pirqe de-Rabbi Eliezer and the Pseudepigrapha (JSJSupp 140; Leiden, 2009). 102 See now Himmelfarb, “Rabbinic and Post-Rabbinic Jewish.”

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Enoch Lost and Found?

pre-Christian Jewish texts and traditions that had been transmitted by Christians or others (e.g., as most famously with Yosippon). It is certainly intriguing that traditions about Enoch are prominent in the same sources in which other evidence of such “back-borrowing” clusters, such as the Chronicle of Yerahmeel (which knew Yosippon and perhaps Pseudo-Philo) and the writings of R. Moshe ha-Darshan (which include intriguing parallels with Jubilees and other “pseudepigrapha”).103 It is in this Hebrew Chronicle and in R. Moshe ha-Darshan’s Bereshit Rabbati (11th c.), for instance, that we find not just motifs that echo earlier Enochic texts and traditions but also extensive material paralleling the Enochic Book of the Giants now known in Aramaic from the Dead Sea Scrolls.104 Whatever the precise causes for this striking reversal of earlier rabbinic disinterest in Enoch, it is notable that medieval Jewish references to his books also resonate within the broader Byzantine and Islamicate cultural settings in which Jews lived, forming part of a shared sense of the antediluvian past as an era of primordial scribes, ancient wisdom, and secret scrolls. In the case of those medieval Jewish writings created and/or circulating in Christian settings, claims about Enoch and his books may reflect the cultural effects of the continued circulation of Enochic excerpts. In the case of those Jewish magical and mystical writings created and/or circulating in areas under Islamic rule, claims about Enochic books could have further grounded their plausibility in Muslim traditions equating Enoch with both Idrīs (Q 19:56–57; 21:85)105 103 When discussing parallels between Jubilees and Midrash Aggada, a collection drawn from R. Moshe ha-Darshan’s commentaries, Himmelfarb has argued that the former may have become accessible to learned Jews like R. Moshe by virtue of their preservation in Christian chronographical source-collections, akin to those used by Syncellus. Citing the case of Yosippon, Himmelfarb further suggests that Jews in Byzantine Italy may have played a mediatory role, translating traditions of interest into Hebrew; Himmelfarb, “Some Echoes,” esp. 117–18, 135–36. 104 With precedents in Aggadat Bereshit and parallels in Simeon ha-Darshan’s Yalqut Shimoni (13th c.); see further Reed, Fallen Angels, 258–68. Another version, with slight variations, is among Raymundi Martini’s quotations of Bereshit Rabbati in his Pugio Fidei (ca. 1280). 105 This equation seems to achieve wide acceptance by the ninth century and may have some root in the interpenetration of Jewish and Muslim traditions about the antediluvian past. In his Iklil, for instance, Hamdani (893–945) credits the seventh-century Yemenite Jewish convert Ka‌ʿb al-Aḥbār for the tradition that Idrīs’ “name in the Torah is Enoch” whom God taught “computation and writing/scripture (al-kitāb).” Elsewhere the tradition is tied to Wahb b. Munabbih (d. ca. 730?), another Yemenite (possibly also a Jewish convert) associated with the early transmission of biblical/Jewish teachings into Islam. On these figures, see M. Pregill, “Isrāʾīliyyāt, Myth, and Pseudepigraphy: Wahb b. Munabbih and the Early Islamic Versions of the Fall of Adam and Eve,” Jerusalem Studies in Arabic and Islam 34 (2008) 215–84. For further examples of medieval Muslim sources equating Enoch with

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and Hermes106—both of whom had their own reputations as ancient scribes and authors. In some cases, what medieval Jews and Muslims may have encountered and cited as writings of Enoch may well be Hermetica. Abraham Ibn Ezra, for instance, cites from an otherwise unknown book called Balances of Enoch (‫)מאזני חנוך‬, which in the early Latin translations of his Sefer ha-Moladot become credited instead to Hermes.107 In any case, it is clear that traditions about Enoch, Hermes, and Idrīs interpenetrated within Islamic traditions of the Middle Ages in a manner that shaped medieval Jewish ideas about Enoch and his books, especially but not only in relation to astronomy (e.g., Pirqe Rabbi Eliezer §8; Midrash Aggadah [ed. Buber] 1.14.29–15.1).108 Much of the early modern European interest in the “book of Enoch” in esoteric circles is heir to the image of Enoch cultivated in medieval Judaism and Islam. Although remembered in the time of Sgambati and Fabricius, however, it would be largely forgotten by the time of Charles, displaced by new narratives that reduced the Nachleben of Enochic texts and traditions to the “loss” and “rediscovery” of 1 Enoch. Idrīs, see Reeves/Reed, Enoch, 284–96; P.S. Alexander, “Jewish Tradition in Early Islam: The Case of Enoch/Idrīs,” in Studies in Islamic and Middle Eastern Texts and Traditions in Memory of Norman Calder, ed. G.R. Hawting et al. (JSSSup 12; Oxford, 2000) 11–29—and for sources that equate the two with a specific emphasis on books and bookishness, see Reeves/Reed, Enoch, 93–104. 106 For some of the relevant sources, see Reeves/Reed, Enoch, 270–84, and on the broader context and implications, K. van Bladel, The Arabic Hermes: From Pagan Sage to Prophet of Science (Oxford, 2009). 107 S. Sela, ed., Abraham Ibn Ezra on Nativities and Continuous Horoscopy (Leiden, 2013) 92–95, 228. 108 E.g., a tradition credited to Abū Maʿshar Jaʿfar b. Muḥammad al-Balkhī (d. 886) in Ibn Abī Uṣaybiʿa, Kitāb ʿUyūn al-Anbāʾ fī ṭabaqāt al-aṭibbāʾ, e.g., holds that Enoch “was the first person to speak about supernal things such as the movements of the stars, and it was from his grandfather Kayōmart, who is (the same figure as) Adam, upon whom be peace, whom he learned the hours of the night and the day,” while in Kitāb al-munāẓarāt, Ibn al-Haytham (d. 1040) similarly notes that “it is said that Idrīs—peace be upon him—is the one who revealed knowledge about the stars and about computation.” In Yaʿqūbī’s Ta‌ʾrīkh in the ninth century, one finds the claim that the Roman rulers who followed the Ṣābian religion “assert that they have a prophet, such as ʾUrānī and ʿAbīdīmōn and Hermes, and he is three-times blessed; it is said that he is the prophet Idrīs, and he was the first to write with a pen and to teach the science of the stars (ʿilm al-nujūm).” All three are triangulated by Abū Ḥātim al-Rāzī (d. 935 CE); see Aʿlām al-nubuwwah, ed. Ṣalāḥ Ṣāwī (Tehran, 1977) 278.7–14; 280.2–4. Notably, the association of Enoch with astrology occurs also in the Christian chronographical tradition, including in Syriac sources; the Chronicle of Bar Hebraeus (13th c.), e.g., claims that Enoch “discovered knowledge about the zodiac and the courses of the planets … He also instituted festival-days for the entrance of the sun into each zodiacal sign, for the new moon, and for when each planet entered into its house or its ascension”; Chronicon (ed. Bedjan), 5.10–21. -

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3

Conclusion

Writing of the early modern period, Ariel Hessayon stresses how “far from being neglected, Enoch and the books under his name had preoccupied monks, chroniclers, rabbis, Kabbalists, Academicians, magicians, Catholic theologians, Protestant divines, Orientalists, sectarians, and poets alike” long prior to Bruce.109 My suggestion is that the situation might not have been as different in the Middle Ages as one might expect. What Boccaccini concludes for the period between Scaliger and Bruce resonates for the period prior as well: “the books of Enoch may have been ‘lost,’ but Enochic traditions were very much alive.”110 Studies by Hessayon, Boccaccini, and others have demonstrated the notable cultural impact of the Enochic excerpts printed by Scaliger, long prior to the availability of print editions and translations of 1 Enoch in Europe. Much of our medieval evidence similarly stands as a reminder that the Nachleben of books is sometimes not limited to their availability as “books”: even excerpts, quotes, and titles could be culturally generative, especially prior to the wide diffusion of books enabled by the advent of printing. The idea of Enoch as author may be shaped by Second Temple texts that we know from 1 Enoch and 2 Enoch, but centuries upon centuries of quotations and references to “book(s) of Enoch”—from Jubilees in the second century BCE to Jude in the first century CE, the Testaments of the 12 Patriarchs in the second century, Tertullian in the third century, and Augustine in the fifth century, as well as chronographers from the fifth to thirteenth centuries—had an accruing effect on the perception and imagination of his literary heritage, as these writings too circulated and traveled, including in locales where the early Enochic literature was not known in full. It remains common to defend the significance of Enochic texts and traditions with appeal to an alluring tale about a long-lost book. But what might seem like a period marked by the “loss” of Enochic and other Second Temple traditions—when seen from the perspective of Europe—is a period of rediscovery of sorts among some learned Jews as well as a period marked by the emergence of new visions of a shared antediluvian past among Jews and Muslims. Sgambati and Fabricius preserve a sense of these visions. This was among what was lost, however, in the wake of European access to 1 Enoch—only to be recovered again in recent research on its Nachleben. There is a long-standing tendency within Biblical Studies and the study of Second Temple Judaism to frame the reception-history of “pseudepigrapha” 109 Hessayon, “Og King of Bashan,” 40. 110 Boccaccini, “Enochic Traditions,” 405. -

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primarily in terms of the making of what we now know as “the Bible” in the West. Just as Jude’s quotation from 1 Enoch and Tertullian’s defense of its authenticity are often cited as exemplary of the scriptural fluidity among early Christians, so the questioning of its authenticity by Athanasius and Augustine is often cited to mark the purported end of that fluidity with the closing of the biblical canon at the dawn of the Christianization of the Roman Empire. Accordingly, it might seem natural to presume that Athanasius’ categorization of the “book of Enoch” as “apocrypha” marks the end of the story of its significance, to which any later references are mere exceptions.111 For its Christian Nachleben, however, Jacob of Edessa may be no less representative.112 Even in the case of Augustine, his oft-cited comments about Enoch’s books in the City of God (Civ. 15.23; 18.38) are explicitly predicated on his acceptance that Enoch did indeed write books known to Jude.113 Augustine casts distrust upon the books attributed to Enoch that were circulating at his time. Nevertheless, he leaves open the space for renewed curiosity about their authentically ancient counterparts, even in the Latin West. Just as the Second Temple period sees the production of numerous Enochic writings and many references to Enoch’s books—both real and imagined—so this multiplicity sets the stage for the multiple afterlives and trajectories of influence of Enochic texts and traditions, not limited to the telos of 1 Enoch or the thin line that leads to modern Europe. Our data for Enochic reception thus resist reduction to the tracing of the transmission of 1 Enoch. Traditions therein often took on lives of their own, which continued to resound in surprising ways and to travel across religious and regional boundaries, often shaped by (and shaping) a shared sense of the antediluvian past. And so too with Enochic books. Even outside of Ethiopia, the literary practice of quoting and commenting upon excerpts from the Book of the Watchers is surprisingly continuous, traveling with the chronographical tradition from late antique Egypt into Byzantine, Syriac, and Armenian settings in the Middle Ages—and influencing the 111 On the trope of “apocrypha” and “pseudepigrapha” as suppressed by Athanasius et al., and its genealogy in relation to anxieties about censorship distinctive to modern print culture, see Reed, “Afterlives,” 413–15. 112 Adler, “Pseudepigrapha,” 227–28. 113 In Civ. 15.23, e.g., Augustine calls upon his reader to “leave unmentioned the fables in those writings which are called apocrypha, because their origin was obscure and uncertain to the fathers from whom the authority of the true Scriptures has come down to us,” but he also admits that “we cannot deny that Enoch, the seventh after Adam, left some divine writings, since this is said by the apostle Jude in his canonical epistle.”

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imagination of the antediluvian past even beyond chronographers. It might be tempting to try to fit our medieval evidence for Enoch and his books into familiar modern narratives, casting the Middle Ages as an era of forgetting. When we consider this period on its own terms, however, what we see instead are glimpses into the richly transregional and interreligious legacy of Enochic texts and traditions, which may prove even more useful as background to understanding the early modern interest in Enoch as well.

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Chapter 2

The Book of Enoch in Relation to the Premodern Christian Doctrines of Spiritual Beings Euan Cameron Unlike much of the present volume, this chapter is not based on any expertise either on ancient Jewish or Christian pseudepigrapha, or on Ethiopic or Slavonic religious texts.1 The work on which this chapter is based lies in the history of ideas, beliefs, and cultures in Western Europe from the late Middle Ages to the early modern. Twelve years ago, my monograph Enchanted Europe explored, among other things, the medieval and early modern doctrines of spiritual beings, and how those doctrines influenced the pastoral advice given regarding popular charms, spells, and techniques of divination.2 It became clear that there was an extremely deeply rooted belief in spirits in the premodern West. At an intellectual level, the doctrine of spirits was determined by increasingly strict metaphysical assumptions about corporeality and incorporeality, which significantly narrowed the options inherited from Late Antiquity. Not everyone embraced these intellectual interpretations: but the overwhelming majority of the literate did. Consequently, much of this chapter will focus on the sheer difficulty—within the Western European context—of accommodating the Enoch traditions, even insofar as these were known, into the thought world of early modern Europe. In order to avoid looking at the subject through the wrong end of the telescope (or microscope) one must appreciate the wide landscape of scholastic metaphysics which informed the premodern doctrine of spirits. From this material one can take due note of all the challenges which attended incorporating the Enoch traditions into this well-established world of thought, and which are expressed (for example) in Joseph Scaliger’s remarkably negative commentary on the Syncellus fragments of 1 Enoch in 1606, which I shall refer to later. 1 In what follows, LW refers to the American edition of Luther’s works (ed. J.J. Pelikan, H.C. Oswald, H.T. Lehmann, 55 vols. [St. Louis, 1955–86]), while WA refers to the Weimar edition (Luthers Werke: Kritische Gesamtausgabe [Weimar, 1883–1948]). 2 E. Cameron, Enchanted Europe: Superstition, Reason and Religion 1250–1750 (Oxford, 2010). The theme is further developed in my “Angels, Demons, and Everything in Between: Spiritual Beings in Early Modern Europe,” in Angels of Light? Sanctity and the Discernment of Spirits in the Early Modern Period, ed. C. Copeland and J. Machielsen (Leiden, 2013) 1–36.

© Euan Cameron, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_004

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Once one has reviewed the greater part of the early modern evidence, and only then, one can suggest some places in early modern Europe where there might just have been opportunities for the Enoch traditions, or traditions cognate to them, to find a more congenial response, not to say acceptance. 1

The Representation of Evil Spirits in the Book of the Watchers (1 Enoch 1–36)

For a necessary setting of the scene, there is offered here a brief summary of the depiction of the nature and roles of evil angels in the first part of what comes down to us as 1 Enoch, that is, the Book of the Watchers (1 Enoch 1–36). Here, 1 Enoch presents a narrative of the fall into evil which is distinctive from that which became the prevailing explanation in Latin Christianity in the Middle Ages. Chapters 6–10 present a highly elaborated development of Genesis 6, focusing on the fall of the angels known as the “Watchers,” their seeking out partners among human women, their teaching of enchantments and magic to humanity, and their engendering on their human spouses of a voracious race of giants.3 A very similar story of the source of the evil angels is told in a later work also in 1 Enoch, namely, in Parables of Enoch (1 Enoch 37–70, esp. 64–66). The clear implication of these passages is that the fall of angels, and the bringing of evil into the world, originated in Genesis 6 and with the crimes of the “Watchers.” Conversely, and as has been noticed for many years, the role of Eve and Adam in consuming the fruit of the tree of knowledge in Genesis 3 was, relatively speaking, downplayed in 1 Enoch. A brief reference is made to this episode in 1 En 32:6: “Then … the holy angel who was with me, answered, ‘This is the tree of wisdom from which your father of old and your mother of old, who were before you, ate and learned wisdom. And their eyes were opened, and they knew that they were naked, and they were driven from the garden.’” Secondly, 1 Enoch presented a significantly different metaphysical view of the natures of spiritual beings. As will be explained later, the prevailing view by the Christian Middle Ages, and into the early modern period, was that spiritual beings were entirely immaterial and incorporeal. In contrast, the presentation of this question in 1 Enoch is complex. There are multiple indications in 1 Enoch regarding the material and/or spiritual natures of the angels. However, 3 See A.Y. Reed, Fallen Angels and the History of Judaism and Christianity: The Reception of Enochic Literature (Cambridge, 2005), esp. ch. 1; also S. Bhayro, The Shemihazah and Asael Narrative of 1 Enoch 6–11: Introduction, Text, Translation, and Commentary with Reference to Ancient Near Eastern and Biblical Antecedents (Münster, 2005).

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the general drift of key passages suggests, first, that even when possessed of spiritual natures, the spirits were prone to what otherwise might be regarded as the attractions and sins of the flesh: they fell by desiring human women and choosing wives from among them. This would contradict the prevailing view in medieval Europe that the only sins which demons could commit, in their incorporeality, were sins of pride.4 Moreover, the evil angels’ persistence in sin tended to make their nature grosser and more terrestrial. One interesting suggestion here comes in 1 En 15:6–10: But you originally existed as spirits, living forever, and not dying for all the generations of eternity. Therefore I did not make women among you. The spirits of heaven, in heaven is their dwelling; But now the giants who were begotten by the spirits and flesh—they will call them evil spirits upon the earth, for their dwelling will be upon the earth. The spirits that have gone forth from the body of their flesh are evil spirits, for from humans they came into being, and from the holy watchers was the origin of their creation. Evil spirits they will be on the earth, and evil spirits they will be called. The spirits of heaven, in heaven is their dwelling; but the spirits begotten in the earth, on earth is their dwelling.5 The moral condition of the evil angels is variously described in 1 Enoch. They are either fallen as a result of their decision to follow their leader down to earth and mingle with human women; or, as is implied in the Parables of Enoch (1 Enoch 37–70), there may have been an evil spirit-world from the beginning. In either case a strong moral binary is implied: this is one area where the Enoch tradition and the prevailing Western views were not at odds; though the story of how that state of affairs came to be is very different between the two. Many and various names are supplied in the Enoch tradition for the fallen angels/Watchers. It is interesting that, even allowing for phonic shifts between Aramaic, Greek, and Ethiopic, the lists of names are not identical between the Aramaic fragments, the so-called Syncellus fragments (in Greek), and the Ethiopic versions.6 However, the tradition of listing names of spirits down from their leader Shemihazah, given in Syncellus’ Greek as Σεμιαζᾶς (or sometimes

4 On the angelology of Thomas Aquinas, see Cameron, Enchanted Europe, 91–97 and references. 5 On this theme, see also A.T. Wright, The Origin of Evil Spirits: The Reception of Genesis 6:1–4 in Early Jewish Literature (rev. ed.; Minneapolis, 2015). 6 For a comparative list based on the different versions, see M. Black, “The Twenty Angel Dekadarchs at 1 Enoch 6:7 and 69:2,” JJS 33 (1982) 227–35.

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as Σεμιξᾶς, e.g., in the Scaliger edition)7 appears unique to 1 Enoch. This exotic nomenclature of spirits would be enormously attractive to the curious in the Renaissance. However, in the Middle Ages there was a profound suspicion about such a multiplication of alleged names of evil spirits. It was much more characteristic for long lists of the names of evil spirits to be included in conjuring invocations or spells, which were roundly condemned in the theological literature.8 2

The Loss of the Book of Enoch in the West and the Western Demonologies

The Ethiopic Church adopted 1 Enoch as canonical scripture in the fifteenth century, but nothing remotely similar happened in Europe. Yet it would be a mistake to assume that, given the physical isolation of Christian Ethiopia from the Latin West, there was no interaction between the two traditions. There was in fact a measure of continuous relationship between the Ethiopian Church and the West from the Council of Florence, ca. 1440, onwards. In 1481, the Pope put at the disposal of the Ethiopians the little church behind St Peter’s then known as Santo Stefano Maggiore and now as Santo Stefano degli Abissini. Ethiopic biblical texts were printed in the West in 1513 and 1518, and the entire Ethiopic New Testament in 1548–1549. However, this enterprise was confined to those scriptural texts regarded as canonical in both traditions.9 The major landmarks in the recovery of Enoch for the West are, first, the publication of brief but critical extracts from the first section of 1 Enoch, derived from the historical work of Georgius Syncellus, in Joseph Scaliger’s edition of the historical works of Eusebius under the title Thesaurus temporum in 1606.10 Secondly, four Ethiopic manuscripts of Enoch were discovered and brought into Europe by James Bruce in the 1770s, leading to their (eventual) publication and translation. Consequently, until the eighteenth century there 7

See Scaliger, Thesaurus temporum, in the separately paginated section headed “Animadversiones in Chronologia Eusebii” and then “Notae” (from p. 241), 244. 8 Cameron, Enchanted Europe, 53–56, 60–61. 9 On Western scholarship in Ethiopic in the early modern period, see A. Hamilton, “The Study of Tongues: The Semitic Languages and the Bible in the Renaissance,” in The New Cambridge History of the Bible, vol. 3: (1450–1750), ed. E. Cameron (Cambridge, 2016) 17–36 at 29–30. The Psalms and the Song of Songs were printed in Ethiopic at Rome in 1513, as [J. Potken, ed.] Psalterium Aethiopicum (Rome, 1513). 10 Scaliger, Thesaurus temporum, “Notae,” 244–45; compare G. Dindorfius, ed., Georgius Syncellus et Nicephorus Cp, 2 vols. (Bonn, 1829) 1.20–23.

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was very little real opportunity for the Enoch traditions to have any significant modifying effect on the Western lore of evil spirits, as that developed from Augustine and through the scholastic tradition. Moreover, by the eighteenth century Christian intellectuals, outside the realm of strict Roman Catholic neo-Thomism, had discarded the metaphysical and natural-philosophical systems of medieval scholasticism in favor of a range of other options, including mechanism, materialism, and a rather free-for-all empiricism.11 In other words, the totality of 1 Enoch only became available to Western Europe at a point when, for entirely unrelated reasons, it would have ceased to have been regarded as any kind of threat to the Christian worldview within most of Europe. 3

Metaphysical Assumptions in Medieval and Early Modern “Demonology”

Allusion has already been made to the divergences between 1 Enoch and the substantial, authoritative and broadly shared demonological theories of the Christian West during the time that 1 Enoch was inaccessible. It is important at this point to add some detail to this description. From the twelfth and thirteenth centuries onwards, Latin Europe developed a highly articulated “scholastic” demonology. The key points were based on the works of Peter Lombard (ca. 1095–1160) and Thomas Aquinas (ca. 1225–1274). In the Book of Sentences II, Peter Lombard noted that some sources thought that evil angels were created evil from the start; others that they enjoyed a period of free will and then fell. The prevalent opinion became that they were very briefly free to choose to be either obedient or rebellious, but that some of them fell soon after.12 This demonological system presupposed that there had occurred a fall of the rebel angels, which was not documented at all in Genesis, but was conventionally assigned to a date at some point within the first few days of creation.13 The fall of the angels was, of course, a narrative prerequisite for the temptation by the serpent in Genesis 3, once that serpent was understood either to represent, or to be acting under the influence of an evil spirit. 11

For the breakdown of Aristotelian metaphysics and its consequences for understandings of spiritual beings, see Cameron, Enchanted Europe, ch. 17 and 18, 270–315. 12 Peter Lombard, Book of Sentences, bk. ii, dist. 3. For a comprehensive discussion of this theme, see D. Keck, Angels and Angelology in the Middle Ages (New York, 1998). 13 Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Ia q. 63, arts. 5–9; compare De Malo, q. 16, art. 4. The complete works of Aquinas may be consulted in the original Latin online at http:// www.corpusthomisticum.org/ (accessed 7 May 2021). Separate URLs are not supplied here for each reference.

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Secondly, medieval demonology came to envisage demons as entirely incorporeal. This view stood in contrast to those patristic traditions which had admitted the possibility that they had tenuous material “aery” bodies. Lombard, in keeping with the approach of the Sentences which rather presented an agenda for disputation than offering a coherent systematic viewpoint, quoted Augustine and others to the effect that the angels might have a sort of “aery bodies”; but he also acknowledged as preferable the possibility that they were purely intellectual and incorporeal natures.14 The later scholastic tradition would insist that demons were entirely incorporeal.15 Moreover, as a result of lacking bodies, demons were incapable of bodily desires and passions.16 Even incubi and succubi were incapable of feeling lust as human beings did. In this area scholastic demonology contradicted vernacular culture and all kinds of natural assumptions about evil and sin. To the scholastics, demons were aseptic, clinical beings entirely without physical passions: they only simulated such passions in order to entrap human souls. The scholastics also had fairly precise ideas about the location, will and capacities of demons. Some demons were believed to be in hell tormenting wicked souls, and some were in the air teasing and tempting the living.17 Since their fall, demons were utterly committed to evil, and irretrievably determined to harm humanity and rebel against God. Medieval scholastics loved to quote John of Damascus’ dictum that the fall of the angels was like death to human beings: it was an irreversible and cosmic change of being, after which no further change of state was possible. This popular quotation constitutes, incidentally, an unusual instance of Syriac theology being known and used in the medieval West.18 Yet demons were constrained in their power to cause harm by divine providence and divine permission. On this point there appears to have been something of a divide in premodern Western thought: scholasticism by its very nature was not monolithic. Thomas Aquinas, the via antiqua theologians, especially Thomas’ fellow-Dominicans who followed him, and many of the Roman Catholic tradition tended to postulate a general divine “permission” 14 Peter Lombard, Book of Sentences, bk. ii, dist. 2, 8. 15 Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Ia q. 50, art. 1. Compare Summa contra Gentiles, 2.46–50, and for more extended arguments that spiritual creatures were truly incorporeal and not endowed with “aery bodies” or any other kind, see Quaestio disputata de spiritualibus creaturis, arts. 6 and 7; and De Malo, q. 16, art. 1. 16 Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Ia q. 59, art. 4. 17 Peter Lombard, Book of Sentences, bk. ii, dist. 6. 18 Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, Ia q. 64, art. 2, and more extensively De Malo, q. 16, art. 5; compare John of Damascus, Exposition of the Orthodox Faith, bk. 2, ch. 4.

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to demons to do harm, where within certain boundaries, evil spirits had some leeway to tempt and molest. Some late medieval nominalists, and nearly all post-Reformation Protestant theologians, were strict providentialists. They believed that God oversaw the works of evil spirits in precise detail at all times. Such divine providence did not absolve the evil spirits of responsibility for their evil. Providence just meant that try as they might, the demons in their attempt to do harm, ultimately brought about the good purposes of God.19 Finally, demons were understood to be very dangerous. So, the less association that people had with them the better. Late medieval pastoral writers in particular, typically warned their readers against the use of “unknown names” found in enchantments and spells.20 These names were very likely to be the names of demons, so using such names was very dangerous. It was widely held that calling out the name of a demon risks summoning it. Therefore, to stress the point: the naming of lists of “watchers” in 1 Enoch would have been vigorously discouraged in the medieval Christian West. The only ones who collected lists of names of evil spirits were necromancers.21 4

Exegetical Assumptions about the Fall in the Medieval West

The medieval view of the fall of humanity made the interpretation of Genesis 3 absolutely fundamental, in a way that was alien both to the Enochic tradition and, be it noted, to much Jewish exegesis of the same passages. The exegetical source cited here will be principally Nicholas of Lyra OFM (1270–1349) whose Postils on the Bible were the earliest printed and most frequently published commentary on the Vulgate in the later Middle Ages. Use will also be made of the sixteenth-century reformers, especially Luther and Calvin.

19 For providentialism in the medieval and early modern discourses of superstition, see Cameron, Enchanted Europe, 126–30, 211–16 and references. 20 See Cameron, Enchanted Europe, 53, quoting e.g. the list of names cited by Martín of Arles y Andosilla, which included one charm which said “be you bound and fastened by these holy names of God, Alleluya, hirelli, habet, sat, mi, filisgie, adrotii gundi, tat, chamiteran, dan, yrida, fat, Sathan, Great God Almighty of the 70, Jesus Christ, Aquila.” The original text is found in Martín of Arles y Andosilla, Tractatus insignis et exquisitissimus de superstitionibus, in Tractatus Universi Juris, xi, pt. 2 (Lyon, 1584) fols. 402v–8r, section 45. 21 For an example of the kind of medieval text which explicitly invoked demons through obscure names, see R. Kieckhefer, Forbidden Rites: A Necromancer’s Manual of the Fifteenth Century (Stroud, 1997), based on Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Manuscript. Clm 849.

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4.1 Genesis 3 First, “the serpent” in Genesis 3 was universally assumed to be Satan, who had fallen in the pre-humanity days of creation. Nicholas of Lyra remarked quite simply “by the serpent it is understood to be the devil, who speaks in the serpent.”22 This statement was taken for granted in the overwhelming majority of Christian exegetes. Secondly, the fall of Eve when she listened to the serpent, and then consuming the fruit, and the fall of Adam when he yielded to his wife’s persuasions, were blamed for a whole array of catastrophes to the created order. Not only was human nature degraded by original sin; the physical creation was disordered, leading to the production of destructive and damaging growth where there was formerly only benign and biddable nature.23 Death came as a result of the fall: without sin humanity would have been translated into a higher form of life without suffering. As Luther imagined it in his lectures on Genesis, if humanity had not sinned, life would have played out far differently: Man would never have experienced the inconveniences of old age; his forehead would never have developed wrinkles; and his feet, his hands, and any other part of his body would not have become weaker or more inactive. Thanks to this fruit, man’s powers for procreation and for all tasks would have remained unimpaired until finally he would have been translated from the physical life to the spiritual.24 Not only that: work became hard, laborious, and demanding as a consequence of the fall. Human control over creation now comes only with the greatest effort.25 Gender subordination came as a consequence of the fall: the subjection of women and the pain of childbirth were also regarded as results of the fall. So, incidentally, was the embarrassment of lust which accompanied spouses’ sexual relations.26 22

Nicholas of Lyra in Textus biblie, vol. 1, fol. 40r: “per serpentem intelligitur diabolus, qui in serpente loquebatur.” 23 Luther claimed, e.g., that the four rivers of Eden were rearranged to flow in completely different directions after the fall: see the Lectures on Genesis (1535) on Gen 2:11 in LW 1.99–100. Compare WA 42.76. Luther also believed that the Flood contributed to the further disordering of the rivers. 24 Lectures on Genesis (1535) on Gen 1:26, in LW 1.92. Compare WA 42:42. 25 Lectures on Genesis (1535) on Gen 3:17–19 in LW 1.203–10. Compare WA 42.152–63. 26 Lectures on Genesis (1535) on Gen 2:16–17, in LW 1.104: “There would not have been in him that detestable lust which is now in men, but there would have been the innocent and pure love of sex toward sex. Procreation would have taken place without any depravity, as an act of obedience. Mothers would have given birth without pain.”

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In Christian exegesis, the Incarnation itself was understood to be the result of the fall. The passage in Gen 3:15 where it was foretold that “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will strike your head, and you will strike his heel” was critical. In traditional medieval exegesis “the woman” represented the Virgin Mary, and “her offspring” represented Christ.27 This interpretation was so universal that it found its way into popular song. The celebrated medieval carol “Adam lay ybounden” contains the lines that “Ne hadde the appil take ben, the appil taken ben, Ne hadde never our lady a ben hevene quen.”28 4.2 Genesis 6 Given the enormous exegetical freight borne by Genesis 3, it was inevitable that conversely, the interpretation of Gen 6:1–4 in the premodern Christian tradition seemed relatively minimal in comparison. Most noteworthy here is the felt need to explain the passage in the most restricted, specific, and least cosmic fashion possible. Two critical interpretative questions arose: who were the “sons of God” in Gen 6:2? And who or what were the “Nephilim” in Gen 6:4? Regarding Gen 6:2, Nicholas of Lyra noted, and made widespread, two suggestions.29 Either this phrase referred to the sons of the powerful among the people, especially the sons of judges; or it referred to the descendants of Seth, who were supposedly more virtuous than the sons and daughters of the line of Cain.30 Martin Luther seemed to follow the suggestion that the passage referred to a forbidden union between the sons of the line of promise and the daughters of Cain.31 Although most of the premodern commentators were aware of the suggestion that the “sons of God” might have been evil angels, they generally dismissed this reading. Lyra called it irrational to posit the sins of demons as the reason for the punishment of human beings in the flood.32 Luther, following Lyra, made a characteristic jibe against Jewish expositors for reading the 27

Nicholas of Lyra in Textus biblie cum: glosa ordinaria; Nicolai de Lyra postilla; moralitatibus eiusdem; Pauli Burgensis additionibus; Matthie Thoring replicis, 7 vols. (Basel, 1506–1508), vol. 1, fol. 42v on Genesis 3. Lyra’s exposition of this passage is underlined in the copy used for this article. Lyra’s interpretation is echoed in Luther’s Lectures on Genesis (1535) in LW 1.193–95. Compare WA 42.141–7. 28 See F.G. Bosman, “‘Adam lay ybounden’: A Marian Felix Culpa,” Acta Universitatis Carolinae Theologica 10.2 (2021) 123–39. 29 Both of these interpretations can be traced back to late antique exegesis. See Reed, Fallen Angels, 218–26. 30 Nicholas of Lyra in Textus Biblie, vol. 1, fol. 50r, on Genesis 6. 31 Lectures on Genesis (1535) on Gen 6:2 in LW 2. Compare WA 42.269. 32 Nicholas of Lyra in Textus Biblie, vol. 1, fol. 50r, on Genesis 6.

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passage in this way. He agreed that incubus demons existed, but—and in this he was true to medieval metaphysics—he regarded it as quite impossible for any child to be born of such a union, folklore to that effect notwithstanding.33 John Calvin, commenting on the same passage, said simply “that ancient figment, concerning the intercourse of angels with women, is abundantly refuted by its own absurdity; and it is surprising that learned men should formerly have been fascinated by ravings so gross and prodigious.”34 It was not that early modern commentators were necessarily unaware of earlier exegetical traditions regarding Gen 6:2. It was rather that those who knew anything about such traditions in the early modern period regarded them as apocryphal and suspect. Typical of such commentators was the Vatican Librarian and titular bishop of Kisamos in Crete, Agostino Steuco of Gubbio (1497/1498–1548). Steuco, in his commentary on Genesis, remarked of the first sentences of Genesis 6 that “since this passage is most obscure in the holy scriptures, it has given birth to the greatest of errors, and has drawn away human minds into a variety of opinions.”35 Of the reading that the “sons of God” might have been demons, Steuco said simply “besides the fact that [these readings] are false, they are also most absurd, both because they are supremely refuted by the Holy Scriptures, and also because they are decidedly repugnant to Christian truth.”36 Premodern Christian exegetes were then faced with the challenge of interpreting the reference to the “Nephilim” in Gen 6:4. In the Vulgate, this word is rendered “gigantes.” Obviously, the Latin is cognate with our “giants,” though the possible interpretations of its meaning in the premodern varied. Luther said of the Nephilim that they were characterized by “tyranny and oppression. 33 Lectures on Genesis (1535) on Gen 6:3 in LW 2: “So far as incubi and succubi are concerned, I do not deny, but believe, that the devil may happen to be either a succubus or an incubus … But that anything can be born from the union of a devil and a human being is simply untrue.” Compare WA 42.269. See the discussion of medieval incubus/ succubus theory in Cameron, Enchanted Europe, 111–13: there was a widespread literary and theological assumption, even spread into popular preaching by Geiler of Kaisersberg, that insisted that anyone born through demonic intercourse must be entirely human, despite the persistent and well-known folk legends of “changelings,” who in some contexts were supposed to be the product of intercourse between demons and people. 34 Calvin’s Commentary on Genesis on Gen 6:1, in J. Calvin, Commentaries on the First Book of Moses Called Genesis, trans. J. King, vol. 1 (Grand Rapids, 1948) 238. 35 “Cum is locus in sacris litteris sit obscurissimus, maximos errores peperit, in variasque sententias hominum mentes distraxit.” See Augustini Steuchi Eugubini, … Opera Omnia, ed. A. Morandus, 3 vols. (Venice, 1591), vol. 1, fol. 102r. 36 “[… id est daemones.] Sed haec praeterquam falsa sunt, sunt etiam absurdissima, tum quod a sacris scriptoribus maxime refelluntur, tum quia a Christiana veritate admodum abhorrent”: Opera Omnia, vol. 1, fol. 103r.

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They raged violently, without any consideration for laws and decency, but exclusively in pursuit of their own pleasures and desires.”37 In effect, Luther read the passage metaphorically and morally. Calvin did the more or less same in his commentary on Genesis, when he wrote: “Moses does not distinguish those of whom he speaks in this place, from other men, so much by the size of their bodies, as by their robberies and their lust of dominion.”38 Agostino Steuco likewise interpreted the Nephilim not as demonic figures, but as human beings of exceptional robustness and strength.39 So, whether one speaks of the medieval Catholic or the Reformation traditions, there was a clear and powerful resistance to reading Genesis 6 in the way that is assumed in 1 Enoch, and a viable range of alternative interpretations. The combined effect of scholastic metaphysics and the exegetical tradition from Lyra onwards (at the very least, since Lyra was not original in all respects) thus made the incorporation of the Enoch tradition into mainstream western Christian thought very difficult. A sophisticated and elaborate demonology, closely incorporated into post-Aristotelian metaphysics and ontology, and regarded as definitive by both Catholics and Protestants until well into the seventeenth century, ensured that any reception of the Enochic legends of the watchers and the Nephilim would be fairly hostile. Moreover, a deeply rooted conviction about the Fall, based on centuries of exposition of Genesis 3, left little room for the theodicy of the Enochic tradition and its interpretation of the fall of angels. The angels had to have fallen before the creation of humanity, or at least well before its Fall; so a fall of angels generations later could only be at best subsidiary, and at worst simply made no sense. 5

Alternative Voices to the Scholastic Traditions

When all that has been acknowledged, there remains a possibility that another approach to angelology, a minority report so to speak, might potentially have created a small space for the later reception of the cosmology and theodicy derived from 1 Enoch. Here I shall consider in much more detail a 37 Lectures on Genesis (1535) on Gen 6:4 in LW 2. Compare WA 42.286. Luther’s interpretation that “those who rule through injustice and violence are properly called ‫נְ ִפ ִלים‬, because they fall upon and oppress those who are beneath them” seems to echo Ibn Ezra’s reading of “Nephilim” from naphal, “fell,” quoted explicitly by Steuco in Opera Omnia, vol. 1, fol. 103r. 38 Calvin, Commentary on Genesis on Gen 6:4; Calvin also alludes to the etymology from naphal though he is unsure how to apply it to this context. 39 Steuco, Opera Omnia, vol. 1, fol. 103r.

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rare non-scholastic approach to angelology, which is found in the De Perenni Philosophia of Agostino Steuco, first published at Rome in 1540.40 Some enticing possibilities must first be set aside. Steuco seems to have had no significant knowledge, and certainly no first-hand knowledge of the books of Enoch, at least as I have so far been able to discover. Nevertheless, his approach to theology was to seek to show that the philosophies of antiquity, including the esoteric strands associated with Neoplatonism and Hermetism, anticipated in a number of striking ways the Christian revelation, even in regard to their doctrines of spirits: he spoke frequently of the “theology” of Plato and Aristotle.41 This was the whole point of De Perenni Philosophia: to show that the wisdom later manifested in the Christian tradition was adumbrated in the best philosophies of antiquity. Steuco used not only pagan antiquity and the Hermetic corpus, but also the theology of the early fathers, with far greater frequency and readiness than he used the scholastics. In fact, his work can be regarded as a rare evocation of humanist esotericism, aligned to Christianity, before the establishment of neo-scholastic orthodoxy after the Council of Trent. I stress that Steuco represents a strain of theological thought just about as close as one could get to that of the esoteric hunters after Enochian material in the sixteenth century. Consequently, the work can be regarded in a sense as both pre-scholastic as to its sources, and post-scholastic as to its composition. Steuco devoted the eighth book of De Perenni Philosophia to the subject of demons, especially from chapter XIX onwards.42 His approach was much more fluid than scholastic texts on the subject, because he was constrained by ancient philology, and (relatively) emancipated from metaphysics. Steuco was aware that the word daimonia in Greek could be used to describe good and bad spirits confusedly (though Steuco always insisted that there was a rigid moral division between them). Steuco argued that it was the property of good angels alone to serve as the messengers of God; fallen demons practiced the fallacious arts of divination and enchantment. To support these claims, he referred constantly to classical philosophers, especially to Plato and the Platonists, but also to the classical poets, whom he regarded as useful if suspect cultural witnesses. Steuco thought that the “airy” bodies of the fallen angels might not be so completely incorporeal as the spiritual essences of the heavenly angels. In his Neoplatonist mode, he was ready to distinguish between “celestial” natures, proper to the good angels, and “aery” natures proper to the demons (“aery” 40 The edition cited here is A. Steuco, Augustini Steuchi Eugubini episcopi Kisami apost. S. bibliothecarii viri doctissimi De Perenni Philosophia libri X (Basel, 1542). 41 Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, bks. II and III. 42 Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, bk. VIII, ch. xix–li, 512–64.

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was less exalted and pure than “celestial” or “ethereal”). He suggested that the demons with their degraded natures were not allowed to enter the heavenly habitations.43 Elsewhere, Steuco, again quoting the Platonists, suggested that there were some demons who were closer to the earth and had acquired a more earthy nature: “indeed all demons are aerial by their generation, because they are from aery and invisible bodies and fly through the air; but some, who rather seek the earth and earthly humours, are called earthly and more corrupted.”44 Demons liked the smell of sacrifices, hence were called material.45 One observes here, almost, an analogy with the Enochic belief in the degradation of demonic natures into more terrestrial matter. It seems most likely that we are dealing with a parallel evolution from a common source, rather than any direct influence from the Enoch tradition; but it is nevertheless interesting. Unusually for a premodern, Steuco was extremely ready to distinguish between the factual claims made by philosophers and fathers and the “fables” of the poets. Scholastic demonology had tended to treat mythic stories as factual. However, technically impossible events, such as the transformation of people into animals in Ovid’s Metamorphoses, were often reinterpreted as the illusions of evil spirits. In the title to VIII chapter xxv, Steuco declared an intention to separate real demons from the subjects of poetic fables.46 In particular, Steuco regarded the stories of demonic spiritual beings having sexual intercourse with human women and producing demonic children by their unions as poetic fables.47 Steuco was aware of, and quoted from, Philo’s short treatise on the giants, which read Genesis 6 in this way; but Steuco reproached him for his reading.48 Consequently, when Steuco returned to the story of the Nephilim in Gen 6:4 in De Perenni Philosophia, his knowledge of the ancient traditions was far better informed than that of most of 43 Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, 519–21. 44 Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, 538–39, esp. 538: “Sunt quidem Daemones omnes generatim aerii, quia corporibus aëriis, et invisibilibusque, et per aëra volant; sed nonnulli, quoniam magis petunt terram, humoresque terrestres, terreni, inquinatioresque dicuntur.” 45 Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, bk. VIII, ch. xxx, 543: “Daemones nidoribus oblectari, ob id materiales appellari.” 46 Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, bk. VIII, ch. xxv, 530–31: “Separantur veri daemones a fabulosis, quos celebrant poetae.” 47 Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, bk. VIII, ch. xxv, 530–31, and ch. xxxii, 541–43: “De Daemonibus qui dicuntur se mulierum commercio contaminasse, aliosque Daemones genuisse: Ноc еssе Daemonas [sic] fabulosos, et quasi poeticos, non veros: et quod is fuit multorum error.” 48 Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, 537. On Philo’s contribution to this subject, see A.T. Wright, “Some Observations of Philo’s De Gigantibus and Evil Spirits in Second Temple Judaism,” JSJ 36 (2005) 471–88.

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the scholastic commentators, though the result which he reached appears—at least at first—to be the same.49 Steuco knew and quoted the passage in Josephus’ Antiquities where Josephus stated explicitly that “angels of God accompanied with women, and begat sons that proved unjust, and despisers of all that was good” (Ant. 1.73). Yet this he called “a most ancient error drawn from the Books of Moses misunderstood.”50 He went on, however, to quote Athenagoras and Tertullian as supporters of the same “error.” In the end, he argued, though without deploying scholastic metaphysics to support his argument, that spirits who lack genital organs, and who do not eat or drink, cannot experience lust or other bodily passions.51 And yet, by his very openness to the range of antique traditions, Christian and pagan, Steuco would allow himself some surprising speculations. In chapter xxxviii of book 8, he speculated on whether the demons had ever been in heaven, and cited Augustine as one who seemed to assume that they had never enjoyed the vision of God.52 Even supposing that the demons had (at most) been in an ambiguous position from which they fell, what might have been the reason for their fall? Steuco listed three possible explanations which he described as “not exclusive of each other, and all three could be true”: (i) disobedience and rebellion against God; (ii) envy of the creation of humanity; and (iii) the desire for women. Evidence for each of these opinions could be found among some of the Fathers, whom he quoted copiously. Regarding the third option, of the desire for women, Augustine had spoken of fallen angels desiring something unlawful: was this, he wondered, a reference to Steuco’s third possibility, which elsewhere Augustine had rejected?53 Steuco’s work offers one of the most interesting attempts to break out from the scholastic and exegetical straitjackets imposed by Lombard, Aquinas, and Lyra on the themes that we find discussed in the first part of 1 Enoch. Even so, the degree of his emancipation is very moderate. He allows that demons may have some quasi-material nature, that they may become more “earthy” as they become degraded, and that the desire for women is at least a possible explanation, a minority report as it were, on the reasons for their fall. That amounts to a very limited challenge to a very broad consensus.

49 50 51 52 53

Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, bk. VIII, ch. xxxii, 541–43. Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, 542. Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, 543. Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, 558–59. Steuco, De Perenni Philosophia, 560–61.

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Reception and Responses ca. 1600

One might have expected Steuco’s 1540 treatise to sink without trace in the confessional climate after the Council of Trent. In fact, that was not quite the case. One example of its reception is offered by the work of the Italian Protestant theologian Girolamo Zanchi (1516–1590). Zanchi served as a Reformed theologian in “Second Reformation” Heidelberg. During a period when the Electoral Palatinate became Lutheran under Elector Ludwig VI (reigned 1575–1583), the reformed theologians were exiled from Heidelberg to what became known as the Casimirianum at Neustadt-an-der-Haardt. When the Reformed confession was re-established in the Electorate, Zanchi chose to remain in effective retirement at Neustadt.54 There he wrote his On the Works of God created within six days, which addressed, among much else, the philosophical and theological status of the angels. Zanchi was a Protestant neo-scholastic, who exemplified the readiness of second- and third-generation Protestant theologians to make use of the heritage of medieval philosophy in support of reformed theology. He described “invisible beings,” the angels, good and fallen, in the first part of his treatise. In the main, he followed the broad lines of Thomist metaphysics. In Part 1, Book 4 Zanchi discussed the Evil Angels. With a remarkable grasp of the literature, he targeted Steuco’s De Perenni Philosophia for its unorthodox approach to demonology. He cited Steuco’s suggestion that the fallen demons might never have been in heaven, but had fallen from their place in the air by rebellion. He summarized quite accurately the three possible reasons proposed by Steuco for their fall: rebellion, envy of humanity, and desire for women. Zanchi observed how Steuco “foolishly” suggested that the evil angels’ “not remaining in the truth” could have meant a desire for women. Even the relatively obsolete and somewhat obscure treatise of a Catholic writer drew forth a rebuttal.55 In this context, one should evaluate the extremely negative response by Joseph Scaliger to the extracts from 1 Enoch which he published in his edition of Eusebius in 1606. This evaluation has already been discussed and published by Ariel Hessayon,56 but it nevertheless repays quoting in full: 54 G. Zanchi, De operibus Dei intra spacium sex dierum creatis (Neustadt, 1591). The work is here cited in the edition in H. Zanchius, Opera theologica, 8 vols. (Geneva, 1613). The discussion of angels and demons occupies vol. 3, cols. 57–216, pt. 1, bks. 2–4. On Zanchi, see C.J. Burchill, “Girolamo Zanchi: Portrait of a Reformed Theologian and his Work,” Sixteenth Century Journal 15.2 (1984) 1–26. 55 Zanchi, De operibus Dei, in Opera, vol. 3, cols. 169–171. 56 A. Hessayon, “Og King of Bashan, Enoch and the Books of Enoch: Extra-Canonical Texts and Interpretations of Genesis 6:1–4,” in Scripture and Scholarship in Early Modern England, ed. A. Hessayon and N. Keene (Aldershot, 2006) 5–40 at 31–32. -

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Thus far for the forged first book of Enoch. I cannot decide whether it took the Jews more leisure to invent it, than it required patience of me to transcribe it. There are so many things in it that are odious, tedious and shameful that, had I not known that it is the property of the Jews to lie, and that even now they cannot leave off such nonsense, I should not have thought it worthy of reading. But since it comes from the Hebrew, as one even moderately practiced in Hebrew can observe; and as it is a most ancient book; and because some things are adduced by Tertullian from it which are relevant to this material; and most of all, because the quotation in the Book of Jude which is attributed to this book obviously comes from this fragment, I preferred to bear with the tedium of transcribing it, than to be responsible for good readers any longer lacking access to it.57 7

Conclusion

With the benefit of the enormous diligence of modern scholarship, one may trace fugitive references—and certainly much seeking after lost or semi-legendary texts—related to the Enoch tradition, through some of the more or less esoteric and scholarly writers of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. However, the purpose of this paper has been to argue that a massive body of theology and biblical exegesis also stood in the way of treating both 1 Enoch, and also some of the late antique traditions that possibly drew on Enoch, at all seriously. To delve into the Enochian traditions from the thirteenth to the seventeenth centuries would have entailed setting aside a formidable body of inherited and shared wisdom about angels, fallen and unfallen, their history, their natures, and how to deal with them. Even if the manuscript sources had been available much earlier than they were, it would have taken a major transformation in Western Christian metaphysics to welcome 1 Enoch into the Christian canon.58 The rare murmurs of dissent from the scholastic norm are most interesting, but they are in a manner of speaking the exceptions which help to prove the rule. 57 Scaliger, Thesaurus temporum, “Notae” (as note 9 above), 245, retranslated for this article. 58 There was, however, a way around the obstacle and welcoming 1 Enoch into western Christian thought as an authentic (albeit non-canonical) prophetic text, in spite of its unorthodox theology. It was enough to reinterpret it in an orthodox sense, revising some claims made in the text to fit in with the received metaphysical understanding of angelic natures, and attributing any unorthodox ideas not to the text itself but to the “fables” of Jews, Muslims and heretics. This is what the Catholic bishop Pompeo Sarnelli argued in 1710 in his commentary on the Greek fragments of the Book of the Watchers; see Chapter 4 (Boccaccini) in this volume.

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Chapter 3

Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, Enoch, and Hermetism Giulio Busi After almost thirty years of investigating Giovanni Pico’s thought, I have learned to proceed with caution, as you do when you enter an unpredictable place, in a labyrinth where it is very easy to lose your bearings. The texts of Pico are full of surprises. Sometimes we start from a sentence, which seems simple, or even from a single word, and we find ourselves very soon surrounded by a forest of sources, from which it is difficult to draw a complete sense. It would be a mistake to underestimate the erudition of the Count of Mirandola, and to think that you have understood him, after consulting only a few books. If the richness of the readings of this prodigious author leaves us astonished, trickier still is the fragmentary character of the Conclusiones, the great masterpiece by the 23-year-old Pico. The 900 Theses had been conceived as a written trace only, and had to be discussed, enriched and deepened in public debate, which, as is known, was then forbidden by Pope Innocent VIII. It is a risky exercise to base oneself on these narrow and enigmatic phrases to reconstruct a complex philosophical and theological thought, and those who undertake it are doomed to error and forcing meaning upon the text. Pico picks up, records, notes. And he proposes, with extraordinary acuity, affirmations that sometimes seem to have been made more to amaze the reader than to found an orderly and exhaustive theory. Yet, the long years I spent with the bad boy from Mirandola convinced me that Pico didn’t just want épater le bourgeois. His is a particular heuristic method, which compares sources of different origin, makes them cut off from each other, in search of greater harmony. Pico’s intelligence feeds on contrasts. It is true that he seeks the harmony of the most varied doctrines. In order to achieve this harmony, however, it passes through oppositions and tensions. It is worth rereading Pico’s profession of faith in the accumulation of quotations, in the maximum expansion of sources: As for myself, however, I have resolved—in order not to swear by the words of another—to pore over all masters of philosophy, to examine every page, and to become acquainted with all schools […] For it was a

© Giulio Busi, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_005

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rule observed by all the ancients in studying every kind of writer never to pass over any commentaries they were able to read, and this is especially true for Aristotle, who for this reason was called by Plato ναγνώστης; that is, “the reader.”1 This premise, which calls for prudence, seems to me indispensable also for dealing with the theme of Enoch and the hermetism of Giovanni Pico. Apparently simple is, in fact, the task of those who want to talk about the presence of Enoch in the texts of the Count of Mirandola. The passages in which we meet the antediluvian patriarch are few, and they are counted on the fingers of one hand. Pico’s relationship with the hermetic tradition is much broader. But the intersection of the two subjects, the symbolism of Enoch and the hermetic context, allow, always at first sight, to keep the situation in hand. We will see that it is a false impression. It is true that Pico’s Enoch is tied to a few sentences, but if we try to unravel the skein, and we go in search of the sources of inspiration of those few quotations, we discover a very varied intellectual world, in which Jewish mysticism, Greek philosophy, and Muslim tradition intertwine, converge, and reject each other. We could even say that Enoch can lead us as a guide to discover textual echoes at first glance unsuspected. We will try to use this ancient protagonist of mysteries as a companion in an intellectual adventure on which there is still much to write about. First of all, let’s see the steps of the Pichian corpus in which Enoch is remembered together with his old friend and celestial adventurer, the enigmatic Metatron.



The first text we encounter, written probably in the summer of 1486, is the Commentary on a Canzone by Girolamo Benivieni. A work halfway between literary criticism and philosophy, the Commentary sets out, in some detail, Pico’s particular Platonism. Among other things, Pico expresses himself in the Commentary in a rather polemical way towards Marsilio Ficino. Pico had 1 [Giovanni] Pico della Mirandola, Oration on the Dignity of Man: A New Translation and Commentary, ed. F. Borghesi, M. Papio, M. Riva (Cambridge, 2012) 200–3, nos. 180 and 183: “At ego ita me institui, ut, in nullius verba iuratus, me per omnes philosophiae magistros funderem, omnes scedas excuterem, omnes familias agnoscerem […] Fuit enim cum ab antiquis omnibus hoc observatum, ut, omne scriptorum genus evolventes, nullas quas possent commentationes illectas preterirent, tum maxime ab Aristotele, qui eam ob causam ναγνώστς, idest “lector,” a Platone nuncupabatur.”

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arrived in Florence less than two years earlier, in September 1484, precisely to follow closely the teaching of Ficino, who was then considered the most prestigious exponent of the Medici circle. Soon, however, the young and impatient Pico had begun to criticize “Marsilio,” attributing to him errors of interpretation of Plato’s texts, even though Ficino had fully translated and commented in depth on these texts. This is the passage we are interested in: Since  … the rational faculty is peculiar to man, but in his intellectual faculty he corresponds to the angels, a man who functions only in his intellect no longer lives with a human life, but with an angelic life. He becomes dead to the sensible world, and is reborn to a more perfect life in the intelligible world. Motion and function are signs of life; the loss of them is a sign of death. Thus when no human function can be seen in a man, it is truly dead with respect to human existence. If he passes from human existence to intellectual existence, he is by that death transformed into an angel. This is what the statement of the Cabalist wise men must mean when they say that Enoch was transformed into Metatron, the angel of divinity, or in general, that any other man is transformed into an angel.2 This passage corresponds to another text, which appears in the so-called Oration on the Dignity of Man, which Pico composed in the autumn of the same year 1486, and then reworked later. As is well known, the Oration, which appeared only posthumously, was conceived as the opening speech of the public debate, which in Pico’s intention should have been held in Rome, in the presence of Pope Innocent VIII and the Cardinals, to discuss the themes outlined in the Conclusiones. The Oration is probably the best known and most important humanistic text of the second half of the fifteenth century, a true manifesto of Renaissance anthropology: 2 Giovanni Pico della Mirandola, Commentary on a Canzone by Benivieni, trans. S. Jayne (New York, 1984) 147 (Detailed Commentary, Fourth Stanza): “E perché […] la parte razionale è propria dell’uomo e per la intellettuale con gli angeli comunica, questo tale non più di umana vita ma di angelica vive e, morto nel mondo sensibile, nello intelligibile rinasce a più perfetta vita. El moto e la operazione è segno di vita, la privazione di questi è segno di morte. Dunque quando nell’uomo niuna umana operazione appare è veramente morto quanto all’essere umano e, se da quello passa all’essere intellettuale, è per tale morte di uomo in angelo trasformato; nè altrimenti el detto si debbe intendere de’ sapienti cabbalisti quando o Enoch in Matatron, angelo della divinità, o universalmente alcuno altro uomo in angelo dicono trasformarsi.”

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The Father infused in man, at his birth, every sort of seed and all sprouts of every kind of life. These seeds will grow and bear fruit in each man who sows them. If he cultivates his vegetative seeds, he will become a plant. If he cultivates his sensitive seeds, he will become a brute animal. If he cultivates his rational seeds, he will become a heavenly being. If he cultivates his intellectual seeds, he will be an angel and a son of God. And if he—being dissatisfied with the lot assigned to any other creature—gathers himself into the center of his own unity, thus becoming a single spirit with God in the solitary darkness of the Father, he, who had been placed above all things, will become superior to all things. Who will not wonder at this chameleon of ours? Or rather, who will admire any other being more? Not without reason, Asclepius the Athenian said that man was represented in the secret rites by Proteus because of his changing and metamorphous nature. Hence the metamorphoses renowned among the Jews and the Pythagoreans. Indeed, even the most secret Hebrew theology at one time transforms holy Enoch into an angel of divinity, whom they call Metatron, and at other times it reshapes other men into other spirits. According to Pythagoreans, wicked men are deformed into brutes and, if Empedocles is to be believed, into plants as well.3 As you can see, both in the Commentary and in the Oration, Pico focuses on the link between Enoch and Metatron. The transformation of the patriarch into an angel is a well-established element in Hebrew literature, largely attested in medieval Jewish mysticism as well.4 Pico’s direct source has been identified with certainty by Giacomo Corazzol, who has rightly called into question a passage from the Commentary on the Torah by the Italian kabbalist Menahem 3 Pico della Mirandola, Oration on the Dignity of Man, 120–27, nos. 27–35: “Nascenti homini omnifaria semina et omnigenae vitae germina indidit Pater. Quae quisque excoluerit, illa adolescent, et fructus suos ferent in illo. Si vegetalia, planta fiet; si sensualia, obrutescet; si rationalia, caeleste evadet animal; si intellectualia, angelus erit et Dei filius. Et si, nulla creaturarum sorte contentus, in unitatis centrum suae se receperit, unus cum Deo spiritus factus, in solitaria Patris caligine, qui est super omnia constitutus omnibus antestabit. Quis hunc nostrum chamaeleonta non admiretur? Aut omnino quis aliud quicquam admiretur magis? Quem non immerito Asclepius Atheniensis, versipellis huius et se ipsam transformantis naturae argumento, per Protheum in mysteriis significari dixit. Hinc illae apud Hebreos et Pythagoricos methamorphoses celebratae. Nam et Hebreorum theologia secretior nunc Enoch sanctum in angelum divinitatis, quem vocant, nunc in alia alios numina reformant; et Pythagorici scelestos homines et in bruta deformant et, si Empedocli creditur, etiam in plantas.” 4 See Magid in this volume.

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Recanati. Pico had the Commentary translated from Hebrew into Latin by Flavius Mithridates, and made extensive use of it in the Conclusiones, as Chaim Wirszubski demonstrated.5 Here is Recanati’s text: Similarly, our teachers of blessed memory have said: “In the world to come, blessed be He, make to the righteous wings with which they fly over the waters” [b. Sanhedrin 92b]. Interpretation of “wings”: the soul is clothed with the angelic nature [cf. Bereshit Rabbah 50:2] in the same way as it is clothed with bodily limbs; the wings, however, do not fail with the disappearance of the elements. What they mean to say is that Enoch stripped himself of his bodily element and clothed himself with the spiritual element, and that the Lord, be He exalted and blessed, crowned him with the vigor of his procession, He who performs wonders in the camps.6 It was Recanati who made the fundamental step here, attributing angelic nature to the blessed in the world to come. Enoch, who “strips himself of the body element,” is only a famous example of this transformation and this is what interests the Count of Mirandola, who paraphrases the kabbalistic cue offered him by Recanati’s Commentary. At the heart of Pico’s exegesis is the concept of metamorphosis, which plays such an important role in Pico’s Oration and anthropology as a whole. For Pico, man is in fact a vehicle for countless metamorphoses, so much so that he can be represented with the image of the chameleon. The Enochic symbolism means, in Pico, a bottom-up process, from earth to heaven, and Metatron is the arrival station, angelic and immaterial, of this metamorphosis that leads man to approach the sphere of the divine. Different, and more philosophical, is the passage of the Conclusiones where Pico speaks of “matatron:” I believe that the active intellect that is illuminating only in Themistius is the same as Metatron in the Cabala.7 Conclusiones 19.2

5 C. Wirszubski, Pico della Mirandola’s Encounter with Jewish Mysticism (Cambridge, MA, 1989). 6 Menahem Recanati, Perush ʿal ha-Torah, ed. A. Gros, vol. 1: Be-reʾshit (Tel Aviv 2003) 147. Cf. G. Corazzol, “Le fondi “caldaiche” dell’Oratio: Indagine sui presupposti cabbalistici della concezione pichiana dell’uomo,” Accademia 15 (2013) 9–62, esp. 28–29. 7 S.A. Farmer, Syncretism in the West: Pico’s 900 Theses (1486), The Evolution of Traditional Religious and Philosophical Systems (MRTS; Tempe, AZ, 1998) 294–95 (“Intellectus agens illuminans tantum credo sit illud apud Themistium quod est matatron in cabala”).

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We have here a procedure typical of Pichian hermetism. Two different cultural spheres—the Commentary on Aristotle’s De Anima of Themistius and the kabbalistic tradition are compared, here thanks to a credo, “I believe,” that establishes a conceptual correspondence. It is advisable to open the commentary of Themistius, author of the fourth century, to better understand the background of the Pichian comparison: And as light when added to potential vision and potential colors produces both actual vision [99] and actual colors, so too this actual intellect advances the potential intellect, and not only makes it actual intellect but also equips its potential objects of thought as actual objects of thought. These are the enmattered forms, i.e., the universal thoughts assembled from particular objects of perception. Up to this point the potential intellect is unable to distinguish between them, or make transitions between distinct thoughts, or combine and divide them. Instead, like a treasury of thoughts, or indeed like matter, it deposits the imprints from perception and imagination by means of memory. But when the productive intellect encounters it and takes over this “matter” of thoughts, the potential intellect becomes one with it, and becomes able to make transitions, and to combine and divide thoughts, and to observe thoughts from [the perspective of] one another … THEMISTIUS, Commentary on Aristotle’s De Anima 98.35 (430a, ll. 5–17)

Yet the intellect that illuminates primarily is one, while those that are illuminated and that are illuminate, like light, more than one. For while the sun is one, you could speak of light as in some way divided into cases of vision. That is why Aristotle makes his comparison not with the sun but with light, whereas Plato’s is with the sun; i.e., he makes it analogous to the Good.8 THEMISTIUS, Commentary on Aristotle’s De Anima 103.32

The relationship between Metatron and the active intellect, recalled by Pico, also appears in Hebrew kabbalistic texts, and in particular in Abraham Abulafia, as has already been widely reported.9 Raphael Ebgi drew attention 8 F.M. Schroeder and R.B. Todd, Two Greek Aristotelian Commentators on the Intellect: The De Intellectu Attributed to Alexander of Aphrodisias and Themistius’ Paraphrase of Aristotle De Anima 3.4–8 (Toronto, 1990) 89, 104. 9 See, e.g., C. Wirszubski, Pico’s Encounter, 231, who transcribes the passage on Metatron from the Latin version of Abulafia’s Sitre Torah, made by Flavius Mithridates for Pico (De Secretis Legis, MS Vat. Ebr. 190, fols. 377r–378v).

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to the theory expressed by Themistius,10 which we have summarized here in its essential characters. And in fact, reading Themistius we can better appreciate the method of Pico. The passage from the intellectual act in power to that in action is made possible, in Themistius, by the enlightenment offered by the active intellect. And this corresponds exactly, mutatis mutandis, to the function of Metatron in Abulafia, although the latter is not described in logicalphilosophical terms, but according to linguistic operations. In Abulafia, the transition from intellectual power to actual knowledge takes place through alphabetical permutations and combinations of numerical values of letters and words: For this reason, it will be necessary for me to mention that the res, which guides our intellect from potentiality to actuality, is the intellect that is separated from any material, and which can be expressed in many ways in our language (using numerical equivalents for the letters). Indeed, it is said hu saro shel ha-ʿolam, or rather, “this is the beginning of the world,” and “Metatron, prince of the countenances,” in Hebrew Metatron sar ha-panim; this latter expression has the same numerical value as the former.11 Both the angelic metamorphosis of Enoch in Metatron and the function of the latter as the active intellect, go in a direction that we might call bottom up, that is, they increase man’s possibilities, making him climb the ladder that leads from corporeality to the incorporeal and luminous world of eternal knowledge. These antecedents are indispensable for us to face the last Pichian text, which according to Wirszubski, followed in this by almost all scholars, refers to Metatron. This is one of the kabbalistic conclusions according to his own doctrine, which Pico proposes in the second part of his 900 Theses: That which among the Cabalists is called [.] is without doubt that which is called Pallas by Orpheus, the paternal mind by Zoroaster, the son of God by Mercury, wisdom by Pythagoras, the intelligible sphere by Parmenides.12 900 Theses, 11>10

10 R. Ebgi, “Kabbalah and Philosophy: The Conclusiones of Giovanni Pico della Mirandola,” in The Renaissance Speaks Hebrew, ed. G. Busi and S. Greco (Cinisello Balsamo, 2019) 196–205, esp. 203. 11 Abulafia’s Sitre Torah, translated from the Latin text transcribed by Wirszubski, Pico’s Encounter, 231. 12 Farmer, Syncretism in the West, 524–25 (“Illud quod apud Cabalistas dicitur [.] illud est sine dubio quod ab Orpheo Pallas, a Zoroastre paterna mens, a Mercurio dei filius, a -

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In the text of the incunabulum of the Conclusiones, the space for Hebrew is left empty, and obviously had to be integrated by hand. Wirszubski argued that this space should be filled with the Hebrew word Metatron. In fact, the Christian kabbalist Francesco Giorgio (i.e. Zorzi) had already suggested, at the beginning of the sixteenth century, that the Hebrew word to be inserted here was hokmah, the name of the second sefirah.13 But Wirszubski rejects this suggestion on the basis of Christological considerations: If you assume that the omitted word is hokmah, you assume eo ipso that it is hokmah as it is understood in the symbolic language of Kabbala, that is to say hokmah as the name of the second sefirah. Pico’s symbolic interpretations of John 8:56, 58, 25 in his thirty-seventh, forty-second, and thirty-ninth Kabbalistic theses leave no room for doubt that in his opinion Sapientia and Principium are Jesus Christ in the same way that Pietas is the Patriarch Abraham. Hence, if one identifies the Kabbalistic Sapientia with the Orphic Pallas, the Hermetic dei filius, the Zoroastrian paternal mens, and the Pythagorean sapientia, which inevitably identifies the symbolic images of the Ancient Theology of the Gentiles with Jesus Christ. But Pico, in his Comment, warns against the identification of the Hermetic I am of God with the Christian Son of God. We are therefore faced with a dilemma: either Pico is inconsistent or Francesco Giorgio is out of tune with Pico.14 As Ebgi has already observed,15 Wirszubski actually falls into a blatant error. In an attempt to overcome the Franciscan Giorgio in Christian theology, he attributes to Pico an incompatible mental structure for a Christian believer like our Count of Mirandola. Pico was well aware that Christ, as God, could not identify with any sefirah. Unlike the Jewish Messiah, man and therefore limited and finite in his attributes, Christ transcends the sefirotic world. If he identifies from time to time with an emanation degree, it is only temporarily, and for a particular aspect of his qualities. It is therefore not possible at this point to interpret Pico’s Christian Kabbalah according to analogies valid for Jewish Pythagora sapientia, a Parmenide sphera intelligibilis nominatur.” Following Wirszubski, Farmer inserts here the word Metatron in Hebrew characters). 13 Declarationes Conclusionum Cabalisticarum Jo: Pici Mirandulani a reverendo quondam patre et celeberrimo doctore et theologo maximo Francisco Georgio Veneto Minorita aeditae anno Domini MDXXXIX, Jewish National and Hebrew University Library, MS Yah. Var. 24, folio 57, quoted by Wirszubski, Pico’s Encounter, 198–99. 14 Wirszubski, Pico’s Encounter, 199. 15 R. Ebgi, Pallade, Hokmah, in G. Busi and R. Ebgi, Giovanni Pico della Mirandola: Mito, magia, qabbalah (Turin, 2014) 241–52, esp. 252. -

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mysticism. Wirszubski’s “Christological” argument must therefore be left aside. Rather, if we examine the Commentary to a Canzone, where Pico dwells on the same correspondences that we find in the “mysterious” conclusio, we see that hokmah is the correct equivalent, which corresponds to Pallas and the other definitions of what Pico also calls “first mind.” It is worth mentioning a text by Ficino, in which Pico’s theories are clearly anticipated: Orpheus called this [image full of God and full of exemplary world] Pallas, born from the skull of Jupiter alone; Plato called her the son of God, in his letter to Hermia, while in the Epinomide calls it “logos,” that is reason and word, stating that “the Logos, the most divine of all things, has adorned his visible world.” Hermes Trismegistus often mentions both the true son of God to be the Spirit. Zoroaster also attributes to God an intellectual offspring. These men spoke according to their possibilities, and with the help of God.16 And this is the relevant text by Pico himself: The Platonists and the ancient philosophers Hermes Trismegistus and Zoroaster call this first creature sometimes “son of God,” sometimes “Wisdom,” sometimes “Mind,” and sometimes “Divine Reason,” which some even interpret as “the word.” But everyone should be careful not to suppose that this “word” is the “Word” that our theologians call the “Son of God.” For what we mean by “the Son” is of one and the same essence as the Father, is equal to him in everything, and, lastly, is a creator and a creature; whereas what the Platonists call “the son of God” must be identified with the first and noblest angel created by God.17 If we take in hand the Commentary of Themistius, we realize that the active intellect is carefully distanced from the first god, and rather represents “a 16 Marsilio Ficino, De christiana religione, XXVIII, in Ficino, Opera omnia (Basel, 1576) 48, quoted by Ebgi, Pallade, Hokmah, 249. 17 Commentary on a Canzone, 81, Commento, I. 5: “Questa prima creatura, da’ Platonici e da antiqui filosofi Mercurio Trimegisto e Zoroastre è chiamata ora figliuolo di Dio, ora sapienzia, ora mente, ora ragione divina, il che alcuni interpretono ancora Verbo. Ed abbi ciascuno diligente avvertenzia di non intendere che questo sia quello che da’ nostri Teologi è detto figliuolo di Dio, perchè noi intendiamo per il figliuolo una medesima essenzia col padre, a lui in ogni cosa equale, creatore finalmente e non creatura, ma debbesi comparare quello che e’ Platonici chiamano figliuolo di Dio al primo e più nobile angelo da Dio creato.”

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suprahuman noetic realm that acts as the guarantor of human reasoning.”18 Pico chooses his own examples and draws the conceptual parallels between different traditions with great accuracy. Pallas, or Wisdom, has a higher status than that of Metatron/Active Intellect. It is no coincidence that in kabbalistic symbolism, wisdom corresponds to the second sefirah from above, while Metatron refers to the tenth and last sefirah, malkhut, or even to the sublunar world that is placed below it. I therefore believe that Wirszubski’s hypothesis should be rejected, although it was followed by many subsequent scholars. Enoch/Metatron is in Pico a trait of union between human and divine, but it comes from below, from the human sphere, and only with difficulty, and beyond worldly life, it manages to rise to the top. On the contrary, Pallas/Wisdom comes down from above, from the rarefied heaven of primeval emanation, where everything is divine, cold and dazzling light. The fire and the dangers to which the old Enoch is accustomed are far away, far below. It is evident that we are here in front of a top-down structure, which serves to draw the passage of divine force from top to bottom. The celestial domain in which Pallas moves is not the right spot for Enoch/Metatron. They would be out of place, because this is not a process of ascent, but of descent. Moreover, the place established for the active intellect in the Muslim philosophical tradition, which has made a fundamental contribution to this (and for Metatron in the kabbalistic tradition) is the lowest sphere of emanation, the one that oversees the sublunar world. Our short trip with Enoch and Metatron stops here. We left for a short excursion, and we soon found ourselves embarrassed about the way forward. But if we read the texts carefully, Pico takes us to our destination. Or at least, it shows us the force fields according to which he organizes the symbolic language. Enoch and Metatron are part of a mythologem of ascent, very useful to calibrate the degrees of humanistic anthropology. A providential gift from the Jewish tradition, for the Count of Mirandola, the most metamorphic of the geniuses of the Italian Renaissance. 18

Schroeder and Todd, Two Greek Aristotelian Commentators on the Intellect, 38.

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Chapter 4

Earliest Commentaries on 1 Enoch before Laurence Pompeo Sarnelli (1710) and Daniele Manin (1820) Gabriele Boccaccini In 1821 Richard Laurence’s The Book of Enoch, the Prophet was a landmark in Enochic Studies as the first complete translation (in English) of the Ethiopic text of 1 Enoch, based on a manuscript brought back directly from Abyssinia to Oxford by the Scottish explorer James Bruce in 1774.1 However, Laurence’s was not the first work or commentary specifically and exclusively devoted to the Book of Enoch in Europe.2 As the studies of John C. Reeves and Annette Yoshiko Reed have demonstrated, the legacy of Enoch from Late Antiquity to the Middle Ages was particularly rich in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.3 After the Syncellus fragments were published by Joseph Justus Scaliger in 1606 and Jacques Goar in 1652,4 European scholars, notably, Thomas Bang in 1657, Scipione Sgambati in 1703, and Johann Albert Fabricius in 1713, collected all extant quotations from the “lost” book.5 They did so in the context of larger collections that aimed to bring together all sayings attributed to the ancient patriarchs in Jewish sources and the Church Fathers. The recovered portions of the Book of the Watchers were considered long enough to support the composition of two full commentaries, both written in Italian, by Pompeo Sarnelli in 1710 and Daniele Manin in 1820, respectively. These works occupy a unique place in the reception history of Enoch traditions in early modern Europe. Although overshadowed and superseded by the publication of Laurence’s commentary, they remain a testament to two 1 Laurence, Book of Enoch. On Bruce, see Erho and Hessayon in this volume. 2 For a treatment of Ethiopic commentaries on 1 Enoch, see Lee in this volume. 3 Reeves/Reed, Enoch; see also Reed in this volume; M. Himmelfarb, “A Report of Enoch in Rabbinic Literature,” SBLSP 13 (1978) 259–69; J. VanderKam, “1 Enoch, Enochic Motifs, and Enoch in Early Christian Literature,” in The Jewish Apocalyptic Heritage in Early Christianity, ed. J. VanderKam and W. Adler (Assen, 1996) 33–101. 4 Scaliger, Theusaurus temporum; Jacques Goar, Georgii Monachi Chronographia (Paris, 1652). 5 T. Bang, Coelum Orientis et prisci mundi triade (Copenhagen, 1657); S. Sgambati, Archivorum veteris testament (Naples, 1703); Fabricius, Codex pseudepigraphus VT, vol. 1. See A. Hessayon, “Og King of Bashan, Enoch and the Books of Enoch: Extra-Canonical Texts and Interpretation of Genesis 6:1–4,” in Scripture and Scholarship in Early Modern England, ed. A. Hessayon and N. Keene (Aldershot, 2006) 1–40.

© Gabriele Boccaccini, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_006

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centuries of European scholarship on 1 Enoch based on the available Greek, Latin, and Hebrew sources before the recovery of the Ethiopic text.6 1

The “First” Enoch Commentary (Pompeo Sarnelli, 1710)

Pompeo Sarnelli7 wrote his commentary on the Book of the Watchers (“Libro degli Egregori”) in 1710,8 at age 60, when he was Bishop of Bisceglie, Apulia. Written in Italian, it was the first commentary specifically and exclusively devoted to the apocryphal text. The work consists of 25 brief chapters, preceded by a prologue and a chronological timetable of the events. Sarnelli followed the chronology of the Vulgate, according to which the birth of Enoch happened in the year 622; he was taken to heaven in 987; and the fall of the angels occurred in the year 1170 at the time of Yared, who died in 1422, 234 years before the Flood of 1656. Almost every chapter focuses on a fragmentary passage from the Greek book of Enoch, quoted in Latin and translated by the author into Italian. 1.1 Synopsis Prologue: “Enoch  … the seventh Patriarch of humankind  … was not only a writer and a prophet, but also public Teacher of the world, and under him 6 Until the beginning of the twenty-first century, interest in the reception history of Enoch traditions in early modern Europe was limited to a few publications, notably, N. Schmidt, “Traces of Early Acquaintance in Europe with the Book of Enoch,” JAOS 42 (1922) 44–52; G. McColley, “The Book of Enoch and Paradise Lost,” HTR 31 (1938) 21–39; A. Williams, “Milton and the Book of Enoch: An Alternative Hypothesis,” HTR 33 (1940) 291–99. Then came the first comprehensive surveys by Ariel Hessayon in 2006 (“Og King of Bashan”) and by Gabriele Boccaccini in 2019 (“Enochic Traditions,” in Guide to Early Jewish Texts, 383–416). 7 Pompeo Sarnelli was born on 16 January 1649 at Polignano a Mare near Bari in Apulia. As with many other intellectually talented youngsters born in poor households, at the age of 14 his strong interest in his studies caused him to flee his home to Naples, where he entered the seminary. He was ordained a priest on 14 March 1672. Afterwards he was awarded the title of Protonotario Apostolico and aggregated to the Accademia degli “Spensierati” of Rossano. His skills attracted the attention of Cardinal Pietro Francesco Maria Orsini (then Archbishop of Manfredonia and future Pope Benedict XIII), who put him under his patronage. Sarnelli followed Card. Orsini when the latter moved first to the dioceses of Cesena and then to Benevento. There, on 5 June 1688, Sarnelli barely survived the destructions of an earthquake. In 1692 Orsini recommended Sarnelli’s nomination as Bishop of Bisceglie in Apulia, where he distinguished himself for pastoral zeal and as the author of numerous books on ecclesiastical history, including the first commentary on the Book of Enoch published at Venice in 1710. Sarnelli died on 7 July 1724 in Bisceglie, two months after his Mentor Card. Orsini became Pope. 8 Pompeo Sarnelli, Annotazioni sopra il libro degli Egregori del s. profeta Henoch (Venice, 1710).

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the study of wisdom began to flourish among men.”9 Both Scriptures and the Church Fathers exalt the holiness of Enoch. He authored four “books: (a) the Prophecy; (b) the Astronomy, (c) the History, and (d) the Book of the Watchers.”10 The first three books, mentioned in ancient sources, are now lost—claims Sarnelli—except for the quotation in the Epistle of Jude, as happened with the “canonical” books mentioned in the Book of Kings. We have fragments only of the Book of the Watchers, which is not history but rather revelation, as Enoch narrated in 987 events that would happen only 183 years after, in the year 1170. There is no falsehood in what we know from the Books of Enoch. It was “the Greeks [who] took the Sacred Scriptures into their fables, transforming Moses into Minoe, the Giants into Titans, Samson into Hercules, the flood of Moses into that of Ogige, the chariot of Elijah into the chariot of the Sun, and even Jehovah himself in Jupiter. They did the same with the story of the rapture of Enoch, transforming it into that of Ganymede, kidnapped by Jupiter.”11 Enoch was a righteous man, “his life was so pious and holy … completely in conformity with the divine will.”12 Enoch is not only a figure of the past, however: he “lives now with Elijah in the Earthly Paradise … and before the Last Judgment … he will come back to preach to his sons (that is, all humans), and will be killed … by the Antichrist but … risen from the dead after three days and half will ascend [to heaven] in glory.”13 He is mentioned with Elijah “in the prayers for the dying, which are at the end of the Roman Breviary.”14 Chapter 1: “The word Egregori is explained.”15—The term Egregori [=Watchers] (Lat. Vigiles) is “an appropriate name for the Angelic Spirits, both good and 9 10 11

12 13

14 15

“Henoch … il settimo Patriarca del genere humano … fù non solo Scrittore e Profeta, ma pubblico Maestro del mondo, e lo studio della sapienza sotto di lui cominciò à fiorire tra gli huomini” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 33–34). “Scrisse Henoch … i Libri seguenti: I. la Profezia. II. L’Astronomia, III. L’Istoria, IV. Il Libro degli Egregori” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 36). “I Greci … trasportarono le Sacre Scritture nelle favole loro: trasformando Mosè in Minoe, i Giganti in Titani, Sansone in Ercole, il diluvio di Mosè in quello di Ogige, il carro d’Elia nella carrozza del Sole, ed anche lo stesso Jehova in Giove: fecero il medesimo della Storia del rapimento di Henoch, trasformandolo in quella di Ganimede, rapito da Giove” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 42). “[La sua] vita [era] così pia, e santa  … all’intutto conforme al Divino volere” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 43). “Vive adunque Henoch con Elia nel Terrestre Paradiso  … ed egli avanti al giudizio Universale  … tornerà à predicare à tutti i suoi figliuoli, cioè à tutti gli huomini; e sarà ucciso  … dall’Anticristo ma  … dopo trè dì, e mezzo, risuscitato, sara assunto in gloria” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 43–44). “Nelle preci per gli Agonizanti, che sono in fine del Breviario Romano” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 44). “Cap. I—Si spiega la Parola Egregori” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 46).

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evil, since they do not need to refresh themselves with sleep.”16 Angels can be either good or evil, the same term applies to both. The Book of the Watchers “deals with the evil done by the evil angels, and with the punishment, which they received from the good angels.”17 Chapter 2: “What the sin of the evil angels was.”18—“The evil angels sinned out of pride … they did not want to be subject to God, but they desired independence from God’s dominion.”19 It was not sexual desire for women; they are incapable of it, since their “spiritual nature cannot be affected by things that belongs to the body … The angels do not delight in carnal obscenities, but in everything that comes from envy.”20 Chapter 3 (Enoch fragment): “Conspiracy of two hundred evil Watchers to ruin the world.”21—Two hundred demons descended on Mount Hermon. “Incorporeal natures are not affected by carnal desires … but demons instigate men to those … The purpose of the demons was to introduce so much corruption into the world that it would go to ruin; as it happened.”22 Chapter 4 (Enoch fragment): “The names of the Princes of the evil Watchers are reported.”23—The names of the 20 evil angelic Princes, led by Semexa, are also attested in the Zohar, mentioned by Sgambati. “Two things it demonstrates; one is that the book of Enoch is very ancient; the other is that those who believed that the Authors of corruption were good angels are mistaken, as Josephus … Philo … [and] Justin held.”24 The narrative confirms the Christian

16 “Nome conveniente agli Angelici Spiriti, perche non hanno bisogno di ristorarsi col sonno” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 46). 17 “Il Libro degli Egregori … tratta del male operato dagli Angeli cattivi, e del gastigo, che dagli Angeli buoni ricevettero” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 49). 18 “Cap. II—Quale fosse il peccato degli angeli prevaricatori” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 49). 19 “Il peccato adunque degli Angeli reprobi fù la superbia … non vollero essere soggetti à Dio, ma appetirono indipendenza dall’imperio di lui” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 49, 51). 20 “La natura spirituale non può essere affetta a’ beni, che sono propri del corpo … Gli angeli non si dilettanto delle oscenità carnali, ma tutto ciò che proviene dall’invidia” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 52–53). 21 “Cap. III—Congiura di ducento cattivi Egregori per rovinare il Mondo” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 54). 22 “Le Nature incorporee non sono affette da volontà carnali … però i demonij istigano à quelle gli huomini … Il fine de’ demonij era introdurre tanta corruzione nel mondo, che andasse in ruina; come avvenne” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 55–56). 23 “Cap. IV—Si rapportano i nomi de’ Principi de’ Cattivi Egregori” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 59). 24 “Due cose dimostra; una che il libro di Henoch, sia antichissimo; l’altra è che vanno errati quelli, che credettero, gli Autori della corruzione essere stati Angeli buoni, come tennero Giosefo … Filone … Giustino” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 63).

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doctrine of the superhuman origin of evil: “we have to fight not against humans but against demons … until the Day of Judgment.”25 Chapter 5 (Enoch fragment): “How the evil Watchers having taken bodily form took wives among the daughters of Cain, and fathered the Giants.”26— Demons can indeed have sexual relations with women and generate monsters. It happened in the past and still happens. For Santelli these are well known facts, supported by many witness accounts. However, since demons cannot produce semen, they use the semen of humans whom they possess. “The child who is born, is not the son of the demon, but of that man, to whom the semen belongs.”27 Giants existed on earth before the descent of the Watchers; they were descendants of Seth. “The demons took their semen to generate giants with the daughters of Cain.”28 Their monstrosity and extraordinary size “must be attributed to the imagination [of women], it is not decided by the seed of man.”29 Chapter 6: “On the great Giants, the Nephilim, and the Eliud.”30—“The giants … called Raphaim … Nephilim … Eliud … are nothing but huge, deformed, wild, proud, and violent bodies, who would also like to tear the sky with their hands.”31 Groups of Giants inhabited the earth in antiquity. Not all Giants were evil. The Scriptures mention Giants who lived after the Flood, and skeletons of Giants have been found even in contemporary times. Some Giants were righteous and beloved by God, such as St. Christopher, “a giant not only in spirit and virtue, but also in size according to Jan Luis Vives who says he venerated a tooth of St. Christopher in the Cathedral of Valencia, which was bigger than a fist.”32 25 “Non habbiamo noi a combattere con huomini, ma co’ demoni … fino al dì del Giudizio” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 65). 26 “Cap. V—Come i cattivi Egregori ne’ corpi assunti presero Mogli delle Figliuole di Caino, e generarono i Giganti” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 66). 27 “Il figliuolo che nasce, non è figliuolo del demonio; ma di quell’huomo, di cui è il seme” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 70). 28 “Col seme di questi i demonj generarono Giganti colle figliuole di Caino” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 72). 29 “De’ attribuirsi alla fantasia [delle donne], non al seme deciso dall’huomo” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 73). 30 “Cap. VI—De’ Giganti grandi, de i Nephilim, e degli Eliud” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 74). 31 “I Giganti—che si chiamano Raphaim  … Nephilim  … Eliud—altro non sono che corpi smisurati, deformi, selvaggi, superbi, e violenti, che vorrebbero anche squarciare il cielo colle mani” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 76). 32 “Che Gigante non solo di animo, e di virtù, ma anche di mole fosse San Cristoforo, lo afferma Ludovico Vives, dicendo haver venerato nel Duomo di Valenza un dente di San Cristoforo, ch’era maggiore di un pugno” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 80). Ludovico Vives

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Chapter 7 (Enoch fragment): “How Azazel invented the making of weapons, ornaments and women’s makeup.”33—“As the good arts and useful sciences were first invented by holy men with the ministry of good angels  … so evil men invented the evil arts with the help of demons.”34 The Fallen Angels first taught the daughters of Cain how to seduce the holy sons of Seth. “To think that demons love women is foolishness, because spirits do not delight in carnal things; but the whole plan was for the daughters of Cain to be so polished and embellished, adorned with silver, gold, and gems, that the sons of Seth, who were righteous, devoted to God and wise, would fall.”35 “Humankind became corrupted” not because demons and women mingled but because “the seeds of Seth and Cain were mixed.”36 Chapter 8 (Enoch fragment): “The other evil Watchers teach the other evil Arts.”37—The angels taught any sort of evil arts to humans. The Flood did not erase the evil teachings as they were handed down by Cham. “Nor was the deluge enough to drown so many evil arts, since that bad inheritance remained in Cham; who, if it is true that he is the same as Zoroaster  … was the first Alchemist … the first Magician and sorcerer; he invented idolatry.”38 Chapter 9 (Enoch fragment): “On the good Watchers, namely, the Archangels Michael, Gabriel, Raphael, Uriel.”39—Following the teachings of St. Thomas, Sarnelli discusses the nature of the angels, who are “spirits not souls.”40 The good Watchers (Michael, Gabriel, Raphael and Uriel) fought against the evil ones. God knows everything but it is the angels’ job to report to God, according

33 34 35

36 37 38 39 40

(Jan Luis Vives, 1493–1540) was a Spanish scholar and Renaissance humanist, active mostly in the Netherlands. “Cap. VII—Come Azazel inventò il lavoro delle Armi, gli ornamenti, e i belletti delle donne” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 81). “Siccome le buone Arti, e le scienze utili furono primieramente inventate dagli huomini santi col ministerio degli Angeli buoni … così le male arti coll’ajuto de’ demonj gli huomini cattivi inventarono” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 81). “Che le donne piacessero a’ demonj è stoltizia, perche gli spiriti non si dilettano delle cose carnali; ma tutta la macchina fù, acciocche le figliuole di Caino così lisciate, e imbellettate, ornate di argento, oro, e gemme, facessero cadere quelli della prosapie di Seth, ch’erano Giusti, divoti a Dio, e sapienti.” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 85). “Così mescolate le generazioni di Seth, e di Caino … gli abitatori della terra si corruppero” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 85). “Cap. VIII—Gli altri cattivi Egregori insegnano le altre mali Arti” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 86). “Nè bastò il diluvio ad annegare tante male arti, essendo rimasta quella pessima eredità à Cham; il quale, se è vero che sia lo stesso che Zoroastro … fù il primo Alchimista … il primo Mago e prestigiatore; egli inventò l’idolatria” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 96). “Cap. IX—Degli Egregori buoni, cioè degli Arcangeli Michele, Gabriele, Raphaele, Uriele” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 91). “Gli Angeli … sono spiriti, e non Anime” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 94).

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to the established hierarchy and order of the world, “not because God does not see, does not know and does not hear everything, but because God wants the lower things to be governed by the higher ones, according to the order of divine providence.”41 Chapter 10: “On the Archangel Uriel, one of the seven spirits who attend the Throne of God.”42—Only Michael, Gabriel and Raphael are mentioned in the Scriptures. The archangel Uriel (and other angels) are not. The Christian tradition however preserves the name of seven good spirits: Michael, Gabriel, Raphael, Uriel, Sealtiel, Jebudiel, and Barachiel.43 These seven angels are distinctively portrayed in Christian iconography, each with his own attributes. In Palermo there was a Church dedicated to the Seven Spirits, whose priest, Antonio Del Duca, went to Rome in 1527, lobbying for decades for papal authorization of a more formal veneration of the Seven Angelic Princes.44 The vision of the archangel Uriel he experienced in the ruins of the Baths of Diocletian in 1541 led to the place being turned into the Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli. The place was cleansed in 1551 and transformed into a church by Michelangelo and dedicated in 1561. Chapter 11: “How the seven blessed Spirits exercise the seven virtues of Divine Providence, and oppose the seven seductive Spirits, who foment the seven deadly sins which are the opposite of the seven virtues.”45—The seven angels mirror the seven attributes of God, or virtues (that is, “Wisdom, Fortitude, Benevolence, Equity, Patience, Threats, Severity”).46 Opposing the seven good spirits are the seven evil spirits (“Leviathan, Asmodeo, Beelzebub, 41 “Non perche Dio non vede, conosce, e ode il tutto, ma perche vuole che le cose inferiori si reggano per le superiori, secondo l’ordine della divina provvidenza” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 95–96). 42 “Cap X—Dell’Arcangelo Uriele, uno de’ sette spiriti assistenti al Trono di Dio” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 96). 43 On the origins of these traditions in Second Temple Judaism, see C. Berner, “The Four (or Seven) Archangels in the First Book of Enoch and Early Jewish Writings of the Second Temple Period,” in The Concept of Celestial Beings: Origins, Development and Reception, ed. F.V. Reiterer et al. (Berlin, 2006) 395–411. 44 Antonio del Duca (1491–1564) was a Sicilian friar and visionary. His devotion to the “Seven spirits that stand before the Throne of God” led to the construction of the Basilica of St. Mary of the Angels and of the Martyrs, although their veneration never received official recognition by the Vatican; see M. Stanzione and C. Alvino, I sette arcangeli: Storia di un culto cattolico contestato e dimenticato (Milan, 2014). 45 “Cap. XI—“Come i sette beati Spiriti esercitano le sette doti della Divina Providenza, e si oppongono a’ sette Spiriti seduttori, che tentano de’ sette vizj Capitali à quelle opposti” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 104). 46 “La Sapienza, la Fortezza, la Benificenza, l’Equità, la Pazienza, le Minaccie, la Severità” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 104).

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Beelphegor, Baalberith, Astaroth, Mammona”), or seven deadly sins (“pride, sloth, envy, greed, wrath, gluttony, lust”).47 Chapter 12 (Enoch fragment)—“Prayer of the Archangels to God.”48—The good angels side with the righteous and pray to God for them. The power of the demons is not unlimited. “The devil can do nothing against us, indeed not even against the things that are possessed by us, except as permitted by God.”49 Chapter 13 (Enoch fragment): “God decrees the Flood and sends the warning to Noah by means of the Archangel Uriel.”50—God does not talk to humans directly but “all revelations are made through the Angels, as affirms St. Dionysius the Areopagite.”51 God sent Uriel to announce the Flood to Noah and to tell him that “from him the human generation will spread, which will last until the end of the world.”52 Chapter 14 (Enoch fragment): “St. Raphael is sent by God to punish Azazel and to remedy so much corruption.”53—God sent Raphael to bind Azazel. “The binding of the demons is mentioned in the Scriptures” (Book of Tobit, Revelation).54 Raphael is “Medicus Dei” (the doctor from God). All sins are ascribed to Azazel, since “on Judgment Day all sins of demons and humans will be judged.”55 Chapter 15 (Enoch fragment): “St. Gabriel is sent by God for the punishment of the Giants.”56—God sent Gabriel to punish the evil Giants. Of them one could say what “a poor old lady said of the emperor Jovian, very tall but of little 47 “la superbia … l’accidia … l’invidia … l’avarizia … l’ira … la gola … la lussuria” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 105). 48 “Cap. XII—Orazione degli Arcangeli à Dio” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 110). 49 “Il demonio non può contra di noi, anzi nè meno contra le cose, che sono da noi possedute, se non quanto gli è permesso da Dio” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 115). 50 “Cap. XIII—Dio decreta il diluvio, e ne manda l’avviso à Noè per l’Archangelo Uriele” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 117). 51 “Che tutte le rivelazioni si facciano per mezzo degli Angeli l’afferma San Dionigi Areopagita” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 117–18). Dionigi Areopagita (Dionysius the Areopagite) lived in the first century and is mentioned in Acts 17:34. In the fifth/sixth century, the Corpus Dionysianum, a series of writings of a mystical nature, was written under the pseudonym of Dionysius the Areopagite; its author is now known as the Pseudo-Dionysius. 52 “Da lui si farà la propagazione della generazione humana, che durerà fino alla fine del mondo” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 119). 53 “Cap. XIV—S. Raphaele è mandato da Dio à gastigare Azalzele, e rimediare à tanta corruzione” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 119). 54 “Di questo ligamento de demonj ne habbiamo esempi nella Scrittura” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 121). 55 “Nel dì del giudizio Universale si discuteranno tutti i peccati de’ Demonj, e degli huomini” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 123). 56 “Cap. XV—“San Gabriele è mandato da Dio per lo castigo de’ Giganti” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 124).

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intelligence: how much is the height so much is the foolishness.”57 The life of humans was limited to 500 years. This does not contradict Gen 6:3 since the 120 years there mentioned refer to the time of repentance given to humans before the Flood, not to the length of human life. “After 120 years I will send the Flood and overwhelm the world.”58 Chapter 16 (Enoch fragment): “God sends St. Michael Prince of the heavenly hosts against Semexa, Prince of Delinquents.”59—God sent Michael, “the prince of the heavenly hosts” against Semexa, the Prince of the Fallen angels. Semexa however should not be identified with Lucifer. “His pride did not allow him to stoop to such cowardice. Even the leader of the bandits … thinks he is far above his other comrades.”60 The 70 generations before the Judgment must not be taken literally. The number 70 is symbolic (the Babylonian exile lasted 70 years). Chapter 17 (Enoch fragment): “On the curse of Mount Hermon.”61—Mount Hermon, “where the evil Watchers swore, or rather conspired to commit wickedness to corrupt the whole of humanity,”62 is cursed. The practice of cursing some places for the evil that occurred there is attested by the Scriptures: “David cursed the mountains of Gelboe, where Saul and Jonathan had been killed.”63 Sarnelli sees the natural condition of Mount Hermon as the result of the curse: “This Mount is contiguous to Mount Lebanon, and due to the coldness of the snow is sterile and uncultivated.”64 Chapter 18 (Enoch fragment): “The time of the Flood is determined.”65— “After the decree of the punishment of the evil Watchers, the chastising of the Giants, and the curse of the Mount, the Universal Flood is announced, in which 57 “Di Giovano Imperatore alto assai, e di poca capacità, disse una vecchierella: quanta est longitudo, so est stultitia” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 125). 58 “Passato detto tempo di 120. anni manderò il diluvio, e n’abbisserò il mondo” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 127). 59 “Cap. XVI—“Dio manda S. Michele Principe delle celesti milizie contra Semexa Principe de’ delinquenti” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 128). 60 “Non gli permise la sua superbia abbassarsi à tanta viltà. Così il Capo bandito … ritiene non sò che di grande sopra gli altri suoi compagni” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 129). 61 “Cap. XVII—Della maledizione del Monte Hermon” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 135). 62 “Dove giurarono, o più tosto congiurarono i cattivi Egregori per commettere scelleratezze da corrompere l’humana generazione” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 135). 63 “Davide maledisse i monti di Gelboe, dov’erano stati uccisi Saul, e Gionata” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 136). 64 “Questo Monte è contiguo al Monte Libano, e per la rigidezza della neve è sterile, e inculto” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 138). 65 “Cap. XVIII—Si determina il tempo del Diluvio” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 139).

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all the wicked and contaminated will perish.”66 The time of the Flood is established, 120 years after the time allowed to men for penance. “Here it is clearly stated that one hundred and twenty years do not refer to the age of man after the flood; but to the life of those who were to be submerged in the Flood.”67 Chapter 19: “On the Ark and the Flood.”68—“The Architectural Experts use the Human Body as a rule of proportions in their art, which is all the more perfect the closer it gets to Nature.”69 Hence, the Ark was made according to the proportions of the human body. A detailed description of the exterior and the three-deck interior of the Ark is provided: “on the first [lower] deck there were the quarters of all the animals … on the second deck above … there were separate warehouses for the provisions of men, and of animals, and seeds … in the third, and the uppermost [deck], there were the quarters of men and birds. There was the oven, the hand mill, the kitchen, the pantry … and stairs to go up and down from the other floors  … and windows.”70 When the Ark was ready and filled with animals, then the Flood occurred in the year of the World 1656. The water was deep enough for the evil Giants to drown. When the rain stopped, “the ark rested on one of the mountains of Armenia.”71 The Flood is a symbol of the Last Judgment (“the Flood … of fire, which will likewise reduce everything to ashes, and sparks”),72 and the Ark is a symbol of the Church: “Who is out of this Ark, that is, the Heretic, or the infidel, will certainly perish.”73

66 “Dopo il decreto della punizione de’ mali Egregori, del gastigo de’ Giganti, della male­ dizione del Monte, si annuncia l’Universale diluvio, nel quale tutti i scellarati, e contaminati periranno” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 139). 67 “Ecco qui detto chiaramente, i cento venti anni non appartenere all’età dell’huomo dopo il diluvio; ma alla vita di quelli che doveano essere sommersi nello stesso diluvio” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 140). 68 “Cap. XIX—Dell’Arca e del diluvio” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 141). 69 “I Periti Architetti si vagliono del Corpo Humano per regola delle proporzioni nella lor’arte, la quale è tanto più perfetta quanto più si accosta alla Natura” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 141). 70 “Nel primo tavolato … era il luogo di tutti gli animali … nel secondo tavolato superiore … erano distinti magazini per l’annona degli huomini, e degli animali, e delle semenze … nel terzo, e sommo tavolato, stavano gli huomini, e gli Uccelli. Quivi era il Forno, il Molino à mano, Cucina, dispensa … le scale per salire e scendere dagli altri tavolati … gli spiragli per l’aria” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 145). 71 “Si posò l’arca sopra uno de’ Monti dell’Armenia” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 146). 72 “Il Diluvio … di fuoco, che similmente ridurrà tutto in cenere, e favilla” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 147). 73 “Chi è fuori di quest’Arca, cioè l’Eretico, l’infedele, certamente perirà” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 148).

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Chapter 20: “Fable of the Hebrews taken from the Book of the Watchers.”74— The Jews have misinterpreted the story of the Fallen Angels. They claim that God allowed the good angels “Azael and Samchazi” to dwell on earth in order to prove their higher righteousness than men, but they also were sexually attracted by women and led to sin. It is said that a woman named Esther obtained by Samchazi the revelation of a divine word that turned her into a star. “This is the Kabbalah of the Rabbis, which perverts all Scripture.”75 Even after the Flood Azael remained unrepentant and he is the one to whom the sons of Israel offer a goat on the Day of Atonement. Everything the Jews tell is not only false, but also blasphemous. “How many words, how many blasphemies: because the spirits do not fall in love with the flesh, and especially the good angels … He who has a clear vision of God cannot sin.”76 Chapter 21: “Two fables drawn by the Greeks from those of the Hebrews.”77— Influenced by the Jews, the Greeks also have misinterpreted the story, by creating “fables” in their mythology about women who became stars. Chapter 22: “Fable of the Mohammedans, who stole many of them from the Hebrews.”78—The Muslims also (“in the book of the Unholy Doctrine of Muhammad”)79 are repeating the fables of the Jews. These stories do not deserve attention: “let’s let the fairy tales go.”80 Chapter 23: “Shared opinions regarding the Watchers.”81—“This story of the Book of Enoch is not history, since it was written by the Prophet 669 years before the Flood, but prophecy, revelation, vision.”82 The filii Dei of Gen 6:1 are neither good angels nor demons; they are the “children of Seth [who] were called children of God because of their holiness, righteousness, temperance, in which the image of God shone.”83 They were tempted by the demons and sinned. As the devil used Eve to seduce Adam, so the demons used the women 74 “Cap. XX—Favola degli Ebrei ricavata dal Libro degli Egregori” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 148). 75 “Questa è la Cabala de’ Rabini, che tutta la Scrittura perverte” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 151). 76 “Quante parole, tante bestemmie: perche gli spiriti non s’innamorano della Carne, e massimamente gli angeli buoni … Chi ha la chiara visione di Dio non può peccare” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 152). 77 “Cap. XXI—Due favole ricavate da’ Greci da quelle degli Ebrei” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 154). 78 “Cap. XXII—Favola dei Maomettani, che ne hanno rubate molte dagli Ebrei” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 155). 79 “Nel Libro dell’Empia Dottrina di Mahometh” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 155). At the time of Sarnelli, the Qurʾan was known in Europe through the French translation by André Du Ryer, L’Alcoran de Mahomet (Paris, 1647). 80 “Lasciamo andar le favole” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 156). 81 “Cap. XXIII—Concordia delle opinioni attorno agli Egregori” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 157). 82 “Questo racconto del Libro di Henoch non è Istoria, perche scritto dal Profeta 669 anni prima del diluvio, adunque è Profezia, Rivelazione, Visione,” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 157). 83 “Si chiamano dunque i figliuoli di Seth, i figliuoli di Dio, per la loro santità, giustizia, temperanza, nelle quali cose risplendeva l’imagine di Dio” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 158). -

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to seduce the Sethians. “The daughters of Cain, who struck so much fire in the world that it took a flood to extinguish it, were the first to drown, feeding the hideous sea monsters with their rotten flesh.”84 Chapter 24: “On Henoch, and Elijah, and the Earthly Paradise.”85—Enoch was initially placed in the Garden of Eden, where Adam also had been. After the Flood destroyed that place, God moved him “to another equally pleasant place, where he also transported the raptured Elijah.”86 There Enoch and Elijah “enjoy a life which is between that of humans on earth and that of angels in heaven.”87 They will return at the end of times to fight against the Antichrist. “The Antichrist will martyr them in Jerusalem, and throw their unburied bodies in the square; but after three and a half days they will rise alive, and glorious before the whole city they will ascend to heaven.”88 Chapter 25: “Enoch’s canonical prophecy of the Last Judgment.”89—In his “canonical prophecy,” recorded in the Epistle of Jude, Enoch foretold the Final Judgment, after prophesizing the Flood. The Fallen Angels will be imprisoned forever. “St. Michael the Archangel … will make Lucifer fall into the Abyss, with all his Demons, to be confined there, and imprisoned forever.”90 Conclusion: “Cenotaph for St. Enoch the prophet.”91—Sarnelli’s commentary ends with an imaginary Cenotaph dedicated to the memory of “St. Enoch the prophet”: To the precious memory of the Prophet Henoch only a golden Cenotaph is due, with this inscription: HENOCH was the seventh who descended from Adam, to always ascend with the mind to God, who rested in this seventh [day]. As a child he did not go climbing to the cradle, but to the Altar dedicating himself to the Most High, as an adult he withdrew into 84 “Le figliuole di Caino, che attaccarono tanto fuoco nel Mondo, che ci volle per estinguerlo un Diluvio, furuno le prime à natarvi annegate, saziando co’ loro carnami gli orrendi mostri del Mare” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 166). 85 “Cap. XXIV—Di Henoch, ed Elia, e del Paradiso Terrestre” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 167). 86 “In altro luogo altrettanto ameno, dove poi trasportò anche il rapito Elia” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 167). 87 “Godono una vita di mezzo trà gli huomini della Terra, ed i beati del Cielo” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 168). 88 “L’Antichristo gli martirizzerà in Gerosolima, e getterà i loro corpi insepolti nella piazza; ma dopo trè giorni, e mezzo risorgeranno vivi, e gloriosi al cospetto di tutta la Città, e se ne saliranno al Cielo” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 169). 89 “Cap. XXV—Profezia Canonica di Henoch del Giudizio Universale” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 173). 90 “S. Michele Arcangelo … farà precipitare nell’Abissio Lucifero, con tutti i suoi Demoni, per istar ivi coartati, e carcerati in sempiterno” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 179). 91 “Cenotafio al S. Profeta Henoch” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 180). -

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solitude, whence destined Ambassador of God to the iniquitous Cainites, he came out so macerated by abstinence, that indeed he demonstrated to preach penance, name then unknown. He exhorts the lewd not to stop worrying about divine vengeance, washing away with tears those deeds of wickedness, for which a flood had been prepared. But like deaf asps they did not listen to the pitiful voices. So those who run to evil do not fear slow revenge; not knowing that very serious things come slowly. So with better luck he turned to teaching the Sethians, opening for them the first Academy in the world, in which he wrote things worthy of being done, and did things worthy of being written. And while he transformed his disciples into angels, he was taken by the angels and transferred to where from the scythe of death he gathers the years and centuries in bundles. Freed from the company of the living, he survives the dead, young and old at the same time. Spectator of the Universe, he sets up the extreme spectacle for it. At the end of the world he will start his fight with the Antichrist, and killed, he will kill the killer. Know therefore, O Wanderer, that Enoch does not rest here. When he rests, everyone will rest. So cry before he rests and comes.92 1.2 The Guardian and Defender of Catholic Orthodoxy In the “Introduction to the pious reader,”93 Sarnelli reveals that the inspiration for writing the commentary came to him in a quite curious fashion:

92 “Alla preziosa memoria del Profeta Henoch non si deve che un Cenotafio d’oro, con questa iscrizione, HENOCH fù il settimo che discese da Adamo, per ascender sempre colla mente a Dio, che in questo settimo si riposò. Bambino non andò rampicando alla culla, ma all’Altare dedicandosi all’Altissimo, Adulto si ritirò nella solitudine, donde destinato Ambasciador di Dio agl’iniqui Cainiti, uscì così macerato dalle astinenze, che anzi dimostrò, che predicò la penitenza, nome incognito allora. Esortò que’ lascivi a non lasciar di preoccupare la Divina vendetta, lavando colle lacrime quelle sceleratezze, alle quali era preparato un diluvio. Ma come aspidi sordi non diedero orecchio alle pietosi voci. Così i precipitosi al male, la lenta vendetta non temono; non sapendo, che le cose gravissime caminano lentamente. Quindi con miglior sorte a insegnare i Sethiani si volse, aprendo loro la prima Accademia del Mondo, nella quale scrisse cose degne d’esser fatte, e fece cose degne d’esser scritte. E mentre che commutava i suoi Discepoli in Angeli, dagli Angeli fù rapito, e traslato là dove fuori della falce della morte miete a fasci gli anni, e i secoli. Uscito da mezzo a’ vivi, sopravive a’ defunti, Giovane insieme, ed antico. Spettatore dell’Universo gli apparecchia l’estremo spettacolo. Nella fine del Mondo principierà il suo combattimento coll’Antichristo, ed ucciso ucciderà l’uccisore. Sappi dunque, o Viandante, che Henoch qui non giace. Quando giacerà egli, giaceranno tutti. Piagni adunque prima, ch’ei giaccia, e venga.” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 180–82). 93 “Al pio lettore” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 20).

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After a book called Archivorum veteris Testamenti libri tres, by P. Scipione Sgambati was published in Naples in 1703 … some scholars of antiquity asked me to write some Annotations, since the topic of the Watchers is very controversial. They took as a pretext the fact that this city [Bisceglie] is called Vigiliae [in Latin], and the inhabitants of Bisceglie are named Vigilientes (or Vigiles) [=Watchers], so—they said—as their bishop I had to fulfill that task.94 Sarnelli jokes about the fact that being the Bishop of Bisceglie makes him the Bishop of the Watchers. He facetiously notes that “I would be the happiest bishop in the world, if all my Vigiles [=Watchers] were good angels as I wish them.”95 The posthumous publication of Scipione Sgambati’s book in 1703 had opened a renewed interest in the biblical pseudepigrapha that would soon find full expression in the work of Fabricius in 1713. Sgambati96 offered one of the most comprehensive collections of all extant passages of the book of Enoch known through canonical and non-canonical sources, including the Syncellus fragments published by Scaliger in 1606. Whereas Scaliger saw in the book of Enoch a bunch of “Jewish lies and disgusting fables,” Sarnelli had a good opinion of the document. In the subtitle he defined it as a “[Book] apocryphal for too much antiquity. Very ancient work, and very new, without authority; but not without benefit to scholars.”97 He did not doubt that Enoch was a historical figure who “lived almost 700 years before the Flood,” and a reliable witness to past events. He did not question the 94 “Essendo uscito dalle stampe di Napoli nel 1703 un libro intitolato Archivorum veteris Testamenti libri tres, Auctore P. Scipione Sgambati  … alcuni studiosi dell’Antichità mi hanno richiesto, che ci facessi delle Annotazioni, per essere la materia degli Egregori assai controversa; servendosi per istimolo del nome di questa Città detta Vigiliae, e dicendo: che essendo io Vescovo della medesima, e chiamandosi i Biscegliesi Vigilientes, ch’è lo stesso, che Vigiles dovea prendere somigliante incarico” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 20–21). The name of the city of Bisceglie derives as a vernacular corruption from its original Latin name “Vigiliae” (Vescégghie → Bisceglie). The settlement was born as a lookout checkpoint for “vigilant” sentinels who would keep watch from guard posts along the via Traiana there for pirates. Consequently, the inhabitants of the city were called “Vigiles” [=Watchers]. 95 “Io sarei il più felice Vescovo del mondo, se tutti i miei Vigiles fossero Angeli buoni, come li desidero” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 23). 96 Scipione Sgambati (1595–1652) was a Roman Catholic priest. Born in Naples, he entered the Jesuit Order in 1611. For many years he taught Holy Scripture and Theology in Vienna, Austria. 97 “[Libro] apocrifo per la troppa antichità. Opera antichissima, e novissima, senza autorità; ma non senza utilità degli studiosi” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, front-page).

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authenticity and antiquity of the book, nor its historical reliability. Referring to the authority of Augustine, Sarnelli states that being apocryphal does not necessarily imply the presence of heretical teachings, rather the non-canonical status of the book should be seen as the result of the lack of “an ancient tradition on how the book passed from hand to hand.”98 As far as he was concerned, he could not find in it “anything that contradicts the doctrine of the Church Fathers.”99 On the other hand, he had no intention of making the document greater than it is or should be. His ambition was “to imitate the famous Cornelius a Lapide who did not fail to use 3 and 4 Ezra, although apocryphal, in his commentaries on the canonical books of Ezra.”100 Sarnelli wrote a theological commentary. The approach was not critical but apologetic. His aim was to defend the “authentic” prophecy of Enoch from any misunderstandings by heretics, Jews and Muslims, and to show that the book fully conformed to, and confirmed, the orthodox Catholic doctrine. Sarnelli’s main theological concern was to draw a clear line of demarcation between angels and demons, on one side, and humans, on the other. The Watchers were indeed evil angels (demons) who descended from heaven to earth, but their children (the Giants) were humans, as the demons induced the “daughters of Cain” to seduce the “sons of Seth.” In line with the view of the Testaments of the 12 Patriarchs and Tertullian, all the blame is ultimately placed on women, whose ability to corrupt men is emphasized in several passages, full of misogynistic remarks. As highlighted by Euan Cameron, the Enochic notion that demons could have sexual relations with women clashed with the scholastic metaphysical conceptions of the incorporeality of angels. It “made the incorporation of the Enoch tradition into traditional western Christian thought very difficult.”101 However, Sarnelli’s commentary demonstrates how the obstacle could be conveniently circumvented by affirming the complete orthodoxy of the writings of Enoch and attributing any unorthodox ideas not to the text itself but to the “fables” of Jews, Muslims, and heretics.

98 “Or’essendo stato Henoch quasi settecento anni prima del Diluvio, non si può havere l’antica tradizione, come questo libro sia venuto di mano in mano” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 22). 99 “Non [vi ho trovata] cosa, che repugni alla Dottrina de’ Padri” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 22). 100 “Imitando in ciò il celebre Cornelio à Lapide, il quale non lasciò di fare le sue note sopra il terzo, e quarto Libro di Esdra, quantunque Apocrifi, come si vede dopo i Commentarj de’ Libri dello stesso Esdra Canonici” (Sarnelli, Annotazioni, 21). Cornelius a Lapide (1567–1637), a Flemish Jesuit and most respected Catholic biblical scholar, had published his Commentaria in Esdram et Nehemiam in 1637. 101 See Cameron in this volume.

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2

The “Second” Enoch Commentary (Daniele Manin, 1820)

Daniele Manin,102 the scion of a prominent Italian-Jewish family converted to Christianity, completed his commentary on the Book of the Watchers (“Degli Egregori”) in Venice in 1820,103 when he was barely 16 years old. Written in Italian, it was the second commentary in a modern Western language composed on the book of Enoch. The work consists of ten chapters, preceded by a general introduction and followed by an appendix. Each chapter presents a portion of the Enoch text in Italian translation, followed by brief annotations. 2.1 Synopsis Introduction: there are different opinions in ancient sources about the ultimate destiny of Enoch, whether he died or was moved to heaven or to the Garden of Eden. Different opinions are also circulating about his exploits, his skills and whereabouts, in particular whether he was the author of some literature. Only fragments of the Book of the Watchers are still extant and were collected by modern scholars such as Scaliger, Goar, and others. The book of Enoch falsely claims that 200 angels married 200 women (which is not possible since angels 102 Daniele Manin was born in Venice on 13 May 1804 into a prominent Jewish family of lawyers (the Medinas), who had (formally) converted to Christianity in 1759. They assumed, as was customary at the time, the surname of the Christian family who had protected them, that of the last doge of Venice, Lodovico Manin. They however preserved their Jewish cultural identity, not unlike what ancient Marranos had done for centuries. The young Manin got a first-class education in Jewish and classical law, history and literature and distinguished himself as a child prodigy for his erudition and his skills in ancient and modern languages (Hebrew, Greek, Latin, Italian, French, German, and English). The Enoch commentary, published in 1820, was one of his first books. Having become a lawyer himself, for his wealth, erudition, and talents, Daniele Manin was regarded as one of the most respected citizens of Venice and one of the most vocal and popular political leaders of the local Italian population under Austrian rule. The anti-Austrian insurgency of 1848 made Manin the President of the reborn (and short-lived) Republic of Venice. The provisional government of Venice, formed by Daniele Manin in 1848, included two Jews: Leone Pincherle as Minister of Agriculture and Commerce and Isacco Pesaro Maurogonato, as finance minister, while rabbis Samuele Olper and Abramo Lattes were appointed Members of the Assembly. Manin continued to support the cause of the unification of Italy even after his exile in Paris, where he died on 22 September 1857, nine years before Venice became part of the Kingdom of Italy. On 22 March 1868 his remains were solemnly transferred to Venice, where the entire town gathered for the funeral procession and saluted him as a hero of the Italian unification. He was buried in a sarcophagus in the central piazzetta dei Leoni, just outside the Basilica of Saint Mark. On 22 March 1875, a monument was erected in his honor in front of his Venetian home in Campo San Paternian (renamed Campo Manin). 103 D. Manin, Degli Egregori (Venice, 1820).

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cannot be united to humans). The book was not written by Enoch and it is not antediluvian, although in the early Church the document was by many considered “canonical,” before its lies were revealed. Chapter 1 (Enoch fragment): “Deliberation of the Watchers to marry the daughters of men.”104—(a) Enoch is said to have written several books. The books of the Pseudo-Enoch were not accepted by the Jews but it is not true that they were unknown to them.—(b) The “sons of God” are not “angels” but “descendants of Seth.” Maybe this was also the opinion of the author of the Pseudo-Enoch (even though the contrary seems more likely). “This would make less absurd what the Pseudo-Enoch tells.”105—(c) The descendants of Seth settled on Mount Hermon, after being cast away from the Garden of Eden, “building a convent there, observing celibacy and making constant prayers.”106 From there they decided to move to the valley and took wives for themselves. They were not “demons.” Chapter 2 (Enoch fragment): “Names of the chiefs of the Watchers, their marriages and descendants.”107—(a) Some of these names are also mentioned in Jewish sources.—(b) The chronology of the Septuagint should be preferred.— (c) The giants were men of exceptional stature, not “sons of angels.” Chapter 3 (Enoch fragment): “Mutual learning, and teachings of the Watchers.”108—(a) The Book of Enoch is full of absurd speculations.—(b) Evil came as a consequence of wrath and envy. It is not necessary to add “fables” about the wives of Cain and Abel.—(c) The fabrication of poisons is said to be one of the skills taught by the Watchers.—(d) “Some visionaries, less ancient but as stupid as the Pseudo-Enoch,”109 have made Lilith the author of any sort of magic. They have described Adam, Abel, and Chaim as authors of books of magic. They also claim that “Noah, together with the bones of his ancestors, also transported their literary productions to the ark and used them to 104 “Capo primo. Deliberazione degli Egregori di ammogliarsi con le figlie degli uomini” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 23). 105 “Diventerebbero in tal caso meno assurde le cose da lui raccontate” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 28). 106 “… fabbricando colà un convento, osservando il celibato e facendo continue orazioni” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 29). 107 “Capo secondo. Nomi de’ Capi degli Egregori, loro maritaggi e discendenze” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 30). 108 “Capo terzo. Studii reciproci ed insegnamenti degli Egregori” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 39). 109 “Alcuni visionarii, meno antichi, ma egualmente imbecilli del falso Enoch, fanno autrice degl’incantesimi Lilit, creata, essi dicono, unitamente ad Adamo e sua prima moglie” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 43). Manin quotes the Latin translation of the Chronicon Orientale of Ibnar-Rahib, published in 1653 by Abraham Ecchellensis (Ibrahim al-Haqilani; 1605–1664), a Maronite Catholic philosopher and linguist.

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compose his Treatise on the origins of things … Guillaume Postel, recovering it, tried to persuade his contemporaries to possess it in the original together with the real books of Enoch, but as usual nobody wanted to believe him.”110— (e) Some even believe that “the Watchers must have taught to the Giants their sons how to write.”111 No more credible is the account that “the second Cain, a very dubious character, in the year of the world 2585 … carried out some excavations in his possessions and found a written document that he immediately knew was the work of some antediluvian giant.”112 Chapter 4 (Enoch fragment): “Cruelty of the Giants: the pleas of men are supported by the Archangels.”113—(a) Contrary to the claim that the Giants were cannibals, many maintain that before the Flood humans were not allowed to eat the meat of animals, but this does not seem likely. “Beings that have life and move, dart within all the drops of water and exist in the surface and within each leaf … therefore absolute abstinence from any being that moves and has life becomes absolutely impossible.”114 Second, Abel was a shepherd.—(b) Only Tobias, Michael and Gabriel are mentioned by name among the holy angels. Manin claims that the name Uriel should not be used. Uriel is mentioned only in apocryphal texts and could even be the name of a demon. The presence of the name Uriel in some Christian funerary inscriptions or in Christian iconography only demonstrates that some were misled by these false beliefs.—(c) The text of the Pseudo-Enoch contains some “alarming” misconceptions about the distinction between spirit and soul, which were common in antiquity.—(d) The attribution of writings to Enoch or Noah is false.—

110 “Assieme con le ossa de’ suoi maggiori trasportò Noè nell’arca anche le loro produzioni letterarie e se ne valse per comporre il suo Trattato sopra le origini delle cose … Guglielmo Postello, avendola recuperate, cercò di persuadere i suoi contemporanei di possederla in originale assieme con li veri libri di Enoch, ma al solito nessuno ha voluto credergli” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 45). Guglielmo Postello (Guillaume Postel; 1510–1581) was a French linguist and astronomer, one of the leading Christian kabbalists of the Renaissance. 111 “Gli Egregori devono aver insegnato a’ Giganti loro figli anche a scrivere” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 45). 112 “Facendo il preteso secondo Cainam, personaggio dubbiosissimo, eseguire l’anno del mondo 2585, a computo de’ Settanta, alcuni scavamenti nelle sue possessioni, rinvenne un documento scritto che subito conobbe essere di pugno di qualche gigante antediluviano” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 46). The story is taken from the Chronography of Syncellus. A “second” Cain is added in the Septuagint to the descendants of Shem (LXX Gen 11:12–13). 113 “Capo quarto. Crudeltà de’ Giganti: suppliche degli uomini dagli Arcangeli appoggiate” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 47). 114 “Guizzano per entro tutte le gocce di acqua ed esistono nella superficie ed interno di ogni foglia degli esseri che hanno vita e si muovono … quindi l’astinenza assoluta da ogni essere che si muove ed ha vita diviene affatto impossibile” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 52).

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(e) The descent of the Watchers was known not only to God but also to Seth, who is said to have ascended to heaven for 40 days, instructed by the angels. Chapter 5 (Enoch fragment): “God commands to announce the Flood to Noah.”115—(a) From the perspective of the author, Enoch wrote his work after the events, when he was in heaven. Chapter 6 (Enoch fragment): “God commands to bind Azazel and purify the earth.”116—(a) To solve the problem of why Azazel “was punished for minor offenses with greater rigor,” some authors speculated that “his further faults were not specified one by one” in the narrative. It is said that Azazel was also guilty of “marital infidelity” or of “impenitence.”117 Chapter 7 (Enoch fragment): “[God] commands to destroy the Giants.”118— (a) The book of Enoch believed that the fathers of the Giants were “immortal”, i.e. “angels.”—(b) No giant entered the ark or survived the Flood. Chapter 8 (Enoch fragment): “[God] commands to bind Semissa and all others, keeping them for seventy generations.”119—(a) Enoch is full of false predictions about the end of times.—(b) According to a legend of no authority Moses was killed by one of the Watchers, but this is impossible since they are imprisoned and are not free to roam the earth. Chapter 9 (Enoch fragment): “Nature of the giants and their future destiny.”120—(a) The only demons are the Fallen angels. There are no other demons, as some falsely claim. There are many stories about Lilith and other semi-demons, whose origins go back to the Book of the Watchers.—(b) Many other absurdities are told about these semi-demons. Chapter 10 (Enoch fragment): “Curse of Mount Hermon and manifestation of the divine wrath.”121—(a) The curse is superfluous as Mount Hermon was cursed by David too (2 Sam 1:21). In any case—Manin notices, not without a final hint of irony—the reason Mount Hermon is covered with snow is its altitude—a natural cause. “Perhaps this was also a purely natural effect 115 “Capo quinto. Comando dato da Dio di annunziare a Noe’ il diluvio” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 62). 116 “Capo sesto. Altro comando divino di legare Exael e purgare la terra” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 70). 117 “O non furono ad uno ad uno specificati … gli ulteriori delitti di Exael e fu per minori colpe con maggior rigore punito. Mancò per altro di fede all’antica e bellettata sua moglie … Fu altresì impenitente” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 71). 118 “Capo settimo. Comando di distruggere i Giganti” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 72). 119 “Capo ottavo. Comando di legare Semissa e tutti gli altri, conservandoli per settanta generazioni” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 75). 120 “Capo nono. Indole de’ Giganti e loro future destino” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 79). 121 “Capo decimo. Maledizione del monte Ermon e manifestazione dell’ira divina” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 90).

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derived from the height of all those mountains, as Father Natale Alessandri rightly observes.”122—(b) The claim of the Pseudo-Enoch (and others) that God set a limit to the human life is false. Gen 6:3 only “means that after this time every reprobate will be drowned in the waters of the flood.”123 Numerous examples of people who lived over 120 years after the Flood are provided by sacred and profane authors. In the appendix, Manin includes, in Italian translation, some of the earliest testimonies to the books of Enoch (Epistle of Jude, 2 Peter, Testaments of the 12 Patriarchs, Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, Athenagoras, Tertullian, Clement of Alexandria, Cyprian, Anatolius Alexandrinus, Lactantius, Sulpitius Severus). In his view, the Enoch quotation in the Epistle of Jude was not from a written document but from “an oral prophecy of that patriarch … which came to the knowledge of the holy Apostle, not by tradition … but by divine revelation.”124 The conclusion is “that the epistle of Jude, far from bearing witness to the books of the Watchers, instead gave rise to the idea of composing them.”125 Since the Council of Trent stated that 2 Peter is authentic (though Manin does not fail to remind the reader that Eusebius believed otherwise), it follows that the Book of Enoch derives also from 2 Peter (and not vice-versa)—“the chapter comes from the verse and not the verse from the chapter.”126 Manin reaffirms his conclusion that the Book of Enoch was written in Greek at the time of the apostles or later (end of the first century to beginning of the second century CE). The testimonies of the Church Fathers show that its authority and canonicity was initially accepted without reservations by the first Christians, who wrongly accepted “the fables of the Pseudo-Enoch.”127 2.2 The Young Enlightened Philosopher When Manin wrote his commentary in 1820, he was taking his first steps as a scholar. Like generations of children in his Jewish family before him, since the 122 “Forse fu questi anche un effetto soltanto naturale derivato dall’altezza di tutti que’ monti, e come giustamente osserva il padre Natale Alessandro” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 92). Natale Alessandro (Noël Alexandre; 1639–1724) was a French theologian, author of an Historia ecclesiastica in 26 volumes (Paris, 1676–86). 123 “Lo che vuol dire che dopo tal’epoca ogni reprobo verrà dalla acque del diluvio affogato” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 93). 124 “Una profezia vocale di quel patriarca  … giunta a notizia del santo Apostolo, non per tradizione … ma per rivelazione divina,” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 101). 125 “[Ne conchiudo] che la Pistola di s. Giuda, lungi dal render testimonianza de’ Libri degli Egregori, abbia in vece fatto nascere l’idea di comporli” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 102). 126 “Il capo è tolto dal versetto e non il versetto dal capo” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 105). 127 “Le favole narrate dal pseudo-Enoch” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 123). “Le favole narrate ne’ Libri del falso Enoch” (134).

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age of 12 he had been home-schooled by his father, Pietro Antonio, a jurist and scholar who taught his son law and the knowledge of ancient Jewish literature (legal rabbinic material but also Targumim and Kabbalah). In 1818, at the age of 14 Manin enrolled at the University of Padua, one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in Europe. Under his father’s continuous guidance, he published in 1819 his first book of law, on the subject of the testaments,128 in which he made large use of ancient sources, especially the Testaments of the 12 Patriarchs. The numerous references in that document to the writings of Enoch aroused his curiosity and drew his attention to the subject. Manin was now perfecting his Hebrew and Greek under the direction of Francesco Fontanella, a priest and scholar, who a few years later in 1824 would be the author of a popular Hebrew-Italian printed dictionary.129 Manin proudly dedicated the volume to Fontanella as evidence of the progress he had made in the study of ancient languages but acknowledged only his father as the main source of inspiration for his commentary. “Only from the teachings of my father, once again, I took all the notions, which I took advantage of to write the prefaces and notes, with his assistance.”130 Manin knew the commentary by Pompeo Sarnelli (erroneously misspelled “Mons. Farnelli” in the printed edition). His approach however was quite different, in spite of many similarities. Like Sarnelli, Manin did not question the existence and holiness of the patriarch Enoch. He recognized the infallibility of Scriptures, so much as to present it as a general rule to be respected: “There must be no regard for any book in this world, if the things narrated therein are in opposition to the sacred scriptures. Only where these are silent are conjectures allowed.”131 Manin, however, was neither a priest nor a theologian, but a scholar. There was nothing apologetical in his work. In spite of his young age, Manin’s approach was primarily historical-critical and philological. A Catholic of Jewish descent, or better a Jew of Christian faith, he belonged to the post-Enlightenment generation, used to looking critically at the writings of the past as works influenced by absurd superstitions to be rejected in the name of reason. 128 D. Manin, Ricerche sopra li testamenti (Venice, 1819). 129 Francesco Fontanella (1756–1828) was professor of Hebrew and Greek at the Venice Seminary. F. Fontanella, Vocabolario ebraico-italiano ed italiano-ebraico (Venice, 1824). 130 “A’ soli insegnamenti di mio padre deggio anche questa volta tutte le nozioni, di cui mi sono approfittato di scrivere, colla di lui assistenza le prefazioni e le note” (Manin, Degli Egregori, book’s dedication). 131 “A nessun libro di questo mondo può aversi il menomo riguardo, qualora le cose ivi narrate stanno con le sacre carte in opposizione. Soltanto, ove queste tacciano, sono le con­ ghietture permesse” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 41).

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Whereas Sarnelli looked at the Enoch fragments as the authentic testimony of a pious and orthodox biblical prophet misinterpreted by heretics, Jews, and Muslims, Manin did not share such a positive approach. As an historian, he patiently and diligently reported and discussed all different sources and opinions, even when he clearly disapproved of them. This did not prevent him from expressing his own conclusions. He thought “it was totally unlikely”132 that the text was written before the Flood and openly denounced it for sharing the unorthodox (and unreasonable) notion that demons had sexual relations with women. In his view, the book contained “speculations” that degenerated into a delirium, where the same old stories are repeated over and over again, enough to look like “leftover reheated soup.”133 Manin recognized that in early Christianity the book was taken in high esteem as Enoch’s “authentic prophecy” and considered to be “canonical” by many authors, including some respected Church Fathers, whom he did not hesitate to criticize. In his view, the Pseudo-Enoch was a forgery originally written in Greek at the end of the first century or beginning of the second century CE. It took some time before its lies were gradually exposed and eradicated. He hoped that his commentary would serve the same purpose. Manin has a consistently skeptical approach toward everything written in the book. He skillfully exploits the document’s non-canonical status to fully display his critical skills. In particular, he denounces as “a very odd speculation”134 that the “sons of Elohim” were angels. In his opinion they were the “sons of Seth” who after settling on Mount Hermon decided to descend to the valleys inhabited by the “daughters of Cain.” He admits that the idea of the descent of angels was shared not only by the author of the book of Enoch, but also by Philo, Josephus, and even many Church Fathers. This however does not stop his criticism of the book of the Watchers. It was not the heretics, the Jews, or the Muslims who misinterpreted the book and misled the Christians, it was the Pseudo-Enoch who “imagined … stories as absurd as they are monstrous.”135 Apart from Scripture, nobody has the monopoly of truth or is error free. The Jews do not accept the Book of Enoch, and yet their writings (especially the Kabbalah) were influenced by its false ideas. On the other hand, Manin has no qualms in recalling the testimony of Jewish sources to correct erroneous doctrines or “superstitions” that had penetrated Christian writings and even to criticize the Christian tradition. “The uncritical belief granted in the early 132 133 134 135

“La cosa … non è neppur verisimile” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 19). “Vaneggiamenti di fantasie riscaldate” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 41). “Stranissima supposizione” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 14). “S’immaginò … racconti del pari assurdi che mostruosi” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 16).

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centuries of the Church to the Pseudo-Enoch and to the similar writings of those times, gave rise and in a certain way also justified the well-known superstitions of our ancestors.”136 The reference to “the well-known superstitions of our ancestors” connects Manin’s work to that of another Italian child prodigy, Giacomo Leopardi, who just a few years before had written an essay inspired by the same attitude: “Essay on the popular errors of the ancients” (1815).137 Leopardi and Manin belonged to a generation of young enlightened philosophers who believed they had definitively left behind all ancient prejudices. “Once upon a time everything that came from the ancients was superstitiously venerated.”138 They shared the call made by Thomas Browne in his work Pseudodoxia Epidemica (London, 1646), which Selvaggio Canturani had popularized in an Italian translation of 1737 issued at Venice under the title “Essay on the popular errors.”139 Drawing inspiration from classical works (first of all, Plutarch’s De superstitione), they understood the philosopher’s fight against superstition was not only as a battle for the truth, but also as a battle for separating religion from superstition. Still closely supervised by their fathers and other pious tutors, in Recanati as in Venice, they both proclaimed their faith in the Catholic Church but in a church they saw as a bulwark against ignorance and prejudice. “Living in the true Church is the only remedy against superstition … Only slight prejudices and not very dangerous superstitions can flourish in a Church, which is the seat of order and unity, the main enemy of error.”140

136 “L’irreflessiva credenza, prestata ne’ primi secoli della Chiesa al falso Enoch, e gli analoghi scritti di que’ tempi hanno occasionate ed in certa guisa anche giustificate le notissime superstizioni de’ nostri Maggiori” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 114). 137 Giacomo Leopardi (1798–1837), the greatest Italian poet and philosopher of the nineteenth century, wrote this essay in 1815, when he was barely 17 years old and was still studying at Recanati under the tutorage of his father, Monaldo. The essay was published only after the death of the author: G. Leopardi, Saggio sopra gli errori popolari degli antichi (Florence, 1846). 138 “Una volta si venerava superstiziosamente tutto ciò che venia dagli antichi” (Leopardi, Saggio, 11). 139 Thomas Browne, Saggio sopra gli errori popolareschi, trans. Selvaggio Canturani (Venice, 1737; 2nd ed., 1743). Selvaggio Canturani was the pseudonym of Arcangelo Agostini (1660–1747), a Venetian Carmelite theologian and man of letters, best known as a translator from French of a large number of works of historical and ecclesiastical erudition. 140 “Il vivere nella vera Chiesa è il solo rimedio contro la superstizione … Soltanto leggeri pregiudizj and superstizioni poco pericolose possono allignare in una Chiesa, che è la sede dell’ordine e dell’unità, capitale nemica dell’errore” (Leopardi, Saggio, 300).

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They both were so confident about the progress of humankind to think that, in their enlightened century, the most effective way to deal with the errors was not to refute them but merely to expose them. One of the objects that some of those who have written about popular errors have proposed, was to refute them. Writing in an enlightened century, I thought it was almost useless to do so … To destroy at least in part these enemies of reason, it is necessary to make them known; to make them known, it is necessary to expose them in detail.141 Leopardi and Manin were deeply affected by the words of Scipione Maffei against ancient and modern beliefs in magic, demons, and witches.142 As an apprentice lawyer, Manin knew the treatise “On Crimes and Punishments” published by Cesare Beccaria in 1764,143 and was aware of the many abuses and atrocities that occur when the justice system is under the nefarious influence of superstition and prejudice. The outrage he shows in reporting the fables about Lilith and witches (or “the various ways in which more or less ancient pro-Watchers authors have tried to justify such monstrous marriages  … the supposed unions of Angels with antediluvian females”)144 is a prelude to the invectives of Alessandro Manzoni, the grandson of Beccaria, who in “The Column of Infamy” (1840) would denounce the atrocious witch-hunt against

141 “Uno degli oggetti che si sono proposti alcuni tra quelli che hanno scritto degli errori popolari, è stato quello di confutarli. Scrivendo in un secolo illuminato, ho creduto quasi inutile il farlo  … Per distruggere almeno in parte questi nemici della ragione, fa d’uopo farli conoscere; per farli conoscere, fa d’uopo farli venirne al dettaglio” (Leopardi, Saggio, 5, 9). 142 S. Maffei, Arte magica dileguata (Verona, 1749), and Arte magica annichilata (Verona, 1754); see A. Ferraris, “L’enciclopedia infernale di Leopardi. Sul « Saggio sopra gli errori popolari degli antichi »,” Lettere Italiane 50.2 (1998) 176–85. A citizen of Verona, Scipione Maffei (1675–1755) was one of the leading and most respected figures of the Italian Enlightenment, especially for his strong call that Christianity should be purified in the name of reason from all superstition and magic. His Arte magica dileguata was included as an Appendix to the second volume of Augustin Calmet, Traité sur les apparitions des esprits et sur les vampires ou les revenans de Hongrie, de Moravie, &c., 2 vols. (Paris, 1751). 143 [C. Beccaria], Dei delitti e delle pene ([Livorno], 1764). Due to the controversial content, the first editions (and first translations) of the work circulated anonymously and with no or false indication of place of publication. The book made Cesare Beccaria (1738–1794) into an international celebrity and one of the most influential authors of the Enlightenment. 144 “I varii modi, co’ quali i Filo-egregori, più o meno antichi, hanno cercato di giusticare tali mostruosissimi connubi … li supposti matrimonii degli Angeli con le femmine antediluviane” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 142).

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those believed by common prejudice to be responsible for the spread of the plague in seventeenth-century Milan.145 Concerning the book of Enoch in particular, Manin could find support for his critical attitude in the words used by Fabricius in the preface to his collection of pseudepigraphic works: “I present this material, not because I am fascinated by those stories ( fabula), or approve of those lies ( fraudes), but because I believe that the best way to reject and refute them is to present them all together in order to expose them to contempt.” Manin was also committed “to completely eradicating” the “fables” of the Pseudo-Enoch. He was equally convinced that the best strategy was not to use the language of philosophical refutation but rather “the most effective weapons of irony.”146 Being full of fables and superstitions, nothing in the Book of Enoch could appeal to the enlightened philosopher, and the young Manin (like the young Giacomo Leopardi) was raised to be one of them. Manin and the Ethiopic Enoch: The Shadow of Bruce, Giorgi, and Antonelli Manin’s commentary was a fine work of scholarship, in line with the international standards of the time. He examined critically all extant ancient sources, and showed an accurate knowledge of secondary literature. He was familiar not only with the Italian (and Catholic) school of interpretation (Sgambati, Sarnelli), but also with international scholars, such as Athanasius Kircher, Fabricius and many others. Nothing could escape the critical eye of the young Manin, with only one conspicuous exception—the Ethiopic text.147 The existence of an Ethiopic version of the books of Enoch was known to European scholars since the sixteenth century.148 In spite of many attempts to recover the text, it was not until 1773 that James Bruce brought back to Europe several copies of the highly sought-after manuscript. Having lived in the early eighteenth century, Sarnelli cannot be blamed for not referring to something that, despite the many rumors and speculations about it, no one had yet seen or had in their hands. But with Manin it is a different matter. In 1820 Venice, his 2.3

145 Alessandro Manzoni, Storia della Colonna Infame (Milan, 1840). 146 “Alla [loro] final estirpazione … gioveranno … le armi molto efficaci del ridicolo” (Manin, Degli Egregori, 21). 147 For a detailed survey of the reception history of Enochic traditions in the early modern period, see Hessayon, “Og King of Bashan”; Boccaccini, “Enochic Traditions.” 148 The first report that the writings of Enoch were canonical in Ethiopia came in Guillaume Postel’s De originibus (Basel, 1553) 10. He got this information from an Abyssinian priest (likely, Tasfa Seyon) living at the Hospitium Fratrum Indianarorum in Rome. The news was quickly spread by John Bale in his popular work Scriptorum Illustrium (Basel, 1559) 3.

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lack of reference to James Bruce and to the rediscovery of the Ethiopic text can hardly be attributed to the ignorance of a provincial author. In spite of his age, Manin was already an experienced writer, living in a cosmopolitan city with an established tradition of solid international connections. Bruce was quite famous in Venice. He had spent several months in Italy, before and after his journey to Ethiopia. He spoke Italian; he had influential friends there. His trip to Bologna, Florence, Rome, Venice, and Milan in winter 1773–1774 had been widely reported in Italian gazettes. Furthermore, in December 1773 he had donated a copy of the Ethiopic book of Enoch to Pope Clement XIV, who gave it to Msgr. Leonardo Antonelli to be preserved in his library.149 Shortly after its acquisition,150 Bruce’s manuscript was examined in Rome by Agostino Antonio Giorgi, an eminent Italian orientalist, as reported in a long letter he wrote to Leonardo Antonelli, which was attached to the manuscript (now preserved at the Vatican Library, Vat. Eti. 71).151 Very similarly to what Silvestre de Sacy would do in 1800 based on the Paris manuscript, Giorgi focused on those passages which in the Ethiopic texts parallel the Greek fragments of Syncellus, and which he translated into Latin. Most venerated Monsignor. In asking your most illustrious and revered Lordship the grace of having in my hands for a few days the famous Ethiopic manuscript believed to be the book of Enoch, I had in my heart only the desire to find in it (within the limits of my abilities) all or at least part of the fragments of this apocryphal book cited by the ancient Church Fathers and then again amply corrected and edited by George Syncellus, as we read today in the pseudepigraphic codex of the Old Testament, among the works of Albert Fabricius.152 149 G. Boccaccini, “James Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript: Solving the Mystery of the Provenance of the Roman Enoch Manuscript (Vat. et. 71),” JSP 27.4 (2018) 237–63. That the Rome manuscript of 1 Enoch (now at the Vatican library, Vat. et. 71) came from Bruce, is confirmed by the paleographical analysis of Ted M. Erho and by additional documentary evidence found by Ariel Hessayon in their contributions to this volume. 150 The nephew of Card. Nicolò Maria Antonelli, Leonardo Antonelli (1730–1811) was a Catholic priest, scholar, archaeologist, protector of letters. His library, which he had inherited from his uncle and enlarged with new acquisitions, was one of the richest in Rome at the time. Since Giorgi’s letter is addressed to “Monsignor” Antonelli, it was written before 24 April 1775 (when Antonelli was appointed Cardinal). 151 Agostino Antonio Giorgi (1711–1797) was a scholar, orientalist, member of the Augustine Order. He was professor at La Sapienza and curator of the Biblioteca Angelica in Rome. 152 “Monsignore Veneratissimo. Nel chiedere a V[ostra] S[ignoria] Ill[ustrissi]ma e Re[verendissi]ma la grazia di avere nelle mani per alcuni giorni il famoso mss. Etiopico del creduto libro di Enoch, non altro io ebbi nell’animo che il desiderio di riscontrare

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The (still unpublished) samples of translation offered by Giorgi in his letter must be regarded among the very first translations of passages from the Ethiopic text in modern times.153 The letter ends with the hope that the document be entirely translated. Giorgi, however, declared his inability and unwillingness to carry out the task: “It would be good to have the translation of the whole manuscript; but I am neither capable nor patient of this fatigue; which would require of me a very long waste of time.”154 In spite of Giorgi’s endorsement, the manuscript remained untranslated. The problem was that during his stay in Italy, James Bruce gained a reputation as an impetuous and unreliable character, with a tendency to boasting and exaggeration. In November 1773, he exposed himself to ridicule by challenging to a duel a powerful member of the Roman aristocracy, Marchese Filippo Accoramboni, for marrying a Scottish girl who had been promised to Bruce eleven years earlier, before he left Europe for Ethiopia. A prominent ecclesiastical figure had to intervene to stop the duel and Bruce was forced to accept a compromise. The scandal was silenced but not forgotten. Despite the numerous honors and accolades Bruce received during his Italian trip (especially in Florence, Rome, and Cortona), Bruce’s claims to have discovered the Book of Enoch were met with great skepticism and too hastily dismissed, not only by conservative Catholic scholars but also by the most influential members of the liberal elite in Italy—the Verri brothers. Pietro Verri,155 who had lunch with him in Milan, received a negative impression from the meeting: in esso (seppure mi fosse stato possibile) o tutti o almeno in parte i frammenti di quest’apocrifo libro citati presso gli antichi Padri della Chiesa e poi ancora diffusamente corretti e prodotti da Giorgio Sincello, siccome leggonsi oggi nel codice pseudepigrafo del Vecchio Testamento, tra le opere di Alberto Fabrizio” (Giorgi, Letter to Antonelli, Vat. et. 71 [unpublished]). 153 In his contribution to this volume, Hessayon refers to Giorgi’s translation as “the second or third earliest translation of a portion of Ethiopic Enoch.” To our knowledge, Carl Gottfried Woide, Agostino Antonio Giorgi, James Bruce, Silvestre de Sacy, Alexander Murray, and possibly Wilhelm Gesenius are the authors who, before Laurence, tried their hand at translating passages from the Ethiopic text. 154 “Sarebbe bene avere tutta la traduzione del Mss; ma io non sono nè capace nè paziente per questa fatica; la quale richiederebbe da me un assai lungo perdimento di tempo” (Giorgi, Letter to Antonelli, Vat. et. 71[unpublished]). 155 Pietro Verri (1728–1797) and Alessandro Verri (1741–1816) were among the most distinguished intellectuals of the Enlightenment in Italy. Pietro lived in Milan, whereas his brother Alessandro had moved to Rome in 1767. Their regular (and monumental) correspondence covers all major events and minutiae (including the most trivial gossip) that were of interest to Italian intellectuals at the time; see E. Greppi and A. Giulini, eds., Carteggio di Pietro e Alessandro Verri, 12 vols. (Milan, 1910–1928).

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The traveler to Abyssinia is the same who wanted to fight for the wife of Accoramboni; he seems to me a very imaginative person … I’m tempted to write myself a copy of the book of Enoch and keep it ready to compete with his version. They will be equally legitimate! (March 5, 1774).156 From Rome, Alessandro Verri confirmed the skepticism of his brother: “Anyone who listened to him telling the story of his peregrinations, has conceived some mistrust because his stories sound like fables and he talks a lot even without being solicited” (9 March 1774).157 Pietro’s last words from Milan sound like a final sentence and a definitive farewell: “He left. He had a large collection of drawings, which he says, he made himself, depicting ancient remains, which he says he saw in Abyssinia. Here few believed him” (16 March 1774).158 Receiving such a resounding rejection from the Verri brothers, fulcrum of the Italian Enlightenment, meant the end of every hope of success in Italy. To the enlightened philosopher, the Book of Enoch could only appear as a chaotic mass of fables, devoid of any reasonableness. Verri’s (and Manin’s) attitude did not differ from the quite ironic and discouraging remarks expressed in a letter (15 November 1775) by Journu de Montagny, a learned French intellectual, after James Bruce sent him some samples of translation from the first chapters of the book of Enoch: Your seventh chapter of Enoch surpasses the understanding of the present age … The antediluvian prophet, whom you are about to introduce into Europe, will not succeed … I should be very much delighted to converse with the author of that book … How much nonsense, magic, divination, and priestcraft, should I discover in those ages! … The humor of drowning mankind, in order to preserve them from being eaten, deserves particular notice.159 156 “Il viaggiatore d’Abissinia è il medesimo che voleva battersi per la moglie dell’Accoram­ boni; mi pare romanzesco assai … Mi vien voglia di farlo il libro di Enoch e di tenerlo in pronto per contrapporlo al suo e saranno due legittimi egualmente” (Carteggio di Pietro e Alessandro Verri, VI.192–193). 157 “Tutti quelli che lo hanno ascoltato nel racconto delle sue peregrinazioni, ne hanno concepita della diffidenza perché i suoi discorsi sanno di romanzo e narra molto senza essere ricercato” (Carteggio di Pietro e Alessandro Verri, VI.195). 158 “E’ partito. Aveva una gran raccolta di disegni, dice fatti da lui, di avanzi di antichità, che dice di aver veduto nell’Abissinia. Pochi gli hanno creduto da noi” (Carteggio di Pietro e Alessandro Verri, VI.198). 159 “Votre 7 chap. de Henoc passe l’intelligence du siècle present … Le Prophete antidiluvien que vous donnerez à l’Europe ne faira pas fortune … Je serois bien curieux de converser avec l’auteur de ce livre … Que de bêtise, de magie, de sort leges, d’escroqueries de prêtres,

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As a result, Bruce lost any interest in translating the document and it took nearly fifty years before a full version of the Ethiopic Enoch was completed. In Rome, the Enoch manuscript remained “buried” for decades in the library of Cardinal Leonardo Antonelli at Palazzo Pamphilj on Piazza Navona, its provenance from Bruce completely forgotten. It would be purchased for the Vatican Library by Angelo Mai around 1825 and its existence (as an Ethiopic manuscript of “unknown origin”) revealed to the world only in 1831160—too late to be of any use to Manin and to have any significant impact in the early research on 1 Enoch. These circumstances may help explain why Manin did not discuss Bruce’s claim that he had recovered the book of Enoch, nor even mention the possibility that the text could be preserved in Ethiopia. Giorgi’s letter to Msgr. Leonardo Antonelli and the very existence of the Rome manuscript were unknown to Italian scholars. Reasons of expediency led Bruce himself to remain silent about his trip to Rome and his gift to the Pope.161 There was no way that Manin could have heard of such events. However, Bruce’s journey to Ethiopia and his claim to have rediscovered the book of Enoch were well known in Italy and in those intellectual and academic circles Manin frequented. Bruce’s travel report was published in English and French in 1790.162 The French edition (with its reprints)163 made it easily accessible to an Italian (and Catholic) audience, rekindling interest in Bruce’s expedition.164 &c. je verrois pratiquées dans ces vieux tems! … La tournure de noyer les hommes pour les empecher d’etremangés est digne de remarque.” See Alexander Murray, Account of the Life and Writings of James Bruce (Edinburgh, 1808) 254–60. The date indicated by Murray is “15 September 1775” but it should be understood as “15 November 1775,” as demonstrated by Hessayon in this volume. 160 A. Mai, Scriptorum veterum nova collection 5 (Rome, 1831), pt. II, 100. Angelo Mai (1782– 1854) was one of the greatest Italian philologists of the nineteenth century. As curator of the Ambrosian Library in Milan, and then (from 1819) of the Vatican Library, he earned an international reputation for his tireless work of rediscovering and publishing ancient manuscripts, including Codex Vaticanus. 161 In his own country Bruce was criticized for giving a copy of the manuscript to the (Catholic) King of France before presenting any gifts to the King of England. Revelations of his journey and gift to the Pope, in a time when the exiled Jacobite pretender Charles Edward Stuart was living in Rome courteously treated by Clement XIV, would have put Bruce in an even more embarrassing position. Bruce decided it was more convenient for him to assume the character of “a loyal and noble Hanoverian subject” and “a vehemently anti-Catholic enemy of religious bigotry and superstition”; see Hessayon in this volume. 162 Bruce, Travels, French ed.: Voyage aux sources du Nil, en Nubie et en Abyssinie, trans. J.H. Castera ([Bern], 1790–1792). 163 A second edition was published in 1798–1799 and a third in 1830–1832. 164 J.C. Durando, Saggio di scoperte geografiche de’ moderni viaggiatori nello interno dell’Africa comparate colle scoperte degli antichi, a illustrazione e supplimento al viaggio di sir James Bruce alle sorgenti del Nilo, nell’Abissinia e nella Nubia (Turin, 1801). -

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Despite his young age, Manin could read French, English, and German, and the cosmopolitan Venetian environment matched perfectly with his encyclopedic thirst for knowledge. There is no evidence that the first (partial) Latin translation of the Ethiopic text made in 1800 by Antoine Isaac Silvestre de Sacy circulated in Italy,165 but Bruce’s travel report certainly did. A copy of the first French edition was available at the library of the University of Padua which Manin then attended as a second-year student.166 It is very unlikely that he (and his teachers and mentors), let alone his prospective readers and critics, were unaware of Bruce’s claims about the allegedly rediscovered Ethiopic text of the book of Enoch. And yet, Manin did not spend a word on the subject. The fact is that Bruce remained in Italy a very controversial character, with a dubious reputation. The scandals he had stirred up there continued to haunt him for years. The accusations of amateurism and plagiarism—already raised by Pietro Verri—even reached London with the publication of “a letter from Bologna, dated March the 15th, in the Year 1778, by a first-rate designer.” Once again somebody who had met Bruce in Italy exposed him as a person accustomed to making false and boastful claims, to the extent of attributing to himself the works of others, specifically the drawings made by Luigi Balugani, his contract designer, who died of dysentery in Ethiopia during the expedition: In relation to Mr. Bruce, an English gentleman, who was here at Bologna with his collections of drawings … certainly it is very true that he said he was capable of drawing them; which we did not believe, as he never was seen with a porto-crayon to give the least indication of any design of animated figures, or inanimate bodies. He bragged much of being a professor, and having made many of those drawings … He carried with him Balugani Bolognese, my friend, a good draughtsman of architecture. He had also others, who did all. Sig. Bruce took a fancy to relate extraordinary stories.167 165 A.I.S. de Sacy, “Notice du Livre d’Enoch,” Magasin encyclopédique 6 (1800). Also available with a German introduction in an edition by Friedrich Theodor Rink (Königsberg, 1801). 166 Founded in 1629, the Biblioteca Universitaria di Padova was then located in the Sala dei Giganti in Piazza Capitanato, before being moved in 1912 to its current location in via San Biagio at Padua. 167 “Circa a quel Sig.re Brus, Inglese, gia fu qua in Bologna con quelle raccolta di disegni … Certo egli e vero che lui diceva di sapere disegnare, ma noi altri non lo abbiamo mai creduto, perche non e mai stato capace d’indicare col toco lapis un minimo segno di qualsivoglia intenzione di figure, o altri corpi insensati. Lui vantava moltissimo di essere un professore e d’aver fatti molti di quei disegni  … Si portò con lui il Balugani nostro Bolognese, mio amico bravo disegnatore d’architettura, aveva ancora altri che facevano tutto. Qui il Sig. Brus aveva concetto di contare molte favole” (A Letter from Bologna. London [1790?]); see also Hessayon in this volume. The importance of the work of Luigi -

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When Manin wrote his commentary, Bruce’s reputation and credibility were so damaged that he could not be cited in Italy as an authority, especially by a young student still seeking recognition. The inevitable result was that just a year after its publication, Manin’s outstanding work was rendered obsolete by the appearance of Laurence’s commentary. With his undisputed authority, Laurence conferred scholarly authority and legitimacy on the many confusing claims Bruce made about the book of Enoch and opened a new chapter in Enochic studies. 3

The “Third” Enoch Commentary (Richard Laurence, 1821)

Richard Laurence168 was Regius Professor of Hebrew at Oxford. As evidenced by some of his other publications, he had a personal interest in the subject, but the translation of 1 Enoch fell within his professional responsibilities as a specialist in Semitic languages, engaged in reviving the study of Ethiopic, which had been neglected in England after the completion of the Polyglot Bible by Brian Walton in 1654–57. Laurence’s commentary (in English) presents the English version of Ethiopic Enoch, preceded by a general introduction, and illustrated with philological notes. The appendix reproduces the work of de Sacy, who in 1800 had translated into Latin portions of another Ethiopic manuscript brought by Bruce and now preserved in Paris.

Balugani (1737–1771) is now widely recognized, despite all of Bruce’s attempts to belittle his role in retrospect; see E. Chiovenda, Documenti relativi a James Bruce e Luigi Balugani che visitarono l’Etiopia nel 1769–1772 (Rome, 1941); P. Hulton, Luigi Balugani’s Drawings of African Plants (New Haven, 1991); S. Medde, The Antiquities of Africa: I disegni di architettura di James Bruce e Luigi Balugani (Milan, 2011). 168 Richard Laurence was born on 13 May 1760 in Bath, England. After attending Bath Grammar School, he was educated in Oxford, at Corpus Christi College. His older brother, French Laurence, became a famous jurist. Richard, instead, joined the Anglican clergy and distinguished himself for the study of ancient Semitic languages. In 1814, he was appointed Regius Professor of Hebrew and canon of Christ Church in Oxford. His major scholarly contribution was the revival of the study of the Ethiopic language in England. He devoted his attention in particular to the study of the Ethiopic versions of Old Testament Pseudepigrapha, such as the book of Enoch. In 1821, he published the first translation of Ethiopic Enoch, based on one of the two manuscripts brought from Abyssinia by James Bruce in 1773 and now preserved in Oxford. The following year, in 1822, he was appointed Archbishop of Cashel, in Ireland. He died in Dublin on 28 December 1838 after completing also the publication of the Ethiopic text, Libri Enoch prophetae versio aethiopica (Oxford, 1838).

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Laurence was not aware of the commentaries of Pompeo Sarnelli (1710) and Daniele Manin (1820). And yet, there is much continuity between them. They all rely on the same secondary sources. Their commentaries are a testament to the lasting influence of authors such as Scaliger, Bang, Sgambati, and Fabricius, who before the rediscovery of the whole text by James Bruce in 1773 kept alive not only the memory of Enoch but also large portions of the books of Enoch. The Ethiopic text gave Laurence some obvious advantages. It allowed him first of all to verify which quotations belonged or not to the text of 1 Enoch: “The Book of Enoch, now first published, contains precisely the same work as the Greek of that title, known to the Fathers; that it was quoted by St. Jude.”169 The Ethiopic text also gave Laurence a clearer understanding of the original language of the document (Hebrew or Chaldean), while Manin thought it was Greek. It also raised a series of new complex questions about the interpretation of the Ethiopic language that were obviously foreign to Sarnelli and Manin. The Ethiopic text finally provided more information about the dating of the final redaction of the document. Laurence correctly identified in the chapters now known as the Parables of Enoch all the elements that pointed to this final stage, from the reference to the “son of man” (which implied a post-Danielic composition) to the invasion of the Parthians (which could only mean an Herodian setting). “Upon the whole then we may be assured, that the book was written before the rise of Christianity; most probably at an early period of the reign of Herod.”170 It should be remembered however that before him both Carl Gottfried Woide and Manin (working independently of each other, the former on the Ethiopic text, the latter on the Greek fragments) had already got rid of the alleged antediluvian origin of the document (still maintained by Sarnelli) by suggesting a late first-century authorship.171 And yet, in spite of all obvious advantages given by the Ethiopic text, Laurence’s conclusions were not necessarily always the most accurate. Sarnelli claimed that Enoch was the author of four books, while Laurence looked at the text not only as the composition of a single author but as if it were one book. Research on 1 Enoch would finally flourish only when the presence of different books by different authors was fully recognized. In 1854, Heinrich Ewald’s landmark study demonstrated that 1 Enoch comprised a number of independent works, which in turn were the precipitate of a larger literature written in the name of the patriarch.172 169 Laurence, Book of Enoch, xix. 170 Laurence, Book of Enoch, xxxvi. 171 On the work of Woide, see Hessayon in this volume. 172 H. Ewald, Abhandlung über des äthiopischen Buches Henókh (Göttingen, 1854).

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As a Catholic bishop, Sarnelli took the theology of 1 Enoch (and the myth of the fallen angels) more seriously than Manin and Laurence did. In their post-Enlightenment rationalistic approach, Manin and Laurence could not help but see in 1 Enoch (particularly, in the Book of the Watchers) the presence of irrational fables whose significance they could not fully understand. The study of Jewish apocalypticism greatly suffered due to this patronizing and dismissive attitude by many modern European scholars, from Julius Wellhausen to Rudolf Bultmann, who saw in apocalyptic texts like 1 Enoch “an adherence to an obsolete world view that cannot and should not be resuscitated,”173 until a greater attention in structuralism and social antropology to the understanding of ancient myth as a source of philosophical and theological knowledge would overcome the prejudice and lead to the contemporary reappraisal of apocalypticism.174 Manin had an attitude toward post-biblical Jewish sources that was much more favorable than that of Laurence, who in a manner similar to Sarnelli, saw only falsehood and deceit in Judaism and in “the meretricious garb of the Jewish Kabbalah.”175 Anti-Jewish prejudice would continue for the next century to maim the field of Second Temple Judaism, labelled “Late Judaism” and depicted as an age of religious decadence after the spiritual heights of biblical prophecy.176 Manin understood that the early Christians regarded the book of Enoch as “canonical,” while Laurence dismissed the claim. “By the ancient Church, perhaps by every Church, ancient and modern, the Abyssinian alone excepted, it was always deemed apocryphal.”177 The emphasis on diversity, changes, and developments is today a central acquisition of contemporary research on the formation of the Jewish canon.178

173 See J.C. Beker, Paul the Apostle: The Triumph of God in Life and Thought (Philadelphia, 1980) 18. 174 J.J. Collins, The Apocalyptic Imagination (3rd ed.; Grand Rapids, 2016). On the importance of authors like Claude Lévi-Strauss for the understanding of the Enochic myth, see M.J. Goff, “Male and Female, Heaven and Earth: Claude Lévi-Strauss’s Structuralist Approach to Myth and the Enochic Myth of the Watchers,” in The Dead Sea Scrolls and the Study of the Humanities: Method, Theory, Meaning, ed. P.B. Hartog et al. (Leiden, 2018) 77–91. 175 Laurence, Book of Enoch, xlvi. 176 See G. Boccaccini, Portraits of Middle Judaism in Scholarship and Arts (Turin, 1992). 177 Laurence, Book of Enoch, xix. 178 See T.H. Lim, The Formation of the Jewish Canon (New Haven, 2014); M.L. Satlow, How the Bible Became Holy (New Haven, 2014); E. Mroczek, The Literary Imagination in Jewish Antiquity (Oxford, 2016).

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4

Conclusion

The existence of early commentaries by Pompeo Sarnelli (1710) and Daniele Manin (1820) before the publication of Richard Laurence’s work in 1821 demonstrates that common claims about 1 Enoch as a book “lost” to Judaism and Mediterranean Christianity for several centuries until its rediscovery in Ethiopia at the end of the eighteenth century are largely exaggerated. Enoch and his book never vanished, either in scholarship or in literature and the arts. Although significant parts of the writings of Enoch were not available to European scholars, 1 Enoch was already present and studied as a book (or a collection of books), long before the James Bruce expedition. The striking continuity between the works of Scaliger, Bang, Sgambati, Sarnelli, Fabricius, Manin, and Laurence should suggest a different approach that pushes back the time of the “rediscovery” of the books of Enoch at least two centuries. More than a sudden new beginning, the publication of the English translation of Ethiopic Enoch by Laurence in 1821 marks a new stage (albeit fundamental) in an ongoing process that started in 1606 with the publication of the Syncellus fragments by Scaliger, and would continue then in 1976 with the publication of the Enoch Aramaic fragments from Qumran by Józef Milik.179 None of these three stages, generated by each of these three “beginnings,” should be studied apart from the others. 179 Milik, Books of Enoch.

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Chapter 5

Enoch and the Genesis of Freemasonry Tobias Churton In 1773, Freemason James Bruce returned to Europe with the Ethiopic Book of Enoch—too late, it transpired, to affect a restoration of Enoch to masonic significance then occurring in America. Enoch featured in a “Rite of the Royal Secret” of 25 degrees promoted by Freemasons Estienne Morin and Deputy, Henry Andrew Francken, some time between Francken’s establishment of an “Ineffable Lodge of Perfection” in Albany, New York, in 1767, and Morin’s death in 1771.1 “Morin’s Rite” seeded what would become the Ancient & Accepted (Scottish) Rite. Its Thirteenth Degree is known in Great Britain as “The Royal Arch of Enoch,” and in the United States as the “Royal Arch of Solomon” or “Master of the Ninth Arch.”2 Enoch appears as visionary builder in a legend whose elements derive from existing “Royal Arch” masonic ritual, biblical accounts of Solomon’s Temple, the Enochs of Genesis, Josephus’ Sethite pillars, and Samuel Lee’s account of excavations on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount in the reign of Julian the Apostate.3 No direct written evidence for masonic interest in Enoch exists until after the Grand Lodge of England’s establishment in London between 1716 and 1718. Rev. James Anderson’s Free-masons’ Constitutions (1723) included a footnoted account of “Enoch’s Pillars,” in line with a tradition first recorded in the Palaea Historica (late 9th–early 10th c.), that Enoch inscribed all known science on marble and brick to survive the Flood.4 However, pre-Grand Lodge written evidence indicates a belief that late medieval masons attributed civilization’s partial re-constitution not to Enoch, but to “Hermes” who discovered a pillar made before the Flood by Jabal, its knowledge subsequently transmitted via Pythagoras, Euclid, and a continuum of lodges.5

1 A.C.F. Jackson, Rose Croix (London, 1980) 43. 2 Jackson, Rose Croix, 231; A. Pike, Morals and Dogma (Charleston, 1871) XIII, 205–17. 3 Samuel Lee, Orbis miraculum, or, The temple of Solomon pourtrayed by Scripture-light (London, 1659) 370. 4 Vassiliev, Anecdota Graeco-Byzantina, 196–98, cited after A. Orlov, “Overshadowed by Enoch’s Greatness: ‘Two Tablets’ Traditions from the Book of Giants to Palaea Historica,” JSJ 32 (2001) 137–58. 5 BL Add. MS 23,198; BL MS Sloane 3848.

© Tobias Churton, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_007

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Whence Then Came Anderson’s Enoch Attribution?

Pre-Grand Lodge English sources are catechetical, regulatory, and where “historical,” craft-centered and often confused as to early medieval chronology. Orally transmitted “Old Charges” probably originated as rights-asserting texts when masons’ assemblies suffered rare state interference. Scottish evidence for lodge minutes, membership regulation, and craft-history are copious from the end of the sixteenth century, but “Enoch’s pillars” are unknown, Jabal being pillar-maker.6 The British Library’s “Cooke MS” (Add. MS 23, 198), named after Matthew Cooke, editor of the first printed version of 1861, is dated ca. 1450, making it—in the view of Freemasons—the second oldest masonic manuscript after the “Regius Poem” (ca. 1390–1430) wherein “noe” (Noah) is the poem’s sole reference to an antediluvian patriarch.7 The Cooke MS declares the building of “Enock” by Cain’s master mason Jabal (“Jobell”; cf. Gen 4:17) marked the first practice of “the science of Geometry, and masonry.” For Masonry and Geometry’s importance, the manuscript cites as authorities Herodotus, Bede, Ranulf Higden’s Polychronicon, “de Imagine Mundi” by Honorius of Autun, bishop and martyr Methodius (the Apocalypse of Pseudo-Methodius), and the Etymologiae of Isidore of Seville.8 “Jobell” is said to have shared brother Jubal and half-brother Tubal Cain’s knowledge of God’s intention to punish sin by vengeance of fire or water. Jabal’s brethren entreat him to make two stone pillars, one of marble (proof against burning), the other of “lacerus” (that “would not sink in water”). On the pillars, “some men say” the “seven sciences” (liberal arts) were inscribed, together with the rest of the brothers’ craft knowledge, including music. Both pillars survive Noah’s Flood, and “as the polychronicon seyth,” one is found after “many years” by “putogoras” (Pythagoras), and the other by “hermes the philosopher” (Hermes Trismegistus), who expound the science there found written [lines 320–330]. While “Cam” (Ham) begins the “tower of Babylon,” son “nembrothe” (Nimrod) is described as a “mighty man upon the erthe,” a “stronge man like a Gyant and he was a grete kynge” [lines 330–350]. The benign reference to being “like a Giant” is redolent of the familiar “giants” born 6 D. Stevenson, The Origins of Freemasonry, Scotland’s Century 1590–1710 (Cambridge, 1988) 19–20. Unlike Josephus’ pillars of brick and stone, where the latter would survive should water dissolve brick (Ant. 1.67), “lacerus” should be Latin lateres (burnt brick or tiles). 7 Commentary by George William Speth, pt. II, Antigrapha, Masonic Reprints vol. 2 (Margate, 1890). 8 Quatuor Coronatorum, Masonic Reprints, ed. G.W. Speth, vol. 2 (Margate, 1890); Part One, Facsimile and Transcript, “Matthew Cooke Manuscript” (BL Add. MS 23,198), lines 140–150.

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of the corrupted daughters of men in Genesis 6, otherwise a story discarded by the “Old Charges.”9 If James Anderson did consult what became known after 1861 as the Cooke MS (as G.W. Speth believed), he evidently chose to discount most of “Cooke’s” patriarchal narrative—despite practically identical narratives concerning Jabal’s role in making the pillars and of Hermes in discovering one of them (they are attested in all pre-1723 copies of Charges containing patriarchal history).10 And all of them add to “Cooke” the detail that Hermes (variously spelt) was son of Cush, son of Noah’s son Shem (despite Genesis holding Cush to be Ham’s son), with only three variants.11 That Hermes is shown as Cush’s son renders it problematic to assume late medieval and early modern Masonry habitually identified Hermes with Enoch, as Arab geographer Ibn Battūta (1304?–77?) maintained, along with Persian Abu Maʿshar (d. 886 CE), Harranian Sabian tradition, and Roger Bacon’s thirteenth-century reflections on pseudo-Aristotle’s Secretum secretorum.12 Hermes’ kinship with Cush perhaps preserves knowledge of the civilization of the Upper Nile. Noah’s curse on Ham’s son Canaan is removed by substitution of a Shemite Cush (and Hermes) who thereby receive Noah’s blessing (Gen 9:26). Early masonic tradition sidesteps biblical curses on both Cain and Ham’s progeny, suggesting a masonic prejudice for universality among all Adam’s progeny gifted with liberal arts, and a preference for science and art over doctrine, evinced in praise for the biblically condemned “Rebel” Nimrod’s construction of Babylonia, with its idolizing of graven images. Before considering why Anderson deviated from manuscript tradition in asserting “Enoch’s pillars,” and why he avoided reference to “father of wise men” Hermes Trismegistus, we must establish whether the Cooke MS’ cited authorities could have informed a masonic understanding of Enoch. While the Cooke MS is keen to cite Ranulf Higden’s Polychronicon, there is no encouragement there for elevating Jabal, rather than Enoch, as patriarch of science. Drawing on Isidore of Seville and Josephus, the Polychronicon informs us that “Enoch founded letters, and wrote some books, so says Saint Judas in his epistle,” and that this son of “Iareth” held “God almighty always his way, 9 “Matthew Cooke Manuscript,” lines 320–30, 330–50. 10 “Matthew Cooke Manuscript,” no pagination. 11 Texts reproduced in W.J. Hughan, preface by Rev. A.F.A. Woodford, The Old Charges of British Freemasons (London, 1872). 12 Ariel Hessayon summarizes medieval and early modern references to Enoch in Scripture and Scholarship in Early Modern England, ed. A. Hessayon and N. Keene (London, 2006) 21, 22, 24, 28, 36, 39, 40; see also Hessayon, Boccaccini, Reed, and others in this volume. On Abu Maʿshar and the Harranian Sabians, see T.M. Green, The City of the Moon God: Religious Traditions of Harran (Leiden, 1992) 137.

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and was translated and brought in Paradise.” Being descended through Seth and seventh from Adam, he was “best,” unlike Lamech, seventh from Cain, who was “worst.” Seth’s sons, busying themselves with geometry and astronomy were good to the seventh generation, but then “God’s sons” (Seth’s lineage) took daughters of Cain’s lineage and begat giants.13 We then learn that “men in that time” shared Adam’s knowledge of God’s punishment and made two great pillars containing what they had learned through great travail, one of marble against water and one of “brend [baked] tyle” against fire. According to Harleian MS 2261, an anonymous fifteenth-century translation, the pillars were still in “Syria,” as Latin translations of Josephus indicated (Ant. 1.71). According to John Trevisa’s translation, the learning was writ in books and put inside the pillars, the one of “stoon” extant in Syria. Hermes only turns up in the Polychronicon as “lord Mercurius” in chapter 14, son of Maia, daughter of Atlas (the Latin has “Atlantis” = the island of Atlas), and “wise in many arts” (Trevisa has “cunning in many crafts”) on which account he was called a god after his death (Trevisa has “as it were, a god”).14 The Polychronicon knows nothing of Hermes discovering a pillar, nor does it add Isidore of Seville’s note in Etymologiae book V, chapter one (“The originators of laws”) that “Mercury (that is Hermes) Trismegistus first gave laws to the Egyptians.”15 We may conclude that the Cooke MS displays scant respect for cited authorities. Two facts may be adduced from this. First, if “old Masons” ever were—as Anderson would maintain in his Constitutions of 1738—emphatic in revering “Enoch’s Pillars,” such reverence did not derive from the Old Charges alone. Second, the Old Charges give more attention to Josephus’ antediluvian pillars than to the biblical pillars of Solomon’s Temple (Jachin and Boaz) that would dominate masonic pillar-symbolism after London’s Grand Lodge extended itself throughout England. Why did Anderson discard the Old Charges pillar narrative? First, he may have consulted the Polychronicon and suspected its abuse. Second, wishing to demonstrate academic authority, Anderson’s familiarity with Josephus’ narrative would have alerted him to the contradiction between Josephus’ Sethite pillars (Ant. 1.69–70) and the Cainite lineage insisted on by the Old Charges. The theologian in Anderson favored Josephus as his authority. 13 Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden, Monachi Cestrensis, Lib. II, ed. C. Babington (London, 1869) 231 (bk. II, ch. 5); containing the Latin text and two MS translations of Polychronicon: John Trevisa’s (ca 1342–1402) and an anonymous fifteenth-century translator (Harleian MS 2261). 14 Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden, Monachi Cestrensis, Lib. II, 337. 15 S.A. Barney et al. eds., The Etymologies of Isidore of Seville (Cambridge, 2006).

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Third, while the Old Charges’ reference to Hermes discovering one of the pillars would in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries have lent authority to the Old Charges’ account, such authority was now diminished thanks to French Huguenot scholar, Isaac Casaubon’s De rebus sacris et ecclesiasticis exercitationes XVI (1614), which re-dated the “Corpus Hermeticum” on philological grounds to the third or fourth century CE, undermining Hermes Trismegistus’ prisca theologia status.16 Concerned to modernize masonic history on rational grounds, Anderson probably favored Casaubon’s critique. If Anderson was aware of the medieval identification of Hermes with Enoch, then he might have considered his elevating Enoch over Jabal accorded sufficient status. Suspicion of Free-masons’ histories was further supported by Oxford Professor of “Chymistry” Dr. Robert Plot’s Natural History of Staffordshire (1686), which included the historical scheme of “Free-masons” from a manuscript scroll of Charges, whose perusal led Plot to conclude that nothing could be found more historically false and incoherent. It is thus ironic that the most fulsome written linkage of Enoch’s name to Freemasonry appears in Anderson’s Constitutions (1723, 1738)—ironic because controversial, outspoken Anderson was central to the radically novel phase of craft development initiated by London’s “Grand Lodge.”17 Judging by the Constitutions, Grand Lodge was critical of pre-existing Masonry and disposed to innovate, not least by operating altogether independently of the freemasons’ trade, advancing a new social ideal founded on what it considered enlightened principles suitable for a new Hanoverian age, dominated politically by Whigs. Masonic enlightenment was considered ideally as originating in Adam’s heart, created by the universe’s “Great Architect” whose knowledge of liberal arts was passed subsequently through lodges of practical geometers, albeit frequently interrupted by calamities, such as Gothic invasions and the collapse of the Roman Empire and its “Augustan Stile,” now recovered, Anderson asserted, from Gothick “Impropriety” and revealed by enlightened science inspired by classicism.18 Having degraded the glories of medieval masons, Anderson presented the “Grand Lodge” as the next “revival” of authentic Masonry after that of “Royal Brother Mason,” James I.19 Page two of the 1723 Constitutions elevates Cain’s son Enoch as inheritor of Adam’s primal knowledge of geometry (synonymous 16 A. Grafton, “Protestant versus Prophet: Isaac Casaubon on Hermes Trismegistus,” Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes 46 (1983) 78–93. 17 T. Churton, Freemasonry: The Reality (London, 2007) esp. ch. 10; R.A. Berman, “The Architects of Eighteenth-Century English Freemasonry, 1720–1740” (Ph.D. dissertation, University of Exeter, 2010) 306. 18 J. Anderson, The Constitutions of The Free-Masons (London, 1723) 38–39. 19 J. Anderson, The New Book of Constitutions (London, 1738) 98. -

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with “Masonry”), his name given to the world’s first city, interpreted as “Consecrated” or “Dedicated.” This Enoch is all but conflated in significance with his Sethite namesake: Nor can we suppose that SETH was less instructed, who being the Prince of the other Half of Mankind, and also the prime Cultivator of Astronomy, would take equal Care to teach Geometry and Masonry to his Offspring, who had also the mighty Advantage of Adam’s living among them.20 A footnote on page three expands on the virtues of Sethite lineage: For by some Vestiges of Antiquity we find one of ’em, godly ENOCH, (who dy’d not, but was translated alive to Heaven) prophecying of the final Conflagration at the Day of Judgment (as St. Jude tells us) and likewise of the General Deluge for the Punishment of the World: Upon which he erected his two large Pillars, (tho’ some ascribe them to Seth) the one of Stone, and the other of Brick, whereon were engraven the Liberal Sciences, &c. And that the Stone Pillar remain’d in Syria until the Days of Vespasian the Emperor.21 The direct linkage of the two biblical Enochs into one masonic lesson is noticeable in the words of the “Master’s Song” appended to the same 1723 Constitutions: CAIN a City fair and strong First built, and call’d it Consecrate, From ENOCH’S Name, his eldest Son, Which all his Race did imitate: But godly ENOCH, of Seth’s loins, Two Columns rais’d with mighty Skill: And all his Family enjoins True Colonading to fulfill.22 Anderson’s “columns” story derives in part of course from Josephus’ account of Sethite pillars (Ant. 1.69–71). In the second, revised book of Constitutions, Anderson perhaps attempts to reconcile the discrepancies with an interesting admission: 20 Anderson, Constitutions, 2–3. 21 Anderson, Constitutions, 3 n. 22 Anderson, Constitutions, 75. -

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ADAM was succeeded in the Grand Direction of the Craft by SETH, ENOSH, KAINAN, MAHALALEEL and JARED, whose Son, Godly ENOCH died not, but was translated alive, Soul and Body, into Heaven, aged 365 Years. A.M. [“Year of Masonry”] 987 He was expert and bright both in the Science and the Art, and being a Prophet, He foretold the Destruction of the Earth for Sin, first by Water, and afterwards by Fire: therefore ENOCH erected Two large PILLARS*, the one of Stone and the other of Brick, whereon he engraved the Abridgement of the Arts and Sciences, particularly Geometry and Masonry.23 Anderson’s asterisk refers to an important side-note: *Some call them SETH’S Pillars, but the old Masons always call’d them ENOCH’s Pillars, and firmly believ’d this Tradition: nay Josephus (Lib. i. cap. 2) affirms the Stone-Pillar still remain’d in Syria to his Time. Bearing in mind Anderson’s caveat concerning “the old Masons” may reflect tremors between the new “Grand Lodge” regime and pre-existing lodges, we must ask why Anderson allows Enoch mastery of the pillars at all, having already discounted the “Old Charges” reservation of the role for Jabal, son of Adah and Lamech, at variance with Josephus’ ascription of the pillars to Seth’s, not Enoch son of Cain’s, lineage. Whether the “old Masons” who—according to Anderson—“always” referred to “Enoch’s Pillars,” intended Cain’s son, or Seth’s descendant (or a conflation of both) remains an open question. Certainly, Anderson identifies the pillar-building Enoch with the prophet of the world’s judgment (Jude 14), raised to heaven directly while alive (Gen 5:24). It is possible Anderson drew not on English “Free-mason” traditions as regards Enoch, but on Scottish oral tradition. Scottish and English masons’ traditions were at this time distinct. For example, Scottish masons did not use the English term “freemason” for a master mason of freestone, but “mason.” According to David Stevenson, Anderson’s father, James, was a leading member of the Lodge of Aberdeen, serving as Master in the 1690s and as “keymaster” in 1719, and his son may have been initiated there too, so Anderson might have got his idea of “old Masons” and “Enoch’s pillars” primarily from Scotland.24 Hermes’ role as pillar-finder and transmitter is, however, explicit in the Old

23 Anderson, New Book of Constitutions, 3. 24 D. Stevenson, “James Anderson: Man and Mason,” Heredom 10 (2002) 94.

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Charges, and as Hermes had been long identified with Enoch, that fact might arguably have stimulated a tradition concerning “Enoch’s pillars.” As for Anderson’s competing ascription “Seth’s Pillars,” he could cite Joshua Sylvester’s translation of Guillaume de Salluste Du Bartas’s epic poems Semaines (“Weeks”): Du Bartas his deuine weekes and workes translated: and dedicated to the Kings most excellent Maiestie by Iosuah Syluester (London, 1613). A chapter by Du Bartas headed “The Columnes,” from the “Second Week,” describes “Seth’s Pillars.” Discovered by Heber, Shem’s great grandson, Heber instructs son Phalec how to use them. Opening a jasper and marble pillar, statues of “four bright Virgins” (the liberal science quadrivium of arithmetic, astronomy, music and geometry) are revealed. “Old Seth” is described as “Adam’s scholar” who taught his children the nature of the stars and their courses, and “by Tradition Cabalistik” his progeny knew God would twice bring this world “to nought, By Flood and Flame.”25 They who called Seth their “Grand-sire” (forefather) thus built the stately pillars with a “hundred learned Mysteries therein.”26 This designation could easily accommodate Enoch, most distinguished of Seth’s progeny. Du Bartas’ French contemporaries, such as Guillaume Postel (1510–1581), were familiar with Enoch’s “Cabalistick” links. Postel’s De Etruriae regionis (Florence, 1551) insisted the Book of Enoch’s prophecies were canonical in Ethiopia, and having collected cited fragments of text, Postel asserted in De Originibus (Basel, 1553) that an Ethiopian priest had confided him the lost book’s meaning. Postel’s Enoch research inspired mathematician John Dee (1527–1608) who famously prayed that God show him what he’d shown in heaven to Enoch.27 By Anderson’s time, so much scholarly work had been expended on Enoch’s lost and fragmentary prophecies that it had become acceptable in literary circles to interchange ascription of the pillars to Enoch or Seth. Thus Dr. Thomas Browne’s 1642 bestseller Religio Medici, dealing judiciously with obscure ancient writings the doctor might wish to preserve, opines: “I would not omit a copy of Enoch’s pillars, had they many nearer authors than Josephus, or did not relish too much of the fable.” That is, the account sounded legendary and historically unreliable. A footnote adds: “For this, the story is, that Enoch, or his father Seth, having been informed by Adam” of the coming conflagration, decided to preserve the sciences with two pillars.28 25 G. de S. Du Bartas, Du Bartas his deuine weekes, trans. J. Sylvester (London, 1613) 360. 26 Du Bartas, Deuine weekes, 360. 27 M. Casaubon, ed., A True & Faithful Relation of What passed for many Yeers Between Dr. John Dee … and Some Spirits (London, 1659) 231. 28 S. Wilkin, ed., Sir Thomas Browne’s Works, vol. 2, Including His Life and Correspondence: Religio Medici-Pseudodoxia Epidemica, Part One (London, 1835) 35. Sir Thomas Browne

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So, while Anderson had precedence to accept the term “Enoch’s pillars,” he was careful not to ascribe extraordinary value or meaning to them. That they meant something to “old Masons” did not dispose him to explore why. It seems then that Enoch might have been a problematic figure for the new Grand Lodge, on account of an antediluvian pillar legend that could confuse attempts by the new order to emphasize its pillars “Jachin” and “Boaz” at Solomon’s Temple: features that would eventually become essential lodge furniture for Freemasons worldwide. It is notable in this regard that according to masonic historian Neville Barker Cryer, a “Grand Lodge of All England” based at York existed “from or before 1725 to 1744 and from 1761 to 1792.”29 After 1720, London’s Grand Lodge began offering charters to new lodges in areas where York’s Grand Lodge of All England had an interest. This move caused ructions. Barker-Cryer suggests one point at issue may have been York masons’ attachment to what was claimed to be a more anciently constituted Masonry. A part-satirical pamphlet of 1746 refers to a privileged group of Masons being “made in the antediluvian manner.”30 It may be that an inkling or hint of an antediluvian Masonry derived principally from Anderson’s 1723 Constitutions, for on page three, he refers to “NOAH and his three Sons, JAPHET, SHEM, and HAM, all Masons true, brought with them over the Flood the Traditions and Arts of the Ante-deluvians, and amply communicated them to their growing Offspring.”31 While no contemporary masonic evidence explicitly links an antediluvian Masonry to Enoch, Anderson’s new Constitutions of 1738 does, as we have seen, assert “the old Masons” firm belief in Enoch’s pillars, while also asserting that those who’d preserved the Arts and Sciences through the deluge enjoyed a distinct identity. When Noah and sons “journeyed from the East (the Plains of Mount Ararat, where the Ark rested) toward the West, they found a Plain in the Land of SHINAR, and dwelt there together, as NOACHIDAE,* or Sons of Noah.”32 This “Noachida” identity was supported by additions to the “First Charge” (printed in the second edition of the 1738 printing) that “a Mason is obliged by his Tenure to observe the Moral Law, as a true Noachida”; “For they all agree in the 3 great Articles of Noah, enough to preserve the Cement of the

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(1605–1682) also knew John Dee’s son Arthur in Norwich. Browne was a correspondent of accepted Free-mason (1646) and Dee-enthusiast, Elias Ashmole (1617–1692). N. Barker Cryer, York Mysteries Revealed (Hersham, 2006) 219. Knoop, Jones, and Hamer, Early Masonic Pamphlets (Manhesterr, 1945) 346; Barker Cryer, York Mysteries, 246 (referring to York Freemason Francis Drake’s speech on the special distinction of Masonry in York); on a tradition of an ancient obligation of York masons anciently to “follow the laws of the Noachedeans,” see Barker Cryer, York Mysteries, 20. Anderson, Constitutions, 3. Anderson, New Book of Constitutions, 4.

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Lodge.”33 We may speculate as to what might have lain behind these additions. Was an interest-group being mollified or accommodated? Some dissatisfaction seems to have congealed into a suspicion that something was missing, or had got lost in the new regime’s conception of “Free and Accepted Masonry.” There exists evidence for “another” privileged form of symbolic Masonry suggestive of a hypothetical Enochic content, based on the widespread Jewish identification of Enoch with Metatron.34 Shortly after Anderson gained approval for his first draft of the 1723 Constitutions, translator and Royal Society Fellow, Robert Samber (“Philalethes Junior,” 1682–1745) attended a feast to celebrate Tory Jacobite the Duke of Wharton’s Grand Mastership, an appointment embarrassing to the Grand Lodge’s ruling clique of anti-Jacobite “Whigs.” Reported as one dismayed by proceedings, Samber asked how demolishing a mountain of venison pastry could contribute to building the “spiritual House”: plainly referring to Paul’s analogy of the new spiritual temple surpassing the old (2 Cor 5:1).35 Samber’s esoteric conception of Masonry is revealed in a prefatory letter to his translation of Harcourt de Longeville’s Long Livers (including a preparation of the “Universal Medicine” by alchemist Arnold of Villanova, 1722). Samber’s epistle addresses the Grand Master, Masters, Wardens and Brethren of Freemasons of Britain and Ireland as “a chosen Generation, a royal Priesthood,” suggesting the lineage of Seth (Seth appears on p. xxxv, and on p. xviii is compared to “false Brother” Cain), and especially those who have passed through “the veil” whose “greater Light” reveals the “Spiritual Celestial Cube” as the source of knowledge, peace and happiness.36 For Samber, Masonry’s “uninterrupted Tradition” makes it meaningful that: “Ye are living stones, built up a Spiritual House,” “exiled Children,” “the Fire of the Universe,” “Sons of Science … who are illuminated with the sublimest Mysteries and profoundest Secrets of MASONRY.”37 Those secrets are clearly indicated as alchemical. The seeds of everlasting repose must be sown in this life, so that Man may ascend, first by contemplating the creature, then rising to his creator.38 Some are not illuminated; Samber addresses “a higher class” who “are but few.”39 33 Anderson, New Book of Constitutions, 143–44. 34 See Magid in this volume. 35 Harcourt De Longeville, Long livers: a curious history of such persons of both sexes who have liv’d several ages, and grown young again (London, 1722), prefatory letter by “philalethes Junior” (Robert Samber), v. 36 De Longeville, Long Livers, v. 37 De Longeville, Long Livers, iii, v, xii, li. 38 De Longeville, Long Livers, vi. 39 De Longeville, Long Livers, xlix.

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In masonic historian R.F. Gould’s preface to an 1891 reprint of Long Livers,40 he observed that Samber’s letter suggested possible relations between Masonry and Rosicrucianism during and after the 1720s; perhaps, Gould opined, some high-ranking Masons were joined to another “Hermetic Society”—Samber’s terminology being inconsistent with stonemasons’ lodges. Arguably, Gould entertained a common, but mistaken conception of the seventeenth-century craft. The idea of so-called “speculative” or symbolic Masonry being the fruit of Rosicrucian impulse was propounded in 1824 by Thomas de Quincey, by whose time a masonic-style neo-Rosicrucianism had flourished and faded on the continent.41 The ground for linking Enochic themes with magic and Hermetic philosophy and practice in alchemy had been laid the century before the “Rosicrucian Manifestos” appeared. According to Gabriele Boccaccini: “The idea that magic and alchemy could provide a shortcut continued to fascinate European intellectual circles. In his Introduction to in divinam Chemiae artem (Basel: Perna, 1572) Petrus Bonus repeated Roger Bacon’s remarks that Enoch was the great Hermogenes.”42 Enoch’s status as a patriarch of Rose-Cross ideology is evident from the Fama Fraternitatis itself, with a conclusion strongly reminiscent of the sphere theme in du Bartas’ “The Columnes” (1584), printed in English in 1613—a year before the printed Fama appeared in Germany: Our Philosophia is nothing new but is the same which Adam received after his fall and which Moses and Solomon applied. … Thus it should not be said: “This is true according to philosophy but false according to theology”, for everything which Plato, Aristotle, Pythagoras and others recognized as true, and which was decisive for Enoch, Abraham, Moses and Solomon and which above all is consistent with that wonderful book the Bible, comes together, forming a sphere or ball in which all the parts are equidistant from the centre.43

40 Churton, Freemasonry, 237–38. 41 The London Magazine (January, 1824) published de Quincey’s assessment of German historian J.G. Buhle’s view that this transformation occurred between 1630 and 1640, particularly with the work of Dr. Robert Fludd (1574–1637), outspoken defender of the R.C. Brotherhood. 42 G. Boccaccini, “In Search of the ‘Lost’ Enoch: The Reception History of Enochic Traditions, from the Fifteenth to the Nineteenth Century,” paper presented at 10th Enoch Seminar, Florence, Italy, 23. “Hermogenes” is one of the variant forms of Hermes, including “Hermenes” within the Old Charges. 43 Fama Fraternitatis 1614–2014, trans. Christopher and Donate McIntosh (Lilienthal, 2014) 46. -

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Britain in the 1650s saw a vigorous network of writers familiar with Robert Fludd and the figure of Enoch as perfected man, with “theomagical” emphases accommodating of Rose-Cross ideology. Early in the next century, Samber was himself a devoted reader of Thomas Vaughan (“Eugenius Philalethes,” 1621–1666) who brought an English translation of the Fama to its first English printing in 1652. Only one of Britain’s Hermetic network is definitely known as a Free-mason, however: Elias Ashmole (1617–1692), “made a Free-mason” at Warrington in 1646. Ashmole’s 1650s circle included Dr. Robert Childe (ca. 1612–1654); physician Nathaniel Henshaw; Henshaw’s brother Thomas, a lawyer; alchemist Thomas Vaughan (Thomas Henshaw’s friend), and Dr. Levin Flood (Robert Fludd’s nephew and inheritor of his uncle’s library). Attempting to form both an ideal Christian community on the lines of likely Fama author Johann Valentin Andreae, and a chemical club, these men revived sixteenth-century Hermetic enthusiasms, to which the persistent rumor of a secret Rose-Cross Fraternity acted as leaven.44 While Levin Fludd and Robert Childe studied medicine in Padua in 1638, King’s Master Mason Nicholas Stone’s son went to Rome to study the Italian masters’ sculpture and architecture, sending home busts and architectural books via the English factory at Livorno. That same year, the Renter Warden’s accounts for the London Company of “ffreemasons” reveal that Nicholas Stone senior attended a special event, a mere note of which has survived: P[ai]d w[hi]ch the accompt layd out w[hi]ch was more than I have received of them w[hi]ch were taken into the Accepcon [Acception] whereof xs [10 shillings] is to be paid by Mr Nicholas Stone, Mr Edmund Kinsman Mr John Smith, Mr William Millis, Mr John Colles.45 44 Dr. Levin (Livinius) Fludd (d. 1678), son of Thomas Fludd (son of Sir Thomas Fludd Knt., brother of Dr. Robert Fludd [b. 1574]); medicine, Leiden 1634, graduated M.D. Padua 1639. Childe: medicine, Leiden 1635, M.D. Padua 1638; afterward Royal College of Physicians London, according to Anthony Wood, Athenæ Oxonienses, vol. 1 (London, 1691) 819; see also Daniela Prögler, English Students at Leiden University, 1575–1650 (London, 2013) 194. Dr. Childe introduced Ashmole to Levin Fludd at Fludd’s home at Maidstone in 1651. For more information on Dr. Childe, see George L. Kittredge, Doctor Robert Child, The Remonstrant (Cambridge, 1919); G.H. Turnbull, Dury, Hartlib and Comenius (Liverpool, 1947). 45 Renter Wardens Accounts, London Company of Masons Records, Guildhall Library, London; quoted in M. Scanlan, “Nicholas Stone and the Mystery of the Acception,” Freemasonry Today 12 (2002); and M. Scanlan, “The Mystery of the Acception, 1630–1723: A Fatal Flaw,” Heredom 11 (2003); cited in Berman, “Architects of Eighteenth-Century English Freemasonry,” 43. Scanlan argues that the “Accepcon” likely constituted a symbolic form of Freemasonry. For an argument that the Accepcon was an élite social gathering with little significant spiritual or symbolic content, see pp. 40–45. -

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All we can say for certain is that the event was held under the auspices of the London Company of freemasons (renamed from 1677 the London Company of Masons) with those “taken into the Accepcon” all members of that company. While the Grand Lodge of England for a longtime held (and its successors generally hold) that it was the word “accepted” that differentiated “operative” (craftsmen) from “speculative” masons (justifying the “Grand Lodge’s” existence), this distinction is misleading when applied to seventeenth-century London Masonry. Anderson seems only to have understood the term “accepted” as one equivalent to the term “admitted” used of non-masons (like himself) joining lodges of stonemasons in Scotland. Sculptor of one of the century’s greatest artworks (effigy of John Donne, St Paul’s Cathedral), Nicholas Stone had been company master four years earlier, while Edmund Kinsman succeeded him in 1635. John Colles (or Collis) would be company master in 1648. Whatever was involved in being “taken into the Accepcon,” it was not to acquire practical knowledge of architecture! Important evidence regarding Stone was subsequently alleged to have been deliberately destroyed. According to Anderson, in 1720 “at some private Lodges, several very valuable Manuscripts (for they had nothing yet in print) concerning the Fraternity, their Lodges, Regulations, Charges, Secrets, and Usages (particularly one writ by Mr. Nicholas Stone the Warden of Inigo Jones) were too hastily burnt by some scrupulous Brothers, that those papers might not fall into strange Hands.”46 It is possible that Anderson invented this story as it stands, as one suiting his determination to manufacture a masonic history acceptable to his patrons’, and presumably his own, wishes. But if Anderson’s account is true, or has truth in it, it is possible the “strange Hands” were responding to a call of 24 June 1718 made by new “Grand Master” George Payne, when, according to Anderson, Payne “desired any Brethren to bring to the Grand Lodge any old Writings and Records concerning Masons and Masonry in order to shew the Usages of antient Times: And this year several old Copies of the Gothic Constitutions were assembled and collated.”47 Accordingly, one may wonder whether the “scrupulous Brothers” included Anderson’s “old Masons” who believed in Enoch’s pillars. It seems likely that some pre-Grand Lodge Free-masons suspected the new regime’s intentions. Anderson may have had a hint of the content of Stone’s burnt manuscript—if, that is, it ever existed and was not Anderson’s invention. Anderson refers to a manuscript by Stone in a side-note comment to the following statement concerning Inigo Jones (1572–1652): “The best Craftsmen 46 Constitutions, 1738, 111. 47 Constitutions, 1738, 110.

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from all Parts resorted to Grand Master [an anachronistic title] JONES, who always allow’d good Wages and seasonable times for Instruction in the Lodges, which he constituted with excellent By-Laws, and made ’em like the Schools or Academies of the Designers in Italy. He also held the Quarterly Communication* [sidenote:] So said Brother Nicholas Stone his Warden, in a manuscript burnt 1720.”48 One can only speculate as to how Anderson had knowledge of the content of a manuscript allegedly burned, unless perhaps, he counted himself among the “scrupulous Brothers.” It would be more than helpful to know the facts behind this story. Commenting on the observation that members and non-members of the Masons Company were admitted to the “Acception,” masonic historians Knoop and Jones stated that this “implies that the ceremony of admission to the Acception was different from any ceremony of admission to the freedom of the Company.”49 We do not know precisely in what way an “Acception” differed, but given its domination by senior, more educated company members and distinguished individuals, it is possible that the ceremony and dinner had some symbolic characteristic related to the philosophical or spiritual meaning of architecture. One might speculate that Enoch might occupy a role as patron of such aspiration, whose pillars testified to the link of the arts and sciences to the heavens, and to lost knowledge, preserved by a few. An esoteric link between the “Acception” ceremony and reception of “Anima Mundi,” understood as Metatron, or Enoch transfigured (viz: 3 Enoch, etc.) may be constructed, or arguably re-constructed, from contemporary materials available to an educated Master or Accepted Mason associated with London’s Company of Freemasons in the seventeenth century. That alchemy was pursued by some freemasons is suggested in the poetic preface to Accepted Mason Elias Ashmole’s publication of Thomas Norton’s Ordinal of Alchemy (1477) in Theatrum Chemicum Britannicum (1652), where Norton writes: But wonder it is that Wevers deale with such warks, Free Masons and Tanners with poore Parish Clerks; … For all such Men as give Tincture to Glasse:50 Admittedly this tidbit has little to offer by way of elucidating a symbolic Masonry peculiar to the Acception. However, the possibility of a ceremonial 48 Constitutions, 1738, 98–99. 49 D. Knoop and G.P. Jones, The Genesis of Freemasonry (Manchester, 1947) 146. 50 E. Ashmole, ed., Theatrum Chemicum Britannicum (London, 1652) 7.

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Figure 5.1 BL Add. MS 10302 fol.6v Reproduced by permission of the British Library

intention of “Acception” is arguably discernible in an illumination to an original MS of Norton’s Ordinall of 1477 (Figure 5.1).51 It shows a scene redolent of Lodovico Lazzarelli’s Crater Hermetis (1505) wherein Lazzarelli’s master, called “Enoch” (Giovanni Mercurio da Correggio), effected Lazzarelli’s spiritual regeneration. That is, Enoch imparts divine wisdom to his disciple, elevating him to a superior level of existence.52 51 BL Add. MS 10302, Thomas Norton, ‘The ordinall of Alchemy’ (1472). 52 W.J. Hanegraaff, “Sympathy or the Devil: Renaissance Magic and the Ambivalence of Idols,” Esoterica 1.2 (1999), which reinterprets the Hermetic idol-making passage from -

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Figure 5.2 T. Norton, The Ordinall of Alchimy (p. 12) in Theatrum Chemicum Britannicum, ed. E. Ashmole (London, 1652) Public domain, published under a Creative Commons license

The illumination to Norton’s Ordinall of Alchymy (fol. 6v; Figure 5.2) shows a master in his chair. He holds a blue book in his left hand by the praying hands of his pupil, with a red book in his right hand close to the pupil’s face (who may be about to kiss it). The pupil kneels on green tiles before the master’s throne. Framed by a Gothic, floriated archway, the green tiled floor extends behind to a blue night sky of golden stars. Above, angels bear scrolls, carrying Asclepius in the light of Lazzarelli’s Crater Hermetis: that is, the highest adept, like the Egyptian sculptor who infuses divinity in a statue, creates souls; the Anima Mundi spiritualizes its projections. Making men divine has its heavenly analogue in Enoch’s transfiguration into Metatron in 3 Enoch, etc., identified with the “Anima Mundi.” -

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the following messages in Latin. Top left is from Psalm 44: “Thou hast loved justice, and hated iniquity: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.” Top right, from Psalm 27:14: “Expect the Lord, do manfully, and let your heart take courage, and wait for the Lord.” Also in Latin, the pupil swears: “I shall keep secret the secrets of Alchemy.” Note especially how the master enjoins the pupil: Accipe donum Dei sub sigillo sacrato; that is: “Accept the gift of God under the sacred seal.” “Accipe donum dei” would conceivably be an appropriate injunction to someone “taken into” an “Accepcon.” This conception is conjectural, of course, and the more so were it conjectured alone. Ashmole had the Ordinall design in question engraved by Robert Vaughan (1597–1663) for the printed Theatrum Chemicum Britannicum. In Vaughan’s exquisite engraving, the master puts one book—possibly the Bible—before the one who swears to keep secret the “donum dei” he has accepted. Instead of a Gothic archway we now have two distinct pillars, differently decorated and constructed, with curious inscriptions of figures and a symbol resembling a door, while an arch, flanked by lions, adjoins the capitals. The left pillar displays illogical perspective and may be hollow. There is perhaps an inner shelf in darkness (the pillar on the right is light). The pillars appear to be tilted slightly off a checkered floor which recedes to a veil, above which the Holy Spirit represented as a dove hovers, emanating beams of light, flanked by angels. One may speculate whether Ashmole, in altering the original manuscript design, perhaps drew on personal experience of being asked to accept a secret. The authentic meaning of “acception” would not then be, in the first instance, that a person is accepted, but that the initiate has accepted something: a significant distinction—a two-way process. Having accepted, the candidate is accepted, that is, becomes acceptable (see Rom 5:2; 12:5). The one who enters the Holy of Holies, who passes through the veil, must be acceptable to the Lord. We may recall Samber’s point about true Freemasons being those who had passed the veil. The precise words exchanged by master and pupil in the engraving reappeared in 1698 in a work about the Philosopher’s Stone, THE GOLDEN AGE: Or, the REIGN of SATURN REVIEW’D,53 in praise of the alchemical works of Eugenius Philalethes (Ashmole’s friend Thomas Vaughan), particularly with regard to the anima mundi, the soul of the world, or “breath of God,” which Vaughan says in his Lumen de Lumine must—note—be received. Vaughan’s treatment shows knowledge shared with Robert Fludd’s identification of “Mettatron” with the Anima Mundi and “second Person,” close to God, familiar 53 Hortolanus [pseud.], The golden age, or, The reign of Saturn review’d (London, 1698) 39.

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as Enoch transformed in 3 Enoch (Sefer Hekhalot). Even if Fludd had not read the complete text of 3 Enoch, the Metatron-Enoch transformation was referred to in numerous works of the late fifteenth and sixteenth centuries; imbued with kabbalist knowledge from many sources, Fludd was familiar with Menahem ben Benjamin Recanati’s cabalistic commentary on the Torah, referring to it at sundry moments in Mosaicall Philosophy. Recanati was familiar with the Enoch-Metatron identification.54 Vaughan explicitly identifies the “East” with the second sephira, “Cocma” (Hokhma = Wisdom), which he calls the “Son of God.” The third sephira, Binah, Vaughan identifies with the “Holy Ghost” which Adam must breathe in to make him “a living soule.” Vaughan emphasizes that the Holy Ghost could not simply “breath” the soul into Adam; Adam had actively to “receive it, or have it of himself.”55 The formative creative principle is stressed: the ability to construct by divinizing art. “Every good soule is a new soule,” writes Vaughan, “coming from the East: that is from Cocmah, or the second Sephiroth, which is the Son of God  … The Holy Ghost could not breath a soule into Adam, but he must either receive it, or have it of himself. Now the truth is he receives it, and what hee receives, that he breaths into Nature.”56 It’s worth noting that Free-mason Ashmole was aware of the extant seventeenth-century Free-masons’ catechism whereby the light of the East (“the jewel”) first touches the Master’s throne in the east of the lodge before setting brethren “to work.” Robert Fludd’s posthumously published account of the Anima Mundi appeared the year Nicholas Stone was taken into the Acception. Fludd’s Philosophia Moysaica (1638) identifies the Anima Mundi specifically with “Mitattron,” for whom the Holy One in chapter ten of 3 Enoch makes a throne like his own, that Metatron as a “Little Yahweh” may sit at the door of the seventh Hall of heaven, it being announced through the Herald that Metatron henceforth is God’s representative and ruler over all the princes of kingdoms and all the children of heaven (all that sustains creation), save the eight high princes called YHWH by the name of their King. Fludd writes: I will begin my relation, with the Cabalist’s Great Angell, whom they call Mitattron: which by interpretation, is Donum Dei, the Gift of God, which (as they say) is the catholick intellectuall Agent, from which all peculiar 54 M. Mantovani, “Notes on the Transmission and Reception of the Sefer Hekhalot in the Renaissance,” in Cultural Encounters: Cross-disciplinary Studies from the Late Middle Ages to the Enlightenment, ed. D. Cappa et al. (London, 2018) 73–89. 55 T. Vaughan, Lumen de Lumine (London, 1651) 83. 56 Vaughan, Lumen de Lumine, 82–83.

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forms do descend…. And this was that catholick angelicall Spirit, which God sent out as a Spirituall Messenger from himself, and out of himself, in the form of an emanation, to move upon the waters, and to inform and vivify them, and give life and being, not only to the great world, but also to every particular thereof, and the emanation was this Word of God, by whom all things were made, and vivified, forasmuch as in it was life: I mean that … By the Word of the Lord the heavens were framed and setled, and by the breath of his mouth, all the virtues thereof, namely, the life, preservation, and being.57 Metatron, writes Fludd, “is nothing else but that universall Spirit of Wisdome which God sent … out of his own mouth, as the greatest gift and token of his benignity unto each world, and the members thereof: to reduce them from deformity, and non-existence, into act and formall being … And this therefore was tearmed rightly in the eies of wise men Mitattron or Donum Dei catholicum, which reduceth the universall Nothing into an universall Something.”58 Remarkably, in my view, Fludd translates “Mitatron” as donum dei, gift of God, something that had to be received, or accepted: the gift of creation. Such a conception also makes sense if what was received found its analogue or symbol in the presentation or reception of a Bible, the manifest Word (breath-mind) of God as understood by educated Englishmen, the foundation, as piety instructed, of all knowledge and true art: living key to the universe and its construction. We know that a “great Bible” was part of the stored equipment pertinent to Acceptions.59 It indicates the dignity with which Acception records were accorded at that time. In 1663, the company kept the “name of the Accepted Masons in a fairly enclosed [probably gilt or silver] frame with a lock and key.” The same inventory lists the following: “Item. One Book of Constitutions which Mr Flood [variant spelling of “Fludd”] gave. Item. One Book of Constitutions. Item. One Bible.”60 A second inventory of 1676 listed the following: “One Book of Constitutions of the Accepted Masons. One Book of the Ancient Constitutions. One great Bible. A faire large Table of the Accepted Masons. One Money Dish and One Ivory Hammer.” We cannot be certain that “Mr Flood” (clearly someone familiar to the company) was the famous Dr. Robert Fludd. “Mr Flood” may have been Fludd’s nephew, Dr. Levin Fludd, 57 58 59 60

R. Fludd, Mosaicall Philosophy (London, 1659) 151. Fludd, Mosaicall Philosophy, 151–52. E. Conder, The Records of the Whole Craft & Fellowship of Masons (1894; facs. ed., 1988). Transactions of the Quatuor Coronati Lodge of Research 9 (1896) 38. Conder inspected a Company Inventory of June 24, 1663, from the Quarterage Book of the Masons Company (Guildhall MS 5313, fol. 1).

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friend of Accepted Free-mason Elias Ashmole (1617–1692). Levin Fludd inherited his uncle’s library. Perhaps it was neither, but the name connection is striking and, all things considered, I should say, significant.61 We do not know whether Dr. Robert Fludd enjoyed familiarity with masonic Acception, or even, as Buhle and de Quincey suggested, assisted in creating a transformed Masonry. After practicing as a physician in Fenchurch Street, Fludd lived in Coleman Street, a neighbor to the London Freemasons Company in Masons Avenue, where Acceptions took place. Masons Avenue joins Coleman Street to Basinghall Street, City of London.



As Helge Kvanvig has observed: “In Jewish tradition Enoch is primarily portrayed as a primeval sage, the ultimate revealer of divine secrets.”62 That a more explicit role for Enoch (other than as pillar-maker) may have been heavily diluted or excised with Grand Lodge’s re-ordering of symbolic Masonry might explain the return of Enoch as a figure of significance in what would become the “Ancient and Accepted” or “Scottish Rite” after the 1760s. Anderson’s Constitutions and a subsequent Third “Master Mason” Degree of substituted secrets failed to satisfy all Freemasons. The first recorded appearance of something like a “Royal Arch” degree (or order) to reveal the “lost word” was in Ireland in 1743. In 1751, Irishmen in London formed a rival Grand Lodge: the “Antients.” Laurence Dermott became its second Grand Secretary in February 1752, the year that yields first evidence of the Royal Arch in lodge minutes. Cherished by the Antients, Dermott would call it the “Root, Heart and Marrow of Masonry.”63 In 1757, a version of the Royal Arch was worked in Fredericksburg, Virginia. However, it would seem that for some Masons, even the Royal Arch with its “lost word” rediscovered was insufficient revelation of the hidden glories of ancient Freemasonry. Besides, the “Pillars of Enoch” had still to be, as it were, masonically rehabilitated. In the Thirteenth Degree of “Morin’s Rite,” called in England the “Royal Arch of Enoch,” this task was cleverly undertaken by an ingenious blending of antediluvian with Solomonic mythology. Taking what he could from the work of Lyon-based Jean-Baptiste Willermoz (1730–1824), who began assembling elements for a 25 Degree system around 61 I am grateful to Matthew Scanlan for this information. 62 H.S. Kvanvig, Roots of Apocalyptic: The Mesopotamian Background of the Enoch Figure and of the Son of Man (WMANT 61; Neukirchen-Vluyn, 1988) 27. 63 L. Dermott, Ahimon Rezon (London, 1756) 47.

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1761, Creole trader Éstienne Morin (1717–1771) went to Port au Prince in 1763 with authority from Écossais Masons from the Council of the Grand and Sovereign Lodge of St. Jean de Jerusalem, to promote Masonry in the Americas. In about 1766, Morin completed a constitution (backdated to 1762), a foundation document for what would eventually become the Ancient and Accepted (Scottish) Rite.64 The Thirteenth Degree offers another slant on the Royal Arch, by addressing the problem of how first to connect the “lost word” of the Royal Arch with Enoch, and second, how to connect Enoch to the Temple at Jerusalem. The solution to the first issue lay in Gen 4:26: “And to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enos: then men began to call upon the name of the Lord.” The Name then was vouchsafed to Seth’s progeny, so it was a small step to insist Enoch preserved the true Name from the Flood in a (new) pillar-story. The second issue was addressed through novelties in the pillar story, inspired by the Royal Arch and other sources. The degree legend informs initiates how, seeking revelation, Enoch experienced a vision that took him to a mountain to see God’s Name impressed in a triangular, golden plate. Manifest to Enoch in the vision, God forbade him pronounce the sacred name. Enoch was then carried underground perpendicularly, finding nine levels, each with an arch above it. In the ninth arch, Enoch saw the plate, again surrounded by flaming light. Filled with God’s spirit, Enoch built a subterranean temple in Canaan with the nine arches he had envisioned. He had a triangular plate made, each side a cubit, and had gems set within the gold, and inscribed the Name. It was placed on a triangular pedestal of white and black marble, deposited in the deepest arch. The temple completed, he made a stone door and put a ring of iron in it and placed it over the opening of the first arch, to save the temple from impending deluge. Enoch then made two pillars, one of brass, to withstand water, the other of marble, to withstand fire, engraving on the marble pillar hieroglyphics signifying a most precious treasure concealed in the Arches underground, while on the pillar of brass were inscribed the principles of the liberal arts, particularly of masonry. In the degree legend, a masonic account of Lamech, Noah, and the Ark followed. Moving on to Solomon’s wish to establish a Temple, potential “Knights” were informed that digging its foundations, an ancient ruin was found with many treasures, duly carried to Solomon. Fearing its pagan provenance, Solomon moved the project to Mt. Moriah, where a vault beneath the Sanctum 64 B.A.C.F. Jackson, Rose Croix: A History of the Ancient and Accepted Rite for England and Wales (London?, 1980) 25–26.

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sanctorum was constructed, supported by a large pillar, which he called the Pillar of Beauty, to support the Ark of the Covenant. Solomon later sent three craftsmen to search the ruins for more treasures. They discovered a stone door with an iron ring. Undeterred, they lowered by rope one of the three who found the ninth arch, leading to the precious treasure’s retrieval and delivery to Solomon, who made them Knights of the Royal Arch. The plate was taken to the Pillar of Beauty. By the time Charleston saw a “Lodge of Perfection” in 1783, Scottish explorer— and Freemason—James Bruce, laird of Kinnaird (1730–1794) had been back in Great Britain for a decade, following years of pioneering exploration in Egypt and Ethiopia in quest of the Nile’s source. Initiated into Freemasonry at Scotland’s famous Cannongate Kilwinning Lodge No. 2 in 1753, Bruce’s adventurous career was crowned by his publishing the bestselling Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile (5 vols., 1790). One might have thought learned Freemason Bruce would have found more delight in the Book of Enoch’s text than appears from his witty, if dry, comments in Travels. One might also have expected Bruce to have extrapolated more about the Old Charges’ Hermes-son-to-Cush relationship—after all, Cush’s progeny (Cushites) were, as he recognized, regarded as ancestors to Ethiopians, Sudanese, biblical Shebans and even Libyans in the eighteenth century, when it was customary to see the world’s races all descended from Noah’s sons. Bruce was aware of the Ethiopian tradition that Cush’s descendants went south beyond Egypt, Saba and the flatlands of Atbara, and—fearing another flood (reminders coming from the region’s tropical rains)—lived in caves in the mountains of Sofala, whence they exploited to their profit plentiful precious minerals.65 Bruce’s following description bears comparison with Josephus’ Sethites: The Cushite then inhabited the mountains, whilst the northern colonies advanced from Meroë to Thebes, busy and intent upon the improvement of architecture, and building of towns, which they began to substitute for their caves; they thus became traders, farmers, artificers of all kinds, and even practical astronomers … Letters too, at least one sort of them, and arithmetical characters, we are told, were invented by this middle part of the Cushites66

65 Bruce, Travels, 1.382–83. 66 Bruce, Travels, 1.383.

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The creation of writing was traditionally attributed to Thoth-Hermes in Egypt. Bruce takes the “prodigious fragments of colossal statues of the dog-star, still to be seen at Axum” as evidence of architectural prowess as well as devotion to Sirius, saying that in the Troglodyte’s language “Seir” meant dog, explaining why the province was called “Sirè” and the river bounding it, “Siris.” As we shall see, these observations are pertinent to Josephus’ intended siting of the surviving Sethite pillar (Ant. 1.71). Bruce believed the Cushites moved from Axum in the Abyssinian mountains to Meroë for better views of the stars, calling ancient Meroë “that first seminary of learning.”67 Thence they established Thebes, evinced by caves above Thebes that he believed they made their first accustomed dwelling there, still haunted by memory of Noah’s flood. Bruce has interesting things to say about Thoth (equated traditionally with Hermes and Enoch) in the context of Cushite astronomy and philology, that would have fascinated learned Masons, though perhaps oaths of secrecy prevented Bruce from linking his conceptions to masonic tradition, if in fact he was aware of the Old Charges’ Cush-Hermes tradition, Anderson having excised it many years earlier. Bruce does not accept the classical contention that Osiris was once king of Egypt, and “Tot” (Theuth) his secretary, or that they could have communicated writing to all peoples of Europe in “very different periods.” Thebes, Bruce maintains, was built by Ethiopians from the city of Sirè, or the Dog Star. While Diodorus Siculus believed Osiris came from putting an O before Siris to make it intelligible, Bruce asserts, contra Diodorus, that that could not make Osiris the sun. No, “Osiris” was simply the Dog Star, “Syrius,” not a man: called after a dog because the star’s becoming visible at its heliacal rising gave warning, as in a dog’s bark, that the Nile’s inundation was imminent. This, Bruce believed, was the first hieroglyphic, and Isis, Osiris, and Tot were inventions relating to it.68 From a masonic point of view, what Bruce could be said to be doing was what, to an extent, Anderson did with his Constitutions over sixty years earlier: bringing ancient lore into conformity with modern, rationally enlightened methods, achieved by experience and patient recording of local records and visible evidence, applying common senses; Bruce shared his era’s educated tendency to be indifferent to obscure spiritual meaning or abstruse metaphysics. “I know,” he writes, “that most of the learned writers are of sentiments very different from mine in these respects. They look for mysteries and hidden meanings, moral and philosophical treatises, as the subjects of these hieroglyphics.”69 He 67 Bruce, Travels, 1.379. 68 Bruce, Travels, 1.412. 69 Bruce, Travels, 1.414–15.

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dismisses the idea of eternal knowledge “which must have appeared by every man finding it in his own breast.” This is almost a paraphrase of Anderson’s first paragraph of history in the 1723 Constitutions where he says Adam must have had geometry written in his heart by God. If so, asks Bruce, why go to the trouble of writing it with much “labour, on a table of porphyry or granite”?70 This is some irony, for Anderson’s Constitutions has been considered a kind of manifesto of the “Enlightenment”! Presumably, Bruce would have been rather skeptical of the idea of antediluvian pillars containing the knowledge that hard experience alone was teaching the descendants of Cush! However, a kind of symbolic link between Cush and Hermes is still discernible in the movement from flood, to Cushites, to Thebes, to “Tot,” though it is expressed as a rational, logical conjecture over time, without anthropomorphism, based on observations on the ground. Bruce interpreted repetition of glyphs by supposing their practical purpose, to do with the Nile, sharing the enlightenment philosophy of his era that man learned not by revelation but principally through his senses’ engagement with ever more challenging circumstances, amid appropriate climactic conditions. The different forms of idols suggested to Bruce different phases of observed astronomical phenomena, of public utility. Likewise, he defers from the views of Iamblichus and others that the Crux Ansata commonly in Thoth’s hand was a symbol of divine being proceeding through the heavens, or of eternal life. Rather, Bruce reckons it simply a monogram of his name: TO (with the O above the T). One might speculate that had Bruce realized the Sethites’ surviving pillar was not in Syria, as was supposed from William Whiston’s translation of Josephus, he would probably have linked the pillars to the stelae of Egypt and interpreted the “flood” context rationally. “Enoch’s pillars” would have been objects to withstand flood, with information relevant to inundation. This would certainly have made sense of Josephus’ Greek text, which stated a pillar still stood κατὰ γῆν τὴν Σειρίδα (Ant. 1.71), which at the time was interpreted as Siriusite or Sirius-worshipping lands: Egypt or Cush—not, as in the Latin text: “in terra Syria,”71 a discrepancy that led Whiston to use his English compound: “Siriad.”72 70 Bruce, Travels, 1.414–15. 71 J. Froben, Flavii Josephi Opera (1524), ch. 4, p. 7. 72 William Whiston, trans., The Works of Flavius Josephus (Edinburgh, 1865) 27; Ant. 1.67–71 is there numbered as 1.2. That Whiston’s “Syria” is an error is supported by Syncellus’ introduction to Manetho, where “high priest” Manetho transmitted inscriptions from pillars “in the Sêriadic land [ἐν τῆι Σηριαδικῆι γῆι],” first “traced by Thoth, the first Hermes, and translated after the Flood … in hieroglyphic characters.” Manetho, trans. W.G. Waddell

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Bruce hypothesizes about the origin of language, believing its invention before the Flood unlikely (goodbye Enoch’s pillars!), but probably, by necessity, soon after. He proposes hieroglyphics the first form, developed by Cushites and later simplified into the Ethiopian languages. Taking all of this on board, we are not surprised to find Bruce more amused than surprised by the Book of Enoch, for which learned Europe had been waiting for centuries. Bruce makes no allusion to Enoch in masonic terms. He may not have known, or have been interested, in the use made of Enoch in the Ancient and Accepted Rite. Enoch had practically disappeared from Grand Lodge-type masonic practice (Bruce was a member of the Grand Lodge of Scotland, established in 1736). Indeed, had Bruce been faced with the question, he would certainly have insisted that Enoch could not have inscribed the name of God on a plate because there existed no means to do so, there being no writing before the Flood, in Bruce’s opinion, and, as he states boldly: “it is very clear, God did not invent letters, nor did Moses.”73 Bruce is content with the idea that the Book of Enoch was an apocryphal book, and used as such, he argued, by Jude as a rhetorical example of what Jude’s opponents accepted, i.e. “your own prophet tells you …”74 All that is material to say further concerning the book of Enoch is, that it is a Gnostic book, containing the age of the Emims, Anakims, and Egregores, supposed descendents of the sons of God, when they fell in love with the daughters of men, and had sons who were giants. These giants do not seem to have been so charitable to the sons and daughters of men, as their fathers had been. [Bruce describes the descent into cannibalism, which makes the giants’ victims cry to God] and God sends a flood which drowns both them and the giants.75 This curt summary accounts, Bruce says, for about four or five of the first chapters, and is but a quarter of its contents, “but my curiosity led me no further. The catastrophe of the giants, and the justice of the catastrophe, had fully satisfied me.” Bruce then disingenuously relates how Dr. Woide left London for Paris with letters from the Secretary of State to Lord Stormont, ambassador at the (Cambridge, MA, 1964) appendix 1, “Pseudo-Manetho,” 208–11. Compare Josephus’ use of the diminutive of σειρίς in Ant. 1.71 with this and other Greek references to “silk people” [Σῆρες], on which see further G.J. Reinink, “Das Land ‘Seiris’ (Šir) und das Volk der Serer in jüdischen und christlichen Traditionen,” JSJ 6 (1975) 72–85. 73 Bruce, Travels, 1.421. 74 Bruce, Travels, 1.498–99. 75 Bruce, Travels, 1.499.

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court, for permission to peruse the manuscript in the French king’s care, “but I know not why, it [the translation] has nowhere appeared. I fancy Dr Woide was not much more pleased with the conduct of the giants than I was.”76 And this rather dismissive testimony brings to conclusion this study of the figure of Enoch in the genesis of masonic mythology, for much of the lava of that mythology had, by the time of Bruce’s death in 1794, solidified, constitutionally unable either to add to, or use, such knowledge of the figure of Enoch as it owned. The eighteenth century saw the greatest flourishing of masonic experimentation, when many roads were followed in quest for the “lost word,” but it is arguable that the meaning Enoch may have had to some “old Masons” was itself lost, as “regular” Freemasonry embraced a moralizing, rationalistic, Newtonian celebration of Solomon’s Temple that shaped subsequent Freemasons’ mental furniture.77 76 Bruce, Travels, 1.500. 77 In this volume, Ludlow also discusses as “speculative” the possibility that masonic traditions influenced Joseph Smith in his representation of Enoch.

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Chapter 6

Blake’s Enoch before the Book of Enoch Francis Borchardt For much of William Blake’s life, the existence of the book of Enoch was sustained, not by face-to-face encounter with the individual, nor by hands-on interaction with book media, but through the narratives perennially told about Enoch and about the writings with which he was associated.1 But, Blake’s life coincided with the era of “discovery” of 1 Enoch/Ethiopic Enoch for the West. This period included Bruce’s expedition to Ethiopia, his conveyance of four Enoch manuscripts to Europe, and their eventual translation into Latin, and then English.2 During Blake’s lifetime the book of Enoch transformed into an entity with which Blake could materially interact, touching its pages, reading its words, and drawing on its descriptions.3 But it never lost its status as an imaginative locus: the book of Enoch became a material reality that could be read, translated, and illustrated, but also remained an idea that could be reprised in numerous distinct ways.4 1 Such stories are featured throughout the other essays in this volume. 2 G. Boccaccini, “James Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript: Solving the Mystery of the Provenance of the Roman Enoch Manuscript,” JSP 27 (2018) 237–63, esp. 237–41, introduces the story of Bruce’s conveyance of the Enoch manuscripts to Europe, and argues for a previously unknown fourth manuscript transported by Bruce. For the early Latin translation of the French manuscript, see A.I.S. de Sacy, “Notice du Livre d’Enoch,” Magasin encyclopédique 6 (1800) 369–98. Richard Laurence produced the first English translation in 1821 (i.e., Laurence, Book of Enoch). See further Boccaccini, Erho, and Hessayon in this volume. 3 This is most clearly seen in Blake’s drawings of figures from the book of Enoch discussed in A. Brown, “Blake’s Drawings for the Book of Enoch,” The Burlington Magazine for Connoisseurs 77.450 (1940) 80–85 and later in P. Taylor, “Blake’s Text for the Enoch Drawings,” Blake: An Illustrated Quarterly 7 (1973) 82–86. 4 In this sense the book of Enoch had been part of the category that Liv Ingeborg Lied and Marianne Bjelland Kartzow have identified in their ongoing research project at the Centre for Advanced Studies in Oslo “Books Known Only By Title” (https://cas.oslo.no/research -groups/books-known-only-by-title-exploring-the-gendered-structures-of-first-millennium -imagined-libraries-article3333-827.html) but thereafter became a writing both occupying the ancient imagination and materially available in various, sometimes distinct forms. Here, the book of Enoch is also an example of the important phenomenon discovered by E. Mroczek, The Literary Imagination in Jewish Antiquity (Oxford, 2016) 38–44: some imagined texts arose in Jewish antiquity as biographical ornaments for noted figures of the past. But they also persisted, taking their place in the ancient library. In her more recent work,

© Francis Borchardt, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_008

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The figure of Enoch, of course, remained primarily a figure of the imagination as well, encountered not in flesh and blood, but in various writings and artistic productions. But even Enoch himself was transformed by the production, and much later, the “discovery” of the book that bears his name. The narratives that served to realize and sustain Enoch gained new chapters that revealed portions of Enoch’s biography in ways distinct from what preceded them. These stories also invited the discovery and creation of even more material about Enoch’s life. Consequently, Enoch transformed from a relatively mysterious character sustained by a few scattered biographical references into a person enriched with a biography of heavenly journeys, angelic encounters, and visionary scenes. These moments in the life of Enoch became more thoroughly realized both in the book of Enoch and through commentary and paraphrase of its contents. After his encounter with Bruce’s book, Blake could be exposed to an Enoch who visited the heavenly court, toured the cosmos, learned divine secrets in visions and writings, and wrote them down for his posterity. These biographical accounts could then, in turn, spark further narratives about Enoch, maintaining his presence in the world. This study investigates Blake’s Enoch before he was realized in European knowledge of the 1 Enoch/Ethiopic Enoch. By examining three of Blake’s depictions of Enoch with his book(s) before the contents of the book of Enoch were known to him, this study attempts to reconstruct Blake’s biography of Enoch and image of the Book of Enoch prior to its modern discovery. For this, I suggest that it is useful to adopt the framework of “fiction” developed by Bruno Latour in his recent project, An Inquiry into the Modes of Existence.5 In conversation with Latour, this essay argues that Blake’s Enoch “before the book of Enoch” is remarkably consonant with the figure that emerges out of Ethiopic Enoch and other Enochic literature. The same is true of Blake’s realization of the book of Enoch. In his works, Blake visually presents Enoch as an important medium of divine revelation who transmits his knowledge through the written word. Moreover, Blake tells the story of a book that is closely linked with Enoch’s revelatory experience, pregnant with potential, and elusive.

Mroczek has continued to argue that the library contained not only books that could be accessed, but those that could be referenced, imagined, or remembered; see “New Maps of Early Jewish Literature Across the Boundaries of the Real: A Response to Molly M. Zahn,” Metatron 1 (2021) 1–9. 5 B. Latour, An Inquiry into the Modes of Existence: An Anthropology of the Moderns, trans. C. Porter (Cambridge, MA, 2013).

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Enoch and His Book: Beings of Fiction

What does it mean to say that Enoch and the book of Enoch are beings of fiction? How are these to be distinguished from other sorts of beings, especially entities that can be experienced primarily through physical and empirical interaction? In An Inquiry into the Modes of Existence, Latour describes a number of different ontologies, or modes of existence, by which moderns (read: Western post-enlightenment people and institutions) realize themselves and their environment. Latour there leads the reader on an ethnographic study that attempts to unveil lived experience so that the interactions that create it are exposed. In that sense, his is a constructivist project. But in pursuing this trajectory, he does not suggest that there is a reality behind the veils. Instead he argues for the authenticity of the realities that moderns create through this act of veiling.6 In arguing for this idea, then, Latour sees no tension between the artifactual and the real or authentic. In fact, the entire thesis of his sociological position, Actor-Network Theory, is that artifice is constitutive of reality; it is what makes things real.7 Everything real is constructed. All constructions are real. However, importantly, he does not understand reality to be established by only one mode of construction, but through many different modes.8 For Latour, these modes are not merely perspectives, but fully distinct ways in which aspects of life are realized and validated through interactions. One of the modes of existence Latour describes is fiction.9 In this case, fiction refers not only to the imagined stories and entities created in literature, but to beings that appear in all sorts of imaginative or artistic production, from storytelling, to sculpture, film, and beyond.10 By describing fiction as a mode 6

7 8 9 10

Latour, Inquiry, 168, argues that the shortcoming of constructivism is in failing to recognize that the idols it seeks to destroy are not hiding reality, but constitute it. See also the critical discussion of D. Elder-Vass, “Disassembling Actor-Network Theory,” Philosophy of the Social Sciences 45 (2014) 100–21, esp. 103, who discusses how Actor-Network theorists make claims that both endorse the existence of the external world and argue for its construction by scientific observation. This links up well with what Mroczek, “New Maps,” 5–7, has shown outside of Latour’s framework: premodern people (ancient Jews in the case of Mroczek’s argument) had no issue with identifying and treating as real, texts that they played a part in imagining. In fact, such texts were crucial pieces of the ancient literary landscape. B. Latour, On the Modern Cult of the Factish Gods, trans. C. Porter and H. MacLean (Durham, 2010) 21–24, discusses how the distinctions between fact and fetish are illusory. Latour, Inquiry, 177–78, introduces the modes of existence for which his project is named. Latour, Inquiry, 233–57, extensively elucidates fiction as an ontology and describes the ways in which beings can exist as fictional entities. On this understanding of the mode of fiction, see the elaborate argument of P. Manglier, “Art as Fiction: Can Latour’s Ontology of Art be Ratified by Art Lovers?” New Literary History 47 (2016) 419–38. -

139

Blake ’ s Enoch before the Book of Enoch

of existence, Latour does not deny the reality of entities described as fictional. Rather, he affirms their reality, but asserts that they have their own process of authentication, their own way of being made real and true, which is distinct from empirical proofs of observation and description imagined in the construct Latour terms Double Click.11 For Latour, beings of fiction are realized through the transformations that they cause.12 Fictional entities constitute themselves when they force themselves on the imaginations of their authors and captivate their audiences. Beings of fiction encourage those they encounter to join their audiences and to become their authors, interpreters, commentators, and even to act in their place. This is because fictional entities’ continued existence depends upon their perennial reprisal by others. When they are no longer commented on, no longer spoken of, no longer speculated about, no longer reproduced, then they cease to exist. This is because beings of fiction benefit from, and really are sustained by the multiplication of performances, interpretations, reviews, etc. that extend their presence. These representations do the work of expanding the number of actors that can be captivated by the fictional beings, and also diversify the reasons for which actors can find the beings of fiction captivating. So, this process of re-presentation both expands their reality and deepens it.13 This fictional ontology is operational not only for figures of imagination dreamt up by artists, but also for flesh and blood people with whom an individual or community do not interact in-person, either because of distance or death. For example, it is Julius Caesar’s fictional ontology that is responsible for his continued survival into contemporary culture. Likewise, it is the fictional ontology of Queen Elizabeth, promulgated through currency, memorabilia, and dramatic depictions that maintain her existence for the vast majority of people in the world. By deploying this language of agency for beings of fiction, Latour means to affirm their reality as actors, and moreover to say that they act on others. Fictional entities enlist other actors in their creation and reproduction.14 11 R. Felski, “Comparison and Translation: A Perspective from Actor-Network Theory,” Comparative Literature Studies 53 (2016) 747–65, esp. 752, 762, rightly notes that Latour understands this belief in perfect reproduction of knowledge through observation to be a modernist construction. Though, we should add, it is not without its forerunners. Latour, Inquiry, 93–95, introduces double click as a pathology of modernism against which actors must learn to protect themselves. 12 Latour, Inquiry, 245–47, describes how the layers of repeated transformation produced by fictions testify to their existence. 13 R. Felski, “Latour and Literary Studies,” PMLA 130 (2015) 737–42, esp. 739–40, notes as an example, “that Emma Bovary was made by Gustave Flaubert and a subsequent stream of critics, translators, commentators, filmmakers, and audiences does not decrease or diminish her reality, but makes it possible.” 14 Latour, Inquiry, 247. -

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Borchardt

Beings of fiction demand that actors write, draw, tell, or otherwise embody them, thereby transforming those actors into authors. Fictional entities command other actors to become subject to them, inviting those actors to interpret them and to retell their stories. Indeed, beings of fiction ask actors to transform themselves. Those they encounter are first transformed by fulfilling the audience function. They become enrolled in the fictional setting itself. They are drawn in as observers of the beings of fiction. But the actors are then transformed again into authors or even role players, when they interpret, retell, speculate about, and act as the fictional beings. In this way, beings of fiction create networks that verify their own existence.15 They shape actors into audiences and authors. They set in motion mouths that speak, hands that write, and bodies that contort all in an effort to realize the beings of fiction anew in various media. The beings of fiction depend upon the continued disturbance of media, and they enlist actors to prolong that disturbance. These fictional entities are not only ink, or paint, or paper, or stone, or the expression of air from an instrument. They depend on that ink to be shaped into words, those words into sentences, those sentences into narratives. They need that paint to become an image, that paper to be inscribed, that stone chiseled, and that expression of air to become a note. It is this disturbance that signals that the fictional being has dispatched the actor on a mission to give it shape. It also serves to send off other actors, as audience, on a journey away from the medium and into a place the story, the concerto, the drawing, or the photograph demands.16 The resultant network, if successfully realized, sends successive actors toward and away from materialization in media, toward and away from the imagination. Beings of fiction need this migration to occur not only once, but continually, or else they will cease to exist. So, when I call Enoch and the book of Enoch beings of fiction, I mean that they are realized and sustained by this very process. Enoch, from the beginning, is possessed of an ontology that depends on persistent storytelling about him, his life, his knowledge and experiences. This happens in Gen 5:18–24, in the various works that make up 1, 2, and 3 Enoch, and in a host of other literature that contributes to his biography. The process continues to this day, even with this very study.17 Enoch, in this sense, is very real, and exists both 15 Latour, Inquiry, 248–49. See also Felski, “Latour,” 740. 16 W. Warner, “Reality and the Novel: Latour and the Uses of Fiction,” The Eighteenth Century 57 (2016) 267–79, esp. 273–74, notes how fictions are both created and have the capacity to create by sending actors toward and away from media. 17 For a relatively recent, though not up to date bibliography of Enochic literature contributing to the study of the figure, the works written in his voice, and the theorized social setting for their creation, see J. Waddell, “Enoch and the Enoch Tradition: A Bibliography,

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141

Blake ’ s Enoch before the Book of Enoch

within the media that materializes him, and outside of it. Among those whom Enoch has enlisted along the way are you (someone reading about Enoch), me (someone writing about Enoch), and William Blake, who depicts him as many as three times in a print and two drawings. We all are transformed by Enoch into observers, authors, and visual artists perennially realizing his existence without him ever having been incarnate in flesh and blood. The book of Enoch is slightly different. It begins as a fiction, like perhaps all books. This does not mean that the contents of all books are false. It means only that they begin their existence before they are realized as material objects. So, the book of Enoch starts out as an idea thought of, its contents imagined, its extent mused over. And, it comes to be realized in different ways as the book imposes itself upon scribes so that they are compelled to put pen to parchment and create physical and conceptual books with apparent contours and recognizable contents.18 But, even as the book of Enoch gains this material ontology, in which it can be handled and read, marked up, and even destroyed, it never actually loses its ontology as a fictional entity. Some people never read it, and so only know of it by hearsay and reputation. Others lose access to it as material books of Enoch deteriorate and disappear, as was thought to have happened in the West, for example. Even among those who possess a physical book of Enoch, they may continue to imagine that there is more to it beyond what is in their possession. For these people, the book is no less a fictional entity than it was for the first scribes who were compelled to materialize a book of Enoch. Because of this, for specific people in certain contexts, the ways in which the book comes to be realized, could change. This appears to be the case with the anthology known as 1 Enoch, as various stories and collections came to be compiled into a single work.19 It is also true of compilers of 2 and 3 Enoch, anthologies that materialize the book of Enoch in distinct ways.20 It is even the case for contemporary textual critics who create editions of 1, 2, 2000–Present*,” in The Early Enoch Literature, ed. G. Boccaccini and J.J. Collins (Leiden, 2007) 337–47. 18 For Latour, Inquiry, 390–95, any project, such as writing the Astronomical Book, or the Book of the Watchers, or indeed compiling the collection known as 1 Enoch always begins with a fiction. It begins with human actors writing a script, as it were, about what they will do. It then continues by enlisting them to play roles in that script, thereby verifying its reality by repetition. In this case, both the actors and the book of Enoch itself would be roles later fulfilled by the project. 19 The introduction to Nickelsburg/VanderKam, 1 Enoch 2, 1–17, contains a concise description of the prevailing theory on how the composition was compiled. 20 For brief introductions to 2 Enoch and 3 Enoch, including their manuscript history and their composition, see F.I. Andersen, “2 (Slavonic Apocalypse of) Enoch,” and P.S. Alexander, “3 (Hebrew Apocalypse of) Enoch,” in OTP 1.91–221 and 1.223–315, respectively.

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or 3 Enoch, as they are driven to realize the book of Enoch as it “really” is, or perhaps “should” be. The book of Enoch in its fictional ontology is also what captivated William Blake. It is true that it did change from being solely fictional into an entity that added an empirical ontology at some point late in his life. No doubt this change altered Blake’s conception of both Enoch and the book. Bruce’s “discovery,” and its subsequent translation simultaneously materialized the book for Blake, and prompted him to explore the world it described, and eventually to realize its beings in a series of drawings.21 The appearance of the material book supplemented Blake’s Enoch and the book as fictional entities, prolonging them yet again in new media and for new audiences. But the “discovery” did not create Enoch or his book for Blake. They had lived with him long before, both as objects to be observed, and as subjects that demanded materialization in word and image. This study is interested in delving into Blake’s Enoch and his book of Enoch before the transformation introduced by Bruce’s book. It seeks to investigate what Enoch and his book were for Blake when they solely existed as beings of fiction, without an empirical ontology to accompany it. This essay argues that William Blake’s reprisals of Enoch embody him in ways that are largely in agreement with the figure and the book of Enoch that would emerge later in his life. This study further argues that, through his depictions, Blake empowers the book in a way that guarantees its continued existence as a being of fiction for those who encounter his work. 2

Description of the Blake’s Three Prints and Drawings

2.1 William Blake, Enoch, 1806–1807 Three of William Blake’s surviving pieces of art have (at times) been determined to depict the antediluvian figure Enoch. They all construct scenes in which the individual identified as Enoch engages with groups of anthropoid figures and multiple textual objects. The most well known and frequently researched of these pieces is Blake’s only extant lithograph (Figure 6.1).22 This is due, in part, 21 These can be found in Brown, “Blake’s,” 81, 85. 22 R. Essick, “Blake’s ‘Enoch’ Lithograph,” Blake: An Illustrated Quarterly 14.4 (1981) 180–84, esp. 180, notes that this is the only known lithograph produced by Blake. The bibliography for this piece is relatively extensive since the publication of its identification in 1935 as a depiction of Enoch by Laurence Binyon and Geoffrey Keynes; “Introduction,” in Illustrations of the Book of Job by William Blake (New York, 1935) 1.8–9. Much of this is concerned with dating the piece; see R. Essick, William Blake Printmaker (Princeton, 1980) plate 166 and caption; Essick, “Dating Blake’s ‘Enoch’ Lithograph Once Again,” Blake: An

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Blake ’ s Enoch before the Book of Enoch

Figure 6.1 William Blake, Enoch, 1806–1807. Lithograph. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

to the perception that various aspects of the lithograph, including its date, mode of production, and subject, are attainable through careful observation. The lithograph has been dated variously to ca. 1803–1820, 1806–1807, 1807, and 1825 on the basis of its use of nascent technology, formal modeling, and/or its relationship to possible source texts for the scene.23 The very identification of Illustrated Quarterly 22.2 (1988) 71–73; J. Gage, “Printing Coloured Pictures,” Art History 14 (1983) 470–74, esp. 473. However, some studies have concentrated on placing the “Enoch” lithograph in Blake’s intellectual and political context; see G. Bentley, “A Jewel in Ethiop’s Ear,” in Blake in His Time, ed. R. Essick and D. Pearce (Bloomington, 1978) 213–40; J. Beer, “Blake’s Changing View of History: The Impact of the Book of Enoch,” in Historicizing Blake, ed. S. Clark and D. Worrall (London, 1994) 159–78; S. Spector, “Blake’s Graphic Use of Hebrew,” Blake: An Illustrated Quarterly 37.2 (2003) 63–79, esp. 70–71; C. Rowland, “Blake, Enoch, and Emerging Biblical Criticism,” in Sibyls, Scriptures, and Scrolls: John Collins at Seventy, ed. J. Baden, H. Najman, and E. Tigchelaar (Leiden, 2016) 2.1145–65; J. Leveton, “William Blake’s ‫“( חנוך‬Enoch”) Lithograph (1806–7): Producing the Theme of Self-Annihilation, Resisting the Politics of the Napoleonic Wars,” Essays in Romanticism 25.2 (2018) 161–86. In contrast, the two drawings of Enoch are only ever written about insofar as they relate to the lithograph. 23 A. Russell, The Engravings of William Blake (London, 1912) 91, gives the 1807 date, even though he believes the image to represent Job. However, G. Keynes, Engravings by William

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the central individual of the lithograph as Enoch is part of the perennial reproduction of Enoch as a being of fiction. By asking whether the figure is Enoch, and by demanding that he is or is not, observers affirm the existence of Enoch not only as an entity, but as someone with identifiable features that exist outside of the particular depiction. Although, for over a century the individual at the center of the composition was thought to be Job, the primary subject is probably intended to be Enoch. This is evident from the Hebrew name ‫חנוך‬ scrawled lengthwise along the inner margin of the open codex in his hands.24 In addition, the two figures floating next to Enoch on the right of the lithograph hold a scroll/tablet written with the Hebrew words ‫וא[י]ננו כי לקח אתו‬ ‫“( אלהים‬And he was not, for God took him”), which comes from the description of Enoch in Gen 5:24.25 These aspects of the presentation taken together make the identification of Enoch nearly certain. Blake: The Separate Plates (Dublin, 1956) 43–44, endorses this dating even after Blake scholarship was armed with the knowledge that the central figure of the image was Enoch. Essick, Printmaker, caption to plate 166, takes the cautious range of dates from 1803 to 1820. However, just one year later, Essick, “Blake’s ‘Enoch’,” 183, argues that the technique used for the lithograph (as described in handwriting on the reverse of one of the four extant prints) could not have been introduced to Blake before 1806, and that there is no evidence for it being used after 1807. Therefore he narrows the range to 1806–1807. Gage, “Printing,” 473, argues for the date of ca. 1825 both because of its ostensible similarity to Job engravings, and because he believes the scene is dependent upon the first English translation in 1821, viz. Laurence, Book of Enoch. Essick, “Dating,” 71–73, however, retorts that the scene need not depend on the Laurence translation, but could have come through other channels, including the writings of Jacob Behmen and Emanuel Swedenborg. Behmen’s interest in Enoch was passing, but Swedenborg had a profound interest in the figure. 24 Binyon and Keynes, “Introduction,” 1.8, attribute the discovery to Joseph Wicksteed. S.F. Damon, A Blake Dictionary: The Ideas and Symbols of William Blake (Hanover, NH, 1965) 126, puzzlingly notes under the “Enoch” entry that the figure is indeed Job, who is reading a book credited to or at least bearing the name Enoch. 25 The scroll/tablet is missing the yod [‫ ]י‬from the Hebrew word ‫ואיננו‬. This may be an oversight on the part of Blake, who apparently did not know Hebrew well, or as Spector, “Blake’s,” 70–71, argues it could be an intentional statement about the inferiority of the letter to the spirit of the written word, which is central to Christian Kabbalism and mystical approaches to scriptures of the Reformation and Enlightenment more broadly. On this phenomenon, see S. Ozment, Mysticism and Dissent: Religious Ideology and Social Protest in the Sixteenth Century (New Haven, 1973). On Blake’s rudimentary knowledge of Hebrew as late as 1803, see his letter to his brother found in D. Erdman, ed., The Complete Poetry and Prose of William Blake (rev.ed.; New York, 1988) 725–27, esp. 727. It should be noted that Leveton, “William Blake’s,” 184–86, misunderstands Spector (in part due to her own misstatement concerning which word is missing the yod [‫)]י‬. But in so doing, he points out that the yod [‫ ]י‬in ‫ אלהים‬is actually flipped. He also asserts that this is purposeful, forcing the onlooker to be an active participant in the artwork by correcting the letter.

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Blake ’ s Enoch before the Book of Enoch

In the lithograph, Enoch sits upon a throne that rests on a two-tiered plinth decorated with gothic ogive arches. Mouth pursed, he stares outward, barely but noticeably avoiding the viewer’s gaze.26 Enoch is clothed in robes, and as stated above, traps an open codex between his forearms and legs. Sharing the plinth with Enoch are three smaller anthropoid individuals, two of whom are nude. Though none of the anthropoid figures is incontrovertibly anatomically gendered, it is possible that the nude individual standing to the left of Enoch is presented as masculine, while both seated figures are depicted as feminine.27 Each individual holds a tool associated with artistic production. The standing figure grasps a painter’s brush and palette. The nude figure seated to the right of Enoch rests a codex on its lap with a quill in its right hand. The clothed individual seated on the left of Enoch balances a lyre between its legs. None of these individuals directs its gaze toward Enoch or seemingly attends to him at all. Instead they all focus on their tools. Above the plinth, two groupings of anthropoid figures surround Enoch. On the right of the image, a large pair of floating figures read the aforementioned Hebrew sentence from Gen 5:24. One individual is discernibly nude, while the other is either clothed in a flowing fabric or veiled by the diagonal lines extending from the blank field above Enoch at the center of the image. Both face away from Enoch, concerned only with the writing in their hands. On the left of the image three anthropoid figures direct their attention to a scroll whose front and back are both obscured by the angle at which it is presented. One nude individual holds the scroll and is turned toward Enoch, while two other figures look over its shoulders, seemingly toward the scroll. All five individuals in both groupings are conspicuously epicene, lacking any anatomical characteristics that might be definitively gendered masculine and feminine. They all float above any floor level, some with feet visibly dangling in the air. The entire collection of anthropoid figures, save Enoch’s head, exists in a space designated by diagonal lines that appear to mark off the margins of rays of light breaking into an otherwise dark space. These rays emanate from the blank field above Enoch which appears as a space of pure light within the topography of the image. The scene is framed both by clouds on the left and right of the lithograph, and ultimately by grape vines extending from a narrow patch of earth along the bottom of the image. 26 Many interpreters, including Spector, “Blake’s,” 70, and Leveton, “William Blake’s,” 165, understand Enoch’s gaze to meet the viewer’s. But the slight leftward tilt of Enoch’s head combined with the position of the whites of his eyes, which are prominent below the iris, give the impression that he looks someplace over the viewer’s left shoulder. 27 On Blake’s tendency toward epicene figures in his art, see T. Connolly, William Blake and the Body (New York, 2002) 43–45.

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2.2 William Blake, Enoch Walked with God, 1780–1785 Discerning the subject matter depicted in Enoch Walked with God (Figure 6.2) is far less certain.28 Here, too, the identification of this drawing as a rendering of Enoch is a fascinating example of the way fictional beings enlist actors in extending their presence, both in the telling and retelling of their stories. In this case, it is the exegesis of the drawing that reprises Enoch just as much as it is specific markers within the drawing itself. The interpretation here invites the viewer to deploy the drawing as an extension of the stories of Enoch and his book. When the individual at the center of this drawing is identified as Enoch, two distinct fictions converge upon a single space. On the one hand, because the figure featured in the image is not clearly established by words or iconography, he petitions to actors, asking them to speculate about his identity. He transforms the actor first into a viewer, and

Figure 6.2 William Blake, Enoch Walked with God, ca. 1780–1785. Watercolor, ink, pencil, and wash drawing. Cincinnati Art Museum, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA © Cincinnati Art Museum

28 M. Butlin, The Paintings and Drawings of William Blake: Text (New Haven, 1981) 55, tentatively identifies the central figure of the piece as Enoch (Number 146, plate 181). See also Essick, “Dating,” 72–73, on the uncertainty of the identification.

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Blake ’ s Enoch before the Book of Enoch

then quickly into an investigator and scholar who translates every available detail into a clue about the figure’s biography. On the other hand, the figure of Enoch drives actors to continue to discover his presence wherever and whenever they can so that his story may be reprised yet again. Here, the fictional Enoch imposes on actors to colonize the unidentified figure, and to become authors arguing for his presence even in this setting. They might be moved to make this identification through acquaintance with Enoch’s materialization in the lithograph, through Genesis or the Epistle of Jude, or even through other Enochic literature. Regardless, the scholars who have identified the figure as Enoch are themselves evidence of a type of captivation by Enoch. So is this very study, which materializes Enoch in this image yet again. Although an open scroll and a codex appear in the drawing, the writing on the scroll is deliberately illegible, and the codex is both closed and only visible edgewise. No labels, in Hebrew or otherwise, help the viewer identify the subject matter.29 Butlin, who is responsible for the image’s paradoxical title (the ostensible Enoch figure here neither walks nor seems to be in the presence of any god figure), concedes that the identification is speculative, based on similarities in composition to the Enoch lithograph.30 Indeed, like the lithograph, the drawing’s central subject has been previously identified as Job, and has some similarities to Blake’s depictions of Moses.31 It should be noted, too, that the composition bears a very strong resemblance to the bottom third of one of Blake’s watercolors and engravings for the Book of Job, typically called Satan before the Throne of God.32 Moreover Essick and Paice have pointed out that this composition, featuring a seated figure raised on a plinth, surrounded by clusters of figures on the right and left, with one or more of the figures in these clusters holding a scroll, codex, or tablet, is typical for Blake’s images 29 As M. Butlin, “Word as Image in William Blake,” in Romanticism and Millenarianism, ed. T. Fulford (New York, 2002) 207–17, esp. 210, notes the lack of actual lettering in this case is typical of Blake’s earlier images involving the representation of words. Butlin tells a story that this develops progressively throughout Blake’s career until words become integral parts of many of his images. 30 Butlin, Paintings, 55, bases the identification on the presence of multiple scrolls or tablets, which are similar to the Enoch lithograph. 31 Binyon and Keynes, “Introduction,” 1.9, make the identification with Job. Butlin, Paintings, 55, notes the similarity with depictions of Moses, especially the drawing covered next in this essay (Figure 6.3) (Number 112, plate 121). 32 Although the portion of Satan before the Throne of God in question lacks the plinth, is flipped, and has a different arrangement of figures around the seated male figure, the botanical imagery, the use of furniture, and the presence of codices and scrolls is very similar.

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of biblical figures more broadly.33 The identification of the central figure in this work as Enoch therefore arises out of the interaction between Butlin, the drawing, and the particular realization of Enoch in the lithograph, rather than a specific identifier that Blake placed within the picture.34 For the purposes of this essay, I shall treat the figure as though he were Enoch, both because Butlin’s reading of the image is an example of the phenomenon under discussion, and because the interpretation is a plausible reading of Blake’s image. Butlin’s dating of the piece to the early 1780s is given with more confidence, and continually repeated in other scholarship discussing the drawing.35 There is no strong basis on which to question the claim, so it will be provisionally accepted. However, given that the similarly composed Satan before the Throne of God from the Butts collection of illustrations of the book of Job comes from 1805–1810, it may be prudent to include this information in the possible range of dates. The rough nature of this Enoch drawing as compared to those in the Butts and Linnell collections of Job illustrations may well suggest an earlier date, but it does not necessitate one that is so early. As noted above, Enoch is portrayed as a white-haired bearded male clothed in white robes. He is seated on a daybed that rests on a two-tiered plinth. Between his right hand and thigh, he balances a codex on its fore edge. Enoch shares the plinth with three pairs of anthropoid figures on the left of the image. Enoch’s attention, however, is drawn to the right side of the composition. There, a cluster of five anthropoid individuals in flowing robes scarcely float above the earth. The foremost pair gaze at Enoch while holding open a scroll with illegible writing upon it. Two of the other three figures in this cluster also apparently stare at Enoch, while the remaining figure is turned toward its companion. None of the figures in this cluster is clearly anatomically gendered. Conversely, at least two of the six individuals who share the plinth with 33 R. Essick and R. Paice, “Newly Uncovered Blake Drawings in the British Museum,” Blake: An Illustrated Quarterly 37.3 (2003) 84–100, esp. 85. However, it should be pointed out that two of the three images they cite as examples of this composition are the two drawings found in this essay (Figures 6.2 and 6.3). 34 It should be noted, though, that the Enoch figure’s bare feet, free from footwear, comport with the popular imagination of Enoch at this time, as can be seen in “An Account of curious Popish Relics,” London Magazine 45 (September 1776) 473, which satirically remarks that Enoch’s slippers (presumably left behind after he had been taken up) were among the articles collected and revealed. I thank Ariel Hessayon for this fascinating detail. 35 Butlin, Paintings, 55, dates the work based on stylistic similarity to other ink and wash drawings of 1780–1785; Gage, “Printing,” 473; Essick, “Dating,” 72; S. Holloway, “The Masculinity of Male Angels on the Make: Genesis 6:1–4 in Early Nineteenth-Century Gothic Imagination,” in Being a Man: Negotiating Ancient Constructs of Masculinity (London, 2017) 248–81, esp. 275 n. 62; Leveton, “William Blake’s,” 180, all do not question the dating.

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Enoch do appear to be marked for gender. Two adult figures reclining on the daybed beside Enoch are dressed in costumes indicating that the individual in the rear is a male and the individual in the foreground is a female. A pair of clothed children recline between them. Standing on the far left of the plinth two nude epicene figures look in the direction of Enoch and the cluster on the right of the image. The four reclining figures stare with the same orientation. It is not clear whether these individuals look to Enoch, or with him, gaze upon the figures with the open scroll. This is because Enoch’s body notably disrupts any direct line between the two clusters of figures. The entire composition is set in an arboreal context and is colored with muted earth tones. This color palette tends to highlight Enoch in his stark white robes and one of the reclining children, who wears a bright blue tunic. A grey wash behind and around the floating figures creates the impression of a mist or cloud out of which these individuals emerge. This mist notably gives way to a brighter palette in the midst of Enoch’s body. 2.3 William Blake, Enoch/Moses and Aaron Flanked by Angels, 1780–1785 A third image (Figure 6.3) is most controversially tied to Enoch. Traditionally this drawing was identified as Job and His Family Restored to Prosperity (?). However, Lindberg was the first to suggest that the drawing be called Moses Speaking, His Face Shining, due to the impression that an object carried by the two foremost figures on the left was a veil.36 Butlin maintains the identification with Moses, but provides the title Moses and Aaron (?) Flanked by Angels.37 This identification is supported by Essick and Paice, when they discuss the piece’s relationship to the composition of the previous two images I have already introduced.38 Yet, this similarity in composition, which is also noted by Butlin, invites the possibility that this image, too, portrays the figure of Enoch.39 Although he is never explicit on the matter, this appears to be the reasoning behind Leveton’s recent discussion of the drawing in the context of depictions of Enoch.40 There is, in fact, some evidence that recommends this 36 B. Lindberg, William Blake’s Illustrations to the Book of Job (Åbo, 1973) 17. 37 Butlin, Paintings: Text, 42 (No. 112, Plate 121), makes the case that the central figures resemble Moses and Aaron in another piece by Blake, The Children of Israel Receive the Ten Commandments (No. 114, Plate 122). The similarity is difficult to see, as in that image, the figure identified as Aaron kneels before the Moses figure alongside several others, while in this drawing the figure identified as Aaron is seated beside the Moses figure reading from a codex. 38 Essick, Paice, “Newly,” 84–85. 39 Butlin, Paintings: Text, 42. 40 Leveton, “William Blake’s,” 174, 180–81.

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Figure 6.3 William Blake, Enoch/Moses and Aaron Flanked by Angels, 1780–1785. Pencil, ink, and wash drawing. Princeton University Library, Princeton, Rare Books and Special Collections Department

identification. If Butlin is right about the presence of multiple scrolls, codices, and tablets in Enoch Walked with God indicating an Enochic subject, then this piece too has those elements. One of the central seated figures holds a codex on its fore edge, another reads from an open codex, a third holds either a tablet or codex, and a fourth writes upon a tablet in its lap. Further, the object held by the two foremost figures on the left of the drawing could also be a scroll. Moreover, the seated central figure with white hair and beard wearing white robes is almost an exact mirror image of the figure identified as Enoch in Enoch Walked with God. Undoubtedly, this identification is speculative. Blake very likely did not attempt to depict Enoch in this piece. But, speculation swings in various directions. How sure can we be of the identification of the central figure as Job or Moses? Like Enoch Walked with God, the figure identified as Enoch is materialized in this image through a convergence of two fictions: Enoch and the unnamed figure in the drawing. Blake’s own work may recall Enoch for some scholars, but it is his lack of identification of this figure combined with Enoch’s power to dispatch actors to realize him that materialize Enoch once

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more. Nevertheless, Leveton’s identification of the figure as Enoch remains just barely within the bounds of possibility. The many differences in composition of this piece recommend a distinct subject. Within this study, I shall proceed with the identification of this figure as Enoch because it is both plausible and illustrative of the fictional ontology borne by Enoch and the book of Enoch. The piece is dated by Butlin to the 1780s without explicit reason, though this likely rests on the similarities in style and composition to other drawings noted above.41 Again, this dating has received support, and there is no strong reason to dispute or expand it.42 The composition of this drawing is unique among the three covered in this essay due to the presence of two central individuals, rather than one. Both are seated on a two-tiered plinth. The one on the left, who is situated at the exact center of the image, has long white hair and a white beard, and is clothed in all white.43 As previously mentioned, this figure closely resembles both the Enoch in the Enoch lithograph and in Enoch Walks with God. As in those images, he holds a codex. In this drawing, Enoch balances a closed codex between his hand and thigh and looks out, perhaps toward the foremost individual on the right side of the drawing. Immediately to the right of Enoch on the plinth another clothed seated figure reads from an open codex with indications of illegible writing. The male individual’s head, covered with dark curly hair and a beard, is bowed down apparently attending to the text. Three smaller anthropoid figures, possibly children, surround Enoch and his companion. The two standing children look directly to Enoch. The third child sits with a tablet on its lap in the act of writing, a pose similar to one already observed in the Enoch lithograph. On the left of the image a cluster of three robed epicene figures barely hovers above the plinth. Two of these hold the object that has variously been interpreted as a scroll and a veil. Opposite this cluster, on the right side of the drawing, four seemingly robed figures levitate above the ground, their eyes fixed on Enoch. The foremost of these figures, who may be gendered as female, bears either a tablet or a closed codex in her right hand. The image lacks any border or spatial setting other than the plinth.

41 Butlin, Paintings: Text, 42. 42 Essick and Paice, “Newly,” 85; Leveton, “William Blake’s,” 180. 43 Regrettably but also helpfully, the drawing has been folded down the center. The fold transects the white figure. See the description of the fold in Butlin, Paintings: Text, 42.

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Enoch and the Book of Enoch in Blake’s Images

Several aspects of these representations are of interest. First, it is notable that all three of these images are thought to predate the first English translation of Ethiopic Enoch by Richard Laurence in 1821. While it is true that the dating of all three pieces is uncertain, at least the best efforts of Blake scholars situate the production of these images in a setting where Blake could not have yet gained access to a full translation of Bruce’s Enoch manuscripts. One might posit Silvestre de Sacy’s Latin translation of portions of the manuscript James Bruce donated to Louis XV as a possible inspiration for the images.44 However, given that this first appeared in 1800, it could only be a source for the Enoch lithograph, and would fail to account for the earlier drawings depicting remarkably similar scenes. There were, of course, other possible sources for depictions of Enoch, whether through scholarly circles, as demonstrated by Ariel Hessayon, or through channels within Christian and Jewish mysticism, as shown by Marsha Shuchard.45 Regardless of the possibilities, the textual basis for Blake’s images of Enoch is not of primary concern here. One of the reasons for this is that, notwithstanding the claims of John Gage, the images do not actually depend upon any knowledge of the contents of the book of Enoch.46 As Robert Essick has shown, all parallels between the image in the Enoch lithograph (a fortiori for the drawings) and passages from any particular book of Enoch are quite general.47 This underlines the premise that not only are Blake’s images of Enoch and his book material extensions of beings of fiction, but that Blake himself was primarily interested in Enoch and his book as fictional entities. 44 Bruce, Travels, 1.497–98, tells his own story of bringing three manuscripts from Ethiopia, and giving one to Louis XV, one to Dr. Douglas, Bishop of Carlisle, and keeping one for his personal library. Note, however, that Boccaccini has identified a fourth manuscript. 45 A. Hessayon, “Og King of Bashan, Enoch and the Books of Enoch: Extra-Canonical Texts and Interpretations of Genesis 6:1–4,” in Scripture and Scholarship in Early Modern England, ed. A. Hessayon and N. Keene (Aldershot, 2006) 5–40, provides a comprehensive account of the widespread knowledge of a book of Enoch and specific portions thereof through various scholarly and semi-scholarly channels. See also the earlier work of Nathaniel Schmidt, “Traces of Early Acquaintance in Europe with the Book of Enoch,” JAOS 42 (1922) 44–52. Marsha Schuchard, William Blake’s Sexual Path to Spiritual Vision (Rochester, VT, 2008) 250–58, provides copious archival evidence for the presence of Enochic traditions in the Moravian, Swedenborgian, and theosophical environment in which Blake lived. See also Holloway, “Masculinity,” 263–64 on this latter point. 46 Gage, “Printing,” 473, claims that the lithograph portrays 1 En 92:1–3. 47 Essick, “Dating,” 71–72, provides for the possibility that these associations with Enoch could have come indirectly from Jub 4:17–24, through the theosopher Jacob Behmen, or through Emanuel Swedenborg.

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Blake ’ s Enoch before the Book of Enoch

Who, then, is the Enoch that William Blake realizes in these two or three images? What aspects of Enoch do Blake and his interpreters unfold as they materialize the figure yet again? There are three aspects of Enoch’s character that emerge as prominent features within Blake’s art, each of which will be discussed. First, through a variety of means, Enoch is consistently presented as a figure of honor among the others represented in the pieces. Second, Enoch is realized as a mediator between the ethereal and the mundane. Third, Enoch is thoroughly connected to books, both through book production and consumption. These character traits are consistently and prominently related to Enoch throughout all three images, and serve to reprise him as someone who is viewed through these lenses. That Blake places Enoch in a position of honor in his art is perhaps so obvious that it need not be pointed out. However, it is useful to notice precisely how Blake realizes Enoch as a figure esteemed within the scenes in which he appears. In the Enoch lithograph, the place of honor is communicated first through Enoch’s position along the vertical meridian of the image. While all eight of the other anthropoid individuals in the lithograph populate the space with various sizes and degrees of implied movement, they appear as peripherally, even centripetally, related to Enoch. Blake positions the enormous body of Enoch as a central, nearly inert, figure unmoved by the activity surrounding him. The smaller anthropoid figures who share the plinth with him have been interpreted by Essick as descendants of Enoch who are set on the course of these activities through him.48 The relatively large anthropoid figures floating on the right of the image explicitly read about Enoch with the quoted verse from Genesis. Blake even enlists viewers as readers of the verse by coyly directing them to read the text over the shoulders of the floating figures. Finally, the grouping on the left of the image contains two figures who appear to gaze in Enoch’s direction, and another who reads a scroll, the contents of which must remain in the realm of speculation (more on this later). So, Enoch’s position in this array of bodies and activities establishes him as being at the center of the scene. He is the cause of the activity for figures on the plinth, and the subject of the activity of the individuals on the right and left of the image, including the viewer! Only one figure does not appear to be engaging with Enoch whatsoever, but even here, the illegibility of the scroll invites viewers to speculate about its identity and contents. Might this be a heavenly book being read to 48 Essick, “Dating,” 72, bases the interpretation on Blake’s own writing on A Vision of the Last Judgment found in Erdman, Complete, 554–66 at 559. Here Blake notes that Noah, Shem, and Japhet represent poetry, painting, and music. These three are, of course, descendants of Enoch within the mythological genealogies.

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Enoch as a means of revelation?49 Or is it another text about him, like the one on the right? Perhaps it is a scroll produced by him? In any case, the lack of legibility might enlist the figure into Enoch’s orbit, even if this is not explicit.50 Other elements of Blake’s materialization of Enoch in this piece also place him in a position of honor. These are more obvious. The placement of Enoch on a throne perched atop a plinth clearly sets him up as analogous to a civil or religious authority. The ogive arches on the plinth are potentially significant here because, as S. Foster Damon has noted, Blake uses these gothic elements in images to indicate the presence of true Christianity before it was corrupted by institutionalized clergy and by reason.51 Therefore by employing these elements in this depiction of Enoch, Blake visually reprises Enoch as an incarnation of authentic religion before its fall. Although Enoch Walked with God and the Enoch drawing both lack the ogive arches, they both maintain an architectural plinth in their reprisals of Enoch. A striking number of the other reverent features found in the lithograph are also to be found in these two earlier pieces. The central placement of Enoch is a notable feature of both. So, too, is his position upon a raised seat. Similarly, all activity in Enoch Walked with God and nearly all activity in the Enoch drawing (save two figures involved in textual production and consumption) is focused on Enoch. Even the two individuals in the Enoch drawing that do not attend to Enoch invite viewers to speculate about the content and identity of the texts they read and write in the same way as the illegible scroll in the lithograph. These could be writings about Enoch, written by him, or made possible through him. All of these elements taken together communicate that Enoch as realized in these images is a figure of great honor and even authority for Blake. This aspect of Enoch’s character is very much in line with the figure of Enoch one finds in 1 Enoch, to say nothing of other Enochic literature. Yet, there is no tension with understanding the image as an extension of the Enoch of Genesis. This is specifically pointed to in the lithograph, but could well be the case for the drawings as well. However, because I am arguing that Enoch is a being of fiction, the decision does not actually need to be made. Beings of fiction, when they exist, always persist both 49

On the physical feature of books, both earthly and heavenly in apocalyptic literature in early Judaism and Christianity see L. Baynes, The Heavenly Book Motif in Judeo-Christian Apocalypses 200 b.c.e.–200 c.e. (Leiden, 2012) esp. 27–61. 50 The idea of the absence of textual content being an invitation to possible literary and epistemological production can be found in H. Najman, Seconding Sinai: The Development of Mosaic Discourse in Second Temple Judaism (Leiden, 2003) 13–15. 51 Damon, Dictionary, 27, contrasts this with classical architecture symbolizing reason, and Druidic architecture, symbolizing a primitive religion of sacrifice. See also Holloway, “Masculinity,” 266, on this point.

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without and within their representations in media. Those material realizations are important both because they provide evidence for the disturbances caused by beings of fiction, and spur on further transformations themselves. The second element of Enoch’s character that Blake reproduces in his images is his status as mediator between an ethereal (perhaps heavenly) realm and the earthly plane of the viewer and many of the other individuals enfleshed through the images. This visual reproduction of Enoch necessitates him inhabiting two planes at once. Blake accomplishes this in several distinct ways among the three images. One of these is spatial. In the Enoch lithograph, Enoch is the only figure who transcends discrete regions within the image. His body is the sole element that inhabits both the triangular blank space at the center of the image and the lower space characterized by dark diagonal lines. If the interpretation offered above is correct, and the blank space represents an area of pure (divine?) light, this placement may depict Enoch in the throes of ecstasy, receiving ethereal knowledge. Blake places the other anthropoid individuals in the image in the dark, at best receiving faint emanations from the light at the center of the image. Because Enoch does not solely inhabit the light, but is also firmly planted in the dark region of the lithograph, he becomes the point at which the light of the heavenly realm and the darkness of the mundane meet. This impression is strengthened by the fact that the convergence point of the lighter triangle is to be found directly in the middle of Enoch’s head, perhaps even his mouth. This may indicate that Enoch’s power of speech brings the ethereal knowledge into the mundane realm. Enoch speaks divine knowledge to earth, and perhaps communicates terrestrial will or desire to the heavenly realm. Blake’s placement of Enoch embodies his status as medium in yet another way. The triangle of light descending from the heavens has a counterpart within the image. Enoch’s body itself, seated on its throne is construed as a second earthbound triangle that overlaps with the first. While the triangle of light stretches down from the heavens toward Enoch, the earthly triangle reaches up to the heavens in the person of Enoch. The two overlap on Enoch’s head. In this way, Enoch not only communicates heavenly knowledge, but appears as its earthly reflection, a (perhaps imperfect) mirror of its heavenly counterpart. Blake embodies this intermediary quality of Enoch in one more way, this time by involving the viewer in the act. By directing Enoch’s stare over the left shoulder of the viewer, Blake draws the audience into the image only to dispatch them out again, so that they follow Enoch’s sightline. In this way, Enoch becomes the pathway through which the audience must pass to look outside the image itself, and out into the space that lies beyond the lithograph, and past even the viewer. Therefore, Blake realizes Enoch as not only a medium

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within the image, but between the viewer, the image, and the world beyond. This is fitting, because for Blake, the arts are the medium through which divine wisdom travels.52 There are several elements within the Enoch lithograph that nuance this interpretation. While the individuals standing and sitting upon the plinth bear all the marks of human beings, and are physically anchored to the earth, the five massive figures floating above the plinth have been interpreted by Butlin as angelic beings.53 He does not provide a reason for interpreting these figures as angels. The identification may rely on their portrayal as floating above the ground in contrast to Enoch and all those who share the plinth with him. Similar floating figures populate Enoch Walked with God and the Enoch drawing. In those cases, they do seem to indicate some sort of supernatural entity. In addition to this, in the lithograph the floating figures are framed by a set of clouds that stretch from the right and left margins of the image across the top, eventually giving way to the blank triangular space at the center. The presence of these clouds would seem to suggest the in-breaking of the heavenly realm. This interpretation is strengthened by the fact that the cloud frame stops short of the plinth and earth in the bottom third of the lithograph. It is further supported by the use of clouds or mist around the floating figures in Enoch Walked with God. If both of these aspects of the composition are taken seriously, then the presence of angels who possibly commute between the ethereal and the mundane would mean that Enoch is a means of mediation between heaven and earth, but perhaps not the only means. It should be noted, however, that Butlin’s presumption of floating figures being angelic is not on entirely solid ground. Several of Blake’s human figures in other works hover and contort themselves in supernatural poses.54 Nevertheless, the similarities between these floating figures and Blake’s other two Enoch images may confirm their angelic status. Regardless of whether the figures in the lithograph are angels, their physical separation from the ground combined with their massive size does suggest a different plane of existence from the individuals seated on the plinth. Yet, the fact that they are all surrounded, and some literally cloaked in darkness may indicate that they exist in an intermediate existence between the earth and the heavens. Unlike Enoch, though, they occupy space in neither. They may be intermediaries of a sort, but still dependent upon Enoch as

52 M. Eaves, “Introduction: To Paradise the Hard Way,” in The Cambridge Companion to William Blake, ed. Eaves (Cambridge, 2003) 1–18, esp. 8–9. 53 Butlin, Paintings: Text, 55. 54 Connolly, William Blake, 27.

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a bridge between the divine light and the mundane darkness indicated by the environment of and around the plinth. As already noted, Blake employs some of the same compositional practices as he uses in the lithograph in Enoch Walked with God and the Enoch drawing. These similarly realize Enoch as a medium. In both of the latter images, aspects of Enoch’s posture situate him as the meridian between human and divine realms. With Enoch Walked with God, Enoch’s aforementioned central position on the plinth plays an important role in embodying mediation. In a move similar to the lithograph, Blake here has Enoch physically separate the six standing and reclining individuals on the left of the image from the five figures who conspicuously float on the right. These floating individuals are surrounded by, and emerge out of, a murky grey mist or shadow. The darker territory reaches its limit on the person of Enoch. All the reclining figures to the left of Enoch are bathed in light. Their clothes and skin exhibit vivid color. A discernible landscape with at least four different topographical zones represented by differing colors and textures appears behind them. In contrast, all the floating figures on Enoch’s right are muted in color. The murk through which they move also has little depth outside of a few sparsely outlined trees. The combination of these features creates the impression of two different realms that are linked by Enoch. As opposed to the lithograph, this drawing would have the murky portion of the image represent the ethereal realm and the brighter half stand in for the terrestrial. This interpretation is based upon the distinction between the grounded posture of those on the plinth and the floating movement of those on the right. This understanding also draws on the use of clouds to indicate the in-breaking of the heavenly realm in the lithograph, which are echoed by the shadows and mist in this drawing. Enoch would thus embody the link between the ethereal world and its knowledge, represented by the book borne by the two foremost floating figures, and the human world. Blake has Enoch looking to this realm. And Enoch has the reciprocal attention of those populating this murky space. Although the other anthropoid figures in the earthly world also appear to look at these same individuals, the composition forces their gaze to move through Enoch. Therefore, Blake here too graphically reprises Enoch as mediator. In the Enoch drawing, the plinth, the floating individuals, and the looks exchanged by Enoch and various figures are once more instrumental in reprising Enoch as mediator. This drawing suggests greater spatial depth than the other two pieces examined. Through the creation of this depth, Blake communicates two distinct spaces. In the background, Enoch and four other figures share a plinth. As in the previous two images, this foundation appears to stand in for the earthly realm. This can again be discerned by the fact that all those in

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the background either sit or stand upon the ground, and are therefore clearly differentiated from the floating figures in the foreground. Additionally, spatial separation is achieved by noting where the various individuals give their attention. Aside from Enoch, all the figures on the plinth are oblivious to the motion and activity of the individuals off of it. Two of these figures are engrossed in books. One reads. Another writes. The other two figures look directly to Enoch himself. This detail separates those in the background from the individuals floating in the foreground even further. Meanwhile, the floating figures all concentrate upon Enoch, seemingly trying to communicate with him. Enoch, in turn looks directly at one of them. So, the plinth and the attention of those on it is separated from the foreground and those who move about in it. Like Enoch Walked with God, the link between the two realms goes through Enoch. As in the previous drawing, he stares at a potentially angelic figure who bears writing material.55 Enoch’s attention to the angel translates the knowledge represented by that codex or tablet to the earthly realm.56 One more characteristic of Enoch consistently observable in all three of Blake’s pieces is his connection to codices, tablets, and scrolls. When linked with his role as medium, this materialization of Enoch suggests that Enoch’s heavenly knowledge does not stop with him, but may go on. In the Enoch lithograph, there are no fewer than four writing materials on display. An enormous codex bearing the name ‫( חנוך‬Enoch) uneasily rests between Enoch’s lap and hands. But Enoch does not read from or write in it. His attention is elsewhere. Its contents, beyond his name, are unknown. A second far smaller codex is stably controlled by one of the seated figures on the plinth. This individual also wields a quill, indicating it is in the act of writing. However, what is being written remains a mystery. The two angels on the right side of the image are in the act of reading the previously discussed tablet. They read a text about Enoch, and tempt the viewer to do the same. Finally, the angel on the left reads from a scroll, the contents of which are hidden from view. Turning to Enoch Walked with God, at least two, and possibly three different writing materials are depicted. As in the lithograph, Enoch grasps a codex between his hands and lap. Unlike the lithograph, this codex is closed, making its contents similarly hidden. Likewise, the angelic figures bear a scroll or open codex, revealing its contents to Enoch. However, the contents are illegible, even to those who might know Hebrew. Lastly, the foremost of two epicene figures standing 55 Leveton, “William Blake’s,” 180–81, suggests that this is a graphic representation of verbal language, but it need not be verbal at all. 56 Butlin, Paintings: Text, 42, makes just such an interpretation, as is already clear from his proposed title: Moses and Aaron (?) Flanked by Angels.

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on the left of the drawing carries a small rectangular object that may be writing material. If so, its contents are entirely unclear. In the Enoch drawing, at least four different textual objects appear. Enoch, yet again balances a closed codex upon his thigh, continuing the theme of illegible or unknown contents of his books. The figure directly to the right of Enoch controls an open codex in his lap, clearly reading from it. The seated individual on the left of the plinth appears to be in the act of writing, similarly to the seated individual in the lithograph. And, the floating angel bears a tablet or codex under her arm, any possible contents concealed from view. This curious array of textual objects circulating in Enoch’s orbit realizes a clear connection between Enoch and writing. One aspect that is repeated in each of the images is the existence of writing on multiple levels. Divine figures interact with textual objects, Enoch bears codices, and the human figures on the plinths deal with writing materials. The viewer, too, is implicated in this process as a reader both of Enoch’s book and of writing about Enoch. Therefore, these images suggest an Enoch who reads books, authors books, and is a source for the continued consumption and production of books. This Enoch even reaches the viewers by engaging them in the act of reading and interpretation of these textual objects that surround him. This aspect of Blake’s Enoch dovetails with his role as mediator. It tells a visual story of Enoch reading divine textual objects to acquire knowledge, bearing (never writing!) codices to record that knowledge, and leaving figures in his wake, including the viewer, who work to read, curate, and transmit that divine knowledge even further. Though textually oriented, this realization of Enoch embodies Blake’s regard for the visionary and prophetic source of knowledge over the rational.57 True wisdom, represented by books, comes through Enoch the preeminent mediator of divine knowledge. The presence of so many books connected to Enoch in these three images raises questions related to their identity, their potential, and their imagined contents. Do all of these depictions of textual objects reprise the book of Enoch? If so, how are they handled, and what can be gained from them? Moreover, what is to be found within their pages? That is, how does Blake prolong the fiction of the book of Enoch through his images? The precise identity of all the books in these images must remain in the realm of speculation. There are no titles imprinted on the covers or spines of the codices, nor are there title-pages or headings visible on any of the textual objects. However, this does not mean that Blake’s images are devoid of 57 On Blake’s preference for visions and prophecy as sources of knowledge, see Beer, “Blake’s,” 176–77; Leveton, “William Blake’s,” 165–67; Rowland, “Blake, Enoch,” 1165.

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elements that might invite viewers to identify these books. In the lithograph, for example, the codex borne by Enoch displays his name in Hebrew along the gutter margin. Although Enoch’s name does not appear as a title on the codex in that image, its presence does suggest that the book is closely associated with the figure, perhaps even to be identified with him. This impression is further supported by Enoch’s physical interaction with the book in the lithograph. The enormous codex is cradled in Enoch’s lap, and forms a significant portion of the lower earthly triangle comprised by his enthroned body. Enoch’s hands trap the book in place, and his arms extend upward toward his head and the heavenly triangle above. This posture creates direct lines from the intermediate space around Enoch’s head to the pages of the codex. The book thus appears as an extension of Enoch’s inspired speech, and of the man himself. It is an integral part of his body, thoroughly connected to his lap, hands, and head. While neither of the two drawings depicts any textual objects with legible writing, they both portray Enoch holding a closed codex between his hands and lap. Neither of the other depictions are as dramatic as the lithograph. But, they do similarly have codices integrated into the figure of Enoch. They are the only such objects possessed or connected to Enoch. So, at least these texts can be understood to reprise the book of Enoch, whatever that might mean. But they might not be the only writing materials that can lay claim to this identity. As noted above, the tablet or scroll handled by the two floating figures on the right of the lithograph contains another Hebrew line meaning: “and he was not, for God took him.” This instance of Hebrew writing also explicitly makes an association with the figure of Enoch. It is a selection known from the book of Genesis, and is part of a statement about Enoch in that context. While I have identified this text as part of the biblical book of Genesis, and understanding its Enochic connotations demands knowledge of that provenance, the text depicted is not exactly Genesis itself. This is not only due to the mistaken orthography, which has one word missing a yod and another flipping a yod backwards. It is also because the writing, as presented, lacks a material context that suggests that it is Genesis. Instead, the tablet or scroll held by the two figures remains blank aside from these words. In this context-free setting, the text is a writing about Enoch. It presents the fiction undergirding the idea that Enoch had access to divine knowledge.58 Could this too be part of the book of Enoch? Is Blake’s book of Enoch not just a work identified with him as a part of 58 See the description of this moment as the basis for Enoch’s heavenly knowledge in early Jewish writings in S. Thomas, “Eternal Writing and Immortal Writers: On the NonDeath of the Scribe in Early Judaism,” in A Teacher for All Generations: Essays in Honor of James C. VanderKam, ed. E. Mason et al., 2 vols. (Leiden, 2012) 2.573–88, esp. 578.

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his person and a record of his visions, but also a work about him? If the answer to these questions is positive, then Blake’s book of Enoch has something in common with several Enochic anthologies. One striking possibility that can be gathered from all three of Blake’s Enoch images, is that the fascination with Enoch may be bolstered by the fact that the precise contents of his writings are unknown. That is, the imaginative space created by the prospect that the books exist, without knowledge of their particular contents allows Enoch to be the perfect sage, and his knowledge to be limitless.59 When we look to the images one last time, we might come to the realization that we were tricked all along. While we noticed that textual objects were ubiquitous, the dearth of legible text is striking. In the lithograph, part of a verse, already known and poorly transcribed, appears on a scroll. But, it is in Hebrew, presented using a script and language most viewers would have been unable to understand. Enoch’s own codex is empty, but for his name, again in Hebrew. The pages are pregnant with possibility. The other textual objects equally have their writings hidden from view. In Enoch Walked with God Enoch’s codex remains closed. Even the angels’ scroll, ostensibly open for all to see, remains unintelligible for the viewer. Likewise, in the Enoch drawing, Enoch’s codex is sealed, his student/descendant’s codex is open but indecipherable, the angel’s tablet is tucked beneath her arm, and if the fabric object is indeed a scroll, no writing is visible. Just as asemic writing produces a sense of awe and mystery in its audiences, Blake’s books of Enoch leave the observer searching for the stories and revelation contained therein.60 Thus, Blake’s fascination with Enoch may have come just as the Ethiopic manuscripts reached Europe in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. But, the Enoch depicted by Blake might be valuable precisely because the contents of those manuscripts remained a mystery. 59 This builds upon the ideas forwarded by Spector, “Blake’s,” 71, and Leveton, “William Blake’s,” 169, but instead of focusing on faulty Hebrew, focuses on the lack of text. 60 On this awe-inspiring characteristic of asemic writing see Law Alsobrook, “The Title of this Paper is ༛◌༾༶◌༙༑༒ On Asemic Writing and the Absence of Meaning,” IAFOR Journal of Arts and Humanities 4 (2017) 5–13, esp. 7.

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Chapter 7

Enoch in the Tradition of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormonism) Jared W. Ludlow The figure of Enoch plays an important role in the tradition of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormonism),1 due to members’ belief in additional scriptural accounts about both his ancient ministry and his prophesied involvement in future events. Yet this expanded tradition does not come from the Book of Mormon, where Enoch is not mentioned, but derives from other books of scripture canonized by the church. This paper reviews additional Enochic accounts in the Latter-day Saint corpus, their transmission and use in later stages or phases, and possible origins for these stories and conceptions. Through the review of the major components of the Enochic accounts in the Latter-day Saint tradition, it will be seen how Enoch became a prophetic role model for achieving community righteousness to the point that not only he, but his city, was taken up to God (perhaps conflating the account of the earlier Enoch’s city; cf. Gen 4:17–18). Thus the early Latter-day Saint effort to gather in one body under the leadership of a prophet to create an ideal society, Zion, is strongly influenced by Enochic accounts. 1

Enoch in Latter-Day Saint Sources

The most important passage about Enoch in Latter-day Saint sources is found in the Book of Moses, part of the Pearl of Great Price.2 The Book of Moses is 1 To be sensitive to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ request of journalists and others to use their full name instead of the abbreviation LDS or the nickname, “Mormon,” which initially was a pejorative term by outsiders but then later adopted and used by the church because of its easier recognition and remembrance, this paper will try to avoid the term Mormon except where found in past quotations. Latter-day Saints is also considered suitable for referencing members of the church. 2 The Pearl of Great Price is a small book of scripture assembled from random texts and canonized after the death of Joseph Smith. It includes the Book of Moses (explained in the paper); the book of Abraham (additional accounts about the ministry of the patriarch, Abraham, and the creation); Joseph Smith—Matthew (a revised version of Matthew 24); Joseph Smith—History (extracts from the early history of Joseph Smith, mostly about the coming

© Jared W. Ludlow, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_009

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a selection of Joseph Smith’s translation or revision of the Bible, commonly referred to as the Joseph Smith Translation (henceforth JST), and covers the first chapters of Genesis with many significant alterations and additions from the King James Version, the most common biblical version used by Latter-day Saints.3 The JST is not a translation in the usual sense because it did not involve the translation from ancient manuscripts or languages;4 rather, Joseph Smith highlighted KJV passages which he felt needed changing (perhaps based on a principle found in the Book of Mormon that plain and precious truths were lost from the biblical record during its transmission). Joseph Smith began this ambitious program to revise the biblical text in June 1830, not long after the organization of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the publication of the Book of Mormon, and continued until July 1833.5 Since Joseph Smith never specifically addressed how or exactly why he made the particular changes he did, it is an open question whether he felt he was restoring ancient material, making inspired commentary, modernizing the language, a combination of these things, or something else.6

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forth of the Book of Mormon); and the Articles of Faith (thirteen statements of belief penned by Joseph Smith). Within the Pearl of Great Price, Enoch is only mentioned in the Book of Moses. For a thorough overview of the production of the Book of Moses (including transcriptions of the original manuscript texts), see K.P. Jackson, The Book of Moses and the Joseph Smith Translation Manuscripts (Provo, UT, 2005). However, Kathleen Flake described “translation” as accurate since Joseph Smith remained bound to the text: “It can be said that, notwithstanding its English source, the JST asks to be understood as a translation, because it does not arise out of the infinite variations available to fiction but, rather, within the limits of an existing narrative of past events”; “Translating Time: The Nature and Function of Joseph Smith’s Narrative Canon,” JR 87 (2007) 508. Although the bulk of the work for the JST occurred in the early 1830s, some think Joseph Smith continued working with the text. Since it was not initially published when he first worked through the entire Bible, Joseph Smith may have continued to revise the manuscripts up until his death in 1844, but the portion about Enoch discussed in this paper was published in the early 1830s in Latter-day Saint periodicals. “What prompted this revelation when JS [Joseph Smith] first began dictating in June 1830 is unknown, but the resulting lengthy manuscript opened an ambitious project of biblical expansion and revision. At some point during the creation of this manuscript, JS came to see such ‘restoration’ of lost biblical texts as part of his prophetic mission…. On the third page of this manuscript, just before the beginning of the creation account, this revelation similarly declares that lost scriptural passages ‘shall be had again among the Children of men.’ An early December 1830 revelation was explicit. After affirming that JS had been given keys to unlock ancient knowledge, the revelation addressed Sidney Rigdon, commanding ‘that thou shalt write for [JS] and the scriptures shall be given even as they are in mine own bosom’ (Revelation, 7 Dec. 1830, in Doctrine and Covenants 11:5, 1835 ed. [D&C 35:20])”; “Old Testament Revision 1, Historical Introduction,” 19, The Joseph Smith Papers, https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/old-testament-revision-1/21.

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The path to canonical status of the Book of Moses and the rest of the Pearl of Great Price began with early missionaries serving in Great Britain preparing a mission pamphlet consisting of some of Joseph Smith’s revelations that had already been published in America. The Table of Contents of this pamphlet describes its excerpt from Joseph Smith’s translation of Genesis in this fashion: 1. Extracts from the Prophecy of Enoch, containing also a Revelation of the Gospel unto our father Adam, after he was driven out from the Garden of Eden. Revealed to Joseph Smith, December, 1830.7 A decision was reached in the late 1870s to publish the Pearl of Great Price for the wider church, which was accomplished in 1878 under the direction of one of the apostles, Orson Pratt. The new Pearl of Great Price was presented to the general church membership at a conference in October 1880 “for a sustaining vote and was canonized as scripture and accepted as binding on the Church.”8 2

Book of Moses—Summary of Enoch Material

Since the Book of Moses is part of the Joseph Smith Translation of Genesis 1–6, it includes the primary material on Enoch. This is probably the section within the JST that shows the most expansion from the KJV (around 110 additional verses; 4,500 words long). The source of this additional material about Enoch is left unstated, but it usually is treated as somehow originating with Enoch himself. A summary of this Enoch story follows to introduce the reader to some key aspects of this account, particularly features that may have relevance to other Enoch traditions in Enochic texts, freemasonry, Hermetic tradition, etc.9 7 This material was first published in 1832 and 1833 in the church’s newspaper Evening and the Morning Star in Independence, Missouri. “A comment in Evening and Morning Star 1 (July 1832): [14] reads: ‘An extract of the Prophecy of Enoch [will be published] in our next number.’ Moses 7 was published as ‘Extracts from the Prophecy of Enoch,’ in Evening and Morning Star 1 (August 1832): [18–19], the earliest publication of New Translation material”; Jackson, The Book of Moses and the Joseph Smith Translation Manuscripts, 103 n. 2. 8 From K.P. Jackson, “How We Got the Book of Moses,” in By Study and by Faith: Selections from the Religious Educator, ed. R.N. Holzapfel and K.P. Jackson (Provo, UT, 2009). 9 The full canonical account of Enoch’s story can be accessed online beginning at Moses 6 https://www.lds.org/scriptures/pgp/moses/6?lang=eng (and continuing to Moses 7). A more historical presentation of the dictated manuscript begins at https://www.josephsmithpa pers.org/paper-summary/old-testament-revision-1/14. To view a copy of the first published version of Enoch’s story in Latter-day Saint periodicals see “Extract from the Prophecy of Enoch,” Evening and Morning Star 1.3 (August 1832) 44–47 [Moses 7], https://contentdm.lib .byu.edu/digital/collection/NCMP1820-1846/id/27870. -

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As in Genesis, Enoch first appears in the Book of Moses in the midst of a genealogical list of descendants of Adam. The chronology of his father, Jared, is the same as in Genesis, but the Book of Moses inserts some discussion of Jared teaching Enoch, and the role of Adam’s descendants, particularly Enoch, in preaching repentance to others (see Moses 6:21–23). The section on Enoch’s ministry begins in parallel with Genesis with the birth of Enoch’s son Methuselah when Enoch was sixty-five years old (see Gen 5:21/Moses 6:25). Whereas the biblical account sparsely states that Enoch walked with God, then he was not for God took him (see Gen 5:24), the Book of Moses greatly expands what Enoch accomplished and explains how he walked with God and how God took him.10 Enoch’s prophetic call comes as he journeys among the people and the Spirit of God descends upon him. God tells Enoch to call the people to repentance because he is angry with their hard hearts and wickedness, particularly their murderous intentions (see Moses 6:27–28). In line with a typical Hebrew prophetic call pattern,11 Enoch initially is reluctant to accept the call considering himself unqualified (slow of speech) and too young (a lad;12 see Moses 6:31). The Lord promises Enoch that if he fulfills his commands then he will protect, empower, and inspire Enoch, “and thou shalt abide in me, and I in you; therefore walk with me” (Moses 6:34). The Lord invites Enoch to anoint his eyes with clay and wash them, whereupon Enoch “beheld the spirits that God had created; and he beheld also things which were not visible to the natural eye; and from thenceforth came the saying abroad in the land: A seer hath the Lord raised up unto his people” 10 The Book of Moses equates “walking with God” with Enoch’s lengthy life of righteousness. Whereas Genesis uses this phrase once, the Book of Moses repeats it several times throughout Enoch’s ministry. 11 Articulated in a formative article by N. Habel, “The Form and Significance of the Call Narratives,” ZAW 77 (1965) 298–301. The pattern includes divine confrontation; introductory word; commission; objection; reassurance; and sign. Enoch’s objection is similar to Jeremiah’s in Jer 1:6–8. 12 Precedents for giving Enoch the title of “lad” or “youth” include 3 Enoch (§4) and the Zohar (Zohar Hadash, Terumah fol. 43d [ed. Margaliot]). Gary Anderson explains this “as due to the fact that Enoch was taken up to heaven during the era of the flood and elevated to a status over that of the angels. This elevation bothered the angels and they made accusations against the person of Enoch, though the specific nature of these accusations have fallen out of the present form of the text. This leads God to asseverate that Enoch is to be prince and ruler over all the angels. At this point the angels relent, prostrate before Enoch, and acclaim him ‘Lad’ … In any event, the reason our text supplies for this title is deceptively simple and straightforward: ‘And because I was the youngest among them and a ‘lad’ amongst them with respect to days, months, and years, therefore they called me ‘lad’”; “The Exaltation of Adam and the Fall of Satan,” in Literature on Adam and Eve: Collected Essays, ed. G. Anderson, M.E. Stone, and J. Tromp (Boston, 2000) 107. -

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(Moses 6:36). Enoch calls the people to repentance, but “all men were offended because of him” (Moses 6:37), yet they become curious about this seer: “there is a strange thing in the land; a wild man hath come among us” (Moses 6:38). No one dares touch or harm Enoch for fear came upon them because he walked with God—the Book of Moses returning to Genesis’ famous phrase (cf. 5:24) after giving its explanation for what it means. Enoch’s doctrinal teachings turn to common features of Latter-day Saint scripture that Jesus Christ, son of God, was known as the savior of the world long before his arrival on earth, and that practices like baptism were performed during the pre-Christian period.13 It is not clear in these writings whether Joseph Smith provides the name Jesus Christ post facto for the redemptive figure/ messiah believing that Jesus fulfilled the messianic mission, or whether the actual name was revealed anciently. Many Latter-day saints probably believe in the latter. Enoch thus quotes God’s words to Adam about how he would send his son to redeem his children for those who believe, repent, and are baptized (see Moses 6:52). Later, the Book of Moses uses and explains the origin of the title “Son of Man” for this messianic figure; a title found in Enochic literature for Enoch (1 En 71:14) and in Daniel and the Gospels as a messianic term.14 “Man of Holiness” is a name given to God, thus “Son of Man” can be seen as a shortened title for “Son of Man of Holiness,” or Son of God. “For, in the language of Adam, Man of Holiness is his name, and the name of his Only Begotten is the Son of Man, even Jesus Christ, a righteous Judge, who shall come in the meridian of time” (Moses 6:57). After a lengthy doctrinal exposition given to Adam and recounted by Enoch (see Moses 6:51–68), the narrative returns to Enoch’s story where he summarizes the effect of Adam’s teachings: “Behold, our father Adam taught these things, and many have believed and become the sons of God, and many have believed not, and have perished in their sins, and are looking forth with fear, in torment, for the fiery indignation of the wrath of God to be poured out upon 13

Early American religious history scholar Richard Bushman has commented on how the Enoch material was a shift from Joseph’s previous augmentation of the biblical narrative. “In redoing the early chapters of Genesis, the stories of Creation, of Adam and Eve, and the Fall were modified, but with less extensive interpolations than in the revelation to Moses. Joseph wove Christian doctrine into the text without altering the basic story. But with the appearance of Enoch in the seventh generation from Adam, the text expanded far beyond the biblical version”; Bushman, Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling (New York, 2006) 138. 14 For a helpful overview on the title “Son of Man” in biblical and Enochic literature, see the discussions and responses in G. Boccaccini, ed., Enoch and the Messiah Son of Man: Revisiting the Book of Parables (Grand Rapids, 2007) 153–249.

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them” (Moses 7:1). This allusion to the sons of God may be significant for the Latter-day Saint interpretation of the “watchers” (a term not used in the Book of Moses), as it is not that the sons of God were angels or other types of supernatural figures, but rather those who had believed God’s teachings through Adam.15 The sons/daughters of men, then, were those who rejected these teachings and who eventually lured away the sons/daughters of God from their covenant relationship with God. Moses 7 is full of many visionary experiences of Enoch.16 It begins with Enoch sharing a vision he had upon a mountain. “I beheld the heavens open, and I was clothed upon with glory; And I saw the Lord; and he stood before my face, and he talked with me, even as a man talketh one with another, face to face; and he said unto me: Look, and I will show unto thee the world for the space of many generations” (Moses 7:3–4). Enoch sees groups of people dwelling in tents who eventually battle each other, leaving the victors, the children of Canaan, in the land. Enoch then goes among various groups of people, except the people of Canaan, and preaches repentance and baptism. Not only does Enoch have spiritual success, but military success as well while defending the people of God.17 “And so great was the faith of Enoch that he led the people of God, and their enemies came to battle against them; and he spake the word of the Lord, and the earth trembled, and the mountains fled, even according to his command; and the rivers of water were turned out of their course; and the roar of the lions was heard out of the wilderness; and all nations feared greatly, so powerful was the word of Enoch, and so great was the power of the language which God had given him” (Moses 7:13). Enoch’s powerful speech is an overwhelming change from his earlier self-assessment of being slow of speech when first receiving his prophetic call (see Moses 6:31). The next small section discloses more separation between the people of God and their enemies. The “giants of the land” are one of the groups specified as standing afar off. Away from their enemies, the people of God experience great things as the Lord dwells with them and the glory of the Lord falls upon 15 For a discussion of a shift in interpretation of “sons of God” from angelic figures to holy men/human figures, see A.Y. Reed, Fallen Angels and the History of Judaism and Christianity: The Reception of Enochic Literature (Cambridge, 2005) 205–26. 16 Cf. Enoch’s visionary experiences in early sources such as Jub 4:16–26; throughout 1 Enoch such as in the Astronomical Book (72–82) discussing cosmological and astronomical secrets, 72:1, 74:2, and 80:1; depicting Enoch as recipient of angelic revelations, 41:1—one who saw all secrets of heaven; and 3 En 11:1–2 which states Enoch is able to behold secrets and mysteries. 17 Islamic traditions (e.g., al-Tabari) make early connections between Enoch and military battles against the sons of Cain. See Reeves/Reed, Enoch, 163.

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them. They are called “Zion, because they were of one heart and one mind, and dwelt in righteousness; and there was no poor among them” (Moses 7:18). Meanwhile, Enoch continues preaching among the people and builds a city called “the City of Holiness, even Zion” (Moses 7:19).18 The concept of a city of righteousness called Zion became a central feature in early Latter-day Saint history as members of the church would gather into a community and build up a city. Because of persecution and other factors, the location of the city of Zion shifted as saints were forced to move from location to location across the American Midwest before finally settling in Salt Lake City, Utah. Today the church’s emphasis is not on gathering to one community, but rather building up Zion in one’s current location, although there are still prophesied events surrounding the concept of New Jerusalem/Zion in America that underscore its importance and connection with Enoch (discussed more below). Enoch is told in discussion with the Lord and later in vision that his city of Zion would be taken up into heaven (see Moses 7:23–24). Zion’s relocation creates a great separation between Enoch’s community in heaven and the wicked on earth under Satan’s power. Angels are sent from heaven among the wicked and those who accept their words are “caught up by the powers of heaven into Zion” (Moses 7:27). The next part of the narrative is a poignant scene of a weeping God overlooking his children who remain on the earth and had become so wicked they were going to be destroyed in a flood. At first Enoch could not understand how God, a creator and holy being from eternity to eternity, could weep. Yet Enoch comes to understand God’s compassion because these wicked ones are also the workmanship of his hands.19 They had been given agency and were commanded to love one another and choose God, but instead, “they are without affection, and they hate their own blood” (Moses 7:33). God notes that among all his creations there has not been so great wickedness. Consequently, he 18 For early references on Enoch as a builder (e.g., Bar Hebraeus, the Zohar, and Islamic sources), sometimes identifying him with Hermes, see Reeves/Reed, Enoch, 160–63. 19 In contrast to God’s tears of compassion in the Book of Moses, Jed Woodworth notes that “The God in [1 Enoch] seems to show some remorse, but only after it becomes obvious the floods did not have the desired effect: ‘Afterwards the Ancient of days repented, and said; In vain have I destroyed all the inhabitants of the earth’ (54:1). When wickedness returns, the God in [1 Enoch], like the God of the Biblical narrative, seems to second-guess himself for ever having sent the flood”; Woodworth, “Extra-Biblical Enoch Texts in Early American Culture,” in Archive of Restoration Culture: Summer Fellows’ Papers 1997–1999 (Provo, UT, 2000) 193 n 44.

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kindles his anger against them to the point of sending floods upon them.20 However, Enoch also beholds in a vision that Noah’s family will be delivered by building an ark (see Moses 7:42–43). Enoch asks when the day of the Lord would come to redeem the wicked. In response, “Enoch saw the day of the coming of the Son of Man, even in the flesh; and his soul rejoiced, saying: The Righteous is lifted up, and the Lamb is slain from the foundation of the world; and through faith I am in the bosom of the Father, and behold, Zion is with me” (Moses 7:47). Enoch subsequently hears a voice from the bowels of the earth speaking, and he comes to realize it is Mother Earth who is asking when she will finally rest from all the filthiness upon her.21 Upon hearing the earth mourn, Enoch asks the Lord to have compassion on her and requests that the earth never be covered with floods again (see Moses 7:49). The Lord covenants that he will stay the floods and that a remnant of Enoch’s seed should always be found upon the earth (see Moses 7:51–52).22 The next section of the Book of Moses foresees the future ministry of the Messiah and his salvific role for the people resulting in the glorification of the saints while the wicked spirits remain “reserved in chains of darkness until the judgment of the great day” (Moses 7:57). Enoch also sees that the Son of Man will ascend to the Father, but then return in the last days “to fulfil the oath 20

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Rampant wickedness on the earth is one of the central themes of the Book of the Watchers (1 Enoch 1–36) and a source of consternation for God throughout much of Enochic literature. However, unlike in the Book of Moses, the root of this evil is identified not only as the wickedness of men, but also the actions of the angelic Watchers. “For our author [of the Book of the Watchers], evil is of such magnitude that it cannot be attributed to a misuse of human freedom alone—there must be a more cosmic and sinister explanation … [T]his is a keynote of the apocalyptic movement. Evil is bigger than humanity and has consequences beyond one’s comprehension. Evil has invaded the earth from the heavenly realms”; L.R. Helyer, Exploring Jewish Literature of the Second Temple Period: A Guide for New Testament Students (Downers Grove, IL, 2002) 84. Mother Earth appears in other Enochic literature where she cries out for the wickedness upon her (see 1 En 7:4–6; 8:4; 9:2, 10; 4QEnGiants 8, lines 3–4, 6–12). In a later verse from the JST about God’s covenant with Noah it reads, “And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant, which I made unto thy father Enoch; that, when men should keep all my commandments, Zion should again come on the earth, the city of Enoch which I have caught up unto myself. And this is mine everlasting covenant, that when thy posterity shall embrace the truth, and look upward, then shall Zion look downward, and all the heavens shall shake with gladness, and the earth shall tremble with joy … And this is mine everlasting covenant, which I made with thy father Enoch.” (JST, Gen 9:21–23; cf. Gen 9:16–17. Emphasis on added material in the JST). Consistently in the JST, when God discusses his covenant with Noah, it is connected to the same covenant he made with Enoch.

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which I have made unto you concerning the children of Noah” (Moses 7:60). As part of this return, the gathering of the elect will occur “unto a place which I shall prepare, an Holy City, … for there shall be my tabernacle, and it shall be called Zion, a New Jerusalem” (Moses 7:62). This city of Zion or New Jerusalem will then unite with Enoch’s city that had been lifted up and usher in a period of a thousand years when the earth shall rest (see Moses 7:63–64). Thus Enoch saw all things even to the end of the world (see Moses 7:67). At this point, the Book of Moses once again parallels the text of Genesis after the lengthy insertion about Enoch’s ministry, except this time instead of it only being about Enoch walking with God, it is him and his community. “And all the days of Zion, in the days of Enoch, were three hundred and sixty-five years. And Enoch and all his people walked with God, and he dwelt in the midst of Zion; and it came to pass that Zion was not, for God received it up into his own bosom; and from thence went forth the saying, Zion is Fled” (Moses 7:68–69).23 3

Doctrine and Covenants

Another canonical source in Latter-day Saint tradition that mentions Enoch is the Doctrine and Covenants. The Doctrine and Covenants is a collection of revelations primarily received by Joseph Smith (with a few received by his successors). It includes doctrinal expositions, praises, religious community policies and organization, and answers to questions directed to God. Within the Doctrine and Covenants, Enoch is noted eleven times. Section 107:48–49 (April 1834) relates that “Enoch was twenty-five years old when he was ordained under the hand of Adam; and he was sixty-five and Adam blessed him. And he saw the Lord, and he walked with him, and was before his face continually; and he walked with God three hundred and sixty-five years, making him four hundred and thirty years old when he was translated.” (The blessing at the hands of Adam when sixty-five may relate to his prophetic call when, as mentioned above, the spirit of God descended upon him [see Moses 6:25–27]). The translation of Enoch and his city is mentioned a few times elsewhere: “Let me show unto you even my wisdom—the wisdom of him whom ye say is the God of Enoch, and his brethren, Who were separated from the earth, and were received unto myself—a city reserved until a day of righteousness 23

Another addition about Enoch in the Book of Moses follows immediately, “that Methuselah, the son of Enoch, was not taken, that the covenants of the Lord might be fulfilled, which he made to Enoch; for he truly covenanted with Enoch that Noah should be of the fruit of his loins” (Moses 8:2).

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shall come—a day which was sought for by all holy men, and they found it not because of wickedness and abominations” (45:11–12; March 1831). “I am the same which have taken the Zion of Enoch into mine own bosom; and verily, I say, even as many as have believed in my name, for I am Christ, and in mine own name, by the virtue of the blood which I have spilt, have I pleaded before the Father for them. But behold, the residue of the wicked have I kept in chains of darkness until the judgment of the great day, which shall come at the end of the earth” (38:4–5; January 1831).24 Enoch was a part of a gathering of antediluvian figures, such as Seth, Jared, and Methuselah, who were called high priests and who met with other righteous posterity in the valley of Adam-ondi-Ahman to receive a final blessing from Adam before his death (107:53; April 1834).25 This event was purportedly recorded “in the book of Enoch” (107:57).26 Those who are considered just 24 In a new version of Latter-day Saint church history, some of Enoch’s influence on the early church is summarized: “Under Enoch’s leadership, the people built a holy city called Zion, which God eventually received into His presence. There Enoch spoke with God as they looked down on the earth, and God wept over the wickedness and suffering of His children. The day would come, He told Enoch, when truth would be brought forth from the earth and His people would build another city of Zion for the righteous. As Sidney and Joseph reflected on the revelation, they knew the day had come when the Lord would again establish Zion on the earth. Like Enoch’s people, the Saints needed to prepare themselves, uniting in heart and mind, so they would be ready to build the holy city and its temple as soon as the Lord revealed its location”; Saints: The Story of the Church of Jesus Christ in the Latter Days, vol. 1: The Standard of Truth, 1815–1846 (Salt Lake City, 2018) 108–9. Shortly after the expansion on Enoch in the JST in December 1830, Joseph Smith recorded a revelation in Doctrine and Covenants 37 which effectively paused the work on the revision of the Bible and exhorted the saints to move to Ohio to begin the gathering. It was controversial because it would mean selling homes, cultivated farms, and properties quickly and likely at a loss; additionally, Ohio was hundreds of miles away and sparsely populated. A further revelation promised greater riches and a land of promise. “Following the example of Enoch’s people, [the Latter-day Saints] worked together and sacrificed to ensure the poor could make the journey before spring”; Saints, 110. 25 The connection of the priesthood to Enoch is found elsewhere in a chain of priesthood transmission: “Abraham received the priesthood from Melchizedek, who received it through the lineage of his fathers, even till Noah; And from Noah till Enoch, through the lineage of their fathers; And from Enoch to Abel, who was slain by the conspiracy of his brother, who received the priesthood by the commandments of God, by the hand of his father Adam, who was the first man” (84:14–16; September 1832). 26 “The book of Enoch is one of the ancient writings that Latter-day Saints anticipate receiving sometime in the future. This is not to be confused with the pseudepigraphic books of Enoch, which nevertheless have garnered the interest of some Latter-day Saints since at least 1840. In Doctrine and Covenants 107:53–57, reference is made to a meeting of Adam’s righteous posterity held at Adam-ondi-Ahman three years before Adam’s death. … While these verses give a précis of what happened, many more things were ‘written in the book

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and saved in the last days are linked to Enoch. Those of the priesthood “are priests of the Most High, after the order of Melchizedek, which was after the order of Enoch, which was after the order of the Only Begotten Son” (76:57; February 1832). More generally, “these are they who have come to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of Enoch, and of the Firstborn” (76:67). Besides canonized Latter-day Saint scripture, there are a few other references to Enoch from early Latter-day Saint leaders. In 1830, Joseph Smith made allusion to the connection of his revelation about Enoch to Enoch’s words quoted in Jude when he stated, Much conjecture and conversation frequently occurred among the Saints, concerning the books mentioned, and referred to, in various places in the Old and New Testaments, which were now nowhere to be found. The common remark was, “They are lost books”; but it seems the Apostolic Church had some of these writings, as Jude mentions or quotes the Prophecy of Enoch, the seventh from Adam. To the joy of the little flock, which in all, … numbered about seventy members, did the Lord reveal the following doings of olden time from the prophiciy [sic] of Enoch.27 Interestingly, Joseph Smith proceeds to then quote some extracts from his prophecy of Enoch as found in the Book of Moses (which does not contain the passage quoted in Jude). “Prophecy of Enoch. Extract from the prophecy of Enoch. Given by Revelation to Joseph Smith Jun.”28 Also in reference to a quotation of Enoch in the book of Jude, Joseph Smith taught that God reserved Enoch unto Himself that Enoch “should not die at that time and appointed unto him a ministry unto terrestrial bodies of whom there has been but little revealed. He is reserved also unto the Presidency of a dispensation … He is a ministering Angel,

of Enoch, and are to be testified of in due time’ (D&C 107:57). Speaking of this book in December 1877, Elder Orson Pratt said, ‘When we get that, I think we shall know a great deal about the ante-diluvians of whom at present we know so little’ ( Journal of Discourses 19:218).” L.R. Church, “Enoch: Book of Enoch,” in Encyclopedia of Mormonism, ed. D.H. Ludlow (New York, 1992) 460. 27 “History, 1838–1856, volume A-1 [23 December 1805–30 August 1834],” 80–81, The Joseph Smith Papers, https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/history-1838-1856-vol ume-a-1-23-december-1805-30-august-1834/86. 28 “History, 1838–1856, volume A-1 [23 December 1805–30 August 1834],” 81, The Joseph Smith Papers, https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/history-1838-1856-volume-a -1-23-december-1805-30-august-1834/87.

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to minister to those who shall be heirs of salvation, and appeared unto Jude as Abel did unto Paul, therefore Jude spoke of him 14 & 15 v.”29 Latter-day Saint church leaders continued to refer to Enoch as the model par excellence of preaching repentance to a wicked people thereby leading them to such righteousness that they were translated to heaven in their mortal state. “If Enoch was righteous enough to come into the presence of God and walk with him, he must have become so by keeping his commandments, and so of every righteous person.”30 With Enoch’s translation, the Lord also took the priesthood away from the people.31 One rare teaching about the translated city of Enoch (because it is not found in canonized Latter-day Saint scripture) was connecting it with the purpose for building the Tower of Babel: they built the tower to reach Enoch’s city. It was claimed in George Laub’s personal journal in 1844 that Joseph Smith taught,32 which was later repeated by an apostle of the church in 1873, that those building the tower thought that the City of Enoch was caught up a little ways from the earth, and that the city was within the first sphere above the earth; and that if they could get a tower high enough, they might get to heaven, where the City of Enoch and the inhabitants thereof were located. They went to work and built a tower. They had this tradition, that there had been a translation of people from the earth, and they were anxious to become acquainted with them.33 Enoch’s example of building up Zion continued to be an important emphasis for early Latter-day Saints. In a discussion about building up Zion with her temple, Joseph Smith stated, The building up of Zion is a cause that has interested the people of God in every age; it is a theme upon which prophets, priests and kings have dwelt with peculiar delight; they have looked forward with joyful anticipation to the day in which we lived; and fired with heavenly and joyful 29 “History, 1838–1856, volume C-1 [2 November 1838–31 July 1842] [addenda],” 17 [addenda], The Joseph Smith Papers, https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/history -1838-1856-volume-c-1-2-november-1838-31-july-1842/552. 30 Times and Seasons 1 (September 1842) 905. 31 Times and Seasons 15 (July 1842) 857. 32 “Discourse, 12 May 1844, as Reported by George Laub,” 25, The Joseph Smith Papers, https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/discourse-12-may-1844-as-reported -by-george-laub/7. 33 O. Pratt, “Meeting of Adam with his Posterity, etc.,” Journal of Discourses 16.47 (1873).

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anticipations they have sung, and wrote, and prophesied of this our day;—but they died without the sight; we are the favored people that God has made choice of to bring about the Latter Day glory; it is left for us to see, participate in, and help to roll forward the Latter Day glory.34 Brigham Young, Joseph Smith’s successor, connected Enoch with temple worship: “I will not say but what Enoch had temples and officiated therein, but we have no account of it.”35 4

Stages of Enoch Transmission among the Latter-Day Saints

When looking at the variety of Enoch material found in Latter-day Saint writings, questions naturally arise about where did it all come from—ancient manuscripts, Joseph Smith’s creativity, or, as believed by many Latter-day Saints, revelation?36 To address some of these questions, it may be helpful to categorize Latter-day interaction with Enoch material in the nineteenth century in three stages or emphases. The first stage of Latter-day Saint Enoch traditions is in the early 1830s with the first published material from Joseph Smith’s 34 “The Temple,” Times and Seasons 3.13 (May 1842) 776. 35 Journal of Discourses 18.303. Hugh Nibley argued that today we do have such accounts of Enoch and temples within the extra-biblical sources of Enoch; Enoch the Prophet, ed. Stephen D. Ricks (Salt Lake City, 1986) 20. Some of these accounts refer to heavenly temples, the Jerusalem temple, or the future temple in a New Jerusalem (see 1 En 14:8–15:4; 87:4; 89:59–90:31 [heavenly temple]; 1 En 89:50, 54, 66–67, 73–74 [Jerusalem temple]; 1 En 90:28–29, 35–36 [eschatological temple in New Jerusalem]). 36 It is impossible in an academic paper to prove the validity of an alleged revelation from deity to a mortal, but it should still be discussed as a possibility since many believers of whatever particular faith tradition is being discussed may hold that view. A risk we sometimes face in academic discourse is going too far to ignore or dismiss the faith claims of believers. As Jon Levenson has pointed out, “to the extent that Jews and Christians bracket their religious commitments in the pursuit of biblical studies, they meet not as Jews and Christians, but as something else … neither [Jews] nor Christians should overlook the costs and the limits of religious neutrality. Nor should a method that studiously pursues neutrality be mistaken for the key to a genuine and profound dialogue between these two great religious communities.” Bracketing traditional identities renders the ability to enrich the other problematic. “Bracketing tradition has its value, but also its limitations. Though fundamentalists will not see the value, nor historicists the limitations, intellectual integrity and spiritual vitality in this new situation demand the careful affirmation of both”; The Hebrew Bible, the Old Testament, and Historical Criticism: Jews and Christians in Biblical Studies (Louisville, 1993) 84, 105. It is hoped that this paper will accurately present the common perspective of Latter-day Saint believers for outsiders, but not for an apologetic or proselyting purpose.

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“translation” of the Bible. There is considerable debate on the issue of whether Joseph Smith had access to 1 Enoch before he wrote the Enoch passages now found in the Book of Moses.37 While it is true that Richard Laurence’s English translation of 1 Enoch was completed in 1821,38 the members of the church only seem to have become acquainted with this text after 1840 through Latter-day Saint missionaries serving in England as seen in their announcements about this newly acquired text, as discussed below. Joseph Smith himself, in the only reference he made to a book of Enoch, spoke about the Enoch quotation in Jude and said its source is among the lost books. Thus it seems that the Enoch traditions in the first stage were not directly transmitted or influenced by 1 Enoch or other earlier Enochic literature. Another perspective related to whether Joseph Smith was familiar with Laurence’s 1 Enoch agrees that it is less likely he was influenced by 1 Enoch in his presentation of Enoch stories, but it posits that Joseph Smith could have become acquainted with Enoch traditions via Freemasonry where Enoch is a significant figure.39 Cheryl Bruno argues for a trajectory of mystical themes (such as theophany, grand assembly, and heavenly ascent) originating in non-canonical Enoch traditions that were adopted in Freemasonry then adapted by Joseph Smith. She stated, “Though access to the Enoch pseudepigrapha was possible from several places, it seems more plausible that Smith utilized masonic tradition rather than other sources for inspiration in his Enoch writings.”40 This possibility, however, remains speculative. Joseph’s older brother was a mason, but there is little direct discussion about masonry from Joseph Smith until he became a freemason in 1842, long after the creation of the Enoch material in the Book of Moses in the early 1830s. Bruno asserts that Joseph Smith still could have been influenced by Enoch traditions within masonry due to cultural familiarity of masonic ritual and legend and the prevalence of anti-masonic literature in the region which would have included the Enoch material. In a more recent work, Colby Townsend argues that portions of 1 Enoch were available in the English literature of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries

37

For a useful summary of these arguments, see J. Woodworth, “Extra-Biblical Enoch Texts in Early American Culture,” in Archive of Restoration Culture: Summer Fellows’ Papers 1997–1999, ed. R.L. Bushman (Provo, UT, 2000) 185–93. 38 Laurence, Book of Enoch. 39 For more discussion on the figure of Enoch among Masons and particularly the distinction that Enoch may have held more meaning for “old Masons,” but not as much for “regular” Freemasonry (closer to Joseph Smith’s time), see Churton in this volume. 40 C. Bruno, “Congruence and Concatenation in Jewish Mystical Literature, American Freemasonry, and Mormon Enoch Writings,” Journal of Religion and Society 16 (2014) 1–19 at 5.

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even before Laurence’s translation.41 He is correct that these references witness to the existence of translations of sections of Enochic texts, but they are scattered throughout English sources in various newspapers, books, and academic collections and never include the complete text.42 While his literary examples are many and accurate, it still begs the question how much these snippets of various parts of 1 Enoch were known by Joseph Smith and whether they influenced his account of Enoch especially since they primarily discuss the Watchers, a feature absent from the Book of Moses. In Lester Grabbe’s response to this paper at the 2019 Enoch Seminar, he discounts the influence of Enochic texts on the earliest Joseph Smith material published around 1831, but notes a higher probability of knowing 1 Enoch directly or indirectly by 1834 when Joseph Smith used the code name “Baurak Ale.” More likely, Grabbe sees the published Enoch material developing biblical concepts and figures from a Wirkungsgeschichte perspective. Therefore, instead of focusing on other Enochic texts, the emphasis of the first stage was on doctrines taught during Enoch’s alleged ministry that helped form a Zion community that was eventually translated. The early saints began patterning their efforts after Enoch’s to gather into one community to create their own Zion of one heart and one mind with no poor among them with the belief that complete righteousness was achievable on earth. For these first-generation Latter-day Saints, the building of this Zion, patterned after Enoch, was probably the way the tradition of Enoch most impacted them. The second stage of Latter-day Saint involvement with Enoch traditions was not until around a decade after the Book of Moses was first printed in the Evening and Morning Star when the first definitive mention of 1 Enoch is published in Latter-day Saint periodicals in an advertisement reprinted from the New York Star for a forthcoming publication of the book of Jasher.43 Early members had always shown excitement for lost books of the Bible, so it is no surprise to see their eagerness for the book of Enoch which had recently “been discovered, translated from the Ethiopic, and published in England.” The following month’s issue of the Millennial Star, primarily a missionary periodical published in England, gave a description of this book of Enoch:

41 C. Townsend, “Revisiting Joseph Smith and the Availability of the Book of Enoch,” Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 53.3 (2020) 41–72. 42 A contemporary Protestant group, the Swedenborgians, also looked to Enoch as a source and preserver of ancient heavenly knowledge. 43 “The Book of Jasher,” Times and Seasons 1.8 (June 1840) 127.

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We have now in our possession a book, the title page of which reads as follows: “The Book of Enoch the Prophet; an Apocryphal Production, supposed for ages to have been lost, but discovered at the close of the last century in Abyssinia; now first translated from an Ethiopic MS. [manuscript] in the Bodleian Library, by Richard Laurence, LL.D., Archbishop of Cashel, late Professor of Hebrew in the University of Oxford.” This book carries with it indisputable evidence of being an ancient production. It steers clear of modern sectarianism, and savours much of the doctrine of the ancients, especially in regard to the things of the latter day. Notwithstanding it was translated and published in England, and that, too, by an English Bishop, who stands entirely unconnected with the church of Latter-Day Saints, yet it seems plainly to predict the coming forth of the Book of Mormon, and the mission of our Elders, which they are now performing among the nations, together with the late persecution which has befallen our people in America, with the conduct of the rulers of that Republic, in refusing to give us redress; yes, in fact, it predicts the final result of that matter, and the complete triumph of the saints. We give the following extract, commencing at page 156, without further comment, and leave our readers to form their own judgment in regard to this remarkable Book.44 The article quotes from 1 En 103:1–2, 10–15; 104; and 105. The early saints saw parallels between the struggles against persecution recounted in 1 Enoch and their own experiences, particularly in regards to the government not aiding the prevention of persecution and sometimes even participating in it. They also saw the fulfillment of passages that foretold the coming forth of books (or “scripture”) in their additional books of scripture like the Book of Mormon. The Millennial Star, therefore, included part of 1 Enoch so that readers could judge for themselves whether this ancient text foresaw the events unfolding in the latter days after the Restoration. Charles Thompson, an elder in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at the time, followed in this same vein, even quoting from the article in the Millennial Star, and published a book in 1841 which he claimed proved the validity of the Book of Mormon. One of the key pieces of evidence that he pointed to were Enoch’s prophecies. His book asserted that the recent 44 “The Apocryphal Book of Enoch,” The Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star 1.3 (July 1840) 61–62 (emphasis in the original).

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discovery of the Book of Enoch “contains an evident prophecy of the coming forth of the Book of Mormon, and the mission of the Elders of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, which they are now performing among the nations of the earth, together with the late persecution which has befallen this church, in Missouri. It also speaks of the conduct of the rulers of this nation in refusing to hear and regard their cries for redress and protection, and predicts the final result of that matter, and the complete triumph of the saints.”45 It then goes on to quote the same introduction and passage from 1 Enoch as the Millennial Star. Concluding its quotation of 1 Enoch, it claims “that whoever will take the pains to read the history of the persecution of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the state of Missouri, will find that Enoch in describing their complaints, has given a most accurate description of what there happened unto them, together with the conduct of the princes or rulers of this nation in refusing to grant them redress for the wrongs they there suffered.”46 Thompson goes on to explain some of the mysteries that Enoch revealed which included an apostasy of the church from the apostolic faith that included some people writing their own books without inspiration. He explains another of Enoch’s mysteries as “the coming forth of the record of the Nephites, the Book of Mormon, and the events following it, viz: The going forth of the officers of God’s Kingdom, his messengers to the nations declaring his glory among the gentiles, &c.”47 Thompson concludes that “the truth of the Book of Mormon is established, proved and confirmed by this prophesy [sic] of Enoch, the seventh from Adam.”48 Thus during the second stage, direct contact with and interpretation of 1 Enoch became the centerpiece of Enoch discussions. While the efforts to create Zion continued from the first stage, a new emphasis on reading 1 Enoch to see ancient prophecies being fulfilled in their day defines the second stage. A previously unknown text was almost treated as scripture (though never canonized, and likely never read by most members of the church beyond some excerpts in church periodicals) as the prophecies of 1 Enoch somehow bolstered their faith that the many new things being unfolded under the prophetic leadership of Joseph Smith were foreseen, and thus true. The third stage of Latter-day Saint use of Enoch was in sermons at general conferences of the church in the latter part of the nineteenth century. Church 45 46 47 48

C.B. Thompson, Evidences in Proof of the Book of Mormon (Batavia, NY, 1841) 125. Evidences in Proof of the Book of Mormon, 130. Evidences in Proof of the Book of Mormon, 130–31. Evidences in Proof of the Book of Mormon, 132.

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leaders randomly mentioned Enoch in these talks reiterating earlier teachings from the Pearl of Great Price related to building up Zion, Christology and “gospel” teachings in the antediluvian period, and seeking righteousness to unite with Enoch’s city. In this stage, however, we begin to see a shift that became even stronger in the twentieth century from emphasizing the patterning of cities after the city of Enoch to the theology of Moses 6–7. Modern Latter-day Saints are much more likely to focus on the doctrines and teachings of the Enoch stories to increase understanding and righteousness. There still exists the notion of preparing for a gathering with the translated city of Enoch, including the future building of a New Jerusalem, but it is more through the righteousness of church members rather than city development.49 5

Conclusion

The figure of Enoch has played an important role in Latter-day Saint tradition. The reception history of this key figure goes through a few stages, the first of 49

Beyond the nineteenth century, one can see a fourth stage of interest in Enoch material by Latter-day Saints after the proliferation and collection of “pseudepigrapha” (primarily in English translation) and the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Some Latter-day Saint scholars, most notably Hugh Nibley, combed these texts for parallels to Joseph Smith’s earlier revelations about Enoch and other figures. This apologetic effort claimed that most of these Second Temple Jewish texts were unknown by Joseph Smith and yet aspects of them corroborated what was found in his works. Dealing specifically with 1 Enoch, J. Woodworth (“Extra-Biblical Enoch Texts in Early American Culture,” in Archive of Restoration Culture: Summer Fellows’ Papers 1997–1999, ed. R.L. Bushman [Provo, UT, 2000] 185–93) categorized two opposing views on Joseph Smith’s acquaintance with Laurence’s Enoch text. The “parallelist” position argues that Joseph Smith did not know Laurence’s Enoch text, but included remarkable parallels with Enoch texts in his writings. They felt that if they could find correspondences between ancient texts, most of which were not available to Joseph Smith during his lifetime, and the purported visions and writings of these figures through Joseph Smith’s works, then it would vindicate Smith’s prophetic role. (Some representative examples: H. Nibley, Enoch the Prophet [Salt Lake City, 1986]; A.C. Skinner, “Joseph Smith Vindicated Again: Enoch, Moses 7:48, and Apocryphal Sources,” in Revelation, Reason, and Faith: Essays in Honor of Truman G. Madsen, ed. D.W. Parry, D.C. Peterson, and S.D. Ricks [Provo, UT, 2002] 365–81; J.M. Bradshaw and D.J. Larsen, In God’s Image and Likeness 2: Enoch, Noah, and the Tower of Babel [Salt Lake City, 2014] 33–198). The “derivativist” position argues that Joseph Smith knew Laurence’s text and was influenced by it in his writings. (Representative is D.M. Quinn, Early Mormonism and the Magic World View [rev.ed.; Salt Lake City, 1998]). An MA Thesis on this issue was done by Salvatore Cirillo at the University of Durham (“Joseph Smith, Mormonism, and Enochic Tradition,” 2010). Thus this stage is marked by the effort to identify parallels with ancient Enochic material to support or debunk Latter-day Saint truth claims.

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which does not seem directly related to Second Temple Jewish sources related to Enoch. While there may be some interesting parallels in ancient Enochic accounts with early Latter-day Saint sources, the direct transmission and influence of Enochic texts is unlikely, though possible. By the time one can clearly see Latter-day Saint interaction with Enochic texts like 1 Enoch, it is in Britain in the 1840s for apologetic purposes to support the unfolding mission of Joseph Smith and the emerging church in relationship to Enochic prophecies. In the first phase of Latter-day Saint Enoch material the biblical account of Enoch expands through what is claimed to be a revelatory experience by Joseph Smith.50 This first phase is responsible for augmenting early church doctrine and placing particular emphasis on the gathering of the saints and lost Israel to form a Zion community like Enoch had done in the Book of Moses. They believed this Zion, or New Jerusalem, was both a place and a condition of living which would prepare for an eschatological reunion after the descent of Enoch’s community that had been taken up from the earth. The second phase evolves after early missionaries in Britain became acquainted with English translations of 1 Enoch. They and others saw 1 Enoch as an example of a “lost” text which witnessed to the unfolding of their missionary work (gathering Israel), persecution of the saints, additional scriptures, and the prophetic mission of Joseph Smith in the last days. The third stage consisting primarily of general church sermons continued to build on the teachings found in the Book of Moses related to Zion, but perhaps emphasized more the required righteousness of Zion and not just gathering to a city. Thus throughout the church’s nearly 200-year history, Latter-day Saints have maintained an interest and curiosity in early Enochic material mostly to ascertain parallels to and support for their additional accounts of this enigmatic figure. 50 A Latter-day Saint canonical perspective would likely trace the transmission of Enoch material in this fashion: Adam’s teachings—Enoch’s record—Moses’ vision—Joseph Smith’s revelation.

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Part 2 Revisiting James Bruce’s “Discovery” and Its Impact



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Chapter 8

James Bruce’s Illusory “Book of Enoch the Prophet” Ted M. Erho Though justifiably famous as the first Westerner to acquire the long-lost Book of Enoch, it would be a mistake to assume that James Bruce’s legacy with respect to it must lie primarily in his role as (re-)discoverer. Such a view fails to appreciate the true influence he has exerted upon Western conceptions of the book, even to this very day. Bruce was certainly the first Briton, and quite likely the first European, to commission a manuscript in Ethiopia for use by foreigners.1 Although it is tempting to think that this action lacked any motivation beyond necessity, i.e., the impossibility of obtaining appropriate codices by other means, its utility ran far deeper. More than once in Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile, Bruce records obtaining manuscripts from Ethiopians, and we can hardly doubt, given the exploits of Henry Salt, Charles-Xavier Rochet d’Héricourt, and especially Antoine d’Abbadie in the early nineteenth century, that such an avenue could have supplied most of his needs in this regard so long as his desires could be satiated by the materials at hand.2 Yet, despite pushback from

1 Nicolò Brancaleone, a Venetian, certainly contributed to manuscript production in Ethiopia ca. 1500 as an illuminator, but it is unclear whether he or other Europeans there at the time were involved in such activities in other ways. Though Jesuit missionaries in the early seventeenth century almost certainly participated in the creation of Geʿez translations of biblical books on the basis of the Vulgate, the precise character of their involvement remains ambiguous. Nevertheless, this enterprise was indubitably targeted at generating materials for Ethiopians in some form, not for the foreigners trying to convert them to Catholicism. European scholastic luminaries such as Hiob Ludolf and Theodor Petraeus never personally visited Ethiopia nor apparently considered commissioning manuscripts from afar, instead contenting themselves with the limited numbers of Geʿez codices already on their home continent. Many of these can be tied to Santo Stefano dei Mori in some way, most of whose manuscripts were eventually acquired by institutions in relatively close proximity, particularly the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana. 2 Bruce, Travels, 1.501, 3.199. A. Dillmann, Catalogus Codicum Manuscriptorum Bibliothecae Bodleianae Oxoniensis. Pars VII. Codices Aethiopici (Oxford, 1848), judged half of the twentysix codices from Bruce in the Bodleian Library to be non-commissioned works, a further ten to have been copied for him, and the remaining three to contain a mixture of both aspects. Antoine d’Abbadie returned from Ethiopia with well over two hundred manuscripts, nearly all of which were obtained from churches and monasteries, while d’Héricourt brought back

© Ted M. Erho, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_010

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the natives, Bruce insisted upon having manuscripts copied for him.3 Since logically no transcript could have been produced unless a copy of the work in question existed in the vicinity, his actions could hardly have been motivated merely by the unavailability of material.4 The truth is less innocuous. Bruce was no mere bystander, paying Gondarine scribes to produce items without additional input or oversight. Bruce’s commissioned Old Testament manuscripts, to which the present study shall be confined, bear telltale marks of a struggle in which native Ethiopian traditions were repeatedly violated, particularly for aesthetic—though possibly also theological—reasons. Through this mechanism Bruce, while not rewording the texts themselves, was able to reshape them so as to be palatable to his own views and European tastes and expectations. Although it would be far too laborious a task to trace and measure the effects of Bruce’s actions and many of the illusions that they have perpetuated, an examination of his unusually active participation in the creation of his codices highlights several of the issues at the point of their geneses. An undue emphasis on Enoch is readily perceptible in his recurrent commissions of this particular text as a standalone “book,” his efforts to entitle it in accordance with pre-existing European conceptions, and his attempt to make it look like a special Ethiopian supplement to the Protestant Old Testament. The oddities in Bruce’s manuscripts hint at his motivations: this is the tale they tell. 1

One of These Is Not Like the Others: The “Original” Enoch and Bruce’s Ethiopic Old Testament

Today in Oxford a quintet of Ethiopic manuscripts giving every impression of uniformity stand together in the bowels of a library, not unalike how they would have stood on a shelf in Kinnaird long ago. Bound in red morocco, with gilt-edged leaves measuring approximately 32.7 × 29 cm, each of MS Bruce 71 a comparable number to Bruce from similar sources. Both assemblages currently reside in the Bibliothèque nationale. 3 Cf. Bruce, Travels, 1.494–495. 4 Indeed, most of the commissioned texts are not scarce, and multiple copies of them can be located in Gondarine churches at that time. For example, the Octateuch and Books of Kingdoms are recorded in roughly contemporary inventories from the local churches of Dabra Ḍaḥay (Qwesqwām), Dabra Berhān (Śellāsē), and Fit Mikāʾēl. Jeremiah was to be found at the first two as well. See BL Or. 504 fol. 2r, Or. 513 fol. 216v, and Or. 732 fol. 369r–v. Since these booklists represent a large percentage of those available from this region, the Old Testament texts that Bruce commissioned were likely very plentiful, suggesting that there would have been ample opportunities to purchase existing material if desired.

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through MS Bruce 75 is stamped on the spine with an abbreviated form of “OLD TESTAMENT—TOME [].” Effort has gone into making these appear to be an Ethiopic Old Testament, and this visual display is buttressed by Bruce’s own assertion that he brought back from Ethiopia “all the Abyssinian books of the Old Testament.”5 Appearances, however, are deceiving. Bruce himself offers no account of the origin of most of these manuscripts, in contrast to others pertaining to Ethiopian history.6 It is instead Alexander Murray in his revised edition of the Travels who supplies the key details that some books were commissioned by the explorer from scribes at Gondar, with the Pentateuch copied by one Adigo Aytcho, Joshua and Judges by Weleda Yesous, Jeremiah by Weleda Selasse, and Chronicles by Confu.7 In light of this background, Bruce’s own comments on the lack of such manuscripts in private hands and the difficulty in procuring “them, even in churches, for the purpose of copying” serve as a form of oblique confirmation.8 The books recorded by Murray can be correlated with four of the five Old Testament codices in the set:9 – MS Bruce 71: Genesis and Exodus – MS Bruce 72: Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy – MS Bruce 73: Joshua, Judges, Ruth, 1–2 Chronicles, 1–4 Kingdoms – MS Bruce 75: Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel, 4 Ezra, Ezra-Nehemiah, Esther While not every one of these texts is included in Murray’s list, there is no reason to presume that any of the others originated discretely, as the inclusion of the name ያዕቆብ (“James” [Bruce]) as commissioner in the last two biblical books intimates.10 MS Bruce 74, the manuscript in the quintet that contains Enoch, represents a very different case, for it gives every indication of not sharing this origin. 5 6 7

Bruce, Travels, 1.489. Bruce, Travels, 1.501. Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 7.411. The second name would properly be transcribed Walda Iyasus and the third Walda Śellāsē, while the first and last remain less readily decipherable. 8 Bruce, Travels, 1.493. 9 For descriptions of these, see Dillmann, Codices Aethiopici, 1–5, 8–9 (I = MS Bruce 71; II = MS Bruce 72; III = MS Bruce 73; VI = MS Bruce 75). 10 Cf. Dillmann, Codices Aethiopici, 9. Dillmann asserts that the first three of these were “cura J. Brucii,” though is less certain about the last, suggesting that parts of it may be older. Based on autoptic examination, I find no reason to dub MS Bruce 75 a hybrid, though the titles in alternating red and black enlarged characters heading both Ezekiel (fol. 35r) and 4 Ezra (fol. 61v) may have been inserted secondarily. Similar titles appear on MS Bruce 73 fol. 72r above the beginning of 1 Kingdoms and, quite incongruously, on MS Bruce 74 fol. 6r, where Ezekiel is written despite that text not being found in the manuscript.

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Bruce himself declares as much, placing its acquisition via purchase or some other form of procurement by his servant some months earlier during his time in Adwa.11 There is no reason whatsoever to doubt this account, not because the traveler’s testimony should arbitrarily be believed here, but because this is the only one of the eight Old Testament manuscripts he brought back from Ethiopia that does not contravene native production norms. Before broaching this topic more directly, it is worth considering some other elements which help to demonstrate both that the existence of such a manuscript from Adwa is not likely to be an invented fiction and that its identification with MS Bruce 74 and not one of the other Enoch codices is quite certain. The first has already been alluded to, namely that no section of this manuscript is found among the known records relating to Bruce’s payments for scribal work. While this cannot be considered definitive, especially since, as shall become clear, some commissioned work was not so reported, its omission is otherwise something of a curiosity. More than a dozen leaves longer than its closest counterpart, this is the lengthiest codex of the Old Testament quintet, and its divisions or major production units at least equal the six of MS Bruce 75. If subject to the same treatment as the others, its non-inclusion in the list thus either represents a statistical anomaly or a deliberate excision. Secondly, on more than one occasion, Bruce writes that the proper place of Enoch in the Ethiopian canon is immediately before the Book of Job.12 Although this statement is more or less correct factually,13 it runs counter to the ostensible witness of Bruce’s own manuscripts, wherein Enoch is found alone except in one instance. The significance and unusualness of the unipartite character of most of these exemplars will be discussed at length below, but here we may note more positively that this outlier contains at its start the precise sequence of 11 Bruce, Travels, 3.199. In describing this codex, Dillmann, Codices Aethiopici, 5–8, similarly indicates “Caeteris J. Brucii Codicibus biblicis aliquanto antiquior est: videtur emtione ab eo esse acquisitus,” a supposition that he does not, however, link with Bruce’s own testimony. 12 Bruce, Travels, 1.489, 498. An earlier witness to the same concept, which dates Bruce’s knowledge of this state of affairs to 1769, exists in the form of his note fronting BnF Éthiopien 49, an English translation of which is consultable in R. Laurence, መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ፡ነቢይ። Libri Enoch Prophetae Versio Aethiopica (Oxford, 1838) ix–xii at x. A.I. Silverstre de Sacy, “Notice du Livre d’Enoch,” Magasin encyclopédique 6 (1800) 369–98, earlier published the original French version of several excerpts from the lengthy note, including the pertinent passage (at 378). 13 Enoch pairs with Job more than any other book. This occurs in a plurality, not a majority, of cases overall however, but was an especially common combination in the period leading up to Bruce’s arrival in Ethiopia, as three-quarters of the surviving seventeenth-century Ethiopic Enoch codices attest this precise sequence.

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books that Bruce considers authentic. Thus while the exact basis for the statement is uncertain, its external validation and the fact that only one manuscript conforms thereto broadly promotes the probability of it being a true Ethiopian production, and by extension the potential Adwa acquisition. Thirdly, moving onto somewhat more impressionistic territory, MS Bruce 74, unlike the other items from the Old Testament set, exhibits signs of native use. While Bruce’s commissions are remarkably free of additiones since they were being produced for him directly and exclusively, this manuscript features various Ethiopic notes added on fol. 4–6, regular marginal notations in several of the books, and the effacement of the names of both its commissioner and the reigning monarch. Corresponding elements are rarely attested in its counterparts.14 Moreover, not infrequent erasures and other corrections occur in the texts themselves and in quite a few instances rubrications are lacking.15 Though allowance must be provided for different scribes’ habits, Bruce’s commissions consistently possess high production values in which similar errors are seldom visible. It is difficult to imagine either that scribes would have presented the explorer with such work or that he would have been willing to accept such craftsmanship when much better was available. Weightier, however, is the fact that MS Bruce 74 adheres to classical Ethio­ pian production norms throughout. By contrast, these same norms are consistently violated, often in highly predictable ways, by Bruce’s commissioned codices. The referenced manuscript sequentially contains the following texts: Enoch, Job, Isaiah, Hosea, Amos, Micah, Joel, Obadiah, Jonah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi, Proverbs, Wisdom of Solomon, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs, and Daniel. Though all these books are attested together within approximately twenty additional codices, it is especially important that, despite varying orders, the same basic production units

14

15

Examples are largely limited to MS Bruce 75, which displays occasional marginal versification and textual corrections, and pen trials and erased personal names on fol. 61 and 73. These irregularities likely prompted Dillmann’s (Codices Aethiopici, 8) hesitation regarding the origin of this section of the manuscript. Lacunae as a result of uncompleted rubrications are even more prevalent than recorded in Dillmann, Codices Aethiopici, 6–7. These include missing chapter references towards the end of Enoch, an element shared by MS Bodl. Or. 531, but not visible in the other Bruce Old Testament manuscripts. Erasures and other easily observable textual corrections are especially common in Enoch, Job, and Daniel, though are far less discernable elsewhere within this whole assemblage of manuscripts. Many Ethiopic codices, both contemporaneous and otherwise, were produced to standards equaling, and often greatly surpassing, those commissioned by Bruce, so quality of work on a purely positive level cannot be adduced to support a specific origin.

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are found unaccompanied in three other eighteenth-century manuscripts.16 It has already been noted above how the first two of these, Enoch and Job, commonly combine in this era, a small marker that should not be overlooked. While the third, Isaiah, offers no special value, the next, namely the Minor Prophets, follows the Septuagintal ordering, not the Masoretic one followed by most Western European Bibles. The significance of this will become increasingly clear as Bruce’s other manuscripts are probed, but it suffices at this point to say that the former, not the latter, is native to the Ethiopian tradition.17 Far more important evidence is provided by the final two production units. Entitled ሰሎሞን (“Solomon”) in Ethiopic inventory lists, the trio of Proverbs (divided into two parts, chs. 1–24 and 25–31), Ecclesiastes, and the Wisdom of Solomon are copied together virtually without exception, with the last two, fluctuating in sequence, commencing with rubricated openings of a secondary character identical to that at Proverbs 25.18 This treatment resembles that of a single book,19 to which Song of Songs is often, though not always, appended in similar fashion,20 and it is precisely this type of arrangement that can be 16 BnF Éthiopien d’Abbadie 30, EMML 5003, and Monumento Nazionale Abbazia di Casamari MS 29. The last of these was recently described in A. Brita et al., “Three Collections of Gǝʿǝz Manuscripts Recently Surveyed in Italy: An Inventory,” Aethiopica 20 (2017) 167–89 at 181, where the manuscript was erroneously assigned to the sixteenth/seventeenth century, a dating that it has been possible to reject via an examination of the item on the basis of digital photographs kindly supplied by colleagues at the Universität Hamburg. 17 There are rare exceptions limited to a handful of manuscripts containing a textform derived from the Vulgate, but these represent a late incursion into the tradition and should be understood as nothing more than a curiosity. 18 In some inventory lists the title is instead rendered ምሳልያተ፡ሰሎሞን (“Proverbs of Solomon”). For early examples of both, see T.M. Erho, “The Shepherd of Hermas in Ethiopia,” in L’Africa, l’Oriente Mediterraneo e l’Europa: Tradizione e culture a confronto, ed. P. Nicelli (Africana Ambrosiana 1; Milan, 2015) 97–117 at 110, 113. These and other inventory lists do not as a rule include either Ecclesiastes (ቃለ፡መክብብ) or Wisdom of Solomon (ጥበበ፡ሰሎሞን), further demonstrating that the title of the first acts on behalf of the group and that, by extension, they are functionally unified. The only exception of which I am presently aware is Tübingen Universitätsbibliothek, M.a.IX 19, where Proverbs follows Sirach without any counterparts. 19 The rubrications are fundamentally no different than those which customarily mark the beginnings of the various tractates within Enoch, e.g., 37:1, 72:1, 83:1, etc. 20 Since Song of Songs is also copied as part of the Psalter, it is actually the most attested biblical book in Ethiopic. It seems probable that this saturation most likely occasioned its selection by the Ethiopians during Bruce’s trip as the book whose rendering in multiple Ethiopian languages could most effectively be executed, since, while many of those tongues were more or less limited to the oral sphere, priests, monks, and other Christians who spoke them would have been generally familiar with the Geʿez version of Song of Songs and could thus convey dialect translations even where none existed before. Bruce’s own choice of Ruth is a much rarer book, and one whose circulation seldom reached

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observed in MS Bruce 74. Though all are part of the de facto Ethiopian Old Testament canon,21 the Wisdom of Solomon is one of only two wholly apocryphal books included within Bruce’s five-volume set. Since, as we shall see, in his commissioned manuscripts there are strong indications that the explorer sought to eliminate such texts, the presence of one here strongly implies a different origin for this codex, one that did not allow for such machinations. The last production unit, Daniel, sandwiches the protocanonical book between Susanna and Bel and the Dragon in typical Ethiopian fashion, and thus acts as a similar, albeit perhaps slightly less clear-cut, marker.22 Inasmuch as it is thoroughly imbued with indicators of native production and use, since it stands apart from the commissioned manuscripts in both respects, and because there is no external evidence on which to otherwise call into question the veracity of the account, MS Bruce 74 can be identified as the codex acquired near Adwa. It is appropriate to pause here for a moment to consider the course of events, for this acquisition played a major role in what occurred thereafter. Bruce arrived in Gondar with this manuscript in his possession. One of his primary aims then became to supplement its contents with copies of each of the other books of the Protestant Old Testament. Whether or not it was possible for him to obtain all of the books in question via purchase of existing manuscripts cannot be known, but it is clear that if it had been, he would have had far less control over the results. It is striking that there are precisely zero duplicated items within the five-volume Old Testament, a near impossibility if choosing from existing codices since the vast majority of them would have included one or more items in MS Bruce 74, and those which did not would have generally overlapped in parts with each other. Commissioning texts lacking from the Adwa manuscript one by one allowed for the artificial creation of an Ethiopian Old Testament, not the Ethiopian Old Testament, one which presented a particular vision, not the reality on the ground, which was far messier

beyond monasteries, so far fewer individuals would have been acquainted with it. For this episode, see Bruce, Travels, 1.494. 21 Though various canon lists are found in the Ethiopian Orthodox tradition, they exhibit much diversity; see R.W. Cowley, “The Biblical Canon of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church today,” Ostkirchliche Studien 23 (1974) 318–23. In general, they also fail to align with the church’s actual practice; cf. Erho, “Shepherd of Hermas in Ethiopia,” 106. No de jure canon has yet to be established, a rare, possibly unique, position among the ancient Christian churches. 22 Interestingly, Bruce, Travels, 1.494, specifically mentions Bel and the Dragon as an example of an apocryphal book that is read, a claim that, akin to that regarding the contiguity of Enoch and Job, may have been precipitated by his own consultation of this manuscript.

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and more theologically problematic.23 Indeed, the other defining characteristic of the four commissioned volumes is their near total restriction to protocanonical works, with, despite Bruce’s assertion that “[t]here is no such thing as distinctions between canonical and apocryphal books,”24 evident pains being taken to avoid the latter category. While this is most clearly witnessed in MS Bruce 75, it is first appropriate to touch upon its three counterparts. The major issue with them is shared, namely that Genesis through Ruth are spread out among the volumes rather than forming an Octateuch as is customary. Exceptions do exist with these books, especially at the monastery of Gunda Gundē,25 but there are simply no other examples of Genesis and Exodus being copied alone together, nor of Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy, and there are no traces whatsoever anywhere in Ethiopia of the Pentateuch instead of the Octateuch. Precisely how much the present distribution of these books owes to their Western binder remains unclear, as does Bruce’s potential instructions regarding the formulation of a Pentateuch either textually or in terms of the total number of volumes in the set.26 MS Bruce 75, on the other hand, provides clear evidence of audacious interference that created not only unusual elements, but unique ones. The latter category is brightly on display at the beginning of the manuscript, which 23

Perhaps some consideration should also be given to the added baggage that duplicated texts would have created, though this hardly seems to have been a major overall concern in view of the amount of material that Bruce tried to export. 24 Bruce, Travels, 1.494. Though perplexingly inaccurate in places, a listing of books comprising the Ethiopian Old Testament, including the apocryphal works, is recorded in H. Ludolf, Historia Aethiopica (Frankfurt, 1681), bk. 3, ch. 4, a publication with which Bruce demonstrates familiarity, and which may even underlie the quoted statement. The broad exclusion of the Old Testament Apocrypha from his commissioned codices can therefore hardly be considered an accidental oversight, though the precise motivation(s) for his actions in this area remain shrouded in mystery. 25 Cf. T.M. Erho, “The Library and Old Testament Manuscripts of Gundä Gunde,” in Studies in Ethiopian Languages, Literature and History: Festschrift for Getatchew Haile, ed. A.C. McCollum (Äthiopistische Forschungen 83; Wiesbaden, 2017) 297–319. 26 The question of whether Bruce’s commissioned quires were ever turned into codices in Ethiopia must remain open. EMML 8518 combines the Octateuch, 1–2 Chronicles, and 1–4 Kingdoms (i.e., MT 1–2 Sam; 1–2 Kgs), and so it may have been originally intended that MSS Bruce 71–73 would form a single bulky codex of a little less than three hundred leaves. Conversely, as the Octateuch and Kingdoms with Chronicles form two very natural units, two books could have been in view. The fact that the Bruce Synaxarium (MSS Bruce 82–85), bound in a four-volume format as opposed to the standard two or three, is also somewhat unusually divided, lends some credence to the notion that the Scotsman and his labourers were not constrained by the originals when affixing the Western bindings.

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opens with protocanonical Jeremiah followed by Lamentations. Simply put, this arrangement is never found in any other Geʿez witness to the book. In the Ethiopian tradition, Jeremiah is composed of several parts all normally subsumed under the name of the first, akin to how the Wisdom of Solomon and Ecclesiastes form sections of “(the Proverbs of) Solomon.” These consist of, in order, Jeremiah, Baruch, Lamentations, and the Epistle of Jeremiah, to which are customarily appended 4 Baruch, and sometimes the Prophecy to Pashur and/or the Life of Jeremiah.27 The absence of the deuterocanonical Baruch and Epistle of Jeremiah within the structure of the book as a whole are unprecedented, and the excision of them, as well as other non-Protestant parts of the text, seems to be a highly deliberate act. Conversely, on first glance the appearance of 4 Ezra and Ezra-Nehemiah (2 Esdras) appear to offer a very different glimpse of the acceptability of what are typically called Old Testament apocrypha or deuterocanonical literature. However, their inclusion may be borne out of confusion, having been intended to stand for Ezra and Nehemiah, with the former being understood as the most popular Ezra book in the Ethiopic tradition (where it is reckoned as the first book so entitled) and the latter the place where Nehemiah’s story is presented.28 Alternatively, it may be that 4 Ezra was not subject to the same level of opprobrium as the normal deuterocanonicals, being viewed as an apocalyptic curiosity more along the lines of Enoch. The manuscript is concluded by Esther, which presents another interesting case. This is not so much because it includes the Septuagintal additions, which would arguably be harder to disentangle than with almost any other book, but rather that it is accompanied by neither Tobit nor Judith. These books customarily collocate in pairs or as a trio,29 and thus Esther’s independence here, while hardly decisive, may be induced by the desire to omit the apocrypha so far as possible, not necessarily via their active suppression, but at least through the failure to commission copies of them despite their intrinsically canonical status in Ethiopia. 27 Cf. W. Wright, Catalogue of the Ethiopic Manuscripts in the British Museum acquired since the year 1847 (London, 1877) 8–10, 13, 15, 18, 20. BL Or. 496 is an exceptional case wherein Baruch and the Epistle precede Jeremiah and Lamentations, but all are nonetheless present, as are the Prophecy to Pashur and 4 Baruch. 28 It is unusual, though not unprecedented, to have 4 Ezra followed by 2 Esdras in a manuscript without 1 Esdras, the other examples being BAV Cerulli et. 28 and the imperfect BL Add. MS 24, 991. 29 For example, among the Magdala collection at the British Library there are nine manuscripts in which the trio appears together as a contiguous unit and only one in which any of the books, in this case Tobit, stands alone. Cf. Wright, Catalogue of the Ethiopic Manuscripts, 8, 10, 13–15, 19–22. Overall, Esther is found without Tobit or Judith just 10% of the time.

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The character of Bruce’s commissioned volumes is thrown into sharper relief by the list of items present in the de facto Ethiopian Orthodox canon of the era that do not appear within the Old Testament set.30 When not construed in isolation, but in concert with the foregoing observations, it hardly seems coincidental that the omitted books, namely 1 Esdras, Baruch, the Epistle of Jeremiah, 4 Baruch, Tobit, Judith, Sirach, the Ethiopic Books of Maccabees, Jubilees, and Psalms,31 do not, with the exception of the last, belong to the protocanon. Reasons for the absence of the Psalms in this context are, however, readily forthcoming.32 That of the others is only explicable, especially when one considers the effort required to hew the supplements to Jeremiah from the remainder, if the goal was, so far as possible, to bring back to Europe the books of the Protestant Old Testament plus the legendary Enoch. Years after the completion of this set, ca. 1771,33 further effort was exerted in Europe to give these five volumes, despite their differing origins, an air of uniformity, subtly adding to the impression that they were a collection. At least some of the codices were trimmed so that the pages would in each case measure roughly 32.7 × 29 cm.34 All of the manuscripts were supplemented with three blank foreleaves and an empty parchment endleaf followed by two paper ones, and the edges of their pages were gilded. Each volume was bound in the same red morocco, stamped on their spines with a reference to the Old Testament and an ascending sequence of numbers.35 Collectively, this served 30 On de facto canonicity in Ethiopia, see Erho “The Shepherd of Hermas in Ethiopia,” 106–7. A de facto canon can be established on the basis of the manuscript tradition, wherein biblical books are almost exclusively copied together with other biblical books in codices that do not contain non-biblical materials. Thus there seems to be a clear distinction between biblical manuscripts and non-biblical ones, with limits on what texts can be included in the former, implying a widely accepted set of canonical writings. 31 Possibly also the Prophecy to Pashur. 32 Murray (in Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray [2nd ed.], 2.416) commented that the five-volume Old Testament contained “all the books in our canon, except the Psalms, and several of the Apocrypha”, seeing the final category as something of a supplement rather than being defective in its own right. On the absence of the ubiquitous Ethiopian Psalter from the Bruce collection, see Hessayon in this volume. 33 Given the dates and details provided by Murray (in Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray [2nd ed.], 7.411), it would seem virtually certain that MSS Bruce 71–73 and 75 were completed in 1771. MS Bruce 74 is not significantly older, probably being best assigned to the early eighteenth century. 34 E.g., MS Bruce 74 fol. 132v and MS Bruce 75 fol. 36v, 47r feature partially cut off marginal notes in secondary hands, implying that those scribes originally had wider columns with which to work. 35 Ethiopic manuscripts customarily exhibit open spines and covers of simple wooden boards, with tooled leather sometimes wrapped around the latter.

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to create a set that seemed homogenous, opulent, and somewhat familiar to British and European viewers, whose base of reference would generally have been printed books, thereby extending Bruce’s prestige for having traveled to regions unknown to secure such marvelous artefacts. Beneath the glittering gold lay a much more complicated story. 2

Disassociating Enoch

One further point favoring the identification of MS Bruce 74 with the purported Adwa manuscript is that its text of Enoch was transcribed to form the codex that Bruce presented to Louis XV. There is no indication that anything similar occurred with the other two copies of Enoch that can be traced to him, MS Bodl. Or. 531 and BAV Vat. et. 71,36 and thus this unusual behavior is unlikely to be entirely due to chance, but rather because MS Bruce 74 was ‘original’ and thus of an acceptable background for duplication. While this direct textual relationship has been known since at least Dillmann, the fact that BnF Éthiopien 49 only reproduces one small part of its antigraph seems to have passed by as undeserving of note.37 Yet this occurrence, resulting in Enoch alone in an Ethiopic manuscript, is far more unusual, remarkable, and impactful than might be assumed (see Table 8.1). By disassociating Enoch from the more widely accepted Old Testament writings with which it customarily stands, it could better be perceived by Europeans as a book in its own right with, as an offshoot, any potential distribution of focus elsewhere negated. In order to demonstrate the oddity of manuscripts solely comprised of Enoch at the time of Bruce’s travels in Ethiopia, it is necessary to discuss briefly both the surviving copies of the book itself as well as an enormous change which took place in Geʿez manuscript production. Twenty-six intact manuscripts containing Enoch are known which antedate the eighteenth century, and twenty-two of these place it alongside other writings, always (with one exception) biblical. While this fifteen percent possibility of independent exemplars might be applied to those that Bruce brought back, it is somewhat misleading, for all such cases contain earlier non-standardized versions of the text. Prior to the standardization of the Ethiopic Bible in the sixteenth century, a greater 36 Respectively catalogued in Dillmann, Codices Aethiopici, 5, and Silvanus Grébaut and Eugenius Tisserant, Codices aethiopici vaticani et borgiani barberinianus orientalis 2 rossianus 865, 2 vols. (Vatican, 1935–1936) 1.257. 37 Dillmann, Codices Aethiopici, 5–6. For a brief description of this manuscript, see H. Zotenberg, Catalogue des manuscrits éthiopiens (Gheez et Amharique) de la Bibliothèque Nationale (Paris, 1877) 47.

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Table 8.1 Unipartite Ethiopic Enoch manuscripts

Location EthII Bibliothèque nationale Bodleian Library Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana Bibliothèque nationale British Library Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana Bayerische Staatsbibliothek Princeton University Library Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek Hamburg Bodleian Library Bodleian Library Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana Lake Ṭānā, Ethiopia EthI Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin Biblioteca Palatina

Shelfmark

Size (cm)

Cols. Fol.

Provenance

Éthiopien 49 MS Bodl. Or. 531 Vat. et. 71

37.3 × 31 29.6 × 27 32.7 × 27.2

2 3 3

63 40 27

Bruce Bruce Bruce

Éthiopien d’Abbadie 99 Add. MS 24,185 P.I.B. 22

22 × 17.5

2

70

19.5 × 13 22 × 23

2 2

77 44

d’Abbadie commissioned Henry Aaron Stern Giuseppe Sapeto

Cod.aeth.30

25.5 × 16

2

61

Garrett Ethiopic MS 42 Orient. 271a

18 × 13

2

81

19.5 × 13.5

2

68

Library acquired between 1875–1890 Henry Christian Reichardt Johann Martin Flad

olim Ullendorff MS Eth. E.U. V MS Aeth. d.18

25.3 × 23

3

66

ex. Sotheby’s 1966

26 × 20

2

59

Raineri 133

30 × 23.5

2

89

Bent Juel-Jensen commissioned Osvaldo Raineri

EMML 8234

20 × 17.5

2

45

Petermann II Nachtr. 29 Parm. 3843

17 × 14

2

167

16.8 × 13.2

2

83

21.4 × 16.2 26 × 19.5 21.1 × 14.3

2 2 2

123 57 78

Remnant Trust s.n. Gunda Gundē, Ethiopia C3-IV-2 (=GG 151) Institute of Ethiopian MS 675 Studies

at Mahāl Zagē Giyorgis Church Julius Heinrich Petermann ex. Gunda Gundē; Antonio Mordini

Produced for an Ethiopian scholar

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propensity towards smaller single work codices, written in a two-column format, existed, thereby allowing for Enoch’s solitary circulation in some cases. The revision of the biblical text on the basis of Christian Arabic manuscripts, which in turn eventually led to a standardization of Enoch as well via an internal text-critical process,38 also begat a distinct shift towards larger multipartite codices. For instance, while the fourteen Pauline Epistles previously formed discrete manuscripts, subsequently they were far more often than not combined with other works.39 The same process resulted in an increased tendency towards Old Testament codices with even more books than before, though very substantial manuscripts of this genre do exist in the earlier period.40 Excluding the anomalous EMML 6281, which places Enoch alongside Clement, seventeenth-century Enochic receptacles contain between five and fourteen textual units and eight and forty-six books in total, with means for each of eight and twenty-four respectively.41 Fairly average examples are EMML 8433 and UNESCO 10.4, and this approximate compositional size is common in the next century, as exemplified in MS Bruce 74. The subtraction of additional texts in the other Bruce Enochs thus contradicts the indigenous trend. The abnormality of the book forming a complete manuscript at this time becomes even clearer when compared to native exemplars which exhibit the standardized text. Thanks primarily to the Ethiopian Manuscript Microfilm Library project,42 but also a few more recent endeavors to digitize manuscripts in Ethiopia, some fifty-five copies of EthII Enoch in the Horn of Africa ranging from the seventeenth to twentieth centuries are accessible to scholars. Precisely one of these contains Enoch by itself.43 Even if the category is expanded to include all copies of the book known in Africa regardless of textual 38 The so-called “beta” or “EthII” recension that arises in the seventeenth century. 39 I am aware of eighteen pre-seventeenth-century Geʿez manuscripts containing the Pauline Epistles, all bar one of which is confined thereto; the solitary confirmed later exemplar to present an early textual recension is similarly limited, as are all manuscripts, sadly fragmentary, of the Commentary of Felon and Felgos on the Pauline corpus. From the point of the Arabic revision onwards, however, the Pauline Epistles are found in codices alongside of other New Testament materials, especially Acts and the Catholic Epistles, the vast majority of the time. 40 E.g., BnF Éthiopien d’Abbadie 55, DA-005, EMIP 1029, EMML 1768, and EMML 7584. 41 The manuscripts being BnF Éthiopien 50, BnF Éthiopien d’Abbadie 35, BL Or. 491, EMML 2436, EMML 2440, EMML 6686, EMML 7103, EMML 8347, EMML 8433, EMML 8703, and UNESCO 10.4. 42 On this project, see C. Stewart, “A Brief History of the Ethiopian Manuscript Microfilm Library (EMML),” in Studies in Ethiopian Languages, Literature and History, 447–72. 43 EMML 8234 (19th c.).

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affiliation, only two others can be adduced.44 Though its earliest extant history is a bit muddled in this regard, Enoch can nonetheless be said to almost always indigenously collocate in some form. The unipartite Bruce Enochs are the first in a series of outliers in this area, and, more than any other feature, this basic anomaly suggests that all were commissioned at the explorer’s behest despite the unavailability of any corroboratory records. Before turning to these other features, it is first worth discussing the aforementioned series of outliers, namely the rather lengthier list of copies of the Ethiopic book in European and American libraries lacking textual counterparts. Even though Bruce nowhere claims to have commissioned manuscripts of Enoch, one of his greatest legacies has been how others have emulated him in this respect—although probably not consciously,45 but rather spurred on by the desire to bring this exotic literary curiosity back from Ethiopia. Only two individuals, Bent Juel-Jensen and Antoine d’Abbadie, have openly claimed to make a commission of this type, the latter being the only individual apart from Bruce known to have both acquired multiple copies of Enoch and to have done so by varying means.46 A far more interesting conglomeration of material, however, comes from missionaries in the nineteenth century, no less than four of whom, namely Henry Aaron Stern, Henry Christian Reichardt, Johann Martin Flad, and Giuseppe Sapeto, returned from Africa with unipartite copies of the book.47 Another of their contemporaries, Johann Ludwig Krapf, whose efforts in securing Ethiopic texts through multiple means are better known, listed Enoch among his possessions.48 While Krapf’s collections were dispersed 44 45

Gunda Gundē 151 (15th/16th c.) and IES MS 675 (19th/20th c.). Richard Laurence’s publication of the book was probably at least as strong, if not a greater, factor, though his work was nonetheless influenced to some degree by the evidence with which he worked, which itself was a by-product of Bruce’s direct actions. 46 Oxford University Exploration Club, Rock-Hewn Churches of Eastern Tigray: An Account of the Oxford University Expedition to Ethiopia 1974 (Oxford, 1975) 48; A. d’Abbadie, Catalogue raisonné de manuscrits éthiopiens (Paris, 1859) 110. In this context, it is worth noting that the antigraph for the first contained at least one additional biblical book. Antoine d’Abbadie collected six copies of Enoch in Ethiopia, and it should hardly be understood as coincidental that the sole commissioned exemplar of the book is the only case in which it stands alone. 47 Cf. T.M. Erho and L.T. Stuckenbruck, “A Manuscript History of Ethiopic Enoch,” JSP 23 (2013) 87–133 at 98, 105–8. This observation suggests that many of these exemplars are likely not as old as their normally attributed dates. 48 H. Ewald, “Ueber die Aethiopischen Handschriften zu Tübingen,” Zeitschrift für die Kunde des Morgenlandes 5 (1844) 164–201 at 174. This list seems to record items in a relatively thorough European fashion, with major texts in each entry being elucidated. For instance, the other Old Testament manuscripts listed as nos. 2, 20, and 27 are almost certainly to be equated with BL Add. MS 16,188, Add. MS 16,187, and Add. MS 16,186 respectively as

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widely and this codex has yet to be definitively traced,49 it may be either the one in the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek or the one auctioned at Sotheby’s in 1966 that soon thereafter came into the hands of Edward Ullendorff,50 the prior provenances of which remain murky. Of all of the exemplars of the book brought to Europe by nineteenth-century missionaries, only one, belonging to S.H. Bronkhorst, includes any additional works in the normal Ethiopian fashion.51 This pattern contrasts greatly with those reaching Europe contemporaneously in the hands of travelers to Ethiopia for other purposes, such as Eduard Rüppell, Charles-Xavier Rochet d’Héricourt, and Antoine d’Abbadie; each of these, save for the single commissioned exemplar of d’Abbadie, contains a minimum of eight other biblical books.52 Exhibiting EthI textforms, the remaining quartet mostly consists of early native productions, the exception being BAV Raineri 133, a late twentieth-century manuscript possibly commissioned by Osvaldo Raineri himself.53 It, however, contains a highly interesting version of Enoch replete with rubricated headings interwoven into the text,

their contents accord exactly with the descriptions in the list. Consequently, the mention of Enoch (no. 44) by itself should almost certainly be taken to mean a solitary copy of the book. 49 For one recently identified exemplar, see N. Valieva, “Ms Ethiopic 4 of the Collection of the India Office: A strayed Manuscript of Gadla Lālibalā,” Aethiopica 20 (2017) 190–201. Manuscripts from Krapf are included in collections in at least Tübingen, London, Manchester, and Oxford, while others have seemingly been lost from the British and Foreign Bible Society collection now housed at Cambridge. Regarding the last, see R.W. Cowley, “Ethiopic,” in Historical Catalogue of the Manuscripts of Bible House Library, ed. M.R. Falivene and A.F. Jesson (London, 1982) 66–121 at 67. 50 Cf. Erho and Stuckenbruck, “Manuscript History,” 103–4, 112–13; Sotheby & Co., Catalogue of Important Western and Oriental Manuscripts and Miniatures (London, July 11, 1966) 32 (lot #171). Famed British bookseller Maggs Bros. purchased the second manuscript at the auction, and it is not clear whether the firm was acting on Ullendorff’s behalf or he acquired the item via a slightly more indirect route. The professor is listed as the buyer of the next lot and also sporadically participated in Sotheby’s sales on other occasions, so the latter seems nominally more probable. 51 Cf. Erho and Stuckenbruck, “Manuscript History,” 99. 52 Cf. Erho and Stuckenbruck, “Manuscript History,” 94, 96–98. 53 No official catalogue entry yet exists, but the codex was reported in Osvaldo Raineri, “Aethiopica Bibliothecae Apostolica Vaticanae,” in Miscellanea Bibliothecae Apostolicae Vaticanae XI (Studi e Testi 423; Vatican, 2004) 637–52 at 641. Palaeography suggests a latetwentieth-century date, and since Raineri both bought and commissioned manuscripts in Ethiopia (for examples of the latter see idem, Atti di Habta Māryām (†1497) e di Iyāsu (†1508), santi monaci etiopici [OCA 235; Rome, 1990], esp. 4), it seems entirely plausible, though not certain, that this manuscript belongs to the second category. For accounts of the other three, see Erho and Stuckenbruck, “Manuscript History,” 102–3, 122–23.

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hinting that it may be the direct descendant of a very early codex,54 one that the book might conceivably have formed alone. Thus, although on the basis of lists of manuscripts available to its scholastic editors one could be tempted to conclude that Ethiopic Enoch circulates in a solitary manner one-third of the time or more,55 this picture is an illusion. The illusion was perpetuated by foreigners, first and foremost Bruce, who evidently wanted an independent, free-standing book to bring home, even though it seldom circulated as such in the native context. While most of these visitors to Ethiopia seem to have been content just to acquire an exemplar, the trio which Bruce distributed display more grandiose aims. They give every impression of having been designed as presentation copies, not only in the later production stages, when, for instance, page edges were gilded and expensive bindings supplied, but from their very geneses. This is especially true of their dimensions, which are comparatively monumental. BnF Éthiopien 49, BAV Vat. et. 71, and MS Bodl. Or. 531 respectively have leaf widths of 31, 27.2, and 27 cm, the smallest being fifteen percent wider than its next closest counterpart among the manuscripts containing only Enoch. A similar situation occurs on the vertical axis, though there MS Bodl. Or. 531 is barely eclipsed by BAV Raineri 133. No other manuscript extends to within three and a half centimeters of them, however, and both BAV Vat. et. 71 and BnF Éthiopien 49 are considerably taller, with the latter measuring a colossal 37.3 cm, more than double the height of several of its counterparts.56 Since larger animal skins would have been more difficult and expensive to procure, this grandiosity, which was not at all necessary for the sake of reproducing the text, should be understood as part of Bruce’s attempt to create extravagant objects worthy of the most hallowed European halls. Comparatively pedestrian exemplars like those obtained by nineteenth-century missionaries would have required far less investment and been easier to transport, but lack the 54 Such tituli are fairly common in fourteenth- and fifteenth-century Ethiopic Old Testament manuscripts, but rarely seen in later periods. Apart from numerous unparalleled variants in the text of Enoch itself, this exemplar is particularly interesting for its unique Christian preface to the book. 55 Listings are provided by A. Dillmann, Liber Henoch Aethiopice, ad quinque codicum fidem editus (Leipzig, 1851) 1–2 (“Annotationes”); J. Flemming, Das Buch Henoch: Äthiopischer Text (Leipzig, 1902) vii–ix; R.H. Charles, The Ethiopic Version of the Book of Enoch (Anecdota Oxoniensia; Oxford, 1906) xviii–xxi; Michael A. Knibb, in consultation with Edward Ullendorff, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch: A New Edition in the light of the Aramaic Dead Sea Fragments, 2 vols. (Oxford, 1978) 2.23–27. 56 Physically larger copies of Enoch do exist, e.g., BnF Éthiopien d’Abbadie 55 (50 × 41 cm), but invariably belong to codices that draw together many writings.

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perceived value of a large, opulent book, particularly when virtually no one was able to read it. Perhaps due in part to their large sizes, two-thirds of the Bruce trio share the extremely unusual feature of being single-work manuscripts written in a three-column format. With the exception of the former Ullendorff codex now in the Bodleian,57 no other unipartite copy of Enoch is similarly designed, since the native codicological tradition favours small leaves in greater quantities over large leaves in smaller ones. The same two Bruce codices consequently fall on the extreme short end of the spectrum, with BAV Vat. et. 71 covering the text in a particularly absurd twenty-seven folios,58 while five of the six solitary EthI Enochs are among the lengthiest half-dozen in terms of total leaves.59 In combination with its relatively large size (25.3 × 23 cm), very clean text, approximate palaeographical age (18th c.), and unclear provenance, this odd format in the Ullendorff manuscript raises the slight possibility that it too may be a product of Bruce’s travels.60 Whatever the case may be, the three-column layout in some of the Scotsman’s unipartite Enoch codices confirms in an even more telling way that they were produced on his instructions. Basic considerations of size and grandness likely played a major role in Bruce’s dispersal of his Enochs. The pridefully-described “very beautiful and magnificent copy of the prophecies of Enoch, in large quarto” which he 57 58

59 60

The Ullendorff manuscripts were bequeathed by Edward Ullendorff to the Bodleian Library and presented by his widow to the institution after his death, but have yet to receive official shelfmarks. There are copies of Enoch compressed into far fewer leaves, but such is a result of trying to limit the total length of an expansive multi-work codex. Such a broad, skinny manuscript is basically nonsensical because of the cost of the larger folios and the greater chance of them sustaining damage. SbPK Petermann II Nachtr. 29 (fol. 167), Remnant Trust (fol. 123), BAV Raineri 133 (fol. 89), Biblioteca Palatina Parm. 3843 (fol. 83), IES MS 675 (fol. 78). The only EthII exemplar to fall within this range is Princeton University Library Garrett Ethiopic MS 42 (fol. 81). In terms of area per page, the Ullendorff manuscript is eclipsed by only the Bruce trio and BAV Raineri 133. Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 2.26 and Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch 1, 17, both assign it to the early eighteenth century, but following autopic examination, there is nothing palaeographically that precludes a somewhat later dating. The wider range proposed by Siegbert Uhlig, Das äthiopische Henochbuch (JSHRZ V/6; Gütersloh, 1984) 475, should be accepted instead. Its parchment is surprisingly fresh for its age and visible corrections within the text are rare, features reminiscent of Bruce’s Ethiopic codices in the Bodleian, though these aspects cannot be considered definitive. There is no indication in the auction catalogue (Sotheby & Co., Catalogue of Important Western and Oriental Manuscripts and Miniatures, 32) of the manuscript’s provenance, but such is fairly de rigueur for sales during that era, and neither contemporary import from the Horn of Africa nor a lengthy sojourn in Western hands should be excluded. The binding has been replaced recently and thus provides no insight into any of these matters.

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presented to Louis XV was the most gargantuan of the three, and the first to be distributed.61 This was followed by the gifting of the second largest to Pope Clement XIV, which after a circuitous journey over the next few decades entered the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana.62 The smallest sibling, perhaps the last one still in Bruce’s possession for this purpose, later went to the Bodleian Library via the Bishop of Carlisle.63 Their deluxe formatting and duplication of a single work, the only one that Bruce seems to have sought to replicate in such a fashion, suggests that they were conceived and designed as presentation copies. The disassociation of the book from its Old Testament compatriots more clearly highlighted what was being offered, an extraordinary work of great rarity,64 so its segregation basically reframed existing materials in a casing more suitable for the European aristocracy while keeping the spotlight firmly pointed towards Enoch. All that was missing was unequivocal proof that this was indeed the long-lost book. 3

Entitling Enoch

Many further curious and sometimes unique elements occur in BnF Éthiopien 49. Its abnormally large script, scribal hand, and inclusion of rubricated lines on each page could each merit further analysis, as could the enlarged capital which commences the book, a feature reminiscent of Latin manuscript and European book production, but totally without parallel in Ethiopian practice.65 Yet, apart from new textual errors accidentally introduced, changes from the antigraph, MS Bruce 74, are cosmetic in character, with one notable exception: at the beginning of the volume there are two title-pages. Identical ones—evidently penned, in fact, by the same hand as BnF Éthiopien 49—are found in BAV Vat. et. 71,66 further validating the provenance for it posited by Boccaccini. Not only are title-pages a concept completely foreign to and otherwise unknown in the 61 Bruce, Travels, 1.498. Dillmann, Codices Aethiopici, 5, calls the manuscript “elegantissimum.” 62 G. Boccaccini, “James Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript: Solving the Mystery of the Provenance of the Roman Enoch Manuscript (Vat. et. 71),” JSP 27 (2018) 237–63. 63 Bruce, Travels, 1.498. 64 As opposed to a mixture wherein biblical texts detracted from Enoch either by stealing part of the limelight or by undermining the manuscript’s overall importance since Greek, Latin, and Hebrew versions of texts were available. 65 Zotenberg, Catalogue des manuscrits éthiopiens, 7, notes several of these features, albeit without reference to their oddity. 66 The text of Enoch in BAV Vat. et. 71 has been copied by a separate scribe.

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Ethiopian tradition,67 but the first, and more famous, title likewise diverges from prior indigenous entitulation by dubbing Enoch a “book.” To understand the significance of this particular designator to Bruce and the European conception of Enoch prior to its rediscovery in Ethiopia, it is necessary to turn back to events in the seventeenth century. In the 1630s, Gilles de Loches informed Nicolas-Claude Fabri de Peiresc that he had seen a copy of an apocalyptic book entitled “Mazhapha Einok” or “prophetiam Enochi,” which the latter thereafter sought and seemingly succeeded in acquiring.68 Ultimately, his manuscript was properly identified as containing not the “Book of Enoch,” but the Book of the Mysteries of Heaven and Earth, a much later Ethiopian theological work that quoted the former liberally.69 This incident caused the illustrious Hiob Ludolf to question outright the existence of Enoch, and Bruce demonstrates familiarity with this entire affair.70 Such events meant that, although there were relatively few preconceived notions about the book in Europe, the reigning disappointment and skepticism about it could best be counteracted by its arrival in an unambiguous form that accorded as closely as

67

Some manuscripts produced in the royal scriptorium of Emperor Haile Selassie do have tables of contents, and occasionally similar listings are secondarily recorded in others. Basic titles have often been casually added on flyleaves or covers of manuscripts in Ethiopia for inventory purposes, especially during the last century, but these never belong to the original production of a codex and so fundamentally differ from those in BnF Éthiopien 49 and BAV Vat. et. 71. 68 P. Gassendi, Viri illustris Nicolai Claudii Fabricii de Peiresc, senatoris Aquisextiensis vita (1641) 269–73. For a robust description of these events, see F. Nau, “Note additionnelle,” in J. Perruchon, Le livre des mystères du ciel et de la terre (PO 1; Paris, 1907) viii–xii and F. Nau, “Complément à l’histoire du manuscrit Éthiopien 117,” in S. Grébaut, Les trois derniers traités du livre des mystères du ciel et de la terre (PO 6; Paris, 1911) 375–83. Additional details are mentioned in A. Hessayon, “Og King of Bashan, Enoch and the Books of Enoch: Extra-Canonical Texts and Interpretations of Genesis 6:1–4,” in Scripture and Scholarship in Early Modern England, ed. A. Hessayon and N. Keene (Aldershot, 2006) 5–40 at 25–29. 69 Hiob Ludolf, Commentarius (Frankfurt, 1691) 347–48. A listing of quotations of Enoch in this work is offered in Milik, Books of Enoch, 86–87. The Book of Mysteries of Heaven and Earth was published from this early-sixteenth-century manuscript, BnF Éthiopien 117, in Perruchon, Le livre des mystères du ciel et de la terre, and Grébaut, Les trois derniers traités du livre des mystères du ciel et de la terre. On Enochic traditions in the Book of Mysteries of Heaven and Earth, see also Assefa and Lee in this volume. 70 Ludolf, Historia Aethiopica, bk. 3, ch. 4; Bruce, Travels, 1.497. The reference in the Historia Aethiopica to “መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ፡Liber Henochi” may have been particularly important to Bruce in selecting a title for his manuscripts, for it is clear that he is not above borrowing from Ludolf, as evidenced through his clear dependence on the latter throughout the discussion of Ethiopic literature in his Travels.

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possible with expectations.71 Hence a title was born: መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ፡ነቢይ (“the Book of Enoch the Prophet”). Examination of the antigraph, MS Bruce 74, reveals neither a title-page nor any heading above Enoch that might be construed as one. This is rather typical. From a sample of eighty-four exemplars, less than 36% contain some sort of title placed above Enoch, but this statistic is misleading inasmuch as five of these are purely secondary additions,72 so a truer mark is approximately 30%. While a handful of the formulations are unique and need not be of further concern in this context, those found more than once can be grouped into three categories, namely ሄኖክ (“Enoch”),73 ዘሄኖክ (“of Enoch”),74 and ዘሄኖክ፡ነቢይ (“of Enoch the prophet”),75 with the latter two also often prefacing the text itself at the beginning of the initial column.76 The first accords with the second title in BnF Éthiopien 49 and BAV Vat. et. 71, but, significantly, among the three no warrant whatsoever exists for labeling Enoch a መጽሐፍ (“book”). The formulation መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ (“Book of Enoch”) has been supplied secondarily in recent hands in two manuscripts, SbPK Petermann II Nachtr. 29 and UNESCO 2.24, but these usages may well be indebted to Western editions of the text and are in any case much too late to have influenced Bruce. Subscriptions to Ethiopic Enoch offer a different potential Vorlage. In a similarly sized sample, around 20% of copies include the phrase መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ (“Book of Enoch”), the two earliest of which are dated to 1659/60 and 1663 respectively.77 However, both of these subscriptions qualify the phrase with the demonstrative adjective ‘this,’ so it might be better understood as a reference to the manuscript itself (“this book of ‘Enoch’”) than an extended title (“this ‘Book of Enoch’”). From the eighteenth century onwards, the qualifier is 71 Note, for example, the dismissive attitude of Pietro Verri towards the book, although this may be due more to his general disdain for Bruce than the document itself (cf. Boccaccini, “James Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript,” 259–60). 72 In BL Add. MS 24,990, BL Or. 485; EMML 629, SbPK Petermann II Nachtr. 29, and UNESCO 2.24. 73 BAV Cerulli et. 75, BAV P.I.B. 22, BnF Éthiopien d’Abbadie 35, EMML 5589, EMML 7385, EMML 8703, EMML 8846, and Ethio-SPaRe TNY-008, as well as in a secondary hand above the opening of Enoch in BL Or. 485. 74 BL Or. 484, EMML 6686, EMML 7103, IES MS 77, and the Remnant Trust manuscript. 75 BnF Éthiopien 50, BL Or. 499, EMDA 219, EMIP 743, EMML 2436, EMML 4750, EMML 8400, Monumento Nazionale Abbazia di Casamari MS 29, UNESCO 10.43, and the former Ullendorff manuscript; it is also secondarily supplied in EMML 629. In several cases this title is supplemented by additional words or phrases. 76 E.g., in EMML 6281 and BL Add. MS 24,185. 77 EMML 2440 and EMML 7103, both of whose dates are found in their subscriptions to Enoch.

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omitted in almost all cases, so the latter sense may be more firmly in view, and there are even three instances in which the noun ነቢይ (“prophet”) is adjoined,78 cohering exactly with the initial title in the two Bruce manuscripts. Yet, there is little reason to assume that Bruce had any knowledge of such examples since none of his exemplars of the book include subscriptions of this type, being instead split between mentioning the “vision of Enoch” (ራዕየ፡ሄኖክ) and omitting one entirely.79 A far simpler explanation comes from the manuscript that the explorer acquired at Adwa and reportedly made an effort towards deciphering.80 Prefaced to the beginning of Enoch is this statement: በስመ፡እግዚአብሔር፡መሐሪ፡ወመስተሣህል፡ርኁቀ፡መዓት፡ወብዙኀ፡ምሕረት፡ወጻድቅ፡ እጽሕፍ፡አንሰ፡መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ፡ነቢይ፡በረከቱ፡ወሀብተ፡ረድኤቱ፡የሀሉ፡ምስለ፡ፍቁሩ፡ ///ለዓለመ፡ዓለም፡አሜን፤ MS Bruce 74 fol. 7r

In the name of God the merciful and compassionate, slow to anger and full of mercy and justice, I write the book of Enoch the prophet. Let his blessing and the gift of his help be with his beloved [NAME] forever and ever. Amen.81 The same plea opens the text in both BnF Éthiopien 49 and BAV Vat. et. 71, as well as in a number of other instances, the earliest being Cambridge University Library Add. 1570 (dated 1588/9). In that magisterial codex, virtually identical statements substituting the name of the appropriate book preface nearly all 78 BL Or. 492, EMDA 219, and EMML 4437. 79 Concluding the majority of EthI copies, though conspicuously absent from most critical editions of the text, a subscription related to the former is probably original to the Geʿez translation because of both its ubiquity and unusualness within the broader tradition. Only Laurence, Libri Enoch Prophetae, 156, and Charles, The Ethiopic Version of the Book of Enoch, 226, include it, though a few years later in Charles, Book of Enoch (2nd ed.), the latter ignored this element entirely. It is equally likely that in view of the common absence of any title in copies of Ethiopic Enoch, especially those antedating the seventeenth century, one was at some point added in accordance with prevailing Ethiopian practice, as probably also transpired with the Shepherd of Hermas. Cf. T.M. Erho, “A Fourth Ethiopic Witness to the Shepherd of Hermas,” in Caught in Translation: Studies on Versions of Late Antique Christian Literature, ed. M. Toca and D. Batovici (TSEC 17; Leiden, 2020) 241–66 at 244–46. 80 Cf. Bruce, Travels, 3.199–200. 81 Versions of the preface were previously published in de Sacy, “Notice du Livre d’Enoch,” 375; Laurence, Libri Enoch Prophetae, v; and Dillmann, Codices Aethiopici, 5.

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other textual units: the Octateuch (fol. 17r), 1–4 Kingdoms (fol. 106r), Isaiah (fol. 174r), the Minor Prophets (fol. 188v), the Jeremiah-cycle (fol. 200r), 4 Ezra (fol. 228r), Daniel (fol. 236v), and Ezekiel (fol. 244r).82 Its ad hoc application throughout this codex, in combination with the inaugural presence of novel or revised textforms almost certainly derived from (Judeo-)Arabic manuscripts, suggests that it was adopted from a Christian Arabic source and then spread more widely, even to books like Enoch which possessed no Vorlage from this quarter.83 Though most thoroughly saturating Add. 1570, this preface opens texts in many later manuscripts, particularly from the eighteenth century onwards when the standardized versions of biblical books become ubiquitous, a pattern to which Enoch fully adheres.84 Since there is reason to believe that Bruce encountered the phrase that would front some of his Enoch codices before reaching Gondar, it cannot be dubbed a complete construct, even though its use as a three-word title was probably sui generis.85

82 A less congruous one begins Job (fol. 163r). For a basic description of the manuscript, see E. Ullendorff and S.G. Wright, Catalogue of Ethiopian Manuscripts in the Cambridge University Library (Cambridge, 1961) 1–3. 83 However, the fact that this is the first manuscript of Enoch to include chapter divisions may suggest further influence from foreign practices upon the book in this context. In Michael Knibb’s recent critical edition of Ezekiel (The Ethiopic Text of the Book of Ezekiel [Oxford, 2015]), he was compelled to print the witness of Add. 1570 alone for one section since it diverges from all its counterparts, but a revision directly against the Masoretic text as he posits seems far less probable than one against a Judeo-Arabic exemplar derived from the Hebrew: the latter are known to have circulated in Egyptian Christian circles, fresh translations into Geʿez and revisions of existing literature on the basis of Arabic are common in this era, and Ethiopian knowledge of Hebrew at this time has yet to be conclusively demonstrated. This transmissional route is not dissimilar to that of Yosippon, which was indubitably composed in Hebrew in medieval Jewish circles and then translated into Arabic, from which an Ethiopic translation was produced. The increasing ‘bookishness’ of Ethiopic literature from the mid-second millennium seems to be in large part a product of influence from the Arabic quarter. 84 All traces of such prefaces have generally been excised from critical editions, though their inclusion or lack thereof serves as a valuable tool for determining interrelationships among EthII witnesses. Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 1.1 stands alone in avoiding this pitfall, a consequence of his decision to reproduce in facsimile a single manuscript that contains it. His apparatus, however, does not react to the preface at all, beginning with 1 En 1:1. 85 Among Bruce’s commissioned Enochs, the one which lacks the title-pages, MS Bodl. Or. 531, is also the only one to not contain the prefatory plea, further intimating a relationship between these features. Due to space constraints, it is not possible to deal with the copious inexplicable solecisms evidenced in the title-pages here, or with those that beset the early chapters of the text in BnF Éthiopien 49: it would be incredible if a trained Ethiopian scribe was responsible. Pace R. Laurence, መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ፡ነቢይ። The Book of Enoch

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The preservation and extension of the very notion of the Ethiopic “Book of Enoch” has arguably been Bruce’s greatest legacy in Enochic Studies, for it was he who created evidence for the alien concept, one which scholarship has continued to perpetuate ever since. Insofar as Gilles de Loches and Hiob Ludolf had earlier posited the similar title መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ (“Book of Enoch”) and there is some indigenous basis for his own version,86 factors beyond the explorer’s own will certainly influenced this development. Yet the insertion of an opening title broadly cohering with expectations for it voiced in the seventeenth century validated not only Bruce’s claims to have recovered the book, but also this mythical European construct. Textual scholarship on the work has been particularly susceptible. Richard Laurence’s 1821 translation and following edition of MS Bodl. Or. 531 were respectively titled መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ፡ነቢይ። The Book of Enoch the Prophet and መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ፡ነቢይ። Libri Enoch Prophetae Versio Aethiopica, a formulation found nowhere in that manuscript, though obviously indebted to Bruce via another.87 In this regard, Laurence can be partly commended for his reliance on something tangible,88 unlike subsequent editors the Prophet (Oxford, 1821) vii–viii, many of the supposed errors in Woide’s transcription of the manuscript are not actually deviations. 86 The formulation is attested within the writings of those who participated in the major theological debates of mid-fifteenth century Ethiopia, for example in the Book of Nativity of Emperor Zarʾa Yaʿeqob and a commentary on Enoch found at—and probably unique to—Gunda Gundē, home of the Esṭifānosite sect. The later of the two copies of the latter even opens with the precise collocation መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ፡ነቢይ (“the Book of Enoch the Prophet”), possibly the earliest extant use of that phrase (Gunda Gundē 111 fol. 17v). Nonetheless, there seems to be a clear demarcation between references to the book in such writings and the title(s) of actual copies themselves. Since the former set of works were unknown to Westerners including Bruce and do not seem to have influenced copying and reporting the work in question among Ethiopians, the mere prior existence of this formulation has only tangential relevance to the topic at hand. 87 Presumably Laurence encountered this title in what is now Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 10; cf. Book of Enoch, viii. 88 He did similarly with his antecedent editions of Ethiopic pseudepigraphic texts: R. Laurence, ዕርገተ፡ኢሳይያስ፡ነቢይ። Ascensio Isaiae Vatis, opusculum pseudepigraphum (Oxford, 1819) and Laurence, ዘዕዝራ፡፩። Primi Ezrae Libri, qui apud Vulgatam appellatur quartus, Versio Aethiopica (Oxford, 1820). In this context, it is especially noteworthy that 4 Ezra is not numbered according to the Western Vulgate reckoning, but the Ethiopian one, and retains the possessive prefix common in the names of eponymous texts despite this having little translational value. Both titles comport fully with the Geʿez tradition, a product of being derived from the natively fabricated Bodleian MS Hunt. 626. Neither is thus termed a “book,” a designation fairly scarce in Ethiopian booklists, particularly for texts descended from Greek Vorlagen, though nonetheless prevalent in the names of mid-second-millennium indigenous compositions that form complete codices, e.g. መጽሐፈ፡ምሥ ጢር (“Book of Mystery”), መጽሐፈ፡ሚላድ (“Book of Nativity”), መጽሐፈ፡ብርሃን

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who have uncritically foisted the even obscurer መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ upon the heads of their texts, though he too committed this blunder.89 The acceptability of this construct owes much to Bruce and the witness of his manuscripts, which legitimated an incorrect Western preconception about the title of the book rather than serving to debunk it either directly or, even more appropriately, through avoiding it altogether.

89

(“Book of Light”), and መጽሐፈ፡ምሥ ጢረ፡ሰማይ፡ወምድር (“Book of the Mysteries of Heaven and Earth”). With the exception of Knibb, whose lack thereof derives from the transparent witness of manuscript images as opposed to a manipulatable typeset form, every edition of Ethiopic Enoch published in the West precedes the text with the title መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ, which is sometimes also placed elsewhere. See Laurence, Libri Enoch Prophetae, 1; Dillmann, Liber Henoch Aethiopice, 1; Flemming, Das Buch Henoch, 1; Charles, The Ethiopic Version of the Book of Enoch, 1–2. The last of these notably headed his Geʿez text with መጽሐፈ፡ሄኖክ while topping the parallel Greek one with ���� (“Enoch”), an incongruity nowhere justified; he also paid no attention whatsoever to the Ethiopic evidence in his discussion of the work’s title in Charles, The Book of Enoch (2nd ed.), xii–xiii. These editors’ lack of contemplation in this area is reflected by their universal failure to provide text-critical notes pertaining to the purported title, and others have often uncritically accepted this construct, e.g., S. Uhlig, “Enoch, Book of,” Encyclopaedia Aethiopica, ed. Uhlig and A. Bausi, 5 vols. (Wiesbaden, 2003–2014) 2.311–13. While most strongly correlating with Old Testament pseudepigrapha, Jubilees in particular also being severely plagued by such malfeasance, the phenomenon of Western scholars manufacturing Ethiopic “books” has not been confined to this sphere. See e.g. A. Dillmann, መጽሐፈ፡ኩፋሌ፡, sive Liber Jubilaeorum (Kiel and London, 1859); R.H. Charles, መጽሐፈ፡ኩፋሌ፡or the Ethiopic Version of the Hebrew Book of Jubilees (Anecdota Oxoniensia; Oxford, 1895); J. VanderKam, The Book of Jubilees: A Critical Text (CSCO 510; Leuven, 1989); A. Dillmann, Biblia Veteris Testamenti Aethiopica. Veteris Testamenti Aethiopici Tomus Secundus, sive Libri Regum, Paralipomenon, Esdrae, Esther (fasc. 2; Leipzig, 1871); J. Bachmann, መጽሐፈ፡ኢሳይያስ፡ነቢይ። Der Prophet Jesaia nach der aethiopischen Bibeluebersetzung. 1. Teil: Der aethiopische Text (Berlin, 1893); F.M.E. Pereira, O livro do profeta Amós e a sua versão etiópica (Coimbra, 1917). With Jubilees, however, the situation is nominally less clear-cut than with Enoch insofar as there is one piece of early evidence for collocating its title with the term “book” in an inventory list from Eritrea published by Alessandro Bausi, “Su alcuni manoscritti presso comunità monastiche dell’Eritrea,” Rassegna di Studi Etiopici 38 (1994) 13–69 at 35–36, 43. This particular phenomenon also frequently besets publications by contemporary specialists in Ethiopian Studies, including the recent five-volume Encyclopaedia Aethiopica. One of many such examples within it lies in the entry on the Ascension of Isaiah (3.195–96), where the pseudo-Ethiopic construct መጽሐፈ፡ዕርገተ፡ኢሳይያስ (“Book of the Ascension of Isaiah”) is given, a title not according with that found in any of the textual editions or its fifteen Geʿez exemplars. (EMDA 27, MK-012, and UNESCO 10.17 can be added to the previously published listings. In addition to these accessible copies of the text, I saw one in a fifteenth-century Old Testament codex at Dabra Ṣeyon Abuna Abrehām in Tegrāy in August 2019, a manuscript that to my knowledge has yet to be photographed.)

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4

Conclusion

Bruce’s desire to fulfill European hopes about a “Book of Enoch” stretched much deeper than simply retrieving the document from a distant land. Fame, and possibly more, awaited the individual who did so, but skepticism stemming from l’affaire de Peiresc a century earlier also loomed, potentially spoiling whatever accolades might be forthcoming. Savvy to these realities, and therefore in need of material evidence to impress the European upper classes and support his claims through limiting challenges, Bruce designed deluxe presentation copies of Enoch with a few relatively novel elements to encourage their—and his—acceptance. These included disassociating the book from its normative placement alongside of other Old Testament works and supplying a title paralleling that proposed in Europe a century before. While the text itself was not altered, these changes effectively wrought a Europeanized Enoch, the book as it had been conceived of in the Western imagination, not that which actually existed in Ethiopia. It is not surprising that Bruce kept the original manuscript of Enoch acquired at Adwa for himself since the broader contents of the codex formed an integral section of the Old Testament that he had compiled. However, the other volumes in this set that he commissioned were subject to much interference, with strong indications that his intention was to restrict it as much as possible to the Protestant canon. Bruce was not a passive collector and often left far more indelible marks on his manuscripts than their sumptuous bindings. Such egregious meddling dictates that scholars exercise caution when utilizing the Scotsman’s codices, especially those that he commissioned, for anomalous elements may be involved. When Bruce returned from Ethiopia, his collection of Geʿez manuscripts was not only the third largest in Europe, but also easily exceeded the totals available in both Britain and all other Protestant realms.90 Under such circumstances, there was little basis on which 90 Including the Enochs that he distributed, twenty-eight Geʿez manuscripts can be tied to Bruce, whereas approximately fifty apiece were held concurrently by Saint-Germaindes-Prés in Paris and Santo Stefano dei Mori in Rome. In England, two codices of this type from the Harleian library were part of the British Museum foundation deposit in 1753, while four were in the possession of the Bodleian Library at the time of its receipt of MS Bodl. Or. 531, three from the 1692 posthumous purchase of Edward Pococke’s oriental manuscripts and one gifted a half-century earlier by Archbishop William Laud. Collections in the Protestant parts of the continent were similarly modest, with, for example, only three or four such codices in Berlin, a similar number in Sweden, and two, formerly owned by J.J. Scaliger, in Leiden. Cf. A. Dillmann, Die Handschriften-verzeichnisse der königlichen Bibliothek zu Berlin: Dritter Band. Verzeichniss der abessinischen Handschriften

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not to assume that they offered a true representation of the indigenous tradition. Now unmasked, this illusion can hopefully be laid to rest even though certain of its consequences live on. (Berlin, 1878) i; O. Löfgren, Katalog über die äthiopischen Handschriften in der Universitätsbibliothek Uppsala (Acta Bibliothecae R. Universitatis Upsaliensis 18; Uppsala, 1974) 7; J.J. Witkam, Inventory of the Oriental Manuscripts in the Library of the University of Leiden, 25 vols. (Leiden, 2007–) 1.108, 5.150. The odd institutional manuscript could be found elsewhere, and a few were held privately, such as that presently located in the British Library under the shelfmark Or. 13156, which reached Naples at the beginning of the seventeenth century and was subsequently acquired by the famous vellomaniac Sir Thomas Phillipps (his no. 1053); cf. S. Strelcyn, Catalogue of Ethiopian Manuscripts in the British Library acquired since the year 1877 (Oxford, 1978) 53–55; Sotheby & Co., Bibliotheca Phillippica. Medieval Manuscripts: New Series: Fourth Part (London, 25–26 November 1968) 71. Further examples include three medieval Old Testament manuscripts that circulated in Europe for a century and a half before being sold to British institutions in the late 1810s, Bodleian MS Hunt. 625 and MS Hunt. 626 and BFBS Mss 169, whose provenances were admirably investigated in A. Rahlfs, Über einige alttestamentliche Handschriften des Abessinierklosters S. Stefano zu Rom (Nachrichten von der K. Gesellschaft der Wissenschaften zu Göttingen, Philologisch-historische Klasse; Göttingen, 1918).

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Chapter 9

James Bruce and His Copies of Ethiopic Enoch Ariel Hessayon* On Sunday, 27 April 1794 a corpulent six foot four (1.93m) Scotsman died as a result of having fallen down the stairs at his home the previous evening. Entertaining guests with his “usual hospitality and elegance,” he had slipped— possibly in the midst of an apoplectic fit—and sustained deadly injuries to his forehead and temples. This “celebrated Abyssinian traveller,” James Bruce (1730–1794) of Kinnaird, having survived “many perils in distant regions” met his end when least expecting it.1 He was buried in the church of Larbert, near Falkirk, his epitaph inscribed on an imposing cast-iron obelisk proclaiming to posterity that Bruce had spent his life “performing useful and splendid actions” including discovering the “fountains of the Nile” and traversing the “deserts of Nubia”: By the unanimous voice of mankind, His name is inrolled with those, who were conspicuous For genius, for valour, and for virtue.2

* I am most grateful to the participants of the 10th Enoch seminar (Florence, 10–13 June 2019) as well as to my colleagues at Goldsmiths who took part in our virtual departmental seminar (1 April 2020) for their helpful and constructive comments. In particular I have benefited from the advice of my respondent Leslie Baynes, as well as Gabriele Boccaccini, Ted Erho, Lorenza Gianfrancesco, Crawford Gribben, Lionel Laborie, Ralph Lee, Diego Lucci, Loren Stuckenbruck, Daniel Taylor, and Francis Watson. I am also grateful to Verônica Calsoni Lima for photographing documents in the Bodleian Library; to Rebecca Higgins at Leeds University Library; and to Laura Callery and Francis Lapka at the Yale Center for British Art. Needless to say, I remain responsible for any mistakes or shortcomings. 1 Oracle (3 May 1794); Sun (5 May 1794); London Packet (2–5 May 1794); Whitehall Evening Post (3–6 May 1794); The Edinburgh Magazine 5 (June 1795) 417; The European Magazine 45 (1802) 351–52; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.clxxviii–clxxix; The Annual Review 4 (January 1805) 14; New Annual Register (January 1808) 89–90; The Annual Review and History of Literature 7 (January 1808) 268; Christian Journal 2 (1818) 254. Accounts of Bruce’s height vary, but all agree that he was an exceedingly large man for the period at over 6 feet tall. 2 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.ccclvii–ccclviii.

© Ariel Hessayon, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_011

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Some sixty or so years later, however, his grave had become neglected and scarcely accessible through uncut grass and tangled weeds. Indeed, it was remarked that this “rude monument” marking Bruce’s “last resting-place” symbolised the “cold contempt and cankerous criticism” that had beset his reputation.3



In this essay, I want to investigate what happened to the manuscripts that Bruce brought back from his travels, particularly four copies of the book of Enoch. Since Gabriele Boccaccini has solved the “mystery” of Bruce’s “fourth” manuscript copy of Ethiopic Enoch (Vat. Et. 71) in his recent ground-breaking article,4 I will deal relatively briefly with that document here. Instead my focus is on the copy that Bruce gave to Louis XV (BnF Éthiopien 49) together with those he transported to the British Isles (MSS Bodl. Or. 531 and Bruce 74). The first section covers the period from September 1769 to June 1774 and deals with, among other things, Bruce’s travels in North Africa, the Arabian Peninsula and Ethiopia; his acquisition and commissioning of manuscripts; journey to France and then the Italian Peninsula; gifts of plant seeds and documents to important figures and institutions; his social network; and reactions to his boasts, embellishments and lies. The second section covers from July 1774 to December 1787 and gives particular attention to Bruce’s knowledge of non-European languages, his unsuccessful attempt to complete a translation of Ethiopic Enoch, and his other scholarly interests. The third covers from January 1788 to April 1794 and focuses on the composition, publication, and critical reception of Bruce’s Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile (1790), particularly with regard to increasing interest in Ethiopic Enoch. The fourth and final section briefly assesses Bruce’s legacy as well as providing an answer to the important question of why no European undertook a complete translation of Ethiopic Enoch during his lifetime. For this study I have consulted a wide range of sources, notably contemporary travel narratives, diaries, memoirs, biographies, correspondence, newspapers, periodicals and auction catalogues, as well as records of the British Museum, Bodleian Library, and British and Foreign Bible Society. Moreover, my discussion should be situated within broader contexts—particularly European attitudes towards Africa and its inhabitants coupled with exploration and 3 Caledonian Mercury (18 October 1858). 4 G. Boccaccini, “James Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript: Solving the Mystery of the Provenance of the Roman Enoch Manuscript (Vat. et. 71),” JSP 27 (2018) 237–63.

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missionary activity within that continent; the acquisition of manuscripts written in non-European languages by private collectors, university libraries, and national museums, as well as the choices made by governmental treasuries and their advisers as to which manuscripts they should purchase; the prestige accrued by individuals and institutions from possessing these artefacts; transnational and cross-confessional scholarly engagement with these texts; and their eventual translation, dissemination, appropriation, and repurposing not just by artists and poets but certain Protestant nonconformists. It should also be placed against a wider backdrop of the Jacobite risings, Seven Years’ War, Anglo-French War, and French Revolution. As we shall see, Bruce’s arrogance, vanity, and tetchiness, combined with a tendency to exaggerate his own exploits, would have significant repercussions for the initial reactions throughout Western Europe to his scarcely believable accounts—and with them his claim to have brought back “all the Abyssinian books of the Old Testament,” including several copies of the book of Enoch.5 Yet in this instance, for all the rambling prose and preposterous anecdotes that went into fashioning his outsized self-image, Bruce was telling the truth; even if he was also hiding part of it.6 Such was the fate of this intrepid Scottish Marco Polo.7 5 Bruce, Travels, 1.489. 6 On Bruce, see Francis Bond Head, The life of Bruce, the African traveller (London, 1830); James Augustus St. John, The Lives of Celebrated Travellers, 3 vols. (London, 1832; repr. New York, 1835) 2.233–301; A. Crichton, “Memoir of Bruce,” in William Swainson, The Natural History of the Birds of Western Africa (Edinburgh, 1837) 1.17–84; Thomas Thomson, ed., A Biographical Dictionary of Eminent Scotsmen, 5 vols. (Glasgow, 1853–55) 1.327–39; “Scotch Travellers in Africa,” The Scottish Review 5 (April 1857) 98–101; Robert Lambert Playfair, Travels in the footsteps of Bruce in Algeria and Tunis (London, 1877); E. Ullendorff, “James Bruce of Kinnaird,” Scottish Historical Review 32 (1953) 128–43; J.M. Reid, Traveller Extraordinary. The Life of James Bruce of Kinnaird (London, 1968); A.A. Moorefield, “James Bruce: Ethnomusicologist or Abyssinian Lyre?,” Journal of the American Musicological Society 28 (1975) 493–514; R. Pankhurst, “The Medical Activities in Eighteenth Century Ethiopia of James Bruce the Explorer,” Medizinhistorisches Journal 17 (1982) 256–76; A. Verhaagen, “James Bruce et l’Abyssinie, terre d’arcanes,” Civilisations 37.1 (1987) 231–74; R.T. Wilson, “Ornithological exploration in the Afrotropics. 2. James Bruce of Kinnaird, Esq., FRS,” Tauraco 2 (1992) 63–72; Miles Bredin, The Pale Abyssinian: A Life of James Bruce, African Explorer and Adventurer (London, 2000); Nigel Leask, Curiosity and the Aesthetics of Travel Writing, 1770–1840: “from an Antique Land” (Oxford, 2004) 54–101; M. van Wyk Smith, “‘Would the real James Bruce please stand up?’ Bruce’s Travels to discover the sources of the Nile (1790) in Alexander Murray’s edition of 1813,” English Academy Review 29 (2012) 208–32; R. Mitsein, “‘Come and triumph with your Don Quixote’: or, how James Bruce travelled to discover the Nile but found Scotland instead,” Studies in Travel Writing 18.1 (2014) 1–17; Anke Fischer-Kattner, Spuren der Begegnung: Europäische Reiseberichte über Afrika 1760–1860 (Göttingen, 2015) 101–214. 7 Cf. St. John, Lives of Celebrated Travellers, 2.300–1.

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The Prophecies of Enoch

Bruce was thirty-nine years old when he reached Ethiopia. Beforehand he had travelled widely exploring antiquities at numerous locations in Western Europe, North Africa, and the Levant between 1762 and 1769—including Paestum, Algiers, Diana Veteranorum, Thignica, Tunis, Carthage, Zaghouan, Thysdrus, Sufetula, Palmyra, Baalbek, Thebes, Karnak, and Luxor. By his own account, his journey through North Africa in particular was “continually attended with every kind of danger, hardship, and difficulty.” Besides being “constantly parched with heat, or dying with extreme cold” he was always in fear of local nomadic Arabs, “the most brutal set of barbarous wretches” that Bruce believed ever existed. He had also dabbled in espionage and diplomacy, serving ineptly as consul-general at Algiers.8 Bruce’s motive for going to Ethiopia—regarded by his first biographer as the “oldest, and indeed … only Christian kingdom in Africa,” but one whose inhabitants were “sunk in the deepest ignorance and superstition”—has been the source of speculation.9 Yet judging from a sympathetic contemporary observation that he had a “natural genius for travelling into the most unknown parts,” it seems straightforward: the pursuit of glory, wealth and knowledge.10 Indeed, this fervent and long-standing desire for recognition is evident in a letter Bruce wrote from Nazareth in April 1768: having all my life been by Nursery intrigues kept unknown to the half of the world and most unworthily misrepresented by the other … I endeavour to Recommend myself to public notice.11 Heading down the Red Sea, his route took him through Jeddah to Al Luhayyah. But Bruce’s claim to have embarked on two further voyages, including sailing south down the Red Sea to Mocha and Bab-el-Mandeb, have been strongly disputed to the extent that a modern authority considers them fictitious and 8

Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.) 1.ccliii–cclviii, cclxxii–cclxxx; John Nichols, Illustrations of the Literary History of the Eighteenth Century, 8 vols. (London, 1817–58) 1.149; Alexander Murray, Account of the Life and Writings of James Bruce, of Kinnaird (Edinburgh, 1808) 29–61, 189; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 39–54; Nigel Leask, “Bruce, James, of Kinnaird (1730–1794),” ODNB. 9 Cf. Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 57, 59–60, 64; Ullendorff, “James Bruce,” 130; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 16. 10 Johann David Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 3 vols. (Leipzig, 1794) 2.365. 11 D. Cumming, “Seven unpublished letters of James Bruce of Kinnaird,” Geographical Journal 137 (1971) 44–45.

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the details plagiarised.12 At any rate, in September 1769 Bruce and his party reached Massawa before eventually arriving by way of Aksum at the Imperial capital Gondar in February 1770.13 Initially disguised as an Arabic-speaking Syrian physician named Yāʿeqob [Yagoubé] because of the apparent Ethiopian policy of executing or banishing Europeans,14 he was just one of a handful of Westerners known to have successfully entered the somewhat isolated mountainous kingdom in the space of about 135 years.15 Since most of his sixteenth- and seventeenth-century predecessors had been Iberian Catholic delegates, soldiers and missionaries, Bruce was probably the first Scotsman and Protestant to visit Ethiopia. According to published extracts from the account book of Luigi Balugani (1737–1771), a Bologna-born artist who accompanied Bruce on his journey, between December 1770 and January 1771, Bruce employed several professional scribes at Gondar to copy the Ethiopic Old Testament. Furnished with quires of parchment, supplied with ink and paid in salt—as was apparently customary—their names and the respective portions of text they were assigned are recorded as Adigo Aytcho (Pentateuch), Weleda Yesous [Walda Iyasus] the younger (Joshua and Judges), Confu (Chronicles) and Weleda Selasse [Walda Śellāsē] (Jeremiah).16 Quite possibly additional scribes were involved since no mention is made in these published extracts of other biblical books preserved in what are now MSS Bruce 73 and Bruce 75. Yet it appears that Bruce did not 12 Cf. Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.clxix; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 61–63, 68; “On the credit due to Bruce’s Travels,” Monthly Magazine 24 (December 1807) 449; J.R. Wellsted, “Notes on Bruce’s Chart of the Coasts of the Red Sea,” The Journal of the Royal Geographical Society of London 5 (1835) 286–95; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 65–71, 311; I. Friis, “Carsten Niebuhr and James Bruce: Lifted Latitudes and Virtual Voyages on the Red Sea …?,” in Early Scientific Expeditions and Local Encounters. New Perspectives on Carsten Niebuhr and the “Arabian Journey,” ed. Ib Friis, Michael Harbsmeier, and Jørgen Baek Simonsen, Scientia Danica (Viborg, 2013) 222–50. 13 Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 66–75; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 72–87, 100–09. 14 General Evening Post (8–10 September 1774); William Jones, ed., The Works of Sir William Jones, 13 vols. (London, 1807) 4.318; John Leyden, A Historical & Philosophical Sketch of the Discoveries & Settlements of the Europeans in Northern & Western Africa (Edinburgh, 1799) 435; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 64; Samuel Gobat, Journal of a Three Years’ Residence in Abyssinia (London, 1834) 130. Yāʿeqob or Yagoubé is the equivalent of Jacob. 15 Among Bruce’s predecessors were the French apothecary Charles-Jacques Poncet (1655– 1706) and the Bohemian Franciscan Remedius Prutky (fl.1753). See V. Nersessian and R. Pankhurst, “The visit to Ethiopia of Yohannes T‘ovmacean, an Armenian jeweller, in 1764–66,” Journal of Ethiopian Studies 15 (1982) 79–104; I. Friis, “Travelling Among Fellow Christians (1768–1833): James Bruce, Henry Salt and Eduard Rüppell in Abyssinia,” in Early Scientific Expeditions, 161–63. 16 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 7.411–12; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (3rd ed.), 7.427–28. These manuscripts are explored fully in Erho’s contribution to this volume.

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commission a copy of the Psalms. This is less puzzling than it might seem, since an edition was already available to European readers—Hiob Ludolf’s parallel Latin/Geʿez Hoc est: Psalterium Davidis (Frankfurt am Main, 1701).17 So perhaps Bruce wished to avoid the time and expense of having a copy made, although he afterwards claimed that he merely forgot to purchase what was a “favourite book” among Ethiopians.18 Moreover, although Bruce recounted in his Travels that one of his servants had acquired the “prophet Enoch” for him at Adwa (MS Bruce 74), that is prior to his arrival at Gondar, it seems likely that some of these scribes or their associates made three further copies of Ethiopic Enoch for Bruce (BnF Éthiopien 49, Vat. et. 71 and MS Bodl. Or. 531).19 Following expeditions to the Ṭisesāt Falls and then to locate the source of the Blue Nile around Geš Abbāy, a swampy region to the south of Lake Tana, Balugani died from dysentery at Gondar in February 1771. Three months later there was civil war. After an inconclusive battle at Serbraxos [Sarbakusa], during which Bruce brazenly but falsely claimed to have commanded a detachment of imperial cavalry atop a huge Sudanese charger, the young Emperor Takla Haimonot’s chief minister Mika‌ʾél was deposed.20 Although Bruce was to insist that there were two further engagements at the same site, that he was present at all three, and that they resulted in the death of two kings, some witnesses later maintained that two of the battles at Serbraxos had preceded his arrival at Gondar while Bruce himself “never went out to war.”21 At any rate, given the political instability at the Imperial capital Bruce prudently set out to depart from Ethiopia in December that same year with what must have been a sizeable retinue of servants considering the weight of his baggage.22 17 James Townley, Illustrations of Biblical Literature, 2 vols. (London, 1821) 1.148. 18 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 2.416 n.; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 297–98; William Beloe, The Sexagenarian, 2 vols. (2nd ed.; London, 1818 [1817]) 2.47; J.J. Halls, ed., The Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, Esq. F.R.S. &c., 2 vols. (London, 1834) 1.325. On returning to Kinnaird, Bruce had Ludolf’s Ethiopic Psalter bound in the same red Morocco cover as his five-volume Ethiopic Old Testament. See, A catalogue of a valuable collection of Oriental literature, collected by James Bruce, of Kinnaird, … which will be sold by auction, by Mr. George Robins (London, 1842) 3–4. 19 Bruce, Travels, 3.199. 20 Bruce, Travels, 3.587–602; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 97–101; Henry Salt, A Voyage to Abyssinia (London, 1814) 335–36, 338; Francis Head, The Life of Bruce the African Traveller (London, 1830) 418–19; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 134–38, 163–66, 192–205; Friis, “Travelling Among Fellow Christians,” 168–69. 21 The Scots Magazine 35 (1773) 287; Morning Chronicle (14 July 1773); Lloyd’s Evening Post (12–14 July 1773); George Annesley, Viscount Valentia, Voyages and Travels to India, Ceylon, the Red Sea, Abyssinia, and Egypt, 3 vols. (London, 1809) 2.177. 22 By the time Bruce reached the ruins of the ancient Nubian capital of Meroë, his party apparently consisted of nine people: himself, a guide (Idrīs), three Greek servants, an old

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His own extraordinary account of crossing the Nubian Desert by camel caravan in November 1772 seems barely credible, for if true it was a reckless and near fatal adventure that could have been avoided by taking a safer route.23 By mid-January 1773 Bruce had reached Cairo with a remarkable tale of how he had survived; his camels and all but one of his servants had supposedly perished from cold, thirst, and hunger in the desert and he had been forced to throw away his drawings, papers, books, and scientific instruments (all subsequently retrieved without difficulty or discernible damage).24 Fortunately for Bruce’s companions, on retelling the story in his Travels due to his courageous leadership they survived their distressing ordeal to drink water from the River Nile—although on this occasion too, Bruce had to temporarily leave his baggage behind.25 Some months later and apparently seriously ill, Bruce proceeded to Alexandria from where he sent the naturalist Georges-Louis Comte de Buffon (1707–1788) rare species of birds “preserved in their feathers” and types of grain hitherto unknown in Europe. Bruce then took passage to Marseille where he arrived towards the end of May.26 Suffering from Guinea-worm disease in his leg but opposing amputation by a French surgeon (or so he was to claim), “wounded” in his left arm—possibly due to a rough voyage rather than being pierced by a poisoned lance at Serbraxos as he was also to claim—Bruce was brought from ship to shore upon a litter and quarantined. Afterwards, still bed-ridden, he wrote to his lawyer intimating that he was close to death yet began recovering.27 His arm healed while the Guinea-worm was “entirely

23 24

25 26

27

Turkish Janissary (Hadji Ismael) and some Nubian camel drivers. In an alternative version that Bruce related, the servants were transformed into slaves. The London Magazine 43 (August–September 1774) 430–31; The Scots Magazine 36 (September 1774) 470; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 6.467–504; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 107–10. London Chronicle (17–19 June 1773) 584; General Evening Post (19–22 June 1773); St James’s Chronicle (19–22 June 1773); Gentleman’s Magazine 43 (1773) 295, 431; The Scots Magazine 35 (1773) 287; Leeds University Library, BC Trv/LOB, endleaves; The London Magazine 43 (1774) 430; Annual Register, or a view of the History of Politics 16 (1774) 106–7. Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 6.500–5. Gazzetta di Parma 25 (22 June 1773) 198; Mercurio Historico y Politico (June 1773) 139; Morning Chronicle (1 July 1773); Notizie del Mondo 53 (3 July 1773) 417; Lloyd’s Evening Post (5–7 July 1773); Otto Sonntag, ed., John Pringle’s correspondence with Albrecht von Haller (Basel, 1999) 304; The European Magazine, 21 (1792) 330–31. Cumming, “Seven unpublished letters,” 45–46; General Evening Post (3–6 July 1773); Lloyd’s Evening Post (5–7 July 1773); The Scots Magazine 35 (1773) 286–87; Gazzetta di Parma 29 (20 July 1773) 229; Gazzetta di Parma 30 (27 July 1773) 238; London Magazine 43 (1774) 431, reprinted in Paul Tankard, ed., Facts and Inventions. Selections from the Journalism of

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extracted” after two attempts (it had broken off on the first occasion).28 About the same time, a friend placed a story in the newspapers so as to assure Bruce’s relatives in Scotland that he was still alive.29 Journeying north from Marseille to Paris Bruce spent several days with Buffon at his house in Montbard, who later praised his guest: “Nothing seems to have escaped his curiosity, and his abilities have embraced everything.”30 Further press releases and letters enable us to trace Bruce’s subsequent movements. Thus from Versailles on 5 September 1773 it was reported first in a French gazette and then in several English, Italian, Spanish, and North American newspapers that Bruce had presented several rare plant seeds to the Royal Garden, among them a cereal called teff which could be used to feed cattle and as a substitute for bread in times of necessity. Moreover, through the king’s secretary Pierre-Augustin Guys (1721–1799), who was also an academician of Marseille, Bruce had presented “an Abyssinian Manuscript which contains the Prophecy of Enoch” to Louis XV.31 This news reached Sir John Pringle (1707–1782), a Scottish physician and then president of the Royal Society, who on 1 October wrote from London to inform his correspondent at Göttingen the biblical scholar Johann David Michaelis (1717–1791) that Bruce’s gift, “what is called an Old Ethiopic Version of the pretended Prophecy of Enoch” was apparently in the Royal Library at Paris.32

28 29 30

31

32

James Boswell (New Haven, 2014) 56; Bruce, Travels, 5.60–61; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 112. Morning Chronicle (14 July 1773); Lloyd’s Evening Post (12–14 July 1773); Gentleman’s Magazine 43 (1773) 501; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 117. Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 2.364. Georges-Louis Leclerc Buffon, Histoire Naturelle des Oiseaux (Paris, 1774) 3.ii; Gazetteer and New Daily Advertiser (1 April 1775); Medical and Philosophical Commentaries (London, 1775) vol. 3, part I, 328; Literary Magazine (August 1788) 103; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 276–77. Gazette de France (6 September 1773) 323; Lloyd’s Evening Post 2531 (17–20 September 1773); London Chronicle (18–21 September 1773); London Evening Post (18–21 September 1773); Craftsman or Say’s Weekly Journal (25 September 1773); Notizie del Mondo 76 (21 September 1773) 617; Mercurio Historico y Politico (September 1773) 13–14; Gaceta de Madrid 38 (September 1773) 333; The Scots Magazine 35 (September 1773) 491; Pennsylvania Gazette 2345 (1 December 1773) 2; Maryland Gazette 29.1474 (9 December 1773) 2; Virginia Gazette 1168 (16 December 1773) 1. The North American newspaper references are cited in C. Townsend, “Revisiting Joseph Smith and the Availability of the Book of Enoch,” Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 53.3 (2020) 55. See also, Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 7.168. Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 2.365; cf. Sonntag, ed., Pringle’s correspondence with von Haller, 299.

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Receipt of Bruce’s donation had been gratefully acknowledged by JérômeFrédéric Bignon (1747–1784), keeper of medals and antiquities, at the beginning of September: I just received, Sir, the Ethiopian manuscript that you had presented to the King, and which the King, by deigning to accept it, ordered to be deposited in the Library. Since nothing matters more to me than to see this precious deposit, which it has pleased his Majesty to entrust me with, to grow and embellish itself with the rarest works, it is my honour to give you particular and hearty thanks for the one with which you just enriched it. If your business brought you to Paris, you would see for yourself the consideration we make of it by the distinguished place it will always occupy among our other treasures.33 Although Bruce had by now departed for Italy, his idiosyncratic understanding of Enoch and the books under his name are recorded in a note written in French enclosed with the codex and addressed to Louis XV.34 This was transcribed by Carl Gottfried Woide (1725–1790), a London-based Prussian scholar then in Paris primarily to study Coptic manuscripts, who first recorded examining Ethiopic Enoch in his diary on 13 October.35 Some months later Woide communicated Bruce’s note to Michaelis and also translated it into English.36 According to Bruce, in the seventeenth century an Ethiopian monk named Gregorius had arrived in Europe pretending that his “mother country” had possessed the “Book of Enoch” from an early period in history when the Ethiopians were still pagan; that is even before the introduction of the books of Moses during the reign of Solomon.37 Evidently Bruce was referring to Abba Gregorius [Gorgoryos] (1595–1658), whom Hiob Ludolf (1624–1704) had met at Santo Stefano degli Abissini (Rome) in 1649 and who subsequently assisted Ludolf in his study of the languages and history of Ethiopia conducted at the 33 34 35 36 37

Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, MS 0639.1, Bignon to Bruce (2 September 1773); n. in Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.clviii and Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 114. For Bignon, see Almanach Royal (1773) 392. Bibliothèque Nationale, Éthiopien 49, fols. Ar–Dv; Hermann Zotenberg, Catalogue des Manuscrits Éthiopiens (Gheez et Amharique) de la Bibliothèque Nationale (Paris, 1877) 47. Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 11, fols. 11r–14r; BL Add. MS 48,702, fol. 118r; The English Review 16 (1790) 183. Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 3.94–98. Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 10, fol. 135r, printed in R. Laurence, ed., Libri Enoch Prophetae versio Æthiopica (Oxford, 1838) ix.

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court of Duke Ernst of Saxe-Gotha.38 Although Bruce knew some of “learned” Ludolf’s work, even consulting “Ludolf’s dictionaries” when attempting to read Ethiopic Enoch at Gondar, his anecdote concerning Gregorius’ report of Enoch seems an embellishment.39 So too the next detail, namely that on hearing the news, Louis XIV’s minister Jean-Baptiste Colbert (1619–1683) ordered the German Dominican Johann Michael Wansleben (1635–1679), who was then searching for Arabic manuscripts in Egypt, to enter Ethiopia and “get as many books as he should find, and principally the Book of Enoch.” While Wansleben never accomplished this mission, he was in Egypt between 1672 and 1673 in Colbert’s service.40 Perhaps tellingly, Gregorius, Colbert, and Wansleben are omitted from Bruce’s account of the book of Enoch in his published Travels.41 But his story regarding another man was not. For in both his note and Travels, Bruce related the failed attempt by the renowned French Humanist Nicolas Claude Fabri de Peiresc (1580–1637) to acquire Ethiopic Enoch.42 Thus far Bruce’s knowledge of Enoch clearly derived from his reading of Ludolf, afterwards supplemented with Pierre Gassendi’s biography of Peiresc.43 But what he said next was taken from elsewhere. Having explained that in Ethiopia he had found the book of Enoch to be a canonical text placed just before Job in the Bible—here probably referring to the copy acquired for him at Adwa (MS Bruce 74), Bruce continued by clarifying that there were actually four different books of Enoch. Jerome had seen one; the Rabbis still possessed one; Jude had quoted from a “third” book in his Epistle which must have been canonical but was no longer extant; while the Sabians held a “fourth Book of Enoch.” Furthermore, these Sabians had a “great respect” for the books of both Enoch and Seth, regarding them as genuine works by antediluvian patriarchs. According to Bruce, Sabianism was the “most ancient religion of the world,” which “from the beginning” had been mixed with Judaism but was eventually destroyed by Muhammad. When the Ethiopians converted from Sabianism to Judaism they retained their reverence for Enoch, acknowledging him to be the “Patriarch of both nations.” For proof 38 39 40

41 42 43

Hiob Ludolf, Iobi Ludolfi … ad suam Historiam Aethiopicam antehac editam Commentarius (Frankfurt upon Main, 1691) 28–35. Bruce, Travels, 1.489, 1.497, 3.199–200. Johann Michael Wansleben, The Present State of Egypt, trans. M.D. (London, 1678); see also, A. Bausi, “Johann Michael Wansleben’s manuscripts and texts: An update,” in Essays in Ethiopian Manuscript Studies, ed., A. Bausi, A. Gori, D. Nosnitsin, and E. Sokolinski (Supplement to Aethiopica 4; Wiesbaden, 2015) 197–244. Bruce, Travels, 1.488–89, 497–500. Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 10, fol. 136r, in Laurence, Libri Enoch, ix–x; Bruce, Travels, 1.497. Pierre Gassendi, Viri Illustris Nicolai Claudi Fabricii de Peiresc (Paris, 1641) book V, 269–70; Pierre Gassendi, The Mirrour of true Nobility & Gentility, trans. W. Rand (London, 1657) book V, 89–90. -

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he stated that the Jews of Ethiopia accepted Enoch as canonical although their book differed from the text known to the Rabbis, adding that it was not admitted into the canon of either the Coptic Church of Alexandria or the Greek Orthodox Church.44 Besides seemingly distinguishing between what we know today as 1 Enoch and later Jewish traditions of Enoch, here Bruce was elaborating on what were fairly common contemporary understandings of Sabianism. Thus in a published dissertation on the “Religion of the Sabeans,” Bernard Picart (1673–1733) had cited an Arabian writer who said that the Sabians were the “most antient People in the World, and received their Religion from Seth and Enoch, to whom they attribute some Books.” These Sabians, moreover, highly prized a book written by Enoch in Chaldaic which discussed morality. Similar information was provided by Pierre Bayle (1647–1706) in his General Dictionary, who also supplied the source: “Kissaeus,” i.e. Muhammad ibn Abdullah al-Kisaʾi, compiler of an anthology entitled Tales of the Prophets.45 Thereafter this material was incorporated within encyclopedia entries.46 As to the contents of Ethiopic Enoch, Bruce had evidently been unable to understand it at first since he likened it to the book of Revelation—thereby again betraying his dependence upon Ludolf who, at the Bibliothèque du Roi, had examined a text obtained by Peiresc in 1636 purporting to be the prophecy of Enoch (but actually authored by one Yesḥāq) called the “Revelations of Enoch.”47 Written in the “pure Ethiopian language,” or Geʿez, Enoch was the “most classical” book of the Ethiopians and indeed the “most curious” and rarest thing he had brought from his travels. Because it was “not to be found in any library of Europe,” Bruce presented it to Louis XV as a token of gratitude, so he claimed, for being granted two passports to France, where he was “obliged” to go for his health during wartime.48 When he wrote his Travels, however, this had been expanded to a public demonstration of thanks for the “many 44 Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 10, fols. 136r–38v, in Laurence, Libri Enoch, x–xi; cf. Bruce, Travels, 1.498, 500. 45 B. Picart, The ceremonies and religious customs of the various nations of the known world, 7 vols. (London, 1733–39) 7.153, 155; P. Bayle, A General Dictionary, Historical and Critical (London, 1734) 1.226; cf. T. Stanley, The History of the Chaldaick philosophy (London, 1662) 83. For a modern translation of the relevant passage, see Reeves/Reed, Enoch, 101–3. 46 E. Chambers, Cyclopaedia: or, an Universal Dictionary, 2 vols. (London, 1751–52) 2, s.v. “Sabæans”; J. Barrow, A Supplement to the New and Universal Dictionary of Arts and Sciences (London, 1754), s.v. “Sabæans.” 47 H. Ludolf, A New History of Ethiopia, trans. J.P. (London, 1684) 269; Ludolf, Historiam Aethiopicam, 347. This work transmitted the teachings of Abba Bakhayla Mîkâʾêl-Zosimus and was said to contain “some very clear discourses of the Mysteries of Heaven and Earth, and the Holy Trinity.” 48 Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 10, fols. 136r–38v, in Laurence, Libri Enoch, xi–xii. For the passports, see Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 22, 32. -

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obligations” Bruce had received from “every rank of that most humane, polite, and scientific nation”—particularly the sovereign, who had given him what a visitor to Bruce’s museum would describe as “a great old astronomical quadrant of brass,” about three-foot radius and weighing sufficient for a camel’s load (rather than the 10 men Bruce once claimed were needed to carry it on their shoulders). At first glance it is remarkable that in return for a quadrant Bruce would give what he called in print “a very beautiful and magnificent copy of the prophecies of Enoch” to a rival power which had fought against and been defeated by the British and their allies only a decade previously in the Seven Years’ War (1756–1763).49 Indeed, the Arabist and bigamist Edward Wortley Montagu (1713–1776), who had met Bruce in Egypt, criticised him in a letter to an unknown correspondent for giving the “bread plant” [teff] to the French, which would be prejudicial to English agriculture and might have damaging consequences in a future military conflict.50 Yet Bruce’s motive appears transparent: he sought patronage and preferment—preferably royal, papal or aristocratic—as well as international recognition. Hence writing from Bologna to his lawyer on 20 October 1773, ostensibly aggrieved about a long-running dispute with an ironworks company mining coal on his estate, he complained that like Christ he had not been received as a prophet in his own country (cf. John 4:44). He had been carried in “Triumph” through France and Italy, receiving more “honours and distinction” than had ever been shown a British subject. Even “among savages,” Bruce had been conferred more consideration than he merited. Yet in Scotland he had received little respect and “often barely Justice.”51 Bruce’s interest in Enoch must also be contextualised within the wider framework of his intellectual pursuits. Among them were his passion for exploring, whether the physical remains of ancient cultures in Western Europe, North Africa, and the Levant (drawings begun by Balugani survive for several sites),52 49 Bruce, Travels, 1.497–98; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.cclxxix, 1.65–66, 7.361; J. Bonnar, “Parish of Larbert,” in The New Statistical Account of Scotland … vol. 8: Dunbarton— Stirling—Clackmannan (Edinburgh, 1845) 351; W. Nimmo, The History of Stirlingshire, 2 vols. (3rd ed.; London, 1880) 1.324. He apparently had the quadrant inscribed: “With this instrument given by Lewis XV. Mr. Bruce proceeded to the sources of the Nile, it being carried on foot, upon men’s shoulders, over the mountains of Abyssinia.” See General Evening Post (8–11 April 1786). 50 The European Magazine 21 (1792) 330–31, 333, 417, 418; The European Magazine 22 (1792) 5; J. Nichols, Literary Anecdotes of the Eighteenth Century, 6 vols. (London, 1812) 4.646–48 n. 51 Cumming, “Unpublished letters of James Bruce,” 47. 52 A. Oppé, English Drawings—Stuart and Georgian periods—in the collection of His Majesty the King at Windsor Castle (London, 1950) 30. Many of the drawings in the Royal Collection at Windsor can be seen at https://www.rct.uk/collection.

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or geographical marvels such as the Ṭisesāt Falls and source of the Blue Nile. Then there was collecting, both manuscripts in oriental languages and curiosities generally, such as those displayed in Bruce’s museum at Kinnaird—of which more shortly. Moreover, like his fellow Freemason the Comte de Buffon, Bruce was an enthusiastic student of natural history, particularly of the flora and fauna of “Egypt, Arabia, Abyssinia, and Nubia,” which comprised the fifth volume of his Travels. In addition, Bruce was “very fond” of astronomy and undertook detailed measurements of latitude and longitude in Africa, together with observations on the moons of Jupiter.53 That Bruce was a Freemason requires comment. Some sensational accounts of his life and travels regard it as of huge significance, even to the extent that it supposedly explains why he went to “such great lengths” to obtain multiple copies of Ethiopic Enoch.54 Because there is no firm evidence to support this suggestion it can be completely rejected. For whereas another prominent Freemason certainly displayed curiosity about the book of Enoch during the 1790s, there is nothing concrete to connect Bruce’s initiation into Freemasonry with his interest in Ethiopic Enoch. Instead, there are merely a couple of tenuous links insufficient to support a plausible argument. Firstly, there is Bruce’s acquisition at Thebes in January 1769 of a Coptic manuscript (MS Bruce 96) containing two works “full of their dreams” that he called “Gnostic.”55 Taken in conjunction with Bruce’s published description of Ethiopic Enoch as a “Gnostic” book this is intriguing, especially since throughout the entire five volumes of his Travels he only uses the word Gnostic when referring to this Coptic codex and Enoch.56 Gnostic, and its cognates Gnosticism and Gnosis, first occur regularly in the English language during the early modern period.57 53 General Evening Post (8–11 April 1786); Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 7.355–80; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 284, 478–96; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 36. According to Murray, Bruce afterwards erected a temporary observatory at Kinnaird. 54 G. Hancock, Sign and the Seal. The Quest for the Lost Ark of the Covenant (New York, 1992) 182–83; A. Collins, From the Ashes of Angels: The forbidden legacy of a fallen race (Rochester, VT, 1996) 12; Abba Yahudah, A Journey to the Roots of Rastafari: The Essene Nazarite Link (Bloomington, IN, 2014) 4. 55 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.xcii, 1.cclxxiii–cclxxiv, cccxli, 2.29–45, 7.123–24, 7.127 n 129; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 362; Catalogue of … Oriental literature … sold by auction … Robins, 35–36. 56 Bruce, Travels, 1.497, 1.499, 5.13; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 2.422, 2.423, 7.129. 57 The earliest known usages are “Gnostici” (1563), “Gnostikes” (1607), “Gnosticks” (1641), “Gnosticisme” (1651), “Gnosticism” (1669), and “Gnosis” (1703). See Oxford English Dictionary; H. More, The Second Lash of Alazonomastix (1651) 12; More, An Exposition of the seven epistles to the seven churches (1669) 99, and the appended An Antidote against Idolatry, sig. O2r.

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Although employed as an adjective in the sense of relating to knowledge, the more common usage was as a noun to indicate those ancient Christians that heresiologists like Ireneaus condemned for their claims to have attained superior spiritual knowledge. Moreover, Gnostic was generally intended as criticism rather than compliment. Doubtless this was Bruce’s meaning too. So treatments of Gnosticism within the framework of legendary masonic history can be disregarded as evidence that Bruce sought out these documents (which he struggled to read) in fulfilment of some masonic quest to obtain secret knowledge.58 Secondly, there is Bruce’s intriguing notion that the Sabians possessed a fourth book of Enoch. Some fifteen years afterwards he elaborated in his Travels: Sabianism was the primary pagan religion of the East which was subsequently adopted by the shepherds of North-East Africa. Furthermore, vestiges of an “ill-understood” Sabianism persisted among the polytheistic inhabitants of regions around Ethiopia, who worshipped the stars, moon and wind.59 Almost a century later, in language reminiscent of Bruce, the American physician Albert Mackey (1807–1881) incorporated “Sabianism” within his discussion of the “primitive freemasonry of antiquity,” describing “worship of the sun, moon, and stars” as a deviation from “true worship” of the “Supreme God,” the “Grand Architect of the Universe.” Accordingly, Mackey denounced Sabianism as “the most ancient of religious corruptions.”60 Even so, the earliest published reference I am aware of discussing Sabianism in relation to Freemasonry is The Round Towers of Ireland (1834) by the “antiquarian enthusiast” Henry O’Brien (1808–1835).61 Interestingly, in this elaborate work which was ridiculed by most contemporary reviewers (one Freemason excepted), O’Brien quoted a lengthy passage from “one of the most extraordinary productions that has ever appeared in England.” He was referring to the second edition of Richard Laurence’s translation of Ethiopic Enoch, particularly chapter 59 concerning the “first and last secrets in heaven above”; i.e., the winds, moon, stars, thunder, and lightning. Indeed, O’Brien went so far as to speculate if Laurence’s careful 58 Cf. G. Smith, The use and abuse of Free-masonry (London, 1783) 320; A. Pike, Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry (Charleston, 1871) 266, 270, 273, 287, 542, 553–68; A. Mackey, The History of Freemasonry its legends and traditions its chronological history, 7 vols. (New York, 1898–1906) 2.371–81. 59 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 2.327, 2.333, 2.397, 2.401–2, 2.426–27, 2.445, 3.11, 3.195, 3.242, 6.369, 7.136. 60 A. Mackey, The Symbolism of Freemasonry (New York, 1869) 26–28, 195, 230–31, 336, 357; cf. Mackey, An Encyclopaedia of Freemasonry, 2 vols. (Philadelphia, 1894) 1.26, 94. 61 Gentleman’s Magazine, 2nd series, 1 (1834) 299; Gentleman’s Magazine, 2nd series, 2 (1834) 365–67; Gentleman’s Magazine, 2nd series, 4 (1835) 553; W.W. Wroth, rev. M.-L. Legg, “O’Brien, Henry (1808–1835),” ODNB.

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highlighting of the words “secret” and “concealed” indicated that he was a Freemason.62 But it must be stressed that Mackey and O’Brien both wrote long after Bruce was dead. Consequently, nineteenth-century attempts in print to connect Sabianism with the antecedents of Freemasonry cannot reasonably be taken as evidence that Bruce’s conception of Sabianism was influenced by orally transmitted masonic lore. In sum, discussions about the relationship between Bruce’s Freemasonry and his attitude towards Ethiopic Enoch are best served by taking into account lively modern scholarly debates; notably those concerning what forms the Enlightenment took (Radical or otherwise), and how Freemasonry can be accommodated within it.63 It is noteworthy that Bruce had been initiated into the Canongate, Kilwinning No. 2 Lodge at Edinburgh on 1 August 1753. Other members of this prestigious lodge included aristocrats, military and naval officers, civil servants, bankers, lawyers, surgeons, academics, publishers, and architects, not to mention the poet Robert Burns (1759–1796) and James Boswell (1740–1795).64 So Freemasonry should be envisaged here, to quote Richard Sher, as “a fraternal cosmopolitan organization that encouraged and spread enlightened principles and provided another homosocial milieu for Scottish men of letters.”65



On reaching the Italian Peninsula Bruce made his way to Bologna, where about mid-September 1773 he was welcomed by an aristocratic friend Marchese Girolamo Ranuzzi (1724–1784). In early October he was reported to have been carried from Bologna to Porretta Terme, albeit with the loss of a horse. After several weeks hydrotherapy treatment at Porretta’s thermal springs he

62 H. O’Brien, The Round Towers of Ireland; or the mysteries of Freemasonry, of Sabaism, and of Budhism (London, 1834) 244, 401–2, 463 n., 475–77; Laurence, Book of Enoch (2nd ed.; Oxford, 1833) 62–63 (ch. 58 in the first edition). Thus far I have found no evidence to suggest that Laurence was a Freemason. 63 M. Jacob, Living the Enlightenment: Freemasonry and Politics in Eighteenth-Century Europe (New York, 1991); Jacob, “The Radical Enlightenment and Freemasonry: Where we are now,” Philosophica 88 (2013) 13–29. 64 “Notices of eminent members of the Canongate Kilwinning Lodge of Scotland,” The Freemasons’ Quarterly Review (September 30, 1841) 297–98; A. Mackenzie, History of the Lodge Canongate Kilwinning No. 2. Compiled from the records, 1677–1888 (Edinburgh, 1888) 78, 237–47. 65 R. Sher, The Enlightenment & the Book. Scottish Authors & Their Publishers in EighteenthCentury Britain, Ireland & America (Chicago, 2006) 108.

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recovered the use of his scarred left arm and right leg.66 Sufficiently restored, Bruce returned to Bologna from where he wrote to his lawyer about the wealth of material he had gathered, bragging that “all Europe” expected an account of his successful travels.67 The boasting did not stop there for Bruce also pretended to be a professor and, with Balugani dead, claimed many of his former companion’s unfinished drawings of North African and Levantine antiquities as his own. Unfortunately for Bruce, his correspondence with the artists he employed to complete the landscape backgrounds and figures for Balugani’s drawings survives.68 Outraged by this deceit and exasperated by Bruce’s “extraordinary stories,” one of Balugani’s friends eventually exposed the fraud so that it became common knowledge among Italian connoisseurs.69 Unperturbed, Bruce had these drawings bound in leather in forty volumes and then sent to the naturalist and explorer Joseph Banks (1743–1820) at London, in the hope that Banks would use his influence so that this considerable number of “drawings of architecture and natural history” would evade duty and inspection at the Custom House.70 Afterwards, Bruce repaid Balugani by almost entirely expunging him from his Travels; an abominable erasure of the truth, to paraphrase one later critic.71 Journeying south by way of Pistoia, Bruce arrived at Florence in late October. There he was presented by the diplomat Sir Horatio Mann (1706–1786) at the court of Peter Leopold, Grand Duke of Tuscany, to whom Bruce gave a “curious 66 Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 114; Notizie del Mondo 81 (9 October 1773) 663; Gazzetta di Parma 41 (22 October 1773) 328; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 277; P. Hulton, F.N. Hepper, and I. Friis, Luigi Balugani’s Drawings of African Plants: from the collection made by James Bruce of Kinnaird on his travels to discover the source of the Nile 1767–1773 (New Haven, 1991) 42. 67 Cumming, “Unpublished letters of James Bruce,” 47. 68 Davide Zanotti (d.1808) and Vincenzo Martinelli (1737–1807) apparently drew the landscape backgrounds, while Emilio Manfredi (d.1801) and Giacomo Zampa (1731–1808) drew the figures. Yet other contemporary accounts suggest that Balugani’s drawings were completed by Giuseppe Manfredi under the supervision of Count Zini, or the Florentine draughtsman Zucchi. See Hulton, Hepper, and Friis, Balugani’s Drawings, 35–36, 50–51. 69 Emanuele Greppi and Alessandro Giulini, eds., Carteggio di Pietro e di Alessandro Verri, 12 vols. (Milan, 1910–28) 6.198; The European Magazine 21 (1792) 420, partly reprinted in Nichols, Literary Anecdotes, 4.649 n.; Monthly Review 2 (June 1790) 184–86; Gazetteer and New Daily Advertiser (18 November 1790); Gentleman’s Magazine 60 (November 1790) 973; Anon, Copy of a letter from Bologna, dated March the 15th, in the year 1778, wrote by a first-rate designer ([London, 1790?]) 1–6. 70 W. Dawson, ed., The Banks Letters. A Calendar of the manuscript correspondence of Sir Joseph Banks (London, 1958) 177; V. Manners and G.C. Williamson, John Zoffany, R.A. His life and works. 1735–1810 (London, 1920) 54–55. 71 Salt, Voyage to Abyssinia, 337–41. Salt noted that Balugani is mentioned only three times in Bruce’s Travels.

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collection” of Ethiopian plant seeds together with what were said to be Bruce’s own engravings and observations.72 This resulted in the successful cultivation of teff and a treatise on the subject by the director of the botanical garden in Florence.73 Turning from natural history to medicine, about this time Bruce also wrote on Guinea-worm disease with his comments published in an Italian gazette.74 By mid-November he was in Rome where his immoderate behaviour created a sensation. Seeking a woman named Margaret Murray (ca. 1749–1785)—to whom he had been betrothed prior to his appointment as consul-general at Algiers—Bruce learned that she had instead converted to Catholicism and married Marchese Filippo Accoramboni. This Italian nobleman reportedly laughed off his wife’s former engagement by saying that travellers often lie. Furious, Bruce demanded satisfaction, challenging Accoramboni to a duel; a violent outcome only avoided by the intercession of Abbé Peter Grant (1708–1784), an important figure at the Scots College in Rome, and a written apology from the Marquis.75 Yet there was also a sequel to the affair. Following Margaret’s death at Rome, Accoramboni confined their daughter within a convent to prevent her becoming romantically entangled. The daughter fell into “convulsion fits” and died suddenly. The bare details of this story were recorded by watercolourist and collector George Cumberland (1754–1848) and reworked together with a character that may have been partly modelled on Bruce into his utopian fable set against an African backdrop, The Captive of the Castle of Sennaar (1798).76 This is noteworthy because among

72 Notizie del Mondo 85 (23 October 1773) 693; Gazzetta Toscana 43 (23 October 1773) 169; Notizie del Mondo 87 (30 October 1773) 712; Gazzetta Toscana 44 (30 October 1773) 173; Sonntag, ed., Pringle’s correspondence with von Haller, 303; W.S. Lewis, ed., The Yale edition of Horace Walpole’s correspondence, 48 vols. (New Haven, 1937–1983) 23.527 n. 14. The root of one of these plants reportedly had medicinal properties useful in the treatment of dysentery. 73 A. Zuccagni, Dissertazione concernente l’istoria di una pianta panizzabile dell’ Abissinia … sotto il nome di Tef (Florence, 1775); S.H. Costanza, J.M. de Wet, and J.R. Harlan, “Literature Review and Numerical Taxonomy of Eragrostis tef (T’ef),” Economic Botany 33 (1979) 414. 74 Notizie del Mondo 93 (20 November 1773) 759–60. 75 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.cccxxii–cccxxv; Greppi and Giulini, eds., Carteggio di Verri, 6.147, 150; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 114, 247–49; Nichols, Literary Anecdotes, 4.646 n; Head, Life of Bruce, 507–10; J.F.S. Gordon, Journal and Appendix to Scotichronicon and Monasticon (Glasgow, 1867) 1.62; J. Gibson, Lands and Lairds of Larbert and Dunipace parishes (Glasgow, 1908) 41 n.; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 36, 275, 277–80; Boccaccini, “Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript,” 249–52; C. Prunier, “Grant, Peter (1708–1784),” ODNB. 76 George Cumberland, The Captive of the Castle of Sennaar: An African Tale, ed. G. Bentley (Montreal, 1991) xiv–xv; Illustrated catalogue of the exhibition of portraits on loan in

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Cumberland’s friends was William Blake (1757–1827), whose depiction(s) of Enoch are discussed elsewhere in this volume. Probably through a combination of Abbé Grant’s favour, who was friendly with the Pope, and a letter of introduction to Cardinal de Bernis (1715–1794) from the French Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs the Duc d’Aiguillon (1720–1788), Bruce secured two audiences with Clement XIV.77 According to an Italian gazette, French periodical, and some English newspapers, Bruce was reportedly received with “great Distinction” by “His Holiness,” most likely between 3 and 11 December 1773. At the second audience, the Pope found “pleasure” in questioning Bruce “minutely” on his travels to Ethiopia and other parts of the world, generously honouring him with a gift of some fine gold and silver medals on his departure.78 Bruce himself claimed that the Pope told him: “fortunate is the sovereign who has a subject like [you], able to speak thirteen languages.”79 Some months later, a French gazette added a crucial detail, possibly derived from Bruce since it contains characteristic hyperbole. Here Bruce was said to have amassed about 6,000 manuscripts, including a good copy of the book of Enoch which he had presented to the Pope when passing through Rome. Together with the researches of Woide, of which more shortly, it was hoped that that the learned would finally settle the question whether this ancient apocryphal work was written by a Jew or Christian.80 But the most important evidence, recently brought to light by Boccaccini, is the correspondence between the brothers Pietro Verri (1728–1797) and Alessandro Verri (1741–1816).81 Writing from Milan on 2 March 1774 Pietro informed Alessandro at Rome that he had spoken to Bruce at lunch, who regaled him with tales of his Ethiopian adventure—stories which sounded like fables to the sceptical Pietro. Moreover, Bruce said that he had given the Pope the book of Enoch quoted by Jude and that it was written in an Ethiopian language. Yet Monsignor Leonardo Antonelli (1730–1811) was unable to find anyone in the Sacred Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith [Propaganda Fide] capable of understanding it,

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the New Galleries of art, Corporation buildings, Sauchiehall Street (Glasgow, 1868) 6–7; F. Greenacre, “Cumberland, George (1754–1848),” ODNB. Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 246; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 277; Boccaccini, “Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript,” 253–55. Notizie del Mondo 101 (18 December 1773) 824; Daily Advertiser (10 January 1774); London Chronicle (8–11 January 1774); The London Magazine 43 (1774) 52; Journal historique et littéraire 1 (February 1774) 138–39; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 115. The medals were engraved with the Pope’s likeness and seen by Murray at Kinnaird. Bonnar, “Larbert,” in New Statistical Account of Scotland, VIII.351. Gazette et avant-coureur de Littérature, des Sciences et des Arts 27 (April 1774) 2–3. Boccaccini, “Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript,” 255–61.

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and so apparently urged Bruce to translate the text.82 A few days later Pietro wrote to Alessandro again about a supposed altercation between Bruce and some customs officers at the border, declaring that Bruce “seems a very imaginative person” prone to “much exaggeration.” Jestingly, Pietro added that he was tempted to create a copy of the book of Enoch himself to compete with Bruce’s version; they would be “equally legitimate.”83 On 9 March Alessandro responded confirming that Bruce had presented a “so-called book of Enoch” to the Pope, which he discussed with Monsignor Antonelli. Alessandro also believed that Bruce had attempted to converse with an Ethiopian in the Propaganda Fide but had not been understood at first. Greatly angered, Bruce ended up speaking Arabic because he had command of that language. Evidently, this encounter severely damaged Bruce’s credibility, prompting Alessandro to conclude that anyone listening to Bruce recount his wanderings “has conceived some mistrust” since “his stories sound like fables and he talks a lot even without being solicited.”84 Nonetheless, Bruce did present Clement XIV with a genuine version of Enoch in Geʿez. Splendidly written on vellum in triple columns, this exquisitely produced high-status cultural artefact was evidently specially created for Bruce as a presentation copy since besides containing a great deal of rubrication it also has a highly unusual feature; namely, the addition of two separate title-pages reading “The Book of Enoch the Prophet” and then “Enoch.”85 As Boccaccini has shown, sometime between early December 1773 and late April 1775 this document was entrusted by the Pope to Antonelli. This is apparent from a two and a half page letter preserved on the fly-leaves of the codex. It was written by the orientalist Agostino Antonio Giorgi (1711–1797) and addressed to Antonelli shortly before he was appointed a cardinal. Here Giorgi requested the opportunity to see the “famous Ethiopic manuscript” for a few days, while acknowledging that he lacked the ability—not to mention the patience and time—to produce a complete translation of what was “believed to be the book of Enoch.”86 Even so, Giorgi did provide an inexact Latin version of certain passages, notably what appears to have been a preface, 82 83 84 85

Greppi and Giulini, eds., Carteggio di Verri, 6.191. Greppi and Giulini, eds., Carteggio di Verri, 6.192–93. Greppi and Giulini, eds., Carteggio di Verri, 6.195. Bibliotheca Apostolica Vaticana, Vatican City, Vat. et. 71, fols. 2r, 3r, https://digi.vatlib.it /view/MSS_Vat.et.71; A. Mai, Scriptorum veterum nova collectio e Vaticanis codicibus edita (Rome, 1831) 5.100. I am most grateful to Leslie Baynes and Ted Erho for discussing the contents of this manuscript, and to Erho for the translation. 86 Vat. et. 71, fly-leaves; T.M. Erho and L.T. Stuckenbruck, “A Manuscript History of Ethiopic Enoch,” JSP 23 (2013) 93; Boccaccini, “Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript,” 240–42.

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the opening phrase (“Dixit bened[ictionem] ipse Henoch”) and extracts from what he designated chapters seven and eight (1 Enoch 6–7). He also supplied some marginal notes in Italian, including a discussion of the Geʿez word for beloved which he thought was connected etymologically to the scapular worn by Ethiopian monks. Evidently, Giorgi focussed on 1 Enoch 6–7 since this portion of the text corresponded to some of Syncellus’ excerpts, an author whom he cited through Johann Albert Fabricius’ Codex pseudepigraphus VT. Giorgi thus seems to have worked directly from Geʿez while referring to the Greek to help him with what must have been an unfamiliar language.87 Although it is unclear whether he made further progress with his Latin translation (a later account stated that someone—probably Giorgi—completed a “great part” until chapter fifty-four), his work represents the second or third earliest translation of a portion of Ethiopic Enoch. Yet despite Giorgi’s efforts, the Ethiopic manuscript gifted by Bruce remained neglected for roughly half a century until it was purchased for the Vatican Library by the philologist Angelo Mai (1782–1854) about 1825.88 Questions remain, however, as to why no further progress was made with this copy of Ethiopic Enoch (now Vat. et. 71) and why Bruce omitted to mention his donation in print. With regard to the former, it may be that besides Giorgi there was no one sufficiently capable or motivated to undertake the task during the Pontificate of Clement XIV. But under his successor Pius VI (1775–1799), especially from the second half of the 1780s, there was renewed emphasis on Catholic proselytizing in Ethiopia. Thus in 1789 the Propaganda Fide published the Geʿez and Amharic alphabets together with the Lord’s Prayer, Ten Commandments, and other material. This superseded a similar publication of 1631 likewise issued by the Propaganda Fide, and was doubtless connected with the mission of Michelangelo Pacelli da Tricarico, which departed from Mocha [modern Yemen] across the Red Sea in November 1789.89 As Boccaccini has observed, this missionary activity was sponsored by Cardinal Antonelli.90 With regard to the latter, here the political context needs to be highlighted. In his Travels, published in April 1790 and dedicated to the “wise, merciful, and just” George III whose reign would “for ever be a glorious [era] in the annals of Britain,” Bruce presented himself as a loyal and noble Hanoverian subject descended from great and glorious Scottish kings who was appalled 87 Vat. et. 71, fly-leaves; Fabricius, Codex pseudepigraphus VT, 1.179–82. 88 Mai, Scriptorum, 5.100; Erho and Stuckenbruck, “Manuscript History,” 93–94; Boccaccini, “Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript,” 242–44. 89 Alphabetum Aethiopicum, sive Abyssinum (Rome, 1631); Alphabetum Aethiopicum sive Gheez et Amhharicum (Rome, 1789); The Analytic Review 7 (August 1790) 476; Viaggi in Etiopia del Michelangelo Pacelli (Naples, 1797) 53. 90 Boccaccini, “Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript,” 245. -

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by the notion of regicide. Moreover, Bruce assumed the character of a vehemently anti-Catholic enemy of religious bigotry and superstition.91 Although his fear of king-killing was evidently genuine (the Bastille had been stormed on 14 July 1789 while Louis XVI would be guillotined on 21 January 1793), Bruce’s love for Margaret Murray remained undiminished despite her conversion to Catholicism. Since the exiled Jacobite “Young Pretender” Charles Edward Stuart (1720–1788) and his young wife Princess Louise of StolbergGedern (1752–1824) were living at Rome in 1773 and indeed treated courteously by Clement XIV—despite the Pope refusing to recognise Bonnie Prince Charlie’s claim to the throne, Bruce prudently omitted his audiences with Clement XIV from his Travels.92 Instead he adopted the guise of anti-Catholic Hanoverian loyalist. On leaving Rome Bruce departed for Tuscany, arriving at Cortona on 26 December 1773. There he looked at various collections of antiquities and made a great impression on his hosts, who were enraptured by this “valorous,” “witty,” and “erudite” traveller. So much so that Bruce, “an adornment of Europe,” was made a member of the Etruscan Academy.93 Afterwards, he was also named a corresponding fellow of the Academy of Agriculture.94 By 11 January 1774 Bruce was back at Florence, where he was in the company of Johan Joseph Zoffany (1733–1810), a painter who included Bruce in his group portrait “The Tribuna of the Uffizi” (1772–77).95 A few days later Zoffany wrote to Joseph Banks at London concerning this huge-sized “great man, the wonder of the age, the terror of married men [doubtless alluding to Marchese Accoramboni] and a constant lover.”96 Bruce then went to Milan, and perhaps also Venice, before going to Paris.97 On 21 June 1774, after an interval of twelve years, he had returned to London.98

91 Bruce, Travels, vol. 1, “Dedication”; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.cxciv, 1.1–7, 1.25, 1.108, 4.395, 5.271, 6.122; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 26–27, 30, 77, 108, 114, 137, 169, 198, 209, 239, 246. 92 Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 278, 280; Boccaccini, “Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript,” 254, 262–63. 93 Notizie del Mondo 101 (18 December 1773) 824; Gazzetta Toscana 1 (1 January 1774) 211–12; Gazzetta Toscana 5 (29 January 1774) 19; Boccaccini, “Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript,” 259. 94 Gazzetta Toscana 12 (19 March 1774) 46. 95 Dawson, ed., Banks Letters, 177; Mary Webster, “Zoffany, Johan Joseph (1733–1810),” ODNB. 96 Manners and Williamson, John Zoffany, 54. 97 Greppi and Giulini, eds., Carteggio di Verri, 6.191, 192–93, 195, 198; Nichols, Literary Anecdotes, 4.646 n.; Gazette et avant-coureur 27 (April 1774) 2–3; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.cccxv; Cumming, “Seven unpublished letters,” 48. 98 Public Advertiser (5 July 1774); Middlesex Journal (2–5 July 1774); Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 115; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 282, 286. -

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Meanwhile Carl Gottfried Woide had been making progress with the copy of Ethiopic Enoch given by Bruce to Louis XV held in the Bibliothèque du Roi at Paris (BnF Éthiopien 49).99 Educated at the universities of Frankfurt an der Oder and Leiden, afterwards minister of the Reformed German chapel in the Savoy (London) and the Dutch chapel Royal at St James’ Palace (Westminster), Woide was extolled as “a man of most profound and various erudition.” Skilled in “almost every ancient and every modern language,” he was acquainted with a number of eminent scholars both in Britain and continental Europe. Moreover, Woide was commended for his piety, zeal, and industry, not to mention his extensive charitable activities despite often lacking ready money.100 He was also a diligent diarist and prolific correspondent. Through the patronage of Frederick Cornwallis (1713–1783), Archbishop of Canterbury and the recommendation of Robert Lowth (1710–1787), then Bishop of Oxford, Woide had been written a letter of introduction on 29 April 1773 by the Prime Minister Frederick North [Lord North] (1732–1792), enabling him to consult “some very valuable Manuscripts in the King’s Library at Paris.” Praised as a “gentleman of a very fair character and extensive erudition,” Woide was working on a new edition of a Coptic dictionary that would be “very useful for the advancement of Oriental Literature.”101 Having crossed the English Channel between Dover and Calais, Woide arrived at Paris on 29 September—just a few weeks after Bruce’s departure.102 Judging from his diary and extant papers, Woide was mainly interested in Coptic versions of Ezekiel, Daniel, and the Twelve Minor Prophets.103 But his diary also records a preoccupation with Ethiopic Enoch between 13 October 1773 and 14 February 1774.104

99 Zotenberg, Catalogue des Manuscrits Éthiopiens, 47. 100 Public Advertiser (4 June 1790); The European Magazine, 17 (June 1790) 405–6; Nichols, Literary Anecdotes, 9.9–14; J. Townley, Illustrations of Biblical Literature, 3 vols. (London, 1821) 1.101–6; BL Add. MS 48,710, fols. 1–5; E. Sheppard, Memorials of St James’s Palace, 2 vols. (London, 1894) 2.244, 247; W.P. Courtney, rev. S.J. Skedd, “Woide, Charles Godfrey (1725–1790),” ODNB. 101 BL Add. MS 48,710, fols. 15r–17v; Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 3.78–82; M.V. de La Croze, rev. C.G. Woide, Lexicon Ægyptiaco-Latinum, 3 vols. (Oxford, 1775) 1.x–xi. 102 BL Add. MS 48,702, fols. 111r–12r. 103 Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 8; Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 9; C.G. Woide, “Mémoire de M. Woide, sur le Dictionnaire Cophte qu’il va publier à Oxford, & sur les Sçavans qui ont étudié la Langue Cophte,” Le Journal des Sçavans (June 1774) 340–41. 104 BL Add. MS 48,702, fols. 118r, 124v, 137v, 138v, 139r, 139v, 141r, 144r.

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On 13 October Woide noted the essential features of the Paris manuscript in his diary: its size (small folio or large quarto), number of sheets, arrangement of text into columns, types of ink used (black, yellow), and consecutive title-pages: “The Book of Enoch the Prophet” and “Enoch.”105 These separate title-pages indicate that like Vat. et. 71, Bibliothèque Nationale, Éth 49 was intended as a presentation copy for a high-status European reader; an impression reinforced by the great care with which the large Ethiopic letters have been rendered in two columns on 63 leaves. However, as Ted Erho has observed, because of scribal mistakes Woide struggled with the title-pages, rendering each word wrongly by confusing the vowel order and mistaking letter forms.106 Despite his rudimentary knowledge of Geʿez, Woide persevered, completing an entire transcription of Ethiopic Enoch by about mid-February 1774.107 Nor was Woide helped by scribal errors in Bibliothèque Nationale, Éth 49, including disarrangement and what he took to be the misnumbering of certain chapters.108 From his correspondence with Johann David Michaelis, dated Paris, 30 January 1774, it is clear that by this point Woide had correctly identified the important verse (1 En 1:9) cited in Jude 14–15.109 Significantly, about this time Woide also began the first translation of passages from Ethiopic Enoch. Thus with the help of Ludolf’s Lexicon he made several attempts at rendering the preface into Latin,110 later translating it into English: In the Name of God Almighty who is pitifull, gracious; far from wrath, and of great mercy, I ordered a copy of the book of Enoch, the blessed Prophet, and this dear Parable will be a usefull present for ever and ever, Amen.111 105 BL Add. MS 48,702, fol. 118r. I am most grateful to Olaf Simons for his help in deciphering Woide’s difficult handwriting. 106 Ted Erho, private communication. 107 Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 10, fols. 10r–133v. Although Richard Laurence subsequently found a number of errors in this copy the scribe may again have been at fault rather than Woide; see Book of Enoch, vii–viii. 108 Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 10, fol. 4r; Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 11, fol. 4r–v. 109 Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 3.83–84. 110 Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 11, fols. 3r, 17r, “In nomine Optimi maximi, miseratoris et clementis, longinqui ab ira et multi misericordia et justi, describendum ego curavi Librum Henochi Prophetae benedictionis, et donum auxilii erit parabola cara in secula seculorum, Amen.” 111 Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 10, fol. 3v; cf. MS Clar. Press d. 10, fol. 143r, “In the name of God, merciful, & placable, abundant in mercy & righteous, long suffering & abundant in mercy & righteous, I will transcribe the book of Enoch the prophet. May his benediction & the gift of his assistance be with his beloved for ever & for ever. Amen.”

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In addition, Woide drafted Latin translations of portions of chapters one, three, fourteen and eighteen. This now corresponds to 1 En 1:1–3; 2:1–3; 14:1–4; 18:1–12; and 18:13–15.112 Returning to London, Woide continued working on Ethiopic Enoch, polishing his notes into a paper that he delivered before the Society of Antiquaries on 10 March 1774.113 Here Woide provided both an English translation of Bruce’s account addressed to Louis XV (discussed previously), and his own observations which, like Bruce’s remarks, he appears to have translated from French.114 According to Woide, the book of Enoch was divided into a “great many chapters” designated by old Greek letters, as was apparently usual practice among Ethiopians. Although the opening eighteen chapters were well marked, the scribe had committed some manifest faults in numbering the remaining chapters. Moreover, the “bookbinder” had wrongly placed chapters 63 to 67 in the middle of the 95th chapter. Woide continued: The Abyssinians think this book to be an antediluvian monument, and a canonical book. This is too much. But it is very probable that it is the Book of Enoch known and quoted by the Fathers. As proof, Woide provided several examples. Thus in the beginning of the first chapter of the manuscript it is said that the angels showed everything to Enoch; and that “he heard from the Angels all what he said.” Furthermore, the text “speaks often of Angels, of Uriel, Gabriel, Michael, and some others.” It also “speaks of the division of times and days” in the same manner as the “Apocryphal Book of Enoch” possessed and quoted by the Church Fathers. Finally, and crucially, Woide found in the manuscript “an imitation of the Passage of St. Jude, which is exact enough.”115 Besides the minutes of the Society of Antiquaries, no further evidence has yet come to light regarding the reception of Woide’s findings. But on 8 April 1774 Woide wrote to Michaelis from London with some brief comments concerning 112 Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 11, fols. 17r–19v. Laurence considered this to be “a slight attempt at literally rendering into Latin a few detached passages; an attempt which sufficiently evinces, that [Woide’s] knowledge of Ethiopic was too imperfect for the completion of such a task”; Book of Enoch, vii. 113 BL Add. MS 48,702, fols. 147v–48r; Society of Antiquaries of London, Minutes, vol. 13 (entries dated 16 December 1773, 10 March 1774), cited in S.M. Sklar, Blake’s Jerusalem as Visionary Theatre: Entering the Divine Body (Oxford, 2011) 48. 114 Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 10, fols. 3r–6r, 135r–38v, printed in Laurence, ed., Libri Enoch, v–viii, ix–xii; cf. Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 11, fols. 3r–5v, 7r–10r, 11r–14r. 115 Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 10, fols. 3r–6r, printed in Laurence, ed., Libri Enoch, v–viii.

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the Parisian manuscript’s physical properties and reporting that he had read his paper to the antiquaries. In addition, he provided what seems to have been the original French version of this notice which Woide had already given to Jean-Augustin Capperonnier (1745–1820), a librarian at the Bibliothèque du Roi and afterwards a joint keeper of printed books. Also included was Bruce’s “Mémoire sur le Livre d’Enoch.”116 On 15 May Woide wrote again, this time to L’Abbé André Barthélemy de Courçay (1744–1799), another employee of the Bibliothèque du Roi. Woide informed de Courçay that he never intended to publish the original book of Enoch, but was considering making available a summary or extracts from it. Nor was Woide aware that Bruce was planning to issue the book himself. Indeed, since in Woide’s view Bruce was the most able person to bring the work before the public he would not prevent him from doing so. However, if Bruce decided not to publish the book of Enoch then Woide hoped Bruce would not mind if he did so instead. In an undated letter from about the same time, Woide added that a learned person had encouraged him to publish the book and that he hoped to discuss the matter with Bruce on his return to England.117 It is important to emphasise that about seven months after he had begun working on Ethiopic Enoch, Woide had restricted the dissemination of his findings. Instead of print he had resorted to oral communication and private correspondence. Nor when he published an article in Journal des Sçavans (June 1774) on his research for a new edition of a Coptic dictionary did he reveal anything except that he had copied the “famous manuscript of Enoch” given by Bruce to Louis XV.118 As we shall see, Woide probably wanted to avoid antagonising Bruce. Even so, about summer 1774, Michaelis published the sixth part of his Orientalische und Exegetische Bibliothek which included a section on the book of Enoch based on Woide’s research. Michaelis’ contribution therefore represents the first printed discussion of Ethiopic Enoch in Western Europe. Here Michaelis made public the relevant extract from Woide’s letter of 30 January together with Woide’s communication to Capperonnier, including Woide’s Latin translation of the preface to the Parisian manuscript. For good measure, Michaelis added Bruce’s “Mémoire sur le Livre d’Enoch,” even supplying a critical note.119 Michaelis’ discussion was subsequently noticed in a learned periodical issued at Göttingen and given fuller treatment in a French equivalent 116 Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 3.86–87, 91–98. 117 BL Add. MS 48,711, fols. 125r, 125v. 118 Woide, “Mémoire … sur le Dictionnaire Cophte,” 342. 119 J.D. Michaelis, Orientalische und Exegetische Bibliothek (Frankfurt am Main, 1774), part vi, 224–32.

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published at The Hague.120 The following year another French journal published an article on Michaelis’ Orientalische und Exegetische Bibliothek reproducing elements of Bruce’s account and Woide’s observations.121 Besides these printed notices, there were then five versions of Ethiopic Enoch in Western Europe by summer 1774. Of these, the best known was held in the Bibliothèque du Roi at Paris, while Woide kept his transcript of this manuscript in London.122 Another was at Rome, perhaps already in Antonelli’s library. The other two remained in Bruce’s possession, to whom we now return. 2

The Return of “His Abyssinian Majesty”

Upon arriving in England, Bruce was swiftly granted a private audience with George III and Queen Charlotte on the evening of 30 June 1774. The following day Bruce was presented to George III at St James’ Palace and given the honour of kissing his monarch’s hand.123 According to Bruce’s first biographer, at one of these meetings Bruce presented two large folio volumes of what he claimed were his drawings to the king—although, as we have seen, they should be credited to Balugani and other hands.124 The question remains, however, why did Bruce not take this opportunity to give George III another gift? He could have given him, for instance, one of his two remaining copies of Ethiopic Enoch (MS Bodl. Or. 531) which, though lacking the title-pages and preface, like BnF Éthiopien 49 and Vat. et. 71 he had clearly commissioned with the intention of donating to a high-status European recipient. The answer may be politics. Perhaps Bruce was frustrated at not being granted a minor title let alone a knighthood in recognition of his exploits, possibly due to his failings as consul-general at Algiers.

120 Göttingische Anzeigen von Gelehrten Sachen 2 (1774) 875 [25 August 1774]; Bibliotheque des Sciences, et des Beaux Arts 42 (July–September 1774) 229–33. 121 Journal des Beaux-Arts et des Sciences 2 (May 1775) 199–207. 122 Following Woide’s death, his library was publicly auctioned on 21 February 1791. Some of his manuscripts, including his transcript of the Parisian copy of Ethiopic Enoch together with his notes, became the property of the Delegates of the Clarendon Press. On completing his English translation of MS Bodl. Or. 531, Laurence examined Woide’s transcript. Afterwards this transcript and the relevant notes became part of the Bodleian Library’s collections on 31 January 1922. See Gazetteer and New Daily Advertiser (17 February 1791); Laurence, Book of Enoch, vii–viii. 123 Public Advertiser (5 July 1774); Middlesex Journal (2–5 July 1774). 124 Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 115; Oppé, English Drawings, 30; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 283–84; Hulton, Hepper, and Friis, Balugani’s Drawings, 35–36.

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On 5  July 1774 Sir John Pringle wrote from London to the Swiss biologist Albrecht von Haller (1708–1777) with “a general sketch of Mr Bruce’s adventures in Abyssinia” together with his own observations on Ethiopian flora, fauna, and manners—“the most barbarous set of mankind.” On the subject of religion, Pringle observed that “such a set of unworthy Christians” had in their canon “all our books of the Bible, & over & above the prophecies of Enoch.”125 Three days later Pringle wrote to Michaelis reporting that he had met Bruce, accompanying him to the Queen’s drawing room and afterwards to dinner. Besides providing an account of Ethiopian history, geography, language, religion, and customs, Pringle noted that Bruce had “brought home a compleat translation of the whole Bible in the literary Abyssinian … with the prophecies of Enoch over and above; a book no less canonical, than the rest.”126 However, a few weeks later and having seen Bruce frequently, Pringle informed von Haller that Bruce was not as communicative as he could have wished: “He means to publish all himself, & I can see is not willing to let out much, lest some body collecting all that he has said should forestall him in his design.”127 While Bruce may have jealously guarded particular information for fear of a competitor writing an account of Ethiopia based on his tales, he remained voluble. Indeed, one of his anecdotes concerning the supposed Ethiopian practice of eating steaks cut from the thicker parts of a living animal was soon ridiculed by Horace Walpole (1717–1797), fourth earl of Orford, who wrote facetiously to one of his correspondents that during his time “in the Court of Abyssinia” Bruce “breakfasted every morning with the maids of honour on live oxen.”128 Addressing an aristocrat, another letter writer complimented Bruce’s drawings as “the most beautiful things you ever saw,” adding that Bruce’s “adventures” were “more wonderful than those of Sinbad the sailor and perhaps as true.”129 The newspapers, too, talked of Bruce’s representation of Ethiopia as “very barbarous and savage,” its inhabitants “ferocious” in times of war but “sunk in sloth and voluptuousness” in times of peace.130 125 Sonntag, ed., Pringle’s correspondence with von Haller, 301–4. 126 Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 2.403–4; reprinted in Commercial & Agricultural Magazine 1 (1799) 315. 127 Sonntag, ed., Pringle’s correspondence with von Haller, 307, 38. 128 Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 2.388–89; Lewis, ed., Walpole’s correspondence, 24.31, 30.60; cf. The European Magazine 21 (1792) 417. 129 Historical Manuscripts Commission. Twelfth Report, Appendix, part X. James, first Earl of Charlemont, vol. 1: 1745–1783 (London, 1891) 322. 130 London Chronicle (19–21 July 1774) 66; General Evening Post (16–19 July 1774); London Evening Post (16–19 July 1774); Middlesex Journal (16–19 July 1774); Public Ledger (19 July 1774); Craftsman or Say’s Weekly Journal (23 July 1774); Gazette et avant-coureur 61 (August 1774) 1.

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Yet Bruce was not the only celebrity traveller entertaining polite society in summer 1774. For he had to compete for attention with Omiah (ca. 1746–1779), a native of Tahiti, who had chosen to sail to England aboard a vessel commanded by Captain Tobias Fourneaux. With tattooed hands, and having learnt a few stock phrases—“How do you do?”—Omiah, accompanied by Joseph Banks and the Swedish naturalist Daniel Solander (1733–1782), was presented to members of the royal family at Kew on 17 July.131 That same month Omiah and Bruce were dinner guests of William, Duke of Gloucester (1743–1805). Bruce claimed he was able to hold some conversation with Omiah, who elsewhere was commended both for his polite table manners and “innocent native Freedom.”132 Afterwards Bruce pitied “this poor fellow,” who had lost all sense of time and been taught nothing of value by his educators; “he will only pass for a consummate liar when he returns; for how can he make them believe half the things he will tell them?”133 For his part Omiah had his likeness engraved for The London Magazine, his portrait painted by Sir Joshua Reynolds and his voice appropriated for a satirical poem purportedly addressed by him to the “Queen of Otaheite.” Omiah eventually returned to Tahiti where he was on the losing side of a battle fought among islanders and died soon after.134 From London Bruce headed north to Scotland. Probably en route he spent a day with Hugh Percy (1742–1817), second Duke of Northumberland at Alnwick Castle. Also present was the Church of Ireland bishop Thomas Percy (1729–1811), who afterwards recorded details of their meeting in the flyleaves and margins of a copy of the Portuguese Jesuit missionary Jerónimo Lobo’s A Voyage to Abyssinia. Here Bruce represented the inhabitants of Ethiopia as sunk into “a most deplorable degree of ignorance.” They had supposedly “lost almost all their ancient books” and few could read, even among the clergy. Even so, Bruce left the country laden with both “his writings & Treasures.” And on his return to Europe, he visited the French court where Bruce “made presents of many curiosities to the King of France (particularly ye MS. Book of Enoch, so much inquired after by our Literati for many ages, to ye King of France’s Library).”135 131 The London Magazine, 43 (August–September 1774) 363–64; Annual Register (1774) 61–63. 132 London Evening Post (23–26 July 1774); Morning Chronicle (27 July 1774); General Evening Post (26–28 July 1774); The Weekly Magazine or Edinburgh Amusement, 25 (1774) 189; York Courant (26 July 1774) 2. 133 A.R. Ellis, ed., The early diary of Frances Burney 1768–1778, 2 vols. (London, 1889) 2.25. 134 Anon., An Historic Epistle, from Omiah, to the Queen of Otaheite (London, 1775); The London Magazine 44 (1775) 496–97; The London Magazine 46 (1777) 306–8; J. Mulholland, “Impersonating Islanders: Inauthenticity, Sexuality, and the Making of the Tahitian Speaker in 1770s British Poetry,” The Eighteenth Century 57 (2016) 343–63. 135 Leeds University Library, BC Trv/LOB; see also, P. Beale, “Bishop Percy’s Notes on A Voyage to Abyssinia,” Proceedings of the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society, Literary and Historical Section 16 (1975) 39–49. -

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On 6 August 1774 Bruce reached Edinburgh.136 Three days later he met James Boswell, a member of the same masonic lodge as Bruce, who described him as a “tall stout bluff man in green and gold,” bad-tempered, “impatient, harsh, and uncommunicative.” As for Ethiopia, Bruce reportedly called it a “barbarous, mountainous country!” Having dug information from him “as from a flinty rock with pickaxes,” Boswell went to see the philosopher David Hume (1711–1776) on 15 August to obtain additional details of Bruce’s travels. From the assembled company he got the idea of comparing the “savage manner of eating in Abyssinia with that of the Cyclops in Virgil.”137 Later that same month Boswell published “Some Account of the very extraordinary Travels of the celebrated Mr. Bruce” in the London Magazine. Here Bruce was portrayed as being of “a firm mind, a determined countenance, and robust constitution; sagacious; observing, and a very good draughtsman.” Even so, Boswell conceded that some people had found Bruce “close and reserved” and that when “teased with idle or ignorant questions” he had repulsed these “troublesome” interlocutors.138 Meanwhile, having spent a couple of weeks or so in Edinburgh, Bruce set out before 24 August to his family’s country seat at Kinnaird, Stirlingshire.139 On 13 October 1774 Woide wrote to Michaelis from London regarding Bruce’s copy of the entire Ethiopic Bible including the book of Enoch. He hoped that when Bruce returned to the capital in the winter he would learn more about whether the traveller had had sufficient time to translate the text. Even so, Bruce was very unhappy with the librarian of the Bibliothèque du Roi for making the copy of Ethiopic Enoch at Paris (BnF Éthiopien 49) accessible without his knowledge and even feared that Woide would make it available to the world.140 Also in October 1774 the orientalist William Jones (1746–1794) wrote to his friend and fellow orientalist Henry Albert Schultens (1749–1793) concerning Bruce’s travels and a report—probably derived from Woide—that Bruce had “brought with him some Æthiopic manuscripts, and among them the Prophecies of Enoch, but to be ranked only with the Sybilline oracles.”141 136 Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 3.100; Public Advertiser (18 August 1774); The Weekly Magazine or Edinburgh Amusement 25 (1774) 223. 137 W. Wimsatt and F. Pottle, eds., Boswell for the defence 1769–1774 (New York, 1959) 260–63, 267, 271; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 287–89. 138 London Magazine 43 (1774) 388–91, 429–31; General Evening Post (8–10 September 1774); Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 289–90. 139 The Weekly Magazine or Edinburgh Amusement 25 (1774) 319; The Scots Magazine 36 (September 1774) 501. 140 Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 3.105–6. 141 A.M. Jones, ed., The Works of Sir William Jones, 13 vols. (1807) 1.221–22; reprinted in Lord Teignmouth, Memoirs of the life, writings and correspondence, of Sir William Jones (5th ed.; London, 1815) 156, with original Latin at 556–57; M.J. Franklin, “Jones, Sir William (1746– 1794),” ODNB. -

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On 15 December Boswell recorded in his journal that the “great traveller” had dined at Edinburgh with the judges John Maclaurin (1734–1796) and James Burnett, Lord Monboddo (1714–1799). He was somewhat hurt that he had not been invited, most likely because Bruce had been displeased with the way he had been depicted in Boswell’s piece for the London Magazine—particularly the comparison with the cyclops Polyphemus: “Forbidding in appearance, in speech to be accosted by no one.” Boswell apologised but “could see plainly that he did not like me; probably because I had given the public a good dish of his travels, better dressed than he could give himself.” Moreover, he regarded Bruce as “a rough-minded man,” a “curiosity” from whom he had extracted a “good essay,” and “there was enough.”142 Yet Boswell could not resist returning to Bruce in a further pseudonymous contribution for the London Magazine: “On the Advantages which Great-Britain may derive from the Discoveries of Travellers in the Reign of his present Majesty” (February 1775). Here he began mockingly: What a prodigious noise has been made about the wonderful acquisitions to our knowledge by the travellers of the age in which we live! … Surely the Arabian Nights Entertainments, and the Adventures of Jack the Giant Killer, are as entertaining as … the Travels of Mr. Bruce. Having made some references to giants—Patagonian and Cornish—he concluded by ridiculing Bruce’s claim that Ethiopians ate the flesh of living animals by envisaging the benefits of “eating meat raw” (no noisy butchers to disturb “our morning slumbers”).143 In early February 1775 Bruce was back in London.144 That same month Bruce sent “Some Observations upon Myrrh” that he had made in Ethiopia in 1771 together with specimens to the Scottish physician William Hunter (1718–1783). These were subsequently read before the Royal Society, a body to which Bruce was later admitted as a fellow—possibly through Hunter’s sponsorship.145 By the beginning of March 1775, however, Bruce was reportedly “dangerously ill”

142 C. Ryskamp and F. Pottle, eds., Boswell: the ominous years 1774–1776 (New York, 1963) 45–46; London Magazine 43 (1774) 431; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 290. 143 London Magazine 44 (1775) 74–76; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 290–91. 144 Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 3.109. 145 J. Bruce, “Some Observations upon Myrrh, made in Abyssinia, in the Year 1771,” Philosophical Transactions 65.ii (1775) 408–17; H. Brock, “Hunter, William (1718–1783),” ODNB. Bruce was elected a fellow of the Royal Society on 11 January 1776 and admitted 14 March 1776. See T. Thomson, History of the Royal Society (London, 1812), appendix, lv.

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and it was feared he would die at his house in Leicester Fields.146 But the news proved to be false, much to Bruce’s amusement. Indeed, he continued attending social engagements, prompting the writer Frances Burney (1752–1840) to provide a vivid picture of “His Abyssinian Majesty,” a “Majestic Personage” standing more than six foot high, “the tallest man I ever saw,” “extremely well proportioned in shape” and with a “handsome and expressive face.” This “Great Lyon” or “man-mountain” was imperious, haughty, vain, and proud in certain company yet at other times convivial and humorous when relaxed.147 Nonetheless, Bruce soon gained a reputation for telling “many strange stories” and was suspected of being a great liar.148 On 26 March Pringle told Boswell that Bruce was considered a “brute” and “not fully believed.”149 Then on 1 April Bruce had dinner with his cousin, fellow Old Harrovian and MP Gerard Hamilton (1729–1796), nick-named “Single-Speech,” and the lexicographer Samuel Johnson (1709–1784), author of The Prince of Abissinia (1759), otherwise known as Rasselas. In the evening Johnson related his impression of Bruce to Boswell: “he is not a distinct relater. I should say that he is neither abounding nor deficient in sense. I did not perceive any superior sense.” For good measure Johnson added that the MP Richard Jackson (ca. 1721–1787), sometimes known as “sensible” or “all-knowing” Jackson, “did not believe Bruce.”150 Nor did the diplomat Sir William Hamilton (1730–1803), who considered Bruce’s journey through Ethiopia an imposture.151 A few years later Johnson also reportedly declared that when he had first conversed with Bruce “he was very much inclined to believe” that he had been to Ethiopia, but that afterwards he had “altered his opinion.”152 For his part, Bruce returned to Scotland by mid-June 1775.153 146 Morning Post (1 March 1775); Public Advertiser (1 March 1775). 147 Ellis, ed., Early diary of Frances Burney, 2.7–8, 13–17, 21, 42, 46; F. Burney, Memoirs of Doctor Burney, 3 vols. (London, 1832) 1.295–329; L. Troide, ed., The Early Journals and Letters of Fanny Burney, vol. 2, 1774–1777 (Montreal, 1990) 44–45; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 292–93; cf. Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 116. 148 Bedfordshire Archives & Records Service, L 30/14/408/40; Lewis, ed., Walpole’s correspondence, 28.204, 30.60, 15.331. 149 Ryskamp and Pottle, eds., Boswell: ominous years, 98. 150 Ryskamp and Pottle, eds., Boswell: ominous years, 112, 114, 138; J. Boswell, The Life of Samuel Johnson, LL.D., 10 vols. (London, 1848) 5.272–74; Reid, Traveller Extraordinary, 293–94; M.J. Powell, “Hamilton, William Gerard [called Single-Speech Hamilton] (1729–1796),” ODNB. 151 Dawson, ed., Banks Letters, 262. 152 Gentleman’s Magazine, 59.i (1789) 544; The European Magazine 11 (1787) 199; Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson, 9.145. 153 A. Fischer-Kattner, Spuren der Begegnung: Europäische Reiseberichte über Afrika 1760–1860 (Göttingen, 2015) 109.

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It was probably at home in Kinnaird that Bruce began working on what appears to have been a French translation of Ethiopic Enoch from the two manuscript copies still in his possession. On 24 October 1775 Woide drafted a letter to Bruce from London asking on behalf of some friends whether “they could hope to see the book of Enoch very soon.” Woide assured Bruce that he would leave publication of the translation to him, although this promise was seemingly omitted from the fair copy that Bruce received. He also took the liberty to beg a favour: Woide was working on a new edition of a Coptic dictionary and asked Bruce for a copy of a few lines from the Coptic manuscript written on papyrus that he had acquired at Thebes (MS Bruce 96). If Bruce obliged, then Woide would honour his “name and character” with “a grateful heart.” Evidently Bruce consented since Woide transcribed the two Gnostic treatises in Sahidic contained within the manuscript (MS Clar. Press d. 13). So as to remain on good terms with Bruce, Woide had doubtless relinquished any plans he may have had for publishing a translation of Ethiopic Enoch in exchange for access to Bruce’s Coptic document.154 On the same day that Woide wrote to Bruce from London, Louis Journu de Montagny (b.1732) wrote to Bruce from Bordeaux saying that he—not to mention all of Europe—was looking forward to seeing the book of Enoch in translation. Accordingly, he hoped that Bruce would not let this enterprise languish.155 On 15 November 1775 de Montagny wrote to Bruce again. Regarding Bruce’s translation: Your seventh chapter of Enoch surpasses the understanding of the present age. That generation of men, sprung from the angels who caressed pretty girls, has been a favourite idea in ancient times … I have no great faith in giants, either ancient or modern; but I suspect, along with many authors, that … giants, should be rendered brutes, bullies, or rascals, and that, if they were thought to be descended from the angels, it was only in consequence of the fear which these knaves had excited in the weak people over whom they tyrannised, who, in the course of time, through ignorance, ascribed to them a supernatural strength and origin. The antideluvian prophet, whom you are about to introduce into Europe, will not 154 BL Add. MS 48,710, fols. 100r–101v. A slightly different version of this letter was printed in Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 262–63. For the Coptic treatises, see Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 3.105–6, 123; Beloe, Sexagenarian, 2.49; E. Crégheur, “Pour une nouvelle histoire de la découverte et de l’état primitif du codex Bruce (1769–1794),” Journal of Coptic Studies 16 (2014) 47–68. 155 Yale Center for British Art, MS 0669, de Montagny to Bruce (24 October 1775); see also Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.clxiii.

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succeed. I am sorry that the church, during the five first precious ages, did not put him among the sacred books. You would then have embraced him heartily, perhaps even more so than the apocalypse. I should be very much delighted to converse with the author of that book, or with any of them who, in those times, were reckoned the best informed. How much nonsense, magic, divination, and priestcraft, should I discover in those ages! Ignorance is the mother of fraud and tyranny, as fear is the mother of gods, and audacity, of kings. The humour of drowning mankind, in order to preserve them from being eaten, deserves particular notice.156 On 5 March 1776 de Montagny wrote once more saying that since Bruce had been kind enough to send him “the little fragment of Enoch” he had heard nothing more of Bruce’s translation. He therefore checked the “public papers” regularly for news of its publication, playfully adding that his obsession with giants had not influenced his friendship with the exceedingly tall Bruce.157 Then on 24 May 1776 de Montagny wrote yet again, clarifying that he had just been joking about the number, origin, and size of the giants and that he was not being serious when he suggested that Bruce’s translation would be badly received. Continuing in the same mollifying tone, de Montagny encouraged Bruce to complete the task since there were people in France eager to read it.158 Bruce was evidently stung by de Montagny’s initial criticism, abandoning his partial translation of Enoch, which elsewhere he called “a strange Rhapsody.” In a letter to William Hunter dated 15 February 1776 he claimed to have translated “half Enoch.”159 This is possible. But it is more likely—judging from de Montagny’s earlier letter of 15 November 1775—that Bruce managed only chapter seven (1 Enoch 6–7).160 Doubtless Bruce had picked this portion of text to begin with since he could check it against Syncellus’ Greek excerpts, which were then also available in Latin and English versions. De Montagny’s reference in one of his letters to gigantic beings of 40,000 cubits that were half angelic and half human in nature suggests that Bruce had made an attempt to 156 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.cccxxxii–cccxxxiii, cccxxxvi–cccxxxvii. Murray dated this letter 15 September, but since de Montagny tended to employ Arabic numerals to indicate the month, I think that here he used “9°” to mean November. I have as yet been unable to trace the original, so it may still be in the possession of Andrew Bruce, 11th Earl of Elgin. 157 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.cccxxxix; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 261. 158 Yale Center for British Art, MS 1394, de Montagny to Bruce (24 May 1776); partly printed in Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.cccxxxv n.; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 257 n. 159 Helen Brock, ed., The Correspondence of William Hunter, 1740–1783, 2 vols. (London, 2007) 2.212–13; Sir Charles Illingworth, The Story of William Hunter (Edinburgh, 1967) 107. 160 Laurence, Book of Enoch, 5–6.

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engage with Ethiopic Enoch directly.161 And when he eventually composed his Travels, Bruce clearly drew on the excerpt he had sent de Montagny for a summary of some of its contents: the book of Enoch is … a Gnostic book, containing the age of the Emims, Anakims, and Egregores, supposed descendents of the sons of God, when they fell in love with the daughters of men, and had sons who were giants. These giants do not seem to have been so charitable to the sons and daughters of men, as their fathers had been. For, first, they began to eat all the beasts of the earth, they then fell upon the birds and fishes, and ate them also; their hunger being not yet satisfied, they ate all the corn, all men’s labour, all the trees and bushes, and, not content yet, they fell to eating the men themselves. The men … were not afraid of dying, but very much so of being eaten after death. At length they cry to God against the wrongs the giants had done them, and God sends a flood which drowns both them and the giants.162 According to Bruce, this synopsis exhausted about “four or five” of the opening chapters, which amounted to less than a quarter of the book.163 Although his first biographer suggested that Bruce had translated “about 18 chapters” into English until “weary of the subject” he “proceeded no further,” this assessment seems overly generous since there is nothing here to indicate that Bruce progressed beyond a couple of chapters.164 Indeed, had Bruce’s unfinished translation been preserved then he would doubtless have referred to it. It should also be emphasized that Bruce provided a self-justificatory explanation for not completing the endeavour: “my curiosity led me no further. The catastrophe of the giants, and the justice of the catastrophe, had fully satisfied me.” For good measure he added that Woide—who died on 12 May 1790, just three weeks after the publication of Bruce’s Travels—had translated the Paris copy of Ethiopic Enoch (BnF Éthiopien 49), but “I know not why, it has no where appeared.” Supposedly Woide was “not much more pleased with

161 Yale Center for British Art, MS 1394. 162 Bruce, Travels, 1.499. 163 Bruce, Travels, 1.499. 164 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 2.425 n. Murray may have arrived at the figure through a misunderstanding of Bruce’s statement: “It is not the fourth part of the book; but my curiosity led me no further.” For Murray initially reckoned that Ethiopic Enoch consisted of 90 chapters divided into six sections, with the first part (chapters 1–18) corresponding to Bruce’s summary.

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the conduct of the giants” than Bruce was.165 This was disingenuous. Bruce knew that Woide had not published a translation of Ethiopic Enoch so as to retain his favour and he was subsequently criticised for self-importance and inaccuracy.166 Moreover, at least one scholar became exasperated with Bruce’s inability to deliver and urged Woide to complete the task instead. This was the Swedish orientalist Jakob Jonas Björnståhl (1731–1779) who wrote to Woide in French from Constantinople on 17 October 1777, asking if Bruce had published his translation of Enoch yet; and if not, was Woide going to let his transcript go to waste. Ethiopic and Coptic went well together so he should get started on a translation.167 While Woide appears to have developed a basic understanding of Geʿez, it seems to have presented a stumbling block for Bruce. This is crucial since Bruce’s lack of proficiency in Geʿez largely explains why he failed to produce a complete translation of Ethiopic Enoch. Moreover, to appreciate the extent of Bruce’s comprehension of Geʿez some discussion of his knowledge of nonEuropean languages is required. We have seen the claim that he supposedly spoke thirteen languages. Besides French, Italian, Spanish, and Portuguese— not to mention subsequent biographers’ assertions that he could read Greek and Latin and also knew Hebrew, Chaldean, and Syriac,168 a number of sources affirm that he was able to converse fluently in Arabic (although whether in the dialect associated with the Maghreb or Mecca is unclear).169 All the same, in the estimation of both a critic and supporter he was less competent dealing with written Arabic and made mistakes transliterating it.170 By his own account on arriving in Ethiopia Bruce had to communicate in Arabic with the aid of an interpreter. But because of his reportedly “extraordinary facility in learning languages” Takla Haimonot soon raised him to prominence in admiration of his “genius” for mastering tongues so quickly. So skilled did Bruce allegedly become in the literary language of Ethiopia that within a matter of 165 Bruce, Travels, 1.499–500; Public Advertiser (12 May 1790). 166 The English Review 16 (1790) 55–56, 183. 167 BL Add. MS 48,706, fol. 25v. 168 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.clxxxi; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 131; The European Magazine 45 (1802) 352; New Annual Register (January 1808) 90–91; The Annual Review and History of Literature 7 (January 1808) 268–69; Bonnar, “Larbert,” in New Statistical Account of Scotland, VIII. 350–51. 169 Greppi and Giulini, eds., Carteggio di Verri, 6.195; London Magazine 43 (1774) 389; General Evening Post (8–10 September 1774); Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 2.393; Sonntag, ed., Pringle’s correspondence with von Haller, 302; The European Magazine 45 (1802) 347; The Literary Panorama 8 (1810) cols. 141, 328. 170 The European Magazine 21 (1792) 420; Jones, ed., Works of Sir William Jones, 2.212–13; Cumming, “Unpublished letters of James Bruce,” 49 n. 4.

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months he claimed to have presented the Emperor a biblical book written in Geʿez “with his own hand, and finely embelished with all sorts of figures.” In conversation with Pringle at London Bruce added that the “common language” of Ethiopia was “very easy to learn, as having a great deal of regularity in the conjugation of their verbs, the adjectives being without genders.”171 Yet we have seen that reportedly Bruce was unable to converse with an Ethiopian in the Propaganda Fide. This is difficult to reconcile with an eyewitness statement that Bruce conversed in Amharic “very well” with two Armenian merchants at Cairo—unless the Ethiopian addressed Bruce in Tigre while Bruce spoke Amharic.172 Additional information comes from the testimony of a man who knew Bruce at Gondar. Many years later he declared that: Mr. Bruce did not speak the Tigré language, nor much of Amharic; that he could read the characters in the books of the country on his first arrival, but did not possess any great knowledge of the Geez, though in this respect as well as with regard to Amharic, he considerably improved himself during his stay in the country.173 There are also Bruce’s interpreters to consider. Among them were Yusuff, an Amharic and Tigre speaker; Georgis, an Arabic speaker; and Bruce’s Greek servant Michael ( fl.1790).174 The last accompanied his master on their return journey to Cairo and later, according to one damaging account, denied knowledge of Bruce’s claim to have discovered the sources of the Nile.175 This “ill founded insinuation,” however, was firmly rejected by the Moravian missionary, jeweller and watchmaker John Antes (1740–1811), who had spoken frequently with Bruce and Michael at Cairo—both at his own home and at the house of a French merchant where Bruce lodged. Indeed, in Antes’ view Michael was “a simple fellow, incapable of any invention” who usually agreed with Bruce on the main points of the traveller’s account—although he never mentioned “the

171 London Magazine 43 (1774) 390; General Evening Post (8–10 September 1774); Sonntag, ed., Pringle’s correspondence with von Haller, 301–2; Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 2.392–93, 399–400. 172 The Edinburgh Magazine (April 1786) 271; Literary Panorama, 8 (1810) col. 141. 173 Salt, Voyage to Abyssinia, 334–35; cf. G. Annesley, V. Valentia, Voyages and Travels to India, Ceylon, the Red Sea, Abyssinia, and Egypt, 3 vols. (London, 1809) 2.177. 174 Valentia, Voyages and Travels, 2.105, 178; The Literary Panorama 7 (1810) col. 442; Salt, Voyage to Abyssinia, 335. 175 F. de Tott, Memoirs of Baron de Tott, on the Turks and the Tartars, 3 vols. (Dublin, 1785) 3.222 n.; J. Trusler, The habitable world described (London, 1790) 267.

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bloody banquet of live oxen among the natives.”176 Another of Bruce’s interpreters was a young Ethiopian called Abu Rumi (ca. 1750–1819). In Edward Ullendorf’s judgement this name “appears to be an Arabicized corruption of Abraham.”177 He was said to have mastered Persian, Italian, Greek, and other languages. Besides being the “instructor of Bruce,” Abraham—or Abram as he was also known—afterwards travelled to Jerusalem, Syria, Armenia, Persia, and India.178 At Calcutta in March 1784 he met Sir William Jones, who questioned him closely on a variety of topics. Jones thought Abraham’s “answers were so simple and precise, and his whole demeanour so remote from any suspicion of falsehood” that he publicised their conversation. This included details about Gondar; the “savage diet” of rural folk and soldiers, who made “no scruple of drinking the blood and eating the raw flesh of an ox”; Ethiopian languages, learning, and sacred books—notably “the Prophecy of Enoch”; and information about Bruce, who Abraham recalled was a physician and explorer of the sources of the Nile. Moreover, according to Abraham, Bruce “understood the languages, and wrote and collected many books.” This prompted Jones to hope that Bruce would “publish an account of his interesting travels, with a version of the book of Enoch, which no man but himself can give us with fidelity.”179 Abraham remained three years with Jones. In later life he went to Cairo. There he translated the Bible from Arabic into Amharic together with the Chargé des Affairs to the French Consul in Egypt, Jean-Louis Asselin de Cherville (1772–1822), over the space of ten years.180 If Bruce knew some Amharic and less Geʿez upon his return to Europe, it seems that he got better at both with the assistance of Ludolf’s grammars and 176 General Evening Post (8–11 April 1786); The Edinburgh Magazine (April 1786) 268, 271–72; The European Magazine 9 (1786) 255; Literary Magazine (August 1788) 106; Dawson, ed., Banks Letters, 178–79; J. Antes, Observations on the manners and customs of the Egyptians (London, 1800) 17–20; The Literary Panorama 8 (1810) cols. 137–42; Antes, Extract of the narrative of the life of … John Antes (London, 1811) 12–13. 177 E. Ullendorf, Ethiopia and the Bible (repr. ed.; Oxford, 1988 [1968]) 63–66. 178 Summary Account of the Proceedings of the British & Foreign Bible Society (London, 1816) 118; Proceedings of a meeting … of the American Bible Society (New York, 1816) 174. 179 Jones, ed., Works of Sir William Jones, 2.33–34, 4.314–19; Teignmouth, Memoirs of Sir William Jones, 307, 430; Asiatick Researches: or, Transactions of the Society, Instituted in Bengal 1 (1788) 383–86; The Scots Magazine 51 (December 1789) 646–48; The European Magazine 16 (December 1789) 406–7; Gazetteer and New Daily Advertiser (22 January 1790); Gentleman’s Magazine 60 (March 1790) 224. 180 Townley, Illustrations of Biblical Literature, 1.151; W. Jowett, Christian Researches in the Mediterranean, from MDCCCXV to MDCCCXX (3rd ed.; London, 1824) 198–203; L. Laborde, Voyages en Abyssinie (Paris, 1838) 28–29; W. Canton, A History of the British and Foreign Bible Society, 5 vols. (London, 1904–1910) 2.23.

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dictionaries.181 So much so that in the third and fourth books of his Travels he used manuscripts in his possession to write a digressive chronicle of the reigns of various Ethiopian monarchs. But it was one thing to provide a history “interspersed with his own reflections and observations,” quite another to undertake a translation from Geʿez that would withstand scrutiny. And Bruce had “not been trained to the drudgery of verbal criticism.”182 In short, he lacked the meticulousness and patience necessary for scholarship.183 Even so, we shall see that Bruce was able to identify and mark the important verse (1 En 1:9) cited in Jude 14–15 in one of his two remaining copies of Ethiopic Enoch (MS Bodl. or. 531).184 It should also be observed that although Bruce discontinued his translation of Ethiopic Enoch, several printed notices served to draw increased attention to the book. Thus in some parallel French and English exercises it was stated that the Ethiopians were great lovers of learning and had two universities. One was at Axum, where there was a fine library belonging to the king. The other was at “Embie,” which reportedly held “manuscripts of Enoch, Abraham, Solomon, and Esdras, written with their own hands.”185 A compiler of a Persian, Arabic and English dictionary was better informed. Remarking that the “books of Enoch have long enjoyed great reputation in the East,” he added that lately that “ingenious and enterprising traveller Mr. Bruce” had “discovered the prophecy” during his stay in Ethiopia and brought back several copies to Europe.186 3

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Proud of the numerous artefacts and texts he had acquired on his wanderings, Bruce built a large room adjoining his mansion-house to display them. 181 Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 434. 182 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.clxvi, clxxiii–clxxv; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 119, 126–27. 183 According to one anecdote, upon the request of an eminent clergyman Bruce volunteered to undertake a literal translation of a number of texts from the Pentateuch of the Ethiopian Bible so that “they might be compared with the English version.” Apparently “he did do this, but they were unfortunately mislaid among his numerous papers.” This sounds like a convenient excuse for not fulfilling his promise. See Beloe, Sexagenarian, 2.46. 184 MS Bodl. Or. 531, fly-leaf, fol. 1r; Bruce, Travels, 1.499. 185 L. Chambaud, Themes François & Anglois (London, 1776) 187; cf. Geography for Youth (London, 1782) 115; W. Perks, The Youth’s General Introduction to Guthrie’s Geography (London, 1792) 386. 186 J. Richardson, A Dictionary, Persian, Arabic, and English (Oxford, 1777) 58; cf. J. Murray, The Magazine of the Ants ([Newcastle], 1777) 4, “the prophecy of Enoch, which is said to have been lately brought from some of the unfrequented tribes of Arabians.” -

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In September 1792 a visitor described a tour, accompanied by Bruce, through this museum which had its own librarian. Besides the many “curiosities” were some book-cases, the panels at the base ornamented with designs in the style of “Herculaneum fresco figures.” In one cabinet were Bruce’s collection of “Abyssinian and Arabian” manuscripts, some “written upon parchment of goat-skins” and transcribed by priests. Among them was doubtless Bruce’s personal copy of the book of Enoch (MS Bruce 74), although he took pleasure in showing a multi-lingual translation of the Song of Solomon “beautifully” executed in Ethiopic characters, in what Bruce maintained were ten different tongues; “each in a different-coloured ink” (red, blue, green, yellow, etc.).187 As for the other copy of Enoch, Bruce had given it away some four years previously. This can be seen in the elegantly written inscription on the fly-leaf which declared that at London on 4 June 1788 Bruce had presented it to John Douglas (1721–1807), a Scottish-born Doctor of Divinity recently appointed Bishop of Carlisle, “as a token of his respect and Gratitude, begging him to place it in any Collection at Oxford, he may think proper”: This small volume was brought from Abyssinia by Mr Bruce, who found it in the Canon of the Scriptures of that church, placed immediately before the Book of Job.—From whence it came to them, is uncertain.—It was a Book received all over the East in the time of Sabaeism, as well as by the Sabaeans, as by the Jews, and with it another called the Book of Seth, which is now no longer extant. On forming the canon of the Scriptures, the first general Council is said to have purposely omitted the Epistle of Jude, as mentioning this Book of Enoch, which they accounted Apocryphal.—Afterwards the Council of Trent re-admitted the Book of Jude, but left Enoch excluded as before. The Passage alluded to, is the 14th. and 15th verses of the Epistle of Jude, and answers to the 2nd. chapter of the Ethiopic manuscript, marked with a small black cross.— In the beginning of this century the learned Pieresc endeavored by all means to get this Book into his hands, and he was at a very considerable expence about it; instead of which, a false Manuscript was imposed 187 J. Lettice, Letters on a Tour through various parts of Scotland (London, 1794) 492–97; Bonnar, “Larbert,” in New Statistical Account of Scotland, VIII.351; Fischer-Kattner, Spuren der Begegnung, 467 n. 175; Nimmo, History of Stirlingshire, 1.323–25. According to Alexander Murray, the languages were “Amharic, Falashan, Gafat, Agou of Damot, Agou of Lasta or Tcherets, Agou and Galla.” An excerpt from this manuscript was reproduced in facsimile in the first edition of Bruce’s Travels. It is now held at the Bodleian Library, MS Bruce 94. See Bruce, Travels, vol. 1, between 400–1; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (3rd ed.), 2.408 n.; Catalogue of … Oriental literature … sold by auction … Robins, 17–18. -

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upon him.—This was afterwards discovered, and the Book placed in the Library of Cardinal Mazarin. Dr. Woide of the University of Oxford, translated this present Book, in the year 1774, but has not yet published it.188 Some six weeks later on 18 July 1788 and with the support of Joseph Banks, then president of the Royal Society, the trustees of the British Museum approved the loan of some of Bruce’s oriental manuscripts on condition that the public had regulated access to them.189 Among the borrowed Ethiopic manuscripts were a copy of the Old Testament in five volumes—including Enoch; a multivolume History of Ethiopia; the Chronicle of Axum [Kebra Nagaśt, i.e., “The Glory of Kings”]; and the Song of Solomon.190 They can be placed there on 3 January 1789. For on that day, Woide responded to a letter from Bruce asking him to go immediately to the British Museum and there locate a thin volume marked on the back “Histoire d Abissinie,” in which he was to check the length of the reigns of certain Ethiopian kings. Although Bruce’s tone was peremptory, Woide obliged. Indeed, he went so far as to copy the two last leaves of the book as an added gift. Doubtless retaining Bruce’s favour remained important to Woide despite, as he confided to another correspondent, this “troublesome task.”191 But the frustration of not having his manuscripts to hand so as to check minor details in the “Annals of Abyssinia,” which were to be included in his forthcoming travels, evidently proved too much for Bruce. Accordingly on 28 April 1789—little more than nine months after lending them—Bruce retrieved his manuscripts through Peter Elmsley (1735/6–1802), a well-known Scottish bookseller operating in the Strand, London.192 Meanwhile, Bruce had been working intermittently on an account of his travels for nearly a dozen years, transcribing or arranging his journals and 188 Bodl. MS Bodl. Or. 531, fly-leaf. 189 BM Central Archive, CE 3/7, 1991–92; BM CE 4/2, 668r–v; Dawson, ed., Banks Letters, 177–78; Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 116–17 n.; Catalogue of … Oriental literature … sold by auction … Robins, 3–5, 9–12, 12–16, 17–18. 190 One version of the Kebra Nagaśt is now Bodl. MS Bruce 93, while another copy Bruce had made is Bodl. MS Bruce 87. In Ted Erho’s view, the other manuscripts referred to here can probably be identified as Bodl. MSS Bruce 71–75, 88–91, and 94. See W. Budge, trans., The Queen of Sheba and Her Only Son Menyelek (Kěbra Nagast) (2nd ed., Oxford, 1932; repr., Cambridge, ON, 2000) xviii. 191 BL Add. MS 48,706, fol. 70r–v; BL Add. MS 48,710, fol. 99r; BL Add. MS 48,711, fol. 113v. 192 BM CE 3/8, 2004; BM CE 4/2, 667; BM CE 4/2, 668v; Dawson, ed., Banks Letters, 178; N. Chambers, Joseph Banks and the British Museum: The world of collecting, 1770–1830 (London, 2007) 93; O.M. Brack, “Elmsley, Peter (1735/6–1802),” ODNB; cf. Bruce, Travels, 1.489; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.clxii note; Annual Review 7 (January 1808) 268.

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sometimes even drafting a few pages before becoming distracted by “more pleasurable avocations.”193 All the same, he received occasional encouragement to complete this task which was expected to bring him both “lasting fame” and “a great sum of money,” as well as silencing whispers that he had never reached the sources of the Nile.194 “Advent’rous” Bruce was even the subject of an anonymous ode published in May 1786 inviting the “bold traveller” and discoverer of those “coy fountains” to reveal the mysteries of Africa.195 Its creator was the poet William Hayley (1745–1820), someone then unknown to Bruce but a friend and later patron of William Blake.196 Hayley was also author of an Essay on Old Maids (3 vols., 1785), a work which drew on purported fragments of the book of Enoch and introduced the character Kunaza, the patriarch’s beautiful virgin daughter who had resisted the advances of Pharmarus, inventor of magic—unlike her sister Kezia who was seduced by Semiexas “prince of the licentious angels.”197 Yet Bruce procrastinated, attributing the delay in publication to a combination of time-consuming law suits, ill health, and the premature death of his second wife; a “melancholy event” which “left him in solitude.”198 His young friend James Fennell (1766–1816), who had turned to acting on the Edinburgh and London stages after squandering his inheritance gambling, subsequently added that Bruce was affluent and hence lacked the “usual incitation to writing”: money.199 But after supposedly meeting privately with George III together with the urgings of his old friend Daines Barrington (1727/28–1800), judge and antiquary, Bruce was persuaded to finish the project. Accordingly, he wrote the narrative part of his travels first and then added various reflections and supplementary material, notably a translation of the “Annals of Abyssinia” from the

193 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.clxv; J. Fennell, An Apology for the life of James Fennell (Philadelphia, 1814) 269. 194 Morning Post (14 August 1778); General Evening Post (8–11 April 1786); cf. Gentleman’s Magazine 59, part i (1789) 544. 195 Bruce, Travels, vol. 1, “Ode to James Bruce,” repr. Public Advertiser (5 June 1790); Annual Register, or a view of the History of Politics 32 (1790) part ii, 145–46, and The European Magazine 17 (1790) 392–93; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.10. 196 W. Hayley, Memoirs of the life and writings of William Hayley, Esq., 3 vols. (London, 1785) 1.343–44. 197 W. Hayley, A Philosophical, Historical, and Moral Essay on Old Maids, 3 vols. (London, 1785) 2.6–37; cf. M.K. Schuchard, Why Mrs Blake Cried. William Blake and the Sexual Basis of Spiritual Vision (London, 2006) 271. 198 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.clxv, 66–68; The Edinburgh Magazine 5 (June 1795) 416. 199 Fennell, Apology, 269–70; J. Knight, rev. N. Banerji, “Fennell, James (1766–1816),” ODNB.

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original manuscripts.200 Bruce’s method of composition was a combination of writing and dictation. For the latter he relied on the services of several people. Thus for what became volume one—which included his account of Ethiopic Enoch—from mid-May 1788 Bruce dictated at a residence in Buckingham Street, London to the future architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe (1764–1820), whose uncle the Moravian missionary John Antes had supplied Bruce with money during the latter’s residence in Gondar and afterwards met him in Cairo. It was not a successful partnership. According to Latrobe, his work required “the most persevering attention, as well as a great quickness of pen.” Having laboriously transcribed Bruce’s words (the introduction alone filled nearly 100 folio leaves), he then copied most of it before correcting nine folio volumes based on the annotations of Barrington and the Bishop of Carlisle as well as his own judgment. Nor was Latrobe’s “very tedious and disagreeable task” facilitated by what he called Bruce’s “uncouth” style, which he likened to the conversation of a Scotsman who had left the Highlands late in life. To make matters worse, on 28 June 1789, having finished what Bruce had wanted, Bruce then placed Latrobe in an awkward situation by avoiding payment. After ignoring letters from both Latrobe and his uncle and then belittling Latrobe’s contribution, Bruce told him to get five guineas from the bookseller Elmsley (to whom Bruce owed money). As a result, Latrobe initiated legal proceedings.201 Another of Bruce’s amanuenses was William Logan, possibly a young Scottish clergyman, who served him from 1786 until Bruce’s death.202 The actor James Fennell also helped; certainly in February 1789 and perhaps also the summer months of 1787 and 1788. Fennell, however, was reluctant to take much credit restricting his acknowledged involvement to making Bruce’s Scottish words more palatable to English ears.203 Through this process of writing, dictation, and editorial amendment the first—albeit still to be expanded—manuscript copy of Bruce’s travels was completed by spring 200 Fennell, Apology, 271; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.clxv–clxvi, 68; D.P. Miller, “Barrington, Daines (1727/8–1800),” ODNB. Bruce may already have translated “a considerable part” of the “Annals of Abyssinia” by mid-February 1776; see Brock, ed., Correspondence of William Hunter, 2.212–13. 201 J.C. van Horne and L. Formwalt, eds., The papers of Benjamin Henry Latrobe. Series IV. Correspondence and Miscellaneous Papers, vol. 1, 1784–1804 (New Haven, 1984) 18–19; Benjamin Henry Latrobe to Thomas Jefferson (Washington, 12 August 1817), https:// founders.archives.gov/documents/Jefferson/03-11-02-0511, A. Abrahams, “The MSS. of Bruce of Abyssinia,” Notes and Queries (25 October 1924) 295–96; Reid, Traveller Extra­ ordinary, 303–4; G. Darley, “Latrobe, Benjamin Henry (1764–1820),” ODNB. 202 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.cccxlix n. 203 Fennell, Apology, 264–66; C. Hulbert, The African traveller; or, select lives, voyages, and travels, carefully abridged from the original publications of Bruce … (London, 1817) 21–22.

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1788.204 Meanwhile, preparations had already begun to publish the work in English as well as a German translation, although the latter project was temporarily abandoned.205 In mid-October 1787 Horace Walpole reported that Bruce was “printing his travels,” which Walpole supposed would prove that Bruce’s “narratives were fabulous.”206 Nearly three months later in January 1788 a correspondent of Thomas Percy informed him that the intended dedicatee of Bruce’s “Abyssinian Tour” was Daines Barrington, the only person who was sufficiently credulous for the author’s purpose. On 17 April 1788 another of Percy’s correspondents told him that the manuscript of Bruce’s travels was in London, where it was to be printed in a 3-volume quarto edition “with many copper plates.”207 Yet the cost of this “elegant and extensive” edition was expected to be “too high for many readers.”208 Early the following year Bruce came into conflict with his London-based publisher Thomas Cadell the elder (1742–1802) who, apparently because of delays in finalising the manuscript, seems to have been disinclined to purchase the travels at the original asking price of £3,000. Consequently, as Barrington wrote to Percy on 20 February 1789, Bruce resolved to “print his work at his own home in Scotland.” Fennell, by his own account, was despatched late at night to Glasgow to “procure the necessary apparatus and workmen.” But despite producing a specimen it soon became apparent to Bruce that he would have to publish by conventional means.209 Accordingly, after some negotiation, Bruce drew up a contract with George Robinson (1736–1801) of Paternoster Row, London, who agreed to publish the travels in an edition of 2000 copies for £6,666.210 A further contract was signed between April and May 1789 with two Scottish printers, James Sibbald (1747–1803) and James Ruthven of Edinburgh. Even so, matters did not progress smoothly. Sibbald became ill in June, prompting Bruce to substitute Ruthven’s name for Sibbald’s on the title-page. Then Bruce became dissatisfied with a batch of yellowed and underweight paper 204 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (3rd ed.), 1.cccl n.; cf. Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.cccxlix n., where “spring 1778” is evidently a misprint. 205 Dawson, ed., Banks Letters, 779. 206 Lewis, ed., Walpole’s correspondence, 31.255. 207 J. Nichols, Illustrations of the Literary History of the Eighteenth Century, 8 vols. (London, 1817–1858) 7.4, 493. 208 A Voyage to Abyssinia, by Father Jerome Lobo  … by M. Le Grand  … Translated from the French by Samuel Johnson (London, 1789) 9. 209 Fennell, Apology, 271–72; Nichols, Illustrations, 8.273; C. Dille, “Cadell, Thomas, the elder (1742–1802),” ODNB. 210 Barrington put the figure at £6,500; a German periodical inflated it to £8,000; while a Scottish periodical subsequently reduced it to £6,000. See, Allgemeine Literatur-Zeitung 14 (January 1790) col. 108; The Edinburgh Magazine 5 (June 1795) 416.

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supplied by a local paper mill at Auchendinny. Furious, he accused Sibbald of sabotage, calling him an “Arch rascal.” Legal proceedings ensued, at the conclusion of which Bruce’s claim for £216 in loss and expenses was dismissed while Sibbald and Ruthven were cleared of the charge of “failing to deliver the book in a workmanlike manner.”211 On 9 June 1789 Woide wrote that Bruce’s book, which was to have been printed at Cadell’s, was instead to be printed at Edinburgh. Three days later Barrington supplied Percy with further details: Bruce had purchased paper, types, and ink; the work would now be a 4-volume quarto edition containing at least 40 engravings; preparations were underway for French and German translations; and copyright would be retained by Bruce.212 Some of Bruce’s own correspondence that year indicates that he continued to face difficulties, notably securing an adequate supply of ink while maintaining four printing presses and paying two compositors.213 At the same time, he was kept busy at Edinburgh correcting proofs.214 Then on 14 February 1790 Bruce wrote to Robinson letting him know that 135 bales of his Travels were aboard a ship in Edinburgh. This amounted to 2,024 copies of the ordinary edition and 21 copies printed on imperial paper for high-status recipients. Besides retaining a copy of each edition to check for corrections, additional copies had been sent to Paris and Leipzig for translation.215 At the end of the month Barrington notified Percy that Bruce had recently arrived in London but that 2,000 copies of his Travels, now expanded to a 5-volume quarto edition with nearly 60 copper-plate engravings, were still afloat in the vicinity of Norfolk.216 Then, having secured permission to dedicate his book to George III, on 13 April 1790 Bruce presented a specially printed copy to the King, which was “most graciously received.” The following day he presented the volumes to Queen Charlotte, who reportedly praised their author for rendering Ethiopian manners with “such delicacy of thought and 211 R. Sher, The Enlightenment & the Book. Scottish Authors & Their Publishers in EighteenthCentury Britain, Ireland & America (Chicago, 2006) 242–43; W. McDougall, “Sibbald, James (1747–1803),” ODNB. 212 BL Add. MS 48,711, fol. 131r; Nichols, Illustrations, 8.274. 213 James Bruce to George Robinson (Edinburgh, 15 June 1789), https://www.the-saleroom .com/en-gb/auction-catalogues/chiswick-auctions/catalogue-id-srchis10463/lot-25d8 b967-36a5-48ad-8df1-a89b00e2fa8a. 214 Dawson, ed., Banks Letters, 178, 533; Cumming, “Unpublished letters of James Bruce,” 50. 215 Private possession, James Bruce to George Robinson (Edinburgh, 14 February 1790), https://www.lotsearch.net/lot/bruce-james-1730-1794-two-autograph-letters-signed-to -george-robinson-23967818?page=2. 216 Nichols, Illustrations, 8.275.

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expression” that the book “promised so much instructive amusement.”217 Finally, on 25 April the five-volume edition of Bruce’s Travels was published, priced at five guineas.218 The title-page displayed an engraving of a medal by James Heath; Bruce’s head in profile on one face, on the obverse three figures representing the fountains of the Nile and above them a Latin inscription: “It has not happened to anyone to have seen this source.”219 Later that year a French translation by J.H. Castéra was published at Paris by Charles-Joseph Panckhoucke. This contained restored passages that Bruce had expurgated from the English version lest they offend female readers.220 A German translation by Johann Jacob Volkmann (1732–1803) with a preface and supplementary notes by the physician and naturalist Johann Friedrich Blumenbach (1752–1840) was also published at Leipzig by Philip Erasmus Reich.221 One contemporary journalist estimated that—even allowing for the expense of paper, ink, engraving and printing—Bruce had netted almost £3,000 profit on the first English edition alone.222



The reception of Bruce’s Travels merits extensive discussion. Here, however, our focus is on the consequences during his lifetime for those interested in Ethiopic Enoch. As we have seen, prior to the publication in April 1790 of the first edition of Bruce’s Travels, very few people knew more than the outline of his claim to have brought back “an Abyssinian Manuscript which contains the Prophecy of Enoch.”223 The exceptions were certain scholars and their correspondents, some British antiquarians, and readers of particular German and French learned publications. Consequently, what Bruce had to say about Ethiopic Enoch in print became almost an authorized version of the book’s opening chapters. Judging from statements in the first volume of his Travels, these passages were composed between mid-July 1788 and late April 1789.224 This agrees with Latrobe’s testimony that he was employed as Bruce’s amanuensis 217 Whitehall Evening Post (6–8 April 1794); General Evening Post (13–15 April 1794); Hulbert, African traveller, 22. 218 Whitehall Evening Post (24–27 April 1794). 219 J. Payne, Universal Geography formed into a new and entire system (London, 1791) 1.337. The inscription: “Nec contigit ulli hoc vidisse caput.” 220 Hulbert, African traveller, 22. 221 N. Klatt, ed., The Correspondence of John Friedrich Blumenbach, Volume III: 1786–1790 (Göttingen, 2010) 264, 284–85, 308–9, 320–21, 324, 326, 327, 351. 222 Edinburgh Magazine 5 (June 1795) 416. 223 Lloyd’s Evening Post 2531 (17–20 September 1773). 224 Bruce, Travels, 1.lxix, 489, 498; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.72.

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between mid-May 1788 and late June 1789. Evidently, Bruce’s indirect gift of a copy of Ethiopic Enoch to the Bodleian Library (MS Bodl. Or. 531) together with the temporary loan of some of his Ethiopic manuscripts to the British Museum (including MS Bruce 74) were intended as public-spirited gestures. No doubt Bruce also hoped that such munificence would endow him with cultural capital. Yet the timing of his gift and loan is also revealing since, with the bulk of his Travels completed, Bruce thought that he no longer needed these texts. And while he subsequently retrieved his manuscripts from the British Museum he left Ethiopic Enoch at Oxford untouched. This suggests that by late spring 1788 Bruce had definitely abandoned his translation of Enoch from the Geʿez. Not only that, but by retaining two copies of Ethiopic Enoch for more than seventeen years he ensured that no one else in the British Isles other than Woide could complete a translation unless they too journeyed to Paris. Following the publication of Bruce’s Travels, several English-language periodicals and at least one French journal quoted or noticed his account of Ethiopic Enoch.225 And all did so uncritically with the exception of The English Review, which defended Woide’s reputation from Bruce’s dishonest misrepresentation.226 There was also a brief if informed discussion in an appendix to Bruce’s Travels by the naturalist Johann Friedrich Gmelin (1748–1804).227 Further publicity came from Isaac D’Israeli’s popular Curiosities of Literature (1791). Here D’Israeli plagiarised Bruce’s story of how Peiresc had been deceived when he purchased what he thought were “The Prophecies of Enoch,” but which upon examination turned out to be a book with a misleading title.228 Moreover, an entertainment for newspaper readers conceived as a fantastical journey to the subterranean world recounted how, in the manuscript room of a museum of curiosities, a traveller saw the “prophecy of Enoch” written upon paper made from amianthus.229 Finally, Bruce’s Travels stimulated interest in Ethiopic Enoch among certain readers of the polymath and mystic Emanuel Swedenborg (1688–1772); a milieu intermittently inhabited by 225 The Analytic Review 7 (June 1790) 146–47; The Critical Review 70 (July 1790) 50–51; The Aberdeen Magazine, Literary Chronicle, and Review 3 (1790) 483–85; The Historical Magazine; or, Classical Library of Public Events 2 (1790) 302; L’Esprit des Journaux, François et Étrangers 11 (November 1790) 88–90. 226 The English Review 16 (July 1790) 55–56; The English Review 16 (September 1790) 183. 227 J.F. Gmelin, Anhang zu James Bruce Reisen in das Innere von Africa, nach Abyssinien an die Quellen des Nils (Leipzig, 1791) 151–52. 228 Bruce, Travels, 1.497; cf. I. D’Israeli, Curiosities of Literature (London, 1791) 20–21; The Town and Country Magazine, 23 (December 1791) 562. 229 Gazetteer and New Daily Advertiser (23 September 1790).

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William Blake requiring detailed treatment elsewhere.230 Yet the most intriguing of all contemporary responses to Bruce’s Travels is contained in a letter dated 18 May 1790 written from Hamburg to a recipient residing in England. Here the author, an “elegant classical scholar” and “accomplished gentleman,” recounted what sounds like a garbled anecdote ultimately derived from Woide: Mr. Bruce himself has often been deceived. When he returned from his travels, he brought over several precious manuscripts: one he sent as a present to the King of France—it was said to be written by Enoch. This being the most marvellous thing that ever was heard of, it was carefully shut up in an elegant box, and nobody was allowed even to peep at it. A German, who was employed in the library, to collate different old manuscripts, humbly represented, that if it was kept in this box, it could not possibly be of any use; and as he was much versed in the ancient oriental languages, offered to decypher it.—No; they would not let a creature see it. Some time after the Queen came to visit the library, and Mons. l’Abbé Directeur, to pay his court to Her Majesty, brought out this box and uncovered it. The German, who was there, peeped over the Queen’s shoulders, and behold—this precious manuscript was nothing more than a Coptic copy of one of the Gospels of the Apostles;—consequently Mr. Bruce is not infallible.231 4

Legacy

The fundamental question that needs addressing is why no European undertook a complete translation of Ethiopic Enoch during Bruce’s lifetime. There are, I think, three main aspects to this answer. Firstly, we must consider Bruce’s character. His narcissistic personality, occasionally difficult behaviour, propensity for embellishment and even taking credit for others’ achievements understandably tended to create a bad impression within certain circles of polite Italian and British society. So much so, that a number of Bruce’s hearers and then readers questioned the accuracy of both minor and major details in his self-aggrandizing dialogues and travelogue. Such was the damage to Bruce’s 230 The New Magazine of Knowledge concerning Heaven and Hell 2 (London, 1791) 421–23; W. Spence, Essays in Divinity and Physic (London, 1792) 19–21. 231 Letters from the continent; describing the manners and customs of Germany, Poland, Russia, and Switzerland, in the years 1790, 1791, and 1792 (London, 1812) iii, 62–63.

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reputation that relatively few scholars and wanderers were prepared to defend his inconsistent and partial accounts. Consequently, some people did not believe either that Bruce had discovered the source of the (Blue) Nile, or that he had returned to Europe with several copies of Ethiopic Enoch. Secondly, there were very few, if any, Britons before the turn of the nineteenth century possessed of sufficient skill, patience and time to produce a full and accurate translation from the Geʿez—including Bruce himself, despite his posturing to the contrary. Indeed, by wanting to take credit for being the first person to render Ethiopic Enoch into a major European written or spoken language, Bruce seems to have deterred other scholars from undertaking this important task. Instead they waited for him to deliver on a project he eventually abandoned. Afterwards, as we shall see in the next chapter, Alexander Murray—recommended as the ablest Ethiopic scholar within the British dominions—died quite young. Given his professed dislike of the subject matter, Murray may anyway have been disinclined to undertake a translation. Among native German speakers, however, the situation appears to have been different. There was strong interest among certain specialists, notably Woide and Michaelis. Furthermore, in 1820 Wilhelm Gesenius (1786–1842) of Halle, an expert in Hebrew, undertook research with the intention of producing a Latin translation. But to consult the three copies Gesenius knew of necessitated foreign travel to Paris, London, and Oxford. As for Italian speakers, they were largely unaware that Bruce had also gifted a copy in Rome to Pope Clement XIV. That leaves France. And it was here, although only after Bruce’s death, that the greatest advances were made by about 1800—particularly through the important contribution of Antoine Isaac, Baron Silvestre de Sacy (1758–1838), but also an untraced work by his pupil Louis-Mathieu Langlès (1763–1824).232 Thirdly, at the outset Ethiopic Enoch appeared to be of comparatively minor benefit in settling theological disputes among Protestants within the English-speaking world. Whereas the Old Testament Apocrypha still generated controversy as late as 1825, extra-canonical texts such as Enoch had essentially become curiosities rather than weapons wielded in polemical attacks against the authority of the Anglican Church and its derivatives. Consequently, from a theological perspective within the Anglosphere, Ethiopic Enoch proved to be of greatest interest to nonconformists—particularly assorted Swedenborgians and Muggletonians, as well as the Latter-day Saints. Given these factors, the book of Enoch’s appeal was more pronounced in other spheres—notably 232 The Scots Magazine 90 (December 1822) 640.

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among people predisposed to what might be termed the occult, including the odd notable Freemason. Moreover, it became relatively influential for some explorations of antediluvian themes expressed through the medium of prose, poetry and art. All of this requires further detailed research. Now, however, I want to turn our attention to what happened to Bruce’s manuscripts after his death.

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Chapter 10

A “Rich and Unparalleled Collection”

The Afterlives of James Bruce’s Manuscripts and Drawings Ariel Hessayon In the previous part of this essay, I examined what befell the manuscripts and drawings that James Bruce brought back from his travels. Here I want to explore their fate after his death—particularly the two copies of Ethiopic Enoch in Britain (MSS Bodl. Or. 531 and Bruce 74). Accordingly, my account begins immediately after Bruce’s demise and culminates with the Bodleian Library’s purchase of ninety-six volumes from his oriental collections in 1843. It should be added that what is presented here has not been done before in any detail.



Following Bruce’s death, and having outlived both his wives, Adriana Allan (1734–1754) and Mary Dundas (1754?–1785), his manuscripts passed to his surviving son by his second marriage: James Bruce (1780–1810).1 As for the copyright to Bruce’s commercially successful Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile (1790), this was purchased in 1802 by a group of four publishers including Archibald Constable (1774–1827), who that same year began issuing the Edinburgh Review.2 Intending to produce a revised and expanded second edition of Bruce’s Travels, the publishers sought the opinion of John Leyden (1775–1811), a student of oriental languages and accomplished poet. In an undated letter from Edinburgh, probably written in 1802, Leyden reported that he had been granted an opportunity to examine Bruce’s papers at the family’s country seat in Kinnaird, Stirlingshire. Among the “Abyssinian” manuscripts

1 J. Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.xxi–xxiii, clxiii, cxciv–cxcvi, ccclviii; The European Magazine 58 (July–December 1810) 76; M.E.C. Bruce, Family Records of the Bruces and Cumyns (Edinburgh, 1870) 368–69, 377–79. 2 Star and Evening Advertiser (3 May 1800); Caledonian Mercury (30 June 1800); T. Constable, Archibald Constable and his literary correspondents, 3 vols. (Edinburgh, 1873) 1.44–46; D. Hewitt, “Constable, Archibald (1774–1827),” ODNB.

© Ariel Hessayon, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_012

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was a copy of the “Book of Enoch.”3 Most likely on Leyden’s recommendation the publishers then employed his friend Alexander Murray (1775–1813), an Edinburgh university-educated linguist of impoverished rural origins, to work through Bruce’s jumbled documents.4 The “studious, timid, and reserved” Murray took up a ten-month residence at Kinnaird between September 1802 and early July 1803.5 Unfortunately for Murray, James Bruce the younger became increasingly frustrated and obstructive as it became apparent that he would not profit quickly from this publishing venture. Indeed, he wished to be rid of his unwelcome guest. Nonetheless, and despite bemoaning his host’s conduct and ignorance in letters to Constable, Murray was able to make some headway with Bruce’s correspondence and manuscripts.6 In October 1802 a prospectus of a new edition of Bruce’s Travels appeared in the Scots Magazine. It informed readers that Bruce had returned to Europe with about seventy volumes of Arabic manuscripts together with a complete copy “in many large quartos” of all the books of the Old and New Testament in Ethiopic. In addition, Bruce had “imported several copies of the celebrated book of Enoch, a Gnostic volume, quoted by an Apostle, but, perhaps, never seen before by any learned European.”7 Since Bruce had described Enoch in his Travels as a “Gnostic book, containing the age of the Emims, Anakims, and Egregores, supposed descendents of the sons of God, when they fell in love with the daughters of men, and had sons who were giants,” the Edinburgh-based author of the prospectus had merely abbreviated Bruce’s readily available printed description.8 Meanwhile, Murray continued at Kinnaird, completing a “Life” of Bruce— “that bold, but not infallible” Ethiopian visitor—by October 1803.9 This biography was serialised in the Scots Magazine and also appended to the second

3 The Scots Magazine 90 (December 1822) 639–40; The Edinburgh Magazine 11 (December 1822) 639–40, repr. A. Murray, History of the European Languages … with a life of the Author, 2 vols. (Edinburgh, 1823) 1.lxxix–lxxxii; T.W. Bayne, rev. R. Maxwell, “Leyden, John (1775–1811),” ODNB. 4 J. Reith, The Life and Writings of Rev. Alex. Murray (Dumfries, 1903) 37–66; T.W. Bayne, rev. J.D. Haigh, “Murray, Alexander (1775–1813),” ODNB. 5 Murray, History of European Languages, 1.lxxxiii–lxxxiv; H. Cockburn, Memorials of his time (New York, 1856) 262–63. 6 Constable, Archibald Constable, 1.213–43. 7 The Scots Magazine 64 (October 1802) 819. 8 Bruce, Travels, 1.499. 9 J.J. Halls ed., The Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, Esq. F.R.S. &c., 2 vols. (London, 1834) 1.263; J. Nichols, Illustrations of the Literary History of the Eighteenth Century, 8 vols. (London, 1817–58) 7.120.

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edition of Bruce’s Travels,10 which was published firstly at Edinburgh in seven volumes in 1804 and then reprinted in the same number of volumes the following October.11 Eventually Murray’s account appeared as a distinct publication, serialised in the New Annual Register and issued as a single volume by Constable and his business partners at Edinburgh in 1808.12 Intending neither “to expose the Abyssinian traveller, nor yet tell lies in his favour,” Murray initially insisted that he had acted “honourably and honestly.”13 Thus he balanced the merits of Bruce’s Travels against defects arising from a desire to make his work “agreeable and popular,” as well as an inattention to detail exacerbated by putting too much faith in the accuracy of his memory. Moreover, in Murray’s view the conversations appeared “too easy and vernacular to be the genuine production of barbarians,” while Bruce’s characters were “too refined and sentimental” when compared with stereotypical “savages.”14 In subsequent correspondence Murray was more candid still, explaining that he felt unable to write “a commentary of the most disagreeable kind” for fear of offending Bruce’s family and friends. For Bruce “certainly was not infallible in many respects.” When he composed his Travels, he had become “old and indolent,” his “tale to his amanuensis” resembling “more that of an old veteran by his parlour fire in a winter evening, than the result of fresh and accurate observation.” Consequently, Bruce had compiled his Travels “very carelessly,” above all occasionally indulging in “a vein of romance … which debased the intrinsic merits of his performance.” Accordingly, Murray considered some of Bruce’s observations inaccurate, while several of his “adventures” were “fictitious.” Indeed, the Travels contained: much fact, amusement, and agreeable observation, not unseasoned with genius, nor obtained without hazard, but too much tinged with vanity.15

10 11 12 13 14 15

Murray, History of European Languages, 1.lxxv, lxxxv–lxxxvi. The Times (9 October 1805). New Annual Register (January 1808) 63–92. Constable, Archibald Constable, 1.242–43. Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 1.clxxi, clxxiv–clxxvi. Halls, ed., Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, 1.283–89, 316. Cf. Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (3rd ed.), 7.73, “No cause can be assigned for that confusion [of dates] except the extreme indolence with which Mr Bruce composed his work, about sixteen years after the events which are the subject of it … in the latter part of his days he seems to have viewed the numerous adventures of his active life as in a dream, not in their natural state as to time and place, but under the pleasing and arbitrary change of memory melting into imagination.”

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All the same, Murray’s biography was read as both a vindication of Bruce’s character and the veracity of his Travels. Indeed, it was well-received by one reviewer.16 Interestingly, another reviewer, this time of the second edition of Bruce’s Travels (1804), not only praised the book for being “so ably edited” but also expressed the wish that the erudite Murray would undertake a translation of the book of Enoch, “however extravagant it may be.”17 Certainly, Murray was well-equipped for this task. Admired for his “almost miraculous or supernatural genius for languages,” he mastered Geʿez and to a lesser extent Amharic with the help of Hiob Ludolf’s Lexicon and the Polyglot Bible, subsequently envisaging the relationship between Hebrew, Arabic, and Geʿez as similar to that between German or Dutch to English or Swedish.18 In March 1811 he translated an Ethiopic letter addressed to George III which had been entrusted to Henry Salt (1780–1827), a traveller recently returned from Ethiopia where he had worked for the British government as an observer and representative. When Murray applied for the Professorship of Oriental Languages at Edinburgh University, a keenly contested position to which he was appointed in July 1812, Salt—along with Walter Scott—wrote vigorously in his support. In this testimonial Salt asserted that he had recommended Murray to the Foreign Secretary as “the only person in the British dominions” capable of translating the Ethiopic letter, which he accomplished “in the most satisfactory way.”19 Moreover, Murray afterwards translated an “abstruse” theological dissertation containing the “true doctrines of the Abyssinian faith” for the benefit of the British and Foreign Bible Society, of which he was a member.20 This had been written in Arabic by Mark, Patriarch of Alexandria, and then rendered into Geʿez.21 His motive was doubtless to improve “the study of Oriental Languages” 16 The Monthly Review 60 (December 1809) 385–94; The Edinburgh Magazine 11 (December 1822) 641, repr. Murray, History of European Languages, 1.lxxxiii–lxxxiv. 17 The Annual Review 4 (January 1805) 16. For another review of the second edition of Bruce’s Travels, see The Scots Magazine (December 1805) 926–33. 18 The Scots Magazine 74 (1812) 509, 516–17, 531; The Edinburgh Magazine 11 (December 1822) 640–41, reprinted in Murray, History of European Languages, 1.lxxx–lxxxiii; Halls, ed., Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, 1.241, 244–45. 19 Constable, Archibald Constable, 1.295–307; Halls, ed., Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, 1.238–60, 341, 345–46; Scots Magazine 74 (1812) 507–33; The Edinburgh Magazine 11 (December 1822) 642; Murray, History of European Languages, 1.xciii–xcvi; Deborah Manley and Peta Rée, “Salt, Henry (1780–1827),” ODNB. 20 Constable, Archibald Constable, 1.318–19; Halls, ed., Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, 1.213–14, 290, 323, 326–27, 334–35; Scots Magazine, 74 (1812) 521; Murray, History of European Languages, 1.xcvi; CUL British and Foreign Bible Society, BSA/B1/5, 225, 231–32, 268. 21 CUL British and Foreign Bible Society, MS 194 [missing on 26 July 2019]; calendared in M.R. Falivene and A. Jesson, eds., Historical catalogue of the manuscripts of Bible House

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which in turn would facilitate “communication between the enlightened and as yet uncivilised part of mankind.”22 Given Murray’s linguistic ability coupled with a derogatory attitude to Africa—an “exceedingly curious and interesting,” if relatively inaccessible continent partly populated by “barbarous tribes,”23 his evolving view of Ethiopic Enoch is thus of particular interest. In a lengthy note to the second edition of Bruce’s Travels (1804), Murray suggested that the book had originally been written in Greek, “probably by some Alexandrian Jew.” Since he knew that the German Jesuit Athanasius Kircher (1601–1680) had published a “large” Greek fragment of Enoch in Oedipus Ægyptiacus (essentially Syncellus’ excerpts with minor variants),24 Murray deduced that the Ethiopic version had been translated from a manuscript formerly used by the Greek Church of Alexandria—later assuming this to be the “mother church” of Ethiopia. His conclusion accorded with Ludolf’s judgment, who had surmised that the Pentateuch in the Ethiopic Old Testament derived from the Septuagint.25 According to Murray, Bruce’s copy of “Metsahaf Henoc” (MS Bruce 74) was divided into 90 Kefal, or chapters. Although there were actually 98 chapters in this copy, such an enumeration was not unique even though it is still considerably less than the 108 chapters with which modern scholars are familiar.26 Moreover, it is worth observing that while the copy Murray examined was intact, the Prussian scholar Carl Gottfried Woide (1725–1790) had thought that the Paris manuscript given by Bruce to Louis XV (BnF Éthiopien 49) contained scribal errors—including the disarrangement of certain chapters.27 Indeed, in the words of Ethiopic Enoch’s first English translator Richard Laurence (1760–1838), there were ‘some occasional and manifest variations’ between the

22 23 24

25

26 27

Library (London, 1982) 111–12, and printed in W. Jowett, Christian Researches in the Mediterranean, from MDCCCXV to MDCCCXX (3rd ed.; London, 1824) 180–95. Scots Magazine 74 (1812) 531. Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 2–3, 10. The relationship between the fragment transcribed by Kircher at the monastery of San Salvatore, Messina (if still extant possibly now held at Salamanca) and the excerpts contained within those copies of Syncellus preserved at the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris, merits close examination. Bruce, Travels, 1.489; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 2.411–12, 423–26 n.; Halls, ed., Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, 1.290, 326; A catalogue of a valuable collection of Oriental literature, collected by James Bruce, of Kinnaird, … which will be sold by auction, by Mr. George Robins (London, 1842) 4–6. R.H. Charles ed., The Ethiopic Version of the Book of Enoch edited from twenty-three MSS. (Oxford, 1906) xviii. I am grateful to Ted Erho for clarifying this point. Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 10, fols. 3r–6r; J.D. Michaelis, Literarischer Briefwechsel, 3 vols. (Leipzig, 1794) 3.91–94.

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two copies he was initially able to scrutinise.28 Bruce’s copy also contained a short preface—modelled on an Arabic original—that was omitted from another version formerly in his possession that had been deposited in the Bodleian Library roughly between June 1788 and April 1789 (MS Bodl. Or. 531).29 Murray provided both an English rendering of this preface and the opening lines of the first chapter: In the name of God, the merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and of great mercy and holiness. This book is the book of Henoch the prophet. May his blessing and help be with him, who loves him for ever and ever, Amen. Chap. I. The word of the blessing of Enoch, with which he blessed the chosen and the righteous, that were of old. May it be in the day of temptation a protection against all the evil and wicked. And Enoch lifted up his voice and spake, a holy man of God, while his eyes were open, and he saw a holy vision in the heavens, which the angels revealed to him. And I heard from them every thing, and I understood what I saw.30 It appears that while working directly from the original Geʿez Murray may have consulted a published Latin translation by Antoine Isaac Baron Silvestre de Sacy (1758–1838).31 Besides this brief English translation Murray supplied a synopsis, dividing Ethiopic Enoch into six parts. This can be summarised as follows: Chapters 1–18 The descent of the angels from heaven; copulation with the daughters of men; birth of the giants; instructing humans in the arts of war, peace and luxury; the names of the leading spirits are mentioned; God’s intention to destroy these angels is then revealed to Enoch. Chapters 18–50 Enoch is led by Uriel and Raphael through a series of visions; he saw the burning valley of the fallen spirits, the paradise of 28 Laurence, Book of Enoch, viii, xlviii, 21, 25, 37, 45, 60, 64, 133, 163. Laurence consulted MS Bodl. Or. 531 and Woide’s transcript of BnF Éthiopien 49 (now Bodl. MS Clar. Press d. 10, fols. 10r–133v). 29 I owe to Ted Erho the observation that this formulaic preface derives from the Arabic tradition, from which it was translated into Geʿez and repurposed in a variety of settings. Erho also notes that variants of this preface occur in eighteen of his sample of eighty manuscript copies of Ethiopic Enoch, with just three examples dating before the eighteenth century. 30 Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 2.424–25 n. 31 Cf. A.I.S. de Sacy, “Notice du Livre d’Énoch,” Magasin Encyclopédique 6 (1800) 375, 382.

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the saints, the utmost ends of the earth, the treasuries of the thunder and lightning, winds, rain, dew, and the angels presiding over these; Enoch then led into the place of general judgment where he saw the ancient of days on his throne and all the kings of the earth before him. Chapters 52–58 Noah is alarmed at the enormous wickedness of mankind and fears vengeance; Enoch tells him that a flood of waters would destroy mankind, while a flood of fire would punish the angels (whom the deluge could not affect). Chapters 59–61 The subject of the angels is resumed; Semeiaza, Artukafa, Arimeen, Kakaba-el, Tusael, Ramiel, Danael, and others to the amount of twenty, appear at the head of the fallen spirits, and give fresh instances of their rebellious disposition. Chapters 62–69 Enoch gives his son Mathusala a long account of the sun, moon, stars, the year, months, the winds and similar physical phenomena. Chapters 70–90 The history of the deluge and Noah’s successful preparations for it; the destruction of all flesh, excepting Noah’s family; the execution of Divine vengeance on the angels and their followers.32 Murray concluded by dismissing Ethiopic Enoch as an “absurd and tedious” work and was subsequently censured by Laurence, not only for his “hasty and prejudiced” view but also for presenting an “imperfect and inaccurate” summary of the book’s contents.33 Clearly Murray’s outline does not correspond to a modern division of the text, or indeed the manuscript from which he was working.34 Even so, while he may not have realised that 1 Enoch was a composite work Murray nonetheless appreciated that it consisted of discrete sections. Furthermore, in his Life of Bruce (1808), Murray softened his position somewhat: Enoch was just an “absurd and romantic” book.35 Following Bruce the younger’s premature death, Constable wrote to Murray on 2 December 1810 informing him both that his Life of Bruce had sold “extremely well” (more than 300 copies) and that Bruce the younger’s widow, Elizabeth née Spicer (1773–1867), was thinking of selling her father-in-law’s collection in one lot to either the British Museum or the Royal Society of London.36 This is partly confirmed in the minutes and papers of the British 32 33 34 35

Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 2.425–26 n. I have sometimes paraphrased Murray here. Laurence, Book of Enoch, x n. I owe the latter point to Ted Erho. Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 299 n., repr. in The Annual Review and History of Literature 7 (1808) 269. 36 Constable, Archibald Constable, 1.286–87; Reith, Life and Writings of Murray, 68–69. James Bruce the younger died at Edinburgh on 9 July 1810. He had married Elizabeth Spicer of -

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Museum trustees’ standing committee, which records receipt of a letter “offering for sale the Library & Museum” of the Ethiopian traveller.37 Accordingly, Murray was prevailed upon to return to Kinnaird although poor health and other commitments prevented him from going there until the beginning of May 1811—by which time Mrs. Elizabeth Bruce had, for the present, “changed her intention” to dispose of her inherited collection.38 Murray’s purpose was to re-examine Bruce’s letters and papers in preparation for a third edition of the Travels and, in anticipation of their imminent sale, to catalogue the oriental manuscripts more thoroughly than he had been able to accomplish during his previous residence.39 Mrs. Bruce proved more hospitable than her late husband, although Murray considered her ideas “narrow” and her “fears of being injured numerous.” Murray himself hoped the collection would “fall into the hands of some liberal and public encourager of Oriental literature” and that “for the good of mankind, and of Africa in particular,” knowledge of Ethiopian literature would be promoted. Indeed, in Murray’s view constant communication with “a nation such as the British” could prevent Ethiopian Christians from “falling into perfect barbarism.” For “gross ignorance” had always been extremely harmful in that country: They imagine that religion consists chiefly in fasts, penances, and renunciation of the duties of life; and the morals of the community at large are sacrificed to alternate fanaticism and licentiousness.40 Then in August 1811 Henry Salt sent Murray five Ethiopic manuscripts. The best of them Salt thought was a copy of the “Book of Enoch” known as the “Book Yereed.” But on examining the Geʿez text Murray clarified that it was a collection of hymns called the “Psalter of Yaréd.”41 On 17 March 1812 Salt wrote to Murray again, this time concerning the wish of some members of the British and Foreign Bible Society to furnish Ethiopians with partially printed copies of

37 38 39 40 41

Mount Wear House, Devon, on 9 June 1798. See Star and Evening Advertiser (21 June 1798); The European Magazine 58 (1810) 76; Cumming Bruce, Family Records, 379, 650, 652. BM Central Archive CE 3/9, 2469 (10 November 1810); BM CE 4/3, 988 (2 December 1810). Constable, Archibald Constable, 1.288–302; Halls, ed., Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, 1.260; BM CE 4/3, 988; BM CE 3/9, 2473 (8 December 1810). Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (2nd ed.), 2.416–18 n., 7.410–11, 413–17; cf. Murray, Life and Writings of Bruce, 297–300; Bruce, Travels, ed. Murray (3rd ed.), 2.406–8 n., 7.426–27, 429–33. Halls, ed., Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, 1.260–65, 279, 335; Constable, Archibald Constable, 1.300–4. Halls, ed., Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, 1.274, 276, 289–90; Henry Salt, A Voyage to Abyssinia (London, 1814), between pages 302–3; cf. Falivene and Jesson, eds., Catalogue of manuscripts of Bible House Library, 104. -

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the Scriptures in their native tongue.42 The Society, however, then lacked complete manuscript copies of the Ethiopic Bible and could only readily access an Ethiopic Gospel of John held in Cambridge University Library (MS Oo.I.41) and a Psalter in the Bodleian (MS Poc. 3). To that end Salt wondered if Mrs. Bruce could be persuaded to part with “duplicates” of the Ethiopic Scriptures or else loan them for a price. But she refused, perhaps being advised that a published Ethiopic Bible based on the Kinnaird manuscripts would lower their value.43 Salt added that Mrs. Bruce had also discussed the sale of the entire collection with the trustees of the British Museum, but had broken off negotiations at an early stage—supposedly either because she had “given up the idea” of parting with the manuscripts or else had decided not to dispose of them “during the minority of her only child.” Ten days later Murray responded, informing Salt that Bruce the younger had died with large debts and that his widow faced difficulties from her late husband’s creditors. Apparently, she had asked for the enormous if unrealistic sum of £20,000 which deterred the Museum’s trustees from pursuing the matter further. Consequently, Mrs. Bruce departed for Sidmouth (Devon), just over fifteen miles from her family home of Mount Wear House, Exeter.44 On 15 April 1813, little more than two months after penning the preface to the expanded eight-volume third edition of Bruce’s Travels and long afflicted by “asthmatic complaints,” Murray died of tuberculosis.45 As for Bruce’s oriental manuscripts, it appears that they were still held at Kinnaird about 1814—by which time news had spread of Murray’s detailed catalogue, and with it mention of the book of Enoch contained within a five-volume set of an Ethiopic 42 Halls, ed., Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, 1.322; CUL British and Foreign Bible Society, BSA/B1/5, 215. 43 Halls, ed., Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, 1.322, 326, 330–31, 346–47; CUL British and Foreign Bible Society, BSA/B1/5, 225, 268; Jowett, Christian Researches, 196; R. Zuurmond, Novum Testamentum Aethiopice, Part 2: Edition of the Gospel of Mark (Äthiopistische Forschungen 27; Wiesbaden, 1989) 229–30. In 1817 Salt would help distribute 220 Ethiopic Psalters by way of Alexandria to Ethiopia, while a complete Amharic translation of the New Testament was published in 1829. See CUL British and Foreign Bible Society, BSA/B1/6, 109, 120, 171; The Missionary Register for MDCCCXVII (London, 1817) 352–54, 501–4; The Sixteenth Report of the British and Foreign Bible Society; M.DCCC.XX (London, 1820) 161–63, 167; Jowett, Christian Researches, 198–204; W. Canton, A History of the British and Foreign Bible Society, 5 vols. (London, 1904–10) 1.140, 2.23–24; E. Ullendorff, Ethiopia and the Bible (Oxford, 2006 [1967]) 62–66. 44 Halls, ed., Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, 1.322, 329–31; A. Abrahams, “The MSS. of Bruce of Abyssinia,” Notes and Queries (25 October 1924) 296. 45 Constable, Archibald Constable, 1.334–36; Halls, ed., Life and Correspondence of Henry Salt, 1.334, 356–57; Murray, History of European Languages, 1.lxxxvi.

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Old Testament lacking the Psalms that had been transcribed for Bruce on vellum in a “clear and beautiful” character by scribes at Gondar.46 On 8  August 1820 Mrs Elizabeth Bruce’s brother, Colonel William Spicer (d. 1855), wrote to Joseph Planta (1744–1827), principal librarian of the British Museum. Recounting their conversations about seven years previously, Spicer again offered Bruce’s “valuable” collection of oriental manuscripts to the Museum. In the event that the British Museum declined to purchase them, however, then Spicer would publicise their sale by auction.47 By summer 1821 this “rich and unparalleled collection” had been transported from Scotland and deposited under Spicer’s care at Chelsea Hospital (London), where he served as deputy treasurer.48 Consisting of ninety-seven volumes—twenty-four Ethiopic manuscripts, one Coptic, one Persian, the remainder Arabic—written on “vellum, oriental paper and papyrus, many of them of large size,” all in the “highest state of preservation,” and amassed at “considerable” expense and trouble, the collection was deemed exceedingly valuable. Indeed, the sum of 1000 guineas was reportedly offered and refused for two or three items among the Ethiopic manuscripts.49 Most likely these prized Ethiopic documents were the Old Testament in five volumes including the “long lost and very rare Book of Enoch,” the New Testament, and perhaps also the Chronicle of Axum.50 Evidently acting on Mrs Bruce’s behalf, Colonel Spicer wanted to avoid breaking up the collection by selling pieces separately. Instead on 7 February 1822 he once more offered this “unique and unequalled” collection in its entirety to the British Museum. Emphasizing the “extraordinary exertions, imminent dangers” and “very great” cost of procuring “accurate transcripts of those Books the originals of which were too highly prized to be parted with,” Spicer presented the manuscripts as “splendid evidence” of James Bruce’s “Taste, Labours, and Public Spirit.”51 The details of this attempted transaction, however, would only be disclosed publicly some years later during the proceedings 46 Salt, Voyage to Abyssinia, 485 n.; W. Beloe, The Sexagenarian, 2 vols. (2nd ed.; London, 1818 [1817]) 2.46–47; The Literary Gazette 28 (2 August 1817) 67; A. Forster, “Beloe, William (1758–1817),” ODNB. 47 Abrahams, “MSS. of Bruce of Abyssinia,” 296; P.R. Harris, “Planta, Joseph (1744–1827),” ODNB. 48 BM CE 3/10, 2771 (13 January 1821); BM CE 4/5, 1703–04, 1705, 1707; cf. The London Literary Gazette 221 (14 April 1821) 232; The Literary Gazette 256 (15 December 1821). 49 BM CE 4/5, 1703r–v; Classical Journal 31.61 (1825) 150–51; The Asiatic Journal 20 (1825) 346; Caledonian Mercury (17 October 1825); The Literary Chronicle 6 (29 October 1825) 698; Gentleman’s Magazine 95, part i (1825) 66; Classical Journal 32 (1825) 154, 185–86; The Museum of Foreign Literature and Science 8 (1826) 89. 50 BM CE 4/5, 1703r–v. 51 BM CE 3/10, 2771; BM CE 4/5, 1703–04; BM CE 1/5, 1188 (9 February 1822).

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of a Parliamentary select committee appointed by the House of Commons to investigate the Museum’s “condition, management and affairs.” The key witness was Sir Henry Ellis (1777–1869), Planta’s successor as principal librarian of the Museum.52 During his examination between 18 May and 19 June 1835, Ellis recalled that he had been instructed by the Museum’s trustees to consult the two “highest authorities in the kingdom”: Richard Laurence, then Regius Professor of Hebrew at Oxford University, and Samuel Lee (1783–1852), then Professor of Arabic at Cambridge University.53 About August 1821 they closely examined the manuscripts at Chelsea. Their focus was on the Ethiopic volumes since so few were held in European libraries and because they thought them of more importance for the study of biblical literature.54 Thereafter the two men engaged in correspondence with Ellis, impressing upon him the “high” literary worth of the manuscripts but steadfastly refusing to estimate their monetary value.55 On 14 February 1822 Laurence wrote to Ellis from Christ Church, Oxford, “respecting the merit and intrinsic value” of the manuscripts collected in Ethiopia by Bruce. The scribal copy of the New Testament he judged to be of “higher antiquity” than the other manuscripts and hence of “greater authority.” As for the book of Enoch, to Laurence’s knowledge Bruce had obtained three transcripts: the one in the present collection, a second which he deposited in the Royal Library at Paris, & a third which he presented to the Bodleian. This book perhaps is rather a curious, than a valuable, part of the collection. Concluding with the hope that this “valuable collection” would remain in Britain, Laurence recommended publication of the Ethiopic New Testament from Bruce’s manuscripts.56 On 23 February 1822 Lee wrote to Ellis from Queen’s College, Cambridge. He agreed with Ellis that the book of Enoch was “of but little value”: 52 M. Borrie, “Ellis, Sir Henry (1777–1869),” ODNB. 53 Report from the Select Committee on the condition, management and affairs of the British Museum ([London], 1835) 12, 42, 112–13. Lee had been appointed Professor of Arabic at Cambridge in March 1819 and reportedly had knowledge of eighteen languages including Syriac, Coptic, Persian, Hindustani, Malay, and Geʿez. See Missionary Register for MDCCCXVII, 502; S. Lee, “A Brief History of the Church of Abyssinia,” in Samuel Gobat, Journal of a Three Years’ Residence in Abyssinia (London, 1834) 1–48; T. Hamilton, rev. J.D. Haigh, “Lee, Samuel (1783–1852),” ODNB. 54 BM CE 4/5, 1704, 1705, 1707. 55 Report from Select Committee on British Museum, 12, 42, 112–13. 56 BM CE 4/5, 1705–6; BM CE 1/5, 1190; BM CE 3/10, 2808. Afterwards Laurence was consecrated Archbishop of Cashel at Dublin on 21 July 1822.

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the work itself is a mere fabrication, and one of the most silly description. Besides the copy would not be of much value, as there are others in the Royal Library at Paris, and in the Bodleian at Oxford. Of the latter Dr. Laurence has, some time ago, published a translation and notes.57 In Lee’s estimation, the “truly valuable” aspect of Bruce’s collection was the Ethiopic scriptures even though the copies were not ancient. While parts of the Old Testament were to be found throughout Europe—Laurence possessed Isaiah and all but one of the Minor Prophets, while Lee himself held a roughly 400-year old Ethiopic Octateuch written on vellum—the “critical value” of the New Testament copy was “very great.” But as to the collection’s monetary value, it was impossible to say. Even so, Lee had reason to believe that should the Museum’s trustees decline purchase of what would be “a great national acquisition” then another body would offer between £1000 and £1200 for the collection.58 Accordingly, in February 1822 Ellis wrote to Colonel Spicer requesting him to name a price. After seventeen months consideration and having consulted some “distinguished patrons of literature” and assorted oriental scholars, on 9 July 1823 Spicer asked for the exorbitant figure of £25,000.59 The trustees naturally declined, while Ellis thought the manuscripts were worth scarcely a tenth that amount. During his examination Ellis was also asked specifically about Enoch. Vindicating his conduct and judgment, Ellis belittled it as merely a “fabulous book.” Moreover, in his estimation Bruce’s copy was not valuable. It was not unique, since Ellis was aware that Bruce had presented one copy to Louis XV and one (indirectly) to the Bodleian which, had the trustees desired, could have been transcribed for “a moderate price.” Nor was it old, because Ellis was sure it was a “modern transcript made in Abyssinia.” When pressed on the latter point, Ellis retorted that after his return from Ethiopia Bruce had temporarily deposited his manuscripts at the British Museum, where they were “well known” to his predecessor Planta and other colleagues; “had the manuscript of the Book of Enoch been ancient” Ellis would have been informed.60

57

The first edition of Laurence’s Book of Enoch had been published in mid-May 1821, some nine months previously. 58 BM CE 4/5, 1707–9; BM CE 3/10, 2808; BM CE 1/5, 1192. The copy of Isaiah mentioned here = Bodl. MS Hunt. 626; the Minor Prophets = Bodl. MS Hunt. 625; and the Octateuch = CUL British and Foreign Bible Society MS 169. I am most grateful to Ted Erho for this information. 59 BM CE 4/5, 1835–36; BM CE 1/5, 1213. 60 Report from Select Committee on British Museum, 12, 42, 112–13.

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With the failure to persuade Ellis and the trustees of the collection’s financial worth, preparations for its auction as one lot were begun by placing notices in the press from November 1826. The news even reached France. James Christie the younger (1773–1831) was appointed auctioneer with the sale to take place on 17 May 1827 at his premises on No. 8 King Street, St. James’ Square (London). Prospective purchasers could apply to inspect the manuscripts and obtain a printed catalogue from Christie’s office.61 This abridged listing derived from Murray’s inventory, where he had provided a full description of Bruce’s copy of “The Book of the Prophet Enoch” preserved within the fourth volume of an Ethiopic Old Testament and preceding the book of Job. Occupying 32 leaves, “beautifully and closely written,” this “highly curious” document was supposedly divided into 96 chapters containing 19 sections. These sections, however, had no connection with the chapters, but seemed: arbitrarily made, without regard to the subject of the work. The language is the purest Ethiopic; and the whole book has a peculiar dignity of style and manner, which imposes on the reader, and impresses on his mind ideas of its great antiquity. Reiterating his opinion that it was a pre-Christian work derived from a long-lost Greek original but revising his reckoning as to the number of chapters (96 instead of 90, but still two short of the actual total), Murray here essentially repeated his summary of Ethiopic Enoch’s contents, adding a flourish perhaps meant to stimulate interest from a buyer: The subject of the book is a series of visions, respecting the fallen angels, their posterity, the giants, the crimes which occasioned the Deluge, the mysteries of heaven, the place of the final judgment of men and angels, and various parts of the universe seen by Enoch, and related by him to his son, Mathusala. The narrative is wild and fabulous, but highly expressive of the sentiments and character of those speculative enthusiasts who blended the Chaldaic philosophy with the sacred history of the Jews. As a literary relic it merits attention; and as an Ethiopic book written in the purest Geez, and venerated by the Abyssinians as of equal authority with the writings of Moses, it deserves to be laid before the public.62 61 Morning Post (1 November 1826); Morning Post (25 December 1826); Morning Post (5 January 1827); Morning Post (11 January 1827); Christian Observer (27 February 1827); Journal des Savans (February 1827) 126. 62 I have used the fuller description communicated to Laurence and compared it with that provided in a later auction catalogue, see Laurence, Book of Enoch, x–xi n.; Catalogue of valuable collection of Oriental literature … sold by auction … Robins, 5; cf. A List of the very -

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On 28 February 1827, less than three months prior to the auction, Colonel Spicer responded to a written enquiry from the obsessive collector Sir Thomas Phillipps (1792–1872). Here Spicer maintained that as a patriotic and “highly honourable” Englishwoman his sister was anxious that the “unique” collection she had inherited would not become the “Property of a Foreign Country.” Phillipps, who had indebted himself through extravagant purchases, responded by offering £5000, to be guaranteed by his bond and paid over a minimum of three years—which was swiftly rejected. He also provided an alternative explanation for why the British Museum had declined to pay £25,000: it seemed to Phillipps that for less than a quarter that amount they could have sent “an intelligent person to Abyssinia to collect precisely the same works in Manuscript,” the majority of which would only differ by about fifty years from those transcribed for Bruce.63 The Museum would indeed obtain about 350 codices directly from Ethiopia, including at least seven copies of Ethiopic Enoch, but only as a consequence of a successful British military expedition which culminated in April 1868 with the release of missionaries and other Europeans held captive in a fortress at Magdala [modern Amba Mariam].64 In these circumstances Bruce’s manuscripts were brought under the hammer on 17 May 1827 with “several booksellers and literary men” present. The reserve price was £5500. Yet according to the collector Francis Douce (1757– 1834), despite an “elaborate eulogium” by Christie during which he notified the assembled company that this extraordinary collection ought to be purchased by the nation, “no bidding or advance took place, and they were of course withdrawn.”65 Later that same month one newspaper reported that behind the scenes the government was negotiating the purchase of Bruce’s rare and valuable Æthiopic and other Oriental Manuscripts, collected by the celebrated traveller, James Bruce, esq. of Kinnaird (1827) 3, 5. 63 A. Munby, The Formation of the Phillipps Library up to the year 1840 (Cambridge, 1954) 56–58; A. Bell, “Phillipps, Sir Thomas, baronet (1792–1872),” ODNB. I am grateful to Ted Erho for pointing out that although Phillipps failed to buy Bruce’s collection he did acquire several Ethiopic manuscripts (Phillipps MSS 1053, 16809, 22401, 23451, 23452, 23610). See Bibliotheca Phillippica. Medieval Manuscripts: New Series: Fourth Part. Catalogue of Persian, Turkish and Arabic manuscripts, Indian and Persian miniatures, from the celebrated collection formed by Sir Thomas Phillipps Bt. (London, 1968) 19–21; Bibliotheca Phillippica. Medieval and Oriental Manuscripts: New Series: Ninth Part (London, 1974) 52–55. 64 T. Holland and H. Hozier, Record of the Expedition to Abyssinia, 2 vols. (London, 1870) 2.396–98; W. Wright, Catalogue of the Ethiopic Manuscripts in the British Museum acquired since the year 1847 (London, 1877) 7–9, 11, 14–16, 19; T.M. Erho and L.T. Stuckenbruck, “A Manuscript History of Ethiopic Enoch,” JSP 23.2 (2013) 98–101. 65 The Morning Chronicle (18 May 1827); The Literary Chronicle 418 (19 May 1827); Gentleman’s Magazine 97.i (1827) 466; Christian Review and clerical magazine 1 (1827) 535; Christian Observer 27 (June 1827) 366–67; Literary magnet 4 (July 1827) 122; New Monthly Magazine, part iii (July 1827) 298; The Christian Advocate 5 (1827) 421; Christian Journal 12 -

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“valuable” manuscripts and that if successful they would be deposited in the British Museum.66 But no agreement was reached. By way of comparison, in May 1825 the British Museum had acquired 802 oriental manuscripts—mainly Arabic, Persian, Turkish, and Syriac—together with coins and antiquities formerly belonging to Claudius James Rich (1786–1821) for £7500. On recommendation of a committee who sought advice from expert witnesses, this collection was purchased by authority of Parliament with money supplied by the government.67 Nearly nine years after the first auction, on 13 May 1836 James Bruce’s grand-daughter and heiress Mrs. Mary Elizabeth Cumming-Bruce (1799–1873) wrote to Josiah Forshall (1795–1863), keeper of manuscripts at the British Museum, enclosing a “literal copy” of Murray’s catalogue of Bruce’s oriental manuscripts.68 That same day a letter from Mary Elizabeth’s husband Charles Lennox Cumming-Bruce (1790–1875) was read to the Museum’s trustees.69 Cumming-Bruce stated that within the last two years he had refused £5,000 for the whole collection as well as £1,200 for the Ethiopic Bible specifically. Accordingly, he sought £8,000 for the oriental manuscripts but was prepared to allow arbiters to settle a sum between £5,000 and £10,000.70 On 14 June 1836 Forshall reported to the trustees that he had carefully examined the manuscripts; the Arabic with the help of Friedrich August Rosen (1805–1837), and the Ethiopic assisted by Thomas Pell Platt (1798–1852), sometime librarian of the British and Foreign Bible Society, and Eduard Rüppell (1794–1884), who two years previously had returned from Ethiopia with a copy of Enoch. As a result the trustees declined to purchase these manuscripts and the secretary was directed to write to Cumming-Bruce informing him that the Ethiopic manuscripts in Bruce’s collection had been “much diminished in importance and value” since Rüppell had deposited a complete copy of the Ethiopic scriptures

66 67 68 69

70

(January 1828) 27; The Christian Observer 29 (1830) 419; W.D. Macray, Annals of the Bodleian Library, Oxford, A.D. 1598–A.D. 1867 (London, 1868) 267. The Standard (23 May 1827); The Standard (29 May 1827). Classical Journal 31 (March 1825) 152; House of Commons Papers (1825) 5.152; J.R. Fawcett Thompson, “The Rich Manuscripts,” The British Museum Quarterly 27 (1963) 18–23. M.R. James, Supplement to the catalogue of manuscripts in the library of Gonville and Caius College (Cambridge, 1914) 6; P.R. Harris, “Forshall, Josiah (1795–1863),” ODNB; cf. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Literature 1.7 (1835–36) 83; The Literary gazette (12 March 1836). Mary Elizabeth had married Charles Lennox Cumming-Bruce on 21 June 1820. She died at Kinnaird House on 23 April 1873. See Dundee Courier (29 April 1873); Cumming Bruce, Family Records, 379, 476–77; D.R. Fisher, “Cumming Bruce, Charles Lennox (1790–1875), of Roseisle, Elgin and Kinnaird, Stirling,” The History of Parliament, https://www.historyof parliamentonline.org/volume/1820-1832/member/cumming-bruce-charles-1790-1875. BM CE 1/6, 1505 (14 May 1836). -

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in the public library at Frankfurt am Main.71 Having admitted that he had been unaware that further Ethiopic manuscripts had been recently brought to Europe,72 in May 1837 Cumming-Bruce attempted to interest the Museum’s trustees in buying what were believed to be James Bruce’s architectural drawings (mainly of Roman remains in North Africa), together with several memoirs and papers. To that end, Cumming-Bruce had these “beautiful drawings” exhibited at meetings of the Graphic Society (10 May 1837) and the Institute of British Architects (15 May 1837).73 The price was either £5,000 or a figure to be determined by arbitration. Although the trustees were “strongly impressed” by the judgment of two experts regarding the quality of the drawings, they were not prepared to recommend Parliament that the drawings be purchased for the nation at the price stated. Despite the drawings and memoirs being “objects of so much curiosity interest and value,” by early December the Chancellor of the Exchequer had intimated that the Treasury would decline the purchase. Cumming-Bruce’s effort to sell the drawings and papers to the French government also proved unsuccessful.74 Consequently, preparations were made to dispose of Bruce’s oriental manuscripts through a second auction, this time to be held by Mr George Robins at his “great room” in Covent Garden (London) on 30 May 1842. Elaborate notices were placed in the press and a “literal copy” of Murray’s catalogue printed, priced at one shilling.75 But again, for “all the eloquence of that most moving of auctioneers” no bid was forthcoming that matched the expectation of the seller.76 So the following month Robins offered this “extraordinary collection” as three separate lots: twenty-five Ethiopic volumes (including Enoch); seventy Arabic; and one Coptic (Codex Brucianus). Yet once more there was no buyer for these “invaluable records” of “historical, religious, scientific, and poetical literature.”77 71 BM CE 3/15, 4292; L. Goldschmidt, Die Abessinischen handschriften der Stadtbibliothek zu Frankfurt am Main (Rüppell’sche Sammlung) (Berlin, 1897); S. Lane-Poole, rev. J.B. Katz, “Rosen, Friedrich August (1805–1837),” ODNB; G. Le Norgate, rev. G. Law, “Platt, Thomas Pell (1798–1852),” ODNB; Erho and Stuckenbruck, “Manuscript History,” 94. 72 BM CE 3/15, 4310. 73 The Architectural Magazine, and Journal of Improvement in Architecture, Building and Furnishing 4 (1837) 264, 360; The Literary Gazette (1837) 322, 401–03; Charles Lennox Cumming-Bruce, Memoir regarding Bruce’s Journies and drawings in Northern Africa (London, 1837). 74 BM CE 1/6, 1564–66; BM CE 3/16, 4529, 4560, 4592–93, 4628–29, 4636–38. 75 The Times (21 April 1842); The Standard (23 April 1842); The Times (26 May 1842); The Literary Gazette (1842) 373; Catalogue of … Oriental literature … sold by auction … Robins. 76 Macray, Annals of Bodleian Library, 267. 77 The Times (13 June 1842); Morning Post (20 June 1842); Abrahams, “MSS. of Bruce of Abyssinia,” 297. -

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In 1843, nearly fifty years after Bruce’s death, the Bodleian Library purchased ninety-six volumes of his oriental manuscripts for £1000.78 The circumstances of this acquisition were recalled in a letter dated 19 January 1852 from Bodley’s Librarian Bulkeley Bandinel (1781–1861) to Sir Henry Ellis: You will no doubt be surprised at the price we gave for the Bruce manuscripts. I think I was once asked as much as £4,500, and when that sum being named as final, the negotiation ceased. Some few years afterwards, in 1843, I learned from [Thomas] Thorpe that Colonel [William] Spicer was about to send them abroad for sale and proposed trying to get them for £1,000. To this as you may suppose, I readily agreed—and for that sum they were handed over to me in Thorpe’s shop, and I gave Colonel Spicer a cheque upon Hammersley, a sad falling off from £25,000 to £1,000.79 Containing—like the other volumes in this collection—an armorial bookplate of “Bruce of Kinnaird,” Bruce’s copy of Ethiopic Enoch was eventually assigned the shelf mark MS Bruce 74. It joined the copy he had previously donated indirectly to the Bodleian (now MS Bodl. Or. 531), which had served as the basis for Laurence’s English translation. Both are recorded together with Bruce’s remaining Ethiopic manuscripts in a catalogue by August Dillmann (1823–1894) published in 1848.80 Some twenty years later MS Bodl. Or. 531, written on 40 leaves of vellum in triple columns, was placed in a glass case and exhibited like an exotic cultural trophy near the Library’s entrance.81



Evidently, for those contemporaries who put a price on manuscripts the monetary value of James Bruce’s remaining copy of Ethiopic Enoch was determined by three main factors: rarity, antiquity and accuracy. To take rarity first: MS Bruce 74 was not unique. Indeed, its financial worth was diminished by the existence of MS Bodl. Or. 531 and BnF Éthiopien 49. Doubtless it would have cost even less to purchase had buyers been aware of Bruce’s “fourth” 78 Bodleian Library records c. 930, no foliation [register of purchases], “The Bruce MSS— £1000” in 1843; Falconer Madan, A Summary Catalogue of Western Manuscripts in the Bodleian Library at Oxford, 7 vols. (Oxford, 1895–1953) 4.655–57. 79 Abrahams, “MSS. of Bruce of Abyssinia,” 297; M. Clapinson, “Bandinel, Bulkeley (1781– 1861),” ODNB. 80 A. Dillmann, Catalogus Codicum Manuscriptorum Bibliothecae Bodleianae Oxoniensis. Pars VII. Codices Aethiopici (Oxford, 1848) 5. 81 Macray, Annals of Bodleian Library, 266–68.

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manuscript copy of Ethiopic Enoch (Vat. et. 71).82 Moreover, we have seen that its value fell still further after Eduard Rüppell deposited a complete copy of the Ethiopic scriptures in the public library at Frankfurt. Hence we should not be surprised that Samuel Lee reckoned it to be “of but little value.” Secondly, with regard to antiquity we have also seen that older manuscripts were considered to have greater authority than newer versions of the same text. Since it was common knowledge that Bruce had commissioned scribes to copy Ethiopic manuscripts—contemporaries were unaware that MS Bruce 74 had been acquired at Adwa—it was believed that the documents that Bruce had brought back to Europe were not old. Thus Sir Henry Ellis was sure that MS Bruce 74 was a “modern transcript made in Abyssinia,” while Richard Laurence considered it a “curious” rather than “valuable” part of Bruce’s collection of oriental manuscripts. Thirdly, it was even doubted whether MS Bruce 74 was an entirely accurate transcript of Ethiopic Enoch. So much so, that on 11 March 1822 Alleyne FitzHerbert, Baron St Helens (1753–1839), one of the British Museum’s trustees, wrote to Ellis expressing scepticism as to whether local scribes working hurriedly and paid a pittance in “salts” could have produced an entirely faithful copy. Ellis concurred, doubting the accuracy of Bruce’s copies on the grounds that his transcribers were paid on “such close calculation.” He also speculated that the ancient originals had been destroyed by white ants.83 While rarity, antiquity, and accuracy were key factors in determining the monetary value of MS Bruce 74, it is also clear that it was more prized—by missionaries, scholars, private collectors and chief librarians alike—when incorporated within a multi-volume manuscript set of the Ethiopic Bible rather than as an individual document. But as for its cultural worth, Ethiopic Enoch was generally held in low esteem; at least by the figures under discussion here. We have seen that a literary critic called it “extravagant.” Alexander Murray initially deemed it “absurd and tedious,” later dismissing its narrative as “wild and fabulous.” Yet at the same time Murray commended the whole book for possessing “a peculiar dignity of style and manner.” Samuel Lee thought it “a mere fabrication, and one of the most silly description,” while Henry Ellis disparaged it as a “fabulous book.” The only exception was Richard Laurence. What prompted him to translate the entirety of Ethiopic Enoch into English, as well as the early reaction to that endeavor, will be explored in a subsequent essay. 82 G. Boccaccini, “James Bruce’s ‘Fourth’ Manuscript: Solving the Mystery of the Provenance of the Roman Enoch Manuscript (Vat. et. 71),” JSP 27 (2018) 237–63. 83 Abrahams, “MSS. of Bruce of Abyssinia,” 297–98.

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Chapter 11

When Enoch Left Ethiopia

On Race and Philological (Im)possibilities in the Nineteenth Century Elena Dugan We see in the present condition of the church the extreme outcome of the Judaic element left as a pungent, even poisonous, leaven in the meal. But considering the fact that Abyssinia has been broken to pieces by great outlying powers of the world, weakened by heretical doctrine, assailed by the sword of Islam and the hammer of Rome, and is a very sentina barbarorum in her natural condition, that “the escape of the nations” only have found their way into her strongholds, it is remarkable that she has preserved as much of truth and lofty ideal as she may unquestionably claim. Henry Robert Reynolds, 18801



Enoch is then, like all of the best specimens of literature in Abyssinia, translated from the Greek. George Henry Schodde, 18822

∵ This article will explore how and why Enoch—not referring to the manuscripts carried by James Bruce, but rather to a literary work as collectively imagined by a community of scholars—was detached from Ethiopia in the nineteenth 1 H.R. Reynolds, “Ethiopian Church,” in A Dictionary of Christian Biography, Literature, Sects, and Doctrines: A Continuation of the Dictionary of the Bible, ed. W. Smith and H. Wace, 2 vols. (London, 1880) 2.241. 2 G.H. Schodde, The Book of Enoch: Translated from the Ethiopic, with Introduction and Notes (Andover, 1882) 7.

© Elena Dugan, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_013

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century.3 In this era of early research on Enoch, European and American scholars, following the guidance of internal textual clues (especially the historical apocalypse found in 1 Enoch 89–90) and the testimony of early readers such as Jude (who quotes 1 Enoch 1), assigned the text drawn from newly published Ethiopian manuscripts to various points between the second century BCE and second century CE.4 As the nineteenth century marched on, the scholarly consensus shifted away from appraising the Ethiopic Enoch to be a singular Enoch work and moved towards recognizing this textual progression as a compendium of multiple compositional moments.5 But even as Enoch was sliced into smaller and smaller “sources” or compositional moments, and its hypothetical layers even more finely drawn, the chronological window in which these moments were placed remained quite rigid—still between the second century BCE and second century CE.6 This is not to say that the scholarly literature 3 I am grateful to Annette Yoshiko Reed, Ariel Hessayon, Pratima Gopalakrishnan, Jillian Stinchcomb, Eliav Grossman, Adina Goldman, and Wendy Belcher for their generous feedback upon earlier drafts of this article. 4 A succinct demonstration of this logic can be found in Richard Laurence’s introduction to his 1821 translation: “That this period [of composition] was one antecedent to the commencement of the Christian era, admits of no question, when we recollect that it was quoted by St. Jude”; Book of Enoch, xxiii. 5 An influential early voice advocating for the recognition of multiple separable pieces of Enoch was H. Ewald, Abhandlung über des äthiopischen Buches Henoch: Entstehung, Sinn und Zusammensetzung (Göttingen, 1854). Reviews of scholarship in this period, focusing especially on the delineation of sources or textual layers within Enoch, can be found in E. Schürer, “Das Buch Henoch,” in Lehrbuch der neutestamentlichen Zeitgeschichte (Leipzig, 1874) 521–35; Schodde, Book of Enoch, 19–32; Charles, Book of Enoch, 9–21. 6 The second and first centuries BCE were the more common windows in which various pieces of Enoch were placed, as in the work of Dillmann, Charles, and the other scholars summarized in the reviews of scholarship cited above. There were, however, scholars who held to a “Christian-era” or Christian authorship for layers of the book, or for the book entirely. So, Johann Christian Konrad von Hoffmann supported a date for the great majority of the work in the second century CE; see “Ueber die Entstehungszeit des Buches Henoch,” Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft 6.1 (1852) 87–91; von Hofmann, Der Schriftbeweis, ein theologischer Versuch, vol. 1 (Nördlingen, 1857) 420–23. Adolf Hilgenfeld understands 1 Enoch 17–19, 37–71, and 106–108 to be traceable to a Christian Gnostic between Saturninus and Marcion in the second century CE; Die jüdische Apokalyptik in ihrer geschichtlichen Entwickelung (Jena, 1857) 91–184; Ferdinand Philippi traces the whole book to a Christian at the start of the second century CE; Das Buch Henoch, sein Zeitalter und sein Verhältniss zum Judasbriefe: ein Beitrag zur neutestamentlichen Isagogik: nebst einem Anhange über Judä V. 9 und dis Mosesprophetie (Stuttgart, 1868). Gustav Volkmar, most idiosyncratically of all, understood the work to be written in 132 CE by a disciple of Rabbi Akiva, and partisan of Bar Kokhba; see “Beiträge zur Erklärung des Buches Henoch: nach dem äthiopischen Text,” Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft 14.1/2 (1860) 87–296; Volkmar,

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on Enoch had settled into a consensus; it remained marked by vociferous disagreement, including many idiosyncratic proposals that have not lived into twenty-first-century research. But there is one hypothesis that was almost never pursued, no matter how small or historically ambiguous the tranches of Enoch identified—namely, that any part of Enoch was composed in Ethiopia. Almost to a man, nineteenth-century scholars did not imagine that any piece of Enoch was written in Ethiopia. This does not mean that anyone denied its Ethiopian transmission, or even the occasional gloss or “corruption” of the text in Ethiopian climes. But the much-prized act of composition, of origination, was almost never traced to Ethiopia. The present article explores why this was the case. To be sure, there are a panoply of philological reasons that such a possibility might have been precluded. The then-regnant fixation on original or Urtexts encouraged scholars to focus on early compositional moments, rather than later transmission.7 The model of textual development in which nineteenth-century scholars were working was not nearly so permissive or celebratory of textual fluidity and change over time as are our current models—textual change was often seen as a tumble into entropy, from pristine origins.8 And the Protestant “Über die katholischen Briefe und Henoch,” Zeitschrift für wissenschaftliche Theologie 4 (1861) 422–36. I am unaware of any nineteenth-century scholar who proposes a date after the second century CE. This would continue to be the case throughout the twentieth century, with one notable exception: the suggestion of J.T. Milik that the Parables of Enoch was a third-century CE Christian composition; Books of Enoch, 94–96. 7 Reviews (and critiques) of the tendency to chase the Urtext in nineteenth-century philology can be found in many places, but we can highlight in particular the work of Hindy Najman critiquing “retrospective” philology, and the work of Brennan Breed arguing that the binary between “original” and “reception” is a forced one. See H. Najman, “Configuring the Text in Biblical Studies,” in A Teacher for All Generations: Essays in Honor of James C. VanderKam, ed. E.F. Mason et al., 2 vols. (Leiden, 2012) 1.3–23; B.W. Breed, Nomadic Text: A Theory of Biblical Reception History (Bloomington, 2014) 15–52. 8 Describing nineteenth-century Lachmannian philology, the modern critic of classical textcriticism Bernard Cerquiglini states: “The scribe was a machine, and this machine had to function poorly in order for the multiplicity and the excess of variants to fall into place, showing the slippery slopes of adulteration and delineating the genealogical branches of the manuscript family. Philology is a bourgeois, paternalist, and hygienist system of thought about the family; it cherishes filiation, tracks down adulterers, and is afraid of contamination”; In Praise of the Variant: A Critical History of Philology, trans. B. Wing (Baltimore, 1999) 49. On the embeddedness of Lachmannian philology as described in nineteenth-century racial discourses, and the ties demonstrable between hierarchies of race (and a privileging of the original Caucasian) and the search for a “pure” Urtext, see Y.-J. Lin, The Erotic Life of Manuscripts: New Testament Textual Criticism and the Biological Sciences (Oxford, 2016) 21–65. Since the nineteenth century, various movements within philology, especially

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identities and professional commitments of many nineteenth-century scholars made the identification of literature dated around the life of Jesus and the early Christian movement an especially exciting and rewarding endeavor, for scholar and rapt audience alike.9 But philology, like all intellectual pursuits, is not practiced in a vacuum. And there is another, pernicious, reason that Enoch so profoundly left Ethiopia in the European and American scholarly imagination when its manuscripts travelled to Europe: the perceived literary incapabilities of Ethiopians, predicated on racist, orientalist, and anti-Semitic caricatures of the nation and people alike. In what follows, it is not my intention to implicate or exonerate any particular scholar of Enoch of holding “racist” beliefs, or inhabiting a particularly “orientalist” posture, but rather to paint a broad-strokes portrait of a community of men in the nineteenth century handling an Ethiopian cultural artifact and enacting certain practices of scholarship according to their contexts. It is possible that some authors would have hotly objected to the prejudices of their contemporaries. But if they did so, it has left little written record. I will focus especially on scholarship emerging from the United States, the British Isles, and Germany, giving special attention to attitudes prevalent in the mid-to-late nineteenth century, albeit briefly gesturing to the genealogy Narrative Textual-Criticism and New/Material Philology, have come to recognize and even celebrate the existence of textual fluidity as a hallmark of transmission in manuscript cultures, and greatly problematized the feasibility of retrieving (and intellectual priority granted to) a so-called original text from later manuscripts. 9 Note William John Deane’s 1891 summation (and the implied “us” for whom the “most important era” is that into which Jesus would be born) that, “the value of these writings is considerable, and this for many reasons; but that which chiefly concerns us is the light which they throw upon Jewish belief at the most important era”; Pseudepigrapha: An Account of Certain Apocryphal Sacred Writings of the Jews and Early Christians (Edinburgh, 1891) 4. In R.H. Charles’ influential 1913 anthology, the exclusive focus on Protestant implications is lessened, but the interrelationship between dating and relevance is clearer still, as signaled by the opening sentence: “For students both of the Old and New Testaments the value of the non-canonical Jewish literature from 200 BC to AD 100 is practically recognized on every side alike by Jewish and Christian scholars”; APOT, 1.iii. Charles’ gesture towards Jewish scholarship was not always made in the nineteenth century. For instance Adolf Hilgenfeld, the editor of Zeitschrift für Wissenschaft und Leben, refused to let any non-Protestant scholars publish therein; see S. Heschel, Abraham Geiger and the Jewish Jesus (Chicago, 1998) 42–43. For some modern reflections upon the functionality of the “Old Testament Pseudepigrapha” as contributors to the study of Christian origins, see esp. A.Y. Reed, “The Modern Invention of ‘Old Testament Pseudepigrapha,’” JTS 60 (2009) 431–34; P. Ahearne-Kroll, “The History of the Study of Pseudepigrapha,” in The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha: Fifty Years of the Pseudepigrapha Section at the SBL, ed. M. Henze and L. Lied (EJL 50; Atlanta, 2019) 113–18.

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of these ideas in earlier periods.10 My choice of focus follows the history of European and American scholarship on Enoch in the nineteenth century, which was largely undertaken in these countries, but also with the hopes of sketching the intellectual milieus of the two men whose names would emerge as the giants of the field—the German August Dillmann (1823–1894) and the Northern Irish R.H. Charles (1855–1931). I will weave throughout the testimony of the foremost (though now little mentioned) nineteenth-century scholar of Enoch on American shores, George Henry Schodde (1854–1917). Schodde proves especially useful for our purposes as he was unusually prolific and wide-ranging in his reflections on both Enoch and Ethiopia, and he proves an enlightening guide as to how pejorative attitudes towards Ethiopia could and did guide the study of Enoch.11 Ultimately, I want to argue that a certain path not taken—the pursuit of compositional homes for Enoch within Ethiopia—was not taken at least partially because of then-prevalent racialized attitudes ascribing specific incompetencies to Ethiopians and Ethiopian scribes. What results, for modern scholars who would hopefully decry and dissent from the gross and crude attitudes found herein, is the removal of a particularly large boulder blocking this path of inquiry. I wonder whether this pathway might be a fruitful line of research, given that it was never granted its due in the first place, as I will explore in the conclusion with special reference to the Parables of Enoch (1 Enoch 37–71). But, most of all, I want to illuminate a previously-invisible outcome of the non-Ethiopian gaze on Ethiopian Enoch. 1

Marginality and (Im)possibility: The Contested Character of Ethiopia

Ethiopia has an unusual legacy within European and American scholarship, as many early modern scholars treated it as a unique entity among “black 10

On the history of Ethiopian scholarship of 1 Enoch taking place in Ethiopia itself, see Lee and Assefa in this volume. 11 E.g., G.H. Schodde, “Specimens of Ethiopic Literature,” Bibliotheca Sacra 39 (1882) 74–103; Schodde, “The Church of Ethiopia,” Presbyterian Review 8 (1887) 16–36; Schodde, “The Abyssinians and Their Church,” Lutheran Quarterly 21 (1891) 172–79; Schodde, “The Hermit Christian Nation of Africa,” The Churchman 28 (February 16, 1895) 252–53; Schodde, “The Abyssinians: Origin and History of a Remarkable and Interesting People,” Evening Post, 18 December 1895; Schodde, “The Church of Abyssinia,” The Independent, February 6, 1896, 185. He published in venues such as The Independent and Evening Post due in part to the outbreak of the Italo-Ethiopian war in 1895.

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Africa.”12 A general claim of cultural or national exemplarity is not, in itself, so troubling, nor is it necessarily an external imposition. Wendy Belcher has argued that the Habesha, in particular, have “made vivid claims for their own exceptionality” over the course of millennia.13 But the idea that Ethiopia, and the history of Ethiopia, is exemplary when pitted among other African nations is more insidious. In the words of Messay Kebede, summarizing this historiographic caricature: The architectural monuments of Aksum, the existence of an indigenous written script, Christianity, state formation, to name but some of them, constitute the distinctive features of Ethiopia when black Africa is defined by such characteristics as stateless societies, absence of script, paganism, in a word, the attributes of primitiveness.14 Ethiopia’s unusual (for Africa) positioning by scholars on the margins of what they considered to represent “Christianity” or “Christendom” yielded few favors for the reception of its literature and heritage in European contexts. In fact, it might be argued that such a positioning led an even more misguided and patronizing treatment of its cultural products than might be experienced by cultures perceived to be wholly detached from the identities held by nineteenth-century European scholars. Phillip Schaff was a German-expatriate, professor at Union Theological Seminary in New York City, founder of the American Society of Church History, and a prolific writer and translator responsible for a five-volume History of the Christian Church still in print today. In his History of the Christian Church, which went through five editions in his lifetime, Schaff remarks, “Slight as are its remains of Christianity, Abyssinia still stands, in agriculture, arts, laws, and social condition, far above the heathen countries of Africa—a proof that even a barbaric Christianity is better than none.”15 George Schodde, also writing in America, would lament that “the Abyssinians have played only the role of wild barbarians, with a religion that is nothing but a caricature of true Christianity … the Abyssinians are

12 See T. Tibebu, “Ethiopia: The ‘Anomaly’ and ‘Paradox’ of Africa,” Journal of Black Studies 26.4 (1996) 414–30. 13 W.L. Belcher, Abyssinia’s Samuel Johnson: Ethiopian Thought in the Making of an English Author (Oxford, 2012) 24. 14 M. Kebede, “Eurocentrism and Ethiopian Historiography: Deconstructing Semitization,” International Journal of Ethiopian Studies 1.1 (2003) 4. 15 P. Schaff, A History of the Christian Church: Nicene and Post-Nicene Christianity, 5 vols. (2nd ed.; Edinburgh, 1884) 3.778.

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not a nation to be learnt from, but one to be taught.”16 There is a proliferate echo of this sentiment among other writers of the time. An argument advanced by Teshale Tibebu and Kebede is that Ethiopia was treated within an Orientalist Semiticist paradigm, in which its Africanness or Blackness was lessened through the hypothesis of historical connections with or dependency upon “Semitic” cultures, such as those of South Arabia or the Levant. So, we might note the formulation of August Dillmann: In origin and essence, Ethiopic is a pure Semitic speech, transplanted by people who migrated from Yemen to Abyssinia … In its sounds and laws of sounds, in its roots, inflectional expedient and word-forms, in all that is reckoned the structure and essence of a language, it bears throughout a genuine and uncorrupted Semitic stamp. From the indigenous languages of these African regions, only a very few names of plants and animals have been taken.17 In effect, Ethiopia is reclaimed from “African” studies for “Semitic” studies. As Tibebu observes, “It is quite revealing that more is written on Ethiopia in the Journal of Semitic Studies than in the Journal of African History.”18 The line between the classification of a language and the classification of a people proved faint at best, and such a characterization was not consigned to lexica or grammars. Schodde, for instance, remarks that Ethiopians “are not an African people at all, but a Semitic race … their pedigree is thus of the best and its genuine character is attested by the best of evidences, such as language, comparate physiology, and the like … they are neither black nor of the negro race.”19 A purported Semitism operated in contradistinction to Blackness. But this did not provide a path towards appreciating Ethiopian literature and culture in the nineteenth century, given the deep anti-Semitism that suffused European and American scholarship. The European gaze on Ethiopia had long been attentive to, and critical of, purportedly Jewish or Semitic elements in its religious practice in particular (e.g., circumcision, Sabbath observance, dietary practices), although the import of such elements was a subject of some debate. In the famous eighteenth-century “book that changed Europe,” The Ceremonies and Religious 16 Schodde, “Specimens of Ethiopic Literature,” 74. 17 The translation of Dillmann is from Ethiopic Grammar (Second Edition), ed. K. Bezold, trans. J. A Crichton (London, 1907 [1857]) 2. 18 Tibebu, “Ethiopia,” 427. 19 Schodde, “Abyssinians and Their Church,” 173.

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Customs of the Known World, a 1733 section on Ethiopian Christians remarks that some writers are “grossly mistaken in charging the Ethiopians with copying the Jews in their Rites and Ceremonies … [for they] practice it only as a Custom with no Reference or Relation to Religion.”20 The vexed question of the Judaism of Ethiopian Christianity is here handled by erasing the “religious” import of such practices and labeling them simply customary. In enacting the exclusion of Jewish elements from the realm of religion, Ethiopia is reclaimed as a site of Christianity (albeit a marginal one), with the underlying assumption that Judaism and Christianity are two fundamentally opposed and incompatible entities—or, at least, that the rightful practice of one can only proceed in the absence of the other. But it is most important for our purposes to note that early modern scholars were vexed by Ethiopia as a representative of Semitism. As we shall see, Tibebu’s and Kibede’s proposals that a Semitic Ethiopia represented a more palatable avenue of research than a black or African Ethiopia might be more applicable to the twentieth or twenty-first centuries, in which more vulgar anti-Semitic ideas or statements would be greeted with derision (sometimes). But for some nineteenth-century interpreters, a purportedly Semitic lineage of Ethiopia was not a credit to the nation’s account, even as it would be invoked in contextualizing the existence of the book of Enoch. A certain perceived lean towards Judaism served to both explain and condemn the preservation of Enoch in Ethiopia. We can revisit, for instance, the quotation used as the epigraph to this piece, written by Henry Robert Reynolds in 1880 for an article on “the Ethiopian Church” for the oft-reprinted Dictionary of Christian Biography and Literature to the End of the Sixth Century. Reynolds, an English minister, president of Cheshunt College, and editor of journals including the British Quarterly Review and Evangelical Magazine, avers: “We see in the present condition of the [Ethiopian] church the extreme outcome of the Judaic element left as a pungent, even poisonous, leaven in the meal.”21 Continuing his diatribe against the nation and church, Reynolds concedes that, despite the Ethiopian Church’s many (perceived-by-him) failings, it is “remarkable that she has preserved as much of truth and lofty ideal as she may

20 B. Picart and J.F. Bernard, “Of the Doctrines and Customs of the Abyssins, or Ethiopians,” in The Ceremonies and Religious Customs of the Various Nations of the Known World, 7 vols. (London, 1733) 5.231. See also M.C. Jacob, W.W. Mijnhardt, and L.A. Hunt, The Book That Changed Europe: Picart & Bernard’s Religious Ceremonies of the World (Cambridge, MA, 2010). 21 H.R. Reynolds, “Ethiopian Church,” in A Dictionary of Christian Biography, Literature, Sects, and Doctrines: A Continuation of the Dictionary of the Bible, ed. W. Smith and H. Wace, 4 vols. (London, 1880) 2.241.

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unquestionably claim.”22 Here is obviously meant works such as Enoch, for he flags the “Book of Henoch” as a “remarkable work” and reminds the reader “it is not Ethiopic in its origin” but only experienced a “prolongation and preservation of its life in Ethiopia.”23 For Reynolds, the preservation of Jewish apocryphal books like Enoch within the Ethiopian canon elicited a historian’s firm thanks, but would be inextricably coupled with a theologian’s stiff rebuke for clinging to such “Judaic” elements. Schodde, in this line of thinking, remarked upon “the conservativism so natural to the Semitic mind” and would tie this to the claim that “the church of Abyssinia is further entitled to the gratitude of Christian scholars for its preservation of important Jewish apocalyptic works.”24 In a fitting remark, he continues that “it is almost a matter of congratulations that this venerable church incorporated into its canon a number of books which the Greek Church rejected.”25 The transmission of Enoch could be seen as a marker of heterodox and Semitic theological proclivities, while also being framed as a passive “prolongation” or “preservation” of an entity whose energetic emergence is to be traced elsewhere. Such a conclusion is not the only way to explain Enoch’s preservation in a purportedly “Semitizing” culture, as one could have also imagined scholars concluding that a Semitic nation was to be credited (or blamed) with the composition of a Semitic work, not just its preservation. We must account for the missing piece of the puzzle, the specific preclusion of composition. Clearly, a demeaning exceptionalism among African cultures did not place Ethiopia on equal footing with the nation-states in which European and American scholars practiced their intellectual pursuits. One way this inequality was enacted was in the total disqualification of Ethiopia from consideration as an active participant in the Enoch tradition. For one statement as to why that might be, we can look to the 1836 comments of the Reverend Edward Murray, an English vicar and chaplain, in a book on the sources of Enoch: It will also be seen on reference to the Abbyssinian history, that their want of regard to any councils subsequent to the fifth century, and their perpetuation of the disputes concerning the nature of the Saviour, which after that time ceased to agitate the Asiatic churches, afford some ground for supposing that their religious or literary intercourse with the rest of the Christian world subsequent to the aera of the Hegira, must have been 22 23 24 25

Reynolds, “Ethiopian Church,” 241. Reynolds, “Ethiopian Church,” 240. Schodde, “Hermit Christian Nation of Africa,” 252; Schodde, “Church of Ethiopia,” 26. Emphasis mine. Schodde, “Church of Ethiopia,” 26.

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so small, that we need hardly enquire whether such a book as that the history of which I am now endeavouring to trace, could have been composed in Abyssinia during the interval which elapsed from that period, to the commencement of the sixteenth century.26 E. Murray caricatures ancient Ethiopia as mired in isolation, so removed from the intellectual networks and conversations of “the Christian world” that it could not be responsible for the composition of a work like Enoch. Ethiopia’s isolation was not benign, for his characterization of the “barbarism of its inhabitants” shows that he shares the opinions of Reynolds and Schaff on the purported civilization of the nation.27 He found Enoch (or rather what he called “Enoch Restitutus”) to have “Scriptural or Prophetic truths contained within it,” so a valuable work indeed.28 With composition eliminated, isolation and preservation could complete a logical circuit; Ethiopia could be only a passive vessel for the transmission of Enoch. (Decades later, Schodde would connect isolation with preservation without even considering composition, averring that “as there is no ill wind that blows no good, the isolation of the Abyssinians has been the source of much good for the Christian Church … this people has had the honor of preserving for Christian scholarship a large amount of good literature … preserved in the seclusion of Abyssinia.”29) Ultimately, E. Murray attempts to restore a pristine ancient Enoch that he imagined to be the one cited by Jude. And underlying this pursuit of an early Enoch is the corresponding assumption that a book could never have been written in Abyssinia after the fifth century CE, because Ethiopia was too isolated and backwards to facilitate such an endeavor. Notably, E. Murray, quite alone among his contemporaries, allowed for the possibility of Ethiopian composition of at least one piece of Enoch, albeit with a large caveat. The piece in question does not belong to the pristine Enoch he prizes but instead to the textual mass of later transpositions that he claims to identify.30 It is worth reiterating that this example is an outlier in Murray’s own 26 E. Murray, “Enoch Restitutus,” or an Attempt to Separate from the Books of Enoch the Book Quoted by St. Jude; Also, a Comparison of the Chronology of Enoch with the Hebrew Computation, and with the Periods Mentioned in the Book of Daniel and in the Apocalypse, by Rev. Edward Murray (London, 1836) 31–32. 27 Murray, Enoch Restitutus, 16. 28 Murray, Enoch Restitutus, 99. 29 Schodde, “Abyssinians and Their Church,” 177. 30 E. Murray speaks quite highly of the pristine ancient Enoch he restores, and critically of the later transpositions: “the errors or absurdities contained in the latter [e.g., the transpositions, ED] need in no degree affect the credit of the former book [e.g., Murray’s restored Enoch, ED] since they only serve to prove the ignorance or carelessness of those

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project, as he does not normally trace even his hypothetical transpositions to Ethiopia. But, nevertheless, relying largely on secondhand narrative accounts from European travelers in Africa (more on whom below), E. Murray argues that the geography implied by the seven mountains of 1 Enoch 24, and the windrose of 1 Enoch 76, implies an author in north-eastern Africa and Abyssinia in particular.31 This argument made little impact in the literature at the time, as it was nestled among a convoluted and largely unsubstantiated series of hypotheses advancing the one-time existence of an ancient Enoch prophecy known to Jude, but suffering “dilapidat[ion]” by the second and third centuries CE.32 But what is especially curious, and telling, is that E. Murray insists that this textual development, which he understands to be native to Abyssinia, takes place not in Geʿez, but in Hebrew: “It must necessarily be inferred that the part which is of Abyssinian origin, is the most modern … even this addition itself was, written, as I have already shewn, in the Hebrew language.”33 Even in this extremely unusual instance in which a scholar traces Enochic composition to Ethiopia, Murray precludes the possibility that it might have been written in an indigenous Ethiopian language, and falls back upon the Semitic character of Ethiopia as the enabling agent of textual generation (as Tibebu and Kibede might have predicted). It is unclear at what date Murray believes this Abyssinian passage to have been generated, though his denial that it took place in Geʿez may suffice to exclude Late Antiquity and onwards. But, despite the difficulties scholars have had (and I still have) in comprehending his particular suggestions, his work provides a unique window into the assumptions guiding scholarship at the time. Though his identification of a textual layer here was completely rejected by his fellow scholars, his work provides a telling window into the kinds of philological possibilities that were, and were not, within the realm of imagination at the time. Ethiopia was often chastised by nineteenth-century scholars for its purportedly heterodox Christianity and cultural isolation, both of which were factors cited (however erroneously) as explicative in the preservation of Enoch. Ethiopia was ultimately deemed incapable of conceptualizing the literature of the sort that Enoch seemed to represent. This is not a perfectly coherent deduction on its own, as it does not necessarily follow that a “Semitizing” who added them”; Enoch Restitutus, 103. See below for language of carelessness deployed against Ethiopian scribes in the accounts of James Bruce and Alexander Murray as well. 31 Murray, Enoch Restitutus, 73–74. 32 I will confess to sharing the confusion of E. Murray’s contemporaries when confronted with some of his ideas, often advanced with more conviction than demonstration. His work was poorly received by his contemporaries. Schodde, e.g., called it a “total failure”; The Book of Enoch, 6. 33 Murray, Enoch Restitutus, 74. -

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culture, or an isolated culture, would be incapable of literary composition. The missing link in the logical chain has to do with the value ascribed to composition and authorship, and the ways that Ethiopia’s purported Semitism, Blackness, and barbarism served to devalue its people in the eyes of European scholars. Though I have spoken largely about composition, as if it were a passive act, our nineteenth-century scholars would not frame the question the same way—they were not searching for disembodied acts of composition, but rather, embodied authors. The denial that acts of composition might take place in Ethiopia, for them, is the denial of Ethiopians as authors, as executors of a prized literary practice (whether we would prize such a practice similarly or not).34 It is a historical judgment about human capability, or rather, incapability, directly inflected by the racial and national categories with which scholars were working. It is unsurprising that a community of scholars who found Ethiopians to be historically marginal, theologically confused, and naturally barbaric, would “need hardly enquire whether such a book as that the history of which I am now endeavouring to trace, could have been composed in Abyssinia.”35 It proved to be too dissonant to place a prized work (Enoch) and a prized action with respect to that work (composition) in the hands of a people so profoundly devalued. Thus, such an option is barely even denied, and mostly just ignored. 2

Preservation or Petrification? Portraits of Transmission

Even before the discovery of various manuscripts of Greek Enoch, such as the brachygraphic excerpt from the Animal Apocalypse (deciphered in 1855, a translation from a manuscript published in 1844),36 Codex Panopolitanus (published in 1892),37 Chester-Beatty/Michigan Epistle (published 1937),38 or

34

35 36 37

38

I do not wish to imply that I share the extreme reification of composition and origination that is prevalent among the nineteenth-century scholars I here discuss. I have above noted the critiques levelled by Najman and Breed, among others, that nineteenth-century scholarship falsely prioritized composition over transmission; a critique with which I am in agreement. Murray, Enoch Restitutus, 32. J. Gildemeister, “Ein Fragment des Griechischen Henoch,” Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft 9.2 (1855) 621–24. U. Bouriant, “Fragments du texte grec du livre d’Henoch et de quelques écrits attribués à Saint Pierre,” Mémoires publiés par les membres de la Mission archéologique française au Caire 9.1 (1892) 93–147; A. Lods, Le Livre d’Hénoch: fragments grecs: découverts à Akhmîm (Haute-Égypte): publiés avec la variantes du texte éthiopien (Paris, 1892). C. Bonner, The Last Chapters of Enoch in Greek (London, 1937). -

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Oxyrhynchus fragments (published in 1927),39 scholars had in hand the Greek Syncellus fragments. These excerpts, combined with the apparent Greek readership of Enoch demonstrated by Jude, Tertullian and others, indicated a Greek transmissional period for at least some materials corresponding to Ethiopic Enoch. At a time when many scholars were convinced that all of Ethiopic Enoch was a single work, of-a-piece, the appearance of any Greek evidence corresponding to any section would further vouch for the Greek transmissional history of the lot.40 The nineteenth-century discovery of pieces from the Animal Apocalypse, then the Book of the Watchers, provided fuller (but not complete) coverage of a “Greek Enoch” from which the Ethiopic was a translation. But, in the context of the attitudes towards Ethiopia surveyed above, we might want to look more closely at just how that translation and transmission is described. The idea that Enoch was to be sought outside of Abyssinia/Ethiopia was so unquestioned that some scholarly contributions rarely or never mention Ethiopia and/or Abyssinia. This can be neatly demonstrated with reference to Emil Schürer’s state-of-the-field account, which mentions that an “Ethiopic version of [Enoch] was still extant in the Abyssinian Church” on the first page, then never mentions Abyssinia/Ethiopia again.41 We might surmise that most scholars did not rehearse the caricatures of Ethiopia excerpted above at great length because they found them distasteful, or perhaps because they were assumed and could go unspoken, or perhaps because Enoch was so firmly removed from Ethiopia by decades of scholarship assuming as much that they were seen as unnecessary. As in Schürer’s account, many mentions of Ethiopia when discussing Enoch in the nineteenth century are often confined to a brief discovery anecdote, demonstrating Ethiopia is only important to the scholar insofar as it preserved something that came from elsewhere. But some concerns were aired about the supposed moment of translation. Schodde, in his treatment of the Book of Enoch, frames the problem of this transitionary moment in the language of trust, as he muses on “the trustworthy or untrustworthy character of the Ethiopic translation.”42 But he concludes, following Dillmann, that the Ethiopic is a “faithful copy of the Septuagint,” and that Enoch “on analogy” will be the same, “although occasional mistakes

39 A.S. Hunt and B.P. Grenfell, The Oxyrhynchus Papyri, Part XVII (London, 1927) 6–8. 40 Indeed, the hypothesis that the Ethiopic Enoch stemmed from a Greek Vorlage was part of the very earliest European scholarship on Enoch, on which see Hessayon’s discussion of Alexander Murray and Hiob Ludolf in this volume. 41 E. Schürer, “The Book of Enoch,” in A History of the Jewish People in the Time of Jesus Christ, 5 vols. (New York, 1891) 3.59–73. 42 Schodde, Book of Enoch, 7.

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and omissions may occur.”43 The abiding concern of Schodde is whether the Ethiopian translators are to be trusted with a valued cultural tradition, and whether they abided faithfully to an externally existing entity. In other words, did Ethiopia ruin its Greek inheritance? His ranking of the two cultural discourses is quite clear: as he states elsewhere, “Greek Christianity … brought as its concomitants and hand-maidens whatever of culture or civilization entered into the make-up of Abyssinian character and history.”44 Note also that he frames this not only in the language of historical accidence, but national competence, as he connects “a literature of translations” with his belief that “the Ethiopic people have shown their dependence upon other nations and followed in their footsteps.”45 The concern is always with the Ethiopic as a vessel for something else—the Septuagint, or Greek Enoch—which is not so strange a line of questioning for scholars of translation, though it is more concerning that this is paired with a judgment that this is all a culture is capable of. Ultimately, Schodde, like many of his contemporaries, decenters Ethiopia in the pursuit of Enoch—Ethiopia is, at best, a starting point, and at worst, an impediment, for the study of Enoch. And, indeed, it is Schodde who gives us our second epigraph for the chapter, declaring that, “Enoch is then, like all of the best specimens of literature in Abyssinia, translated from the Greek.”46 The centuries after translation were deemed to be quiet ones for the transmission of Enoch. But, again, the reasons for that assumption deserve to be studied carefully. It was characterized in the announcement notice of the Enoch manuscript in various newspapers, that “the language is of the purest Ethiopic; and the whole book has a peculiar dignity of style and manner, which imposes on the reader, and impresses on his mind ideas of its great antiquity.”47 The Ethiopic Enoch, then, is an artifact from a bygone era, and the purported purity of its language vouchsafes its safe travel through the centuries, and non-contamination by centuries of transmission. As Yii-Jan Lin has demonstrated, the language of purity among nineteenth-century philologists was inextricably linked with contemporary discourses concerning race and genealogy, and “a concern for origins and purity went hand in hand with paranoia over the corruption of a race, thought to be pure, via the transmission of flaws through the blood.”48 In the context of a clearly marked concern among Europeans and Americans for the status of a legacy they identified as their own 43 44 45 46 47 48

Schodde, Book of Enoch, 8, 9, 10. Schodde, “Abyssinians and Their Church,” 175. Schodde, “Church of Ethiopia,” 21. Schodde, Book of Enoch, 7. See further Hessayon in this volume. Lin, Erotic Life, 58.

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(i.e., the writings and libraries of the Greek Church) among a people racialized as an outgroup (whether racialized as Semites, Africans, or something else), it is clear that philological and racial anxiety stacked neatly on top of one another. The idea that Ethiopia was a site at which ancient things—whether texts, ideas, practices—might be preserved over the centuries has deep roots in European intellectual history and early modern Christian apologetics. Hiob Ludolf, one of the prominent early scholars of Ethiopian language and literature in Germany, mused in 1682: that which deserves the greatest admiration is the antiquity of the Christian Religion, which first began under S. Athanasius, Patriarch of Alexandria, at what time Frumentius Preached among them; the Opinions and Ceremonies of which Church they still retain. So that many Primitive Rites in other Places obsolete, are here still in Use.49 For some, like the Lutheran Ludolf, a purported primitivity was a boon, for it hearkened back to an age of Christianity unsullied by the intervention of the Catholic Church. For others, like the Catholic Father Jerome Lobo, who travelled in Ethiopia in the early seventeenth century and whose memoirs were translated by the famous English author Samuel Johnson, isolation from the Catholic Church bred ignorance, as he laments: so many errors have been introduced, and in-grafted into their religion, by their ignorance, their separation from the Catholic church, and their intercourse with Jews, Pagans, and Mahometans, that their present religion is nothing but a kind of confused miscellany of Jewish and Mahometan superstitions, with which they have corrupted those remnants of Christianity which they still retain.50 Ethiopian Christianity proved a popular site of contention among European Christian intellectuals, as its perceived isolation and marginality could situate it as a vessel of purity (or corruption) in the transmission of ancient Christianity. As Belcher points out, “Modern scholars are frequently unaware 49 H. Ludolf, A New History of Ethiopia Being a Full and Accurate Description of the Kingdom of Abessinia, Vulgarly, Though Erroneously Called the Empire of Prester John, trans. J.P. Gent (London, 1682 [1681]) 5. 50 J. Lobo, Voyage to Abyssinia … With Fifteen Dissertations on Various Subjects Relating to the Antiquities, Government, Religion, Manners, and Natural History of Abyssinia, by M. LeGrand, trans. S. Johnson (London, 1789) 70.

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of just how much eighteenth century intellectuals knew about the Habesha church, a knowledge fed by ongoing religious debates between Roman Catholics and Protestants about their churches’ purity.”51 The extent to which Ethiopia/Abyssinia was deemed a faithful vessel of ancient traditions, then, was one with a long prehistory as well as great contemporary religious implications for early modern Christians. Alongside this fixation on the pure objects purportedly preserved in Ethiopia came the classical philologists’ distaste for the effects of transmission. But all of this was enabled by a mocking portrait of the Ethiopian Christians who copied, venerated, and studied such texts. Although the act of preservation might have garnered the appreciation of some historians, theologians, or philologists, the idea of conservative transmission of an ancient text was not necessarily one predicated on great appreciation for an Ethiopian scribal tradition—in fact, for some, it was just the opposite. It is important to remember that most nineteenth-century scholars of Enoch, or Ethiopian language or literature, would go their lives without seeing Ethiopia, or even a functioning manuscript culture, first-hand. Scholars often relied on travelers to provide illustrations of the living culture producing the artifacts to which they had devoted their attention. Accordingly, it can be instructive to consult such accounts to recover the ways that this assumedly conservative Ethiopian scribal practice—little mentioned but always assumed in academic treatises on Enoch—would have been imagined. Robert Curzon was an English aristocrat and traveler, most renowned for his mid-nineteenth-century travels of monasteries (and subsequent acquisition of various manuscripts held therein). In his account of an “Abyssinian” monastery, his apparent admiration for the Abyssinian scribal tradition sits uncomfortably beside his low opinion of Abyssinians. In his memoir of a time visiting an Abyssinian monastery, he remarks: There were perhaps nearly fifty volumes, and as the entire literature of Abyssinia does not include more than double that number of works, I could easily imagine that what I saw around me formed a very considerable accumulation of manuscripts, considering the barbarous state of the country from which they came.52 He goes on to marvel over the “immense labor” that goes into the production of an Abyssinian manuscript, “worthy of being compared with the best

51 Belcher, Abyssinia’s Samuel Johnson, 71. 52 R. Curzon, A Visit to Monasteries in the Levant (New York, 1852) 84–85.

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specimens of calligraphy in any language.” Indeed, most germane to our purposes, he mentions: I have a MS. containing the book of Enoch, and several books of the Old Testament, which is remarkable for the perfection of its writing, the straightness of the lines, and the equal size and form of the characters throughout: probably many years were required to finish it.53 But such an appreciative attitude towards their cultural productions is seen as being completely consonant with a lament over their backwards practices and culture—for he remarks: … although they looked exceedingly slippery and greasy, they seemed to be an austere and dismal set of fanatics … poor fellows! they meant well, and knew no better; and what more can be said for the endeavours of the best of men?54 The apparent care and even beauty of the Ethiopian manuscript tradition, for Curzon, is set alongside an often-cheerful condescension, as a palatable exception to their elsewise inscrutable practices. But it is crucial to note the absolute preclusion of creativity in this portrait, as the attention of the scribe (as Curzon portrays it) is focused irrevocably on the act of replication and copying. They have no cursive writing; each letter is therefore painted, as it were, with the reed pen, and as the scribe finishes each he usually makes a horrible face and gives a triumphant flourish with his pen. Thus he goes on letter by letter, and before he gets to the end of the first line he is probably in a perspiration from his nervous apprehension of the importance of his undertaking. One page is a good day’s work, and when he has done it he generally, if he is not too stiff, follows the custom of all little Arab boys, and swings his head or his body from side to side, keeping time to a sort of nasal recitative.55 He addresses the idea of creativity obliquely in an aside on drawings and illuminations, lamenting that, “Some of these manuscripts are adorned with the quaintest and grimmest illuminations conceivable … the arts of drawing and 53 Curzon, Visit, 89. 54 Curzon, Visit, 83–84. 55 Curzon, Visit, 87–88.

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painting are thus ruthlessly mangled on the pages of their books.” Clearly, for Curzon, the scribes are best suited to the act of copying, and copying alone. William Cornwallis Harris was an English traveler and big-game hunter who led a diplomatic mission to Ethiopia, and came back with salacious travel diaries (as well as a knighthood in 1842, bestowed for his accomplishments in Ethiopia). His account lacks Curzon’s condescending charity, but echoes some of its key conclusions nevertheless: The Abyssinian scribe does not hold the pen of a ready writer; and the dilatory management of his awkward implement is attended with gestures and attitudes the most ludicrous … as with the Chinaman, each individual character must, on completion, be scrutinized from every possible point of view, before proceeding to the next. Each word must be read aloud by the delighted artist, spelt and re-spelt, and read again; and the greasy skin must be many times inverted, in order that the happy effect may be thoroughly studied … European patience has become exhausted at the scene of awkward stupidity, and the gross waste of valuable time which it involves.56 Cornwallis Harris takes an especially repulsive attitude towards Abyssinian people, as is clear here and elsewhere in his account. But for all it is mocking, this is a portrait of a widely-held idea, of the conservative Ethiopian scribe. Though Harris pillories it as a “gross waste of valuable time,” what is narrated is nevertheless a set of practices apparently focused on preservation and accuracy, though inextricably linked to the idea of an inherent illiteracy (not a “ready writer”) and incompetence. He makes special mention of the linguistic disconnect between the scribes and the Geʿez language that many may have had limited abilities in, ridiculing that the scribes look upon the manuscripts “in an unknown tongue … with the eye of superstitious credulity.”57 His account of scribes happily but ignorantly turning their manuscripts upside down to uncomprehendingly check their work is a nasty joke at their expense. In Curzon’s and Harris’ accounts, we see the dangerous other side of the scholarly assumption that the Ethiopic scribal tradition so neatly “preserved” Enoch. Scribal practices that preserved texts that are so exciting to scholars are met with an Englishman’s disdain. It is alarming to note that the assumption of scribal passivity was so easily coupled with the racialized assumption that

56 W. Cornwallis Harris, The Highlands of Ethiopia, 3 vols. (London, 1844) 3.182–83. 57 Cornwallis Harris, Highlands of Ethiopia, 3.183.

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passive transmission was all Abyssinian scribes were capable of (and only with great effort). With such a negative and confined understanding of the Ethiopic scribal tradition, it is hardly shocking that textual transformation, when detected, was often derided as carelessness, and outright composition was openly mocked. James Bruce, the famed if controversial agent by which Enoch manuscripts came to Europe, lamented in his 1790 memoirs that: nothing can be more inaccurate than all Abyssinian calculations. Besides their absolute ignorance in arithmetic, their excessive idleness and aversion to study, and a number of fanciful, whimsical combinations, by which every particular scribe or monk distinguishes himself …58 Bruce further comments upon “the fallen state of literature among them” and saves a special ire for the scribes, whom he derides as “the ignorant, careless copiers of the holy scriptures.”59 For all that Bruce is associated with Ethiopian manuscripts today, he placed a desperately low value on the tradition which produced the artifacts he flourished upon return to Europe.60 Alexander Murray, Bruce’s biographer and editor, would share this opinion, remarking upon the degree to which “the Ethiopic scribes are so careless in their computations,” and in a summation of the Kebra Negast, bemoans “the carelessness of the Ethiopic scribes, the only men of learning in their country.”61 The recurrence of the language of carelessness is no doubt directly inherited from Bruce, but the extent to which it colors Murray’s entire approach to the Ethiopic literary corpus is quite noticeable. So, Murray is equally unimpressed with the composers of the Kebra Negast, as he is its copyists, lamenting “The Kebir Neguste is an absurd performance, worthy to be read only by those holy men, who have allowed all their real ancient history to perish.”62 Nevertheless, hidden in Murray’s now-trite rehearsal of the literary failings of Ethiopia is the recurrent idea that the best, and perhaps only, gift Ethiopia could have given to non-Ethiopian observers is the preservation of “real ancient” history,

58 59 60 61

Bruce, Travels, 3.354. Bruce, Travels, 3.317, 319. Further on Bruce, see Erho and Hessayon in this volume. A. Murray, Account of the Life and Writings of James Bruce, of Kinnaird, Esq. (Edinburgh, 1808) 336, 339. 62 Murray, Account, 343. Murray’s curt dismissal was directed towards what some now recognize as the “chef d’oeuvre of Ethiopic literature”; see further E. Ullendorff, Ethiopia and the Bible (The Schweich Lectures 1967; London, 1968) 74.

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hearkening back to the ongoing valuation of Ethiopia as important insofar as it acts as a site of prolongation of the ancient world.63 We can close with the perspective of George Schodde, who has a rather violent way of bringing together a derogatory opinion of Ethiopian scribes and the preservation of works such as Enoch, reliant upon the language of petrifaction and death. Schodde believed “the Ethiopic Church of today is, as it has been for centuries, the petrifaction of the Greek Church,”64 “the petrification of teaching and life in the Church,”65 or the “petrification of the Greek Christian civilizations of the fifth and sixth centuries.”66 He does not use the language of petrifaction lightly, as he elsewhere bloodily glosses the emergence of the Abyssinian church that happened when “the Abyssinian Church severed its connection with the Church of the Roman Empire and became a hermit body,” contrasting its “dead orthodoxy” with a “living Christianity.”67 When it comes to the literature in their libraries, Schodde plays the coroner again, and declaims “the Abyssinians can make but little use of this literature themselves. For them it is practically a dead letter.”68 The rich literatures of Ethiopia, among which he counts (and feminizes!69) Enoch as “the queen of uninspired apocalyptic literature,”70 are nothing but fossils, remnants of “the time when the country enjoyed a vigorous Christian life” (albeit consisting mostly of translations from elsewhere, as he concedes in the very next sentence).71 Schodde characterizes Ethiopia as petrified, sleeping, and even dead. Given such an attitude 63

64 65 66 67

68 69 70 71

Murray would aver that “the book of Enoch was originally written in Greek, probably by some Alexandrian Jew,” with little discussion on how he arrives at that opinion; Account, 298. Given the esteem (or lack thereof) in which he held the Ethiopic literary tradition, alongside the knowledge of Greek fragments and Greek citations/readership from early Christian literature, it is unsurprising that a Greek origin for such a work seemed more plausible than anything else. Schodde, “Church of Ethiopia,” 20. Schodde, “Church of Abyssinia.” Schodde, “Hermit Christian Nation of Africa,” 252. Schodde, “Hermit Christian Nation of Africa,” 252. Note also that he connects this with “the most brutal of Oriental despotism, such as is characteristic of the untamed Semitic heart and is yet seen in the treacherous Arab Bedouin, is found allied closely with a fervency of prayer, fasts and religious observances that would be psychologically considered enigmatical were it not known that centuries of isolation and stagnation in mind and spirit changed into dead forms what had originally been living principles.” Schodde, “Abyssinians and Their Church,” 178. On the fear of corruption of texts gendered as feminine, see Y.-J. Lin, “Who Is the Text? The Gendered and Racialized New Testament,” in The Oxford Handbook of New Testament, Gender, and Sexuality, ed. B. Dunning (Oxford, 2019) 137–53. Schodde, “Church of Ethiopia,” 28. Schodde, “Specimens of Ethiopic Literature,” 75.

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towards a nation, its history, and its perceived capabilities, it is no wonder that Schodde and all of his contemporaries traced the emergence of Enoch literature elsewhere. 3

The Books of the Giants: August Dillmann and R.H. Charles

It may be objected that such attitudes are peripheral to the study of Enoch and have done little to set the tone of research in the nineteenth century and beyond. After all, almost none of the names mentioned above will be familiar to any but the most involved Enoch scholar (and many are not Enoch scholars at all). So I think it necessary to reflect briefly on the two giants of nineteenth-century Enoch scholarship—August Dillmann and R.H. Charles—and consider carefully how their framing and practices of study emerged in this milieu. August Dillmann, though a renowned expert on Ethiopia and its literatures, operated within the then-regnant paradigm of Ethiopian cultural inferiority and transmissional passivity. In his classic treatment on the Book of Enoch, August Dillmann considers Enoch on analogy with the Ethiopic translation of other biblical books, a subject on which he was the acknowledged expert of his time. He avers: We do not find an example anywhere of the Abyssinians defacing the books with larger additions and inserts or arbitrarily repositioning individual passages of the text, as the Greeks did; On the contrary, in relation to their volume and order, and even partly in relation to the subdivision of the text, the books are still preserved with them just as they came from the hands of the Greeks.72 Here, Dillmann emphasizes (and values!) an apparent Ethiopic tendency towards conservative transmission and non-intervention in their received literary traditions, a thesis we noted above refracted in the accounts of our travelers. One can spot in Dillmann a certain exasperation with the Greek scribes, contrasted with an appreciation of the “Abyssinian” attitude. In fact, Dillmann, perhaps unusually among his colleagues, occasionally shared a rather high opinion of early Ethiopian literary cultures, as would make sense in a man who devoted a great deal of his life to the study of Ethiopian language and literature. But he, too, would join his colleagues in lamenting the contemporary 72 A. Dillmann, Das Buch Henoch (Leipzig, 1853) LIX.

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“barbarism” of Ethiopia—he simply delays the point of decay to the sixteenth century, and ties it to the decline of Geʿez: It was only after the Galla tribes pressed into the country after the sixteenth century, and thus shook and loosened the entire kingdom, that the language received its deathblow  … civilization yielded to a rapid recrudescence of barbarism; Christianity was pressed hard and partly supplanted by Islam, and in itself it degenerated into the merest caricature of a Christian faith. Along with the power, culture, and literature of these lands, the venerable speech died out also.73 Such is Dillmann’s portrait of the state of things as he writes, as contrasted with the imagined (and now fading) glory he locates in early Ethiopia. What comes after, to him, is not worthy of much attention. So, he laments, “later on, sacred poetry degenerates into an innumerable quantity of Encomia of Saints—men and women—and proportionately sinks in intrinsic value.”74 Dillmann is often celebrated, rightly, as a scion of Ethiopic studies, and he was clearly a great appreciator of Geʿez and the ancient communities in which it grew and came to life. Yet his denial of “intrinsic value” for comparatively modern indigenous cultural productions here is quite telling—what is inherently worthwhile in Ethiopic literature is that which came from another time and place. It is worth remembering that many of the manuscripts of Enoch that scholars like Dillmann would handle were productions of this “degenerate” period—from the sixteenth century and onwards. The artifacts were, comparatively, modern. For someone such as Dillmann, who saw this period of Ethiopia’s history as a “recrudescence of barbarism,” it is unsurprising that the artifacts would be seen as suspect, imperfect vessels for something of value from a valuable, previous era. This contextualizes Dillmann’s pursuit of the Sitz im Leben of Enoch in the second and first centuries BCE. Even as his understanding of the multiple moments of composition of the work developed, it is remarkable that each was to be located in Second Temple Palestine.75 Again, many historical and cultural features were at play. Dillmann was, after all, a scholar of the Old Testament and a Lutheran pastor. It is not so strange that he would feel a special draw to the literature of Palestine, or the centuries before 73 English translation from Dillmann, Ethiopic Grammar (Second Edition) 2; cf. Dillmann, Grammatik der äthiopischen Sprache (Leipzig, 1857) 1–2. 74 Dillmann, Ethiopic Grammar (Second Edition), 12. Cf. Dillmann, Grammatik der äthiopischen Sprache, 9. 75 For a brief summary of the development of his thought, see Charles, Book of Enoch, 6–7.

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the common era—especially given some of the features mentioned above that indicate a happy home for text belonging to Enoch in such a time and place. Moreover, Dillmann’s own extensive work on the Ethiopic translation of Greek biblical materials, the books of which are certainly extant in full in Greek elsewhere, likely led him to think about Enoch in an analogous manner. Though even in his wheelhouse, on the Greek to Ethiopic transition, we can note that Dillmann’s characterization of the people who produced the Ethiopic texts he studied had its own philological consequences: The Ethiopic translators were by no means very learned men, and had not an absolute command of the Greek language; especially when they had to translate rare words and technical terms this clearly appears, and consequently some misunderstandings and mistakes have crept into the text through the fault of the translators.76 Dillmann’s opinion here is not lightly given—he devoted decades of his life to the study of Ethiopic and its role with reference to a Greek Old Testament—but his portrait of unlearned Ethiopians vexed by Greek is one with problematic echoes. I suggest Dillmann’s imagination was limited by his historical and cultural context. It is, to my mind, curious that Dillmann, with such a high opinion of Geʿez (though not all Ethiopian) literature did not think overmuch about the idea that the newly discovered textual entity called Enoch might have something to do with Ethiopia, or changed somehow in Ethiopia. I suggest some of the factors cited above—on the regnant attitudes towards the historical isolation or contemporary barbarism of Ethiopia, and the specific (in)capabilities of Ethiopian scribes—might suffice to explain why Dillmann’s imagination was set in such a manner, especially given the degree to which his own comments above indicate a consonant view of nineteenth-century Ethiopia from his place in nineteenth-century Germany. R.H. Charles, writing from the British Isles at the close of the nineteenth century, exemplifies the erasure of Ethiopia from the study of Enoch. Charles, a skilled reader and expositor of Ethiopic, was known especially for his role in the study of the works in a variety of languages classed under the headings “apocrypha” and “pseudepigrapha.” Enoch represented the par exemplar of what the study of these texts might do—better contextualize the New Testament, 76 The translation of Dillmann comes from G.H. Schodde, The Book of Enoch: Translated from the Ethiopic, with Introduction and Notes (Andover, MA, 1882) 8–9; cf. A. Dillmann, “Aethiopische Bibelübersetzung,” in Real-Encyklopädie für Protestantische Theologie und Kirche, ed. J.J. Herzog, 18 vols. (Leipzig, 1877) 1.204.

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as he firmly believed Enoch to be already completed and an influence upon the writers of Christian scripture. Charles, who began decades of publication on Enoch and other ancient Jewish and Christian texts at the very end of the nineteenth century, represents a kind of high-water mark for the submerging of Abyssinia in the study of Enoch. Charles’ 1893 commentary (which would be reissued in several subsequent editions) mentions Abyssinia precisely once, as the country in which Bruce found his manuscripts. It is certainly not for lack of acquaintance with Ethiopia and its literature. Among other contributions in the translation and interpretation of texts from Ethiopic, Charles would supply an article on the “Ethiopic Version” of the Bible to James Hastings’ 1898 edition of the very popular Dictionary of the Bible.77 In the article, he betrays acquaintance with some of the themes in the European apprehension of Ethiopia summarized above (though he forgoes any language of barbarism), and he especially highlights the possibility of Hebrew influence upon the Ethiopic OT and the “Levitical character” of Ethiopic Christianity. He is not unaware of the network of Ethiopian scriptures among which Ethiopic Enoch belongs. But, in his book on Enoch, all other mentions of Ethiopia are actually to Ethiopic: either referring to the text, the manuscripts, or the language. For Charles, the move is quite simple: he states on the first page, “The present book from the Ethiopic belongs to the second and first centuries BC.”78 In this, Charles joins decades of European scholarship which readily, and almost without comment, pursued the origins of Enoch outside of Ethiopia. But what makes Charles different, and so crucial for the history of scholarship, is the precedent for the source-criticism of Enoch that his work would represent. Though he was not the first to pursue four or more sources or compositional moments within the Book of Enoch, he would prove to be the most influential expositor of such from the nineteenth century, who would set the tone for the pursuit of separable works within Enoch for decades to come. Among the largest of the separable pieces is, as was quite commonly accepted at the time and still today, the entire Parables of Enoch. He also postulated a variety of interpolations, including chapters 17–20, 50, 71, and 80–81, as well as various verses (e.g. from the Book of the Watchers alone, 6:3–8; 8:1–3; 9:7; 10:1–3, 11).79 He proposed that many of these belonged to a lost “Apocalypse of Noah,” or something indirectly related to such. 77 R.H. Charles, “Ethiopic Version,” in Dictionary of the Bible, ed. J. Hastings (Edinburgh, 1898) 791–93. He would also contribute articles on Ethiopic Enoch (1 Enoch) and The Book of the Secrets of Enoch (2 Enoch). 78 Charles, Book of Enoch, 1. 79 Charles, Book of Enoch, 25.

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For Charles, as for Dillmann, there are readily apparent reasons for his philological commitments that would seem to have little to do with the scholar’s feelings towards Ethiopia. So, for Charles, the closure of textual development of Enoch would be necessarily near-complete by the time of the New Testament, given the extent to which he believed the latter to be dependent upon Enoch. Some of the sources that Charles postulates are dated, in his estimation, by internal factors—he considers the Parables of Enoch to be dateable by way of a purported reference to the Maccabean princes in 1 En 38:5.80 But Charles’ textual surgeries also created loose-floating glosses and chapters, some of which bear no historically specific information at all. Take, for instance, 1 En 39:1–2a (“And it will come to pass in those days that elect and holy children of the high heaven will descend, and their seed will become one with the children of men. In those days, Enoch received books of zeal and wrath, and books of disquiet and expulsion”); Charles identifies this as an intrusion in the narrative flow of the Parables of Enoch, and excises it accordingly.81 But he assigns this gloss, along with many others, to a lost “Apocalypse of Noah,” and their interpolation into the text is ascribed to the editor of the complete Enoch, which “we may with safety conclude … was before the beginning of the Christian era.”82 Other scholars left loopholes for the possibility of Christian transformations in Enoch, especially in the Parables of Enoch (though by Christian, these scholars meant Greek Christian), but Charles did not. For Charles, “there is no room for doubt as to the Palestinian origin of the book … the whole tone and exegesis of the book are Palestinian in character.”83 Thus Ethiopic Enoch was an artifact of Palestine. This is very similar to a formulation by Schürer, citing the work of Dillmann, that the book of Enoch, “undoubtedly owes its origin to Palestine (hat ohne Zweifel zum Vaterland Palästina).”84 I suggest that the extreme level of certainty expressed by these formulations owes in no small part to the absolute elimination and erasure of Ethiopia as a site of transformation, and any period after the fifth century as a time for its composition. Charles, to my mind, represents the zenith of the nineteenth-century extraction of Enoch from Ethiopia. Even as he postulated the existence of smaller and smaller textual units, of correspondingly uncertain provenance, none were to be traced to Ethiopia, and every one was imagined to be a creation of a denizen of the ancient Levant. This is no indictment of Charles in particular, but simply 80 81 82 83 84

Charles, Book of Enoch, 106–8. Below, I will note that this reasoning is not always sustained. Charles, Book of Enoch, 115. Charles, Book of Enoch, 33. Charles, Book of Enoch, 22. Schürer, “Book of Enoch,” 69–70.

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demonstrates the extent to which the boundaries of scholarly imagination had calcified by the close of the nineteenth century. 4

On the Parables of Enoch

Though none of our nineteenth century scholars would have known as much, more manuscripts of Enoch would be discovered in the twentieth century, demonstrating that at least a version of some of the works within 1 Enoch were indeed circulating before Enoch arrived in Ethiopia. Fragments of the Book of the Watchers, Astronomical Book, Book of Dreams, and Epistle of Enoch were discovered at Qumran, though the fragments do not always cover every part of the Ethiopic text (e.g. the Flood Vision of 1 Enoch 83–84 is yet to be witnessed in a non-Ethiopic manuscript), and sometimes evidence a version of the text that is quite different (e.g., the Astronomical Book). The discovery of the fragments, in some ways, validates the long-held scholarly hypotheses that Enoch did come from outside Ethiopia, and textual parallels between the Qumran fragments and Ethiopic codices would confirm the existence and even success of a conservative scribal tradition in Ethiopia in preserving such a text. And so, even if scholars came to these conclusions buffeted at least in part by racial and cultural attitudes we find distasteful today, their source-critical hypotheses were nevertheless correct. In that case, my analysis above would merely be a portrait of a different set of social and cultural mores; a curiosity with little impact on scholarly practice today. Perhaps the reader might walk away with a small caution when greeted with assumptions of scribal conservativism and passivity in European accounts of non-European cultures. Perhaps not. However, not all of Enoch has non-Ethiopic manuscripts evidencing its circulation elsewhere. In fact, one section that has near-universally been identified as a separable section—the Parables of Enoch—has no non-Ethiopic manuscript evidence outside of Ethiopia to provenance it at all. Why is the possibility that the Parables of Enoch was either written entirely in Ethiopia, or changed in Ethiopian transmission, so curiously absent from the history of scholarship? Scholars have occasionally suggested that the Parables of Enoch owes entirely to, or changed in, Christian transmission.85 In the twentieth century, 85 Many scholars are suspicious of purported Christian interventions into the text—after all, why mention a messianic figure, and not explicitly label him as Jesus or Christ? For those whose threshold for spotting Christian transmission is explicit, named references to distinctively Christian figures, the Parables of Enoch will fall short. But it is not clear

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J.T. Milik famously proposed a third-century CE date, and Christian authorship for the Parables of Enoch. He was not the first. In 1877, for instance, James Drummond concluded: “As the book was principally used by the Christians of the earlier centuries, and as we owe its preservation to a Christian Church, it surely may have borrowed something from the medium of its transmission.”86 Drummond notes especially the curious absence of the “Messianic” passages from the Parables of Enoch from the testimony of early readers of Enoch such as Tertullian, or the Testaments of the 12 Patriarchs. And he arrives at the conclusion that, “we cannot rely upon the integrity of the present Book of Enoch; that the Messianic passages in the Similitudes are of unknown, but probably Christian origin; and therefore we cannot safely appeal to them as evidence of pre-Christian Jewish belief.”87 This summation, curiously, reflects not at all upon which Christians may have so transformed the Parables of Enoch, nor when, nor in which language. It may be assumed, given what we know about the cultural mores of the time, that Drummond meant “(Greek) Christian origin.” Indeed, we can look to Drummond’s contemporaries who were convinced of a Christian Parables of Enoch (or Enoch more broadly), all of whom placed it in the first or second century CE, to justify the idea that Ethiopian Christians were implicitly excluded from such a formulation.88 An especially that “Christian references” were the only distinctive flourishes we might expect of a Christian scribal hand—we might think, for instance, of the Shepherd of Hermas, which never mentions Jesus, and yet is studied under the heading of early Christian literature. Or we might look to other works classed among the pseudepigrapha, like 3 Baruch, 6 Ezra, or the Apocalypse of Adam, for which scholars have claimed both Jewish and Christian authorship (even without opening up the vexed category of Jewish-Christian!). In short, though explicit references have been employed in scholarship as clear and specific markers of Christian textual intervention, they are not the sole way to judge the identities of our tradents and composers over time. Moreover, for our purposes in the present article, the history of scholarship bears out that not all scholars felt bound by this evidentiary threshold. 86 J. Drummond, The Jewish Messiah, a Critical History of the Messianic Idea among the Jews from the Rise of the Maccabees to the Closing of the Talmud (London, 1877) 33. Such an observation is consonant with the more recent line of research, pioneered by Robert Kraft, Michael Stone, and Marinus de Jonge (among others), concerning the inextricability of Jewish texts from their Christian transmissional histories. See, e.g., R.A. Kraft, “The Pseudepigrapha and Christianity, Revisited: Setting the Stage and Framing Some Central Questions,” in Exploring the Scripturesque: Jewish Texts and Their Christian Contexts (Leiden, 2009) 35–61; M.E. Stone, Apocrypha, Pseudepigrapha and Armenian Studies: Collected Papers (OLA 144–145; Dudley, MA, 2006); M. de Jonge, Pseudepigrapha of the Old Testament as Part of Christian Literature: The Case of the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs and the Greek Life of Adam and Eve (Leiden, 2003). 87 Drummond, Jewish Messiah, 73. 88 See n. 6 above.

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close analogue to Drummond is Adolf Hilgenfeld, who muses on additions that may have been made by “the Christian hands, through which the Ethiopian text have passed (die christlichen Hände, durch welche der äthiopische Text hindurchgegangen ist),” a category which he deems to include the Parables of Enoch. However, he concludes the Parables of Enoch (and other additions) are to be traced to a Greek Christian gnostic of the second century CE.89 It was not impossible to imagine a Christian Parables of Enoch—why not, then, an Ethiopian Christian one? It is possible that a non-pursuit of an Ethiopic Parables of Enoch may owe something to purported Greek readers of the Parables of Enoch that are occasionally mustered, though I would submit that none of these are so clear as to be determinative as to the existence of a “completed” Parables of Enoch. Milik argued that “no quotation from [the Parables] is recorded between the first and fourth centuries.”90 (The fourth century would be the purported time at which Enoch, including the Parables of Enoch, entered Ethiopia). While some scholars have collected possible allusions, none of them are so exact as to mandate how we think about dependency, and none can bear the weight of witnessing to a closed or completed Parables of Enoch.91 Another impediment to the pursuit of an Ethiopic Parables of Enoch might be signals within the text itself that have been interpreted as “Aramaisms” or “Hebraisms” or indicators of a Greek Vorlage. But based on the history of scholarship I have constructed above, I would contend that the speed with which textual incongruities are classed as perceived corruptions from a more pristine Vorlage has been unduly fast for certain historical reasons, and would hope the reader would join me in exercising caution based on this scholarly legacy. But even were we to bracket that argument, all of the purported Aramaisms or Greekisms in the Parables of Enoch are so identified because of difficulties 89 See Hilgenfeld, Jüdische Apokalyptik, 150–79. 90 Milik, Books of Enoch, 92. 91 George Nickelsburg adduces the Apocalypse of Peter and Origen as possibilities but stops himself at chastising that Milik may have spoken “perhaps not quite accurately” about a lack of quotations; 1 Enoch 2, 60. Darrell Bock, in a review of scholarship on the dating of the Parables, assembles no shortage of critical voices on Milik’s proposal, but nevertheless muses that Milik’s statement on a lack of quotation “seems sustained”; “Dating the Parables of Enoch: A Forschungsbericht,” in Parables of Enoch: A Paradigm Shift, ed. J.H. Charlesworth and D.L. Bock (London, 2012) 61. Lee Martin MacDonald’s summary of possible citations of the Parables in early Christianity conclude that “most of the references to the Parables of Enoch are rather vague”; “The Parables of Enoch in Early Christianity,” in Parables of Enoch, 357. I agree with his conclusion, although I think makes it difficult to take on the list of parallels he provides there (p. 361) as anything other than a marker of homophony.

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modern scholars have of understanding the text—there is no transcription here—and these are sometimes solved elsewhere without recourse to textual corruptions. For instance, various solutions have been advanced to account for the apparent problem in 1 En 52:9, “All these things will be denied (ይትከሐዱ yətkäḥädu) and destroyed from the face of the earth.”92 Black remarks that “to say that ‘they will be denied’ is … hardly appropriate in the context.” Dillmann suggested this reflects the Hebrew ‫“( כחד‬perish”),93 Charles suggested both verbs reflected a double rendering in Greek of ‫ יכחדו‬that were both incorporated in Ethiopic,94 and Knibb believed this to indicate a direct dependence of the Ethiopic on an Aramaic ‫יתכחדון‬.95 Meanwhile, Caquot and Geoltrain,96 followed by Piovanelli97 and Nickelsburg, recognize that there is “no problem with the notion of denial or rejection here, noting rightly that the kings and the mighty are repeatedly accused of rejecting or denying (the name of) the Lord of the Spirits.”98 This is but one example, but it indicates a general principle: there need be no recourse to a purported Aramaism (or Greekism, as in Charles) if another interpretation lets the text stand as is and does not rely upon the hypothesis of external versions or languages to provide hermeneutic stability. Moreover, it is unclear to me why the presence of an isolated Aramaism (even if such a thing were to be proven to the satisfaction of all) necessarily precludes the situation of composition in Ethiopian climes—surely we can imagine a scribe using some previous material, or even trying to use the occasional word or phrase to write in a register reminiscent of other biblical books, like Daniel, that echo with their own “Aramaisms.” All of which is to say that I believe Aramaisms or Greekisms cannot be privileged as textual solutions, nor as signals for the wholly external development of the Parables of Enoch, unless the collective imagination of scholars to place lines in Ethiopian literary contexts has been utterly exhausted—an endeavor that we have yet to embark upon as a field. The final, and to my mind strongest, reason that the growth of the Parables of Enoch in Ethiopia has been little pursued has to do with analogy with the movement of other Greek biblical texts, and the other books of Enoch itself, 92 The literal translation here comes from M. Black, The Book of Enoch or I Enoch: A New English Edition (Leiden, 1985) 185. 93 Dillmann, Das Buch Henoch, 168–69. 94 R.H. Charles, The Ethiopic Version of the Book of Enoch (Oxford, 1906) 96 n. 9. 95 M.A. Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch: A New Edition in the Light of the Aramaic Dead Sea Fragments, 2 vols. (Oxford, 1978) 2.137. 96 A. Caquot and P. Geoltrain, “Notes sur le texte éthiopien des ‘paraboles’ d’Hénoch,” Semitica 13 (1963) 46. 97 P. Piovanelli, “Sulla ‘Vorlage’ Aramaica Dell’Enoch Etiopico,” Studi Classici e Orientali 37 (1988) 585. 98 Nickelsburg/VanderKam, 1 Enoch 2, 193. -

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into Ethiopia. The thinking would go: we can see other books belonging to the Greek Old Testament moving relatively conservatively into Ethiopic transmission, and so too should we imagine the movement of Enoch. This argument has a long legacy in scholarship and appears in the works of Dillmann and Schodde cited above. But even here, we should be careful, as the power of analogy can be helpful when there are gaps in the historical record, but also runs the risk of erasing heterogeneity in favor of an assumed similarity. If the Parables of Enoch were to be transformed substantially in Ethiopia, or written entirely there, it would be an exception to what we can tell about the “rule” of the movement of Greek Old Testament books into Ethiopia. But this is still not impossible. Moreover, there is more than one way to draw an analogy. If the Parables of Enoch is to be imagined on analogy with the Book of the Watchers, a text for which we have a relatively full Greek manuscript that seems to mostly correspond with the Ethiopic textual progression, perhaps we are to imagine the conservative transmission of a translated text drawn from outside Ethiopia. But if the Parables of Enoch is to be imagined on analogy with the Astronomical Book, perhaps we are to imagine the wholescale reimagination of a text in new cultural and literary climes. I do not, then, consider any of these to represent sufficient impediments to the location of the Parables of Enoch in Ethiopia to be sustained. I have suggested above that a hidden reason that the possibility of any textual development in Ethiopia was historically so firmly precluded from entering the realm of scholarly imagination was the racial and cultural attitudes fundamental to the positionality of men practicing scholarship in the nineteenth century. The Ethiopic scribal tradition does seem to practice conservative transmission in some cases. But the idea that a conservative scribal transmission of certain documents signals the impossibility of creativity is one with a specific colonial and racial legacy having to do with the way that men in America, Germany, and the British Isles imagined the (in)capability of bodies and minds in the colonized world, as well as Ethiopia.99 Recent work on the efflorescence of Ethiopic literature and its manuscript cultures over the centuries should clarify the nonsensical nature of this proposition, and I do not imagine that many scholars today would grant the cultural assumptions of their predecessors.100

99 It is worth remembering that Ethiopia was never colonized. Even the period of Italian occupation in the twentieth century did not result in a lasting colonial administration. 100 For recent portraits of the state of the field see S. Kelley, ed., A Companion to Medieval Ethiopia and Eritrea (Leiden, 2020), and especially the contributions there of Alessandro Bausi, Denis Nosnitsin, and Antonella Brita. -

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I understand this assumption baked into the nineteenth-century approach to Enoch—that Ethiopians could never have written Enoch, on account of some perceived racial or national inferiority—to represent a large boulder blocking off an avenue of research. When cleared, there are still some rocks in the way that make certain pathways unreasonable. For example, the Qumran fragments and Codex Panopolitanus, alongside the rich reception history of the Book of the Watchers, makes it clear that the Book of the Watchers had a long history outside of Ethiopia. But there is one pathway that strikes me as clearer, now, and that is the origin and development of the Parables of Enoch. I do not have a strong argument in favor of an Ethiopic compositional home for the Parables of Enoch, but nor do I have one against it. I am open to the position that has received much attention in recent years that the Parables of Enoch belongs to the first centuries BCE or CE, though I find the particular historical allusions often cited to be unconvincing.101 But, to my mind, it is impossible to proceed with the idea that the Parables of Enoch belong to the turn-of-the-millennium Levant without attending to the very real possibility of transformation during transmission, or even composition in Ethiopian climes. In this way, I hope to respond to the call of Robert Kraft that scholars of Jewish texts in Christian transmission recognize the “burden of proof lies with claims of Jewishness.”102 I also am inspired by a core insight often associated with the movement known as New or Material 101 For a recent attempt to pursue a Sitz im Leben in the first century CE, characterizing its conclusions as a “paradigm shift,” see J.H. Charlesworth and D.L. Bock, eds., Parables of Enoch: A Paradigm Shift (London, 2012). Some critiques of the historical allusions often used to arrive at such a certain dating can be found in D.W. Suter, “Enoch in Sheol: Updating the Dating of the Book of Parables,” in Enoch and the Messiah Son of Man, ed. G. Boccaccini (Grand Rapids, 2007) 415–44; M.E. Stone, “Enoch’s Date in Limbo: Or: Some Considerations on David Suter’s Analysis of the Book of Parables,” in Enoch and the Messiah Son of Man, 444–49. The most substantial critique of the pursuit of narrow windows of dating for the Parables of Enoch, with particular reference to the insufficiency of the purported historical allusions to facilitate dating is that advanced by Ted Erho. Note, however, that Erho does not venture beyond 100 CE and correctly notes that “no scholar of early Judaism in the last forty years has ventured to date this document outside of the period 50 BCE to 100 CE.” (italics original); “Historical-Allusional Dating and the Similitudes of Enoch,” JBL 130.3 (2011) 509; see also Erho, “Internal Dating Methodologies and the Problem Posed by the Similitudes of Enoch,” JSP 20.2 (2010) 83–103. I am persuaded by several of Erho’s arguments, most especially his learned reminder that Ethiopic scribal practice included the updating of place-names, or even just updating and change at all; a point that goes largely unaccounted for in the current state of scholarship on the Parables of Enoch. What Erho calls “the key presumption of textual certainty” (p. 503) is exactly the assumption that I am attempting to give a historical genealogy in this paper. 102 Kraft, “Pseudepigrapha and Christianity, Revisited.”

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Philology, that there is no text outside our manuscripts.103 And I want to add a third corollary, based on my findings here—namely, that Ethiopia and the Ethiopian scribal tradition have been unnecessarily and wrongly erased in the study of Ethiopic texts. We can state the problem as follows: the Parables of Enoch does not exist outside of a Christian manuscript tradition which begins in fourteenth-century Ethiopia. We might wish to be agnostic, if not skeptical, of our ability to recover any pre-Ethiopic, pre-Christian, pre-medieval material. The context that has formed our only evidence might be assumed to be entirely constitutive of the text attested, with no material able to be adduced to the contrary. But, at least, we need to acknowledge the primacy of this position, and the incredible effort needed to shift the burden of proof away from an Ethiopic Christian text, in Ethiopic Christian manuscripts, towards something else. I see little reflection in the literature on the Parables of Enoch on the weight of that burden of proof, a legacy I understand at least partially to stem from the nineteenth-century denial that Ethiopian Christianity might be accorded the gravitas to represent such a “burden,” and that the Ethiopian scribal tradition possessed the capabilities to enact meaningful change.104 I rather suspect that this work will continue to resist firm provenancing, and scholars will find it difficult to advance any particular context to the exclusion of others. But the grounds upon which Ethiopia has been excluded as a compositional home are not ones that we should accept. 103 L. Lied and H. Lundhaug, eds., Snapshots of Evolving Traditions: Jewish and Christian Manuscript Culture, Textual Fluidity, and New Philology (Boston, 2017) 1–19. For work specifically pursuing Enoch from the perspective of New Philology see E. Dugan, “Enochic Biography and the Manuscript History of 1 Enoch: The Codex Panopolitanus Book of the Watchers,” JBL 140.1 (2021) 113–38; Dugan, “On Making Manuscripts, Genre, and the Boundaries of Ancient Jewish Literature,” Metatron 1.1 (2021). 104 For one piece moving towards prioritizing early modern Ethiopian scribes and scholars in the study of the Parables of Enoch, see Hall in this volume.

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Part 3 Enoch beyond Europe



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Chapter 12

The Reception and Function of 1 Enoch in the Ethiopian Orthodox Tradition Ralph Lee Theories of the transmission of the text of 1 Enoch to Ethiopia are well known,1 but the function of 1 Enoch within the Ethiopian Christian tradition, as expressed in commentary that develops after its emergence in the fourteenth century as a somewhat contested book in the Ethiopian scriptures, is little explored. Early reflection appears to have focused only on portions of 1 Enoch that perhaps most easily fit into Christian reflection and commentary on these passages, developed to reconcile the understanding of 1 Enoch with that of some other biblical books. The distinct sections chosen for detailed reflection perhaps also point to an early, if not limited, understanding of the diverse literary traditions in 1 Enoch, apparently perceiving distinct literary units within the book. This short article will first present an overview of the parts of 1 Enoch referenced in classical Ethiopian literature, before focusing on the commentary on one of the most popular sections for commentary, the Apocalypse of Weeks. 1

The Texts, Sources of the Quotations

Thirteen Ethiopic manuscripts have been identified that clearly reference 1 Enoch:2 d’Abbadie 803 (15th c.) containing the Rətuʿa Haymanot homilies;4 1 See, e.g., L.T. Stuckenbruck, “The Book of Enoch: Its Reception in Second Temple Jewish and in Christian Tradition,” Early Christianity 4 (2013) 7–40. 2 Supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft at LMU, Munich under the direction of Prof. Loren Stuckenbruck, for the preparation of a new edition of the texts of Ethiopic 1 Enoch. 3 M. Chaîne, Catalogue des Manuscrits Éthiopiens de la Collection Antione d’Abbadie (Paris, 1912) 53–54. 4 The quotations in this manuscript are very few, but they are contained within a very interesting homily for Pentecost, which develops the Book of Watchers’ account into a tale which resembles the Book of Giants. The quotations are used to open the story of a boastful avaricious giant who seems to seek repentance, but who in the end is destroyed along with other giants in a mini-version of the flood, which itself inspires God to plan the Deluge. See R. Lee, “Little Known Giants Traditions in Ethiopian Literature,” in Representations of Angelic Beings in Early Jewish and in Christian Traditions, ed. A. Tefera and L.T. Stuckenbruck (Tübingen, 2021). © Ralph Lee, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_014

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d’Abbadie 1785 (17th c.); Cowley MS A (BL Orient 13830)6 (18th c.), containing the Tərgwame Qälamsis commentary on the Apocalypse of St John; EMML 18357 (15th c.) from Ḥayq ʾƎsṭifanos monastery, containing homilies honoring angels; EMML 24618 (19th c.); EMML 8971 (16th c.) with commentary on the Apocalypse of Weeks; EMML 8260 (Tana3) (16th c.); Gundä Gunde 111/1129 (16th c.) with a summary commentary on 1 Enoch in about 2500 words; The Book of Mysteries of Heaven and Earth (probably mid-15th c.)10 which refers to the Apocalypse of Weeks; Giyorgis of Sagala’s Book of Mysteries11 (15th c.); The Därsanä Afnin12 (15th c.), homily on the Archangel Afinin; The Book of the Nativity13 (15th c.); Ethiopièn 6414 (16th c.).

5 6 7

8

9

10

11 12 13 14

Chaîne, Catalogue, 106–7. R.W. Cowley, The Traditional Interpretation of the Apocalypse of John in the Ethiopian Orthodox Church (Cambridge, 1983) 65. W.F. Macomber and G. Haile, “A Catalogue of Ethiopian Manuscripts Microfilmed for the Ethiopian Manuscript Microfilm Library, Addis Ababa, and for the Hill Monastic Manuscript Library, Collegeville, vol. 5: Project Numbers 1501·2000” (Collegeville, MN, 1981) 318–29. W.F. Macomber and G. Haile, “A Catalogue of Ethiopian Manuscripts Microfilmed for the Ethiopian Manuscript Microfilm Library, Addis Ababa, and for the Hill Monastic Manuscript Library, Collegeville, vol. 6: Project Numbers 2001·2500” (Collegeville, MN, 1982) 504–13. For information of the Gundä Gunde library see T.M. Erho, “The Library and Old Testament Manuscripts of Gundä Gunde,” in Studies in Ethiopian Languages, Literature, and History Festschrift for Getatchew Haile Presented by his Friends and Colleagues, ed. A.C. McCollum (Äthiopistische Forschungen 83; Wiesbaden, 2017) 297–319. A critical edition of this text has been published in two parts: S. Grébaut, “Les Trois Derniers Traités du Livre Des Mystères du Ciel et de la Terre,” in Patrologia Orientalis 6.3, ed. R. Graffin and F. Nau (Paris, 1911) 361–464; J. Perruchon and I. Guidi, “Le Livre des Mystères du Ciel et de la Terre,” in Patrologia Orientalis 1.1, ed. R. Graffin and F. Nau (Paris, 1907) 1–97. For further information on this text, see G. Lusini and G. Ficcadori, “Məśṭirä Sämay Wämədr: Mäṣḥafä Məśṭirä Sämay Wämədr,” in Encylopaedia Aethiopica, ed. S. Uhlig, 5 vols. (Wiesbaden, 2007) 3.945–46. For more on this text and its author, see G. Colin, “Giyorgis of Sägla,” in Encylopaedia Aethiopica, 2.812. C. Conti Rossini, “L’Arcangelo Afnin Nella Letteratura Etiopica,” Analecta Bollandiana 68 (1950) 424–35. G. Haile, “Mäṣḥafä Milad,” in Encyclopaedia Aethiopica, 3.964–65. H. Zotenberg, Catalogue des Manuscrits Ethiopiens (Gheez et Amharique) de la Bibliothèque Nationale (Paris, 1877) 71–72.

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2

Range and Frequency of Quotations

The data from all sources has been compiled in Figure 12.1, to give a profile of the distribution and frequency of quotations from and clear allusions to 1 Enoch.15 In summary: Book of Watchers (1–36), Parables of Enoch (37–71), and the Apocalypse of Weeks (93:1–10 + 91:11–17) are quoted extensively; Astronomical Book (72–82) and Book of Dreams (83–90) are occasionally quoted; and Exhortation (91:1–10, 18–19), Epistle (92:1–5, 93:11–105:2), Birth of Noah (106– 107), and Eschatological Admonition (108) are not quoted at all. The lighter colors on the graph show the distribution of all quotations, and those in red show only those from the Gundä Gunde commentary, which can be seen to reflect in its content the broad distribution of quotations found in all the material. 3

Commentary on the Apocalypse of Weeks and the Animal Apocalypse

After the few selected verses from the Book of Watchers, the Apocalypse of Weeks is the most quoted part of 1 Enoch so far identified, and it also has the most commentary material: possibly the oldest is in Book of Mysteries of Heaven and Earth, which is probably a fifteenth-century composition; slightly later in sixteenth-century Gundä Gunde 111/112 and EMML 8971; and finally, the Amharic andəmta commentary committed to writing in the late seventeenth century, although some of its content may be earlier.16 In addition to these, more recently Vatican Comb.S.8 f.17r–19r has been identified, a seventeenth-century manuscript which also contains commentary on the Apocalypse of Weeks. Ethiopian tradition asserts that the “prophet” Enoch wrote the whole book, but within that the Apocalypse of Weeks is regarded as a literary unit in commentary material, broadly in line with contemporary scholarship;17 although 15

I am indebted to Ted Erho who has provided me with further material on quotations of 1 Enoch which has not yet been integrated into this study, but the overall impression will not change significantly with this additional material. 16 According to Ethiopian records, these commentaries were committed to writing by imperial decree in 1674 EC, and their outlook appears to reflect that of the Gondar Kingdom of that period, see Selassie Seyfe Yohannes, የኢትዮጵያ ኦርቶዶክስ ተዋሕዶ ቤተ ክርስቲያን ታሪክ ከልደተ ክርስቶስ እስከ ፳፻ (2000) (Addis Ababa, 2000 EC) 187–88. 17 See L.T. Stuckenbruck, 1 Enoch 91–108 (Berlin, 2007) 49–53. Modern scholarship concludes that the Apocalypse of Weeks (93:1–10 + 91:11–17) was originally a separate work, by an author not responsible for other parts of 1 Enoch, transmitted in its current form, embedded in the Epistle, at an early stage (pp. 57–60).

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Book of Parables Astronomical Book Book of Dreams

GG

Distribution of quotations from and allusions to 1 Enoch

Book of Watchers

Figure 12.1

0

5

10

15

20 All sources

Epistle

Apocalypse of Weeks

1.01 6.03 9.10 11.02 14.09 15.09 18.10 21.09 24.06 30.02 37.03 40.03 45.01 48.08 52.09 56.04 60.09 61.09 63.05 67.01 69.08 70.04 72.08 72.33 74.13 76.12 78.15 81.09 83.04 86.02 89.14 89.39 89.64 90.12 90.37 92.01 94.07 97.06 99.06 101.02 103.07 106.02 108.05

Book of Noah/ Eschatological Admonition

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commentary does cross reference other parts, especially Book of Watchers. In the Geʿez commentary the ten weeks are in numerical order,18 in a simple reconstruction that does not enter the more complex discussions of modern scholarship. This reordering is abandoned in the Amharic andəmta commentary which follows the text as found in the manuscript tradition, which starts with weeks eight to ten and the “many weeks,” 1 En 91:12–17, and then later weeks one to seven, 1 En 93:3–14, with the text merged with parts of the Exhortation and Epistle. The Weeks are not complex to interpret, and Loren Stuckenbruck outlines the following natural interpretation of the weeks, which provides a useful framework for comparing Ethiopian interpretations:19 A.

B.

Past Time 1. The birth of Enoch 2. The rise of evil, the Great Flood, Noah rescued, and the Law given for sinners 3. Abraham, the plant of righteousness 4. The visions of holy and righteous ones, the giving of the Law (Mosaic Torah), the Tabernacle 5. The Temple built 6. The blind fall away from wisdom, Elijah ascends, the Temple burned, the exile 7. The rise of a wicked generation, the election of the chosen from the eternal plant of righteousness Future Time 8. Judgement on oppressors and sinners by the righteous, the Righteous obtain possessions, the Temple of the Great King built in glory forever 9. Disclosure of the righteousness judgement to the whole world, the works of the wicked written down for destruction, all people look to the way of uprightness 10. Eternal Judgement 11. Weeks without number, in which sin no longer exists

18 So 1 En 93:3–14 precedes 91:12–17. 19 Stuckenbruck, 1 Enoch 91–108, 57–58.

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The Book of Mysteries of Heaven and Earth

The Book of Mysteries of Heaven and Earth is probably the oldest text in the collection. It is a four-part text that seeks to reveal secrets not revealed to the prophets and apostles,20 and the main aspects of its interpretation of the Apocalypse of Weeks are:21 Enoch wrote about the establishment of twelve weeks,22 interpreted before they happen by Enoch: Week 1. Concerning the Son, because in the first week there was rest, and with the birth of Our Lord rest came to the whole of creation; Week 2. The man who is saved is Noah, saved from the Deluge. In the days of Cain evil and destruction were increased. Proud angels clothed themselves with flesh, and learned great sin, doing all the things that they had seen in heaven. They learned to sin because they glorified themselves, and because of this it does not become mankind to glorify itself, blessed is he who overcomes Satan while clothed with flesh. Enoch’s offspring, Gaydad, Mälalʾel, Matusala, Lämeḫ are all symbols of Satan. Lämeḫ killed Cain, the seventh of his offspring, and Satan killed Adam, the seventh of the seven works of creation. Cain was punished by God for the 77 days of the deluge, and he punished also Adam, who was made to carry the 77 families of animals, as Luke the Evangelist mentioned. Week 3. The plant of righteousness, which is Abraham; Week 4. Moses is the man who was called, called on Horeb, and the enclosure is the Tabernacle of Israel; Week 5. The vision signifies the age of the prophets; Week 6. The man who ascends is Christ, ascending the Cross, and the people who are dispersed are the people of Israel, dispersed at his crucifixion; Week 7. In which people believe in the coming of the Lord. The double23 doctrine is the Old and New Testament. This 20 21

Lusini and Ficcadori, “Məśṭirä Sämay Wämədr,” 3.945–46. Summarised from Grébaut, “Les Trois Derniers Traités du Livre Des Mystères du Ciel et de la Terre,” 428–57 (170–99). 22 Although the text only discusses the ten found in the Apocalypse. 23 «ክዕብተ፡ትምህርትሂ» Grébaut, “Les Trois Derniers Traités du Livre Des Mystères du Ciel et de la Terre,” 432 (174). In place of «ሰብዓቱ፡መክዕቢተተ፡ትምህርት»; R.H. Charles, The Ethiopic Version of the Book of Enoch (Oxford, 1906) 196. -

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perverse generation believes in the “heresy of Rome”—the “quadritarians”24 who say that the Lord being man, became God, whereas we say that being God he became man, without his divinity changing. Arius denied the incarnation of the Son, saying that God is not born from a woman, and he taught many other heresies, which were marked with the seal of Sheol; Week 8. The age of the 318 Orthodox Faithful, the sword is the Word of God, and the palace signifies the churches built in the age of King Constantine. Week 9. The age of the heretics, whose names are known; Week 10. The age of the false Messiah, and the end of the world, in which will be fulfilled all the words of the prophet Daniel. This interpretation seeks to set the weeks within a broad apocalyptic framework which has a cyclical element starting with and returning to Christ, which emphasizes the significance of the seventh week. The “many weeks” are not mentioned, and the reason for the initial statement that there are twelve weeks is unclear. Note also the straightforward interpretation of the fallen angels, which is challenged in later interpretations. 5

The Gundä Gunde Commentary

In the intriguing brief commentary found in two sixteenth-century manuscripts25 originating from Gundä Gunde, in Tigray, brief quotations from the Apocalypse lead to the following simple outline of the weeks:26 The weeks, in the Ethiopic context are:27 24

25 26 27

Although not explained in the text, this appears to be a term used to indicate the splitting of the humanity and divinity of Christ by implication into two persons, making the Trinity into a Quadrity(?) understood to be the position of “Nestorians” condemned at the Council of Ephesus in 431 CE, and a group frequently condemned in the Ethiopic literature. I am indebted to Ted Erho for his analysis of the manuscripts. Gundä Gunde 112 is a composite manuscript, with parts (ff. 127–153) dating from the fifteenth century, but the parts containing the Enoch commentary are from the sixteenth century. It is worth noting that this commentary refers to only parts of 1 Enoch which are roughly in line with the broader quotations in the Geʿez tradition. The commentary text reads (here from GG 111 fol. 23r): “‘(93.3) I, Enoch, was born in the first week,’ this is the age from Adam to Enoch, ‘(93.4) and in the second week there will be the first end,’ this is the time of the deluge until Abraham, ‘(93.5) and after this, in the third week, a man will be chosen from the plant of righteousness,’ this is Abraham, ‘(93.6) and in the fourth week statues will be given,’ this is the Law, ‘(93.7) and in the fifth week a -

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Week 1. Adam to Enoch Week 2. The deluge until Abraham Week 3. Abraham, the plant of righteousness, until the giving of the Law Week 4. The giving of the Law, the precepts, until the age of Solomon Week 5. The age of Solomon, the building of the ‘house of glory’ Week 6. The captivity, in which the ‘house’ is burned Week 7. From the captivity until the birth of Christ Week 8. The age of the birth of Christ and the establishment of the Church Week 9. The age of the 31828 Week 10. The day of judgement Many weeks, the never-ending Kingdom of Heaven, in which sin no longer exists is not mentioned. Broadly this interpretation correlates with that of Stuckenbruck, but Christ is understood to be “the eternal plant of righteousness” in week seven, and the advent of the church is the beginning of the future period. 6

emml 897129

This text follows a similar pattern to the Gundä Gunde commentary, but is more expansive, in each case naming seven figures to signify a week. This further emphasises the importance of the number “seven” in the interpretation, and identifying the weeks with generations of people, primarily from the Gospel genealogies of Jesus to identify the period, is a modest attempt to integrate the Apocalypse with other biblical books. This approach is further

house of glory will be built,’ this is the age of Solomon, ‘(93.8) and in the sixth week there will be those blind in heart, and they will burn the palace with fire, and in it all the root of the chosen race will be scattered,’ this is the age of the captivity, ‘(93.9) and in the seventh week an apostate generation will arise,’ this is after the captivity until Christ, ‘(91.12) and there will be an eighth week of righteousness,’ this is the age of the birth of Christ, ‘(91.13) and a house for the great king will be built,’ this is the church, ‘(91.14) and in a ninth week the righteous judgement will be revealed,’ this is the age of the 318 ‘(91.15) and in the tenth week, in the seventh part judgement, judgement that is eternal,’ this is the day of judgement, ‘(91.16) and the first heaven will depart and pass, and a new heaven will appear,’ After these many weeks, the Kingdom of Heaven that has no end and has no sin, and from this it will be called eternally.” 28 That is, the Council of Nicaea. 29 Fols. 68r–70r.

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developed in later Amharic commentary, and indeed this commentary seems to be a close precursor of some of the Amharic material. This the first of the commentaries to quote the text in full, which shows occasional deviations from the text found in R.H. Charles’ edition,30 and is more in line with that of Michael Knibb.31 The most important of these is in the tenth week, where EMML 8971 and Knibb read «ኵነኔ እንተ ለዓለም ዓቢይ ዘይበቍል እማእከሎሙ ለመላእክት»,32 “great eternal judgement which will spring forth in the midst of the angels.” Charles regarded ዘይበቍል as a corruption, preferring ዘይትቤቀል,33 hence “there shall be the great eternal judgement, in which He will execute vengeance amongst the angels.”34 Week 1. Adam, Seth, Enos, Cainan, Mahalaleel, Yared, Enoch, before sin multiplied; Week 2. Methuselah, L[amech, Noa]h, Shem, Arphaxad, Cainan, [Shelah?] in which sin and destruction multiply because of the Watchers; and Noah is the man who is saved at the first end, with eight souls in the ‘tabot,’ as a symbol of the end of the world, and after Noah’s death sin multiples again;35 Week 3. Eber, Peleg, Reu, Serug, Nahor, Terah, Abraham, in which Abraham is chosen, as the plant of righteous judgement, and Abraham gives the model for all righteous people; Week 4. Isaac, Jacob, Judah, Perez, Hezron, Aram, Aminadab, in which there were many prophets who clearly heard the word of God, and the Tabernacle and the Law were established; Week 5. Nahshon, Salmon, Boaz, Obed, Jesse, David, in which Solomon built the Temple, and his palace. This temple will never disappear, but will be hidden for a time as Jeremiah said; Week 6. Rehoboam, Abijah, Asaph, Jehoshaphat, Joram, Anaziah, Jehoash, a generation of blind and deaf people who forget wisdom. There will be none like David, Hezekiah, or Josiah; and the man who ascends is Elijah;

30 Charles, Ethiopic Version of the Book of Enoch. 31 M.A. Knibb, The Ethiopic Book of Enoch: A New Edition in the Light of the Aramaic Dead Sea Fragments, 2 vols. (Oxford, 1978). 32 Knibb, Ethiopic Book of Enoch, 1.345. EMML 8971, fol. 70r. 33 Charles, Ethiopic Version of the Book of Enoch, 192 n. 26. 34 R.H. Charles, The Book of Enoch (repr. ed.; London, 1997) 134. 35 Several of the names in this “week” are illegible, but a comparison with the Amharic andəmta has the names to be supplied.

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Week 7. Amaziah, Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, Hezekiah, Manasseh, Amon, with kings who worship idols, and who transgress regarding the role of priests, but in which the elect righteous appear in the form of Hezekiah; Week 8. Josiah, Jehoiakim, Jechoniah, Salathiel, Zerubabel, Abiud, Eliakim, and in which righteous judgement will be made on the people Babylon because of their oppression Week 9. Azor, Zadok, Achim, Eliud, Eleazar, Jotham(?),36 Joachim, in which judgement is revealed on the whole world, after the death of Antiochus, and in which Simeon is born, and is destined not to die before seeing the Messiah Week 10. The generation of Christ, the ‘head of many weeks without number’ in which: the first judgement is against Satan and the fallen angels; the new heaven and earth will come, for the righteous to inhabit, and the light of the Kingdom of Heaven will shine sevenfold more brightly than the sun.37 Important here is the brief allusion to the interpretation of the Book of Watchers, where the many weeks at the end of the Apocalypse (1 En 91:17) start with eternal judgement brought against Satan and his fallen angels, in line with Book of Mysteries of Heaven and Earth, an interpretation that is rejected in the Amharic andəmta commentary. 7

Vatican Comb.S.8 fol. 17r–19r

This text appears to be a seventeenth-century copy of the commentary found in EMMP 8971. 36 (ዮአታም) in the text. 37 Comments on two “false” ideas are appended to this commentary (see EMML 8971, fol. 70r), in a style that is reminiscent of the later Amharic commentary: “If there is one who says that Christ is not present at the right hand of God, but that he will wait until his enemies are trampled under his feet, how therefore can he judge in this world? The solution is that he knows that it says, ‘the authority of heaven and earth was given to me.’ Again, one says, ‘because the Father does not judge anyone, as he has entrusted judgement to his son, and from now he (Christ) judges while he has not been revealed as God,’ but that when he comes it will be said, ‘behold, he comes of a cloud, and all eyes will see him.’” These appear to be derived from thinking about the Apocalypse and they appear to use the framework of the Apocalypse to justify certain understanding of the role of Christ in glory and in future judgement, but are not directly related to its interpretation.

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8

The Amharic Andəmta Commentary

Later Amharic andəmta commentary follows the same basic pattern of interpreting the weeks, but is rather more expansive, further emphasising the significance of “seven.” It takes the Ethiopian chapter 35 as a literary unit, with the weeks starting at eight because the weeks are counted “in a hidden way,” and then returning later to the earlier ones, and incorporating parts of Exhortation, 1 En 91:1–10, 18–19, and Epistle, 1 En 92:1–5, 93:11–105:2, into the interpretation. The commentary is more expansive and gives alternative views on the interpretation of some sections of the text, as is customary in this tradition. Here the content is summarised: Week 8. Of righteousness, a week represents a “generation” namely from the kings Josiah, Jehoiakim, Jechoniah, Salathiel, Zerubbabel, Abiud, Eliakim (Matt 1:11–13). In which judgement comes on the people of Persia and Babylon, and the remnant is the agent of Babylon’s falls. At the end of this week the Gentiles will be gathered. Week 9. The generation from Azor, Zadok, Achim, Eliud, Eleazar, Matthan, to Jacob (Matt 1:14–16), in which the idol of Antiochus will disappear. Week 10. Alternative interpretations are given: a. Of judgement, which starts with the children of Seth, the Watchers. In this week the Kingdom of Heaven will be given. b. Alternatively, this week is understood as the generation leading to the birth of Mary. Eleazar bears Matthan and Qəsra;38 Matthan bears Jacob, who bears Joseph, counting three generations; Qəsra bears Joachim, who bears Our Lady, counting three generations; the Lord is the 38

No explanation of whom ቅስራ is has been found in the Ethiopian literature. She appears to be Esthra also known as Estha, the daughter of Eleazar, who married Matthan and became the father of Joachim. According to Julius Africanus, Joseph’s grandfather, Matthan married Esthra, bearing Joacob, Joseph’s father. Matthan died, and Esthra married Heli’s father Melchi. Heli dies childless, and Jacob takes Esthra as his wife to raise children for Heli. Heli is understood by some to be the same as Joachim, see Julius Africanus, “The Epistle to Aristides,” in The Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to AD 325, vol. 6: Fathers of the Third Century: Gregory Thaumaturgus, Dionysius the Great, Julius Africanus, Anatolius, and Minor Writers, Methodius, Arnobius, ed. A. Roberts and J. Donaldson (repr.ed.; Grand Rapids, 2004) 218.

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seventh, counting in this way the left and right week, the fathers are counted together. It says that a woman married to a man is not counted, as he previously affirmed. c. The passing of heaven is followed by the establishment of the Kingdom of Heaven. Many weeks: in the period following the birth of the Lord there will be many generations that pass with truth and with goodness and without measure of their number. Notable here is the contrast with EMML 8971 and Book of Mysteries of Heaven and Earth, which has many similarities to this presentation of the weeks, but where judgement is against Satan and the fallen angels, whereas here the judgement is against the children of Seth. The andəmta commentary on the Book of Watchers39 in which this account of judgement is found, states that the judgement is against monastics who have left their vocation, identified with the “children of Seth,” a reading supported in this commentary by reference to “celibates who keep their vows” in the interpretation of week seven below. An alternative reading of these weeks is also offered, typical of the approach of the andəmta, without giving precedence to one or other reading. This alternative focusses on the understanding expressed throughout the andəmta tradition that the Lord is born in the 5500th year after creation, and attempts to calculate precisely each week, understood as a period of 700 years, further still emphasising the significance of the number “seven.” Week 8. Seven weeks pass, making 4900 years. 5500 years is seven weeks with 600 remaining. The eighth week is this 600 with the missing 70(?) days added.40 The sword given in the eighth week is the authority given to the apostles, and it is an era when oppressors, named as the demons, will be judged, and the demons and heretics will fall into the hands of the apostles, who will build the Church, which is the house that is built. Week 9. This week is explained stating that 1500 remain,41 to make a total of 7000 corresponding to ten weeks. From 500 of the uncounted, 100 is accounted for in making up the eighth week, 39 R. Lee, “The Ethiopic ‘Andəmta’ Commentary on Enoch 2 (chapters 6–9),” JSP 23.2 (2013) 173–200. 40 No further explanation of this is given. 41 That is two weeks of 700 and the 100 remaining from the period of 600 in week 8.

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leaving 400, combined with 300 from the remaining 1000 to make the ninth week. This week is the age of the scholars (the patristic age), in which the “godless” heretics will disappear. Week 10. Judgement will be carried out on the children of Seth, which comprises the remaining 700 years, and then any remaining time is not counted. An alternative counting is offered, that of Bizan42 The many weeks are the years of the Kingdom of Heaven. Following this, the first seven weeks are explained in direct relation to the genealogy of Jesus, mostly from Luke 3, but there are some names missing, presumably to divide history into periods of seven. Week 1. In which Enoch is born, the generations being Adam, Seth, Enos, Cainan, Mahalaleel, Jared, Enoch (Luke 3:37–38) Week 2. In which malicious acts strengthen, and which finishes with divine punishment, the generations being Methuselah, Lamech, Noah, Shem, Arphaxad, Cainan, Shelah, the week in which Noah is saved (Luke 3:35–38) Week 3. In which sin multiplies, and the people of Shinar (ሰናዖር)43 will cause the dispersion of languages, and Abraham is chosen as the plant of righteousness, the generations being Eber, Pele, Reu, Serug, Nahor, Terah, Abraham (Luke 3:34–35). There is a brief discussion left unresolved as to whether Abraham is chosen to perform righteous acts according to the Law, or whether he is chosen because he does these righteous acts. After Abraham, Isaac takes his place, or the text can read ‘እምኔሁ’ ‘from him’ instead of ‘እምድኅሬሁ’ ‘after him,’ which means Isaac was born from Abraham; Week 4. The celibate and law-keepers will be revealed in this week, the generations being Isaac, Jacob, Judah, Perez, Hezron, Aram, Aminadab (Luke 3:33–34), and in which the Law (precepts) and the Tabernacle (the vineyard or enclosure) are made

42 43

This could either refer to Byzantium, or possibly to a different way of counting the weeks associated with the Däbrä Bizan Monastery, but the details are not given. Mentioned also in Jub 9:3 (Ethiopic 9:17) as the boundary of the portion of Asshur, Shinar is associated with the land of Nineveh. See R.H. Charles, The Book of Jubilees, or, The Little Genesis (London, 1902) 75.

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Week 5. In which the ‘house of glory’ the Temple is built that will last forever, the generations being Nahshon, Salmon (Sala in Luke, Salma in 1 Chron), Boaz, Obed, Jesse, David (Luke 3:31–32), Solomon44 Week 6. The generations being Rehoboam, Abijah, Asaph, Jehoshaphat, Joram, Ahaziah, Jehoash, in which the people become deaf, but in which Elijah rises up. There is a brief discussion as to whether the people “fall into error, from wisdom” or “wisdom falls from their heart.” The “house of dominion” that is burned with fire is “not known,” but alternatively it is understood as the “tribes” of government which will be destroyed by the sword, and the “race of the root of election” will be destroyed, which is taken to refer to LXX 2 Chron 22:10 in which Gotholia (the mother of Ochozias), when she saw that her son was dead, destroyed all the offspring of the kingdom in the house of Judah. Week 7. A rebellious or unjust generation. The generations are Amaziah, Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, Hezekiah, Manasseh, Amon, with the possibility that Josiah is joined with Amon, and this is the end of the genealogy to the time of Babylon. At its conclusion those who are chosen are the celibate who keep their vows. The sevenfold instruction will be given to the celibates who keep their vows. With references to the Gospel genealogies and other books, this commentary sets 1 Enoch as part of a broader canon to be interpreted together. The additional commentary on the Exhortation and the Epistle does not add a great deal, except for some textual comments. So 35:34 (93:12): “and who is there who is able to understand the deeds of heaven? And to see his soul, or if not his soul, who is able to speak, or if not to ascend and see all of their wings.” The commentary explains that these are the “wings of angels” but also offers ጽነፊሆሙ “their borders” in place of አክናፊሆሙ “their wings,” so the text asks “who is able to see and think of the edge of heaven,” interpreting the question “who?” as saying “unless he has revealed to him.”

44

Not mentioned in Luke.

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9

Some Reflections

The Apocalypse of Weeks naturally adapts to a Christian interpretation, and the scheme would have easily been correlated with a broader interpretation as outlined by Stuckenbruck. The idea of God’s dealing with creation and humankind being divided up into weeks is found in other biblical texts, most clearly in the interpretation of Daniel 9. It is perhaps the relative ease with which the Weeks are interpreted that makes the Apocalypse of Weeks the most commented on passage of 1 Enoch within the Ethiopian tradition. Ordered approximately according to their dates, the collection of Ethiopian interpretations shows the gradual development of the understanding of the weeks. Even in the earliest texts the weeks start in Eden at a peaceful time when sin was not present, and then follow the introduction of evil by the Watchers, through to the coming of Christ and the establishment of a new order, culminating in the final age of “many weeks” where peace is restored. The main difference in interpretations is between those that place the birth of Christ in the seventh week and those that have this event in the tenth week. There is a natural tendency to draw significance within the pattern of “weeks” to the seventh week, and this seems to be the earlier approach. The Book of Mysteries of Heaven and Earth makes a direct association with the interpretation of Daniel, and uniquely associates the first week with the Son, connecting his coming with the restoration of paradisical rest. Later commentary in EMML 8971, reproduced in the Vatican manuscript, prefer a scheme which is possibly more guided by the genealogy of Christ as presented in Luke’s Gospel, but in which the pattern is adjusted so that there are seven figures in each week; an approach which points to this possibly being the precursor to the more expansive Amharic commentary. The Book of Mysteries of Heaven and Earth also stresses the significance of the number seven and may have inspired this approach. The Amharic commentary follows its strong characteristic, which is to assimilate multiple interpretations, and so offers both possibilities of the scheme, with an additional set of numerical calculations not seen in other interpretations. This commentary, in making a more concrete connection between the weeks of the Apocalypse of Weeks and the genealogy of Luke cements at least this portion of 1 Enoch as laying down a pattern for the interpretation of the sweep of history in other biblical books.

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Chapter 13

The Archangel Uriel in 1 Enoch and Other Ethiopian Texts Daniel Assefa The study of 1 Enoch’s reception in the Ethiopian Church is relatively recent.1 However, the last decade has enjoyed quite interesting researches in this connection. Works like the Book of the Mysteries of Heaven and Earth (15th c.), the Book of Nativity (15th c.), the Amharic ʾAndǝmtā commentary of 1 Enoch, and various Ethiopian hymns have drawn the attention of scholars. As in other Orthodox and Oriental Churches, the veneration of angels is an important component of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tawāhǝḥdo Church. However, the veneration of the archangel Uriel, a significant character in 1 Enoch, adds more distinctive features to the Ethiopian Church. According to the Ethiopian Book of Saints or Synaxarium, the annual feast of the archangel Uriel takes place on July 28. In addition to churches dedicated to the Archangel Uriel, one also finds various texts narrating deeds and miracles. The archangel is believed to have sprinkled blood in various regions of Ethiopia, taken from the drops of the Cross of Jesus. The homilies written in his honor and the hymns composed to praise him not only mention Enoch but also take recourse to motifs found in 1 Enoch. Can we identify the portrait of Uriel in 1 Enoch with the descriptions given in the subsequent Ethiopian texts related to Uriel? How far do we find the same characteristics as far as the angelic person is concerned? Where and how can we speak of new elements and innovations? This paper will address these questions by focusing mainly on hymns written in honor of the archangel Uriel. 1 Among the works that discuss the reception of 1 Enoch one may mention the following: Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch 1, 87–95; A.Y. Reed, Fallen Angels and the History of Judaism and Christianity: The Reception of Enochic Literature (Cambridge, 2005); L.T. Stuckenbruck, “The Book of Enoch: Its Reception in Second Temple Jewish and in Christian Tradition,” Early Christianity 4 (2013) 7–40. Haileyesus Alebachew has recently written a dissertation on Ethiopian poems that quote from or refer to 1 Enoch: “Enoch as depicted in poetic genres of Geʿez Literature: Textual Analysis and annotated Translation on some selected Poetic Geʿez texts” (Ph.D. dissertation, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia, 2018). All the quotations of 1 Enoch are taken from Michael Knibb’s translation in The Ethiopic Book of Enoch: A New Edition in the Light of the Dead Sea Fragments, vol. 2 (Oxford, 1978).

© Daniel Assefa, 2023 | doi:10.1163/9789004537514_015

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1

Uriel in 1 Enoch

According to 1 En 20:2, the archangel Uriel is associated with thunder and tremors. This Enochic explanation will be taken and used several times in Ethiopic texts, especially in the poetic ones as we shall see below. In 1 Enoch, the archangel Uriel, like most of the other archangels, accompanies Enoch and engages in substantial conversations. The following may be taken as just two examples. Then I, Enoch, answered him, saying: “I wish to learn about everything, but especially about this tree.” 1 En 25:2

… and Uriel, one of the holy angels who was with me and led me, spoke to me and said: “Enoch, about whom do you ask? About whom do you inquire and ask and care.” 1 En 21:5

The conversation with Enoch shows Uriel’s role as revealer and interpreter. Thus, the archangel Uriel explains the significance of the place and how it is narrated with the fallen angels: And Uriel said to me: “The spirits of the angels who were promiscuous with the women will stand here; and they, assuming many forms, made men unclean and will lead men astray so that they sacrifice to demons as gods (that is) until the great judgment day on which they will be judged so that an end will be made of them. And their wives, having led astray the angels of heaven, will become peaceful.” And I, Enoch, alone saw the sight, the ends of everything; and no man has seen what I have seen. 1 En 19:1–3

Not only do they take or transport Enoch, but they also interpret the world that he discovers, including a portrait of the archangels. And these are the names of the holy angels who keep watch. Uriel, one of the holy angels, namely (the angel) of thunder and of tremors. Raphael, one of the holy angels, (the angel) of the spirits of men. Raguel, one of the holy angels, who takes vengeance on the world and on the lights. Michael, one of the holy angels, namely the one put in charge of the best part of mankind, in charge of the nation. Saraqael, one of the holy angels, who

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(is) in charge of the spirits of men who cause the spirits to sin. Gabriel, one of the holy angels, who (is) in charge of the serpents and the Garden and the Cherubim. 1 En 20:1–7

Enoch’s reaction and emotion are resounded by the archangel’s Uriel’s question. Then Uriel, one of the holy angels who was with me, answered me. He answered me and said to me: “Enoch, why do you have such fear and terror because of this terrible place, and before this pain?” And he said to me: “This place (is) the prison of the angels, and there they will be held for ever.” 1 En 21:9–10

The archangel Uriel mentions the same event in 1 En 19:1, as a reference to a future judgement, in the context of eschatological judgement. Having said this, the repetition of the deeds underlines the gravity of the transgressions. It also indicates the agreement between different characters as far as the severity of the sin is concerned. Perhaps, the most recurrent and obvious motif which 1 Enoch gives to the subsequent Ethiopian texts that mention the archangel Uriel, is one of light and fire. Just as the name indicates, the archangel leads the luminaries, controls their trajectory and reveals their mystery to Enoch. 2

Uriel in the Miracles of Uriel

According to “A Miracle of the Archangel Uriel Worked for Abba Giyorgis of Gasäčča,” published by Getachew Haile,2 Uriel plays many interesting roles. First, the Archangel appears to the father of Abba Giyorgis who prays and cries in front of his picture asking God for a child.3 It is the archangel Uriel who will announce the good news that the man’s wife will conceive, and that the child will become a great teacher of the church. The man used to address God as the “God of the Archangel Uriel.”

2 Getachew Haile, “A Miracle of the Archangel Uriel Worked for Abba Giyorgis of Gasäčča,” in Research in Ethiopian Studies, Selected papers of the 16th International Conference of Ethiopian Studies, ed. H. Aspen et al. (Wiesbaden, 2010) 1–14 at 4. 3 Getachew, “Miracle of the Archangel Uriel,” 11.

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The apparition had such an impact on the man. For three days he “was in admiration because the appearance of Uriel’s face was admirable, amazing and wonderful.”4 After the apparition and the announcing of the good news, at the birth of the child, the archangel comes to visit the mother and says: This child of yours, his name shall be Giorgis of the perfume tongue. (he shall be) a new apostle whose faith will be like (that of) Peter and Paul; and his priesthood will be pure life (that of) Aaron, Melchisedec and Samuel, priests of righteousness of the Old Testament … He shall fight in the Orthodox faith, with kings, like George of Lydda, Martyr of Jesus Christ. He will be honored by Metropolitan and bishops.5 The archangel Uriel’s intervention is prepared in the narrative by the fact that the child, although sent to learn the Scriptures, was not even able to learn the alphabet after seven years of teaching. The solution was to make the child an attendant of the monks. While praying and lamenting over his situation, the Virgin Mary will tell him in a dream that he will get a solution thanks to the intercession of the archangel Uriel. The proposal of Uriel is to make Giyorgis drink a “cup of perception.” And this will take place when Uriel descends from heaven with “five crystal chalices filled with a drink of life that makes one pour forth words of books, and made him drink.”6 Thanks to this drink, Giyorgis will be a prolific author of many theological books. The prayers of the archangel Uriel in favor of Giyorgis are mentioned at the narration of the latter’s death too.7 Although direct quotations from 1 Enoch are absent one may find allusions to the text in this miracle story. The activity of writing is a key element both in 1 Enoch and in the Miracle of Uriel. Just as Uriel assists Enoch by writing down for him the names of the stars (1 En 33:3–4), he enables Giyorgis to be a productive writer. The intercessory role of Uriel is also present both in 1 Enoch and in the Miracle of Uriel. Together with other archangels, the archangel Uriel interceded for the earth which is filled by the blood of the giants. As mentioned above, in the Miracle of Uriel, the archangel intercedes at different moments of the life of the Ethiopian monk, namely, before his birth, at his birth, when learning was needed, and at his death. 4 5 6 7

Getachew, “Miracle of the Archangel Uriel,” 12. Getachew, “Miracle of the Archangel Uriel,” 12. Getachew, “Miracle of the Archangel Uriel,” 13. Getachew, “Miracle of the Archangel Uriel,” 14.

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Uriel in the Dǝrsāna Urāʾel (Homilies in Honour of Uriel)

Amsalu Aklilu has edited a fifteenth-century homily in honor of the archangel Uriel.8 According to Amsalu, Two Old Testament writings/pseudepigrapha, 4 Ezra and 1 Enoch, serve as the primary base for the homily, and both are quoted extensively (4 Ezra 3:1–5:49, 10:28–58; 1 Enoch 8:4, 9:1, 19:1, 20:1, 27:1–4, 33:2–4, 72:1, 82:7–9). In most cases, the citation slavishly adheres to the quoted work, though in a few cases the author summarizes and abridges the source material.9 In fact, much of the material presents a dialogue between the archangel Uriel and Ezra on the lot of Zion.10 The section that is related to 1 Enoch is shorter.11 Apart from the quotations mentioned by Amsalu, the Dǝrsan or homily is influenced by 1 Enoch as far as the dialogue between Uriel and Ezra or between Uriel and Enoch is concerned. In both works Uriel explains mysteries. 4

Uriel in the Dǝrsāna Urāʾel ii (Homilies in Honor of Uriel)/ Longer Recension (19th Century?)

There is a more recent recension of the homily in honor of Uriel that has much more material and narrations. There, one finds more than intercession; the archangel becomes the facilitator and companion of spatial movement. He thus transports the holy family on a cloud as well as on lions. He enables Mary to visit some holy places of Ethiopia while sitting in a chariot of light, upon a cloud (DU II, 41–55). He does the same for Saint Cyriacus, a Christian martyr, an important figure in Ethiopian tradition for his special devotion to Mary. In fact, the text begins with Cyriacus’ description of his visions about Mary in the first person. As in 1 Enoch, Mary’s vision and visit to Ethiopian mountains are narrated in the first person. In DU II, 61, the archangel Uriel accompanies Mary to show her the space of the righteous as well as Hell, the place of the sinners. The 8

Amsalu Aklilu “A Fifteenth Century Ethiopian Homily on the Archangel Uriel,” Aethiopica 21 (2018) 87–119. There is a longer recension of the homily in honor of Uriel with more scenes and more figures. 9 Amsalu, “Fifteenth Century Ethiopian Homily,” 88. 10 Amsalu, “Fifteenth Century Ethiopian Homily,” 88–110. 11 Amsalu, “Fifteenth Century Ethiopian Homily,” 111–17. In both cases, the text is twice written, in Geʿez and in English. -

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homily states that Christ, after the death of Mary, glorified the archangel Uriel and utters a promise and a covenant. Christ explains the reasons for which Uriel is glorified (DU II, 62–63): 1. 2. 3. 4.

Uriel was always with Mary since her childhood up to her dormition; He is patient; He is meek and kind towards human beings; He is loving and intercessor.

Jesus would add the following with regards to the archangel: I, God, and Son of God, I have revealed for the third time your glory in front of priests or in front of Levites, in the month of Zion, and on the islands of the seas. First, since you revealed the mysteries of heaven and earth to my servant Enoch; second, since you revealed mysteries to Ezra by making him drink a chalice of knowledge after the Babylonians had destroyed the books of Moses and the prophets; third, since you sprinkled the blood which poured from my (pierced) side upon all the earth for the forgiveness of sin; I gave you authority so that your name be praised in heaven and on earth. One may notice how through time, new materials are added to explain the spread of Christianity in different places of Ethiopia, more precisely in central and south Ethiopia (DU II, 53–55). In the DU II, one finds a conversation between Jesus and Mary. On their way to Egypt, Mary sees Ethiopia from afar. Seeing that the land pleased her, Jesus gives the country to her. Besides, they will ride a lion to visit the land whereby Uriel plays an important role: ወአሜሃ፡ጸርሐ፡ዑራኤል፡መልአክ፡እምሰማይ፡ወይቤ፡ቁሙ…ወኢትደንግፁ፡እስመ፡ ዘተነበዩ፡ነቢያት፡እስራኤል፡ኮነ፡እሙነ፡ዮም፡ከመ፡አንበብክሙ፡ትንቢተ፡ኢሳይያስ፡ ወእዝቅኤል፡ በእን ተ፡እግዝእትነ፡ማርያም፡ድንግል፡ወላዲተ፡ወላዲተ፡ለዐማኑኤል፡ዘእግዚአብሔር፡ ቃል። ወይቤሎሙ፡ለእሉ፡አናብስት፡ንዑ፡ተጸዓኑ፡መልዕልተ፡ደመና፡ወአነ፡አርገክሙ።

At that time Uriel, the angel Uriel called from heaven and said: “Stop … and do not be afraid, for the one prophesized by Israel has been among us today, as you read in Isaiah and Ezekiel about Our Lady Mary, the Virgin, the bearer of Emmanuel, the Word of God.” And he said to the

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lions, “Come, accept that they get on you, above clouds, and I will make you ascend.” This interesting story is reminiscent of Enoch who travels to various spaces upon mountains, paradise, and the otherworld (e.g., 1 Enoch 17–36). 5

Uriel in the Malkǝʾa Urāʾel (The Image of Uriel)

In the poetic genre called Malkǝʾ, peculiar to Ethiopian liturgical texts, all strophes rhyme in such a way that the same syllable is found in the last words, at the end of each line. The first two lines of each strophe present a greeting and a symbolic appreciation of one part of Uriel’s body. The third line is a direct address or description of Uriel’s qualities. The last two lines are usually prayers that derive from the imagery whereby the poet wishes some favor, help, or divine blessing. Tedros Abraha has published the Image of the Holy Trinity with an annotated translation in Italian (Effigie della Trinità).12 Among the characteristics of this genre, as he notes in his introduction,13 is polysemy, especially the presence of two meanings, one apparent and clear, and the second one deeper, rather hidden, and containing the nucleus of the message. Another would be “anthropomorphism,” as one would understand when the different parts of a human body are used metaphorically to praise the Holy Trinity,14 an already biblical practice whereby God acts as a potter (Gen 2:7) or shows his back to Moses (Exod 33:23).15 Now, the first strophe of the Image of Uriel (Malkǝʾa Urāʾel), where the last syllable of the last words of each line is ba, the poet salutes the memory of Uriel’s name and the dexterous role played by Enoch (as well as by Ezra) in keeping the archangel’s portrait. The poet or the singer calls Uriel “leader of light,” “wrapped with flame.” One may see here a link with 1 En 72:1:

12

Tedros Abraha, “Mälkǝʾa Śǝllase—L’effigie della Trinità di Abba Sǝbḥat Läab,” in Miscellanea Bibliothecae Apostolicae Vaticane XV (Studi e Testi) (Vatican, 2008) 311–98. 13 Tedros, “Mälkǝʾa Śǝllase,” 322–25. 14 Interestingly, too, one finds the same practice in late antique Jewish mystical tradition for the body of God; see M.S. Cohen, The Shiʿur Qomah: Texts and Recensions (Tübingen, 1985). Interestingly, one example of its medieval extension from God to an angel specifically pertains to Metatron: E.R. Wolfson, “Metatron and Shiʾur Qomah in the Writings of Haside Ashkenaz,” in Mysticism, Magic, and Kabbalah in Ashkenaz, ed. K.E. Grözinger and J. Dan (Berlin, 1995) 60–92. 15 Tedros, “Mälkǝʾa Śǝllase,” 329–33. -

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… which Uriel, the holy angel who was with me and is their leader, showed to me; and he showed me all their regulations exactly as they are, for each year of the world and forever, until the new creation shall be made which will last forever. The first strophe of the Image of Uriel reads as follows: 1.

ሰላም ለዝክረ ስምከ በእደ ኄኖክ ዘተጠብጠበ ወበእደ ሱቱኤል ካዕበ መራሔ ብርሃናት ዑራኤል ዘትትዐጸፍ ላህበ ውስተ እንግዳዓየ አክብድ ጥበበ ውዳሴ ዚአከ እውጥን ወእክሀል ነቢበ

1.

Salutation to the memory of your name worked out so dexterously by Enoch As well as by Sutuel (Ezra) Oh Uriel, leader of lights be wrapped with flame Load wisdom on my chest I begin your praise and I start to utter

In the second strophe, where the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is nǝ, the archangel Uriel is associated with the movement of light, inspired by the Astronomical Book and the Book of Watchers. Uriel has the virtue of “dividing the length of time,” meaning the setting of seasons and the days and the nights. The poet desires to get rid of unhappiness and asks Uriel to bring him joy. 2.

ሰላም ለሥእርተ ርእስከ ዘኢገሰሶ ኀጼን ለያልየ ኵሎ ወኑኀ ዘመን ዑራኤል ረዋጺ በገጸ ብርሃን ተማኅፀንኩ በሥዕርትከ እምነ ኵሉ ሐዘን መስተፍሥሔ አልባብ ይኩነኒ ማኅሌትከ ወይን

2.

Salutation to the hair of your head Which has not been touched by a razor The separator of all, [divider] of the length of time Oh Uriel, you who run on the face of light I implored on behalf of your hair from all sadness Let the wine of your praises be to me the bringer of blissful heart

According to the third strophe, whereby the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is rā, a myriad of an angelic army accompanies the archangel Uriel. -

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This is not directly attested in 1 Enoch, although one may read in 1 En 40:1: “And after this I saw a thousand thousands and ten thousand times ten thousand, (a multitude) beyond number or reckoning, who stood before the glory of the lord of spirits.” The crown on the head of Uriel, not attested in 1 Enoch, has to do with his glorification by Jesus for the virtues as mentioned above in DU II. On the other hand, Uriel’s presence in the otherworldly journey as well as his dialogue, is an important motif attested in 1 Enoch. The last two lines of the third strophe allude to the intercessory role of Uriel, an element also found in 1 Enoch. According to 1 En 9:11, while interceding, Uriel, together with other archangels, affirms God’s omniscience: “And you know everything before it happens, and you know this and what concerns each of them. But you say nothing to us. What ought we to do with them about this?” This is, in fact, a reaction to the violence and the bloodshed that took place on earth. In other words, the poem’s recourse to Uriel’s intercession has a motivation. There are enemies of soul for which Uriel’s help is needed. 3.

ሰላም ለርእስከ ዘይትቄጸል ጌራ ከመ ቀስተ ደመና ዘይመስል ሕብራ ዑራኤል ፍንው መንገለ ኄኖክ ወዕዝራ ተመየጥ መንገሌየ ምስለ አእላፍ ሐራ በኃይለ ጸሎትከ ትጽባእ ለነፍስየ ፀራ

3.

Salutation to your head which is topped with a crown Which resembles a mass, like a rainbow Uriel, who is sent to Enoch and Ezra Please turn to me with a myriad of army Fight the enemy of my soul with the power of your prayers

In the fourth strophe, where the syllable of the last words of each line is lǝ, mercy is attributed to Uriel. In 1  Enoch, this is the virtue of the archangel Michael. 1 En 40:9 reads: “And he said to me: ‘This first one is he holy Michael, the merciful and long-suffering.” We also find an association with mercy in 1 En 71:3: “And the angel Michael, one of the archangels, took hold of me by my right hand, and raised me, and led me out to all the secrets of mercy and the secrets of righteousness.” The fallen angels and the sinners are denied mercy in 1 Enoch. Mercy is on the contrary bestowed to the righteous. The seal of the holy cross is an innovation of the Image of Uriel or a Christological application. One should remember that the traditional Ethiopian commentary of 1 Enoch considers Enoch as a

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prophet who announces the coming of Christ. In the Andemta commentary,16 the tree of life in Paradise (1 Enoch 24–25) becomes a symbol of the cross. It is from a Christian soteriological context that one should understand this strophe that evokes the cross and invokes salvation and mercy through the intercession of Uriel. The archangel Uriel is asked to engrave that symbol on the face of the poet or the one who sings the Image of Uriel. Worthy of note is also the correlation between the face of Uriel and the face of the poet. 4.

ሰላም ለገጽከ መፍርህ ነበልባል ወነፋስ ቀሊል መልአከ ዳኅና ዑራኤል ወመልአከ ሣህል አንብር በገጽየ ማኅተመ ቅዱስ መስቀል አድኅኖትየ እስመ ውእቱ ይክል

4.

Salutation to your face, which is fear inspiring flame And swift wind Uriel, angel of wellbeing and of mercy Put on my face the seal of the holy cross For that can save me

In the fifth strophe, where the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is mā, Uriel’s quality of watching is evoked.17 1 En 39:12–13 has: Those who do not sleep bless you, and they stand before your glory and bless and praise and exalt, saying: “Holy, holy, holy, Lord of Spirits; he fills the earth with spirits.” And there my eyes saw all those who do not sleep standing before him and blessing and saying: “Blessed are you, and blessed is the name of the Lord for ever and ever!” The poem affirms the difference between angels and humans as far as watching is concerned. The last line of the strophe mentions Enoch and his being hidden as narrated in 1 En 12:1: “And before everything Enoch had been hidden, 16 መጽሐፈ ሄኖክ “ወለመዋዕል አራየኒ ዑርኤል መልአክ” ከጥንት አባቶቻችን ሲወርድ ሰዋረድ የተቀበልነው የአንድምታ ትርጓሜ፣ትንሣኤ ማሳተምያ፤2003 ዓ.ም, “and the days the angel Uriel showed to me”; Andemta Commentary we inherited from antiquity up to now (Addis Ababa, 2010/11) 51–58. Interestingly, Uriel as the angel who shows “the days” (1 En 75:3) is mentioned on the cover page. For a discussion of this theme, see D. Assefa, “Seven Mountains (1 Enoch 24–25) in the light of the traditional Ethiopian Commentaries,” in Aethiopia fortitude ejus, ed. R. Zarzeczny (OCA 298; Rome, 2015) 149–60. 17 In this strophe, unlike the other hymns, Uriel is mentioned in the fourth line.

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and none of the sons of men knew where he was hidden, or where he was, or what had happened.” Nevertheless, while 1 Enoch is not precise or explicit as to who hid Enoch, the hymn confirms that it was Uriel who hid Enoch. This seems to be an innovation of the Image of Uriel. According to 1 Enoch, the reader knows only that Enoch was hidden. The agent is not mentioned. 5.

ሰላም ለቀራንብቲከ እለ ያንበሰብሳ በግርማ እንዘ ኢይዴቅሳ ሕቀ ወኢይነውማ እምቀራንብተ ሰብእ ተፈጥሮ እማንቱ ቀደማ ዑራኤል ተማኅፀንኩ በዘነሣእከ አስኬማ በከመ ኀበእኮ ለሔኖክ ኅብአኒ እምፃማ

5.

Salutation to your eyelids that sparkle with awe That never slumber or sleep They precede the eyelids of humans Uriel, I implore you since you lifted Askema18 Hide me from suffering just as you hid Enoch

In the sixth strophe, where the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is ro, praise is given to the eyes of the archangel Uriel. The eyes are associated with capacity of inquiry, research, leading to wisdom, expressed then in writing. The eyes here are also linked with Uriel’s role in the movements of the luminaries. One may notice here the symbolism of light and the capacity of seeing. The poet here requests from the archangel perception, wisdom and the capacity of composing poems to be then sung. 6.

ሰላም ለአዕይንቲከ እለ ጠየቃ ነገሮ ለጸሐፌ ጥበብ ወአእምሮ ዑራኤል ዘትጸይሕ ለትእምርተ ዘመን ምሕዋሮ ምልአኒ ጥበበ ወወስከኒ አንከሮ ከመ አቅርብ ለከ ሐዋዘ ዘምሮ

6.

Salutation to your eyes who investigates things Writer of wisdom and understanding Uriel, who paves the signs of time and trajectory (of the luminaries) Fill me with wisdom and increase in me wonder So that I may present to you pleasant songs.

18

This is the habit of those who live in a monastery.

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The seventh strophe, in which the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is nā, acclaims the ears of the archangel Uriel, that pay attention to the sufferings and prayers of those who implore. From listening ears, one passes to the good news that is brought by the archangel. Sinai as a place of God’s presence and eschatological space is here invoked, reminiscent of 1 En 1:4: “… and the Eternal God will tread from there upon Mount Sinai, and he will appear with his host, and will appear in the strength of his power from heaven.” The poet relies on Uriel’s readiness to listen. 7.

ሰላም ለአእዛኒከ እለ ሰምዓ ዳኅና እምእለ ሠርዐ አምላክ ይትለአክዎ በደብረ ሲና ዑራኤል ርሱይ ወሥርግው በቅድስና ውኩፋተ ስእለታትየ ውስተ እዝንከ ይኩና እንበለ ማዕቅፍ ወኀጕል ኅሊፎን ደመና

7.

Salutation to your ears which heard about well-being Which are sent to Mount Sinai from the work of God Prepared and adorned in holiness Let our prayers be received in your ears Crossing over clouds without obstacles

The eighth strophe, where the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is na, mentions the cheeks of the archangel Uriel. Is there any association between the cheeks and the archangel’s leadership of light? The poet desires to establish a covenant with Uriel. As mentioned above, in the long recension of the homilies in honor of Uriel, the term covenant is used in connection with the promise that Jesus makes to the archangel for his kindness, service and virtues. 8.

ሰላም እብል መላትሒከ ቀይሓነ እለ ይመስላ ሮማነ ዑራኤል መልአክ እንተ ትመርሕ ብርሃነ በከመ ጽሑፍ ነዐ ንትካየድ ኪዳነ እመንገለ ነፋስ ወነድ ዘመድከ አነ

8.

Salutation to your red cheeks That look like pomegranate Uriel, you lead lights Come let us make a covenant as it stands written From wind and fire I am your kin

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In the ninth strophe, where the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is zā, the poem greets the nose of the archangel Uriel. Accordingly, like Enoch in his exploration of mountains with aromatic trees at the ends of the earth (1 Enoch 24–25), Uriel also appreciates the fragrance of sacrifices. The priestly dimension is evoked in the case of the archangel. Yet, there is a rather abrupt transition to other themes, namely one of blowing a horn. The poet’s prayer, on the other hand, is a cry of help to be delivered from sin. The reference to the archangel’s wing, a more common attribution, seems also an allusion to Exodus 19:4. 9.

ሰላም ለአእናፊከ እለ አጼነዋ መዐዛ እምሥ ዋዐ አምላክ ዘጠረጴዛ ዑራኤል ዘትደምፅ ከመ ቃለ ቀርን ወድምፀ ብዕዛ ንሥአኒ በአክናፊከ ከመ እንተ ይነሥእ ጒዛ ባሕረ ኀጢአት እዕዱ ወእኅልፍ ሰኬዛ

9.

Salutation to your nose that smelled the fragrance From the altar of the divine sacrifice Oh Uriel, you who sing like the sound of a horn and the voice of a trumpet Lift me up with your wings like a falcon takes up Let me cross over the sea of sin and pass over the devil’s spear

The tenth strophe, where the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is sē, mentions the lips of the archangel Uriel. Just as angels praise God recurrently in 1 Enoch, so does the Image of Uriel, the only peculiarity being that the poet, as a Christian, includes the trinitarian aspect. The poet compares himself to the moon. Both would be kept on the right trajectory, safe from going astray, thanks to the archangel Uriel. According to 1 En 18:14–16, stars have been imprisoned for having transgressed and offended God, by not coming out at their proper times. 10. ሰላም ለከናፍሪከ እለ ይሴብሓ ሥላሴ

አንቅዕተ ጥበብ ወቅዳሴ ዑራኤል ስቡሕ ከመ መልክአ ገጽ ዘሙሴ ምስለ ኃጥአን ከመ ኢይርአይ ድምሳሴ ውስተ አእምሮ ሚጠኒ ዘሜጥከ ብናሴ

10. Salutation to your lips that praise the Trinity Springs of wisdom and Thanksgiving19 19

The Ethiopic word here is also the technical term used for the Eucharistic celebration. -

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The Archangel Uriel in 1 Enoch and Other Ethiopian texts

Oh Uriel, yours are praiseworthy like the image of Moses’ face So that I may not see destruction with sinners turn me to understanding you who turned Benase20 In the eleventh strophe, where the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is ta, the poet salutes the mouth of the archangel Uriel. On the one hand, the mouth is associated with the virtue of praising God, without ceasing, an angelic characteristic. Then Enoch is portrayed as an angel of peace and light. The expression “angel of Peace” is frequent in the Parables of Enoch (1 En 52:5; 53:4; 54:4; 56:2; 60:24). On the other hand, as also mentioned in the Miracle and the Homilies of Uriel, Enoch, Ezra, and the Ethiopian monk Gyorgis have become inspired and eloquent because they have been assisted by the archangel Uriel, expressed metaphorically by the act of drinking a chalice of wisdom. The poet wishes to enjoy the same benefit by drinking from the chalice brought down by Uriel. 11.

ሰላም ለአፉከ እንተ ይነብብ ስብሐተ ወኢየዐርፍ ሰዓተ መልአከ ሰላም ዑራኤል ወመልአከ ብርሃን አንተ ዘታስተናግር ነቢያተ ወታጐሥዕ ኦሪተ በከመ አስተይኮ ለዕዝራ አስትየኒ ሊተ

11.

Salutation to your mouth that utters praise That never rests for an hour Angel of Peace, Uriel, you are an angel of light Who make prophets speak21 And make the Law gush out Make me drink as you made Ezra drink

In the twelfth strophe, in which the rhyme is based on the repeated syllable sā at the end of the last words of each line, reference is made to the teeth of the archangel Uriel. Reference is made to the fall of Jerusalem at hands of the Babylonians. The vocabulary draws from Jeremiah 31:29–30 and Ezekiel 18:2. 12. ሰላም እብል ለአስናኒከ ዘኢፀርሳ

ወኢበልዓ ቆዐ አበሳ እምነ ድቀታ ለጽዮን እስከ ኍልቈ ዓመት ሠላሳ

20 A name of the moon. 21 The Geʿez verb here may allude to the effects of a drink that “inebriates a person and makes someone loquacious”; W. Leslau, Comparative Dictionary of Geʿez (Classical Ethiopic), Geʿez-English/English-Geʿez (Wiesbaden, 1991) 392. -

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Assefa ለሱቱኤል ዘአለበውኮ ምሥ ጢረ ክልኤቱ እንስሳ አለብወኒ ዑራኤል እፈጽም ኀሠሣ

12. Salutation to your teeth that are not set on edge22 That did not eat unripe (grape) of transgression From the fall of Zion up to the reckoning of thirty years You revealed the mystery of the two beasts to Sutuel23 Inspire me Uriel so that I may investigate The next strophe, where the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is yǝ, salutes the tongue of the archangel, 13. ሰላም ለልሳንከ ልሳነ እሳት ውዑይ

እምልሳነ ሥጋ ሊሉይ መልአከ ሰላም ዑራኤል ወመልአከ ፀሓይ በከመ ይቤ ራእይ ፍኖተ ንስሓ ምርሐኒ ለብእሲ ጊጉይ

13. Salutation to your tongue, tongue of blazing fire Quite different from a tongue of flesh Angel of peace, Uriel, angel of the Sun As written in the Revelation24 Lead me to the way of conversion, me a person of wrongdoing The repeated syllable in this strophe is ṣu or ḍu. 14. ሰላም ለቃልከ ከመ ድምፀ ማያት ድምፁ

እንተ ይነብብ ስብሐተ ለልዑል በቅድመ ገጹ ዑራኤል ዘተሐውር ለፀሓይ በአውደ ምርዋጹ በአምሳለ ዐርከ ዘይረድአ ለቢጹ በዕለተ ምንዳቤየ ርድአኒ ወምሕረተ ኢትዕጹ

14. Salutation to your word the sound of which resembles the voice of waters That pronounces praises in front of the face of the Exalted Uriel, you who move along the orbit of the Sun Like a friend that helps a friend Help me in the days of my misery and do not shut the (gate) of mercy 22 That are not dull? 23 Salatiel. 24 Here the Book of Revelation is not specified but one may consider an apocalyptic text. -

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The Archangel Uriel in 1 Enoch and Other Ethiopian texts

In this strophe, where the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is la, Uriel’s voice is qualified, compared with the voice of waters (cf. Rev 1:15; 14:2). Above, in the Miracle and the homilies of Uriel, we have seen that Uriel’s breath inspired Enoch, Ezra, and Giyorgis. 15. ሰላም ለእስትንፋስከ ዘይነፍኅ ሣህለ

ወዘይሁብ ቃለ ዑራኤል ዘትመርሕ ትእምርተ መዋዕል ጽዱለ ዕቀበኒ ወአድኅነኒ እስመ አጥረይኩከ ክፍለ እመልአከ ሞት ዘየኀሥሥ ሀጕለ

15. Salutation to your breath that blows mercy That also offers word Uriel, you who leads the sign of the brilliant day Keep me and save me since I possess from your portion From the angel of death that searches destruction The repeated syllable is rǝ. 16. ሰላም እብል ለጕርዔከ ምንሃር

ዘፈለገ ስብሐት መዐርዒር ቢጸ ብርሃናት ዑራኤል መልአከ ሰላም ወፍቅር ለኄኖክ መካነ ተድላ በከመ ኀባእኮ እምድር በወልታ ረድኤትከ ሊተ ኅብአኒ እምፀር

16. Salutation to your throat, a pair of bellows A river of praise, sweet like honey Friend of lights, Uriel, angel of peace and love Space of delight for Enoch as you hid him from the earth Hide me from enemy by the of shield of your help In the seventeenth strophe, where the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is du, the poet appreciates the neck of the archangel Uriel. The poet asks here to share from the abundant love of Uriel. 17. ሰላም ለክሣድከ ለከተማ ርእስ ጕንዱ

ለፌ ወለፌ መትከፈ ዐውዱ ዑራኤል መልአክ እምነ ሊቃናት አሐዱ ያስጥመኒ ከመ መልሕቅ ለስፍሐ ዓለም ዐጸዱ ባሕረ ፍቅርከ ዘይፈልሕ ሞገዱ

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17. Salutation to your neck, the stem of the top head Whose shoulder moves here and there Uriel, one of the archangels Let the garden, the width of the world, immerse me like an anchor (In) The sea of your love the waves of which bubble up The next strophe, where the repeated syllable of the last words of each line is ʿu, the poem refers to the shoulders of the archangel Uriel. Again, there is reference to the movement of lights entrusted to the care of the archangel. While this motif is frequent, it is associated with Uriel’s intercession for which the poet strongly affirms the need. 18. ሰላም ለመታክፍቲከ ለመዝራዕትከ መናቅዑ መስፈርተ ብርሃናት እኂዞሙ እለ ያጸንዑ ዑራኤል ክፍልየ እምነ ሊቃናት ሰብዑ እጸርሕ መንገሌከ ለኅሊናየ በምልኡ ወስእለትየ ኀቤከ እክዑ

18. Salutation to your shoulders that articulate your arm That keep firm the measurement of lights by carrying them Uriel, my portion from the seven archangels I cry out to you with all my mind And I pour out my invocations towards you The nineteenth strophe, where the repeated syllable of the last words in each line is ṭǝ, salutes the wings of the archangel, beautiful and powerful. Uriel’s authority over thunder and trembling is taken from 1 En 20:2, whereby the names of the archangels are explained. 19. ሰላም ለአክናፊከ እምአክናፈ ሴርኖን ወመጠጥ ዘሥነ ግበሪሆን ፍሉጥ በዲበ ረዓም ወረዓድ ዑራኤል ሥሉጥ ዘኢኮነ በተውላጥ ወኢበሤጥ ይርከበኒ እምኔከ በረከት ኅዳጥ

19. Salutation to your wings, from the wings of Ostrich25 The beauty of their action is distinguished Uriel sovereign over thunder and trembling 25 Leslau (Comparative Dictionary of Geʿez, 513) mentions also sirens.

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The Archangel Uriel in 1 Enoch and Other Ethiopian texts

Not realized by alteration or trade Let a small amount of your blessing reach me The twentieth strophe, in which the repeated syllable of the last words in each line is tǝ, it is the back of the archangel that is praised through the association with precious clothes of various colors. After the usual connection with the luminaries, the poem affirms commitment and love towards Uriel. 20. ሰላም ለዘባንከ ዘይከድኖ ሞጣሕት

ዘሕብረ ደርከኖ ወፈትለ ያክንት ዑራኤል መልአክ ቢጸ ብርሃናት ኢትኅድግ አፍቅሮትየ ለፍቁርከ ዘትካት እስመ ፍቅር ከመ ሞት ጽንዕት

20. Salutation to your back covered by linen Purple-colored thread of Hyacinth Oh angel Uriel, companion of lights Never dismiss my devotion to your love For love is strong as death The next strophe, where the repeated syllable is ri, it is the chest of the archangel that is praised. From the salutation, the poem shifts to affirmation of the glorious position of Uriel as well as to his intercessory role. 21. ሰላም ለእንግድዓከ ክበደ ልቡና ጸዋሪ

እምነ ቅዱሳን መላእክት እለ ይተግሁ ቅድመ መሓሪ ቀዳማይ አንተ ወአኮ ደኃሪ ኪያየ መክፈልተከ በዓመተ ምሥ ጢር አጥሪ ወጌጋይየ ዑራኤል አስተስሪ

21. Salutation to your chest, carrier of the glorious heart Among the holy angels who watch before the Merciful You are the first and not the last Conquer me your portion in the year of secrets Uriel, get forgiveness for my mistakes The following strophe, with ḥo as the last syllable, praises Uriel’s bosom, capable of receiving generously the prayers of the saints. Here, there is also the priestly motif expressed in fragrant offerings. The poet participates in the heavenly confirmation of Uriel’s greatness, by watching.

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22. ሰላም ለሕፅንከ ዘያስተጋብእ ሰፊሖ

ጸሎተ ቅዱሳን ምዑዛ በአጸንሕሖ ዑራኤል መልአክ ለፀሓይ ዘትመርሖ ዜና ውዳሴከ እስከ ኀበ እክል አብጽሖ ለኅሊናየ እምንዋም አንቅሆ

22. Salutation to your bosom that gathers widely The prayer of the saints sweetly as burnt offering Angel Uriel who leads the Sun I bring up the news of your praise to the utmost Height I wake up my mind from sleep The twenty-third strophe, with fa as the last syllable, salutes the hands of the archangel Uriel. 1 Enoch is alluded to in the third line when the poem affirms that Enoch has written about Uriel. 23. ሰላም ለአእዳዊከ እለ ይኴንኑ አእላፈ

ዘቦሙ አክናፈ መራሔ ብርሃናት ዑራኤል ዘወልደ ያሬድ ጸሐፈ ለወርኅ ወለከዋክብት ከመ ትመርሖሙ ዘልፈ መካነ አእምሮ ምርሐኒ ዘአልቦ ማዕቅፈ

23. Salutation to your hands that judge ten thousands That have wings Uriel, leader of lights, about whom the son of Yared26 wrote Just as you always lead months and stars Lead me to a place of knowledge where there are no obstacles The twenty-fourth strophe, with di as the last syllable, greets the archangel’s arms and appreciates the cosmic dimension of his action. 24. ሰላም ለመዝራዕትከ አጽናፈ ሰማይ ዐዋዲ

እምነፋስ ግቡር ወእምነ እሳት ነዳዲ ጊዜ ይብዕል ብርሃን ወጊዜ ይነዲ ዑራኤል ክፍለ ብርሃን ውስተ ዐውደ ፀሐይ ዘትወዲ አበሳ ዚአየ በንጽሕከ ፍዲ

26 Enoch.

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The Archangel Uriel in 1 Enoch and Other Ethiopian texts

24. Salutation to your arms that encircle the ends of heaven Made of winds and burning fire When light is abundant or scarce Uriel, you who insert part of light into the Sun By your purity redeem me from my sins The following strophe, where the last syllable is qu, salutes the elbow of the archangel, made up of light. The same elbow is mentioned in the poet’s prayer to get rescued from the “sea of sin.” 25. ሰላም ለኲርናዕከ ለእመትከ መንፈቁ

ብርሃን ምሉእ እንተ ኢኮነ ዕራቁ ከመ ቀርን ዑራኤል ለስብሐተ ልዑል ዘትነቁ እምባሕረ ኀጢአት ዘኢይትረከብ ዕመቁ ኵርናዓቲከ ኪያየ ይምጥቁ

25. Salutation to your elbow, half of your forearm Full of light, which is never naked Uriel, ready to praise the Most-High like a horn From the bottomless sea of sin Let your elbow lift me high In the next strophe, with nu as the last syllable, praise is made to Uriel’s forearm. The theme seems to refer to Uriel’s capacity of measuring and leading the luminaries. 26. ሰላም ለእመትከ ዘፅሑፍ አምጣኑ

ለዮሐንስ በቀማድኑ አርእስተ ከዋክብት ርብዐ ዘይሜጥን በበዘመኑ ትእምርተ ዕለታት ወትእምርተ ሌሊተ ይኩኑ መራሔ ብርሃናት ዑራኤል ዘከማከ መኑ

26. Salutation to your forearm whose measure is written To John beqemadnu27 Who measures according to time the heads of stars Let they be a sign for days and sign for the nights Who is like you Uriel, leader of lights 27

Is it a reference to John in the Book of Revelation?

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Assefa

The next strophe, with ṭi as the last syllable, refers to Uriel’s palm of hand. Again, the motif of light is evoked. 27. ሰላም ለእራኅከ መስፈርተ ብርሃን ፀባጢ

ወፍኖተ ፀሓይ ሜጢ በሮማይስጢ (በጽርእ) ሱርያል ወዑራኤል በዕብራይስጢ ዘይፈቅድ ውኂጦየትየ ከመ አንበሳ መሣጢ ፀረ ነፍስየ በጽንዕከ አንጢ

27. Salutation to your palm of hand, holder of the measure of light The one who turns the path of the Sun Sureyal in Latin (Greek), Uriel in Hebrew Like a hunting lion the one who allows my being swallowed In your strength wear out my enemy The twenty-eighth strophe, where the last syllable is fa, salutes the archangel’s fingers. Tablets of heaven are also mentioned, reminiscent of 1 En 81:1, 93:2, 103:2, and 106:19. After the most common motif of light, the poet implores Uriel to write on his or her face, just as he did it on heavenly tablets. 28. ሰላም ለአጻብዒከ ለገጸ ሰማይ በጸፍጸፋ

ዘአርአያሁ ለኄኖክ ኆኅያተ አልፋ ዑራኤል መልአክ ለፀሓይ ዘትትዐጸፋ ተማኅፀንኩ በአጻብዒከ ከመ ይኩናኒ ሐገፋ ወዲበ ገጽየ ማኅተመ ይጽሐፋ

28. Salutation to your fingers that pave the tablets of heaven Like Enoch the letters, “Alfa”28 Angel Uriel, who cloth yourself the Sun I beseech you on behalf of your fingers so that they may protect me And carve on my face a seal In the twenty-ninth strophe, where the last syllable is tu, the archangel Uriel is appreciated for not behaving like the fallen angels. And the poet would like to receive help and a sign from him in order to desire heaven instead of the worldly space which attracted the fallen angels. The motif of the fallen angels is of course inspired by 1 Enoch.

28 Aleph, the first letter of the alphabet. -

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29. ሰላም ለአጽፋረ እዴከ ሠርጸ አጻብዕ እማንቱ እለ አልቦን ጥምዐት በሕገ መላዕክት ዘስሕቱ ይቅጽባኒ ለለ ዕለቱ እምዓለመ ጽልመተት ከንቱ ዘበሰማያት አኀሊ ወአኮ ዘታሕቱ

29. Salutation to your nails that shoot forth from the fingers That do not plunge in the rule of angels that went wrong Let him give me a signal everyday Rather than the futile world of darkness I meditate the one of heaven and not the one here below In the next strophe, with bo as the last syllable, praise is due to the archangel’s side. The image is linked with the theme of strength for watching, in which the poet wished to be strong in order to watch in prayer. Unlike the side of Uriel that stands by itself, the poet needs the support of the archangel. 30. ሰላም ለገቦከ አስምኮ ዘአልቦ

አሐተ ሰዓተ ዘኢየዐጽቦ ይተግህ ጸሎተ ቅዱሳን በአስተርክቦ ዑራኤል በተናብቦ ከመ ኢይቢት ሰኪቦ ለስብሐተ ልዑል አንቅህ ዘዚአየ ገቦ

30. Salutation to your side that does not need support That is never in difficulty, not even for an hour Is vigilant putting together the prayer of the saints Uriel, in speaking so that [I] may not pass the night sleeping Wake up my side to praise the Most High The thirtieth strophe, with sa as the last syllable, invokes the belly. The image is associated with the interior self. The poet wishes to be filled with a pure spirit, because of the archangel’s holiness and purity. 31. ሰላም ለከርሥከ ጻዕረ ዘኢፀንሰ

ወኢወለደ አበሳ ወርኵሰ ዑራኤል ዘትመሥጥ ጸሎተ ቅዱሳን ነኣሰ ዘይሁብ ጥበበ ወዘይጼጉ ሞገሰ በውስተ ከርሥየ ሐድስ ርቱዐ መንፈሰ

31. Salutation to your belly that does not conceive agony Nor gave birth to sin or impurity -

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Uriel who snatches away the prayer of the saints easily Which gives wisdom and blossoms glory Renew the right spirit in my belly The next strophe, where the last syllable is li, salutes the archangel’s heart. Again, the virtues of Uriel are invoked, thanks to which the poet desires to be protected. 32. ሰላም ለልብከ ነገረ ዐመፃ ዘኢይኄሊ

ከመ ልበ አብዳን መምዐሊ ዑራኤል መልአኩ ለእግዚአብሔር ከሃሊ እምአፈ ቀታሊ ወእምልሳን ጠቃሊ ከመ ታንግፈኒ ኀቤከ እጼሊ

32. Salutation to your heart that does not ponder violence Like the heart of the fool that commits injustice Uriel, the angel of the almighty God From the murderer’s mouth and the liar’s tongue I pray so you may rescue me The following strophe, with nǝ as the last syllable, uses the image of Uriel’s pure mind. Its excellence is affirmed by the metaphors of gold and silver. Uriel’s priestly role is also declared, while his assistance to the poet is strongly and eagerly mentioned. 33. ሰላም ለኅሊናከ ጽሩይ ወፍቱን

እምግዕዘ ወርቅ ንጹሕ ወብሩር ርሱን ዑራኤል ሠዋዒ ወመስተካህን ለወሊደ ወልድ ከመ ትጔጕእ ማሕፀን ለረዲኦትየ ጐጕእ እምልዑል መካን

33. Salutation to you mind pure and tested More than a mass of pure gold or untainted silver Uriel, offering sacrifices and priest Just as a womb yearns to give birth to a son Desire to help me from the place of the Most High The thirty-fourth strophe, with wa as the last syllable, again refers to the interior self of the archangel Uriel. Accordingly, God prepares Uriel from the interior, so that he may inspire prophets. The metaphor of fogs that are scattered by the rays of light is invoked to express the poet’s desire to be freed from sin. -

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34. ሰላም ለንዋየ ውስጥከ ውስተ ከርሠ ኅቡአት ምህላወ እግዚአብሔር ሎቱ ዘአስተዳለወ ዑራኤል ዘኮንከ ኀበ ነቢያት ፍንወ በእግረ ፀሓይ ጊሜ ከመ ይከውን ዝርወ ጊሜ ኃጣውእየ ዝሩ ወረሲ ሳሕወ

34. Salutation to the organs inside you, dwelling place of the secrets That God prepared for himself Uriel, who are sent to prophets As fogs are dispersed at the ray of the sunlight Let the fog of my sins be dissipated and be dispersed In the next strophe, with ṣǝ as the last syllable, Uriel’s navel is mentioned. The theme of health is also introduced here. 35. ሰላም እብል ለሕንብርትከ ፍሑቅ እምነፋስ ሕኑጽ ወእምነ እሳት ንዱቅ መልአከ ዳኅና ዑራኤል ወመልአከ ጽድቅ ኀበ ተአዘዘ ከመ ይፈጥን መብረቅ ረዲኦትየ አፍጥን እምሰማይ ምጡቅ

35. I salute your navel well-shaped and made of wind And built of fire Uriel, angel of health and righteousness Just as lightening hurries to where it is sent Hasten your help to me from the high29 heaven The following strophe, where the last syllable is la, Uriel’s loins are praised. As seen above, the imagery of the human body is always associated with light and power when it is applied to the archangel. The poet wishes to join Uriel for a heavenly feast. Here one may mention 1 En 39:8, according to which Enoch desires and longs for the heavenly and blessed dwelling. 36. ሰላም ለሐቌከ ዘይቀንት ኀይለ

እሳት ነበልባለ ዑራኤል መንፈስ ዘኢለበስከ አባለ በለኒ ውስተ ቤትከ አስተዳሉ ክፍለ ወበኀቤከ እገብር በዓለ

29

Or sweet? -

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36. Salutation to your loins girded with power Blaze of fire Uriel, spirit, unclothed with members Say that you will reserve a place for me in your house And I will make a feast with you In the following strophe, with dǝ as the last syllable, Uriel’s legs, made of fire are greeted. The poet appeals here to Uriel’s intercessory role. 37. ሰላም እብል ለአቊያጺከ አዕማድ

እለ ግብረቶን እምነድ ዑራኤል ሥዩም በዲበ ረዓድ እስእል ኀቤከ ለረኪበ ኵሉ መፍቅድ ኀበ አቡሁ ከመ ይስእል ወልድ

37. I salute your legs, pillars That are made of fire Uriel, installed upon trembling I pray to you to obtain all the necessities Towards the Father so that he may ask the Son The next strophe, where ku is the last syllable, refers to the archangel’s legs, again made of fire. The image of prostration for prayer is mentioned here, whereas, in 1 Enoch, the angels take usually the standing position. The kneeling position is altogether absent from 1 Enoch. 38. ሰላም ለአብራኪከ እምነ እሳት ዘተልሕኩ

ውስተ ቤተ ስብሐት ያስተብርኩ ዑራኤል ስቡሕ ለእግዚአብሔር መልአኩ በግዕዘ ዐርክ ዘይረድኦ ለአርኩ በዕለተ ምንዳቤየ ትርድአኒ ኀቤከ አስመኩ

38. Salutation to your knees That kneel down in the house of praise Uriel, praiseworthy, angel of God In the freeing of a friend who helps one’s friend I take refuge in you so that you may help me during my sufferings The next strophe, with mu as the last syllable, salutes Uriel’s feet, again made of fire, since they stand upon fire. Here Enoch is explicitly mentioned.

-

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39. ሰላም ለአእጋሪከ ውስተ ምድረ እሳት እለ ይቀውሙ እንዘ ኢየአርፉ ሕቀ ወኢይደክሙ ዑራኤል ለኄኖክ መልአከ ሰላሙ ጊዜ ይትፈጸሙ ብርሃናተ ዓለም ኵሎሙ ምሥ ያመ ብርሃንከ ትኩን ለገብርከ ፍጽሙ

39. Salutation to your feet that stand upon a land of fire That never pause or get tired Uriel, Enoch’s angel of peace When the lights of the world are accomplished Let the appointment of your light be the front of your servant In the fortieth strophe, with ʿǝ as the last syllable, the forefoot of Uriel is associated with heavenly space. The poet wishes to have firm forefeet. 40. ሰላም ለሰኳንዊከ ዘመከየዲሆን ጽንዕ

በጠፈረ ሰማይ ሥሩዕ መያጤ ፀሓይ ዑራኤል እምነ ዐረብ ለመስዕ እትመሐፀን በጸሎትከ ብእሲ ኃጥእ ሰኳንውየ ይቁማ በርትዕ

40. Salutation to your forefoot whose steps are firm Made of the firmament of heaven Uriel, you turn the sun from the west to the South-east I implore your prayers, me a sinner Let my forefoot stand resolutely The following strophe, where ṣā is the last syllable, Uriel’s footstool, again associated with light and the sun, is praised. 41. ሰላም ለመከየድከ ቅድመ ገጸ ፀሓይ እለ ይረውጻ ይጸንዓሂ ዘልፈ ወኢይድኅፃ ዑራኤል ክፍልየ ዘአጥረይኩከ በዕፃ ለክምረ ማዕበል ከመ ደፈነቶ ኆፃ ምክረ ጸላእትየ አቅም ዘይነብብ ዐመፃ

41. Salutation to your footstool that run before the face of the sun Always firm and never slipping Uriel, you are my portion whom I acquired in a lot Just as sand blocks the mass of waves Stop the conspiracy of my enemy who speaks of violence -

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In the next strophe, with ʿa as the last syllable, the fingers of Uriel’s feet are greeted. The number 6 and 4 require further inquiry to understand better the symbolism. The allusion to Uriel’s role as revealer and interpreter is explicit and verifiable in 1 Enoch. 42. ሰላም እብል ዘአእጋሪከ አጻብዐ

እለ ይትፈቀዱ ስድሰ ወእለ ይትኌለቁ ርብዐ ዘነፋሳት መዝገበ ወዘከዋክብት ሙፃአ ለኄኖክ ዘአለበውኮ ምሥ ጢረ ከዋክብት ኅቡአ ነዐ ነዐ ዑራኤል ነዐ በዲበ ፀርየ ከመ ትግበር ጸብአ

42. Salutation to the fingers of your feet That are wanted30 six times, numbered four times Chambers of wind and outlets of stars You who made Enoch understand the hidden secret of the stars Come! Oh come Uriel! Come upon my enemy to fight him In the forty-third strophe, where fǝ is the last syllable, it is the turn of the nails of Uriel’s feet that are praised. The image of moving swiftly is a recurrent motif, especially in connection with fire and light. It is not clear to what specific verses of Scriptures the poet is alluding when he or she invites Uriel to fight against enemies. 43. ሰላም ለአጽፋሪከ ዘአእጋሪከ አጽናፍ

እለ የሐውራ ዘልፈ እንበለ ማዕቀፍ መልአከ ፀሓይ ሚካኤል ወሔልያሴፍ ዑራኤል መልአክ ሊቀ አእላፍ በከመ ይቤ መጽሐፍ ለእለ ይጸብኡኒ ሊተ ጽኦሙ በሰይፍ

43. Salutation to the nails, fringes of your feet That march always without obstacles Milkeʾel angel of the sun and Wahelyasef31 Angel Uriel, chief of thousands Fight with your sword those who fight me, as stands written32 in the Scriptures

30 The word could also mean “counted.” 31 Other names of Uriel? 32 Lit. as mentioned in the book.

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The next strophe, with qa as the last syllable, refers to Uriel’s stature and its role in controlling winds. The harvest imagery seems to have an eschatological connotation. 44. ሰላም ለቆምከ ዘይጐድዕ ጥቀ ራሕቀ አየራት ምጡቀ ኅጠተ ውዳሴከ ናሁ ውስተ ልብየ ዘወድቀ ዑራኤል በጸሎትከ ጸንዐ ወልህቀ ለማእረር በጽሐ ወለገሚድ አልጸቀ መዛግብቲሁ አስተዳሉ ወኢታትርፍ ሕቀ

44. Salutation to your stature that strikes strongly the raised winds The small praise that entered in my heart Uriel, through your prayer, became strong and grew up And became ready for harvest and near for