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Dadishoʿ Qaṭraya’s Compendious Commentary on The Paradise of the Egyptian Fathers


in Garshuni


Edited and Translated by Mario Kozah, Abdulrahim Abu-Husayn & Suleiman Mourad
The Compendious Commentary by the Church of the East monk Dadishoʿ Qaṭraya (7th cent.) was originally written in Syriac but was eventually translated into Garshuni or Syro-Arabic. It is a work aimed at immersing the novice monk in the spiritual lore of the monastic vocation, and saturating his mind and spirit with advice and warnings about the pitfalls of aiming to be perfect while remaining nevertheless an imperfect human being. This is a critical edition and translation of the Compendious Commentary in Garshuni that uses all available manuscripts.
Publisher: Gorgias Press LLC
Availability: In stock
SKU (ISBN): 978-1-4632-0566-9
  • *
Publication Status: In Print

Publication Date: Jun 1,2016
Interior Color: Black
Trim Size: 6 x 9
Page Count: 374
Languages: English, Syriac
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0566-9
$85.00
$51.00

Dadishoʿ Qaṭraya is a seventh century Syriac author of monastic and ascetic literature, a Church of the East monk who was a native of the Qatar region, as his demonym “Qaṭraya” indicates. He belongs to an important group of Syriac writers on spirituality and commentators or exegetes within the Church of the East tradition who all originated from the Qatar region (Beth Qaṭraye) and were educated there. This fact reveals the presence of an important school of education that rivaled in its sophistication the other more well-known schools such as the School of Nisibis or the School of Edessa. The Syriac writers of Qatar as a whole produced some of the best and most sophisticated writing to be found in all Syriac literature of the seventh century.

Although Dadishoʿ Qaṭraya’s Compendious Commentary was originally written in Syriac it was eventually translated into Garshuni or Syro-Arabic. It is a work aimed at immersing the novice monk in the spiritual lore of the monastic vocation, and saturating his mind and spirit with advice and warnings about the pitfalls of aiming to be perfect while remaining nevertheless an imperfect human being. This Garshuni version features in a number of manuscripts one of which was first identified in Berlin by Eduard Sachau in 1899 who also established the relationship between this Garshuni Compendium and a Syriac abridged version to be found in the British Library. This critical edition and translation of the Compendious Commentary uses all available manuscripts.

This is the third publication of a three year research project funded by the Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF) under its National Priorities Research Program (NPRP). Project number: NPRP 4-981-6-025.

Front cover: Rubric indicating the start of Dadishoʿ Qaṭraya’s Compendious Commentary on The Paradise of the Egyptian Fathers in MS Mingana Syriac 174 folio 44v. Courtesy of Birmingham University Library.

Dadishoʿ Qaṭraya is a seventh century Syriac author of monastic and ascetic literature, a Church of the East monk who was a native of the Qatar region, as his demonym “Qaṭraya” indicates. He belongs to an important group of Syriac writers on spirituality and commentators or exegetes within the Church of the East tradition who all originated from the Qatar region (Beth Qaṭraye) and were educated there. This fact reveals the presence of an important school of education that rivaled in its sophistication the other more well-known schools such as the School of Nisibis or the School of Edessa. The Syriac writers of Qatar as a whole produced some of the best and most sophisticated writing to be found in all Syriac literature of the seventh century.

Although Dadishoʿ Qaṭraya’s Compendious Commentary was originally written in Syriac it was eventually translated into Garshuni or Syro-Arabic. It is a work aimed at immersing the novice monk in the spiritual lore of the monastic vocation, and saturating his mind and spirit with advice and warnings about the pitfalls of aiming to be perfect while remaining nevertheless an imperfect human being. This Garshuni version features in a number of manuscripts one of which was first identified in Berlin by Eduard Sachau in 1899 who also established the relationship between this Garshuni Compendium and a Syriac abridged version to be found in the British Library. This critical edition and translation of the Compendious Commentary uses all available manuscripts.

This is the third publication of a three year research project funded by the Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF) under its National Priorities Research Program (NPRP). Project number: NPRP 4-981-6-025.

Front cover: Rubric indicating the start of Dadishoʿ Qaṭraya’s Compendious Commentary on The Paradise of the Egyptian Fathers in MS Mingana Syriac 174 folio 44v. Courtesy of Birmingham University Library.

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Contributor Biography

Mario Kozah

Mario Kozah is Assistant Professor of Syriac and Islamic Studies at the American University of Beirut. He holds a B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. in Oriental Studies from the University of Cambridge.

Suleiman Mourad

Abdulrahim Abu-Husayn

  • Table of Contents (page 7)
  • Acknowledgments (page 9)
  • Introduction (page 11)
    • A Note on the Manuscripts (page 20)
    • List of Witnesses (page 20)
    • Stemma Codicum (page 22)
    • Manuscripts (page 23)
  • Text and Translation (page 25)
    • English Translation (page 26)
    • Garshuni Text (page 27)
  • Index of Biblical References (page 289)
  • Index of Names, Terms and Subjects (page 293)
  • Glossary of Proper Names and Key Concepts (page 297)
  • Bibliography (page 303)
  • Notes to the Garshuni Text (page 305)
  • Notes on the English Translation (page 359)
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