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Texts from Christian Late Antiquity

TeCLA (Texts from Christian Late Antiquity) is a series presenting ancient Christian texts both in their original languages and with accompanying contemporary English translations.

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Commentary on Daniel

Commentary on Daniel
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4278-7
Ishoʿdad of Merv’s (fl. 850 AD) Commentary on Daniel provides an important witness to East Syriac exegetical technique. In it Ishoʿdad typically emphasizes an historical reading of the Old Testament above any kind of allegorical, spiritual, or even Christological interpretation. Most notable is Ishoʿdad’s belief that the Maccabees fulfilled several of the visions described in the book of Daniel, even including the Heavenly Kingdom of Daniel chapters 2, 7, and 8, and the physical resurrection of Daniel 12. These interpretations dramatically depart from most eastern and western commentators who considered Daniel’s visions to portend the rise of the Roman Empire and the advent of Christ. Ishoʿdad’s commentary is translated here into English for the first time.

The Life of Simeon of the Olives

An entrepreneurial saint of early Islamic North Mesopotamia
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4346-3
The first ever critical edition and complete translation of the Syriac Life of Saint Simeon of the Olives, who was an abbot of Qartmin Monastery in Tur Abdin and a bishop of the city of Harran in the late seventh and early eighth century AD.

Jacob of Sarug's Homily on Samson

Translated by Dana Miller; Edited with Notes and Introduction by Mary T. Hansbury
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4290-9
Recognized as a saint by both Chalcedonian and non-Chalcedonian Christians alike, Jacob of Sarug (d. 521) produced many narrative poems that have rarely been translated into English. Of his reported 760 metrical homilies, only about half survive. Part of a series of fascicles containing the bilingual Syriac-English editions of Saint Jacob of Sarug’s homilies, this volume contains his homily on Samson. The Syriac text is fully vocalized, and the translation is annotated with a commentary and biblical references. The volume is one of the fascicles of Gorgias Press’s Complete Homilies of Saint Jacob of Sarug, which, when complete, will contain all of Jacob’s surviving sermons.

Jacob of Sarug’s Homilies on the Six Days of Creation (The Seventh Day)

The Seventh Day
Edited and Translated by Edward G Mathews Jr
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4344-9
In this final installment of the long Homily 71, On the Six Days of Creation, Jacob treats the events of the seventh day.

Jacob of Sarug's Homilies on Paul

On the Conversion of the Apostle Paul and a Second Homily on Paul the Apostle
Translation and Introduction by Raju Parakkott; Edited with Notes and Introduction by Mary T. Hansbury
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4273-2
Recognized as a saint by both Chalcedonian and non-Chalcedonian Christians alike, Jacob of Sarug (d. 521) produced many narrative poems that have rarely been translated into English. Of his reported 760 metrical homilies, only about half survive. Part of a series of fascicles containing the bilingual Syriac-English editions of Saint Jacob of Sarug’s homilies, this volume contains two of his homilies on Paul. The Syriac text is fully vocalized, and the translation is annotated with a commentary and biblical references. The volume is one of the fascicles of Gorgias Press’s Complete Homilies of Saint Jacob of Sarug, which, when complete, will contain all of Jacob’s surviving sermons.

Jacob of Sarug’s Homilies on the Six Days of Creation (The Sixth Day)

The Sixth Day
Edited and Translated by Edward G Mathews Jr
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4211-4
In this sixth installment of the long Homily 71, On the Six Days of Creation, Jacob treats the events of the sixth day.

George, Bishop of the Arabs

Homily on the Consecration of Myron
Translated by Fr. Baby Varghese
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0731-1
George was one of the last scholarly Syrian Orthodox bishops to live in the early Islamic period. His metrical homily, probably composed to be sung during the consecration of the Myron, is presented here with the vocalised Syriac text and English translation on facing pages.

Jacob of Sarug's Homilies on Jacob

On Jacob’s Revelation at Bethel and On our Lord and Jacob, on the Church and Rachel and on Leah and the Synagogue
Translated by Dana Miller; Edited with Notes and Introduction by Mary T. Hansbury
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4189-6
Recognized as a saint by both Chalcedonian and non-Chalcedonian Christians alike, Jacob of Sarug (d. 521) produced many narrative poems that have rarely been translated into English. Of his reported 760 metrical homilies, only about half survive. Part of a series of fascicles containing the bilingual Syriac-English editions of Saint Jacob of Sarug’s homilies, this volume contains two of his homilies on Jacob. The Syriac text is fully vocalized, and the translation is annotated with a commentary and biblical references. The volume is one of the fascicles of Gorgias Press’s Complete Homilies of Saint Jacob of Sarug, which, when complete, will contain all of Jacob’s surviving sermons.

The History of John the Son of Zebedee

Introduction, Texts and Translations
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4075-2
Many stories and legends about John the son of Zebedee have survived from antiquity. He was known as one of the twelve disciples of Jesus Christ, as the “Beloved Disciple” and author of the Gospel of John, and even as the recipient of the divine revelation in the Apocalypse. Later traditions, such as the Greek Acts of John, told of how John traveled to Ephesus and converted people to Christianity. John was an important figure to Catholic Christians, to Gnostic Christians, and to Manichaeans. He also found a distinct place among Syriac Christians who preserved their own story about John’s acts in Ephesus. William Wright first introduced the History of John in 1871 using two manuscript witnesses. Since then, more witnesses have been discovered, but little work has been done on this native Syriac apocryphon. The present volume brings together all of the known Syriac witnesses to the History of John with a new translation and includes, for the first time, a critical discussion of the history, provenance, and importance of this text for the study of Syriac Christianity and Christian Apocrypha more generally.

The Law Code of Simeon, Bishop of Rev-Ardashir

Edited and Translated by Amir Harrak
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4134-6
The Law Code of Simeon of Rev-Ardashir, originally written in Persian, was translated into Syriac by a monk of Bēṭ-Qatrāyē. The Code's author, possibly to be identified with a rebellious metropolitan mentioned in the letters of Patriarch Īšoʿ-yahb III, aims to clarify theoretical scriptural law, and to address specific cases of inheritance law.

Jacob of Sarug’s Homilies on the Six Days of Creation (The Fifth Day)

The Fifth Day
Edited and Translated by Edward G Mathews Jr
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4117-9
In this fifth installment of the long Homily 71, On the Six Days of Creation, Jacob treats of the events of the fifth day, the creation from the waters of the various species of fish and reptiles, as well as the assorted types of birds and other winged creatures. God created them all in wisdom and in love, prepared everything that they would need and endowed them with the natural characteristics required for their particular type of life. Jacob highlights the fact that the creation of these animals on the fifth day to inhabit the land and water separated on the third day is a symbol of the Resurrection of Christ.

Homily 33 on the Sanctification of the Church

Edited and Translated by Amir Harrak
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0552-2
Narsai’s memra 33 is made of 12 by 12 syllables, and its title “On the Sanctification of the Church” suggests that it was written for the feast of the Dedication of the Church celebrated by the Church of the East to this day on the first of November. The memra names the Church of the Nations the Bride of the Bridegroom Christ. The Church had a pagan origin but Christ chose her to become his bride. He thus saved her through his suffering, cleansed her with baptism, prepared the bridal feast for her through the Eucharist, and crowned her victory over all the nations.

Jacob of Sarug’s Homilies on the Six Days of Creation (The Fourth Day)

The Fourth Day
Edited and Translated by Edward G Mathews Jr
ISBN: 978-1-4632-3912-1
In this fourth installment of the long Homily 71, On the Six Days of Creation, Jacob treats of the events of the fourth day, the creation of the spheres of light over the earth: the sun to rule over the day, and the moon and the stars to rule over the night.

The Commentary of Gabriel of Qatar on the East Syriac Morning Service on Ordinary Days

Text, Translation, and Discussion
ISBN: 978-1-4632-3924-4
This volume provides a study and an original edition and translation from Syriac into English of Discourse Two of Gabriel of Qatar's liturgical commentary, written in the first half of the seventh century.

Jacob of Sarug's Additional Homilies on Good Friday

Translation and Introduction by Edward G Mathews Jr
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0752-6
Two homilies by Jacob of Sarug on Good Friday, one of which has only survived in Armenian translation.

Moshe Bar Kepha’s Cause of the Celebration of the Nativity

A Genre for Exegesis, Ecumenism, and Apology
Edited and Translated with an Introduction by Abdul-Massih Saadi
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0733-5
This book is a part of series of Causes of Celebrations written by Moshe Bar Kepha (813-903). These Causes are unique in that they demonstrate a new genre of the Syriac literature initiated by the East Syriac authors at the beginning of the sixth century. Moreover, these Causes reveal the appreciation and dependency of Moshe Bar Kepha on the East Syriac sources despite the ecclesiastical doctrinal separation between the East Syriac and West Syriac churches.

The Julian Romance (revised)

A New English Translation
Edited and Translated by Michael Sokoloff
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0708-3
The so-called "Julian Romance" was discovered among the Nitrian manuscripts in the 1830s. This revised edition, with facing Syriac text and English translation, provides a new, more accurate translation of this important Syriac text.

The Works of Cyrillona

Edited and Translated by Carl Griffin
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0606-2
Cyrillona (fl. 396) has been ranked among the foremost early Syriac poets since his work was rediscovered by scholars in the mid-19th century. His Holy Week discourses on the Last Supper, the Washing of the Feet, and the Institution of the Eucharist have become particularly well-known to western readers through quotations by such diverse authors as Hugo Rahner and Photina Rech. This volume presents the first modern critical edition of Cyrillona’s Syriac works together with the first complete English translation.

Jacob of Sarug’s Homilies on the Six Days of Creation (The Second Day)

The Second Day
Edited and Translated by Edward G Mathews Jr
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0553-9
In this second part of Homily 71, On the Fashioning of Creation, Jacob treats the making of the firmament: what it was, where it was, what – as far as can be determined – was placed above it and what below it, its purpose and utility for humanity, and the importance of its place in the Genesis account of the six day progression of creation.

Isaac the Syrian's Spiritual Works

Edited and Translated by Mary T. Hansbury
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0593-5
Isaac the Syrian lived the solitary life in the 7th century. He was born in Qatar and subsequently lived in present day Iraq and Iran. After life as a monk, then briefly as a bishop, he withdrew to live the solitary life. These discourses are primarily for solitaries to consolidate them in the love and mercy of God. In this volume, the text of Isaac V has also been included because of the light which it sheds on Apocatastasis, of increasing interest in academic and ecclesial circles.

Jacob of Sarug’s Homilies on the Six Days of Creation (The Third Day)

The Third Day
Edited and Translated by Edward G Mathews Jr
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0615-4
In this third part of Homily 71, On the Fashioning of Creation, Jacob treats the God's separation of the waters from the earth, and the bringing forth of vegetation on the newly-revealed dry land.

Jacob of Sarug's Homilies on Women Whom Jesus Met

ISBN: 978-1-4632-0580-5
Five homilies by Jacob of Sarug on women whom Jesus met: the Canaanite Woman, the Samaritan Woman, the Hemorrhaging Woman, the Woman Bent Double, and Jairus' Daughter.

Jacob of Sarug's Homilies on Praise at Table

Edited and Translated by Jeff W. Childers
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0605-5
Part of a series of fascicles containing the bilingual Syriac-English editions of Saint Jacob of Sarug’s homilies, this volume contains his homilies on Praise at Table. These homilies offer a glimpse into the efforts of one late antique author to construct distinctly Christian meaning from the experience of communal meal-sharing. The Syriac text is fully vocalized, and the translation is annotated with a commentary and biblical references. The volume is one of the fascicles of Gorgias Press’s The Metrical Homilies of Mar Jacob of Sarug, which, when complete, will contain all of Jacob’s surviving sermons. Recognized as a saint by both Chalcedonian and non-Chalcedonian Christians alike, Jacob of Sarug (d. 521) produced many narrative poems that have rarely been translated into English. Of his reported 760 metrical homilies, only about half survive.

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

in Garshuni
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0566-9
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.

Jacob of Sarug's Homilies on the Solitaries

Edited and Translated by Colby A. Scott & Morgan Reed
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0562-1
Jacob of Sarug's pastoral concern and rhetorical acumen have appropriately earned him the title “the lyre of the Holy Spirit”. This volume presents Jacob's admonitions to those living a life of consecrated singleness to God.