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The Digital Edition and Critical Evaluation of the Coptic Holy Week Lectionary: 2023 progress report

The time has come to provide a progress report with the highlights of the second year that the project has been in operation. 

1. New dedicated Partner Project web page 

The website of the Digital Edition of the Coptic Old Testament now hosts a dedicated Holy Week Lectionary (=HWL) web space under the Partner Projects tab. The new space is fully functional and features blogposts and publications along with the three dedicated sections for the Holy Week Lectionaries: Sahidic Holy Week Lectionary, Bohairic Holy Week Lectionary, and Arabic Holy Week Lectionary. A synopsis of the entire Holy Week lectionary index, prepared on the basis of all manuscripts examined in the framework of the project, can be consulted in each of the three sections.

1.1 Sahidic Holy Week Lectionary section

The five lectionaries (270 leaves) displayed in the Sahidic HWL section are by now fully indexed, liturgically tagged, and transcribed. Meanwhile, the Manuscript Speculation Tool (=MST), created by Diliana Atanassova, Troy A. Griffitts and Ulrich B. Schmid for the reconstruction of pages in fragmentary manuscripts,[1] was further developed and adapted for the reconstruction of lectionaries. Besides, Diliana Atanassova and myself used the MST extensively for the reconstruction of the codex structure of another liturgical manuscript from the White Monastery library, namely the Sahidic Euchologion MONB.VE.[2] Thanks to the development of the MST and to our experience with the reconstruction of liturgical manuscripts, we are now able to reconstruct the codex structure of the individual Sahidic lectionaries despite their fragmentary state, see for example the codex structure of sa 299L.

1.2 Bohairic Holy Week Lectionary section

The list in the Bohairic HWL Lectionary section now includes nine Holy Week lectionaries (2710 leaves) along with the four Ṭuruḥat (272 leaves) for the Holy Week codices. All nine Bohairic HWL were indexed by Peter Missael and liturgically tagged by myself. In cooperation with the British Library, the Bohairic Holy Week lectionary bo 3000L will soon be the subject of a show case. I have already liturgically tagged and transcribed the bilingual Bohairic–Arabic texts of the 313 leaves. Its codex structure is also already retrievable. As for the other eight Bohairic HWL in the list, more than 1100 leaves have already been transcribed. The transcription was achieved with the support of our student assistants Peter Missael and Sophie-Charlotte Gissat.

1.3 Arabic Holy Week Lectionary section

As already mentioned in the project’s first year report, the list in the Arabic HWL section includes all bilingual Sahidic–Arabic (3 manuscripts, 238 leaves) and Bohairic–Arabic HWL (5 manuscripts, 1300 leaves) already included in the other two dedicated sections as well as the monolingual Holy Week lectionary ar 1L (185 leaves). All Arabic texts of the Sahidic–Arabic HWL, more than 280 leaves of the Arabic texts of the Bohairic–Arabic HWL, and 50 leaves of the monolingual ar 1L have already been transcribed by myself.

2. 14-day visit of the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana in Rome

Diliana Atanassova and myself visited the BAV in Rome from June 5 to June 16, 2023 to carry out an autopsy of the manuscripts preserved in Rome and included in the project’s main sources. Besides, Diliana Atanassova consulted all Sahidic liturgical typika kept in the BAV and pertaining to her research in the framework of her DFG project AT 193/1-1 “The Hymns in the Coptic Liturgy of the White Monastery in Upper Egypt”. A detailed account of the Sahidic and Bohairic HWL autopsy results can be found in two dedicated blogposts (part I and part II).

3. Blogposts in the second year

- Elhage-Mensching, Lina, The Digital Edition and Critical Evaluation of the Coptic Holy Week Lectionary: 2022 progress report. In: Digital Edition of the Coptic Old Testament, 21 March 2023.
- Elhage-Mensching, Lina, A Visit to the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, 5-16 June 2023: Autopsying Coptic Holy Week Lectionaries (Part I). In: Digital Edition of the Coptic Old Testament, 5 July 2023.
- Elhage-Mensching, Lina, A Visit to the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, 5-16 June 2023: Autopsying Coptic Holy Week Lectionaries (Part II). In: Digital Edition of the Coptic Old Testament, 4 August 2023.
- Elhage-Mensching, Lina, Remarks on the translation of John 2:15 into Coptic and Arabic. In: Digital Edition of the Coptic Old Testament, 20 February 2024.
- Missael, Peter, Sahidic influences in two Bohairic Holy Week Lectionaries. In: Digital Edition of the Coptic Old Testament, 29 November 2023.

4. Publications in the second year

- Atanassova, Diliana / Elhage-Mensching, Lina (2023). Die sahidischen Euchologia des Weißen Klosters – eine kodikologische Bilanz. In: Diliana Atanassova, Frank Feder, Heike Sternberg el-Hotabi (eds), Pharaonen, Mönche und Gelehrte. Auf dem Pilgerweg durch 5000 Jahre ägyptische Geschichte über drei Kontinente. Heike Behlmer zum 65. Geburtstag, Texte und Studien zur Koptischen Bibel / Texts and Studies on the Coptic Bible 4, 61–78.
- Atanassova, Diliana / Griffitts, Troy A. / Schmid, Ulrich B. (2023). Manuscript Speculation Tool 2.0: Digital Support for the Reconstruction of Biblical and Liturgical Coptic Manuscripts. In: Diliana Atanassova, Frank Feder, Heike Sternberg el-Hotabi (eds), Pharaonen, Mönche und Gelehrte. Auf dem Pilgerweg durch 5000 Jahre ägyptische Geschichte über drei Kontinente. Heike Behlmer zum 65. Geburtstag, Texte und Studien zur Koptischen Bibel / Texts and Studies on the Coptic Bible, 79–94.
- Feder, Frank (2023). Old Testament, Coptic Versions of the: Update. In: Claremont Coptic Encyclopedia (CCE), https://ccdl.claremont.edu/digital/collection/cce/id/2188/.

5. Forthcoming publications

- Atanassova, Diliana / Feder, Frank (forthcoming). Die Bedeutung der biblischen Lesungen und der sahidischen Lektionare für die Edition der sahidischen Bibelübersetzung – Eine Zwischenbilanz. In: Felix Albrecht, Frank Feder, Martin Karrer (eds), Liturgische Traditionen: Ihr Nutzen und Stellenwert für die biblische Editionswissenschaft / Liturgical Traditions: Their Use and Value for Critical Editions of the Bible, Antike Schriftauslegung / Ancient Scriptural Interpretation.
- Atanassova, Diliana / Elhage-Mensching, Lina (forthcoming). The Digital Edition and Critical Evaluation of the Coptic Holy Week Lectionary. Outline of a New Project in Coptic Studies. In: Chrysostom Nassis, Arsenius Mikhail, Daniel Galadza (eds), ΛΟΓΙΚΗ ΛΑΤΡΕΙΑ. Proceedings of the Eighth International Congress of the Society of Oriental Liturgy, Thessaloniki, 13–18 June 2022, Studies in Eastern Christian Liturgies.
- Atanassova, Diliana / Elhage-Mensching, Lina (forthcoming). The Anaphora of Saint James in a Sahidic Euchologion of the late 10th century. In: Proceedings of The Liturgy of St James Conference, Regensburg, 6–10 June 2022.
- Atanassova, Diliana (forthcoming). New Research on Coptic Liturgy 2012–2022. In: Proceedings of the 12th International Congress for Coptic Studies, Brussels, 11–16 July 2022.
- Elhage-Mensching, Lina (forthcoming). The Owner Family of a Sahidic–Arabic Holy Week lectionary: Arabic and Bohairic marginalia in the 14th century codex sa 16L. Ιn: Proceedings of the 12th International Congress for Coptic Studies, Brussels, 11–16 July 2022.
- Elhage-Mensching, Lina (forthcoming). Eusebian Tituli Psalmorum in the Coptic Psalter Codex sa 2033. In: Felix Albrecht, Reinhard Kratz (eds), Editing the Greek Psalter, De Septuaginta Investigationes, 511–521.

 

[1] See the article in the volume published in honour of Prof. Heike Behlmer here in section 4.

[2] See the article in the volume published in honour of Prof. Heike Behlmer here in section 4.

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