Item description for Subhalmaran The Book Of Gifts (Scriptores Syri) (Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium 612, Syriac 236 & 237) by D J Lane...
This work provides a Syriac text and English translation of writings on ascetical life by Subhalmaran, early seventh-century metropolitan of Beth Seloq, now Kirkuk in Iraq. He was a contemporary of Catholicos Gregory I, of the monastic reformer Babai the Great, and of the writer Barhadbesabba. The Syriac material, found in British Library Oriental Manuscript 6714, is there passed off as a single work, but is an editorial collection of five pieces on asceticism and one on the Last Things. This last is similar to, possibly the same as, a piece known elsewhere as being by Babai the Great. Subhalmaran's approach is biblically based, perceptive and witty. His theme is that gifts of the virtues come to those who, by conquering passions and combatting demons, live so as to acquire what is mediated through Old and New Testament ascetics and their successors from their Lord and perfecter, the Messiah.
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Studio: Peeters Publishers
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.4" Width: 6.3" Height: 0.7" Weight: 0.94 lbs.
Release Date Aug 1, 2005
Publisher David Brown
ISBN 9042915188 ISBN13 9789042915183
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Rare Christian Syraic Homilies Edited Translated Mar 8, 2006
Subhalmaran The Book Of Gifts edited by David J. Lane (Scriptores Syri Tomus, 236: Peeters) Syriac text only Intro in English; Subhalmaran The Book Of Gifts: Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium translated by David J. Lane (Translator) (Scriptores Syri Tomus, 237: Peeters) Excerpt: Ktaba da-mnawata, variously translated Book of Gifts, Book of Frag- ments, Book of Centuries, of Subhalmaran the early seventh-century Metropolitan of Selok, now Kirkuk, apparently survives in one manu¬script alone. The chief part of that (73 folios) is now British Library Ori¬ental Manuscript 6714', but other fragments (1 folio) are now in the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris (Ms arabe 6725)2 and (1 folio) in the Selly Oak Colleges Library at Woodbrooke, Birmingham, (Mingana Syriac ms 631).
A translation of this manuscript is offered here. The translation is inten¬ded to remain fairly close to the Syriac, but at the same time to make the work accessible to those who are without benefit of Syriac, yet wish to know a writer on East Syriac asceticism who stands in thought and prac¬tice at a mid-point of development between the fourth-century Aphrahat and Joseph the Seers from the second part of the seventh century. As with other Syriac writers, the greatest obstacles to a translator of ubhalmaran are the length of compound sentences and the multiplicity and ordering of subordinate clauses; the length of interval between an initial accusative case and a concluding finite verb; the use of personal pronouns which leave doubt about the antecedent, and the position of adverbs. Hence, in this translation, long sentences have been broken up, some clauses have been re-ordered, and in some cases the relevant sub¬ject made clear. There is an attempt to give appropriate nuances to the Syriac words and syntax rather than to provide a mechanical series of equivalents. The version is intended as a mean between a formal and a dynamic translation, able to give a flavour of the author's scriptural, per¬ceptive and witty style.
The listing of English equivalents and a transcription of the Syriac terms on p. 197-219 indicates how this has been done. If such an ap¬proach seems cavalier, attention is drawn to the habit of our author in manipulating scripture to clarify as well as to support his argument. Or, in a more modern term; facilitation, not manipulation. To aid still fur¬ther clarity, the parts of Subhalmaran work have been identified, and the chapter divisions divided into paragraphs of varying length to give some correspondence with the subject matter.
When NAU described the contents of the first 73 folios of BL Oriental manuscript 67146, he allowed himself to be misled. Instead of his three sections:15 sections on virtues and virtuous practices (fols 1-30); 22 chapters of prudent warnings (fols 30-54); and other chapters about suit¬able patterns of behaviour for ascetics alone or in monasteries, with rules and regulations for private and public behaviour (fols 54-73) there are in fact six. Here they are called Parts, one of which is found inserted in the middle of another. They are:
Part 1: The Book of Gifts which was compiled by the holy Mar Subhalmaran Bishop of Karka d-Befit &Mk. Part 2: Next, chapters concerning wise admonitions and the way in which grace summons each one of us, and an analogy from the natural orders: these are of advantage to everyone who wishes to be an ascetic. By the same author. Part 3: (Between chapters X and XI of Part 2). Next, an extract from a letter to one of those friends who wished to go out to the desirable companionship of the guides of the ascetic life and was oppressed by his fear. By the same author Subhalmaran. Part 4: More warnings and chapters of instruction that are useful for honest penitents and for those who wish to increase their right actions, and con¬cerning the last times. These are set out alphabetically by the same Mar Subhalmaran
Part 5: Further chapters by the same author, as to how it is necessary for broth¬ers who are in accord with each other to live a life of asceticism in love in a dwelling or in a monastery or wherever. And about canons and regulations for their manners of life outside and inside.
Part 6: (Eight chapters about the first and second coming of our Lord and the role of Elijah; three chapters about the Last Judgement and the condi¬tion of those in Gehenna and those with our Lord).
Excipit: The end of the Book of Gifts that was made by Mar Subhalmaran.