patristics | manuscripts

Cool summer schools ahead (on Greek manuscripts, Coptic papyri, and papyrus conservation)

Three important summer school are up for next year, so I thought I might mention them here, in the order of their approaching deadlines. I’ve taken park in previous editions of the first two, and I couldn’t recommend them more warmly.

1) Papyrus Conservation Summer Seminar | Ann Arbor, 11-22 June 2018 | Deadline 1 November 2017

2) Lincoln College Summer School of Greek Palaeography | Oxford, 30 July – 4 August 2018 | Deadline 15 January 2018

3) The Sixth Summer School in Coptic PapyrologyParis, 3-11 July 2018 | Deadline 15 March 2018


Here are more details for the first and the third, which arrived via emails with no link attached.


Papyrus Conservation Summer Seminar

The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI | Monday, June 11 – Friday, June 22, 2018

Deadline: Wednesday, November 1, 2017

The Papyrology Collection of the University of Michigan Library will host a two-week seminar in papyrus conservation from Monday, June 11 to Friday, June 22, 2018 directed by Conservation Librarian/Conservator Marieka Kaye.

Participants will receive an in-depth, hands-on introduction to papyrus conservation. They will learn about the tools and materials used in papyrus conservation as well as the theory and methodology behind current conservation techniques. They will then utilize these techniques to perform a range of treatment on papyri from the University of Michigan’s Collection, including written documentation, digital photo-documentation, mechanical cleaning, damp treatments, reduction of folds, alignment of fibers, alignment of fragments, and methods of housing and storage.

Due to space constraints, the number of participants is strictly limited to six. Preference will be given to scholars and conservators who are directly involved with papyrus conservation, whether in papyrus collections or archaeological excavations.

There is no course fee for the seminar which is supported by the University of Michigan Papyrology Collection; participants are responsible for their own travel, lodging and meals. All required tools will be provided for use during the seminar and participants will have the option of purchasing them at cost at the conclusion of the seminar. All participants are required to offer a presentation on their home institution’s papyrus conservation issues, experiences, and concerns. A certificate of participation will be provided at the end of the seminar.

The Instructor: Marieka Kaye has served as a conservator of books, paper, and papyrus at the University of Michigan since 2013, where she studied papyrus conservation with Leyla Lau-Lamb. She comes to the University of Michigan after serving as a book and paper conservator for 8 years at the Huntington Library in San Marino, CA. She received a Masters degree and Certificate of Advanced Study in Art Conservation from Buffalo State College and a Masters of Library and Information Science from San Jose State University. Marieka began to work in the field of library conservation as a Preservation Assistant at Brandeis University in 1998. She went on to work as Library Preservation Assistant at the Brooklyn Museum of Art and Conservation Assistant for Exhibitions and Loans at the New-York Historical Society. She also completed advanced internships at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City Municipal Archives, Syracuse University, Etherington Conservation Services, and the University of California Los Angeles.

To apply please send contact information, a statement summarizing relevant conservation or papyrological experience and responsibilities (maximum 600 words), and one letter of recommendation in PDF format to:

Marieka Kaye:

Deadline for applications is 1 November 2017. | Received through the Digest for PapyrusConservation.


The Sixth Summer School in Coptic papyrologyParis, July 3-11, 2018

The sixth summer school in Coptic Papyrology will be held in Paris from the 3rd to 11th of July 2018. It follows the summer schools held in Vienna 2006, Leipzig 2008, Strasbourg 2010, Heidelberg 2012, and Barcelona 2014. The event will be organised by Anne Boud’hors (IRHT/CNRS) et Alain Delattre (Université libre de Bruxelles/EPHE) around the collection of the Papyrological Institute of the Sorbonne ( The Collège de France, the Laboratoire d’excellence Religions et sociétés dans le monde méditerranéen (Labex Resmed) and the Association francophone de coptologie (AFC) are also taking part in the organization and funding of this event.

Students from fields such as Coptology, Egyptology, Papyrology, Classics, religious studies, Ancient History, Arabic studies, or Byzantine studies are invited to participate, provided they have acquired a solid knowledge of Coptic.

Unlike previous summer schools, this one will only concern documentary Coptic papyri (letters, legal documents, accounts, etc.), and possibly some ostraca. Students will have the opportunity to work on an unpublished original papyrus and will have the possibility to publish it in a collective volume.

A fee of € 400,- will include participation in all classes and activities, as well as accommodation in a nearby residence hall, daily breakfast and lunch.

The number of places is restricted to 15.

How to apply?

Applications should contain:

1. The applicant’s curriculum vitae.

2. An application letter.

3. One letter of reference.

Please send the application to:

Dr. Anne Boud’hors

Institut de Recherche et d’Histoire des Textes, CNRS

Section Grecque et de l’Orient chrétien

52 rue du Cardinal Lemoine

75005 Paris


The deadline for applications is 15 March 2018. Applicants will be informed whether they have been successful at the beginning of April 2018.


Classes will be taught by papyrologists specialized in palaeography and the decipherment of non-literary hands as well as on relationships between documents and other textual or archaeological evidence. For practical exercise, each student will be given an unpublished document to work on, in the prospect of presenting it at the end of the session and publishing it in a collective volume, as in CPR XXXI or P.Stras.Copt.

Main instructors of the summer school will be María Jesús Albarrán (Barcelone/Madrid), Lajos Berkes (Berlin), Anne Boud’hors (Paris), Alain Delattre (Bruxelles), Esther Garel (Vienne), T. Sebastian Richter (Berlin), and Gesa Schenke (Oxford). Speakers will also include James Cowey (Heidelberg), Jean-Luc Fournet (Paris), Loreleï Vanderheyden (Paris), and Naïm Vanthieghem (Bruxelles/Paris).

Classes will be taught in English. | Received through PAPY Digest.


Fresh Issues of BASP and JTS

Haven’t received the hard copies yet, but over the last couple of days I heard news that JTS 68.2 (2017) and BASP 54 (2017) have just been published. Contents are available here and here.

In BAPS 54 there are plenty of good articles. I’ll just mention Lincoln Blumell’s article on “An Amulet Containing Acts 9:1“:

Edition of a previously unpublished New Testament papyrus in the J. Rendel Harris Collection at the University of Birmingham. The papyrus preserves a single verse from the book of Acts (9:1) and likely dates to the late third or fourth century. Given the physical characteristics of this papyrus it seems likely that it was manufactured as an amulet. However, the use of Acts 9:1, a verse about Saul ‘breathing out threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord’, is rather curious and deserves some elucidation.

From JTS 68.2 I’ll just briefly mention Brent Nongbri and Stuart George Hall’s article on “Melito’s Peri Pascha 1-5 as Recovered from a ‘Lost’ Leaf of Papyrus Bodmer XIII” (for which see here), Lincoln Blumell’s “P.Mich. inv. 4461KR: The Earliest Fragment of the Didascalia CCCXVIII Patrum Nicaenorum“, Doru Costache’s “Revisiting the Date of Chrysostom’s Homilies on Genesis” (for which see here).

My article in BASP 54 is available here, and my short piece in JTS 68.2 here.


New POxy Volume (and the NAPS conference coming up)

To start properly: there is a new Oxyrhynchus Papyri volume out (POxy 81), and its table of contents includes a third century fragment of 1 Timothy which, I believe, is the first Greek papyrus that we have of this letter. Not bad.

Also the NAPS conference is coming up in May. My paper goes as follows:

The Coptic Reception of the Shepherd of Hermas: A Reassessment

This paper proposes a reassessment of the Coptic reception of the Shepherd of Hermas. To that end, it offers an updated list of all its published Coptic manuscripts, a reassessment of the dating and a description of the scribal habits found in those which are currently available, then a re-evaluation of two scholarly proposals—the truncated Coptic transmission hypothesis on the one hand, and, on the other, the possibility that the Akhmimic papyrus leaves were initially part of a pandect similar to Codex Sinaiticus (i.e. containing OT and NT books, and also Apostolic Fathers)—in view of their relevance for our understanding of the reception of the Shepherd as authoritative text in Coptic Christianity.

Reading Signs in Manuscripts

New book from the Presses Universitaires de Liège:


Gabriel Nocchi Macedo and Maria Chiara Scappaticcio (eds.). Signes dans les textes, textes sur les signes: Érudition, lecture et écriture dans le monde gréco-romain.
Papyrologica Leodiensia 6; Liège: PUL, 2017.

The various paratextual signs found here and there in early-Christian papyri and manuscripts have drawn quite some attention during the last decade for the possible clues they could offer not only about the use of these manuscripts but possibly also about liturgical practices and the formation of the canon.

This book offers sixteen contributions on the Greek and Roman background on signs found in manuscripts and inscriptions, and should therefore inform all future developments of such debates. The papers are written in Italian, English, Spanish and French, so it should be good fun. I’ve pasted the contents below, for convenience. Daniela Colomo’s article, on quantity marks in Greek prose texts on papyrus, is available online here.

Guglielmo CAVALLO

Segni nei testi, testi sui segni: perché?

Some Observations on the Usage of Punctuation in Early Greek Inscriptions

Segni e layout delle iscrizioni greche in Egitto. Un sondaggio su testi esposti in prosa

Los signos de lectura más antiguos en papiro

La ponctuation dans les papyrus grecs d’Herculanum

Daniela COLOMO
Quantity Marks in Greek Prose Texts on Papyrus

Kathleen MCNAMEE
Sigla in Late Greek Literary Papyri

Rodney AST
Signs of Learning in Greek Documents: the Case of spiritus asper

Eleanor DICKEY
Word Division in Bilingual Texts

Rodolfo FUNARI
Segni di interpunzione e di lettura nei frammenti storici latini da papiro e pergamena rivenuti nell’Egitto

Textes sur les signes : les sources latines

Giuseppina MAGNALDI
Integrazioni con parola‐segnale in manoscritti ciceroniani e apuleiani

Segni nei libri: esempi e problemi nei manoscritti medievali di contenuto grammaticale

La pratique de la ponctuation dans les manuscrits de Lyon du Ve au IXe siècle

Ricezione ed evoluzione di un trattato elementare : le Declinationes e le redazioni dell’Ars Ambianensis

Herencia clásica en la ponctuación y la acentuación del Siglo de Oro español

Clement’s Exegesis

New book from Brill:


Veronika Černušková, Judith L. Kovacs, and Jana Plátová (eds.)
Clement’s Biblical Exegesis: Proceedings of the Second Colloquium on Clement of Alexandria (Olomouc, May 29–31, 2014)
VCS 139; Leiden/Boston: Brill, 2017.


In Clement’s Biblical Exegesis scholars from six countries explore various facets of Clement of Alexandria’s hermeneutical theory and his exegetical practice. Although research on Clement has tended to emphasize his use of philosophical sources, Clement was important not only as a Christian philosopher, but also as a pioneer Christian exegete. His works constitute a crucial link in the tradition of Alexandrian exegesis, but his biblical exegesis has received much less attention than that of Philo or Origen. Topics discussed include how Clement’s methods of allegorical interpretation compare with those of Philo, Origen, and pagan exegetes of Homer, and his readings of particular texts such as Proverbs, the Sermon on the Mount, John 1, 1 John, and the Pauline letters.

For a taste of this, you can find the contributions of Annewies van den Hoek (“Clement of Alexandria and the Book of Proverbs“) and Matyáš Havrda (“Clement’s Exegetical Interests in Stromateis VIII“) readily available on Good stuff, this.

NAPS 2017 program released

The program of the 2017 North American Patristics Society has just been published, here. Plenty of cool papers to go around, methinks.

Of course, as for any such occasion, check out Melissa Ridley’s advice on cultivating collegiality, and David Lincicum’s jolly good tips on how not to be a jerk at conferences.

New Issues of APF and Biblica

The other day I received my copies of the latest issues of Biblica and Archiv für Papyrusforschung. Since neither issue is yet online, TOC previews might be useful.

In Biblica 97/4 (2016) I have an essay on the presence of the Apostolic Father in the the ‘Great Biblical Uncials’ (“The Apostolic Fathers in Codex Sinaiticus and Alexandrinus“). NT people might be interested in the article by my Leuven colleague, Bincy Mathew, “The Syntax of John 13:1 Revisited”.

img_20170130_190841     img_20170130_191232

In Archiv für Papyrusforschung 62/2 (2016) J have a short piece: “Two Notes on the Papyri of the Shepherd of Hermas and Its Egyptian Transmission“. This issue of APF has two articles on Hermas, which must be some sort of record. Paolo Cecconi’s interesting article “La padrona diventa serva. Un nuovo inizio del Papiro Bodmer 38” is not uploaded on academia edu, but the description there includes the invite “For a copy, please write me”.

img_20170130_190754     img_20170130_190956


Patristic Works in Antique Translations

As the 2017 annual conference of the European Society for the Study of Religions will be held in Leuven, September 18-21, some may wish to know that it will include a panel on the this topic, currently accepting paper proposals: “Caught in Translation: Versions of Late-Antique Christian Literature”.

These sessions focus on the transmission of translations from patristic works (broadly conceived) in Late Antiquity and beyond. Apart from a limited number of better known cases which received a certain amount of attention, e.g. the Latin translations from Origen’s works, there is of course a large amount of understudied material. Yet for the texts which are translated, the versions are not only (sometimes crucial) textual witnesses, but also important testimonies of independent strands of reception, cast in the cultural context of the new language. The aim of these sessions, therefore, is to sample the range of problems and approaches involved in addressing the reception of Christian literature in the various languages in which it was transmitted.

Full description of the panel and the list of invited papers can be found here. The EASR call for papers (and the list of all panels) is available here. Deadline for submission is January 31. Do join in!

The New Testament in Byzantium

New book from Dumbarton Oakes:


Derek Krueger & Robert S. Nelson (eds.)
The New Testament in Byzantium (Dumbarton Oaks Byzantine Symposia and Colloquia; Washington, D.C.: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 2016).


The New Testament lay at the center of Byzantine Christian thought and practice. But codices and rolls were neither the sole way—nor most important way—the Byzantines understood the New Testament. Lectionaries apportioned much of its contents over the course of the liturgical calendar; its narratives structured the experience of liturgical time and shaped the nature of Christian preaching, throughout Byzantine history. A successor to The Old Testament in Byzantium (2010), this book asks: What was the New Testament for Byzantine Christians? What of it was known, how, when, where, and by whom? How was this knowledge mediated through text, image, and rite? What was the place of these sacred texts in Byzantine arts, letters, and thought?

Authors draw upon the current state of textual scholarship and explore aspects of the New Testament, particularly as it was read, heard, imaged, and imagined in lectionaries, hymns, homilies, saints’ lives, and as it was illustrated in miniatures and monuments. Framing theological inquiry, ecclesiastical controversy, and political thought, the contributions here help develop our understanding of the New Testament and its varied reception over the long history of Byzantium.

The volume stems from a 2013 conference (see here) and a number of contributions are available on, e.g. that of Maximos Constas on “The Reception of Paul and of Pauline Theology in the Byzantine Period,” or that of Derek Kruger on “The Hagiographers’ Bible,” as well as the two editors’ introductory chapter on the “New Testament of Byzantium.”

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