Abbot Anastasius

Abbot ANASTASIUS

Anastasius is said to have been the abbot of a Pachomian monastery, probably that of PBOW. His period is not indicated, but he is the author of several stories, one of which, relating to the adventures of a Nubian prince, Qafri, has been retained in the of the Copto- of the Copts from Upper Egypt. The name Qafri may be a play on words, as points out, for this word is related to the Arabic qafr (desert) and describes an anchorite.

Using a Nubian invasion for cover, the prince reached the of Abnud, which is near Qift (Ramzi, 1953-1963, Vol. 2, pt. 4, p. 174)—and became a monk in a monastery of Pachomius. This story will be found in the European editions of the Synaxarion, either that of Basset (1907, pp. 514-16) or that of Forget (1905-1922, Vols. 47-49, pp. 353-55). Two other stories of Athanasius have been published by Crum (1932).

Such episodes recall for us a historical event, the Nubian invasion, which would otherwise pass unnoticed. At the same time, they allow us to date Athanasius before the Islamic conquest.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

  • Crum, W. E. “A Nubian Prince in an Egyptian Monastery.” In
  • Studies Presented to F. Ll. , pp. 137-48. London, 1932.
  • Muhammad Ramzi. Al-Qamus al-Jughrafi lil-Bilad al Misriyyah, 3 vols. in 8 pts. Cairo, 1953-1966.

RENÉ-GEORGES COQUIN