barbarians

Figures in the Carpet and Monastic Spirituality in the Wadi al-Natrun (Scetis)

Figures in the Carpet: Macarius the Great, Isaiah of Scetis, Daniel of Scetis, and Monastic Spirituality in the Wadi al-Natrun (Scetis) From the Fourth to the Sixth Century Not many years ago I read a very good scholarly book on Palestinian monasticism in Late Antiquity. In my review of that book I observed, however, that …

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Scetis

SCETIS A name that historically designated the area of monastic settlement extending about 19 miles (30 km) through the shallow valley known in the medieval period as Wad Habb, now called Wad al-Natrun, which runs southeast to northwest through the Western or Libyan Desert, about 40 miles (65 km) southwest of the Nile Delta. In …

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Arianism

ARIANISM Arianism is the doctrine established by Arius. It is important to mention that our primary sources on the Arian crisis are very poor. Most of our knowledge comes from his opponents, that is, Athanasius of Alexandria and others. The Arians played an important role in Church history until their extinction around 395 a.d. Arianism …

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Cycle

CYCLE One of a group of works in Coptic literature dealing with episodes in the life of one or more specific characters, mostly saints and martyrs. There are two basic types of cycle: homiletic and hagiographical. The difference lies simply in the different literary forms used, with the homiletic cycles being made up of texts …

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Filioque

FILIOQUE Latin, meaning “and [from] the son.” In the sixth century, Arian barbarians (Goth and Visigoth) invaded the western empire and introduced many heretical dogmas and expressions. In 589 a.d., the Council of Toledo included details in the Nicene Creed concerning the procession of the Holy Spirit from the Father and the Son in order …

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Dayr Al-Baramus

DAYR AL-BARAMUS History This monastery is farthest to the northwest in the monastic colony of Wadi al-Natrun (ancient Scetis). The topographic allusions in ancient literature lend some credence to the statement by the author of the Coptic Life of Saint Macarius (probably of the eighth century; cf. Guillaumont, 1968-1969, pp. 182-83) that Dayr al-Baramus evolved …

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Dayr Anba Maqar

DAYR ANBA MAQAR Rising on the desert horizon like a great fortress, the Monastery of Saint MACARIUS was originally the most remote and least accessible of the monasteries of Wadi al- Natrun. It came into being around 360 when Saint Macarius the Egyptian moved southward from the valley to escape the overcrowding of hermits. Here, …

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Coptic And Irish Art

COPTIC AND IRISH ART It has been asserted that Irish art is derived from Coptic art. The only precise affirmations that resurface most often concern illuminated books, suggesting a need for concentrated research on this subject. C. Nordenfalk (1977, p. 13) formulated a prudent opinion on the subject. Towards the middle of the seventh century, …

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Roman Army

ROMAN ARMY Roman troops were already present in Egypt when the country was still ruled by the Ptolemaic dynasty. Ptolemy XII Auletes, who had been driven from his throne by the Alexandrian opposition, would hardly have been able to reenter Egypt without the military aid of the Roman legate Aulus Gabinius (55 B.C.). Since that …

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