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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Christian Subjects In Coptic Art

CHRISTIAN SUBJECTS IN COPTIC ART Whatever its materials and techniques—stone or wood relief sculpture, painted walls or manuscripts, textiles, metalwork, ceramics, or glass—Coptic Christian iconography retained a few rare elements of pharaonic origin and many Greco-Roman elements from Alexandrian tradition. From the fifth century on, these pagan subjects mingled with Christian motifs. The Christian subjects […]

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Hosanna

HOSANNA Hebrew word, meaning “save us.” In the Coptic liturgy, it relates to Palm Sunday. In the 12th century, Abu al-Makarim wrote his book, the History of the Churches and Monasteries in Egypt. The feast of Palm Sunday was a special ceremony in his church (Church of the Holy Virgin in Haret Zuwylah in Old […]

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Anaphora Of St. Gregory

ANAPHORA OF ST. GREGORY This anaphora belongs to the same Syrian type as the Anaphora of St. Basil. It is unique in that its prayers are directed to the Son and not to the Father through the Son, which indicates a sixth-century date. It seems that the Syrian monks who came to the desert of […]

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Saint Severian Of Jabalah Or Severianus

SAINT SEVERIAN OF JABALAH or Severianus One of the great orators of the fourth century (feast day: 7 Tut). Known for numerous homilies, he died after 408. Severian had been invited to court at Constantinople, where he must have known Saint JOHN CHRYSOSTOM, with whom he did not sympathize. Indeed, the bishop of Jabalah was […]

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Dayr Anba Helias

DAYR ANBA HELIAS A twelfth-century Ethiopian monastery in Wadi al-Natrun. In all the documents that concern this monastery, it is linked with the presence of Ethiopian monks. It is not that no other Ethiopian monks lived in other places in Wadi al-Natrun, but this monastery appears to have been populated exclusively by Ethiopians. The presence […]

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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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Dayr Anba Samu’il Of Qalamun

DAYR ANBA SAMU’IL OF QALAMUN History The monastery is situated in the southwest of the Fayyum, in the northern part of the Wadi al-Muwaylih. One may reach it either from the valley, starting from al-Maghaghah, or from the south of the Fayyum from Gharaq al-Sultani. Because access is extremely difficult, it is still the most […]

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Dayr Apa Anub (Nub)

DAYR APA ANUB (Nub) A small monastery near Wadi al-Natrun whose precise date of establishment is not known. Evelyn-White (1932, p. 369) remarked that MAWHUB IBN MANSUR IBN MUFARRIJ, in his list of the relics venerated in Egypt in the History of the Patriarchs (written in 1088; Vol. 2, pt. 3, 1970), did not speak […]

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