Thrace

The Monastery of Apollo at Bala’iza and Its Literary Texts

The Monastery of Apollo at Bala’iza and Its Literary Texts Dayr al-Bala’iza, situated at the edge of the desert on the west bank of the Nile some eighteen to nineteen kilometers south of Asyut, gained initial recognition among Coptic scholars through the large cache of manuscripts, both literary and documentary, discovered at the site during …

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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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Castrum

CASTRUM A Roman military camp developed from the so-called marching camp, which was constructed each evening by troops on the march in accordance with a model in force throughout the Roman empire. The uniformity of the camps enabled the soldiers to find their way about and also enabled them to react with speed in the …

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Constantine I (288?-337)

CONSTANTINE I (288?-337) The Roman emperor who allowed freedom of worship in the empire, thus ending the persecution of Christians. Flavius Valerius Constantinus (Constantine) was born to Constantius Chlorus and Helena. When his father was appointed Caesar in 293, Constantine was sent to the court of DIOCLETIAN, the senior emperor, where he later distinguished himself …

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Physiologos

PHYSIOLOGOS This Greek text was begun around 200 b.c. by Paul of Mendes, who confused the scientific study of nature with magical traditions. Others continued the work after 200 b.c. In a Coptic text attributed to Eusthatius of Thrace, the book of the Physiologos is attributed to King Solomon. (This tradition survived also in Islamic …

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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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Monophysitism

MONOPHYSITISM The doctrine that the incarnate Christ is one Person and has one divine nature as opposed to the orthodox doctrine that he is one Person and has two natures, one human and one divine. The rift between the Monophysites, including the Coptic, Syrian, Ethiopian, and Armenian churches, and the Orthodox Church has divided Eastern …

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Greeks In Egypt

GREEKS IN EGYPT Greek contacts with Egypt had been frequent and varied before Alexander the Great conquered the country in 332 B.C., inaugurating the Hellenistic period of Egyptian history. As early as the times of the Sea Peoples and the Dark Ages of Greece Egypt experienced Greek invaders and raiders, but the country was not …

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Proclus Saint

PROCLUS SAINT The patriarch of Constantinople (434-446), who was a preacher and writer (feast day: 20 November in the East, 24 October in the West). According to the historian Socrates, Proclus was very young when he assumed the lector’s robe. From 407, when he was eighteen, to 425, he served Atticus, patriarch of Constantinople, as …

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