Tag Archives: manuscript

Scholars begin using Vatican Syriac manuscripts online

As recently reported, CPART’s Kristian Heal and colleagues have started the work of producing new catalog descriptions for eighty Syriac manuscripts from the collection of the Vatican Apostolic Library. As part of this project, the Vatican Library has just made new digital images of these manuscripts available online in June. These online facsimiles still lack their full metadata and descriptions, but they are already being hailed by scholars as a vital new tool for research.

Read the rest at The Maxwell Institute.

I’ve personally enjoyed the digitization efforts as the Vatican recently put a scan of Targum Neofiti up which has been absolutely delightful.


Meanwhile in the Mandaic Book of John…

Sometimes the scribe simply couldn’t make up their mind what they were trying to write

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Mandaic alphabet, here’s a better illustration:

Quite sloppy. I’m still trying to figure out how to represent this with sigla…

Luckily the scribe just gave up and re-wrote it from scratch as the next word. πŸ™‚

UPDATE: Here’s how it looked in the manuscript where we can see that the scribe just gave up and started over:

/mlalkun/ “your (pl.) speech” was intended as you can see. πŸ™‚


So What Does Transcribing a Manuscript Look Like?

Working on the Mandaic Book of John.

Well, in truth it’s rather boring if you’re not a linguist. But this tends to make folks like me geek out. πŸ™‚

Gotta admit, though, (and I’m not endorsing Apple, just stating a fact) using a Retina Display makes it so much easier on the eyes. Big improvement. πŸ™‚


Israel Science Foundation to Fund New Aramaic Research Project

Crazy how two projects I’m currently working on “converge” in such a way, between the Comprehensive Aramaic Lexicon and the Mandiac Book of John. πŸ™‚

August 02, 2010 via Biblical Archaeology Review

“The Israel Science Foundation will be funding a three-year research project to transcribe and study the unpublished manuscripts of the Mandaic culture. Mandaean religious texts were written in a dialect of Eastern Aramaic, which is very grammatically similar to Jewish Aramaic of the Babylonian Talmud. Mandaeans are the last surviving Gnostic religious group and can be traced back to the Talmudic period; political problems over the past few decades have threatened the continued existence of this ancient culture.

The Mandiac texts themselves will be kept in Israel, but they will be digitized through the Comprehensive Aramaic Lexicon Project of Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. This will be the first time the texts will be made accessible to the public. They will eventually be made into a dictionary of the Mandaic language.”


Syriac Medical Palimpsest Imaging at Walters

(Not the MSS in question, but it sure looks pretty. :-))

Via Michael Thoth’s blog on EUREKA!:

Today we begin imaging a Syriac Medical Palimpsest believed to be a work of Galen, with an integrated spectral large-format imaging and LED illumination system. Over the past decade, our imaging capabilities have been refined and adapted in the Archimedes Palimpsest Program and at the Library of Congress. We set up the camera and illumination system yesterday, and with the support of Vincent, a conservator who is an expert in manuscript handling, we hope to begin moving forward with full imaging tomorrow after calibration, focus checks and workflow prototyping today.

Read more here: http://digitalarchimedes.ning.com/profiles/blogs/syriac-medical-palimpsest?xg_source=activity