Several months ago I posted an item here on the start of my investigation into the Syriac tradition of the Infancy Gospel of Thomas (available HERE). Since then I have made significant progress in obtaining manuscripts and have begun collating them against previously published editions. Inspired by Roger Pearse’s posts on Thoughts on Antiquity (the latest is available HERE) relating to his work on the Onomasticon by Eusebius (edit: the text he is studying is actually Quaestiones ad Stephanum et Marinum or “Gospel problems and solutions”), I thought I would offer this progress report on the project. I began the […]
Despite my interest in Gnosticism and all things apocryphal, I must confess that I find reading one Gnostic cosmogogical myth after another rather tedious. I have speculated before that perhaps other young religious systems went through a similar process of crafting such myths before an official one (or two) became standard. For Christian and non-Christian Gnosticism we get to see mythmaking in process—in all its joys and pains. So, I struggled a little this week to find something in our discussion of Valentinianism that would excite me, and therefore excite the class. We ambled through the lecture material—an overview of […]
The first assignment due in my current Gnosticism course is a translation comparison. The goal of the assignment is for students to see how much work is involved in putting together an edition of a text and how the editor’s decisions can greatly affect how one reads or understand the text. This is particularly so with fragmentary texts. In previous years I have used the translations of the Apocalypse of Adam in Layton’s Gnostic Scriptures and Robinson’s Nag Hammadi Library. This year I opted for the Gospel of Judas by Marvin Meyer (The Nag Hammadi Scriptures) and April DeConick (The […]
A story is making the rounds of the blogging world of a manuscript discovery from the Deir al-Surian monastery in Egypt. The story (found HERE) focuses on the recovery of a missing page of a codex housed at the British Library. The missing page, a list of Christian martyrs from Edessa in 411, was recently found beneath a floor in the monastery. But what is most interesting about the story (to me, at least) is the following: The fragments were among hundreds discovered beneath a floor in the Deir al-Surian, which is itself a treasure trove of ancient books. Dr […]
In 2007 I used the Apocryphicity blog as a host for some musings on the weekly classes of my course on the New Testament Apocrypha. I am now teaching the counterpart to that course: Gnosticism. Though a little late into the semester now, there’s no reason to let that prevent me from posting some thoughts on the course to date. We’ll begin with a discussion of the course syllabus (available HERE). 1. Course Texts. This is the third incarnation of the Gnosticism course. The first two versions were constructed around Kurt Rudolph’s Gnosis. I found Rudolph’s book useful but occasionally […]
The deadline is fast approaching for proposals for the 2008 Annual Meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature. The meeting takes place in Boston, November 21-25. Anyone interested in submitting a proposal to the Christian Apocrypha Section (really, the only section that truly matters) can find details at THIS LINK. Proposals must be in by March 1. I will be there once again this year, this time presenting on my ongoing work on the Syriac Jacobite tradition of the Infancy Gospel of Thomas.