An early copy of Ibn Ǧarīr’s Guidebook   Leave a comment

Abū Naṣr Yaḥyá b. Ǧarīr al-Tikrītī was a Syriac Orthodox writer of the eleventh century. As usual, Graf (GCAL II 259-262) provides a good overview of what is known about him and his works, including known manuscripts. Below is indicated his theological work, but in the report on him by Ibn Abī Uṣaibiʿa (ʿUyūn al-anbāʾ, Mueller’s ed. I 327) other titles are mentioned, including the Kitāb al-iḫtiyārāt fī ʿilm al-nuǧūm (The Book of Choices in Astrology).

Ibn al-Ǧarīr’s main theological work is the Guidebook (titled variously in the manuscripts, but in the earlier Mardin copy mentioned below, كتاب مرشد في قواعد الشريعة المسيحية والقوانين السليحية). It has not been published in full yet, but there are several partial editions, and they are listed by Graf (including one chapter by the great William Cureton, here from Google Books, not yet in Graf lists a number of copies of the work in both Arabic and Garšūnī. To this manuscript list we can add two more. CFMM 358 is a 1960 copy of the work with Dolabani as the scribe, but more notable is a much earlier (but undated) manuscript, CFMM 357.

CFMM 357, pp. 29-30: ch. 12, On “Christ came to save us from Satan and from the death of sin”

There are some later replacement pages at the beginning of the codex and there are many blank pages indicating apparent lacunae in the original manuscript, but even with these missing parts, it is nevertheless a potentially very significant witness to this text, which has excited some interest among scholars but hitherto not to the point that a full edition and translation have appeared.

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