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Excerpta synaxarica   Leave a comment

For a diversion or language practice, here are a few lines from the synaxaria for yesterday (Jan 20), with English translation and a few notes.

Ṭūba 25/Jan 20, for Abadius, PO 11: 697

فقال مقدم القصر للنقيب ما ذا يستحق هذا من العذاب لانه قد سب الابلون فاجاب النقيب قائلا له هذا مستوجب عقوبة الموت فقال له القديس اباديوس ما دام حكمت عليّ بالموت فامضي وادفن ابنك لان العقرب لسعته ومات

  • imḍī wa idfin If impv, we should, of course, understand here (and below) imḍi, the 2msg impv, not the 2fsg. Basset thus takes both verbs as imperatives in his FT. Alternatively, we might read ʾamḍī wa ʾadfinu, “I will go and bury.”

فقال له مقدم القصر ايش هذا الكلام السحر الذي انت تقوله فامر ان يضرب بالسياط والقديس قال له امضي وادفن زوجتك لانها ماتت

  • al-kalām al-siḥr Either hendiadys, or perhaps read kalām al-siḥr or al-kalāmal-siḥrī.
  • sawṭ, pl. siyāṭ whip

فقال النقيب لكاتب الدرج اخرج واكشف الخبر ولما خرج من باب القصر وجد عبيد مقدم القصر وهم مشققين الثياب صارخين من اجل موت الصبي الذي لسعه العقرب وسمع البكا في بيت النقيب على زوجته

  • šaqqaqa to tear, rip open (also I, with sim. mng.)

فرجع بسرعة واعلمهم بما كان وقال لهم ان هذا الانسان رجل الله وللوقت امر ان يلقوا القديس في السجن

The castle overseer [muqaddam al-qaṣr] said to the leader [naqīb], “What kind of punishment does this man deserve, because he has cursed Apollo?” The leader answered, saying to him, “He is worthy of the death penalty.” Then Saint Abadius said to him, “As you sentence me to death, go and bury your son, because a scorpion has stung him and he is dead.” The castle overseer said to him, “What are these words of sorcery you are saying?” And he commanded that he be whipped, but the saint said, “Go and bury your wife, because she is dead.” Then the leader said to the secretary [kātib al-darǧ], “Go out and discover what happened.” And when he went out from the gate of the castle, he found the castle overseer’s servants tearing open their garments and screaming on account of the death of the boy whom the scorpion had stung, and in the leader’s house he heard weeping for his wife, so he quickly returned and informed them of what had happened and said, “This person is a man of God!” And immediately [the leader] commanded that they throw [the saint] in prison.

Ṭǝrr 25/Jan 20, for Sebastian, PO 45: 182, 184

ወበዛቲ ፡ ዕለት ፡ ካዕበ ፡ ስምዓ ፡ ኮነ ፡ ቅዱስ ፡ ስብስጥያኖስ።

ወየሐውር ፡ በጥበብ ፡ ወብአእምሮ ፡ ውይፌውስ ፡ በጸሎቱ ፡ ብዙኃነ ፡ ድውያነ ፡ ወይከሥት ፡ አዕይንተ ፡ ዕውራን።

ወእምዝ ፡ ሶበ ፡ ክህዶ ፡ ዲዮቅልጥያኖስ ፡ ለአምላክ ፡ አገበሮ ፡ ለቅዱስ ፡ ስብስጥያኖስ ፡ ይስግድ ፡ ለጣዖት ፡ ወሶበ ፡ ዓበዮ ፡ አዘዘ ፡ ይእስርዎ ፡ ውስተ ፡ ኦም ፡ ይቡስ ፡ ወይንድፍዎ ፡ በአሕፃ ፡ ዘአልቦ ፡ ኍልቍ ፡ ወተሐዘብዎ ፡ ከመ ፡ ሞተ።

  • ዖም፡ tree, forest, woodland
  • ሐጽ፡ pl. አሕጻ፡ arrow
  • ተሐዘበ፡ to think, believe

ወበሌሊት ፡ ረከብዎ ፡ ምእመናን ፡ እንዘ ፡ ሕያው ፡ ውእቱ ፡ ወፈትሕዎ ፡ ወወሰድዎ ፡ ማእከለ ፡ ደሴት ፡ ወአንበርዎ ፡ ህየ።

  • ደሴት፡ dasset island

ወሰሚዖ ፡ ዲዮቅልጥያኖስ ፡ ተመጠዎ ፡ ኀቤሁ ፡ ወአዘዘ ፡ ይዝብጥዎ ፡ በአብትረ ፡ ሐፂን ፡ ወዘበጥዎ ፡ ብዙኃ ፡ መዋዕለ ፡ ወእምዝ ፡ መጠወ ፡ ነፍሶ።

  • ዘበጠ፡ to beat, strike
  • በትር፡ pl. አብትር፡ stick, rod

And on this day, too, was the martyrdom of Saint Sebastian.

And he would act with wisdom and understanding, and with his prayer would heal many sick people and open the eyes of the blind. Then, when Diocletian had denied God, he compelled Saint Sebastian to worship the idol. And when [Sebastian] disobeyed him, [Diocletian] commanded them to bind him in a dry woodland and to shoot him with innumerable arrows. [They did so] and they thought he was dead, but during the night the faithful found him still alive and they led him to an island and established him there. Diocletian having heard this, [his men] took hold of [Sebastian and brought him] to [Diocletian], and he commanded them to strike him with rods of iron, and they did so for many days, and then he gave up his spirit.

And finally, from the Armenian yaysmawurk’, there’s a line that has vocabulary we also saw in this post.

Arac’ 13/Jan 20, for Euthymius the Great (յիշատակ Եւթիմոսի մեծի անապատականին եւ քահանայի), PO 19: 63

Էր կարճահասակ եւ մօրուսն երկայն մինչեւ ի ծունկսն։

He was short, with his long beard to his knees.

  • կարճահասակ short, little
  • մօրուս Why acc?
  • երկայն long
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Daniel the Stylite in the Armenian Synaxarion (K’ałoc’ 3)   1 comment

This selection, on Daniel the Stylite, from today’s date in the Armenian synaxarion (PO 18: 22, where a French translation will also be found) includes some vocabulary for anatomy and terms associated with asceticism. This brief description paints quite a picture of the man, which was probably the point.

Յայսմ աւուր յշատակ է Դանիէլի սիւնակեցւուն յԱնապլոս, մերձ ի Կոստանդինուպօլիս։

  • սիւնակեաց, -եցաց stylite (< սիւն, սեանց column)

Այսմ երանելի ծերունիս Դանիէլ յառաւել եւ յերկարաձիգ ամաց ճգնութենէն եւ յանձկութենէ խցին յորուն, ծունկքն տկարացեալ ի կուրծսն կցէին եւ ոլոքն ի բարձսն, եւ իբրեւ զկոճղ անկեալ դնէր։

  • ծերունի old man
  • առաւել excessive
  • երկարաձիգ long, long-lasting
  • ճգնութիւն asceticism, penitence, labor, effort, combat, danger
  • անձկութիւն narrowness, pressure, trouble
  • խուց, խցից cell
  • բնակէր 3sg impf բնակեմ, -եցի to inhabit
  • ծունկ, ծնկաց knee
  • տկարացեալ aor ptcp տկարանամ, տկարացի to become weak (on verbs in -անամ, cf. Meillet, Altarm. Elementarbuch § 113)
  • կուրծք, կրծից chest
  • կցէին 3pl impf (m/p) կցեմ, կցեցի to join, unite
  • ոլոք, -աց shin
  • բարձ, -ից thigh (and several other meanings)
  • կոճղ, -ղաց trunk, block (also fetters, shackles, torture)
  • անկեալ aor ptcp անկանիմ to fall: “decayed, ruined, impaired, etc.”
  • դնէր 3sg impf (m/p) դնեմ to put, place

Եւ էին հերք գլխոյն երկոտասան հիւսակս բաժանեալ, երկուց կանգնոց երկայնութեամբ, եւ մօրուսն յերկուս մասունս երեք կանգնոց։

  • հերք hair
  • երկոտասան twelve
  • հիւսակ, -աց tress, braid
  • բաժանեալ pres ptcp բաժանեմ, -եցի to divide
  • երկու two
  • կանգուն, -գնոց cubit
  • երկայնութիւն length (երկանեմ, -եցի to lengthen, stretch)
  • մօրուք, -րուաց beard
  • մասն, -սին, -սանց part, bit, portion (Meillet, Altarm. Elementarbuch § 58)

Եւ բարւոք ճգնութեամբ ի խորին ծերութիւն հասեալ հանգեաւ ի Քրիստոս։

  • բարւոք good
  • խոր, -ոց deep, profound (here with ի, deeply, profoundly)
  • ծերութիւն old age
  • հասեալ aor ptcp հասանեմ, հասի to arrive at, reach, obtain
  • հանգեաւ 3sg aor m/p հանգչիմ, հանգեայ to rest, take repose, die

Old Georgian phrases and sentences 35 (Lk 12:27)   Leave a comment

Below is Lk 12:27 in the Adishi text. A comparison with this verse as it appears in the xanmeti manuscript A-844, the Pre-Athonite version, and the Athonite version reveals only minor differences, two of which are mentioned below.

κατανοήσατε τὰ κρίνα πῶς αὐξάνει· οὐ κοπιᾷ οὐδὲ νήθει· λέγω δὲ ὑμῖν, οὐδὲ Σολομὼν ἐν πάσῃ τῇ δόξῃ αὐτοῦ περιεβάλετο ὡς ἓν τούτων.

განიცადენით შროშანნი, ვითარ-იგი აღორძნდის: არცა შურებინ, არცა სთავნ. ხოლო გეტყჳ თქუენ, რამეთუ არცა სოლომონ ყოველსა დიდებასა მისსა შეიმოსა, ვითარცა ერთი ამათგანი.

  • გან-ი-ცად-ენ-ი-თ aor impv 2pl განცდა to see, look at
  • შროშანი lily (cf. Armenian շուշան [this verse begins Հայեցարուք ընդ շուշանն], Syr. šuša(n)tā, etc.)
  • აღორძნ-დ-ი-ს aor iter 3sg აღორძინება to grow
  • შურ-ებ-ი-ნ pres iter 3sg შურება to hurry; suffer (the other versions have შურების pres 3sg)
  • სთავ-ნ pres iter 3sg სთვა to spin (the other versions have სთავს pres 3sg)
  • გ-ე-ტყ-ჳ pres 1sg O2 სიტყუა to say
  • შე-ი-მოს-ა aor 3sg შემოსა to clothe, put on

On readers/chrestomathies: what’s the best kind of arrangement?   10 comments

I have spoken here before of my love of chrestomathies, with which especially earlier decades and centuries were perhaps fuller than more recent times. (I don’t know how old the word “chrestomathia” and its forms in different languages is, but the earliest use in English that the OED gives is only from 1832. We may note that, at least in English, the word has been extended to refer not only to books useful for learning another language, but simply to a collection of passages by a specific author, as in A Mencken Chrestomathy.) Chrestomathies may — and I really do not know — strike hardcore adherents to the latest and greatest advice of foreign language pedagogy as quaint and sorely outdated, my own view is that readers along these lines — text selections, vocabulary, more or less notes on points of grammar — can be of palpable value to students of less commonly taught languages, especially for those studying without regular recourse to a teacher. Since I’m talking about reading texts, I have in mind mainly written language and the preparation of students for reading, but that does not, of course, exclude speaking and hearing: those activities are just not the focus.

I have gone through seventy-one chrestomathies from the nineteenth to the twenty-first centuries in several languages (Arabic, Armenian, Coptic, Syriac, Georgian, Old Persian, Middle Persian, Old English, Middle English, Middle High German, Latin, Greek, Akkadian, Sumerian, Ugaritic, Aramaic dialects, &c.). The data (not absolutely complete) is available in this file: chrestomathy_data. By far the commonest arrangement is to have all the texts of the chrestomathy together, with or without grammatical or historical annotations, and then the glossary separately, and in alphabetical order, at the end of the book (or in another volume). Notable exceptions to this rule are some volumes in Brill’s old Semitic Study Series, Clyde Pharr’s Aeneid reader, and the JACT’s Greek Anthology, which contain a more or less comprehensive running vocabulary either on the page (the last two) or separately from the text (the Brill series). Some chrestomathies have no notes or vocabulary. These can be useful for languages that have hard-to-access texts editions or when the editor wants to include hitherto unpublished texts, but the addition of lexical and grammatical helps would even in those cases add definite value to the work for students.

In addition to these printed chrestomathies, there are some similar electronic publications, such as those at Early Indo-European Online from The University of Texas at Austin, which give a few reading texts for a number of IE languages: the texts are broken down into lines, each word is immediately glossed, and an ET is supplied, with a full separate glossary for each language.

From a Greek reader I have been putting together off and on.

From a Greek reader I have been putting together off and on.

Over the years, I have made chrestomathy texts in various languages, either for myself or for other students, and more are in the works. (Most are unpublished, but here is one for an Arabic text from a few years ago.) I have used different formats for text, notes, and vocabulary, and I’m still not decided on what the best arrangement is.

This little post is not a full disquisition on the subject of chrestomathies. I just want to pose a question about the vocabulary items supplied to a given text in a chrestomathy: should defined words be in the form of a running vocabulary, perhaps on the page facing the text or directly below the text, or should all of the vocabulary be gathered together at the end like a conventional glossary or lexicon? What do you think, dear and learned readers?

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