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 Qawl mukhtaṣar fī l-ubuwwa wa-l-bunuwwa

(227 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
A brief account of fatherhood and sonship Makkīkhā ibn Sulaymān al-Qankānī Date: About 1100 Original Language: Arabic Description This lost work, which is known only from the Asfār al-asrār, was probably about the relationship between God and Jesus Christ, a long-recognized point of friction between Muslims and Christians in their perceptions of God and how he relates to creatures. Significance It is not possible to say anything about the significance of the work, beyond the fact that it continues a long tradition of debates over a key point of differenc…

Christian-Muslim religious interaction 1200-1350. A historical and contextual introduction

(6,908 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
The years 1200-1350 witnessed many important political changes that dramatically affected relations between Christians and Muslims. Insight into the historical developments that occurred in these years is necessary background for appreciating the works and authors discussed in this volume.[1] Political developments The destruction of Baghdad by the Mongols in 1258 not only marked the end of the Abbasid dynasty, which had determined, at least in part, the course of the Islamic world for more than half a millennium, but also led to a fur…

 Two Syriac fragments

(287 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Titles unknown Two Syriac fragments Date: Unknown Original Language: Syriac Description In two manuscript miscellanies in the Mingana Collection at the University of Birmingham are to be found two brief fragments written in different hands and of different origin. Both are in Karshūnī and partly illegible. In the first, which is ‘against those who deny the cross’ ( miltā lūqbal ailayn d-gādpīn ʿal slībā), the Christian interlocutor remarks that Muslims believe the Word of God is created and a servant (cf. Q 4:171-72). The second fragment is a discussion bet…

Quryāqus al-Rāhib

(198 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Quryāqus (ibn Zakariyyā al-Ḥarrānī) al-Rāhib Date of Birth: Possibly early 10th century Place of Birth: Unknown; perhaps Ḥarrān Date of Death: Possibly later 10th century Place of Death: Unknown Biography Quryāqus was an East Syrian monk, possibly identical with the East Syrian theologian Quryāqus ibn Zakariyya, from Ḥarrān, who composed a refutation of some of the anti-Nestorian arguments formulated by Yaḥyā ibn ʿAdī (d. 974) (q.v.) in his letter to Abū l-Ḥasan al-Qāsim ibn Ḥabīb, to which Yaḥyā developed an elaborate counter-argument.   Primary Sources of Information E. Platti, Ya…

 Risāla fī ithbāt ʿaqāʾid al-dīn al-Masīḥī

(323 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Lumaʿ ʿajib (sic) min al-umūr al-sharʿiyya wa-nukat gharība min al-milal al-dīniyyaDemonstration of the beliefs of the Christian religion Hibat Allāh ibn al-Tilmīdh Date: 12th century Original Language: Arabic Description This (for the greater part) unedited work deals with various general theological subjects, which can no longer be specified. Cheikho ( Chresthomathie, pp. 282-83) published an extract from one chapter on the abrogation of the Mosaic law, the law of justice, as opposed to the final and universal character of the law of Christ, …

Ktābā d-ʿal-idaʿtā da-shrārā

(65 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Unknown author Date of Birth: Unknown; possibly 11th century Place of Birth: Unknown Date of Death: Unknown; possibly 11th century Place of Death: Unknown Biography This author was an otherwise unknown West Syrian (Jacobite) Bishop of Edessa. Primary Sources of Information - Secondary Sources of Information - Works on Christian-Muslim Relations Ktābā d-ʿal-idaʿtā da-shrārā aw d-ʿElat d-kull ʿellān Herman G.B. Teule

 Shrōrō galyō

(366 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
‘The evident truth’ Jacob bar Shakkō Date: Before 1231 Original Language: Syriac Description This work is no longer extant but, as is suggested by Bar Shakkō himself, a brief summary may be found in Part 2, ch. 41, of the Book of treasures (see below), entitled The religion of the Christians has more truth than all other confessions. The Shōrō galyō was meant as a refutation of the ḥeryōyē, a normal designation for Christian heretics, but in this case it is clear that Muslims were addressed, as appears from the argumentation, which runs as follows: Truth can sub…

 Risāla ilā aḥad fuqahāʾ al-muslimīn

(106 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Epistle to a Muslim legal scholar Muḥyī l-Dīn al-Iṣfahānī Date: Possibly 12th century Original Language: Arabic Description According to Sbath ( Fihris i, p. 63), this treatise is a refutation of Islam. There is no way of knowing more about it until the MS should become accessible. Significance It is not possible to say what the significance of the work is. Manuscripts MS Aleppo, Qusṭanṭīn Khuḍarī Collection (inaccessible MS in private collection, lost; see Sbath, Fihris i, p. 63, no. 514) Editions & Translations - Studies - Keywords Chronological Category: 1100-1200 Genre & S…

 Mabādi’ al-mawjūdāt wa-marātib quwāha

(207 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
The principles of existent things and the degrees of their potencies Faraj ibn Jirjis Afrām Date: 10th century Original Language: Arabic Description This was a treatise on God’s triunity, his characteristics ( awṣāf) and the way in which Christians speak of plurality, substantiality ( jawhariyya) and persons ( uqnūmiyya). According to the passage in the Majmūʿ uṣūl al-dīn mentioned above, Jirjis reworked a treatise with the same title by the Muslim Abū Sulaymān Ṭāhir al-Manṭiqī (who is presumably Abū Sulaymān al-Sijistānī [q.v.]), using ‘thoughts and …

 Title Unknown

(740 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
The Chronicle of Dionysius of Tell Maḥrē Dionysius of Tell-Maḥrē Date: After 842/3, probably shortly before his death in 845 Original Language: Syriac Description Dionysius’ Chronicle covered the years between 582, the beginning of the reign of the Greek Emperor Maurice, and 842-3, the deaths of the Greek Emperor Theophilus and the Caliph al-Muʿtaṣim. His carefully arranged work, written at the request of Iwannis, Metropolitan of Dara, was divided into two parts, the first of which dealt with ecclesiastical history and…

 Tashʿyātā w-sharbē mawtrānē d-ʿal nāshā qaddishē (w-iḥidāyē) da-hwaw b-dār dār b-ʿumrā qaddishā d-Bēt ʿAbē

(421 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Ktābā d-rishānēThe useful histories and stories on the holy men (and solitaries), who generation after generation lived in the holy monastery of Bēt ʿAbē, The Book of Governors Thomas of Margā Date: Unknown, but while he was bishop of Margā Original Language: Syriac Description The work contains biographies of the abbots of the monasteries of Bēt ʿAbē and of many other figures of the Church of the East (e.g. Patriarch Ghiwargis I, Timothy I, etc.), covering the period between the late 6th and the mid-9th centuries. It contains important i…

 Ktābā d-marganitā

(505 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
'The book of the pearl' ʿAbdishoʿ of Nisibis Date: November 1298 Original Language: Syriac Description At first sight, the Ktābā d-marganitā seems an internal Christian theological work, dealing with the traditional issues of East Syrian doctrine and ecclesiastical practice. In the introduction, however, the author explains that the pearl mentioned in the title is the pearl of the truth of Christianity in general, apparently not just of the truth of his own community, the Church of the East. It would appear that he…

Ghiwarghis I

(352 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Biography Born into a noble family, Ghiwarghis was sent by his parents to take charge of their estates in the country of Margā, where he became attracted to monastic life and became monk in the Monastery of Bēt ʿAbē. He caught the attention of Ishoʿyahb, bishop of Mosul-Nineveh, and when the latter became patriarch of the Church of the East as Ishoʿyahb III (q.v.), he made Ghiwarghis metropolitan of Irbil. Shortly before his death, Ishoʿyahb suggested the name of ‘his disciple Ghiwarghis’ to the future electors of the new patriarch. The brief note on Ghiwarghis in the Kitāb al-majdal (11th c.…

 Risāla fī l-tawḥīd wa-l-tathlīth, raddan ʿalā l-Muslimīn

(107 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Treatise on the [divine] Unity and Trinity, in refutation of the Muslims Yūḥannā Yūshaʿ ibn Shūshān Date: Second half of the 10th century Original Language: Arabic Description Beyond what can be gathered from the title, nothing is known about the contents of this work. Significance It is not possible to say what the significance of the work was. Manuscripts MS Aleppo, Rizqallāh Farrā Collection (inaccessible MS in private collection; see Sbath, Fihris i, p. 36, no. 259) Editions & Translations Studies Keywords Chronological Category: 1000-1100 Genre & Source Type: Apologies, Refutat…

Theodore bar Koni (Konay)

(313 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Theodore bar Koni Date of Birth: Unknown, 8th c. Place of Birth: Unknown Date of Death: Unknown, late 8th c. or early 9th c. Place of Death: Unknown Biography According to one of the copyists of Theodore bar Koni’s Book of scholia, he was a malpānā (teacher, doctor) and rabban from the land of Kashkar, between Kūfa and Basra. He belonged to the Church of the East, where he was venerated as St Theodore, and composed several writings, including an ecclesiastical history, instructions (ascetic, dogmatic?) and ‘funeral discourses’ (?, buyyā’ē), which are all lost. His Book of scholia, a student…

Chronicon ad annum 1234 pertinens

(194 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Unknown author Date of Birth: Unknown Place of Birth: Possibly the region of Edessa Date of Death: Around 1240 Place of Death: Unknown Biography Little information is available about the author of this chronicle. The fact that the chronicle pays much attention to the region of Edessa (Urhōy) suggests that he lived for some time in this city. Some events that occurred there in the last quarter of the 12th century and the beginning of the 13th, among them the destruction of a number of local churches, are described in great detail as if the author had personally witnessed them In 1187, the autho…

 Ktābā d-deboritā

(550 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Ktābā d-luqāṭē ‘Book of the bee’; ‘Book of selected works’ Solomon of Basra Date: Unknown; early 13th century Original Language: Syriac Description The Book of the bee relates the history of salvation, beginning with the creation of the world and ending in Solomon’s own time. Most attention, however, is given to the biblical period, and for later periods Solomon limits himself to a list of patriarchs of the Church of the East (this was continued by some scribes down to the 16th century), and a list of rulers to the end of the Sasanian dynasty. These are followed by a very br…

 Al-mujādala allati jarat bayna l-usquf Yuʾanīs ibn al-Shammāʿ al-Suryānī wa-l-malik al-Muʿizz bi-ḥuḍūr Ibn al-Muqaffaʿ, usquf al-Ashmunayn

(231 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Al-mujādala bayna Yuʾanīs ibn al-Shammāʿ wa-l-MuʿizzThe debate that took place between Bishop Yuʾanīs ibn al-Shammāʿ al-Suryānī and the ‘king’ al-Muʿizz with Ibn al-Muqaffaʿ, Bishop of al-Ashmunayn, in attendance, The debate between Yuʾanīs ibn al-Shammāʿ and al-Muʿizz Ibn al-Shammāʿ Yuʾanīs al-Suryānī Date: Late 10th century Original Language: Arabic Description We know nothing about the circumstances or course of this debate, or about the subjects covered, except that it would have been held in Cairo during the first years of Fatimid rule. …

Barhebraeus

(2,765 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Abū l-Faraj Gregory Bar ʿEbrōyō, Abū l-Faraj Jamāl al-Dīn Ghrīghūriyūs ibn Tāj al-Dīn Hārūn ibn Tūmā al-Malaṭī bar ʿEbrōyō, Bar ʿEbrāyā, Ibn al-ʿIbrī Date of Birth: Late 1225 or 1226 Place of Birth: Malaṭya (Melitene, today Eskimalatya, Battalgazi) Date of Death: 30 July 1286 Place of Death: Marāgha; his relics were later transferred to the Monastery of Mar Mattay near Mosul, his official place of residence as maphrian Biography Gregory Barhebraeus was a prolific author as well as a capable religious leader who occupied important ecclesiastical positions within t…

Moses bar Kephā

(800 words)

Author(s): G.B. Teule, Herman
Biography Moses bar Kephā was baptized Moses after his learned uncle, who was a teacher of the reformer of Syriac church music, David bar Paulus d-Bēt Rabban, which points to the intellectual milieu in which bar Kephā grew up. The sources for his life are two Vitas, of which Vita A is extant in a shorter (10th-century) and a longer  (12th-century) recension, and some notes in later chronicles. Vita B is based on the longer recension of Vita A. Moses’ name Bar Kephā (Kephā meaning stone) goes back to his father, Simeon Kephā/Petrus, but is also attributed to the fact that…
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