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Western Medieval Manuscripts : Greek grammar by Antonius Arcudius

Western Medieval Manuscripts

<p style='text-align: justify;'> This small manuscript contains a <i> Greek grammar by Antonius Arcudius</i> (Antonio Arcudi, 1554-1612), archpriest from Soleto in Apulia in Southern Italy. Arcudius is known for having composed the <i> Neon Anthologion</i>, a breviary in Greek to be used for individual prayer by all the people living in Italy observing the Byzantine rite, which was printed in Rome in 1598 ( Νέον Ἀνθολόγιον πληρέστατόν τε καὶ ἀκριβέστατον εἰς τὸ τὰς νυχθημέρου κανονικὰς ὥρας τε καὶ δεήσεις ἀναγνώσκειν, συντεθὲν καὶ συλλεχθὲν, κατὰ τὴν τάξιν τοῦ παλαιοῦ καὶ καθολικοῦ τυπικοῦ τῆς παραδόσεως τῶν ἁγίων πατέρων, τοῦ τε ἁγίου Σάβα, καὶ τοῦ Στουδίτου καὶ τὸ πλεῖστον τοῦ Ἁγίου Ὄρους, οὐ μὴν δὲ ἀλλὰ καὶ μέρος τῆς παραδόσεως τοῦ ὁσιωτάτου πατρὸς ἡμῶν Ἰωσὴφ τῆς μονῆς τοῦ ἁγίου Νικολάου τῶν Κασούλων. Ἐτυπώθη ἐν Ῥώμῃ ͵αφϙη΄. Ἐκ τῆς Βατικανῆς Τυπωγραφίας) (on Arcudius' <i> Neon Anthologion</i> see, among others, C. Korolevskij, 'La codification de l’Office byzantin. Les essais dans le passé', in: <i> Orientalia Christiana Periodica</i> 19 (1953), pp. 25-58). This initiative fell within the framework of a policy of reform adopted by the Roman Church, after the Council of Trent, towards the Greek communities observing the Byzantine rite present in Italy, in particular in the southern regions: these, although officially falling under the jurisdiction of the Roman catholic hierarchies, were often still tied to the Eastern Church. Among the questions touched upon, there are, for example, the selection of the books to be used in the Byzantine liturgy, or the ordination of the Byzantine secular clergy in Italy. </p><p style='text-align: justify;'> Antonius Arcudius is reported to have been a Greek teacher, and in particular to have been the teacher of Pietro Lasena (1590-1636), antiquarian and historian of the Reign of Naples (he compiled: <i> Dell'antico ginnasio napoletano opera posthuma di Pietro Lasena</i>, published in Rome in 1641 and in Naples in 1688), but until now almost nothing was known about this. The circumstance was known thanks to the accounts in J.-J. Bouchard, <i> Petri Lasenae Vita</i> (Romae, 1637), p. 8, and P. Giannone, <i> Istoria civile del regno di Napoli</i> (Milano, 1821), 8, p. 352. Only recently a grammatical fragment attributed to Antonius Arcudius has been found by Roberta Durante in the archive of S. Caterina in Galatina (see R. Durante, 'Nuove testimonianze dal Salento ellenofono: personaggi, testi e disegni in copertina tra tardo Medioevo ed età moderna', in: <i> Manoscritti italogreci: nuove tessere in un mosaico frammentario</i>, a cura di S. Lucà, con la collaborazione di D. Bucca e F. D'Aiuto (Roma, 2020), pp. 253-270). This manuscript, which contains a grammatical work by Arcudius, copied by his student Pietro Lasena, could shed more light on this little known aspect of the life of the archpriest of Soleto. </p><p style='text-align: justify;'> Dr Erika Elia</p>

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