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Western Medieval Manuscripts : Miscellany of Greek texts

Western Medieval Manuscripts

<p style='text-align: justify;'>This miscellaneous manuscript dates to the late 14th or early 15th century, and contains several texts from antiquity to the Palaeologan era. These concern different subjects, such as history, ethics, medicine, and astrology, and are often incomplete. The manuscript begins with the <i>Contra Apionem</i> or <i>On the Antiquity of the Jews</i> (late 1st century CE), which contains an apology on Judaism and a demonstration of the antiquity of Jews people that challenges the antiquity claimed by the Greeks, and gives an insight into the anti-Semitism of the first century CE. Along with Josephus, this <i>Miscellany of Greek texts</i> contains works by Synesius of Cyrene (c. 373-414), the Byzantine poet George of Pisidia (7th century), John Mauropus (11th century), Theodore Prodromos (c. 1100-1165/70), some texts from the <i>Corpus Hippocraticum</i>, Gregory of Nyssa (c. 335-395), Porphyry of Tyre (c. 335-395), and an astrological anonymous treatise, mainly on forecasts.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>The manuscript is also one of the few copies of a rare astronomic treatise on lunar theory, commonly titled <i>Epinoema</i>, of Byzantine scholar Demetrius Triclinius (14th century), better known for studying the metric structure of the tragedies of Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides. This treatise is of major interest because it testifies to the scholar's interests were not strictly literary but encompassed scientific matters. Unfortunately, this copy is incomplete. The treatise describes twelve lunar phases, related to the signs of the zodiac, and mainly the black figures in the moon (and this is the section in the manuscript) (see Wasserstein 1967, pp. 154-155). The complete text survives in <a target='_blank' class='externalLink' href=''> München, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Cod. graec. 482</a>, <a target='_blank' class='externalLink' href=''> Vatican City, Bibliotheca Apostolica Vaticana, Barg. gr. 16</a>, Escorial, Real Biblioteca, Esc. Φ. I. 10 (Andrés 188), Escorial, Real Biblioteca, Esc. Φ. I. 10 (Andrés 188), Modena, Biblioteca Estense universitaria, MS α. W. 3. 17 (Puntoni 215), <a target='_blank' class='externalLink' href=''> Paris, Bibliothèque nationale de France, grec 2381</a>.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'> The texts were copied by four hands, some of them very similar to each other, on two columns only at <a href='' onclick='store.loadPage(47);return false;'>ff. 21r-36r</a>.</p><p style='text-align: justify;'>Dr Matteo Di Franco</p>

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