Armenian History Attributed to Sebeos (Liverpool University by Robert Thomson

By Robert Thomson

The background attributed to Sebeos is without doubt one of the significant works of early Armenian historiography. even supposing nameless, it was once written in the midst of the 7th century, a time while related chronicles in Greek and Syriac are sparse. Sebeos strains the fortunes of Armenia within the 6th and 7th centuries in the broader framework of the Byzantine–Sasanian clash. This e-book should be of curiosity to all these fascinated about the learn of Armenia, the Caucasus, the japanese Roman Empire and the center East in past due antiquity. will probably be of specific worth to Islamicists, on the grounds that Sebeos not just units the scene for the arriving of Islam, yet offers the single colossal non-Muslim account of the preliminary interval of growth.

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Extra info for Armenian History Attributed to Sebeos (Liverpool University Press - Translated Texts for Historians)

Sample text

The question of foreign sources that may have been available to him is covered in the section ‘Sebeos as Historian’, lxvi^lxx. SEBEOS xlix (a) The Bible Some of the dramatic episodes in Sebeos’ narrative depend on biblical parallels, a notable example being the despatch of insulting letters to the emperor in Constantinople and his reaction. Since for all Armenian authors the Bible was the literary resource par excellence, themes from those books56 constantly appear. Indeed biblical vocabulary is so pervasive that it is often di⁄cult to decide whether a parallel is being hinted at, or whether the historian naturally expressed himself in such a fashion with no further nuance intended.

The turn of the sixth and seventh centuries, for he states: ‘And now for the present times, . . he is most helpful and . . supplies with his assistance our [people] of Armenia’. Ukhtane· s does not make it clear whether this passage, written by a contemporary of Smbat, is to be construed as a statement by the author of the ‘History of Heraclius’, or whether it came from an earlier source used by that author. In any event, the quotation from the ‘History of Heraclius’ does not come from the text identi¢ed by Mihrdatean as ‘Sebeos’, even though it refers to an important ¢gure in the latter work.

12 These two short sections are not included in the translation below. v. Sebeos. 13 In Abgaryan’s edition section I runs to 8 pages, section II to 9, and the History proper to 113 pages. The History begins as chapter 7, which is Mihrdatean’s ‘Prologue’. 14 For the historical importance of this History see the section above, ‘Historical Background’, xi^xii, xxvi^xxx. The ¢rst translation into German by Hu«bschmann was fragmentary. The text is usually quoted from the 1904 French rendering by Macler.

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