Egypt Exploration Fund   [Hrsg.]
Archaeological report: comprising the work of the Egypt Exploration Fund and the progress of egyptology during the year ... — 1900-1901

Seite: 72
DOI Artikel: 10.11588/diglit.12583.8
DOI Seite: 10.11588/diglit.12583#0088
Zitierlink: i
Lizenz: Creative Commons - Namensnennung - Weitergabe unter gleichen Bedingungen

Pkogkess of Egyptology.

with hardly an exception, letters addressed to the bishop by various clerics,
magistrates, etc. Perhaps those still to appear may contain his answers ;
though, as the find obviously points to the episcopal archives, we may in
this be disappointed. Some of the letters are lengthy, and their contents
are in all cases of interest, both for their matter, which usually concerns
clerical and judicial administration, and for their language and style, which
shows us the rich and often obscure vernacular of the Theban neighbour-
hood, with only a moderate admixture of literary refinements. The
documents are of the greatest value for the study either of the Sa'idic
ostraca, generally dating from the same period (circa 600), or of the legal
papyri of the following century.

One of the most popular of narratives in Egypt seems to have been that
relating the history of the merchant Ketson or Matthew, and the conversion
to Christianity of King Kesanthos which is embodied in a homily attributed
to Severus of Antioch (v. Budge, St. Michael, pp. 51*, 63). M. Pereira has
made a special study of this story,33 the original of which he supposes to
have been in Greek, and brings together a good deal of evidence to show
that, while certain data (" John of Ephesus " made contemporary with Con-
stantine) forbid its being really the work of Severus, the incidents described
probably take place in India (Tentike=-\v§iicrj), while Ketson himself is a
native of Persia. He would place the occurrences in the fifth or sixth century,
when Christianity still flourished in India. The legend may, M. Pereira
admits, be but the Christianized version of an account of some noted con-
version to Buddhism and he hopes that Indian scholars may be able to
trace its Coptic form to some such source.

Few puzzles have more often exercised the ingenuity of orientalists than
that as to the identity of " the Mokaukis," as the Arabic historians call
the personage who acted as intermediary between the Byzantine forces in
Egypt and the invading Arabs. Mr. A. J. Butler, who since his Ancient
Coptic Churches appeared, has published nothing relating to Christian
Egypt, is now engaged on a history of the Mohammedan Invasion, and has
given us as a preliminary a study of the Mokaukis problem.33 After an
exhaustive review and criticism of the statements of Arab and Egyptian
historians and of the opinions of modern scholars, Mr. Butler proposes
explanations of the three problematic names which have brought such
confusion into the history of the period. The native bishop who, as " Abu
(or Ibn) Maryam," plays a leading part in the events as narrated by
several chroniclers, is most probably none other than the Jacobite patriarch
Benjamin, whose name may easily have been thus distorted at the hands
of successive copyists. In like manner the name of the Prefect, George
loading ...