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E00876: Coptic prophetic passage, addressing Egypt and relating its creation, involving the assistance of *Michael (the Archangel, S00181), as the most important among the seventy-two countries of the world and as destined to rejoice in the establishment of thrones for its 83,721 martyrs. Datable to the 4th/5th c.

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posted on 23.11.2015, 00:00 by gschenke, dlambert
P.Köln 8 354

A I:

⳨ ⲙⲉⲛⲛⲥⲁ̣ ⲛ̣ϥ̣ϣⲉϫⲓ ⲉⲡⲕⲉϩ̣ⲓ̣ ⲛ̣ⲕ̣ⲏ̣ⲙⲓ
ⲁϥⲥⲙⲟⲩ ⲉⲗⲁϥ ⲡⲉϫⲉϥ ϫⲉ ⲛⲧⲁⲕ
ϩⲱⲕ ⲡⲕⲉϩⲓ ⲛⲕⲏⲙⲓ ⲛⲧⲁⲕ ⲡⲉ ⲡϩⲁⲏ ⲛ-
4  ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ϩⲛ ⲧⲉⲟⲃ ⲛⲭⲱⲣⲁ ⲛⲧⲉⲕ ⲟⲩⲧⲱϣ
ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ϩⲓⲧⲉⲛ ⲡⲉⲧⲉ ϩⲛⲉϥ ⲙⲡⲓⲱⲧ
ⲉⲕⲉϣⲱⲡⲓ ϩⲙ ⲡⲉⲥⲙⲟⲩ ⲛⲛⲉⲧⲉ ⲛ̣ⲱ
ⲧⲏⲗⲟⲩ ⲡⲁⲟ̣ⲃ ⲛϣⲏⲗⲓ ⲉⲩⲉϭⲉⲙ
8 ⲡⲉⲕϣⲓⲛⲓ ϩⲉⲛ ⲁⲃⲁⲧ ⲉⲩⲉ<ⲗ>ϩⲩⲡⲟⲧⲁⲥ-
ⲥ̣ⲉ̣ⲛ̣ ⲛ̣ⲉ̣ⲕ ⲧⲏⲗⲟⲩ ⲛϫⲉ ⲛⲛⲱⲧ ⲛⲧⲉ-
ⲟⲃ ⲛ̣ⲭⲱⲣⲁ ⲛⲛⲧⲉⲛϩ ⲛⲛⲧⲏⲟⲩ
ⲉⲧ̣ⲁ̣ⲧ̣ⲡ ⲉϩⲟⲩⲛ ⲉⲛⲉⲩⲁϩⲱⲱⲣ ⲉⲩⲉ-
12 ϣⲱⲡⲓ ⲛⲉ̣ⲕ ⲙⲡⲛⲟⲏ ⲛⲁⲛⲉ-
ϭⲣⲏⲡⲓ ⲛⲛⲉⲭⲱⲣⲁ ⲉⲩⲉⲗⲧⲓⲙⲁ
ⲙⲙ̣ⲁ̣ⲕ

1 For this construction cf. part B, line 7. ⲙⲉⲛⲛⲥⲱ̣ⲥ̣ ⲁ̣ϥϣⲉϫⲓ ‘Afterwards, he spoke’ ed.pr.
7 ⲡⲁⲓⲃ ⲛϣⲏⲗⲓ ‘my twelve sons’ ed.pr.
8 Perhaps one could consider reading ϩ(ⲉ)ⲛ <ϩⲉⲛ>ⲁⲃⲁⲧ.
8/9 ϩⲩⲡⲟⲧⲁⲥⲥ̣ⲓ̣ⲛ̣ ed.pr.
11 ⲉⲧⲁ̣ⲧⲡ ed.pr. Perhaps even ⲉⲧ̣ⲥ̣ⲁ̣ⲧ̣ⲡ could be considered, ‘The wings of the chosen winds in their storerooms ….’

When he had addressed the land of Egypt, (2) he blessed it and said: (3) ‘You yourself, land of Egypt, you are the last to come forth (4) from among the seventy-two countries. You are destined (5) through that which the Father wants. (6) You shall be under the blessing of all those who are mine. (7) My seventy-two sons shall visit you (8) in a few months. (9) The fathers of the seventy-two countries shall all be subordinate to you. (10) The wings of the winds, (11) which are locked in their storerooms, (12) shall be breath for you. Those of the (13) countries’ sceptres shall honour you.

A II:

ⲉⲕⲉϣⲱⲡⲓ ⲛϩⲩⲡⲟⲡⲁ̣ⲇⲓⲟ̣ⲛ̣ ⲛⲏⲓ ϩⲙ ⲡⲉϩⲁⲟⲩ ⲛⲧⲉⲕⲕⲗ̣ⲏ̣ⲣⲟⲛⲟⲙⲓⲁ ⲙⲡⲁϣⲏ̣ⲗ̣ⲓ̣
ⲛⲛⲕⲓⲃⲓ ⲛⲧⲉ ⲡⲉϥ̣ⲥⲙⲟⲩ ⲉ̣ϥ̣ⲉ̣ϣ̣ⲱⲡⲓ ϩⲛ ⲛⲉⲕⲉ̣ⲣⲱⲟⲩ ⲛⲛⲉ ⲕⲁⲣⲡⲟⲥ ⲱϫⲉⲛ ⲛϩⲏⲧ̣ⲕ̣
ⲛⲗⲁⲡⲥ ⲛⲟⲩⲁϣ ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ϫⲉ ⲁⲛⲁⲕ ⲡⲉⲧⲁⲧ̣ⲣⲟⲩⲉⲛⲧⲕ ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ⲥⲉⲛⲉⲗⲫⲑⲟⲛⲓ̣ⲛ̣ ⲉ̣-
4 ⲗⲁⲕ ⲛϫⲉ ⲛⲉⲧⲁⲩϩⲏ ⲥⲉⲛⲉⲧⲁϣⲁ ⲛⲉⲩⲁ̣ⲛⲟⲙ̣ⲓⲁ ϩⲗⲏ ϩⲓⲱⲧⲕ ϩⲓ ⲛⲁⲧⲁⲣⲉ̣ⲧⲏ̣
ϩⲁⲃⲁⲗ ⲙⲙⲁ̣ⲕ̣ ⲁⲛⲁⲕ ϩⲱ ⲛ̣ϯⲛⲉⲕⲱ ⲙⲡⲉⲕⲙⲏⲟⲩ̣ ⲛⲥⲱ ⲉⲛ ⲁⲗⲗⲁ ϯⲛ̣ⲉ̣-
ⲃⲁⲗⲕ ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ⲉⲧⲃⲉ ⲧⲁⲛⲟ̣ⲙⲓⲁ ⲙⲙⲟ̣ⲩ̣ ⲛ̣ⲉϣⲱⲡⲓ ϩⲓϫⲱⲕ ⲁⲩⲱ ⲛⲧⲁ̣ⲉ̣ⲓ̣ⲕ
ⲛ̣ⲃ̣ⲃⲣⲓ ϩⲗⲏ ϩⲙ ⲡⲙⲉϩ ⲅ ⲛ̣ⲥⲁⲡ ⲉⲩⲉⲡⲟ̣ϩ̣ ⲉ̣ⲗⲏ̣ⲙ̣ⲙⲁ ⲡⲉⲧⲟⲩⲉⲃ ⲉⲩⲉϣⲱⲡⲓ
8 ⲛϩⲏⲧⲕ ⲛϫⲉ ⲡⲅ ⲛϣⲁ ⲙⲙⲁⲣⲧⲩⲣⲟ̣ⲥ̣ ⲙ̣ⲛ̣ ⲍ ⲛϣⲏ ⲙⲛ ⲕⲁ ⲉⲁⲩⲡⲱⲛ ⲙ-
ⲡⲉⲩⲥⲛⲁϥ ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ⲉⲧⲃⲉ ⲡⲁϣⲏⲗⲓ̣ ⲉⲗⲉ ⲧⲡⲓⲥ̣ⲧⲓⲥ ⲙⲛ ⲧ̣ⲁⲅⲁⲡⲓ ⲉⲩⲉ̣-
ϣⲱⲡⲓ ⲛⲉⲕ ⲛⲱⲛⲓ ⲛⲕⲁⲁϩ ⲉⲕⲉⲗⲟⲩⲁⲛ ϩⲙ ⲡⲥⲁⲃϯ ⲛⲛⲉⲑⲣⲟⲛ[ⲟⲥ ⲛ-]
ⲛⲁⲇⲓⲕⲉⲟⲥ ⲉⲧⲥⲉⲛⲉⲧⲁⲣϣⲁ̣ⲩ̣ ϩⲗⲏ ⲛϩⲏⲧ ϩⲉⲛϣⲓ ⲛⲛⲉⲕⲓⲁⲗ̣ⲉ̣ⲗ̣ ⲛ̣ϩ̣ⲏ̣-
12 ⲧⲟⲩ ϣⲁⲛⲧⲉⲕⲙⲓⲥⲓ ⲛⲛⲉⲧⲉⲧⲏ̣ⲗⲏ̣ⲗ̣ ⲉⲕⲉⲗⲉϣⲓ ⲙⲛ ⲛⲉⲧϥⲓⲁϩⲁ̣ⲙ̣
ⲉϩⲗⲏ ⲉϫⲉⲛ ⲡⲉⲩϩⲏⲓ

1 ⲙⲡⲁϣⲁ̣ⲥ̣ ‘in the month of Pashons’ ed.pr.
2 ⲛⲛⲕⲓⲃⲓ ⲛⲧⲉ ⲡⲉⲕⲥⲙⲟⲩ ⲉ̣ⲩ̣ⲉ̣ϣ̣ⲱⲡⲓ ϩⲛ ⲛⲉⲕⲉ̣ⲣⲱⲟⲩ ‘The breasts of your blessing shall be in your rivers.’ ed.pr.
5 ⲙⲙⲁ<ⲕ> ed.pr.
6–7 ⲁⲩⲱ ⲛⲧⲱ̣ⲕ ⲛ̣ⲃ̣ⲃⲣⲓ ‘And the new powers’ ed.pr.
7 ⲉⲩⲉϩ̣ⲓ̣ ⲇ̣ⲓ̣ⲕ̣ⲁⲓⲱⲙⲁ ‘a penalty shall be given’ ed.pr.
8 ⲡⲅ ⲛϣⲁ ⲙⲙⲁⲣⲧⲩⲣⲟ̣ⲥ̣ ⲁ̣ⲩ̣ⲱ̣ ⲍ ⲛϣⲏ ⲙⲛ ⲕⲁ ‘the 3,721 martyrs’ ed.pr., under the assumption that this was a fixed and well known figure. Compare also the number of angels mentioned in the Apocalypse of Elijah which is 64,000, see E02657.
11 ⲉⲧⲥⲉⲛⲉⲡⲁⲣϣⲟ̣ⲩ̣ ϩⲗⲏ ⲛϩⲏⲧ⟨ⲕ⟩ ‘who will be set up in you’ ed.pr. Read ϣⲓ(ⲛⲓ) (F).
11–12 ⲛⲛⲉⲕⲓⲁ̣[. . .]ⲧ̣ⲉ̣ⲓ̣ ed.pr.
12 ⲛⲛⲉⲧ⟨ⲕ⟩ⲏⲧ ⲙ̣ⲙ̣ⲁ̣ⲩ̣ ‘those with whom you are pregnant’ ed.pr.

You shall become a footstool for me on the day of your inheritance through my son. (2) You shall not be thirsty under his blessing. It (the blessing) shall be in your rivers. Fruit shall never cease in you, (3) since it is I who caused you to be brought forth. (4) Those who have fallen will be envious of you. They will increase their lawless acts on you. Cast those lacking virtue out of you! (5) I myself will not abandon your memory, but I will destroy you, (6) because of the lawlessness. Deaths will be upon you and I will renew you. (7) By the third time, success shall be gained.

You holy one, (8) 83,721 martyrs shall exist throughout you, who have shed (9) their blood because of my son. Faith and love shall be a cornerstone for you. (10) You shall shine in the preparation of the thrones for my righteous ones, (11) who will multiply through me. You shall not dazzle in prophecies, (12) until you bring forth those who rejoice. You shall be delighted with those who sigh over their destruction.

B:

ⲙⲓⲛⲓ ⲛⲓⲃⲓ ⲛϣⲉⲛ ⲉⲧϩⲙ ⲡⲡⲁⲣⲁⲇⲓⲥⲟⲥ ⲥⲉⲛ̣ⲉⲧⲁϭⲟⲩ ⲛϩⲏⲧⲕ ϣⲁⲧⲉⲛ ⲍ ⲛϣⲏ ⲙⲛ ⲗⲅ ⲓⲃ ⲛⲁⲕⲧ̣[ⲓⲛ] ⲛ̣ⲧⲉ ⲡⲣⲉ ⲉⲩⲉⲗ-
ⲟⲩⲁⲛ ϩⲓϫⲱⲕ ⲁⲩⲱ ⲧⲕⲉⲟⲁ ⲍ ⲛⲁⲕⲧⲓⲛ ⲛⲧⲉ ⲡⲣⲉ ⲛⲉⲧⲉⲗⲟⲩⲁⲛ ⲉ̣ⲗ̣ⲁⲩ ⲉⲗⲉ ⲡ̣ⲉⲕⲟⲩⲁ[ⲛ] ⲉ̣ϥ̣ⲉ̣ϣ̣ⲱⲡⲓ ⲉⲛⲁ-
ⲉϥ ⲉⲡⲱⲟⲩ ⲛⲉ ⲛⲁⲕⲧⲓⲛ ⲉⲗⲉ ⲧⲙⲉⲧⲕⲟⲩ ⲙⲡⲁϣⲏⲗⲓ ⲉⲥⲉϣⲱⲡⲓ ⲛϩⲏⲧⲕ ⲛⲅ ⲛⲗⲁⲙⲡⲓ ⲙⲛ ⲓ̣ⲁ ⲛ̣[ⲁⲃⲁⲧ] ⲛ̣ϩ̣ⲁ̣ⲟ̣ⲩ̣ ϩ̣ⲟⲧⲁⲛ ⲁⲩ-
4 ϣⲁⲛⲡⲱⲧ ⲛⲥⲱϥ ⲛϫⲉ ⲛⲉⲕϫⲉϫⲓ ⲉⲕⲉⲥⲱⲧⲉⲙ ⲉⲛⲉϥⲙⲩⲥⲧⲏⲣⲓⲟ̣ⲛ̣ ϩⲛ ⲛⲉϩⲁⲟⲩ ⲉⲧⲉⲙⲙⲉⲩ ⲉ̣[ϥ]ⲉ̣ϯ̣ ⲛ̣ⲉ̣ⲕ̣ ⲡ̣ⲣ̣ⲟ̣ⲥ̣ ⲡⲁⲣ̣ⲏⲃ
ⲛⲧⲉϥⲙⲉⲧⲃⲃⲓ ⲉⲕⲉϫⲓ ⲥⲙⲟⲩ ⲛⲧⲁⲧϥ ⲕⲁⲧⲁ ⲛ ⲛ{ⲛ}ⲗⲁⲙⲡⲓ ⲉϥⲉϭⲉⲙ ⲡⲉϥϣⲓⲛⲓ ⲛϫⲉⲡⲁϣⲏⲗ̣ⲓ̣ ⲕ̣[ⲁ]ⲧ̣[ⲁ] ⲍ ⲛϩⲁⲟⲩ
ⲉⲗⲉ ⲛⲁⲡⲛⲁ ⲛⲗⲉϥϣⲉⲙϣⲓ ⲙⲟⲩⲛ ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ⲛϩⲏⲧⲕ ⲛⲛⲉⲩ ⲛⲓⲃⲓ ⲙⲛ ⲛϫⲓⲛ ϯⲛⲟⲩ ⲙⲛ ϣⲁ ⲉⲛⲉϩ ⲁⲗ̣[ⲗⲁ] ⲁ̣ϫ̣ⲓ̣ⲥ̣ ⲛ̣ϩ̣ⲗ̣ⲁⲩ ⲛⲟⲩ-
ⲱⲧ ⲧⲏⲗⲧⲉⲛ ϫⲉ ϩⲁⲙⲏⲛ ⲙⲉⲛⲛⲥⲁ ⲛϥⲟⲩⲱ ⲉϥϫⲱ ⲛⲛⲉⲓⲥⲙⲟⲩ ⲛⲁϩⲧⲣⲏⲧⲟⲛ ⲉⲡⲕⲉϩⲓ ⲛⲕ̣[ⲏ]ⲙ̣ⲓ̣ ⲁ̣ϥ̣ϥ̣ⲓ̣ ⲛⲟⲩ-
8 ⲥⲫⲁⲅⲓⲥ ⲁϥⲧⲱⲃⲉ ⲛⲧⲉϥⲧⲣⲁⲕϩⲙⲏ ⲛⲕⲉϩⲓ ⲛⲅ ⲛⲥⲫⲁⲅⲓⲥ ⲟⲁ ⲛⲇⲣⲁⲭⲙⲏ ⲛⲕⲉϩⲓ ⲛⲧⲁ̣[ϥ]ⲛ̣ⲉ̣ⲧ̣ⲁ̣ϥ̣ⲧⲱ̣ⲃⲉ ⲉⲗⲁ-
ⲟⲩ ⲛⲟⲩⲥⲫⲁⲅⲓⲥ ⲙⲙⲉϯ ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ϫⲉ ⲛ<ⲁ>ⲗⲉ ⲙⲓⲭⲁⲏⲗ ⲓⲛⲓ ⲛⲛⲭⲱⲣⲁ ⲧⲏⲗⲟⲩ ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ⲁϥϥⲓ ⲛⲟⲩϣⲏⲙ ⲙ̣[ⲙ]ⲉ̣ϯ̣ ⲉ̣ⲃ̣ⲁ̣ⲗ̣ ϩ̣ⲛ ⲧⲉ-
ⲭⲱⲣⲁ ⲧⲉⲭⲱⲣⲁ ⲁϥϫⲓⲧϥ ⲉϩⲗⲏ ⲙⲡⲓⲱⲧ ⲁϥⲥⲙⲟⲩ ⲉⲡⲟⲩⲉⲓ ⲡⲟⲩⲉⲓ ⲕⲁⲧⲁ ⲡⲉϥⲙϣⲉ ⲙⲛⲛⲥ̣[ⲁ ⲛ]ϥ̣ⲟⲩ̣ⲱ̣ ⲛ̣ⲧⲟⲩⲛⲓ
ⲛⲟⲁ ⲛⲁⲅⲅⲉⲗⲟⲥ ⲁϥϯ ⲛⲟⲩⲇ<ⲣ>ⲁⲭⲙⲏ ⲛⲉⲩ ⲉⲡⲟⲩⲉ ⲉⲡⲧⲉϥϫⲓⲧⲥ ⲛϥⲥⲉⲙⲛⲏⲧⲥ ϩⲛ ⲧⲁ̣[ⲣ]ⲭ̣ⲏ̣ ⲛ̣ⲧ̣ⲉ̣ⲭ̣ⲱⲣⲁ

2 ⲧⲕⲉⲟⲁ refers to ⲛⲭⲱⲣⲁ.
4 ⲙⲡⲁⲣ̣ⲏⲃ ed.pr.
5 ⲃⲃⲓ ‘to well up’, ⲃⲉⲃⲓ (B). [ϩⲙ ⲡⲙⲉϩ] ⲍ ⲛϩⲁⲟⲩ ed.pr. But possibly a much larger number is to be expected in the lacuna.
6 ⲁ̣[ϫⲓⲥ ϩⲛ ⲟⲩϩⲗ]ⲁⲩ ed.pr.
8 ⲛⲧ[ⲁⲩ ⲛⲉⲧⲁϥⲧ]ⲱ̣ⲃⲉ ed.pr.
10 ⲙⲛⲛ[ⲥⲁ ⲛ]ⲧⲟⲩⲛⲓ ed.pr., which does not seem sufficient to fill the entire lacuna.
11 Reading ϩⲛ ⲧⲁ̣[ⲙ]̣ⲁ̣ ⲛ̣ⲧ̣ⲉ̣ ⲧ̣ⲉ̣ⲭ̣ⲱⲣⲁ ‘as creation of each country’could perhaps also be considered. ⲧⲉ̣[ⲭⲱⲣⲁ ⲧⲉ]ⲭ̣ⲱⲣⲁ ed.pr.

Any kind of tree, which are in paradise, will be planted in you except for 733. Twelve rays of the sun shall shine over you. (2) For the other seventy-one (countries), seven rays of the sun shall shine. Your light shall be greater (3) than theirs by five rays. The childhood of my son shall take place in you for three years and eleven months of days. (4) When your enemies pursue him, you shall hear his mysteries. In those days, he shall give you his spring as a pledge. (5) You shall receive a blessing from it for fifty years. My son shall visit it for seven days. (6) My devoted spirits shall remain in you at any time and from now on until eternity. But you all, say with one voice: ‘Amen’!

(7) When he finished uttering these secrete blessings over the land of Egypt, he took a seal, (8) and sealed his handful of earth with three seals. It is seventy-one handfuls of earth, however, which he sealed with only one seal, (9) because Michael was bringing forth all the countries. He took only a small bit from each country and (10) he brought it up to the Father. He (the Father) blessed each one with respect to its worthiness. When he had finished and seventy-one angels had been brought, (11) he gave a handful to each one of them, so that he (each angel) would take it and establish it as the origin of each country.

C

ⲧⲉⲭⲱⲣ̣ⲁ̣ [ⲛⲧⲁ]ϥ̣ [ⲁϥϯ] ⲙ̣ⲡⲗⲉⲛ ⲛⲧⲉⲧⲣⲁⲭⲙⲏ ⲧⲉⲧⲣⲁⲭⲙⲏ ⲉⲡⲗⲉⲛ ⲛ̣ⲧ̣ⲉ̣ⲭ̣ⲱⲣⲁ ⲙⲛ ⲡⲗⲉⲛ ⲙⲡⲓⲁⲅⲅⲉⲗⲟⲥ ⲉⲧⲕⲁⲑⲓⲥⲧⲁ
ⲉϩⲗⲏ̣ [ⲉϫⲱⲥ ⲁⲩⲱ ⲁⲛ]ⲁⲕ ϩⲱ ⲁϥϯ ⲛⲏ ⲛⲧⲉⲧⲣⲁⲭⲙⲏ ⲙⲡⲕⲉϩⲓ ⲛⲕⲏⲙⲓ ⲁϥⲧⲁⲥϩⲉⲓ ⲙⲡⲁⲗⲉⲛ ϩⲓⲱⲧⲥ ⲁϥϫⲓⲧⲥ ⲁⲥ <ⲉ>ⲥⲉⲙ-
ⲛⲏⲧⲥ̣ [ϩⲛ ⲧⲁⲡⲕⲉϩⲓ] ⲛ̣ⲕⲏⲙⲓ ϩⲛ ⲉⲇⲉⲙ ϩⲛⲛ ⲙⲙⲁ ⲛϣⲉⲓ ⲉⲧⲁⲩ ⲁⲛ ⲉⲩⲛⲉⲗⲡⲗⲁⲥⲥⲓⲛ ⲛⲁⲇⲁⲙ ⲁⲩϥⲓ ⲁⲛ ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ϩⲛ ⲧⲉ-
4 ⲧⲣⲁ[ⲭⲙⲏ ⲉⲧⲁⲥⲣ ⲡ]ⲕ̣ⲉϩⲓ ⲛⲕⲏⲙⲓ ⲉⲧϩⲛⲛ ⲉⲇⲉⲙ ⲁϥⲉⲗⲡⲗⲁⲥⲥⲓⲛ <ⲛⲁⲇⲁⲙ> ⲛϫⲉ ⲡⲓⲱⲧ ⲛⲉⲙⲏ ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ⲗⲱ ϫⲉ ⲡⲁⲗⲉⲛ ⲉⲧϩⲓ-
ⲱⲧⲥ̣ [ⲛⲧⲉⲓⲧⲣⲁⲭ]ⲙ̣ⲏ̣ ⲉⲧⲃⲉ ⲡⲉⲓ ⲗⲱ ⲁ<> ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ϩⲓⲗⲉⲧϥ ⲛⲁⲇⲁⲙ ⲉⲧⲁϥⲙⲉϩ ⲛⲉⲭⲱⲣⲁ ⲧⲏⲗⲟⲩ ⲁⲩⲱ ⲁⲛ ⲁⲛⲛⲉⲗⲓ
ⲛⲧⲁ̣ⲕ̣ⲗ̣ⲏ̣ⲣ̣ⲟ̣ⲛ̣ⲟ̣ⲙ̣ⲓ̣ⲁ̣ ⲛϩⲏⲧϥ ⲙⲛ ⲛⲁ<ⲓ>ⲇⲓⲟⲥ ⲧⲏⲗⲟⲩ ϫⲉ ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ⲛϩⲏⲧ ⲗⲱ ⲛⲉ ⲛϫⲓⲛ ⲧⲁⲣⲭⲏ ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ϫⲉ ⲁⲩϥⲓ ⲉ-
ⲃⲁⲗ ϩⲛ̣ ⲛ̣ⲉ̣ⲭ̣ⲱ̣ⲣⲁ ⲧⲏⲗⲟⲩ ⲁⲩϯ ⲙⲡⲕⲉϩⲓ ⲛⲕⲏⲙⲓ ⲁⲫϯ ⲟⲩⲛ ϥⲓ ⲛⲁⲇⲁⲙ ⲉⲃⲁⲗ ϩⲙ ⲡⲕⲉϩⲓ ⲛⲕⲏⲙⲓ ⲁϥⲧⲉϥ-
8 ⲙⲉϩ ⲛ̣ⲉ̣ⲭ̣[ⲱ]ⲣ̣ⲁ̣ ⲧ̣ⲏⲗⲟⲩ ⲡⲏ ⲟⲩⲛ ⲉⲧⲛⲉⲧⲕⲁⲛ ϩⲛ ⲭⲱⲣⲁ ⲛⲓⲃⲓ ⲡⲉϥⲙⲁ ⲛ̣ϫⲓ ⲕⲗⲏ̣ⲣⲟⲛⲟⲙⲓⲁ ⲡⲉ ⲡⲕⲉϩ̣ⲓ̣ ⲛⲕⲏ̣ⲙ̣ⲓ̣
ⲛⲟ̣ⲩ̣ⲕ̣ⲗ̣ⲏ̣ⲣ̣ⲟ̣ⲛ̣ⲟ̣ⲙ̣ⲓ̣ⲁ̣ ⲛϣⲁ ⲉⲛⲉϩ ⲛⲉⲛⲉϩ ⲁⲛⲟⲩⲱϩⲉⲙ ϩⲁⲗⲱϥ ⲙⲡⲓⲱⲧ ⲉⲛϫⲱ ⲙⲙⲁⲥ ϫⲉ ϩⲁ̣ⲙⲏⲛ ⲉⲡⲏⲇⲏ ⲁϥ̣-
ϣⲉϫ̣ⲓ̣ [ⲉⲗⲁⲥ ⲛⲉⲛ] ϩ̣ⲁ̣ⲗⲱϥ ⲙⲡⲓⲱⲧ ⲛϫⲓⲛ ⲧⲁⲣⲭⲏ ϫⲉ ⲁⲕⲛⲉⲗⲓ ⲛⲧⲉⲕⲕⲗⲏⲣⲟⲛⲟⲙⲓⲁ ϩⲓⲱⲧϥ ⲛⲧⲉⲓϩⲏ
ⲉ̣ⲧ̣ⲁ[ϣⲉϫⲓ ⲉⲗⲁⲥ] ⲁϥⲟⲩⲱϩⲉⲙ ⲛϫⲉ ⲙⲁⲑⲉⲟⲥ ⲉϥϫⲱ ⲙⲙⲁⲥ ⲙⲡⲥⲱⲣ ϫⲉ ⲡϭⲥ ϩⲁⲣⲁ ⲟⲩⲛ ⲡⲉⲧⲛⲉϣⲱⲡⲓ ⲛⲙ̣ⲉ̣-
12 [ⲧⲣⲏ ϩⲙ ⲡⲉⲕϩⲩⲡⲟⲡⲟ]ⲇ̣ⲓ̣ⲟⲛ ⲙⲛ ϩⲱⲃ ⲛⲓ<ⲃⲓ> ⲉⲧϣ̣ⲁ̣ⲡ ϩⲓϫⲉⲛ ⲡⲕⲉϩⲓ ⲛⲕ̣ⲏ̣ⲙⲓ

1 {ⲧⲉⲭⲱⲣ̣ⲁ̣ [ⲧⲉⲭⲱⲣ]ⲁ̣} ⲡⲗⲉⲛ ⲛⲧⲉⲧⲣⲁⲭⲙⲏ ⲧⲉⲧⲣⲁⲭⲙⲏ <ⲡ>ⲉ ⲡⲗⲉⲛ ⲛ̣ⲧ̣ⲉ̣ⲭ̣ⲱⲣⲁ ed.pr.
2 [ⲉϫⲱⲥ ⲁⲛ]ⲁⲕ ed.pr., which seems not to fill the entire lacuna.
2–3 ⲁ<ϥ>ⲥⲉⲙⲛⲏⲧⲥ̣ [ϩⲙ ⲡⲕⲉϩⲓ] ⲛ̣ⲕⲏⲙⲓ ed.pr. Possibly read ⲁϥ- for ⲁⲥ assuming a misreading of the copyist.
3 Reading [ϩⲛ ⲧⲁⲣⲭⲏ ⲙⲡⲕⲉϩⲓ] ⲛ̣ⲕⲏⲙⲓ, parallel to the end of line 11 on side B, might be too long for the lacuna.
4 ⲧⲣⲁ[ⲭⲙⲏ ⲙⲡⲕ]ⲉϩⲓ ⲛⲕⲏⲙⲓ ed.pr.
5 ⲱⲧϥ [ . . . . . ⲡ] and ⲁⲩⲱ ⲁⲛ{ⲁⲛ}ⲛⲉⲗⲓ ed.pr.
6 ⲛϩⲏⲧ<ϥ> ed.pr.
9–10 ⲁⲛ̣ϣⲉϫ̣ⲓ̣ [ⲉⲗⲁϥ ϩ]ⲁ̣ⲗⲱϥ ed.pr.
11 ⲁ̣ⲛ̣ . . [. . . . .] ed.pr.
11–12 ⲛⲙ̣ⲉ[ⲧⲣⲏ ⲟⲩⲃⲉ/ⲉⲧⲃⲉ ⲙⲙⲩⲥⲧⲏⲣ]ⲣ̣ⲓ̣ⲟⲛ ‘a witness against/for the mysteries’ ed.pr. ⲡⲉⲕϩⲩⲡⲟⲡⲟ]ⲇ̣ⲓ̣ⲟⲛ supplied here in view of AII,1. But perhaps also ⲙⲁⲣⲧⲩ]ⲣ̣ⲓ̣ⲟⲛ could be considered.


[He] named each handful (of earth) by the name of the country and the name of the angel who is put in charge over it. (2) To me he gave the handful of Egyptian earth and he let me write my name on it. He took it and it came to be established [as that of the land] of Egypt.

(3) In Eden, in the places of the East where Adam was yet to be formed, one took again from the (4) handful [which became the] land of Egypt, while it was still in Eden. The Father has formed together with me, because it is my name, which is on it, [on this handful (of Egyptian earth)]. (5) Therefore, I also have come forth to Adam who has filled all the countries. And again, we will accept (6) my inheritance through him together with all my own ones, since through me then they were from the beginning, because one has brought forth (7) from all the countries and given to the land of Egypt. God, therefore, took Adam from the Egyptian land and let him (8) fill all the countries. That one then,
Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity

Categories

Keywords

History

Evidence ID

E00876

Saint Name

Anonymous martyrs : S00060 Michael, the Archangel : S00181

Saint Name in Source

ⲙⲓⲭⲁⲏⲗ

Type of Evidence

Early manuscripts - Books/scrolls Literary - Other

Language

Coptic

Evidence not before

350

Evidence not after

499

Activity not before

350

Activity not after

499

Place of Evidence - Region

Egypt and Cyrenaica

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc

Arsinoites (Fayum)

Place of evidence - City name in other Language(s)

Arsinoites (Fayum) Hermopolis ϣⲙⲟⲩⲛ Ashmunein Hermopolis

Cult activities - Non Liturgical Practices and Customs

Saint as patron - of a community

Source

Papyrus P.Köln 8. 354 is preserved at the papyrus collection of the University of Cologne as inv. 20912. The text is written on two narrow and wide strips of papyrus, one being used recto and verso, the other recto only. The text is dated to the 4th/5th century on account of its specific dialectical forms (early Fayumic F4/F5), as well as on palaeographical grounds. The find spot of the document is unknown.

Discussion

The text relates the creation of Egypt as a country of special sacred status. Taken most probably from a longer prophetic text treating the creation of the world with its seventy-two countries, the excerpt preserved in these two papyrus slips focuses on the importance of Egypt as the Christian country par excellence. God addresses Egypt directly offering an overview of how it came about and what is to happen to it in the future. Designed by the Creator, it is to be elevated above all the other countries in the world and to be revered by them, due to its role as a safe haven for God’s son (after the flight into Egypt), and the large number of martyrs generated through strong belief. Each country is said to be created from a handful of earth taken by Michael out of Eden and brought up to the heavenly Father to seal it, name it, and appoint an angel over it. When it finally came to Egypt, however, it received not only one seal, but three, which seems to include the name of Christ, as well as a seal for martyrdom, in addition to the name of Michael as the angel appointed over it. Prior to the creation of Egypt as the last of the seventy-two countries, the forming of Adam is said to have taken place. For this, some of the earth which later would become the land of Egypt was taken to mould Adam, a process in which the son of God claims to have been involved together with his Father, because his name was to be attached to the land of Egypt. In this way, Christians from all the other counties are linked with Egypt and would find their true inheritance there. Christ himself, who seems to have related this entire report of his Father’s creation and intention, then turns to address his audience directly, by asking his disciples, whether they are prepared to accept their Christian inheritance in Egypt. They answer in the affirmative, but Matthew then poses the question of what will happen to a witness for Egypt’s inheritance, possibly desiring a definition of the term ‘martyr’ and how to become one. As the essence of Egypt is defined here by its Christian heritage manifested in the large number of its martyrs, a question as to what will happened to the martyrs in Egypt seems only natural. One wonders, whether the excerpt of the text really ended with this question, or whether more text was extracted onto leaves now missing containing perhaps a discussion on the nature of Christian martyrdom and martyr cult in Egypt.

Bibliography

Schenke, G., "The “Ode” to Egypt. P.Köln 354: Egypt as the Holy Land of Martyrs," Journal of Coptic Studies 20 (2018), 165–172. Schenke, G., "P.Köln 354: Über Ägyptens Sonderstatus vor allen anderen Ländern," in: M. Gronewald, K. Maresch, and C. Römer (eds.), Kölner Papyri (P.Köln) vol. 8 (Papyrologica Coloniensia VII/8, Abhandlungen der Nordrhein-Westfälischen Akademie der Wissenschaften; Opladen: Westdeutscher Verlag 1997), 183–200.

Continued Description

who will be strong in any country, his place of receiving an inheritance is the land of Egypt, (9) as an eternal inheritance. We answered in front of the Father, saying: ‘Amen’, after he said [to us concerning it] (10) in front of the Father from the beginning: ‘Will you accept your inheritance on it (the land of Egypt) in this manner in which I have [spoken about it]?’ (11) Matthew answered, saying to the Saviour: ‘Lord, what is it that will happen to a witness [at your footstool (i.e. in Egypt)] (12) and to everything which exists in the land of Egypt?’ (Text and trans. Gesa Schenke)

Licence

Exports

Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity

Categories

Keywords

Licence

Exports