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E01348: The Epic Histories, traditionally attributed to P'awstos, written in Armenian in the second half of the 5th c., recount the life, miracles and posthumous miracles performed by Epip'an (Greek anchorite and saint in the Epic Histories, 01863) disciple of *Daniel (Syrian bishop and chorepiskopos, supervisor of the shrine at Aštišat, S00066).

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posted on 04.05.2016, 00:00 by naleksidze
The Epic Histories, Book 5, chapter 27

Այլ երանելին սուրբն Եպիփան էր ընդ սրբոյն Շաղիտայի աշակերտ եղեալ մեծին Դանիէլի. եւ սա ի մանկութենէ սնեալ էր յանապատի: Եւ յետ մահուանն մեծի քահանայապետին Ներսիսի եկն բնակեցաւ նա ի մեծ Ծոփս յանապատին, որ կոչի անուն տեղւոյն Մամբրէ, ի վերայ գետոյն` որ անուանեալ կոչի Մամուշեղ: Եւ էր բնակեալ ի քարանձաւս, եւ հանապազորդեալ էր ընդ գազանս անապատի, եւ ժողովէին առ նա արջք եւ ինձք: Եւ էր սա հանապազորդեալ յանապատին, եւ առնէր սա մեծամեծ նշանս եւ սքանչելիս. եւ դարձուցանէր զբազում մոլորեալս ի հեթանոսութենէ ի քրիստոնէութիւն, եւ լնոյր զերկիրն Ծոփաց վանիւք. եւ դնէր վարժեար ընդ ամենայն երկիրն Ծոփաց, եւ լինէր սուրբն Եպիփան լոյս երկրին Ծոփաց, եւ լուսաւորէր զնոսա մեծապէս:
Անցանէր եւ յերկիրն Աղձնեաց, լուսաւորէր եւ զնոսա, եւ լնոյր զերկիրն Աղձնեաց վաներով. եւ շինէր վկայանոց մի յաւանին ի քաղաքին Տիգրանակերտի, եւ յօր յիշատակի սրբոցն ի փրկութիւն եւ ի բարեխօսութիւն աշխարհի. եւ առնէր ինքն նշանս, եւ դառնայր ինքն յիւր վանսն: Եւ էր մօտ ի գետն Մամուշեղ աղբեւր մի, եւ ձուկն բազում ելանէր ընդ ակն աղբերն. եւ բազում մարդիկ հանեալ զձուկն, օգտէին ի նմանէ: Ապա երկու եղբարք ի վերայ ձկանն հակառակեալք, էսպան մինն զմինն. եւ իբրեւ գիտաց սուրբն Եպիփան, ասէ. Յայսմ հետէ այտի ոք ձուկն մի' կերիցէ: Եւ անդէն դառնացաւ ձուկն տեղւոյն, եւ եղեւ իբրեւ զլեղի դառն մինչեւ ցայսօր ժամանակի. եւ ոչ ոք որսաց զնա մինչեւ ցայսօր ժամանակի: Բազում եւ այլ զօրութիւնս առնէր եւ նշանս անչափս:

'The blessed saint Epip'an had been a disciple of the great Daniel together with Šalit'ay, and he had been nurtured from childhood in the desert. And after the death of the great high-priest Nersēs, he went and dwelt in the desert of Great Cop'k' at a place called Mambre on the river named Mamusel. And he dwelt in rocky caves, he was constantly with the wild beasts of the desert, and bears and pards gathered to him. And he was constantly in the desert and wrought the greatest signs and miracles. And he brought back many who had been led astray, from paganism to Christianity. He filled the land of Cop'k' with solitary-communities and gave teachers to all of the land of Cop'k'. And so, St. Epip'an became the light of the land of Cop'k' and illuminated them greatly. He also went to the land of Aljnik' and illuminated them too, and filled the land of Aljnik' with solitary-communities. And he built a martyrium in the walled-town of Tigranakert, and on [their] day commemorated the saints for their intercession and their salvation of the world. And he himself wrought marvelous signs, and then returned to his solitary-community. There was a spring near the Mamušel River, and a great many fish rose out of that spring, and many people profited by catching the fish from it. Then, two brothers quarreled over the fish and one killed the other. When St. Epip'an learned of this, he said: "Henceforth, let no one eat the fish from here." And immediately, the fish in that place became bitter, and it has been bitter as gall up to the present day, and no one catches it to this very day. And he performed other powerful deeds and countless marvels.'

Epip'an left many regulations and went forth to the land of the Greeks taking with him hundreds of disciples and hermits. After this he crossed a sea and established himself on an island which was previously inhabited only by snakes and ferocious beasts. They all miraculously left the island. Epip'an died on the same island.

Text: Garsoïan 1984. Translation: Garsoïan 1989, 206-207.

History

Evidence ID

E01348

Saint Name

Epip'an, Greek anchorite and saint in the Epic Histories : S01863 Daniēl, Syrian bishop and chorepiskopos, supervisor of the shrine at Aštišat and missionary to Persia : S00066 Šałitay, Syrian anchorite and disciple of Daniēl : S00067

Saint Name in Source

Եպիփան Դանիէլ Շաղիտա

Type of Evidence

Literary - Other narrative texts (including Histories)

Language

Armenian

Evidence not before

460

Evidence not after

470

Place of Evidence - Region

Armenia

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

Hadamakert Հադամակերտ Hadamakert Başkale

Major author/Major anonymous work

Epic Histories (Buzandaran Patmut'iwnk')

Cult activities - Places

Martyr shrine (martyrion, bet sāhedwātā, etc.)

Cult Activities - Miracles

Miracle during lifetime Miracle with animals and plants

Cult Activities - Protagonists in Cult and Narratives

Ecclesiastics - monks/nuns/hermits Other lay individuals/ people Ecclesiastics - lesser clergy

Source

The History, traditionally attributed to a certain P‘awstos Buzandac'i (usually translated as 'Faustos of Byzantium') covers Armenian history from the later Arsacid dynasty (c. AD 330) to the partition of the Armenian kingdom between Byzantium and Iran (AD 387). The History is the earliest source covering this specific period of history, which was later treated by Movsēs Xorenac'i. As N. Garsoïan points out, despite the evident importance of the material contained in the History for the study of 4th century Armenia, it was never included into the received Armenian tradition, and medieval historians preferred to refer to Movsēs Xorenac‘i, the most authoritative source for later authors, as the sole authority for 4th century events. Łazar P'arpeci, for example, considered the information provided by P‘awstos as false and absurd, and so apparently did the rest of medieval scholarship. Date and language The authorship of the text has long been debated. The author claims to have been an eyewitness of the events he describes, but if this was indeed the case he could not have written in Armenian, as the Armenian script was only created in the 5th century. Thus, he was often considered a Greek historian, a supposition 'supported' by a misunderstanding of the word Buzand (in his name) as 'Byzantium' (see below). Other external evidence has also been cited to favour the idea that the work was originally written in Greek, and only later translated into Armenian. There has also been a theory in favour of a Syriac original, mostly advanced by Peeters and based on multiple Syriacisms in the text. The most convincing theory, however, favours an Armenian original, and is mostly based on internal linguist evidence, such as the use of scriptural quotations that derive from the Armenian version of the Bible, various colloquialisms, and the spelling of proper names. As to the date of the composition, the author’s own claim cannot be accepted as trustworthy as he is far too ignorant of 4th century events to be considered a contemporary; he presents 4th century historical events as filtered through folk memory, often projecting events of the 5th century into the previous century. Based on the Epic Histories' quotations from Koriwn (who wrote in the first half of the 5th century), and a reference to the Histories by Łazar P‘arpeci (writing at the very end of the 5th century), who places 'P‘awstos' immediately after Agathangelos, Garsoïan suggests convincingly that the date of composition was around 470, arguing that 'it is difficult to imagine a time more suitable for a work glorifying the role of the Mamikonean family in Armenian history than the generation immediately following the sparapet Vardan Mamikonean's heroic defense of Armenian Christianity in 451' (Garsoïan, Epic Histories, 11). The author The claim by some late antique and medieval sources that P‘awstos was Greek rests on a misunderstanding of the word Buzand, which was considered to mean 'Byzantium'. Medieval reception 'corrected' the form Buzand to Buzandac‘i ('from Byzantium') to support the Greek origin of the author. The actual title appended to the text is Buzandaran Patmut‘iwnk‘. A. Perikhanian has found a definitive solution to the problem, showing that the word buzand derived not from the toponym ('Byzantium') but from the Parthian bozand , 'a reciter of epic poems, a bard' , with the suffix –aran as an adjectival qualifier. The title can thus be translated as Bardic or Epic Histories. So, as N. Garsoïan has shown, the work generally titled History of Armenia and attributed to Faustos of Byzantium is in fact a compilation of tales assembled by an anonymous historian in the 5th century. In our database the text will be consistently referred to as the Epic Histories. The author’s agenda From the perspective of the author’s representation of cultic practices, Garsoïan’s conclusion (as follows) is noteworthy: 'The author may have been a native of the southwestern district of Taron because of his unreserved devotion to the Mamikonean lords of the district and to its holy site Aštišat, which he invariable presents as the original centre of Armenian Christianity, as against the focus of the contemporary 'Agathangelos Cycle' on the northern city of Vałaršapat'/Dwin, and the nearby holy site of T'ordan' (Garsoïan, Epic Histories, 16). The author is a rigourous defender of Nicene orthodoxy and is thus strongly antagonistic toward the Armenian crown, which 'sought to conform with the Arianizing policy of the successors of Constantine through much of the fourth century' (Garsoïan, Epic Histories, 15).

Bibliography

Edition: Buzandaran Patmut'iwn (The Epic Histories) also known as Patmut'iwn Hayoc' (History of Armenia) Attributed to P'awstos Buzandac'i, a facsimile reproduction of the 1883 St. Petersburg edition with an introduction by Nina G. Garsoïan (New York: Caravan Books, 1984). Translation: Garsoïan, N.G., The Epic Histories Attributed to P'awstos Buzand (Buzandaran Patmut'iwnk') (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1989).

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