The appreciation of Slavonic parabiblical heritage goes far beyond its significance for Slavonic studies. Even though the Church Slavonic MSS containing witnesses to Judaeo-Christian apocryphal and pseudepigraphic writings may date from a relatively late period, they are considered to be offspring of much earlier texts (originally in Hebrew and Aramaic, but also in Greek, as well as Syriac and Latin). For many of these compositions, their Vorlagen may be dated to the early Second Temple period. Hence the study of Slavonic parabiblical writings can contribute significantly to a better understanding of Judaism of the Hellenistic age and thus of the roots of Rabbinic Judaism, early Christianity, Gnosticism, and later mystical thought. Slavonic translations of Byzantine Chronographic accounts will also be treated. Not only are parabiblical written texts to be included within this purview, but also iconography and vernacular oral tradition (including “Folk Bible” compositions).
The overall research questions in this proposal have several different aspects to be taken into account. 1) Comparisons of particular topoi within Slavonic apocryphal heritage which are known to be attested in or based on earlier Jewish and/or Christian traditions. 2) More detailed analyses of the religious and ritual contexts of these topoi in parabiblical writings from the point of view of calendar, liturgy, etc., as a prerequisite for improved results in understanding the Slavonic texts. 3) Higher resolution consideration of the original language (e.g. Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek) of topoi later appearing in Slavonic. The parallel attestations of such topoi in their Slavonic contexts will allow the combined expertise of the research team to focus on common questions from differing perspectives.
Slavonic Parabiblical Heritage, Old and New Testament Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha, Religious Art and Iconography, Oral Tradition, Intertextuality in Abrahamic Religion