These pages undergo revision at intervals, depending on available material and, of course, the availability of time. There are now quite a few pages on this site. This page is intended to facilitate the reading of anyone who looks in regularly. Older announcements are available from the links at the bottom of the page.
See also the What's New page for the additional fathers for other material placed online by me, which is where I am mainly working at the moment. See also my blog for my news.
30/06/2016 (Thu) : I find that the three Tertullian incunables are now all available online. If you search for Tertullianus at the British Library short title catalogue here, up they pop!
08/06/2016 (Wed) : Great news! The 1521 Rhenanus edition is online, and, even better, can be downloaded as a PDF!! Get it from here: http://dx.doi.org/10.3931/e-rara-13349
05/05/2016 (Thu): The collection of materials put together by Dr. Ian Balfour has been transfered to the library of Union School of Theology at Bridgend, S. Wales. It is available to scholars wishing to access the material on a reference only basis, but is as yet uncatalogued. Anyone wishing to view the materials should apply to the librarian.
Union School of Theology
20/01/2016 (Wed) : Tertullian scholar Ian Balfour is retiring. He writes:
While working on a Ph.D. thesis on Tertullian in the 1970s, I photocopied about 500 periodical articles and monographs on Tertullian from libraries all over the country (with appropriate permissions) and bound them in spring-back foolscap-size folders, and stored them at home.
My son took over our house in 2001, but allowed me to leave the collection there. He is now going to sell the house in the summer of this year, so I would like to find a good home for the collection.
I do not wish any payment for it, and the cost of transport would be for discussion between myself and anyone who was interested in taking it or any part of it.
I don’t have a typed index of the articles and books, but I could give some details of what is available to anyone who was interested.
If you are interested, please contact me using this form, and I will pass the message on.
In addition, he has created his own website:
… my 1980 University of Edinburgh Ph.D thesis, ‘The Relationship of Man to God, from conception to conversion, in the Writings of Tertullian’ is now available (with an English translation of non-English words and comments on it by Rene Braun of Nice) on my website, www.ianbalfour.co.uk.
An English translation of some German and French works, with the original and the translation on alternate pages, are also available on the website, and more are to follow.
03/07/2015 (Fri) : The new Chronica Tertullianea et Cyprianea has appeared (Revue d'etudes augustiniennes et patristique 60, 2014, 381-425), and the editors have kindly sent me a copy. All the new Tertullian pieces are reviewed - there are no new editions - and of course there is a mass of non-Tertullian material, concerned with Latin Christianity before Nicaea. Here are a couple of items that I would highlight.
The first of these is a Brazilian translation and study of Adversus Valentinianos. I can't say how good it is, but it is welcome. It has been made as part of a thesis, and appears online here (which is a very good idea).
Next, an interesting article by Paul Mattei has appeared, in Vita Latina 187-88 (2013) 274-292, on the last chapter of De Spectaculis, discussing precisely why Tertullian appears to rejoice at the suffering of the damned. This includes a fresh edition of the text, and a bibliography which completes that in the SC edition by Marie Turcan. His answer is that Tertullian does not rejoice so much as the suffering as rejoice at the restoration of truth against those who sought to destroy it. This must be well worth reading. I would suggest that much of the criticism of Tertullian on this matter comes from people who have not belonged to a reviled and persecuted minority, who have never worried whether the police will be interested in them, and have never seen society visibly getting worse all around them, such that they wonder if anyone at all is still upholding virtue. Those who today are experiencing these things may perhaps see the reaction of Tertullian differently?
My final highlight is from archaeologist Ahmed Ferjaoui (Rivista di Studi Fenici 40, 2012, 245-250, but article in French), who has been excavating in Tunisia, and has published the results in a study on the temple of Baal Hammon (the "African Saturn" - remember Kronos ate his children) at Henchir al-Hami. He brings the evidence of archaeology and bone analysis to bear on the passage in the Apologeticum (9:2-3) where Tertullian says that human sacrifice of children continued until the time of a certain Tiberius. This shows that the sacrifices to Baal Hammon at Henchir al-Hami continued throughout the 1st and 2nd centuries AD. This demonstrates in turn that the reference cannot be to the Emperor Tiberius. This is solid and useful information.
The CTC also reviews other worthy material, which I pass over as it did not catch my eye.
I cannot end without observing that a great number of papers reviewed - and all of these in English - seem to me unworthy of the reviewers' attention. All of them are concerned with matters of interpretation, and none of them seem at all likely to advance knowledge in any way. I would include in this the majority of a bunch of papers in a volume entitled Tertullian and Paul.
It is not a victimless crime, to produce papers which add little or nothing to the sum of human knowledge. A scholar will wish to have read everything in his field. It is a nuisance when professional academics produce material not worth reading. I cannot avoid feeling that many of these papers must fall into that category. Even less welcome than this, however, was a bunch of papers by Americans, supposedly about Perpetua, and all with "Gender" in the title.
I feel a little ashamed, on behalf of the English-speaking world, that these excellent and dedicated French scholars have had to wade through this ocean of low grade material, some of it quite evidently worthless or politically motivated. I wonder whether the CTC should impose a quality filter on literature in English, since apparently US universities are incapable of doing it themselves?
As ever, the CTC editors have done a splendid job. I only wish that more of the world's scholars produced work worthy of them.
24/05/2014 (Sat) : A new Chronica Tertullianea et Cyprianea has appeared. Unfortunately I have not found anything of particular interest in it. I will update this entry if, on rereading, I conclude differently. There are a lot of papers, but few of obvious importance.
23/09/2013 (Mon): A Red Letter Day!!!! The Codex Agobardinus (Paris lat. 1622) is now online at Gallica! Here.
03/06/2013 (Tue): The 1493 Scinzenzeler incunable from Canterbury, which I was prevented from photographing, has been sent to the sale room! I have added details from Sothebys online catalogue to the editions page.
10/05/2013 (Fri): The Chronica Tertullianea et Cypriaea 2011 has appeared. I have posted a review on my blog here.
27/04/2012 (Fri) : The new Chronica Tertullianea et Cyprianea is out! (More details when I am not quite so busy at work!) But, as ever, it is invaluable for everyone interested in Tertullian, and also the other Latin Fathers prior to Nicaea. Here are a few -- a very few -- items which caught my eye; but of course the CTC is packed full of useful stuff in every conceivable language. It can't be summarised here (if ever it could be!).
The CTC brings news of the death of Charles Munier, on 28th November 2011 at the age of 88. He will be remembered as the editor of several works of Tertullian in the Sources Chrétiennes series. I knew him only from his work, but had always imagined that he was a young man, as his contributions started only in 1980.
The works of Tertullian continue to appear in Italian; two more volumes have appeared in the Scrittori cristiani dell'Africa romana series, and are reviewed in the CTC, comprising De praescriptione, Adversus Hermogenem, Adversus Valentinianos, De carne Christi, De anima, De resurrectione carnis, and Adversus Praxean. In each case this consists of a pre-existing text, without apparatus, plus a revised Italian translation, or a new one where necessary. This must be welcome, and will create a reference edition and translation for the complete works in Italian in one place. Likewise 5 treatises have appeared in a new Romanian version, with facing Latin.
There is a paper by Christian Gnilka on the martyrdom of Peter and Paul, as discussed in Tertullian (Scorpiace 15). Claire Clivaz has written an interesting paper on the mention of "Ebion" in De carne Christi 14:30-41 (revue des études juives 169, 2010, p.287-311). A paper in Folia Electronica Classica 17 discusses whether De spectaculis shows evidence that Tertullian had read Seneca, and the reviewer -- Pierre Petitmengin -- is interested but not convinced, and neither am I. Incidentally I do approve of this online journal, really I do! If I ever get time to breathe, I shall have a look to see what other gems are therein.
By contrast there is an interesting-sounding paper on Mithram esse coronam suam -- "Mithras be my crown" -- by Levente Nagy in German, which appears in a Hungarian festschrift. Now that is how you keep stuff out of the way of the reader! No-one reads German, and no-one subscribes to Hungarian publications. (Neither statement is true, but both are uncomfortably nearly true). Yet it's an attempt to reconstruct the Mithraic initiation ceremony from texts and iconography. Wish I could read it!
Also interesting must be -- if we could see it -- a whole new book by Tim Barnes, Early Christian Hagiography and Roman History. Gregor Emmenegger (the Swiss hero who has put the Bibliothek der Kirchenvater translations on the web) has written a paper Credo quia absurdum! Tertullien et G. K. Chesterton, Pierre d'angle 13 (2007), 57-66, which ought to be interesting too. I've often thought that Chesterton's attitude to paradox is not that dissimilar, in some respects, to the way that Tertullian argues in that famous passage in De carne Christi.
Among the spuria, an online edition of the Carmen ad quendam senatorem has appeared here, with French translation and commentary. There is discussion of the manuscripts and editions (which, sad person that I am, I have yet to read!)
But these can only give a flavour of the whole. I wish the CTC were online! One day, perhaps!
21/04/2012 (Sat) : Thomas Heyne has kindly sent me the paper on Tertullian and Medicine, which appeared in Studia Patristica 50. He also presented something on Tertullian and obstetrics at the Oxford Patristics Conference, 2011. The first paper I have converted to PDF form. It comes complete with some gruesome-looking illustrations of implements!
24/12/2010 (Fri) : A reader has advised me that the 1539 edition is online here. Many thanks! Also I find that the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana in Florence has place the Plutei collection of manuscripts online. They can be searched here. A search for tertullianus reveals a load of stuff -- not the Conventi Soppressi mss, of course, but still a complete copy of the Cluny Collection, in Plut.26.12 and 26.13. The page images can be downloaded too!
16/09/2010 (Thu) : In Finland, Tertullian's Apologeticum has just been published in Finnish translation. This was made by a Lutheran emeritus bishop Juha Pihkala. The publisher is Kirjapaja. My informant tells me that it looks like they have used in the cover the photo of the codex Romanus S. Isidoriensis 1/29 that I made some years ago; compare for example the lights in the middle of the photo. You can see the cover here. The publisher's own net site (http://www.kirjapaja.fi/) shows a different picture on the cover of the book, but this one (the Isidoriensis) is on the actual book, I gather. I'm pleased. It's nice to see those forgotten images getting used!
06/09/2010 (Mon) : I have uploaded Tertullian: Udvalgte Skrifter (=Selected Works) to Archive.org here, in PDF form. It's about 116 Mb, so take care! This contains a Norwegian translation of 5 works from 1887. Unfortunately it was printed in Fraktur, so is quite un-scannable. I bought it back in January 2001, but was never able to do anything with it.
27/05/2010 (Thu) : I have added a link to an English translation of the spurious Carmen ad Senatorem quendam to the Spurious works page.
26/05/2010 (Wed) : My thanks to Yago Fernández de Alarcón who identified quote 26 in the quotes page for us!
24/03/2010 (Sat) : Dr. Pierre Petitmengin has kindly sent me the new Chronica Tertullianea et Cyprianea (2008) digest and review of all new publications on Tertullian and the early Latin Fathers. The new editions and translations are mostly Italian and Spanish. There's an article on the lost works of Tertullian, linking them to the interests in his existing works. There's a review of one by Luc Renaut (#42), querying whether in De praescriptione haereticorum 40:4, the mention of Mithras cultists being marked "on their fronts" (frontibus) should read "in the waters" (fontibus), i.e. Mithraic 'baptism'. Corey Brennan (#45) has written an article on De pallio and Roman dress, suggesting that the dissolution of morals and the degradation of the toga into a garment worn mainly by whores led Tertullian to make the pallium a preferred choice of daywear. Sebastian Moll (#87) has written an article Three against Tertullian on the sources for the life of Marcion -- Tertullian's works, plus the Adversus Omnes Haereses, Epiphanius' Panarion, and Philaster's Diversarum haereson liber -- and debunked the consensus deriving from Harnack's Markion. Das Evangelium vom fremden Gott (Leipzig, 1924, 2nd ed.), suggesting that the latter three sources are mainly invented.
29/03/2010 (Tue) : A reader sent in an interesting quotation from De cultu feminarum, which I have added to the bottom of the quotes page.
19/02/2010 (Fri) : An email from John Eldevik, who has examined the Cambridge manuscript and corrects some of the information I have. The updates are here.
07/10/2009 (Wed) : An interesting book review of a Tertullian volume has appeared online here. Another review is here.
16/05/2009 (Sat) : I have created and uploaded a searchable PDF of D'Ales, La Theologie de Tertullien, to Archive.org here.
15/05/2009 (Fri) : The new Chronica Tertullianea et Cyprianea (2007) has come out, and Pierre Petitmengin has very kindly sent me a copy. The quantity of scholarly papers seems to grow every year, although anglophone papers still don't seem to read the CTC or the French literature.
The first entry tells us that German interest in Tertullian is reviving fast, through discussions in online fora (although which I do not know). A link is given to a Perpetua site full of texts and translations. There seem to be several editions of the minor poems attributed indifferently to Tertullian and Cyprian this year. Several people seem interested in the Carmen ad senatorem.
You do have to read the articles, and be alert. At the bottom of p.363, entry 104, in a seemingly uninteresting article on the arraignment of Giordano Bruno by the Inquisition, we learn that the collation of the lost Codex Fuldensis used by Junius for his 1597 edition was sent to him by Kaspar Schoppe, who had the collation written in a copy of the Pamelius edition of 1583-4. This edition has been rediscovered, and is in the Grand Seminary in Padua. Furthermore Emil Kroyman found it there, and was deeply disappointed to discover that it gave him nothing new about the lost manuscript (Rheinisches Museum 70, 1915, pp.365-7). (I have updated the page on the manuscripts of the Apologeticum).
07/05/2009 (Thu) : I have just discovered the existence of a thesis discussing the Carmen ad senatorem, with an English translation. Unfortunately it doesn't seem to be on the UMI online database. I have written to the author, but with no answer.
25/04/2009 (Sat) : In Mexico, the Latinist Roberto Heredia (IIFL, UNAM) has written a small book about Tertullian; he translates some passages of the Apologeticum. You can find it in Google Books.
27/09/2008 (Sat) : Updated the Decretum Gelasianum for some typos. Thanks to Daniel Hadas for letting me know about them!
29/08/2008 (Fri) : Updated De la Patience for some typos. Thanks to Philiberte Bongo for letting me know about these!
Also Petr Kitzler lets me know that his article on textual criticism in Tertullian's De spectaculis is online in full at the journal Exemplaria Classica, (www.exemplariaclassica.org), No 9, 2005.
18/08/2008 (Mon) : Just a note that I have started blogging at roger-pearse.com/weblog. It's all patristic, so should be of interest to readers.
14/05/2008 (Wed) : Petr Kitzler has been following up the story of the scarce Czech edition of De Patientia. He writes:
I have finally checked in person two other copies of the Prague edition of Tertullian´s De patientia - in Wien and in Prague - Vyšehrad. I have collected all the scarce information I was able to find out and the product is the short notice which you will find attached (it will be published in Listy filologicke 2008, 3-4.
The article will be in German, and include a photograph of the title page of the edition.
30/04/2008 (Wed) : The new Chronica Tertullianea et Cyprianea 2006 is out! Many thanks to Dr Pierre Petitmengin who has kindly sent me a copy. Of course it is impossible here to summarise 105 reviews and notices! Here are but a few highlights only.
The CTC2006 reviews a new edition with Italian translation of the apologetical works (Mart., Apol., Nat., Test., Iud., and Scap.) by Claudio Moreschini, which has a substantial intro with notes on Tertullian and scripture. Also reviewed is the new German translations of De baptismo and de oratione by Dietrich Schleyer, both from existing editions but welcome all the same. There is new Spanish translation of Mart., Scorpiace, and De fuga. Novatian De trinitate has received a Polish translation! In Mexico has appeared a study of the Apologeticum, which can only help promote interest in Tertullian in that country. A critical review of Vincent Hunink's De pallio is reviewed by Marie Turcan. Pierre Petitmengin has published an article on the contest between Paris and Basle in printing editions of the fathers in the 16th century -- looks likely to be very interesting!;
Petr Kitzler has written to me to tell us that his review of Rex D. Butler's book on the Passio Perpetuae and Montanism is now on-line (the same book is reviewed in the CTC2006 by François Dolbeau). It's in Czech with an English summary, and is on the Listy filologicke web site (http://lf.clavmon.cz) in the 'selected full-texts' section (direct link). "I do agree in principle e.g. with the appraisal of F. Dolbeau in the last CTC," he says, for the benefit of those of us who don't read Czech. He has also completed some minor translations into Czech: Acta Acacii and all the sermons on the Passio Perpetuae by or attributed to Augustine (i.e. 280-282, 394, 394A).
He has also found a very nice digitised version of the editio princeps of Benalius (often given as 1483; not later than 1494) online at http://diglib.hab.de/wdb.php?dir=inkunabeln/115-quod-2f-4. This seems to be from Wolfenbüttel.
Many thanks Petr for all this!
29/02/2008 (Fri) : A kind gentleman writing as Albocicade has sent in some corrections for F. X. Funk, La question de l'agape - un dernier mot, Revue d'Histoire Ecclésiastique 7 (1906) pp. 5-15. Thank you very much! (It wasn't one of my better transcriptions, I can see). Jean Claude Pompanon has kindly sent some corrections for De Labriolle's version of De Paenitentia.
15/02/2008 (Fri) : Tom Findlay has written to me to say that he is selling up his library, and has an Oehler edition of Tertullian in 3 vols which he is offering for $300 + P&P, and a copy of the J.E.B.Mayor/Alexander Souter Apologeticus, at $60 + P&P. Anyone wishing to contact him can send me a note and I will pass his email address on.
25/01/2008 (Fri) : Quincy Howe has made another new English translation, and allowed it to appear here! This time it is De testimonio animae. It is very good news that he is continuing to work on Tertullian.
Rob Bradshaw emails me to say that Gerald Bray has permitted his 1979 book Holiness and the Will of God: Perspectives on the Theology of Tertullian to appear at http://www.earlychurch.org.uk/book_tertullian_bray.php. Again this will make it much more accessible to us all.
I hope that everything is OK on the site now, and that all the counters work. If there are any pages which seem to have unreadable characters on them, do let me know.
18/01/2008 (Fri) : I apologise for the loss of service. www.site5.com decided to take my site down, and would not bring it back up. A lot of spam is sent, supposedly from my domains but in reality with false addresses, and they objected. So I have returned temporarily to www.pair.com.
25/12/2007 (Tue) : Merry Christmas everyone!
My current webhosting company, www.pair.com, only allows me 1.5Gb of disk space, and this is now full. So I am moving to www.site5.com in the new year. This should be transparent to users. The only problem is that it may destroy the page counters -- I can't find a way to move the count of hits over. I will add a note when this is complete. The new host allows huge amounts more disk space, which should allow me to add more books in PDF form again.
01/12/2007 (Sat) : Petr Kitzler has sent me a copy in PDF form of the article in English on the Passio and Acta Perpetuae that he published in Listy filologicke. It's here. Many thanks!
30/11/2007 (Fri) : Quincy Howe has completed his new English translation of Ad Nationes book 1! Better yet, he has very kindly allowed it to appear here. I am very grateful, and I think we all owe Dr Howe a debt of gratitude. This makes the text far more accessible to us all than the 150-year old Ante-Nicene Christian Library version, which we often have to retranslate into modern English. I think Dr. H found the translation pretty challenging! He tells me that he is now working on a fresh translation of De testimonio animae. His work is in connection with the Patristics Project at Faulkner University. http://www.faulkner.edu/academics/artsandsciences/humanities/patristics.asp
06/10/2007 (Sat) : Maarten van Driel has drawn my attention to a useful online database of medieval manuscripts. It's at http://www.mmdc.nl. The search engine interface seemed a bit difficult -- almost unusable, actually! However author=Tertullian did work in the end. I've created a page for the Leiden Apologeticum ms. Also some folio numbers for the Leidensis of the Cluny collection, since that was all the information on that manuscript that I was able to extract (it must have more data in it, I'm sure, but it wouldn't play!).
29/09/2007 (Sat) : The new Sources Chrétiennes edition of De Pallio by Marie Turcan is a fine piece of work, and I think it will be become the standard reference edition. The introduction is concise but excellent, including a survey of the manuscripts and editions, the latter being particularly useful. It also signals a new paper by Pierre Petitmengin on protestant editors of Tertullian and Cyprian which discusses the lost codex Divionensis in Irena Backus (ed), Theodore de Beze (Geneva, 2007). An earlier draft has been online at this site for comments. The translation is very clear; the comments are inline at the foot of the page rather than at the end as with other SC volumes. A very useful index of words used appears at the end, as an integral part of the edition. The book only costs 29 euros, so buy it now!
I noticed that Dr Turcan had difficulty locating a copy of the Meyboom translation. If only she'd asked me! -- I have a copy of the relevant volume right here. Meyboom is out of copyright, but I have never scanned the volumes that I have (42, 43, 45, 46) because my OCR software did not like the old-fashioned font very much, and I am otherwise too busy. But if anyone wants to digitise these, I'd be happy to cooperate.
28/09/2007 (Fri) : We have some new photographs of the Keppel fragment! Maarten van Driel took colour digital photographs and has emailed them to me with permission to use them here. This is incredibly good news, since those in the Lieftinck article were never of that high quality. I have integrated them into the Keppel fragment page. I think that we all owe Mr van Driel some very sincere thanks!
25/09/2007 (Tue) : I've just got back from a tourist trip to Libya, to find some interesting items in the inbox!
First is a very friendly email today from Maarten van Driel, archivist of the Gelders Archief, Arnhem in the Netherlands, concerning the whereabouts of the Keppel Fragment of De Spectaculis, discovered by Lieftinck and identified by Dekkers. It's not been that clear just where this item was. In fact from 1950-69 it was on loan at the Universiteitsbibliotheek Leiden, but thereafter returned to the Rijksarchief in Gelderland, Arnhem. This in turn has been merged into the Gelders Archief, where it has the following inventory details: Gelders Archief, Huisarchief Keppel (bloknr 0409), inv.nr 1784a. I've written back to see if we can get a new digital image of the fragment online somehow, either here or at the Gelders Archief website. My sincere thanks to Mr van Driel for the update, and also to Mr. Van der Vlist of the Koninklijke Bibliotheek, The Hague, who let him know that there was uncertainty about this issue.
Equally important, I have today received a copy of Marie Turcan's new edition and translation for the Sources Chretiennes of De Pallio! More on this when I have had a chance to look at it, but it looks very impressive! My grateful thanks to Dr Turcan for sending me a signed copy.
Finally Petr Kitzler has written to say that he has an article forthcoming in Listy filologicke on the Passio and Acta Perpetuae.
Readers may be interested to hear that Mohammed Tabbal, our Libyan tour guide referred to 'Berbetwa' (which is how he pronounced Perpetua) being martyred by Caracalla while taking our party around Sabratha and Leptis Magna.
14/09/2007 (Fri) : Did anyone know that there is a Danish translation of De spectaculis (=Om Skuespil)? Richard Mott has made one, starting from the old Norwegian 1880 text of Arnesen, and posted it online here, with parallel Latin text and illustrations. He has very kindly given permission for a copy to be posted on this site here.
08/08/2007 (Wed) : Daniel Hadas has kindly signalled some more typos in the Latin text of De Spectaculis -- thank you!
Petr Kitzler has written to tell me that a Danish translation of De spectaculis has appeared online here. I will write and see if I can get a copy for this site. Thanks Petr!
17/07/2007 (Tue) : I've had a delightful email from Quincy Howe, who has written to me, enquiring if anyone else is currently working on a translation of Ad Nationes. Dr Howe is himself doing such a translation into English, and is 4,000 words into it. He took the task on as a volunteer for the patristics project at Faulkner College in Alabama, although Dr. Howe is using the online text (Borleffs, 1954) rather than Migne. Please contact me if you would like to write to him, as I think he would like to know that there are other Tertullianists out there! English translations are a rarity, of course, and a new one would be very welcome.
I've revised the Decretum Gelasianum text and translations for a transcription error (one Corinthian epistula rather than two).
29/06/2007 (Fri) : Petr Kitzler has written to me to tell me that he has found a couple more copies of the 1676 Czech edition of De Patientia. I have added a note on the editions page about it.
21/06/2007 (Thu) : A kind gentleman has made a French translation of the Decretum Gelasianum and sent it to me to upload here. I do so gladly. He also offered various suggestions to improve my own English translation of that text, which I have made. Many thanks indeed!
08/06/2007 (Fri) : I've had to remove the content of the page of PDF's from google books. I rent space, you see, and I got fined for over-usage last month. So these have had to go offline. But I have left the list, since all these *are* available at the source sites.
26/05/2007 (Sat) : I've been fixing typographical errors from time to time, but not signalling them. I've uploaded a minor change to Gerlo's Latin text of De Pallio. This is courtesy of Daniel Hadas, who has been reading through some of the Latin texts and sending in corrigenda or queries. I am grateful - thank you!
24/03/2007 (Sat) : The new Chronica Tertullianea et Cyprianea (2005) has now appeared in Revue des Études Augustiniennes 52 (2006), pp. 433-461! As everyone knows, this reviews all the publications concerning Tertullian (and other ante-Nicene Latin fathers) in the past year.
Reviewed this time is Vincent Hunink's De Pallio; also several articles by Czech scholar Petr Kitzler including his edition of De spectaculis; and much more. Jean-Claude Fredouille has published a paper on Tertullian's anthropological vocabulary in a volume on the Fathers and their attitude to ancient medicine. There's a review of an article on the Fragmentum Fuldense in the Apologeticum, analysing it for style to see whether it is indeed evidence of an earlier revision of the text. Another on Tertullian and allegory; several on the relation between Christianity and the ante-Nicene state, including one by Claudio Moreschini on the relation with philosophy, and one on Tertullian and dolphins (!).
Interestingly I see that some of the Polish translation of Tertullian are being reissued. I also learn that David Rankin's Tertullian and the Church has been translated into Czech, with Petr Kitzler doing the Tertullian quotations. There is a real renaissance in Czech studies of Tertullian going on, thanks to PK, and it is very good to see.
One interesting if unusual review is of a new edition of Florus of Lyons Opera Omnia. One might ask what this 9th century writer is doing here!? But of course the answer is his access to very early and very good patristic manuscripts at the Cathedral of Lyons. We all recall his note in the margin of the Codex Agobardinus, and the article by Marie and Anne-Marie Turcan proposing that De execrandis diis is in fact Florus' summary of the lost De superstitione saeculi from that damaged manuscript. In this case the review discusses Cyprian, but Florus is someone whose work we need to be aware of, and to know more of. Who would not wish to look over his shoulder as he worked?
This publication is, as ever, essential reading for every Tertullianist. Anglophone enthusiasts with no French have no excuse for not reading it, given the excellence of French-to-English online translation tools; if I can do it, you can do it! Many thanks indeed to Dr. Pierre Petitmengin who sent me an off-print.
16/03/2007 (Fri) : Most people will know that Google books has many volumes of the Patrologia Latina and Patrologia Graeca online complete, but it can be hard to locate a specific volume. A gentleman in the US has drawn up a bibliography of volumes accessible from there. Alas, most of them are invisible to us! But the PL and PG are indeed all visible and can be downloaded in PDF form from the links he gives. Look at https://umdrive.memphis.edu/mhooker/google_books-bible_judaism_christianity.html and close to the end of the page.
03/02/2007 (Sat) : Yago Fernández de Alarcón has kindly sent in some bibliographic details about a Spanish translation of De anima, and one of De baptismo and De oratione. Dr Werner Rinner has kindly corrected two typos in the German translation of the Apologeticum. Many thanks to both of you!
Also Daniel Hadas very kindly sent me corrections to the endless typos in my online text of De anima as well as one for the Genoude translation. I am very grateful.
26/01/2007 (Fri) : I have added to the collection of PDF's: Hoppe, Syntax und Stil; Lupton's edition of De baptismo; De Labriolle's 1907 edition of De praescriptione haereticorum; and CSEL 20, vol. 1 of the Vienna edition of Tertullian's works. All of these were scanned from copies at Harvard, but Google Books only makes them available in PDF form to those with a US-based web connection. Fortunately I am currently working for a multinational, and Google can't tell where I am! I have some further items to upload, but disk space is a real limitation here. So we need to concentrate on valuable texts, I think. That said, I have another volume of Migne on my PC at work which I will upload.
I've found another volume on Archive.org: Souter's translation of De resurrectione carnis. This has been uploaded also.
20/01/2007 (Sat) : I have decided to create a collection of the Tertullian PDF's referred to below, as a way for us all to find them all in one place. These can be found at books. There is a risk that overuse of these will break the bandwidth limit on my site, but it is very useful to have these available. If you find other Tertullianea around the web, please let me know. (PS: URL now corrected)
19/01/2007 (Fri) : I have just discovered Archive.org. If you use the search engine for 'Tertullian', and specify 'texts' you will find a wealth of scanned material. Kroymann's CSEL 47 is there; J.E.B.Mayor/A.Souter's version of Oehler's Apologeticum; Dodgson's translation; SPCK translations by Souter. All have been given a basic scan (i.e. no proofing), but the PDF's of the original volume are there to download. The university of Toronto in Canada is conspicuous among the suppliers, and well done to them. I have downloaded a whole load of stuff, by various fathers, and I recommend it to everyone. I was originally directed to it by someone using the search term 'Syriac'.
10/01/2007 (Thu) : Happy new year. I've fixed a couple of typos reported by readers -- thank you!
I have today visited Google Books (http://books.google.com) and done a search for 'Tertullian'. Available for download are PDF files of the Dodgson English translation, of Oehler's version, of the Migne text, of various French versions, and a vast array of other material. A search on 'Tertullien' brings up yet more useful material. Clearly whole libraries are being scanned, and many of them not only make the material available (and searchable) online, but make it possible to download the complete book in PDF form. Now that we all have broadband internet access, such things are possible.
At the same time JSTOR is growing in size, although still inaccessible to ordinary taxpayers, and holds modern articles and literature.
So the question arises whether this site has a future. Do sites like this one still have any reason to exist? Copyright means that I cannot hold up to date material; and I can hardly compete with Google books and JSTOR. The only way forward is to place online material not otherwise available, which may not be very feasible. The same applies to most of my site. While I welcome the availability of these old books, it is with mixed feelings that I see my own labours of the last 10 years being rendered obsolete. What the future is I do not know.
25/12/2006 (Mon) : Merry Christmas to you all!
03/11/2006 (Fri) : A couple of corrections added to Charpentier's De baptismo. I am working on other parts of my site at the moment, so no Tertullian updates are scheduled.
15/09/2006 (Fri) : Barnes' Tertullian is back in print! Yes, if you look on Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk you can buy a hardback copy of T.D.Barnes classic (if flawed) English language study. Buy yours now, while stocks last! In the UK it's £60 (wince); in the US $95, although copies can be had for $60 there. (Please support this site and use the links to Amazon above -- I get a small commission on sales that way).
Pierre Petitmengin has also sent me a page from David G. Selwyn's book The Library of Thomas Cranmer which also concerns Cranmer's 1528 edition. I have likewise added it to the editions page under 1528.
08/09/2006 (Fri) : Here's a question for you all: has anyone seen Thomas Cranmer's copy of the 1528 edition? Or know where it is? Pierre Petitmengin has written to me as follows:
David G. Selwyn, The Library of Thomas Cranmer, Oxford, The Oxford Bibliographical Society, 1996, p. 76 (Number 284), points out that the Archbishop possessed a copy of the second edition of Tertullian by Beatus Rhenanus (Basle, 1528) :
"Formerly at Ince Blundell School, Hightown, Nr Liverpool, but not traced since subsequent dispersal of the bookis from that school and from Ince Blundell Hall."
This edition was on sale in the Catalogue 349 (Nr 967) of Stechert-Hafner, New York.
Does anyone know its present location?
He has also sent me a photocopy of the Stechert-Hafner catalogue entry, which is I have added to the editions page under 1528.
29/08/2006 (Tue) : Petr Kitzler has very kindly photographed the rest of the pages of this 1676 Prague edition and sent them in. They are all available from this link to the editions page. He adds:
If any of the "Tertullianists" have any further information about this edition, I would be grateful to hear it. The size of the pages is duodecimo; the handwritten inscription in the first page reads "Bibliothecae Slanensis 1685"; and according to the title page it was the property of the Piarist School in Slaný (a town approx. 40.km westward from Prague) which was founded in 1658.
28/08/2006 (Mon) : Petr Kitzler has bought a 1676 Prague edition of De Patientia, and very kindly sent in some photographs. This edition seems very obscure, and I have added details of this previously unknown edition to the editions page.
14/08/2006 (Mon) : Pino Blasone has very kindly sent me an Italian translation of De Pallio, which he has made. The Italian texts on this site get quite a bit of traffic, so it is very good news to have this text online also.
04/08/2006 (Fri) : Jim Turner has kindly sent me some images of the 1662 Pamelius reprint, which I have added to the editions page.
21/07/2006 (Fri) : Jeanne Nuechterlein has very kindly sent in some details about the work of Hans Holbein the Younger for the Rhenanus edition of 1521. I have updated the page accordingly.
20/07/2006 (Thu) : The Greek in the De paradiso entry from last week corrected and translated. My thanks to Stephen Carlson for locating the text in the TLG and pointing me to the translation.
15/07/2006 (Sat) : Noted added to the entry on De paradiso about Charles Hill's articles from 1989, speculating that a fragment from John Damascene, Sacra Parallela, may in fact be from De paradiso.
14/07/2006 (Fri) : I have added two notices to the editions page from dealer catalogues; a 1509 Lactantius for 5000 Euros, and a 1597 Junius for 750 Euros. Both were advertised on Maremagnum.com. The former seems over-priced; the latter is rare on the continent, and perhaps worth that price.
Petr Kitzler has been busy, and has kindly let me know of more of his things online. Chapters 20-22 of his Czech translation of De Spectaculis are now online at http://www.iliteratura.cz/clanek.asp?polozkaID=19321 and at http://www.iliteratura.cz/clanek.asp?polozkaID=19509 is his review of H. Zilling, Tertullian. Untertan Gottes und des Kaisers; the book has some weaknesses, according to the review.
01/07/2006 (Sat) : I have uploaded some images of pp.37-41 of the 1608 reprint of Pamelius to the editions page, in response to a request from a New Zealand scholar for details of Pamelius' comments on Apologeticum 39. I've also been through abebooks.com and updated the same page with various editions offered for sale.
No further reply from the British Library to my query. I will talk to the Rt. Hon John Gummer again next weekend and we'll have another pop at the BL.
On a more positive note, I have discovered that the National Archives in London allow readers to photograph medieval documents with their own digital cameras. Their procedures seem sensible, and one can only applaud their initiative.
I'm very very busy at work at the moment, working longer hours on this contract than normal, so don't expect more than occasional updates.
09/06/2006 (Fri) : I've had a reply from Lynne Brindley of the British Library -- again, 10 out of 10 for professionalism. Unfortunately her reply ignores my request and repeats the wrecking 'offer' of last year. It sounds as if she has been told that this was mutually acceptable, which is very curious! But no doubt there are wheels within wheels.
The offer made to me was that the BL would supply me with some black-and-white microfilms for me to digitise. Now there are multiple stings in this offer; the output quality is really bad; because it is 2-colour it can't be resized so is very unsuitable for display in a browser; and only a specialist bureau could digitise it which would cost me hundreds of pounds, which of course is impossible for someone like myself to afford. Yet the end product isn't worth it!
Also the people in their photographic department would have to subject the mss to all that handling to get low-grade photos -- why not stick a digital camera on the top of the tripod?! I'm not sure why it is in anyone's interest for the library to spend its own money producing useless rubbish, when I would do it for free.
I am conscious that, while these games play out, the whole national collection of manuscripts remains unphotographed, at the mercy of the first suicide bomber to attack Kings Cross railway station. It's so very sad to see so little vision in such an important institution. Does the world need the British Library any more, I wonder, if it can't even recognise the value of cooperating with its readers to record its collection. Perhaps all these people will have to die and let younger people replace them before this can happen.
But I will ask again.
03/06/2006 (Sat) : Today I have written to the Bibliothèque humaniste in Sélestat and to the Bibliothèque Sainte-Geneviève in Paris and asked for permission to photograph their Tertullian material. The BibHum. has the Codex Paterniacensis that Rhenanus used for the first printed edition, plus the letter from John Leland to Beatus Rhenanus about the Codex Masburensis, plus a collation of three texts from that codex by Rhenanus himself! The Bib.St.Gen. contains the books of the abbey of St.Genevieve, and this includes the 1566 edition used by Pamelius and containing a full collation of the Masburensis. I'd like to photograph the lot and place it online so we can all study it. It will be interesting to see what happens. Some US libraries have tentatively started to allow scholars to use digital cameras to photograph manuscript material, although no doubt reserving any copyright to themselves.
I have had an acknowledgement from Lynne Brindley's office (CEO of the British Library) -- 10 out of 10 for professionalism. I've also seen her response to the Guardian article, and added a comment myself. No word from David Lammy's office though (shame, gentlemen).
I've also written to Richard Parkin at the BBC, who did a programme on BBC4 about Oxyrhynchus and the papyri there, suggesting that a programme on manuscripts with broad appeal should be possible.
I haven't done more on the 1756 Borghini, because I've been writing emails all day.
29/05/2006 (Mon) : I have today uploaded photographs of the entire 1756 Borghini Latin text and Italian (Tuscan) translation. The folder with thumbnails of the lot and links to all the pages is here. I'm out of time this weekend, so I will wrap some scripts around the images to make paging easier next weekend. It is a copy that I own myself, which helps, but it took much longer to take 500+ photographs than I thought it would! It also was harder to upload the images (some 200mb) than it should have been.
I have also made another attempt to getting the three British Library manuscripts of Tertullian online. Regular readers may recall that I have been writing to people about this for some years, going to see bureaucrats and getting shirty answers proclaiming how fragile the mss are (although 'fragile' means 'may fall apart if handled', and they don't care if I handle them all day long! It's only having a lens somewhere nearby that frightens them), pestering my MP (the Rt. Hon. John Gummer), who has been helpful but getting no results. Today I saw an article in the Guardian newspaper telling us how the BL is doing some odd-sounding things. But the article rather suggests that the CEO, Lynne Brindley, genuinely wants to facilitate public access to the collection. So I have written to her and asked for help in getting to photograph these mss. She reports to the minister for culture, David Lammy, who looks like the sort of person who wouldn't be very impressed by a load of scaremongering nonsense, and I have written to him also. I will let you all know what they say. I sometimes feel that I am trying to lift the weight of the whole lazy British civil service on my shoulders. Let's hope the politicians realise the issue and act!
26/05/2006 (Fri) : I have now seen the new edition of the Chronica Tertullianea et Cyprianea 2004. My thanks to Pierre Petitmengin who sent me a copy. It contains quite a lot of Tertullianea, including reviews of the Sources Chrétiennes Adversus Marcionem V; G.Dunn's volume of translations into English; the Carley/Petitmengin article on Leland; and much more.
Most interesting is the existence of Adalbert Keller, Translationes Patristicae Graecae et Latinae: Bibliographie der Übersetzungen altchristlicher Quellen, Stuttgart: Anton Hiersemann (1997, 2004), which in two volumes lists translations into various modern languages (including English, French, German, Italian and Spanish) of patristic texts in some 936 pages. It can be bought from the publisher, for 200 euros per volume. That's probably too much for me, tho!
10/05/2006 (Wed) : The images of the Seitenstetten manuscript of the Apologeticum are now online!
09/05/2006 (Tue) : I'm back from my trip to Seitenstetten yesterday, but very tired after a 3am start and midnight finish. I flew from London Stansted (6:45am!) to Salzburg, hired a car and then it was a round trip of 337kms (225 miles) in all. But I have the photographs of the Tertullian portion of codex 30!
It was a blazing hot day, and while there was snow on the topmost crags of the Austrian alps, the country was green and well-kept, like a garden. Seitenstetten is a charming place, not very far from the A1 autobahn from Salzburg to Vienna. I came off the A1 at the Haag turnoff, but then got lost going into Haag itself (I should have just followed the road from the autobahn down, leaving Haag town-centre alone, until I reached the Steyr-Seitenstetten road and turned left). There are many service stations along the A1, and English is spoken at most, so the journey is not arduous (although it took 2 hours).
The abbey itself is a big place, all in the baroque style, and includes a school at the front where you come in. I was able to park right outside without difficulty. There is an abbey office (Wirtschaftskanzlei) near the front gate, which is signposted from the entrance, and where they speak English. I was assigned to the care of Br. Florian, who also spoke English (and French, had I needed this), and to whom I am most grateful for showing me around the library. In fact I did my photographing in the abbey office. At the same time I also photographed the rear portion of Ms. 61, containing ps.Virgil, Moretum, as Br. Florian had been asked by a German amateur for photographs of it, and of course I had my tripod all rigged up right there. Curiously that is the same text which I photographed for someone else when I went to the Convent of S. Isidoro d'Irlandese in Rome!
The photographs will appear online in a day or two. Forgive me, people, but I am rather weary today.
06/05/2006 : I have today seen that the Sources Chrétiennes are offering vols.1-450 at 50% off until June! But how you order from them, they leave vague. Why do they make it hard for people to order from them? (But I have now heard that you can do this through Procure (www.laprocure.com), or www.alapage.com). De Baptismo for 8 euros, De praescriptione for 13 euros, anyone?!
05/05/2006 : Many thanks to Jurgen Schmidt for sending me some details of the new German translations of De oratione and De baptismo (Fontes Christiani 76, Brepols, 2006). I've added these to the bibliographies on the works pages. (Postscript 9th May 2006: I understand that their German-language texts can be ordered or will be available through www.Libri.de. They do not have this volume yet, but the price will be 37.49 euros. Brepols have been sending out advertising emails, but as yet the book can only be bought from themselves, and, strangely, they don't have an online shop! Quite why they spend time and money advertising something but make it hard to buy it is hard to imagine...!).
Today I have started to prepare for the trip to Seitenstetten to photograph their manuscript. I've just discovered that it means a flight at 06:45, getting back at 22:35, which means leaving home at 04:30 at the latest. I know that I am going to feel so tired after this... With luck the manuscript will go online on Tuesday 9th May.
04/05/2006 : I have heard a rumour that the Sources Chrétiennes series is in financial trouble. I sincerely hope the story is untrue, for the loss of this wonderful series would be a great disaster for patristics. May I recommend that those wanting copies of volumes buy them now? I have just obtained a bunch of Tertullien volumes successfully through Amazon.fr, so they are certainly available.
11/04/2006 : Marie TURCAN, Tertullien, De pallio. Introduction, édition critique, traduction française, commentaire et index, is now online! I think that Dr Turcan will welcome scholarly (only) comments on the text.
01/04/2006 : Marie Turcan has been working on a new critical edition of De pallio for the Sources Chrétiennes series, and with the consent of the publisher, she has very kindly volunteered to allow some of it to appear online here, in order to promote discussion of the text prior to formal publication. The text is:
Marie TURCAN, Tertullien, De pallio. Introduction, édition critique, traduction française, commentaire et index, mis en ligne en mars 2006, À paraître dans la collection Sources Chrétiennes, Editions du Cerf, fin 2007.
The intention is that the critical Latin text, with apparatus and selected notes on the most controversial points of the text, plus an introduction without bibliography, will appear here. For the full notes, bibliography, French translation, you will have to buy the book when it appears around Christmas 2007!
If you have comments on this material, I know that Dr. Turcan will want to hear them. You can contact me, and I will forward them; I hope to create a web form whereby you can send a message to Dr Turcan directly.
27/03/2006 : I was searching for 'Tertuliano' on www.iberlibro.com, and came across a 1792 translation of the Apologeticum, of which I have added details to both the editions and apologeticum pages. I'm not going to buy it, though, at 225 Euros! But it does highlight the possibilities that we now have with the internet, to acquire useful texts. Also details of a 1947 Spanish translation of De Patientia and De exhortatione added, which I am going to try to purchase!
24/03/2006 : Text of the Oehler edition (revised by Glover) of the Apologeticum compared with the CETEDOC text, although they are very different, and various errors fixed. That's all the CETEDOC texts that I have at the moment; when I can get some more, I will carry out the same proofing process on the rest of the Latin.
23/03/2006 : Text of the Carmen adversus Marcionitas also checked and fixes made. Also De iona. Also De ieiunio, which is the most error-prone so far. But then I did scan it in 1999, with a low-grade scanner and the poor quality software that was all we then had. Really it is not too bad, given the circumstances. Also Ad Uxorem 1 and 2, although 2 had no errors. Also De testimonio animae. Also Becker's Apologeticum, although only a few errors were picked up, and I'm not sure how useful it was otherwise.
22/03/2006 : I've checked the text of Ad Scapulam against the CETEDOC text, looked at the printed text and fixed one or two things where they differ (and noted one or two where the CETEDOC differs from the printed text). Likewise with Gerlo's text of De Pallio, which had quite a number of errors in it (and so does the CETEDOC, although in a minor way). Also the Ad martyes, although there were no errors here, and this is a different edition. Also De virginibus velandis from Bulhart's edition. Also De execrandis diis, although no errors were found. Also Ad Nationes, Book I and Book II.
I'm sending these revised texts to The Latin Library and Intratext also, in case anyone wonders: let's try to avoid defective copies going around.
20/03/2006 : I've added the Latin text of Novatian, De trinitate. This is mainly because I was asked to by Bill Carey, who runs The Latin Library website. But it was also a good opportunity to try out a Latin spell-checker that I have been developing. I compared the result electronically to the CETEDOC electronic text, with some difficulty because it was hard to get the text out of the CETEDOC website. While there were still a few errors that the spell-checker did not pick up, on the whole the result was very good indeed. Undoubtedly this is the best Latin text that I have done so far.
My thanks today also to Leo Tepper for picking up a scanner error in the Latin text of Ad Martyras, and emailing me about it. I have corrected this.
27/02/2006 : I've added Emil Kroymann's Quaestiones Tertullianeae Criticae as a PDF (7Mb). I would have preferred to scan this as ASCII text, but I think that I will never have the time to do this.
25/02/2006 : No updates this time, but just a note to say that I have been busy scanning English translations of works by other fathers of the church, for the Additional Fathers collection.
None of the Tertullian material which I have available to scan and put online seems very exciting to me, apart from the Seitenstetten manuscript which won't happen until the summer. So I will do more when the mood strikes me.
One thing that I do want to do is to recheck the Latin texts. I have been working on a spell-checker for Latin, which almost works (!) and should be usable to improve the quality of these.
I went to Libya last weekend, and had a very good time there! It did rain on one day, though. But to warm you all up at this chilly time of year, here's a picture of the temple of Isis, by the sea-shore at Sabratha, about 11am on Friday 17th February. I got sun-burn that day!
12/01/2005 : Happy new year to you all! Your very belated Christmas Tertullian is Charles Dodgson's English translation of De Spectaculis. I seem to have been working slowly on this volume for years, but the sheer number of marginal notes and footnotes makes it very slow going.
The Opticbook was not a success, unfortunately, but I will attempt other ways to scan the Dutch translations.
Now for something exciting! Over the Christmas break I wrote to Seitenstetten Abbey in Austria, asking if I might inspect and photograph their manuscript of the Apologeticum. A couple of days ago, the librarian wrote back that I may! This is very good news, of course. The abbey is not far from Linz, and Ryanair fly there from London Stansted airport, which is the one I prefer to use, so getting there will not be difficult. Indeed the airfare is two UK pounds (plus £30 of taxes!). The availability of cheap air-travel means that it is often possible to make a day-trip to such places. But in this case there is only one flight a day, arriving at 4pm, which means I will have to stay overnight. I'm not sure when I'll make the trip -- Austria in February might be rather chilly!
Before I heard about this, I booked a long weekend holiday in Libya in February, to visit Leptis Magna and Sabratha. It's important to make the time to do these things, and I'm looking forward to it. I wonder if Tertullian ever visited Leptis?
I have always wondered why we have no papyri from the cities of Libya. If anyone knows, I would love to hear from them! Just imagine if papyri of Tertullian were under the sand, somewhere!
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