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By Robert Romanchuk

The Kirillov Monastery at White Lake within the some distance north of the Muscovite kingdom used to be domestic to the best library, and maybe the single secondary tuition, in all of medieval Russia. This quantity reconstructs the tutorial actions of the religious fathers and heretofore unknown academics of that monastery.

Drawing on large archival study, released files, and scholarship from various fields, Robert Romanchuk demonstrates how assorted conduct of studying and interpretation on the monastery responded to diverse social priorities. He argues that 'spiritual' and 'worldly' experiences have been sure to the monastery's major varieties of social association, semi-hermitic and communal. additional, Romanchuk contextualizes such cutting edge phenomena because the modifying paintings of the monk Efrosin and the monastery's strikingly refined library catalogue opposed to the advance of studying at Kirillov itself within the 15th century, relocating the dialogue of medieval Russian publication tradition in a brand new direction.

The first micro-historical 'ethnology of analyzing' within the Early Slavic box, Byzantine Hermeneutics and Pedagogy within the Russian North will turn out attention-grabbing to western medievalists, Byzantinists, Slavists, and ebook historians.

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Extra info for Byzantine Hermeneutics and Pedagogy in the Russian North: Monks and Masters at the Kirillo-Belozerskii Monastery, 1397-1501

Example text

And it is telling that the East Slavs at the court – first and foremost, Gennadii – offer the most pronouncements against the heretics, while they appear to have understood scholastic culture the least. Hence, the picture we gain of learning at Gennadii’s court is one of the application of scholastic tools to a limited number of problems, both urgent (such as the new calendar) and less so (such as the creation of a complete Bible codex for reading, with full scholastic commentary), by exclusively foreign or foreign-trained figures – monks, diplomats, and tradesmen.

Around the second terminus of the culture that produced the encyclopedic miscellany, as Dmitrieva showed in her 1968 article, private reading and certain ‘secular’ texts (belletristic narratives and texts of pedagogical orientation) lost prestige. Likewise, this culture must have arisen before the first terminus – for the earliest encyclopedic miscellany is, as Dmitrieva remarks, a mature example of its genre. This is a codex dated 1446, containing school texts translated in the Balkans: the Gram- 16 Byzantine Hermeneutics and Pedagogy in the Russian North matica of Pseudo-John Damascene, the Damascene’s Dialectica, the Geographica sometimes assigned to Eustratius of Nicaea, and the Short Chronograph of Patriarch Nicephorus of Constantinople.

The author of this colophon is, beyond a reasonable doubt, the same Oleshka who copied school texts (including those attributed to John Damascene) into the earliest Kirillov encyclopedic miscellany. We may thus contextualize not only the erudition of Oleshka Palkin himself, but Kirillov’s academic culture as a whole within a translatio studii that arrived at Kirillov before 1446. The outlines of my study, then, have been sketched out by a century of Slavistic scholarship that never confronted the problem it had uncovered.

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