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The Life of Theodotus of Amida

Syriac Christianity under the Umayyad Caliphate


By Robert Hoyland & Andrew Palmer; With an archaeological appendix by Charlotte Labedan-Kodaş
The Life of Theodotus of Amida is that rare thing: a securely dated eye-witness account of life under Arab Muslim rule in the first century of Islam, and one of the few extant texts from seventh-century North Mesopotamia. It is imbued with local color and contemporary detail, revealing an intimate knowledge of the terrain, its inhabitants and officialdom, as well as the precariousness of the lives of those living in the borderlands between the Byzantine and Islamic empires.
Publisher: Gorgias Press LLC
Availability: In stock
SKU (ISBN): 978-1-4632-4409-5
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Publication Status: In Print
Publication Date: Mar 7,2023
Interior Color: Black
Trim Size: 7 x 10
Page Count: 425
Languages: English
ISBN: 978-1-4632-4409-5
$75.00
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The Life of Theodotus of Amida is that rare thing: a securely dated eye-witness account of life under Arab Muslim rule in the first century of Islam, and one of the few extant texts from seventh-century North Mesopotamia. It is imbued with local color and contemporary detail, revealing an intimate knowledge of the terrain, its inhabitants and officialdom, as well as the precariousness of the lives of those living in the borderlands between the Byzantine and Islamic empires.

The Life of Theodotus of Amida is that rare thing: a securely dated eye-witness account of life under Arab Muslim rule in the first century of Islam, and one of the few extant texts from seventh-century North Mesopotamia. It is imbued with local color and contemporary detail, revealing an intimate knowledge of the terrain, its inhabitants and officialdom, as well as the precariousness of the lives of those living in the borderlands between the Byzantine and Islamic empires.

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ContributorBiography

RobertHoyland

Robert Hoyland specializes in the history and material culture of the Middle East. He is currently Professor of Late Antique and Early Islamic Middle Eastern History at New York University's Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, having previously been Professor of Islamic history at the University of Oxford and the University of St. Andrews. His best known publications are Seeing Islam as Others Saw it (1997, 2018), Arabia and the Arabs (2001) and In God’s Path: The Arab Conquests and the Creation of an Islamic Empire (2014).

AndrewPalmer

Andrew Palmer teaches Classics at a Dutch Grammar School. He holds a D.Phil from the University of Oxford. He has more than ninety publications, mainly on Syriac in the context of Byzantine Studies, and is presently preparing an edition of the Life of Barsawmo for a Muenster-based project on religious violence in Late Antiquity.

Table of Contents (v)
Preface (vii) 
List of Maps, Tables and Illustrations (ix)
Abbreviations (xi)

Part One: The Historical Context of the Life of Theodotus (1)
   Introduction (1)
   The end of the Byzantine-Persian war and beginning of the Arab conquests (3)
   Between conquest and civil war (640–80) (4)
   The civil war years (680–92) (5)
   The rise of a new order and the death of Theodotus (7)
   Borderlands (9)
   Administration and Taxes (12)
   The Muslim presence in North Mesopotamia (16)
      Amida and its mosque (16)
      Converts to Islam in Amida? (20)
   Conclusion (22)

Part Two: Introduction to the Syriac Edition (25)
   “Migraine Monastery”: A Saint with a Story (25)
   How they Preserved the Life of Theodotus (34)
   How to Navigate this Edition (45)
   Editorial Decisions (ED) (46)
   The Sermon Appended to the Life (59)
   The Annotated Translation (60)
   Conclusion (61)

Part Three: Edition and Translation of the Life of Theodotus (77)
   Chapter One. Origins and Monastic Education (78)
   Chapter Two. Pilgrimage to the Holy Land and Egypt (102)
   Chapter Three. Homecoming to the Diocese of Amida (124)
   Chapter Four. Sojourn in the Diocese of Samosata (144)
   Chapter Five. From the Taurus Frontier to the Diocese of Dara (170)
   Chapter Six. Ordination as Metropolitan Bishop of Amida (202)
   Chapter Seven. Episcopal Exertions and Early Exhaustion (222)
   Chapter Eight. From Qenneshre to Qelleth (244)
   Chapter Nine. Dying with Dignity (278)
   Chapter 10. Simeon of Samosata, His Signature and his Sermon (304)
   The Copyist’s Conclusion (316)

Appendix 1: The late antique Syriac churches and monasteries of Amida and its diocese west of the Tigris (319)
Appendix 2: Excerpts from the Life of Daniel of Aghlosh pertaining to Daniel’s enclosure (323)
   Introduction (323)
   Translated excerpts (324)
Appendix 3: Searching for the Enclosure of Daniel (331)
   Introduction (331)
   Literary Sources (332)
   Observations in the field (337)
   Evolution of the church of Gümüşyuva (339)
   The tower (343)
   The enclosure of Daniel (343)
   A new light on the rural background of the church? (344)
   Conclusion (345)
   Select bibliography (345)
Bibliography (355)
   Primary Sources (355)
   Secondary Literature (including Syriac lexica) (364)
Index of Primary Sources (375)
General Index (383)

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