The Unexplored Translation of the Vita of Byzantine Empress Irene-Xenia Cover Image
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Неизследван превод на житието на една византийска императрица
The Unexplored Translation of the Vita of Byzantine Empress Irene-Xenia

Author(s): Klimentina Ivanova, Ivan N. Petrov
Subject(s): Language studies
Published by: Институт за литература - BAN

Summary/Abstract: The focus of the article is the Vita of empress Irene-Xenia. It was written in the Constantinople monastery of Christ Pantocrator built by her. The anonymous Vita came into existence soon after she was canonized, around the mid of the 12th c. The time of its composing is situated between 1143 (as the death of the emperor John II Comnenos is mentioned at the end of the text) and 1180 (the death of emperor Manuel Comnenos). There are two redactions of the Vita in the Greek tradition. It can be found in the Synaxaria for the second half of the year (under the date of 13th August). There are other copies of the Vita in the August Menaia with verse Synaxaria under the same date. In Bulgaria it was translated as a part of the Verse Prolog for August; it is known in numerous manuscripts (Bulgarian, Serbian and Russian) under the same date. At the same time, there is a copy of the saint’s life in a Moldavian Menologion from the Russian State Library (fund 178, № 3171) under the date of 24th January – the day of St. Xenia of Rome. The manuscript is the only Slavonic codex in which the life functions as a reading from a Menologion. The Slavonic text is without any doubt a translation of a version very close to the full redaction of the Greek text. All Slavonic copies seem to have originated from one translation. This translation is correct in certain parts while there are passages which the Bulgarian translator had seemingly not understood or had missed. There are passages showing a freer interpretation or even deliberate changes in the text. The Greek and the Slavonic texts are published in the two Appendices. The Greek one – according to its full redaction, and the Slavic one – according to its oldest copy from the Zograph Monastery with variations based on the Moscow manuscript (№ 3171).

  • Issue Year: 2013
  • Issue No: 47
  • Page Range: 121-147
  • Page Count: 27
  • Language: Bulgarian