Old church books, we (hardly) known today Cover Image

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Old church books, we (hardly) known today

Author(s): Lucian Petroaia
Subject(s): Christian Theology and Religion, Theology and Religion
Keywords: printing; prints; old book; sacred heritage; value; rediscovery;

Summary/Abstract: Old church/religious book, printed or handwritten, is a separate chapter in the mobile sacred heritage. Churches with history, monasteries, diocesan centers, museum collections, restoration centers holding such valuable pieces, display them in temporary or permanent exhibitions, at high-class cultural events or by publishing catalogues of great interest to specialists and not only. However, in our century, excessively pragmatic and secularized, very often even rare copies, both searched and researched, are forgotten or aren’t enough highlighted. This observation (in fact, realistic) generated the motivation-message of this study: some of the old "leading" books with an ecclesiastical content, less and less used today, both in the common worship, and in the particular one, too, haven’t to be allowed "to die", as happened to some of "their older sisters"! This danger is imminent for some books, still used in the public or particular liturgical worship: Homiliary, Lavsaicon, Limonariu, Everghetinos, Paterikon, Matericul, Little store etc. It is true that, during the last years, some of these books were reedited and reprinted. Others that were widely used in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries haven’t been printed again. Thus, a lot of religious books, expression of the liturgical and spiritual life of the age mentioned above, disappeared; all the books that it will be speaking below, once "living" and present in universal liturgical worship or in the Christian piety use, today they "died"! They are still only in collections, deposits, funds of "old" books and some of them are very few or even unique. The present study is also a warning so that all the books listed above, having in view this argument (and others, being under the same "threat") do not to add to those below; do not get headlines and contents about which nobody knows anything! The present pleading and urging should give us reasons to believe in the fast "destiny" of the church book, which should overcome the centuries by its sacred message, by its printing beauty and by the love with which Christians give it life. Hence, the Latin Motto, which opens the study. Further presentation of those few copies of church old books forgotten and abandoned has in view three criteria: 1.a few "biographical data" of the printing: 2. its content; 3. other features of the studied copy/specimen.

  • Issue Year: XV/2017
  • Issue No: 15
  • Page Range: 246-272
  • Page Count: 27
  • Language: Romanian