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April 2008

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Seraf

The Pearl

I just  spent about 30 to 40 minutes photocopying the Syriac text of the wonderful gnosticizing "Hymn of the Pearl" found in the Acts of Thomas. My superviser has had the good taste to teach me Syriac, and why not use it to read a text in the original that I have long adored in translation? I'm actually thinking of writing something about it (something scholarly, that is) at some point after the dissertation is ready. We'll see.

The text is a wonderfully poetic allegory on the soul's capitivity in matter: a young prince is sent by his royal parents to "Egypt", to fetch a pearl from an evil dragon. But he eats of the Egyptian food and drinks the Egyptian drinks, and he forgets his home and is charmed. He is caught in a foreign land, without any ability to free himself. Finally, a letter from the parents "wakes him up", and so he captures his pearl and returns home to wear his robe of glory. A translation of this wonderful text can be found at http://www.gnosis.org/library/hymnpearl.htm .

Comments

Friends?

Nu tarhunza, nu tarhunza!
I also care for hittite, hurrian and other ancient near-eastern and indo-european stuff and have thus friended you. Feel free to friend me back!

Re: Friends?

Siwannes-ta assulli pahsantaru!

Of course - it's always a pleasure to get into contact with others with similar deviant interests :-D
I have personally been somewhat inactive on LJ lately (mainly due to lots of work and a Swedish blog to take care of), but I plan to make amends!