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Studies in Iranian Philology

Barbera, Gerardo, Matteo De Chiara, Alessandro Del Tomba, Bhikkhunī Dhammadinnā, Federico Dragoni & Paola Orsatti (eds.). 2024. Siddham. Studies in Iranian philology in honour of Mauro Maggi. Wiesbaden: Ludwig Reichert Verlag.

This volume is a tribute to Mauro Maggi, celebrating his distinguished career and significant contributions in the fields of Iranian, Indo-Aryan, and Central Asian philology and linguistics. It features a diverse collection of papers presented by colleagues, former students, and friends, reflecting the broad spectrum of Mauro Maggi’s research interests. This collection not only honours Mauro Maggi’s extensive scholarly contributions but also serves as a valuable resource for researchers in Iranian, Indo-Aryan, and Central Asian studies. It will be of interest and value to scholars of Iranian philology and linguistics, as well as those in Indo-European linguistics, Central Asian philology, and Buddhist literature. Through this comprehensive tribute, the volume underscores the lasting impact of Mauro Maggi’s work and his enduring legacy in the field.

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Books

Der Manichäismus

Hutter, Manfred. 2023. Der Manichäismus. Vom Iran in den Mittelmeerraum und über die Seidenstraße nach Südchina. Anton Hiersemann Verlag.

Das erste umfassende deutschsprachige Handbuch der unterschiedlichen religionsgeschichtlichen Ausformungen des Manichäismus seit 1961.

Der in der Mitte des 3. Jahrhunderts u.Z. entstandene Manichäismus war die erste „weltweit“ verbreitete Religion. Mani (216-277) präsentierte seine aus biblisch-gnostischen und iranisch-zoroastrischen Vorstellungen schrittweise entwickelte Lehre als den älteren Religionen überlegen, um die Lehre Jesu im Westen, Zarathustras im Iran und Buddhas in Indien abzulösen. Dieser Überlegenheitsanspruch wurde jeweils lokal spezifiziert, was von christlichen Theologen, zoroastrischen Priestern und chinesischen buddhistischen Gelehrten nicht unkommentiert blieb. Dadurch lässt sich diese Religion durch religionsinterne Quellen sowie externe Fremdbeschreibungen facettenreich rekonstruieren.

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Books

Women in Western and Eastern Manichaeism

Scopello, Madeleine. 2022. Women in Western and Eastern Manichaeism (Nag Hammadi and Manichaean Studies, 101). Leiden: Brill.

The exceptional place women held in Manichaeism, in everyday life or myth, is the object of this book. Relying on firsthand Manichaean texts in several languages and on polemical sources, as well as on iconography, the various papers analyze aspects of women’s social engagement by spreading Mani’s doctrine, working to support the community, or corresponding with other Manichaean groups. Topics such as women’s relation to the body and elect or hearer status are also investigated. The major role played by female entities in the myth is enlightened through occidental and oriental texts and paintings discovered in Central Asia and China.

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Events

Manichaean Studies

Sasanian King Šāpūr with Mani. Agra (India), 1610–1620. © British Library Board (Add MS 5600, folio 404v)

10th International Conference of the International Association of Manichaean Studies

Tenth Conference of the International Association of Manichaean Studies to be held at Aarhus University (Denmark), Monday 8th – Thursday 11th August 2022

Organizers: Nils Arne Pedersen, Aarhus University, President of IAMS & René Falkenberg, Aarhus University Gunner Mikkelsen, Macquarie University, Secretary of IAMS

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Books

The Manichaean Coptic Papyri

Richter, Siegfried (ed.). 2022. The Manichaean Coptic papyri in the Chester Beatty library: Psalm Book Part I, 1 (Corpus Fontium Manichaeorum: Series Coptica 3). Turnhout: Brepols.

Das manichäische Psalmenbuch der Chester Beatty Library gehört zu den sieben Codices des Fundes, der sich zum größten Teil in einem sehr schlechten Zustand befand. Mit der Restaurierung in Berlin begann eine rege Editionstätigkeit, die durch den 2. Weltkrieg unterbrochen wurde. Vom Psalmenbuch wurde die besser erhaltene zweite Hälfte (PsB II) 1938 von C.R.C. Allberry publiziert. Der bis auf einige Einzelpsalmen noch unpublizierte vordere Teil des Buches (PsB I) befand sich in einem sehr viel schlechteren Erhaltungszustand und umfasste ursprünglich 396 Seiten. In dieser ersten Ausgabe werden 122 Seiten mit koptischem Text und deutscher Übersetzung dem Leser zugänglich gemacht. Die poetisch anspruchsvollen Lieder bieten einen originalen Einblick in die manichäische Religion. Neben einer Psalmgruppe, die die ältesten Sonnenhymnen des Manichäismus bewahrte, geben einige Psalmen in 22 Strophen den Inhalt vom Lebendigem Evangelium des Religionsgründers Mani wieder.

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Books

Dictionary of Manichaean Texts

Sims-Williams, Nicholas & Desmond Durkin-Meisterernst. 2022. Dictionary of Manichaean texts (Corpus Fontium Manichaeorum: Subsidia 7). Volume III, 2: Texts from Central Asia and China (Texts in Sogdian and Bactrian). Turnhout: Brepols. Second, revised and enlarged edition.

This revised and substantially enlarged edition of the Dictionary of Manichaean Texts covers the vocabulary of all Manichaean (and anti-Manichaean) texts in Sogdian and Bactrian (material published up to 2020, including short passages and even individual words which have been cited in print). Unlike the first edition, it also contains a substantial amount of material from texts which are still unpublished, especially unusual or otherwise unattested words and expressions. As before, the volume contains a full bibliography, references to discussions in the scholarly literature, and numerous corrections to previously published readings and interpretations. It is completed by an English index. Providing an up-to-date analysis of all published Manichaean material in the Eastern Middle Iranian languages, the new edition of the Dictionary will continue to be an essential tool for everyone interested in Manichaeism, Iranian languages, or Central Asian history.

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Books

A Manichaean Prayer and Confession Book

Sims-Williams, Nicholas, John S. Sheldon & Zsuzsanna Gulácsi. 2022. A Manichaean prayer and confession book. (Corpus Fontium Manichaeorum: Series Iranica 1). Turnhout: Brepols.

The Manichaean Prayer and Confession Book is the best-preserved Manichaean book found in the Turfan area and the only one which survives in the form of a bound codex. It constitutes a precious treasure-trove of information on its three Iranian languages, on the Manichaean religion itself, and on Manichaean codicology and book-art. The surviving parts of this beautifully decorated miniature paper codex include Middle Persian and Parthian hymns and readings for the Bema festival, the high-point of the Manichaean liturgical calendar, followed by an elaborate confessional formula for the Elect in the Sogdian language. Until now this manuscript has been accessible for scholarship only from its 1937 edition in German by W. B. Henning, titled ‘Ein manichäisches Bet- und Beichtbuch’ (BBB). This new edition provides the first English translation by Nicholas Sims-Williams, the first codicological study by Zsuzsanna Gulacsi and an introduction by John S. Sheldon. It also includes the supplementary Sogdian texts which Henning added to his ‘BBB’. It incorporates magnificent colour photos, codicological diagrams, and digital reconstructions never seen before. This beautifully-produced volume appropriately inaugurates the Series Iranica of the Corpus Fontium Manichaeorum.

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Books

Mani and His Religion

Taqizadeh, Seyyed Hasan. Mani e la sua religione. Translated by Simone Cristoforetti and Andrea Piras, Mimesis, 2020.

Mani and his Religion contains the text of two lectures that the well-known statesman and scholar Hasan Taqizadeh (1878-1970) gave at the Iranological Society of Tehran on 15 December 1949 and 1 February 1951, published in 1956. In addition to its importance in reconstructing the history of Manichaeism, the work testifies to the indefatigable cultural activity that Taqizadeh was able to carry out, despite his leading official positions in the politics and diplomatic representation of his country, Iran. His great courage and intellectual honesty led Taqizadeh to investigate an area – the dualistic religion of the heretic Mani – considered more than disreputable in Iran at the time, in the conviction that Mani and Manichaeism had represented one of the most important cultural phenomena in the history of late Iran and beyond. The translation proposed here is accompanied by a historical background of the author and a bibliographical update on the themes of the text.

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Constructions of Gender

Towers, Susanna. 2019. Constructions of gender in late antique Manichaean cosmological narrative (Studia Traditionis Theologiae 34).

Manichaeism emerged from Sasanian Persia in the third century CE and flourished in Persia, the Roman Empire, Central Asia and beyond until succumbing to persecution from rival faiths in the eighth to ninth century. Its founder, Mani, claimed to be the final embodiment of a series of prophets sent over time to expound divine wisdom.
This monograph explores the constructions of gender embedded in Mani’s colourful dualist cosmological narrative, in which a series of gendered divinities are in conflict with the demonic beings of the Kingdom of Darkness. The Jewish and Gnostic roots of Mani’s literary constructions of gender are examined in parallel with Sasanian societal expectations. Reconstructions of gender in subsequent Manichaean literature reflect the changing circumstances of the Manichaean community.
As the first major study of gender in Manichaean literature, this monograph draws upon established approaches to the study of gender in late antique religious literature, to present a portrait of a historically maligned and persecuted religious community.

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When the dualists argued

Ruani, Flavia & Mihaela Timus (eds.). 2020. Quand les dualistes polémiquaient: Zoroastriens et manichéens (Orient & Méditerranée, 34). Leuven: Peeters.

The authors of this collected volume show that Zoroastrianism and Manichaeism, which share a dualist vision of the world and the primordial entities, have raised in a similar way to Judaism, Christianity and Islam the question of the relationship of their followers to truth and therefore the error made by others. The volume makes a fundamental contribution to the study of the phenomenon of religious controversy in Late Antiquity and the early Middle Ages. It allows us to better understand two Eastern systems of thought, both in what they have in common and in their irreducible individuality.