Euchologion [Missal and Ritual of the Orthodox Church]
In Greek, manuscript on paper
Greece, c. 1600-1630 AD
- 31 500 €
90 leaves, paper folded in 4°, chain-distance 30 mm, watermarks similar to Velkov’s ancre inscrite dans un cercle nos. 147-158 (AD 1611) and arbalète nos. 5-18 (AD 1605-1627); quires, signed in Cyrillic by a later hand in the central lower margins of their first page, starting with „ron f. 2r: i (of 12, ff. 1-11 lost), xii (of 12), xi (of 11), vi (of 6), viii (of 8), viii (of 8), viii (of 8), viii (of 8), viii (of 8), xii (of 12), viii (of 10, f. 9-10 lost); old pagination in Greek, starting with κγ’ on f. 1r; 13 lines per page, justification c. 140 x 90 mm. Eighteenth-century Ottoman binding of blind-tooled brown leather over squared and grooved wooden boards, raised endbands, no ridges on the spine, flyleaves lost, front pastedown apparently original, back pastedown replaced c. 1900-1950. Dimensions 207 x 145 mm.
All Greek manuscripts are rare on the market, even liturgical ones. In spite of its relatively late date, the present manuscript merits further study and may be of interest to liturgical scholars (the text of each Euchologion is diffferent). This volume is further noteworthy for three reasons: first, its old binding is well preserved; second, in spite of its late date, its handwriting imitates calligraphic hands of the late Byzantine period; third, it belonged to the little-known but noteworthy Italian bibliophile Emilio Pittaluga
1. The volume is written by a single hand on homogeneous paper. The scribe did not sign his name, and his handwriting cannot be readily identified. The manuscript’s dating is based on the paper watermarks
2. In a church in a Bulgarian-speaking region, judging by the Bulgarian names recorded (with Greek letters) for commemoration on the front pastedown (living: Трифун, Митан, Ангели, Христо, Апостоли, Соколе, Димитри, Стоян, Никола, Кире, Магдапресвитера, Зафира, Ружа, Костура; deceased: Михаилйереа, Недялко, Стоян, Гюро, Новаце, Стале, Стойко, Бисера, Ангьо, Маламапресвитера, Нехтана), from the Cyrillic transliteration on the front pastedown (“макарiось, агiось”) and in the margin on f. 1r (“еθыдеωмеθаvперь”), and from the unfinished invocation on f. 48v (“кωйпеетънаωваякнига...”, i.e. “let he who chants from this book...”).
3. Emilio Pittaluga, Genoa, his bookplate on the back pastedown (“Dei fidens justitiae. Ex libris Emilio Pittaluga, iudicium”)
4. L.A., a bookplate on the back pastedown (“ΤΟ ΞΥΛΟΝ ΤΟΥ ΓΙΝΩΣΚΕΙΝ ΚƒŸΛΟΝ ΚƒŸΙ ΠΟΝΗΡΟΝ, L. A.”)
ff. 1r-30v, Divine Liturgy of St John Chrysostom http://analogion.gr/glt/texts/Oro/Lit_with_Deacon.uni.htm, beginning lost. Inc. [ἡ]μῖν χαρισάμενος προσευχᾶς, ὁ (καὶ) δυσὶ καὶ τρισὶ συφωνοῦσιν (sic)...;
ff. 31r-70v, Divine Liturgy of St Basil the Great (of Caesarea) http://analogion.gr/glt/texts/Oro/Basil_Liturgy.uni.htm.
ff. 71r-86v, Divine Liturgy of the Pre-Sanctified Gifts http://analogion.gr/glt/texts/Oro/Pro.uni.htm.
ff. 87r-90v, Prayer spoken by the confessor over those who are about to receive Communion, Εὐχὴ λεγομ(ένη) ὑπὸ π(ν(ευμα)τικοῦ π(ατ)ρ(ὸ)ς ἐπὶ τοὺς μέ(λλοντ)ους μ(ετα)λαβάνειν (sic). Inc. Κ(ύρι)ε ὁ Θ(εὸ)ς ἡμῶν Ἰ(ησο)ῦ Χ(ριστ)έ, υἱὲ καὶ λόγε Θ(εο)ῦ τοῦ ζῶντος, ποιμὴν καὶ ἀμνὲ, ὁ αἴρων τὴν ἁμαρτίαν τοῦ κόσμου... [ed. Arranz, 103-9], end lost, des. τῶν ζωοποιῶν καὶ ἀχράντων μυστηρίων· τῶν ἀθανάτων καὶ.
An Euchologion is an essential liturgical book, containing, as this one does, the texts of the three eucharistic Liturgies used in the Eastern Orthodox Church. These are usually followed by other church services and prayers which vary from manuscript to manuscript. The Euchologion is one of the chief liturgical books of the Orthodox Church, containing the portions of the services that are said by the bishop, priest, and deacon (it corresponds more or less with the Catholic Missal and Ritual). The oldest such text is a Greek manuscript written around 790 (Barberini Euchologion, Gr. 336), and the first printed edition was published in Venice in 1526. No two manuscript Euchologia are identical.
In spite of its relatively late date, the present manuscript merits further study and may be of interest to liturgical scholars. The present volume is further interesting for three reasons: first, its old binding is well preserved; second, in spite of its late date, its handwriting imitates calligraphic hands of the late Byzantine period (see Politis, 1977, below); third, it belonged to the little-known but noteworthy Italian bibliophile Emilio Pittaluga (on him, see F. Alberico, Le origini e lo sviluppo del fascismo a Genova, Milan, 2002, 37-38).
Arranz, M. “Les prières pénitentielles de la tradition byzantine,” Orientalia Christiana periodica 57 (1991), pp. 87-143, 309-329.
Goar, J., ed. Euchologion, sive Rituale Graecorum, 2d ed., Venice, 1730; repr. Graz, 1960; also on-line at http://books.google.com.
Politis, L. “Persistances byzantines dans l’écriture liturgique du XVIIe siècle,” in La paléographie grecque et byzantine, Paris, 1977, pp. 371-381.
Velkov, A. Les filigranes dans les documents ottomans: divers types d’images, Sofia, 2005.
Schaefe, L., ed. Greek Liturgical Texts of the Orthodox Church (in Greek)
“Euchologion” in the Catholic Encyclopedia
On the Barbarini Euchologion (Gr. 336)