There comes a time in the life of every man interested in patristics when he needs to know about classical Armenian literature. Hoc est hora. There must be fragments of Eusebius in Armenian catenas, I reason. But where to look?
The indefatigable Robert W. Thomson gave us a Bibliography of classical Armenian literature to 1500, published by Brepols in 1995 and available for an eye-watering sum. I think that I will try and do an ILL for that!
But while surfing for it, in abebooks.co.uk I came across something strange, something otherwise unknown to Google. It’s a series called “The Armenian Classical Authors”, published by the Armenian Catholicosate of Cilicia ca. 2005. There are at least 5 volumes, each running to around $100. It starts with the 5th century of course. Contents are in Armenian, which is why they don’t show up in an English-language book search.
Book Description: Armenian Catholicosate of Cilicia, 2005. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. The Armenian Classical Authors Volume IV, 7th Century. Yegavian, Zaven (Director).
Book Description: The Armenian Catholicosate of Cilicia, Antelias (Lebanon), 2005. Hard Cover. Book Condition: New. First Edition. xiii, 791 pp., Armenian text, double columns per page, hard back. A series of studies covering large number of Armenian authors. The idea of this work was pursued by his Holiness Aram I Catholicos. In the occasion of the 1600 anniversary of the Armenian Alphabet Genesis, invented by Mesrob Mashdots, and in celebration of the Armenian Golden literary age of the fifth century. This work contain a bibliography of famous Armenian authors of the fifth century, together with a study and analysis of the work of each author. Due to weight and size of the book, shipping to outside of the USA is $39.00. Inside USA is $10.00. Size: 8 1/2″ x 11″
How fascinating! How wonderful that such a book should exist. I’ve even managed to find an online bookseller in Lebanon who stocks it, Kutub Ltd (and even my Syriac is enough to recognise the triliteral root KTB = book). Nice to see the Lebanese abandoning their pointless civil wars long enough to make money. But… any chance of it in English?
Later: I’ve been asking in LT-ANTIQ, and the excellent Dominique Gonnet has told me that the Clavis Patrum Graecorum supplements cover versions of Greek texts in Syriac, Armenian, etc. I must hie me to a library and look!