Fragments of Philip of Side now online

There are quite a few fragments of the monster Christian History of Philip of Side around, but no complete English translation has ever been made — until now.   Last year I commissioned Andrew Eastbourne to do it, and it is now complete and online.

A PDF of the collection is available from Archive.org here.  The HTML version is here.

I’m placing this in the public domain — do whatever you like with it.

A translation of the Religionsgesprach am Hof der Sasaniden will be uploaded shortly.

7 Responses to “Fragments of Philip of Side now online”


  1. H. Jeremiah Lewis

    Oh, exciting! That actually contains some material relevant to my studies that I’ve never come across before.

  2. Roger Pearse

    Better still! There’s all sorts of interesting snippets out there, which no-one knows about.

    Might I ask which bit you were interested in? (It doesn’t matter if you’d rather not say). I don’t know whether the Religionsgesprach will help as well, but take a look at that.

    The translation arrived in .doc form, and I converted those to PDF. So the PDF’s are probably more accurate than the HTML, as the latter required quite a bit of working over!

  3. jo rosenblum

    I’ve so enjoyed reading the material…..thank you

  4. H. Jeremiah Lewis

    I know! Even with as much research as I’ve done, there’s always new material to discover and that’s very exciting indeed.

    I don’t mind sharing my interests at all. Basically I have two driving intellectual passions. The first is the Hellenistic era generally – it’s politics, religion, literature, history, etc. – with a special emphasis on the Ptolemies and Egypt. Secondly (and somewhat related to this) I’m intrigued by Dionysos, who was the divine patron of the Ptolemaic Dynasty.

    He was much more than that, of course, and people have been talking about him pretty continuously from about 1300 BCE up to the present. I’ve explored a lot of that, including much later cultural depictions such as you find during the Byzantine era, the Renaissance, among the Romantics, Pre-Raphaelites, etc. and it’s fascinating to see what remains the same and what changes. (One of the most amusing of these modern depictions is Os Lusíadas, the Portuguese national epic written by Luís Vaz de Camões which has Bacchus as the protagonist attempting to stop Vasco da Gama and his men from reaching India. Intriguingly he makes him the god of Muslims – a curious notion also found in John Milton, though it’s unlikely that the great English bard ever read Camões.)

    At one point I had an ambitious plan to track down every reference to Dionysos from antiquity. I spent months in our university library filling up nearly a dozen notebooks, making hundreds of photocopies and so forth. Eventually I gave up on the project because there was just too much stuff (plus I had a computer crash and lost an agonizing amount of this research – the only stuff left was what I’d failed to type up or used in other projects) but I keep an eye out still for material I haven’t come across before. Such as the Religionsgesprach and a few other things you’ve posted here (like the material on the Brumalia a while back.)

  5. Roger Pearse

    Ah, you’re a Ptolemy are you? I was interested in the Seleucids, and got Bevan’s “House of Seleucus” as a boy. You must know his corresponding tome on the Ptolemies.

    I’m impressed by your Dionysus project. But yes, I’m not sure how easy it would be to do. I’m just confining myself to a subset.

    The material on the Brumalia from John the Lydian was useful. I have Andrew Eastbourne translating the stuff from the same work for the month of March at the moment (22 pages) which ought to be interesting!

  6. H. Jeremiah Lewis

    Oh yes! Bevan’s work is very near and dear to my heart. I first came across it, thanks to Bill Thayer’s site, years before my fascination with them truly took off whilst researching something else. In a lot of ways it’s what kicked the whole thing off, which shows the importance of what people like you and Mr. Thayer are doing by making all of this material available on the internet.

    I am definitely looking forward to anything else you post from De Mensibus, since it’s full of very valuable information and is constantly being cited in scholarly works. I’d love to have the opportunity to read it in full some day, but that’s not very likely considering my situation.

  7. Roger Pearse

    Bill’s site is very valuable, I agree.

    I’d like to get all of De Mensibus into English, but it depends mainly on availability of translators. We’ll see how “March” goes.