An email from a correspondent revealed to me that the anonymous translation of John Chrysostom’s Eight homilies against the Jews was no longer accessible at the Fordham University site. This is a nuisance. What to do?
Back in 1998 Paul Halsall created the Medieval Sourcebook site there. He included this translation which he found online on anti-Jewish sites. The origins of the translation are unknown; it is not the standard translation found in the Fathers of the Church series. But Dr Halsall has long since moved on to other things, and the site seems rather neglected.
I have notified Fordham that the page is missing. But since the site is no longer actively maintained, even if the page should reappear, there is a considerable possibility that it will vanish again. If it remains missing, people looking for the text will be forced to find it in strange places.
Lately US universities have acquired a reputation for political intolerance and censorship. I have no way of knowing how true this is, but if it is correct, I can imagine that students and lecturers might find it unsafe or impossible to access the extremist sites on which copies of this translation presumably may still be found. Indeed might even referring to such a URL in an essay not place an unwary student at risk of official victimisation from an ill-disposed person? The Fordham site has a page indicating that there were calls for censorship, and suggesting that Dr Halsall displayed some professional bravery in placing it on his site.
In the circumstances I have felt that it would serve everyone best to add the anonymous translation to my own collection of translations of the Fathers, where it may be safely consulted by everyone, and sits next to other works of Chrysostom not found in the Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers collection. It is here:
The enquiry that reached me was in fact searching for a translation of Chrysostom’s sermon “Against Jews and Pagans, that Christ is God”. This has never been translated, as far as I know, which is a pity. It would be nice to complete the list of Chrysostom’s anti-Jewish works.
UPDATE: The Fordham page has mysteriously reappeared. The URL is different, tho: http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/chrysostom-jews6.asp