Reading pre-WW1 handwriting

Don’t you hate it when the postman brings a whole pile of things that you’ve been waiting to work on, all on the same day?  Well that happened to me this morning, just as I was about to go off and get an Armenian grammar.

The first item is a printout of a microfilm of a Syriac text of Marutha of Maiperkat, On the Council of Nicaea, which I mentioned a while back.  Marutha lived in the 5th century and persuaded the Persian king to allow the Christians of that kingdom to hold a General Council, at which they ratified the Nicene Creed.  This particular copy consists of a modern 14-page handwritten booklet, presented to the American Oriental Society by a certain A.H.Wright.  Half of it is Syriac text, in Nestorian characters; the rest a handwritten English translation.  No published translation is known.

“Aha!” I hear you cry, “He’s going to transcribe the English and upload it.”  Indeed I am.  But I’m having trouble with about a dozen words.  Would anyone like to see if they can do better?  If you look in http://www.tertullian.org/00temp, you will see a file transcription.txt, and also a monster 128Mb marutha_eng.pdf.  It’s so large because I scanned the English at 600 dpi greyscale.

Contributions gratefully accepted!

Leave a Reply