I had an email today enquiring about editions of the works of Severian of Gabala. This chap was a bishop from Syria who became well-known as a preacher in Constantinople at the end of the 4th century AD, despite a heavy Syrian accent. Unfortunately he fell out with John Chrysostom, and became involved in the evil proceedings that led up to the deposition of the latter. He belonged to the Antiochene school of biblical exegesis, and took a very literal approach to everything, sometimes to the point of absurdity.
A bunch of his sermons are extant, mostly in Greek, but some in Armenian, Syriac and Coptic. In addition fragments of his work appear in the catenas. Writers who treat the text literally inevitably tend to be useful to people compiling catenas and other forms of commentary.
I have been unable to discover any edition of his works more recent than Migne in the Patrologia Graeca 66. This itself is a reprint of an edition by the 18th century French Benedictine editor Montfaucon, the man who invented Greek paleography. It looks as if there is an edition by a certain Savile which is also around, but again elderly and not mentioned by Quasten (although it is noted by the Clavis Patrum Graecorum — and why is that essential list of patristic texts not online?). I’ll also ask in LT-ANTIQ whether anyone is working on an edition.
The query related to a possible interesting quotation from Mark in the homily de sigillis librorum. A while ago someone wrote to me offering their services for translation, and I declined, being fully busy right now! But I see that the homily is only 15 columns of Migne — 531-544 — or rather 7-8 once we ignore the parallel Latin translation. So I have offered a commission on it to her, and we’ll see if (a) she accepts and (b) can deliver a good translation. Why not? I’ll give it away free online, of course.
It will be the first translation of any of the Migne collection of sermons. The Migne covers cols. 411-590 or around 200 columns; 100 columns of Greek, or about $2,000 at my usual rate for such things. How little money that is, to any institution! But it’s more than I have kicking around at the moment!
UPDATE: An email has pointed out that ‘Savile’ must be the 17th century editor of the 8-volume complete works of Chrysostom, Henry Savile. A meeting room at Merton College Oxford commemorates his name even now, although when I was there I certainly didn’t associate “the Savile Room” with 17th century editors!