Via the EthiopianLit list, I receive this intriguing announcement of a talk at Princeton University in March, which I would certainly go to, if I could.
Nobody has any idea what exists in Ethiopic. There’s gold out there, you know?
Preserving the African Archive: Field Research on Early Manuscripts and Monasteries in Northern Ethiopia
Denis Nosnitsin, University of Hamburg
March 27, 2012 4:30 pm
127 East Pyne, Princeton University
Ethiopia has one Africa’s largest archives, with tens of thousands of written sources held in around 600 monasteries and 20,000 churches, some of which date to the early Middle Ages. Very little from these archives has received scholarly evaluation, with less than ten percent having been microfilmed or digitized and far fewer being researched or translated. A great part of this unique heritage is on the verge of extinction and urgent action needs to be taken to save it from complete disappearance.
In this talk, Dr. Nosnitsin will present information about his innovative project Ethio-Spare based at Hamburg University, funded by a European Research Council Starting Grant, and focused on digitizing the most important monastic libraries and archives in Ethiopia and creating searchable databases that will allow quantitative and qualitative research into Ethiopian literature. He will then present his own historical and philological research on two of the more important Ethiopian hagiographies. For more information, contact Wendy Laura Belcher firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dr. Denis Nosnitsin, a research fellow at Hamburg University, is an expert in African literatures, especially that in Ge`ez (Ethiopic), Amharic, and Tigrigna, as well as in the pre-modern history of the region. He is the principal investigator of the project Ethio-SPARE. His current research is on Ethiopian hagiography and historiography, monastic manuscript collections and Ethiopian Christian manuscript culture, and historical analysis of marginal notes and documents in Ethiopian manuscripts. His degree in African (Ethiopian) philology is from St. Petersburg State University. He has published in Aethiopica, Orientalia Christiana Periodica, Scrinium, and Africana Bulletin. For more information, see