ETHIOPIAN BIBLE IS OLDEST AND MOST COMPLETE ON EARTH

ETHIOPIAN BIBLE IS OLDEST AND MOST COMPLETE ON EARTH

8/11/2021, 7:20:04 PM
ETHIOPIAN BIBLE IS OLDEST AND MOST COMPLETE ON EARTH Beautifully illustrated, the colours are still vivid and thanks to the Ethiopian Heritage Fund have been conserved. Abba Garima arrived from Constantinople in 494 AD and legend has it that he was able to copy the Gospels in a day The incredible relic has been kept ever since in the Garima Monastery near Adwa in the north of the country, which is in the Tigray region at 7,000 feet. Experts believe it is also the earliest example of book binding still attached to the original pages. The survival of the Gospels is incredible considering the country has been under, Italian invasion and a fire in the 1930s destroyed the monastery’s church. They were written on goat skin in the early Ethiopian language of Ge’ez. There are two volumes which date from the same time, but the second is written in a different hand from the first. Both contain illustrations and the four Gospels. Though the texts had been mentioned by the occasional traveller since the 1950s, it had been thought they dated from the 11th century at the earliest. Carbon dating, however, gives a date between 330 and 650 – which tantalisingly overlaps the date Abba Garima arrived in the country. So the first volume could be in his hand – even if he didn’t complete the task in a day as the oral tradition states. The charity Ethiopian Heritage Fund that was set up to help preserve the treasures in the country has made the stunning discovery. It was also allowed incredibly rare access to the texts so experts could conserve them on site. Source orthochristian website Photographer unknown

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