To the Question of Sources and Influences in Cyril of Skythopolis’ Works

Vestnik Volgogradskogo Gosudarstvennogo Universiteta. Seriâ 4. Istoriâ, Regionovedenie, Meždunarodnye Otnošeniâ. 2018;23(5):169-178 DOI 10.15688/jvolsu4.2018.5.15

 

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Journal Title: Vestnik Volgogradskogo Gosudarstvennogo Universiteta. Seriâ 4. Istoriâ, Regionovedenie, Meždunarodnye Otnošeniâ

ISSN: 1998-9938 (Print); 2312-8704 (Online)

Publisher: Volgograd State University

Society/Institution: Volgograd State University

LCC Subject Category: History (General) and history of Europe: History of Russia. Soviet Union. Former Soviet Republics | Political science: International relations

Country of publisher: Russian Federation

Language of fulltext: Russian

Full-text formats available: PDF

 

AUTHORS

Yuliya V. Sheludchenko (Department of World History, Belgorod State National Research University, Belgorod, Russian Federation)
Nikolay N. Bolgov (Department of World History, Belgorod State National Research University, Belgorod, Russian Federation)

EDITORIAL INFORMATION

Double blind peer review

Editorial Board

Instructions for authors

Time From Submission to Publication: 7 weeks

 

Abstract | Full Text

Introduction. Сyril of Scythopolis (524 – after 559) is one of the most famous early Byzantine hagiographers, the most important source on the history of the Palestinian monastery of the Judean Desert of the 6th century AD. The preserved lives of Saints, despite a high degree of originality, have well-established sources. Methods. The methodological basis of the work is the conception of Late Antiquity in the spirit of the continuum, as part of the theory of local civilizations. The historical and biographical (relative to the person of Cyril) methods and the method of content analysis (regarding the content of sources) have also been used. Analysis. The sources can be divided into literary, documentary, oral and autobiographical. The works of Cyril do not show us the knowledge of classical, non-Christian works. By this, Cyril of Scythopolis is different significantly from the majority of writers of late Antique time. Cyril was not the only monk of the 6thcentury Palestine who wrote about the saints. Nevertheless, it is the lives written by Cyril of Scythopolis that give us the most vivid picture of the monastic life of the 6th-century Palestine, especially the Judean Desert. Cyril’s sources were diverse, and their use allows us to conclude that a reasonable degree of borrowing does not distort the reliability of most of the historical information reported. Cyril is a very accurate historian and a connoisseur of Palestine, and his religiosity is not at all original, but typical, never embellishing what he saw. He is full of naive prejudices, but never burdens his compositions with fabulous details. Therefore, it is an important source not only for the history of the church and monasticism, but also for the whole history of Early Byzantium. Results. Sources of Cyril are quite diverse, and their use allows us to make conclusion about a reasonable degree of borrowing, not distorting the reliability of most of the reported historical information. The authors of the article have divided the research tasks in the following way: the analytics and the main conclusions have been prepared by Yu.V. Sheludchenko; N.N. Bolgov has worked with Greek originals, specifying terms and categories and carried out general editof the text.