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Christianity and Monasticism in Middle Egypt$
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Gawdat Gabra and Hany Takla

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9789774166631

Published to Cairo Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.5743/cairo/9789774166631.001.0001

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Intellectual Life in Middle Egypt: The Case of the Monastery of Bawit (Sixth–Eighth Centuries)

Intellectual Life in Middle Egypt: The Case of the Monastery of Bawit (Sixth–Eighth Centuries)

(p.15) 2 Intellectual Life in Middle Egypt: The Case of the Monastery of Bawit (Sixth–Eighth Centuries)
Christianity and Monasticism in Middle Egypt

Alain Delattre

American University in Cairo Press

The monastery of Bawit is located on the west bank of the Nile, on the edge of the desert. At the beginning of the twentieth century, the site was excavated by a team from the Institut français dʻarchéologie orientale, led by the archaeologists Jean Clédat, Émile Chassinat, and Jean Maspero. The archaeological work and the discoveries in architecture, sculpture, and painting are fundamental to our knowledge of Coptic monasticism and art history. However, the intellectual history of the monastery remains largely unknown. No library has yet been discovered in Bawit, nor is any book inventory preserved. This chapter studies rare literary texts and other related material from Bawit that sheds light on the intellectual life at the monastery. It examines education and science there as well as the literary quotations on the walls of the monastery and the P. Cotsen 1 schoolbook.

Keywords:   monasteries, Bawit, intellectual life, museum archaeology, literary quotations, P. Cotsen 1 schoolbook, education, science

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