The Chapters of the Wisdom of My Lord Mani

Part III: Pages 343-442 (Chapters 321-347)


The Chapters of the Wisdom of My Lord Mani, a Coptic papyrus codex preserved at the Chester Beatty Library in Dublin, describes Mani’s mission, teachings and debates with sages in the courts of the Sasanian empire during the reign of Shapur I; with an extended account of his last days and death under Bahram I. The text offers an unprecedented new source for the history of religions in Late Antiquity, including interactions of Manichaean, Zoroastrian, Christian, Jewish, and Buddhist traditions in Iran, remarkably transmitted into the Mediterranean world as part of Manichaean missionary literature. This is the first of four fascicles constituting the editio princeps, based on enhanced digital and multispectral imaging and extended autoptic study of the manuscript.

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Jason BeDuhn, Ph.D. (1995), Indiana University, is Professor of the Comparative Study of Religions at Northern Arizona University. He is the author of The Manichaean Body (Baltimore, 2000) and Augustine’s Manichaean Dilemma (Philadelphia, 2010/2013).

Paul C. Dilley, Ph.D. (2008), Yale University, is Assistant Professor of Ancient Mediterranean Religions at the University of Iowa. He is the author of Monasteries and the Care of Souls in Late Antique Christianity: Cognition and Discipline (Cambridge, 2017).

Iain Gardner, Ph.D. (1983), University of Manchester, is Professor of the History of Religions at Sydney University. He has published widely on Manichaean studies, and edited many original papyri in Coptic, notably on behalf of the Dakhleh Oasis Project.

"... it is extremely helpful to have [...] the text available in an edition of the Coptic text with facing English translation."

Paul Foster, University of Edinburgh, The Expository Times 130(3)

'this long-awaited volume will stimulate further research on an important body of late antique religious literature that remains poorly understood and under-explored. [...] It should be of interest not only to scholars of Manichaeism specifically, but also to students of Late Antiquity more generally, as well as the Coptological community. It is highly recommended, and the remaining volumes are eagerly anticipated.'
Timothy Pettipiece, Carleton University, Vigiliae Christianae 74 (2020)
All interested in the history of Late Antique religions, whether in the Roman or the Sasanian Empire, and the development of early Christianity.
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