Georgian Christian Thought and Its Cultural Context

Memorial Volume for the 125th Anniversary of Shalva Nutsubidze (1888-1969).


The volume contains contributions dedicated to the person and the work of Shalva Nutsubidze and his scholarly interests: the Christian Orient from the fifth to the seventh century, the Georgian eleventh century, the Neoplatonic philosopher Ioane Petritsi and his epoch and Shota Rustaveli and mediaeval Georgian culture. Among the articles are a new edition and translation of the original Georgian author’s Preface to the lost Commentary on the Psalms by Ioane Petritsi and the editio princeps with an English translation of an epistle of Nicetas Stethatos (eleventh century), whose Greek original is lost.

The traditions of Georgian mediaeval thought are considered in their historical context within the Byzantine Commonwealth and are traced in both philosophy and poetry.
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Biographical Note

Cornelia B. Horn, Ph.D. (2001), Dr. phil. habil. (2011) is a Senior Researcher at the University of Tübingen and a Research Fellow at The Catholic University of America. Author of Asceticism and Christological Controversy in Fifth-Century Palestine: The Career of Peter the Iberian (Oxford, 2006).

Basil Lourié, Ph.D. (2002), Dr.phil.habil. (2008), is the Editor of Scrinium. Revue de patrologie, d'hagiographie critique et d'histoire ecclésiastique. He has many publications on the Christian Orient, including Peter the Iberian and Dionysius the Areopagite, Scrinium 6 (2010) 143-212.

Table of contents

Shalva Nutsubidze and His World
Selected Bibliography of Shalva Nutsubidze’s Scholarly Works
Tamara Nutsubidze – Shalva Nutsubidze: From Alethology to Neoplatonism.
Demur Jalaghonia – Alethology as the First Philosophy

Epoch of the Corpus Areopagiticum
Christopher Haas – Geopolitics and Georgian Identity in Late Antiquity: the Dangerous World of Vakhtang Gorgasali
Cornelia Horn – Transgressing Claims to Sacred Space: The Advantage of the Portability of Relics in the Christological Conflicts in Syria-Palestine in the Fifth and Sixth Centuries CE
Tuomo Lankila – The Corpus Areopagiticum and Proclus’ Divine Interface
Basil Lourié – Philosophy of Dionysius the Areopagite: An Approach to the Intensional Semantics
David Shengelia – The Author of the Scholia to the Doctrina Patrum
Youhanna Nessim Youssef – Severus of Antioch as Canonist in the Copto-Arabic Tradition
Alexander Toepel – Zur Bedeutung der Begriffe ‚Hypostase‘ und ‚Prosopon‘ bei Babai dem Großen

Ioane Petritsi and His Time
Lela Alexidze – One in the Beings’ and ‚One within Us’: Basis of the Union with the One in Ioane Petritsi’s Interpretation of Proclus’ Elements of Theology
Levan Gigineishvili – On Ioane Petritsi’s Preface to His Commented Translation of the Book of Psalms [with the first English tr. and a new edition of the Georgian text]
Damana Melikishvili – Ioane Petritsi and John Italus on Two Original Causes
Maia Raphava – Georgian Translations of Nicetas Stethatos’s Epistles (According to Arsen Iqaltoeli’s Dogmatikon) [with the editio princeps of a letter lost in Greek].

Shota Rustaveli and Georgian Culture
Elguja Khintibidze – Towards Rustaveli’s Place in Medieval European-Christian Thought
Maka Elbakidze, Irma Ratiani – Shota Rustaveli’s Romance The Knight in the Panther’s Skin in the Context of European Chivalric Romance: An Anthropological Approach
Mikheil Makharadze – Philosophical Ideas of the Corpus Areopagiticum in “The Knight in the Panther’s Skin”
N. Doborjgenidze – Religious Inculturation and Problems of Social History of the Georgian Language
Adam McCollum – The Application of Thought to Language Learning: An Experiment in the Study of Old Georgian.


All interested in the cultures of the Christian Orient and mediaeval Georgian culture in particular, the history of Neoplatonic philosophy, Shota Rustaveli and Georgian epic poetry.


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