Five Private Christian Letters from Egypt


  • Sergej Valijev Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Institute of Slovenian Literature and Literary Studies, Ljubljana, Slovenia



Christian letters from late antiquity, early Christian community in Egypt, bishop Sotas, Oxyrhynchus


The article discusses five private letters found in Egypt, dating from the 3rd and 4th centuries A.D.: P. Bour. 25, PSI X 1161, P. Oxy 12 1492, PSI III 208 and PSI IX 1041. There is sufficient evidence for ascribing them to Christian authors. The indications allowing such identification are particularly the opening and closing formulae and the use of nomina sacra. The letters of Sotas, who was probably the bishop of Oxyrhynchus in the second half of the 3rd century, provide some data about the ecclesiastic organisation in this period. Furthermore, the paper draws attention to those orthographic and grammatical characteristics of the documents which deviate from the language norms of the classical period. These features grant us some insight into this stage of development of the Greek language.


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Izdaje pisem

P. Bour.: P. Collart, izd. Les Papyrus Bouriant. Paris: Honoré Champion, 1962.

P. Oxy 12: B. Grenfell in A. Hunt, izd. The Oxyrhynchus Papyri. 12. zv. London: Egypt Exploration Fund, 1916.

PSI III: T. Lodi, izd. Papiri greci e latini. 3. zv. Firence: Felice le Monnier, 1914.

PSI IX: G. Coppola, izd. Papiri greci e latini. 9. zv. Firence: Felice le Monnier, 1929.

PSI X: G. Vitelli izd. Papiri greci e latini. 10. zv. Firence: Felice le Monnier, 1932.


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