A Royal Correspondence in the XVth and XVIth Centuries: the Documents of the Gospel of Däbrä Kärbe (Zana)

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Derat, Marie-Laure (2012)
  • Publisher: Universität Hamburg, Hiob Ludolf Centre for Ethiopian Studies
  • Journal: Aethiopica (issn: 2194-4024, eissn: 1430-1938)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.15460/aethiopica.9.1.241
  • Subject: Ethiopian Studies | Däbrä Kärbe (Zana); Tigre; Manuscripts; Gospel; Royal Correspondence; Ge'ez; | ddc:090 | ddc:230 | ddc:490 | ddc:400 | ddc:890 | ddc:960

One of the numerous manuscripts seen by C. Conti Rossini and copied for him deals with the monastery of Däbrä Kärbe, a religious community of Tigre. Some documents included in the Gospel of Däbrä Kärbe preserved traces of a correspondence between this community and the ‘aqqabe sä‘at of Ḥayq. This correspondence is very interesting from a historical point of view. It is accepted that the community of Ḥayq headed the monastic clergy in Ethiopia approximately until the XVIth century. But, it was not known how the ‘aqqabe sä‘at exercised control and authority over the monasteries, and what was his area of competence. These documents of Däbrä Kärbe give us a first answer to these questions.