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Document Details :
Title: The Story of the Sleepers of Ephesus according to the Oldest Extant Text
Subtitle: Manuscipt N.S.S.4
Author(s): TONDELLO, Marco
Journal: Journal of Eastern Christian Studies
Volume: 71 Issue: 1-2 Date: 2019
The Tale of the Sleepers of Ephesus has long fascinated many people of different ages and traditions. In the past two centuries scholars have tried to discover its origin. E. Honigmann seemed to have found a solution by giving a historical interpretation of the tale and proposing a historical reconstruction of its origin, but his analysis does not respect the proper identity of each extant version. The tradition of the tale is so rich that each witness needs to be considered very attentively as one moment in the complex history of the tale. I offer here a critical edition with an English translation of the oldest extant text, the Syriac manuscript N.S.S.4 of St. Petersburg (5th-6th century). It is presented in parallel with another text (ms Z, Add. 17202), while the textual variations of two other manuscripts (Syr.162 and Sachau321) are given in the apparatus. The edition is introduced by a codicological description of N.S.S.4 and a brief presentation of all the other extant Syriac manuscripts. Some notes on the relationship between the various Syriac versions of the tale are given in the conclusion.