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Document Details :
Title: L'Histoire des Patriarches d'Alexandrie
Subtitle: Une nouvelle évaluation de la configuration du texte en recensions
Author(s): PILETTE, Perrine
Journal: Le Muséon
Volume: 126 Issue: 3-4 Date: 2013
The Arabic text of the History of the Patriarchs of Alexandria (HP) is preserved in a highly complex manuscript tradition. Translated from scattered Coptic sources and then continued directly in Arabic from the 11th century onwards, it has been generally described as a double corpus, transmitted in a primitive – or authorial – recension on the one hand, and in a widely spread Vulgate version on the other. This article intends to point out that this dichotomous articulation of the transmission could be the product of a mis-conceptualization due to wrong working bases, i.e. uncritical editions from the early 20th century. A critical review of these editions, informed by recent methodological insights, will show how this perception of HP as a 'double' corpus came to be taken for granted. Then, the concept of Vulgate itself will be questioned, by problematizing the current definitions of this term as well as by a systematic analysis of the textual data obtained from the manuscripts. A discussion on the results of such an analysis will lead to a new conceptualization of the transmission, which proposes to consider the text of the HP as a dynamic, or fluid, textual tradition.