Historiae adversus paganos‘Histories against the pagans’
- Non-Celtic texts, Universal history
(fl. early 5th century)
Christian author and theologian from Spain; student of Augustine of Hippo; author of the Historia(e) adversus paganos, the Commonitorium and the Liber apologeticus.
For a handlist of manuscripts, see Janet M. Bately • D. J. A. Ross, ‘A checklist of manuscripts of Orosius’ Historiarum aduersum paganos libri septem’, Scriptorium: Revue internationale des études relative aux manuscrits 15 (1961).
- Manuscripts of possible Irish or insular interestinclude
- Milan, Biblioteca Ambrosiana, MS D 23 sup = The Bobbio Orosius [s. vii]Imperfect: Book I and part of Book II (up to ch. 13)
- Munich, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, MS Clm 396 [s. ixex]ff. 35–42
- also of note: Vatican City, Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, MS Reg. lat. 1650 [s. ix]ff. 1r–10vNot the text, but a Hiberno-Latin commentary on two books of the Historiae
- Manuscripts with Breton glosses
An early medieval Latin work of cosmography, geography and ethnography, datable to the first half of the eighth century, which purports to be an epitome of a work by a Scythian philosopher named Aethicus (Ister) and which spuriously attributes its redaction and running commentary to St Jerome. Aethicus is described as a pagan (gentilis) who lived before the birth of Christ and travelled the four corners of the earth, although the chronology of peoples and events is regularly disturbed.
Middle Irish saga on the career and conquests of Alexander the Great, based on an account in Orosius’ Historiae adversus paganos, Alexander’s letter to Aristotle about India and the correspondences known as the Collatio cum Dindimo.
Primary sources Text editions and/or modern translations – in whole or in part – along with publications containing additions and corrections, if known. Diplomatic editions, facsimiles and digital image reproductions of the manuscripts are not always listed here but may be found in entries for the relevant manuscripts. For historical purposes, early editions, transcriptions and translations are not excluded, even if their reliability does not meet modern standards.
Secondary sources (select)
Orosius as primary source
Transmission and reception
[EN] From Orosius to the Lebor Gabála Érenn : the glosses in ms. Reg. lat. 1650.
The Hiberno-Latin glosses on Orosius’s Historiae contra Paganos, that occur in the manuscript Vatican, B.A.V., Reg. lat. 1650, seem to have some points of contact with the Irish compilation Lebor Gabála Érenn. These glosses may have contributed to the dissemination in the Irish monastic circles of some of Orosius’s ideas, that were later taken over in the Lebor Gabála.
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