The catalogue entry for this text has not been published as yet. Until then, a selection of data is made available below.

One of the best known theological writings by John Cassian, which purports to record the author’s interviews with the monks of Scetis (today, Wadi El Natrun, Egypt) on various topics relating to the contemplative life, ascetic practices and spirituality. The work was written in the 420s and one of its dedicatees is Pope Leo I.

Manuscript witnesses


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.

[ed.] Migne, Jacques-Paul, Joannis Cassiani opera omnia, 2 vols, Patrologia Latina, 49, 1846.
Google Books – vol. 1: <link> Google Books – vol. 1: <link>
cols. 477–1328
Editions of Cassian’s works go back to the 16th and 17th centuries (e.g. 1559, 1575, 1616, 1628,1 642), but this development is not within the current project’s scope.

Secondary sources (select)

Diem, Albrecht, Monastic manuscript project, Online, ?–present. URL: <>. 
The Monastic Manuscript Project is a database of descriptions of manuscripts that contain texts relevant for the study of early medieval monasticism, especially monastic rules, ascetic treatises, vitae patrum-texts and texts related to monastic reforms. We provide lists of manuscripts for each of these texts, which are linked to manuscript descriptions. The purpose is to offer a tool for reconstructing not only the manuscript dissemination of early medieval monastic texts but also to give access to the specific contexts in which a text appears.The database supports current edition projects and draws attention to understudied texts and the transmission of fragments, excerpts and florilegia. It is designed to facilitate the work of students and scholars who are interested in the history and reception of texts and who want to work with manuscripts rather than rely on modern editions.