Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Some F.C. Burkitt Manuscripts in Tyndale House

The Tyndale Burkitt Papers
Notes by P.J. Williams, 17.7.07

Obtained by P.J. Williams for Tyndale House from Prof. A.R. Millard (Liverpool), who obtained it from Prof. F.F. Bruce. The originals are to be lodged in Tyndale House library for consultation.

7 March 1916
R.H. Connolly to F.C. Burkitt: Burkitt’s article on Hosanna in JTS 17 (1916) pp. 139 ff. has led Connolly to a number of observations from ‘a long and wearisome commentary on the Nestorian Offices’. 4 sides.

25 November [presumably during the Great War]
Written from the Red Cross Hospital in Giza by E.C. Hoskyns. Addressee unnamed but appears to be singular (from p. 2, but is not Burkitt). Type-written. Five sheets of paper, single sided. The writer is evidently acting as a chaplain in a war hospital. On the first side he discusses the merits of having communion at 7.15 a.m. or 9.30 a.m., preferring the former. On Christmas day he plans to have one at 6.30 a.m. and another at 9.30 a.m. The Bishop has arrived today (p. 2). Discusses a ‘Doctor friend’ who is now attending communion. ‘He is a simply splendid heretic & has taught me a great deal about the O.T. especially about Leviticus…’ (p. 2). ‘When you say the Coptic church failed because it was not missionary, I do not believe that it is so at least as most people understand “missionary”. The Coptic & the Syriac churches lasted on for a very long time but they failed to hold the people because they failed to produce men of really independent & free minds’ (p. 2). P. 3 contains the phrase ‘as Burkitt says’. It also discusses whether clergy should enlist. P. 4: ‘My little Frenchman who teaches Coptic, is a brilliant little scholar.’ P. 4: discusses tribe of Bedouin known as Senussi and their beliefs.

19 December 1918
4 pages, headed on Trinity College, Cambridge, notepaper. From ‘A A Bevan’. Begins: ‘My dear Burkitt, I am extremely glad to hear that you are interesting yourself in Mitchell’s Ephraim [i.e. S. Ephraim’s Prose Refutations of Mani, Marcion, and Bardaisan]. The situation is briefly as follows. When his death was announced, I told Whitney and Barnett that I was willing to be responsible for correcting the proofs of the remainder of this text and seeing the translation through the press.’ It discusses the state of work done and what remains to be done. It also discusses Bevan’s attempts to read the manuscript (presumably BM Add. 14623). ‘But my chief difficulty is that my attempts to read the original MS by means of a re-agent have been almost wholly fruitless’ (p. 3). Bevan expresses a willingness to hand Mitchell’s papers over to Burkitt since the latter is ‘better able to deal with such things…But I do not want to send manuscripts to France, on account of the risk of their being lost’ (p. 4).

‘Sunday after Xmas 1818 [sic]’ [It is hard not to believe that 1918 is meant]
J.P. Whitney to F.C. Burkitt: begins by an apology for not replying to Burkitt’s ‘first letter’ and for not thanking him for ‘your very pleasing give + remembrance of the “Ecclesiastes”’. Discusses how [A.A.] Bevan has been dealing with the affairs of Mitchell (I presume C.W. Mitchell, who died in the war in 1917). Whitney and Burkitt seem to be looking for Mitchell’s papers, apparently with particular reference to his work S. Ephraim’s Prose Refutations of Mani, Marcion, and Bardaisan, published in 1921, i.e. posthumously: ‘He [Bevan] tells me he has written to you saying how things stand. He thinks that there must be something more among Mitchells [sic] papers.’ (p. 2). ‘It will be very pleasant to have you back at work here. Undergraduates are already? Returning. King’s, for instance, have 20 fresh men for next term. I hope you will have a good rest in S. France…’ (pp. 3–4). 4 pages

30 January 1921
4 pages, headed on Trinity College, Cambridge, notepaper. From AAB [A.A. Bevan] to Burkitt. ‘My dear Burkitt, Many thanks for sending me your Introduction. Here are some notes on it.’ Burkitt has given the date 238 for when Mani proclaimed his religion. Bevan notes that Nöldeke uses the date ‘March 20, 242’. Pp. 2–4 discuss various corrections to Burkitt’s work, including discussion of Syriac, Arabic and ‘Mandaitic’ words.

12 January 1923
Two sides of notes by F.C.B. (i.e. F.C. Burkitt) which appear to be peer reviewing a Hulsean Essay on Marcion. It begins ‘It is a little difficult for me to give a judicial opinion on this Essay because I do consider myself aggrieved.’ He criticizes various bibliographical omissions of the author and weaknesses in the argument. I am unsure as to the identity of the essayist, but given the review it is quite possible that it was never published.

Two press cuttings from ‘Durrant’s Press Cuttings’.
19 July 1928, review in the Literary Supplement of The Times of F.S. Marsh, The book of the Holy Hierotheos.
2 August 1928, Burkitt’s letter to the Literary Supplement of The Times, entitled ‘The Book of Hierotheos’

1 comment

  1. Sorry, I was temporarily unable to use the blog and so got PMH to post this. To me the most interesting item is the item from 12 Jan 1923. I'd particularly value any guidance as to what author he may be discussing.