Vittorio Berti

Mar Aba the Great on Exodus: Fragments from the Commentary of Ishoʿdad of Merv and the Christian Topography of Cosmas Indicopleustes

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Keywords: Mar Aba; Exodus; Cosmas Indicopleustes.

The Catholicos Mar Aba I (d. 552 CE) was a prominent figure in the sixth-century scholastic culture of the Church of the East and a biblical exegete associated with the School of Nisibis. Unfortunately, few traces of his exegetical work have survived. Although his commentaries are lost, a number of his explanations can be found in later exegetical collections such as the commentaries of Ishoʿdad of Merv, the "Gannat Bussame", and the socalled "Anonymous Commentary". This paper presents some fragments of Mar Aba's biblical interpretation on Exodus, clarifies in what form and by what method his writings may have originally been composed, and connects his teachings to Cosmas Indicopleustes' "Christian Topography".

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