In the works of Nabokov there is a combination
of scryptography of symbols that the writer uses in an ambivalent
way-playing with them (in the high, psychologic sense of the play
also as ritual) and exploiting them as polygenetic symbols with different
referent sources (Jewish Bible, Egypt, New Testament, antiquity, Dante,
Cabala, alchemy, freemasonry). The article shows in a parallel investigation
of the Russian and the English texts of the short story how the fantastique
way from a museum in France to the native town of the hero, to Russia,
due to the broad variety of intertextual allusions, motives and invariants
of Nabokov's oeuvre can be understood as a ritual transition through
the “underworld” to an “other world”.
The author shows that the application of Jewish ethical precepts derived from the Halakhah (Bible, Talmud, Rabbinic writings and related sources) to 21st century concerns is not easy. Notwithstanding this difficulty, the basic precepts and overall ethical approach - the meta-ethics - are highly instructive for resolving modern-day business problems. Judaism has much to offer by way of insights and experience concerning the conduct of ethical business activity. The author points out that it is a profound insight in the Jewish tradition that Wealth (broadly defined as economic productivity) and Righteousness (broadly defined as ethical behaviour, justice, integrity) go hand in hand. This is what we, moderns, would all do well to ponder and to implement.
During the Roman Empire, when an autonomous Etruscan culture had disappeared long ago, aspects of the old Etruscan religion were still surviving and had been integrated in the Roman traditional religion: the haruspices, acting as diviners for public or private purposes all over the Roman empire, could interpret prodigies, what Roman priests and even augurs did not. When, with the Christians, a new religion arrived which risked to overthrow the old national religion of the Romans, Etruscan religious tradition played an important role against the rise of Christianity: with the sacred books of the Etruscans, with the prophets who were alleged to have created the Etruscan religious tradition, the Romans could find in their own heritage what could match the Bible of the Christians or their prophets. Unsurprisingly, haruspices were active in the resistance movement against the new religion.
The subject of the paper is a folk prayer, a German popular text, which was collected by Zsuzsanna Erdélyi from a Swabian woman in Hungary. The prayer is a modern textual version of late medieval ars moriendi. It can be regarded as a folk prayer as it was in use among the common people, but its authorship cannot be linked to the common people. The author might have been a person from the lower clergy, with profound knowledge of theology and the Bible. This religious text satisfied a spiritual need among the people, as it was read out by the bed of the dying person, thus assisting the soul in reaching heaven. If the dying person recited it, or if it was read out to him, the prayer promised delivery from sin and automatic salvation without clerical mediation. No wonder such prayers were disapproved of and even banned by the Church.
In the late 1930s several “peasant ecclesiola” formed around two Calvinist peasant prophetesses in Sub-Carpathia, a region that came under fi rst Czechoslovak, then successively Hungarian, Ukrainian and Soviet rule as a consequence of the Trianon peace dictate. One group functioned between 1937–1977 under the leadership of Mariska Borku (Tiszaágtelek, 1910–1978). Over a period of 40 years Mariska Borku wrote the “Words”, under the inspiration of Jesus Christ or the Holy Spirit. Her manuscript called the Lettszövetség (Third Testament) was regarded by the prophetess and her followers as sacred and seen as a continuation of the Bible. They disseminated it in handwritten copies and used it in religious services held in homes and for private devotions.The other prophetess, Borbála Szanyi Mikó (Nagydobrony, 1897–1950) organised a smaller, closed prayer group around herself, composed mainly of relatives. She too wrote down the “Words” she received in visions, in her Örökkévaló Evangélium (Eternal Gospel).
The first chronicles of Central Europe were written in the beginning of 12th century. The authors of these chronicles lived in the courts of the princes or kings, and wrote their chronicle to support the idea of princely or royal courts about their own legitimacy. They used also the dynastic myths and some elements from the general tradition of the community about the past (oral history). They wrote differently about the origins, but there were common in the adaptation of the stories from the Bibles. The article focuses on the question how the Christian chroniclers wrote the pagan past; how the negative attitude to the pagan habits was mixed with the glorious events of the community in the pagan past.
-11 August, 4281, p. 21.
VERKHOVSKY, Aleksandr 1999: The Church and the national radicals. In: Russkaja Mysl', 5-11 August, 4281, p. 20-21.
BADALANOVA, Florentina 1999: The Bulgarian Folk Bible. In: Zhivaja starina , 2, pp
The Psalter (Wolfenbüttel, Herzog August Bibliothek, Cod. Guelf. 39 Aug. 4º) of Beatrice of Aragon, the wife of King Matthias Corvinus, often features in research literature on account of its title-page and ornate binding. The title-page (fol. 13r) was long attributed to Francesco del Cherico, but for some time now it has been ascribed to Francesco Rosselli and his collaborator, the Maestro dell'Iliade Medicea, while the binding is attributed – after Anthony Hobson – to Felice Feliciano. There are written documents to prove that both Francesco Rosselli and Felice Feliciano visited Hungary, both in the late 1470s, in1480 the latest. That Rosselli painted the Psalter title-page in Buda cannot be proven, although the arguments proposed by Edina Zsupán – the Hungarian saints in the calendar, the crudeness of the parchment – may suggest it. However, not only the title-page but six other pages of the Psalm-book are illumined (foll. 43r, 59v, 76v, 94r, 115v, 135v, 155v). These pages so far ignored by research literature are not Francesco Rosselli's works, being in completely different style. Their illuminator was presumably one of the North Italian masters who illumined for Hungarian clients several manuscripts in Buda around1480 and later, among whom only one is known by name(Franciscus Kastello Ithallico de Mediolano). He used cold, bright colours, the faces of the figures are markedly modelled, the drapery has a metallic hardness. One of the ruling motifs of the marginal decoration is the cornucopia. This hand cannot be identified at present in any manuscript whose provenience was Buda; its closest relative is a single Italian illumination in the Corvinus Gradual(National Széchényi Library, Cod. Lat. 424, fol. 7r). The master of the ornate binding of the Psalter – as Marianne Rozsondai has established – was the binder of the 14th century Bible kept in Erlangen (Universitätsbibliothek, Ms. 6) which also features of portrait of King Matthias. Important roles are played on both bindings by the leather filigree arabesques and the embossed all'antica motifs. The hand of the master making the gilded Corvina bindings can also be discerned on the Bible binding. So it seems that these two luxurious manuscripts completed around 1480 had an important – maybe even model-giving – role in the history of the evolving royal library, the Bibliotheca Corvina.
Baking bells (or baking lids) were actually very simple ovens that were suitable for baking bread, meat and fish. This method of food preparation was practiced since prehistory in the Mediterranean world and we can find descriptions of baking bells in the Bible and in the works of the writers of antiquity. This individual mode of baking bread became especially widespread during late antiquity. In some regions, the use of baking bells survived either owing to a general stagnation (as in the Balkans or the Alpine lands), or to unusual living conditions (as in the Roman military camps of the Augustan period and in the medieval Ottoman-period border forts in Hungary). Their increasingly frequent use in late antiquity was a reflection of economic decline and the disappearance of urban bakeries. At the same time, the adoption of baking bells by the Barbarian peoples (such as the Avars and the ancient Hungarians) settling on the fringes of the Mediterranean world can be seen as a cultural advance and the adoption of local traditions. Baking bells were still used in the Carpathian Basin as late as the 19th century and they can be found in some areas of the Balkans even today.