Peresopnytsia Gospel

Image - The Peresopnytsia Gospel. Image - Peresopnytsia Gospel (1556-61). Image - An illuminated page from the Peresopnytsia Gospel (1556-61).

Peresopnytsia Gospel (Пересопницьке Євангеліє; Peresopnytske Yevanheliie). An ornamented manuscript of the four books of the New Testament translated ca 1556–61, partly in the Monastery of the Holy Trinity in Dvirtsi, Lviv region, and partly in the Monastery of the Mother of God in Peresopnytsia, Volhynia. The scribe was probably Mykhailo Vasylovych from Sianik, and the translator was Hryhorii, the archimandrite of the Peresopnytsia monastery. Some scholars believe the illuminations in the Peresopnytsia Gospel to be the work of Fedusko of Sambir. The gospel was discovered in 1837 by Osyp Bodiansky and is preserved at the National Library of Ukraine in Kyiv. It is an interesting example of a vernacular Ukrainian translation of the Holy Scriptures from the Polish and Czech (the names of chapters are translated from the Czech) using the Bulgarian-Serbian orthography. Its language has western Boiko (see Boiko dialect) and, to a lesser extent, southern Volhynian dialectal traits (see South Volhynian dialects), and many lexical Church Slavonicisms, Polonisms, and lexical synonyms from various dialects (eg, kolodjaz’/studnja/krynytsja ‘well’, Ážytnycja/klunja/stodola ‘barn’). Pavlo Zhytetsky studied its language and published from it the Gospel according to Saint Luke (Trudy III arkheologicheskogo s"ezda, vol 2 [1878]). Its paleographic and Renaissance artistic features were analyzed by Oleksander Hruzynsky (1911, 1912) and Hryhorii Pavlutsky (Iskusstvo, 1911, no. 2). Since 1991 presidents-elect of Ukraine have recited the Ukrainian oath of office with their hands on the Constitution of Ukraine and the Peresopnytsia Gospel.

[This article was updated in 2016.]

Image - An illuminated page from the Peresopnytsia Gospel (1556-61). Image - A page from the Peresopnytsia Gospel (1556-61). Image - An illuminated page from the Peresopnytsia Gospel (1556-61).

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