Araştırma Makalesi

DOI :10.26650/artsanat.2019.12.0005   IUP :10.26650/artsanat.2019.12.0005    Tam Metin (PDF)

Erken Bizans Dönemi Resimli Dini El Yazmaları

Pınar Serdar Dinçer

Çalışmanın konusu Erken Bizans Dönemi Resimli Dini El Yazmalarından oluşmaktadır. Bu çalışmanın amacı konuyla ilgili yapılmış araştırmalar ışığında söz konusu el yazmalarının sınıflandırılması, konularının, üslup özelliklerinin, üretim yerlerinin ve malzemelerinin belirlenmesi ve benzer özelliklerin tespit edildiği el yazmalarıyla karşılaştırmalarının yapılmasıdır. Müze ve kütüphanelerde gerçekleştirilen çalışmada, Erken Bizans Dönemi Resimli Dini El Yazmaları başlığı altında Quedlinburg Itala (Ms. Theol. Lat. fol. 485 / LDAB 8476), Ashburnham Pentateuch (Ashburnham Pentateuch MS nouv. acq. lat. 2334 / LDAB 8110), Rabbula İncili (Rabbula Gospels Cod. Plut. I,56 / LDAB 115232), Paris Suriye Kutsal Kitabı (The Syriac Bible of Paris Cod. syr. 341 / LDAB 115270), Aziz Augustus İncilleri (Cambridge, Corpus Christi College 286 / LDAB 7481), British Library Kanon Tabloları (London, British Library Add MS 5111 / LDAB 7151), Cotton Genesis (Lond.Cotton Otho B.IV / LDAB 3242) incelenmiş, Erken Bizans Dönemi Purpura Kodeksler başlığı altında ise Rossano İncilleri (Codex Purpureus Rossanensis / LDAB 2990), Sinop İncilleri (Codex Purpureus Sinopensis Paris, Suppl. Gr. 1226 / LDAB 2902) ve Viyana Genesis (Vindob. Theol. gr. 31 / LDAB 3078) el yazması ayrı olarak ele alınmıştır. Yapılan değerlendirmeler sonucunda Kutsal Kitap resimlemelerinin Ortodoks Bizans inancında kendisine yer bulması; bunun da ötesinde, Viyana Genesis el yazması örneğinde olduğu gibi Yeni Ahit konularına yer verilmeden sadece Eski Ahit sahnelerinin betimlenmiş olması, henüz yeni kurumsallaşmakta olan bir inancın gelenekle kurduğu ilişki açısından önemlidir. Helenizm kültürünün etkisini taşıyan Yahudi sanatının Eski Ahit konularının Hristiyanlık temalarında kullanılmasına yol açması, coğrafi ve tarihi anlamda farklı kültürlerin birbirine hangi biçimlerde eklemlendiğini göstermesi açısından bilimsel veriler taşır.

DOI :10.26650/artsanat.2019.12.0005   IUP :10.26650/artsanat.2019.12.0005    Tam Metin (PDF)

Early Byzantine Illuminated Theological Manuscripts

Pınar Serdar Dinçer

The subject of this study is the Early Byzantine Period Illuminated Theological Manuscripts. The primary aim of this study is to identify and classify the themes of Early Byzantine Period illuminated theological manuscripts, analyzing and comparing their styles accordingly, presenting the production materials and determining their place of production. During the museum and library research the Quedlinburg Itala (Ms. Theol. Lat. fol. 485 / LDAB 8476), Ashburnham Pentateuch (Ashburnham Pentateuch MS nouv. acq. lat. 2334 / LDAB 8110), Rabbula Gospel (Rabbula Gospels Cod. Plut. I,56 / LDAB 115232), Paris Syrian Bible (The Syriac Bible of Paris Cod. syr. 341 / LDAB 115270), St. Augustus Gospel (Cambridge, Corpus Christi College 286 / LDAB 7481), British Library Cannon Tables (London, British Library Add MS 5111 / LDAB 7151) and Cotton Genesis (Lond.Cotton Otho B.IV / LDAB 3242) were analyzed at the outset under the title of Early Byzantine Period Illuminated Theological Manuscripts. The Rossano Gospels (Codex Purpureus Rossanensis / LDAB 2990), Sinope Gospel (Codex Purpureus Sinopensis Paris, Suppl. Gr. 1226 / LDAB 2902) and Vienna Genesis (Vindob. Theol. gr. 31 / LDAB 3078) were addressed separately under the title of Early Byzantine Period Purpura Codices. Analyses revealed that presence of the biblical illuminations in Orthodox Byzantine, and even the depiction of the Old Testament scenes without referring to the New Testament as in the Vienna Genesis manuscript samples, is of high importance in terms of the relationship developed between a belief that has just been institutionalized and tradition. The fact that Jewish art bearing traces of Hellenistic culture caused the Old Testament plots to be used in Christian themes contains some scientific data with regards to the fact that it shows how geographically, and historically different cultures are articulated.


In this study, the origins of illuminated manuscripts were mentioned prior to the analysis of Early Byzantine illuminated theological manuscripts. While the illumination of papyruses, which are the pioneers of text materials, is rarely encountered, it is known that there are papyruses belonging to different disciplines, such as mathematics. There are also illuminations available in rolls, which is another text material. Information on the use of paintings together with the manuscripts is also available in Antique Period sources. Although there are numerous questions left unanswered in this regard, the subjects composing the content of Antique Period manuscripts or rolls reveal that the texts were definitely accompanied by paintings, regardless of revealing which subject was illuminated more. There are two opinions on the causes of the increase in codex illustrations, which were first used as a text material in the 1st century or an earlier period. The first opinion asserts that the paintings were used as a guide in manuscripts which comprised scientific and technical texts. However, accompaniment of the texts that are related to Christianity and which date back to the same centuries as narrative paintings constitutes a problem against this thought. Another opinion - agreed by most researchers - is that the narrative paintings first occurred in rolls which were used in Egyptian Art of the Hellenistic Period, and that they became a separate branch of art. Narrative painting is the most distinct characteristic of Early Byzantine Period manuscripts. It is a remarkable fact that there are traces of Classic Antique and Jewish Art encountered in these cycles while searching for the origins of narrative cycles. Large amounts of cycles, the superiority of the Old Testament cycles, arrangements of the Holy Book that were written separately, and stylistic and iconographic similarities of paintings found in these arrangements, can serve as a proof for these traces. Researchers, on the other hand, inquire whether there were narrative painting cycles in Jewish manuscripts despite the prohibition of painting by Judaism. Hellenistic Jewish Art might have encouraged the use of Old Testament subjects in Christian art. Yet, the most encouraging sample is the Dura Europos Synagogue frescos dating back to the 3rd century. Most researchers agree on the fact that Jewish manuscript art had an influence on the development of the illumination of Christian Old Testament themed manuscripts. However, their opinions differ when it comes to the issue of date. Admitting the existence of the Jewish Holy Book illumination leads us to the undeniable fact that these paintings are limited to the Old Testament only. On the other hand, if we assume that the illumination of the New Testament was created in the first centuries of Christianity, we come to the conclusion that the painting cycle may be a combination of both Greek-Roman and Jewish narrative art. Moreover, it is not possible to suppose that the Old Testament cycles come from a Jewish origin. In the study, Quedlinburg Itala (Ms. Theol. Lat. fol. 485 / LDAB 8476), Ashburnham Pentateuch, Rabbula Gospel (Rabbula Gospels Cod. Plut. I,56 / LDAB 115232), Paris Syrian Bible (The Syriac Bible of Paris Cod. syr. 341 / LDAB 115270), St. Augustus Gospel (Cambridge, Corpus Christi College 286 / LDAB 7481), British Library Cannon Tables (London, British Library Add MS 5111 / LDAB 7151) and Cotton Genesis (Lond.Cotton Otho B.IV / LDAB 3242) were analyzed under the title of Early Byzantine Period Illuminated Theological Manuscripts. Early Byzantine Period Purpura Codices: the Rossano Gospels (Codex Purpureus Rossanensis / LDAB 2990), Sinope Gospel (Codex Purpureus Sinopensis Paris, Suppl. Gr. 1226 / LDAB 2902) and Vienne Genesis (Vindob. Theol. gr. 31 / LDAB 3078), on the other hand, were analyzed under a separate title. Late Antique and Early Christian book luxury codices were the great traditional metropolitan centers which had become the seats of the early patriarchates: Rome, Alexandria, Antioch, and Constantinople. The earliest Biblical miniatures are from the luxuriously illustrated Books of Kings manuscript in Berlin, the so-called Quedlinburg Itala from the early fifth century. Three Greek manuscripts written on purple parchment and dating from the 6th century – the Vienna Genesis, the Gospel in the treasury of Rossano cathedral in Calabria, and the fragments of the Sinope Gospels in the Paris Bibliotheque Nationale can also be credibly attributed to the Eastern Empire, as can the remains of the Cotton Genesis, in London. The tendency towards formal abstraction is apparent in the Vienna Genesis and Rossano and Sinope Gospels, which are usually attributed to an oriental origin. Here Hellenistic tradition is combined with the hieratic style. The paintings in the Syriac evangeliary from Rabbula, now in Florence, executed at the Zagba monastery in Mesopotamia and dated to 586, are even farther removed from the antique tradition: the proportions of the figures do not conform to classical canon. Even the pictures of the seventh-century Syriac Bible still reflect a strong Hellenistic heritage within a specific Syrian tradition. Also it is largely deprived of its architectural function and often, as in the Rabbula Canon Tables, is filled with abstract and floral decorations, and crowned by flowers and birds. Fragments of four Greek Canon Tables in London show the full extent of ornamental richness and exuberance. The larger groups of illustrated biblical books were the Octateuch in the Greek East and the Pentateuch in the West Latin, of which one early, luxuriously illustrated copy has survived, the seventh century Ashburnham Pentateuch in Paris.

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Serdar Dinçer, P. (2019). Erken Bizans Dönemi Resimli Dini El Yazmaları. Art-Sanat, 0(12), 385-420.


Serdar Dinçer P. Erken Bizans Dönemi Resimli Dini El Yazmaları. Art-Sanat. 2019;0(12):385-420.


Serdar Dinçer, P. Erken Bizans Dönemi Resimli Dini El Yazmaları. Art-Sanat, [Publisher Location], v. 0, n. 12, p. 385-420, 2019.

Chicago: Author-Date Style

Serdar Dinçer, Pınar,. 2019. “Erken Bizans Dönemi Resimli Dini El Yazmaları.” Art-Sanat 0, no. 12: 385-420.

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Serdar Dinçer, Pınar,. Erken Bizans Dönemi Resimli Dini El Yazmaları.” Art-Sanat 0, no. 12 (Jul. 2024): 385-420.

Harvard: Australian Style

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Serdar Dinçer, Pınar,. Erken Bizans Dönemi Resimli Dini El Yazmaları.” Art-Sanat, vol. 0, no. 12, 2019, pp. 385-420. [Database Container],


Serdar Dinçer P. Erken Bizans Dönemi Resimli Dini El Yazmaları. Art-Sanat [Internet]. 13 Jul. 2024 [cited 13 Jul. 2024];0(12):385-420. Available from: doi: 10.26650/artsanat.2019.12.0005


Serdar Dinçer, Pınar. Erken Bizans Dönemi Resimli Dini El Yazmaları”. Art-Sanat 0/12 (Jul. 2024): 385-420.


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