‖ Bibliotheca Basiliana Vniuersalis ‖

The series' subtitle is 'Manuscript Tradition, Translations and Editions of the Works of Basil of Caesarea'. The aim of this series is to put in the hands of any genuinely interested reader as much primary information as possible. Rather than withholding from the readers the information on which scholarly conclusions are based and giving them only the results of the research, the Bibliotheca Basiliana Universalis has been conceived as a tool for judging the accuracy of the premises on which the investigation rests.

A further goal of the BBU is to preserve for posterity many of the works considered inferior, and closely related to this objective is the commitment to salvage for history MSS and books destined to perish long before their time.

  • First volume: 1993

  • Number of volumes published: 8 (most recent volume: 2004)

  • Publication frequency: Irregular

  • Editorial responsibility: Paul J. Fedwick

  • Publishing manager: Bart Janssens

Basilius Caesariensis - The Letters

Paul J. Fedwick

Basilius Caesariensis - The Homiliae Morales, Hexaemeron, De Litteris, with Additional Coverage of the Letters

Part one: Manuscripts || Part two: Editions, Translations

Paul J. Fedwick

The second volume of the Bibliotheca Basiliana Vniversalis covers all the extant mss, translations and editions of Basil of Caesarea's Homiliae morales, and more than 300 homiletic type adaptations. In addition, it provides descriptions of a number of the mss and editions of the letters that were left out volume one, and of all the editions and translations both of the homilies and the letters from ca.1470 to the present. Besides the native tongue of Basil, some twenty other languages are represented. Throughout an attempt has been made at correcting some of the descriptions of the sixteenth- century composite editions which the homilies share with the letters and the ascetica. Also in this volume have been included many mss, editions and translations of the Vita s. Basilii of Ps.-Amphilochius (CPG 3253), the Laudatio of Ps.Ephraem (BHG 246) and the Laudatio of Ioannes XIII Glykys, Patriarch of Constantinople (1315-1319; BHG 262h) even when they were found in mss containing no works of Basil. The method employed in this volume is very similar to that adopted in the first volume.

Basilius Caesariensis - The Ascetica, Contra Eunomium 1-3, Ad Amphilochium de spiritu sancto, dubia et spuria, with supplements to volumes I-II

Paul J. Fedwick

The remaining treatises of Basil - ascetic, dogmatic and exegetic - are given full coverage in the manner and style of the previous volumes. The bulk is taken up by the Ascetica. Twelve recensions of the Great Asketikon are identified, seven in Greek and five more in one of the nine languages of some of which the Greek original is no longer extant. Studied are also the versions into Armenian, Arabic, Coptic, Georgian, Latin, Old Slavonic and Syriac. Reconstituted for the first time ever is the complete Asketikon of Basil or Asketikon B made up of 370 erotapokriseis. The reconstituted Asketikon attests to the existence of authentic pieces eventually discarded or replaced by Basil himself because of changed opinion (on his part) or changed circumstances (provinces of Pontos, instead of Cappadocia, or vice versa). In addition the three Books against Eunomios, the treatise on the Holy Spirit to Amphilochios and the remaining works ascribed to Basil are treated.

Basilius Caesariensis - Testimonia, Liturgical and Canonical compositions, Florilegia, Catenae, Iconography

Part one: Testimonia || Part two: The Manuscripts - Libraries || Part three: Liturgical and canonical compositions, Florilegia, Catenae, Iconography

Paul J. Fedwick

During his short lifetime (c. 330 - 1 January 379), Basil of Caesarea's advice was sought by government officials, ecclesiastics, monks, military and ordinary people, the rich and dispossessed, even by those who did not belong to the Christian church. The appeal to him continued after his death. Councils, oecumenical and regional, theologians, chroniclers, historians, compilers of the numerous biblical catenae and florilegia-makers, artists and painters found in his works continuous inspiration. Volume Four collects for the first time the largest number of testimonials and references to him in Greek, Latin, Arabic, Armenian, Coptic, Ethiopian, Georgian, Old Slavonic, Syriac and many a modern language. It draws primarily from the many unpublished sources - some 8.000 manuscripts - but also from post-medieval and current critical editions. The volume provides a comprehensive coverage of the various liturgies and prayers attributed to Basil, with an accurate identification of all their various components, making this an indispensable tool for any researcher interested in studying these public and private expressions of Christian faith over the last two millenia. In addition Volume Four gives the most detailed account of all the largest canonical collections in which Basil, from their inception, always occupied a preeminent place. The appeal to the great Capadocian was not confined to verbal expressions alone, but extended into imagery, making him one of the favourites of the manuscript illuminators, engravers, painters of icons and churches and even sculptors. Volume Four provides a comprehensive and reliable coverage of all and each one of these aspects of Basil's "Nachleben", while at the same time it aims at charting new avenues of research.

Basilius Caesariensis - Studies of Basil of Caesarea and his World: An annotated Bio-Bibliography

Paul J. Fedwick

The whole concept and dynamic of the five-volume Bibliotheca Basiliana Vniuersalis (1993-2004) can be seen in the form of an interlocking structure. There is no proper start nor finish in such a picture, but a wavelike motion leading from one block/particle to another, a very much quantum entity like anything else. Since nothing better illustrates the quantum reality than a picture of a ladder with jumps from rung to rung, so is the BBV. Hence one could say that a ladder-like project, such as the BBV, has reached with this volume in a spacetime continuum warp the final rung in accordance with a pre-planned design. All a matter of convention and convenience rather than intrinsic necessity.

After dealing directly with the manuscripts, editions, translations, my project wraps up with the complete records of the names of those who since the second half of the fifteenth century have published their works and whose records have survived the ravages of time. Cross-listed are here also all the printed editions and translations quoted fully in BBV i-iv. BBV v incorporates further more than just works specifically or exclusively dealing with Basil, —his life, teaching, Nachleben,—, as it covers also many of the studies dealing with the historical period and geographical setting he lived in and which have a bearing on a better and more accurate understanding of his thought and significance. Unlike any other author, for instance Origen, John Chrysostom or Augustine of Hippo, Basil by himself encompasses the vast areas of spirituality, theology, philosophy, linguistics, kanon law, liturgy, florilegia, catenae, painting, gender issues, and in most instances not just implicitly but explicitly. To be sure, if one were to leave out works dealing with the environment, demography, literary genres, gender issues, imperial administration, geography, numismatics, archaeology, palaeography, diplomatics—much would be missing from the true picture of his achievements or shortcomings, in other words, from a correct understanding of his role in history conceived as the carrying out of one's life in a world open to the widest spectrum of lived possibilities.


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