Wednesday, 26 April 2023, 4 PM, Keble College, ARCO, Roy Griffiths Room, Teaching Rhetoric in the Syriac World

British Academy Newton International Fellow Daham University, Department of Classics and Ancient History

The art of public speaking and composing powerful orations that can swing the juries, persuade the masses and praise or attack public figures, is one of the most practised exercises in the history of mankind. In the Syriac world, the use of rhetorical devices is evident from the very start of literary production. However, it is only in the ninth century that we have the first, and only, known handbook on Syriac rhetoric, composed by the schoolteacher Antony of Tagrit

The lecture will discuss the rhetorical knowledge inferred from Anthony’s treatise to understand how rhetoric was taught in Synac schools. It will also discuss its similarities with the Greco-Roman tradition and highlight the differences, in an attempt to bring together some of the scattered pieces composing the puzzle of Syriac education, a subject which remains, to this day, still not fully understood.

Summer School (online): Catholic University of America, Washington DC, USA

Take a College Level Language Course in Arabic, Armenian, Coptic, Ethiopic, Georgian, or Syriac

The Semitics department offers intensive summer language courses through Summer Sessions. Languages and literatures of the Christian Near East (Arabic, Armenian, Coptic, Ethiopic, Georgian, Syriac) are a focus of the department’s summer program.

Summer 2023 Program 

The Summer 2023 Program includes introductory-level and readings-level courses in Classical Arabic, Coptic, Classical Armenian, Ethiopic, and Syriac. All Semitics department Summer 2023 Program classes will be offered through virtual learning environments. 

Students enrolled in these courses enjoy access to the Institute of Christian Oriental Research (ICOR) collections in the University’s Semitics/ICOR Library.

For questions about the department and its programs contact Dr. Andrew Gross, Department Chair.

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