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A Newly-Discovered Commentary on the Hippocratic Prognostic by Barhebraeus: Its Contents and Its Place within the Arabic Taqdimat al-maʿrifa Tradition

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There are only two manuscripts of Barhebraeus’ Arabic Prognosticon commentary that have been described in catalogues. They are, moreover, incomplete and inaccessible and even considered lost for posterity. However, the present author, during recent ‘fieldwork’ in Istanbul (2011), recovered a complete manuscript of Barhebraeus’ abridged commentary on the Hippocratic Prognosticon, which also contains exciting new information on his commentary of the Aphorisms. The manuscript under consideration remained dormant for more than 700 years. This breakthrough finding will shed light on and be of significance for our understanding of Barhebraeus’ works and will also highlight his relationship to those authors who had major influences on his work. The newly discovered text will moreover offer us the possibility to study the position and status of Barhebraeus’ commentary within the corpus of Arabic commentaries on the Hippocratic Prognosticon or Taqdimat al-maʿrifa.


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