Excerpta Latina Barbari

Joseph Justus Scaliger dubbed the text of Parisinus Latinus 4884, the sole

surviving witness to a Merovingian Latin translation of a now lost Greek

world chronicle, the Excerpta Latina Barbari. The name was essentially a

judgement on the linguistic abilities of the translator, but it is suggestive.

What is there in the chronicle to appeal to the ‘barbarian’ inhabitants of

Gaul? An answer to this question can offer some insight into the provenance

of a neglected, but intriguing text. It will be proposed that the Greek original

of the Excerpta was composed as a gift for the Austrasian king Theudebert I

and was intended to elicit his aid in the war against the Ostrogothic rulers of

Italy. The translation is another matter. It seems to have been undertaken

about two centuries later in the context of the missionary push to the north

and east from Frankish territory.


Okey Dokey. Yeah. Hurrah. It’s been forever since I’ve come up against Joseph Justus Scaliger out-of-the-blue.

Ooooh. Happy As……:o)

P.S. V Interesting comments in the video below. Chaos Roolz!

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