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23 03 2012
Scholars in Israel are collecting the inscriptions of the Armenian, Georgian, Jewish and other people

Scholars_in_IsraelAn ambitious international project Corpus Inscriptionum Iudaeae/Palaestinae led by two adventurous Israeli classicists aim to analyze and catalog every ancient inscription that has been made in Israel.
According to the Israeli newsletter "Haaretz", work on the project began in 1999 and is expected to be completed in 2017. When it is complete, all of the ancient inscriptions discovered within the borders of the State of Israel will be gathered together in a single comprehensive scientific series. The seven-volume work aims to organize a sea of information that until now consisted of partial, truncated and widely-scattered items to track down inscriptions that have never been published; and to offer the widest range of contemporary interpretations for those inscriptions that are already known to scholars. Some of the texts are dozens of lines in length; others have only a single word. They are written in more than 10 languages, of which Hebrew, Greek, Latin, Phoenician and Aramaic are only a partial list. "Georgians, Armenians, Romans, Greeks, Syrians - everyone who was here was documented," says Cotton-Paltiel, "not just the Jewish people." In similar projects to date it was the custom to sort inscriptions by language and publish each of them separately but the scientists consider that division is old-fashioned. "We present them all together, as they are, as authentic expressions of the different societies and cultures that coexisted in our region, and which deserve to be presented in an egalitarian manner" Cotton-Paltiel says.

One of scholar's tasks was to contact all of the religious institutions in Jerusalem. The Greek patriarch, for example, issued a special permit giving the scholars access to all the churches and monasteries under his supervision, including the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. "The high point of the visit occurred when they entered a room otherwise closed to the public, whose key is held only by an Armenian priest. He opened the door for us, and there we saw an awfully famous Latin inscription left by Christian pilgrims," reconstructs Cotton-Paltiel excitedly.


Source`  http://www.haaretz.com/weekend/week-s-end/the-writing-on-the-wall-tablet-and-floor-1.417504


Translation from Armenian by Amalia Harutyunyan




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