Commentary on Song of Songs; Letter on the Soul; Letter on Ascesis and the Monastic Life


This 14th-century manuscript is a collection of translations into Arabic. At the beginning is the Commentary on the Song of Songs, originally in Greek, by Gregory of Nyssa (died 394), brother of Basil the Great and, with him and Gregory of Nazianzus, one of the three so-called Cappadocian Fathers. Next comes one of the many pieces of philosophy in Arabic attributed to Hermes the Sage, A Letter on the Soul. The manuscript concludes with a letter of Isaac of Nineveh (active, end of the seventh century) on asceticism and monasticism, originally written in Syriac. Isaac’s works on monasticism became very influential, not only among Syriac and Arabic readers, but also in Greek and eventually Georgian and Slavonic translations.

Date Created

Subject Date


Title in Original Language

١ مختصر شرح نشيد الانشاد ٢ رسالة منسوبة الى هرمس الحكيم في معاتبة النفس ٣ الرسالة الولى في الزهد والرهبنية

Type of Item

Physical Description

124 folios, 15.2 x 11.2 centimeters

Last updated: September 18, 2015