by Fahri Xharra

Kodiket_e_Beratit_650I only wrote half a century after “La Vulgate’s” Latin translation of the Bible by St. Jerome Eusebius, the Purple of Portland is a historic manuscript to early biblical literature. According bibliologë and paleografë scholars, referring to the technique of writing, is a manuscript of no later than the 6th century AD. He is one of the four oldest codices in the world.Contemporary with famous manuscripts such as “Petropolitaus”, “Vindeobone-USIS” and “Sinopencis”, “the Purple codices” literature listed on the foundations of the Eastern rite church.

French scholar Pierre Batiffoli, visiting the churches of Berat in 1865 was captivated by the discovery of some old church codex. The manuscripts of the most famous, for whom speaks Batiffoli is Beratius purpurus Codex, the work of centuries. VI and Anthimi Codex aureus belonging to the IX century. But how was it possible that this codex arrived until our days?

Our homeland, Albania has always been the focus of invasions by different enemies. Countless wars always bring along persecution and destruction as well as the looting of cultural values.

Serbs burned in 1356 in Berat, who was one of the main centers of development Arber and the Orthodox Church. It is in this difficult situation, the priest monk Skuripeqi along with 27 sacks loaded Theodhulos manuscripts of the Holy church and hid, that Albanian culture not damaged and robbed of this nation never lost tradition of history. (30) During World War I of World Austrians who occupied Berat and its environs used all means, that promises tempting and to threats against epitropëve castle to show the secret place.
To add the following: “Codex the Purple codices “and” Codex Golden Anthimi “(” Beratinus-2 “, the 9th century AD) were two of the works that were on the list of facilities declared” hunting “in the period of World War II World. Clergy, church council (council), the patriarchs and religious people of Portland, which was requested immediate delivery of two codices, decided to make every sacrifice and not to show their location, under any circumstance. They hid in the mouth of a well, in a metal crate. For a time, in the years that followed, “Beratinus-1” and “Beratinus-2” considered missing. It was rediscovered in the church tower of the city in 1968, in a very damaged condition.

So these sacred works survived thanks to people hopefuls patriots of our Church. This simple but heroic story has been repeated many times through the centuries, where other foreign friend once guise of times at gunpoint, tried to steal the treasures of our people. And in all these cases, the Orthodox people hopefuls has come for God by saving sight as these sacred books, as it has also preserved other treasures that constitute our national identity.

The text of the “Codex Purpureus Beratinus” is written in scripta-continuae antique style, ie without separation of words from each other, without accents and other signs of segregation words. It is set in a backdrop that features stylized heart. In hearts that adorn the interior of the sheet are floral motifs – roses tripetalesh (Lilan).

(Only these last years is gaining international recognition Beratinus, entering and “Memory of the World” as evidence of early Christianity in Albania ,. What can “regulate” in this context, the image of the existence of a rare manuscript? E asked Prof. Dr. Shaban Sinani

“There are two views on the faith of a people. Vertically Albanians are one of the most Christian nations of the world. I do not believe there nor in Greece or in Italy, in Rome old, bishops that in 56. This year we Durres Bishop Caesar. If we open the volume 8 of Illyricum Sacrum in Durres has a bishop in the year 56. It is one of the countries that is at the time of the apostles evangelized. I do not want comparisons, but many other people were evangelized centuries later 7-8. Evangelism in the Early Christian period have been Greeks, Albanians, Romans, Latins and said that early Christianity had in Spain. In other countries of the region begins after shek.5-6 Christianity. The fact that in Albanian areas are developed as the Crusade shows in this country that was krishtëruar pass people who to get, as it were, baptized as Christians traveled from Britain as in the case of Richard the Lionheart, up to Jerusalem becoming Christians.

It can be said that Illyricum was a Christian for 15 centuries, from century I-XV. There has been a Christian for fashionable people, for solidarity. There were a people who fi able contributions to Christianity hershëm.Nxori St. Jerome gave West the first translation of the Bible into Latin, “La Vulgate”, is the people who brought St. Niketën Dardanian who composed the first prayer of Christianity ” Te Deum laudeamus “-Ty praise God, who continues to be kryelutje, people who gave martyrs and saints, St. Caesar and St. Ashti in Durres, who actively experienced in early Christianity, although in this period Christianity was illegal . The decree had not yet come out of Sunday’s 321 year proclaiming Sunday as the day of God and Christianity as a religion of humanity. (Shaban Sinani) “)

“The historical circumstances explain the Islamization of a large part of the Albanians after shek.XV-XVI not to be taken as a phenomenon that represents a deviation, if there has been a distortion, as a disaster in the Albanian world. But if required the depth of faith Albanians everywhere will be released Christian layers. Albania’s northern Highlanders celebrate Saint George, Saint Mary, St. John, St. Mark. The shrine of St. Nout in Milot, have been and are Christians and Muslims to express their will and prayer, to liberate faith healing or overcoming difficulties, then simply devotion. ”

International Committee Consultative UNESCO consisting ga many experts the world has recorded two day in their meeting in Lijiang of China “Two codices of Berat” to register “Memory of the World (” Mémoire du Monde “) as unique values to humanity and that already protected by UNESCO. Following the example of Butrint, registered in 1991 in the World Heritage List (Monuments) – Albanian codex that are now recorded as “monuments of world culture.” Two codices of Berat, Beratinus 1 and Beratinus 2 are recorded so the list of UNESCO along with and other documents rarely and cultural one-off in other countries of the world like China, with Listen Golden Dynasty imperial Qing, the Ptolemaic Cosmology America by Amerigo Vespucci and France with the Lumière films, Greece with Olympic Hymn, Norway with documents Amundsen expedition, alphabet fenician Lebanon, Belgium with burgundy dukes library, etc. Registration of two famous codex of Berat is definitely a boost for UNESCO to propose other values ​​to be recorded in its golden fund.

The “Memory of the World” ( “Mémoire du Monde”) and the creation of a registry for the precious values ​​of humanity in the documentary field, was set up by UNESCO, in 1992 to date are recorded dozens of funds Documentary Collections . Just a few years ago recorded 33 collections were proposed by the different countries of the world, where you belong and the Gutenberg Bible, Sonora archive collections of Vienna, Journal of the exploratory vessel James Cook, memories of the Suez Canal, Quran Othman- it, in Uzbekistan, etc. In 2003, this number reached 91 collections recorded from 45 member countries of UNESCO. The register of UNESCO is recorded and the oldest book printed in the world, South Korea. It comes to a second volume of the book entitled Anthology of zen teachings of prominent Buddhist priests, printed in July 1377, in the house Cheongju. Until a few years ago as the first publication of the Gutenberg Bible held humanity, but this is true only present in the European framework.

codices of Berat by Shaban Sinani
“codices of Albania” given to the public by the State Archives, Ben Andoni
A codex of the XVII century in the archives of the National Museum, Klotilda Biçaku
become familiar 100 codices of Albania, Prof. either. dr. Kaliopi Naska Prof. either. dr. Shaban Sinani
A “European passports” for Albania Interview with Prof. Dr. Shaban Sinani –
Art as theological aesthetic in codices of Berat, Dr.Moikom Zeqo
Beratinus, skriberëve testimony, the Christian dimension of Albania, Elsa Demo
“Purpureux Beratinus Codex” in the “Memory of the World”.


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