Translations of the Studies of Evagrius Ponticus Made by Euthymius the Hagiorite [1]

DOI: 10.55804/jtsuSPEKALI-17-20


Evagrius Ponticus († 394), an ascetic of the 4th century, made a great contribution to the development of ascetic writing. His works were translated in an early period into ancient Christian languages (Latin, Armenian, Syriac, Coptic, Arabic, Ethiopic, Sogdian and Georgian). Evagrius Ponticus was anathematized by the Fifth World Church Council (553) on the charge of Origenism, thus his works in Greek were partially lost and partly survived under the name of other authors. Most of them were attributed to Saint Nilus of Sinai (IV-V centuries). According to K. Kekelidze, Evagrius must have been Georgian by origin, because, according to Greek church writers and historians (Palladius of Hellenopolis, Socrates Scholasticus, Ermia Sozomenes and Nicephorus Callistus). Evagrius was from Ponto, the city of the Iberians (πόλεος Ἰβήρων) [Kekelidze, 1960: 5-17]. This opinion was shared by other Georgian scholars [Kaukhchishvili, 1967: 106-117; Lolashvili, 1978: 31-52].

The works by Evagrius Ponticus were translated in the first three stages of the development of ancient Georgian writing: in the so-called pre-Athonic period (V-X centuries); In the Athonic period (10th – 1st part of the 11th century), by Euthymius the Hagiorite († 1028). In the Hellenophile period (2nd part of the 11th century), these works were translated presumably by St. Ephraim the Lesser (the 11th  century).

Extracts of several works known as authored by Evagrius were preserved only in the Sinai manuscript copied in 907 – O/Sin.geo.35 [Makharashvili, 1984: 3-39]. In the second oldest list – H-622 (the 10th century), the work by Evagrius is attributed to Saint Nilus of Sinai. In the translations by Euthymius, the works by Evagrius, unlike the Greek original, were identified as translated by St. Basil the Great († 379) and by St. Maximus the Confessor († 662). St. Ephraim the Lesser translated the works by Evagrius under the name of  St. Nilus of Sinai, as was common in the Greek manuscript tradition.

In the pre-Athonic period, the works by Evagrius Ponticus were translated fragmentally [Garitte, 1956: 99-102; Kekelidze, 1960: 8-9; Tkebuchava, 2020a: 183-187]. They are preserved in two manuscripts – O/Sin.geo.35 (907 BC, 26v-39r) [Makharashvili, 1984: 21-38] and H-622 (X century, 57r-61v, 103v-105v).

These works are as follows:

1. “Chapters to Monks” (Sententiae ad monachos: CPG 2435) – sententiae 1-5, O/Sin.geo.35, 26v-27r.

2. “The Rule for Newly Ordained Monks” (Ad juniores monachos instructio) [PG 79, col. 532 D 9 – 533 B 3], O/Sin.geo.35, 27r.

3. “On the Eight Thoughts” (De octo spiritibus malitiae: CPG 2451) – first two chapters, O/Sin.geo.35, 27r-29r; 37r-39r.

4.  “Praktikos” (Praktikos: CPG 2430), O/Sin.geo.35, 29r-32r.

5. Prologue of “Treatise to the Monk Eulogius” (Tractatus ad Eulogium monachum: CPG 2447), O/Sin.geo.35, 32r-v.

6. “On the Vices Opposed to the Virtues” (De uitiis quae opposita sunt: CPG 2448) – six antithetical pairs [for nine], O/Sin.geo.35, 32v-35v.

7. “On Vain Glory” (De vana gloria), O/Sin.geo.35, 35v-37r; H-622, 103v-105v. Its Greek original is not found.

8. “Chapters on Prayer” (De oratione: CPG 2452), H-622, 57r-61v. Instead of 153 exhortations, it contains only 48. According to B. Outtier, this work must have been translated from Arabic [Outtier, 2003: 198-200].

We would like to note here that in the Hellenophile period,  “Chapters on Prayers” by Evagrius was completely translated supposedly under the name of Nilus of Sinai. This work is preserved in the only manuscript – A-60 (the 13th century), 130v-138r (pp. 270-285) [Kochlamazashvili, 2017: 192-230; Kochlamazashvili, 2022: 7-50]. Most probably, the "Sententiae" of Pseudo-Nilus preserved in the same list must also belong to Evagrius (Sententiae: CPG 6583a, 6583b):

a) "Wise phrases for the Benefit of the Soul" (Capita Paraenetica: CPG 6583a), A-60, 138r-141r (pp. 285-291) [Chkonia, 1963: 103-121].

b) "Wise phrases separating from the corruptible and connecting with the incorruptible" (Sententiae abducentes hominem a corruptibilibus, et incorruptibilibus unientes: CPG 6583b), A-60, 141r-142v (pp. 291-294).[2]

In the Athonic period (the 10th – 11th centuries) the works by St. Evagrius were translated by Euthymius the Hagiorite. These translations, as mentioned above, were ascribed to St. Basil the Great and St. Maximus the Confessor. In Greek patristics, the above-named church writers were considered the authors of some of Evagrius’ works. In particular, the 8th  letter, – "On faith" (Epistula fidei: CPG 2439) [PG 32, col. 245-268] known belonging to Basil. In fact, this work belongs to Evagrius Ponticus and is confirmed by the Syriac translation [Frankenberg, 1912: 620-635; Quasten, 1986: 176]. It is also certain that the main part of the Capita Practica by Pseudo-Maximus [Епифанович, 1917: 56-59] is the authentic text of the "Gnostic Chapters" (Kephalaia Gnostica: CPG 2432) by Evagrius [Hausherr, 1939: 229-233].[3]  However, none of Evagrius’ works translated by Euthymius the Hagiorite are known in the original version under the names of Basil the Great and Maximus the Confessor. Most of the mentioned texts, which we will touch on below, are attributed to Saint Nilus of Sinai in the Greek tradition.

The following works were translated by Euthymius the Hagiorite under the name of Basil the Great:

1. "Studies on Prayer and Virtues for the Blessing of the Soul by Holy and Reverend Father of Ours, Basil" [Chikhorlishvili, 2015: 9-62; Samaseuli, 2018: 33-57; Kochlamazashvili, 2022: 126-179]. This text consists of 129 articles and is included in the manuscript collection – A-1101 (1047), 88r-108v, 137v-140r – amongst the untitled "Studies" of Basil the Great (A-1101, 83r-132v). In three lists (S-1595, A-116, A-57) a short recension  of the same text is also known ("On Prayer"), which seems to have been translated before a longer version [Kochlamazashvili, 2022: 70-89; Text: ibid., 180-188].

From the extended editorship of "Studies”, exhortations 127 and 128 were identified by N. Kajaia. They were compilations of the "Commentary on the Psalms" by Basil of Caesarea translated by Euthymius the Hagiorite. The first (127th) is a fragment of the commentary on the 12th verse of Psalm 33, and the second (128th) is the translation of the commentary on the 6th verse of the same Psalm. A scholar noted that in order to identify the text, it would be necessary to take into account the extensive patristic literature [Kajaia, 1992: 67-68].

Recently, E. Kochlamazashvili has published critically established texts of both (short and long) recensions of Pseudo-Basil's works [Kochlamazashvili, 2022: 51-201]. This author has identified the first 43 exhortations from the extended "Studies", and 15 from the short recension. These Sententiae were found to be extracted from Evagrius Ponticus’ treatise – "On prayer" (De Oratione) [Kochlamazashvili, 2022: 89-125].[4]  We would like to add that the 44th Study of the extended version also consists of the two concluding exhortations of the mentioned treatise (152+153).

In the same period, we also studied Pseudo-Basil's "Studies on Prayer" and revealed that the main part of the text is a compendium of the works by Evagrius Ponticus. In particular, 123 of the 129 exhortations are taken from the eight works by Evagrius.  The 76th Study is a fragment of the "25th Homily" authored by Macarius the Great; “Study 125” is taken from the prologue (sixth paragraph) of the "The Religious History" (Historia religiosa: CPG 6221) of Blessed Theodoret, and Study N 126, from his sermon "On Divine Love" (De divina charitate: CPG 6224); The 129th exhortation belongs to Basil, namely, it turned out to be a fragment of the 167th letter (To the Widow) [Tkebuchava, 2022: 196-198].

It should be noted that in manuscript A-1101 (1047), the so-called 127th – 129th exhortations ("Saint Basil said...", 137v-139r), which turned out to be fragments from the works by Basil follow entitled "Studies by St. Gregory of Nazianzus”  (134r-137v), without any other reference. In the remaining lists (Jer. Geo.14, 1055 and others), this work is the concluding part of the "Studies" by Pseudo-Basil. We think that the transposition of these three exhortations into the text of Pseudo-Basil must be the work of the copyist. This later version must have been established in the manuscripts. In our opinion, it would be advisable for Studies 127 – 129 to be considered separately. Thus, it can be claimed that "Studies on Prayer" actually consists of 126 chapters.

The short recension of the works by Pseudo-Basil "On the prayer of Saint Basil" (S-1595, XI century, 147r-151v), similar to the extended version, is also compiled from the same works by Evagrius. The short recension includes fewer exhortations and is shortened compared to the longer, more extended version. In addition, six works by Evagrius are used instead of eight. The mentioned version ends with a small fragment translated from the prologue of “The Religious History” by Theodoret of Cyrus (S-1595, 151v). It is followed by exhortations taken from Basil the Great’s “The 11th  Ascetic Speech” (CPG 2889): He said to himself: “If it is God's will to find a man who teaches good deeds... Be patient in your cell, so that you may see the Lord in your prayer" (S-1595, 151v-152v) [text see Kochlamazashvili, 2022: 186-188]. This completes the short recension of Pseudo-Basil's "Study".

Thus, the relationship between the extensive and short recension of Pseudo-Basil's "Studies" and the works by Evagrius is as follows:[5]

a) St. 1-44 = “On prayers“ (De Oratione: CPG 2452) [SC 589; PG 79, col. 1165 1200]:[6]  1 = 3; 2 = 4; 3 = 5; 4 = 6; 5 = 7; 6 = 9; 7 = 10+11; 8 = 12; 9 = 20; 10 = 28; 11 = 27; 12 = 31; 13 = 33; 14 = 39; 15 = 43; 16 = 45; 17 = 47; 18 = 48; 19 = 49; 20 = 50; 21 = 54; 22 = 59; 23 = 62; 24 = 65; 25 = 66; 26 = 71; 27 = 72; 28 = 78; 29 = 79; 30 = 81; 31 = 87+88; 32 = 89; 33 = 90; 34 = 91; 35 = 92+93; 36 = 95; 37 = 96; 38 = 102; 39 = 104; 40 = 133; 41 = 134; 42 = 149; 43 = 150 and 44 = 152+153. In the short recension “On Prayers”, 17 exhortations are translated from the treatise:  3, 5, 6, 7, 20, 28, 31, 33, 43, 45, 47, 49, 79, 81, 87, 92 and 93.

In the Greek manuscript tradition, this work is attributed to Nilus of Sinai, although its Syriac and Arabic translations confirm the authorship of Evagrius [Quasten, 1986: 174]. The treatise is included in the Greek "Philokalia"  by St. Nicodemus the Hagiorite [Φιλοκαλία (Α΄), 1893: 102-110] under the name of Nilus.

b) St. 45 = "Exhortation Chapters" (Capita Paraenetica: CPG 6583a) [PG 79, col. 1252 B – 1262 C]. Three Sententiae are joined here: 25(1) + 26(2) + 31(7). These exhortations were not found in the short recension.

In the Greek tradition, the text is attributed to Nilus of Sinai and St. Hesychius of Jerusalem and is included in the Clavis Patrum Graecorum (CPG) under the name of Hesychius. It was mentioned above that these Sententiae were translated into Georgian under the name of Nilus in the Hellenophile period: "Wise phrases for the Benefit of the Soul" [Chkonia, 1963: 103-121].

c) St. 46-62 = “Praktikos” (Practicus: CPG 2430) [SC 171]:[7]  46 = 15; 47 = 19; 48 = 24; 49 = 25; 50 = 30; 51 = 33; 52 = 44; 53 = 49; 54 = 52; 55 = 53; 56 = 61; 57 = 64; 58 = 65; 59 = 67; 60 = 75; 61 = 83; 62 = 86. Only two exhortations (15 and 49) are translated from “Praktikos” in the short recension.

The work is the first book of the well-known trilogy The Monk (Monachicos)[8] and consists of 100 chapters.[9]

d) St. 63-65 = “The Foundations of the Monastic Life” (Rerum monachalium rationes: CPG 2441) [PG 40, 1252-1264]: 63 = 2+3; 64 = 6; 65 = 11. Only 11 exhortations are translated in the short recension.

The work consists of 11 chapters and is known as authored by Evagrius, although, in some Greek lists, its important part (chapters 2-8) is attributed to  Athanasius the Great (IV century) [PG 28, col. 845-849], and a small fragment (Chapter 9) belongs to  St. Amun (Ammon) of Nitria (IV century) [Nau, 1915: 486-487].

e) St. 66-75, 77-79 = “On Thoughts” (De malignis cogitationibus: CPG 2450) [SC 438]:[10] 66 = 1; 67 = 9; 68 = 11; 69 = 14; 70 = 15; 71 = 17; 72 = 39; 73 = 22; 74 = 43; 75 = 26; 77 = 34; 78 = 35; 79 = 37.  In the short recension, from the mentioned work only two exhortations (43 and 26) can be found.

The treatise is known by two Greek recensions, short (22 chapters) and extensive (43 chapters). A short recension is included in the Philokalia [Φιλοκαλία (Α΄), 1893: 25-33], a slightly extended variant of the same version (27 chapters) is attributed to Nilus of Sinai [PG 79, col. 1200 D – 1233 A]. A longer recension is known as written by Evagrius Ponticus [Muyldermans, 1932: 47-55], several chapters of this work are mistakenly included in another work by Evagrius (Capita Practica) [PG 40, col. 1236 C 9 – 1244 B 7].[11]

J. Muyldermans published only the part of the longer recension not found in the short version. This scholar published the Greek text according to the manuscript Coislin 109 (10th century) and added the yet unknown, 44th exhortation, which followed the work named in the list, as the same author's exhortation "About Purification" (Τοῦ αὐτοῦ περὶ ἁγιασμοῦ) [Muyldermans, 1932: 55-60]. Later it turned out that the above-mentioned 44th chapter was the 25th speech by Macarius the Great [PG 34, col. 668-673] from "50 Spiritual Homilies" (Homiliae spiritales: CPG 2411) [Peterson, 1933: 271-273].

A similar picture is portrayed in two other Greek manuscripts – Protaton 26 (X century, 64v-70r) and Lavra Γ 93 (XI century, 267r-271v) [SC 170: 171, 179]. In the version of the work translated by Euthymius the Hagiorite, the situation is different. In this version, Macarius’ words come not at the end of the work, but within the text (no. 76) and fragmentarily, only in the last part of the homily, in paragraphs 7-10 [PG 34, col. 672 C 3 – 673 D 11]. We think that the mentioned fact indicates that Euthymius the Athonite must have used a manuscript similar to the above-mentioned Greek collections when translating the work.

f) St. 80-106 = "Treatise to the Monk Eulogius" (Tractatus ad Eulogium: CPG 2447) [SC 591: 268 - 408; PG 79, col. 1093 - 1140][12] : 80 = 11; 81 = 12; 82+83+84 = 13; 85+86 = 14; 87+88 = 15; 89+91 = 17; 90+92+93+94 = 18; 95 = 19; 96+97+98 = 20; 99 = 21; 100 = 22; 101+102 = 24; 103 = 25; 104+105 = 28; 106 = 29. In the short recension four paragraphs from the treatise "To Eulogius" are translated: 14, 15, 24, 25.

The majority of Greek manuscripts ascribe this work to St Nilus of Sinai. Only a few attribute it to Evagrius Ponticus, although Evagrius is named as the author in the Syriac and Armenian translations [Quasten, 1986: 175].

g) St. 107 = "Reflections" (Skemmata, Capita cognoscitiva: CPG 2433). Only the 25th (12b) exhortation has been translated into Georgian [Muyldermans, 1931: 377; 52]. In the short recension of Pseudo-Basil's works, instead of this exhortation, another article (66th) from the same work of Evagrius is translated as follows: "Saint Basil said: As a hungry wolf scatters the flock, so the soul with fornication fills the bellies with them": Λύκος πεισῶν ἐξιχνιάσει ποίμνην· καὶ πνεῦμα πορνείας τοὺς πληροῦντας γαστέρα αὐτῶν [Muyldermans, 1931: 57].

The work "Reflections" (Skemmata) consists of short exhortations. In some Greek manuscripts and Latin translations, it is also known to have been written by Nilus of Sinai.[13]  This work was considered to be a supplement to the "Gnostic Chapters" (Kephalaia Gnostica: CPG 2432). This treatise is the third part of “The Monk” (Monachicos) which consists of six books and each chapter contains 90 short exhortations whereas the whole number of exhortations is 540. However, in the epilogue of the trilogy, Evagrius writes to the addressee of the treatise, Anatoli, that he is sending the text with 600 exhortations [SC 171: 492]. Apparently, because of this inconsistency, later editors expanded the "Gnostic Chapters" by adding 60 exhortations to make 600, which also went into its Syriac and Armenian translations [Frankenberg, 1912: 422-471; Sarghisean, 1907: 207-216].[14]  Thus, in these additional chapters, 1-39 exhortations and other 21 pieces of advice are included from "Reflections" [Harmless... 2001: 503].

h) St. 108-124 = " Exhortations for Monks" (Institutio ad monachos: CPG 2454):[15]  108 = I,7+I,8+I,10+I,11; 109 = I.14; 110 = I.15; 111 = II,4; 112 = II.5; 113 = II.6; 114 = II.7; 115 = II.9; 116 = II,11; 117 = II,12; 118 = II.13; 119 = II.15; 120 = II.16; 121 = II.18; 122 = II.20; 123 = II.35; 124 = II,39. These Sententiae were not found in the short recension.

The treatise, as the title suggests, consists of exhortations for monks. The majority of the Greek manuscripts attribute it to St. Nilus of Sinai. A short (33 exhortations) [PG 79, col. 1235-1240] and long (58 exhortations) recensions of the work are known [Muyldermans 1938: 198-204].

An extended version under the name of Evagrius Ponticus is included in the two main Greek collections of Evagrius’ works – Protaton 26 (X c., 108v-113v) and Lavra Γ 93 (XI c., 304v-307r) [SC 170: 173, 181-182]. In these collections, the work is presented in two parts, the first consists of 16 exhortations, and the second contains 42 of them [Sinkewicz, 2003: 217-223]. The Syriac translation of the longer recension is thought to have been done by Evagrius [Muyldermans, 1952: 61-62].

Thus, the extended version of the works by Pseudo-Basil ("Studies on Prayer") is almost entirely compiled from the works by Evagrius Ponticus. A fragment of Macarius the Great's 25th homily is included as the 76th exhortation [PG 34, col. 672 C 3 – 673 D 11], and the sententiae by Evagrius end with two exhortations (s. 125, 126) from the works of the blessed Theodoret – "The Religious History" (the sixth paragraph of the prologue) [SC 234: 132-134, 6.5-17; PG 82, col. 1288 C 9 – D 8] and "On Divine Love" [SC 257: 254-314; PG 82, col. 1497-1522]. All three works are included in the Athonic collections of works by Evagrius Ponticus - Protaton 26 (X century) and Lavra Γ 93 (XI century).[16]

In both Greek lists, the 25th homily by Macarius the Egyptian follows the treatise "Refutation of Passions” and is considered as its constituent part. Regarding the two works by Theodoret, the above-mentioned Greek lists present a different picture: in Protaton 26, the works by Theodoret of Cyrus follow the studies by Evagrarius (127v-330r) and include the second part of this manuscript [SC 170: 174]. In Lavra Γ 93, the writings of Theodoret are found at the beginning, as the first part of the manuscript (1r-114v), and the works of Evagrius make up its last, fourth part (226r-315v) [SC 170: 177-182].[17]

As mentioned above, in both Greek collections of Athonic origin, the works by Evagrius are included under the name of this author and are not attributed to other church writers. In both lists, Evagrius’ work begins with "Praktikos" and ends with the studies of "On the Eight Thoughts". The six works used by Euthymius the Hagiorite to create the work by Pseudo-Basil are also confirmed in the mentioned Greek collections; their order also coincides. These Greek lists include not only the first two works of the "Studies" – "On Prayer" (ch. 1-44) and "Exhortation Chapters" (St. 45).[18]

Based on the mentioned data, we think that Euthymius the Athonite must have had a Greek manuscript with a composition similar to Protaton 26 when he created the works of Pseudo-Basil. That is why Euthymius added the exhortations of the blessed Theodoret to the Sententiae collected from the works of Evagrius. The 25th homily by Macarius the Great, as it was said, is among the writings of Evagrius in the Athonic lists, and it is not surprising that its fragment was included in the above-mentioned text ("On Thoughts"). Thus, Euthymius the Hagiorite first created a short recension of the works ("On prayer"), and then a long one ("Study for prayer"). He attributed both versions to St. Basil of Caesarea. In this way, the distrust towards Evagrius was disguised by the name of the Holy Father, so that the reader could also receive spiritual benefit from the work by Evagrius Ponticus.

2. "The Study of Basil the Holy Father" [Khundadze, 2004: 16-19; Tkebuchava, 2021b: 320-334]. The text is found among the untitled "Studies" of Basil the Great in the same manuscripts (A-1101, 132v-134r; Jer.Geo.14, 340v-342v) that include Pseudo-Basil's "Studies on Prayer". This is the apophthegm – "On activitying in the cell", the 9th chapter of Evagrius’ "The Foundations of the Monastic Life" (Rerum monachalium rationes: CPG 2441). This exhortation is included in both collections of the Apophthegmata Patrum (alphabetic-anonymous and systematic). The same apophthegm, under the name of  Amun (Ammon) of Nitria, can be found in the Georgian translation of the Systematic Paterik by Theophilus the Hieromonk [Dvali... 2004: 172].[19] In the Greek tradition, this fragment is attributed to St. Amun [Nau, 1915: 486-487].

We have shown above that Pseudo-Basil's "Studies on Prayer" contains several chapters by Evagrius’ "The Foundations of the Monastic Life" (2+3, 6, 11), although there is no named-above a paragraph among them. It seems that Euthymius the Athonite must have selected this 9th chapter in a special way and included it in the work as an independent work. The text is an extensive version of the original; in particular, in two places, it includes exhortations about “the second coming of the Lord", which remain unidentified [Tkebuchava, 2021b: 324-325]. The following works were translated by Euthymius the Hagiorite under the name of Maximus the Confessor:

We have shown above that Pseudo-Basil's "Studies on Prayer" contains several chapters by Evagrius’ "The Foundations of the Monastic Life" (2+3, 6, 11), although there is no named-above a paragraph among them. It seems that Euthymius the Athonite must have selected this 9th chapter in a special way and included it in the work as an independent work. The text is an extensive version of the original; in particular, in two places, it includes exhortations about “the second coming of the Lord", which remain unidentified [Tkebuchava, 2021b: 324-325].

The following works were translated by Euthymius the Hagiorite under the name of Maximus the Confessor:

1. "Spiritual  Studies of St. Maximus the Confessor" [St. Maximus the Confessor, 2006: 3-36; Samaseuli, 2018: 59-100].[20] "Spiritual Studies" by Pseudo-Maximus consists of 100 exhortations (A-146, XIV century, 65r-89v). As was found out by us, the main part of the mentioned "Studies" (vv. 9, 37-100) is taken from the gnomic writings, called "Exhortations Chapters" (Capita Paraenetica: CPG 6583a) [PG 79, col. 1252 B – 1261 C]. In the Greek manuscript tradition, this text is known as authored by St. Nilus of Sinai and St. Hesychius of Jerusalem[21], although the style is similar to the works by Evagrius Ponticus. In Patrologia Greca, the text known as written by Nilus of Sinai consists of 139 Sententiae [PG 79, col. 1249 C – 1261 C]. The fact is that Sententiae 1-24 [PG 79, col. 1249 C – 1252 B 3] are listed in the order of the Greek alphabet, which also deserves attention. The mentioned section (vv. 1-24) was also identified separately under the name of Evagrius (Capita Paraenetica: CPG 2443) [Elter, 1892: LII], which suggests that the real author of the "Exhortation Chapters" may be Evagrius Ponticus. In addition, as was said above, the 45th article in Pseudo-Basil's works – "Studies on Prayer"  is a synthesis of three Sententiae (25, 26, 31) taken from the "Exhortation Chapters". In Pseudo-Basil's text, which is a compendium of Evagrius’ works, the inclusion of these expressions by Euthymius the Hagiorite is, we believe, an additional argument for considering Evagrius Ponticus as the author of the works [Tkebuchava, 2022: 199-202].

In the "Studies" by Pseudo-Maximus, the "Exhortation Chapters" are translated selectively, and each sententia is expanded with commentaries. In this way, 69 sententiae [22] (Iberian = Greek) were translated from the "Exhortation Chapters" by Euthymius the  Athonite under the name of Maximus the Confessor: 37 = 25; 38 = 26; 39 = 28; 40 = 29; 41 = 31; 42 = 32; 43 = 33; 44 = 34; 45 = 35; 46 = 38+39; 47 = 41; 48 = 42; 49 = 43; 50 = 46; 51 = 47; 52 = 48; 53 = 49; 54 = 53; 55 = 54; 56 = 55+56; 9 = 57; 57 = 58; 58 = 59; 59 = 60; 60 = 61; 61 = 62; 62 = 63; 63 = 64; 64 = 67; 65 = 69; 66 = 70; 67 = 74; 68 = 71; 69 = 76; 70 = 77; 71 = 78; 72 = 79; 73 = 80; 74 = 81; 75 = 82; 76 = 83; 77 = 85; 78 = 86; 79 = 134; 80 = 135+136; 81 = 93; 82 = 94; 83 = 95; 84 = 96; 85 = 97; 86 = 99; 87 = 100; 88 = 101; 89 = 103; 90 = 104; 91 = 106; 92 = 107; 93 = 108; 94 = 110; 95 = 111; 96 = 112; 97 = 115; 98 = 118; 99 = 128+129; 100 = 137 [Tkebuchava, 2022: 198-219].

2. “Refutation of Passions of our holy and blissful father, Maximus the Confessor, written to Father Thalassius” [Kochlamazashvili, 2019]. “Refutation of Passions” by Pseudo-Maximus is a synthesis of two works by Evagrius Ponticus – “Antirrhetikos” (Antirrheticus: CPG 2434) and “On the Eight Thoughts” (De octo spiritibus malitiae: CPG 2451) [Tkebuchava, 2019: 127-138; Kochlamazashvili, 2019: 9-68].

Following eight passions, both works by Evagrius Ponticus consist of eight chapters, preceded by an introductory epistle. Each chapter of the text combines both of Evagrius’ works. First, a certain corresponding part is given from the Study "On the Eight Thoughts", and then – from the "Antirrhetikos". For example, in the first chapter – "On Gluttony" – first there is an exhortation "On Gluttony” and then - biblical quotations from the "Antirrhetikos", rebuking the same habit. This is the form of each chapter composed for the suppression of the eight main passions.

"On the Eight Thoughts" in Greek is known in two recensions – extended (B) [Muyldermans, 1939: 235-274; Sinkewicz, 2003: 294-299] and short (A) [PG 79, col. 1145-1164]. In the majority of Greek manuscripts, this work is attributed to Nilus of Sinai. The authorship of Evagrius is confirmed only in two Athonic manuscripts – Protaton 26 (X century, 115r-127r) and Lavra Γ 93 (XI century, 308r-315v) [SC 170: 166-182]. As it was said, two chapters of the treatise (about excessive eating and fornication) were translated into Georgian at an early period (O/Sin.geo.35, 27r-29r; 37r-39r) [Makharashvili, 1984: 22-24, 36-38]. In the translation by Euthymius, the text is presented in its entirety, it follows the editorially extensive (B) version. As revealed by our research, the Athonic list Lavra Γ 93 shows the highest degree of variant closeness to Euthymius’  text [Tkebuchava, 2020a: 183-264].

"Antirrhetikos" was known only in Armenian [Sarghisean, 1907: 217-323] and Syriac [Frankenberg, 1912: 472-545] translations, its Greek original is lost.[23] The translation by Euthymius is distinct from the Armenian-Syriac versions from the point of editorial work. Armenian and Syrian recension are seen standing close to each other. The Armenian translation is more complete in terms of the number of discursive chapters and must be closer to the lost original version [Tkebuchava, 2020b: 165-196].

"Refutation of Passions" starts with the so-called 4th Epistle by Evagrius [Frankenberg, 1912: 568-569; Guillaumont, 1987: 219-220], which is addressed to the addressee of the "Antirrhetikos", some Lucius [Brakke, 2009: 1]. The four paragraphs of the epistle are completely missing in the translation made by Euthymius, but an extract of the 56th Catechesis (Catechesis LVI) of Theodore the Studite is inserted instead [Auvray, 1891: 202,21-203,42]. The same interpolation was revealed in "the life of Theodore of Edessa" (BHG 1744) [Tkebuchava, 2021a: 333-340].[24]  The above-mentioned epistle is followed by the preface of the "Antirrhetikos" and thus a kind of introduction is created for the work [Tkebuchava, 2019: 132-133; Tkebuchava, 2021a: 325-351].[25]

Thus, as we can see, a large part of Evagrius Ponticus’ work was revealed in ancient Georgian literature. Fragments of Evagrius’ works with the author's name were known only in the manuscript from Sinai (O/Sin.geo.35) containing the old (pre-Athonian) translations. As it turned out, under the authorship of the holy fathers, studies by Evagrius were later translated into Georgian. If in the pre-Athonian and Hellenophile periods, the translator relies on the Greek manuscript tradition, the situation is different in the Athonian period. In particular, St. Euthymius Athonite translated the works under the name of St. Maximus the Confessor and Basil the Great. Evagius’ teachings were translated mainly in excerpts, although two works – "Antirrhetikos" and "On the Eight Thoughts" were translated in their entirety, as a result of their synthesis, one treatise was compiled under the name of Maximus the Confessor, entitled – "Refutation of Passions".

[1] This research was supported by the Shota Rustaveli National Science Foundation (SRNSF) [PHDF-19-438, Ascetic Text “Talking Back to Passions” Attributed to St Maximus the Confessor and its Translation by Euthymius the Hagiorite].

[2]Besides A-60, these Sententiae are found in four more lists of a later period: A-67 (XVI), 84r-91v; S-269 (XVII), 111r-125r; H-1246 (1754), 153r-164r; Lit. Mus.  24 (XVIII), 25r-36v.

[3]The work by Evagrius entitled "Gnostic Chapters" (Kephalaia Gnostica) is the third part of the famous trilogy ”Monachicos”. It is preserved in the original only in fragments, and the most extensive fragment is attributed to Maximus the Confessor [Сидоров, 1994: 16]. "Gnostic Chapters" is known by Syriac [Frankenberg, 1912: 48-423; Guillaumont, 1958] and Armenian [Sarghisean, 1907: 143-207] translations [Quasten, 1986: 174].

[4]As mentioned by E. Kochlamazashvili earlier, many phrases from Evagrius Ponticus’ treatise "On Prayer" were included in the writings by  Pseudo-Basil [Kochlamazashvili, 2019: 140].

[5]We will discuss  “Studies”  by Pseudo-Basil separately in another article.

[6]The number of the Greek text  is indicated according to SC 589.

[7]The number of the Greek text is indicated according to SC 171.

[8]Monachicos: a) “Praktikos” (Practicus: CPG 2430), b) “Gnostikos” (Gnosticus: CPG 2431), c) “Gnostic chapters” (Kephalaia Gnostica: CPG 2432).

[9]Is published as fragments in PG:  PG 40, 1220C-1236C (1-5, 15-42, 50-53, 63-90); PG 40, 1244B-1252C (29, 31, 43-49, 54-62, 91-100); PG 40, 1272A-1276B (6-14).

[10]The Greek text is numbered according to SC 438.

[11]Altogether, 9 fragments are included [PG 40, col. 1236C-1244B]: 63=3; 64=22; 65=31; 66=33; 67=34; 68=36; 69=38; 70=39; 71=40.

[12]The Greek text is numbered according to SC 591.

[13]The Greek versions of the work were published in 1931 by J. Muyldermans. In the first article, the researcher published the Greek text of the Skemmata according to the Codex Barberini p. 515, which consists of 67 exhortations. There Muyldermans published Latin (59 gnomes) and Armenian (18 gnomes) translations [Muyldermans, 1931: 37-68]. In the second article, the scientist wrote the original Codex Parisiensis gr. Published according to 913 (X century), it consists of 62 exhortations and contains 49 admonitions of the first version [Muyldermans, 1931: 369-380], the remaining 50-67 chapters are known from the aforementioned Armenian translation [Muyldermans, 1931: 65-68]. After some time, the scientist also studied the Syriac and Armenian versions of the work [Muyldermans, 1934: 73-106].

[14]Capita Gnostica and its supplement (Capita Cognoscitiva) in the Syriac translation, on the other hand, are accompanied by the comments of Nestorian Babai the Great (569-628).

[15]The Greek text is numbered according to English translations by R. Sinkewicz [Sinkewicz, 2003: 218-223].

[16]Both manuscript collections contain the same works by Evagrius Ponticus [SC 171: 166-182].

[17]Lavra Γ 93 (XI century) is a slightly later and widespread collection, it consists of four parts.

[18]It should be noted here that Pseudo-Basil's "Study" is thematically similar to "Ascetic Chapters" (Capita ascetica) by Theodore of Edessa (IX century). The work mentioned in the manuscripts containing the Greek "Life" of Theodore of Edessa describes Theodore's life. It was. included in the Greek Philokalia [Φιλοκαλία (Α΄), 1893: 182-194] by Nicodemus the Hagiorite. It is revealed by Gouillard that the main part of Theodore's “A Century” is paraphrased from the six works by Evaggrius Ponticus [Gouillard, 1947: 143-149]. We will explore the similarity between these two Studies separately in detail, now we will only note that five of the six works in the "Ascetic Chapters" by Theodore de Edessa are also found in the "Studies" of Pseudo-Basil ("Praktikos", "The Foundations of the Monastic Life", "On Thoughts", "Treatise to the Monk Eulogius", "Exhortations to Monks"). In addition, interpolation from the 25th homily by St. Macarius of the Egypian is included  in Theodore's “A Century” (68-69 AD), a paraphrase from paragraphs 1-3 of the sermon, and in Pseudo-Basil's "Study" (AD 76) – paragraphs 7-10 (the last part of the homily).

[19]The exhortations by Evagrius in the Alphabetical Paterik begin with this exhortation [PG 65, col. 173-176], and in Chapter III of the Systematic Collection (De Compunctione – "On Repentance"), the apothegm by Evagrius follows the study of St. Amun the Monk (IV century) [PL 73, col. 860-861]. In some Greek lists of Systematic Paterik, it is into two parts, where the initial section of St. It is attributed to Antony the Great, and the other half to some Theodore, published in this form in the critical recension of the Greek text [SC 387: 148-150].

[20]For the manuscript preservation of the text, see: Gabidzashvili, 2009: 227-228 (N 714).

[21]As it was said above, this work was translated by Ephraim the Lesser under the name of Nilus of Sinai: "Wise phrases for the Benefit of the Soul" [Chkonia, 1963: 103-121].

[22]We refer to the numbering of the Greek text.  According to J.-P. Migne's edition [PG 79, col. 1249 C – 1261 C].

[23]Fragments of the work have also been preserved in the ancient Sogdian translation [Sims-Williams, 1985: 168-182].

[24]"The Life of St Theodore of Edessa" is written in Greek by Euthymius the Athonite, as well as Theodore's "Ascetic Chapters" (Capita ascetica). We are exploring the issue with Nana Chikvatia.

[25]Famous French scholars Bernard Outtier and Paul Gehin dedicated a special paper to the Georgian translation of the 4th epistle by Evagrius in “Le Museon”, 2022, 3-4;  The epistle by Evagrius and the catechism by Theodore the Studite have been discussed there [Outtier... 2022: 393-416]. We discuss the same issue in the above-mentioned letter published in the ecclesiastical-scientific collection “The Scroll”, 2021, issue N 8 (Tbilisi Theological Academy) [Tkebuchava, 2021a: 325-351].


გაბიძაშვილი ე.
ჰომილეტიკა, ძველი ქართული მწერლობის ნათარგმნი ძეგლები, ბიბლიოგრაფია, 3, თბილისი.
დვალი მ., ჩიტუნაშვილი დ.
თეოფილე ხუცესმონაზონი, მამათა სწავლანი და თხრობანი, შუა საუკუნეთა ნოველების ძველი ქართული თარგმანები, ტომი III, თბილისი.
კეკელიძე კ.
მეოთხე საუკუნის საზღვარგარეთელი ქართველი მოაზროვნე და მოღვაწე, ეტიუდები ძველი ქართული ლიტერატურის ისტორიიდან, VI, თბილისი. გვ. 5-17.
კოჭლამაზაშვილი ე.
წმ. ნილოს სინელის სახელით წარწერილი სწავლანი ლოცვისათვის და მისი ძველი ქართული თარგმანი, ქრისტიანულ-არქეოლოგიური ძიებანი, IX. გვ. 192-230.
კოჭლამაზაშვილი ე.
ევაგრე პონტოელის Antirrhetikos-ის ძველი ქართული თარგმანი, პატრისტიკული კვლევა საქართველოში, IV, თბილისი.
კოჭლამაზაშვილი ე.
ევაგრე პონტოელის De Oratione-ს ძველი ქართული ვერსიები, პატრისტიკული კვლევა საქართველოში, VI, თბილისი.
ლოლაშვილი ი.
ქართველთა კულტურული ურთიერთობა ბიზანტიასთან (IV ს.), ქართული წიგნისა და მწერლობის საწყისებთან, თბილისი.
წმ. მაქსიმე აღმსარებელი
სწავლანი სულიერნი, თბილისი.
მახარაშვილი ს.
ევაგრე პონტოელის ცხოვრება-მოღვაწეობა და მის თხზულებათა ქართული თარგმანი, ძველი ქართული მწერლობის მატიანე, I, თბილისი. გვ. 3-39.
ქართული სასულიერო მწერლობა, წიგნი III, ტექსტი გამოსაცემად მოამზადეს: გიორგი კალანდაძემ, მიხეილ ქავთარიამ, გამომცემლობა „მთაწმინდა“.
ტყებუჩავა ლ.
წმინდა მაქსიმე აღმსარებლის სახელით ცნობილი ასკეტური ძეგლი „სიტყჳსგებისათჳს ვნებათაჲსა“ და მისი ექვთიმე ათონელისეული თარგმანი, მრავალთავი, ფილოლოგიურ-ისტორიული ძიებანი, 26. გვ. 127-138.
ტყებუჩავა ლ.
ევაგრე პონტოელის შრომა „ბოროტების რვა სულის შესახებ“ და მისი წმ. ექვთიმე ათონელისეული თარგმანი, საღვთისმეტყველო-სამეცნიერო შრომები, X-XI. გვ. 183-264.
ტყებუჩავა ლ.
ევაგრე პონტოელის „ანტირეტიკოსი“ და მისი წმ. ექვთიმე ათონელისეული თარგმანი, გრაგნილი, საეკლესიო-სამეცნიერო კრებული, VII. გვ. 165-196.
ტყებუჩავა ლ.
ევაგრე პონტოელის მე-4 ეპისტოლე და მისი წმ. ექვთიმე ათონელისეული თარგმანი, გრაგნილი, საეკლესიო-სამეცნიერო კრებული, VIII. გვ. 325-351.
ტყებუჩავა ლ.
ევაგრე პონტოელის აპოფთეგმის ექვთიმე ათონელისეული თარგმანი, ენრიკო გაბიძაშვილი 90. 320-334.
ტყებუჩავა ლ.
წმ. ექვთიმე ათონელის მიერ თარგმნილი კომპილაციური შრომა „სწავლანი სულიერნი წმიდისა მაქსიმე აღმსარებელისანი", გრაგნილი, საეკლესიო-სამეცნიერო კრებული, IX. გვ. 191-224.
უტიე ბ.
ფსევდო-ნილოსის ლოცვისათვის, არაბულიდან ქართულად ძველი ნათარგმნი თავები. კონსტანტინე წერეთელი 80, საიუბილეო კრებული. გვ. 198-200.
ქაჯაია ნ.
ბასილი კესარიელის თხზულებათა ძველი ქართული თარგმანები, თბილისი.
ყაუხჩიშვილი ს.
გეორგიკა, ბიზანტიელი მწერლების ცნობები საქართველოს შესახებ, ტომი მეშვიდე, თბილისი.
ჩიხორლიშვილი დ.
წმიდისა და ღმერთშემოსილისა მამისა ჩუენისა ბასილისნი სწავლანი ლოცვისათჳს და სხუათა თითოსახეთა სათნოებათათჳს საცხორებელად სულისა, გრაგნილი, საეკლესიო-სამეცნიერო კრებული, III. გვ. 9-62.
ჭყონია თ.
ერთი ძეგლი გნომური ლიტერატურისა, ხელნაწერთა ინსტიტუტის მოამბე, V. გვ. 103-121.
ხუნდაძე ლ.
წმიდა ბასილი დიდი, სწავლანი, თბილისი.
Auvray, E.
Sancti Patris Nostri et Confessoris Theodori Studitis Praepositi Parva Catechesis. Paris.
Brakke, D.
Evagrius of Pontus, Talking Back, A Monastic Handbook for Combating Demons. Collegeville, Minnesota.
Clavis Patrum Graecorum, vol. II (Ab Athanasio ad Chrysostomum), III (A Cyrillo Alexandrino ad Iohannem Damascenum), ed. M. Geerard, Brepols – Turnhout, 1974, 1979.
Elter, A.
Gnomica I, Sexti Pythagorici, Clitarchi, Euagrii Pontici sententiae, Lipsiae.
Frankenberg, W.
Euagrius Ponticus, Abhandlungen der königlichen Gesellschaft der Wissenschaften zu Göttingen, Philologisch-historische Klasse, Berlin.
Garitte, G.
Catalogue des manuscrits géorgiens littéraires du Mont Sinaï. Corpus christianorum orientalium, 165, Subsidia Tome 9, Louvain.
Gouillard, J.
L'oeuvre de saint Théodore d'Édesse, Revue des études byzantines, tome 5. pp. 137-157.
Guillaumont, A.
Les Six Centuries des “Kephalaia Gnostica” d'Evagre le Pontique, édition critique de la version syriaque commune et édition d'une nouvelle version syriaque, intégrale, avec une double traduction française, dans Patrologia Orientalis, t. XXVIII, fasc. I, Paris.
Guillaumont C.
Fragments grecs inédits d’Evagre le Pontique. Texte und Untersuchungen zur Geschichte der altchristlichen Literatur 133, ed. Jürgen Dummer (Berlin: Akademie). pp. 209-221.
Harmless, W. & Fitzgerald, R.
The sapphire light of the mind: The 'Skemmata' of Evagrius Ponticus (So-called "reflections" on early Christian mystical theology), Theological Studies 62. pp. 498-529.
Hausherr, I.
Nouveaux fragments grecs d'Évagre le Pontique. Orientalia Christiana Periodica, vol. 5. pp. 229-233.
Muyldermans, J.
Evagriana, Le Muséon, Revue d'Études Orientales 44. pp. 37-68; 369-383.
Muyldermans, J.
À Travers la Tradition Manuscrite d’ Èvagre le Pontique, Essai sur les manuscrits grecs conservés a la bibliothèque nationale de Paris, Bibliothèque du Muséon 3, Louvain.
Muyldermans, J.
'Evagre le Pontique. Les Capita cognoscitiva dans les versions syriaque et arménienne', Le Muséon, Revue d'Études Orientales 47. pp. 73-106.
Muyldermans, J.
Evagriana, Le Vatic. Barb. Graecus 5I5, Le Muséon, Revue d'Études Orientales 51. pp. 191-226.
Muyldermans, J.
“Une nouvelle recension du De octo spiritibus malitiae de S. Nil”, Le Muséon, Revue d'Études Orientales 52. pp. 235-74.
Muyldermans, J.
Evagriana Syriaca. Textes inedits du British Museum et de la Vaticane, Bibliotheque du Museon, 31 (Louvain: Publications Universitaires).
Nau, F.
Ammonas successeur de saint Antoine, Textes grecs et syriaques, Patrologia Orientalis, XI, Fasc. 4, Paris.
Outtier, B. & Géhin P.
L'importante découverte de deux traités d'Évagre le Pontique sous le nom de Maxime le Confesseur en géorgien, Le Muséon, Revue d'Études Orientales 134 (3-4). pp. 393-416.
Peterson, E.
Irrige Zuweisungen asketischer Texte. Zeitschrift für katholische Theologie, Vol. 57, No. 2. pp. 271-274.
Patrologiae cursus completus, Series Graeca, accurante et recognoscente J. P. Migne, Paris, 1857-1866.
Patrologiae cursus completus, Series Latina, accurante et recognoscente J. P. Migne, Paris, 1844-1880.
Quasten, J.
Patrology, vol. III, The Golden Age of Greek Patristic Literature, Westminster.
Sarghisean, P. B.
The Life da Works of the Holy Father Evagrius Ponticus in an Armenian Version of the Fifth Century with Introduction and Notes (in Armenian), Venice.
SC 170
Sources chrétiennes 170, Évagre le Pontique, Traité pratique ou le moine. tome I, Introduction par Antoine Guillaumont et Claire Guillaumont, Paris, 1971.
SC 171
Sources chrétiennes 171, Évagre le Pontique, Traité pratique ou le moine. tome II, Édition critique du texte grec, Traduction, Commentaire et tables par Antoine Guillaumont et Claire Guillaumont, Paris, 1971.
SC 234
Sources Chrétiennes 234, Théodoret de Cyr, Histoire des moines de Syrie, “Histoire Philothée” I-XIII. tome I, Introduction, Texte critique, Traduction, Notes par Pierre Canivet et Alice Leroy-molinghen, Paris, 1977.
SC 257
Sources Chrétiennes 257, Théodoret de Cyr, Histoire des moines de Syrie, “Histoire Philothée” XIV-XXX, Traité sur la Charité (XXXI). Tome II, Texte critique, Traduction, Notes, Index par Pierre Canivet et Alice Leroy-molinghen, Paris, 1979.
SC 387
Sources Chrétiennes, N° 387, Les Apophtegmes des Pères, Collection Systématique, Chapitres I-IX. Introduction, texte critique, traduction et notes par Jean-Claude Guy, Paris, 1993.
SC 438
Sources Chrétiennes 438, Évagre le Pontique, Sur les pensées. Edition du texte grec, Introduction, traduction, Notes et Index par Paul Géhin, Claire Guillaumont et Antoine Guillaumont, Paris, 1998.
SC 589
Sources Chrétiennes 589, Evagre le Pontique, Chapitres sur la priere. Edition du texte grec, Introduction, traduction, Notes et Index par Paul Géhin, Paris, 2017.
SC 591
Sources Chrétiennes 591, Evagre le Pontique, A Euloge; Les vices opposes aux vertus. Introduction, Texte critique, Traduction et Notes par Charles-Antoine Fogielman, Paris, 2017.
Sims-Williams, N.
The Christian Sogdian Manuscript C2, Schriften zur Geschichte und Kultur des alten Orients, Berliner Turfautexte 12 (Berlin, 1985). pp. 168-182.
Sinkewicz, R.
Evagrius of Pontus, The Greek Ascetic Corpus, Translation, Introduction and Commentary by Robert E. Sinkewicz, Oxford.
Φιλοκαλία (Α΄)
Φιλοκαλία των Ιερών Νηπτικών. Τόμος Πρώτος (Α΄). Συνερανισθείσα παρά των Αγίων και Θεοφόρων Πατέρων ημών εν η διά της κατά την πράξιν και θεωρίαν ηθικής φιλοσοφίας ο νους καθαίρεται, φωτίζεται, και τελειούται και εις ην προσετέθησαν τα εκ της εν Βενετία εκδόσεως ελλείποντα κεφάλαια του μακαρίου Πατριάρχου Καλλίστου. Εκδιδομένη υπό Παναγιώτου Αθ. Τζελάτη, Εκ του Τυπογραφείου Παρασκευά Λεώνη, Εν Αθήναις.
Сидоров А. И.
Творения Аввы Евагрия, Аскетические и богословские трактаты.
Епифанович С. Л.
Материалы к изучению жизни и творений преподобного Максима Исповедника, Киев