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Biblical Poetry: the Legacy of the Psalms in Late Antiquity and Byzantium [POSTPONED] - 23-24/04/202


The Psalms, in their Greek Septuagint translation, were a fundamental corpus of biblical poetry, and as such were continuously referred to in Christian literature. They played a key role in the daily life and in the development of religious sensitivity of late antique and Byzantine people. The production of Psalm-related literature, notably exegetic, was impressively widespread. The Psalms, however, influenced other genres of religious literature as well, and their poetical nature remained an important feature that later authors were well aware of.


Unfortunately, in response to the evolving situation with Covid-19, the conference Biblical Poetry: The Legacy of the Psalms in Late Antiquity and Byzantium (, intended to be held in Ghent 23-24 April 2020, has been cancelled and will be rescheduled in a later period. It will be our care to let you know the new date as soon as possible.

LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: Ghent University (Ghent, Belgium)

ORGANIZADOR/ORGANIZER/ORGANIZZATORE: Floris Bernard; Reinhart Ceulemans; Cristina Cocola; Kristoffel Demoen; Anna Gioffreda; Andreas Rhoby; Rachele Ricceri.

INFO: web -


PROGRAMA/PROGRAM/PROGRAMMA: Disponible también en PDF/Also available in PDF/Anche disponibile in PDF

Day 1 (23 April)

9h – 9h30 Welcome and registration

9h30 – 9h40 Introduction (Kristoffel Demoen, Andreas Rhoby)

Session 1: Rewritings I (chair Kristoffel Demoen)

9h40 – 10h20 Andrew Faulkner (Waterloo), Authority and Innovation in the Metaphrasis Psalmorum

Respondent: Reinhart Ceulemans

10h20 – 11h00 Konstantinos Melidis – Maria Ypsilanti (Nicosia), Greek and Latin Paraphrases of the Psalms 2 and 136 (137). Pseudo-Apollinarius and Paulinus of Nola: a Comparative Study

Respondent: Berenice Verhelst

11h00 – 11h20 break

Session 2: Gregory of Nazianzus and Beyond (chair Floris Bernard)

11h20 – 12h00 Alessandro De Blasi (Padua), “We Too Will Compose Psalms” Gregory of Nazianzus’ Poetry in the Wake of the Psalms

Respondent: Kristoffel Demoen

12h00 – 12h40 Thomas Kuhn-Treichel (Heidelberg), The Psalms as a Justification for Christian Poetry: from Gregory of Nazianzus to the Metaphrasis Psalmorum

Respondent: Rachele Ricceri

12h40 – 14h lunch

Session 3: Personal Poetry (chair Krystina Kubina)

14h – 14h40 Marina Bazzani (Oxford), The use and function of Psalms in the Exomologesis and the personal poems of John Geometres

Respondent: Emilie Van Opstall

14h40 – 15h20 Ugo Carlo Luigi Mondini (Milan), Voicing Political Relief through Psalms: Manuel II Palaiologos and the Battle of Ankara

Respondent: Anna Gioffreda

15h20 – 15h40 break

Session 4: Komnenian Period (chair Reinhart Ceulemans)

15h40 – 16h20 Alberto Ravani (Oxford), Πολλάκις πολλοῖς καὶ διαφόροις τρόποις. Themes and Purpose of Euthymius Zigabenus’ Commentary on the Psalms

Respondent: Joseph Verheyden

16h20 – 17h Giulia Gerbi (Venice – Paris), Τίνας ἂν εἴποι λόγους ὁ Δαυίδ. A Triptych of Ethopoeiae Portraying David in Nikephoros Basilakes’s Progymnasmata

Respondent: Maria Tomadaki

19h dinner

Day 2 (24 April)

Session 5: Poetry from the Psalter (chair Anna Gioffreda)

9h30 – 10h10 Floris Bernard (Ghent), The Place of the Psalms in Byzantine Historical Consciousness about Metre and Poetry

Respondent: Andreas Rhoby

10h10 – 10h50 Rachele Ricceri (Ghent), Striking the Psalm-Inspired Lyre: the Poetry of Byzantine Psalter Epigrams

Respondent: Peter Van Deun

10h50 – 11h10 break

Session 6: Shared Heritage (chair Peter Van Deun)

11h10 – 11h50 Barbara Crostini (Uppsala), The Poetry of Prayer: Psalms as a Meeting-Point of Cultures

Respondent: Reinhart Ceulemans

11h50 – 12h30 Michael Zellmann-Rohrer (Oxford), Ritual Poetry: The Reception of the Psalms in Byzantine Magic

Respondent: Julie Van Pelt

12h30 – 14h lunch

Session 7: Liturgical and Performative Poetry (chair Rachele Ricceri)

14h – 14h40 Cristina Cocola (Ghent – Leuven), The Art of Singing with the Psalms in Nikephoros Kallistos Xanthopoulos’ Kατανυκτικά

Respondent: Stefano Parenti

14h40 – 15h20 Antonia Giannouli (Nicosia), David and the Book of Psalms in Byzantine Hymnography

Respondent: Floris Bernard

15h20–15h40 break

Session 8: Rewritings II (chair Andreas Rhoby)

15h40 – 16h20 Anna Gioffreda (Vienna), Reworking the Psalms: Manuel Philes ́ Metaphrasis

Respondent: Krystina Kubina

16h20 – 17h Christian Høgel (Southern Denmark), God’s Dwelling Place: Greek Rewritings of Psalms 25 and 26

Respondent: Claudia Sode

17h – 17h20 Concluding remarks (Floris Bernard, Reinhart Ceulemans, Rachele Ricceri)

17h30 Reception, generously sponsored by Brepols Publishers

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