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This folio from a vellum codex contains the Coptic version in the Sahidic dialect of a collection of rules relating to church discipline ascribed to St Basil. Basil the Great (born c.300), bishop of Caesarea, was an important early theologian as well as one of the fathers of communal monasticism. The Canons of St Basil were originally written in Greek, translated into Coptic and later from Coptic into Arabic. The Chester Beatty leaves represent the best preserved and most complete Coptic version of the canons so far uncovered. The text is embellished with initial letters denoting the beginning of each rule. This page is decorated with a portrait of the bearded St Basil holding his book.
Created circa 900 AD.