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Research Seminar: In Search of Hebrew Epitaphs from Medieval Constantinople

Tuesday, February 1, 2022, 12:40 pm – 1:30 pm

No medieval Jewish inscriptions are known from Istanbul. Trying to fill this gap, the lecture will present the results of a historical and literary analysis of a little-known indirect source, the anthology of "Byzantine epitaphs" that was published by the Venetian Hebraist Biagio Ugolini in 1767. The lecture will try to determine the possible origin of these texts on the changing map of Jewish cemeteries in Byzantine and early Ottoman times. It will then compare these delicately crafted funeral poems to parallel documents from the database of Turkish-Jewish inscriptions that went online in October 2021 under the direction of Minna Rozen ( This new digital tool provides us with interesting clues for rethinking the history and meaning of Ugolini's corpus.


For joining the lecture online, please click here.

Meeting ID: 929 4621 6450
Passcode: 944836

CEMS Research Seminars are informal, lunchtime gatherings at which CEMS members present their current or recent research in a friendly, low-stakes environment. The presentations are brief (15-20mins) and ample time is left for discussion. The idea is to become more familiar with one another's research and encourage conversations within CEMS. In this way, we hope to strengthen the internal community and benefit from the excellent scholarship in which our colleagues are engaged.