Diocletian and the Goats

Was the Emperor Diocletian of Rome a former Egyptian goat-herd? That is apparently what many Copts believed. This claim features in a Coptic manuscript just digitized at the Vatican Library, Vat.copt.65, which relates the life of Saint Theodore of Shwtp (or Saint Theodore the General), who was burned alive between 305 and 310 CE in Pontus in modern-day Turkey.

The contents of the 14th-century manuscript are discussed in detail by Dioscorus Boles on his blog. Among the interesting aspects are the story's allegation of Roman racism towards Egyptians and the practice of press-ganging Egyptians for Roman military service. Shwtp, in case you are asking, is town in Egypt.

Last week 26 manuscripts were released online. Here is my full list:
  1. Barb.lat.3996,
  2. Reg.lat.1350,
  3. Vat.ar.52 (Upgraded to HQ),
  4. Vat.copt.65 (Upgraded to HQ),
  5. Vat.copt.66 (Upgraded to HQ),
  6. Vat.copt.67 (Upgraded to HQ),
  7. Vat.gr.1702 (Upgraded to HQ),
  8. Vat.lat.2286, Bartolus de Saxoferrato 1314-1357 wrote this legal commentary: Lectura in primam partem Digesti Infortiati and Lectura super secunda parte Digesti novi. This is a 15th century copy.
  9. Vat.lat.2311,
  10. Vat.lat.3299,
  11. Vat.lat.3404,
  12. Vat.lat.3424, Ermolao Barbaro or Hermolaus Barbarus (1454-1493): letters to Jacopo Antiquario, seemingly attacking a book, Cornucopia, by his fellow humanist Nicolo Perotti. See eTK.
  13. Vat.lat.3433,
  14. Vat.lat.3440,
  15. Vat.lat.3442,
  16. Vat.lat.3457.pt.2,
  17. Vat.lat.3465, a panegyric of Thomas Aquinas. This Renaissance codex and others in the range were originally possessions of Antonio Carafa (1538-91), Vatican librarian.
  18. Vat.lat.3477,
  19. Vat.lat.3485,
  20. Vat.lat.3488,
  21. Vat.lat.3491,
  22. Vat.lat.3497,
  23. Vat.lat.3504,
  24. Vat.lat.3509.pt.1,
  25. Vat.lat.3536,
  26. Vat.lat.8866,
This is Piggin's Unofficial List number 169. Thanks to @gundormr for harvesting. If you have corrections or additions, please use the comments box below. Follow me on Twitter (@JBPiggin) for news of more additions to DigiVatLib.

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