Ethiopic Scriptures

Wednesday 15 February, 18.30 - 19.30 

Detail from an early illustrated manuscript depicting the Evangelist Luke holding a page and a pen.

Talk in Pitt Rivers Lecture Theatre. Entry via Robinson Close, off South Parks Road.

Also online via Zoom.


In-person (includes refreshments) - Members: £3, Non-Members £6. Book here.  

Online - Members: Free, Non-Members £3 (Recording available for 30 days after talk). Book here.  

The Bodleian Library has one of the oldest and most significant collections of Ethiopic manuscripts in the world. Originating from Ethiopia and Eritrea, these manuscripts were for centuries the principal means of transmitting the Scriptures and recording historical information. Dr Jacopo Gnisci and Dr Cesar Merchan-Hamann discuss their research on the lavishly illustrated Ethiopic Scriptures in the Bodleian Library, giving fascinating insights into the life and culture in which the manuscripts were produced.

Everyone welcome. Doors open at 18.00 and refreshments will be served. Talk starts at 18.30.


Jacopo Gnisci graduated with a BA from the University of Rome 3 and an MA from UEA. He obtained his PhD from SOAS in 2016 and has subsequently worked at Dallas Museum of Art and UT Dallas, the University of Hamburg, the Vatican Library, and the University of Oxford as Exhibition Assistant and Research Associate for the Monumental Art of the Christian and Early Islamic East ERC project. In 2019 he was awarded a Getty/ACLS Fellowship and in 2020 he worked as a Curator for the Endangered Material Knowledge Programme within the Department of Africa, Oceania, and the America at the British Museum. Jacopo is currently a Lecturer in the Art and Visual Cultures of the Global South at UCL, and a Visiting Scholar in Department of Africa, Oceania, and the America at the British Museum.

César Merchán-Hamann is the Hebrew and Judaica curator in the Bodleian Library and director of the Leopold Muller Memorial Library at the University of Oxford.