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'Gospel of the Lots of Mary' discovered


Posted on Thursday, 5 February, 2015 | Comment icon 13 comments

The manuscript is particularly unusual for a gospel. Image Credit: sxc.hu
The 1,500-year-old divination manuscript was once used to provide guidance or encouragement.
Written in the Egyptian language Coptic, the manuscript is very unusual for a gospel as it contains a series of 37 oracles and its pages contain only vague references to Jesus.

In ancient times it is likely to have been used for divination and would have been consulted to help answer difficult questions.

The precise origin of the text, which was donated to Harvard University by Beatrice Kelekian, remains unknown.
Books similar to this one, sometimes called 'lot books', were often used to predict a person's future. This one however, given that it was called a 'gospel', offered predominantly encouraging news.

"The fact that this book is called that way is very significant," said Prof Anne Marie Luijendijk from Princeton University. "Nobody who wants to know the future wants to hear bad news in a sense."

Another interesting aspect of the manuscript was that it was only the size of a person's palm.

"Given the book's small size, the handwriting is surprisingly legible and quite elegant," said Prof Luijendijk. "The book's small size made it portable and, if necessary, easy to conceal."

Source: Live Science | Comments (13)


Tags: Manuscript, Gospel, Mary


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #4 Posted by GreenmansGod on 5 February, 2015, 17:03
I didn't know Christians were allowed to do such things and I wonder who wrote it? Interesting find.
Comment icon #5 Posted by PersonFromPorlock on 5 February, 2015, 17:26
I didn't know Christians were allowed to do such things and I wonder who wrote it? Interesting find. Christianity - which presumes that human life is inevitably flawed - is actually pretty relaxed about what Christians can and can't do. Christian heirarchies, though, like to have scrupulous observation of their rules lest someone get the idea that heirarchies are unnecessary.
Comment icon #6 Posted by IceBorne on 5 February, 2015, 18:36
So does this mean, the church has stolen even more stuff from other cultures??? . . . Would be no surprise to me. Some hobbies last forever. XD
Comment icon #7 Posted by Leonardo on 5 February, 2015, 21:18
No, they used the old 37 sided dice or 37d for you RPers out there. Do you get to re-roll if you get a bad result?
Comment icon #8 Posted by FLOMBIE on 5 February, 2015, 21:22
Do you get to re-roll if you get a bad result? Only if you have a fate point left!
Comment icon #9 Posted by Child of Bast on 5 February, 2015, 22:50
Do you get to re-roll if you get a bad result? Not with this book as it's supposedly all positive stuff...
Comment icon #10 Posted by OverSword on 6 February, 2015, 2:04
Yep, seems more to do with fortune telling than religion. It's really cool from an antiquary point of view but has little or nothing to do with being a religious ure. They keep it vague and generalized like astrology or tarot making it the obvious tool of a charlatan.
Comment icon #11 Posted by Peter B on 6 February, 2015, 2:06
So does this mean, the church has stolen even more stuff from other cultures??? . . . Would be no surprise to me. Some hobbies last forever. XD Not at all. And I don't think the church was responsible for stealing much other stuff from other cultures either. Rather I see these sorts of things in two similar ways. One way is that people becoming Christians bring a lot of their old culture with them and the church accepts it and builds it into its own systems (hence Christmas being celebrated on 25 December). However, the church could (and occasionally did) crack down on overtly pagan practices,... [More]
Comment icon #12 Posted by paperdyer on 6 February, 2015, 15:53
So does this mean, the church has stolen even more stuff from other cultures??? . . . Would be no surprise to me. Some hobbies last forever. XD Just like all religions. Progressive wasn't first in pick your own options
Comment icon #13 Posted by Ellapennella on 6 February, 2015, 18:08
A 1,500-year-old book that contains a previously unknown gospel has been deciphered. http://www.livescien...deciphered.html Whoa !!!


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