Medieval Slavic Manuscripts and Culture

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Welcome to the Hilandar Research Library & the Resource Center for Medieval Slavic Studies at The Ohio State University

To welcome new visitors and patrons, we summarize here some resources to explain to the uninitiated about the Hilandar Research Library (HRL) and the Resource Center for Medieval Slavic Studies (RCMSS).

Note that the photo of the HRL/RCMSS in the video (see below) shows one of the two rooms we inhabited before the renovation of the William Oxley Thompson Library.

Hilandar Research Library, 225 Main Library, circa 1992

Former location of the Hilandar Research Library, circa 1992

Here’s where we are currently located, sharing  space since 2009 with the Rare Books and Manuscripts Library and the Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee Theatre Research Institute in the Jack and Jan Creighton Special Collections Reading Room (Thompson Library 105):

 Jack and Jan Creighton Special Collections Reading Room (THO 105)

The Jack and Jan Creighton Special Collections Reading Room (THO 105)

















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Thompson Library Special Collections Welcomes Mary P. Key Resident

Guest blog post by Nena Couch, Head of the Special Collections in Thompson.

The new year brings the happy addition of Kapil Vasudev to Thompson Library Special Collections as the Mary P. Key Resident for Cultural Diversity Inquiry.  Kapil comes to us from Davidson College in North Carolina where, as a Library Collections Assistant, he facilitated the acquisition, description, and preservation of library collections, including the processing of oral histories of the African American community in North Mecklenburg County. In his previous roles at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library, he worked with diverse communities and participated in a system-wide effort to increase cultural inclusivity of library programs.  He was a teaching assistant for North Carolina State University’s Department of History, and earned his MLIS at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Working as part of the Thompson Special Collections team with Rare Books and Manuscripts, the Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee Theatre Research Institute, and the Hilandar Research Library, Kapil will connect our distinctive collections to curricular opportunities where special collections can enlighten and inspire a deep understanding of diversity.

OSU Libraries’ two-year Mary P. Key Diversity Residency Program provides professional development and mentorship for a successful transition from academic training to research librarianship, provides hands-on exposure in many areas of the University Libraries, and contributes to advancing diversity initiatives for both the academic librarianship profession and The Ohio State University Libraries.   Before retiring from the Agriculture Library in 1998, Mary P. Key served as the first chair of the Libraries’ Diversity and Inclusion Committee, which has served an important role in advising our diversity residency program. She was the second African American librarian to head a department at the OSU Libraries.

Old Russian Birchbark Letters: A Pragmatic Approach

Simeon Dekker, PhD Slavic Studies, University of Leiden, The Netherlands, who attended the 2017 Medieval Slavic Summer Institute (June 19-July 14), presented the Hilandar Research Library with a bound copy of his dissertation, Old Russian Birchbark Letters: A Pragmatic Approach.

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Monument to Napoleon, Ljubljana, Slovenia

An obelisk stands on Trg francoske revolucije (French Revolution Square), at the juncture of Rimska cesta (Rome Avenue) and Vegova ulica (Vega Street – in honor of the mathematician Jurij Vega*). A native New Orleanian would immediately recognize the head of Napoleon wearing a laurel wreath on the side of the obelisk. Napoleon designated Ljubljana the capital of his “Illyrian provinces,” 1809-1816, and the monument is thus known as the “Illyrian Monument.”

Picture of the obelisk

Illyrian Monument on Trg fransoske revolucije (French Revolution Square)

Close up of the gold sculpture of Napoleon's head on the obelisk

A local Ljubljana guide book notes that the obelisk “was erected in 1929, 120 years after the establishment of the Illyrian Provinces…. built of marble from the Croatian island Hvar. A bronze half moon with three stars is engraved at the top, and verses, a French inscription dedicated to an unknown hero and Napoleon’s head … are engraved on the sides.”*

Street lined with cars and trees with white obelisk at one end

View of the Illyrian Monument from Kongresni trg (Congress Square)


*Matjaž Chvatal, Ljubljana: City Guide (Golnik: Založba Turistika, 2015), 60 and 58.

Recent Acquisitions, November 2014

bluish-green cover with the title in Serbian at the top of the page, in English at the bottom, with a seal of the Centre between the two.

Front cover of the inaugural issue of Initial (2013)


Initial: A Review of Medieval Studies 1 (2013). Иницијал: Часопис за средњовековне студије, књ. 1 (2013).
Beograd: Centre for Advanced Medieval Studies. Београд: Центар за напредне средњовековне студије.


Initial: A Review of Medieval Studies 2 (2014)Иницијал: Часопис за средњовековне студије, књ. 2 (2014).
Beograd: Centre for Advanced Medieval Studies. Београд: Центар за напредне средњовековне студије.

The journal’s Editor-in-Chief is Srđan Rudić.

The editoral board consists Lenka Blechová-Čelebić (Prague), Stanoje Bojanin, Borislav Grgin (Zagreb), Gábor Klaniczay (Budapest), Esad Kurtović (Sarajevo), Smilja Marjanović-Dušanić, Vojin Nedeljković, Georgi Nikolov (Sofia), Paola Pinelli (Florence), Danica Popović, Dejan Radičević, Srđan Rudić, Irena Špadijer, Georg Vogeler (Graz).

Publishing Editor is Dragić Živojinović.


Table of contents for volume 1 of Initial (2013)

Table of contents for volume 1 of Initial (2013)

Table of contents for volume 2 of Initial (2014)

Table of contents for volume 2 of Initial (2014)


Recent Acquisition from Slavic Research Center, Hokkaido University


Brian D. Joseph, OSU Professor of Linguistics, brought back from a recent conference in Japan several gift books from Nomachi Motoki of Hokkaido University (Sapporo, Japan) to the OSU Libraries. Professor Nomachi sent a copy of The Grammar of Possessivity in South Slavic Languages: Synchronic and Diachronic Perspectives, Slavic Eurasian Studies No. 24 (Sapporo, Japan: Slavic Research Center, Hokkaido University, 2011), which he edited. It includes articles on historical and contemporary Slavic languages in general, as well as specifically on Serbian dialects, Slovenian, and Macedonian and Polish.

Ranko Matasović, “Slavic Possessive Genitives and Adjectives from the Historical Point of View,” 1-12

София Милорадович, “Способы выражения притяжательности в сербских народных говорах на фоне аналитизации,” 13-33

Jasmina Grković-Major, “The Development of Predicative Possession in Slavic Languages,” 35-54

Motoki Nomachi, “From Possession to Passive: The Slovenian Recipient Passive through the Prism of Grammaticalization Theory,” 55-81

Liljana Mikovska, “Competition between Nominal Possessive Constructions and the Possessive Dative in Macedonian,” 83-109

Frančiška Lipovšek, “The Meaning of EPCs: Possessive Dative and Possessive Locative Juxtaposed,” 111-126

Sonja Milenkovska, “Possessor and Possessum as Arguments of the Nonpossessive Predicate Realized as Nominative and Accusative NPs in Possessive Relation Body/body Part (Macedonian~Polish),” 127-138

Professor Nomachi also presented OSUL with the latest issue of Acta Slavica Iaponica 33 (2013) and a published collection of articles, Russian and Russians through the Eyes of Other Slavic Peoples: Language, Literature, Culture 1 (December 2010), Slavic Eurasia Papers No. 3.


† Bishop Hrizostom (1939-2012), former Hilandar Monastery Librarian


We are saddened to learn of the death of Hrizostom, Bishop of Žiča, Serbia, on Monday, December 17, 2012.

At the time of the Hilandar Research Project photographic expeditions to Mount Athos in the early 1970s, Bishop Hrizostom was the librarian of Hilandar Monastery.

Photograph of Bishop Hrizostom with Mateja and Predrag Matejic

Reunited at the 5th International Hilandar Conference in 2002: Very Rev. Dr. Mateja Matejic, Bishop Hrizostom, Dr. Predrag Matejic (Photograph by Slobodan Mileusnić)

Bishop Hrizostom (Stolić) was born in Ruma, Yugoslavia, in 1939. From Visoki Dečani Monastery (Kosovo), where he had become a monk, he went to Jordanville, New York, where he graduated from St. Sergius Holy Trinity Orthodox Seminary. Afterwards he spent 19 years in Hilandar Monastery. He became Bishop for Western America in 1988, serving in that capacity until 1992, when he was elected Bishop of Banat. In 2003, he became Bishop of Žiča. He is the author of several interesting books on Orthodoxy, Svetačnik ili Pravoslavni mesecoslov, Služba Sv. Savi Trećem, and the editor of Liturgija Sv. Apostola Jakova, Liturgija Apostola Marka and Liturgija Apostolskih ustanova (Joković 2007: 47, n31).

Source: Joković, Miroljub. An Archival History of the Hilandar Research Project at The Ohio State University. Translation from the Serbian by Nataša Kaurin-Karača. Belgrade: Рашка школа, 2007.

Bishop Hrizostom’s death was reported in the online issue of Глас Јавности.

Screenshot of online obituary of Bishop Hrizostom from Глас јавности, Dec. 18, 2012.

Screenshot of online obituary of Bishop Hrizostom from Глас јавности, Dec. 18, 2012.







May his memory be eternal!






Recent Acquisitions to the HRL, December 2012


Photo of the cover of the book shows image of an ornate gold and purple mosaic of a saint

“Saints and Sainthood in Central and Eastern Europe” (Sofia, 2012)


Ангушева-Тиханова, Аделина, Маргарет Димитрова, Росина Костова, и Росен Р. Малчев, состав. In Stolis Repromissionis: Светци и святост в централна и източна Европа. София: Импресарско издателска къща “РОД,” 2012.



photo of the book coverDitommaso, Lorenzo, and Christfried Böttrich, eds., with the assistance of Marina Swoboda. The Old Testament Apocrypha in the Slavonic Tradition: Continuity and Diversity. Texts and Studies in Ancient Judaism 140. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2011.



Garipzanov, Ildar H., ed. Historical Narratives and Christian Identity on a European Periphery: Early History Writing in Northern, East-Central, and Eastern Europe (c. 1070-1200). Medieval Texts and Cultures of Northern Europe 26. Turnhout, Belgium: Brepols, 2011.




Петков, Петко Д. Ръкопис 2/23 от сбирката на Рилския манастир: Сборник с жития от края на XV век. Библиотека отець Неофитъ Рыльскый том 3. София: Херон Прес, 2011.

Photo of the book cover

Rila Ms. 2/23, Miscellany of Saints’ Lives from the 15th Century





“Description of the Slavic Manuscripts in the Church, Historical and Archival Institute – Sofia,” vol. 1

Христова, Боряна, Елисавета Мусакова, Елена Узунова. Опис на славянските ръкописи в Църковно-Историческия и Aрхивен Институт – София, т. I: Библейски книги.София: Борина, 2009.