The Development of Arab Christian Book Printing in Lebanon and Syria in the First Half of the 18th Century

  • Post category:Issue XXII

Ihor Ostash
PhD in Philology, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Ukraine in the Lebanese Republic

Abstract. The article deals with the history of the emergence of the Arab Renaissance in Lebanon and Syria at the turn of the 17th century and the commencement of Arab Christian book printing that became a driving force in this process. Based on the analysis of scientific, historical, and religious literature, the article reveals the figure of one of the first book printers in the Middle East, Abdallāh Zakher, who invented fonts used in the first Arab Christian books and was the founder of the first printing house in Lebanon, in the town of Chouweir, at the Monastery of St John the Baptist. The author also looks into the Ukrainian contribution to the development of Arab Christian book printing, particularly the release of two publications with support from Ivan Mazepa in Alepo in 1708, namely the titular Tetraevangelion with a foreword of Athanasius III Dabbās, Patriarch of Antioch, devoted to Ivan Mazepa, and the Gospel Book at the expense of Danylo Apostol, Myrhorod Colonel.
Keywords: Arab Renaissance Nahda, Arab Christian book printing, Abdallāh Zakher, Mazepa’s Gospel, Danylo Apostol’s titular Gospel Book.

DOI: 10.37837/2707-7683-2021-15

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