“For they ascend to three maḏāhib as their roots”: An Arabic Medieval Treatise on Denominations of Syrian Christianity
The Book of the Concordance of Faith (Kitāb iǧtimāʿ al-amāna) is an ecumenical treatise that aims at reconciling three main denominations of Syrian Christianity: the ‘Nestorians’, the ‘Melkites’, and the ‘Jacobites’. The work is known in two recensions, one of which is ascribed to Elias al-Ǧawharī, while the other, probably the original one, is attributed to ʿAlī ibn Dāwūd al-Arfādī. Russian historians frequently referenced to the treatise as written by “Elias Geveri, the Nestorian Metropolitan,” emphasizing that the work contains a testimony to the two-ﬁnger sign of the cross current in his time among the Melkites. The article deals with the source on which these references are based to explore the ecumenical views in the medieval Christian Orient, with a special reference to the ‘roots and branches’ concept.