Christian Identity of the Crimean Goths
The newly found Gothic inscriptions from Crimea reopened the question of the Christian identity of the Crimean Goths in its interrelation with the Greek-Byzantine environment. The Mangup graffito I.1 and the Late Medieval inscription from Bakhchysarai both contain the acronymised formula ‘(Saviour) God Jesus’ which we think was a purposeful declaration of the Gothic community’s Orthodox Nicene allegiance. The expanded variant of Ps. 76:15 in the graffito of Mangup proves its liturgical character and the involvement of the Crimean Goths with Byzantine liturgical processes. The alternative counting of weekdays which from the 11th century onwards is epigraphically attesed in the Gothic eparchy in Crimea may have its origin in the Gothic church calendar of the 4th–5th century and have influenced neighbouring peoples of Eastern Europe and the Caucasus.