Project members

Nikoloz Aleksidze is currently a research associate at the University of Oxford (Cult of Saints Project, Faculty of History). In 2013-2014 he worked as Dean of School of Social Sciences at Free University of Tbilisi, having previously completed his doctoral studies at Oxford (Faculty of Oriental Studies). His thesis entitled Making, Remembering and Forgetting the Late Antique Caucasus, is soon to appear as a monograph. Earlier, in 2009, he received his Masters degree from Central European University’s Department of Medieval Studies.

Anna Arevshatyan


Anahit Avagyan is scientific assistant at the Department of Researching and Editing of the Manuscripts of Matenadaran - Mashtots Institute of Ancient Manuscripts. She also lectures on Patristics and related subjects at the Faculty of Theology, Yerevan State University in Armenia. She received her PhD from the Faculty of Theology of Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg in Germany. Avagyan’s current research is on Armenian translation of the works of St. Athanasius of Alexandria with a prospect towards publishing a critical edition of the translations and focusing on the possible 'transformation' (Thomson) of Athanasian theology in Armenian translations.


 Levon Chookaszian was born in 1952 in Yerevan, Armenia. He graduated from Yerevan State University in 1974 with a degree in philology and is the author of two monographs. He has published over two hundred articles and reviews on Armenian art, painters, sculptors, and architects for the Armenian Soviet Encyclopedia, the Armenian Question Encyclopedia, the Armenian Abridged Encyclopedia, and the Saur Allgemeines Kunstlerlexikon (Germany, Munchen Leipzig). He and his brother, Garegin Chookaszian, founded the Armenian Art Database. He is the Director of the UNESCO Chair of Armenian Art History at Yerevan State University, which he established in 1996. He has delivered lectures on Armenian art at institutions around the world as well as advising on 12th through 13th century Armenian illuminated manuscripts found in the USA.


Tina Dolidze is Professor at the Iv. Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University, Head of the Department for Byzantine Studies (Institute of Classical, Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies), National correspondent of the Association Internationale d' Études Patristiques, editor-in-chief of the series Patristic Studies in Georgia. Her research areas are Patristic Theology, Georgian-Byzantine Literary Contacts and Late Ancient Philosophy. She is the author of publications in Georgian, German, English, Russian, Italian and Spanish.


Niels Gaul is an associate professor of Byzantine studies at Central European University. He received his PhD from Bonn University in 2005 and is interested in the societal repercussions of rhetoric and rhetorical performances in post-iconoclast Byzantium; his monograph on Thomas Magistros und die spätbyzantinische Sophistik was published in 2011.


György Geréby is associate professor at the Medieval Studies Department of the Central European University. He taught at ELTE (Budapest), in Liverpool, at Rutgers University and last year he was Keeley Visiting Fellow at Wadham College, Oxford. His research interests are in the history of ideas. At the Department he teaches mainly Medieval and Late Antique philosophy and theology. His recent book was on political theology, Isten és birodalom (God and empire). Currently he is finishing a commentary on the Protevangelium of James, a document of late second century polemical narrative theology.


Levan Gigineishvili is an associate professor at Ilia State University (Tbilisi, Georgia). He received a PhD from the CEU Medieval Studies in 2000. His doctoral dissertation, entitled The Platonic Theology of Ioane Petritsi, was published in book form by Gorgias Press (USA) in 2007. He has taught courses such as Byzantine literature, Christianity and Paganism in Late Antiquity, and the History of Medieval Philosophy at Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University and Ilia State University. He is currently working on an English translation and critical edition of Ioane Petritsi's annotated translation of Proclus' Elements of Theology.


Garnik Harutyunyan has studied theology in Yerevan State University (YSU). He is senior researcher in Matenadaran – Mashtots Institute of Ancient Manuscripts. He received his PhD from the Faculty of Theology of YSU in 2014. His thesis was entitled “Canonical vernacular texts and issues of the history of Armenian Church law (V-VII centuries)”. Since 2014 he also lectures in the Faculty of Theology of YSU. His interests are in the history of the Armenian canon law, Armenian calendar systems, codicology and bioethics.


Bejan Javakhia teaches at Ilia State University, Tbilisi. His area of studies is History of Middle Ages, particularly History of Medieval Europe, Georgia and Byzantium, History of the Church and problems of interrelation of cultures in the multicultural societies. Among his monographs are: From Antiquity towards Middle Ages: Western Europe, Byzantium, Georgia (Tbilisi, 2005); Georgia in European World. 16th-17th-century Georgia in the Travel Book of Adam Olearius (Tbilisi, 2005); Eternal Rome: ‘Another Rome’ after Rome (Tbilisi, 2009); Byzantinism and the Problem of the Legacy of Byzantium (Tbilisi, 2009).


Annegret Luening was born in East Berlin where she did her university entrance diploma at the former Berlinisches Gymnasium zum Grauen Kloster, a tradition school with a broad education in the Classical languages. She studied Classical, Late Antique and Byzantine archaeology and art history at Jena university. In her PhD thesis she dealt with the cultural and art policy of Constantine I. Her special interests point to archaeology, architecture and the art of Caucasia in the first millenium A.D., and her habilitation thesis presents the first contextual consideration of the relationship of Early Christian architecture in Armenia, Georgia and Caucasian Albania to the Mediterranean world of the Late Antique and Early Christian periods. She is assistant professor for Classical archaeology at Jena university, had guest professorships at universities in Germany, Austria and Georgia. Her academic projects dealt with acculturation processes in Roman times in the Eastern Pontus, historical photos of archaeological monuments in the East, or with Byzantine architecture in the Southwest Crimea.

Volker Menze is Associate Professor of Late Antique History and Director of the Center for Eastern Mediterranean Studies at CEU. After receiving his PhD from Princeton University in 2004, Volker Menze was lecturer in Ancient History at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster 2004-2009; since 2010 he teaches at CEU. His interests include late antique ecclesiastical history, Christology and ecclesiology with a focus on the Eastern Mediterranean. He published Justinian and the Making of the Syrian Orthodox Church (Oxford 2008) and (together with Kutlu Akalın) John of Tella’s Profession of Faith: the Legacy of a Sixth-Century Syrian Orthodox Bishop (Piscataway 2009). In recent years he has been involved in a DFG (German Research Foundation) founded project together with Johannes Hahn and Andrew Palmer that will lead to the editio princeps of the Syrian Vita Barsumae.


Magda Mtchedlidze Associate Professor (invited), delivering lectures in Ancient Greek and Christian authors, History of Byzantine Literature at Iv. Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University. Research areas: Neoplatonism and Byzantine Philosophy; the Educational system in Byzantium and Georgia.


Sandro Nikolaishvili


Anna Ohanjanyan is Assistant Professor at the Department of Theology, Yerevan State University. She is also affiliated to the Institute of Ancient Manuscripts, “Matenadaran” in Yerevan. She received her Ph.D. in 2011 from the Institute of Archeology and Ethnography, Armenian Academy of Sciences jointly with the Department of Theology, Yerevan State University. Her interests cover medieval theology and exegetics, polemical literature, monastic folklore and hagiography.


Thamar Otkhmezuri is the Head of the Department of Codicology and Textology, National Centre of Manuscripts, Tbilisi, Georgia. Her work focuses on the study of the problems of Georgian-Byzantine literary relations, Old Georgian translation tradition, the publication of Old Georgian ecclesiastic texts, namely, translations of the 11th-13th centuries. She participated in the international project: The Critical Edition of the Works of Gregory of Nazianzus (Institut Orientaliste, Université Catholique de Louvain, Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium, 1990-2005). Among her monographs are: Pseudo-Nonniani in IV orationes Gregorii Nazianzeni commentarii. Versio iberica (Corpus Christianorum. Series Graeca, 50. Corpus Nazianzenum, 16), Turnhout - Leuven, 2002; The Commentarial Genre in the Medieval Georgian Translation Tradition, Ilia State University Press, Tbilisi, 2011. She is currently working on the descriptive catalogue of Greek manuscripts preserved at the National Centre of Manuscripts in Tbilisi.


Tamar Pataridze is currently a Post-doctoral fellow at the Center for the Study of Christianity, Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She received her second PhD from the Université Catholique de Louvain (Belgium) in oriental philology in 2012, thesis awarded by Alexander-Böhlig-Preis for “outstanding academic achievement in the field of Oriental Languages”. Her main research interests are literary exchanges between the Christian Middle East and the Caucasus in late Antiquity and the Middle Ages and the Syriac Christianity. She has written several contributions, published in the field of Byzantium, Karthvelology and Semitic Studies. She is involved in a number of international projects, including Comparative Oriental Manuscript Studies, 2010-2015 (European Science Foundation) and others.


István Perczel is Professor at the Department of Medieval Studies at Central European University. He works in the fields of Late Antique Philosophy, Patristics, Byzantine intellectual history, Syriac studies and Indian Christianity.


Andrea Schmidt is full professor at the University of Louvain, Institut of Oriental Studies, where she is teaching Eastern Christianity with special attention on Syriac, Armenian and Georgian studies. She is working on Greek texts (Gregory of Nazianzus) translated into Syriac, and Syriac texts transmitted into Armenian and Georgian literature, as well as on amulets in the Eastern Syriac tradition. She is editor of the series Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium and member in several editorial boards of journals and book series devoted to the Oriental Christianity. Andrea Schmidt was awarded with the chair Francqui (Belgium) in 2008, and elected member of the Academy of Sciences at Göttingen (Germany) in 2014. Since 2009, she is also expert in the Patristic Commission of research projects of the German Academies of Sciences (Mainz).

Werner Seibt is retired professor for Byzantine Studies and Mediaeval History of Armenia and Georgia, now continuing as honorary fellow of the Division of Byzantine Research at the Austrian Academy of Sciences. For many years he had been deputy director of the Byzantine Commission of the Austrian Academy of Sciences and Director of Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies at the University of Vienna. His research focuses on Byzantine Sigillography, Byzantine administrative history, Byzantine prosopography, Byzantine history, History of the peoples in the Caucasus region, Early history of the Slavs, and Monograms. He published a dozen of monographs and more than 100 articles. A selected bibliography is found in Ch. Stavrakos – A.-K. Wassiliou – M. K. Krikorian (edd.), Hypermachos. Studien zu Byzantinistik, Armenologie und Georgistik. Festschrift für Werner Seibt zum 65. Geburtstag. Wiesbaden 2008, XXII-XXVIII.

Erna Shirinian is Professor at the Yerevan State University and the Head of "Researching and Editing of Ancient Armenian Texts" Department at the Institute of Ancient Manuscripts - Mashtots' Matenadaran. Historian of Late Antique, Medieval Studies, Armenian and Byzantine Studies of (having taught Greek, Latin, Commentaries on the Bible, Armenian Canon-Law, History of Dogmas, Armenian Interpreters of the Bible). Her Academic research profile includes as follows: Early Byzantine and Armenian historiography, Late Antique, Byzantine and Armenian philosophy, Byzantine and Armenian theology, Eastern Christian Studies, Greek and Armenian manuscripts. She has published several books and articles on Armenian translations of the Hellenizing School and on textual criticism (Socrates Scholasticus' Ecclesiastical History; [Aristotle] De vitiis et virtutibus; Vita Silvestri), on Byzantine-Armenian Cultural and Historical connections (Patriarch Photius; The Armenian Version of the Greek Ecclesiastical Canons; Formation and development of Apostolic Sees of the Church), the Armenian reception of the Greek philosophical and patristic theological heritage in Late Antiquity (Philo in Armenian translation, Pseudo-Zeno, Anonymous Philosophical Treatise; David the Invincible's Commentary on Aristotle's Categories; Book of Causes). She is the editor of the Ashtanak (an Armenological periodical) and the three-volume periodical Armeniaca (English summaries of Armenological publications in Armenia). She is also the Coordinator of the "Orthodox (Russian) Encylopaedia" in Armenia, and the Vice-President of the Armenian National Commitee of Byzantine Studies.

Zaza Skhirtladze is the Head of the Institute of the History and Theory of Art, Faculty of Humanities, Tbilisi State University, Georgia. His area of studies is Medieval Georgian Art, particularly monumental painting. Among his monographs are Historical Figures at Kolagiri Monastery in the Gareja Desert (2000); The Tomb of Saint David Garejeli (2006); Early Medieval Georgian Monumental Painting. Telovani Church of the Holy Cross (2008); The Frescoes of Otkhta Eklesia (2009). He is also the head of the Gareja Studies Centre and the editor of the Treasury of Gareja some volumes of which have already been published. He is currently heading the projects Corpus of the Historical Figures in Georgian Art and Prosopography of Medieval Georgian Craftsmen.


Theo van Lint


Full List of Project Participants

  • Nikoloz Aleksidze (University of Oxford/Free University of Tbilisi)
  • Zaza Alexidze (National Center for Manuscripts, Tbilisi)
  • Tamar Aptisauri (Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University)
  • Anna Arevshatyan (National Academy of Sciences, Yerevan)
  • Anahit Avagyan (Matenadaran, Yerevan)
  • Levon Chookaszian (Yerevan State University, UNESCO)
  • Tina Dolidze (Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University)
  • Igor Dorfmann-Lazarev (SOAS, London)
  • Niels Gaul (CEU)
  • György Geréby (CEU)
  • Levan Gigineishvili (Ilia Chavchavadze State University, Tbilisi)
  • Garnik Harutyunyan (Matenadaran, Yerevan)
  • Bejan Javakhia (Ilia Chavchavadze State University, Tbilisi)
  • Tavit Kertmenjian (Yerevan State University of Architecture & Construction)
  • Annegret Lüning (University of Jena)
  • Armine Melkonyan (Matenadaran, Yerevan)
  • Volker Menze (CEU)
  • Magda Mtchedlidze (Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University)
  • Anna Ohanjanyan (Yerevan State University)
  • Thamar Otkhmezuri (National Center for Manuscripts, Tbilisi)
  • Sandro Nikolaishvili (CEU)
  • Oya Pancaroǧlu (Bogaziçi University)
  • Tamar Pataridze (Hebrew University of Jerusalem)
  • István Perczel (CEU)
  • Zara Pogossian (John Cabot University, Rome)
  • Andrea Schmidt (University of Louvain)
  • Werner Seibt (University of Vienna)
  • Erna Shirinian (Matenadaran, Yerevan)
  • Zaza Skhirtladze (Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University)
  • Theo M. van Lint (University of Oxford)
  • Şafak Ural (University of Istanbul)
  • Edda Vardanyan (Matenadaran, Yerevan)
  • Sara Nur Yildiz (Orient-Institut Istanbul)
  • Daniel Ziemann (CEU)