8832RE: [GTh] Re: "Hymn of the Pearl" posts
- Jun 18, 2009Dear List members,
I hope I won't be clobbered for this totally personal suggestion re the Hymn of the Pearl/Soul.
Background is the legend of ailing Edessan king Abgar V (d. ca. 50 CE) being converted to Christianity
by a miraculous cloth image of Jesus associated somewhow, with various story lines, with Thomas's
mission to Parthia/India. In a passage in the sixth-century Greek Acts of Thaddaeus, the cloth with
which Jesus wiped his face leaving its image was called a sindon tetradiplon. Since sindon is the
synoptics word for Jesus's shroud, I have I have wondered if this "folded shroud" could be the much-
needed document for a first-century origin of the Turin Shroud in Edessa. In Eusebius and in the Acts
of Thaddaeus Thomas sends Thaddaeus/Addai to deliver the image and heal Abgar. An Addai has been
traditionally linked to Adiabene by Josephus (Antiquities). Then Thomas might have sent him from
Nisibis or Adiabene to Edessa, but from the East, the traditional area of Thomas's ministry.
So, with the Turin Shroud in the mix--with its twin image possibly formed by Jesus's own body (not
miraculously but by some natural transfer process)--could it be the royal garment of the first-person
protagonist of the allegorical Hymn? This prince left the kingdom of the King of Kings to retrieve the pearl
protected by a dragon. The pearl, Jesus's mission, was the salvation of souls. The key lines of the Hymn
could support this view. After taking off his royal garment and putting on the clothing of the locals, the
prince became mired in eartly business. Finally, his father’s letter begs him to complete his mission and
return home. He retrieves the pearl, then having put on his own splendid garment, he returns home to his
father's kingdom. It is the prominence of this garment in a first century text that suggests the Shroud.
"It became like me, as my reflection in a mirror, and in it I saw myself, yet quite apart from myself, so that
we were two in distinction and again one in single form. I clothed myself with it and mounted up to the
palace of peace and worship" (Hymn vv.76-78).
I did not see any of this in past threads on the list, so I am quite apprehensive. Comments?
From: email@example.com [firstname.lastname@example.org] On Behalf Of Roger Mott [mottrogere5@...]
Sent: Monday, June 15, 2009 3:39 PM
Subject: [GTh] Re: "Hymn of the Pearl" posts
Dear Dr. Scovone
There is a pretty good advanced search routine on the Yahoo home page for this list. I put in "Hymn of the Pearl" in the subject line and came up with (6) 1999 posts by scholars like Jack Kilmon and Stevan Davies.
The "Hymn" string began with post number 516.
--- In email@example.com, "Scavone, Daniel C" <DCScavon@...> wrote:
> Dear list members,
> Has there been any discussion of the Hymn of the Pearl/Soul on the list?
> If so, how would I access the wise comments of the gthomas scholars?
> Many thanks,
> Dan Scavone, Ph.D.
> Prof. of History Emeritus
> University of Southern Indiana,Evansville
Gospel of Thomas Homepage: http://home.epix.net/~miser17/Thomas.html
Interlinear translation: http://www.geocities.com/mwgrondin/x_transl.htm
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