HOME   

Historical Background

NationalArchives  

National Library

Literary heritage

Services Rendered

Contact officials

Organizational Structure

Proclamation/Word

Records Appraisal, 
& Disposition 
Directive

 

ŠNALE


Literary Heritage

One among many other things by which Ethiopia is known is suggested to be her literary heritage. This priceless, rare and valuable literary heritage reflects the indigenous civilization of the country. In addition to their significance in manifesting the indigenous civilization, these manuscripts written on religion, history, language, philosophy, astrology, social, economic and Political...etc. issues have got a valuable contribution for research.
Nevertheless, the duty of collecting, arranging and preserving them for the purpose of research and posterity, looked at it from the numbers of literary heritage found in the country, could be considered as minimal.

It is expected that, Manuscripts created and preserved under the custodianship of churches, monasteries, and individuals and written in different languages be estimated to be around 500,000 in number. Nonetheless, out of these hundreds of original copies, and around 15,000 microfilm copies are collected and preserved in a scientific way by the National Archives & Library.
           

a) Homily of the passion of our Lord and Services for passion week:-
The Manuscript is written on vellum in 2 columns in the Geez Language in the 15th C. The writings are bold and neat. Names and headings are rubricated. Its size is 46x33.5 cm and has 434 pages with wooden board covered with stamped leather.

b) St. Paul Gospel (Bible, New Testament): -
The Manuscript is written on vellum in 2 columns in the Geez Language in the 15th C. The Writings are bold and neat. A painted picture (drawing) of St. Paul and his followers is seen in the book. Its size is 34.6x25 cm and has 281 pages and is covered by a hard leather.

c) The Four Gospel (Bible, New Testament): -
The Manuscript is written on vellum in 2 columns in the Geez language in the 14th C. The writings are bold and neat. Its size is 29.5 x 20.3 cms and has 554 pages. The first 45 pages of the book are filled with painted pictures (drawings); particularly of Jesus Christ, his followers, Saints, Angels etc. The book is partially damaged due to manhandling.

d) Letter of King Thewodros to Queen Victoria of Britain: -
The letter deals with the misunderstanding created between him and the queen. He also urges the Ethiopian people to go along with the direction he has started so as to develop the Nation. And finally his dreams to bring about a competent Nation and the misunderstanding created by his men; and his final repentance is stated.

e) Letter of King Menelik II to the King of Moscow Nicolas Cesar II: -
The letter deals with Menelik's Victory over Italians at Adowa in 1896. And acknowledges the king and the Red Cross Society who were by his side. He also requested the king to further strengthen the relationship between Ethiopia and Moscow in the same letter. (It available in digital format)

f) Letter of King Sahlesselassie of Shoa to the Queen of Britain: -
The letter deals with the reception and dialogues made between the King and the envoys of the Queen. He further asked to strengthen the ties with Britain in the same letter.

g) Psalterium Davidis: -
The Book is written by Johannes Potken in Geez Language with an introduction in German Language and was printed in Rome, 1513. The Book is printed without change in the calligraphy of the writer. It is taken as the first printed publication in Ethiopian history. ( it is available in digital format in addition to hard copy)

h) Fetha Negest: - (Nomocanon): -
The Manuscript is written on vellum in 2 columns in the Geez language in the 19th C. The writings are bold and neat. Names and headings are rubricated. Its size is 22 x 23 cms and has 146 + 7V and a V folio with wooden boards covered with stamped leather. It is full of marginal notes. The text is partly damaged by water. Wooden boards broken on one side but connected with some pieces of cords. The text is badly damaged due to careless handling and long service.
It has marginal notes and designs. It has also illumination. There are musical notations over the text. It has plenty of marginal notes and designs. (Microfilm)

i) Tarike Negest (History of Kings): -
The Manuscript is written on paper in 2 columns in the Geez and Amharic Language in the 20th Century. The writing is bold and neat. The names and headings are rubricated. Its size is 21.3 x 16.5 cms, and has 12 folios with paperback cover. (Microfilm).

j) Anaphora:-
The Manuscript is written on vellum in 2 columns in the Geez Language in the 17th C. The Writing is bold and neat. The headings and names are rubricated. There are musical notes over most of the text. It has marginal notes and designs. Its size is 19.5 x 15.5 cm. and has 78 folio with wooden boards cover. (Microfilm).

k) History of Menelik II:-
The Manuscript is written on paper in 1 column in Amharic Language in the 19th C. The writing is bold and neat. It includes the Government's of Showa and its Districts and diary and St. Tekle Haimanot and history of Oromo people. Its size is 21 x 17 cms, and has 178 folios with hard cover. (Microfilm).

l) Henock: -
The Manuscript is written on vellum in 2 columns in the Geez Language in the 15th Century. The Writing is fine and neat. Its size is 15.5 x 19 cm. and has 160 folios with simple wooden boards cover. There are marginal notes on each page. Some times the pen changes. It includes 10 other books in between. (It is available both in  Microfilm and digitized format).

|Home |Historical Background |National Archive|
|National Library |Literary Heritage|
|Servicerendered|Organizational Structure |News| Links|