Athanasius Kircher

DFS346

New Member
May I ask for help with translation of this phrase in a letter from Athanasius Kircher to Theodorus Moretus, dated March 12, 1639:
"Alterum denique folium quod ipsi ignote characteri genere scriptum uidebatur illyrico idiomate, charactere quem D. Hieronymi uulgo uocant, impressum sciat; utunturque eodem charactere hic Romae in missalibus alijsque sacris libri illyrico sermone imprimendis."

My best shot is approximately as follows:
"In short, the other sheet that [had] unknown characters, they seemed to be like the script of the Illyrian language, the script that people call that of D. Hieronymus, let him know [that] it was printed; and they use the same characters here in Rome in missals and other sacred books to print Illyrian sermons."

In particular I'm uncertain what "ipsi" refers to: the sheets, or the characters? Is there an implication that both sheets were written in the same script?

Many thanks.
Image F11-01 1639-03-12 39a.jpg
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
Alterum denique folium quod ipsi ignoto characteris genere scriptum uidebatur illyrico idiomate, charactere quem D. Hieronymi uulgo uocant, impressum sciat; utunturque eodem charactere hic Romae in missalibus alijsque sacris libris illyrico sermone imprimendis.

Ispi refers to a preson previously mentioned.

"Finally, as for the other sheet which seemed to him to be written in an unknown kind of font in the Illyrian language, let him know that it is printed in the font commonly called "of St Jerome"; and they use the same font here in Rome to print missals and other sacred books in Illyrian."
 
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DFS346

New Member
Many thanks for your kind reply.

In this context, is "sermone" the ablative singular of "sermo" ("language")? and if so, does it have the same sense as "idiomate" in the first line?

Would "ipsi" be expected to refer to another person mentioned in the same letter? Or could it refer to a person mentioned in the correspondent's letter, to which this letter is a reply?
 
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cinefactus

Censor
Staff member
illyrico sermone: in the Illyrican language
 

Pacifica

grammaticissima
Staff member
In this context, is "sermone" the ablative singular of "sermo" ("language")? and if so, does it have the same sense as "idiomate" in the first line?
Yes.
Would "ipsi" be expected to refer to another person mentioned in the same letter? Or could it refer to a person mentioned in the correspondent's letter, to which this letter is a reply?
The person is likely to have been mentioned in the same letter. If he had been mentioned only in the correspondent's letter, the writer of this one would probably have referred to him by name first rather than with a pronoun. That's what's more likely, but I guess it isn't entirely impossible that the person was mentioned only in the correspondent's letter and the writer here used a mere pronoun because the correspondent would know who was being referred to.
 

Bestiola

Sciura Tigrina Croatica
Staff member
Btw, Illyrian language is another name for Croatian language, starting with renaissance onward. There is also the ancient Illyrian, as in an universal name for the Celtic dialects spoken here before and after Romans came, so that name is misleading.

Real Illyrian language(s) were extinct by the 6th century. I don't think any sacred missal has ever been written in any of the ancient Illyrian language(s). In fact, apart from some toponyms, hydronyms, anthroponyms and ethnonyms nothing is known of it, since there is no written record of it.

In the early modern era and up to the 19th century, the term "Illyrian" was also applied to the modern South Slavic language of Dalmatia, today identified as Serbo-Croatian. This language is only distantly related to ancient Illyrian and is not descended from it.


And Serbo-Croatian is also misleading term since Serbs never called their language "Illyrian" - in ancient Moesia Thracian and Dacian dialects were spoken, while we had so called "Illyrian movement" in the 19th century, which was made to protect the Croatian language from the German and Hungarian oppresive influence.
 
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