Courses/Jan 11, 2023

2023 Dumbarton Oaks/HMML Intermediate Syriac Summer School

2023 Dumbarton Oaks/HMML Intermediate Syriac Summer School lead image

2023 Dumbarton Oaks/HMML Intermediate Syriac Summer School, Hill Museum & Manuscript Library, July 10–August 4, 2023

In partnership with Dumbarton Oaks, Hill Museum & Manuscript Library (HMML) will host an intensive four-week intermediate level course on Syriac language and paleography in the summer of 2023. This course is intended for doctoral students or recent PhDs who can demonstrate a need for intermediate level Syriac instruction to further their research. Priority is given to students who lack opportunities to continue studying Syriac at their own institutions. The program welcomes international applicants but does not sponsor J visas.

Approximately ten places will be available. All costs for the class, food, and lodging are generously funded by Dumbarton Oaks. Participants must pay their own travel costs to and from Collegeville, Minnesota, USA.

An elementary course in Syriac grammar (know the parts of speech, and able to use the dictionary).

By the end of the course, students will be able to independently approach both vocalized and unvocalized Classical Syriac texts, to translate from Syriac into English with confidence, to have a comprehensive grasp of grammar and syntax, and to gain an appreciation of the most common rhetorical and stylistic devices found in those texts.


  • Guest faculty: Dr. Kelli Bryant Gibson, Assistant Professor in the Graduate School of Theology at Abilene Christian University, Abilene, Texas; Dr. Robert Kitchen, Regina, Saskatchewan
  • HMML staff: Father Columba Stewart, OSB, Executive Director, HMML & Professor of Theology, Saint John’s University; Dr. Joshua Mugler, Curator of Eastern Christian and Islamic Manuscripts; Dr. James Walters, Lead Cataloger of Eastern Christian Collections; and Dr. Matthew Z. Heintzelman, Curator of Western European Manuscripts & Special Collections.

Students will be housed in dormitory apartments on the Saint John’s University campus. Each participant will have an air-conditioned, private bedroom and bathroom, with shared kitchen and laundry facilities.

A meal contract at the college Refectory will be provided.