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What’s with this “Wren” thing?
The oldest extant version of the fable
are presenting here appeared in 1913 in the first volume of a two-volume anthology
Saxon folktales (Plattdeutsche
Volksmärchen “Low German Folktales”)
collected by Wilhelm Wisser (1843–1935). Read
preserved Coptic texts on papyrus
date back to the 4th and
5th centuries C.E.
Language information: The language that is frequently referred to as “Coptic” is in fact Egyptian that is somewhat Greek-influenced and written with the Coptic (Graeco-Egyptian) script, a script based on Greek letters with additional Semitic-based letters. This group of language varieties represents the fourth and supposedly last stage of Egyptian. As an everyday language and as a language of administration it came to be replaced with the Arabic conquest of the 7th century C.E. and the consequent Arabicization and Islamicization of Egypt. As a first language it seems to have died out in the 16th century. However, Bohairic Egyptian has been preserved for liturgical purposes among Coptic Orthodox Christians all over the world. Some of them can even speak it as a second language and are now endeavoring to restore it as a first language in Coptic homes. Akhmimic
Coptic flourished in and around the town of Akhmim (ancient Panopolis) during the 4th
and 5th centuries C.E., after which it became extinct. Most of the differences
between it and Lycopolitan pertain to writing. Bohairic
(or Memphitic) Coptic is a medieval dialect believed to have originated in the Western Nile Delta.
It has been known since the 4th century C.E., but it became an important literary
language beginning with the 9th century C.E. It later upstaged Sahidic as the
leading literary language. To this day it serves as the liturgical language
of the Coptic Orthodox Church.
Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria is represented
in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Jerusalem.
(or Bashmuric) Coptic was used between the 3rd and 19th centuries C.E., mainly in the Fayyum region
west of the Nile Valley. Lycopolitan
(Subakhmimic or Assiutic) Coptic is similar to Akhmimic in most regards. It was used mostly in the Asyut area
(ancient Lycopolis). Most of the differences between it and Akhmitic pertain
to writing. Oxyrhynchite
(or Mesokemic) Coptic (also known as “Middle Egyptian”), which is similar to Fayyumic, was used mostly in the 4th and 5th centuries
in and around Oxyrhynchus. Sahidic
(or Thebaic) Coptic, a contemporary and rival of Bohairic, is the dialect in which the vast majority of extant Coptic texts was composed.
Sahidic is believed to have begun as the dialect of the area around al-Ashmunayn
(ancient Hermopolis magna),