SOR Logo
Tur Abdin: Living Cultural Heritage
Rev. Hans Hollerweger (Friends of Turabdin: Linz, 1999)
Book Review
by Edip Aydin in
Hugoye: Journal
of Syriac Studies 4:1

Rev. Prof. Hans Hollerweger has published the first illustrated book about Tur `Abdin, in South East Turkey, under the auspices of the organization, Friends of Tur Abdin based in Linz, Austria. Since 1995, Friends of Tur Abdin has done yeoman service to the cause of the Syriac Orthodox faith in Tur `Abdin by providing moral support and monetary assistance to various Syriac Orthodox monasteries and communities in Tur `Abdin. (Between 1995 and 2000, the society published a quarterly news magazine, "The Voice of Turabdin," which has unfortunately become defunct.)

Tur `Abdin is a place dear to the hearts of the Syriac Orthodox faithful. The faith flourished in the mountains of Tur `Abdin since the earliest days of the Christian Church until the beginning of this century. The hundreds of monasteries and churches bear witness to this fact. The oldest Christian monastery in existence today, Dayro d-Mor Gabriel, and the ancient seat of the Patriarch of Antioch, Dayro d-Mor Hananya, are in Tur `Abdin. Due to the unfortunate circumstances in this part of the world and the promise of better economic conditions in the West, the Syriac Orthodox community in Tur `Abdin has dwindled considerably in this century.

In the words of H.H. Patriarch Mor Ignatius Zakka I Iwas, in his message published in the book, "Turabdin truly means everything to us. In other words, it is a summary and complete example of the history of our Syrian Church. Therefore the love of Turabdin has a special place in our hearts. The ancient monasteries and churches are sacred to us. As Patriarch of the Syrian Church, we regard Turabdin as a holy site, second only to Jerusalem, and look on our visits there as pilgrimages.

With more than 400 photographs in color, the book provides insight into one of the oldest Christian cultures on the Tigris where you can to this day encounter people who speak the language of Christ Jesus. The book comes at a very opportune moment when the existence of this culture is under significant threat of extinction.

As a founder of the "Friends of Turabdin" and with his long association with this area, Prof. Hollerweger is an eminently qualified author. Further, the book has been written in collaboration with eminent Syriac Studies scholars, Profs. Sebastian Brock and Andrew Palmer. The book has 368 pages (306 in color) introduced by letters from the Patriarch H.H. Mor Ignatius Zakka I Iwas and the Archbishop of Tur `Abdin, H.E. Mor Timotheos Samuel Atkas.


ATS 480; DEM 68; CHF 58; SKR 320; EUR 34.90 (+ Shipping & Handling)
US $ 40 + Shipping & Handling $8 per copy ($24 for courier delivery)

Bulk orders have lower shipping and handling costs. For US orders, 10 books will be shipped for $54 ($86 for courier delivery).

To place orders, contact Fax: +43 732 773578. Orders can also be mailed to:
Freunde des Tur Abdin
Bethlehemstraße 20
A-4020 Linz

Bank Accounts:

Austria: "Stimme des Tur Abdin", Hypo-Landesbank Linz (BLZ 54.000) Konto 202481.
Germany: "Stimme des Tur Abdin", Volksbank-Raiffeisenbank Passau (BLZ 74090000) Konto 25968.
Sweden: "Voice of Turabdin", PostGirot Sverige, Konto 1908548-9.
Switzerland: "M. Tekin, Stimme des Tur Abdin", St. Gallische Kantonalbank 01*55/331.654-08 BC 781, Konto 90-219-8.

North American residents should send orders to the following address with checks payable in US Dollars to "The Monastery".

Syriac Orthodox Archdiocese of the Western US
417 E. Fairmount Rd.
Burbank, CA 91501-1705

Please allow at least 8 weeks for delivery.

Copyright © Syriac Orthodox Resources. All Rights Reserved.
Last Update: August 14, 1999