The Catholic University of America

The Hyvernat Lecture


The first Annual Hyvernat Lecture was presented on Thursday, March 22, 2012 at 5:00 p.m. in Aquinas Hall Auditorium. The inaugural lecture was given by Professor Geoffrey Khan of Cambridge University on the topic of "The North-Eastern Neo-Aramaic Dialects and Their Historical Background."

About the Hyvernat Lecture Series

This is an Annual Lecture in honor of the department's mission and its founder, Monsignor Henri Hyvernat (1858-1941). The lecture is presented by the generous support of an anonymous donor.

About Msgr. Henri Hyvernat (1858-1941)

Henri Hyvernat was the first professor appointed to the Faculty of the new Catholic University of America. The youngest member of the original faculty, he served as Professor of Oriental Languages and Biblical Archaeology (1889-1894/96), Professor of Semitic Languages and Biblical Archaeology (1895/96-1910/11) and Professor of Semitic Languages and Literatures (1911/12-1940/41). He held the Andrews Chair of Biblical Archaeology from 1889 until his death in 1941. He established the Department of Semitic and Egyptian Languages and Literatures and its Institute of Christian Oriental Research (ICOR). His private library became the cornerstone of CUA's Semitics/ICOR Library.

Hyvernat spent fifty-two years in distinguished service to The Catholic University of America. He is remembered with affection as "The Grand Old Man of the University."

The Hyvernat Fellowship Program

The Department of Semitic and Egyptian Languages and Literatures is pleased to announce the creation of the Hyvernat Fellowship program. Each year the department will select one of its graduate students to receive a $2,000 travel grant that may be used for various academic activities, including language study, travel and research.

Eligibility: The Hyvernat Fellowship is open to all full-time graduate students currently enrolled in the department of Semitic and Egyptian Languages and Literatures.

Purpose: The funds are meant to encourage travel for any sort of project that would contribute to the recipient's academic development—broadly conceived.

Application: The application materials must include:

  • a one-page project proposal
  • a rough budget covering the entire trip and demonstrating the use of the total amount being requested.

Deadline: Applications must be submitted via email no later than January 31 to the Department Chair (grossa@cua.edu). Materials should be sent as Word attachments or PDFs. The recipient of the grant will be announced the day before the annual Hyvernat Lecture.

Recipient Obligations: The grant funds must be used within one year of its being awarded. The 2017 recipient must submit a one-page report by March 1, 2018 that details the use of the funds and the overall impact of the project on the recipient's academic development. In addition, the recipient will make a short presentation on his or her experience the day before the 2018 Hyvernat Lecture.

The 2017 Hyvernat Lecture Program

Speaker, Gary A. Rendsburg, Blanche and Irving Laurie Professor of Jewish History, Distinguished Professor of Jewish Studies, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, N.J.

 Wednesday, March 22, 2017

11:10 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Prof. Rendsburg meets with Biblical Hebrew classes (SEM 612/712) combined in the ANE Seminar Room; a limited number of students not enrolled in the class may attend; contact Dr. Gross (grossa@cua.edu) for information.

2:10 p.m.-3:15 p.m.

Prof. Rendsburg meets with Aramaic classes (SEM 522/724) combined in the ANE Seminar Room; a limited number of students not enrolled in the class may attend; contact Dr. Cook (cooke@cua.edu) for information.

5:00 p.m.

Announcement of this year's recipient of the Hyvernat Fellowship Travel Grant for Semitics Students.

5:15 p.m.—6:15 p.m.

The "Hyvernat Eve Lecture"  will be delivered by Dr. Andrew Litke, Fellow of the Institute of Christian Oriental Research (ICOR):

"Following the Frankincense: Reassessing the Sitz im Leben of Targum Song of Songs."

Location: May Gallery, Mullen Library (first floor)

This lecture is open to the public.

6:30 p.m.

Currently enrolled students and invited guests are invited to join Prof. Rendsburg for dinner at a local restaurant (to be announced). This dinner is free to the students and invited guests. The dinner group will proceed from the May Gallery to the restaurant after Dr. Litke's lecture. For more information about the student dinner, contact Ryann Craig (ryanncraig@gmail.com).

Thursday, March 23, 2017

2:00 p.m.-3:15 p.m.

Prof. Rendsburg meets with the Historical Hebrew Grammar class (SEM 719) in the ANE Seminar Room; a limited number of students not enrolled in the class may attend; contact Dr. Cook (cooke@cua.edu) for information.

6:00 p.m.

The Sixth Annual Henri Hyvernat Lecture will be delivered by Gary A. Rendsburg, Blanche and Irving Laurie Professor of Jewish History, Distinguished Professor of Jewish Studies, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey.

Lecture Title: "Scroll Down: Classical Jewish Texts, from Parchment to Internet."

Over the course of more than two millennia, Jewish texts have transitioned from scroll to codex to book - and now to the digital age. This talk will survey the classical Jewish sources (Bible, Mishnah, Talmud, Siddur, Haggadah, etc.) from before the age of printing, now available on the internet for the public at large to view, read, and study. This talk will bring this old-new world of Hebrew Studies scholarship to the general community in an accessible manner. We will focus both on the contents of the manuscripts (especially when they differ from later printed editions) and the history of these documents, including their preservation in museums and libraries for centuries, along with the move to greater access in the current digital age. To present just one tease: we will look at various manuscripts of the Passover Haggadah - with two, three, four, and even five questions!

The lecture is open to the public. A light reception will follow.

Location: Heritage Hall in Father O'Connell Hall

7:45 p.m.

The Semitics faculty will join Prof. Rendsburg for dinner at an off-campus location.

 

The 2016 Hyvernat Lecture Program

Speaker, Dr. Jan Joosten, Regius Professor of Hebrew, University of Oxford.
 
Wednesday, March 16, 2016
 
11:10 a.m.—12:15 p.m.
 
Prof. Joosten meets with Biblical Hebrew classes (SEM 612/712 combined) in ANE Seminar Room; a limited number of students not enrolled in the class may attend; contact Dr. Cook (cooke@cua.edu) for information.
 
2:10 p.m.—3:25 p.m.
 
Prof. Joosten meets with Syriac Literature class (SEM 632) in CNE Seminar Room; a limited number of students not enrolled in the class may attend; contact Dr. Butts (buttsa@cua.edu) for information.
 
5:00 p.m.—6:00 p.m.
 
Mr. Brad Sabin Hill, Curator of the I. Edward Kiev Judaica Collection of the Gelman Library of George Washington University, will deliver an illustrated lecture, "Hebrew Printing in the Arab and Islamic World."
 
Location: May Gallery, Mullen Library (first floor)
 
This lecture is open to the public.
 
6:30 p.m.
 
Currently enrolled students and invited guests are invited to join Prof. Joosten for dinner at Brookland Pint. This dinner is free to students and invited guests. The dinner group will proceed from the May Gallery after Dr. Hill's lecture to Brookland Pint. For more information about the student dinner, contact Ryann Craig (ryanncraig@gmail.com).
 
Thursday, March 17, 2016
 
5:00 p.m.—6:00 p.m.
 
The Fifth Annual Henri Hyvernat Lecture will be delivered by Prof. Jan Joosten, Regius Professor of Hebrew at Oxford University.
 
Lecture Title: "How did Hebrew Become a Holy Language?"
 
Location: Aquinas Hall Auditorium, CUA campus
 
The lecture is open to the public. A light reception will follow.
 
7:30 p.m.
 
The Semitics faculty will join Prof. Joosten for dinner at an off-campus location.
 

 

 

The 2015 Hyvernat Lecture Program

Speaker, Leo Depuydt, Professor of Assyriology and Egyptology, Brown University.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

11:10 a.m.-12:25 p.m. The classes SEM 682 (Introduction to Coptic Studies) and SEM 709 (Comparative Semitic Grammar) will meet jointly with Prof. Depuydt in the Christian Near East Seminar room (Mullen 036). If you are not registered for either of these classes, and would like to sit in on the discussion, please notify Prof. Timbie or Prof. Butts.

5:00 p.m. "Jesus, Judas, and Me: A Coptic Scholar Addresses the Public" by Prof. Janet Timbie in the May Gallery of Mullen Library. This lecture is open to the public, and will be followed by a question period.

6:00 p.m. Prof. Depuydt's dinner with departmental students at Brookland Pint.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

5:00 p.m. The 4th Annual Hyvernat Lecture, Aquinas Hall Auditorium.

Leo Depuydt, Brown University

Title: "The Literature of the Copts and the Contributions of Msgr. Henri Hyvernat to the Study of the Subject."

6:00 p.m. Post-Lecture Reception at Aquinas Hall.

All members of the public and the university community are invited to attend.

7:00 p.m. Post-Lecture Dinner with Semitics department faculty and guests at Mama Ayesha's, Adams Morgan.

For more information, please contact Department Chair Prof. Edward Cook at cooke@cua.edu or cua-semitics.edu.


 The 2014 Hyvernat Lecture Program

Speaker, Prof. John Huehnergard, University of Texas at Austin.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. Prof. Huehnergard visits the Biblical Hebrew Poetry class in Mullen 034 [limited to registrants for Biblical Hebrew].

2:10 p.m.-3:00 p.m. Prof. Huehnergard visits the Aramaic Dialects class in Mullen 034 to answer questions about Aramaic and Hebrew historical grammar [contact Prof. Cook if you want to attend and are not registered for the class].

3:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m. Prof. Huehnergard visits the Akkadian Texts class [tentative; class normally meets at 3:40 p.m.; contact Prof. Gross for details].

04:10 p.m.-5:00 p.m. The "Hyvernat Eve" lecture in the May Gallery of Mullen Library:

Michal Marmorstein, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 2014 ICOR Research Fellow

Title: "The 'Resembling Verb'  in Classical Arabic Grammar"

All members of the public and the university community are invited to attend.

After the lecture, students will convene in the May Gallery and then go to dinner with Prof. Huehnergard at Dukem Ethiopian Restaurant (address: 1114-1118 U St. NW). This dinner is free to Semitics students. RSVP to Ryann Craig!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

12:30 p.m: Women students lunch with Prof. Huehnergard. Contact Ryann Craig for details.

5:00 p.m. The 3rd Annual Hyvernat Lecture, Aquinas Hall Auditorium. [Note the new location.]

John Huehnergard, University of Texas at Austin

Title: "Writing Carefully: Letters of the King of Babylon to the King of Egypt"

All members of the public and the university community are invited to attend.

7:00 p.m. Post-Lecture dinner with Faculty.

For more information call 202-319-5084 or write to cua-semitics@cua.edu .

 

The 2013 Hyvernat Lecture Program

Speaker, Prof. Lucas Van Rompay of Duke University.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

01:10-2:00 p.m. Prof. van Rompay will visit the combined Aramaic classes taught by Dr. Cook (SEM 722 Qumran Aramaic and SEM 522 Intro to Aramaic II) in the Ancient Near East Seminar room (Mullen 034).

Other students who have studied Aramaic may attend, but check first with Dr. Cook (cooke@cua.edu) about available seating.

05:00-6:00 p.m. Dr. Shawqi Talia will give a lecture "Readings in Neo-Aramaic Literature: Qiryana b-Lushana Aramaya Hadhta" in the May Gallery of Mullen Library. There will be a special presentation in honor of Prof. van Rompay.  All members of the public and the university community are invited to attend.

After Dr. Talia's lecture, the students will have dinner with Prof. van Rompay at an off-campus site. For more information, contact GSA representative Ryann Craig.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

02:10-3:25 p.m. Prof. van Rompay will visit Prof. Sidney Griffith's Syriac Literature class (SEM 632) in the Christian Near East Seminar room (Mullen 036).

Those who are not registered for the class may attend, but check with Prof. Griffith (griffith@cua.edu) about available seating.

05:00 p.m. The 2nd Annual Hyvernat Lecture: "Christianity and Scholarship in the Syriac-Orthodox Monasteries of the Early Islamic Period," by Prof. Van Rompay in the Pryzbyla Center Great Room B.

All members of the public and the university community are invited to attend.

After the lecture, which will end approximately at 6:00 p.m., there will be a reception with light refreshments. All are invited to stay and greet the lecturer and other guests.

At 7:30 p.m., the department faculty and invited guests will have dinner with Prof. van Rompay at Mama Ayesha's in Adams Morgan.

 

The 2012 Hyvernat Lecture Program

Speaker, Prof. Geoffrey Khan of Cambridge University.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

10:00 a.m. Hebrew class with Prof. Khan in the Ancient Near East Seminar room (Mullen 034).

01:00 p.m. Aramaic class with Prof. Khan in the Ancient Near East Seminar room (Mullen 034).

05:00 p.m. "Readings in Neo-Aramaic Poetry" by Dr. Shawqi Talia in the May Gallery of Mullen Library.

06:30 p.m. Prof. Khan's dinner with Semitics dept. students and recent dept. alumni.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

02:00 p.m. Syriac class with Prof. Khan in the Christian Near East Seminar room (Mullen 036).

05:00 p.m. The 1st Annual Hyvernat Lecture at Aquinas Hall Auditorium: "The North-Eastern Neo-Aramaic Dialects and their Historical Background," by Prof. Khan. At Aquinas Hall Auditorium.

06:00 p.m. Post-Lecture Reception at Aquinas Hall.

07:00 p.m. Department Faculty Dinner with Prof. Khan.