VI, 2010, 1

The Rediscovery of a Lost Book: The Romanian Octoichos of Metropolitan Dosoftei of Moldavia | p. 49–90

metropolitan Dosoftei, Octoichos, old Romanian literature, Putna Monastery


This paper brings back to light a hitherto lost book, which is very important for the Romanian culture. It is the first Octoichos that was translated into Romanian and printed sometime between 1683 and 1686. It was Metropolitan Dosoftei of Moldavia (1671–1674; 1675–1686) who translated it. The book was preserved in the library of the Putna Monastery until 1895 when it was given away and subsequently disappeared. This work of Romanian religious literature was rediscovered in 2008 and it was returned to the Putna Monastery in 2010. The Octoichos together with other four books, translated by the same author, mark the beginning of the use of the Romanian language in the church services. While translating it, Metropolitan Dosoftei invented new Romanian words, thus enriching the Romanian language. The book also has autograph notes of Metropolitan Dosoftei, representing reviews of the translation. This is the oldest Romanian Octoichos that reached us and it survived in only one copy.