Jacopo Marcon

Jacopo Marcon

Department of Theology and Religion
Doctoral Researcher

Contact details

PhD title: The Pseudo-Oecumenian Catena on Romans
Supervisor: Professor Hugh Houghton
PhD Theology and Religion


MA in Classics: Archaeology, History and Literature (University of Udine)
BA in Classics (University of Udine)


Whilst in Italy, my training was focused primarily on literary -philology, more specifically, the study of Latin Palaeography and Classical Philology. My BA thesis was about a paper fragment written in a humanist script, kept in the Guarneriana Library of San Daniele del Friuli. This led to the opportunity to present my research at a public conference at the Guarneriana library.

In addition to my theoretical knowledge of manuscript studies, my understanding of the codicological, palaeographical, and philological aspects of codices were reinforced by my experience of completing my MA thesis.

During my MA I spent six months as an Erasmus student at Leiden Universiteit in the Netherlands. I was also a university tutor for the curriculum of Classics: Archaeology, History and Literature at the University of Udine, and a student delegate in the faculty and department committee of the same university. 


My research focuses on a particular type of commentary manuscript called Catenae. More specifically, it focuses on the Pseudo-Oecumenian Catena commentary of the Pauline Epistle to the Romans. Biblical catenae are manuscripts that contain the biblical text and a commentary, made up of excerpts from multiple sources. The text is organized either continually to follow the biblical quotation (alternating catenae), or around the passage, which is in the middle of the page (frame catena). Sometimes the biblical text and commentary are evenly divided into two columns.  The aim of my research is to make the first ever critical edition of this, the most common catena on Romans. This will involve identifying and examining the manuscripts in which it is attested, and selecting witnesses for an edition. On the basis of Theodora Panella’s thesis concerning the Pseudo-Oecumenian Catena on Galatians, my research will firstly analyze the layout of the manuscripts with relation to the different types of Scholia. There are three of these: one set is numbered, one is known as the Corpus Extravagantium, and the third is the Scholia Photiana. What is the relationship between these different types of comments? When and how were the comments by the Byzantine scholar Photius added in a second stage in the manuscripts? Is there a Urform (an original form of Catena, only with the numbered set) for Romans, as for Galatians? This work is useful for the analysis of the pattern of biblical quotations, the reconstruction of the author’s citation technique, and the identification of the anonymous scholia in the commentary. The work will shed new light on the history of the tradition of the Pauline Epistles’ commentaries, and aims to retrace the original pattern of the Pseudo-Oecumenian Catena on Romans and its evolution during the centuries.

 The project is funded by the ERC consolidator grant, CATENA: Commentary Manuscripts in the History and Transmission of the New Testament, and its director, Professor H.A.G. Houghton, is my main supervisor. Like the project, I am based in ITSEE (the Institute of Textual Scholarship and the Electronic Editing), in the Department of Theology and Religion of the University of Birmingham.

Other activities

  • Public conference: Scritture, parole e storia in un pezzo di carta. Uno sconosciuto frammento umanistico alla Guarneriana (Scripts, words and history on a piece a paper. An unknown humanistic fragments at the Guarneriana Library), San Daniele del Friuli, Civica Biblioteca Guarneriana, with Professor Laura Pani
  • ERC funded Project: CATENA: Commentary Manuscripts in the History and Transmission of the New Testament; PhD student; 
  • https://uniud.academia.edu/jacopomarcon