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Natalia Semyonovna

Candidate of Sciences (equiv. Ph.D.) - History
Born on December 22, 1978 in Leningrad.

Secondary education

June 1995 — graduated from the School (Gymnasium) under the auspices of the State Russian Museum.

Higher education

1995-2000 — St Petersburg University, Department of History, Section of Medieval Studies (2000). Honours degree certificate of five-year higher education. Graduate work subject: History of the Early Byzantine Empire. Supervisor: late Prof Dr Georgy L. Kurbatov.

Postgraduate studies

2000-2004 — part-time Ph.D. student in Syriac Studies at the St Petersburg Branch of the Institute of Oriental Studies, the Russian Academy of Sciences (now IOM RAS). Subject of the thesis: Melkite Syriac Hymnography to the Virgin Mary from the 9th to 13th Century as a Source for the History of Oriental Christianity (Based upon the Syriac MS New Series 11 from the National Library of Russia). Supervisor: Prof Dr Elena N. Mescherskaya.


From May 2003 up to 2016 — researcher, Institute of Oriental Manuscripts of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Department of Near Eastern Studies. Fields of research: Melkite liturgy and hymnography from the 8th century onwards, Syriac literature translated from Greek, Syriac manuscripts in the collections of St Petersburg and in some other European collections.

Research fellowships

2004-2005 Short-term Research Fellowship, The Warburg Institute, School of Advanced Study, University of London

2005 Short-term Research Fellowship, Laboratoire des études sémitiques anciennes, CNRS-Collège de France associé à l’Université Paris-Sorbonne (Paris IV)

2007 Visiting Fellow, Centre for the Study of Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations, Department of Theology and Religion, University of Birmingham, UK

2007-2008 Visiting Fellow, Department of Theology and Religious Studies, University of Nottingham, UK

Research conferences and seminars

2001-2007 Annual research conference of the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences (St Petersburg)

2001, 2006 International Congress of Byzantine Studies (Paris, London)

2002 Summer School United People-Divided Nations (Ochrid, Republic of Macedonia)

2003 International Patristics Conference (Oxford)

2005 International Conference History in Manuscripts – Manuscripts in History (St Petersburg)

2005 5th Woodbrooke-Mingana Symposium on Arab Christianity and Islam (Birmingham)

2005 International Conference Mediaeval book centres: local traditions and inter-regional connections (Moscow)

2006 International conference The Mother of God in Byzantium: Relics, Icons, and Texts (Oxford)

Publications ( the entire list as a *.pdf file)


Dickens M., Smelova N. A Rediscovered Syriac Amulet from Turfan in the Collection of the Hermitage Museum // Written Monuments of the Orient. Vol. 7, No. 2(14), 2021. P. 107–147.


Smelova N. The Canons of the First Ecumenical Council of Nicaea in the Manuscript IOM, RAS Syr. 34 // Written Monuments of the Orient. 1(3), 2016. P. 35–63.

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A meeting of the IOM RAS Academic Council will be held at 14:00 on Wednesday, March 1, 2023. E.P. Ostrovskaya, Doctor of Sciences in Philosophy, will give a talk titled “Buddhist ethics as theoretical foundation of religious morality”.

Programming© N.Shchupak; Design© M.Romanov

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