An article by Dr Sebastian Brock. Appeared in Parole de l'Orient III:1 (Kaslik, 1972) 119-130.
Although to-day the Melkite baptismal service is in Arabic and belongs to the Constantinopolitam rite, the oldest surviving manuscripts of the service are in Syriac, and some of these manuscripts preserve a form of text which antedates the byzantinisation of the rite that took place after the recapture of Antioch by the Greeks in 969. This earlier form of the service represents a genuinely Antiochene rite, and one that has several points of contact with the other Antiochene baptismal ordines in Syriac, i.e. the two Syriac Orthodox services, attributed to Severus (=S) and Timothy of Alexandria (=T) respectively, and the Maronite service attributed to Jacob of Serug (=JS). This Antiochene Melkite ordo, which is attributed to Basil (=B), has been published, from a Vatican manuscript, by J.A. Assemani in the invaluable collection of baptismal ordines in volumes I-III of his Codex Liturgicus Ecclesiae Universae.
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