Shamsi Clan [Syr. Orth.]
Sun worshipers who converted to the Syr. Orth. faith around the 6th cent., according to later testimonies. From the 14th cent. onward, they lived in and around Amid and Mardin. They must have been looked upon with suspicion from the 14th until the 16th cent., for they resorted to obtaining at least eight bulls from various patriarchs and maph. testifying to their membership in the Syr. Orth. faith. The first testimony that survives is given by Patr. Abrohom II Gharīb dated 25 July 1436, from which many later testimonies draw their text. The Shamsi followed the liturgical rites of the Syr. Orth., but had their own social traditions. Probably until the 19th cent., they did not intermarry with others. They used to bury their dead with furniture and personal belongings, especially weapons, gold and silver, in their own cemeteries. In the mid-19th cent., they started marrying other Syr. Orth. There were around 70 families of them in Amid and Mardin in the period of World War I, and they had their own Church (Virgin Mary) in Mardin. A few families survive in Syria, Lebanon, Turkey, and the US.
- Barsoum, in PatMagJer 3 (1936), 100–8, 137–45. (testimonies; republished in Barsoum, Manārat antakya al-suryāniyya [Aleppo, 1992], 114–30, and G. Y. Ibrahim, Dulabani nasik mardin [Aleppo, 1999])
How to Cite This Entry
Footnote Style Citation with Date:
George A. Kiraz, “Shamsi Clan,” in Gorgias Encyclopedic Dictionary of the Syriac Heritage: Electronic Edition, edited by Sebastian P. Brock, Aaron M. Butts, George A. Kiraz and Lucas Van Rompay (Gorgias Press, 2011; online ed. Beth Mardutho, 2018), https://gedsh.bethmardutho.org/Shamsi-Clan.
Bibliography Entry Citation:
Kiraz, George A. “Shamsi Clan.” In Gorgias Encyclopedic Dictionary of the Syriac Heritage: Electronic Edition. Edited by Sebastian P. Brock, Aaron M. Butts, George A. Kiraz and Lucas Van Rompay. Digital edition prepared by David Michelson, Ute Possekel, and Daniel L. Schwartz. Gorgias Press, 2011; online ed. Beth Mardutho, 2018. https://gedsh.bethmardutho.org/Shamsi-Clan.
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