Coptic hymnody

The word ‘Copt’ comes from the Greek word ‘Aigyptios’ (‘Egyptian’) and was disfigured by the Arabs to ‘Copt’. The Greek word is the name of the sanctuary near Memphis ‘Het-Ka-Ptah’ (‘The dwelling of the 'Ghost'(ka) of Ptah’). Hence this word is used to designate the Egyptian people. The Egyptians used the Egyptian Language (Hieroglyphic and later Coptic) until the conquest of Alexander the Great, when Greek was used. After the Arab conquest, Arabic was imposed. According to the Gospel of Matthew, Christ and the Holy Family came to Egypt fleeing from Herod (Matthew 2:15); it is the one country apart from Palestine where Christ lived. The Pentecost account mentions that among the devout Jews...

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