Prayers for Seed Sowing, Harvest and a Threshing Floor in Ancient Byzantine Euchologia

The aim of this study is to present the prayers that address agricultural matters such as the sowing of seeds, harvest and the blessing of a barn, which are found in the ancient Byzantine Euchologia, but have fallen into disuse. The contemporary Euchologion preserves only one prayer over the sowing of seed – “O Lord our God, we offer the seed that lies before Thine eyes…” – and another over a threshing floor – “O Lord our God, O Fountain of good things…” –, which is in fact an adaptation of an ancient prayer for those who offer the firstfruits. The author analyses a number of fifteen such prayers (with variants), distributed in different liturgical manuscripts from the 8th century until the 16th century. The diversity of prayers proves the powerful link between the agricultural experience and the liturgical one of the faithful. The author also proposes the recovery of some of these prayers for their clarity and theological coherence, in order to preserve a part of the ancient euchological treasure of the Orthodox tradition.