After informal lessons in Armenian language from the late Rev. Fr. Levon Arakelian at Holy Ascension parish in Trumbull, CT, Roberta Ervine enrolled in the newly-reopened Armenian Studies Program at Columbia University, where she studied with Profs. Nina Garsoïan, James Russell, and the Very Rev. Fr. Krikor Maksoudian. She holds her PhD from Columbia University. Dissertation research led her to Jerusalem, where she lived in the Armenian Monastery of St. James as a disciple of His Grace Abp. Norayr Bogharian, curator of manuscripts. For sixteen of her twenty-one years in the Holy City, Prof. Ervine taught for the Holy Translators Academy; she also lectured for several other Jerusalem institutions, including the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 2001 she returned to the United States to teach at St. Nersess Armenian Seminary, where she lectures on topics related to the history of Armenian Christianity and Armenian Christian thought.
Prof. Ervine pursues topics related to the history of Armenians in Jerusalem and the intellectual tradition of the Armenian middle ages (particularly the thinking of Vanakan Vardapet, Vardan the Great and Hovhannēs of Erznka). She is also interested in medieval Armenian grammatical texts.
Current projects include work on a new, annotated translation of St. Nersēs Shnorhali’s Letters, the first volume of which will appear in 2011. In addition, Dr. Ervine’s translation of the lengthy Questions and Answers of Vanakan Vardapet will appear serially in the pages of the St. Nersess Theological Review, beginning with vol. 14.
- “The Armenians on Melchizedek, Christ and Priesthood”
- “Armenian Grammatical Writings: An Overview”
- “On Teaching the Young to Read. A Text from MM 1869”
- Nersēs Shnorhali’s Correspondence, Vol. 1: The General Epistle
- “Towards an Educated Leadership. Seminary Study in the St. James Armenian Monastery of Jerusalem, 1833-1885,” (in Hebrew)
- “Questions on Writings of the Cappadocian Fathers in the Questions and Answers attributed to Vanakan Vardapet”
- “Portrait of a Local Saint: Hannē of Jerusalem,” Religion and the Arts 15 (2011), 61-81
- “Twelve Objects with Armenian Inscriptions from a Private Collection in New York,” in Barlow Der Mugrdechian, ed., Between Paris and Fresno: Armenian Studies in Honor of Dickran Kouymjian (Armenian Studies Series 13), Costa Mesa, CA: Mazda, 2008, 125-139
- “Twelve Objects with Armenian Inscriptions from a Private Collection in New York,” in Barlow Der Mugrdechian, ed., Between Paris and Fresno: Armenian Studies in Honor of Dickran Kouymjian (Armenian Studies Series 13), Costa Mesa, CA: Mazda, 125-139
- “The Women Deacons of the Armenian Church,” St. Nersess Theological Review 12 (2007), 17-56
- The Blessing of Blessings. St. Gregory of Narek’s Commentary on the Song of Songs,Kalamazoo, MI: Cistercian Publications
- “Vardan the Great’s Homily for Wednesday of the Holy Cross,” St. Nersess Theological Review11 (2006) 107-144
- Worship Traditions in Armenia and the Neighboring Christian East (AVANT 3), Crestwood, NY: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press [editor]
- “Vardan Aygekc‘i’s Homily on the Ten Integers,” St. Nersess Theological Review 10 (2005), 169-215.
- “Vardan Aygekc‘i’s Holy Places Prayerbook,” in R.R. Ervine, ed., Worship Traditions in Armenia and the Neighboring Christian East (AVANT 3), Crestwood, NY: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 223-235.
- “Epigraphica Armeniaca Hierosolymitana X. An Inscribed Candlestick and Inscribed Lamps from Holy Arhangels Church, Jerusalem,” Revue des études arméniennes 30 (2005-2007), 359-399 [with Michael E. Stone]
- “Vardan Arewelc‘i’s Sermon On the Ten Commandments,” St. Nersess Theological Review 8 (2003), 13-83.
- The Armenians in Jerusalem and the Holy Land (Hebrew University Armenian Studies 4), Louvain: Peeters [edited with Michael E. Stone and Nira Stone]
- The Unpublished Writings of Abp. Tiran Nersoyan, I. Correspondence: The Early Years (1924-1944), St. Nersess Press [editor, translator]
- “Changes in Armenian Pilgrim Attitudes between 1600 and 1857. The Witness of Three Documents,” in R.R. Ervine, Michael E. Stone and Nira Stone (eds.), The Armenians in Jerusalem and the Holy Land (Hebrew University Armenian Studies 4), Louvain: Peeters
- “Kirakos Erznkac‘i on the Eight Thoughts of Evagrius: the Text of MM 2542,” St. Nersess Theological Review 5-6 (2000-2001), 65-118 (with Tigran Karapetyan)
- “Epigraphica Hierosolymitana VIII. Inscribed Candlesticks from Holy Archangels Church, Jerusalem,” Revue des études arméniennes 28 (2001-2002), 465-494 [with Michael E. Stone]
- The Armenian Text of Epiphanius of Salamis’ On Weights and Measures (CSCO 583/Subsidia 105), Louvain: Peeters [jointly with Michael E. Stone]
- “Antecedents and Parallels to Some Questions and Answers on Genesis in Vanakan Vardapet’sBook of Questions,” Le Muséon 113.3/4 (2000) 417-428.
- “Women Who Left the World: the Armenian Nuns of Jerusalem,” in Thomas Hummel, Kevork Hintlian and Ulf Carmesund, eds., Patterns of the Past, Prospects for the Future: The Christian Heritage in the Holy Land, London: Melisende, 124-134.
- ” Modern Aramaeans: Israel’s Syrian Orthodox,” Eretz v Teva’ (August, 1998) 35-61/60-66, 72 (English and Hebrew)
- “The Armenian Community of Istanbul,” Ararát (June, 1998) 5-11. (Budapest. In Armenian)
- “Patriarch Minas Amt‘ec‘i and His Diary,” in Nicholas Awde, ed., Armenian Perspectives, Richmond, Surrey: Curzon, Caucasus World, 111-118.
- “Grigor the Chainbearer (1717-1744). The Rebirth of the Armenian Patriarchate,” in Anthony O’Mahoney et al., eds., The Christian Heritage in the Holy Land, London: Cavendish, 112-128.
- “The Holy Archangels’ Church in Jerusalem: Its History and Inscriptions,” Journal of the Society for Armenian Studies 8 (1995), 35-51.
- “Yovhannēs Erznkac‘i’s Compilation of Commentary on Grammar as a Starting Point for Reading Medieval Grammars,” in J.J.S. Weitenberg, ed., New Approaches to Medieval Armenian Language and Literature, Amsterdan: Rodopi, 149-165.