Martini was born in Orbassano, near Turin, Italy, Feb. 15 in 1927. In 1958 he received a doctorate in Theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University. His thesis was entitled Il problema storico della Risurrezione negli studi recenti. After some years of teaching, he moved to Rome in 1962 accepting the Chair of Textual Criticism at the Pontifical Biblical Institute, where he also earned a doctorate in Scripture (summa cum laude) in 1966 with a thesis, well-known among text-critics, Il problema della recensionalità del codice B alla luce del papiro Bodmer XIV (Analecta Biblica, 26; Roma: Pontificio Istituto Biblico, 1966). In 1969 he became that institute's Rector Magnificus.
In 1967 Martini joined the UBS Committee to produce the second, third and fourth editions of the UBS Greek New Testament (the 2nd ed. was published in 1968). Among his many works in textual criticism is also a facsimile of P72 and the Epistles of Peter with a transcription (Beati Petri Apostoti Epistulae, Ex Papyro Bodmeriano VIII [Milan: 1968]). This part of the Bodmer manuscript was presented to the Pope Paul VI by the Swiss collector Martin Bodmer in 1969.
Subsequently Martini became Rector of the Pontifical Gregorian University from July 1978 until December 1979, when he was appointed Archbishop of Milan (ordained in 1980). He was elevated to the cardinalate in 1983. After his retirement in 2002 he moved to Jerusalem. Based at the Pontificial Biblical Institute in Jerusalem, he worked on a study of Codex Vaticanus which I assume was never completed. (From what I remember he was planning to write an extensive introduction to the manuscript.) In 2008 he moved back to Milan due to his health problem.
I never met Martini in person, but I corresponded with him after I had written my first article on Papyrus 72 and sent it to him. He read it with pleasure and also kindly offered to write me a letter of recommendation for the Vatican Library, so that I could research their manuscript treasures. Regrettably I never got the chance to do that research trip before the renovation work.
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