Friday, January 18, 2013
A Tricky Variant in Acts and Some Musings on NA28/27
Working on a variant in Acts 17, I was faced with a whole set of issues, and was glad that this was in some sense also true for the editors of NA27/28.
Here is the text from Acts 17:3:
ὅτι οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ χριστὸς [ὁ] Ἰησοῦς ὃν ἐγὼ καταγγέλλω ὑμῖν.
First problem, how are the variants of ο χριστος ο ιησους best listed? This is what the apparatus of NA28 and NA27 do:
ο χριστος [ο] ιησους
1 2 4 L Ψ 323. 945. 1175. 1241. 1739 Maj
2 4 P74 A D 33. 81 gig vgst
4 2 Alef 614. 1505 vgcl
4 3 2 E 453. 2818
ο χριστος [ο] ιησους
1 2 4 Ψ 1739 Maj
2 4 P74 A D 33vid. 81 pc gig vgst ([reverse order] Alef 614. 1505 pc vgcl)
4 3 2 E 36. 453 pc
(Maj stands for Gothic M; [reverse order] for the superscript floating s-shaped wiggle; Alef for the Hebrew letter)
The main difference between the two editions regarding the grouping of manuscripts is that the variant 4 2 ιησους χριστος is no longer given as a subvariation of 2 4 χριστος ιησους. Consistent and clear.
However, I was puzzling over the representation of the last variant 4 3 2 ιησους ο χριστος, simply because there is an alternative way of indicating the same words, 4 1 2. This is of course because the first and third word of the printed text are identical. And though I might be nitpicking here, I would chose for 4 1 2 over 4 3 2, simply because I think that this variant is derived from the first variant (1 2 4) rather than from the third (4 2) or from the text reading (1 2 3 4) or an untestified 2 3 4. Actually (see below) I don't think the 3 appeared anywhere except in Vaticanus. Yet, since this is open to debate, I don't think 4 3 2 for ιησους ο χριστος is 'wrong', it is simply based on a different local stemma.
Second problem, what to do with the differences in listed manuscripts? I appreciate it that the witnesses added in NA28 are there. Most of these manuscripts are very interesting.
In NA28 the videtur with minuscule 33 has disappeared, and as far as I can tell this is an error since the transcription of this manuscript on the NT.VMR indicates that there is the possibility of ο χς ις (reading 1 2 4, not 2 4). The image on the same website is unclear.
It is good to know that minuscule 2818 used to be minuscule 36aK, which explains the difference in the last variant.
The disappearance of the pauci siglum in three of the listed variants is a real loss, I like to know that there is more to know, even when I don't know what that is. The presence of pc also helps to emphasize that the text reading is found only in Vaticanus.
Third problem, is the correct text printed? I doubt it. It seems to me that the text of Vaticanus is produced by intervention and, given the affinities of its text, comes straight from the 2 4 variant (2 4 to 1 2 3 4). Whether 1 2 4 or 2 4 is original is hard to tell. The former might be the result of influence of 9:22 (ὅτι οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ χριστός.), the latter of attraction of χς to the following anarthrous ις.