Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Manuscripts in D.C. and Dinner in Dollyworld


A few weeks ago, Elijah and I were hosted by the Museum of the Bible in Washington, D.C. to talk about Myths and Mistakes. Elijah and I are alumni of the original Green Scholars Initiative, a formative experience for both of us. So it was especially nice to feel like we could give something back. The Museum staff was beyond hospitable and generous with their time. I was able to tour one of the floors (on the Bible’s history) and really enjoyed it. The medieval and English Bible artifacts were the highlight for me. I saw a number of important Greek New Testaments for the first time with my own eyes. I had no idea how small Stephanus’s 1551 edition is.

We were also able to spend time with four of their earliest New Testament fragments: P39, 0313, 0206, and 0220. All of these were of interest, but we were most interested in 0220. This is the earliest copy of Rom 5.1 and its reading on ἔχομεν/ἔχωμεν is marked “vid” in NA28 and with underdots in THGNT. We were able to look at it twice, once with a Dino microscope camera. Our conclusion? 0220 most likely has the omicron.

A Dino cam image of ε[χο] in 0220

On the way home, I stopped over in East Tennessee, Hixson’s backyard and the sacred home of HRH Dolly Parton. Sadly, we did not see her majesty. But we were able to see another legend, one Maurice Robinson! I can’t be sure, but it may have been the largest gathering of ETC blog members in the last year. He did not have anything quite as old as 0220, but we were able to see the original edition of the Byzantine text-form and the very computer—still working!—that it was made with. We even acquired some rare KJV-only books with Pierpont’s (sometimes extensive) marginal criticisms.

All-in-all, it was a great trip and I am grateful to all my hosts.


  1. I believe its Dollywood, not Dollyworld, a point of variation not nearly as important as ἔχομεν/ἔχωμεν

    1. The amusement park is, it’s true. But I was referring to all of East TN.

    2. As a native, I'll take it. She is our patron saint.

    3. Ah, that makes sense, I thought you were speaking of Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg itself. Been to that area a couple of times--some of the most scenic hiking in the entire USA.

  2. But did you have a chance to eat at Calhoun's?

  3. We all ate wonderful pizza from Geppetto's in Wears Valley TN, just down the road from Pigeon Forge.

    Sort of like an ETS dinner without the academic intensity. A splendid time was had by all.

  4. "we were able to see the original edition of the Byzantine text-form and the very computer—still working!—that it was made with." Anyone told Wachtel?