Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Ethiopic Gospel of John

For those of us who like to read Ge'ez, the Ethiopic Gospel of John is now available:

Wechsler, Michael G., Evangelium Iohannis Aethiopicum, CSCO 617, Leuven: Peeters, 2005.

with an introduction, mentioning the kind of text Eth John reflects (mixed, as you might have guessed). The main corpus is a critical edited text of Eth John, based on the earliest Ethiopic MSS. Besides, an additional chapter lists minor variants, and another one has suggestions for the NA27 text, in Greek (for that, you do not need Ge'ez!).

It seems to be a thoroughly edited work, which will be very helpful in the future editions of the IGNTP / ECM Gospel of John volumes. In the foreword, he acknowledges, besides others, the help of R. Zuurmond (who edited Eth Mark & Matthew) and of God (who, according to him, seems to have been somehow involved in the production of the Greek Vorlage ...).

Anyone who wants to know more about the Ethiopic Bible: Take a look at the Encyclopaedia Aethiopica, Vol. I and II are now out (Harrassowitz, Wiesbaden). Look for the article "Bible" in Vol. 1. Very helpful.


  1. So when NA27's CA tells us that "eth" reads such-and-such, they are really telling us that the "oldest and best mss" of the ethiopic read that way.

    That makes each revision of Nestle-Aland the newest edition of the oldest texts.

    But should we read the "oldest and best" edition of Nestle (1898) or the newest one, that's undergone the most recension?

  2. Obviously NA27 is vastly superior in terms of information given over N1. However, since N1 contained less information in the apparatus it also contained fewer mistakes. Modern coins contain even fewer printing errors, which hardly means that they are superior to N1, let alone NA27.

    Much more is known about all of the mss, versions and Fathers now than in 1898.

  3. I've just got this from the SNTS bookstall. Very neat edition: xliv + 210 pages.