Friday, January 13, 2012

Resolving a mystery in NA26 & 27 at Gal 1.1

There is an unusual error in my New Testaments (NA26 & NA27).

At Gal 1.1 AUTON, towards the end of the verse, is marked in the text with the little right-angle mark which indicates that a different word occurs in the textual tradition, but there is nothing in the apparatus. I have occasionally wondered what happened there. I figured there probably was a variant and that the editors decided to leave it out but forgot, or were too late, to delete the marker in the text. If I had ever thought about it for long I could have checked Tischendorf or Swanson, but I never bothered. But today I was looking at Sinaiticus and found what I assume is the variant:

It is definitely an odd reading: 'from God the father who raised them from dead'. AUTWN if taken seriously would have to refer to the ANQRWPWN from whom Paul did not get his apostleship, but why think that God had raised THEM from the dead? It doesn't make any sense, it is a nonsense reading, it was quickly corrected (S1 acc Sin Proj). It is interesting in relation to the scribes of Sinaiticus (since blunders reveal more about a scribe than good copying), but it doesn't warrant a mention in the NA editions.


  1. Interesting, but wrong.
    The substitution marker (⸀) is a leftover from earlier Nestle editions (from N17 (1941) to NA25) in which the note on Marcion's omission of και θεου πατρος was complemented with “(et ⸀αὑ-?).” The idea must have been that Jesus would have raised himself from the dead, according to Marcion, according to the editor of this note.

  2. "Interesting, but wrong". Thanks Jan, but how sad to have to bring solid evidence from earlier editions into the discussion. Oh well, it was worth a try.

  3. I always say that the comments are the best part of our blog!

  4. The marker is in my 27th ed., 3rd printing, but gone by the time of my 27th ed., 8th printing.

    There's a similar isolated substitution marker at Gal 2:20, on the word ἀγαπήσαντος. This is also Marcion-related.

  5. So to complement the information: the bracketed part of the note on Gal 1:1 was still there in NA26; in NA27, it was omitted, but the substitution marker remained in the text, until a later printing of NA27.
    In Gal 2:20, there was no bracketed information in the apparatus, but simply a variant with Marcion as the only witness; this variant, introduced as early as N13 (1927), was omitted in NA27, but here as well, the substitution marker in the text was "left behind" and omitted only in a later printing.
    Apparently, besides "living texts", we also have "living editions".

  6. Just to note, CNTTS correctly lists 01* as reading AUTWN. Swanson adds ms. 2125 as reading it too.

    I think this nonsense reading was simply an orthographic error by pronunciation (assuming the text was read aloud while someone copied it).

  7. Looking at the Muenster Transcripts Prototype website, I see that they treat it more as an alternate spelling than as a correction. Only the "Compare" and "Show original spelling" features even show AUTWN.

  8. a similar, although not as nicely visible confusion in 01 is in Mt 26.56, where A mistakenly used omicron in the subjunctive form, thus creating a morphological no-no.