Friday, July 20, 2018

New Articles in TC: A Journal of Biblical Textual Criticism

The first installation of TC: A Journal of Biblical Textual Criticism volume 23 (2018) is complete with three articles and a number of reviews. Three or four additional articles will follow in the second installation in November. Notably, two of the articles are written by two PhD students, Jonathan Hong (ISBTF Kirchliche Hochschule Wuppertal/Bethel), who is working under Martin Karrer on the text of the Psalms in a German project concerned with the reconstruction of the oldest text form of the Septuagint (Old Greek) and its linguistic and theological characteristics; and Jesse R. Grenz (Faculty of Divinity, University of Cambridge), who is studying the scribal habits in Codex Vaticanus under supervision of our co-blogger Dirk Jongkind.

Volume 23 (2018)


Garrick V. Allen, “There Is No Glory and No Money in the Work”: H. C. Hoskier and New Testament Textual Criticism
Abstract: Focusing on the work and life of H. C. Hoskier, this article explores the broader intellectual context of late nineteenth and early twentieth century textual criticism. This examination illuminates the deep context of current trends in textual scholarship on the New Testament, arguing that the discipline has much to learn from the dark corners of the tradition. Though seemingly dry and laborious work (and of a truth it is the latter to a large extent) some of the most wonderful truths, some of the most interesting problems present themselves to his mind as letter by letter, line by line, and page by page the patient collator toils along slowly at his task.
Jonathan Hong, In Search of the “Old Greek” in the Septuagint Psalter: A Case Study of LXX Psalms 49 and 103
Abstract: Till today Rahlfs’s edition from 1931 is the standard text when it comes to the Greek Psalter. However, important discoveries were made after 1931, for example the Psalm scrolls from Qumran and early Greek manuscripts. This article includes the new material and argues that the original text of the Septuagint has been a freer translation than the text reconstructed by Rahlfs. It also shows that the new Greek manuscript findings of Papyrus Bodmer XXIV (Ra 2110) and Oxyrhynchus Papyrus 5101 (Ra 2227) attest to a particularly strongly Hebraized text-form.
Jesse R. Grenz, Textual Divisions in Codex Vaticanus: A Layered Approach to the Delimiters in B(03)
Abstract: In this article, I am concerned with the various delimitation markers found in Codex Vaticanus. While some scholars have assumed an overall coherence between these markers, I argue that they must first be examined on their own to determine their function and relation to one another. This is done first by understanding textual delimitation as a part of transmission and scribal habit. After examining the spacing, ektheses, paragraphoi, and Greek section numerals, I conclude: (1) only the spacing and ektheses are original to the work of the scribes; (2) the paragraphoi were later additions for the purpose of reading, and sometimes correct the original divisions of the scribes; and (3) finally, the later additions of Greek section numerals were for ease of reference and can both agree and disagree with previous division markers. The data presented below has implications for any further conclusions about the purpose and relationship of these divisions to the larger textual tradition.


Marietheres Döhler, Acta Petri: Text, Übersetzung und Kommentar zu den Actus Vercellenses (Thomas J. Kraus, reviewer)
Liv Ingeborg Lied and Hugo Lundhaug, Snapshots of Evolving Traditions: Jewish and Christian Manuscript Culture, Textual Fluidity, and New Philology (Marcus Sigismund, reviewer)
Alan Mugridge, Copying Early Christian Texts: A Study of Scribal Practise (Michael Dormandy, reviewer)
Ernst Würthwein and Alexander Achilles Fischer, The Text of the Old Testament: An Introduction to the Biblia Hebraica (Andrew W. Dyck, reviewer)


  1. Thanks Tommy,

    I'm sure Jesse Grenz is right that the paragraphoi in Vaticanus are not original (although it would have been helpful to demonstrate this). Some helpful data collection and analysis here.
    I'm not so convinced of Mugridge's view, as per Dormandy: "Mugridge argues that his findings suggest that many scribes of Christian manuscripts were paid professionals, who were not necessarily Christians. Mugridge argues that, therefore, contra Bart Ehrman and others, it is unlikely that deliberate theological alterations to the text were common, because the scribes were probably mostly non-Christians, with little interest in the content." This seems to be built into Mugridge's assumptions rather than emerging from his investigation.
    Anyway, plenty to think about.

  2. Does anyone know if a Gottingen edition for Psalms is underway yet?

  3. Sorry for being off topic but may someone be willing to tell me if the Text and Textwert volume of Revelation will serve to be more comprehensive than the forthcoming ECM (my interest is Revelation)? Any clarification will be very helpful. Thank you!

    1. May someone who has posted on here please help a brother out? Thank you so much!

  4. My review of Mugridge is more critical. I think he has collected lots of valuable evidence, but the way he interprets is very unconvincing.

  5. Shamelessly begging here - I'd love to read the Mugridge book, but I don't have library privileges anywhere that stocks it, and I don't have $300 to buy my own copy, so I'm fresh out of ideas. Anyone have any suggestions?

    1. It is in my office in Oxford. You can stay for free in my flat and borrow the book in my office.

    2. The family lore is the George Wombwell started a circus with little more than a dead elephant, and built up his enterprise to the point that when the King's hounds started dying mysteriously, it was Wombwell who was summoned to save the day, and Wombwell who in fact did so by discovering the their poisoned water supply. No word on whether it was also Wombwell who poisoned the water in the first place, but when the grateful king offered him a reward, as cocky as ever he reportedly replied "what would you give a man who already has everything?" Of course, the correct answer which he should have given was "more money" as apparently the family went broke and lost the manor house in Geoff's Oak in just a few generations.

      So, easy come, easy go. It's still one of my life goals to swim over there for a visit and see it all for myself, and I'm very happy to add your office in Oxford to the itinerary. That trip may not be for quite a few years yet though.