Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Luther’s Marginalia on Erasmus’s NT Annotationes

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For those interested in such things, the University of Groningen has a very nice digital version of Martin Luther’s personal copy of Erasmus’s Annotationes. Elsewhere, Luther says, “At first it was a good book, although he [Erasmus] is often devious in it.” That gives you a flavor for the marginalia too. The online edition nicely catalogues the marginal comments and gives transcriptions by Arnoud Visser. For helpful context, see Visser’s chapter in the FS for Anthony Grafton.

Luther’s marginal response to Erasmus’s hope that his reader is kind to him: “I am not a kind reader and you are a not a kind writer”

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Hernandez on Chapa’s New Introduction to TC

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Over on the FB NTTC group, Juan Hernandez shares his thoughts on the new introduction from Juan Chapa which I have copied here with permission.

Fresh off the press! Juan Chapa’s new book on textual criticism: La Transmisión Textual del Nuevo Testamento: Manuscritos, Variantes y Autoridad. Having read the pre-published version I can tell you that the book is a real treat, especially having such a careful, thorough discussion of textual criticism not simply from the perspective of an experienced papyrologist (editor of several Oxyrhynchus papyri), who is current in today’s text-critical trends, but also from the perspective of a priest from the order of Opus Dei. The discussion of textual authority was particularly fascinating, nuanced, historically grounded, and theologically sophisticated. There was also a good amount of textual criticism on the Latin text toward the end as well. There will be a lot to learn here, and it will have a slightly different tone from the multitude of Protestant voices in the discipline today since Chapa stands squarely in the Catholic tradition. I have included a picture of the book with the table of contents. Even if one doesn’t read Spanish, the contents will be easy to discern.

Here’s the table of contents:




Thursday, February 18, 2021

New Articles and Reviews in TC 25 (2020)

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 I am delighted to announce that the delayed second installment of TC: A Journal of Biblical Textual Criticism 25 (2020) has just been published which completes vol. 25, packed with 163 pages of textual criticism. The new installment contains a number of articles in honor of Eldon Epp who turned 90 years old in 2020 and four new reviews. Note also the new section on digital tools.

Here below is all the new contents:

Volume 25 (2020)

Articles

Special Section in Honor of Eldon Jay Epp

Jennifer Wright Knust and Tommy Wasserman, “In Honor of Eldon Jay Epp: Nonagenarian and Doyen of New Testament Textual Criticism” (pp. 85–88)

Abstract: The editors Knust and Wasserman introduce five articles in the current volume written in honor of Eldon J. Epp, now a nonagenarian, and at the same time express their own appreciation and personal gratitude for Epp’s tremendous contribution to the field.

Bart D. Ehrman, The Theological Tendency of Codex Bezae Cantabrigiensis at Age Forty-Four. In Commemoration of Eldon Epp’s Eightieth Birthday” (pp. 89–95)

Abstract: Not many years after Eldon Epp composed a “Requiem for the Discipline” of New Testament textual criticism in America, the field experienced a birth to new life. Ironically, in many ways Epp himself was the progenitor. His best-known publication The Theological Tendency of Codex Bezae Cantabrigiensis in Acts had earlier raised issues now central to the discussions: textual variants as historically significant data rather than mere chaff to be discarded; the importance of “scribal tendencies”; and the fraught question of an “original” text. This essay looks back on Epp’s early achievement and its long-term effect on what is now a vibrant and thriving discipline.

J. Keith Elliott, “Eldon Jay Epp’s Exegesis. A Paper Honoring the Exegetical Work of Eldon Jay Epp” (pp. 97–101)

Abstract: Since the 1960s I have been reading with interest all that Eldon Epp has been publishing on New Testament Textual Criticism. He is clearly the doyen of the trade and his many papers (now carefully gathered together into two separate volumes) have been expertly and professionally reprinted and updated. Those articles, together with his two main books, have provided us with a splendid summary of his work. In this article I offer a brief review of his most important contributions including appreciative comments on what he has done more generally for our discipline.

See also Larry W. Hurtado, “Going for the Bigger Picture: Eldon Epp as Textual Critic” (TC 15 [2010])

Abstract: Eldon Jay Epp, who turned 80 in 2010, has made numerous contributions to NT textual criticism. In this essay, the focus is on his repeated efforts to promote greater efforts toward framing a fully-informed theory and history of the early textual transmission of NT writings. At various points over the last several decades, he has drawn upon his appreciable knowledge of the history of the discipline to criticize the slow pace in these matters. He has also promoted and demonstrated study of the earliest NT papyri as key evidence for any such theory and history of the NT texts. Moreover, he has urged that study of NT papyri be done with attention to the larger Roman-era environment of textual transmission.

Yii-Jan Lin, “The Multivalence of the Ethiopian Eunuch and Acts 8:37” (pp. 103–110)

Abstract: Modern textual critics have concluded that the Christological confession at Acts 8:37 is a later addition to the story of Philip and the Ethiopian Eunuch. It is therefore neglected by most contemporary exegetes. As Epp has argued, however, such “discarded snippets” open up new interpretive possibilities, inviting further reflection on the multiplicity of meaning and the changing role of texts in actual human lives. Building on Epp’s insight, this article reclaims Acts 8:37 as a site for the creative use of textual criticism.

An-Ting Yi, Jan Krans, and Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte, “A New Descriptive Inventory of Bentley’s Unfinished New Testament Project” (pp. 111–128)

Abstract: One of Eldon J. Epp’s areas of expertise is the scholarly history of New Testament textual criticism. He offers an excellent overview of its different stages, including Bentley’s unfinished New Testament project. Yet, many aspects can be refined by studying the materials left by Bentley, preserved at Wren Library of Trinity College (TCL), Cambridge. This contribution offers an up-to-date descriptive inventory of all the remaining archive entries, containing bibliographical information, precise descriptions, relevant secondary literature, and parts of the reception history.

Section on Digital Tools

Sarah Yardney, Miller Prosser, and Sandra R. Schloen, “Digital Tools for Paleography in the OCHRE Database Platform” (pp. 129–143)
Tuukka Kauhanen and Hannu Kalavainen, “Automated Semantic Tagging of the Göttingen Septuagint Apparatus” (pp. 145–147)

 

Reviews

Diane Apostolos-Cappadona, ed., Biblical Women and the Arts (Michael Sommer, reviewer) (pp. 149–151)
Alan Taylor Farnes, Simply Come Copying: Direct Copies as Test Cases in the Quest for Scribal Habits (Zachary Skarka, reviewer) (pp. 153–156)
AnneMarie Luijendijk and William E. Klingshirn, eds., My Lots Are in Thy Hands: Sortilege and Its Practitioners in Late Antiquity (Anna Oracz, reviewer) (pp. 157–159)
Paul Trebilco, Outsider Designations and Boundary Construction in the New Testament (Michael Sommer, reviewer) (pp. 161–163)

Friday, February 12, 2021

Best board imaginable!?

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Ravi fell, but he had help.

“It is with deep gratitude to God, joined by the best board anyone can imagine and affirmed by the rest of our senior leadership, that these two appointments have been made.”

These are Ravi Zacharias’s words as he celebrates the appointment of two executives of Ravi Zacharias International Ministries, namely his daughter Sarah Zacharias Davis as CEO and Michael Ramsden, a Christian apologist as president. Ravi Zacharias remained as the chairman of the board. It’s difficult to say who’s currently on the board, because I can’t find an annual report on the website and RZIM seems to have used a religious exemption to avoid filing a public 990 for several years. The 2014 statement has Ravi and his wife earning a total of $523,926 ($190,565 + 174,750 & 143,690 + 14,921). His daughter, Sarah Davis earned $208,995 plus $7,042 in other compensation. Naomi Zacharias, who oversaw poverty relief internationally, was subsisting on $129,679. 

If you serve on the board of a non-profit, you are responsible for oversight. When the poop hits the fan, it’s your fault. Why was the fan there? Why is poop being flung around the room? It is your fault; you should have been asking these questions! Family members of executive staff should not occupy a board seat. Contractors or employees of other organizations should never have a board seat or an executive position. Rarely do academics or public speakers possess any gifting with management or strategic planning. No matter how much prestige their name may carry, they should not manage or lead unless they have demonstrated ability.

Every board should review and publish an annual report and is responsible for setting the executive salary through its own research or consultants. Likewise, the board should ensure that compliance officers (HR and finance) have reporting mechanisms to catch ethical and legal violations when they are small.  In other words, the board should be interacting discretely with these staff to address problems.  A ministry the size of RZIM should undergo an external audit annually and should have published this audit on Guidestar.org or its own website. Problems are normal; cover-up allows gangrene to spread. 

From the 2014 990, the RZIM board seems to have had about twenty members, including Ravi, Ravi’s wife and his daughter. That’s too big and the lack of a board-approved annual report causes one to wonder whether any of the members of the board had assigned annual responsibilities. The founder and/or CEO can never be the chairman of the board, unless s/he owns the company. If the president/CEO is also chairman of the board, you have no oversight. Zero. 

Principles 

Centrality of Christ. Christian charities should be based on a gospel mission which itself focuses on Jesus Christ. Naming a charity after yourself is unacceptable. Serving as chairman of your own oversight committee reflects nothing more than narcissism. Put Christ at the center. "For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified." (1 Cor 2:2)

Compliance and transparency. Compliance means knowing and following the legal and ethics mandates of your business. Transparency is speaking truth, telling people what they need to hear when or before they need to hear it. “Let God be true and every man a liar.” (Romans 3:4.) 

Accountability. Things will go wrong, because even the best people are selfish and depraved. Will your organization nip it in the bud or let the cancer spread? Recognize that the easiest way to solve a problem is to deny its existence. Acknowledge, however, that the easy solution is a lie. “Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.” (Prov 12:1) 

Greed. “For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil.” (1 Tim 6:10) 

Victims. RZIM must be shut down and its assets designated toward the victims. Ravi’s family can’t earn money from his name and the employees need to move on. The board members as well as Ravi’s family are people of integrity who fell short on compliance, but the current organization’s continued existence under any name will only continue Ravi’s now-inexcusable legacy. The “Executrix” should release all parties from the Non-Disclosure Agreements and likewise release the documents related to the earlier investigation of RZ which found him innocent. “As for those who persist in sin, rebuke them in the presence of all, so that the rest may stand in fear.” (1 Tim 5:20) 

Backstory

This blog post responds to the Evangelical readers will have watched this scandal unfold through our niche media and may not realize that former-evangelical, now atheist skeptic, Steve Baugman played a central early role in building support for the victims. In other words, RZIM affiliated lawyers seem to have quashed the story and Christian media outlets pursued it with reticence. Baugman’s original discoveries entailed Zacharias’s extensive lies about academic credentials. Baugman himself was not shocked by the evangelical inability to hold its own accountable, saying, “This is exactly what my atheist worldview would have predicted.” 

RZIM has released a twelve-page commissioned report, which largely relies on interviews with women and some of Ravi’s cell phones. While most of the 200 images of women on his phone were clothed selfies, he requested nude images from at least two women and received nude images from at least one woman.  According to the report, another woman who purportedly sent nude images later requested “$5 million in exchange for a release of claims against him and the ministry.” Christian leaders would do well to consider the following summary paragraph:

[Ravi Zacharias] further claimed, “In my 45 years of marriage to Margie, I have never engaged in any inappropriate behavior of any kind.” Much of the inappropriate massage therapy behavior discussed above occurred prior to the Thompson matter, and Mr. Zacharias’s lengthy text and email communication with the massage therapist from Bangkok whose culinary schooling he arranged for through RZIM and whom he called the “love of his life” occurred in 2014. His claim that he had long made it his practice “not to be alone with a woman other than Margie and our daughters” was similarly false. As reported above, Mr. Zacharias’s inappropriate conduct often occurred when he was alone with massage therapists. Because his need for massage treatments was well known and accepted, he was able to hide his misconduct in plain sight. He further stated that, after reflection, he learned that the “physical safeguards” he had “long practiced to protect my integrity should have extended to include digital communications safeguards.” As the architect of those “physical safeguards,” Mr. Zacharias well knew how to elude them.

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Predicting Scribal Glosses in Acts 17.26

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I recently bought a new book on the Bible in the American Civil War. Among other things, the author does some great work detailing the most quoted Bible verses in sermons, newspapers, pamphlets, books, and the like in both North and South. 

The most quoted verse by the North was Acts 17.26: “And [God] hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation.” The first half of v. 26 was regularly used to attack slavery by Northern pastors and writers. Ironically (and sadly), the second half was later used to defend segregation

The reception of this verse, however, isn’t my interest here. Rather, it’s the variant. The problem is that our earliest witnesses do not have the word “blood” (αιματος). The two main readings, from the ECM, are:

  1. εποιησεν τε εξ ενος    P74V. 01. 02. 03. 33. 35*. 81. 181. 323. 629. 630. 1739. 1875. 1891. 2200. 2718. L1178. Clem. CosmIn. L:V. 54. 58. 189.
  2. εποιησεν τε εξ ενος αιματος    (05). (08). 014. 020. 025. 049. 0142. 1. 5. 18. 35C. 43. 61. 88. 93. 94. 103. 104. 180. 206. 254. 307. 319. 321. 326. 330. 365. 378. 383. 398. 424. 429. 431. 436. 441. 453. 459. 467. 468. 522. 607. 610. 614. 617. 621. 623. 636. 642. 665. 808. 876. 915. 945. 1127. 1241. 1243. 1251. 1292. 1359. 1448. 1490. 1501. 1505. 1509. 1563. 1609. 1611. 1642. 1678. 1704. 1718. 1729. 1735. 1751. 1827. 1831. 1832. 1837. 1838. 1842. 1852. 1874. 1890. 2138. 2147. 2243. 2298. 2344. 2374. 2412. 2495. 2652. 2774. 2805. 2818. L23. L60. L156. L587. L809. L1825. L2010. Chrys. IrLat. NilAnc(V). Thdrt. L:51. 61.
In his textual commentary, Metzger concedes that the shorter reading could easily be explained by accidental omission aided by the repetition of -ος. But the committee finally settled on the shorter reading on the strength of the external evidence. In his discussion, Metzger also notes what a factor that deserves more weight when he writes, “Likewise, there is some force in the consideration that αἵματος is not a very natural gloss on ἑνός—for that one would have expected ἀνθρώπου or something similar.”

This is indeed what we find scribes doing in John 18.39 where 1820, 2129, 2786, 1819 have δεσμιον after ενα (per Morrill’s apparatus). Also worth considering is that in John 11.50, 18.14 the original text has a form of ἄνθρωπος with the adjective (and we find the same in Rom 5.12, 15, 19). The only biblical texts I know that even have εἷς and αἷμα in the same verse are Lev 7.14, Ps 13.3, and 1 Jn 5.8 and in none of these are they grammatically related. All this adds weight to Metzger’s observation that αἵματος is not the obvious gloss here.

In the end, it’s a tough call and I still lean toward the shorter reading. But I might give it a C rating rather than the UBS’s B.

I’d love to hear what our readers might think.

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Grinfield Lectures on the Septuagint

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The famous and learned James K. Aitken, Reader in Hebrew and Early Jewish Studies in the University of Cambridge, is presenting this year’s Grinfield Lectures on the Septuagint and the History of the Book (in the University of Oxford):

The Material World of the Septuagint (2020–2021)

The schedule is as follows, and are open to anyone interested (sign up by clicking on the embedded zoom link):


Tuesday, February 09, 2021

New Spanish Intro to NTTC by Juan Chapa

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I have just learnt that my friend and colleague Juan Chapa Prado, professor of New Testament at the Facultad de Teología (Universidad de Navarra) and one of the editors of The Oxyrrhynchus Papyri has just published a new introduction to New Testament textual criticism in Spanish: La transmisión textual del Nuevo Testamento Manuscritos, variantes y autoridad, Biblioteca de Estudios Bíblicos, 163 (Salamanca: Ediciones Sigueme, 2021).

Since Chapa is a skilled papyrologist, there is excellent coverage of the material aspects and the earliest manuscripts on papyrus. Apart from the traditional topics in introductions to the field, Chapa discusses concepts like "initial text," "living text," "narrative textual criticism," canon, authority of scripture, regula fidei, the relationship to oral tradition and many other interesting topics.

Table of contents and introduction is available here.

Thursday, January 28, 2021

A Master Thesis on the Ending(s) of Mark by Bonar Lumban Raja

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Here follows a very brief summary (without notes and bibliography) in English of Bonar Lumban Raja’s master thesis with the original title “Markan Ending: Penerapan Teori dan Metode Kritik Teks Perjanjian Baru Terhadap Akhir Injil Markus.” Bonar holds an M.Th. from the Evangelical Theological Seminary in Indonesia (STT Injili Indonesia Medan), where he now teaches. I have wanted to highlight his work not least because it comes from a totally different part of the world than my own privileged context.

Summary of “Markan Ending: The Application of Theory and Method of New Testament Textual Criticism to the Ending of Mark’s Gospel”

Introduction

Most textual critics agree that the ending(s) of Mark reflect one of the most signficant textual problems in the New Testament. Although the issue has been vigorously debated by textual critics and commentators over the past 150 years in the Western world, it is still rarely discussed in my context in Indonesia. The ending of Mark is not simply a binary problem – whether Mark ended his Gospel at modern v. 8 with the phrase frase ἐφοβοῦντο γάρ or whether he wrote a longer ending vv. 9–20. In fact, the problem of the ending of Mark is very complex. Depending on how you count, there are at least five variants which are possible endings of the initial text of Mark. My master thesis on this topic attempts to understand how these variants appeared in the transmission of Mark by applying the so-called “Reasoned eclectic method,” taking into account external and internal evidence.

Textual Analysis of the Endings of Marks

There are six different variants of the ending of Mark reflected in the United Bible Societies Greek New Testament: The Abrupt Ending (omits vv. 9-20), the Intermediate (Short) Ending, the Intermediate Ending and the Longer Ending, the Longer Ending with the Freer Logion, the Longer Ending with critical note or sign, and the Longer Ending. The distribution of textual witnesses for these different endings of Mark are laid out in the table below according to their type (papyri, uncials, minuscules, lectionaries, early versions, and patristic citations); the traditional text type, and their date.

Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Darrell Post on Family 1 in John: Five New Core Members

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In May last year we published a guest post by Darrell Post on the newly registered minuscule 2957.

Darrell is a graduate of Virginia Beach Theological Seminary, Here below we publish another guest post in which he identifies five new core members of Family 1 in John.


 

 

 

The 2011 dissertation A Textual Study of Family 1 in the Gospel of John, by Alison Welsby, presented a complete textual analysis of John’s gospel among 17 manuscripts suspected of being related to Kirsopp Lake’s famous Family 1. Welsby included a proposed family stemma and reconstructed text of the Gospel of John according to Family 1. Her completed research placed the 17 manuscripts into the following groups:

Core Group: 1, 565, 884, 1582, and 2193

Venice Group: 118, 205, 209, 2713, and 2886 (formerly 205abs)

Subgroup: 22, 1192, 1210, 1278, and 2372

Miscellaneous: 131

Not a member of Family 1: 872

In her introduction, Welsby explained her selection of the 17 codices to study. 1, 22, 118, 205, 209, 1192, 1210, and 1582 were included based on the confirmation of Amy Anderson's work on Family 1 in Matthew. 131, 872, 1278 and 2193 were also selected because Anderson had found them to be weak Family 1 members in Matthew. Then Welsby added 565, 884, and 2372 as these were not included by Anderson, but were indicated by the Text und Textwert volumes as possible members of Family 1 in John's gospel. Finally, 2886 was also included in its own right, coming out from under the shadow of being formerly known as 205abs.

Having included additions to Family 1 found in Text und Textwert, Welsby’s work gives the impression that all available witnesses to the text of Family 1 in John were included in her dissertation, leaving no others with a GA number as of the year 2011. However, it seems the manuscript clusters tool available on the INTF internet page (http://intf.uni-muenster.de/TT_PP/TT_Clusters.html) was not available to Welsby back in 2011. A quick search using this tool selecting GA-1, John, and Strict Grouping, reveals a much longer list of possible Family 1 members. 138, 357, 994, and 2575 are all indicated as related to Family 1, but none were included in Welsby’s dissertation. These four additional manuscripts also include a commentary in an alternating text format, and they all include the PA in its traditional location, 7:53-8:11 (other core Family 1 members place the PA after the end of the gospel). Further use of the INTF’s Clusters tool also suggest 809 and 2702 as more distant relations to Family 1.

Welsby’s subgroup, 22, 1192, 1210, 1278, and 2372 appears to have several additional members including 19, 149, 660, 697, 791, 924, 1005, and 1365. Most of these additional cluster relationships were also observed by Bruce Morrill in his 2012 dissertation on John 18 (see GA-138 on page 147).

I have also confirmed each of these proposed additions to Family 1 in John’s gospel as part of a project to collate manuscripts of John chapter 11. 138, 357, 994, and 2575 all belong to Welsby’s core group, with these four most closely related to 884 in John 11. I also found Welsby’s subgroup to be two related clusters, both with only a minimal connection to Family 1 itself.

Finally, 2517 was found to preserve only 12 leaves of John’s gospel, and only a small portion of chapter 11. However, this portion was found to strongly match 1, 565, 1582 and 2193. Bruce Morrill found the same results for 2517 in its extant portion of John 18.

The first table below shows the percentage of agreement in John 11 among the core members and the Venice Group, while the second table shows the agreement in John 11 among the subgroup.



 

 

 

 

 

 

 



 

There are completed IGNTP transcriptions of 138, 357, and 2575 available on the INTF manuscript workspace page. These three along with 994 and 2517 need to be fully studied and integrated with the work of Welsby toward better understanding the Family 1 text of John’s gospel.

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

New CSNTM Manuscript Viewer

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CSNTM has launched a revamped manuscript viewer on their website and it’s quite nice. The main image is much bigger and—my favorite feature—you can make it even bigger by toggling the various panes for filters, thumbnails, and details. As always, their filters are very handy for finding certain features in the manuscript. You can read more about it here.

Friday, January 22, 2021

Center for New Testament Restoration Update

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The following update came to my inbox and I thought our readers might like to know about it too. It’s from Alan Bunning, director of the Center for New Testament Restoration.
The biggest news is that I retired from Purdue University and now am working full-time at the Center for New Testament Restoration, so hopefully new improvements will be coming at a much quicker pace. Stepping out comes with some risk though, so any donations to the project are welcome. The CNTR website is now averaging about 1000 hits per day and its usage only continues to grow. Here are some of the latest updates to the CNTR project (greekcntr.org) that I just put out today:
  • The CNTR transcriptions have been updated and made available for download in a new MES format under the CC BY-SA license. The new format is a lot easier for most users to work with, requiring only a simple text editor.
  • “vid” which is normally only shown in apparatuses is now displayed in the CNTR collation and transcriptions shown with color-coded inverse characters. This makes it easy to see what supplied words are in variants and which ones are highly probable.
  • A new filter option has been added to the transcription pages which allows the spaces and other elements to be removed leaving only the letters. This makes it easier to compare the transcription on a page to its image.
  • The CNTR Project Description has been updated and split into two documents: the CNTR Project Overview and the CNTR Technical Reference. Lots of new and improved information.
Let me know if you have any questions about these things. Comments and suggestions are welcomed.

Alan Bunning, D.Litt.
Executive Director
Center for New Testament Restoration
greekcntr@gmail.com

Thursday, January 21, 2021

2021 Logos: Texts and Manuscripts

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Mike Holmes has reminded me that the deadline for the Logos Summer workshop is fast approaching. I participated in earlier iterations of the Logos workshop and it was a great experience. Some of the other students I met there are still good friends. I highly recommend it.

Here’s the description:

Logos is a workshop dedicated to equipping graduate students with the tools and knowledge needed to further Biblical studies, ancient texts and manuscripts research, museum studies, education programmes and other similar disciplines. The 2021 workshop is hosted by Scholarship & Christianity in Oxford (SCIO) and will be held at the Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC, from 31st May to 11th June. For more information, please visit the SCIO website at scio-uk.org/research/logos.

I would also note that Logos is for graduate students, and prior participation in a Scholars Initiative activity is not required.

Friday, January 15, 2021

A claim that Jesus was a woman(!) and other things I’ve read about recently

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Now that I’ve got your attention with my shamelessly clickbaity title, I mention below some observations from my recent reading. But the titular claim is not the only thing I could have used as clickbait! Below are discussions on a manuscript that contains the Comma Johanneum, facsimiles of the Chester Beatty papyri, and even a romance novel inspired by a manuscript!

1. Andrew J. Brown on Codex 61

Part of my job at CSNTM has been purchasing books for our physical library. One group of books that I have been eager to acquire is the four volumes of Andrew J. Brown’s edition of Erasmus’ text in the Amsterdam series, Opera Omnia Desiderii Erasmi Roterodami (ASD VI-1 through ASD VI-4). ASD VI-1 has not been published yet, but I was especially excited to get ASD VI-4 for CSNTM. This volume covers Erasmus’ editions of 1 Timothy–Hebrew, the Catholic Epistles, and Revelation. Brown’s editions are really remarkable. Take ASD VI-4, for example: Opening the 698-page book at random, you’ll see on average about 1/4 of the two-page opening given to Erasmus’ Greek and Latin texts and 3/4 to Brown’s notes. These notes cover textual variations among Erasmus’s editions, textual variants in the manuscripts he would have had access to and even Brown’s own text-critical observations. I even updated my post about textual commentaries to include Brown’s editions there.

E. C. Colwell and Kenneth Clark Lecture Audio

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Juan Hernandez has recently made a great find in the course of some internet sleuthing. But I’ll let Juan tell you about it:

In addition to discovering audio of E. C. Colwell’s lecture on poetry, I also uncovered this 1963 lecture (at PTS) titled, “The Next Steps in the Textual Criticism of the NT.” A fascinating lecture that echoed all of the classic ideas we have come to expect from Colwell (e.g., about quantitative analysis, scribal habits, text types, etc.). The lecture was clear, cogent, and forceful. Interestingly, he did not call the Western text a text-type but talked about loose affiliations and used the language of “cluster,” which is fascinating since I thought Epp was the first to suggest this. You will LOVE it. I was rapt in attention (partly in disbelief that I was hearing his actual voice after so many years of just reading him). Colwell’s lecture is followed by another by K. W. Clark on his examination of Greek manuscripts in libraries in Greece. These are true gems. At any rate, I’m sharing it with you in case you think folks on the ETC blog might like to hear a lecture from one of the twentieth century’s leading textual critics.

You can find the audio at PTS’s website. These two papers were presented at the Bible Studies Conference, 1963. Thanks, Juan! Great find.