Thursday, November 25, 2021

SBL Presentation on “Archaic be Mark” (GA 2427)



At the SBL Annual Meeting in San Diego I gave a presentation on Archaic Mark (GA 2427), "tying up some loose ends." This paper was originally slotted for another day, but since the session was turned into a virtual one it was moved to Friday, and so I know some friends (like Jeff Cate) missed it.  

However, I have now made a new recording of a longer (and therefore more relaxed) presentation of the paper which you can access on the IGNTP New Testament Textual Criticism youtube-channel here where there is a special playlist for SBL 2021. In case anyone else who presented in NTTC would like to upload a recording, you can contact Hugh Houghton who maintains the channel. Below is my conference abstract.

“‘Archaic Mark’ Revisited: Tying Up Some Loose Ends”

The Gospel manuscript known as the “Archaic Mark” (Greg.-Aland 2427) in the Goodspeed Collection of the University of Chicago (MS 972) is now known as a modern forgery and has been removed from NA28. An important breakthrough was made in 2006 by Stephen C. Carlson who identified Philipp Buttmann’s 1860-edition as the textual Vorlage, whereas the final verdict on the case including an evaluation of the physical and chemical make-up, the palaeography and iconography was published by Margaret M. Mitchell and her team in 2010. However, there are still some loose ends of the story. In this paper I will examine the codicology, palaeography, text and iconography of both Archaic Mark and a related manuscript in St Petersburg tracing them back to the same batch of parchment from which the two manuscripts were made, likely in a workshop in Athens around 1914, and likely involving the work of two prominent artists and friends. In this connection, I will also discuss the sometimes thin line between authenticity and forgery, in particular if we distinguish the text from the artifact.

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