THE TEXT OF THE GREEK BIBLE - A STUDENT'S HANDBOOK by Frederick G Kenyon, late Director & Principal Librarian of the British Museum. First published 1937 New edition 1949 Reprinted 1953. (Prepared for katapi by Paul Ingram 2015).
HOME | contents | << | introduction | papyri | uncials | miniscules | in-print | bibliography | >> |

Chapter 3. THE MANUSCRIPTS OF THE NEW TESTAMENT

In dealing with the New Testament it will be convenient first to describe the extant evidence for its text, and afterwards to narrate its history and the theories which have been formed with regard to it. The evidence falls into three classes, (1) Manuscripts, or copies of the text in the original Greek, (2) Versions, or translations into other languages, (3) Fathers, or quotations found in the writings of the early Christian Fathers. The manuscripts, as in the case of the Old Testament, are classified under three main heads, (1) Papyri, (2) Uncials, (3) Minuscules, to which may be added (4) Lectionaries, which are manuscripts (generally of late date) in which the Bible text is arranged for ritual use in the services of the Church.

The accepted catalogue of New Testament manuscripts goes back to that compiled by J. J. Wetstein, a disciple of Bentley, in 1751-2. It was he that established the system of indicating the uncials by capital letters, and minuscules by Arabic numerals; papyri were then unknown. It was perhaps unfortunate that he made separate lists for the four main groups of books, the Gospels, Acts and Catholic Epistles, Pauline Epistles, and Apocalypse, a method which has only recently been abandoned; for though this method economized letters and numbers, it meant that the same letters and numbers denoted different manuscripts in different books. In the Gospels his catalogue ran from A to O in the uncials, and 1 to 112 in the cursives; in the Acts and Catholic Epistles, A to G, 1 to 58; in the Pauline Epistles, A to H, i to 60; in the Apocalypse A to C, 1 to 28; with 24 Lectionaries of the Gospels and 4 of the Epistles. Nearly a century later J. M. A. Scholz carried on and greatly extended the list. By this time the uncials had exhausted the Latin capitals, and recourse was had to the Greek, to which the Hebrew was subsequently added in a few cases, mainly because Tischendorf wanted a distinctive designation for his great discovery, the Codex Sinaiticus. Scholz's catalogue, published in 1830-36, includes Gospels A-Δ, 1-469; Acts A-H, 1-192; Paul A-I, 1-246; Apocalypse A-C, 1-88; Lectionaries, Evl. 1-181, Apost. 1-58. The discoveries of the nineteenth century, and the industry of scholars in searching libraries, led to large additions to this list, which were separately numbered by Scrivener in England and by Gregory in Germany as far as Evan. 774, Acts 264, Paul 341, Apocalypse 122; after which it was generally agreed to accept Gregory's numbers, and to allow him to keep the official catalogue of manuscripts.

By this time, however, the system was beginning to break down by its own weight. The Latin and Greek alphabets were exhausted, in spite of the expedient of grouping a number of different fragments under a single letter [e.g. W1, W2, W3, Θ1, Θ2, Θ3, etc.); and the Hebrew alphabet was unfamiliar. Moreover, it was inconvenient to have the same symbols denoting different MSS., and the same MS. passing under different symbols in different books. Thus B in the Apocalypse denoted quite a different MS. from B, the great Codex Vaticanus, in the other books, and one having much less importance; while one of the most valuable of the cursives was known as 33 in the Gospels, 13 in Acts, and 17 in the Pauline Epistles.

It was partly on account of these inconveniences that H. von Soden, in the great critical edition of the New Testament which he produced in 1902-13, devised a wholly new method of numeration. In this all MSS., whether uncial or minuscule, are grouped together and are indicated by numerals, preceded by the letter δ, ε, or α, according to their contents (διαθήκη, εὐαγγέλιον, ἀπόστολος). The numbers, however, are not arranged in a continuous succession, but an attempt is made to indicate the date of each manuscript. Manuscripts of the Gospels earlier than the tenth century are denoted by the numerals from 1 to 99, and MSS. of the entire New Testament, Acts, or Epistles by numerals from 1 to 49, preceded by the appropriate distinguishing letter in each case. If these numbers should not suffice, they are to be repeated with a o prefixed. Gospels MSS. of the tenth century have numbers from 1000 to 1099, those of the other groups from 50 to 99. Those of the eleventh century have the numbers 100-199, followed by 1100-1199; those of the twelfth century, 200-299 and 1200-1299; of the thirteenth century, 300-399 and 1300-1399; of the fourteenth century, 400-499 and 1400-1499; of the fifteenth century, 500-599 and 1500-1599. If these numbers do not suffice (as they do not after the eleventh century), the numeration of the twelfth century continues from 2000, the thirteenth from 3000, and so on. But within these classes there are subdivisions. In each hundred of the 8 or a categories, the first half (i.e. 100-149, 200-249, etc.) are assigned to MSS. which include the Apocalypse, the second half to those which omit it. Further, MSS. containing only the Acts and Catholic Epistles have the numbers 1000-1019, 1100-1119, etc., MSS. containing only the Pauline Epistles 1020-1069, 1120-1169, etc., and MSS. containing only the Apocalypse 1070-1099, 1170-1199, etc. Manuscripts containing commentaries in addition to the text have a separate numeration with a distinguishing abbreviation.

Von Soden's system, ingenious as it is, is open to serious objections. In the first place, it is intolerably complicated. It is easy to look up a MS. in a continuous numeration, but it is bewildering to have to look for ε1011 before ε101, ε1180 before ε200, and so on. Habitual usage would no doubt overcome this difficulty, but it is a serious obstacle to occasional reference. Then the chronological information which it is designed to give is doubtful in itself and of little value. The dating of Greek minuscules is very dubious, and those who know most are apt to be the least confident about it; and when it is known, it is of little value for textual purposes. It is important to know whether a manuscript is of the fourth, fifth, sixth or seventh century; but here von Soden fails one, since all MSS. earlier than the tenth century are lumped together. On the other hand, it is of little importance whether they are of the tenth century or later, for here their importance depends on whether they contain the ordinary ecclesiastical text, or have retained some traces of earlier recensions. Their actual date matters little, and it is not worth while to complicate the list in order to give information of doubtful accuracy and negligible value. Finally, it is a very serious drawback to change the designations of important manuscripts. When manuscripts are so well-known, and have been so constantly referred to in textual literature, as א, A, B, C, D, it is darkening counsel to substitute for them the symbols δ1, δ2, δ4, δ1, δ2, δ5.

To avert the danger of the introduction of a new system which had so little to recommend it, C. R. Gregory (the author of the Prolegomena to Tischendorf's New Testament) produced, after prolonged consultation with the principal students of textual criticism in Europe and America, an amended form of the previously-accepted method, which should meet the recognized need for expansion with the minimum of change in the familiar nomenclature. The principles on which his list ← Printed in Die Griechischen Handschriften des Neuen Testaments (Leipzig, 1908). Tables showing the previous uses of all letters and numbers are added, so that it is easy to identify any reference. is formed are as follows: (i) Papyri are denoted by a P (preferably of " antique " form, P ) followed by a number; (2) Uncials are denoted by numbers in thick (" clarendon ") type preceded by o; but for the first forty-five of them their old designations by Latin or Greek capital letters are retained (Hebrew in the case of א only); this involves double designations in the case of eight letters only, D, E, F, G, H, K, L, P, the duplicates being distinguished as D2 or Dpau1, etc.; the long series of fragments previously grouped under the letters, O, T, W and Θ are abolished, thus setting free those letters for substantial MSS. recently discovered; (3) minuscule MSS. are indicated by Arabic numerals, as before, but in a continuous numeration, so that the designations of Gospel MSS. are unchanged, while those of the other groups follow on or fill accidental gaps. This system, which is easily intelligible and involves the minimum of change in familiar symbols, has been generally accepted, and is used in the following list, the numbers of von Soden being added for the benefit of those who wish to refer to his edition. Gregory's list was continued after his death by von Dobschiitz, and the addition of newly discovered MSS. is now in the hands of Dr. H. Lietzmann.

For the full description of all MSS. reference must be made to the catalogues of Scrivener (Plain Introduction to the Criticism of the New Testament, 4th ed. by E. Miller, 1894, vol. I, pp. 90-376), Gregory (Prolegomena to Tischendorf's Novum Testamentum Graece, 1894, pp. 345-800, Textkritik des Neuen Testamentes, 1900-9, pp. 18-478, 1018-1292, 1363-1375), and von Dobschiitz (Zeitschrift fur Neutestamentliche Wissenschaft, 1922, 1926, 1927, 1933). In the following list a full selection of the more important MSS. is given, which is likely to be sufficient for most students.
↑top


1.—Papyri

P5. (Sod. ε 02). British Museum Pap. 782. Discovered at Oxyrhynchus by Grenfell and Hunt, and published as Oxyrhynchus Pap. 208. Contains John i.23-31, 33-41, xx.11-17, 19-25. 3rd cent. The outermost leaf but one of a single quire probably of 25 sheets (50 leaves) containing the whole Gospel. Notable as the first example to be discovered of the single-quire form of papyrus codex, now known to have been common in the 2nd and 3rd centuries (see p. 19 above). Its text agrees generally with that of א.

P13. (Sod. α 1034). British Museum Pap. 1532. Discovered by Grenfell and Hunt (Oxyrhynchus Pap. 657). Contains Heb. ii.14—v. 5, x.8-22, 29— xi.13, 28—xii.17. Late 3rd or 4th cent. Written on the back of an epitome of Livy of the 3rd century. Important as containing parts of Hebrews which are lacking in B, to which (and also to P46) it is akin in character.

P15-30. Papyrus fragments from Oxyrhynchus, of no great importance individually.

P38. Michigan Pap. 1571. Published by H. A. Sanders (Harvard Theological Review xx, 1, 1927). Contains Acts xviii.27—xix.6, xix.12-16, with mutilations. Probably 4th cent. (Sanders dates it early 3rd, Hunt and Schubart early 4th, Wilcken 4th or 5th). The text is substantially that of Codex Bezae (D), including the very marked variants quoted below (pp. 93-4) in xviii.27, xix.1,14. Important as showing that a Greek text of this type was extant in Egypt.
↑top

p45

P45. Chester Beatty Pap. I. Portions of 30 leaves of a codex which originally contained all four Gospels and Acts, apparently occupying about 110 leaves, written in a small hand in a single broad column on a page of about 10 x 8 inches. Early 3rd cent. The extant remains include portions of 2 leaves of Matthew, 6 of Mark, 7 of Luke, 2 of John, and 13 of Acts, those of Luke and John being the best preserved. Some small fragments of the second Chester Beatty leaf of Matthew are at Vienna (published by H. Gerstinger, in Aegyptus xiii, 1). The text includes (though often much mutilated) Mt. xx.24-32, xxi.13-19, xxv.41—xxvi.39 (partly at Vienna), Mk. iv.36-40, v.15-26, 38—vi.3, 16-25, 36-50. vii.3-15, 25—viii.1, 10-26, 34—ix.8, 18-31, xi.27—xii.1, 5-8, 13-19, 24-28, Lk. vi.31-41, 45—vii.7, ix.26-41, 45—x.1, 6-22, 26—xi.1, 6-25, 28-46, 50—xii.12, 18-37, 42—xiii.1,6-24, 29—xiv.10,17-33, Jn. x.7-25, 31—xi.10,18-36, 42-57, Acts iv.27-36, v.10-20, 30-39, vi.7—vii.2, 10-21, 32-41, 52—viii.1, 14-25, 34—ix.6, 16-27, 35—x.2, 10-23, 31-41. xi.2-14. 24—xii.5, 13-22, xiii.6-16, 25-36, 46—xiv.3, 15-23, xv.2-7, 19-26, 38—xvi.4, 15-21, 32-40, xvii.9-17. This MS., with P46 and P47, forms part of the Chester Beatty find, described on p. 39 above, which is the most important Biblical discovery since that of the Codex Sinaiticus, and has given us our earliest evidence of the text of the N.T. Its character is described below (Chapter VI). Edited by F. G. Kenyon, Chester Beatty Biblical Papyri, fasc. ii (1933) with complete photographic facsimile in a separate fasciculus.
↑top

P46

P46.Chester Beatty Pap. II. Eighty-six leaves (all slightly mutilated) of a single-quire codex of 104 leaves, of which the last 5 were probably blank, written in a good hand in a single column on a page of about 11 x 6½ inches. Thirty of the leaves are in the library of the University of Michigan. Early 3rd cent. Originally contained all the general Epistles of St. Paul, in the order Romans, Hebrews, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Ephesians, Galatians, Philippians, Colossians, 1 and 2 Thessalonians; but the following portions are missing: Rom. 1.1—v.17, vi.14—viii.15, 1 Thess. ii.3—v.4, 2 Thess. The Pastoral Epistles were apparently never included in it, since there is not room for them on the leaves missing at the end. Also a few lines (generally not more than 1-4) are lost from the bottom of each page. Ten leaves were included in the original Chester Beatty acquisition, and were edited (with P47) by F. G. Kenyon in Chester Beatty Biblical Papyri, fasc. iii (1934). Subsequently the University of Michigan obtained 30 more leaves, which were edited (with the above-mentioned ten) by H. A. Sanders (University of Michigan Humanistic Series, xxxviii, 1935). Finally Mr. Beatty obtained the remaining 46, and the whole MS. was edited by F. G. Kenyon in Chester Beatty Biblical Papyri, fasc. iii supplement (1936). The photographie facsimile was published in 1937. The position of Hebrews is probably due only to its length, the epistles being arranged in descending order of length. The papyrus is remarkable in respect of the position assigned to Hebrews, which seems to indicate the high position assigned to this Epistle in the Eastern Church, where its Pauline authorship was generally accepted, and in the fact that the doxology to Romans (xvi.25-27), which in the earlier MSS. stands at the end of ch. xvi and in the great mass of later MSS. at the end of ch. xiv, is here placed at the end of ch. xv. In general, the readings of the papyrus agree more with the Alexandrian group represented by א A B than with the Western group represented by D F G, though (especially in Romans) there are a noticeable number of agreements with the latter.

P47. Chester Beatty Pap. III. Ten leaves of a codex of Revelation, written in a rather rough hand in a single column on a page of about 9½ x 5½ inches. It is either a single quire of 10 leaves, preceded and followed by quires probably of 12 and 10 leaves respectively, or the central portion of a single-quire codex of 32 leaves. 3rd cent. Contains ix.10—xvii.2, with the loss of 1-4 lines from the top of each page. In text it agrees more with the four earliest uncial MSS. (א A C P) than with the group headed by 046 or than with the mass of later MSS.; but it shows a good deal of independence. Edited by F. G. Kenyon in Chester Beatty Biblical Papyri, fasc. iii (1934), with photographic facsimile in a separate fasciculus (1936).

P48. Papyrus 1165 of the Società Italiana at Florence, 3rd century. A fragment containing Acts xxiii.11-16, 24-29, in a text definitely of the Codex Bezae type. It is the more valuable because D is deficient here. For instance, it reads in verse 13 οἱ ἀναθεματίσαντες ἑαυτούς (with an old Latin MS.) 14 inserts τὸ σύνολον after γεύσασθαι (with Old Latin) 15 νῦν οὗν παρακαλοῦμεν [τοῦτο] ποιήσατε ὑμῖν, 24 adds ἐφοβήθη γὰρ μήποτε ἐξαρπάσαντες αὐτὸν οἱ Ἰουδαῖοι ἀποκτείνωσιν καὶ αὐτὸς μεταξὺ ἔγκλημα ἔχῃ ὡς εἰληφὼςἀργύρια (with Old Lat., Syr.phil., etc.), 25 ἐν ᾗ ἐγέλραπτο 27 ἐρυσάμην κράζοντα [καὶ λέγοντα] εἶναι 'Ρωμαῖον (with Old Latin). Published by Vitelli (Pap. Soc. Ital. x, 112).
P52 ↑top

P52. Papyrus Ryl. Gk. 457 in the John Rylands Library at Manchester. Early 2nd century. A small fragment of a codex of St. John's Gospel, discovered by Mr. C. H. Roberts among some papyri acquired in 1920 by B. P. Grenfell. Contains John xviii.31-33, 37, 38. The earliest known fragment of any MS. of the New Testament and important as a proof of the early circulation of the Fourth Gospel. Published by C. H. Roberts, An Unpublished Fragment of the Fourth Gospel in the John Rylands Library (Manchester, 1935).
↑top


2.—Uncials

Codex Sinaiticus

א Codex Sinaiticus. (Sod. δ 2). Now British Museum Additional MS. 43725. Early 4th cent. Contains (in addition to the Old Testament leaves described above, p. 47) the entire New Testament, with the addition of the Epistle of Barnabas and part (Vis. i.1—Mand. iv.6) of the Shepherd of Hermas. Written on 148 leaves of fine vellum, measuring 15 x 13½ inches, with four columns to the page (a reminiscence perhaps of the narrow columns of the papyrus rolls from which the MS. was copied). No ornamentation and no enlarged initials, but the first letter of a paragraph projects slightly into the left-hand margin.

The Codex Sinaiticus is not only one of the two oldest vellum MSS. of the Greek Bible, but is also famous because of the circumstances of its discovery. It was first seen by Constantin Tischendorf, when, on a visit to the monastery of St. Catherine at the foot of Mt. Sinai, he noticed a number of leaves of vellum in a basket destined for the furnace, in which, as he was informed, two baskets-full had already been consumed. In all he saw 129 leaves, all of the Old Testament, and 43 of these he was allowed to take away and present to his patron, King Frederick Augustus of Saxony, by whom they were placed in the University Library at Leipzig, where they still are. For the rest he could only secure that they should not be destroyed. In 1853 he revisited the monastery, but could neither hear nor see anything of the manuscript, which he suspected had been disposed of to some other visitor. In 1859 he was there again, and on the last evening of his visit he chanced to show the steward of the monastery a copy of the edition of the Septuagint which he had lately produced; whereupon the steward remarked that he also had a copy of the Septuagint, and produced a quantity of leaves wrapped in a cloth, which Tischendorf recognized at once as belonging to the MS. that he so eagerly coveted. Moreover he quickly discovered that the prize was far greater than he had ever dreamed; for not only did it include 199 leaves of the Old Testament in addition to the 43 which he had already acquired, but also the entire New Testament, with the Barnabas and Hermas as above mentioned. The Barnabas was wholly new, and Tischendorf sat up all night copying it, and next morning asked if he might take the whole MS. to Cairo (where there was a branch of the monastery) to be copied. One monk objected, so Tischendorf proceeded to Cairo and persuaded the Superior, who was there, to send for the MS., which thereafter was handed out to him, leaf by leaf, to be copied by himself and his assistants. So far is the story, subsequently put about by Tischendorf's enemies, that he stole the MS. from being true, that it never was out of the hands of the representatives of the monastery.

An offer to buy the MS. having been refused, Tischendorf suggested that it would be an appropriate gift for the monks to offer to the Tsar of Russia, the patron of the Greek Church, with a letter of commendation from whom he was himself travelling. The monks were disposed to accede to this suggestion, since there was a vacancy at the time in the Archbishopric of Sinai, and they desired the assistance of the Tsar to secure the acceptance of their nominee by the Porte, in face of the strong opposition of the Patriarch of Jerusalem. Tischendorf interested himself in supporting their case at Constantinople, and through the intervention of the Russian Ambassador obtained that he should take the MS. to St. Petersburg to be deposited there for his use until the monastery was in a position (through the election of a new Archbishop as its head) to make the gift officially to the Tsar. Ultimately (the full story is a long one) the Archbishop was appointed, the gift was made, and (after Tischendorf, on the request of the Archbishop, had intervened on their behalf) the return gift which the monks had no doubt always expected was obtained from the Tsar. It consisted of a sum of 9,000 roubles (a substantial price in those days) and a number of decorations. In view of the fact that subsequent generations of monks have considered that they were cheated out of a valuable possession, and have put about stories which European travellers have repeated, it is right to emphasize that Tischendorf's own story, which is confirmed by contemporary documents, shows that he acted with perfect correctness throughout, that everything was done through and with the approval of the official heads of the monastery, and that he remained on friendly terms with them to the end of his life. ← The fullest and fairest account of the whole affair is to be found in the pamphlet. The Mount Sinai Manuscript of the Bible, published by the British Museum in 1934, on the occasion of the purchase of the MS.

A comic episode followed the announcement of Tischendorf's great discovery. An ingenious Greek, Constantine Simonides, had about 1855 brought to England a number of manuscripts, among which was one which purported to be a lost history of Egypt by one Uranius. The well-known scholar, W. Dindorf, accepted it as genuine and prepared an edition for the Oxford University Press; but when a few sheets of it had been printed, another German scholar detected that the chronology was obviously taken from a modern history, and after a short controversy the fraud was exposed and the edition suppressed. Tischendorf had taken a hand in denouncing the imposture, and Simonides took his revenge by declaring that, while the Uranius was perfectly genuine, he had written another MS., viz. the Codex Sinaiticus, which he had copied from a Moscow Bible in about six months at Mt. Athos in 1840. The story was patently absurd; for in 1840 Simonides was only 15 years old, he could not have obtained 350 large leaves of ancient vellum (modern vellum is quite different), he could not have copied it in six months, and no Moscow edition of the Bible with a similar text exists. Moreover the codex is written by at least three different scribes, and has a large number of corrections in various hands. The story is merely one of the comedies of crime, and is only worth mentioning because it has been recently revived. The character of Simonides is further illustrated by the fact that he subsequently claimed to have discovered among the Egyptian collections of a Liverpool gentleman a papyrus copy of St. Matthew written fifteen years after the Ascension, with fragments of first-century manuscripts of the Epistles of St. James and St. Jude and other equally surprising documents. These ingenious forgeries may still be seen at Liverpool.

Tischendorf published the Codex in full in facsimile type in 1862, when some sheets of it were exhibited in the Great Exhibition at London, and the manuscript found what might have been expected to be its permanent home in the Imperial Library of St. Petersburg. But after the revolution in Russia, the Government of the Union of Soviet Republics, not being interested in the Bible, and being in need of cash, entertained the idea of selling it. Negotiations in America failed in consequence of the financial collapse in that country in 1931, and in 1933, after rather prolonged negotiations, it was purchased by the Trustees of the British Museum for £100,000, of which the British Government guaranteed £50,000, while the Trustees undertook to raise the other half. Ultimately, however, so great was the general interest taken in this great Biblical treasure that over £60,000 was raised, mostly in small contributions from individuals and congregations of all sects. At Christmas, 1933, the MS. was received, amid much popular excitement, at the British Museum, and there, having been handsomely bound in two volumes, it may be hoped that it has secured a permanent home, side by side with the only less great Codex Alexandrinus.

The Codex Sinaiticus, therefore, consists in its present state of 393 leaves, of which 43 are at Leipzig, 3 fragments (extracted by Bishop Porphyry in 1845 from bindings) at Leningrad,← These show that the mutilation of the MS. began at some time considerably earlier than Tischendorf's first visit. and 347 in the British Museum. The original total must have been about 720. They are arranged generally in quires of eight leaves. The writing is a rather large and very graceful uncial. According to Tischendorf, who is followed by Lake, four scribes took part in the original writing, of whom one wrote the whole of the New Testament and Barnabas, while another wrote Hermas. Several correctors' hands are discernible, of whom the most important are those contemporary, and perhaps identical, with the original scribes (אa), and those who in the seventh century corrected it at Caesarea from the very early MSS. in the library of Pamphilus (אc); see above, p. 47. Now that the MS. is available for close examination (for which no photograph suffices) in the British Museum, a fresh study of the correctors' hands is being undertaken, of which the results must be awaited. ← In an elaborate study (Scribes and Correctors of the Codex Sinaiticus, 1938) Messrs. Milne and Skeat make it very probable that the number of original scribes should be reduced from four to three. Their reduction of the number of correctors from nine to two (who are identified with two of the original scribes) is less certain. Tischendorf's assertion that one of the scribes of א is identical with the scribe who wrote the N.T. in B is universally discredited. In the margins of the Gospels the section-numbers compiled by Eusebius (who died in 340) have been added by a corrector who (since they do not appear on two leaves which were re-written by the corrector אa) must be about contemporary with the MS. This would make a date for the original writing of the MS. earlier than the second quarter of the fourth Century impossible.

The place of origin of the MS. cannot be stated with certainty. Caesarea, Rome, southern Italy, have all been advocated, but the preponderance of opinion is in favour of Egypt. Every detail in its writing can be paralleled in Egyptian papyri; and though this is not conclusive, since no equally early MSS. from other countries exist for comparison, the occurrence of unusual forms, such as the " Coptic " μ and an ω with a much elongated central upright, which are found also in the papyri, is a strong confirmation of this view. Its kinship in text with the Codex Vaticanus, which also has instances of these peculiar forms, and with the Coptic versions is a further argument for an Egyptian origin; and if Egypt, then Alexandria is the most probable home for so splendid a piece of book-production. ← Lake notices a close similarity between the superscription in Acts (the title πραξεις at the top of many of the pages) in א and B, which suggests that they may have been produced in the same scriptorium.

The character of the text of the Codex Sinaiticus will be considered later. Here it will be sufficient to state that it is closely allied to the Vaticanus, and that these two fourth-century MSS. form the head and main substance of a group which in the opinion of many presents the most authentic text of the N.T. Substantially it is the text represented in our Revised Version. To quote only a few instances: א agrees with B in omitting the doxology of the Lord's Prayer in Mt. vi.13; in omitting Mt. xvi.2, 3 and xvii.21; in adding οὐδὲ ὁ υἱὸς in Mt. xxiv.36, and the piercing of our Lord's side in Mt. xxvii.49; in omitting Mk. ix.44, 46 and the end of 49; in omitting the last twelve verses of Mk. xvi; in having the shortened version of the Lord's Prayer in Lk. xi.2-4; in omitting the moving of the water and the mention of the angel in Jn. v.3, 4. On the other hand, it differs from B in including the incident of the Bloody Sweat (Lk. xxii.43, 44) and the word from the Cross (" Father, forgive them," etc.) in Lk. xxiii.34. In Acts and Epistles it is habitually to be found in the same group with A and B, though not without some variations.

Besides Tischendorf's editions in facsimile and ordinary type, a complete photographic facsimile, from negatives taken by Prof. Kirsopp Lake, has been published by the Oxford University Press (with the financial assistance of the British Academy through the munificence of a private benefactor), the New Testament in 1911 and the Old in 1922, with valuable introductions by Prof. Lake.
↑top

Codex Alexandrinus

A. Codex Alexandrinus (Sod. δ 4). In the British Museum (Royal MS. D. v-viii). Early 5th cent. Contains both Testaments, nearly complete. In the N.T. Mt. i.1-xxv.6 has been lost by mutilation, also Jn. vi.50—viii.52 (where however calculation of the space shows that the ftericope adulterae could not have been present), and 2 Cor. iv.13—xii.6. At the end, the two Epistles of Clement follow the canonical books; but 1 Clem. lvii.7—lxiii.4 and 2 Clem. xii.5 to end are lost, together with the Psalms of Solomon, which a table of contents at the beginning shows to have been appended, though its title is separated by a space from those of the canonical books. It consists of 773 leaves (O.T. 630, N.T. 143) and ten leaves have been lost from the O.T. and probably 37 from the N.T., making a total of 820 leaves, measuring 12¾ x 10¾ inches, with two columns to the page. The quires (before a modern rebinding) were of eight leaves, as is shown by a quire-numeration in Greek characters. Initials of paragraphs are enlarged, and (except in the poetical books) stand in the margin.

Five scribes were employed on the MS., of whom three took part in the New Testament, one writing Matthew, Mark, 1 Corinthians x.8b—Philemon, a second Luke—1 Corinthians x.8 (including the Catholic Epistles, which follow Acts), and a third the Apocalypse. A fourth scribe, who was also employed on the Old Testament, wrote the Clementine Epistles. In each case the change is made at the beginning of a new quire. Several correctors have left their mark on the MS., the most important, apart from corrections made by the original scribes (A1), being Aa, who is nearly contemporary with the MS. ← On the scribes and correctors, see Introduction to reduced facsimile of New Testament, by F. G. Kenyon, published by the British Museum (1909).

The MS. not only contains the Eusebian canons and sections, ← Eusebius made a division of the Gospels into numbered sections (Mt. 355, Mk. 236, Lk. 342, Jn. 232), and then drew up ten tables, called '' Canons,'' in which he placed in parallel columns the numbers of those sections which contained accounts of the same event. The canons are prefixed to many MSS., and the section numbers, with references to the canon in which they appear, are placed in the margin of the text, often with the numbers of the corresponding sections in other Gospels. Eusebius based his section-division on a harmony of the Gospels by Ammonius of Alexandria, whence the sections are often called the Ammonian sections. but also (prefixed to the Psalter) treatises by Eusebius and Athanasius. As the latter died in 373, a date before the latter part of the fourth century is impossible. The writing also is later in character than that of the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus. It is heavier and firmer, and less reminiscent of the papyrus type; and the arrangement in two columns (which thenceforward is habitual in uncial MSS.) points to a later stage than the four columns of the Sinaiticus or the three of the Vaticanus. On the whole, the first half of the fifth century is the most probable date.

With regard to the place of origin, everything points to Egypt. A note by the Patriarch Cyril says that according to tradition it was written by Thecla, a noble lady of Egypt, shortly after the Council of Nicaea (A.D. 325), and that her name originally appeared in a note (since lost by mutilation) at the end of the volume. This date is too early, but the tradition points to Egypt. Other notes, in Arabic and Latin, add that it was presented to the patriarchal cell of Alexandria in 1098; and it was from Alexandria that it was brought by Cyril to Constantinople. The Coptic forms of α and μ appear in the titles of some of the books, and in the O.T. the text appears to be generally of the Alexandrian type. In the N.T. it is Alexandrian (i.e., akin to א B) except in the Gospels, where it shows signs of the Antiochian revision which eventually produced the received ecclesiastical text.

Its modern history begins with Cyril Lucar, who was Patriarch of Alexandria before being translated to Constantinople in 1621. He offered it to the British Ambassador, Sir Thomas Roe, as a gift to James I; but by the time it reached England in 1627 Charles I was on the throne, and the binding which it then received bears the initials C.R. In 1757 it passed with the rest of the Royal Library to the newly founded British Museum.

It was the arrival of the Codex Alexandrinus in England (sixteen years after the publication of the Authorized Version) that gave the first stimulus towards the criticism of the text of the Greek New Testament. Patrick Young published the previously unknown Epistles of Clement in 1633, collations of its New Testament text were given by Walton in his Polyglot Bible of 1657, and by Mill in his New Testament in 1707 ; the Old Testament was edited in full by Grabe in 1707-20, the New Testament by Woide in 1786. The Old Testament was published in facsimile type by Baber in 1816-28, and a complete photographic facsimile was edited by E. Maunde Thompson in 1879-83. A reduced photographic facsimile of the New Testament, with introduction by the present writer, was published in 1909, and three parts of the Old Testament have since followed (1915-36), containing respectively the Octateuch, Kingdoms and Chronicles, and the Prophets with Esther, Tobit and Judith.
↑top

Codex Vaticanus

B. Codex Vaticanus (Sod. δ 1). In the Vatican Library at Rome (Vat. gr. 1209). Early fourth century. Contains both Testaments, but in the New Testament all is lost after Heb. ix.14, including the Pastoral Epistles and Apocalypse, with any non-canonical books that may have followed. It consists of 759 leaves (out of an original total of about 820), measuring 10½ inches x 10 inches, arranged in quires of 10 leaves, with three columns to the page. Of the New Testament there are 142 leaves out of an original total of about 162. There is no ornamentation and no enlarged initials. The writing is small and neat, but its appearance has been spoilt by a later scribe, who found the ink faded and went over every letter except those which he thought incorrect. A few passages therefore remain to show the original appearance of the writing. There appear to have been two scribes of the Old Testament and one of the New Testament, and two correctors, one (B2) about contemporary.

The Eusebian sections do not appear, which points to a date before they were generally known; but there is a different numeration in the Gospels, which is found only in one other MS. (Ξ), and two independent numerations in the Acts and Epistles.

With regard to its date and place of origin, the extreme simplicity of its writing and the arrangement in three columns point to a very early place among vellum uncials, and the first half of the fourth century is generally accepted. With regard to its place, Hort was inclined to assign it to Rome, and others to southern Italy or Caesarea; but the association of its text with the Coptic versions and with Origen, and the style of writing (notably the Coptic forms used in some of the titles), point rather to Egypt and Alexandria.

The MS. was apparently the first of the great uncials to come to Europe, though it was the last to become fully known. It was certainly in the Vatican Library in 1481, since the catalogue of that year mentions a " Biblia in tribus columnis ex membranis in rubeo "; and this may be the same as the " Biblia ex membranis in rubeo " which appears among the Greek MSS. in the catalogue of 1475. ← The description " in rubeo " is not so distinctive as may appear at first sight, since 19 of the 57 volumes of Biblical texts are so described. It is enough to say that it was certainly there by 1481. It was fully used by Carafa for Pope Sixtus V's Septuagint in 1587, but in the New Testament it was unfortunate. Collations were made by various scholars in 1669,1720, and 1780, but none of these collations was published, so that its evidence remained unknown to scholars. Hug called attention to its importance when it was brought to Paris by Napoleon, but on its return to Italy the Vatican authorities undertook to publish it, and therefore refused access to it to foreign scholars, while their own edition failed to appear. The fact was that Cardinal Mai, to whom it was entrusted, executed his work so poorly that it was held back during his life, and the two editions which appeared after his death, in 1857 and 1859, differed so much from one another as to be quite untrustworthy. In 1866 Tischendorf obtained access to it for forty-two hours, and made a rapid collation, but as he violated his contract by transcribing twenty pages in full, it was withdrawn from his use. Nevertheless he was able in 1867 to publish an edition of it which greatly increased the knowledge of the MS., and in 1868 the New Testament was finally published by Vercellone and Cozza, and was followed by the Old Testament in 1881. A full photographic facsimile was published in 1889-90, which provided scholars with an accurate knowledge of this most important MS.

The character of its text will be a main subject of Consideration in the following chapters. It is the leading representative of the type of text which scholars, associate with Alexandria, and of which West-cott and Hort thought so highly that they dubbed it " Neutral," and indeed made the Vaticanus the sheet-anchor of their edition. Powerfully supported by א, by several early uncial fragments and a few minuscules, by the Coptic versions and, in the main, by the quotations in Origen, and by Jerome in his revision of the Latin New Testament, it certainly represents a type of text of great antiquity, and one which commands respect by its character. How it is affected by recent discoveries will appear later.

B2. Codex Vaticanus 2066. The great Codex Vaticanus being deficient in the Apocalypse, the letter B was formerly assigned in that book to another Vatican MS. Since, however, this MS. is of quite different date and character, it is better to avoid confusion. It is described below as 046.
↑top

Codex Ephraemi

C. Codex Ephraemi (Sod. δ 3). [katapi ed: The Codex Ephraemi page index is HERE.] A palimpsest in the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris, fifth century. Originally contained the whole of both Testaments, but in the twelfth century it was converted into a palimpsest; that is, the original writing was washed out, and some works of Ephraim Syrus were written over it. Many leaves also were thrown away, so that what remains is very incomplete, and the readings not always decipherable. It now contains 64 leaves of the Old Testament and 145 (out of an original 238) of the New Testament, measuring 12¼ x 9 inches, with writing in a single column. Every book of the New Testament is represented except 2 Thess. and 2 John, but none is perfect. Full particulars are given by Gregory and Scrivener. The writing is a rather heavy uncial, not unlike the Alexandrinus, and probably of approximately the same date. Initials are enlarged, and the Eusebian sections are indicated in the margins. Its text is of a mixed character, and Hort shows, from some displacements of text in the Apocalypse, that it must have been copied from a MS. with pages only about a quarter of its own size—probably a small papyrus codex, intended for private use. It is therefore a witness to the variety of texts which were in circulation in the early centuries.

The codex belonged in the sixteenth century to the Medici, family, and was brought to France by Catherine de Medici, It was collated for Bentley in 1716, but not fully made known until the full publication by Tischendorf of the New Testament in 1843 and the Old Testament in 1845.
↑top

Codex Bezae

D. Codex Bezae (Sod. δ 5). In the University Library at Cambridge, to which it was presented by Theodore Beza, the great Reformation scholar, in 1581. Probably fifth century. Contains the Gospels and Acts, with a small fragment of the Catholic Epistles, in Greek and Latin, the two versions facing one another on opposite pages, with the Greek on the left. The Gospels are arranged in the order common in the Western Church, Matthew, John, Luke, Mark. The text is not written continuously, but arranged in short clauses, or κῶλα, so as to facilitate comparison of phrases in the two languages. The following passages are lost by mutilation: Mt. i.1-20, vi.20—ix.2, xxvii.2-12, Jn. i.16—iii.26, Acts viii.29—x.14, xxi.2-10, xxii.10-20, xxii.29 to end. The Catholic Epistles preceded Acts, but all are lost except the Latin version of 3 Jn. 11-15, the subscription to which shows that this Epistle, and not Jude, stood last in this group. The hand is a difficult one to date, being unlike those of the vellum uncials in general. This is probably due to the MS. having been written in the West (as the presence of a Latin version would suggest) at some place where trained Greek scribes were not available. It was formerly assigned to the sixth century; but MSS. in untrained hands generally look later than they are, and a fifth-century date (which Burkitt would prefer on textual grounds) is certainly not impossible and may be regarded as probable. The place of origin is even more doubtful. Clark advocates Egypt; but it is not likely that a bilingual Graeco-Latin MS, would be required there, and the Greek script is not like that of any MS. written in Egypt. It must almost certainly have been written somewhere where, though the Scriptures might be read in Greek (as appears from the fact that the liturgical directions are all on the Greek side), Latin was the language in normal use, so that a Latin interpretation was needed (just as, in our own country, Anglo-Saxon translations were added to the Latin Vulgate). In Rome itself, more skilled Greek scribes would probably have been available; and the same is probably true of southern Italy, which has been suggested on the ground that certain lection-marks which have been added in the MS. are in accordance with the Byzantine use. Sicily is advocated by Ropes. Northern Africa is possible, and it is to be observed that the text of D finds its closest ally in the African form of the Old Latin version; Sardinia also has been suggested, on the ground that another Graeco-Latin MS. (E2) probably originated there. But there is in fact no sufficient evidence to decide the question.

In its text Codex Bezae is the most peculiar manuscript of the New Testament, showing the widest divergences both from the Alexandrian type headed by א B and from the type which eventually prevailed in the Greek Church and which appears in our Received Text and Authorized Version. These divergences are most marked in Luke and Acts, so much so as to have suggested that they represent a different edition of these books. A few of the most notable may be mentioned, in order to indicate the character of the MS., which will be much in question later.
In Mt. xx.28 it adds (with Θ, the Old Latin, a few MSS. of the Vulgate, and the Curetonian MS. of the Old Syriac) ὑμεῖς δὲ ζητεῖτε ἐκ μικροῦ αἰξῆσαι καὶ ἐκ μείζονος ἔλαττον εἷναι· εἰσερχόμενοι δὲ καὶ παρακληθέντες δειπνῆσαι μὴ ἀνακλίνεσθε εἰς τοὺς ἐξέχοντας τόπους, μήποτε ἐνδοξότερός σου ἐττέλθῃ, καὶ προσελθὼν ὁ δειπνοκλήτωρ εἴπτῃ σοι, ἔτι κάτω χώρει, καὶ καταισχυνθήσῃ. ἐὰν δὲ ἀναπέσῃς εἰς τὸν ἥττονα τόπον καὶ ἐπέλθῃ σου ἥττων, καὶ ἐρεῖ σοι ὁ δειπνοκλήτωρ, σύναγε ἔτι ἄνω, καὶ ἔσται σοι τοῦτο χρήσιμον.
Ιη Lk. ν.10, 11 the call of James and John is quite differently worded: ἧσαν δὲ κοινωνοὶ αὐτοῦ Ἰάκωβος καὶ Ἰωάνης, υἱοὶ Ζεβεδαίου· ὁ δὲ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς, δεῦτε καὶ μὴ γείνεσθε ἁλιεῖς ἰχβύων, ποιήσω γάρ ὑμᾶς ἁλιεῖς ἀνθρώπων· οἱ δὲ ἀκούσαντες πάντα κατέλειψαν ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς καὶ ἠκολούθησαν αὐτῷ.
After verse 14 it inserts Mk. 1.45; and it omits verse 39.
After Lk. vi.4, it inserts a new incident: ττῇ αὐτῇ ἡμέρα θεασάμενός τινα ἐργαζόμενον τῷ σαββάτω εἶπεν αὐτῳ, ἄνθρωπε εἰ μὲν οἶδας τί ποιεῖς, μακάριος εἶ· εἰ δὲ μὴ οἴδας, ἐπικάταρατος καὶ παραβάτης εἦ τοῦ νόμου, and transfers verse 5 to follow verse 10.
In Lk. ix.55 it has the words καὶ , εἶπεν οὐκ οἴδατε ποίου πνεύματός ἐστε with Old Latin and Old Syriac support, which are omitted by א A B C and several other Greek MSS.; but it omits (with א A B C, etc.) the following words, ὁ γὰρ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου οὐκ ἦλθεν φυχὰς ἀνθρώπων ἀπολέσαι ἀλλὰ σῶσαι.
In Lk. xi.2-4 it has the fuller form of the Lord's Prayer, and prefixes the words (after ὅταν προσεύχησθε) μὴ βαττολογεῖτε ὡς οἱ λοιποί· δοκοῦσιν γάρ τινες ὅτι ἐν τῇ πολυλογείᾳ αὐτῶν εἰσακουσθήσονται· ἀλΛὰ προσευχόμενοι λέγετε, which are taken from Mt. vi.7.
In the narrative of the institution of the Lord's Supper (Lk. xxii.15 ff.) it omits the latter part of verse 19 and the whole of 20 (τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν διδόμενον ... ἐκγυννόμενον), thus removing the second mention of the Cup, and leaving the order of institution inverted.
In Lk. xxii.43 it includes the incident of the angel and the Bloody Sweat, with א and the Old Latin, but against אa A B, etc.
In Lk. xxiii.34 the Word from the Cross, πάτερ, ἄφες αὐτοῖς· οὐ γὰρ οἴδασι τί ποιοῦσι, is omitted by the first hand (with אa B W ) but added by a corrector (with א C, etc.); the Old Latin and Old Syriac evidence is divided.
In xxiii.53 it has an extraordinary and obviously non-authentic addition, καὶ θέντος αὐτοῦ ἐπέθηκεν τῷ μνημείῳ λίθον ὅν μόγις εἴκοσι ἐκύλιον.
In the narrative of the Resurrection it omits xxiv.6, οὐκ ἔστίν ὧδε ἀλλ' ἠγέρθη, the whole of 12, the end of 36, καὶ λέγει αὐτοῖς, εἰρήνη ὑμῖν, and the whole of 40; and all mention of the Ascension disappears by the omission of the words καὶ ἀνεφέρετο εἰς τὸν οὔρανον in 51.

In Acts the variations are so numerous that it is necessary to recognize drastic editorial action, either by the editor of the D-text in additions and variations, as generally held, or by the editor of the א B-text in excisions, as maintained by Prof. A. C. Clark in his recent edition of the book.
A few examples are given here ← Other examples of the readings of D and its allies are given below, pp. 221-30.:
v.15, it adds ἀπηλλάσσοντο γὰρ ἀπὸ πάσης ἀσθενείας ὡς εἶχεν ἕκαστος αὐτῶν;
v.39 (οὐ δυνήσεσθε κ αταλῦσαι. αὐτους), οὔτε ὑμεῖς οὔτε βασιλεῖς οὔτε τύραννοι· ἀπέχεσθε οὖν απὸ τῶν ἀνθρώπων τούτων;
vi.10, it adds διὰ τὸ ἐλέγχεσθαι αὐτοὺς ἐπ' [? ὑπ'] αὐτοῦ μετὰ. πάσης παρρησίας. μὴ δυνάμενοι οὖν ἀντοφθαλμεῖν τῇ ἀληθείᾳ;
viii.24 it adds ὃς πολλὰ κλαίων οὐ διελίμπανεν;
x.25, προσεγγίζοντος δὲ τοῦ Πέτρου εἰς τὺν Καισάρειαν προδραμὼν εἵς τῶν δούλων διεσάφησεν παραγεγονέναι αὐτόν, ὁ δὲ Κορνήλιος ἐκπήδησας κ.τ.λ.;
xi.2 ὁ μεν οὖν Πέτρος διὰ ἱκανοῦ χρόνου ἠθέλησεν πορενθῆναι εἰς Ἱεροσόλυμα· καὶ προσφωνήσας τοὺς ἀδελφοὺς καὶ ἐπιστηρίζας αὐτούς πόλυν λόγον ποιούμενος διὰ τῶν χωρῶν διδάσκων αυτούς· καὶ κατήντησεν αὐτοίς καὶ ἀπήγγειλεν αὐτοῖς τὴν χάριν τοῦ θεοῦ, omitting ὅτε δὲ ἀνέβη Πέτρος εἰς Ἱεροσόλυμα;
xii.10 καὶ ἐξελθόντες κατέβησαν τοὺς ἐπτὰ βαθμούς;
xii.23 καὶ καταβὰς ἀπὸ τοῦ βήματος γενόμενος σκωληκόβρωτος ἔτι ζῶν καὶ οὕτως ἐξέψυξεν;
xiii.29 ᾐτοῦντο τὸν Πιλᾶτον τοῦτον μὲν σταυρῶσαι, καὶ ἐπιτυχόντες πάλιν;
xiii.33 it adds αἴτησαι παρ' ἐμοῦ καὶ δώσω σοι ἔθνη τὴν κληρονομίαν σου, καὶ τὺν κατάσχεσίν σου τὰ πέρατα τῆς γῆς;
xiv.2; οἱ δὲ ἀρχισυνάγωγοι τῶν Ἰουδαίων καὶ οἱ ἄρχοντες τῆς συναγωγῆς ἐπήγαγον διωγμὸν αὐτοῖς κατὰ τῶν δικαίων ... ὁ δὲ Κύριος ἔδωκεν ταχὺ εἰρήνην;
xiv.7 καὶ ἐκινήθη ὅλον τὸ πλῆθος ἐπὶ τῇ διδαχῇ. ὁ δὲ Παῦλος καὶ Βαρνάβας διέτριβον ἐν Λύστροις;
xv.2 (after Βαρνάβᾳ) σὺν αὐτοῖς· ἔλεγεν γὰρ ὁ Παῦλος μένειν οὐτως καθὼς ἐπίστευσαν διϊσχυριζόμενος· οἱ δὲ ἐληλυθότες ἀπὸ Ἰερουσαλὴμ παρήγγειλαν αὐτοῖς τῷ Παύλῳ καὶ Βαρνάβᾳ καὶ τισιν ἄλλοις ἀναβαίνειν ... ὅπως κριθῶσιν ἐπ' αὐτοῖς;
xv.20 (after αἵματος) καὶ ὅσα μῆ θέλουσιν ἑαυτοῖς γίνεσθαι ἑτέροις μὴ ποιεῖτε (so also in 29);
xvi.35, ἡμέρας δὲ γενομένης συνῆλθον οἱ στρατηγοὶ ἐπί τὸ αὐτὸ εἰς τὴν ἀγοράν, καὶ ἀναμνησθέντες τὸν σεισμὸν τὸν γεγονότα ἐφοβήθησαν;
xvi.39 καὶ παραγενόμενοι μετὰ φίλων πολλῶν εἰς τὴν φυλακὴν ; παρεκάλεσαν αὐτοὺς ἐξελθεῖν, εἰπόντες· ἠγνοήσαμεν τὰ καθ' ὑμᾶς ὁτι ἐστὲ ἄνδρες δίκαιοι· καὶ ἐξαγαγόντες παρεκάλεσαν αὐτοὺς λέγοντες, ἐκ τῆς πόλεως ταύτης ἐζέλθατε, μήποτε πάλιν συστραφῶσιν ἡμῖν ἐπικράζοντες καθ' ὑμῶν;
xvii.15 (after Ἀθηνῶν) παρῆλθεν δὲ τὴν θεσσαλίαν, ἐκωλύθη γὰρ εἰς αὐτοὺς κηρῦξαι τὸν λογον;
xviii.27 ἐν δὲ τῇ Ἐφέσῳ ἐπιδημοῦντές τινες Κορίνθιοι καὶ ἀκούσαντες αὐτοῦ παρεκάλουν διελθεῖν σὺν αὐτοῖς εἰς τὴν πατρίδα αὐτῶν σνγκατανεύσαντος δὲ αὐτοῦ οἱ Ἐφέσιοι ἔγραφαν τοῖς ἐν Κορίνθῳ μαθηταῖς ὅπως ἀποδέξωνται τὸν ἀνδρα· επιδημήσας είς την Άχαίαν πολύ συνεβάλλετο εν ταΐς έκκλησίαις;
xix.1 θέλοντος δὲ τοῦ Παύλου κατὰ τὴν ἰδίαν βουλὴν πορεύεσθαι εἰς Ἰεροσόλυμα, εἶπεν ἀντῷ τὸ Πνεῦμα ὑποστρέφειν εἰς τὴν Ἀσίαν;
xix.9 (after Τυράννου τiνὸς) ἀπὸ ὥρας πέμπτης ἕως δεκάτης;
xix.14 ἐν οἷς καὶ υἱοὶ Σκενᾶ τινος ἱερέως ἠθέλησαν τὸ αὐτὸ ποιῆσαι. ἔθος εἶχαν τοὺς τοιούτους ἐζορκίζειν, καὶ ἐισελθόντες πρὸς τὸν δαιμονιζόμενον ἤρξαντο ἐπικαλεῖσθαι τὸ ὄνομα, λέγοντες· παραγγέλλομέν σοι ἐν Ἰησοῦ ὃν Παῦλος κηρύσσει ἐξελθεῖν;
xxi.16 (after ξενισθῶμεν) καὶ παραγενόμενοι εἴς τινα κώμην ἐγενόμεθα παρὰ Μνάσωνι.
For the rest of Acts D is wanting, but the other authorities for this type of text (principally the Old Latin) continue to show variants of the same character (see description of P48 above).

The MS. is corrected by many hands; Scrivener in his edition distinguishes nine, but his descriptions and datings are untrustworthy. The most active is Dg, whom Burkitt and Lowe consider to be contemporary with the MS. and who is certainly not much later; he deals chiefly with the Latin side.

There has been much dispute as to whether the Greek text of D really represents a current recension of the Greek Gospels and Acts, or is the result of retroactive influences from versions in other tongues. One group of critics, including Griesbach, Scrivener and Hort, have held that the Greek is the main text, and that the Latin has been influenced by it. Others, including Mill, Wetstein, Rendel Harris, von Soden, Ropes and Vogels, have held the opposite view, that the Greek has been influenced by the Latin, so much so that it has even been questioned whether this type of text should be regarded as properly Greek at all, and not rather an Old Latin (and to some extent Old Syriac) form. Against this extreme view has now to be put the evidence of the Michigan and Florence papyrus fragments (P38 and P48), which show that Greek texts of Acts of this type were extant in Egypt in the 3rd and 4th centuries; and the latest editor of Acts, Prof. A. C. Clark, comes to the conclusion that the Latin is in basis a servile translation of the Greek of D with some alterations due to a Latin text resembling that of g. He regards it as of little value except as evidence for the Greek of D where that is mutilated. The conflict of authority between eminent scholars who have studied the MS. minutely shows how difficult a decision is.

There is also a question as to Syriac influence. Bishop Chase (The Old Syriac Element in the Text of Codex Bezae, 1893, and The Syro-Latin Text of the Gospels, 1895) held that D is descended from a bilingual Graeco-Syriac MS., probably produced at Antioch, and that many of its variations, especially the apparently pointless substitution of synonyms for words in the normal Greek text, are due to re-translations from the Syriac. Plooij agrees as to this Syriac influence, and argues that this is a proof that this type of text is not due to Luke himself; but most scholars have not accepted it. It is of course possible that the D text, in the course of its ancestry, has been subject to influences of all these various kinds, Greek, Latin and Syriac; and this possibility, while it hardly affects the problem of the larger variants, throws some doubt on the value of the MS. in respect of verbal variations. ← On the whole of this bewildering question see especially Rendel "Harris, A Study of Codex Bezae (1891), Ropes The Text of Acts in Jackson and Lake's Beginnings of Christianity (1926), Clark's edition of Acts (1933), and various papers in the privately circulated Bulletin of the Bezan Club (1925-36).

As to the history of the MS., wherever it was written, it was in France (probably at Lyons) by the ninth century, when a note was added in a French charter hand, and nine leaves supplied in a Caroline script. It was at Lyons that Beza found it in 1562, in the monastery of St. Irenaeus; but it had previously been collated "by someone for Robert Stephanus, who inserts readings from it in the margin of his edition of 1550. Beza used it little, and gave it to Cambridge in 1581. It was used by Walton and Mill in their critical apparatus, and fully edited by Kipling in 1793, and again by Scrivener in 1864. In 1889 a complete photographic facsimile was published by the Cambridge University Press. It has been elaborately studied by Scrivener, Rendel Harris, Chase, Weiss, Ropes and Clark, and has held a foremost place in textual discussion since the time of Westcott and Hort. More will be said about it when the Western text comes to be considered as a whole.
↑top

Codex Claromontanus

D2. Codex Claromontanus (Sod. α 1026). In the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris. 6th century. Contains the Pauline Epistles in Greek and Latin, colometrically arranged, with the Greek on the left-hand pages. The Greek is very well written, which points to a country of origin where good Greek scribes were available, though a Latin translation was required. This would suggest Italy ; but Prof. Souter has argued for Sardinia, on the ground that Lucifer, bishop of Cagliari in that island in the fourth century, used a Latin text practically identical with that in this MS. The difference in date somewhat weakens this argument. The Latin text is independent of the Greek, and (though somewhat corrected from the Vulgate in the longer Epistles) is generally a good example of the Old Latin version. Before Hebrews a list of New Testament books (including Barnabas, Hermas, the Acts of Paul, and the Apocalypse of Peter, but omitting, probably by accident, Philippians, Thessalonians and Hebrews) is inserted, with the number of στίχοι in each. ← The στίχος was the unit of measurement for the purpose of payment of copyists, and was normally taken as equivalent to 36 letters. In P46 the number of στίχοι is given at the end of each Epistle. The numbers are not identical with those in D2, but are not greatly different.

In text, D2 forms a group with E3 (which was directly copied from it) F2 G3, representing the Latin or Western type of text, as opposed to the Alexandrian (א A B).

Like D, D2 once belonged to Beza, who acquired it from the monastery of Clermont, near Beauvais, and used it in his edition of 1582. After his death it passed through private hands till it was bought by Louis XIV for the Bibliotheque du Roi. It was edited by Tischendorf in 1852.
↑top

E. Codex Basiliensis. (Sod. ε 55). In the library of the University of Basle. 8th century. Of no great value.

Codex Laudianus

E2 Codex Laudianus (Sod. α 1001). In the Bodleian. Probably 7th century. Contains Acts, in Greek and Latin, arranged in very short κῶλα, with the Latin on the left-hand page. The hand is large and coarse. The Greek text is akin to that of D, and it is the earliest MS. that contains the eunuch's confession of faith (viii.37). It was formerly held that the Latin has been accommodated to the Greek, but the contrary view is now generally accepted. On a fly-leaf is a copy of an edict of Fl. Pancratius, Dux of Sardinia, and it may probably have been written in this island. It must have come to England by about the beginning of the 8th century, since it was certainly used by Bede in his Expositio and Liber Retractationis. It may have been brought over by Theodore of Tarsus in 669, as was probably the original from which the Lindisfarne Gospels (see p. 147) was copied. It was presented by Archbishop Laud to the Bodleian in 1636, but whence he acquired it is unknown. It was edited by Hearne in 1715, by Hansell in 1864, and by Tischendorf in 1870.

E3. Codex Sangermanensis. (Sod. α 1027). At Leningrad. 9th or 10th century. A copy of D2, made later than the fifth corrector of that MS.

F2. Codex Augiensis. (Sod. α 1029). 9th century. In the library of Trinity College, Cambridge. Contains the Pauline Epistles (lacking Rom. i.1—iii.19), in double columns of Greek and Latin. Hebrews is given in Latin only. Belongs to the same group as D2. It came from the abbey of Reichenau, where it may have been written, and was presented to Trinity College by Bentley, who collated it. Published in full by Scrivener in 1859.

G3. Codex Boernerianus (Sod. α 1028). In the National Library at Dresden. 9th century. Contains the Pauline Epistles in Greek, with a Latin version between the lines. Closely akin to F2, both being probably copies of the same original. It was originally part of the same MS. as Δ of the Gospels, and may have been written at St. Gall, where Δ now is.

Codex Coislianus 202

H3. Codex Coislinianus 202 (Sod. α 1022). 6th century. Forty-one leaves of a MS. of the Pauline Epistles, of which 8 are in the monastery of the Laura on Mt. Athos (where the whole MS. once was), 22 at Paris, 3 at Leningrad, 3 at Moscow, 3 at Kieff, and 2 at Turin. Written colometrically in a very large hand. It contains scattered portions of the Epistles, ending with Titus, to which is appended a note saying that it was corrected from the copy in the library of Caesarea, written by the holy Pamphilus. It contains the colometrical edition of the Epistles prepared in the 4th century by Euthalius of Sulca, who was also the author of a division of the Acts and Catholic Epistles into sections, which is probably the basis of the later section-numeration found in B. The text is therefore of some importance. Edited by Omont; photographic facsimile of the Athos leaves by Lake (1905), who also recovered the text of five more pages from the offsets from them on the opposite pages.
↑top

Washington Codex IV

I. Codex Washingtonianus IV (Sod. α 1041). In the Freer Museum at Washington. Probably 7th century. A much mutilated manuscript of the Pauline Epistles (including Hebrews, which follows Thessalonians), with fragments of all except Romans. The quire numeration shows that it originally included Acts and the Catholic Epistles. The text is strongly Alexandrian in character, and agrees with א and A more than with B. Edited by H. A. Sanders (1918).

K. Codex Cyprius (Sod. ε 71). In the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris. 9th century. A complete copy of the Gospels, and a typical representative of the normal ecclesiastical or Byzantine text.

L. Codex Regius (Sod. ε 56). In the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris. 8th century. Contains the Gospels, in a text which has largely escaped the Byzantine revision, so that it often agrees with B, and forms part of the Alexandrian group. It is remarkable as containing both the shorten ending of Mk. referred to in the margin of the R.V. and then the ordinary last twelve verses, with a note prefixed to each saying that it is found in some copies. Published by Tischendorf (1846).

Uncial Codex N

N. Codex Purpureus Petropolitanus (Sod. ε 19). Mainly (182 leaves) at Leningrad, but with 33 leaves at Patmos, 6 in the Vatican, 4 in the British Museum, 2 at Vienna, and 1 at Genoa; in all, 228 leaves out of a probable total of 462. 6th century. Contains portions of all four Gospels, written in silver on purple vellum. Closely connected with Σ (probably copied from the same original), and less so with two other purple MSS., O and Θ. Probably produced at Constantinople, and dismembered in the 12th century, perhaps by Crusaders. The main surviving portion was acquired from Sarumsahly (Caesarea in Cappadocia) by the Russian Government in 1896. The text is of Byzantine type, in a rather early stage of its evolution. Edited by H. S. Cronin (1899).

O. Codex Sinopensis (Sod. ε 21). In the Bibliotèque Nationale in Paris. 6th century. Forty-three leaves of St. Matthew (mainly xiii-xxiv) written in letters of gold on purple vellum, with five illustrations. Akin both in form and text to N and Σ. Edited by Omont (1900).

P2. Codex Porphyrianus (Sod. α 3). At Leningrad, 9th cent. A palimpsest, containing Acts, Epistles, and Apocalypse, and valuable as one of the few uncial MSS. of the latter book. In text it is grouped in this book with the earlier uncials א A C, rather than with the group headed by 046, but these do not agree closely among themselves. Edited by Tischendorf.

R. Codex Nitriensis (Sod. ε 22). In the British Museum. 6th century. A palimpsest copy of Lk., imperfect, only about half being preserved in separate portions. Akin in character to the א B family. Edited by Tischendorf.

T. Codex Borgianus (Sod. ε 5). In the library of the Propaganda at Rome. 5th century. Seventeen leaves from Lk. and Jn., in Greek and Sahidic on opposite pages. In text it is closely associated with א B. Edited by Tischendorf.
↑top

Washington Codex W

W. Codex W ashingtonianus I (Sod. ε 014). In the Freer Museum at Washington. Late 4th or 5th century. Contains Gospels in the Western order (Mt., Jn., Lk., Mk.), with a text of very varied character. Mt., Jn. i.1—v.12 (a quire added about the 7th century, presumably to replace one which was damaged) and Lk. viii.13 to end are of the common Byzantine type, Jn. v.12 to end and Lk. i.1—viii.12 are Alexandrian, Mk. i.1—v.30 is akin to the Old Latin version, while the rest of Mk. is of a different family which is described below as Caesarean.
Inserted in the ending of Mk. after verse 14 is a remarkable addition: κἀκεῖνοι ἀπελογοῦντο λέγοντες ὅτι ὁ αἰὼν οὖτος τῆς ἀνομίας καὶ τῆς ἀπιστίας ὑπὸ τὸν Σατανᾶν ἐστίν, ὁ μὴ ἐῶν τὰ ὑπὸ τῶν πνευμάτων ἀκάθαρτα τὴν ἀλήθειαν τοῦ Θεοῦ καταλαβέσθαι δύναμιν· διὰ τοῦτο ἀποκάλυψόν σου τὴν δικαιοσύνην. ἤδη εκεῖνοι ἔλεγον τῷ Χριστῷ, καὶ ὁ Χρίστὸς ἐκείνοις προσέλεγεν ὅτι ττεπλήρωται ὁ ὅρος τῶν ἐτῶν τῆς ἐξουσίας τοῦ Σατανᾶ, ἀλλὰ ἐγγίζει ἄλλα δεινὰ καὶ ὑπὲρ ὧν ἐγὼ ἀμαρτησάντων παρεδόθην εἰς θάνατον, ἵνα ὑποστρέψωσιν εἰς τὴν ἀλήθειαν καὶ μηκέτι ἀμαρτήσωσιν· ἵνα τὴν ἐν τῷ οὐρανῷ πνευματικὴν καὶ ἀφθαρτον τῆς δικαιοσύνης δόζαν κληρονομήσωσιν.
The first part of this obviously apocryphal addition (κἀκεῖνοι ... δικαιοσύνην) is quoted by Jerome (Contra Pelag. ii, 15) who says that it was found in some copies, chiefly Greek ones. The rest is new. This interesting MS. was acquired by Mr. C. L. Freer (with I and two Old Testament MSS., described above, pp. 54, 55) in Egypt in 1906, and was edited by H. A. Sanders, with a separate complete facsimile, in 1912.

Z. Codex Dublinensis (Sod. ε 26). At Trinity College, Dublin. 6th century. A palimpsest containing 295 verses of Mt., written in large uncials of a strongly Egyptian type, and Egyptian also in text, with many agreements with א. Edited by Barrett in 1801, and more fully by T. K. Abbott in 1880.

Δ. Codex Sangallensis (Sod. ε 76). At St. Gall. Probably 9th century. A Graeco-Latin copy of the Gospels, originally forming one volume with G3, the Latin being written between the lines of the Greek. In Matthew, Luke, John, the text is ordinary, but Mark is of the Alexandrian type. The Latin is a mixture of Old Latin and Vulgate, somewhat modified from the Greek, so that it is of little value.

Θ. Codex Koridethianus (Sod. ε 050). At Tiflis. 9th century. Contains the Gospels, very roughly written by a scribe poorly acquainted with Greek, but with a very interesting text. Lake first showed that in Mark at any rate it was akin to the groups of minuscules described below under the numbers 1 and 13, and subsequent study has given this family the name of the Caesarean text, of which more will be said in later chapters. Attention was first called to this MS., which formerly belonged to the monastery of Koridethi, in the neighbourhood of the Caspian, by von Soden in 1906, and it was fully published by Beerman and Gregory in 1913. For a study of its origin and text, see K. Lake and R. P. Blake, Harvard Theological Review, 1923. In the Gospels other than Mark its text has been revised into closer conformity with the Received Text.

Λ. Codex Tischendorfianus III (Sod. ε 77). In the Bodleian. 9th century. Apparently originally part of the same MS. as Evan. 566 at Leningrad, although the latter is in minuscules (cf. E of the Septuagint); for the Oxford portion has the subscription to Mark, which is wanting in 566. Contains Luke and John. In common with a group of twelve minuscules, it has a subscription saying that its text was derived " from the ancient copies at Jerusalem."

Ξ. Codex Zacynthius (Sod. A1). In the library of the British and Foreign Bible Society. 8th century. ← Codex Ξ. is assigned to the 6th cent. by W. H. P. Hatch (in Casey and Lake, Quantulacunque, 1937, but the argument, though plausible, is not conclusive. The MS. π should be included in this list, in view of the study by Silva Lake, Family π and the Codex Alexandrinus (Studies and Documents, part v, 1936). A palimpsest containing most of Luke i.1—xi.33, with marginal commentary. Its text is akin to that of B, and it has the same section-division, which is peculiar to these two MSS. Published by Tregelles (1861).

Σ. Codex Rossanensis (Sod. ε 18). At Rossano in Calabria. 6th century. Contains Matthew and Mark written in silver letters on purple vellum, with illustrations. A sister MS. of N. (q.v.).

Φ. Codex Beratinus (Sod. ε 17). At Berat in Albania. 6th century. Contains Matthew and Mark, written in silver letters on purple vellum. Forms part of the same group as N, O, and Σ, having the Byzantine text in an early stage; but it is remarkable for having the long insertion at Matthew xx.28, which is also found in D. Edited by Batiffol in 1886.

Ψ. Codex Laurensis (Sod. δ 6). In the monastery of the Laura on Mount Athos, 8th or 9th century. Contains the Gospels (from Mark ix onwards), Acts, and Epistles. It agrees with L in inserting the short ending to Mark before the longer one; and Lake has shown that in Mark it has a non-Byzantine type of text, with readings characteristic both of the א B and the D type.

046. Codex Vaticanus 2066 (Sod. α 1070). In the Vatican Library. 8th century. Contains the Apocalypse, where it heads a group of about forty minuscules, with a recension of the text different both from the early uncials and the later ecclesiastical text. Edited by Tischendorf (1869).
↑top


III.—Minuscules

The latest catalogue of minuscule manuscripts reaches a total of 2,401. Only a small minority of these contain the complete New Testament. Manuscripts of the four Gospels are by far the most numerous; others contain either the Acts and Catholic Epistles, or the,Pauline Epistles, or the Apocalypse, or some combination of these. Only a small minority, however, need be mentioned in a 'handbook of the present description. An overwhelming majority contain the common ecclesiastical text, which, originating in a revision which seems to have begun in Syria at the end of the fourth century, was generally adopted throughout the Church, and is known as the Byzantine or Received Text. ← Von Soden devoted much labour to the division of this great mass of MSS. into groups (see p. 179). One of these groups, to which von Soden assigned the symbol K, is being examined by Prof, and Mrs. Lake. The object of textual criticism is to get behind this revision, and to ascertain the text of the earliest centuries. It is therefore interested mainly in those MSS. which, of whatever date, appear to have in some degree escaped this revision and to preserve some evidences of earlier texts. It is with these, or with some of these, that the following brief list is concerned.

1 (Sod. δ 254). The manuscript which heads the list is a twelfth century MS. at Basle, which was one of those used by Erasmus in preparing the first printed Greek Testament. If he had made it his chief authority for the Gospels, the text of our ordinary Bibles would have been very different from what it is; but in fact he followed mainly another Basle MS., 2, which contains the ordinary Byzantine text. MS. 1 in fact belongs to an important group with characteristics of its own. Its allies are 118, 131, and 209, and the four MSS. are collectively known as Family 1; but 1 is the best of the group. They were first thoroughly studied by Lake (Cambridge Texts and Studies, vii, 3, 1902), and they are now recognized as forming part of what is known as the Caesarean text (see below, p. 176).

2 (Sod. ε 1214). At Basle, 15th century. Only notable as having been Erasmus' principal authority in the Gospels. In the Acts and Paul he used another Basle MS., 2ap. (Sod. α 253) and in the Apocalypse one at Maihingen in Bavaria (1r, Sod. Αν.20).

13 (Sod. ε 368). At Paris, 12th century. ← On Cod. 13 see K. and S. Lake, Family 13 (The Ferrar Group) Studies and Documents, part xi, 1941. This MS. is one of a group originally recognized and studied by W. H. Ferrar and T. K. Abbott (1877), and hence known as the Ferrar group or Family 13. It consists primarily of the MSS. 13, 69, 124, 346; but other MSS. (543, 713, 788, 826, 828, 983) have been shown to have traces of the same type of text. Three of them (13, 124, 346) were written in Calabria, where the archetype (from which 69 also descends) must have been in the twelfth century. The group contains many peculiar readings, especially the transference of the pericope adulterae to follow Luke xxi.38. It is now associated with Family 1 as forming part of the Cesarean group.

28 (Sod. ε 168). At Paris, 11th century. Contains many non-Byzantine readings in Mark akin to the Caesarean group.

33 (Sod. δ 48). At Paris. 9th century. Considered by Eichhorn and Hort to be the best of all the minuscules of the Gospels, its text being of the same type as that of B. Formerly known as 13 in Acts and 17 in Paul, and referred to under these symbols in earlier works.

61 (Sod. ε 603). At Dublin, 15th or 16th century. Historically of importance because it was the first Greek MS. to be discovered which contained the passage relating to the Three Heavenly Witnesses (1 John v.7, 8). This passage occurs in the Vulgate, and when Erasmus, not finding it in his Greek authorities, omitted it in his first New Testament, he was sharply criticized, and promised to insert it if any Greek MS. could be produced that contained it. Accordingly, when this very late MS. was brought to light, he inserted the words in his third edition of 1522. One other MS. (629) also has it.

69 (Sod. δ 505). At Leicester, 15th century. Belongs to Family 13. Written by a Greek, Emmanuel, from Constantinople, for Archbishop Neville of York.

81 (Sod. a 162). In the British Museum, written A.D. 1044. Contains Acts only, for which it is the best of the minuscules, ranking with the leading uncials in quality. Formerly known as Act. 61.

118 (Sod. ε 346). At Oxford, 13th century. Belongs to Family 1.

124 (Sod. ε 1211). At Vienna, 12th century. Belongs to Family 13.

131 (Sod. δ 467). In the Vatican, 13th century (having a note dated 1303). Belongs to Family 1.

157 (Sod. ε 207). In the Vatican, 12th century. Specially mentioned by Hort, as in the same class as 33.

209 (Sod. δ 457). At Venice, variously dated; palaeographic opinion points to the 14th century, but Lake gives reasons for believing it to be the parent of 118, which is assigned to the 13th century. If not, they have a close common ancestor. Belongs to Family 1. A 15th-century MS. of Revelation is bound with it.

274 (Sod. ε 1024). At Paris, 10th century. Contains in the margin the shorter ending to Mark.

346 (Sod. ε 226). At Milan, 12th century. Belongs to Family 13. In Matthew i.16 it (alone of Greek MS.) has the same reading as the Curetonian MS. of the Old Syriac: Ἰωσήφ ᾧ πνηστευθεῖσα παρθένος Μαριὰμ ἐγέννησεν Ἰησοῦν τὸν λεγόμενον Χριστόν.

383 (Sod. α 353). At Oxford, 13th century. Contains many readings of the Codex Bezae type in Acts xiii-xxii.

565 (Sod. ε 93). At Leningrad, 9th-10th century. Written in gold letters on purple vellum with colophon stating that it was copied and corrected from MSS. from Jerusalem. Has a good text with ancient readings, and in Mark is akin to the Caesarean type.

566 (Sod. ε 77). At Leningrad, 9th century. The minuscule portion of Λ, q.v.

579 (Sod. ε 376). At Paris, 13th century. Has the double ending to Mark, as in L.

614 (Sod. α 364). At Milan, 11th century. A MS. of Acts and Paul, of the Codex Bezae type, and useful for the end of Acts, where D is deficient.

700 (Sod. ε 133). In the British Museum, 12th century. Has a remarkable text (e.g. in Luke xi.2, it reads ἐλθέτω τὸ πνεῦμά σου τὸ ἅγιον ἐφ' ἡμᾶς καὶ καθαρισάτω ἡμᾶς in place of ἐλθέτω ἡ βασιλεία σου). Specially studied by H. C. Hoskier.

826, 828 (Sod. ε 218, 219). At Grotta Ferrata, 11th-12th century. Written in Calabria, and belong to Family 13.

1908 (Sod. Οπ103). At Oxford, 11th century. A good text of the Pauline Epistles, with the commentary of Oecumenius.

2040 (Sod. Αρ11). In the British Museum, 12th century. A good text of the Apocalypse, with the commentary of Andreas (not Arethas, as stated by von Soden).

The most important of these are the two groups, 1118131209 and 136924346, and their satellites. These will be referred to later in dealing with the text-families into which the general mass of authorities has been divided. In addition, 33 and 81 deserve special mention, as containing texts of a very early type.

There remain only the Lectionaries, of which the latest catalogue enumerates 1609. These have an importance of their own in connection with liturgical history and also with the history of the text during the Middle Ages. In general, they give only the ordinary ecclesiastical type of text, but a recent study by E. C. Colwell and D. W. Riddle Prolegomena to the Study of the Lectionary Text of the Gospels (University of Chicago Press, 1933), which includes a survey of the use hitherto made of lectionaries by textual students. has shown that the lections from Mark include a high proportion of readings of the א B, and not a few of the Codex Bezae type. According to the statistics compiled by the American scholars there are 347 variants from the Received Text in the week-day lections from Mark (which include about three-fourths of the text of the Gospel); and of these variants 200 have the support of א, 185 of B, 163 of C, 191 of L, and 202 find a place in the text of Westcott and Hort. On the other hand, only 27 have the support of D and its allies; but by a curious and unexplained contrast the lection-introductions, or incipits, show a considerable number of readings supported by D W Θ, family 13, the Old Latin and the Sinaitic Syriac. These figures show that the lection-aries would repay fuller study than they have yet received, though more from the point of view of the history of the text than for the recovery of its original form. It seems clear that there was a definite lectionary text, since a comparison of lectionaries shows a high level of uniformity; but it is also clear that different parts of it were compiled at different times or from different sources. Thus the lections from Mark for Saturday and Sunday do not show anything like the same high proportion of א B readings as the lections for the other days of the week; and the lections from the other Gospels are generally of the Received Text type. This is in accordance with a phenomenon observed elsewhere, and to which reference will be made again, that the text of Mark has much more often escaped the Byzantine revision than that of the other Gospels, which were more popular and in more general use.

Another point of view from which it is profitable to observe the evidence of lectionaries is that of the influence which they may have exerted on ordinary MSS. This is most apparent in the introduction into an ordinary text of the opening phrases characteristic of lections, such as τῷ καιρᾦ ἐκείνῳ or εἷπεν ὁ Κύριος. It must, however, suffice here to call attention to the interest of the lectionaries, as a branch of textual study which deserves cultivation. In an elementary handbook such as this it is not possible, in the present state of knowledge on the subject, to make effective use of them.
↑top


BIBLIOGRAPHY

C. R. Gregory, Prolegomena to Tischendorf's Novum Testamentum Graece (1894), Textkritik des Neuen Testamentes (1900-9), Die griechischen Hand-schriften des Neuen Testaments (1908); F. H. A. Scrivener, Plain Introduction to the Criticism of the New Testament (4th ed. by E. Miller, 1894); H. von Soden, Die Schriften des Neuen Testaments, vol. I, pt. 1, (1902); F. G. Kenyon, Handbook to the Textual Criticism of the New Testament (2nd ed., 1912). References to theliterature relating to the several MSS. have been given in the description of them.

[katapi ed: In recent years, much attention has been given to digitizing MSS., and a good place to search on-line is the CSNTM website. The source MSS websites can accessed through their Manuscripts list. They deal in the main with NT mss., but they are worth checking out none-the-less. (Your might also try the Wikipedia website for more background on individual MSS.)
↑top