11531recent "Secret Mark" claims
- Oct 31, 2009In the November-December Biblical Archaeology Review four articles address the
question whether Morton Smith's "Secret Mark" manuscript is bogus or not. All
four articles are written by staunch proponents of authenticity. Not
surprisingly, BAR's claim of genuineness is unsatisfactory. It fails to
present a balanced selection of facts, and it asserts as fact things which are
not fact. For example, H. Shanks, attempting, weakly, to give the case for
fraud, wrote (p. 51) that Smith "would also have to have sufficient knowledge
of Latin to forge the Latin passage in the letter." But, there is no Latin
passage in the Greek "letter."
Another recent treatment, translating a thesis in the blog by Timo S. Paananen
curiously accuses Stephen Carlson's book of proposing a "conspiracy theory,"
though conspiracy, by definition, includes plural conspirators, which Carlson
did not posit.
I welcome further research--including documented description of any other
annotations in the Voss volume that may indicate where that book has been;
including more JTS archive research (as Allan Pantuck and others have pursued);
including investigation whether the putative monk scribe penned any other Mar
Saba/Jerusalem mss; etc.