Codex Schoyen - "Gospel of Matthew" - More info?
- Karen King mentioned this in her book "The Gospel of Mary of Magdala"
and said that it was "interesting". I searched online and found only
the info below.
Could anyone provide any additional information on this (papers, text
in English, summaries, etc...)?:
Commentary: The text opens at ch. 5:38 and goes more or less
continuously to the end.
The present codex is the earliest Matthew in any Coptic dialect. The
11 chapters, 6-9, 13-17, 22 and 28, and a great number of verses
elsewhere, are in addition the earliest witnesses to these parts of
the Bible. The text is unique, not following any Coptic nor Greek
manuscripts known of Matthew.
Prof. Dr. Hans-Martin Schenke in his editio princeps of the text, has
named the manuscript Codex Schøyen, with the siglum Mae 2. (siglum
Mae 1 being the Scheide Codex of 5th c.) His conclusions are that the
text is not representing a free text transmission in relation to all
the other extant Greek and Coptic manuscripts of Matthew, but that it
is a correct translation of an entirely different Gospel of Matthew.
There is only one other Gospel of Matthew known, the lost Hebrew
Gospel of the Jewish Christians mentioned by the church fathers. This
would have been the Hebrew exemplar of the Greek translation the
present manuscript is based upon. Actually the famous statement by
Papias that the Hebrew Gospel of Matthew was translated into Greek
several times (Eusebius, hist. eccl. III, 39, 16), now come in a new
light. Due to a series of textual differences between Codex
and the Canonical Gospel, it appears that both Gospels derive from
different versions of the Hebrew Matthew. The consequence is that the
relationship among the Synoptic Gospels has to be entirely re-
evaluated, causing far-reaching and dramatic consequences for New
Published: Hans-Martin Schenke in the series Manuscripts in The
Schøyen Collection, ed. Jens Braarvig; Coptic Papyri, vol. I. Oslo
Thanks in advance,
Don Smith - Calgary, Alberta, Canada
- Tjitze Baarda has an article on "Mt. 17:1-9 in 'Codex Schøjen'" in the
latest *Novum Testamentum*. I have not read it yet, but my understanding is
that Baarda challenges Schenke's interpretation at its broadest points, so I
imagine he reveals a lot about his view of the codex as a whole.
John C. Poirier
Don Smith wrote:
> Could anyone provide any additional information on this (papers, textin English, summaries, etc...)?:
- Here is something I wrote about one ear ago. And, yes, Baarda disagrees
with Schenke on his source theory.
Some notes on the Coptic Mt, Schoyen MS 2650 = mae-2
Manuscripts in the Schoyen Collection
Coptic Papyri, Vol. 1
Hermes Publishing, Oslo 2001
ISBN 82 8034 002 5
(you have to order it from the publisher)
mae-2 is a new (bought 04/1999) Coptic, middle-Egyptian MS, dated first
half of the 4th CE. We already discussed this with respect to the Two
Sons pericope. There are 39 leaves, with text from 5:38 to the end with
many lacunae. Originally there must have been 46 leaves (92 pages).
The edition of the text is very good. Unfortunately all discussion is in
German. It has all you need: Plates of all pages, the reconstructed
text, a translation (German!), and a reconstructed Greek text. One
problem I have with the presentation is that you have to look at three
places for the discussion: 1. the apparatus of the Coptic, 2. the
apparatus of the translation with different, complementary commentary
and the Greek reconstruction at the end of the book.
Another problem I have is with Schenke's view that the text is something
completely different and that our canonical text and this text both go
back to a common original, possibly the Hebrew Matthew. Schenke's
reconstruction builds on the view that the translator slavishly
translated a Greek original. Therefore Schenke's Greek reconstruction
looks very different from our canonical text (mostly minutiae). I am
absolutely no expert and don't know Coptic at all, but from what I know
now, I find it more probable that this text is just a free text, a free
translation. There are many minor variations, but they are all really
minor and can be explained simply as translation freedom IMvHO. I may be
wrong though. Schenke admits that his view is just speculation.
His main argument for the strangeness of this Coptic Mt is the scarcity
ALLA 23 33
GAR 39 104
DE 155 416
IDOU 8 23
KAI 142 315
OUN 14 54
On the other hand:
TOTE 83 49
(of the 49 in mae-1, 21 are NOT found in mae-2!)
Schenke says, that basically mae-1 can be explained as descend from a
canonical Greek form, but not mae-2. Therefore mae-2 must come from a
different Greek text, which he tried to reconstruct.
He also notes that, because of the very limited circulation of the mae-2
form and of certain secondary elements, this textform itself must be
later than canonical Mt. He thinks that both the canonical Mt and the
mae-2 form are translations of a Hebrew Ur-Mt.
All this I find rather improbable. A check of all variants in the TCG
shows that the underlying textform of mae-2 is basically Alexandrian,
most agreements are with 01, Co. Additionally it has many singular
An analysis of the variants from the TCG for which mae-2 is extant
(about 100) gives the following results. Agreement in %:
This of course gives only a very rough view, because it is based on a
selection of variants only ("significant" variants), and not on a
complete collation. It basically shows that mae-2 is embedded in the
Egyptian textual tradition. It is especially close to 01, with which it
shares many minority readings. (This does not rule out basically
Schenke's speculation that mae-2 might have been translated from a
Hebrew Mt, but this Hebrew Mt then must have been quite close to 01,
One should note that f1 forms its own texttype in Mt and that D/it have
a comparatively good text in Mt.
Unfortunately I didn't have the contents of mae-1 handy so I couldn't
check if it has significant lacunae in Mt. If it's complete the above
value of only 46% agreement with mae-2 is interesting.
Wieland Willker, Bremen, Germany
- Here is a list of the more noteworthy variant readings of mae-2:
I went once through the text and noted the things I found noteworthy.
THIS IS NOT COMPLETE! Please refer to the volume mentioned before to
draw your own conclusions.
There are many (from my point of view) minor singular readings (mostly
not noted), which are difficult to evaluate for me, because I don't know
Coptic. But there is nothing really thrilling. If a Greek text is given,
it is the reconstruction by Schenke. The new MS is referred to as mae-2
5:44 mae-2 supports the short text, against mae-1
6:8 mae-2 omits O PATHR hUMWN
6:13 mae-2 has the short form with mae-1
6:25 mae-2 omits H TI PIHTE
6:28 omits PWS AUXANOUSIN
6:33 mae-2 omits TOU QEOU
8:31-33 slightly different
9:2 adds hOS HN ETH DEKAOKTW EN TH ASTENEIA AUTOU
after BEBLHMENON (compare Lk 13:11)
9:13 mae 2 omits EIS METANOIAN against mae-1
9:14 mae-2 omits POLLA
9:24 Schenke reconstructs: APOSTHTE APO TOU KORASIOU. OUK APEQANEN
9:25 mae-2 omits OTE ... EISELQWN, singular reading?
9:35 mae-2: ... QERAPEUWN TAS NOSOUS AUTWN TAS EN AUTWN
10:27 adds EN TOIS TAMEIOIS (from Lk 12:3)
10:34-35 OUK HLQON BALEIN EIRHNHN ALLA MACAIRAN 35 HLQON GAR
is here only: HLQON META MACAIRHS
10:37 omits 37b with B*, D (h.t.)
10:42 reads with D, it et al.: OU MH APOLHTAI hO MISQOS AUTOU
11:1 omits DWDEKA with f1 !
11:8 mae-2: EN TW OIKW TWN BASILEWN EISIN
11:18 adds probably PROS hUMAS with L and Theta et al.
12:12 adds MALLON
12:30 (mae-1), mae-2:
hO MH SUNHGMENOS WN MET' EMOU ESKORPISMENOS ESTIN
"who is not gathered with me, is scattered".
12:47 mae-2 omits verse
13:13 mae-2 omits all from OTI ... SUNIOUSIN
13:33 omit: ALLHN PARABOLHN ELALHSEN AUTOIS
13:51 LEGEI AUTOIS hO IHSOUS with Byz
14:9 mae-2 ends the verse with EKELEUSEN
14:18+19a omitted by mae-2
14:24 mae-2 has: STADIOUS POLLOUS ... against Byz
14:30 omits ISCURON
15:6 mae-2 omits complete 15:6a: OU ... AUTOU
15:14 mae has TUFLOI EISIN only. It omits hODHGOI [TUFLWN].
16:2-3 mae-2 omits
16:4 adds TOU PROFHTOU with Byz
16:12 PERI THS ZUMHS with D et al.
16:20 IHSOUS hO CRISTOS with Byz
17:1 mae-2? for ANAGEI with D, f1, Or
17:8 AUTON MONON; mae-2 omits Jesus
17:14 mae-2 adds here:
TOTE HLQON PROS AUTON hOI MAQHTAI AUTOU
17:21 mae-2 omits verse.
18:11 mae-2 omits verse.
18:15 mae-2 has EIS SE
18:29 has EIS TOUS PODAS AUTOU with Byz
19:3 mae-2 omits ANQRWPW and reads ..THN GUNAIKA **SOU**...
19:9 mae-2 seems to confirm something like the the B, f1 or the D,
f13 reading of 9b.
19:16 mae-2 has txt = omits AGAQE
19:20 mae-2 has EK NEOTHTOS MOU with Byz
19:29 mae-2 has GUNAIKA with Byz
20:4 AMPELWNA MOU
20:7 ERGAZESQE EIS TON AMPELWNA MOU
20:16 mae-2 without POLLOI GAR ...
20:22-23 mae-2 has the short text
20:30 ELEHSON hHMAS, IHSOUS hUIOS DAUID mae-2
20:31 ELEHSON hHMAS, KURIE, ELEHSON hHMAS hUIOS DAUID mae-2
21:29-31 mae-2, geo(2A): The "fourth form" of the Two
1. he answered, 'I go, sir'; but he did not go.
2. he answered, 'I will not'; but later he changed his mind and
3. They said, "The first."
21:44 omits verse!
22:15 mae-2 adds KAT' AUTOU with C-c, Delta, Theta, f1, bo
22:30 omits TOU QEOU
23:2-3 different wording, plural "chairs of Moses"
23:3 only POIHSATE with 01*
23:4 omits KAI DUSBASTAKTA
23:5 adds TWN hIMATIWN AUTWN with Byz against mae-1
23:14 omits verse
23:19 omits MWROI KAI against Co
24:7 omits KAI LOIMOI against mae-1
24:36 omits OUDE hO UIOS with Byz
24:48 CRONIZEI hO KURIOS MOU PRIN H ELQEIN
26:42 TOUTO TO POTHERION PARELQEIN AP' EMOU with Byz
26:44 PALIN APHLQEN EK TRITOU, omits 2nd PALIN
26:51 mae-2 adds from Jo 18:10 "and the name of the servant was
26:73 does not add PALIN, contra mae-1
27:17 APO TOUTWN
27:27 TOU DIKAIOU TOUTOU with Byz
27:33 omits LEGOMENOS
27:35 not the addition at the end, against mae-1
27:49 the piercing: mae-2 has the addition and it has with Gamma and
some minuscules the order hAIMA KAI hUDWR, as in John.
28:2 APO THS QURAS TOU MNHMEIOU
28:19 has the full trinitarian formula
Wieland Willker, Bremen, Germany