RE: [GTh] Manuscript Notes: Page 32
- Hi Judy-
||This is quite a normal feature of texts of the time, whether they were
||in Coptic or Greek....
That's a good point. Not that I have looked carefully at a great number of
MSS, but I guess I never really paid that much attention to those I have
seen. It's been thirty odd years since I've seen any of the facsimile
editions of the NHC (other than the Thomas MS) so I can't conjure up a
picture in my mind about how carefully the left and right sides were
||............................Probably (my opinion) this is less likely to
happen when an
||experienced professional copyist is at work because s/he was better at
||the letter spacing even across the line. It would also be more likely to
||on the first version of a MS than in copies because in the first version
||be less clear what characters one was going to need to fit into each line.
That having been said, a couple of questions come to mind:
First, Page 32 would then seem to qualify as the work of an "experienced"
copyist since such care was taken to keep the lines horizontally and
vertically "plumb and square." Moreover, if that is the case, could we dare
infer that what we have here on this page is not only the work of an
experienced scriptor, but that we are also looking at a version of the MS
that is **not** the first edition?
Second, providing that Page 32 is indeed the work of a pro and that it is
**not** the copyist's first attempt with the text, what are we to make of
those pages subsequent to Page 32 that seem to be much less well
orthographically structured? As yet I certainly haven't gotten to the point
of measuring them in the same way I did with the first page, but I think by
just eye-balling the differences one must begin to wonder about the basic
integrity of the MS. So far as I know, no one has seriously challenged the
supposition that a single hand is present throughout the Thomas MS (based I
suppose on the orthographic style). In other words, it seems to be broadly
accepted that only one person was responsible for composing the text as we
now have it. But could one advance the theory that apparent differences in
the care with which various pages were composed might point to a document
that was put together, taken apart and then put back together again by the
I think that as I work through these pages some more, asking such questions
might have merit.
> In the Middle Ages, ['quire'] had a number of specific meanings, withAs I said earlier, Bob, regardless of this and other definitions deriving
> specific names. In modern times, it refers to 1/20th of a ream, IIRC.
> See the Wikipedia.
from non-ancient binding and publishing processes, James Robinson
didn't use the word that way in his Intro to the Facsimile edition. In his
usage, a quire is an indefinite number of leaves folded together:
"A *codex* is made up of one or more *gatherings", usually referred
to as *quires*. For although this term is derived from *quaterniones*,
which is the designation for gatherings of four sheets (which came
to predominate), it has taken on the broader meaning of gatherings
of any number of *sheets* or *bifolios*." (p.32)