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Re: [Synoptic-L] Synoptic Problem

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  • Ron Price
    ... Bruce, It s not quite so simple. There is good case for a sayings source behind the synoptics, and where it is supported its scope and relationship with
    Message 1 of 6 , Jul 4, 2005
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      Bruce Brooks wrote:


      > As Farmer and others (see Stephen Carlson's web site) have pointed out,
      > given that the Synoptic Problem is to state the literary relationships among
      > three texts, and given that there are exactly 18 ways in which such
      > relationships can be structured, there are exactly 18 possible solutions to
      > the Synoptic Problem. Several of them have names, quite a few of them have
      > been seriously proposed at one time or another. Only one of them can be
      > right. When we find out which one, we will have solved the Synoptic Problem.
      >
      > No?

      Bruce,

      It's not quite so simple. There is good case for a sayings source behind the
      synoptics, and where it is supported its scope and relationship with them
      should also be a part of the solution.

      There are some folk who propose proto- or deutero- editions of one of the
      synoptics, and this also needs to be considered.

      Ron Price

      Derbyshire, UK

      Web site: http://homepage.virgin.net/ron.price/index.htm


      Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
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    • Joseph Weaks
      ... Well, of course. In fact, anyone who insists that it is even possible, much less likely, that no other sources were used is smoking the wrong papyrus leaf.
      Message 2 of 6 , Jul 4, 2005
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        On Jul 4, 2005, at 1:28 PM, Ron Price wrote:
        > Bruce Brooks wrote:
        >
        >> As Farmer and others (see Stephen Carlson's web site) have pointed
        >> out,
        >> given that the Synoptic Problem is to state the literary
        >> relationships among
        >> three texts, and given that there are exactly 18 ways in which such
        >> relationships can be structured, there are exactly 18 possible
        >> solutions to
        >> the Synoptic Problem. ...
        > Bruce,
        >
        > It's not quite so simple. There is good case for a sayings source
        > behind the
        > synoptics, and where it is supported its scope and relationship with
        > them
        > should also be a part of the solution.
        >
        > There are some folk who propose proto- or deutero- editions of one of
        > the
        > synoptics, and this also needs to be considered.

        Well, of course. In fact, anyone who insists that it is even possible,
        much less likely, that no other sources were used is smoking the wrong
        papyrus leaf.
        However, if one is focusing on the literary relationship between
        between these three texts, then what he Bruce said stands.
        If fact, if the goal is to delineate all the sources each writer
        used... well that's just insane. The first goal, at least, is to answer
        the questions, "Did Mat/Mark/Luke know of and in some way make use of
        Mat/Mark/Luke and/or Mat/Mark/Luke?"

        Or, less lazily,
        "Did Mat know of and in some way make use of Mark and/or Luke?"
        "Did Mark know of and in some way make use of Mat and/or Luke?"
        "Did Luke know of and in some way make use of Mat and/or Mark?"

        Or better yet, those little triangle pictures running around are even
        better.

        Q, M, L material and the like comes secondary support.

        Cheers,
        Joe


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      • E Bruce Brooks
        To: Synoptic-L In Response To: Ron Price On: Synoptic Problem From: Bruce I had referred to the Farmer (et al) list of 18 logically possible relationships
        Message 3 of 6 , Jul 4, 2005
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          To: Synoptic-L
          In Response To: Ron Price
          On: Synoptic Problem
          From: Bruce

          I had referred to the Farmer (et al) list of 18 logically possible
          relationships between 3 texts which either do or do not make use of each
          other.

          RON: It's not quite so simple. There is good case for a sayings source
          behind the synoptics, and where it is supported its scope and relationship
          with them should also be a part of the solution.

          BRUCE: Here under the benign rule of MarkG, it may be possible to ask (or
          anyway, it has been asked on Syn-L in the past), Knowing what we now know
          about Synoptic relationships, or (if one prefer that formulation) assuming
          what most people now assume about them, would the case for Q arise, as it
          did in the nineteenth century? Or would it not? Some of us (MarkG can update
          us as to his own opinion if he cares to; otherwise, see his book) think not.
          It might be worth the time to pursue it as a thought experiment. Q always
          was a thought experiment, so the suggestion seems not very controversial.

          (Those acquainting themselves with the Syn-L conversation via the archive
          should not miss Stephen Carlson's post of 1 April 2003, which is salutary
          for perspective on this matter).

          In the nineteenth century (I recall in particular the work of Abbott, but he
          had lots of company) it was assumed that all the Synoptics were independent
          witnesses to the Historical Jesus, and that words or deeds which appeared
          in all three of them thus had independent testimony as to their accuracy
          (here the practice of witnesses according to Roman law was typically cited).
          That is why, to this day, elements common to all three Synoptics are still
          called the Triple Tradition. It means, or meant in that day, the most
          soundly attested information about Jesus.

          It was in this climate of thought that the case for Q was first made, and
          firmly accepted. The literary independence of the Synoptics was one element
          in that case. Nobody who has recently posted to this list, to start with
          them as representative of modern opinion, seems to accept the literary
          independence of the Synoptics. If the case for Q were now to be considered
          de novo, it would have to be based on premises at least partly different
          from those which were originally considered to support it.

          So, to revert to Ron's phrase, where is Q, or any other hypothetical sayings
          source behind the Gospels, now "supported?"

          While I am referring to ancient opinions, I should probably mention my own
          outline of possible Synoptic relations, which appeared on this list under
          date of 19 Jan 2005. The Farmer list of 18 possible patterns is there
          expanded to 25 by considering certain finesses. In terms of that outline,
          the question I have just asked would be: What evidence would lead us to the
          conclusion that Solution #9 is correct, and that an outside conjectural
          source is also required?

          Bruce

          E Bruce Brooks
          Warring States Project
          University of Massachusetts at Amherst


          Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
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        • Tim Reynolds
          ... Not if one or more of the 18 relationships bears the relation to its source that the Bad Quartos of Shakespeare s most popular plays bear to the Folio
          Message 4 of 6 , Jul 4, 2005
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            on 7/4/2005 8:09 AM, E Bruce Brooks at brooks@... wrote:

            > As Farmer and others (see Stephen Carlson's web site) have pointed out,
            > given that the Synoptic Problem is to state the literary relationships among
            > three texts, and given that there are exactly 18 ways in which such
            > relationships can be structured, there are exactly 18 possible solutions to
            > the Synoptic Problem. Several of them have names, quite a few of them have
            > been seriously proposed at one time or another. Only one of them can be
            > right. When we find out which one, we will have solved the Synoptic Problem.
            >
            > No?
            >
            > Bruce


            Not if one or more of the 18 "relationships" bears the relation to its
            source that the Bad Quartos of Shakespeare's most popular plays bear to the
            Folio texts:

            To be or not to be, aye, that's the point.
            To die, to sleep, is that all? Aye, all. No,
            To sleep, to dream, aye, marry, there it goes . . .

            Shakespeare scholars are now, I believe, agreed that these Bad texts are
            bootlegs, the result of "auditory piracy". Shakespeare's contemporary
            Thomas Heywood, in the preface to his Lucrece of 1608, speaks of early plays
            of his having "accidentally come into the printers hands and theerfore so
            currrupt and mangled (coppied only by the eare) that I haue been as vnable
            to know them, as ashamed to chalenge them".

            We find the same complaint in 1851 Paris by "such eminent preachers as
            Lacordaire and De Ravignan:

            "More than ever do we see the spread of enterprises aiming, as they directly
            announce, to publish verbatim issues of sermons, lectures, instructions,
            delivered in the churches of Paris by the most celebrated preachers, against
            their incontestable rights, and to the prejudice of the dignty and liberty
            of the sacred Word. Consequently, the priests undersigned, who more than
            others have had to suffer from this lamentable industry, avow that not only
            are they averse to these reproductions, but that the same are generally,
            inexact, marred and even so deformed as to compromise, in outward opinion,
            the purity of their orthodoxy ..."

            If so, our problem is not only direction of transmission, but mode of
            transmission.

            More in the Archives.

            tim



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          • E Bruce Brooks
            To: Synoptic-L In Response To: Tim Reynolds On: Synoptic Relationships From: Bruce I had mentioned the logically possible 18 (or more precisely 25) patterns of
            Message 5 of 6 , Jul 4, 2005
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              To: Synoptic-L
              In Response To: Tim Reynolds
              On: Synoptic Relationships
              From: Bruce

              I had mentioned the logically possible 18 (or more precisely 25) patterns of
              relationships that may obtain among the 3 Synoptic texts, noted that only 1
              of them can be right (they are mutually exclusive), and concluded that if we
              can identify the 1, we have solved the Synoptic Problem, as usually defined.

              TIM: Not if one or more of the 18 "relationships" bears the relation to its
              source that the Bad Quartos of Shakespeare's most popular plays bear to the
              Folio texts:

              BRUCE: I think this mixes categories. A relationship is not a text, to be
              judged on its fidelity. The solution to the Synoptic Problem will be of the
              form (for example), A | B > C. It will not say how close or scrupulous C is
              in deriving material from B, or anything of the sort. It also won't
              establish whether John Mark was the author of Mark, or any of the other
              things we might like to know in a perfect world; those things come, or not
              come, in their turn. What it *will* establish, among the 3 Synoptics, is who
              knew whom. Present list discussion will attest that this is not presently
              agreed, so that any future agreement, or progress toward agreement, would
              seem to constitute progress.

              Respectfully resubmitted,

              Bruce

              E Bruce Brooks
              Warring States Project
              University of Massachusetts at Amherst


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