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Re: [Synoptic-L] Boismard on Mk 5:1-20

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  • Maluflen@aol.com
    In a message dated 9/17/2001 4:23:39 PM Eastern Daylight Time, ron.price@virgin.net writes:
    Message 1 of 19 , Sep 17, 2001
      In a message dated 9/17/2001 4:23:39 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
      ron.price@... writes:

      << The quirks in Mk 5:1-20 probably arose from a
      combination of Mark's peculiar style and an attempt to combine two
      stories that he had heard from others. >>

      OR: "stories that he heard from two others".
      Except for the implication of aural origin, the above seems to me to be a
      reasonable hypothesis regarding the composition of Mk 5:1-20.

      Leonard Maluf

      Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
      List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
    • Emmanuel Fritsch
      ... But do you have an estimation of this circulation ? It would be necessary to quantify this circulation with precision if you really think this is an
      Message 2 of 19 , Sep 18, 2001
        > >The single fact there is a synoptic problem proves that gospels
        > >circulated during the redaction process.
        >
        > Agreed. But harmonisation is a consequence of familiarity with another
        > document. All I am saying is that such familiarity would have been *less
        > common* (not "non-existent") in the first century.

        But do you have an estimation of this circulation ?
        It would be necessary to quantify this circulation
        with precision if you really think this is an
        objection against a multi-stage process.

        > Emmanuel,
        > I've had a look at the Boismard diagram in the Rolland article at the
        > Web address you mentioned. Even if Mc. int and B are merged and the C -
        > Mc. int link is removed as you suggested, it involves 6 hypothetical
        > documents or editions and at least 12 links. It is, in a word,
        > "incroyable".

        Yes. This system is really incredible, even if it may have been
        simplified a little more.

        My trouble is : when checking some little parts of Boismard works
        (for instance the recent work on proto-Mark) arguments look impressive,
        phenomena he revealed seem effective, and fit very well with his system.

        When I ask scholars for an eventual fallacy, they do not consider
        the germane phenomena and they do not answer on the arguments,
        Their key argument is the complexity of the Boismardian system.
        Yes, it looks hard to believe, but "hard to believe" does not
        mean there is a historical impossibility, neither a historical
        implausibility of this system.

        What is hard to believe is : considering the few documents we have,
        how is it possible to deduce such a complex system, and not another
        one ? But since there is a reasonning path to go from fact to this
        system (and not another one), I think the only method to rebuke it
        is to address the arguments, or propose a simpler theory that fit
        facts with an equivalent fidelity. Am I wrong ?


        > The fact that synoptic differences can often be explained in more than
        > one way means that such an elaborate structure cannot have a secure
        > foundation.
        > In the end it comes down to a matter of judgement. In my judgement the
        > synoptic problem can be solved without positing any hypothetical
        > documents or editions. The quirks in Mk 5:1-20 probably arose from a
        > combination of Mark's peculiar style and an attempt to combine two
        > stories that he had heard from others.

        It is possible.
        Boismard explanation fits better with :
        - the lukan characters of the style.
        - the existence of parallel Matthean story, when you posit
        another unknown source for Mark (on this stage, Boismard
        is more economic)
        - the Lukan character of other passages in Mk, for instance
        the end of the gospel.

        a+
        manu

        Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
        List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
      • Ron Price
        ... Emmanuel, No, I cannot quantify the circulation. All I can say is that the circulation and the familiarity must have tended to increase as the early
        Message 3 of 19 , Sep 19, 2001
          I wrote:

          >> But harmonisation is a consequence of familiarity with another
          >> document. All I am saying is that such familiarity would have been *less
          >> common* (not "non-existent") in the first century.

          Emmanuel Fritsch replied:

          >But do you have an estimation of this circulation ?
          >It would be necessary to quantify this circulation
          >with precision if you really think this is an
          >objection against a multi-stage process.

          Emmanuel,
          No, I cannot quantify the circulation. All I can say is that the
          circulation and the familiarity must have tended to increase as the
          early decades passed, for Christianity was growing. Also, for an
          individual scribe the maximum length of time he could have been familiar
          with another gospel was still increasing during the first century. (At
          first the limit would have been how long the gospel had been published.
          Later the limit would have been the working life of a scribe.)

          >When I ask scholars for an eventual fallacy, they do not consider
          >the germane phenomena and they do not answer on the arguments ...

          Maybe they haven't got the time. Or maybe they don't feel qualified to
          counter the statistical part of the argument.

          >Their key argument is the complexity of the Boismardian system.
          >Yes, it looks hard to believe, but "hard to believe" does not
          >mean there is a historical impossibility, neither a historical
          >implausibility of this system.

          But you're wrong here. A theory with six hypothetical
          documents/editions, of which every single manuscript has been lost, and
          to most or all of which there is not a single historical reference, is
          indeed implausible.

          >What is hard to believe is : considering the few documents we have,
          >how is it possible to deduce such a complex system, and not another
          >one ?

          It isn't. What about Boismard 1972, Boismard 1994 (?), or Rolland 19??
          in the article which contained the Boismard diagram. That's three for a
          start.

          > I think the only method to rebuke it
          >is to address the arguments, or propose a simpler theory that fit
          >facts with an equivalent fidelity. Am I wrong ?

          You're right. But it's a major task which few will be prepared to
          undertake in detail because they consider the theory to be too fanciful.
          This is Prof. Udo Schnelle's conclusion: "... there is no other literary
          evidence for the preliminary forms of the Gospels that must be
          presupposed, so that the high degree of complexity of the theory moves
          it into the realm of pure postulation" (_The History and Theology of the
          New Testament Writings_, ET, London: SCM, 1998, p.177)

          Ron Price

          Weston-on-Trent, Derby, UK

          e-mail: ron.price@...

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

          Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
          List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
        • Emmanuel Fritsch
          ... You are right, and my words just before were far away from my thought. I just mean that the solution provided by Boismard remains possible. And if you
          Message 4 of 19 , Sep 19, 2001
            > >When I ask scholars for an eventual fallacy, they do not consider
            > >the germane phenomena and they do not answer on the arguments ...
            >
            > Maybe they haven't got the time. Or maybe they don't feel qualified to
            > counter the statistical part of the argument.

            You are right, and my words just before were far away from my thought.
            I just mean that the solution provided by Boismard remains possible.
            And if you defend a theory that he rebukes, for instance with markan
            priority, you are challenged to answer his arguments, since a part of
            his arguments are against classical systems.


            > >Their key argument is the complexity of the Boismardian system.
            > >Yes, it looks hard to believe, but "hard to believe" does not
            > >mean there is a historical impossibility, neither a historical
            > >implausibility of this system.
            >
            > But you're wrong here. A theory with six hypothetical
            > documents/editions, of which every single manuscript has been lost, and
            > to most or all of which there is not a single historical reference, is
            > indeed implausible.

            Are you sure about the argument of lack of historical reference ?

            1a- I heard that for scholars, gospels were written between 70 and 100,
            although there are no references to the written gospels until the 2c.
            Is it true ? If yes, the absence of historical reference does not
            look in fact implausible. Or am I wrong on the dates of gospels ?

            1b- If I well remember, the story of Alexander (pseudo-Callisthene)
            is considered as deriving from hypothetical and quite unatested
            documents. This does not look as a problem.

            2- On an other hand, when arguing gospels being eyewitness and apostle
            reports, the church fathers would have naturally hidden the composite
            characters of gospels. So here is another potential explanation for
            the lack of historical reference to first-stage gospels.

            3- And as I said first, on proto-Mark demonstration, the single
            hypothetical documents is proto-Mk.


            > > I think the only method to rebuke it
            > >is to address the arguments, or propose a simpler theory that fit
            > >facts with an equivalent fidelity. Am I wrong ?
            >
            > You're right. But it's a major task which few will be prepared to
            > undertake in detail because they consider the theory to be too fanciful.
            > This is Prof. Udo Schnelle's conclusion: "... there is no other literary
            > evidence for the preliminary forms of the Gospels that must be
            > presupposed, so that the high degree of complexity of the theory moves
            > it into the realm of pure postulation" (_The History and Theology of the
            > New Testament Writings_, ET, London: SCM, 1998, p.177)

            Hard to consider this conclusion, since we do not know what evidences
            Udo Schnelle accounts just before. I hope he does not forget to address
            the Marko-lukanian phenomenon, and I would like to know what he says
            about.

            a+
            manu

            Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
            List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
          • Ron Price
            ... Emmanuel, Your date range is quite correct. But I think your deduction is wrong. I would expect *some* church father to have known about and commented on
            Message 5 of 19 , Sep 19, 2001
              I wrote:

              >> A theory with six hypothetical
              >> documents/editions, of which every single manuscript has been lost, and
              >> to most or all of which there is not a single historical reference, is
              >> indeed implausible.

              Emmanuel Fritsch replied:

              >Are you sure about the argument of lack of historical reference ?
              >
              >1a- I heard that for scholars, gospels were written between 70 and 100,
              >although there are no references to the written gospels until the 2c.
              >Is it true ? If yes, the absence of historical reference does not
              >look in fact implausible. Or am I wrong on the dates of gospels ?

              Emmanuel,
              Your date range is quite correct. But I think your deduction is wrong.
              I would expect *some* church father to have known about and commented on
              such important first century Christian documents.

              >1b- If I well remember, the story of Alexander (pseudo-Callisthene)
              >is considered as deriving from hypothetical and quite unatested
              >documents. This does not look as a problem.

              I'm not familiar with this. Perhaps the evidence for the hypothetical
              documents is stronger there.

              >2- On an other hand, when arguing gospels being eyewitness and apostle
              >reports, the church fathers would have naturally hidden the composite
              >characters of gospels.

              But they were not expert source critics. They would have known A,B,C
              etc. as distinct documents without realizing the relationship between
              them. They would not have known there was anything to hide.

              >3- And as I said first, on proto-Mark demonstration, the single
              >hypothetical documents is proto-Mk.

              The extant Mark (apart from a few small interpolations) shows signs of
              careful planning, which fits a first edition better than an updated
              edition.

              >> This is Prof. Udo Schnelle's conclusion: "... there is no other literary
              >> evidence for the preliminary forms of the Gospels that must be
              >> presupposed, so that the high degree of complexity of the theory moves
              >> it into the realm of pure postulation" (_The History and Theology of the
              >> New Testament Writings_, ET, London: SCM, 1998, p.177)

              >Hard to consider this conclusion, since we do not know what evidences
              >Udo Schnelle accounts just before. I hope he does not forget to address
              >the Marko-lukanian phenomenon, and I would like to know what he says
              >about.

              He does not mention this alleged phenomenon in the above book. He does
              allocate nearly a page to Boismard's theory, which is more than any
              other NT Introduction book I know. I don't know what explanation he
              would give for the peculiarities of Mark 5:1-20.

              Ron Price

              Weston-on-Trent, Derby, UK

              e-mail: ron.price@...

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

              Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
              List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
            • Jeffrey Glen Jackson
              ... I m not sure they would have known to hide it either so to speak. Note the tradition that regards Peter as the source for Mark s Gospel. The church
              Message 6 of 19 , Sep 19, 2001
                > But they were not expert source critics. They would have known A,B,C
                > etc. as distinct documents without realizing the relationship between
                > them. They would not have known there was anything to hide.

                I'm not sure they would have known to hide it either so to speak.
                Note the tradition that regards Peter as the source for Mark's
                Gospel. The church fathers seem to have no embarrassment that
                Mark wrote his Gospel without Peter's authorization or
                approval. This would seem rather strange if the tradition was
                an invention of the church to add authority to Mark's Gospel.
                This is why I think the tradition, and Marcan Priority theories,
                are most likely accurate.

                ><> Jeffrey Glen Jackson, son of Albert, son of George, son of <><
                ><> Henry, son of Miles, son of Randolph, son of Ephraim, son of <><
                ><> Thomas, son of John, son of Thomas, .... sonne of Jack. <><
                mailto:jeff@... http://www.jeff-jackson.com




                Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
                List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
              • Brian E. Wilson
                Ron Price wrote -- ... Leonard Maluf commented -- ... On my analysis, Mk 5.1-20 is an awkward combination of one written story with parts of another written
                Message 7 of 19 , Sep 20, 2001
                  Ron Price wrote --
                  >
                  >The quirks in Mk 5:1-20 probably arose from a combination of Mark's
                  >peculiar style and an attempt to combine two stories that he had heard
                  >from others.
                  >
                  Leonard Maluf commented --
                  >
                  >OR: "stories that he heard from two others".
                  >Except for the implication of aural origin, the above seems to me to be
                  >a reasonable hypothesis regarding the composition of Mk 5:1-20.
                  >

                  On my analysis, Mk 5.1-20 is an awkward combination of one written story
                  with parts of another written story (the Capernaum Demoniac), this
                  combination having been made by the writer of the common source used by
                  all three synoptists. There are two dozen pairs of stories in the
                  synoptic gospels of this kind. I call them "story dualities". These are
                  described and discussed on my homepage.

                  Best wishes,
                  BRIAN WILSON

                  >HOMEPAGE *** RECENTLY UPDATED *** http://www.twonh.demon.co.uk/

                  Rev B.E.Wilson,10 York Close,Godmanchester,Huntingdon,Cambs,PE29 2EB,UK
                  > "What can be said at all can be said clearly; and whereof one cannot
                  > speak thereof one must be silent." Ludwig Wittgenstein, "Tractatus".
                  _

                  Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
                  List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
                • Emmanuel Fritsch
                  This is my last set of questions on this thread, since we are now far away from Mk 5:1-20. ... If Mk is just a development of pt-Mk, there is no reason to keep
                  Message 8 of 19 , Sep 20, 2001
                    This is my last set of questions on this thread,
                    since we are now far away from Mk 5:1-20.

                    > >1a- I heard that for scholars, gospels were written between 70 and 100,
                    > >although there are no references to the written gospels until the 2c.
                    > >Is it true ? If yes, the absence of historical reference does not
                    > >look in fact implausible. Or am I wrong on the dates of gospels ?
                    >
                    > Emmanuel,
                    > Your date range is quite correct. But I think your deduction is wrong.
                    > I would expect *some* church father to have known about and commented on
                    > such important first century Christian documents.

                    If Mk is just a development of pt-Mk, there is no reason to keep
                    pt-Mk : fivety years after his redaction, it may have disappeared,
                    extant Mk being prefered every where. No mean for church father,
                    a century after, to quote him.

                    Due to the similarity of Mk and pt-Mk, they were probably both
                    attributed to Mark. The same with Luke and Matthew. (the same
                    with ps. Callisthene)

                    And according Boismard, some church fathers quote pre-canonical
                    gospels. I have two examples in mind : the reference to the
                    "Korbona" when Epiphan comments the gift of the widow, and
                    the parable of the sewer in Justin Martyr.


                    > >2- On an other hand, when arguing gospels being eyewitness and apostle
                    > >reports, the church fathers would have naturally hidden the composite
                    > >characters of gospels.
                    >
                    > But they were not expert source critics. They would have known A,B,C
                    > etc. as distinct documents without realizing the relationship between
                    > them. They would not have known there was anything to hide.

                    If the link from proto-Mk to Mk was evident, even a silly christian
                    would have recognized it. And more over if the attribution was the
                    same. If the difference was only that extant Mk was more complete
                    than pt-Mk, then pt-Mk would have been forgotten very fast.


                    > >3- And as I said first, on proto-Mark demonstration, the single
                    > >hypothetical documents is proto-Mk.
                    >
                    > The extant Mark (apart from a few small interpolations) shows signs of
                    > careful planning, which fits a first edition better than an updated
                    > edition.

                    How do you recognize this few interpolations ?
                    Are you not hurt that Lukan style is found in some of this small
                    interpolations ? (for instance Mk 16:19-20)

                    Are there a concensus on the plan of Mark ?

                    Thanks for all your answer.

                    a+
                    manu

                    Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
                    List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
                  • Ron Price
                    ... Emmanuel, This is almost a tautology. It s not clear why you think the link would have been evident. ... I was referring to interpolations prior to the
                    Message 9 of 19 , Sep 20, 2001
                      Emmanuel Fritsch wrote:

                      >If the link from proto-Mk to Mk was evident, even a silly christian
                      >would have recognized it.

                      Emmanuel,
                      This is almost a tautology.
                      It's not clear why you think the link would have been evident.

                      >> The extant Mark (apart from a few small interpolations) shows signs of
                      >> careful planning, which fits a first edition better than an updated
                      >> edition.

                      >How do you recognize this few interpolations ?

                      This is the set of criteria I suggested to the GMark List last year:
                      >>(1) There must be something inconsistent about the supposed added words
                      >>in their current context.
                      >>(2) Removal of the supposed added words must leave a text which makes
                      >>better sense.
                      >>(3) There must be a plausible reason why the scribe made the emendation.

                      >Are you not hurt that Lukan style is found in some of this small
                      >interpolations ? (for instance Mk 16:19-20)

                      I was referring to interpolations prior to the establishment of what
                      is now generally regarded as the standard text, i.e. NA27. This standard
                      text correctly reflects the original in ending at 16:8. I'm not really
                      interested in later additions such as 16:9-20, which is enclosed in
                      brackets [[.....]] indicating that it was definitely not part of the
                      original text.

                      >Are there a concensus on the plan of Mark ?

                      No. Though curiously the best treatment I have come across is in a
                      book first published in French: E.Trocme, _La formation de l'Evangile
                      selon Marc_, 1963 (ET, _The Formation of the Gospel according to Mark_,
                      London, SPCK, 1975, pp.74-84). He points out several authors who posit
                      similar structures. In my opinion he is close to identifying the major
                      sections of Mark.

                      Ron Price

                      Weston-on-Trent, Derby, UK

                      e-mail: ron.price@...

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

                      Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
                      List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
                    • Emmanuel Fritsch
                      ... If I well undestand, according you, their his a multi-stage redaction for this story : - a first stage of redaction with the markan capernaum story, and
                      Message 10 of 19 , Sep 21, 2001
                        to Brian :

                        > On my analysis, Mk 5.1-20 is an awkward combination of one written story
                        > with parts of another written story (the Capernaum Demoniac), this
                        > combination having been made by the writer of the common source used by
                        > all three synoptists. There are two dozen pairs of stories in the
                        > synoptic gospels of this kind. I call them "story dualities". These are
                        > described and discussed on my homepage.

                        If I well undestand, according you, their his a multi-stage
                        redaction for this story :

                        - a first stage of redaction with the markan capernaum story, and the
                        matthean swine story.
                        - a merge of both stories in the written source of all synoptic. Mark keeps
                        the form of this story.
                        - Matthew and Luke have modified the story to cancel all awkward details

                        Am I right ?
                        May you explain the advantage of your theory compared to Boismard ?

                        a+
                        manu

                        Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
                        List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
                      • Brian E. Wilson
                        Brian Wilson wrote -- ... Emmanuel Fritsch replied -- ... Emmanuel, No. My Logia Translation Hypothesis posits that all three synoptists independently used a
                        Message 11 of 19 , Sep 21, 2001
                          Brian Wilson wrote --
                          >
                          >On my analysis, Mk 5.1-20 is an awkward combination of one written
                          >story with parts of another written story (the Capernaum Demoniac),
                          >this combination having been made by the writer of the common source
                          >used by all three synoptists. There are two dozen pairs of stories in
                          >the synoptic gospels of this kind. I call them "story dualities".
                          >These are described and discussed on my homepage.
                          >
                          Emmanuel Fritsch replied --
                          >
                          >If I well undestand, according you, their his a multi-stage redaction
                          >for this story :
                          >
                          >- a first stage of redaction with the markan capernaum story, and the
                          >matthean swine story.
                          >- a merge of both stories in the written source of all synoptic. Mark
                          >keeps the form of this story.
                          >- Matthew and Luke have modified the story to cancel all awkward
                          >details
                          >
                          >Am I right ?
                          >
                          Emmanuel,
                          No. My Logia Translation Hypothesis posits that all three
                          synoptists independently used a common Greek documentary source, the
                          Greek Logia, that contained the pairs of stories which when copied into
                          the synoptic gospels are "story dualities". These story dualities were
                          originally the result of the writer of the Greek Logia on a number of
                          occasions deliberately repeating wording from one story he had already
                          used earlier in his writing to expand a later story in the same
                          document. Thus he had already written out the story of the Capernaum
                          Demoniac but then later in the same document used wording from this
                          already-used story to expand a story about a Demoniac in the Gerasene
                          region. He did this awkwardly, however. The consequence is that if the
                          wording in common between the two stories in Mark is omitted from the
                          Capernaum Demoniac, the remaining wording does not contain a more
                          coherent story, but, if the wording in common between the two stories in
                          Mark is omitted from the Gerasene Demoniac, then the remaining wording
                          does include a more coherent story. (The same also applies to the
                          parallel stories in Luke which also form a story duality in Luke.) For
                          examples in detail in Greek of story dualities you will have to see my
                          homepage on this (the talk given in Finland). Story dualities cannot be
                          set out in Greek in detail in a letter like this one to Synoptic-L.

                          >
                          >May you explain the advantage of your theory compared to Boismard ?
                          >

                          Boismard's hypothesis is too complex to be checked against the data. As
                          J. S. Kloppenborg Verbin has written, "Even if it were right it would be
                          impossible to demonstrate its correctness." ("Excavating Q", page 51.)
                          There are dozens of equivalent hypotheses of the same level of
                          complexity as the hypothesis Boismard posits. There is no sensible means
                          of deciding between these. The Logia Translation Hypothesis, on the
                          other hand, posits that only one Greek documentary source was prior to
                          the synoptic gospels. It can be checked against the data.

                          Best wishes,
                          BRIAN WILSON

                          >HOMEPAGE *** RECENTLY UPDATED *** http://www.twonh.demon.co.uk/

                          Rev B.E.Wilson,10 York Close,Godmanchester,Huntingdon,Cambs,PE29 2EB,UK
                          > "What can be said at all can be said clearly; and whereof one cannot
                          > speak thereof one must be silent." Ludwig Wittgenstein, "Tractatus".
                          _

                          Synoptic-L Homepage: http://www.bham.ac.uk/theology/synoptic-l
                          List Owner: Synoptic-L-Owner@...
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