Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: ATTN: LXX scholars--one text or many?

Expand Messages
  • Robert B. Waltz
    On Sun, 2 Mar 1997, Perry L. Stepp wrote: [ ... ] ... Actually, a dominant text did eventually develop (though it was never as dominant
    Message 1 of 4 , Mar 4, 1997
    • 0 Attachment
      On Sun, 2 Mar 1997, "Perry L. Stepp" <plstepp@...> wrote:

      [ ... ]
      >
      >An added problem is that the LXX doesn't seem to have been a single text,
      >but rather a group of divergent texts (if I read the tea leaves properly).
      >In other words, there may have been no single ascendant Greek OT text, but
      >rather a group of them, and no single text could claim to be *the* standard
      >LXX.
      >
      >Perhaps a Septuagint scholar can fill in the lacunae in my knowledge of
      >this particular point and its corrolaries. Which LXX texts were most
      >widely used? How widely do the extant texts diverge? Is Rahlfs a
      >satisfactory critical text? How large a base is its text built on? How do
      >NT quotes relate to the schizophrenic state of the LXX in late antiquity
      >(if the situation is as I've described it)?

      Actually, a dominant text did eventually develop (though it was never
      as dominant as the Byzantine text). This seems to have been the "Old
      Greek" form of the LXX as revised (probably in several stages) toward
      the MT. In general, as I understand it, this text resembles that of
      A more than B.

      It does not seem likely that this text was completely dominant in
      NT times, however. Based, again, on my experience in Paul, the
      NT citations don't match any particular text. I once did a check
      on Psalms citations in some list of books or other (I can't remember
      which). Out of about twelve citations, I believe seven agreed with
      Aleph, six with B, and seven with A. I believe three did not match
      any of those texts. (Please note that this was a *very* informal
      survey; don't quote me, OK?)

      My conclusion was that Rahlfs is *not* an adequate authority for
      the LXX text. Even if its apparatus includes all the variants in
      the tradition, it doesn't tell you their support. And this is
      important. Where B, Aleph, and A divide, one needs to know the
      evidence of supporting witnesses (C, G, M, N+V, Q, probably some
      minuscules) to know how to assess the variant.

      Robert Waltz
      waltzmn@...

      Inside Bluegrass
      2095 Delaware Avenue
      Mendota Heights, MN 55118-4801
      612-454-8994
      World Wide Web: http://www.mtn.org/~mbotma/
    • John Wevers
      The query raised by Robert Waltz raises so many questions that it is difficult to know where to begin. Permit me to address one of the questions raised. What
      Message 2 of 4 , Mar 5, 1997
      • 0 Attachment
        The query raised by Robert Waltz raises so many questions that it is
        difficult to know where to begin. Permit me to address one of the
        questions raised. What about the text of Rahlfs, and on what evidence
        is it based? First of all, I am not sure what the questioner means by
        Rahlfs. There is the large and complete text of the entire Greek
        O.T. Bible. This is usually appreviated Ra. But there are other Rahlfs
        texts as well. His Psalmi cum Odi is a semi critical text on the {salter,
        but its collations of most materials cited in it are based on the old
        Holmes-Parsons voluminous work, which is not at all trustworthy. Then
        he did an earlier text of Genesis, based on the Cambridge Septuagint. Since
        this rests on a much more secure basis that the large Ra, its text is
        markedly superior.
        As to Ra, which is presumably what you wish assessed, it is
        based on a recollation of very few uncial texts. Thus for the
        Pentateuch it cites only B and A and the few fragments of S. For the
        rest an occasional hexaplaric gloss is cited, and that is about it.
        Since for the Pentateuch, there are over 100 preGutenberg mss
        extant, this is obviously not a critical text. In Ralhfs' defence it
        should be stated that he never intended Ra to be more that a Nothilfe,
        a text which was rapidly prepared to serve as an interim text, which
        had at least rid the text of many glaring errors which a text which
        presented a single ms text, such as Swete's O.T. in Greek, which is
        based, as is the Cambridge LXX, on the text of cod B, and where that
        is not extant on cod A. Fortunately, Rahlfs was enamored of cod B
        which for many parts of the Greek text is an excellent witness to the
        oldest recoverable text of the Septuagint. Far superior to the text
        of Ra, and this I am sure is what Rahlfs would have wanted to be
        publicized as widely as possible, is the text of the Goettingen LXX,
        which is a truly critical text. Unfortunately, these volumes are
        very expensive.
        I realize that this is only small reply to the many and varied
        queries raised by R. Waltz, but it would take a great deal of time
        to cover the ground adequately. It would take a book! JWW
        --

        John Wm Wevers
        Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations
        University of Toronto
        INTERNET: jwevers@...
      • Kent Smith
        ** Reply to note from Robert B. Waltz Tue, 4 Mar 1997 09:42:47 -0700 re: OT quotes in NT. The question raised as to text used in
        Message 3 of 4 , Mar 5, 1997
        • 0 Attachment
          ** Reply to note from "Robert B. Waltz" <waltzmn@...> Tue, 4 Mar 1997 09:42:47 -0700
          re: OT quotes in NT. The question raised as to text used in quotes is very complicated.
          A few of the factors:
          As mentioned by others, there Greek text in NT times was quite diverse and we probably
          do not any "pure" examples of any of the versions or recensions that were in use. The best
          we can say is that a quote approaches Aquilla, etc.
          Although the Hebrew was settling into what we recognize as the MT, there were other
          alternatives available, to say nothing of the Targums.
          We need to distinquish between actual quotes, introduced by a one of a number of
          standard words and phrases and allusions. Allusions are often reworded or only approximated
          to suit the argument at hand. True quotations appear to have been directly copied from some
          source and usually are very close to some version we recognize.
          We may not always have the original text being quoted -- possible examples: I Cor 15:45
          is not really quoting Gen 2:7, I Cor 3:19 |= Job 5:13. These, and others are possibly quoting
          texts other than our known versions of "Biblical" books.
          Although I've been working on this issue, I'm not anywhere close to saying a Percentage.
          I tend to follow the common wisdom that most of the quotes are from a greek text of one sort
          or another, although I have a few examples where the MT is the closest.



          Kent Smith. West Side Presbyterian Church. Ridgewood, NJ
        Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.