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Tatian's Diatessaron on the Web

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  • Jean Valentin
    Dear TC-ers, I thought this might be intersting to you. One or two weeks ago someone asked where to find english translations of the NT versions. If you go to
    Message 1 of 3 , May 2, 1997
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      Dear TC-ers,

      I thought this might be intersting to you.
      One or two weeks ago someone asked where to find english translations of
      the NT versions.
      If you go to the following URL:
      http://www.knight.org/advent/fathers/1002.htm
      you will find an english translation of the Arabic Diatessaron. I have just
      found it and I don't know which translation and what it's worth though.

      ---------------------------------------------------------
      Jean Valentin - Brussels - Belgium
      ---------------------------------------------------------
      email : jgvalentin@... /// netmail : 2:291/780.103
      ---------------------------------------------------------
      "Ce qui est trop simple est faux, ce qui est trop complique est
      inutilisable"
      "What's too simple is wrong, what's too complicated is unusable"
      ---------------------------------------------------------
    • Maurice Robinson
      As Professor L.W. Hurtado wrote on Mon, 5 May 1997 17:16:02 ... in the 1970s, I have certain reservations about the 70% figure myself. Certainly 70% is
      Message 2 of 3 , May 5, 1997
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        As Professor L.W. Hurtado" wrote on Mon, 5 May 1997 17:16:02

        >the validity of the 10% "gap" and the 70% agreement observation is that
        >these figures are functional quantitative definitions of the behavior of
        >*major/good reps. of text-types when collated with major/good reps. of
        >all other known text-types*.

        >From my own quantitative studies of the MSS of the Gospels and Acts, done
        in the 1970s, I have certain reservations about the 70% figure myself.
        Certainly 70% is sufficient (barely so in some cases) to quantifiably
        define MSS of the Alexandrian type, but a cutoff at around 90% would be
        needed to define Byzantine MSS, since MSS with only 70% agreement with the
        other MSS comprising Byzantine Textform would be weak indeed. Similarly,
        "Western" witnesses will almost universally fall below the 70% threshold,
        but I would not consider that this failing causes Western groups suddenly
        to become non-extant. I also find that the 10% gap simply tends not to
        hold well among any texttype grouping once more than a minimum
        representative sampling of MSS is added to the pool.

        >Waltz makes several statements that either seem to me incorrect or else
        >not comprehensible to me.--He allgeses as what he calls corollaries of
        >the Colwell-Tune method (a) that a text-type can exist only if it has a
        >pure representative, and (b) that a sufficiently mixed ms can't belong
        >to a text-type. Both are incorrect allegations.

        If Waltz indeed says this, I would demur, since certainly the strongest
        members of a texttype almost by definition will _not_ be 100% "pure" in
        the sense that they will have all of the supposedly "characteristic"
        texttype readings, nor necessarily the entire pattern of textual readings
        normally found to pertain to such a texttype.

        Similarly with (b) above, certainly there is a point of mixture at which a
        MS might not be able to be assigned to any discernable texttype, but
        except in the most extreme cases, a mixed MS can probably have a leaning
        toward one primary type or another. The real question in regard to
        mixture is where the mixture comes from and what type of text was the
        original underlying element preceding the mixture (which in many cases
        cannot be solved satisfactorily).

        >To repeat: per Colwell, a text-type is a group of mss that can be shown
        >to belong together in some objective way (i.e., open for others to
        >examine and test). No pure rep is required, only that a group of mss
        >exhibit sufficiently strong agreement to indicate that they are a group.
        >Mixed mss may show up as weaker members of such a group, or a group of
        >"mixed" mss. might exhibit sufficient agreement to form a group.

        With this I would concur.

        >Given that some have used text-type to = a "pattern of readings" and
        >others (my preference) an identifiable major group of mss distinguisable
        >from other major groups,

        I think both a quantitative definition is needed to establish groupings of
        MSS into "near-neighbor clusters" (Griffith's term), from which texttype
        or subtype relationships can be posited, and then from such groupings a
        pattern-oriented list of texttype- or subtype-specific readings can be
        drawn in order to determine what might be the characteristic elements of
        the texttype or subtype which transcend the imperfect testimony of the
        individual MSS in their quantitatively-determined groupings.

        >Finally, as I've stated earlier (and demonstrated in my study of the
        >Codex W) quantitative analysis is only the *first step* in grouping
        >mss and in analysing their relationships. It has to be complemented
        >with analysis of the specific readings shared by mss. No one has
        >suggested that I know of that quantitative agreement alone is more
        >than a rough measurement and one with heuristic value.

        Also agreed. But I simply am not convinced that Waltz and Hurtado are
        really talking about totally different concepts in all of this.

        _________________________________________________________________________
        Maurice A. Robinson, Ph.D. Professor of Greek and New Testament
        Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary Wake Forest, North Carolina
        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      • Robert B. Waltz
        On Mon, 5 May 1997, Maurice Robinson ... I have to agree with Robinson. 70% agreement with other Byzantine mss. is a necessary
        Message 3 of 3 , May 5, 1997
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          On Mon, 5 May 1997, Maurice Robinson <mrobinsn@...>
          wrote:

          >As Professor L.W. Hurtado" wrote on Mon, 5 May 1997 17:16:02
          >
          >>the validity of the 10% "gap" and the 70% agreement observation is that
          >>these figures are functional quantitative definitions of the behavior of
          >>*major/good reps. of text-types when collated with major/good reps. of
          >>all other known text-types*.
          >
          >From my own quantitative studies of the MSS of the Gospels and Acts, done
          >in the 1970s, I have certain reservations about the 70% figure myself.
          >Certainly 70% is sufficient (barely so in some cases) to quantifiably
          >define MSS of the Alexandrian type, but a cutoff at around 90% would be
          >needed to define Byzantine MSS, since MSS with only 70% agreement with the
          >other MSS comprising Byzantine Textform would be weak indeed.

          I have to agree with Robinson. 70% agreement with other Byzantine
          mss. is a necessary but by no means a sufficient condition. If a
          manuscript only agrees with the other Byzantines 70% of the time,
          it is either full of errors or mixed.

          I think the 90% number is about right, too. That seems to be
          what keeps coming up in my results.

          Within Byzantine groups such as Family Pi, the agreement rate rises to
          about 95%.

          >Similarly,
          >"Western" witnesses will almost universally fall below the 70% threshold,
          >but I would not consider that this failing causes Western groups suddenly
          >to become non-extant.

          Given that, in the Catholics, the manuscripts of Family 2138 seem to
          agree about 80% of the time, I think this just proves that, at minimum,
          we need to let each type define its own percentages.

          >I also find that the 10% gap simply tends not to
          >hold well among any texttype grouping once more than a minimum
          >representative sampling of MSS is added to the pool.

          My point exactly.

          And if Robinson and I agree on something, that should go a long way
          toward proving it. It's about like an agreement between B and D:
          Highly unusual.

          >>Waltz makes several statements that either seem to me incorrect or else
          >>not comprehensible to me.--He allgeses as what he calls corollaries of
          >>the Colwell-Tune method (a) that a text-type can exist only if it has a
          >>pure representative, and (b) that a sufficiently mixed ms can't belong
          >>to a text-type. Both are incorrect allegations.
          >
          >If Waltz indeed says this, I would demur, since certainly the strongest
          >members of a texttype almost by definition will _not_ be 100% "pure" in
          >the sense that they will have all of the supposedly "characteristic"
          >texttype readings, nor necessarily the entire pattern of textual readings
          >normally found to pertain to such a texttype.

          The representative does not have to be absolutely pure; I don't believe
          there ever were such things. But there has to be something substantially
          pure. If you check the math, it turns out that two manuscripts need only
          suffer 20% random mixture to fall below the 70% threshold. (They will
          typically have 68% agreement -- 64% in the base text and 4% in the
          inserted readings.)

          Of course, mixture is not always random. But then, 20% mixture isn't
          much, either.

          >Similarly with (b) above, certainly there is a point of mixture at which a
          >MS might not be able to be assigned to any discernable texttype, but
          >except in the most extreme cases, a mixed MS can probably have a leaning
          >toward one primary type or another. The real question in regard to
          >mixture is where the mixture comes from and what type of text was the
          >original underlying element preceding the mixture (which in many cases
          >cannot be solved satisfactorily).

          Hear, hear!

          I will concede that a manuscript that agrees, say, 55% of the time with
          B is not purely Alexandrian. But it might have a very strong Alexandrian
          *element.* And if we care about the Alexandrian text, then we want to
          study that element.

          Actually, that last is true even if the Alexandrian element is very
          small. For example, 104 is held up as an Alexandrian manuscript in
          the Paulines. My results show that it agrees with the Byzantine text
          nearly 80% of the time, and with the leading Alexandrian witnesses
          only 50-60% of the time. In other words, on its face 104 is Byzantine.
          Does that mean that we should write it off as useless?

          I also agree that we often cannot tell all we want to about mixture. And
          even if we can guess, the guesses are often based on some sort of
          observation rather than statistics.

          >>To repeat: per Colwell, a text-type is a group of mss that can be shown
          >>to belong together in some objective way (i.e., open for others to
          >>examine and test). No pure rep is required, only that a group of mss
          >>exhibit sufficiently strong agreement to indicate that they are a group.
          >>Mixed mss may show up as weaker members of such a group, or a group of
          >>"mixed" mss. might exhibit sufficient agreement to form a group.
          >
          >With this I would concur.

          But see the numbers above. My point is that it doesn't take all that
          much mixture to destroy that "sufficiently strong agreement."

          [ I'll omit the rest as I have little to add. Surprise, surprise, eh? ]

          -*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-

          Robert B. Waltz
          waltzmn@...

          Want more loudmouthed opinions about textual criticism?
          Try my web page: http://www.skypoint.com/~waltzmn
          (A site inspired by the Encyclopedia of NT Textual Criticism)
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