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tc-list A Markan Excursus

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  • M A Robinson
    An excursus of sorts: It is probably little known, but interesting that MS 2145 of the 12th century contains a *third* form of the ending of Mark, this one
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 31, 1998
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      An excursus of sorts:

      It is probably little known, but interesting that MS 2145 of the 12th
      century contains a *third* form of the ending of Mark, this one
      specifically "cribbed" from the long ending. It serves as a good
      example of what one might expect in a summary precis. (Interestingly,
      this MS is like virtually all others in containing without question the
      long ending in its usual location. This summary is taken from the two
      leaves which _precede_ the Markan title page).

      For reference purposes: MS 2145 is a vellum MS completed 23 Feb 1144
      by the scribe John, containing the four gospels, lacking Mt. 1:1-9:28.
      The PA is missing from its main text; added in margin by later hand.

      (Information and summary quotation taken from Kurt Treu, _Die
      Griechischen Handschriften des Neuen Testaments in der UdSSR_
      [Berlin: Akademie-Verlag, 1966], pp.92-95).

      Here is MS 2145's summary of the Markan long ending:

      ANASTAS O CRISTOS WFQH MARIA, AF HS TA Z DAIMONIA EXEBALEN. EKEINH EIPE
      TOIS MAQHTAIS. OI DE HPISTHSAN. EPEITA WFQH EN TH ODW TOIS DUSIN, EITA
      TOIS ENDEKA. KAI WNEIDISE THN APISTIAN AUTWN, KAI APESTEILEN AUTOUS
      KHRUSSEIN KAI BAPTIZEIN KAI SHMEIA POIEIN. KAI META TAUTA ANELHFQH. KAI
      TOUTO TO TELOS ECEI TO KATA MARKON EUAGGELION.

      The summary is good, short, and reasonable; and if one had not seen the
      long ending, this precis nevertheless would fairly accurately reflect
      that ending. But what is more pertinent to the discussion of "cribbing"
      and borrowing from the other gospels in the supposed creation of the
      long ending is the amount of paraphrase found in this precis versus the
      amount of identity of wording.

      How was this summary created from the long ending? Certainly not
      directly, but with careful and creative paraphrasing, locking in to a
      few words here and there from the original source. Note below the
      entire long ending with the only materials capitalized being those
      found in the MS 2145 summary (allowing Z = EPTA):

      ------------------------------------------------------------

      9 ANASTAS de prwi prwth sabbatou efanh prwton MARIA th magdalhnh AF
      HS ekbeblhkei EPTA DAIMONIA. 10 EKEINH poreuqeisa aphggeilen TOIS met
      autou genomenois penqousin kai klaiousin 11 kakeinoi akousantes oti
      zh kai eqeaqh up auths HPISTHSAN 12 meta de tauta DUSIN ex autwn
      peripatousin efanerwqh en etera morfh poreuomenois eis agron
      13 kakeinoi apelqontes aphggeilan tois loipois oude ekeinois episteusan
      14 usteron anakeimenois autois TOIS ENDEKA efanerwqh KAI WNEIDISE THN
      APISTIAN AUTWN kai sklhrokardian oti tois qeasamenois auton eghgermenon
      ouk episteusan 15 kai eipen autois poreuqentes eis ton kosmon apanta
      khruxate to euaggelion pash th ktisei 16 o pisteusas KAI baptisqeis
      swqhsetai o de apisthsas katakriqhsetai 17 SHMEIA de tois pisteusasin
      tauta parakolouqhsei en tw onomati mou daimonia ekbalousin glwssais
      lalhsousin kainais 18 ofeis arousin kan qanasimon ti piwsin ou mh
      autous blayh epi arrwstous ceiras epiqhsousin kai kalws exousin
      19 o men oun kurios META to lalhsai autois ANELHFQH eis ton ouranon
      kai ekaqisen ek dexiwn tou qeou 20 ekeinoi de exelqontes ekhruxan
      pantacou tou kuriou sunergountos kai ton logon bebaiountos dia twn
      epakolouqountwn shmeiwn amhn
      -----------------------------------------------------------

      A total of 21 words are identical out of 55 in the precis itself (38%)
      and out of (I think I counted correctly) 166 in the actual long ending
      (12%).

      What is of significance here is that so few words have direct parallel
      with the material being summarized. True, some other words merely
      appear in different form (e.g. the summary has KHRUSSEIN KAI BAPTIZEIN
      while the actual text has "khruxate" and "baptisqeis" [widely
      separated]). But even if the near parallels were noted, the summary
      still would bear little direct parallel with the whole of what is being
      "cribbed".

      Applying these observations to the long ending of Mark as it stands,
      what becomes significant is this: _some_ episodes in the long ending
      (e.g. the road to Emmaus parallel) might fit in well with the type of
      summary pattern demonstrated in MS 2145. But other passages not only
      remain longer than would be expected in a precis summary, but they also
      have many more direct verbal parallels to wording found in the other
      gospels from which they are supposedly "cribbed" (these are not given
      here, but if need be, I will be happy to demonstrate).

      Add to this the question of all the "new" material being added to the
      long ending which has NO parallel and which properly should not have
      appeared within a summary precis and the question of source or motive
      becomes significant. Finally, the idea of a summary pastiche loosely
      compiled from within Acts and the Epistles regarding the ascension and
      sitting at the right hand of God seems to go far beyond the normal
      style of a mere summary, if the pattern seen in MS 2145 is any
      indication of what really occurs in the preparation of such.

      Note also that the so-called "shorter ending" is not actually a precis
      summary at all. Notice its text in comparison to the long ending with
      identical words capitalized (some of these quite generously):

      panta DE ta parhggelmena TOIS peri ton petron suntomws exhggeilan. META
      DE TAUTA kai autos o ihsous apo anatolhs kai acri dusews exapesteilen
      di autwn to ieron kai afqarton khrugma ths aiwniou swthrias.

      (5 words out of 33 in the short ending identical to words appearing in
      the long ending = 15%;if counted against the 166 words in the long
      ending itself, the parallel is a dismal 3%; compared to this the 38%
      and 12% respectively from the MS 2145 precis is a huge amount).

      Interestingly there are some terms in the shorter ending which come
      close to the precis summary in MS 2145, e.g. EXAPESTEILEN vs 2145's
      APESTEILEN. But the extremely low percentage of parallel identity in
      the shorter ending as compared to the 2145 precis here tends to
      indicate that the shorter ending was NOT intended as a precis, but as a
      _substitute_ for the long ending (I have a theory regarding this, but
      that will have to wait for a paper I am preparing)

      Just a few random thoughts....feel free to differ.

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