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Re: "Alexandrian" Text

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  • rachel@ms1.hinet.net
    In , on 06/04/96 at 04:57 PM, Maurice Robinson said: I tried to
    Message 1 of 1714 , Nov 8, 2001
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      on 06/04/96
      at 04:57 PM, Maurice Robinson <mrobinsn@...>
      said: I tried to input some comments of my own into this thread
      since I am only a lurker but then it got to be more and more
      difficult thus back to lurking and someday when I "grow up"
      enough then I can jump in all the way..... <grin> I suggest that
      more lurkers join once in a while.......

      ---On Tue, 4 Jun 1996, Robert B. Waltz wrote:

      ---> I suppose it depends on which problem one is attacking. In
      ---using the > terminology you do, you are working from a
      ---particular theory: Byzantine > priority.

      ---Admitted. *;-)
      ---> Now it's obvious that I don't agree with this theory, but
      ---that's not > the point.
      ---> My goal is to start without *any* assumptions. If I
      ---construct a > textual theory, I want to do it from the bottom
      ---up. *Any* assumption > about the relationship of texts can
      ---lead to invalid results.

      ---I suspect that any attempt to start from the bottom up with no
      --- assumptions regarding textual groupings or theory will lead
      ---to jumbled and inconclusive results (just as you are noting).
      ---Since textual criticism cannot be done in a vacuum, I do not
      ---think it unreasonable to begin with theories regarding
      ---transmissional history before attempting to evaluate the
      ---interrelationship among MSS based upon percentage agreements;
      ---but this may only be a peculiarity of my own approach.
      Beg my pardon since I am only a lurker ;)
      But this is precisely the point that Maurice is trying to make
      and as far as my TC reading goes so far I wholeheartedly concur
      with his opinion -- Starting with a theory sounds wonderful --
      But which one?? Hort? Aland? Kilpatrick? Colwell? For much
      too long I think that many of the theories have not influenced my
      thinking as much as Maurice has done.
      Of course I am not a heavyweight and rarely post in here due to
      that fact.... Thus this is why I state that I have not been
      greatly impressed or influenced by the trad. approaches

      I do
      ---not think the results are skewed by my method, nor do I think
      ---they are necessarily improved by your method.

      ---> If it be objected that elsewhere I have constructed a theory
      ---of the > text, and even attempted to reconstruct the original
      ---text based on > it, I will concede that this is true. But that
      ---reconstruction is > tentative, based on what I know about the
      ---manuscripts. It might > change if I knew more.

      ---My own textual theory and reconstruction is also based upon
      ---what I know about the MSS and copying habits of scribes etc.,
      ---but it does not require the determination of what I consider
      ---the minutiae of MS interrelationships in order to function.
      ---Even if the results remain tentative in any reconstruction,
      ---the theory still must exist in order to explain the
      ---> And, more to the point, I do not consider that text to be
      ---final > until the textual complexion of all manuscripts is
      Excuse me I am too familiar with how this theory works out in
      Theological circles thus I would not be surprised if you were to
      conclude that you were correct all a long... <g> Weiss
      methodology and Maurice has a lot more going for it than meets
      the eye since many if not most are covertly and overtly opposed
      to his system...... This is not true scholarship in my opinion

      ---And if such were indeed known, would you REALLY consider your
      ---text "final" and/or inviolate as a representation of the
      ---autograph? I certainly would not claim such in regard to the
      ---Byzantine Textform even were we to possess full collations of
      ---all MSS, since the places where the Byzantine MSS are divided
      ---would still remain tentative in light of both internal and
      ---external evidence. I simply remain skeptical of being able
      ---to approach any total level of certainty merely by statistical

      ---> So I maintain that, until we have fully examined that
      ---manuscripts, > we must refer to the process of adding
      ---Byzantine readings to > non-Byzantine manuscripts as mixture.

      ---Which, from your perspective, I can understand. From my
      ---perspective, I would prefer to maintain the semantic
      ---distinction previously mentioned.

      --->> I obviously would not concur on this point. I do agree
      ---that the tendency >> would be for localized texts to move
      ---steadily toward a Byzantine form as >> they begin to be
      ---corrected by comparison with MSS from outside their local >>
      ---region. I also agree that the localized variations were
      ---themselves >> movements to varying degrees AWAY from the
      ---Byzantine Textform. But I do >> not concur that most MSS
      ---within the wider scope of MS transmission would >> derive from
      ---a non-Byzantine or less-Byzantine model. If this were so, >>
      ---what factors would legitimately, within any normal "process"
      ---view, cause >> non- or less-Byz MSS to become Byzantine?
      ---Barring a major textual >> upheaval, the normal patterns of MS
      ---copying and correction would tend to >> maintain the text
      ---which was dominant at any given point of time.
      ---> I must admit that I don't understand that paragraph. So I
      ---may be missing > the point.
      Me too..... <grin>

      ---Let me rephrase simplistically: if local texts existed (and
      ---they did), they must have come about as a deviation from the
      ---autograph. What was the autograph remains the question. If
      ---the autograph were basically the Byzantine Textform, then the
      ---local texts in process of time would tend to slowly disappear
      ---and become re-amalgamated within the Byzantine Textform
      ---through the process of cross-comparison and correction against
      ---MSS from other portions of the Greek-speaking Empire. This is
      ---a logical and natural conclusion from within my own
      ---text-critical perspective.

      ---On the other hand, if the local texts were deviations from an
      ---autograph which itself was non-Byzantine in character, some
      ---other explanation needs to be given as to how and why the
      ---deviant local texts did not eventually return to the
      ---theoretically "predominant" autograph text which supposedly
      ---permeated the Greek-speaking portion of the Empire hitherto,
      ---but instead gravitated inexorably toward a Byzantine

      ---> But how much do we really know about local texts? We know a
      ---little about > the text of Egypt from the papyri. But other
      ---than that, it seems to me > that our knowledge of local texts,
      ---especially in the western half of the > Roman Empire, is very

      ---I really have no problem with the concept of local texts. The
      ---Western text, even though fragmentary and scattered, still
      ---seems to be quite clearly divided into European and African
      ---forms. The local text of Alexandria can be seen not only in
      ---the Greek MSS in varying degrees, but also in the national
      ---Coptic texts of that locality; the "Caesarean", though also
      ---questionable in nature and essence, still seems to stand
      ---midway between the Alexandrian and Byzantine texts, and does
      ---seem, from patristic evidence, to have an locale of origin in
      ---and around Palestine, with possible spreading from there into
      ---the Georgian and Armenian versions. Even some of the
      ---Byzantine sub-families likely reflect texts current in a
      ---given locality, and that possibly a monastery or even

      ---> Looking at the statistics for collections in the (old)
      ---Kurzggefasste Liste > and in Aland/Aland, it would appear that
      ---40% are in Greece and nearby > areas -- areas which would
      ---belong to the Patriarchy of Constantinople. > Another 40+% are
      ---in libraries to which they must have been moved (e.g. >
      ---London, Oxford, Ann Arbor). Most of the rest are either at
      ---Rome or > Sinai. So how can we claim to know *anything* about
      ---the local text > of, say, North Africa (except from patristic

      ---I'm not sure what your point is here: the present localities
      ---of MSS have no bearing on the "local text" question, since
      ---that goes back to the venues wherein they were originally
      ---copied, and the resultant textual alignments which can be
      ---discerned among the existing MSS. Of course, if you are
      ---starting from scratch and reject the alignments, then nothing
      ---is certain.
      ---> >This is why I supplement the Colwell rule with Griffith's
      ---"Near-Neighbor > >Clusters" concept. I find that approach
      ---works admirably well, and allows > >a MS like 424 to be
      ---"generally" Byzantine, but equally part of a > >distinctive
      ---fam.1739 (and there is no reason why both cannot be true, >
      --->just as with Family Pi).
      ---> That sounds reasonable -- though I do not know the work you
      ---mention. > Can you tell me was it published? (Thanks in

      ---John G. Griffith, "Numerical Taxonomy and Some Primary MSS of
      ---the Gospels," JTS, n.s. 41(?) 1969. Not completely sure of
      ---the reference; that was off the top of my head, but the
      ---article is definitely in the fall 1969 fascicle.

      ---> It sounds like you and I may suffer from the same degree of
      ---frustration, > even if for wholly different reasons. As long
      ---ago as Lake, people were > calling Westcott-Hort a "failure,"
      ---yet no one has proposed a substitute.

      ---Excuse me? I thought _I_ had done that *;-) Maybe you mean
      ---"within the modern eclectic fold"?

      ---> Why do you think I started this discussion? Remember, I was
      ---offering a > deliberate unorthodoxy -- even though I was not
      ---sure it was true.

      ---I recall that quite well. I also offer a heterodoxy to the
      ---common eclectic position, though I am more convinced that my
      ---model has validity.
      ---> In saying this, I can only think of the history of science.
      ---At (admittedly > irregular) intervals something comes along
      ---and completely overturns > everything. On that analogy,
      ---textual criticism is overdue for a revolution.

      ---On this I fully concur.

      ---Maurice A. Robinson, Ph.D. Assoc. Prof./Greek and
      ---New Testament Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary
      ---Wake Forest, North Carolina

      Respond to Jim at the following address

    • Julian Goldberg
      The complete Hebrew Scriptures (Hebrew Bible) or TANAKH (Torah-Law, Neviim-Prophets, Ketuvim-Writings) based on the Masoretic Hebrew text with vowels and
      Message 1714 of 1714 , Feb 4, 1997
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