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Re: [textualcriticism] follow-up to: copies from a common vorlage; a fantastic (but instructive?) scenario

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  • James Miller
    ... Thank you for that advice, Tommy. I ll respond later to your specific reading suggestions. But for now, just some points of clarification. I have a
    Message 1 of 20 , May 6, 2006
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      On Sat, 29 Apr 2006, Tommy Wasserman wrote:

      > Honestly I think you need to read more background.

      Thank you for that advice, Tommy. I'll respond later to your specific reading
      suggestions. But for now, just some points of clarification. I have a feeling
      we're somehow not on the same page, and this will be an attempt to determine if
      that's the case. Imagine you are faced with the following scenario: you have a
      full Bible manuscript in which brief excerpts from various biblical books are
      included as a short separate work within the whole. Maybe something like a
      mini-lectionary--mostly OT excerpts, but a couple of NT ones as well. The
      mini-lectionary was obviously included in the initial production of the
      manuscript. This is something like the scenario on which my study focuses.
      Would the fact that the same range of text appears at two places within the
      same manuscript raise for you the expectation that the two were copied from the
      same exemplar? It did in the case of the manuscript I studied. For almost 400
      years it has been the universal working conclusion that the two ranges of text
      were copied from a common exemplar. I decided it was high time to test this
      presumption. So, I was looking for ways to either prove or disprove the
      working conclusion. In light of this, do you maintain I am going to find means
      of so proving or disproving the working conclusion in the literature you point
      out? If so, should I expect what I find there to simply augment, or rather to
      supersede, what I was able to glean from WH's approach to the matter? Please
      bear in mind that, while for others the question of familial relations between
      these texts might be of prime interest, for me it is a yes or no question of
      immediate ancestry. The two either were or were not arguably copied from the
      same exemplar. The family question is for someone else's study, not mine.

      I should also mention that my study does not really have a TC payload--other
      than pointing out the oversight TC scholars have been making regarding texts
      contained in this ms. My payload is actually a point about the history of
      worship in connection with this work. I of course realize that the scenario
      presented by this manuscript could have TC implications and that it could be
      studied and used for more properly TC ends. For example I ran across what
      appear to be a few singular readings that could be of interest to text critics,
      and some other instances in which I found a reading in Greek that previously
      seems to have had only versional support (I think they call these
      "sub-singular" in NT TC)--perhaps equally interesting. But my immediate goal
      was not text critical, so I'll either expand on those points in a subsequent
      study, or will leave that to someone else who may read it and want to explore
      those avenues.

      > referred you to in the original message, and why check out the volumes
      > on Family Pi too in the same series (by Silva Lake, J. Geerlings et
      > al.).

      I have Silva Lake's study on Family Pi, had read it previously, and have now
      reread it. I'll respond on that and the other recommended readings later.

      > See above for some examples. Check out Robert Waltz Encyclopedia, which
      > may offer additional references. Why not visit Stephen Carlson's
      > homepage, he is working with these questions concretely.

      I've known about and used Waltz's encyclopedia for a number of years now--7 or
      8 at least. I did use it to some extent as I was executing my study, but I am
      expected to use mostly dead-tree resources and must engage with
      well-established scholarship (e.g., WH) in the main. I've looked at Steven
      Carlson's page: what in specific do you refer to there? His cladistics
      approach? Nothing jumped out at me as being very relevant to my query, but
      maybe I did not look carefully enough.

      >> He's making up his own methods, Tommy. What should we do with this
      >> guy?
      >
      > Please, do not involve me in the polemic. I just gave you some helpful

      It's not a polemic, just a bit of ribbing.

      > Good luck! And note that these are just references offered for help. I
      > do not have time to discuss your methods, at this point, but I do look
      > forward to see your name on an article somewhere...

      We'll see if this work gets published. I _am_ writing an article for
      publication now, but on a quite different topic. You're likely to see that
      before anything appears regarding the study that is the subject of the present
      thread. Too bad you don't have time. I'm afraid only with time could
      productive dialogue on these issues be achieved. I always presume I could
      stand to learn something new, regardless of my assumed expertise in a given
      area: how about you?

      James
    • Tommy Wasserman
      James, ... Probably not on the same page. I haven t had time to respond in detail. My advice was very general, i.e. some bibliographic references that I
      Message 2 of 20 , May 7, 2006
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        James,

        > I have a feeling
        > we're somehow not on the same page, and this will be an attempt to
        > determine if
        > that's the case.

        Probably not on the same page. I haven't had time to respond in detail.
        My advice was very general, i.e. some bibliographic references that I
        thought might be helpful. Very good if you are already familiar with
        the relevant literature. It is just that my warning system switched on
        when you started talking about inventing your own methods...

        > full Bible manuscript in which brief excerpts from various biblical
        > books are
        > included as a short separate work within the whole. Maybe something
        > like a
        > mini-lectionary--mostly OT excerpts, but a couple of NT ones as well.
        > The
        > mini-lectionary was obviously included in the initial production of the
        > manuscript. This is something like the scenario on which my study
        > focuses.

        Interesting. I look forward to read your study. I wonder what kind of
        manuscript this is...

        > Would the fact that the same range of text appears at two places
        > within the
        > same manuscript raise for you the expectation that the two were copied
        > from the
        > same exemplar?

        Not necessarily. For example, if a scribe was to produce a commentary
        manuscript, I suppose he would normally choose an existing commentary
        manuscript as his exemplar but this is not an absolute rule. Further,
        if he did choose a commentary manuscript as exemplar the two texts
        (lemma and commentary) could still be textually different (i.e. the NT
        text included in the commentary). I still wonder what kind of
        manuscript you are studying.

        > It did in the case of the manuscript I studied. For almost 400
        > years it has been the universal working conclusion that the two ranges
        > of text
        > were copied from a common exemplar. I decided it was high time to
        > test this
        > presumption. So, I was looking for ways to either prove or disprove
        > the
        > working conclusion. In light of this, do you maintain I am going to
        > find means
        > of so proving or disproving the working conclusion in the literature
        > you point
        > out?

        Hopefully. You have two texts which, as proposed, are copied from a
        common exemplar. Then you have lots of texts to use as control
        manuscripts. If both MSS are "Byzantine" you will expect to find a very
        high degree of common variants (+90%) and you cannot tell from e.g. a
        quantitative analysis that they are close on the stemmatic level, so
        that you can show that the two are immediately related, i.e. copied
        from a common exemplar. What becomes interesting in your case is
        "Leitfehler," provided that the two texts in a first step (e.g. a
        quantitative analysis with a good number of control MSS) are shown to
        be close. Then you can look for common and peculiar errors, spelling
        and so on, and again compare with other MSS (if you have such detailed
        collations for those other MSS, that is).



        > If so, should I expect what I find there to simply augment, or rather
        > to
        > supersede, what I was able to glean from WH's approach to the matter?
        > Please
        > bear in mind that, while for others the question of familial relations
        > between
        > these texts might be of prime interest, for me it is a yes or no
        > question of
        > immediate ancestry. The two either were or were not arguably copied
        > from the
        > same exemplar. The family question is for someone else's study, not
        > mine.

        To the recommended literature, you can add Paul Maas, Textkritik, 3d
        ed. (Leipzig: Teubner, 1957),
        also available in English translation: Textual Criticism, tr. Barbara
        Flower (Oxford: Clarendon, 1958).

        > We'll see if this work gets published. I _am_ writing an article for
        > publication now, but on a quite different topic. You're likely to see
        > that
        > before anything appears regarding the study that is the subject of the
        > present
        > thread.

        Good luck again.

        > Too bad you don't have time.
        > I'm afraid only with time could
        > productive dialogue on these issues be achieved. I always presume I
        > could
        > stand to learn something new, regardless of my assumed expertise in a
        > given
        > area: how about you?

        Absolutely. Actually I have learnt a lot from this scholars on this
        list, and the previous TC-list.

        With kind regards

        Tommy Wasserman
        Centre for Theology and Religious Studies
        Lund University
        Sweden
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