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Re: [textualcriticism] Re: Vulgate text-form

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  • Larry Swain
    Apologies for the delay in responding, tis a busy time of year. ... Then you d be incorrect. ... A) Since a similar practice of translation was followed by the
    Message 1 of 24 , Sep 3, 2006
      Apologies for the delay in responding, tis a busy time of year.
      >
      >
      > ((((((((
      > that depends very much on what part of the Vulgate one is speaking
      > of. The gospels for example are more nearly a fresh translation
      > with an eye on the Old Latin versions than other parts of the Bible
      > which are hardly corrected at all (and in the case of the Apocrypha
      > which Jerome rejected, not corrected at all).
      > ))))))))
      >
      > Actually, I'd say it was the other way around.

      Then you'd be incorrect.

      > Jerome's own words described the 4 Gospels as being "revised",
      > not translated, while > he says he did a fresh translation of at
      > least parts of the > Apocrypha. Here are Jerome's own words on
      > the topic....

      A) Since a similar practice of translation was followed by the KJV
      and RSV committees, i. e. substantial revision of an existing text
      in the target language with an eye on both other, previous versions
      as well as the original, I'd say that Jerome's gospels are a translation in as much as we also call those texts translations rather than updates of Tyndale and Wycliffe.
      B) Please note what I said, are "more nearly a fresh translation than...", and certainly when one looks at Matthew and Mark in particular one sees a much more significant "overhaul" if I must avoid the word "translation" than in the latter part of Luke and John. Whereas throughout the rest of the NT books the changes, if even made by Jerome which modern scholarship on the Vulgate now seriously doubts, are sparse, and in some cases non-existant, and so match the VL texts as precisely as any copy of one text in the ancient world can match another copy. It is thus not "the other way round" which would mean that the gospels are but lightly retouched in contrast to a heavily revised remainder of the NT.

      >
      > Jerome learned a hard lesson when he did a fresh translation of
      > Jonah, and the public did not like it. He tried not to repeat that
      > mistake here.

      Interesting take here. It is generally accepted that Jerome's gospels appeared in 383 in Rome. ANd most modern scholarship believes that he undertook his translation of the OT prophets in the productive period at Bethlehem between 390-394. And usually Augustine's letter relating the story of the Tunisian bishop and his reading of Jerome's Jonah is dated 404--some 21 years after Jerome published the gospels. So I'm not sure on what basis one can make the claim that Jerome did not want to REPEAT the "mistake" (and the mistake in question according to Augustine was Jerome's choice to translate from Hebrew into Latin, rather than from LXX into Latin) he hadn't made yet and wouldn't make for nearly a decade after the appearance of the gospels and not hear about it until a decade after he made the choice to translate the prophets from Hebrew. Are you aware of evidence that he did Jonah before the gospels, and that it was ill received before his translation of the gospels?

      He knew a fresh translation might get rejected, so
      > he stuck with simply updating the Gospels.

      Which is an understatement, considering in some places he changed words that completely changed the theology of the gospel passage!

      > ...BUT...the Apocryphal books were not considered cannon, and it
      > appears that he did not feel the need for such restraint on other
      > books, for here's what he said about Tobit and Judith, he says.....

      Who says that the so-called Apocryphal books were not considered canon? Perhaps a little reading in primary and secondary literature on the canon of the Christian Old Testament in Late Antiquity is in order, but there can be no question that Jerome was an innovator in rejecting the Apocryphal books, solely on the grounds that they were not included in the Rabbinic canon, see his famous Prologus Galeatus and also Letter 53.

      I had forgotten that in 407 he had done Tobit and Judith, but he did not do the other Apocryphal books.


      Apparently, Jerome was not
      > afraid that these non-cannonical books would cause the kind of
      > uproar that his fresh translation of Jonah did, perhaps since these
      > books were not given the same weight of credibility.

      Jerome was certainly never afraid of his translations causing an uproar, he justified his choices in treatises and letters all over the place and felt no compunction to "tone it down" anywhere. See JND Kelly's too often overlooked bio of Jerome.

      Or possibly,
      > because they were not read publicly like Jonah was, or like the
      > Gospels were.

      They were. We have evidence.

      >
      >
      > And of course, even then, one could argue that he did not correctly
      > value the right texts.

      They were the texts in use at Rome at the time. Damasus and Jerome both tell us so as I recall.

      Larry Swain
      Univ. of Illinois

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    • Jovial
      ((((((((( A) Since a similar practice of translation was followed by the KJV and RSV committees, i. e. substantial revision of an existing text in the target
      Message 2 of 24 , Sep 4, 2006
        (((((((((
        A) Since a similar practice of translation was followed by the KJV
        and RSV committees, i. e. substantial revision of an existing text
        in the target language with an eye on both other, previous versions
        as well as the original, I'd say that Jerome's gospels are a translation in
        as much as we also call those texts translations rather than updates of
        Tyndale and Wycliffe.
        )))))))))

        What you're saying about the KJV is correct, which is why I would not
        consider the KJV a fresh translation either, but merely a revision of
        previous translations, much like Jerome describes the Vulgate as a revision
        of the previous Latin.

        One argument Jerome made was that he claimed he really couldn't conclude
        that differences between the Latin and Greek were necessarily Latin
        deficiencies. He also argued that perhaps the Greek scribes goofed. But he
        did seem to use the Greek as the final authority anyway. For example, he
        argued in one place that the Johanine comma was legit, but he appears to
        have left it out of the Vulgate.
      • Larry Swain
        ... It would be interesting to know how he determined what Greek manuscripts to choose (besides the oldest ) to compare the Latin with. On a related note,
        Message 3 of 24 , Sep 4, 2006
          >
          >
          > (((((((((
          > A) Since a similar practice of translation was followed by the KJV
          > and RSV committees, i. e. substantial revision of an existing text
          > in the target language with an eye on both other, previous versions
          > as well as the original, I'd say that Jerome's gospels are a translation in
          > as much as we also call those texts translations rather than updates of
          > Tyndale and Wycliffe.
          > )))))))))
          >
          > What you're saying about the KJV is correct, which is why I would not
          > consider the KJV a fresh translation either, but merely a revision of
          > previous translations, much like Jerome describes the Vulgate as a revision
          > of the previous Latin.
          >
          > One argument Jerome made was that he claimed he really couldn't conclude
          > that differences between the Latin and Greek were necessarily Latin
          > deficiencies. He also argued that perhaps the Greek scribes goofed. But he
          > did seem to use the Greek as the final authority anyway. For example, he
          > argued in one place that the Johanine comma was legit, but he appears to
          > have left it out of the Vulgate.

          It would be interesting to know how he determined what Greek manuscripts to choose (besides the "oldest") to compare the Latin with.

          On a related note, Nestle argued in a couple of places that translation choices in the gospels indicated to him the presence of multiple hands there, and that John was all but untouched.

          I haven't looked at the Comma problem in the Vulgate, what evidence is there that it wasn't in the Vulgate? It is in Codex Amiatinus, the oldest complete Vulgate mss., I didn't check Codex Fuldensis, the oldest Vulgate NT, since its gospels are a Vulgatized version of the Diatesseron in which case it wouldn't tell us one or another if the Comma was in the Vulgate. Other evidence?

          Larry Swain

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        • Daniel Buck
          ... is there that it wasn t in the Vulgate? It is in Codex Amiatinus, the oldest complete Vulgate mss., I didn t check Codex Fuldensis, the oldest Vulgate NT,
          Message 4 of 24 , Sep 7, 2006
            --- In msg #2563, "Larry Swain" wrote:

            >>I haven't looked at the Comma problem in the Vulgate, what evidence
            is there that it wasn't in the Vulgate? It is in Codex Amiatinus, the
            oldest complete Vulgate mss., I didn't check Codex Fuldensis, the
            oldest Vulgate NT, since its gospels are a Vulgatized version of the
            Diatesseron in which case it wouldn't tell us one or another if the
            Comma was in the Vulgate. <<

            You may be thinking of the Johannine Pericope, which is in the
            gospels. The Johannine Comma is 1 John 5:7/8. It is apparently not
            original to the Vulgate as it dominates the late Vulgate tradition
            only.

            Daniel Buck
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