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[textualcriticism] Inside the Box 1

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  • dagoi@aol.com
    I ve also been working on a text critical project and would appreciate some feedback. Inside the Box Preperatory Notes The Correction of errors complicates the
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 19 12:35 AM
      I've also been working on a text critical project and would appreciate some

      Inside the Box

      Preperatory Notes

      The Correction of errors complicates the textual critics task. A scribe,
      seeing the differences between two text lines might prefer an older manuscript,
      or his fanciest, or a text line he was familiar with. He might change one
      reading only, or 'correct' a few chapters. When the next guy comes to copy a new
      manuscript, he is now copying a mixed text.

      The original NT texts on papyri were in one tracate packages. The codex form
      allowed for an ever growing package that incorporated corpuses, and the
      vellum codices were the first package form to allow the space for the complete NT
      canon or even the whole Bible and other books in a complete package.

      I use the UBS2 (1968). It lists the variation points of interest to
      translators, uses a scientifically representative selection of witnesses, and givea an
      {A} to {D} indication for each variation point of the amount of certainty the
      UBS committee had for the correctness of thier choice. I also use the
      commentary for the UBS4, which in general is more certain about many of the same

      Variation readings should be given notations for the presumed roles they play
      in the variation point, such as 'O' for original, 'V' for original error, and
      'R' for a reading presumed to be a reaction to knowledge of the two readings.


      In my own studies, I give each witness a number for each variant point that
      identifies which reading that witness has according to the order the readings
      are listed in in the critical apparatus. If a witness has the reading chosen
      by the UBS2 text, then since that reading is listed first, the witness gets a
      '1' for that variant point.

      At present I have data bases (variation points against witnesses) made up for
      1Pt, 1Jn, and the first 7 chapters of Mt on an old Macintosh Microsoft Works
      program that can port over to Works 3.0, Works for Windows 3.0, etc, probably
      fairly old programs, but you're welcome to them. This allows sorting for any
      three variation points.

      Witnesses not listed at that variant point get a '0', and are not included
      when that variant point is dealt with. A number of reasons may account for a
      '0'; hiatus in the manuscript, grammatical difficulties in versions; suffice it
      to say it is not in the critical apparatus at that point.
      Setting the fingerprint results for two witnesses side by side, it is
      easy to tell, by comparing the numbers except for zeroes, where the two
      witnesses agree, and by how much.

      Some readings at a variant point will be closer to each others texts than
      others, of course, but by this method alone the comparative similarities and
      differences between the readings are not evident, as their listing in the critical
      apparatus is consistently not geared to show this either. We must refer to
      the text diagrams for this information . Perhaps an accommodation will develop
      for this later, but for now it is not imperative.

      2V diagrams

      The 2V diagrams are used with the fingerprints by considering two variant
      points and putting the sets of each combination of reading at seperate angles of
      a square.

      Considering two readings, the listing '11' is given to those witnesses having
      the same readings accepted by the UBS committee; '12' witnesses have the
      first reading the same as that accepted by the committee but have the second
      reading in their texts; '21' witnesses have the second reading for the first
      variation point, but the UBS text reading for thier second reading; and '22' has
      both readings that the UBS committee has rejected.

      The witnesses at the 11 position then, if the UBS commitee is correct in both
      variation points, will be those witnesses not involved in either error
      (though the possibility that some 'correct corrections' exist cannot be ruled out of

      If, on comparing two variation points we find a set of 11, 12, 22, then we
      can see that the second variation point is chonocologically prior to the first,
      in the same text line.
      If we find the set 11, 21, 22, then the first variation point is prior to the

      If the 11, 12, and 21 positions are filled, then we can see that the
      variation points reflect two different text lines, and we can't be sure, on this
      alone, which one is prior.

      If all of the points on the 2V square are filled, then we can be sure that
      'correction' has occured, even if the UBS selection is incorrect. Either one of
      the points has been corrected from the 22 position, or someone has made an
      incorrect decision to bo with both incorrect readings.

      Corrections Types (in this context)

      3 types of corrections to consider are 1) corrections evident in the
      manuscripts. These are flagged in the critical apparatus with superscripts to the
      manuscripts involved. 2) Reactions to the existence of two readings that make
      multiple readings (that is, more than two) for a variant point, and 3)
      corrections manifested by 2V (or 3V) analysis.
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