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Announcement - the Annotated GUAM is Online

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  • James Snapp, Jr.
    Dear Wieland and friends: I am pleased to announce that the annotated Greek Uncial of Mark is now online in working order. (Some adjustments will hopefully be
    Message 1 of 11 , May 1 6:27 PM
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      Dear Wieland and friends:

      I am pleased to announce that the annotated Greek Uncial of Mark is
      now online in working order. (Some adjustments will hopefully be
      made to correct typographical errors and improve the formatting, but
      the project is essentially completed.) The annotated GUAM includes a
      brief Introduction, an independently compiled Greek text of the
      Gospel of Mark presented in an uncial font with contracted nomina
      sacra and with color-coding to indicate the text-type of variant-
      readings, and annotations explaining text-critical decisions (from an
      eclectic approach + the premise that the Byzantine Text is a
      stratified text with a non-Alexandran, non-Western strata in the
      second century), plus other information (such as most umlaut-
      occurrences and fluctuations in the N-A text), plus representations
      of the chapter-divisions in Vaticanus and the standard Byzantine
      lection-divisions.

      Ben C. Smith graciously hosts the online presentation of the GUAM at

      http://www.textexcavation.com/marcanarchetype.html

      Yours in Christ,

      James Snapp, Jr.
      Minister, Curtisville Christian Church
      Tipton, Indiana (USA)
      www.curtisvillechristian.org
    • Philip
      Dear All, I am of the unlearned opinion that the TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the MT seems to be more reliable and less susceptible to errors than the TRANSMISSION
      Message 2 of 11 , May 3 11:02 AM
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        Dear All,
         
        I am of the unlearned opinion that the TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the MT seems to be more reliable and less susceptible to errors than the TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the LXX, because of the strict rules of copying that the MT scribes employed as compared to the varying copy styles of the LXX.
         
        What do you think?
         
        Best regards.
         
        Philip Engmann


        Ahhh...imagining that irresistible "new car" smell?
        Check out new cars at Yahoo! Autos.
      • Richard J. Saley
        Philip There s over a millenium between the beginning translation of the Hebrew Bible into Greek (ca. 280 BCE) and the work of the Masortes (9th-10th centuries
        Message 3 of 11 , May 5 11:05 AM
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          Philip

          There's over a millenium between the beginning translation of the Hebrew Bible
          into Greek (ca. 280 BCE) and the work of the Masortes (9th-10th centuries
          C.E.).

          Cheers,
          Dick Saley

          Quoting Philip <philipengmann@...>:

          > Dear All,
          >
          > I am of the unlearned opinion that the TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the MT seems
          > to be more reliable and less susceptible to errors than the TRANSMISSION
          > HISTORY of the LXX, because of the strict rules of copying that the MT
          > scribes employed as compared to the varying copy styles of the LXX.
          >
          > What do you think?
          >
          > Best regards.
          >
          > Philip Engmann
          >
          >
          > ---------------------------------
          > Ahhh...imagining that irresistible "new car" smell?
          > Check outnew cars at Yahoo! Autos.


          <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
          Richard J. Saley, Ph.D.
          Lecturer on the Ancient Near East
          Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations
          Harvard University
          Six Divinity Avenue
          Cambridge, MA 02138-2020 USA
          Tel: 617-495-4239
          Fax: 617-496-8904
          <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
        • Larry G. Overton
          Dick, I believe your statement needs clarification. Your reference to the work of the Masortes [sic] (9th-10th centuries C.E.) is not altogether clear. If by
          Message 4 of 11 , May 6 1:34 PM
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            Dick,

            I believe your statement needs clarification. Your reference to "the
            work of the Masortes [sic] (9th-10th centuries C.E.)" is not
            altogether clear. If by this you mean the dates of the oldest extant
            MSS of the Masoretic Text (e.g., the Aleppo Codex), then I have no
            argument with your comment itself.

            However, if I have interpreted your comment correctly, then I must
            say that I fail to see how the fact of "the beginning translation of
            the Hebrew Bible into Greek" occurring many centuries before the
            dates of the oldest extant MSS of the Masoretic Text actually
            addresses the issue at hand. The question raised by Philip concerns
            transmissional reliability, or, in his words, "the TRANSMISSION
            HISTORY of the MT seems to be more reliable and less susceptible to
            errors than the TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the LXX" (emphasis his).

            In fact, in that context, my first inclination when reading your
            statement about "the work of the Masortes" was to interpret your
            words as a comment meant to limit the work of the Masoretes to 9th
            and 10th centuries AD. Of course, such was not the case, and upon
            reflection I don't think that was the message you were trying to
            convey.

            Would you please elaborate on your previous comment for us?

            Larry G. Overton
          • Viktor Golinets
            Dear Philip, to compare the transmission history of MT with the transmission history of LXX is not an easy venture. We don’t have factual evidence for
            Message 5 of 11 , May 9 1:31 AM
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              Dear Philip,
               
              to compare the transmission history of MT with the transmission history of LXX is not an easy venture.
              We don’t have factual evidence for scribal practice in Hebrew manuscripts during the transmission period of MT between first and 9th century CE. We know what Talmud says about how to copy the Bible but we can hardly compare these prescriptions with the manuscripts. The problem is that we have only few fragmentary manuscripts and apparently only from the end of the mentioned period. These are the Cairo genizah manuscripts which along with being fragmentary are hard to date and – even worse – are hard to access. But they should be studied anew on a big scale. (I would appreciate if somebody would do it. I want to do it one day.) Then apart from gaining other important insights we would have factual basis to compare the transmission history of MT with the transmission history of LXX.
              If one looks into works of Kennicott and De Rossi who have collected variants from the Hebrew MSS of the period 10th to14th centuries, one finds all types of clerical errors that one face in other textual traditions: spelling blunders, grammatical errors, ditto- and haplography, metathesis of words, omissions, harmonisations, conflation of similar texts to pseudo texts and so on. I guess that if you would compare the transmission history of these late manuscripts of MT with the transmission history of LXX you would find a lot of similarities.


              Viktor Golinets, M.A.

              Altorientalisches Institut
              Universität Leipzig

              Institut für Semitistik
              Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, München


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            • Ted Clore
              Viktor, If you don t mind could you reference this please. I have an interest in an accepted transmission process and have not read this. Thank you, Ted
              Message 6 of 11 , May 9 8:12 AM
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                Viktor,

                If you don't mind could you reference this please. I have an interest in an
                "accepted" transmission process and have not read this.

                Thank you,
                Ted Clore

                >We know what Talmud says about how to copy the Bible but we can hardly
                >compare these prescriptions with the manuscripts.

                >Viktor Golinets, M.A.
              • Richard J. Saley
                Dear Larry, Whoops, you are absolutely right! In my haste not only did I misinterpret Philip s question, but I misstated the dates for the Masoretes and, for
                Message 7 of 11 , May 9 11:27 AM
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                  Dear Larry,

                  Whoops, you are absolutely right! In my haste not only did I misinterpret
                  Philip's question, but I misstated the dates for the Masoretes and, for good
                  measure, left out the first 'e' in the word 'Masortes'. (You might say, I'm
                  left with 'gg' on my face!) Instead of 9th-10th centuries CE I should have
                  given 7th-11th centuries CE--with the 10th being the most important with the
                  work of the Ben Asher family--as the dates for the main work of the Masoretes.

                  But to get to the main point of Philip's question, as properly understood,
                  Viktor Golinets, in a response subsequent to both mine and yours, has sketched
                  out the difficulties attendant to ascertaining evidence of Hebrew scribal
                  practice between the 1st century CE (presumably the time of the consonantal
                  stabilization of the text of the Hebrew Bible) and the 9th century CE. That
                  having been acknowledged, there is little doubt--in my mind, anyway--that the
                  TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the MT was more reliable and less susceptible to errors
                  than the TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the SEPTUAGINT. That is because the Septuagint
                  as it has been handed down to us is a mixture of text-types: the Old Greek (the
                  'original' translation in the 3rd-2nd centuries BCE); kaige Greek (the Old Greek
                  revised toward the developing pre-/proto-Masoretic text in the mid to late first
                  century BCE); Hexaplaric revisions to the Greek (based on the fifth column of
                  Origen's mid-third century CE Hexapla) to more fully align it with the finally
                  fixed Hebrew text; and even the literalistic work of the second century CE
                  Aquila which might be found in certain books of the Septuagint. To this needs
                  to be added the Lucianic edition of the Septuagint as it is increasingly
                  becoming defined which points in many instances to readings closer to the Old
                  Greek than found in any other Greek source, while evidencing a substratum of
                  revisions unique to that tradition.

                  To put it differently, the Septuagint as we have it is anything but a monolithic
                  whole, and the 'original' Old Greek has in many, many places been revised out of
                  existence or simply replaced by a later textual tradition. Often this has been
                  intentional by tradents to bring the Greek text closer to the fully developed
                  Hebrew. In other cases it has been accidental, not only the result of the types
                  of errors that all scribes make, but in the larger mixing of text-types. The
                  parade example of the latter may be found in the Septuagint text of
                  Samuel-Kings (1-4 Reigns) where 1Sam 1:1-2Sam 11:1 and 1Kgs 2:12-21:43 are Old
                  Greek in our best manuscripts while 2Sam 11:2-1Kgs 2:11 and 1Kgs 22:1-2Kgs
                  25:30 are kaige.

                  I hope this has helped clear up the confusion caused by my first response. In
                  the process I have taken a vow never to respond to a list while taking a quick
                  break from working in the garden on a weekend.

                  Cheers,
                  Dick Saley

                  Quoting "Larry G. Overton" <LGO@...>:

                  > Dick,
                  >
                  > I believe your statement needs clarification. Your reference to "the
                  > work of the Masortes [sic] (9th-10th centuries C.E.)" is not
                  > altogether clear. If by this you mean the dates of the oldest extant
                  > MSS of the Masoretic Text (e.g., the Aleppo Codex), then I have no
                  > argument with your comment itself.
                  >
                  > However, if I have interpreted your comment correctly, then I must
                  > say that I fail to see how the fact of "the beginning translation of
                  > the Hebrew Bible into Greek" occurring many centuries before the
                  > dates of the oldest extant MSS of the Masoretic Text actually
                  > addresses the issue at hand. The question raised by Philip concerns
                  > transmissional reliability, or, in his words, "the TRANSMISSION
                  > HISTORY of the MT seems to be more reliable and less susceptible to
                  > errors than the TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the LXX" (emphasis his).
                  >
                  > In fact, in that context, my first inclination when reading your
                  > statement about "the work of the Masortes" was to interpret your
                  > words as a comment meant to limit the work of the Masoretes to 9th
                  > and 10th centuries AD. Of course, such was not the case, and upon
                  > reflection I don't think that was the message you were trying to
                  > convey.
                  >
                  > Would you please elaborate on your previous comment for us?
                  >
                  > Larry G. Overton
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > Yahoo! Groups Links
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >


                  <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
                  Richard J. Saley, Ph.D.
                  Lecturer on the Ancient Near East
                  Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations
                  Harvard University
                  Six Divinity Avenue
                  Cambridge, MA 02138-2020 USA
                  Tel: 617-495-4239
                  Fax: 617-496-8904
                  <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
                • Larry Overton
                  Well said, Dick. Continuing this discussion regarding the reliability of the transmission history of the Masoretic text, I acknowledge that which Viktor
                  Message 8 of 11 , May 12 10:02 PM
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                    Well said, Dick.

                     

                    Continuing this discussion regarding the reliability of the transmission history of the Masoretic text, I acknowledge that which Viktor pointed out and you reiterated, namely, the dearth of witnesses to the Masoretic text prior to the ninth century. However, it is my impression that evidence for the text type that came to be identified with the work of the Masoretes is to be found well before their time.

                     

                    For instance, it has long been my understanding that some of the scrolls from the caves at Qumran exhibit a text that is essentially in agreement with the Masoretic text. I have read others who have maintained this position, and from what I have read of _The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible_ (Abegg, Flint & Ulrich), this seems to be the case.

                     

                    I would appreciate hearing from list members on this point.

                     

                    Larry G. Overton

                     

                     


                    From: Richard J. Saley [mailto:saley@...]
                    Sent: Wednesday, May 09, 2007 1:27 PM
                    To: textualcriticism@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: Re: [textualcriticism] RELIABLE TRANSMISSION HISTORY; LXX Versus MT

                     

                    Dear Larry,

                    Whoops, you are absolutely right! In my haste not only did I misinterpret
                    Philip's question, but I misstated the dates for the Masoretes and, for good
                    measure, left out the first 'e' in the word 'Masortes'. (You might say, I'm
                    left with 'gg' on my face!) Instead of 9th-10th centuries CE I should have
                    given 7th-11th centuries CE--with the 10th being the most important with the
                    work of the Ben Asher family--as the dates for the main work of the Masoretes.

                    But to get to the main point of Philip's question, as properly understood,
                    Viktor Golinets, in a response subsequent to both mine and yours, has sketched
                    out the difficulties attendant to ascertaining evidence of Hebrew scribal
                    practice between the 1st century CE (presumably the time of the consonantal
                    stabilization of the text of the Hebrew Bible) and the 9th century CE. That
                    having been acknowledged, there is little doubt--in my mind, anyway--that the
                    TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the MT was more reliable and less susceptible to errors
                    than the TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the SEPTUAGINT. That is because the Septuagint
                    as it has been handed down to us is a mixture of text-types: the Old Greek (the
                    'original' translation in the 3rd-2nd centuries BCE); kaige Greek (the Old Greek
                    revised toward the developing pre-/proto-Masoreti c text in the mid to late first
                    century BCE); Hexaplaric revisions to the Greek (based on the fifth column of
                    Origen's mid-third century CE Hexapla) to more fully align it with the finally
                    fixed Hebrew text; and even the literalistic work of the second century CE
                    Aquila which might be found in certain books of the Septuagint. To this needs
                    to be added the Lucianic edition of the Septuagint as it is increasingly
                    becoming defined which points in many instances to readings closer to the Old
                    Greek than found in any other Greek source, while evidencing a substratum of
                    revisions unique to that tradition.

                    To put it differently, the Septuagint as we have it is anything but a monolithic
                    whole, and the 'original' Old Greek has in many, many places been revised out of
                    existence or simply replaced by a later textual tradition. Often this has been
                    intentional by tradents to bring the Greek text closer to the fully developed
                    Hebrew. In other cases it has been accidental, not only the result of the types
                    of errors that all scribes make, but in the larger mixing of text-types. The
                    parade example of the latter may be found in the Septuagint text of
                    Samuel-Kings (1-4 Reigns) where 1Sam 1:1-2Sam 11:1 and 1Kgs 2:12-21:43 are Old
                    Greek in our best manuscripts while 2Sam 11:2-1Kgs 2:11 and 1Kgs 22:1-2Kgs
                    25:30 are kaige.

                    I hope this has helped clear up the confusion caused by my first response. In
                    the process I have taken a vow never to respond to a list while taking a quick
                    break from working in the garden on a weekend.

                    Cheers,
                    Dick Saley

                    Quoting "Larry G. Overton" <LGO@LarryOverton. com>:

                    > Dick,
                    >
                    > I believe your statement needs clarification. Your reference to "the
                    > work of the Masortes [sic] (9th-10th centuries C.E.)" is not
                    > altogether clear. If by this you mean the dates of the oldest extant
                    > MSS of the Masoretic Text (e.g., the Aleppo Codex), then I have no
                    > argument with your comment itself.
                    >
                    > However, if I have interpreted your comment correctly, then I must
                    > say that I fail to see how the fact of "the beginning translation of
                    > the Hebrew Bible into Greek" occurring many centuries before the
                    > dates of the oldest extant MSS of the Masoretic Text actually
                    > addresses the issue at hand. The question raised by Philip concerns
                    > transmissional reliability, or, in his words, "the TRANSMISSION
                    > HISTORY of the MT seems to be more reliable and less susceptible to
                    > errors than the TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the LXX" (emphasis his).
                    >
                    > In fact, in that context, my first inclination when reading your
                    > statement about "the work of the Masortes" was to interpret your
                    > words as a comment meant to limit the work of the Masoretes to 9th
                    > and 10th centuries AD. Of course, such was not the case, and upon
                    > reflection I don't think that was the message you were trying to
                    > convey.
                    >
                    > Would you please elaborate on your previous comment for us?
                    >
                    > Larry G. Overton
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Yahoo! Groups Links
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >

                    <<<<<<<<<<<< <<<<<<<>> >>>>>>>>> >>>>>>>>
                    Richard J. Saley, Ph.D.
                    Lecturer on the Ancient Near East
                    Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations
                    Harvard University
                    Six Divinity Avenue
                    Cambridge, MA 02138-2020 USA
                    Tel: 617-495-4239
                    Fax: 617-496-8904
                    <<<<<<<<<<<< <<<<<<<>> >>>>>>>>> >>>>>>>>

                  • Viktor Golinets
                    Dear Ted, you find a lot of information pertaining to this topic together with Talmud and bibliographical references in the book of E. Tov, Textual Criticism
                    Message 9 of 11 , May 13 12:41 PM
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                      Dear Ted,
                       
                      you find a lot of information pertaining to this topic together with Talmud and bibliographical references in the book of E. Tov, Textual Criticism of the Hebrew Bible ( Minneapolis : Fortress Press 1992), 4th chapter, sections A and B. I have only the German version of the book at hand so I can not tell the pages.
                       
                      Victor


                      Ted Clore <tedclore@...> schrieb:
                      Viktor,

                      If you don't mind could you reference this please. I have an interest in an
                      "accepted" transmission process and have not read this.

                      Thank you,
                      Ted Clore

                      >We know what Talmud says about how to copy the Bible but we can hardly
                      >compare these prescriptions with the manuscripts.

                      >Viktor Golinets, M.A.



                      Yahoo! Clever - Der einfachste Weg, Fragen zu stellen und Wissenswertes mit Anderen zu teilen.

                    • Richard J. Saley
                      Hello, again, Larry, Your understanding is indeed correct that some of the scrolls from the caves at Qumran exhibit a text that is essentially in agreement
                      Message 10 of 11 , May 15 2:45 PM
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                        Hello, again, Larry,

                        Your understanding is indeed correct that some of the scrolls from the caves at
                        Qumran exhibit a text that is essentially in agreement with the Masoretic text.
                        What is equally important, of course, is that texts of different types were
                        also found at Qumran and elsewhere in the Judaean Desert. Thus, for example,
                        the oldest text found at Qumran (ca. 250 BCE) is 4QExod-Lev-f, which is of the
                        type later found in the Samaritan Pentateuch (but not in the Masoretic Text).
                        Other Hebrew texts agree with the Septuagint against the MT: for example, in
                        that section of 4QSam-a where the Old Greek is extant, there are over 200
                        instances where 4QSam-a agrees with one or the other of the MT and the Old
                        Greek, but not both. In 2 out of every 3 of these instances 4QSam-a agrees
                        with the Old Greek against the MT.

                        There are also Hebrew text-types--for lack of a better term--at Qumran and
                        elsewhere that do not correspond to the MT, Old Greek or Samaritan texts. What
                        groups these might have belonged to is unknown to us. (The scholarly consensus
                        is that the majority of the scrolls found at Qumran were not produced there,
                        but brought from elsewhere, thus providing somewhat of a cross-section of the
                        differing types of texts found in Palestine between ca. 250 BCE and 68 CE.) The
                        overall picture gleaned, then, is one of textual fluidity and plurality prior to
                        the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in 70 CE. That calamitous event
                        brought an end once and for all to the sacrificial cultus of the biblical
                        period, leaving as its replacement synagogal prayer and the reading of the
                        biblical text. Of those worshipping groups that existed prior to 70 CE, only 3
                        continued to exist thereafter in an organized fashion: the former temple
                        (Pharisaic) establishment with its text (the pre-/proto-MT); the Samaritans
                        with their text (the Samaritan Pentateuch); and the Jewish Christian sect with
                        its text (the LXX). The other texts, devoid of a worshipping community, ceased
                        to be copied and died out, and when the consonantal text of what was to become
                        the MT was fixed in the late 1st century CE (or early 2nd century), it was not
                        necessarily the best text ever for a particular book that was chosen, but
                        rather that text that had survived.

                        Quoting Larry Overton <LGO@...>:

                        > Well said, Dick.
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Continuing this discussion regarding the reliability of the transmission
                        > history of the Masoretic text, I acknowledge that which Viktor pointed out
                        > and you reiterated, namely, the dearth of witnesses to the Masoretic text
                        > prior to the ninth century. However, it is my impression that evidence for
                        > the text type that came to be identified with the work of the Masoretes is
                        > to be found well before their time.
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > For instance, it has long been my understanding that some of the scrolls
                        > from the caves at Qumran exhibit a text that is essentially in agreement
                        > with the Masoretic text. I have read others who have maintained this
                        > position, and from what I have read of _The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible_ (Abegg,
                        > Flint & Ulrich), this seems to be the case.
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > I would appreciate hearing from list members on this point.
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Larry G. Overton


                        <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
                        Richard J. Saley, Ph.D.
                        Lecturer on the Ancient Near East
                        Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations
                        Harvard University
                        Six Divinity Avenue
                        Cambridge, MA 02138-2020 USA
                        Tel: 617-495-4239
                        Fax: 617-496-8904
                        <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
                      • Richard J. Saley
                        ... Date: Tue, 15 May 2007 17:45:56 -0400 From: Richard J. Saley Reply-To: Richard J. Saley Subject: RE:
                        Message 11 of 11 , May 21 9:55 AM
                        • 0 Attachment
                          ----- Forwarded message from "Richard J. Saley" <saley@...> -----
                          Date: Tue, 15 May 2007 17:45:56 -0400
                          From: "Richard J. Saley" <saley@...>
                          Reply-To: "Richard J. Saley" <saley@...>
                          Subject: RE: [textualcriticism] RELIABLE TRANSMISSION HISTORY; LXX Versus MT
                          To: textualcriticism@yahoogroups.com

                          It is indeed correct that some of the scrolls from the caves at
                          Qumran exhibit a text that is essentially in agreement with the Masoretic text.
                          What is equally important, of course, is that texts of different types were
                          also found at Qumran and elsewhere in the Judaean Desert. Thus, for example,
                          the oldest text found at Qumran (ca. 250 BCE) is 4QExod-Lev-f, which is of the
                          type later found in the Samaritan Pentateuch (but not in the Masoretic Text).
                          Other Hebrew texts agree with the Septuagint against the MT: for example, in
                          that section of 4QSam-a where the Old Greek is extant, there are over 200
                          instances where 4QSam-a agrees with one or the other of the MT and the Old
                          Greek, but not both. In 2 out of every 3 of these instances 4QSam-a agrees
                          with the Old Greek against the MT.

                          There are also Hebrew text-types--for lack of a better term--at Qumran and
                          elsewhere that do not correspond to the MT, Old Greek or Samaritan texts. What
                          groups these might have belonged to is unknown to us. (The scholarly consensus
                          is that the majority of the scrolls found at Qumran were not produced there,
                          but brought from elsewhere, thus providing somewhat of a cross-section of the
                          differing types of texts found in Palestine between ca. 250 BCE and 68 CE.) The
                          overall picture gleaned, then, is one of textual fluidity and plurality prior to
                          the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in 70 CE. That calamitous event
                          brought an end once and for all to the sacrificial cultus of the biblical
                          period, leaving as its replacement synagogal prayer and the reading of the
                          biblical text. Of those worshipping groups that existed prior to 70 CE, only 3
                          continued to exist thereafter in an organized fashion: the former temple
                          (Pharisaic) establishment with its text (the pre-/proto-MT); the Samaritans
                          with their text (the Samaritan Pentateuch); and the Jewish Christian sect with
                          its text (the LXX). The other texts, devoid of a worshipping community, ceased
                          to be copied and died out, and when the consonantal text of what was to become
                          the MT was fixed in the late 1st century CE (or early 2nd century), it was not
                          necessarily the best text ever for a particular book that was chosen, but
                          rather that text that had survived.

                          Quoting Larry Overton <LGO@...>:

                          > Well said, Dick.
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Continuing this discussion regarding the reliability of the transmission
                          > history of the Masoretic text, I acknowledge that which Viktor pointed out
                          > and you reiterated, namely, the dearth of witnesses to the Masoretic text
                          > prior to the ninth century. However, it is my impression that evidence for
                          > the text type that came to be identified with the work of the Masoretes is
                          > to be found well before their time.
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > For instance, it has long been my understanding that some of the scrolls
                          > from the caves at Qumran exhibit a text that is essentially in agreement
                          > with the Masoretic text. I have read others who have maintained this
                          > position, and from what I have read of _The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible_ (Abegg,
                          > Flint & Ulrich), this seems to be the case.
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > I would appreciate hearing from list members on this point.
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Larry G. Overton
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > _____
                          >
                          > From: Richard J. Saley [mailto:saley@...]
                          > Sent: Wednesday, May 09, 2007 1:27 PM
                          > To: textualcriticism@yahoogroups.com
                          > Subject: Re: [textualcriticism] RELIABLE TRANSMISSION HISTORY; LXX Versus MT
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Dear Larry,
                          >
                          > Whoops, you are absolutely right! In my haste not only did I misinterpret
                          > Philip's question, but I misstated the dates for the Masoretes and, for good
                          > measure, left out the first 'e' in the word 'Masortes'. (You might say, I'm
                          > left with 'gg' on my face!) Instead of 9th-10th centuries CE I should have
                          > given 7th-11th centuries CE--with the 10th being the most important with the
                          > work of the Ben Asher family--as the dates for the main work of the
                          > Masoretes.
                          >
                          > But to get to the main point of Philip's question, as properly understood,
                          > Viktor Golinets, in a response subsequent to both mine and yours, has
                          > sketched
                          > out the difficulties attendant to ascertaining evidence of Hebrew scribal
                          > practice between the 1st century CE (presumably the time of the consonantal
                          > stabilization of the text of the Hebrew Bible) and the 9th century CE. That
                          > having been acknowledged, there is little doubt--in my mind, anyway--that
                          > the
                          > TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the MT was more reliable and less susceptible to
                          > errors
                          > than the TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the SEPTUAGINT. That is because the
                          > Septuagint
                          > as it has been handed down to us is a mixture of text-types: the Old Greek
                          > (the
                          > 'original' translation in the 3rd-2nd centuries BCE); kaige Greek (the Old
                          > Greek
                          > revised toward the developing pre-/proto-Masoretic text in the mid to late
                          > first
                          > century BCE); Hexaplaric revisions to the Greek (based on the fifth column
                          > of
                          > Origen's mid-third century CE Hexapla) to more fully align it with the
                          > finally
                          > fixed Hebrew text; and even the literalistic work of the second century CE
                          > Aquila which might be found in certain books of the Septuagint. To this
                          > needs
                          > to be added the Lucianic edition of the Septuagint as it is increasingly
                          > becoming defined which points in many instances to readings closer to the
                          > Old
                          > Greek than found in any other Greek source, while evidencing a substratum of
                          > revisions unique to that tradition.
                          >
                          > To put it differently, the Septuagint as we have it is anything but a
                          > monolithic
                          > whole, and the 'original' Old Greek has in many, many places been revised
                          > out of
                          > existence or simply replaced by a later textual tradition. Often this has
                          > been
                          > intentional by tradents to bring the Greek text closer to the fully
                          > developed
                          > Hebrew. In other cases it has been accidental, not only the result of the
                          > types
                          > of errors that all scribes make, but in the larger mixing of text-types. The
                          > parade example of the latter may be found in the Septuagint text of
                          > Samuel-Kings (1-4 Reigns) where 1Sam 1:1-2Sam 11:1 and 1Kgs 2:12-21:43 are
                          > Old
                          > Greek in our best manuscripts while 2Sam 11:2-1Kgs 2:11 and 1Kgs 22:1-2Kgs
                          > 25:30 are kaige.
                          >
                          > I hope this has helped clear up the confusion caused by my first response.
                          > In
                          > the process I have taken a vow never to respond to a list while taking a
                          > quick
                          > break from working in the garden on a weekend.
                          >
                          > Cheers,
                          > Dick Saley
                          >
                          > Quoting "Larry G. Overton" <LGO@LarryOverton.
                          > <mailto:LGO%40LarryOverton.com> com>:
                          >
                          > > Dick,
                          > >
                          > > I believe your statement needs clarification. Your reference to "the
                          > > work of the Masortes [sic] (9th-10th centuries C.E.)" is not
                          > > altogether clear. If by this you mean the dates of the oldest extant
                          > > MSS of the Masoretic Text (e.g., the Aleppo Codex), then I have no
                          > > argument with your comment itself.
                          > >
                          > > However, if I have interpreted your comment correctly, then I must
                          > > say that I fail to see how the fact of "the beginning translation of
                          > > the Hebrew Bible into Greek" occurring many centuries before the
                          > > dates of the oldest extant MSS of the Masoretic Text actually
                          > > addresses the issue at hand. The question raised by Philip concerns
                          > > transmissional reliability, or, in his words, "the TRANSMISSION
                          > > HISTORY of the MT seems to be more reliable and less susceptible to
                          > > errors than the TRANSMISSION HISTORY of the LXX" (emphasis his).
                          > >
                          > > In fact, in that context, my first inclination when reading your
                          > > statement about "the work of the Masortes" was to interpret your
                          > > words as a comment meant to limit the work of the Masoretes to 9th
                          > > and 10th centuries AD. Of course, such was not the case, and upon
                          > > reflection I don't think that was the message you were trying to
                          > > convey.
                          > >
                          > > Would you please elaborate on your previous comment for us?
                          > >
                          > > Larry G. Overton
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > > Yahoo! Groups Links
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          > >
                          >
                          > <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
                          > Richard J. Saley, Ph.D.
                          > Lecturer on the Ancient Near East
                          > Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations
                          > Harvard University
                          > Six Divinity Avenue
                          > Cambridge, MA 02138-2020 USA
                          > Tel: 617-495-4239
                          > Fax: 617-496-8904
                          > <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >


                          <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
                          Richard J. Saley, Ph.D.
                          Lecturer on the Ancient Near East
                          Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations
                          Harvard University
                          Six Divinity Avenue
                          Cambridge, MA 02138-2020 USA
                          Tel: 617-495-4239
                          Fax: 617-496-8904
                          <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

                          ----- End forwarded message -----


                          <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
                          Richard J. Saley, Ph.D.
                          Lecturer on the Ancient Near East
                          Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations
                          Harvard University
                          Six Divinity Avenue
                          Cambridge, MA 02138-2020 USA
                          Tel: 617-495-4239
                          Fax: 617-496-8904
                          <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
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