Thursday, September 9, 2010

Matt. 12:46-47

Matt. 12:46-47 (traditional text)


.................................................ε τι δε αυτου λαλ-
ουντος τοις οχλοις ιδου η μητηρ .....και οι αδελφοι
αυτου ειστηκεισαν εξω ζητουντες αυτω λαλησαι
ειπεν δε τις αυτω ιδου η μητηρ σου και οι αδελφοι
...σου ..εξω εστηκασιν ..ζητουντες ..σοι λαλησαι

.............................................. While he
yet talked to the people, see; his mother and his brethren
stood outside, desiring with him to speak.
Then one said unto him, see; thy mother and thy brethren
outside stand, desiring with thee
to speak

Include Verse: א(corr.a) Θ Π 0112 0250 family 1, family 13, 28 33 565 700 892 1010 1071 1079 1195 1216 1230 1242 1253 1344 1365 1546 1646 2148 2174 Byz Maj (Majority of continuous MSS) lect.-333 it-a/aur/c/d/f/ff2/g1/h/l/q Vg Syr-P/H Cop-Bo Goth Arm Eth Geo Diatessaron Origen Chrysostom

Omit: א* B L
1009 l12 it-ff1 Cop-Sa

Never could four lines of coupled pairs be more prone to a haplographic error of the first kind.   A spark from the fireplace or a sneeze may have been enough to distract the copyist's glance, and so skip two more sacred lines of text.

And the early Egyptian copyist does not disappoint. He stumbles past the second verse in his desire to get the job done and get out of the baking copying-room in 110 degree desert weather, to enjoy a well-deserved and refreshing plunge in the cool Nile waters. Whether he was subsequently eaten by a crocodile, we may never know.

If all these haplographic boners were actually Byzantine "expansions" of the text, as Hort imagined, then our frantically driven text-bloaters were the most unimaginative ad-libbers ever born, and must have had the intellects and attention-spans of 1st graders.   But then how in that case did they have the cunning to consistently disguise their work as homoioteleuton errors? Surely the theory gives these verbose,  babbling madmen far too much credit.

Hort himself dared not completely excise this verse ( Matt. 12:47 ), and Nestle and USB timidly bracket the embarrassing gaffe, (betraying the true nature of all the other errors found in Aleph and B).

Yet the Revised Standard Version, Moffat, and Goodspeed lop off the text, and send it into oblivion, hoping to be rid of yet another wordy passage.  What Alexandrian editor confronted with Matthew's stilted, redundant but faithful recitation, wouldn't pounce on a shorter text, no matter what the original cause? And modern editors naturally follow suit.

Yet if we continue this way, reinstating every omission in every
ancient manuscript, our NT would quickly become a Swiss Cheese, and be
about as readable as a Scientology lecture, or a gem from Madame

Other possible formats that are especially vulnerable to homoioteleuton are as follows:

1 comment:

  1. Go here for some good pictures of what the master-copy of the ancestor of Aleph/B might have looked like: