Newbie looking for some Textual Criticism help.

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Robert Pavich | Forum Activity | Posted: Mon, Jul 11 2011 8:20 AM

I'm researching some differences between the KJV and the more modern versions and I'm trying to get a handle on the manuscript evidence.

I've got Metzgers Textual Commentary that is pithy on the passage I have started with (Luke 9:49-56) and I have the SBL apparatus ( But I don't know how to make use of it) and the Tichendorf apparatus.(But I can't read it)

I guess my difficulty comes in what I want to know vs what resources I have.

I'm sort of looking for the list of manuscripts that have a certain reading....is there a resource that plainly lists this?

I'd like to know (to start) What manuscripts have what parts of Luke 9:55b (as in the KJV) and what manuscripts don't.

 

If someone could help, that would be great.

Robert Pavich

For help go to the Wiki: http://wiki.logos.com/Table_of_Contents__

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davidphillips | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 8:58 AM

Bob,

I'm not great with Textual Criticism, but hopefully this will help:

What you're asking for is found in the textual apparatus of a critical edition of the GNT (Na27, UBS4). The SBL apparatus doesn't function in quite the same way, as it is concerned with listing the differences between a set of specific texts, not addressing manuscript evidence.

As you mentioned the problem with Tischendorf is that the front matter that explains how to use the appartatus is all in Latin. Sad

You could buy the basic SESB package (http://www.logos.com/product/8484/stuttgart-electronic-study-bible), which would give you access to the NA27 critical apparatus and the explanatory notes on how to read it, but that's not a cheap investment.

Another way to examine the evidence, at least in part, is through the use of Comfort and Barrett's "The text of the Earliest Greek New Testament Greek Manuscripts" if you have it. This just contains papyri however, and won't give you a full picture of manuscript evidence. However, you can set up a collection featuring these manuscripts, then use the Text Comparison tool to view which manuscripts contain the passage you're interested in.

Posts 11306
Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 9:01 AM

It's sometimes helpful to view your NET-Notes resource as the equivalent to an apparatus (vs simply hover your mouse). In this specific instance, the Notes provide a more 'english-y' explanation concerning the manuscript agreement / disagreements.

The only real way to deal with the manuscripts themselves is to 'read-up' on the various theoretical families or groups, which then gives you a better idea of what's going on. It's fascinating.

I'm presently reading 'The Text of the New Testament in Contemporary Research' which Matthew 'highly recommended' (joking) due to Bart Ehrman's involvement (the resource celebrated Metzger's 80th birthday). But it has a good series of introductory discussions of the various manuscripts by various current researchers.

A resource not offered by Logos but VERY good is the Text of the Greek New Testament by the Alands. Considerable amount of detail and also manuscript illustrations to demonstrate the points.

"God will save his fallen angels and their broken wings He'll mend."

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Robert Pavich | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 9:32 AM

Thank you both for your suggestions...

 

Can someone give me a screen shot of the SESB as it pertains to this particular variant? I'd had to drop some huge coin only to be disappointed for some reason....

 

bob

Robert Pavich

For help go to the Wiki: http://wiki.logos.com/Table_of_Contents__

Posts 11306
Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 9:52 AM

On the wiki, the various apparatus resources are discussed with screen shots: http://wiki.logos.com/Resource_Review

Here's the specific passage for NA27 (USB4 is a mouseover on SESB)

w

 

"God will save his fallen angels and their broken wings He'll mend."

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Rick Brannan (Faithlife) | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 10:23 AM

Hi Bob.

Unfortunately, there's no silver bullet on this issue. The NA apparatus lists a whole lot of information, but it is deeply abbreviated (and even it is not comprehensive). To be able to read it one almost needs to learn a new language, not to mention have internalized gobs of data about each manuscript, its tendencies, its knowable history, and such. It's like telling someone to "just go to the library" to learn art history. Surely you can, and once you've got enough information assimilated the library (even better, a museum) is a helpful source. But if you don't know Picasso from Monet from Rembrandt from Warhol, digging for art history in the library may not be the best way to do it.

So, some initial hints:

First, commentaries like ICC and WBC will almost always discuss the major variants, especially between the TR and more modern editions of the Greek NT. I'm less familiar with NICNT, but think it does handle major variations (at least in some vols). Check the references you're studying in those commentaries (if you have them). NIGTC is less about variants and more about the meaning/grammar. Hermeneia does discuss some variants, but in my experience they're more about external citations, form criticism, and other external influences on the development of the text (at least the volumes I've used in the past). As others mentioned, the NET Notes are good, as is Metzger (though he's more documentary and less of a commentator/explainer). You may also want to check Roger Omanson's Textual Guide to the Greek NT, which is essentially a rewrite of Metzger's TCGNT geared specifically to explain variations to translators who have an understanding of Greek, but not of textual criticism.

Second, while the SBL apparatus does only list editions, it lists each edition comprehensively. One of the editions it lists is Maurice Robinson's edition of the Byzantine text (abbreviated 'RP', should be easy for you to remember!). While it is not exactly like the edition the KJV is based on, it shares a lot with that edition as they have the same heritage so it can be used to isolate where differences occur. Searching the SBL Apparatus for a string like negapp:RP AND (posapp:NIV OR posapp:NA27) (where 'negapp' means 'negative apparatus' [disagrees w/SBLGNT] and 'posapp' means 'positive apparatus' [agrees w/SBLGNT]) should provide a lengthy list of where Robinson's Byzantine (RP) differs from either NIV or NA27. You could do the search more simply like negapp:RP. You could even turn that search into a visual filter to make it easier to see in the future.

Third, more important than finding the manuscript differences is developing an understanding of how to evaluate differences between manuscripts. This is where the art and science of textual criticism meet. One good resource is Ehrman & Holmes "The Text of the New Testament in Contemporary Research: Essays on the Status Quaestionis" There are excellent articles detailing types of MSS (papyrus, uncial/majuscule, minuscule, lectionaries), editions of the NT (Syriac, Latin, Coptic, etc.), Patristic Witnesses, and a good collection of articles on method. It's not just taking the oldest, or taking the "most difficult", or the "shortest", or the most common or most well distributed reading; it is an art of balancing all of those principles (not rules, as they're commonly called) and understanding the present reading being examined. That's why I point to the critical commentaries first -- they typically do this, and while you may not agree with their take on a particular reading, what you begin to see is how they use the evidence to arrive at their conclusion.

Fourth, know that most of the variations between the Greek text that underlies the KJV NT and the Greek texts that underlie most translations today are overall negligible. In the gospels, at least, several of the variations are where the TR has a name or pronoun explicit that is in the UBS/NA/etc. implicit. In such cases (warning, my opinion) the TR many times is clarifying and making explicit (so, supplying "Jesus" instead of the implicit "He") what the critical edition leaves implicit (either with a pronoun or with the person/number of the verb).

Fifth, don't discount the knowledge of Greek grammar and syntax one must have. I learned a lot from working with Michael Holmes on the SBLGNT. The basic principle I take from that is to seek the reading that best explains the others. It might not be the most popular, or the oldest. It could be based on a point of grammar, or distribution of evidence, or scribal method, or any number of things. But knowledge of grammar (why would a future be better than an aorist here?) plays a big role.

Bottom line: Before you start to go too far in a hunt for manuscript evidence (which is a great thing to do) begin to develop your own ideas/methodology/whatever to evaluate those differences. This is a bit symbiotic -- you can't practice/develop a method without data. But I think the background reading and study is the place to start, not the manuscript differences themselves. Then read through some commentary in WBC or ICC or NICNT to see how they handle the variation, and how they explain it. Interact with it. Do you agree with them, or disagree? Why? Doing this will check your instincts, give you an understanding, and help you when you are examining variations that aren't discussed in a commentary you might have access to.

Rick Brannan
Data Wrangler, Faithlife
My books in print

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David Ames | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 11:01 AM

DMB:
  It's sometimes helpful to view your NET-Notes resource as the equivalent to an apparatus

Textual Criticism – was it added or dropped and how much do you trust the person that told you so? 

But the poster that pointed out the NET was right on!

182 182 tc Most mss, especially the later ones (A C D W
Θ Ψ f1, 13 33 M it), read here “as also Elijah did,” making the allusion to 2 Kgs 1:10, 12, 14 more explicit. The shorter reading has better and earlier support (P45, 75 א B L Ξ 579 700* 1241 pc lat sa). It is difficult to explain how the shorter reading could have arisen from the longer, especially since it is well represented early on. However, the longer reading looks to have been a marginal note originally, incorporated into the text of Luke by early scribes.
sn An allusion to 2 Kgs 1:10, 12, 14.


184 184 tc Many mss (Drinks K
Γ Θ f1, 13 [579] 700 2542 pm it) have at the end of the verse (with slight variations) “and he said, ‘You do not know what sort of spirit you are of, for the Son of Man did not come to destroy people’s lives, but to save [them].’” This variant is clearly secondary, as it gives some content to the rebuke. Further, it is difficult to explain how such rich material would have been omitted by the rest of the witnesses, including the earliest and best mss.

Biblical Studies Press, The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible, Lk 9:54–56 (Biblical Studies Press, 2006; 2006)

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Robert Pavich | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 11:49 AM

How in the WORLD did I miss the net notes on this????

Thank you very much for posting that.....arggg....

Robert Pavich

For help go to the Wiki: http://wiki.logos.com/Table_of_Contents__

Posts 4508
Robert Pavich | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 11:50 AM

Rick,

thanks also...that will help me alot also...

Robert Pavich

For help go to the Wiki: http://wiki.logos.com/Table_of_Contents__

Posts 218
John Nerdue | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 11:51 AM

Another resource is the "Textual Guide To The Greek New Testament" By Roger L. Omanson. This is based on Metzger's commentary on the Greek New Testament but revised a bit and changed. I use both of these along with other resources.

See my Layouts below.

Also two resources that are not in Logos but are very helpful are:

1) "New Testament Text and Translation Commentary" by Philip W. Comfort

2) "New Testament Greek Manuscripts: Variant readings arranged in horizontal lines against Codex Vaticanus" by Reuben Swanson

We really do need these in Logos.

 

Posts 4508
Robert Pavich | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 12:05 PM

James Chaisson:
"Textual Guide To The Greek New Testament" By Roger L. Omanson. T

 

Where did you find that? I looked on the website

Robert Pavich

For help go to the Wiki: http://wiki.logos.com/Table_of_Contents__

Posts 4508
Robert Pavich | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 12:06 PM

James Chaisson:
1) "New Testament Text and Translation Commentary" by Philip W. Comfort
James Chaisson:
2) "New Testament Greek Manuscripts: Variant readings arranged in horizontal lines against Codex Vaticanus" by Reuben Swanson

 

both would be very helpful to me...

Robert Pavich

For help go to the Wiki: http://wiki.logos.com/Table_of_Contents__

Posts 218
John Nerdue | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 12:17 PM

Robert Pavich:

James Chaisson:
"Textual Guide To The Greek New Testament" By Roger L. Omanson. T

 

Where did you find that? I looked on the website

I thought I got it from Logos as a single book add on but after looking myself I noticed it's part of the SESB Collection

Stuttgart Electronic Study Bible (SESB), Version 3.0 (52 vols.)

http://www.logos.com/product/5181/stuttgart-electronic-study-bible

Very expensive but worth getting if textual critical work is important to you.

 

Posts 11306
Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 12:35 PM

I suppose 'expensive' is relative to everyone's individual pocketbook. However the Logos edition of SESB in my mind is quite affordable ( http://www.logos.com/product/8484/stuttgart-electronic-study-bible ).

It doesn't have Omanson but personally I don't see him as that good. His entries match Metzger one-for-one and primarily add for translators (similar to the USB4 apparatus). His opinions sometimes surprise me, since periodically they don't match Metzger and I wonder whether Bruce agreed.

 

"God will save his fallen angels and their broken wings He'll mend."

Posts 218
John Nerdue | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 3:00 PM

DMB:
personally I don't see him as that good. His entries match Metzger one-for-one and primarily add for translators (similar to the USB4 apparatus). His opinions sometimes surprise me, since periodically they don't match Metzger and I wonder whether Bruce agreed.

Yeah that’s why I use him along with Metzger and others. I want to know other opinions and views. I don’t think Metzger is perfect in all his conclusions and shouldn’t be questioned.

And I think you are right when it comes to expense (one man thinks it high another thinks it’s not) but for me the price tag on the SESB is expensive but I sprang for it because I thought it was worth having. I didn’t want to settle for the less expensive one because I wanted all the text and apparatuses.

 

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Keep Smiling 4 Jesus :) | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 3:29 PM

Wonder about Logos plans for SESB 4 ? remember reading about release in November => SESB 4????

Keep Smiling Smile

Posts 11306
Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 3:44 PM

"God will save his fallen angels and their broken wings He'll mend."

Posts 2212
Damian McGrath | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 6:39 PM

Robert,

 

Another "not in Logos" resource of great value is Wieland Willker's text critical commentary. It can be found here: http://www-user.uni-bremen.de/~wie/TCG/index.html

Posts 4508
Robert Pavich | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 6:44 PM

Damian McGrath:

Robert,

 

Another "not in Logos" resource of great value is Wieland Willker's text critical commentary. It can be found here: http://www-user.uni-bremen.de/~wie/TCG/index.html

 

Thanks Damain! That looks like it will be really helpful to me at my baby-stage.

 

Robert Pavich

For help go to the Wiki: http://wiki.logos.com/Table_of_Contents__

Posts 468
BKMitchell | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 11 2011 9:05 PM

SESB 4.0! Yes, we can and yes you all should!

And, I am still smiling Smile

 

DMB:

 

חַפְּשׂוּ בַּתּוֹרָה הֵיטֵב וְאַל תִּסְתַּמְּכוּ עַל דְּבָרַי

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