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Volume 15 (2010)


Welcome back to TC! Biblical textual criticism is a growing field of study, more lively than ever. It deserves an up-to-date, free-access electronic journal. With our new editorial team (see the "About" page), we are determined to provide just that, maintaining the high scholarly standard that has been associated with TC since its beginning in 1996. Please come back regularly for new articles and reviews, and why not consider submitting your contributions to this SBL-affiliated journal? Previous volumes of TC will of course remain available; however we plan to introduce various enhancements such as the use of Unicode for non-Roman text.


L.W. Hurtado, Going for the Bigger Picture: Eldon Epp as Textual Critic

Abstract: Eldon Jay Epp, who turned 80 in 2010, has made numerous contributions to NT textual criticism. In this essay, the focus is on his repeated efforts to promote greater efforts toward framing a fully-informed theory and history of the early textual transmission of NT writings. At various points over the last several decades, he has drawn upon his appreciable knowledge of the history of the discipline to criticize the slow pace in these matters. He has also promoted and demonstrated study of the earliest NT papyri as key evidence for any such theory and history of the NT texts. Moreover, he has urged that study of NT papyri be done with attention to the larger Roman-era environment of textual transmission.

Jan Krans, Codex Boreelianus (F 09) and the IGNTP Edition of John

Abstract: Comparison of the electronic IGNTP edition of John and new digital images of Codex Boreelianus (F 09) shows that a number of improvements can be made. Besides some corrected readings, a small portion of new text can be found on the new images. Shortcomings of the IGNTP edition in its representation of F (09) can mostly be attributed to the limitations of the microfilm with which the collators had to work. Some room for discussion is indicated concerning the correctors of the manuscript, its accentuation and word division, and its segmentation.

Timothy J. Finney, Mapping Textual Space

Abstract: The apparatus of a critical edition of the biblical text can be encoded as a tabular structure called a data matrix. By counting how often witnesses disagree in their readings, another tabular structure called a dissimilarity matrix is obtained which records the distance between each pair of witnesses. This article begins by applying statistical reasoning to determine what constitutes a statistically significant distance between two witnesses and how sample size affects the margin of error for a distance estimate. Following this, two modes of multivariate analysis called “multidimensional scaling” and “divisive clustering” are introduced then applied to data extracted from the apparatus of the Letter to the Hebrews in the fourth edition of the United Bible Societies' Greek New Testament.

Tommy Wasserman, A Comparative Textual Analysis of 𝔓4 and 𝔓64+67

Abstract: In a 1997 article T. C. Skeat suggested that 𝔓4 comes from the same four-gospel codex as 𝔓64+67. Subsequently, Peter Head and Scott Charlesworth have argued against this identification, mainly on the basis of codicological data. However, it is still possible that the same scribe copied them yet no one has made a comparative textual analysis of these papyri. In his original publication, Skeat included a brief analysis of the text of 𝔓4, providing “some basic facts.” Unfortunately his analysis is unsatisfactory in two ways: it concerns only 𝔓4 and it is based only on deviations from the Textus Receptus. This article presents a new textual analysis of 𝔓4 and 𝔓64+67 using a method devised by Kurt and Barbara Aland and subsequently developed by Kyoung Shik Min, in order to examine the textual quality, transmission character, and the nature of the readings in these papyri. The result shows that both 𝔓4 and 𝔓64+67 have a “strict” textual quality and a “strict” transmission character. The concern for careful copying reflected by the textual quality and transmission character of 𝔓4 and 𝔓64+67 correlates with their external features, which Roberts regarded as indicative of a “thoroughgoing literary production.”


Tommy Wasserman, The Epistle of Jude: Its Text and Transmission (Jörg Frey, reviewer)
Kyoung Shik Min, Die früheste Überlieferung des Matthäusevangeliums (bis zum 3./4. Jh.). Edition und Untersuchung (Ulrich Schmid, reviewer)