Another fantastic new press release from CSNTM:
New manuscripts digitized by the Center for the Study of New Testament Manuscripts (CSNTM) have just been added to our searchable collection. These include 10 new manuscripts from the National Library of Greece in Athens, the site of our ongoing digitization project for 2015–16.
- GA 777: From the 12th century, this manuscript (MS) contains the complete Tetraevangelion. The manuscript features 22 beautiful icons, many of which are from the life of Jesus.
- GA 792: From the 13th century, this is a rare MS in that its New Testament contents include only the Gospels and Revelation. Also included are selected passages from the Old Greek.
- GA 798: From the 11th century, this MS of the Gospels contains Matthew and Mark. CSNTM had previously digitized the other portion (containing Luke and John) housed at the Institute for New Testament Textual Research (INTF), so digital images are now available for the entire MS.
- GA 800: From the 12th or 13th century, this MS of the Gospels has extensive commentary wrapping around the text on three sides, and some unique textual features.
- GA 1411: From the 10th or 11th century, this MS of the Gospels contains extensive commentary on John and Luke by Chrysostom and Titus of Bostra.
- GA 1412: From the 10th or 11th century, this MS of the Gospels interweaves the biblical text with commentary by Chrysostom and Titus of Bostra, using a variety of different methods to distinguish the text from the commentary.
- GA 1973: From the 13th century, this MS of Paul’s letters contains commentary from Theophylact of Bulgaria.
- GA Lect 440: Paper lectionary dated to 1504, which was damaged and then repaired with other paper texts with script at some later point in its history.
- GA Lect 1524: Paper lectionary dated to 1522, a well-used manuscript.
- GA Lect 2007: Paper lectionary from the 15th century.
We have also added images for 12 manuscripts that are now in our digital library. Many of these are older images from microfilm.
- GA 08
- GA 010
- GA 014
- GA 015
- GA 017
- GA 018
- GA 019
- GA 020
- GA 034
- GA 035
- GA 038
- GA 044
These images have now been added to our growing searchable collection, which gives everyone free access to the best available digital images of Greek New Testament manuscripts.
9 thoughts on “New Manuscripts Available at CSNTM”
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GOOD WORK DAD
You frequently mention that there are over 5,800 cataloged Greek New Testament manuscripts, and some 20,000 other manuscripts written in other languages (Coptic, Syriac, Gothic, Ethiopic, Latin etc.). My question, therefore, is: What percentage of the entirety of New Testament manuscripts have been collated for textual variants? Have all of the Greek New Testament Manuscripts been collated? Can you recommends any reference books that documents this information.
Oh, I wish that were the case! Only about 20% of all Greek NT MSS have anything more than a sentence even published on them! There is much work to be done. CSNTM frequently finds manuscripts inside of other, known manuscripts that were simply overlooked–and largely because they had not really been examined. The books on collations and transcriptions are legion. The best place to start is J. K. Elliott’s Bibliography of New Testament Manuscripts, third edition.
That’s interesting. So when New Testament Scholars and Christian apologists make reference to “99% accuracy across all Greek New Testament manuscripts,” they really are just referring to the 20% of manuscripts that scholars have only begun to examine for variants, is this correct? If so, it appears that any argument for, or against the consistency of the New Testament text is essentially moot at this point given that the data has not been fully vetted, or even close. This raises an even more important question. How can scholars of N.T. textual criticism already be in position to unequivocally determine the authenticity or in-authenticity of certain bible verses and passages when it does not yet appear that there will ever be an end to the collation and discovery of N.T. manuscripts? Perhaps there is another book you can refer me to that addresses these kinds of topics. I have just placed an order for J. K. Elliot’s Bibliography.
I appreciate your response.
I’m not sure who’s saying there is 99% accuracy across all NT manuscripts. I think you’re getting that confused with another statistic. At the same time, the 80% or so of MSS that have not been examined in detail have usually been spot-checked, often in numerous places. And what that reveals is typically a profile of readings that is in keeping with their late date. Scholars then put them aside and look at the next MS. There are many treasures not noticed by this process, but there are also few workers for the task. I would say that there textual scholars can indeed make claims of strong likelihood, even moral certainty, about most of the text of the NT. But because this is a historical discipline, there will never be absolute certainty. The more we know about the MSS, however, the stronger that certainty will be. It’s not as black or white as you are suggesting.
I agree that nothing is entirely in black or white, as you rightly point out. My opinion (given what you have stated) is simply that much more work needs to be done before any definitive interpretation can be applied to the facts from those on both sides of the fence. I find that to be a reasonable position to take as a non expert.
Can you please recommend a good textbook on the methodology of N. T. textual criticism that gives a nice overview of the field and adresses the categories of textual variants, dating methods, ethical ethical guidelines etc.)? That would be a great help.
Benjamin E. Saldana
Benjamin, the fact that all NT MSS agree at least 90% of the time is sufficient evidence that we have a very high degree of certainty for most of the text. And of the remaining 10%, the great majority of the textual issues are so insignificant as to not be translatable. I estimate that only 0.2% of all textual variants are both viable and meaningful.
As for a good introduction to textual criticism, Metzger and Ehrman’s The Text of the New Testament is still the standard.
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