Last week I wrote about critical editions of the Greek New Testament, and showed some pictures of Matthew 1 from several editions. Some of those pictures also had the critical apparatuses in them, which seem very cryptic. Actually, they are codes, and anyone who knows the non-secret code can decode an apparatus (with some practice). The symbols are technically called sigla (plural) or siglum (singular).
In addition to having...
The written word has evolved significantly over the millennia. Many of the evolutions have made writing easier for the sender, and reading easier for the recipient. The media that has been used for writing is one example: some of the oldest knowing writings (or drawings) are on cave walls, and sometimes clay tablets were used. Papyrus (made from the papyrus plant, common along the Nile river) was used for well over 2,000 years, then parchment (made from animal...
Surprisingly, archaeologists don't often find manuscripts, but there are some notable exceptions.
A famous manuscript find was the Codex Sinaiticus (א, Gregory-Aland 01) found by Constantin von Tischendorf, at Saint Catherine's Monastery, at the foot of Mount Sinai in Egypt, between 1844-1859. This book was written about A.D. 325-350. It originally contained the entire Bible, along with the Apocrypha and...
What is a Manuscript?
The word manuscript comes from the Latin words manu, meaning hand, and scriptus, meaning write. Historically, a manuscript is a handwritten document, or a handwritten copy of a document. In modern times, a manuscript could be made on a typewriter or computer, but then refers to the original document created by the author, as opposed to mass-produced copies of the same document.
Manuscripts are a...
After writing 13 articles on the canon, I've started researching a new topic: New Testament manuscripts. I haven't exhausted the subject of the Biblical Canon (I've focused on the New Testament canon and haven't written about the Old Testament canon), but I've exhausted my current interest in studying it.
The books of the canon make the Bible, but how did the Bible get from the early church to us? How do we know the Bible has been...
I had planned on
seeing the new documentary Patterns of Evidence: The Moses Controversy
on opening night and writing a review for today's article, but the projector in
the theater wasn't working, so my plans have changed. The Moses Controversy is scheduled to be shown again on
Saturday, March 16th, and Tuesday, March 19th, so hopefully I'll be able to
write a review for next weekend, but by then it will be to late to see it in