Codex Sinaiticus - the facts

However, Parker is quite skeptical of the colophons being truthful.

David Parker says .. caution about:
"the frequency with which a colophon making similar claims appears in very different texts and manuscripts of the Old and New Testaments."
The Story of the World’s Oldest Bible, p. 83

The problem was that Bottrich made an erroneous claim.
"these two predate such secondary usurpation"
The meaning I attribute to him is that the colophons, in being inserted by a corrector, are shown not to have been copied from a source manuscript. Thus they are original to Sinaiticus.
 
The meaning I attribute to him is that the colophons, in being inserted by a corrector, are shown not to have been copied from a source manuscript. Thus they are original to Sinaiticus.

However, he gave a chronology defense of that view that is factually incorrect.
 
If he was right, why did he resile from it

Quite obvious. Sinaiticus posed a problem. Tischendorf's accusations against the 1856 Athous text as earky would be applied to the Sinaiticus manuscripts. (Where Sinaiticus had text, and that text agreed with Athous.)

So Tischendorf gave awkward, clumsy, pseudo-retractions, and never addressed the actual facts that are in his arguments.

As far as I can tell, not one Sinaiticus scholar has actually reviewed the specific Tischendorf arguments, although David Daniels did review one, Maximo, working through Donaldson.
 
It's not nonsensical - Maximus is likely a member of Hermas's family who had apostatized.

Special pleading.
Conjecture sans substance.

Nothing in the text supports any element of the above.

Do you see Hermas calling out to other unknown family members?
 
Last edited:
This precis from Christfried Böttrich's article (Greifswald University):

Codex Sinaiticus and the use of manuscripts in the Early Church (2017)

Abstract

Codex Sinaiticus, the world’s oldest and most complete manuscript of a Greek Bible (4th century)
has a complicated and exciting history. Re-discovered by the German Theologian Constantin von
Tischendorf (1844/1859), the already split codex was transferred to Europe (Leipzig, St. Petersburg,
London). The donation of its major part to Tsar Alexander II in 1869 caused controversies about
ownership during the 20th century. Some years ago, the four different parts were, virtually, united
again. This was the starting point for a new and intensive examination of this precious manuscript.

The present article discusses some old issues in the light of new insights.
.
.
.
For the origin of Codex Sinaitcus, there always have been two alternatives: Caesarea or Alexandria. These two places had famous
libraries and efficient scriptoria. And both places played an important role during the 4th century.

The balance of arguments inclines a little more to Caesarea.

First: there are some lexical indications regarding geographical substitutes.
Second: Codex Sinaiticus adopts the Eusebian system in the gospels, and offers a special text division in Acts following a model that can be traced back to Pamphilus.
Third: there are two famous colophons after the text of 2 Esdras and Esther claiming a correction of the text in Caesarea at least in the 6th century; such colophons should be viewed with caution because they became inflationary in later times, being copied from one codex to the other, but these two predate such secondary usurpation.
.
.
.
The supposed origin of Codex Sinaiticus in Caesarea does not automatically make it a part of Constanine’s ‘Bible commission’. It merely places the codex in the immediate context of this project. Usually the Codex is dated to the middle of the 4th century.*

[*Milne / Skeat, Scribes and Correctors (1938), 64, say
around 360 (despite a supposed link to Constantine’s ‘Bible
commission’); G. Zuntz, Lukian von Antiochien und der
Text der Evangelien, ed. B. Aland and K. Wachtel, AHAW.
PH 1995/2 (Heidelberg: Winter, 1995), 40–6, on 43, taking
the ‘commission’ in VitConst seriously, is more precise with
a date about 320–40.]
.
.
.
Theodore Skeat re Constantine's bible commission : Codex Sinaiticus was something like Eusebius’ first attempt or test case. But quickly the bishop realised that he had miscalculated the project. He abandoned the work and Codex Sinaiticus remained unfinished. For a second attempt, Eusebius reduced the size, the number of columns, the content and weight—and Codex Vaticanus was born. Codex Sinaiticus was laid aside (“perhaps as unsaleable”), stayed in Caesarea and never left the scriptorium until it was brought to Sinai.

Such a precise reconstruction says more than we can really know. But Skeat’s main idea could indeed be the key to a reliable answer: the codex never went to Constantinople; the codex was never used for liturgical reading; the codex was never written to be carried around. So what was its function? In all probability,
Codex Sinaiticus was the master copy in the scriptorium of Caesarea. For liturgical reading, it would be very disturbing and a hindrance to have marginals, asterisks, and crosses, supra- and sublinear additions in different hands. Here the eye even of a trained reader is in danger of straying from the main line. But, for a skilled scribe, it is essential to have all these corrections. Codex Sinaiticus is a prominent example of how textual work was done, comparing the manuscript again and again, eradicating mistakes and improving doubtful readings.
.
.
.
What do you make of the fact there are scores of places where the KJV does not accurately render the Codex Sinaiticus into English correctly?
 
Special pleading.
Conjecture sans substance.

Nothing in the text supports any element of the above.

Do you see Hermas calling out to other unknown family members?
Waffle sans substance.

There is nothing particularly anomalous in the text, except Maximus being unknown (could be a veiled reference to the emperor).

Many of Paul's companions are referenced only once in his letters. In Hermas "even as it is written in the book of Eldad and
Modad" is also obscure, as also Jude's reference to the archangel Michael "disputing with the devil about the body of Moses."

Sometimes you just have to accept obscurity.

However, he gave a chronology defense of that view that is factually incorrect.
Without knowing what Parker says I admit I'm a bit lost here. I hope to have Parker's book shortly.

Actually, I complimented Tischendorf's indefatigable labours and productivity.
You don't believe anything else Tischendorf said, so why do you credit his attack on Hermas?
 
What do you make of the fact there are scores of places where the KJV does not accurately render the Codex Sinaiticus into English correctly?
The KJV isn't based on Sinaiticus, whose existence wasn't known prior to the 19th century, or on the Vaticanus, but on the Textus Receptus, for which see here.
 
Is this a problem in reading comprehension? I did not say or suggest the KJV was taken from the SC. Your two posts are irrelevant to my inquiry.

My question stands as is. Regardless of the fact the KJV did not appeal to Sinaiticus, what do you make of the KJVs scroes of errors thereof? I can ask the exact same question in regard to the Textus Receptus because the KJV has scores of inconsistencies with that source, too, but that is not my question. Since this is the KJVO board.....


What do you make of the fact there are scores of places where the KJV does not accurately render the Codex Sinaiticus into English correctly?

The KJV doesn't ""accurately render Codex Sinaiticus " because the KJV doesn't follow Sinaiticus. It's as simple as that. Your question is a red herring.
 
There is nothing particularly anomalous in the text, except Maximus being unknown (could be a veiled reference to the emperor).

As Tischendorf points out, the Palatine retro-version explains the Athous-Sinaiticus Greek text.

So there is no reason to leave the Vulgata for an imaginary person.

In your scenario, with the imaginary person, there is no sensible explanation for the Vulgata text.
 
As Tischendorf points out, the Palatine retro-version explains the Athous-Sinaiticus Greek text.
No, you've got your facts wrong.

Tischendorf propounded that the Greek text of the Athos MS. was not
really the original Greek of the Shepherd, but had been con-
structed in the middle ages out of some Latin Version, which
was however neither the ' Old Latin ' nor the ' Palatine '.

Authority: p. viii of A Collation of The Athos Codex of The Shepherd of Hermas by SPYR. P. LAMBROS 1888

So there is no reason to leave the Vulgata for an imaginary person.
The two Latin translations, Old Latin and Palatine, "come from different traditions" respecting Visions 1-4, per Carolyn Osiek, Shepherd of Hermas, 1999. No scholar today holds the view that the Greek was translated from the Palatine.

In your scenario, with the imaginary person, there is no sensible explanation for the Vulgata text.
That there is no explanation for the divergence between Old Latin and Palatine in respect of Visions 1-4 is not a reason to engage in conspiracy theories. After all, old Latin translations were unregulated and as Augustine observed: even as to scripture, anyone could translate anything howsoever they pleased.

The Shepherd was written in a Greek strongly influenced by terms and colloquial expressions from Latin and Semitic languages (The Shepherd of Hermas in Latin - Critical Edition of the Oldest Translation Vulgata, 2014, Edited by Christian Tornau and Paolo Cecconi).

From the latter:

The textual sources for the Palatina are: a fragment of a manuscript from the 8th
century which contains the 8th, 9th and part of the 10th Commandments (Düsseldorf
University Library, codex Kl.C.118), and two manuscripts of the 15th century which are
conserved in the Vatican Library, the codices Vat.Pal.lat.150 and Vat.Urb.lat.486. As
I. Mazzini and after him A. Vezzoni have shown, these two manuscripts go back to
the same archetype.41
The complex issue of the relationship of the Palatina to the Vulgata cannot fully
be addressed here, so some brief remarks must suffice. Visions I–IV seem to have been
translated afresh from the Greek; A. Carlini has argued that the Palatina translator
followed a shorter version of the text that was close to the Codex Sinaiticus and the
Papyrus Bodmer 38, whereas the codex Athous Grigoriou 96 and the Vulgata represent
a different, longer text of the Visions.42 As far the remaining portions (Vis.V,
Mand., Sim.) are concerned, the translator (whether the same or another one) seems
to have aimed primarily at a revision of the existing translation Vulgata, to which he
apparently sticks more closely in the Parables than in the Commandments.43 However
this may be, what seems certain at least to us is that the translator or translators of
the Palatina had a Greek text before him or them throughout and that they more or
less carefully checked their new Latin text by comparing it with the Greek version
they knew. This, we think, is proven by the simple fact that the Palatina translates
several passages from the Greek that are absent from the Vulgata and that the omissions
in the latter cannot always be explained as textual corruptions.44 Hence we must
always reckon with the possibility that differences between the two Latin versions are
caused by a different Greek text; it would be rash to treat the Palatina as just another
witness of the Vulgata text.

41 Mazzini (1980) p. 181–182; Vezzoni (1994), p. 41.
42 Carlini (1983) p. 98–100; Carlini (1987) p. 31–32; Carlini (1991) p. 16–23.
43 Mazzini (1981) p. 45–86.
44 Cf. e.g. Mand.VI,2,7; Sim.II,6–7; VIII,5,5; VIII,6,6; X,2,4. Contrast e.g. Sim.II,8 where an emendation
of the Vulgata text from the Palatina seems inevitable.
 
Last edited:
No, you've got your facts wrong.

Tischendorf propounded that the Greek text of the Athos MS. was not
really the original Greek of the Shepherd, but had been con-
structed in the middle ages out of some Latin Version, which
was however neither the ' Old Latin ' nor the ' Palatine '.

Authority: p. viii of A Collation of The Athos Codex of The Shepherd of Hermas by SPYR. P. LAMBROS 1888

You should read Tischendorf on Maximo directly, if you want to know how he related the Palatine Latin to the current Greek text.

Plus anything he said after 1859 is of little value, since at that point it became necessary to protect Sinaiticus, and he changed positions. It looks like Sypridon Lambros did not take that into account.

Anyone who watched the discussion with James Snapp would have heard the superb discussion from Kirk DiVietro about Maximo in the Shepherd of Hermas showing that the Sinaiticus Hermas is not an early Greek version. The irony there is that the person who first pointed out this problem was ... Constantine Tischendorf in 1856.

Hermae Pastor. Gr. ed. ex fragmentis Lipsiensibus A.F.C. Tischendorf. Ex ed. Patrum apostolicorum Dresseliana centum exemplis repetitum (1856)
Constantine Tischendorf
https://books.google.com/books?id=osAHAAAAQAAJ&pg=PR15

Tischendorf made this point before the Hermas Sinaiticus text was known in any detail.

James Donaldson is also excellent on Maximo, bringing Tischendorf’s argument int English.
https://books.google.com/books?id=60gtAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA310
“The Palatine accounts well…”

See also Charles Holland Hoole:
https://forums.carm.org/threads/the...regarding-sinaiticus.11880/page-6#post-912732
 
Last edited:
The KJV doesn't ""accurately render Codex Sinaiticus " because the KJV doesn't follow Sinaiticus. It's as simple as that. Your question is a red herring.
We have a Sinaiticus. We have a King James Translation. The two do not reconcile in many places. What do you make of that?

We have a Greek manuscript, Sinaiticus, that was written sometime in the 4th century. We have an English translation, the KJV, written in the early 17th century. The latter does not accurately reflect the former in many places. What do you make of that?

We have Greek manuscript that was written 13 centuries before the KJV. The KJV was translated in ignorance of Sinaiticus' existence. There are scores of differences between the two. What do you make of that?



I did not say the KJV was translated from SC. I simply said there are scores of differences where it does not render the SC accurately. There are scores of places where it doesn't render the TR accurately, either, but all I am currently asking about is the SC. It is NOT a red herring. If you can't/don't/won't answer the question I will take that as an opportunity for you to learn something. Otherwise, just answer the question asked because it's you're arguing the disparity to avoid answering the question that is the red herring.
 
Laugh if you like @Unbound68, but the question is valid and veracious and should be answered by anyone hoping to defend the KJVO position.


A number of the places the KJV doesn't reconcile with the Sinaiticus are also places it doesn't reconcile with the Vaticanus. Those two reconcile with each other where the KJV does not. I've simply started with Sinaiticus because that's the doc upon which this op focuses.
 
Laugh if you like @Unbound68, but the question is valid and veracious and should be answered by anyone hoping to defend the KJVO position.


A number of the places the KJV doesn't reconcile with the Sinaiticus are also places it doesn't reconcile with the Vaticanus. Those two reconcile with each other where the KJV does not. I've simply started with Sinaiticus because that's the doc upon which this op focuses.
I'm not KJO, but I'll answer the question very simply: the KJV is not based upon Sinaiticus (or Vaticanus, for that matter), so it's not surprising that there are different readings. Incidentally, Sinaiticus and Vaticanus also differ from each other, in thousands of places.
 
Laugh if you like @Unbound68, but the question is valid and veracious
The question is off-topic. This thread was started in direct relation to the forger Simonides and his alleged creation of Sinaiticus in the 19th century.


and should be answered by anyone hoping to defend the KJVO position.
That wouldn't be me. I'm not KJVO.


A number of the places the KJV doesn't reconcile with the Sinaiticus are also places it doesn't reconcile with the Vaticanus.
So what? Different text types dude.


Those two reconcile with each other where the KJV does not.
Because they are from one text type, the KJV is based on another.


I've simply started with Sinaiticus because that's the doc upon which this op focuses.
The OP relates to the history of Sinaiticus, its scribes and correctors, and it's date of composition. The other two threads dealing with Simonides are what prompted the creation of this thread.

Start a new topic if you're going to discuss the differences between the KJV and Sinaiticus. Please.
 
I'm not KJO, but I'll answer the question very simply: the KJV is not based upon Sinaiticus (or Vaticanus, for that matter), so it's not surprising that there are different readings. Incidentally, Sinaiticus and Vaticanus also differ from each other, in thousands of places.
cjab and I gave him the very same response already, and were accused of having reading comprehension problems.
 
Back
Top