Byzantine text-type

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Codex Vaticanus 354 S (028), an uncial codex with a Byzantine text, assigned to the Family K1

In textual criticism of the New Testament, the Byzantine text-type (also called Majority Text, Traditional Text, Ecclesiastical Text, Constantinopolitan Text, Antiocheian Text, or Syrian Text) is one of the main text types. It is the form found in the largest number of surviving manuscripts of the Greek New Testament. The New Testament text of the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Patriarchal Text, as well as those utilized in the lectionaries, are based on this text-type. Whilst varying in at least 1,830 places,[1] it also underlies the Textus Receptus Greek text used for most Reformation-era (Protestant) translations of the New Testament into vernacular languages. Modern translations (since 1900) mainly use Eclectic editions that conform more often to the Alexandrian text-type.

The Byzantine text is also found in a few modern Eastern Orthodox editions, as the Byzantine textual tradition has continued in the Eastern Orthodox Church into the present time. The text used by the Orthodox Church is supported by late minuscule manuscripts. It is commonly accepted as standard Byzantine text.

Manuscripts[edit]

Codex Alexandrinus, the oldest Greek witness of the Byzantine text in the Gospels, close to the Family Π (Luke 12:54-13:4)

We have no early witness discoveries of either the Byzantine Text type or the Alexandrian Text type manuscripts that originate from where the original New Testament scriptures were either authored or initially sent to, which was the greater Byzantine area.[citation needed]

The earliest Church Father to witness to a Byzantine text-type in substantial New Testament quotations is John Chrysostom (c. 349 – 407); although the fragmentary surviving works of Asterius the Sophist († 341) have also been considered to conform to the Byzantine text,[2] and the incomplete surviving translation of Wulfila (d. 383) into Gothic is often thought to derive from the Byzantine text type or an intermediary between the Byzantine and Western text types.[3] Chrysostom and Asterius used text only in 75% agreed with the standard Byzantine text. The second earliest translation to witness to a Greek base conforming generally to the Byzantine text in the Gospels is the Syriac Peshitta (though it has many Alexandrian and Western readings);[4] usually dated to the beginning of the 5th century;[5] although in respect of several much contested readings, such as Mark 1:2 and John 1:18, the Peshitta rather supports the Alexandrian witnesses. Dating from the fourth century, and hence possibly earlier than the Peshitta, is the Ethiopic version of the Gospels; best represented by the surviving fifth and sixth century manuscripts of the Garima Gospels and classified by Rochus Zuurmond as "early Byzantine". Zuurmond notes that, especially in the Gospel of John, the form of the early Byzantine text found in the Ethiopic Gospels is quite different from the later Greek Majority Text, and agrees in a number of places with Papyrus 66.[6]

Amongst the bulk of later New Testament manuscripts it is generally possible to demonstrate a clear Byzantine majority reading for each variant; and a Greek New Testament text based on these majority readings—"The Majority Text"—has been produced by Zane C. Hodges and Arthur L. Farstad, although this text does not correspond to any one particular manuscript.

Notable manuscripts[edit]

Codex Boreelianus, Byzantine manuscript, member of the Family E
Sign Name Date Content
A (02) Codex Alexandrinus 5th Gospels
C (04) Codex Ephraemi Rescriptus 5th Gospels (mixed Byzantine/Alexandrian)
W (032) Codex Washingtonianus 5th Matt 1-28; Luke 8:13–24:53
Q (026) Codex Guelferbytanus B 5th Luke–John
061 Uncial 061 5th 1 Tim 3:15-16; 4:1-3; 6:2-8
Ee (07) Codex Basilensis 8th Gospels
Fe (09) Codex Boreelianus 9th Gospels
Ge (011) Codex Seidelianus I 9th Gospels
He (013) Codex Seidelianus II 9th Gospels
L (020) Codex Angelicus 9th Acts, CE, Pauline Epistles
V (031) Codex Mosquensis II 9th Gospels
Y (034) Codex Macedoniensis 9th Gospels
Θ (038) Codex Koridethi 9th Gospels (except Mark)
S (028) Codex Vaticanus 354 949 Gospels
1241 Minuscule 1241 12th only Acts
1424 Minuscule 1424 9th/10th NT (except Mark)

Other manuscripts[edit]

Papyri

𝔓73

Uncials

Codex Mutinensis (Uncial 014), Codex Cyprius, Codex Mosquensis I, Campianus, Petropolitanus Purp., Sinopensis, Guelferbytanus A, Guelferbytanus B, Nitriensis, Nanianus, Monacensis, Tischendorfianus IV, Sangallensis (except Mark), Tischendorfianus III, Petropolitanus, Rossanensis, Beratinus, Dionysiou, Vaticanus 2066 (Uncial 046), Uncial 047, 049, 052, 053, 054, 056, 061, 063, 064, 065, 069 (?), 093 (Acts), 0103, 0104, 0105, 0116, 0120, 0133, 0134, 0135, 0136, 0142, 0151, 0197, 0211, 0246, 0248, 0253, 0255, 0257, 0265, 0269 (mixed), 0272, 0273 (?).

Minuscules

More than 80% of minuscules represent the Byzantine text.[7]

2, 3, 6 (Gospels and Acts), 8, 9, 11, 12, 14, 15, 18, 21, 23, 24, 25, 27, 28 (except Mark), 29, 30, 32, 34, 35, 36, 37, 39, 40, 42, 44, 45, 46, 47, 49, 50, 52, 53, 54, 55, 57, 58, 60, 61 (Gospels and Acts), 63, 65, 66, 68, 69 (except Paul), 70, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 80, 82, 83, 84, 89, 90, 92, 93, 95, 97, 98, 99, 100, 103, 104 (except Paul), 105, 107, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 116, 119, 120, 121, 122, 123, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 132, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 142, 143, 144, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151, 155, 156, 159, 162, 167, 169, 170, 171, 177, 180 (except Acts), 181 (only Rev.), 182, 183, 185, 186, 187, 189, 190, 192, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 200, 201, 202, 203, 204, 205 (Epistles), 206 (except Cath.), 207, 208, 209 (except Gospels and Rev.), 210, 212, 214, 215, 217, 218 (except Cath. and Paul), 219, 220, 221, 223, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 235, 236, 237, 240, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 250, 254 (except Cath.), 256 (except Paul), 259, 260, 261, 262, 263 (except Paul), 264, 266, 267, 268, 269, 270, 272, 275, 276, 277, 278a, 278b, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 287, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 297, 300, 301, 302, 303, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 313, 314, 316, 319, 320, 324, 325, 327, 328, 329, 330 (except Paul), 331, 334, 335, 337, 342, 343, 344, 347, 350, 351, 352, 353, 354, 355, 356, 357, 358, 359, 360, 361, 362, 364, 365 (except Paul), 366, 367, 368, 369, 371, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378 (except Cath.), 379, 380, 381, 384, 385, 386, 387, 388, 390, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 398 (except Cath.), 399, 401, 402, 404, 405, 407, 408, 409, 410, 411, 412, 413, 414, 415, 417, 418, 419, 422, 425, 426, 429 (Paul and Rev.), 431 (except Acts and Cath.), 432, 438, 439, 443, 445, 446, 448, 449, 450, 451 (except Paul), 452, 454, 457, 458, 459 (except Paul), 461, 465, 466, 469, 470, 471, 473, 474, 475, 476, 477, 478, 479, 480, 481, 482, 483, 484, 485, 490, 491, 492, 493, 494, 496, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 502, 504, 505, 506, 507, 509, 510, 511, 512, 514, 516, 518, 519, 520, 521, 522 (except Acts and Cath.), 523, 524, 525, 526, 527, 528, 529, 530, 531, 532, 533, 534, 535, 538, 540, 541, 546, 547, 548, 549, 550, 551, 553, 554, 556, 558, 559, 560, 564, 568, 570, 571, 573, 574, 575, 577, 578, 580, 583, 584, 585, 586, 587, 588, 592, 593, 594, 596, 597, 600, 601, 602, 603, 604, 605, 607, 610 (in Cath.), 614 (in Cath.), 616, 618, 620, 622, 624, 625, 626, 627, 628, 632, 633, 634, 637, 638, 639, 640, 642 (except Cath.), 644, 645, 648, 649, 650, 651, 655, 656, 657, 660, 662, 663, 664, 666, 668, 669, 672, 673, 674, 677, 680, 684, 685, 686, 688, 689, 690, 691, 692, 694, 696, 698, 699, 705, 707, 708, 711, 714, 715, 717, 718, 721, 724, 725, 727, 729, 730, 731, 734, 736, 737, 739, 741, 745, 746, 748, 750, 754, 755, 756, 757, 758, 759, 760, 761, 762, 763, 764, 765, 768, 769, 770, 773, 774, 775, 777, 778, 779, 781, 782, 783, 784, 785, 786, 787, 789, 790, 793, 794, 797, 798, 799, 801, 802, 806, 808, 809, 811, 818, 819, 820, 824, 825, 830, 831, 833, 834, 835, 836, 839, 840, 841, 843, 844, 845, 846, 848, 852, 853, 857, 858, 860, 861, 862, 864, 866, 867, 868, 870, 877, 880, 884, 886, 887, 889, 890, 893, 894, 896, 897, 898, 900, 901, 902, 904, 905, 906, 910, 911, 912, 914, 916, 917 (Paul), 918 (Paul), 919, 920, 921, 922, 924, 928, 936, 937, 938, 942, 943, 944, 945 (Acts and Cath.), 950, 951, 952, 953, 955, 956, 957, 958, 959, 960, 961, 962, 963, 964, 965, 966, 967, 969, 970, 971, 973, 975, 977, 978, 980, 981, 987, 988, 991, 993, 994, 995, 997, 998, 999, 1000, 1003, 1004, 1006 (Gospels), 1007, 1008, 1010 (?), 1011, 1013, 1014, 1015, 1016, 1017, 1018, 1019, 1020, 1023, 1024, 1025, 1026, 1028, 1030, 1031, 1032, 1033, 1036, 1044, 1045, 1046, 1050, 1052, 1053, 1054, 1055, 1056, 1057, 1059, 1060, 1061, 1062, 1063, 1065, 1067 (except Cath.), 1068, 1069, 1070, 1072, 1073, 1074, 1075, 1076, 1077, 1078, 1080, 1081, 1083, 1085, 1087, 1088, 1089, 1094, 1099, 1100, 1101, 1103, 1104, 1105, 1107, 1110, 1112, 1119, 1121, 1123, 1129, 1148, 1149, 1150, 1161, 1168, 1169, 1171, 1172, 1173, 1174, 1176, 1177, 1185, 1186, 1187, 1188, 1189, 1190, 1191, 1193, 1196, 1197, 1198, 1199, 1200, 1201, 1202, 1203, 1205, 1206, 1207, 1208, 1209, 1211, 1212, 1213, 1214, 1215, 1217, 1218, 1220, 1221, 1222, 1223, 1224, 1225, 1226, 1227, 1231, 1241 (only Acts), 1251 (?), 1252, 1254, 1255, 1260, 1264, 1277, 1283, 1285, 1292 (except Cath.), 1296, 1297, 1298, 1299, 1300, 1301, 1303, 1305, 1309, 1310, 1312, 1313, 1314, 1315, 1316, 1317, 1318, 1319 (except Paul), 1320, 1323, 1324, 1328, 1330, 1331, 1334, 1339, 1340, 1341, 1343, 1345, 1347, 1350a, 1350b, 1351, 1352a, 1354, 1355, 1356, 1357, 1358, 1359 (except Cath.), 1360, 1362, 1364, 1367, 1370, 1373, 1374, 1377, 1384, 1385, 1392, 1395, 1398 (except Paul), 1400, 1409 (Gospels and Paul), 1417, 1437, 1438, 1444, 1445, 1447, 1448 (except Cath.), 1449, 1452, 1470, 1476, 1482, 1483, 1492, 1503, 1504, 1506 (Gospels), 1508, 1513, 1514, 1516, 1517, 1520, 1521, 1523 (Paul), 1539, 1540, 1542b (only Luke), 1543, 1545, 1547, 1548, 1556, 1566, 1570, 1572, 1573 (except Paul?), 1577, 1583, 1594, 1597, 1604, 1605, 1607, 1613, 1614, 1617, 1618, 1619, 1622, 1628, 1636, 1637, 1649, 1656, 1662, 1668, 1672, 1673, 1683, 1693, 1701, 1704 (except Acts), 1714, 1717, 1720, 1723, 1725, 1726, 1727, 1728, 1730, 1731, 1732, 1733, 1734, 1736, 1737, 1738, 1740, 1741, 1742, 1743, 1745, 1746, 1747, 1748, 1749, 1750, 1752, 1754, 1755a, 1755b, 1756, 1757, 1759, 1761, 1762, 1763, 1767, 1768, 1770, 1771, 1772, 1800, 1821, 1826, 1828, 1829, 1835, 1841 (except Rev.), 1846 (only Acts), 1847, 1849, 1851, 1852 (only in Rev.), 1854 (except Rev.), 1855, 1856, 1858, 1859, 1860, 1861, 1862, 1869, 1870, 1872, 1874 (except Paul), 1876, 1877 (except Paul), 1878, 1879, 1880, 1882, 1883, 1888, 1889, 1891 (except Acts), 1897, 1899, 1902, 1905, 1906, 1907, 1911, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917, 1918, 1919, 1920, 1921, 1922, 1923, 1924, 1925, 1926, 1927, 1928, 1929, 1930, 1931, 1932, 1933, 1934, 1936,1937, 1938, 1941, 1946, 1948, 1951, 1952, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1957, 1958, 1964, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1974, 1975, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1986, 1988, 1992, 1997, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2007, 2009, 2013, 2048, 2096, 2098, 2111, 2119, 2125, 2126, 2127 (except Paul), 2132, 2133, 2135, 2138 (only in Rev.), 2139, 2140, 2141, 2142, 2144, 2160, 2172, 2173, 2175, 2176, 2177, 2178, 2181, 2183, 2187, 2189, 2191, 2199, 2218, 2221, 2236, 2261, 2266, 2267, 2273, 2275, 2277, 2281, 2289, 2295, 2300, 2303, 2306, 2307, 2309, 2310, 2311, 2352, 2355, 2356, 2373, 2376, 2378, 2381, 2382, 2386, 2389, 2390, 2406, 2407, 2409, 2414, 2415, 2418, 2420, 2422, 2423, 2424, 2425, 2426, 2430, 2431, 2437, 2441, 2442, 2445, 2447, 2450, 2451, 2452, 2454, 2455, 2457, 2458, 2459, 2466, 2468, 2475, 2479, 2483, 2484, 2490, 2491, 2496, 2497, 2499, 2500, 2501, 2502, 2503, 2507, 2532, 2534, 2536, 2539, 2540, 2545, 2547, 2549, 2550, 2552, 2554, 2555, 2558, 2559, 2562, 2563, 2567, 2571, 2572, 2573, 2578, 2579, 2581, 2584, 2587, 2593, 2600, 2619, 2624, 2626, 2627, 2629, 2631, 2633, 2634, 2635, 2636, 2637, 2639, 2645, 2646, 2649, 2650, 2651, 2653, 2656, 2657, 2658, 2660, 2661, 2665, 2666, 2671, 2673, 2675, 2679, 2690, 2691, 2696, 2698, 2699, 2700, 2704, 2711, 2712, 2716, 2721, 2722, 2723, 2724, 2725, 2727, 2729, 2746, 2760, 2761, 2765, 2767, 2773, 2774, 2775, 2779, 2780, 2781, 2782, 2783, 2784, 2785, 2787, 2790, 2791, 2794, 2815, 2817, 2829.[8][9][10]

Distribution by century[edit]

9th century

461, 1080, 1862, 2142, 2500

9th/10th

399

10th

14, 27, 29, 34, 36e, 63, 82, 92, 100, 135, 144, 151, 221, 237, 262, 278b, 344, 364, 371, 405, 411, 450, 454, 457, 478, 481, 564, 568, 584, 602, 605, 626, 627, 669, 920, 1055, 1076, 1077, 1078, 1203, 1220, 1223, 1225, 1347, 1351, 1357, 1392, 1417, 1452, 1661, 1720, 1756, 1829, 1851, 1880, 1905, 1920, 1927, 1954, 1997, 1998, 2125, 2373, 2414, 2545, 2722, 2790

10th/11th

994, 1073, 1701

11th

7p, 8, 12, 20, 23, 24, 25, 37, 39, 40, 50, 65, 68, 75, 77, 83, 89, 98, 108, 112, 123, 125, 126, 127, 133, 137, 142, 143, 148, 150, 177, 186, 194, 195, 197, 200, 207, 208, 210, 212, 215, 236, 250, 259, 272, 276, 277, 278a, 300, 301, 302, 314, 325, 331, 343, 350, 352, 354, 357, 360, 375, 376, 422, 458, 465, 466, 470, 474, 475, 476, 490, 491, 497, 504, 506, 507, 516, 526, 527, 528, 530, 532, 547, 548, 549, 560, 583, 585, 596, 607, 624, 625, 638, 639, 640, 651, 672, 699, 707, 708, 711, 717, 746, 754, 756, 773, 785, 809, 831, 870, 884, 887, 894, 901, 910, 919, 937, 942, 943, 944, 964, 965, 991, 1014, 1028, 1045, 1054, 1056, 1074, 1110, 1123, 1168, 1174, 1187, 1207, 1209, 1211, 1212, 1214, 1221, 1222, 1244, 1277, 1300, 1312, 1314, 1317, 1320, 1324, 1340, 1343, 1373, 1384, 1438, 1444, 1449, 1470, 1483, 1513, 1514, 1517, 1520, 1521, 1545, 1556, 1570, 1607, 1668, 1672, 1693, 1730, 1734, 1738, 1770, 1828, 1835, 1847, 1849, 1870, 1878, 1879, 1888, 1906, 1907, 1916, 1919, 1921, 1923, 1924, 1925, 1932, 1933, 1934, 1946, 1955, 1980, 1981, 1982, 2001, 2007, 2098, 2132, 2133, 2144, 2172, 2176, 2181, 2183, 2199, 2275, 2277, 2281, 2386, 2295, 2307, 2381, 2386, 2430, 2442, 2447, 2451, 2458, 2468, 2475, 2539, 2547, 2559, 2563, 2567, 2571, 2587, 2637, 2649, 2661, 2723, 2746, 2760, 2782, 2787
2306 (composite of parts from the 11th to the 14th centuries)

11th/12th

665, 657, 660, 1013, 1188, 1191, 1309, 1358, 1340, 1566, 2389, 2415, 2784

12th

2e, 2ap, 3, 9, 11, 15, 21, 32, 44, 46, 49, 57, 73, 76, 78, 80, 84, 95, 97, 105, 110, 111, 116, 119, 120, 122, 129, 132, 134, 138, 139, 140, 146, 156, 159, 162, 183, 187, 193, 196, 199, 202, 203, 217, 224, 226, 231, 240, 244, 245, 247, 261, 264, 267, 268, 269, 270, 275, 280, 281, 282, 297, 304, 306, 319, 320, 329, 334, 337, 347, 351, 353, 355, 356, 366, 374, 387, 392, 395, 396, 401, 407, 408, 419, 438, 439, 443, 452, 471, 485, 499, 502, 505, 509, 510, 514, 518, 520, 524, 529, 531, 535, 538, 550, 551, 556, 570, 571, 580, 587, 618, 620, 622, 637, 650, 662, 673, 674, 688, 692, 721, 736, 748, 750, 760, 765, 768, 770, 774, 777, 778, 779, 782, 787, 793, 799, 808, 843, 857, 860, 862, 877, 893, 896, 902, 911, 916, 922, 924, 936, 950, 967, 971, 973, 975, 980, 987, 993, 998, 1007, 1046, 1081, 1083, 1085, 1112, 1169, 1176, 1186, 1190, 1193, 1197, 1198, 1199, 1200, 1217, 1218, 1224, 1231, 1240, 1301, 1315, 1316, 1318, 1323, 1350a, 1355, 1360, 1364, 1375, 1385, 1437, 1539, 1583, 1673, 1683, 1714, 1737, 1752, 1754, 1755a, 1755b, 1800, 1821, 1826, 1872, 1889, 1914, 1915, 1917, 1926, 1951, 1970, 1971, 1974, 1986, 1988, 2013, 2096, 2126, 2135, 2139, 2173, 2177, 2189, 2191, 2289, 2282, 2426, 2437, 2445, 2459, 2490, 2491, 2507, 2536, 2549, 2550, 2552, 2562, 2639, 2650, 2657, 2671, 2700, 2712, 2725, 2727, 2781, 2785, 2791, 2794
632 and 1227 (composites of parts from the 12th to the 14th centuries)

12th/13th

905, 906, 1310, 1341, 1897, 2311

13th

52, 55, 60, 74, 107, 121, 128, 136, 141, 147, 167, 170, 192, 198, 204, 219, 220, 227, 248, 260, 284, 291, 292, 293, 303, 305, 309, 327, 328, 342, 359, 361, 362, 384, 388, 390, 410, 449, 469, 473, 477, 479, 482, 483, 484, 496, 500, 501, 511, 519, 533, 534, 546, 553, 554, 558, 573, 574, 592, 593, 597, 601, 663, 666, 677, 684, 685, 689, 691, 696, 705, 714, 715, 725, 729, 737, 757, 759, 775, 811, 820, 825, 830, 835, 840, 897, 898, 900, 912, 914, 966, 969, 970, 981, 995, 997, 999, 1000, 1004, 1008, 1011, 1015, 1016, 1031, 1050, 1052, 1053, 1057, 1069, 1070, 1072, 1087, 1089, 1094, 1103, 1107, 1129, 1148, 1149, 1150, 1161, 1177, 1201, 1205, 1206, 1208, 1213, 1215, 1226, 1238, 1255, 1285, 1339, 1352a, 1400, 1594, 1597, 1604, 1622, 1717, 1717, 1728, 1731, 1736, 1740, 1742, 1772, 1855, 1858, 1922, 1938, 1941, 1956, 1972, 1992, 2111, 2119, 2140, 2141, 2236, 2353, 2376, 2380, 2390, 2409, 2420, 2423, 2425, 2457, 2479, 2483, 2502, 2534, 2540, 2558, 2568, 2584, 2600, 2624, 2627, 2631, 2633, 2645, 2646, 2658, 2660, 2665, 2670, 2696, 2699, 2724, 2761

13th/14th

266, 656, 668, 1334, 2499, 2578

14th

18, 45, 53, 54, 66, 109, 155, 171, 182, 185, 190, 201, 214, 223, 232, 235, 243, 246, 290, 308, 316, 324, 358, 367, 369, 381, 386, 393, 394, 402, 404, 409, 412, 413, 414, 415, 417, 425, 426, 480, 492, 494, 498, 512, 521, 523, 540, 577, 578, 586, 588, 594, 600, 603, 604, 628, 633, 634, 644, 645, 648, 649, 680, 686, 690, 698, 718, 727, 730, 731, 734, 741, 758, 761, 762, 763, 764, 769, 781, 783, 784, 786, 789, 790, 794, 797, 798, 802, 806, 818, 819, 824, 833, 834, 836, 839, 845, 846, 848, 858, 864, 866a, 867, 889, 890, 904, 921, 928, 938, 951, 952, 953, 959, 960, 977, 978, 1020, 1023, 1032, 1033, 1036, 1061, 1062, 1075, 1099, 1100, 1119, 1121, 1185, 1189, 1196, 1234, 1235, 1236, 1248, 1249, 1252, 1254, 1283, 1328, 1330, 1331, 1345, 1350b, 1356, 1377, 1395, 1445, 1447, 1476, 1492, 1503, 1504, 1516, 1543, 1547, 1548, 1572, 1577, 1605, 1613, 1614, 1619, 1637, 1723, 1725, 1726, 1732, 1733, 1741, 1746, 1747, 1761, 1762, 1771, 1856, 1859, 1899, 1902, 1918, 1928, 1929, 1952, 1975, 2085, 2160, 2261, 2266, 2273, 2303, 2309, 2310, 2355, 2356, 2406, 2407, 2431, 2441, 2454, 2466, 2484, 2503, 2593, 2626, 2629, 2634, 2651, 2653, 2666, 2668, 2679, 2698, 2716, 2765, 2767, 2773, 2774, 2775, 2780, 2783

15th

30, 47, 58, 70, 149, 285, 286, 287, 288, 313, 368, 373, 379, 380, 385, 418, 432, 446, 448, 493, 525, 541, 575, 616, 664, 694, 739, 801, 841, 844, 853, 880, 955, 958, 961, 962, 1003, 1017, 1018, 1024, 1026, 1059, 1060, 1105, 1202, 1232, 1233, 1247, 1250, 1260, 1264, 1482, 1508, 1617, 1626, 1628, 1636, 1649, 1656, 1745, 1750, 1757, 1763, 1767, 1876, 1882, 1948, 1957, 1958, 1964, 1978, 2003, 2175, 2178, 2221, 2352, 2418, 2452, 2455, 2554, 2673, 2675, 2691, 2704, 2729

15th/16th

99, 1367

16th

90, 335, 445, 724, 745, 755, 867, 957, 1019, 1030, 1065, 1068, 1088, 1239, 1362, 1370, 1374, 1618, 1749, 1768, 1861, 1883, 1911, 1930, 1931, 1936, 1937, 1979, 2009, 2218, 2378, 2422, 2496, 2501, 2532, 2555, 2572, 2573, 2579, 2635, 2636, 2690, 2711, 2721, 2779

16th/17th

1371

17th and later

289, 868, 956, 963, 988, 1044, 1063, 1101, 1104, 1303, 1748, 1869, 2267, 2450, 2497, 2581, 2619, 2656.[11]

Characteristics[edit]

Compared to Alexandrian text-type manuscripts, the distinct Byzantine readings tend to show a greater tendency toward smooth and well-formed Greek, they display fewer instances of textual variation between parallel Synoptic Gospel passages, and they are less likely to present contradictory or "difficult" issues of exegesis.[12]

Origin[edit]

In order to displace the Textus Receptus (see the following section) from its initially prominent position among printed editions of the Greek New Testament, later textual scholars of the critical text persuasion saw the need for a thoroughgoing theory of the transmission of the text that could effectively disregard the overwhelmingly numerical superiority of the Byzantine text which formed its base. This Wescott and Hort's Introduction accomplished in masterful detail (over the course of 600 pages) as the culmination of 28 years of laborious effort on their part.

They summarize the problem early on in their work (p. 45) as follows: "A theoretical presumption indeed remains that a majority of extant documents is more likely to represent a majority of ancestral documents at each stage of transmission than vice versa." In the discussion that follows, they reason that the "incalculable and fortuitous complexity of the causes here at work" in the transmission of the text leads them to the conclusion that "every ground for expecting 'a priori' any sort of correspondence of numerical proportion between existing documents and their less numerous ancestors in any one age falls to the ground."[13]

Among those modern scholars who believe that the Byzantine text is only a secondary witness to the original text of the autographs, there is some debate concerning the origin of the Byzantine text and the reasons for its widespread existence and use. The suggestions that have been put forward are:

The standard Byzantine text used by the Eastern, Greek-speaking Greek Orthodox Church is supported by late minuscule manuscripts dating after the 4th century. However, some are earlier and a few papyri are also classified here. The early Byzantine text is near to the Alexandrian text in that it differs from the late Byzantine text in roughly 3000 places. Kurt Aland did not consider early Byzantine families such as E and Π to be classified as Byzantine manuscripts. He placed some of them into Category III of the Greek New Testament manuscripts. Aland placed all manuscripts with standard Byzantine text into Category V.

The Textus Receptus[edit]

The first printed edition of the Greek New Testament was completed by Erasmus and published by Johann Froben of Basel on March 1, 1516 (Novum Instrumentum omne). Due to the pressure of his publisher to bring their edition to market before the competing Complutensian Polyglot, Erasmus based his work on around a half-dozen manuscripts, all of which dated from the twelfth century or later; and all but one were of the Byzantine text-type. Six verses that were not witnessed in any of these sources, he back-translated from the Latin Vulgate, and Erasmus also introduced many readings from the Vulgate and Church Fathers. This text came to be known as the Textus Receptus or received text after being thus termed by Bonaventura Elzevir, an enterprising publisher from the Netherlands, in his 1633 edition of Erasmus' text. The New Testament of the King James Version of the Bible was translated from editions of what was to become the Textus Receptus. The different Byzantine "Majority Text" of Hodges & Farstad as well as Robinson & Pierpont is called "Majority" because it is considered to be the Greek text established on the basis of the reading found in the vast majority of the Greek manuscripts. The Textus Receptus differs from the Majority Text in 1,838 Greek readings, of which 1,005 represent "translatable" differences.[15]

Modern critical texts[edit]

Karl Lachmann (1850) was the first New Testament textual critic to produce an edition that broke with the Textus Receptus, relying mainly instead on manuscripts from the Alexandrian text-type. Although the majority of New Testament textual critics now favor a text that is Alexandrian in complexion, especially after the publication of Westcott and Hort's edition, there remain some proponents of the Byzantine text-type as the type of text most similar to the autographs. These critics include the editors of the Hodges and Farstad text (cited below), and the Robinson and Pierpont text. Around 6,500 readings will differ from the Hodges and Farstad text depending on which modern critical text is taken as an exemplar of the Alexandrian text-type (Wallace 1989).

To give a feel for the difference between the Byzantine form of text and the Eclectic text, which is mainly Alexandrian in character, of 800 variation units in the Epistle of James collected by the Institute for New Testament Textual Research, the Byzantine and Eclectic texts are in agreement in 731 of the places (a rate of 92.3%). Many of the 69 disagreements involve differences in word order and other variants that do not appear as translatable differences in English versions. According to the preface to the New King James Version of the Bible, the Textus Receptus, the Alexandrian text-type and the Byzantine text-type are 85% identical (that is, of the variations that occur in any manuscript, only 15% actually differ between these three).

The Byzantine type is also found in modern Greek Orthodox editions. A new scholarly edition of the Byzantine Text of John's gospel, (funded by the United Bible Societies in response to a request from Eastern Orthodox Scholars), was begun in Birmingham, UK. and in 2007, as a result of these efforts, The Gospel According to John in the Byzantine Tradition was published.[16]

Von Soden divided manuscripts of the Byzantine text into five groups:

  • Kx: no uncials, hundreds of minuscules, among them codex 2, 3, 8, 14, 45, 47, 49, 51, 54, 56, 58, 59, 60, 61, 73, 75, 76, 78, etc.
  • Kr: no uncials, no early minuscules, hundreds of minuscules: 18, 35, 55, 66, 83, 128, 141, 147, 155, 167, 170, 189, 201
  • K1 (subfamily of Kx): S V Ω 461
  • Ki (Family E): E F G H
  • Ik (also Ka), now Family Π: (A) K Y Π; this subgroup is the oldest, but only 5% of manuscripts belong to it. Majority of them have text mixed with other Byzantine subfamilies.[17]

Since the discovery of the Papyrus 45, Papyrus 46, and Papyrus 66, proof is available that occasionally the Byzantine text preserves a reading that dates from early witness. Examples:

Luke 10:39

Ιησου: 45 75 A W Byz b
κυριου: א B D L Ξ 579 892 copbo syrc[18]: 229 

Luke 10:42

ενος δε εστιν χρεια: 45 75 A C W Byz
ολιγων δε χρεια εστιν η ενος: B
ολιγων δε εστιν η ενος: א
ολιγων δε εστιν χρεια: 38 syrpal[19][18]: 229 

Luke 11:33

φῶς: א B F Θ f1 f13
φέγγος: 45 33 Byz[18]: 233 

John 10:29

ὃ ... μεῖζον: B it
ὃς ... μείζων: 66 f1 f13 Byz[18]: 334 

John 11:32

πρός: א B C* D L X
εἰς: 66 Θ Byz[18]: 338 

John 13:26

βάψας: א B C L X 33
καὶ ἐμβάψας: 66c A Θ[18]: 349 

Acts 17:13

ταράσσοντες:
omitted: 45 E Byz[18]: 441 

1 Corinthians 9:7

τὸν καρπόν: א* A B D* G P
ἐκ τοῦ καρποῦ: 46 Byz[18]: 534 

Ephesians 5:9

φωτός: א* A B D* G P
πνεύματος: 46 Byz[18]: 598 

Philippians 1:14

του θεου: א A B (D*) P Ψ 33 81 104 326 365 629 1175 1241 2464
omitted: 46 D2 Byz[18]: 604 

Other examples of Byzantine readings were found in 66 in John 1:32; 3:24; 4:14.51; 5:8; 6:10.57; 7:3.39; 8:41.51.55; 9:23; 10:38; 12:36; 14:17.[citation needed] This supports the views of scholars such as Harry Sturz (1984) and Maurice Robinson (2005) that the roots of the Byzantine text may go back to a very early date.[citation needed] (In 1963 Bruce Metzger had argued that early support for Byzantine readings could not be taken to demonstrate that they were in the original text.)[20] Some authors have interpreted this as a rehabilitation of the Textus Receptus.[21] Many of these readings have substantial support from other text-types and they are not distinctively Byzantine. Daniel Wallace found only two agreements distinctively between papyrus and Byzantine readings.[22]

See also[edit]

Families of the Byzantine text-type[edit]

Families associated with the Byzantine text

Other text-types[edit]

Critical text[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Daniel B. Wallace, The Majority Text Theory: History, Methods, and Critique in Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 37/2 (June 1994) pp. 194 fn. 59
  2. ^ Gordon D. Fee, "The Use of Greek Patristic Citations in New Testament Textual Criticism: The State of the Question," pp. 344–359 in Studies in the Theory and Method of New Testament Textual Criticism (ed. Eldon J. Epp and Gordon D. Fee; Studies & Documents 45; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1993), p. 358.
  3. ^ Bennett, William, 1980, An Introduction to the Gothic Language, pp. 24-25.
  4. ^ Metzger, Bruce M. (1977). The Early Versions of the New Testament: Their Origin, Transmission and Limitations. New York; Oxford: Clarendon Press. p. 61. ISBN 0-19-826170-5.
  5. ^ Metzger, Bruce M.; Ehrman, Bart D. (2005). The Text of the New Testament: Its Transmission, Corruption and Restoration. New York: Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 86–87. ISBN 978-0-19-516122-9.
  6. ^ Zuurmond, Rochus; Niccum, Curt (2013). "The Ethiopic Version of the New Testament" in Bart D. Ehrman and Michael W. Holmes eds "The Text of the New Testament in Contemporary Research" 2nd edn. Brill. pp. 231–252. ISBN 978-90-04-23604-2."One would say that the Ethiopian Versio Antiqua is basically a Byzantine text, with some Western elements and some remnants of the early Egyptian text. For lack of a better term one could coin this "early Byzantine".
  7. ^ Aland, Kurt; M. Welte; B. Köster; K. Junack (1994). Kurzgefasste Liste der griechischen Handschriften des Neues Testaments. Berlin, New York: Walter de Gruyter. p. 128. ISBN 3-11-011986-2.
  8. ^ Aland, Kurt; M. Welte; B. Köster; K. Junack (1994). Kurzgefasste Liste der griechischen Handschriften des Neues Testaments. Berlin, New York: Walter de Gruyter. pp. 129–140. ISBN 3-11-011986-2.
  9. ^ Kurt Aland, "Synopsis Quattuor Evangeliorum. Locis parallelis evangeliorum apocryphorum et patrum adhibitis edidit", Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft, Stuttgart 1996, p. XXXII.
  10. ^ Nestle, Eberhard et Erwin (2001). Novum Testamentum Graece. communiter ediderunt: B. et K. Aland, J. Karavidopoulos, C. M. Martini, B. M. Metzger (27 ed.). Stuttgart: Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft. p. 714.
  11. ^ Kurt Aland, and Barbara Aland, "The Text of the New Testament: An Introduction to the Critical Editions and to the Theory and Practice of Modern Textual Criticism", trans. Erroll F. Rhodes, William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1995, pp. 140-142.
  12. ^ "The Syrian text has all the appearance of being a careful attempt to supersede the chaos of rival texts by a judicious selection from them all." Brooke Foss Westcott, Fenton John Anthony Hort. The New Testament In The Original Greek, 1925. p. 551
  13. ^ http://www.westcotthort.com/books/Westcott_Hort_-_Introduction_to_the_New_Testament_in_the_Original_Greek_(2nd_1896).pdf
  14. ^ Aland, Kurt; Barbara Aland (1995). The Text of the New Testament: An Introduction to the Critical Editions and to the Theory and Practice of Modern Textual Criticism. Erroll F. Rhodes (trans.). Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company. p. 67. ISBN 0-8028-4098-1.
  15. ^ Michael D. Marlowe states:[1] yet it differs from the Received Text in about a thousand places, most of them being trivial. while Daniel B. Wallace [2] Archived 2007-08-05 at the Wayback Machine has counted 1,838 differences between it and the Textus Receptus.
  16. ^ Mullen, Roderic L.; Crisp, Simon; Parker, D. C., eds. (14 July 2008). The Gospel According to John in The Byzantine Tradition. Hendrickson Pub. ISBN 978-1598563078.
  17. ^ Appendix III: Von Soden's Textual System at the Encyclopedia of New Testament Textual Criticism.
  18. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Aland, Barbara; Aland, Kurt; Karavidopoulos, Johannes; Martini, Carlo M.; Metzger, Bruce M., eds. (2012). Novum Testamentum Graece (28 ed.). Germany: The German Bible Society. ISBN 978-3-438-05156-1.
  19. ^ Gordon D. Fee, P75, P66, and Origen: The Myth of Early Textual Recension in Alexandria, p. 253.
  20. ^ Bruce M. Metzger, Chapters in the History of New Testament Textual Criticism, Wm. B. Eerdmans, Grand Rapids 1963, p. 38
  21. ^ Edward F. Hills, Dean Burgon in the Light of Recent Research; D. A. Waite, Defending the King James Bible, Bible For Today, Collingswood, New Jersey 2004.
  22. ^ D. Wallace, The Majority Text Theory: History, Methods, and Critique, in Studies & Documents 1995, p. 303

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]