Monday, July 6, 2015

When The Greek Didn't Match The Vulgate

One of the interesting things about the Complutense is when the Greek doesn't match the Latin. The editors of the Complutensian Greek New Testament, the first printed Greek New Testament, recognized the issue when they were working on this historic volume. One of the men who participated in the project really wanted to see more work done on giving priority to the Greek. There's been some criticism about whether or not they've done as much as they could have. There's no doubt more could have been done. But it's interesting to see when the editors left the Greek column in conflict with the Latin column. One of those cases is Matt. 3:11. The Greek column does not have the words καὶ πυρί, while the Latin does have the words et igni. One of the documents that goes along with the Complutensian Polyglot–a sort of notes tracking such textual issues between the Greek and the Latin columns–is featured below. More might have been possible when it comes to the fifth volume of the polyglot, but they definitely didn't make the Greek say something for which they probably had either no witness to a reading or no witness that they felt credible. Here's one example of them letting the text read as the evidence so led them. Of course, this isn't the only text with the Greek and Latin side by side and in conflict. The criticism really deals with "correcting" the Latin to match what the Greek says. As you can see, they let the Vulgate stand as it was.

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