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5 years ago  ::  Jan 31, 2009 - 4:11PM #1
MarkDavidNJ
Posts: 6
I have been searching for a while and I thought I'd ask if there is any consensus on what manuscripts were the earliest out of Mark, Mathew, Luke, John, Thomas along with the rest of the New testament(Acts, Pauline and General epistles and Revelation). I am familiar(vaguely) with when these books were claimed to have been written, but I am wondering rather what are the earliest full manuscripts and fragments in existence. I'm trying to prepare an essay and I would appreciate being steered in the right direction.

For example:

Gospel of Mark - (Date written), (Earliest Fragment name and its date), (Earliest full manuscript name and its date),
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 31, 2009 - 4:11PM #2
MarkDavidNJ
Posts: 6
I have been searching for a while and I thought I'd ask if there is any consensus on what manuscripts were the earliest out of Mark, Mathew, Luke, John, Thomas along with the rest of the New testament(Acts, Pauline and General epistles and Revelation). I am familiar(vaguely) with when these books were claimed to have been written, but I am wondering rather what are the earliest full manuscripts and fragments in existence. I'm trying to prepare an essay and I would appreciate being steered in the right direction.

For example:

Gospel of Mark - (Date written), (Earliest Fragment name and its date), (Earliest full manuscript name and its date),
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 31, 2009 - 9:18PM #3
PeterKane
Posts: 63
Mark:  I can get you started:

GJohn:  Written some time near the end of first century, earliest known fragement about 125  (the earliest known fragment of any gospel), see http://www.library.manchester.ac.uk/spe … nfragment/

GMark:  Widely thought to be written plus or minus a few years of the destruction of the temple

GMatt next.

Acts:  Pervo, Dating Acts, puts it at around 115-120.  Raises the question, is Luke then later than usual dates.

Try http://www.cbl.ie/Collections/The-Weste … lical.aspx , Chester Beaty Library, to see fragments of Paul letters dated from the end of the second cent.

Try http://www.papyrology.ox.ac.uk/POxy/pap … apyri.html for more images than you would care to look at from the Oxyrhynchus site.

You can google 'early new testament manuscripts' and get a ton of web sites, but beware, a lot of them are trying to make it look like the physical evidence is older than respected scholars would indicate.

Happy hunting:  Peter
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 31, 2009 - 11:09PM #4
PeterKane
Posts: 63
Mark:

Found a complete list of Greek NT papyri, with which cent. they are dated, and which texts they represent.

http://www.religionfacts.com/christiani … ts.htm#MSS

Peter
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 31, 2009 - 11:11PM #5
PeterKane
Posts: 63
Mark:  Oops, try here instead.

http://www-user.uni-bremen.de/~wie/text … -list.html

Peter
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5 years ago  ::  Feb 01, 2009 - 10:25AM #6
GeneStecher
Posts: 556
Great info and resources, Peter.  And Mark, if you have or can get access to a Greek New Testament, the Introductory section will have a lot of the information.  I have the Aland, Black, Martini, Metzger, Wikgren text (1968), and it lists all of the Papyri (content, location date), all of the manuscripts (content, location, date), all of the uncials and minuscules (#, content, date), and the symbols and abbreviations used therewith.  You would no doubt want to get a more recent Greek NT. 

Mine indicates that the earliest papyri are "about 200":
Dublin, Chester Beatty: epistles of Paul
Oxford and Barcelona: gospels
Geneva, P. Bodner II: gospels
Barcelona: gospels

And the major manuscripts are estimated as follows:
London Sinaiticus, 4th century: gospels, Acts and catholic epistles, epistles of Paul, Revelation
London Alexandrinus, 5th century: same as Sinaiticus
Rome Vaticanus, 4th century: same, but does not have Revelation
Paris Ephraemi Rescriptus, 5th century: same as Sinaiticus

Welcome to the JS egroup.

Gene
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5 years ago  ::  Feb 10, 2009 - 5:31PM #7
Hebrewtattoo
Posts: 292

MarkDavidNJ wrote:

I have been searching for a while and I thought I'd ask if there is any consensus on what manuscripts were the earliest out of Mark, Mathew, Luke, John, Thomas along with the rest of the New testament(Acts, Pauline and General epistles and Revelation). I am familiar(vaguely) with when these books were claimed to have been written, but I am wondering rather what are the earliest full manuscripts and fragments in existence. I'm trying to prepare an essay and I would appreciate being steered in the right direction.

For example:

Gospel of Mark - (Date written), (Earliest Fragment name and its date), (Earliest full manuscript name and its date),


David, I am just pasting through and noticed your post. Maybe this is a bit late. For essay purposes I would suggest that you go to your university library and pick up a Greek New Testament. Check the introduction, there should be a textual apparatus section. In the section they have listed number/name of manuscript, content, location (that being where you can actually go and see the manuscript if on display) and date.

So, for instance, the copy I am looking at lists P38 (papyri 38) containing Acts housed in Ann Arbor Mich at about 300 AD. As I skim through the list I also see a few others papyri late 3 century. These are not complete texts, Acts is found complete with 4 century uncials. There is also a fragmented uncial I notice 0189 that dates 2/3 century. You can do an Internet search on that one.

If you are doing this essay to learn how to research, I would suggest this method, on the other hand, if you just want to make a passing remark on the subject, some links have been provided already that might give you that quick answer.

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5 years ago  ::  Feb 12, 2009 - 11:45AM #8
MisterC
Posts: 1,865
"GJohn: Written some time near the end of first century, earliest known fragement about 125 (the earliest known fragment of any gospel), see http://www.library.manchester.ac.uk/...tjohnfragment/ "

Sorry, couldn't let that one pass. That dating is a warm fuzzy for Christians who, so worked up with a world that has rendered their "bible" anachronistic. It is similar to those frauds we find so much in Old Testament "archeology" and the silly "tomb of James" crap. According to Philip Wesley Comfort, senior editor Biblical Reference at Tyndale and prof at Wheaton, P66, Bodmer II, is "Usually dated c 175-200, but dated c 125 by Hunger..." (P. 60, Early Manuscripts and Modern Translations of the New Testament").

Christians get all excited when someone like Hunger makes such statements. As Comfort says in his book, the alterations in the New Testament that affected meaning were products of the second century and the evidence from the second century, as far as fragments go, is virtually non-existent. Too bad. The fragment of John could just as easliy be early third century! Of course, if we used P66 correctly, we would get a gnostic reading of 1:18. Instead of "the only begotten Son" we would get "a unique god" or "the only god," which the Valentinians used.

I'll let you get back to your fun. Just trying to add a little...
Dennis
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5 years ago  ::  Feb 13, 2009 - 12:14AM #9
MarkDavidNJ
Posts: 6
thank you all for contributing info to this post
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