|John 21:20b-23a |
in Codex Sangallensis,
page 394. A Latin double-reading
(highlighted) is at the start of 20:23.
Codex Sangallensis (Δ, 037) is best-known for its Greek text; it is one of the “consistently cited witnesses of the second order” used in the Nestle-Aland Novum Testamentum Graece compilation. Its Latin Gospels-text, known as δ or Vetus Latina 27, has some interesting features too. For the most part, it agrees with the Vulgate, the translation that Jerome made in 383-384, and for which he consulted ancient Greek manuscripts. Occasionally its text contains additional words which mean approximately the same thing as the main Latin text are included; for this reason, 037’s Latin text may be thought of as the Amplified Vulgate.
Even before the text of the Gospels begins in Codex Sangallensis, the main text of Jerome’s Preface to the Vulgate Gospels (Epistula Ad Damasum) – a secondary attachment to the Gospels-codex – is supplemented by notes – some interlinear and some in the margins – which explain or simplify the meaning of the text. For example, in the sentence in which Jerome mentions two causes to feel comforted although his work is bound to be rejected by some individuals, “first cause” (prima causa) and “second cause” (seconda causa) are written above the main text, just to ensure the reader’s understanding.
Occasionally such supplemental material is accompanied by a special symbol, consisting of the combination of a dot, a vertical line, and another dot (×½×). This symbol, which stands for the Latin words id est (“that is”), sporadically accompanies notes and supralinear readings in the Gospels-text. In 1891, the prolific researcher J. Rendel Harris (in a detailed study) investigated the significance of this symbol and the material it accompanies, as part of a broader investigation of the source, or sources, of the verbal amplifications in the Latin text of 037. Harris sought to determine whether the copyist had freely and spontaneously added clarifications to the text, or else derived the amplifications from a second Latin exemplar, with an Old Latin Gospels-text.
The presence of supplemental notes, including a few with the ×½× symbol, in the Epistula Ad Damasum, does not interlock well with the idea that the copyist was consulting an Old Latin text that was completely independent from the Vulgate, inasmuch as Epistula Ad Damasum cannot have been an integral part of any Old Latin text. Yet, Codex Sangallensis also contains the Argumentum Matthai – one of the “Monarchian” Prologues, not written by Jerome (contrary to the title given to it in 037) – and in its text, too, the ×½× symbol introduces some (but not all) supplemental notes. For instance, where the text mentions that Matthew’s record of Christ’s genealogy involves the beginning of the covenant-sign of circumcision and God’s sovereign election, the marginalia identifies Abraham and David specifically as the individual ancestors whose lives involved these things.
Clearly, the ×½× symbol is capable of accompanying interpretive comments. But most of the interpretive comments are not introduced by it; for instance, where the Prologue mentions that Christ was born under the Law (making an allusion to Galatians 4:4), a supralinear note (with no symbol accompanying it) identifies this as a reference to circumcision.
Sometimes, in the text of the Gospels, the symbol accompanies material which is paralleled in Old Latin manuscripts. More frequently, although the symbol is lacking, the Latin amplification seems to be drawn from a written source, rather than inserted due to a whim of the copyist. (And, on occasion, the Latin text simply isn’t there, showing that it has not been rigorously conformed to the accompanying Greek text.)
Let’s look into the first eight chapters of Matthew for a closer look at some of the features which have earned this manuscript a place among the Vetus Latina). The word vel (“or”) is usually abbreviated.
The double-readings in these eight chapters alone (and Harris collected many more) adequately compel the conclusion that the copyist is not spontaneously augmenting the Latin text with synonyms; a second Latin exemplar is being cited.
This does not mean that every supplemental note represents a variant in the Latin text –for example, on page 310, in Luke 24:24, the ×½× symbol precedes a note identifying those who visited the tomb as Peter and John. But often the double-readings are explained far more plausibly as citations of a secondary Old Latin source than as explanatory notes added by the copyist.
Two outstanding indications that the copyist was using a second Latin exemplar occur in Matthew 10:31 – where the Greek word διαφέρετε (“better”) is matched by the Latin meliores (the Vulgate reading) which is augmented by vel praecellitis – and in a cluster of double-reading in Matthew 12:34-35; the motive for the double-readings in these places seems particularly unlikely to have been to make the passage clearer to the reader.
It may be worthwhile, as we finish our examination of the Latin text of Codex 037, to notice what J. Rendel Harris noticed about some of the Latin alternate-renderings that occur in the first part of Matthew 25: where the text of δ disagrees with, or is augmented by, a non-Vulgate reading, the non-Vulgate reading often agrees with the Latin text of Codex Bezae. This seems to compel the conclusion that not only are the amplifications of δ’s Latin text echoes of a secondary exemplar, but that this secondary Latin exemplar contained a Western text similar to what is found in the Latin pages of Codex Bezae.
Thus, Codex Sangallensis may be considered congruent to two and a half manuscripts:
● the Greek text (most of which is thoroughly Byzantine in Matthew, Luke, and John, but a mixture of Byzantine and Alexandrian in Mark) and
● the interlinear Latin text (most of which represents the Vulgate, with some adjustments to correspond to the Greek text) and
● the amplifications in the Latin text (which echo an Old Latin exemplar).
Pictured: Luke 20:15-23 in Codex Sangallensis (037).
Red Underline = Δ disagrees with NA and Byz. Notice the reading λαλοις (where the text should be αλλοις; the copyist apparently accidentally reversed the first two letters) at the end of the third line, in verse 16.
Red and Green Underline: Δ disagrees with NA but agrees with Byz.
Dashed Orange Underline: Δ agrees with NA but disagrees with Byz.
Blue Background: Non-Vulgate readings in δ.
Yellow Background: Double-reading in δ.
Large letters in the text alongside the purple bracket: a chapter-title, About the question about the tax-money. The chapter-number (71) is in the left margin.
[Readers are welcome to double-check the data in this post.]