[b-hebrew] The New Testament

rochelle altman willaa at netvision.net.il
Mon Oct 23 13:06:02 EDT 2006


You seem to expect ancient Sumerian and Akkadian and Ugaritic and 
Phoenician and Moabite and Hebraic, and Aamaic, etc. as well as Greek and 
Latin and Greco-Latin vcrnacular writing systems to follow modern 
standards.. Is that not to denigrate the ancients as "primitive"??

>The attitude towards documents that you call "modern" where the format
>was unimportant but the content is, is derived from the thinking found
>in Tanakh and New Testament. That makes it unique among ancient
>attitudes towards writing.

This is quite a claim that is completely contrary to the concrete 
evidence.  Concrete examples, please. FROM the original texts, please.

 >That does not mean that individuals following that attitude were not 
influenced by the attitude that
 >existed among the Greeks, Romans, etc., but that they did not consider 
themselves bound by >them.


Ever hear of  Arius and Athanasius? That was fourth century.  You are 
aware, of course, of the fighting between rival religious parties as well 
as within religious parties. Surely you are aware that each religious party 
had an identifying script.

>As a result I find your argument that the differences in writing style
>between Vaticanus and Sinaiticus reflect different political factions
>vying for power within the ancient church a theory that is less than

I am sorry if the evidence undercuts.presuppositions, but the massive 
evidence across five-thousand years is concrete and visible. Then, after 
your peculiar and exceptionally rude last response, I no longer even try to 
convince you; I am writing this reply for others

Every time there is a change of power structure there is a change to the 
official identifying script
This is quite visible in the Hebrew and Aramaic scripts among the DSS. let 
alone both before the DSS and after..The changes in the designs of 
cuneiform scripts is an early example, a modern one is the enforced change 
on German scripts by a ruler with Imperial ambitions.

>However, I have no problem with the concept that those differences reflect 
>different geographical locations.

Good of you.What about the different canons. Just locale? Nothing to do 
with religious affiliation., right?

>I have heard the theory that these are the only remaining copies of the 
>"Great Bibles"
>that Constantine ordered to be placed in all churches,

Sigh, and just how many of those "great bibles" do these folks think were 
produced. Later instances of ordering large books (e.g., AElfred's ordering 
translations of Gregory's "Pastoral Care") to be reproduced and in every 
church usually end up with perhaps three or so copies. It was only with the 
printing press that such grandiose schemes, for instance, the book of 
common prayer, could be implemented.

>in which casemany would have been hastily done, using materials of uncertain
>quality locally available. As a result, many of these "Great Bibles"
>early on would have been recognized as less than stellar examples of
>the copyist's art.

Please! Both the Siniaticus and the Vaticanus are written on superior 
parchment. Both are written in formal bookhands. Both are carefully laid 
out on the leaves.

When open for reading, the Vaticanus imitates the shape and size of an 
official proclamation on a  wall tablet in the Greek hierarchy of shape and 
sizes. The Siniaticus imitates the shape and size of formal Imperial 
documents on papyri..

The script of the Vaticanus is archaized, sans serif,  and imitates 
Classical (4th BCE) Greek scripts. The script of the Siniaticus adds Roman 
serifs and imitates Greco-Roman designs.

Where do you find any evidence that they were supposed to be "inferior" 

>Because this attitude that you call "modern" is also an ancient one,

Sure. The Atticists tried it on Greek -- didn't take effect for more than 
500 years -- just take a look at the documents in the Epigraphic Museum or 
the Archaeological Museum in Athens some day. . The Augustinians tried it 
on Latin. Took **1600** years to finally take effect.

Peoples fight for their identity; the design of a script is the ancient 
"national" flag of identity.-- whether we are talking about ethnic groups 
or religious parties.Still is, if you bother to read Jack Goody's 
(anthropological) works. Do note that the so-called "Rashi" script  is the 
reason for the change in the ta'amim and nikkud. It's a compact script with 
minimal leading. The earlier notation systems required large leading.The 
compact leading required a redesign of the notations. The Rashi script, 
though is merely a slight change in design of an identifying script, 
turning a large bookhand into a compact, condensed bookhand. It did not 
eliminate identity.Nor is it used everywhere.

Unless you have a brutal dictator who enforces change by death, as, for 
example, in the 20th-century, to effect a change to a people's writing 
system takes centuries. The technique is called "classicization"; the name 
of the game is "standardization." It finally took hold in the English 
speaking world during the Commonwealth; took the printing press to help it 
along. Orthography, though... that's really very modern. And that has taken 
300 years to sort of enforce. Modern. You bet! We are the heirs of the late 
17th- and 18th-century Classicists. The Internet is rather quickly throwing 
the "Enlightenment" standardization out the window this time around. Just 
another round in the same old dance. What else is new?

>albeit a minority ancient one, therefore early corrections of
>Vaticanus and Sinaiticus could be just that, corrections.

The early corrections were made by the original scribes; they are 
corrections. The later ones, some are, some aren't. AS I SAID!!!

>Karl W. Randolph.

Dr. Rochelle I. Altman

>On 10/23/06, rochelle altman <willaa at netvision.net.il> wrote:
>> >Peter,
>> >
>> >I a, perfectly aware of the fact that most are papyri gragments. Schmuel
>> >was going on about the Siniaticus, no?


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