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Thread: the rise and fall of lectio brevior

  1. Default the rise and fall of lectio brevior


    Today I ran into what seems to be the earliest quote that is used for the lectio brevior (shorter reading) theory that is a key part of the hortian charade. Bengel and Griesbach are two important names in this discussions of textual canons, and we plan to examine their positions. However this writer precedes Bengel.

    Jean Daillé (1594–1670)
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean_Daill%C3%A9

    And this quote from 1666 gets a surprisingly large amount of usage. Richard Porson in the heavenly witnesses debate, Tregelles and others. And through Porson it even jumps to Shakespeare text analysts.


    Ioannis Dallaei De scriptis, quae sub Dionysii Areopagitae et Ignatii Antiocheni nominibus circumferuntur, libri duo. Quibus demonstratur illa subdititia esse, diu post martyrium, quibus falso tribuuntur, obitum ficta; idemque de illis judicandum quae de operibus Christi cardinalibus inter Cypriani monumenta habentur. Adjecta est brevis commonefactio, de ruffiniana origenicorum aliquot operum interpretatione (1666)
    Jean Daillé
    http://books.google.com/books?id=9c1H7ETd3mcC&pg=PA238


    Natura enim ita comparatum est ut auctorum probatorum libros plaerique omnes amplos, quam breves malint; verentes scilicet, ne quid sibi desit, quod auctoris vel sit, vel esse dicatur.


    Translation from Jonathan Borland on b-latin:

    [B-Latin] Jean Daillé and the first lectio brevior quote
    Jonathan C. Borland - Dec 6, 2014
    https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/...s/messages/372


    "For nature so has it that the vast majority should prefer recognized authors' books/manuscripts that are long/full rather than short/concise; reverently of course, lest anything that either may be or may be said to be the author's should become lost to them."
    Daillé was a bit of a flake in terms of ECW writings (quick to label writings spurious with weak, circular and special pleading argumentation). And he supplies pure Bible contras with the first lectio brevior quote.

    Here is an interesting book by
    Daillé translated into English:

    A Treatise Concerning the Right Use of the Fathers in the Decision of Controversies Existing at this Day in Religion (1631 French)
    Jean Daillé - translated by Thomas Smith, 1651, 1856 edition
    http://books.google.com/books?id=U7YPAAAAIAAJ


    John James Blunt (1794-1855)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_James_Blunt


    dealt with
    Daillé's skeptical approach to the ECW in sermons, this third section is right on point:

    On the right use of the early fathers; 2 ser. of lectures (1858)
    John James Blunt
    http://books.google.com/books?id=K8ECAAAAQAAJ&pg=PA46

    This is by way of introduction. The plan is to expand the studies on the development and gross abuse of the lectio brevior concept. However the side-journey to theories about the ECW is also interesting. The approach of
    Daillé prefigures the method of the modern liberals and skeptics.

    In the next post you can see how Richard Porson used this Daillé quote

    Steven Avery

    Last edited by admin; 12-06-2014 at 07:12 PM.

  2. Default Porson - "surest canon of criticism" fabrication -> to oppose heavenly witnessess


    The heavy drinker and skeptic Richard Porson is known to have written on only one Bible text issue, opposition to the heavenly witnesses.


    1 John 5:7
    For there are three that bear record in heaven,
    the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost:
    and these three are one.


    As part of that opposition Porson put together a little section in 1790 where he called lectio brevior the "surest canon of criticism". Using the minor note of the flaky Jean
    Daillé above and an offhand quote from Bengel.

    The goal of Richard Porson was singular, to support the very difficult "marginal note" theory of heavenly witnesses creation. Porson simply fabricated the idea that this margin-to-text idea is a common occurrence. And brazenly claimed that this margin-to-text writing had occurred "millions" of times.
    This was part of the correspondence debate in the Gentlemen's Magazine with George Travis in 1782. Porson was responding to this section from George Travis (1741-1797):

    Letters to Edward Gibbon: author of the History of the decline and fall of the Roman Empire
    George Travis
    http://books.google.com/books?id=QwcrAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA342 (1785)
    http://books.google.com/books?id=nf0qAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA453 (1794)

    But when the rage of persecution began to abate, and when the different assemblies of Christians had leisure to communicate together, and to consult in security their originals, or such authentic transcripts thereof as held with them the place of originals—then the absence of this verse was discovered, and the omissions of it were in some degree rectified. Private persons corrected their erroneous MSS in the most compendious, as well as least expensive method: namely, by interlining the omitted verse in the text, or by adding it in the margin of their copies of this Epistle.
    fn The adversaries of this verse have founded, on this latter circumstance, their idea of a marginal gloss, or comment. But surely, nothing can be more affected or absurd. When the possessor of a MS of this Epistle had discovered the omission of this verse in his copy, how is it to be supposed that he would act ? He would not re-copy his MS, beginning with this omission ; for that expedient would be too troublesome, or too expensive. He must, of necessity, correct his erroneous MS, either by an interlineation (which however would be impracticable in some MSS) or by inserting the omission in its margin. And this seems to be the true, the obvious, and the only reason why some MSS have interlined, and others have exhibited in their margins, this verse of St. John.
    Now lots of counterpoint to Travis was possible, but Richard Porson decided to simply brazen it out, throwing out a couple of quote-snippets to grossly misrepresent the New Testament Bible history.

    Letters to Mr. Archdeacon Travis, in Answer to His Defence of the Three Heavenly Witnesses, 1 John, V 7 (1790)
    Richard Porson
    http://books.google.com/books?id=_btdAAAAcAAJ&pg=PA150
    http://books.google.com/books?id=uNOLTFNl2_IC&pg=PA71 (1828 reprint)

    ... the next transcriber, in a fit of politeness, might think that if this sentence was not text, it deserved to be, and might compliment it with a place in the middle of his page. Perhaps you think it "an affected and absurd idea" that a marginal note can ever creep into the text: yet I hope you are not so ignorant as not to know that this has actually happened, not merely in hundreds or thousands, but in millions of places. "Natura," says Daille, "ita comparatum est ut auctorum probatorum libros plerique omnes amplos, quam breves malint; verentes scilicet, ne quid sibi desit, quod auctoris vel sit, vel esse dicatur."

    To the same purpose Bengelius, "Non facile pro superfluo aliquid hodie habent complures docti viri, (he might have added, ' omnesque indocti,') eademque meute plerique quondam librarii fuere."

    From this known propensity of transcribers to turn every thing into text which they found written in the margin of their Mss. or between the lines, so many interpolations have proceeded, that at present the surest canon of criticism is, Praferatur lectio brevior.
    The Bengel quote can be seen in English translation in context here:

    Gnomon of the New Testament (1740, 1877 edition)
    Johann Albrecht Bengel
    https://archive.org/stream/cu3192409.../n238/mode/1up

    ... Upon the whole, on a review of the verses 8, 17, these words appear to have been introduced [by transcribers] into ver. 11, rather than deemed superfluous [and so omitted by them]. Learned men in general, at the present day, do not readily deem anything superfluous, and many copyists of old were of the same opinion. Such passages are more safely decided by the copies, than by arguments: and under this head the Latin translator has special weight, wherever competent Greek witnesses, however few, prove that he is not affected with his own peculiar blemishes. Would that all would keep this closely in mind; it would be a very great advantage for the removal of many doubts.
    Ironically, the same section from Bengel that makes an offhand reference to copyists considering every word important is also giving an emphasis on the Latin text, which is exactly one major position supporting the heavenly witnesses as scripture. Notice, there is nothing at all even in either quote remotely related to bringing margin readings to the text, the Porson context.

    Wettstein gave a lectio brevior canon starting in 1730.

    This is discussed by Metzger in an unusual paper where he gives a modest defense of lectio brevior by way of comparison with the textual history of the Sanskrit
    Mahābhārata. (Note the allusion to the Lucian Recension theory on p. 153, which goes with his very weak Chapter One, The Lucianic Recension of the Greek Bible.)

    Chapters in the History of New Testament Textual Criticism (1963)
    RecentTrends in the Textual Criticism of the Iliad and the
    Mahābhārata (1945)
    Bruce Manning Metzger
    http://books.google.com/books?id=noA3AAAAIAAJ&pg=PA153

    J. J. Wettstein appears to be the first editor of the Greek Testament to formulate this canon fully. In his Prolegomena ad Novi Testamenti Graeci editionem accuratissimam (Amsterdam, 1730), p. lx, and again in his celebrated Novum Testamentum Graecumm, 11 (Amsterdam, 1752), 862, he laid down the rule that, "Inter duas variantes lectiones non protinus amplior atque prolixior breviori est praeferenda, sed contra potius," etc.
    Thus you can find the Wettstein writing at:

    Prolegomena ad Novi Testamenti Graeci editionem accuratissimam: (1730)
    Johann Wettstein
    IX - lectio brevior

    http://books.google.com/books?id=0vsqAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA184

    XII - least orthodox reading
    http://books.google.com/books?id=0vsqAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA186

    With at least those two duas variantes sections really needing translation. The lectio brevior pages are p. 187 and the top of p. 188 and include references to Erasmus and Jerome.


    Online is the Brian Walton polyglot, which has the Wettstein points in Latin in the 1828 Francis Wrangham edition. Wettstein's canons are the focus of p. 511-513.

    Briani Waltoni In Biblia polyglotta prolegomena specialia, Volume 1 (1828)
    Brian Walton, Francis Wrangham
    http://books.google.com/books?id=l_Q2AQAAMAAJ&pg=PT573

    Metzger only mentions some supporters of the western text as among those who oppose the lectio brevior canon in the NT. Albert Curtis Clark (1850-1937), Jose Maria Bover (1877-1954) and Edgar Simmons
    Buchanan (1872-1932). Robert Eisler (1882-1949) is also referenced. Today, the opposition to the canon and its gross abuse would have to include various Received Text, Byzantine and eclectic writers. And the modern group of studies spearheaded by James Ronald Royse, which have demonstrated that the canon is simply, overall, opposite from the scribal reality. Those studies began in 1965 by Ernest Cadman Colwell's Scribal Habits in Early Papyri: A Study in the Corruption of the Text, which was later reprinted in 1969 as Method in Evaluating Scribal Habits: A study of P45, P66, P75.

    ===============================

    Griesbach a few years later gave his version of lectio brevior, in his
    Prolegomena to the 2nd edition of his Greek New Testament (1796-1806). However, the canon was heavily qualified and would have been of little or no use to Porson.

    Beyond the mild and not well-received Wettstein section, it is hard to find any uses or statements of the supposed lectio brevior canon of criticism before Porson in 1790.

    The irony is that Porson's fabrication above, including the millions and a flippant and errant claim about scribal habits, became very popular, as if it was a scientific observation. And was quoted by various New Testament and Shakespeare scholars throughout the 1800s as authoritative. Thus, the bitter opposition of Porson to the heavenly witnesses contributed to the general scholarship malaise, confusion and apostasy on textual issues throughout the 1800s.


    Steven Avery
    Last edited by admin; 12-07-2014 at 08:24 AM.

  3. Default lectio difficilior and lectio brevior made easy :)


    One interesting point about lectio brevior.

    Johann Albrecht Bengel (1687-1752)
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johann_Albrecht_Bengel


    never stated lectio brevior as any sort of canon (he also would have had plenty of opportunity to state such a concept when he defended the heavenly witnesses as scripture) yet that myth comes forth from modern writers.


    The lectio brevior canon actually began with Wettstein, and more importantly for scholarship use, Griesbach, with many qualifications that essentially contradict the canon.

    Now, it can be claimed by a theoretician, see Timpanaro below, that lectio brevior is one sub-element of lectio difficilior. That would only be if some one set up their textual theory structure that way. Here is:

    Eberhard Nestle (1851-1913)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eberhard_Nestle


    putting words in the mouth and mind of Bengel.

    Introduction to the textual criticism of the Greek New Testament (1901)
    Eberhard Nestle
    http://books.google.com/books?id=gelHAQAAIAAJ&pg=PA239

    Bengel reduced all the rules to a single one. Quite recently Wordsworth and White comprehended the rules they followed in the preparation of the text of their Latin New Testament in four sentences. Of these the fourth (brevior lectio probabilior) is but another form of Bengal's canon.
    Nope. Maybe Nestle blundered and thought that the shorter reading is a subset of lectio difficilior (the more difficult reading.) However, not Bengel.

    Even if you are looking for the more difficult reading, it will often be the longer text, not the shorter. Such a setup is simply wrong.

    As a sidenote, Nestle does do a good job indicating some of the textual theoreticians before Bengel:

    Gerhard von Maestricht laid down forty-three Critical Canons, and Wettstein set forth in his New Testament his Animadversiones et Cautiones ad exatnen variarum lectionum Novi Testamenti necessariae (vol. ii. 851-874). In 1755 J. D, Michaelis added to his Curae in versionem Syriacam Act. Apost. his Consectaria critica de . . . . usu versionis Syriacae tabularum Novi Foederis See Semler's edition of J. J. Wetsteinii libelli ad cristen atque interpretationem N.T.. Halae, 1766.

    We can add the Clericus reference below. And it should be mentioned that Gerhard von Mastricht is demonstrating the canons that are de facto behind the pure Received Text.

    A Dictionary of the Bible: Comprising Its Antiquities, Biography, Geography and Natural History
    (1863)
    New Testament
    Brooke Foss Westcott
    http://books.google.com/books?id=HIXGbKjboKIC&pg=PA525

    "a series of canons composed to justify the received text"


    Although I would not take the Westcott presentation too seriously, we would have to research Gerhard more directly. And note that on p. 530 Westcott mangles the "proclivi scriptioni praestat ardua" sense of Bengel, as we discuss below.


    For context, Bengel put his difficult reading concept, which he carefully qualified, as:

    Proclivi scriptioni praestat ardua
    To an easy reading prefer the harder.
    The difficult reading is to be preferred to that which is easy.

    And please note that the proper understanding of Bengel is very different than today's lectio difficilior. While ignored by the confused modern writer's today, this was carefully noted by:

    Thomas Kingsmill Abbott (1829-1913)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Kingsmill_Abbott

    A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Epistles to the Ephesians and to the Colossians (1897)
    http://books.google.com/books?id=Jw9WAAAAMAAJ&pg=PR45

    It may not be out of place here to say a word on that much misapplied maxim: "The more difficult reading is to be preferred"; a maxim which, pressed to its logical conclusion, would oblige us to accept the unintelligible because of its unintelligibility; and which, indeed, is sometimes urged in support of a reading which cannot be interpreted without violence. Bengel with his usual terseness and precision expressed in four words the true maxim of which this is a perversion : "Proclivi scriptioni praestat ardua." "Proclivis scriptio" is not a reading easy to understand, but one into which the scribe would easily fall; and "scriptio ardua" is that which would come less naturally to him. The question is not of the interpreter, but of the scribe. This includes the former erroneous maxim so far as it is true; but it may, and often does happen that the "proclivis scriptio" is a "difficilis lectio." Bengel's maxim includes a variety of cases which he discusses in detail.
    Thus, Bengel's harder reading does not mean the geographical errors and logical blunders and inconsistencies in the modern Vaticanus critical text, which are generally ultra-minority little scribal faux pas. From Bengel, this is a reference to scribal writing, not mind-reading.

    Abbott made the point here as well, with examples:

    M. Berger's History of the Vulgate - Review (1896)
    Thomas Kingsmill Abbott
    http://books.google.com/books?id=pW8NAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA51

    Mr. Bensly, (Robert Lubbock Bensly 1831-1893)
    by the way, gives a good instance from the same book of the substitution of the familiar for the unknown in the reading Nazareth substituted in one MS. for Arzareth. The latter is simply an imperfect transliteration of the Hebrew for ' a strange land.' I quote this as an illustration of Bengel's admirable, but invariably misquoted, maxim, 'Proclivi scriptioni praestat ardua.' This does not mean 'the more difficult reading is to be preferred to the easier,' which is an unsound rule, and involves a mistranslation of three out of the four words; but, the reading to which the scribe would be more prone is less likely to be the true one. It will be seen that 'proclivis scriptio' includes familiar combinations of words or letters, which may make the text more difficult to the reader, as, for example, 'non sum ihs' for 'non sum missus.' In the same note Mr. Bensly mentions a reading found in three mss., which may serve as an illustration of the unsound rule just quoted, 'Et mulieres et heretici parient menstruatae monstra.' If the more difficult reading is to be preferred, certainly ' et heretici' should be genuine.
    The basic problem in the modern abuse of the lectio difficilior concept is well understood by a writer on textual theory who had not been molded by the New Testament hortian conditioning:

    Martin Litchfield West (b. 1937)
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Litchfield_West

    (Note that on the previous page he effectively discard the oldest manuscript fascination, which is behind Vaticanus primacy.)


    Textual Criticism and Editorial Technique (1973)
    Martin Litchfield West
    http://books.google.com/books?id=AXuk4pdxk1YC&pg=PA51

    Since the normal tendency is to simplify, to trivialize, to eliminate the unfamiliar word or construction, the rule is praestat difficilior lectio 3... When we choose the 'more difficult' reading, however, we must be sure that it is in itself a plausible reading. The principle should not be used in support of dubious syntax, or phrasing that it would not have been natural for the author to use. There is an important difference between a more difficult reading and a more unlikely reading.
    The principle was clearly enunciated by Clericus, Ars Critica (Amsterdam 1696), ii. 293. For earlier hints or" it sec S. Timpanaro, La Genesi del metodo del Laachmann (Firenze 1963), p. 21 n. 1.
    accept the unintelligible because of its unintelligibility - Abbott

    difference between a more difficult reading and a more unlikely reading - West

    Now, perhaps another day we will go into the continual mangling and gross abuse of lectio difficilior by Metzger, Wallace, Ehrman and the parrots. However, the above should give you the ammunition for understanding.

    Note that I go into this West section and the modern theories in some extra depth here:

    Pure Bible - Facebook
    Martin Litchfield West on textual criticism theory and praxis
    Steven Avery - August 16, 2014
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/pure...8789437546282/


    Returning to the point at the top, the modern theorists at times blunder outright and claim that Bengel had a lectio brevior canon.

    First Corinthians (2005)
    Raymond F. Collins edited by Daniel J. Harrington
    http://books.google.com/books?id=QaFu25KmgiIC&pg=PA199
    ... on the basis of Bencel's lectio brevior principle ....

    Paul's Divine Christology (2012)

    Chris Tilling
    http://books.google.com/books?id=P_LDRwNHTAUC&pg=PA78
    Johann Albrecht Bengel's textual critical dictum of lectio brevior potior (the shorter of two readings is to be preferred)


    A Marxist atheist scholar:

    Sebastiano Timpanaro (1923-2000)
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sebastiano_Timpanaro


    one of the many unbelievers who elbow their way into modern textual studies trying to give you your Bible, actually gave some solid background and explanation.


    The Genesis of Lachmann's Method (2005)
    Sebastiano Timpanaro
    http://books.google.com/books?id=vxdJvAZV00kC&pg=PA69


    In the first quote, we can see that Bengel did in fact have the absurd lectio difficilior concept that does not allow the Holy Spirit to inspire beautiful writing through the apostles, if a chopped-up weaker text is available:

    Bengel 1763a (1734):17: "Where the one (sc. reading) is more easy, the other less so, the one that is old, weighty, brief, is preferred; the one that charms us by its greater perspicacity and fullness, as though it had been introduced deliberately, is generally set aside."
    Next, Timpanaro properly sees the difficulty of connecting lectio brevior and lectio difficilior, however so far we have seen no basis with Bengel for saying that he had lectio brevior as a subspecies of lectio difficilior. (Similarly, Timpanaro also appears to be unaware of the salient point made by Abbott above, about Bengel.)

    If should be noted that already in Bengel, and then in Wettstein and Griesbach, and even in recent manuals, the lectio brevior appears as a subspecies of the lectio difficilior—but in fact the lectio brevior is a much more uncertain criterion, since if the fuller reading can derive from the desire to make the text clearer or from interpolations of various kinds, the briefer reading can be caused by omissions (Dain 1975 [1949]: 20), especially by unconscious elimination of words not strictly necessary to the context yet still present in the authentic text: cf. Timpanaro 1976: 35-40; other examples in Rizzo 1977: 104-5. (continues with LeClerc.)
    ===========================================

    Another book with a lot of interesting information (better than the standard New Testament textual criticism propaganda and pablum) is:


    The Enlightenment Bible: Translation, Scholarship, Culture (2013)
    Jonathan Sheehan
    http://books.google.com/books?id=6RryAAAAQBAJ


    p. 89-102 online
    http://books.google.com/books?id=SJGhYCqVflUC&pg=PA100

    is a recommended read (short of the eventual purchase or library fuller read) with Gerhard von Mastricht, Jean le Clerc, Bengel, Daniel Whitby and Johann Wettstein being among those who are in this early period of textual ferment, where canons were being shot, variants were being counted and some scholarship was in rebellion against the pure Bible text.


    ===========================================

    Hope the above is helpful, sensible, readable and can be received iron sharpeneth. A bit on the techie side, but I do believe it is helpful if we learn how the academy pseudo-scientific textual criticism got into its current mess.

    In a follow-up post, I plan to show how the Richard Porson nonsense above distorted textual theory.

    It would be good to follow up the lectio brevior difficulties, moving forward from Griesbach (the above is prior to Griesbach). A certain amount of material is posted on Facebook and forum threads, ready to come over.

    Also we will go back to some of the various related discussions, including one today on Facebook NT Textual Criticism about the Griesbach "unorthodox" canon.


    ===========================================

    Psalm 119:140
    Thy word is very pure:
    therefore thy servant loveth it.


    Steven Avery - Nov 29, 2014

  4. Default lots of lectio brevior resources


    And it would be good to prepare a timeline of the rise and fall of lectio brevior.

    Lets put together some of the fine overall recent scholarship references, mostly those that have not been covered in the posts above.
    In fact, we will add a lot of the blunder and deceptive stuff that is parrot fodder as well.

    Note: to be a fuller timeline/chronology we would have to pull from the first three posts as well. (Planned for later.) Plus, a separate entry would be placed for Griesbach, who is given in Metzger and Miller and others below. Albert Clark and Claude Boismard could use their own spots.

    Hort, without a canon, was the supreme lectio brevior aficianado of all, when you add in the absurd western non-interpolations. Since he did not overtly proclaim the concept, the response from Burgon, Salmon, Miller and others, even later Colwell and Clark, to the abbreviated, shorter reading, aspect of the Hort text was only discussed in the larger context of the hortian approach to mangling the text.

    (Placed on the next post: in the heavenly witnesses debate there are a number of fine references to the ease of omission, how it is much more sensible than the multi-step hypothetical addition by margin. The margin claim as in the Richard Porson claim above. Note that, in addition to showing how Metzger-Ehrman and Aland and Wallace have fed the misinformation, the Richard Porson "million" disaster should have its own exposition. Since it really shows how certain deficient writers develop a parrot following, even branching out to confuse Shakespeare scholars about textual criticism.)

    As for the quote-boxes breaking up at times, two or three boxes where we would like only one, that is a question I have to research with vbulletin.

    ======================================

    Jerome

    The New Testament ... in the original Greek: with notes and introductions by Chr. Wordsworth
    (1859)
    Christopher Wordsworth
    http://books.google.com/books?id=DN5UAAAAcAAJ&pg=PR12


    It is likewise certain, as was long since observed by S. Jerome, that à priori the shorter readings are preferable, and that the text of one Gospel has often been interpolated from another. But how much caution and circumspection is necessary in the application of these principles!
    Even with his own caution, Wordsworth was severely overstating the position of Jerome, as discussed here:

    [TC-Alternate-list] Wordsworth (1877) on Jerome on lectio brevior
    Steven Avery - May 20, 2011
    https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/...ns/topics/4196


    Here is the Jerome text:

    Jerome, Letter to Pope Damasus: Preface to the Gospels
    Preface to the Gospels
    Translated by Kevin P. Edgecomb, 27 July 1999, Berkeley, California.
    http://www.tertullian.org/fathers/je...ce_gospels.htm


    Therefore, this present little preface promises only the four Gospels, the order of which is Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, revised in comparison with only old Greek books. They do not disagree with many familiar Latin readings, as we have kept our pen in control, but only those in which the sense will have been seen to have changed (from the Greek) are corrected; the rest remain as they have been.
    We have also copied the lists which Eusebius the bishop of Caesarea, following Ammonius of Alexandria, set out in ten numbers, as they are had in the Greek, so that if any may then wish through diligence to make known what in the Gospels may be either the same, or similar, or singular, he may learn their differences. This is great, since indeed error has sunk into our books; while concerning the same thing, one Evangelist has said more, into another they have added because they thought it inferior; or while another has differently expressed the same sense, whichever one of the four he had read first, he will revise the other to the version he values most. Whence it happened how in our time that all have been mixed; in Mark are many things of Luke, and even of Matthew; turned backwards in Matthew are many things of John and of Mark, yet in the remaining others, they are found to be correct. When, therefore, you will have read the lists which are attached below, the confusion of errors is removed, and you will know all the similar passages, and the singular ones, wherever you may turn to. In the first list, the four agree, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John; in the second, three, Matthew, Mark, John; in the third, three, Matthew, Luke, John; in the fourth, three, Matthew, Mark, John; in the fifth, two, Matthew, Luke; in the sixth, two, Matthew, Mark; in the seventh, two, Matthew, John; in the eighth, two, Luke, Mark; in the ninth, two, Luke, John; in the tenth some peculiar ones are given which the others don't have. Separately in the Gospels are numbered sections of unequal length, beginning with one and increasing to the end of the books. This is written before the passage in black, and it has under it a red number, which shows to which of the ten (lists) to proceed, with the first number to be sought in the list.
    It is truly a flying hortian-style leap to try to find lectio brevior in there, in what is a description of the Eusebian canons, showing where sections of the New Testament agree in the different gospel books.

    "This is great, since indeed error has sunk into our books; while concerning the same thing, one Evangelist has said more, into another they have added because they thought it inferior; or while another has differently expressed the same sense, whichever one of the four he had read first, he will revise the other to the version he values most."

    It is not even clear that Jerome is talking of scribal habits at all, rather than the development of the four gospels.


    The Latin is given here:

    Praefatio Hieronymi in Quatuor Evangelia
    Latin text from Miqne PL Vol. 29, Col. 525
    http://www.earlychurchtexts.com/main..._gospels.shtml


    ... Magnus siquidem hie in nostris codicibus error inolevit, dum quod in eadem re alius Evangelista plus dixit, in alio quia minus putaverint, addiderunt. Vel dum eumdem sensum alius aliter expressit, ille qui unum e quatuor primum legerat, ad ejus exemplum caeteros quoque aestimavent emendandos


    (A subscription or inquiry could tell us if their English version is the translation above.)

    And I plan to ask on the b-latin forum whether the context of the "error" has to do with the development of the gospels, or later scribal adjustments.


    ======================================

    Eberhard Wassenburg

    Thomas Hartwell Horne

    Frederick Henry Ambrose Scrivener


    Here is a Bible scholar, Eberhard Wassenburg.
    Shortly after the wild Richard Porson claim, he ran with a margin-to-text theory of interpolation.

    Everwinus Wassenbergh (1742-1826)
    https://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Everwinus_Wassenbergh


    Selecta e scholis Lud. Casp. Valckenarii in libros quosdam Novi Testamenti
    : In quo scholae in Lucae Evangelium et Actus Apostolorum : cum brevi editoris annotatione, Volume 1 (1815)
    Lodewijk Caspar Valckenaer, Eberhard Wassenbergh
    http://books.google.com/books?id=qYtAAAAAcAAJ&pg=PA1

    Everwini Wassenberghii
    Dissertatio Glossis Novi Testamenti

    84 pages on New Testament glosses, heavenly witnesses are not given

    An Introduction to the Critical Study and Knowledge of the Holy Scriptures, Volume 2
    Thomas Hartwell Horne
    http://books.google.com/books?id=pMUVAAAAYAAJ&pg=RA1-PA128

    1836
    Valckenaer was one of the most distinguished critics of the' last century. These extracts from his Scholia are wholly philological. To the first volume, M. Wassenberg has prefixed a dissertation on those passages which he thinks were originally glosses, written in the margin of manuscripts, but which in the lapse of ages have become incorporated with the text. To the second volume he has
    also prefixed a Dissertation respecting the Trajecttions often necessary in the New Testament. Some of these Trajections or transpositions are arbitrary enough. Bishop Jebb has given a specimen of them, with some just casugatory remarks, in his Sacred Literature, pp. 128—130.
    A Plain Introduction to the criticism of the New Testament. For the use of Biblical students (1861)
    Scrivener
    http://books.google.com/books?id=QkNVAAAAcAAJ&pg=PA373

    III. "Brevior lectio, nisi testium vetustorum et gravium auctoritate penitus destituatur, praeferenda est verbosiori. Librarii enim multo proniores ad addendum fuerunt, quam ad omittendum" (Griesbach, N. T. Proleg. p. lxiv. Vol. I.). This canon bears an influential part in the system of Griesbach and his successors, and by the aid of Cod. B (see p. 93) and a few others, has brought great changes into the text. Mr Green too (Course of Developed Criticism on Text of N. T.) sometimes carries it to excess in his desire to remove what he considers accretions. It is so far true that scribes were prone to receive marginal notes into the text which they were originally designed only to explain or enforce (e.g. 1 John v. 7) 1;

    1 "Though the theory of explanatory interpolations of marginal glosses into the text of the N. T. has been sometimes carried too far (e. g. by Wassenbergh in Valeken. Schol. in N.T. Tom. I.), yet probably this has been the most fertile source of error in some MSS. of the Sacred Volume." (Wordsworth, N.T., on 2 Cor. iii. 3.) Yes, in some MSS
    Note the careful note from Scrivener, relating only to some manuscripts. One can think he has Codex Bezae in Luke-Acts in mind. Yet even there, margin-to-text is an unlikely mechanism for the additions.

    And notice the overview, as the lectio brevior myth was a prime element in trying to find a new non-TR text:


    "This canon bears an influential part in the system of Griesbach and his successors (e.g. Alford and Tregelles), and by the aid of Cod. B (see p. 93) and a few others, has brought great changes into the text."
    Then on p. 93, about Vaticanus there is lots of interesting writing. Scrivener knew that Vaticanus was an omission text because of scribal errors and that the lectio brevior idea was false.

    "One marked feature, characteristic of this copy, is the great number of its omissions, which has induced Dr Dobbin to speak of it as presenting "an abbreviated text of the New Testament" and certainly the facts he states on this point are startling enough ... oversights of the scribe"
    And "one of the most vicious extant" about Vaticanus was likely from Burgon after viewing the manuscript in Rome in 1860. (Letters from Rome, 1862, p. 158) Note that this is a full decade before the Westcott-Hort recension text.

    ======================================

    Tregelles

    An Account of the Printed Text of the Greek New Testament: With Remarkson Its Revision Upon Critical Principles. Together with A Collation of the Critical Texts of Griesbach, Scholz, Lachmann, and Tischendorf, with that in Common Use (1856)
    http://books.google.com/books?id=Jw8_AQAAMAAJ&pg=PA88


    The following is a brief synopsis of some of the general principles of criticism laid down by Griesbach:—No reading must be considered preferable, unless it has the.support of at least some ancient testimonies. As to readings, looked at in themselves, a shorter is to be preferred before one that ia more verbose; * so also is that which is more difficult and obscure,—that which is more harsh,—that which contains something unusual,—that which is less emphatic (unless emphasis may be expected); in all these cases, however, and others which are laid down, such as those favouring " monkish piety," seeming glosses, etc., weight of evidence may cause the apparently less preferable reading to be accepted as genuine.

    *It can hardly be too habitually remembered, in criticism, that. copyists were always more accustomed to add than to omit. Those who know nothing of criticism or of ancient books, biblical or classical, often imagine tbe contrary, but such is not the fact. Of course careless transcribers may omit ; but, in general, texts, like snowballs, grow in course of transmission. p. 88
    And we see Tregelles actualy latching onto the absurdity of Porson:
    Their own subjective feeling hinders them from rightly weighing objective facts; so that there is even a reluctance to admit truth, although owned to be such on grounds of overwhelming objective evidence—evidence to which the judgment is compelled, though with regret, to submit**

    ** Too following sentence of Porson (Letters to Travis, pp. 149,150) is well worthy of attention: " ... a marginal note can ever creep into the text ... this has actually happened, not merely in hundreds or thousands, but in millions of places... the surest canon of criticism is, Preferatur lectio brevior."
    That Tregelles and others could quote Porson without any critical thinking is a demonstration that forces were in play against the pure Bible that were totally irrational, even among the more respected type of scholar like Tregelles.

    Stuff like this may be why Alfred Edward Housman (1859-1936) wrote in 1992 an article titled The Application of Thought to Textual Criticism. With quotes like this from Porson and Tregelles, and the convoluted verbal sludge of Hort, thinking had become a low priority.

    Others who got similarly trapped by the Porson "millions of places" disaster include Thomas Sheldon Green (1803/4-1876) A Course of Developed Criticism (1856) and even Ezra Abbot in the Authorship of the Fourth Gospel (1888)
    . To make it even worse, this fabricated absurdity of Porson polluted Shakespeare scholarship such as George Steevens (1736-1800) and John Mitford (1781-1859),

    ======================================

    Alexander Roberts (1826-1901)
    Inquiry Into the Original Language of St. Matthew's Gospel:With Relative Discussions on the Language of Palestine in the Time of Christ, and on the Origin of the Gospels (1859)
    http://books.google.com/books?id=HKgCAAAAQAAJ&pg=PA126

    First, let us look at its additions. These are very frequent,—so numerous, indeed, that amplification may, in general, be said to be the characteristic of this Syriac copy as compared with the Greek- Now, this is in itself a very suspicious circumstance. There is no sounder rule in Biblical criticism, than that which is announced in the first of the Canons of Griesbach:—" Brevior lectio .. "

    In the mid-1800s, the stage was set for Hort's abbreviated text by the parsed writing confusions from Griesbach. Where he made the ultra-parsed canon sound like a rule of sorts. That led to the more overt errors of men like Hammond, Roberts and Tregelles. Then came the shortest text of all, the Westcott-Hort recension.


    ======================================

    Charles Edward Hammond (1837-1914)
    Outlines of textual criticism applied to the New Testament (1872)
    Charles Edward Hammond
    http://books.google.com/books?id=XW6EVLfVBrkC&pg=PA94 (1876)
    https://archive.org/stream/outlineso...ge/88/mode/2up


    I. Brevior lectio praeferenda verbosiori
    This is Griesbach's first canon. It may be found, together with his others, with its various limitations and corollaries, in the Prolegomena to Dean Alford's Greek Testament, vol. i. It rests on the well-known tendency of transcribers, already before alluded to, to include in the text all marginal notes, glosses, &c. found in their copy; nothing, if possible, being omitted. This canon has additional probability in cases where the shorter reading is harsher than the other, or elliptical or obscure; for then there is the possibility of the longer reading being an intentional alteration; or again, if there is in addition a variation between the readings of the codices, either in the phraseology, or in the order of words; or again, at the commencement of passages appointed as Church Lections.
    On the other hand, there are considerations which may sometimes cause a preference of the longer reading, e. g. if a homoioteleuton may have occurred; if the words omitted might seem to a scribe superfluous, harsh, or contrary to a pious belief; or if the shorter reading seem to be out of harmony with the writer's style, or devoid of meaning. But such considerations
    must be used with great caution.

    Alexander Roberts and Charles Edward Hammond are noteworthy as leading into the hortian shorter reading norm. See a bit more on that in the intro.

    ======================================

    Westcott & Hort

    The New Testament in the original Greek (1881)
    Brooke Foss Westcott, Fenton Hort
    http://books.google.com/books?id=gZ4HAAAAQAAJ&pg=PA175

    The almost universal tendency of transcribers to make their text as full as possible, and to eschew omissions, is amply exemplified in the New Testament.
    ======================================

    Revision Revised (1883)
    John William Burgon
    http://books.google.com/books?id=nXkw1TAatV8C&pg=PA138

    short reference (Hort used the shorter reading de facto, without it being a canon)

    ======================================

    George Dunbar Kilpatrick

    The New Testament in Historical and Contemporary Perspective, 1965.
    The Greek New Testament of Today and the Textus Receptus
    George Dunbar Kilpatrick
    http://www.amazon.com/The-Testament-.../dp/0631088407

    "There are passages where reasons can be found for preferring the longer text and there are others where we can find
    reasons for preferring the shorter. There is a third category where there does not seem to be any reason tor deciding one way or the other. How do we decide between longer and shorter readings in this third category? On reflection we do not seem able to find any good reason for thinking that the maxim lectio brevior potior really holds good." p.196.
    ======================================


    Colwell

    Method in Evaluating Scribal Habits: A study of P45, P66, P75 (1969)
    Ernest Cadman Colwell

    http://books.google.com/books?id=4pI3AAAAIAAJ&pg=PA112

    p. 112 has a reference to Alphonse Dain (1896-1964) Les manuscrits, 1949 p. 43, the omission of short words being frequent.

    Nazaroo with excerpts from the Colwell section.

    Colwell on Haplography
    http://textualcriticism.scienceontheweb.net/SUPLEM/Colwell-Haplography.html

    ======================================

    Jakob von Bruggen

    The ancient text of the New Testament (1975)
    Prof. Jakob van Bruggen
    http://www.enigstetroos.org/pdf/VanB...wTestament.pdf


    Eclecticism is always a subjective matter and only creates new mixed texts. The criteria of eclecticism also contradict each other's. 97


    97 A reading which is preferable because of "the style and vocabulary of the author throughout the book" or because of "the immediate context" is on the other hand often suspect as lectio facilior. When one takes into account the possibility that the scribe omits "material which he deemed to be (i) superfluous, (ii) harsh, or (iii) contrary to pious belief, liturgical usage, or ascetical practice" one often comes in conflict with the rule lectio brevior potior. Cf. Metzger, Textual Commentary pp. xxvi-xxviii. The criterion of the authenticity of the reading which can explain the origin of the other variants cannot be applied objectively: when reading B via "transcriptional probability" can be described as derived from heading A, reading A can often via "redactional probability" be described as derived from reading B.

    Jakob van Bruggen does not really highlight any of the problems.

    ======================================

    Kurt and Barbara Aland

    The Text of the New Testament (1995) p. 281 - first edition 1987
    Kurt and Barbara Aland

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Text-New-T.../dp/0802840981

    11. The venerable maxim lectio brevior lectio potior ("the shorter reading is the more probable reading") is certainly right in many instances. But here again the principle cannot be applied mechanically. It is not valid for witnesses whose texts otherwise vary significantly from the characteristic patterns of the textual tradition, with frequent omissions or expansions reflecting editorial tendencies (e.g., D). Neither should the commonly accepted rule of thumb that variants agreeing with parallel passages or with the Septuagint in Old Testament quotations are secondary be applied in a purely mechanical way. A blind consistency can be just as dangerous here as in Rule 10 (lectio difficilior).


    ======================================

    Gordon Fee

    Gordon D. Fee tries hard to criticize Wilbur Pickering (see below) on the harder reading.

    Studies in the Theory and Method of New Testament Textual Criticism
    The Majority Text and the Original Text of the New Testament (1993)
    Gordon D. Fee
    http://books.google.com/books?id=XCCfBCdQT3wC&pg=PA196


    2. Pickering's unhistorical view of the causes of textual corruption is almost certainly what also causes him to slight the matter of "the internal evidence of readings," for after all, most of the canons of internal criticism (at least those under the rubric "transcriptional probability'') are merely other ways of speaking about the causes of variation.

    Thus, the canon of "the shorter reading," though less useful than others simply means that in most cases of "deliberate" variation scribes were more likely to have added words (pronouns, conjunctions, etc.) than they were to have deleted them. ... modern textual criticism relies heavily on such canons, p. 196
    And I do have a special study on this paper by Gordon Fee, which was placed on the NT Textual Criticism forum on Facebook.

    John 3:15 - Gordon Fee Demonstrates TC Indoctrination Techniques
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTTe...4298925323777/

    John 9:38-39 (AV)
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTTe...al_comments=13


    ======================================

    Maurice Robinson

    New Testament Textual Criticism: The Case for Byzantine Priority (2001)
    Maurice A. Robinson
    http://rosetta.reltech.org/TC/v06/Robinson2001.html

    Neither the shorter nor longer reading is to be preferred.

    The reasoned eclectic principle here omitted is the familiar lectio brevior potior, or giving preference to the shorter reading, assuming all other matters to be equal63--a principle which has come under fire even from modern eclectics.64 Not only can its legitimacy be called into question, but its rejection as a working principle can readily be justified. The net effect of such a principle is to produce an a priori bias on insufficient internal grounds which favors the shorter Alexandrian text. The underlying premise is faulty: it assumes that scribes have a constant tendency to expand the text, whether in regard to sacred names, or by a conflationary combination of disparate narratives, lest anything original be lost.65 Yet scribal habits as exemplified in the extant data simply do not support such a hypothesis. Had the later scribes done according to all that has been claimed for them, the resultant Byzantine Textform would be far longer than that currently found: divine titles would be extensively expanded, parallel passages would be in greater harmony, and a universally-conflated text would dominate. Such simply is not the case.
    63 Matters rarely are equal: shorter readings may be due to transcriptional error or intentional removal of a perceived difficulty. Such skew the case and minimize whatever benefit derives from the principle (which is based on a questionable premise of continued scribal expansion).
    64 See for example, Elliott, "Recent Studies" 43: "My own observation is that in general it is the longer text that is original."
    65 This is the rationale in Metzger, Text of the NT, 200: "Rather than make a choice ... (with the attendant possibility of omitting the genuine reading), most scribes incorporated both readings in the new copy which they were transcribing." Such a claim simply is not true (cf. n. 25 above).
    ======================================

    Sebastiano Timpanaro

    The Genesis of Lachmann's Method (2005)
    Sebastiano Timpanaro
    http://books.google.com/books?id=BlWRusu4BY4C&pg=PA192
    ...
    the lectio brevior is a much more uncertain criterion, since if the fuller reading can derive from the desire to make the text clearer or from interpolations of various kinds, the briefer reading can be caused by omissions
    (Dain 1975 [1949]: 20), especially by unconscious elimination of words not strictly necessary to the context yet still present in the authentic text: cf. Timpanaro 1976: 35-40; other examples in Rizzo 1977: 104-5. (continues with LeClerc.)
    A quote which we had in these studies earlier. Note that Dain is given along with Rizzo and more from Timpanaro as being in favor of omission being common.

    ======================================

    Peter Head

    ‘Observations on Early Papyri of the Synoptic Gospels, especially on the “Scribal Habits”’ - Biblica 71 (1990), 240–247
    Peter M. Head
    https://www.academia.edu/1175078/Obs...Scribal_Habits

    documentation on Wettstein on p. 247


    ======================================

    Metzger and Ehrman
    Griesbach canons


    The Text of New Testament
    Bart M. Metzger, Bart D. Ehrman
    http://books.google.com/books?id=lA4WAwAAQBAJ (2005)
    http://www.amazon.com/The-Text-New-Testament-Transmission/dp/019516122X (1992)

    (2005 back to 1992, likely earlier, these sections are likely unchanged, thus Ehrman inherited the presentation)

    http://books.google.com/books?id=lA4WAwAAQBAJ&pg=PA166
    The Modern Critical Period
    From Griesbach to the Present
    I. The Beginnings of Scientific Textual Criticism of the New Testament
    "Among the 15 canons of textual criticism that Griesbach elaborated, the following (his first canon) may be given as a specimen: p. 165

    The shorter reading (unless it lacks entirely the authority of the ancient and weighty witnesses) is to be preferred to the more verbose, for scribes were much more prone to add than to omit. They scarcely ever deliberately omitted anything, but they added many things; certainly they omitted some things by accident, but likewise not a few things have been added to the text by scribes through errors of the eye, ear, memory, imagination, and judgement. Particularly the shorter reading is to he preferred, even though according to the authority of the witnesses it may appear to be inferior to the other,—

    a. if at the same time it is more difficult, more obscure, ambiguous, elliptical, Hebraizing, or solecistic;
    b. if the same thing is expressed with different phrases in various manuscripts;
    c if the order of words varies;
    d. if at the beginning of pericopes;
    e. if the longer reading savours of a gloss or interpretation, or agrees with the wording of parallel passages, or seems to have come from lectionaries

    But on the other hand the longer reading is to he preferred to the shorter (unless the latter appears in many good witnesses),—

    a. if the occasion of the omission can be attributed to homoeotcleuion;
    b. if that which was omitted could have seemed to the scribe to be obscure, harsh, superfluous, unusual, paradoxical, offensive to pious ears, erroneous, or in opposition to parallel passages;
    c. if that which is lacking could be lacking without harming the sense or the structure of the sentence, as for example incidental,
    brief propositions, and other matter the absence of which would he scarcely noticed by the scribe when re-reading what he had
    written;
    d. if the shorter reading is less in accord with the character, style, or scope of the author;
    e. if the shorter reading utterly lacks sense;
    f. if it is probable that the shorter reading lias crept in from parallel passages or front lecuonaries.
    The inherent tension and contradiction in this section from Griesbach is frequently a subject of discussion. One writing said there is a second layer of qualifications.

    http://books.google.com/books?id=lA4WAwAAQBAJ&pg=PA212
    Modern Methods of Textual Criticism
    2. ALBERT C. CLARK
    One of the axioms of classical textual criticism is brevior lectio potior that is, the shorter of two readings is probably original. This principle, which has been accepted as generally valid by both classical and Biblical scholars, was challenged in 1914 by Albert C. Clark in his inaugural lecture as Corpus Professor of Latin in the University of Oxford. Clark's researches in the manuscripts of Cicero's orations led him to believe that accidental omission was a much more common fault than deliberate interpolation by scribes. Four years later Clark published a lengthy treatise on The Descent of Manuscripts (Oxford, 1918), in which he showed that many omissions in classical texts involve multiples of the number of letters in an average line of script. Of two forms of text, one longer and one shorter, the latter can almost always be explained as the result of a scribe's omitting one or more lines of his exemplar. As Clark put it, 'A text is like a traveller who goes from one inn to another, losing an article of luggage at each halt.'

    Clark applied his principle, longior lectio potior, to the text of the Gospels and Acts, with the result that the Western form of
    text, being in general the longer text, came off much better than it had at the hands of Westcott and Hort. If Hort could see no good in the Western text, Clark could see none in the Neutral text, which he regarded as the result of accidental omissions of multiples of lines of average length.

    Clark's theory of accidental scribal omissions was criticized on several scores by such eminent textual scholars as Sanday, Souter, and Kenyon. ....

    More recently, the case against the criterion brevior lectio potior, at least for the earliest New Testament witnesses, has been taken up by James Royse, who, on the basis of a careful study of the papyri, has concluded that in fact the opposite scribal tendency appears to hold, that is, that the scribes of our surviving papyri were more likely to omit portions of the text rather than add to it.
    http://books.google.com/books?id=lA4WAwAAQBAJ&pg=PA212
    Here Metzger and Ehrman hide the demolished canon at the bottom of a section about the quirky Albert Clarke. Crafty.

    Notice the backhand support they throw in:

    "axioms of classical textual criticism is brevior lectio potior that is, the shorter of two readings is probably original. This principle, which has been accepted as generally valid by both classical and Biblical scholars"

    http://books.google.com/books?id=lA4WAwAAQBAJ&pg=PA303
    I. Basic Criteria for the Evaluation of Variant Readings p. 300

    The following is a list of the chief considerations and criteria that the textual critic takes into account when evaluating variant readings in the New Testament p. 302 ....
    2. Interna! evidence, involving two kinds of probability:
    a. Transcriptional probabilities defend on considerations of paleograpbical details and the habits of scribes. ...
    In general, the shorter reading is to he preferred, except where parablepsia arising from homoeotelcuton may have occurred or where the scribe may have omitted material that he deemed to be superfluous, harsh, or contrary to pious belief, liturgical usage, or aseetical practice. (Compare Griesbach's fuller statement of this criterion, pp. 166-67 above.)
    Thus the Alands and Metzger-Ehrman are still today quoted as simply supporting lectio brevior, despite the fact that it is simply a false canon, by the crafty back-maneuvering.

    ======================================


    Peter Williams

    Brevior lectio - history of the concept
    Peter J. Williams - Nov. 12, 2005
    http://evangelicaltextualcriticism.b...f-concept.html

    "Is a Byzantine text from the fourteenth century noticeably longer than one from the fifth? To what extent is the lectio brevior canon something that is held to hold equally through the centuries or to what extent is it just thought to apply to the period in which the principal text-types emerge?"
    ====================================

    James David Miller
    Bible Translator
    The Long and Short of Lectio Brevior Potioer (2006)
    James David Miller
    Associate Professor of Bible at Milligan College, near Johnson City, Tennessee.
    http://tbt.sagepub.com/content/57/1/11.extract
    Files section of textualcriticism forum
    https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/textualcriticism/files


    Though oft-stated, I reject the principle of lectio brevior potior, and the purpose of this article is to urge the reader to do the same. I am not the first to question the preference for the shorter reading. Early in the twentieth century. Albert C. Clark argued against it. A decade later B. H. Streeter insisted "the notion is completely refuted that the regular tendency of scribes was to choose the longer reading, and that therefore the modern editor is quite safe so long as he steadily rejects [longer readings]." Edward Hobbs pointed out the logical extreme of preferring the shorter reading, "if you have enough variations ... if you follow the shorter readings, you will end up with no text at all."2 Studying the habits of the scribes of select papyri, Ernest Colwell (P45, P66 P75), James Royse (P45, P46, P47, P66, P72, P75), and Peter Head (fourteen shorter papyrus fragments) have found the scribal tendency to omit stronger than the tendency to add. Royse, for example, argues that P46 adds fifty-five times but omits 167 times. Similarly, P47 omits eighteen times but adds only five times. Other scholars as well have challenged lectio brevior potior.4

    4 See, for example, Augustinus Merk, ed.. Novum Testamentun Graece et Latine (5 ed.; Rome: Pontifical Biblical Institute, 1933), 12*-13*; George D. Kilpatrick, "A Textus Receptus Redivivus?" in Protocol of the Thirty-Second Colloquy (Berkeley: The Center for Hermeneutical Studies in Hellenistic and Modern Culture, 1978), 7; Emanuel Tov, "Criteria for Evaluating Textual Readings: The Limitations of Textual Rules," HTR 75 (1982): 429- 48.

    Four facts render this rule invalid for New Testament textual criticism. First, it has been inaccurately handed down from its early formulators, giving a false impression of its central importance. Second, it leaves too many questions unanswered. Third, its numerous exceptions make it impractical. Fourth, and most importantly, it is fundamentally flawed.

    First, the legacy of lectio brevior potior has been mishandled. Johann J. Griesbach (1745-1812) is often claimed as the prime authority behind this principle. Indeed, he articulated reasons for preferring the shorter reading, in the first of his fifteen canons. What is generally ignored, however, is that Griesbach also went on to discuss the longer reading. That is, he first mentions the shorter reading, adding five conditions that strengthen its probability, and then mentions the longer reading with six similar comments. ...

    Griesbach does, in his opening paragraph, state a preference for the shorter reading, but his preference is not based on length. To make this clear, he goes on to state circumstances that commend the longer reading. It is, therefore, inappropriate to appeal to Griesbach's rule of lectio brevior potior, for it exists only in the context of his rule of lectio longior potior -two paragraphs juxtaposed in one canon.

    It is often assumed that, after Griesbach, lectio brevior potior was passed on by the giants of textual criticism. This assumption, however, is exaggerated. The rule is absent, for example, from the works of Karl Lachmann (1793-1851), who focused almost exclusively on external evidence. It is not one of the canons of Constantin von Tischendorf (1815-1874). And it is not part of the theory of B. F. Westcott (1825-1901) and F. J. A. Hort (1828-1892). ... p. 3-4

    Moving into the twentieth century, lectio brevior potior is absent from other important works. We do. on the other hand, find the principle passed on in brief handbooks such as those by David A. Black and J. Harold Greenlee. More alarming, however, is its inclusion in the influential introductions of Barbara and Kurt Aland and of Metzger. Unless one has the time and resources to investigate the history of the principle of the shorter reading, the reader of these handbooks will overestimate it as a time-honored and well established rule. p. 5 ...

    Third, lectio brevior potior is impractical. Whenever the rule is carefully stated, it is accompanied by numerous exceptions—so numerous, in fact, that the exceptions begin to negate the rule. Vaganay and Amphoux agree, "The problem with the rule ... is that there are too many exceptions."13 Such exceptions are present in Griesbach's original statement and Metzger's modem restatement, both quoted above. Other examples are from Black and the Alands. p. 6

    In summary, the principle lectio brevior potior is inappropriate as a maxim in New Testament textual criticism. While the shorter reading is often, perhaps usually, preferable, this is only a symptom and not a cause. Reasons other than length must motivate the critic's choice.

    On balance, an additional comment is appropriate. A prima facie preference for the longer reading is similarly to be rejected. This reversed rule, lectio longior potior, has found favor with some rigorous eclectics.22 In the end, however, scholars must admit that the length of a reading is the result of other factors and therefore irrelevant to the reading's merit.
    p.9

    13 Leon Vaganay and Christian-Bernard Amphoux, An Introduction to New Testament Textual Criticism
    (2nd ed.; trans. Jenny Heimerdinger; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991), 80.


    22 J. Keith Elliott and lan Moir, Manuscripts and the Text of the New Testament: An Introduction for English Readers (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1995), 33; Elliott, "Thoroughgoing Eclecticism in New Testament
    Textual Criticism," in Contemporary Research, ed. Ehrman and Holmes, 327.

    We are learning, however, that the longer reading really should be preferred. Which has always been the position of Reformation Bible and AV defenders.
    ====================================

    Eldon Jay Epp

    The Textual History of the Greek New Testament: Changing Views in Contemporary Research (2011)
    Traditional "Canons" of New Testament Textual Criticism: Their Value, Validity, and Viability-or Lack Thereof p. 79-128
    Eldon Jay Epp
    http://www.sbl-site.org/assets/pdfs/...008P.front.pdf TOC
    http://librarum.org/book/21668/88

    Miller .. advocate(s) abandoning the criterion because preference for the
    shorter or longer reading is "always for reasons other than its length" (p. 107 == libarum-116).



    8. A variant—depending on circumstances—that is the shorter/shortest reading or that is the longer/longest reading in its variation-unit.
    {Because (a) scribes tend to shorten readings by omission due to parablepsia especially as a result of homoioteleuton, in which case the longer reading is preferable. But (b) scribes also tend to add material through interpretation, harmonization, and grammatical or stylistic improvement, in which case the shorter reading is preferable. In all cases, both readings must be tested also by the other criteria. (This criterion currently is debated, but the compromise formulation given here accommodates the range of known textual phenomena, which were recognized already by Griesbach.)} p. 106
    Le Clerc, in the late seventeenth century, discussed such matters (see below), and Bengel alluded to this criterion in 1734 when, in speaking of readings, he asserted:

    Where the one is more easy, the other less so, the one that is old, weighty, brief, is preferred; the one that charms us by its greater perspicacity and fullness, as though it had been introduced deliberately, is generally set aside." 86
    86. Bengel, Apparatus criticus, 17 (§XX1).
    In his Admonition 14, Bengel added that "the recurrence of the same
    words suggests an omission.'
    87
    87. Bengel, Gnomon, xiii [= Latin ed.] (his canon 14); idem, New Testament
    Word Studies
    , xviii [= English ed.].

    Wettstein invoked the principle in 1730 and repeated it in his edition of the Greek New Testament (1751-52).88 It was Griesbach, however, who brought the shorter reading criterion to prominence by making it his first canon and discussing it at length—in 212 words (in Latin). As part of this discussion, he invoked a half-dozen additional criteria in subsidiary fashion (before offering a list of fourteen others). Later Tregelles endorsed the criterion, though it did not appear in Tischendorf's list or in Westcott and Hort's discussion. The Alands affirmed that it is "certainly right in many instances" but cannot be used mechanically;89 and it is found in the Metzger/Ehrman handbook, the UBS Textual Commentary,90 and most other modern manuals, not infrequently with qualifications.

    89. Aland and Aland, Text of the New Testament, 281.

    90. With qualifications in Metzger and Ehrman, Text of the New Testament,
    166-67, 303; Metzger, Textual Commentary, 13*. The numerous qualifications lead J. David Miller ("The Long and Short of lectio brevior potior," BT [Technical Papers] [2006]: 11-16) to advocate abandoning the criterion because preference for the shorter or longer reading is "always for reasons other than its length" (p. 16). For a recent defense of the shorter reading criterion, see Wim M. A. Hendriks, "Brevior lectio praeferenda est verbosiori," RB 112 (2005): 567-95, who seeks its more objective application; his example is Matt 6:33, including a chronological ordering of
    forty-four patristic citations to assess its two variant clauses (esp. pp. 576-81).

    Indeed, some relevant cautions and qualifications were noted already by Le Clerc in his noteworthy Epistola de editione Milliana (inserted into Ludolf
    Küster's unauthorized reprint of Mill's Greek New Testament, 1710), when he referred to ὀπίσω μου in Matt 3:11 (". . .he who is coming after me is mightier than I"). These words are present in some witnesses and absent in others...(apparatus info) Le Clerc at first took these words to be authentic: "For there was no reason why these words should have been added, for they are obscure and add nothing to clarify the meaning of the passage____" Seen in this light,
    ὀπίσω μου, the longer reading, represented the harder reading, whereas the witnesses omitting them would have the clearer reading—and the shorter reading. But Le Clerc's statement continued: "On the contrary, for these very reasons they [the two words] could have been eliminated as obscure and useless." In that case, the shorter text would be secondary, and the longer would have priority. Timpanaro summarizes: "Le Clerc speaks of an intentional alteration ... and demonstrates that the lectio longier can even be the lectio difficilior."91
    91. Timpanaro, Genesis, 69 n. 30.

    Griesbach's formulation of the shorter reading criterion contained its own cautions, and it is striking that one-third of his description referred to occasions when the longer reading is preferable. He began as follows:

    "The shorter reading (unless it lacks entirely the authority of the ancient and weighty authorities) is to be preferred to the more verbose, for scribes were much more prone to add than to omit." 92 This portion has been quoted frequently ever since, often in a shorter and more simple form of Griesbach's opening statement, such as, "The shorter reading is preferable, for scribes were more prone to add than to omit." But this is to overlook Griesbach's careful qualifications that followed and is a disservice to him. Surely he emphasized the shorter reading and its priority, but his full criterion should be in view—as in the following paraphrase: (p. 107-108)

    (Epp continues with Griesbach qualifications. On p. 109 he goes to the modern views of Ernest Cadman Colwell, James Ronald Royse, James Keith Elliott, Peter M. Head and Juan Hernández, Dirk Jongkind and
    Moisés Silva)

    As a conclusion to his thirty-one page discussion of the shorter reading issue, Royse thoughtfully provided for us his own formulation of a fresh criterion. He named it a "canon of transcriptional probability," though it might very well have been called a "criterion of the longer reading" He eschewed the latter designation apparently to avoid "an uncritical application of the principle lectio longior potior ('the longer reading is to be preferred'), 109 and suggested rather, that now "the burden of proof should be shifted from the proponents of the longer text to the defenders of the shorter text."110 His criterion follows:

    p. 112 == libarum-121 ...

    Griesbach, in the text of his famous canon, not only affirmed that scribes were "much more prone to add than to omit," but added that "they scarcely ever deliberately omitted anything, but they added many things," thereby asserting that omission primarily occurred unintentionally and implying that additions were intentional. Yet it was at this juncture that he inserted his half-dozen exceptions to his canon, including several kinds of deliberate omissions, where the longer reading should be preferred." 116. 116. See Griesbach's canon in Metzger and Ehrman, Text of the New Testament, 166. The Textual Commentary and Metzger and Ehrman's volume, reflecting Griesbach, allowed for the longer reading where "the scribe may have omitted material that he [sic] deemed to be superfluous, harsh, or contrary to pious belief, liturgical usage, or ascetical practice," actions that inevitably would be intentional. 117
    117. Metzger, Textual Commentary (2nd ed., 1994), 13*; Metzger and Ehrman, Text of the New Testament, 303.
    Keith Elliott stated, partly to the contrary:
    To omit from a text is a frequent and easily demonstrable scribal activity, but to add to a text demanded conscious mental effort. Obviously such activity expanding a text did occur but, in general, manuscripts tended to be accidentally shortened rather than deliberately lengthened in the process of copying.118
    118. Elliott, "Can We Recover the Original Text," 39-40; see 33.
    ====================================

    Epp, unwilling to acknowledge that the shorter reading is the common scribal error, and looking for a compromise and a way out for the hortians, manages a segue into usus scribendi (the author's habitual style) on p. 116, which takes us to Petzer on a related issue.

    ====================================

    Jakob Petzer

    In that section Jacobus Hendrik Petzer makes interesting points that should be considered in all the sytlistic discussions of variants like the traditional ending of Mark, the Pericope Adulterae, and other New Testament sections and verses.

    .... 1990, when J. H. Petzer published an article entitled "Author's Style and the Textual Criticism of the New Testament." Here Petzer asserted that "the whole criterion is based upon the presumption that one can expect to find consistency in the use of language in a text" and then stated his contrary thesis:
    It cannot be expected or presupposed that the language employed in the New Testament documents will of necessity be consistent, or, to put it differently, the stylistic patterns identified in those documents cannot be employed as a means of determining what was written in them originally and what not.125

    125. J. H. Petzer, "Author's Style and the Textual Criticism of the New Testament," Neotestametitica 24, no. 2 (1990): 187-97; quotations from 186. p. 116
    As stated by Fee, Petzer is emphasizing redactional and source elements, and source elements are significant, although redactional considerations tend to be liberal scholarship. There may also be the other important consideration in there.

    Language style can change radically when the events being described are unusual and special. Such as describing the most momentous event in human history, the resurrection of Jesus Christ!

    ====================================

    ETC
    Peter Head on Wettstein

    Wettstein on the Shorter Reading
    Wettstein's 1751-1752 Novum Testamentum, II, p. 863
    Peter M. Head - Nov 16, 2005
    http://evangelicaltextualcriticism.b...r-reading.html


    Above we were looking for the 1730 translation. Includes bibliography of some writings from James Ronald Royse and Peter M. Head.


    Jan Krans on Wettstein's GNT

    Wettstein's Novum Testamentum Graecum online
    Jan Krans - Oct 27, 2011

    http://vuntblog.blogspot.com/2011/10/wettsteins-novum-testamentum-graecum.html

    Wettstein's 1751-1752 Novum Testamentum, II, p. 863 http://archiv.ub.uni-marburg.de/eb/2010/0009/
    http://archiv.ub.uni-marburg.de/eb/2010/0009/view.html
    # 867 brings up 863

    ======================================

    The More Difficult Reading?
    Peter M. Head - Nov 5, 2009
    http://evangelicaltextualcriticism.b...t-reading.html

    ===================================

    Emanuel Tov

    Textual Criticism of the Hebrew Bible (2011)
    Emanuel Tov

    http://books.google.com/books?id=5Sh7dBDD7ykC&pg=PA277
    b. Lectio Brevior (Brevis) Potior
    The logic behind the rule of the lectio brevior (brevis) potior ("Ihe shorter
    rending is to be preferred") is that ancient scribes were more prone to
    add details than to omit them." 30
    Klein, Textual Criticism, 75:
    "Unless there is clear evidence for homoeoteleuton or some other form of haplography, a shorter text is probably better. The people who copied
    manuscripts expanded the text in several ways: they made subjects and objects of sentences explicit whereas they were only implicit in the original text; they added glosses or comments to explain difficult words or ideas; and when faced with alernate readings in two or more manuscripts they were copying. they would include both of them (conflation) in a serious attempt to preserve the original." Similarly Archer. 52. p. 277
    The books are:
    Textual Criticism of the Old Testament: From the Septuagint to Qumram
    , 1975 by Ralph W. Klein
    A Survey of Old Testament Introduction, 1964, Gleason L. Archer

    This rule sounds logical, yet its raison d'être has often been criticized. In fact, in neither the NT nor Hebrew Scripture can it be decided automatically that the shorter reading is original. Furthermore, the rule does not cover scribal omissions (haplography, homoiotelcuton, and homoioarcton). It would be helpful if one could identify texts that tended to add or omit details, but few such texts are known. Therefore, this rule is impractical .... p. 278

    The two aforementioned rules of the lectio difficilior and lectio brevior can be applied to only a small percentage of the readings that need to be
    evaluated. Yet, they are the main rules mentioned in handbooks on textual criticism and methodological discussions ... p. 278-279

    • The logic underlying certain rules is questionable (lectio difficilior, lectio brevior). p. 279
    ====================================

    Dennis Kenaga

    [TC-Alternate-list] Skeptical Trends in New Testament Textual Criticism - Dennis Kenaga -
    Steven Avery - April 14, 2011
    https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/TC-Alternate-list/conversations/topics/4096

    Skeptical Trends in New Testament Textual Criticism: Inside the Alexandrian Priority School and Why Bible Change Is Coming. (2008)
    Dennis Kenaga
    http://www.all-of-grace.org/pub/kenaga/SkepticalTrends.pdf

    Why are the internal arguments unable to sustain the Alexandrian hypothesis without the age rule? A shorter reading is not inherent evidence for originality. Lectio brevior is not a self-evident axiom, because obviously editors can cut out words as easily as add. NU scholars have not produced empirical evidence to demonstrate that Koine scribes had a habit of lengthening their exemplars. In fact, when the actual studies were done on the Alexandrian and papyri scribes, they supported the opposite conclusion.17
    17 Andrew Wilson, New Testament Textual Criticism—Science, Art or Religion? A New Way of Approaching New Testament Textual Criticism,... ; see also Ernest Colwell "Method of Evaluating Scribal Habits: A Study of P45, P66, P75," in Studies in Methodology in Textual Criticism of the New Testament (Leiden: Brill, 1969), 114-21.
    p. 26

    Why Lectio Brevior Is Invalid but Its Influence Endures Anyway.

    Philip Comfort, a contemporary pro-Alexandrian critical scholar, gives the
    reason that the lectio brevior rule cannot always be trusted and a papyrus like P45 cannot be admitted to the A-list, even though it is older than the Alexandrian uncials:
    According to a study done by Colwell, the scribe of P45 worked "without any intention of exactly reproducing his source." 18 ... While copying phrases and clauses, he worked at reproducing what he imagined to be the thought of each phrase. Thus he transposed and omitted many words and deleted several phrases. Colwell said, "The most striking aspect of his style is its conciseness. The dispensable word is dispensed with. He omits adverbs, adjectives, nouns, participles, verbs, personal pronouns—without any compensating habit of addition. 19 Another study of P45 done by Royse affirms Colwell's observation about the scribe's penchant for brevity.... "The scribe has a marked tendency to omit portions of text, often (as it seems) accidentally but perhaps also by deliberately pruning."20
    Comfort and Barrett describe the papyrus as "an abbreviated yet readable rendition.21 Obviously, if third-century scribes could have done this to an Alexandrian papyrus exemplar, the earlier Alexandrian scribes could have done it to their exemplars.

    18 Ernest Colwell op. cit.
    19 Ibid., 118-119.
    20 Philip W. Comfort and David P. Barrett eds., The Complete Text of the Earliest New Testament Manuscripts (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1999), 150-151, quoting James Ronald Royse, "Scribal Habits in Early Greek New Testament Papyri" (Ph.D. diss., Graduate Theological Union, 1981), 156.

    21 Comfort and Barrett, op. cit., 151.

    (continues, please read online)


    Whether for justifying an individual variant or the whole A-list, lectio brevior is merely a circular argument based on the relative brevity of the Alexandrian text or a preference for the streamlined style. p. 36

    Aland rule 8—derivability: how can one text be explained as arising from another? Many people believe that this third intrinsic probability is the most important and convincing rule of all. It is very flexible and lends itself to scholarly ingenuity. In practice, however, it is merely a restatement of the dubious lectio brevior. This is how lectio brevior is smuggled in here: the Alexandrian prioritist assumes that the Byzantine scribes added words, but Alexandrian scribes did not drop words; therefore, it is easy for the critic to explain how the longer text could be derived from the shorter one, but not vice versa. It is circular, but the critic usually finds it very convincing anyway. p. 50

    lectio brevior—Latin for the rule that the shorter reading is to be preferred. One of the three main internal criteria. This is a mainstay of the popular Alexandrian priority, obviously because the whole Alexandrian text is considerably shorter than the Byzantine or Western. Although this rule has been proven false by numerous proofs, including NU's own rejection rates of Alexandrian omissions, the rule is retained tenaciously by the Alexandrian prioritists because their case would be devastated without it. Ironically, although the public discussion and justification for individual variants frequently revolves around lectio brevior, the actual selections in NU are mostly based on text type. p. 53

    Western non-interpolation—an Alexandrian prioritist embarrassment invented by WH, based on a radical adherence to lectio brevior. It is proof that critical scholars' judgments are speculative. WH decided that if the Western text lacked a word or phrase, the lack must have been original. WH excised whole verses from the Bible on that basis, and it put the Revised Version in bad odor. When papyri were discovered (after WH's time) containing the alleged omissions, the critical scholars were forced to admit their exuberance and reinstate the original verses, causing more doubt among the public about the Alexandrian scholars' objectivity. p. 59
    ====================================

    Andrew Wilson

    New Testament Textual Criticism—Science, Art or Religion?

    Chapter Three - Should Text Critics Prefer the Shorter Reading?
    Andrew Wilson
    https://web.archive.org/web/20070807...com/short.html


    Prefer the Shorter Reading?
    http://www.nttext.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=63refer-the-shorter-reading&catid=36:scribal-habits&Itemid=71



    Digging for the Truth - Collected Essays regarding the Byzantine Text of the Greek New Testament; A Festschrift in Honor of Maurice A. Robinson (2014)
    Scribal Habits and the New Testament Text
    Andrew Wilson
    http://www.amazon.de/Digging-Truth-C...8423111&sr=1-1

    Scribal Habits in Greek New Testament Manuscripts
    SBL Presentation by Andrew Wilson, London 2011
    http://www.nttext.com/index.php?opti...bits&Itemid=55

    In Conclusion
    Let me conclude by listing eight summary points:

    1. Scribes of all eras tend to omit, rather than to add
    2. Brief omissions are not an exception to any rule, but the rule itself
    3. Among longer omissions, roughly one third have no detectable mechanical cause
    4. Ad hoc correction played a significant role in the expansion of the text over time
    5. There is very little evidence among singular readings for Lectio Difficilior Potior
    6. Sub-singular readings also provide little support for the Harder Reading canon.
    7. Colwell’s and Royse’s studies show little evidence of the canon in action.
    8. The common sense case for this canon lacks acqaintance with scribal realities.

    ======================================

    Wilbur Pickering

    The Four Gospels: A Study of Origins, Treating of the Manuscript Tradition (1924)
    Burnet Hillman Streeter (1874-1937)
    http://books.google.com/books?id=oD9KAwAAQBAJ&pg=PA122
    http://www.katapi.org.uk/4Gospels/Ch5.htm

    John William Burgon
    Leo Vaganay
    George Dunbar Kirkpatrick
    Ernest Cadman Colwell


    The Identity of the the New Testament Text IV (2014 edition, 2nd ed was 1977)
    Wilbur Pickering
    www.cspmt.org/pdf/resources/Pickering%20Identity%20IV.pdf
    Aside from inadvertent mistakes, presumed deliberate changes have given rise to two important canons of criticism—brevior lectio potior, the shorter reading is to be preferred (on the assumed propensity of scribes to add material to the text), and proclivi lectioni praeslat ardua, the harder reading is to be preferred (on the assumed propensity of scribes to attempt to simplify the text when confronted with a supposed difficulty).

    On the basis of such considerations. Hort declared the "Syrian" text to be characterized by "lucidity and completeness", "apparent simplicity", "harmonistic assimilation", and as being "conspicuously a full text". He said further:
    In themselves Syrian readings hardly ever offend at first. With rare exceptions they run smoothly and easily in form, and yield at once to even a careless reader a passable sense, free from surprises and seemingly transparent. But when distinctively Syrian readings are minutely compared one after the other with the rival variants, their claim to be regarded as the original readings is found gradually to diminish, and at last to disappear.
    Hort's characterization of the "Syrian" text has been generally accepted by subsequent scholars. p. 20
    The shorter reading

    Perhaps the canon most widely used against the "Byzantine" text is brevior lectio potior—the shorter reading is to be preferred. As Hort stated the alleged basis for the canon, "In the New Testament, as in almost all prose writings which have been much copied, corruptions by interpolation are many times more numerous than corruptions by omission". Accordingly it has been customary since Hort to tax the Received Text as being full and interpolated and to regard B and Aleph as prime examples of non-interpolated texts.

    But is it really true that interpolations are "many times more numerous" than omissions in the transmission of the New Testament? B.H. Streeter thought not.
    ....

    The tables have been turned. Here is a clear statistical demonstration that interpolations are not "many times more numerous" than omissions. Omission is more common as an unintentional error than addition, and P45 shows that with some scribes omissions were deliberate and extensive. Is it
    mere coincidence that Aleph and B were probably made in the same area as P45 and exhibit similar characteristics? In any case, the "fullness" of the Traditional Text, rather than a proof of inferiority, emerges as a point in its favor. p. 49-50
    ======================================

    David Trobisch

    A User’s Guide to the Nestle-Aland 28 Greek New Testament (2013)
    David Trobisch
    http://books.google.com/books?id=btqdAgAAQBAJ&pg=PA24

    Sometimes lectio brevior is thought of as simply determining the lengths of the competing variants and then preferring the reading with the least amount of characters. This would be a profound misconception. The rule only applies to two readings that are superficially combined. Ideally both readings are reflected in the manuscript tradition, but in many cases only the conflation and one of the two readings has survived; in other cases only the conflation is documented, and exegetes would have to infer two older variants from the surviving evidence.
    This is rather convoluted, limiting the concept to conflations, and then theoretical conflations without actual documentation in the manuscript evidence. This all appears to be a David Trobisch rehabilitation attempt, where by limiting the rule, the counter-indications that the rule is bogus can be ignored.

    Then, when this gets criticized in the review, the cure is as bad as the disease.
    (And Trobisch is on the next generation of UBS NA update committee.
    )

    ======================================

    Daniel Wallace & friends

    Daniel Wallace works his usual dual role as parrot (from Metzger) and deceiver by spinning hortian and Critical Text disinformation. I placed his objection to Trobisch on the SBL forum.

    Society of Biblical Literature
    lectio brevior canon?
    Steven Avery - Dec 1, 2014
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/SocB...2913302449255/


    When a book is reviewed, and errors are claimed, it is expected that the corrector will have their facts right!
    .
    =================================

    Review of Trobisch’s User’s Guide to the Nestle-Aland 28
    Daniel Wallace - April, 2014
    http://danielbwallace.com/2014/04/18...stle-aland-28/


    "Even in this introductory chapter, Trobisch got some facts wrong. .... and the canon of the shorter reading or lectio brevior “only applies to two readings that are superficially combined” (24), when the consensus among textual critics is that this rule applies to those variants that have more words than the alternative, whether they are a combination of older readings or not (cf. the variants in John 3:13 and Rom 8:1, for example)."
    =================================

    1) consensus on all readings with words or more on lectio brevior?

    Has Daniel Wallace been living in a manuscript cave? James Ronald Royse, Peter Head, James David Miller, Juan Hernandez and many others have been pointing out that lectio brevior simply does not apply as a canon. The exceptions and qualifications are greater than the rule (even, one might argue, back to the Griesbach canon.) And some even argue that, if a canon is desired, lectio longier would be the right one.

    Surely there is no "consensus" for a lectio brevior canon.
    =================================

    Reinventing Jesus: How Contemporary Skeptics Miss the Real Jesus and Mislead Popular Culture (2006)
    J
    . Ed Komoszewski, M. James Sawyer, Daniel B. Wallace
    http://books.google.com/books?id=GtdzmykR_XMC&pg=PA92


    The Shorter Reading Is to Be Preferred

    Scribes had a strong tendency to add words or phrases rather than omit them. The text tended to grow over time rather than shrink, although, it grew only 2 percent over fourteen hundred years. Scribes almost never intentionally omitted anything.7 Thus, as long as an unintentional omission is not likely, the shorter reading is usually to be preferred. We have already discussed the addition of the name ]esus in several places in the Gospels where it was not originally used.
    Reclaiming the Mind
    Text Criticism in a Nutshell
    http://www.reclaimingthemind.org/blo...in-a-nutshell/
    C. Michael Patton

    2. The shorter reading is usually closer to the original
    .
    This is closely connected with the last, but with a difference. Because scribes would often paraphrase, make additional “side notes” that get assumed into the text, or try to correct difficulties, this, more often than not, produced a longer reading. This principle assumes that scribes were more inclined to add to the original rather than take away from it. That is why the King James is thicker than other translations.
    ======================================

    Scribal Habits in Early Greek New Testament Papyri
    Papers from the 2008 SBL Panel Review Session
    Juan Hernandez Jr, Peter M. Head, Dirk Jongkind, and James R. Royse
    https://www.academia.edu/6077932/Rev...stament_Papyri
    https://docs.google.com/viewer?url=http://rosetta.reltech.org/TC/v17/TC-2012-PR-Royse.pdf&embedded=false&chrome=false&dov=1

    Peter Head
    3. Royse and Griesbach: The Shorter Reading?
    Peter M. Head
    "Yet, ultimately, I have to agree with Royse on Griesbach's canon. Royse is absolutely correct in dismissing the short and even the more nuanced version of the lectio brevior lectio potior canon; it puts us on the wrong foot. Every canon should in my opinion start with an awareness of the hazardous nature of copying and the many types of complicated clerical errors that can arise. Instead of formulating the canon in terms of the shorter reading, the term "expansionary" might be better. A reading which appears to be an expansion of an alternative reading should not be preferred, thus bringing the actual content of the extra words into play. But more remains to be said here and though Royse made a start in his book, I am not sure we are there already." p. 17
    =============================

    James Ronald Royse

    "We have to keep in mind that the vast majority of textual variants do not involve (as it seems) theological corruption. So, while most textual variants may have arisen early, the comparatively few theological corruptions could have been late on the scene. Of course, others have thought to find theologically motivated readings in, say, P46, I have not been inclined to agree, but in any case the numbers of such readings would be, I believe, comparatively small; but that doesn't mean that they didn't exist." p. 19

    "Jongkind is correct in reminding us that Griesbach's first canon is a much more nuanced, and much more complicated, piece of advice than the principle of simply preferring the shorter reading. Indeed, suspect that the nuances and the complications are precisely what have caused it to be replaced in many subsequent lists of canons by simpler and more direct principles of some kind or other. And for that purpose simple, direct principles are the most useful. For example: "Prefer the reading of Vaticanus and Sinaiticus." "Prefer the reading that is not. harmonized." "Prefer the shorter reading." Those are the sorts of principles that inform most modern texts. Indeed, we have on record in Metzger's Textual Commentary the principles used to construct, or at least to justify, our current "standard" text in Nestle-Aland. And we see there nothing like Griesbach's first canon. ... " p. 21-22

    "Finally, I should note that Jongkind's own study of Codex Sinaiticus has provided yet further evidence that early scribes tended to omit rather than to add. This adds to my conviction that the preference for the shorter reading is fundamentally mistaken. And I wonder if there is, or really ever was, any evidence at all that scribes tended to add. In any case, there is increasing evidence, from the work of Hernandez on Revelation, of Head on the early less extensive papyri, and of Jongkind on Codex Sinaiticus, that omission was more common than addition, and thus that the scribal tendency underlying the preference for the shorter reading is illusory.".
    ** An excellent conclusion! ** worth noting

    (Royse downgrades it a bit with more allusion to Markan priority nonsense.)
    .

    ======================================

    TC-Alternate & Facebook - value added

    Facebook - NT Textual Criticism
    lectio brevior - one of the hortian-metzgerian fabrications
    Steven Avery - Nov 7, 2014
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTTe...tal_comments=3


    Review of 2008 SBL panel


    Juan Hernandez Jr, Peter M. Head, Dirk Jongkind, and James R. Royse

    ======================================

    [TC-Alternate-list] seeking history of - "brevior lectio praeferenda est verbosiori" (Griesbach)
    Steven Avery - October 7, 2010
    https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/...ns/topics/3572


    [TC-Alternate-list] Wordsworth (1877) on Jerome on lectio brevior
    Steven Avery - May 20, 2011
    https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/TC-Alternate-list/conversations/topics/4196

    Facebook - PureBible
    Textual Criticism's 3 blind mice - lectio difficilior, lectio brevior, best explains
    Steven Avery - June 25, 2014
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/pure...3656526726240/


    ====================

    When the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus shared scribes theories are developed, and the same scriptorium theories:
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTTe...9871068433229/

    Ironically, the textual theorists properly use the opposite of lectio brevior praeferenda, the far more sensible longer reading, in favor of the longer (Hebrew and Latin) recension.

    Some Neglected Texts of Tobit: the Third Greek Version (2006)
    Stuart Weeks
    https://www.academia.edu/3080320/Som..._version_2006_

    ".... One can readily see how the translator of G1 has condensed the narrative and the dialogue between Tobias and Tobit."

    The common sense that scribes frequently condense and abbreviate and take short-cuts can be found in general in textual studies, except where there is a bogus New Testament canon fogging minds.


    ======================================

    Five references of some interest

    American Journal of Philology (1882)
    New Testament Autographs
    Rendel Harris
    http://books.google.com/books?id=MuM4AAAAMAAJ&pg=PA526
    http://books.google.com/books?id=MuM...AJ&pg=RA1-PA29 (heavenly witnesses)


    The Primitive Text of the Gospels and Acts (1919)
    James Hope Moulton
    http://books.google.com/books?id=pDs1AQAAIAAJ&pg=PA145
    discussion of Albert Clark.
    Also Rendel Harris New Testament Autographs.
    Harry Stovall Cronin - An Examination of some Omissions of the Codex Sinaticius in St. John's Gospel (1912)


    Encountering New Testament Manuscripts (2001)
    Jack Finegan
    http://books.google.com/books?id=fIcU1BFiMBgC&pg=PA75
    uses heavenly witnesses as example


    «Who Was Manifested In The Flesh? - * A Consideration Of Internal Evidence In Support Of A Variant In 1 Tim 3:16A» (2003)
    Stephen W. Frary
    http://www.bsw.org/filologia-neotest...ticle-p10.html
    2. Canons of Internal Evidence p. 9
    "prefer the shorter reading"
    Metzger, Robinson, Elliott


    Haplography Vs. Lectio Brevior Praeferenda (2012)
    Jason Johnson

    https://www.facebook.com/notes/jason.../3145792367128

    ======================================

    Psalm 119:140
    Thy word is very pure:
    therefore thy servant loveth it.


    Steven Avery


  5. Default heavenly witnesses - omission easy and common, addition complex and difficult


    Now, lets take a look at some of the discussions about the heavenly witnesses:
    1 John 5:7
    For there are three that bear record in heaven,
    the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost:
    and these three are one.
    that considered which was easier, omission or addition. We can start with the Wikipedia section:

    Omission theories (verse authentic)

    Those who believe the Johannine Comma is authentic attribute authorship to the apostle John. They have diverse theories as to why the Comma dropped out of the Greek manuscript line and why most of the evidence is in Latin manuscripts and church writings. Often these proposed textual histories include scribal error as the initial cause of the early variant. In 1699 Louis Ellies Dupin discussed the possibility:

    A compleat history of the canon and writers of the books of the Old and New Testament
    Luis Ellis Du Pin
    http://books.google.com/books?id=VzZ...AJ&pg=RA1-PA79

    "...that those two verses beginning with the same words, it was easy for the copiers to omit one by negligence, nothing being more usual than when the same word is in two periods that follow one another, for the copier to pass from the word of the first period to that which follows in the second."
    The commentary of Puritan scholar Matthew Henry added the difficulty and unlikelihood that a deliberate addition could be inserted into the text-line:

    Matthew Henry Commentary, Exposition of All the Books, Vol 5, 1803, p. 644-645.
    http://books.google.com/books?id=JQE-AAAAcAAJ&pg=PA644


    "It was far more easy for a transcriber, by turning away his eye, or by the obscurity of the copy, it being obliterated or defaced on the top or bottom of a page, or worn away in such materials as the ancients had to write upon, to lose and omit the passage, than for an interpolator to devise and insert it; he must be very bold and impudent, that could hope to escape detection and shame, and profane too, that durst venture to make an addition to a supposed sacred book."
    The Commentary emphasized internal arguments for authenticity. The 1 John section was completed by London minister John Reynolds after Matthew Henry passed, as explained on Puritanboard http://www.puritanboard.com/f29/clos...14/#post289549 . A complementary section, asking whether the verse is genuine or spurious, expunged or admitted, is given by:

    John Hey (1734-1815)
    http://books.google.com/books?id=WmILAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA838

    Lectures in Divinity, 1796, pp. 289-290.
    http://books.google.com/books?id=6GUYAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA289


    Thus self-cautioned, I will make only general suppositions:—either this contested verse must be genuine or spurious: if genuine, it must have been expunged unfairly; if spurious, it must have been admitted unfairly: which is easier to conceive? Could it be expunged?—many passages, we find, have been, though we cannot now tell why:—so might this; the ancients made very free with Scripture; even whole books have been rejected, when they stood in the way of settled notions: while a number of writings of doubtful authority were claiming attention, the judgment of private individuals had more scope than now (z). Whoever first omitted any passage in any copy, it would be omitted by all transcribers from that copy, and from theirs. Some seem strongly persuaded, that governors of a Church, or leading men amongst Christians, might order some things to be omitted in some copies. When those who transcribe do not understand what they write, if two things are like, (as the 7th and 8th verses are), one of them is perhaps omitted (a).—Though, therefore, there are other passages to the same effect with this under consideration, it might be genuine, and yet get expunged.

    Now suppose it spurious ; then it must have got admitted unfairly: is this equally easy? why should it be forged? Voltaire says, a man would be mad to forge it; but he did not understand the subject: we may say, that no one would think of forging such a passage, till it was wanted in
    (b) controversy: but then, enemies would be upon the watch; and they, by objecting, could stop the forgery: Mr. Gibbon says (c) this forgery was committed about the time of the Council of Carthage; but, durst the African Bishops forge it at that time? would not the Arians, who were then in power, have been clamorous?— of such a forgery at such a time, I see no degree of probability.
    If this Text might be more easily expunged unfairly, than admitted unfairly; it is more easy to conceive it genuine than spurious.

    (z) Yet Luther is said to have rejected the Epistte of James; and Michaelis the Epistle of Jude: well might they reject a single verse.
    (a) "There are three that bear record," the scribe writes; looks up again, takes the second for the first; goes on, "in earth."
    (b) Some suppose it to have been written marginally first, as a gloss upon the 8th verse, and afterwards to have been taken
    into the Text; as before-mentioned.
    (c) vol. III. p. 544. Quarto.
    Anthony Kohlmann (1771-1836)
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthony_Kohlmann


    asked the question:

    Unitarianism philosophically and theologically examined, 1821,
    Anthony Kohlmann,
    http://books.google.com/books?id=a2I3AAAAMAAJ&pg=PA173


    "what reason can you assign for so notable an omission in some old manuscripts?"
    In response, Kohlmann pointed to homoeoteleuton and doctrinal motivations and included an analogy to another verse which some attempted to excise.


    "There are several ways of accounting for that omission and among others, it may be said, 1st, that this omission happened by the neglect of some ignorant copyists, who, after having written the first words of the 7th verse 'there are three, that give testimony,' by a mistake of the eyes, skipped over the remaining part of the text, and passed on to the immediately following text, where the same words recur; for such mistakes often take place in transcribing, especially when the two verses and the two periods begin and end with the same words. Another reason of this omission is given by the author of the prologue to the seven Catholic epistles ... (Vulgate Prologue section translation)... By these words he not obscurely alludes to the Marcionites or Arians, who designedly erased this verse from all the copies they could get into their hands; for they well understood that by that one testimony their cause was undone. With a like perfidy, St. Ambrose, (lib. iii de spiritu sancto cap. 10.) reproaches the Arians, who had expunged these words from the Scriptures: Because God is a Spirit, 'Which passage, says the holy doctor addressing the Arians, you so well know to be understood of the Holy Ghost, that you have erased it from the copies of your scriptures, and would to God! you had only expunged it from yours and not also from those of the church."
    The difficulty in this analogy is that "Because God is a Spirit" in John 3:6 was a minor Old Latin addition that was properly omitted from later manuscripts and the Vulgate. Amborse made a good point with an example that does not fit. 1 John 2:23b would be a more sensible analogy verse.

    ===========================

    I'll be looking overall for good sections that simply discuss the ease of omission compared to addition, which is where the heavenly witnesses and lectio brevior interface.

    Thomas Hartwell Horne has lots of good material (although he flipped his overall position in 1828, much solid material on "internal" evidences was kept in the editions up to 1841).

    An introduction to the critical study and knowledge of the holy Scriptures
    Thomas Hartwell Horne

    http://books.google.com/books?id=yjM...J&pg=RA1-PA243 (1821)
    http://books.google.com/books?id=y_opAQAAIAAJ&pg=PA481 (1828)


    5. Further, those critics who advocate the genuineness of this text, observe that omissions in antient manuscripts, versions, and authors, are neither absolute contradictions, nor direct impeachments of facts. They only supply food for conjecture, and conjectural criticism ought to be sparingly and cautiously applied before it can be admitted as sufficient authority for altering the received text Besides, the omission in the present case may be satisfactorily accounted for, from various circumstances. (continues with reasons)
    From the Latin writings, the 3rd book from

    Friedrich Ernst Kettner (1671-1722
    )
    http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Friedrich_Ernst_Kettner


    in 1713:

    Historia Dicti Johannei De Sanctissima Trinitate, 1. Joh. Cap. V. vers. 7 (1713)
    http://books.google.com/books?id=yjJBAAAAcAAJ
    http://reader.digitale-sammlungen.de...206_00002.html


    is likely the most important, although Maius, Fabricius and others might have good sections.
    Here is Horne in 1821 on Kettner:



    Richard Porson had attempted to dismiss Kettner's section:

    Letters to Mr. Archdeacon Travis, in Answer to His Defence of the Three Heavenly Witnesses, 1 John
    , V7
    http://books.google.com/books?id=_btdAAAAcAAJ&pg=PR3 (1790)
    http://books.google.com/books?id=qobx5D2P3D8C&pg=PA224 (1828)

    In the mean time Kettner answered Simon in three publications, in which he has produced most of the arguments usually alleged on his side, but mixed with so many absurd and trifling observations, that to read through them is no moderate exercise of patience. He reckons in the second century twenty-seven, in the third twenty-nine, in the fourth forty-two reasons, which might hinder the Fathers from appealing to the heavenly witnesses. Of the third set of reasons, his eighteenth is, lest that text might seem to favor Sabellianism; his twenty-fourth, lest Constantine the Great, being then a catechumen, should be scandalised ! At the end of his dissertation he bursts out into the following rapturous expressions....
    While online the KJVToday webpage addresses the omission question from a different perspective.

    And let's includes also from the article by Tim Dunkin.

    Steven Avery

  6. Default Wettstein's Latin - full section

    Hi,

    Since Jakob Wettstein institituted the lectio brevior canon, and the Griesbach attempt is essentially self-contradictory, it would be good to determine the actual Wettstein claims and qualifications.

    Note that so far this canon does not have an independent existence outside the bias of New Testament scholars. Who were looking for reasons to justify opposition to the Received Text. And in Richard Porson's case, opposition specifically to the authenticity of the heavenly witnesses.

    Here is a post where I was seeing if the scholars, including solid Latin translators, would interact. Next, I may place this on a Latin translation forum. I'll tweak t he text a bit here:


    New Testament Scholarship Worldwide
    Steven Avery - Dec 2, 2014
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/1519...6664371353050/


    Johann Wettstein was the first in 1730, and in 1751, to actually make a canon of sorts out of lectio brevior.


    Earlier there was a comment by Jean Daillé (1594–1670) that was referenced (marketed) by Richard Porson (1759-1808) in the heavenly witnesses debate with George Travis in 1782. Porson's misrepresentation confused both New Testament and Shakespeare scholarship for the next century at least, as he spoke of "millions" of margin notes that had come into the text. Jean le Clerc (1657-1736) in the Epistola de editione Milliana had at least one quote mildly related to the lectio brevior topic. And about Johann Albrecht Bengel (1687-1752), Metzger wrote "Bengel alluded to this criterion in 1734". Note the well-know Bengel lectio difficillior canon had some critical distinctions, this was pointed out by Thomas Kingsmill Abbott (1829-1913) and then forgotten by later scholarship.

    Thus, before Griesbach (whose own presentation is often misrepresented) Wettstein is the writer of real interest. And Metzger writes:

    ===========================================
    Chapters in the History of New Testament Textual Criticism (1963)
    Recent Trends in the Textual Criticism of the Iliad and the Mahābhārata (1945)
    Bruce Manning Metzger
    http://books.google.com/books?id=noA3AAAAIAAJ&pg=PA153

    J. J. Wettstein appears to be the first editor of the Greek Testament to formulate this canon fully. In his Prolegomena ad Novi Testamenti Graeci editionem accuratissimam (Amsterdam, 1730), p. lx, and again in his celebrated Novum Testamentum Graecumm, 11 (Amsterdam, 1752), 862, he laid down the rule that,

    "Inter duas variantes lectiones non protinus amplior atque prolixior breviori est pracferenda, sed contra potius," etc.
    =========

    Prolegomena ad Novi Testamenti Graeci editionem accuratissimam (1730)
    Johann Jakob Wettstein
    http://books.google.com/books?id=0vsqAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA184





    ===========================================

    However, afaik nobody has translated or even commented on the page and more that follows the two-lines given by Metzger.

    With the later Griesbach approach we have seen the ultra-qualifications that were somewhat self-contradictory to the canon, an anomaly that has caused much stumbling.

    *** By comparison, how does Wettstein handle the full question? ***

    Are there various qualifications, commentary, etc? The Latin needs translation and exposition.

    Here in the picture is the text of IX.

    (No, so far I don't know why the page numbers do not match what is given by Metzger.)

    On the 1752 Vol 2 given by Metzger the pages do match up.
    You go to p. 866 at
    http://archiv.ub.uni-marburg.de/eb/2010/0009/view.html
    or
    http://books.google.com/books?id=rBxJAAAAcAAJ&pg=PA862

    ==========================================


    Steven Avery

  7. Default the effect of the Porson nonsense on textual writers


    To try to finish up, for now, we would need:
    Chronology

    Summary - Bibliography - Conclusions (how did we get into this mess)

    A bit more on Griesbach and Wettstein
    =========================

    Here are some of the people buffeted by the Porson

    "millions of places"
    "surest canon of criticism"

    nonsense above.
    Absurd claims that helped make a scholastic legend out of what is simply a false theory.


    The Plays of William Shakespeare: With the Corrections and Illustrations of Various Commentators, to which are Added Notes. Glossarial Index. Tempest. Two Gentlemen of Verona, Volume 4 (1799)
    Samuel Johnson, George Steevens, Isaac Reed
    http://books.google.com/books?id=LBJMAAAAcAAJ&pg=PA68

    Perhaps (says that excellent scholar and perspicacious critic
    Mr. Porson, in his 6th letter to Archdeacon Travis) ...
    An Account of the Printed Text of the Greek New Testament: With Remarks on Its Revision Upon Critical Principles. Together with A Collation of the Critical Texts of Griesbach, Scholz, Lachmann, and Tischendorf, with that in Common Use (1854)
    Samuel Prideaux Tregelles
    http://books.google.com/books?id=Jw8_AQAAMAAJ&pg=PA184

    The following sentence of Porson (Letters to Travis, pp. 149, 150) is well worthy of attention: ...
    A course of developed criticism (1856) Thomas Sheldon Green
    https://archive.org/stream/acourseof...e/n14/mode/1up

    An indisposition, which is often manifested, to admit the reality of this final stage, in the actual accretion of marginal matter—a disposition to
    regard omission and curtailment as more likely than amplification—is best
    confronted by opinions of high authorities, such as the following: ...
    T
    he Authorship of the Fourth Gospel, and Other Critical Essays: Selected from the Published Papers of the Late Ezra Abbot (1888)
    http://books.google.com/books?id=SCtVAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA239

    And we are confirmed in our view when we find that the tendency to add rather than to omit characterizes the MSS. of ancient classical authors, and that the most eminent philologists fully recognize the principle to which our New Testament examples seem irresistibly to lead us. For example, Porson says in his Letters to Travis (p. 149) ....
    And a bunch more, in Bible and Shakespeare circles.

    Steven Avery


  8. Default the contras weigh in

    Hi,

    A little attempted contra harumph on the censored forum.
    Not as bad as their usual stuff, so I will give the whole post and go point-to-point.


    The Rise and Fall of Lectio Brevior
    http://bibleversiondiscussionboard.y...Lectio-Brevior


    Ken Willy looks like one of their pseudonyms. (Think Will Kinney.)


    ========================

    (note: working to find a strikethrough code on this vBulletin, or maybe an upgrade)

    BVDB
    The Rise and Fall of Lectio Brevior King James Onlyism - 12/20/2014
    Ken Willy

    http://www.purebibleforum.com/showthread.php?t=58

    I see that Mr. Avery is still chasing windmills a-la Don Quixote. The latest attempt to “overthrow” modern scholarship is to defend the longer reading (presumably in the KJV).

    He loves to post Google searches as if he is unaware that everyone has access to Google. He would do better to cite the salient texts that bolster his point and footnote a reference to them. Then again that would require actually reading and mastering the material that he cites. We all know that will never happen. I wish Mr. Avery would be aware that an academic library has boatloads of information not available in a Google search. I rarely see him cite Ph.D. dissertations and Master Theses (unless they are on the net). Rarely do we find him citing Academic Journals. These have a limited presence on the net, so I guess they do not exist in his universe. Also there are massive bibliographies cited in the appendices of the several modern books he does reference. But he never seems to avail himself of this material. Of course, some of it is in languages and technical expertise beyond his educational experience. (So why does he bother?) I always find the references dating 100-200 years in the past amusing with no point of reference to modern research. But alas, what is one to do without a full academic library at an institution of higher learning at a center where these matters are taught.

    One is hard pressed to see the actual conclusion to which Mr. Avery is trying to arrive. Perhaps he needs to state clearly his thesis proposition at the beginning of his “studies.” It should read something like this: “Since we know that the KJV was given by inspiration of God and is inerrant in all its parts, this includes all readings in all sources which differ from the KJV. Therefore, any longer reading in the KJV is correct because it was given by inspiration of God.”

    Is the longer reading always correct? KJVOs reject the longer Alexandrian reading in Matthew 24:36? So why all the blather about the longer reading? Wallace points out that “there are 657 places where the Majority Text is shorter than the critical” (Wallace, Bibliotheca Sacra, Vol.146, no. 583 (1989): p. 278).

    What then? Is the KJV wrong where these readings exist? Of course not! How can it be since it “parachuted down from heaven?”

    If we follow this principle to the extreme, then the Western Text type must be preferred since it is an expansive text. Some “longer” texts are found in translations esp. the Latin Vulgate. Then the Masoretic text must be abandoned in favor of the Greek OT which represents an expansive text.

    The conclusion is simple. Textual criticism must be employed to determine when to apply certain principles and when not to apply them. None of the principles of TC were employed in the crafting of the TR in a systematic manner. There are also obvious errors that must be taken into consideration (e.g. Revelation 17:8 a printer’s error ). So, his whole “study” is an exercise in futility


    I really wish he could attend an open forum at the ETS or SBL where he can present his “brilliance” while fielding questions. That would be a hoot!

    ========================

    Lots of smileys. Let's go down this step-by-step.


    Quote Originally Posted by contra
    BVDB
    The Rise and Fall of Lectio Brevior King James Onlyism - 12/20/2014
    Ken Willy

    http://www.purebibleforum.com/showthread.php?t=58

    I see that Mr. Avery is still chasing windmills a-la Don Quixote. The latest attempt to “overthrow” modern scholarship is to defend the longer reading (presumably in the KJV).

    He loves to post Google searches as if he is unaware that everyone has access to Google. He would do better to cite the salient texts that bolster his point and footnote a reference to them. Then again that would require actually reading and mastering the material that he cites. We all know that will never happen. I wish Mr. Avery would be aware that an academic library has boatloads of information not available in a Google search. I rarely see him cite Ph.D. dissertations and Master Theses (unless they are on the net). Rarely do we find him citing Academic Journals. These have a limited presence on the net, so I guess they do not exist in his universe. Also there are massive bibliographies cited in the appendices of the several modern books he does reference. But he never seems to avail himself of this material. Of course, some of it is in languages and technical expertise beyond his educational experience. (So why does he bother?) I always find the references dating 100-200 years in the past amusing with no point of reference to modern research. But alas, what is one to do without a full academic library at an institution of higher learning at a center where these matters are taught.
    Most of this is simply the obligatory harumph. If I find a good resource in a bibliography (which I do check) I often go the library, buy the book, or pay the dues for an article in a Journal. (Some are free, like JStor at a local university.) When there is important foreign language material, I make efforts to have it translated. Or reviewed by a gentleman fluent in the language.

    Let's take lectio brevior as a test case.

    With this whole harumph, what are the missing papers? That would shed more light on the issue than the study above?
    All this wind ... what papers not referenced above would give more insight and background than the thread above?

    Specifics .. s'il vous plait.

    ============================

    The simple fact is that the net and searches including google have revolutionized research and study. And lots of the best material is in the 1700s and 1800s, and thus usually fully and freely available. The folks who spent years getting brainwashed in a seminary are upset that they can not keep out with solid discussion. That they are effectively scholarly dinosaurs, holding wrong and indefensible positions. Like the idea that lectio brevior is a solid textual principle.

    Quote Originally Posted by contra
    One is hard pressed to see the actual conclusion to which Mr. Avery is trying to arrive. Perhaps he needs to state clearly his thesis proposition at the beginning of his “studies.”
    A study is a study. It is a work in process, and develops in its own dynamic. It follows the evidences and the history. A study is not a journal article or a finished post.

    Not real complicated. Plus, I like to make a lot of the better resources easily availble, so others can contribute iron sharpeneth, without having to go through a mass of material.


    Quote Originally Posted by contra
    It should read something like this: “Since we know that the KJV was given by inspiration of God and is inerrant in all its parts, this includes all readings in all sources which differ from the KJV. Therefore, any longer reading in the KJV is correct because it was given by inspiration of God.”
    While the contra is writing sensibly on another topic, it is a bit of a reversal. If lectio brevior were a solid principle, the AV would not the pure word of God. If the moon was made of cream cheese, we could spread it on bagels. We deal with reality. And it is solid reasoning and questioning to understand how the modern textual theories went so awry.

    Quote Originally Posted by contra
    Is the longer reading always correct?
    Nope. There are many factors that determined the Reformation Bible excellence. Overall, though, if the question is whether the shorter reading or the longer reading should be considered as a positive evidence, the

    Quote Originally Posted by contra
    KJVOs reject the longer Alexandrian reading in Matthew 24:36? So why all the blather about the longer reading? Wallace points out that “there are 657 places where the Majority Text is shorter than the critical” (Wallace, Bibliotheca Sacra, Vol.146, no. 583 (1989): p. 278).
    Quote Originally Posted by contra
    What then? Is the KJV wrong where these readings exist? Of course not! How can it be since it “parachuted down from heaven?”
    If we follow this principle to the extreme, then the Western Text type must be preferred since it is an expansive text. Some “longer” texts are found in translations esp. the Latin Vulgate. Then the Masoretic text must be abandoned in favor of the Greek OT which represents an expansive text.
    This is partly silly stuff, based on the false thinking that lectio brevior is the only textual idea. However, when I come back, I will go into this a bit more. The question of the western text as longer and not mostly not authentic longer is legitimate, yet notice that God providentially prevented any of those western additions from taking over the Latin line (contras would take exception to one, the heavenly witnesses, but that is only because they really do not understand Bible verse evidences.) If fact, the Old Latin is exception in certain ways, as the only text that actually had definite expansions, note though that those were likely complete by the 2nd century and were on a singular level of extensivity.

    The expansions in a couple of Greek Old Testament, as in Jeremiah, are also really a very unique element, hardly comparable to anything. The original vorlage translated was likely much different.


    The conclusion is simple. Textual criticism must be employed to determine when to apply certain principles and when not to apply them. None of the principles of TC were employed in the crafting of the TR in a systematic manner. There are also obvious errors that must be taken into consideration (e.g. Revelation 17:8 a printer’s error ). So, his whole “study” is an exercise in futility
    I really wish he could attend an open forum at the ETS or SBL where he can present his “brilliance” while fielding questions. That would be a hoot! [/QUOTE]

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