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The Gospel According to John in the Byzantine Tradition

Guidelines for the Apparatus


The witnesses are numbered according to the system developed by Caspar René Gregory and later extended by others, including Kurt Aland. The older system of using letters for some majuscule manuscripts has been abandoned in the apparatus, though the letters are recorded in the witness list. Readers should soon become familiar with the manuscript numbers for the majuscule witnesses. Lectionaries have an L prefix. Commentary witnesses retain their Gregory-Aland numbers, though with a K prefix in the apparatus. On occasion a later scribe will have supplied supplementary leaves in a manuscript to remedy a lacuna (loss or destruction of one or more leaves). Places where these supplementary witnesses occur are recorded in the witness list as supp. Supplementary witnesses are indicated in the apparatus by a lower-case s following the manuscript number.

Verse numbers form no part of the manuscript tradition and first appear in printed editions in 1551, since which time they have proved to be a handy reference for readers. In the present volume verse numbering follows that of NA27. Scribal information found in the superscriptions and subscriptions has been recorded in the present edition although it does not form part of the Gospel per se and is usually set off by different styles of writing or by different inks in the manuscripts.

Deficiency Apparatus

The apparatus is divided into two parts. The first (upper) apparatus indicates deficiencies for entire verses. Deficiencies may occur in a witness for a variety of reasons. Reasons for deficiencies are noted as:

Main Apparatus

The second (lower) apparatus indicates actual variants and partial deficiencies within verses. If only a few words are missing from the verse, the witness is noted as deficient at that point with the same sigla as used in the deficiency apparatus and the words in the base text that correspond to the deficiency are recorded. For the purposes of the present edition, a lemma system similar to that used by Tischendorf and more recently by the editors of the International Greek New Testament Project has been adopted.

While this is not especially compact, it has the advantage of putting the variant readings clearly before the user. If a witness does not occur in the list of variant readings, and if it is not listed in the deficiency apparatus for a particular verse or noted as partially lacunose in the main apparatus, it may be presumed to agree with the base text. The single exception to this rule is in the case of supplements supplied for missing pages by scribes. The supplementary portions of manuscripts are recorded in the witness list, but lacunae for them are not recorded in the deficiency apparatus or in the main apparatus where the main manuscript has text for the entire verse.

When two variant readings begin at the same word, the longer variant will appear first in the list in this electronic edition.

As noted above, the base manuscript has very regular orthography and differs only slightly from familiar printed editions of the Byzantine text. Indeed, many of the alternative spellings can themselves be found in earlier editions.

A list of those very few places where the spelling of our base manuscript has been changed in the present edition appears below. Accents, punctuation, word division and capitalisation of the present edition follow the Patriarchal Edition mentioned above.

Places where the spelling of Manuscript 35 has been changed in the base of the present edition:

Places where the base text follows the corrector of Ms 35 rather than the first hand because of an apparent error in the first hand:

Places where the scribe of ms 35 seems to present an alternative to the running text:

Manuscript 35 treats 7.53-8.11 as doubtful, using an obelus ÷ to indicate the doubtful verses, and the present edition follows that practice. Other continuous-text manuscripts follow a similar procedure in that passage (and/or in 5.4). Some manuscripts do not include 7.53-8.11 at all, and the early Greek fathers used here do not refer to the passage. The lectionaries refer to the passage, if at all, only in the menologion.

Movable nu has in general been regularised to agree with the usage of the base manuscript, though in the case of singular readings it has sometimes been allowed to stand as it is in the individual witness. A similar procedure of regularisation has been followed with ουτω - ουτως and the like.

Manuscripts display a wide variety of itacistic readings and other spelling variants. These too have been regularised. An exception to this may occur in two cases: when words have more than one recognised spelling, and when it is impossible to decide with certainty which of two or more possible variants one peculiar spelling or a "hybrid" of two peculiar spellings is likely to represent. The unregularised forms of all readings will be found in the transcription files of the electronic version.

Purely orthographic variants of proper names have generally been regularised to the spelling of the base text. This is true except in those cases where manuscripts appear to present a difference between the declinable and indeclinable forms of a name.

Where a witness displays a correction, the reading of the first hand is indicated by an asterisk *. The reading of the corrector is identified in superscript by an uppercase C. Readings where more than one corrector can be identified are indicated by C1, C2, etc. C* indicates a correction by the original scribe. For witness 038, correctors are noted as Ca, Cb, etc. following the conventions of the earliest editor of that manuscript.

Where a lectionary records a passage of Scripture at more than one place and displays more than one reading at a point of variation, the variant readings have been numbered according to the order in which they occur in the lectionary. With regard to patristic witnesses, divergent strands of a father's tradition are indicated by a lower-case a, b, etc. in superscript.

Om indicates that the manuscripts listed omit the word(s). Praem indicates that the manuscripts listed place the indicated word(s) before the word indicated in the base text. Add indicates that the manuscripts listed add the word(s) at the end of the verse.

Where there is some uncertainty about how a partially lacunose word should be restored, the uncertain letters are placed within brackets [ ]. In some cases, as when a word or phase has been completely erased or when images are unclear, there is no certainty at all about individual letters; in such cases the transcribers have placed numbers inside the brackets; for example [2-3] to indicate the approximate number of letters that would fit within the defective portion. If a partial lacuna occurs in a word and the amount of missing text cannot be determined, the symbol {Lac} is used.