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Testamentum D. N. J. C. novum in usum studiosæ juventutis edidit Laur. Sahl. Havniæ, 1787. 11. 8.
Novum Test. græce. Recognovit atque insignioris lectt. varietatis et argumentorum notationes subiunxit G. C. Knappius, Hal, 1797. 8.
VI. Critical editions, with annotations.
Novum Test. græce. Perpetua annot. illustratum a J. B. Koppe, Vol. I. compl. Epp. Pauli ad Gal. Thess. Eph. Gött. 1778. 8. Second edition by T. C. Tychsen, 1791. 8. Volumen IV. complectens Ep. Pauli ad Rom., Gött. 1783. 8.
Volumen VII. compl. Epp. Pauli ad Tim. Tit. et Philem. continuavit J. H. Heinrichs Gött. 1792. Volumen IX. compl. Epp. Jacob. et Petri-continuavit, Dav. Jul. Pott.
Volumen VIII. compl. Ep. Pauli ad Ebræos continuavit. J. H. Heinrichs. Vol. X. complec. Apocal. continuavit, J. H. Heinrichs.
Pauli ad Corinthios Epp. græce. Perpetua annot. illustratæ a F. A. Gu. Krause. Vol. I. complec. Ep. priorem Fr. f. ad M. 1792.
Pauli Ap. Ep. ad Philipp. gr. ex. rec. Griesbach. annot. perpetua illustrata a M. J. G. am Ende, Vit. 1798.
Epistola Judæ gr. Commentario critico et annot. perpetua illustrata a H. C. A. Haenlein, Erl. 1799.
H.E.G. Paulus, Philologisch-krit. und histor. Kommentar, über das neue Test, in welchem der griech. Text nach einer Recognition der varianten etc. bearbeitet ist. Erster Theil der drei ersten Evv., erste Hälfte, Lüb. 1800. 8. Zweiter Th. der drei ersten Evangelisten, zweite Hälfte 1801. 8 Dritter Theil, 1802, 8.
Michaelis in his Introduction, after giving the character of the various editions, which were then published, states the objects which it is still desirable to obtain, in a critical edition of the N. T. See also, Haenlein Handbuch, II. 292.
CRITICAL LAWS OF THE BOOKS OF THE NEW TESTAMENT.
I. If the origin and nature of the readings of the N. T. be understood, it will be perceived, that besides the laws, which all interprèters of ancient authors, ought to follow, in examining ancient documents, in selecting from their various readings—in detecting and expunging interpolations, in filling up chasms, and restoring depraved passages—there must be others, peculiar to the Sacred Volume.
J. H. ab Elswich Diss. de recentiorum in Novum Fædus critice, Vit. 1711.
C. B. Michaelis Tractatio crit. de var. lectt. N. T. caute colligendis et dijudicandis, in quo cum de illarum causis—tum de cautelis agitur, simulque de codicibus, versionibus antiquis et Patribus partim curiosa, partim utilia afferuntur, Hal. Magd. 1749. 4.
Fr. Ant. Knittels neue Gedanken von den allgemeinen Schreibfehlern in den Handschr. des N. T. Braunschw, 1755. 4.
J. J. Breintingeri Diss. crit. de examine dubiæ lectionis N. T. rite instituendo, Mus. Helv. XVIII. See also, the works of Semler, Wetstein, and Griesbach, already frequently referred to.
Criticism is divided, although not very properly, into higher and lower, and each into grammatico-historical and conjectural.
I. Lower or verbal criticism. See,
S. G. Wald diss. de eo, quod incertum est in critica verbali N. T., Regiom. 1795. 4.
The general rule is, that the reading which bears, as it were, the impress of the author's hand, and from which it may be seen, how the other readings might easily have
arisen, is probably genuine. Hence, it is proper, that even the obvious errors of transcribers, should be noted, as they often furnish indications of the correct reading.
The common laws which are of authority, in the criticism of profane authors in general, are,
1. That reading, which rests upon the testimony of decidedly the greatest number of witnesses, is to be esteemed genuine. Yet all the readings of the smaller number of witnesses, are not at once to be rejected.
2. That reading, which is found in the best copies, unless other reasons forbid, is to be preferred to that which rests upon inferior copies, although these copies be the more numerous. The antiquity and intrinsic excellence of a reading, do not, of themselves, prove it to be genuine.
3. That reading, which is the more harsh; obscure, difficult, and unusual, if it have besides, competent testimony in its behalf, is to be preferred to the perspicuous, the obvious, and the usual. Difficulty is sometimes in the style and connexion, sometimes in particular words and phrases, sometimes it is grammatical, historical, or doctrinal.
4. That reading, which is most consistent with popular and familiar usage, if supported by external testimony, is to be preferred to that which is more artificial or abstruse.
5. The shorter reading, caeteris paribus, is to be preferred.
6. That reading, which furnishes the best sense, is to be selected. But in deciding upon this point, the nature of the passage, and character of the writer, and not our own opinions, are to be regarded.
7. That reading, which gives an unmeaning, or incongruous sense, is to be rejected. Care, however, must be taken, that we do not hastily decide that a sense is false, which a more thorough examination, may show to be probable, and perhaps correct.
8. The reading, most consistent with the author's style, is to be preferred. It should be remembered, however, that the style of an author, in a course of years, sometimes changes.
9. That reading is to be rejected, which exhibits indications of an alteration designedly made.
These changes might arise,
c. From doubts on historical, or geographical grounds. Matthew, VIII, 28.
d. From the desire of reconciling passages apparently contradictory.
e. From the desire of increasing the force of an expression.
f. From thc collation of different MSS., whose readings are sometimes intermixed.
g. From the comparison of similar passages.
10. Those which arise from mere negligence of transcribers, or the errors frequent in all writings, are not, properly speaking, to be regarded as various readings. . Under this head belong,
a. The commutation of dialects, especially the Macedonian, Alexandrian, or' others, with the common. Fischer. Proluss. de vit. Lex. N. T. p. 666.
The common forms, and those of the Alexandrian dialect, in the N. T., are more commonly genuine than those of the other dialects.
b. The change of letters and sy Mables, through mistake, either of the eye, or the ear.
c. The confusion of synonymous words.
d. The introduction of notes from the margin into the text, and the uniting of two readings.
e. The omission of a word or verse.
Everw. Wussenberg. diss. phil. crit. de transpositione, seu saluberrimo in sanandis vett. Scriptis remedio. Francf, 1786.
g. Mistakes from words of similar termination, or similar appearance ; or from neighbouring words terminating or beginning with the same syllable.
h. The improper division or union of words, arising chiefly from the ancient method of writing.
i. Improper interpunction.
11. Thật reading which has the appearance of being a gloss or explanation, is to be rejected.
These explanations consist sometimes of single words, and sometimes of entire passages. The sources of them are various ; they are sometimes connected with the genuine words, and sometimes they exclude them. It is not to be supposed, however, that every explanatory addition we find in the text, is to be rejected as spurious.
Fischer. Proll. de vitt. Lexx. N. T. p. 593. Abresch. Spec. III. Anim. in Ep. ad Hebr.
346. C. C. Tittman Pr. de glossis N. T, æstimandis et judicandis. vit. 1782, 4.
12. Hence, also, those readings which have found their way into the text from versions, or from the comments of the ancient interpreters are to be rejected ; but in acting upon this rule, the greatest skill and caution are necessary.
II. Higher Criticism. Common laws.
1. That sentence or passage, that book or section, which, in its matter or style, is so foreign from the genius and manner of an author, as that it can scarcely be thought have proceeded from him, ought to be reckoned spurious, or at least highly suspicious.
2. A passage, which is entirely at variance with the rest of the discourse, and interrupts the connexion, is to be considered an interpolation-see,
Ferberg. Spec. II. Animadverss. in loca selecta N. T. 1798.
3. Where the same, or nearly the same words, are