« ÖncekiDevam »
mortal expression of the inward immortal life; and at once the old struggle begins to repeat itself between the flesh and the spirit, the form and the reality. For awhile the lower tendencies are held in check. The meaning of the symbolism is living and fresh. It is a living language, vivid and suggestive. By-and-by, as the mind passes into other phases, the meaning is forgotten. The language becomes a dead language, and the living robe of life becomes a windingsheet of corruption. The form is represented as everything, the spirit as nothing. Obedience is dispensed with. Sin and religion arrange a compromise ; and outward observances and technical inward emotions are converted into juggler's tricks, by which men are enabled to enjoy their pleasures, and escape the penalties of wrong. Then such religion becomes no religion, but a falsehood; and honourable men turn away from it, and fall back in haste upon the naked elemental life.'
And take again this beautiful påssage upon the gradual change in favour of toleration which has come over Christendom :
"The three centuries which have passed over the world since the Reformation have soothed the theological animosities which they have failed to obliterate. An enlarged experience of one another has taught believers of all sorts that these differences need not be pressed into mortal hatred; and we have been led forward unconsciously into a recognition of a broader Christianity than as yet we are able to profess in the respectful acknowledgment of excellence wherever excellence is found. Where we see piety, continence, courage, self-forgetfulness, there, or not far off, we know is the spirit of the Almighty; and as we look around us among our living contemporaries, or look back with open eyes into the history of the past, we see--we dare not: in voluntary blindness say we do not see that God is no respecter of denominations' any more than He is a respecter of persons. His highest gifts are shed abroad with an even hand among the sects of Christendom, and petty distinctions melt away and become invisible in the palaces of a grander truth. Thus, even among those whose theories allow least room for latitude, liberty of conscience has become a law of modern thought. It is as if the ancient Catholic unity which was divided in the sixteenth century into separate streams of doctrine, as light is divided by the prism, was again imperceptibly returning; as if the coloured rays were once more blending themselves together in a purer and more rich transparency.'
The style of these passages of course speaks for itself; and indeed as regards that of all Mr. Froude's history, it is of the very highest order. Here and there marks of hastiness may be visible;, here and there a sentence runs to great and unnecessary length, and is involved and contains repetitions; but as a whole the language is a beautiful model of ease, simplicity, harmony, and power.
And yet we must not be blind to the great faults of these volumes. We have already alluded to the want of study of con
The Vatican Greek Testament.
stitutional law which they betray, and here we shall only observe that this defect is as plain in the second as in the first part of the history. No notice is taken of the fact that the benevolence exacted by Henry in 1545 was directly in contravention of a statute of Richard III.; no attempt is made to estimate the changes in our polity which were the effect of the Reformation; and no opinion is given with regard to Tudor state trials and attainders, except a general assertion of their justice. These are serious errors undoubtedly; and yet perhaps the gravest error of this history is its disregard of moral considerations in narrating the events it has to deal with Mr. Froude appears to arrange his drama as if an inevitable necessity compelled the actors in it to follow the lines of their conduot; and as if they were relieved of all moral responsibility, provided the ends they attained were great and advantageous. This is his method in portraying the cha. racters of Henry VIII. and of Cromwell, and, however interesting and effective it makes such personages to the eye, it is surely an exemplification of the great falsehood that the end justifies the means employed. Under this conception any period of history must be placed in a false light, and it is a conception which in its extreme results, can only end in an idolatry of brute and unscrupulous force.
ART. II.- Vetus et Novum Testamentum, ex antiquissimo Codice
Vaticano. Edidit ANGELUS Maius, S.R.E. Card. Romæ. Joseph Spithöver. 1857. 5 vols. 4to.
At last, this long-expected work, which has, for the last twenty years, sorely tried the patience of the Biblical scholars of Europe and America, has made its appearance. The Vatican codex-the queen of MSS.—to inspect which Bentley, Tischendorf, Tregelles, and many others, have made journeys to Rome-is no longer a sealed book, an unknown volume. Here are its whole contents, given to the world, and available to all who can afford to pay the goodly price at which the work is published.
As the title-page announces, the MS. is edited by Cardinal Mai, to whose laborious industry we are indebted for many other valuable works. Although but recently published, it has been long known that this edition of the Greek Scriptures has been printed some years. The cardinal showed Tischendorf the whole five volumes ready for publication in 1843. And from the work itself we learn that it was printed so far back as the year 1838. Various reasons have been suggested to explain this unaccountable delay. Dr. Tregelles says that when Rome was in the hands of the Republican government, and the authority of the Pope could no longer hinder the appearance of useful works, Cardinal Mai offered the impression for sale to Mr. Asher, the publisher at Berlin, but the terms named by the cardinal were deemed top high, and thus the negotiation came to nothing. The French decupation of Rome, and the restoration of the Papal government, soon prevented Cardinal Mai from publisling his edition; and thus Biblical scholars have been doomed to wait another ten years for this preciouş/boon. Now that it is in our hands it is melancholy to reflect that the learned editor did not live to see the consummation of his labours, and that the work was finally sent forth to the world under the superintendence of another. t,
The work is well and handsomely got up. The type is very good, and the paper, very stout, and capable of being written on. The text of the M$. is comprised in five stout quarto yolumes, of which four contain the Old Testament, the fifth, the New, The Old Testament-the Septuagint, translation is of course valuable, having never before been correctly published ; but the New Testament is beyond all comparison, that which renders this work so especially importantul. On this account it is much to be regretted that the one cannot be separated from the other. The Old and New Testaments must be bought together. As the cost of the whole work is rather considerable-nine pounds--this is a serious matter to scholars, A race not usually burdened with wealth. It is true an edition of the New Testament alone, in smaller size, is announced as to follow hereafter, but the editor adds, some considerable time will probably first elapse.
It is well known that the Vatican codex, of which this edition is professedly a copy, has several deficiencies. In the New Testament it is entirely defective from Heb. ix. 14, to the end of the Apocalypse. This statement is likely to mislead, however, those who may not be aware of the order in which the various writings of the New Testament are placed in the most ancient copies where the general epistles precede those of Paul.t All that is really deficient then in this celebrated codex is-Heb. ix. 14, to the end, the pastoral epistles, and the Apocalypse. A recent seribe has added, in a cursive hand, what was defective of the Epistle to the Hebrews, and also the whole of the Apocalypse, but not the pastoral epistles. In the copy before us, the chasm in the Hebrews is supplied from an ancient MS. in the Vatican Library, of the tenth century, marked No. 1761. The pastoral epistles are given from the same codex. The Apocalypse exhibits the text of the celebrated Uncial MS, in the Vatican, No. 2006 (B. in the Apocalypse), belonging to the eighth century.
Description of the MS. 'I
317 - The Vatican codex thius at lengtły given to the world we need scarcely say—is generally regarded as the most ancient copy of the Greek Scriptures in existence. When it was deposited in that library ? lor Whence it was brought ? are questions which none can answer.l: All we know is that early in the sixteenth century it was well known as an extremely ancient copy; but whether it came there is a present, or formed part of the spoils of the Greeks after the capture of Constantinople, it is impossible to decide.
By those who have seen the original MS., it is described as being of very thin vellum. The letters are small, regularly-formed úncials, without either accents or breathings as originally written; but these have been added by a later hand. The MS. is also entirely wanting in i stóps; the initial letters are of the same size as the rest. - At each opening of the book six columns of writing are presented to the eye-three on each page. Critics insist much on these pálæographic peculiarities as proofs of the extreme antiquity of the codex. Both Tischendorf and Tregelles ascribe its date to the middle of the fourth century. "How much older it may be," says the latter, we have no means of determining. I
It must be obvious that the publication of a MS. of the Greek Testament, of such extraordinary age, must be of vast service in a critical point of view. But what enhances its value so greatly is the extreme difficulty, almost impossibility hitherto, of inspecting the MS. Such has been the narrow selfishness of the Papal court that all kinds of obstacles have been placed in the way of those who desired to examine its readings. Tischendorf, the indefatigable editor of the Critical Greek Testament, and of facsimile editions of MSS., was only permitted to inspect a few select passages in the codex. Dr. Tregelles met with similar treatment. He visited Rome in 1845, principally for the purpose of collating the M8. for himself. During the five months which he spent there, he made great efforts to obtain permission to coltate it, or at least to examine it in those places in which existing collations differ, but all ended in disappointment. He often saw the MS., but was not allowed to transeribe any of its readings. When we add that the collations hitherto made of the codex are so imperfect that they differ from each other in two thousand instances, it will be unnecessary to add anything further in proof of the exceeding importance of Cardinal Mai's publication. 17. But while we think the lamented editor has achieved a work which entitles him to the gratitude of the whole of Christendom, there are one or two points in which we are disposed to find fault with him. It appears that the text of this edition does not strictly follow that of the Vatican MS. In many instances where, in the opinion of the learned cardinal, the transcriber 'had fallen into an error; or where the MS. from which he copied it, followed a reading not considered genuine, the passage is altered. Now we do protest against this uncritical mode of eliting a doenment. If the text of a MS. is to be given to the world, let us have it, as it is found in the codex itself, with all its faults. ' We can then form a judgment on the subject for ourselves.,1,-!
As examples of our meaning, we may mention that, in John i. 15, the Vatican MS. itself reads OutOC NÚ O 'ELTWv, but this the editor has altered into the common reading outoç nu ov ELTOV, placing the variation in the margin." In Natt. XXV. 22, the MS. omits lapu, but the editor inserts the word in the text. A whole verse is wanting at Matt. xii. 47; it is supplied, however, in the present elition. The same remarks apply to the following passages :-Mark xv. 28; Luke xxii. 43, 44, Luke xxiii, 17 and 34 ; John v. 3, 4; 1 Peter v. 3. All these passages are omitted, whether by design or orersight we cannot determine, in the MS. itself, but they are printed in the text of this edition. Still more remarkable, the passage containing the account of the adulterous woman, John vii. 53-viii. 12, though absent from this ancient codex, appears here,'as does also the famous clause of the three witnesses in 1. John' v. 7. We cannot but think this is n great mistake. It is true the learned editor has in every case distinctly stated what the reading of the MS. really is; but the proper plan would have been to have made the text itself an exact representation of the Vatican copy. Why, too, has not Cardinal Mai supplied the other lacunæ of the MS.? To have been consistent with himself, Matt. xxiii. '14, and Acts xxiv. 7, 8, should have been supplied. If I John v. 7 is inserted, in favour of which not a single Greek MS. written before the sixteenth century can be quoted, surely the above passages ought not to be omitted:
Another and more serious charge which we have to bring against the editors of the work, is the want of that rigid accuracy which is so necessary in a publication of this kind. There is an impression prevalent amongst Biblical scholars that Cardinal Mai's edition does not faithfully represent the Vatican text; and it must be confessed, there is some ground for the belief. Not that any intentional departure from the reading of the MS. has been practised. On the contrary, the work contains abundant evidence that the cardinal has honestly endeavoured to give us a faithful copy of the Vatican text. He never makes the most trivial corrections without informing us what is the actual reading of the MS. But something more than good intentions is requisite in a publication of this nature. There can be no