Page:A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on Judges.djvu/56

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INTRODUCTION

Catena Nicephori represents this family. Grabe, in 1705, proved that this version was of Egyptian origin;[1] a conclusion which is brilliantly confirmed by the fact, that of all the secondary versions only the Sahidic (k) is based upon it.[2] As the quotations in the Alexandrian Fathers from the 2d to the 4th century (Clement, Origen, Didymus)[3] follow the version represented by GA and its congeners, while Cyrill uses the text which we find in GBGNk,[4] the conjecture is not remote that the latter translation of Judges was made in the 4th century; but much remains to be done before any positive conclusion can be reached.

In this state of the case, I have thought it proper to adduce the evidence of the Greek versions with more fulness than would ordinarily be necessary in a commentary. If the Greek version is to be used at all for the emendation of the Hebrew text, it must be used critically; and to operate, as older commentators did, with "A" and "B," or as some more modern scholars do, with Tischendorf's reprint of the Roman edition and Lagarde's "Lucian," taking the one or the other for "Septuagint" upon the intrinsic probability of readings, is not a critical procedure.[5]

The Latin version of Jerome is one of the best specimens of his skill as a translator; and is exegetically of the greatest value, because it gives not merely Jerome's own interpretation, but that of his Jewish teachers and helpers. It is of less assistance to the textual critic, because the Hebrew text from which it was made was substantially the Jewish standard text which, having been authoritatively fixed in the 2d century, a.d., has been transmitted to us with great fidelity. For the Latin text itself we have an

  1. In the letter to Mill, cited above. Grabe embarrassed this result by the assumption that the version, or revision, was the work of Hesychius.
  2. Ciasca, Sacrorum Bibliorum fragmenta copto-sahidica, i. 1885. Contains of Judges, 110–21 127–218.
  3. Didymus died 394 or 399.
  4. Cyrill became Bp. of Alexandria in 412 a.d.
  5. On the Greek text of Judges, see Grabe, Epistola ad Millium, 1705; Ziegler, Theologische Abhandlungen, i. 1791, p. 276 ff.; O. F. Fritzsche, Liber Judicum secundum LXX interpretes, 1867 (distinguishing three types of text); Schulte, De restitutione atque indole genuinae versionis graecae in libro Judicum, 1889; Lagarde, Septuaginta Studien, 1892, p. 1–72. For the fragments of Aquila, Symmachus, and Theodotion, Field, Origenis hexaplorum quae supersunt, 1875; cf. J. G. Scharfenberg, Animadversiones quibus fragmenta versionum graecarum V.T. ... illustrantur emendantur, ii. 1781, p. 40–85.