Ehrman, 1993. Bart D. Ehrman, The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture: The Effect of Early Christological Controversies on the Text of the New Testament. London: Oxford University Press, 1993.

Ehrman's book is an interesting study in the theological motives which may have given rise to some textual variants in the New Testament. Ehrman's arguments involve a good bit of speculation, though, and he sometimes makes use of "higher" criticism of the canonical books. The important distinction between scientifically rigorous lower criticism, on the one hand, and purely speculative higher criticism on the other, ought to be maintained more carefully by an author who wants to be taken seriously by conservatives.

Ehrman and Holmes, 1995. Bart D. Ehrman and Michael W. Holmes, editors, The Text of the New Testament in Contemporary Research: Essays on the "Status Quaestionis." Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1995.

Includes essays reviewing recent developments in every department of textual criticism.

Ellicott et al., 1881. C.J. Ellicott, et al., The New Testament of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, Translated out of the Greek: Being the Version Set Forth A.D. 1611, Compared with the Most Ancient Authorities and Revised, A.D. 1881. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1881.

The New Testament version commonly called the "Revised Version" (RV) or the "English Revised Version" (ERV) of 1881, of which the American Standard Version was an American edition. This version is a revision of the King James version made on the basis of Westcott and Hort 1881 and Tregelles 1857. The readings adopted by the committee of revisers were presented in a continuous Greek text in Palmer 1881, which includes marginal notes showing every departure from the Greek text presumed to underlie the King James version (for which see Scrivener 1881).

For a convenient comparison of the ERV with the KJV, see Geoffrey Cumberlege, ed., The Interlinear Bible: The Authorised Version and the Revised Version, Together with the Marginal Notes of Both Versions and Central References (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1906). For philological commentary on the ERV see Frederick Field, Notes on the Translation of the New Testament (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1899). For criticism of the underlying Greek text see Burgon 1883 and Whitney 1892.

Elliott et al., 1984. G.G. Willis, J.N. Birdsall, J.K. Elliott, et al. (American and British Committees of the International Greek New Testament Project), The New Testament in Greek: The Gospel According to St. Luke: Part One: Chapters 1-12. Part Two: Chapters 13-24. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1984, 1987.

The International Greek New Testament Project, a cooperative undertaking of British and American scholars, began work on a comprehensive critical apparatus of various readings in 1948, and after forty years we have the fruit of their labors in these two volumes of Luke's gospel. Work is now proceeding on the gospel of John. The two volumes published so far are without a doubt the most detailed and wide-ranging collection of variants ever published for Luke. The collation base is the 1873 Oxford reprint of Lloyd 1828.

Elliott, 1989. J.K. Elliott, A Bibliography of Greek New Testament Manuscripts. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1989.

Elliott's bibliography is a complete guide to published manuscripts, collations, facsimiles, and photographic plates.

Elzevir, 1624. [Isaac Elzevir], Novum Testamentum Græce. Lugduni Batavorum [Leiden]: Ex officina Elzeviriana, 1624; 2nd edition 1633.

The Elzevir text is practically a reprint of the text of Beza 1565 with about fifty minor differences in all. The Elzevirs were notable printers, and their editions of the Greek New Testament were accurate and elegant. Throughout Europe the Elzevir editions came to occupy a place of honor, and their text was employed as the standard one for commentary and collation. The Elzevir editions are collated against Estienne 1550 in the appendix of Tregelles 1854, and in Newberry 1877, Scrivener 1861, and Hoskier 1890.

The following information on the Elzevir editions is given by Dr. Ronald D. Minton of Piedmont Baptist College in his book, The Making and Preservation of the Bible.

"The Elzevirs [also spelled Elzevier and Elsevier] were a family of well-known Dutch printers and publishers. They were of Flemish ancestry and were famous printers for several generations....

"Bonaventure and his nephew, Abraham, are famous for publishing the Greek New Testament. However, it was Abraham's brother Isaac that actually printed the first Elzevir Greek New Testament in 1624. This edition was small and convenient. It had all verse numbers on the inside margin of each page. After that printing sold out, Bonaventure and Abraham themselves printed the second Elzevir edition in 1633. The preface of this second edition was written by Daniel Heinsius (1580-1655) and the editor was Jeremias Hoelzlin (1583-1644). [This has been rarely mentioned, and was uncertain until the publication of H.J. de Jonge, "Jeremias Hoelzlin: Editor of the 'Textus Receptus' Printed by the Elzevirs Leiden 1633," in T. Baarda, A.F.J. Klijn, and W.C. VanUnnik, eds. Miscellanea Neotestamentica 1 (1978): 105-28. Heinsius and Hoelzlin were both professors at Leiden.] It had all the verse numbers to the left of the text and within the text itself. Each verse was started separately and the first letter was capitalized. The text of this 1633 edition became known as the "Textus Receptus" because of an advertisement in Heinsius' preface that said in Latin Textum ergo habes, nunc ab omnibus receptum: in quo nihil immutatum aut corruptum damus, 'Therefore you have the text now received by all in which we give nothing altered or corrupt.' ...

"On the Elzevirs' family and their publishing and printing history, see Alphonse Willems, Les Elzevier, Histoire et Annales Typographiques (Brussels-Paris-The Hague: Van Trigt, 1880; 2nd reprint Nieuwkoop: B. de Graaf, 1974); H.B. Copinger, The Elzevir Press (n.p. 1927); D.W. Davies, The World of the Elzevirs, 1580- 1712 (The Hague, 1954); P.R. Sellin, Daniel Heinsius and Stuart England (London: Oxford University Press, 1968)."

Elzevir, 1633. [Jeremias Hoelzlin, ed.], Novum Testamentum Græce. Lugduni Batavorum [Leiden]: Ex officina Elzeviriana, 1633.

This second Elzevir edition differs little from the first (see Elzevir 1624), and is collated against it in Hoskier 1890.

Epp and Fee, 1981. Eldon Jay Epp and Gordon Fee, eds., New Testament Textual Criticism: Its Significance for Exegesis. London: Oxford University Press, 1981.

Epp, 1989. Eldon Jay Epp, The New Testament and its Modern Interpreters. Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1989.

The fourth chapter of this book ("Textual Criticism") is followed by an extensive bibliography (pages 106-126).

Epp and Fee, 1993. Eldon Jay Epp and Gordon D. Fee, Studies in the Theory and Method of New Testament Textual Criticism. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1993.

This volume is a collection of articles published in scholarly journals over the past twenty-five years. Epp and Fee are critical of the genealogical theories of Westcott & Hort, and emphasize the need for new and more adequate theories. They point out the weaknesses of the largely intuitive "eclectic" method practiced by most editors today, in which basic theoretical issues are ignored. Kurt Aland (see Aland et al. 1979) is severely criticized for his neglect of theory in two of the articles.

Erasmus, 1516. Desiderius Erasmus, Novum Instrumentu omne, diligenter ad Erasmo Roterodamo recognitum et emendatum, non solum ad graecam veritatem, verum etiam ad multorum utriusque linguae codicum, eorumque veterum simul et emendatorum fidem, postremo adprobatissimorum autorum citationem, emendationem, et interpretationem, praecipue, Origenis, Chrysostomi, Cyrilli, Vulgarii, Hieronymi, Cypriani, Ambrosii, Hilarii, Augustini, una cum Annotationibus, quae lectorem doceant, quid qua ratione mutatum sit. Quisquis igitur amas veram theologiam, lege, cognosce, ac diende judica. Neque statim offendere, si quid mutatum offenderis, sed expende, num in melius mutatum sit. Apud inclytam Germaniae Basilaeam [The entire New Testament, diligently researched and corrected by Erasmus of Rotterdam, &c]. Basel: Johann Froben, 1516; 2nd ed. 1519; 3rd ed. 1522; 4th ed. 1527; 5th ed. 1535.

Desiderius Erasmus, born 1466 in the Dutch town of Gouda, was the second illegitimate son of a local Priest. He took monastic vows at the age of 21, and was himself ordained a Priest at the age of 26. A largely self-taught classical scholar, he began to take an interest in the Greek New Testament around the age of 34, and at the age of 39 published an edition of Valla's Annotations on the New Testament. In 1511, at the age of 45, he published a satirical work called Moriae encomium, "Praise of Folly," in which he ridiculed the hypocritical churchmen of his day. His first edition of the Greek New Testament appeared in 1516, when he was 50 years old. The Reformation broke out in Germany five years later, and many expected him to join the Protestants; but he did not share their theological convictions, and preferred to remain safely in the church of Rome. He died in 1536, at the age of 70.

Sources: Erasmus' Greek text was based upon three of the cursive manuscripts readily available to him in Basle. They are (as designated by the notation of Scrivener and Miller 1894): Evan. 2 (15th cent.); Act.Paul. 2 (13th to 14th cent.); and Apoc. 1 (12th cent.). He sometimes adopted readings found in three other cursives also at Basle: Evan.Act.Paul. 1 (10th to 13th cent.); Act.Paul. 4 (15th cent.); and Paul. 7 (date undetermined). For his second edition (1519) he evidently consulted the cursive Evan.Act.Paul. 3 (12th century). He also made much use of his notes on various readings of the Latin Vulgate, of Patristic quotations, and of other (unspecified) Greek copies he had met with over the years, which he had compiled in preparation for his revision of the Latin Vulgate. The cursive manuscript Apoc. 1, his only Greek source for the book of Revelation, was scarcely legible in places, and it lacked the final leaf containing the last six verses of the book.

Method: Erasmus himself later said that the Greek text of his first edition was "not edited, but done headlong;" that is, thrown together hastily. His publisher, John Froben, desired to get the edition out on the market quickly, and so Erasmus obtained what manuscripts he could find on short notice, marked on them a few changes, and gave them as copy to the printer. Most of the changes were made in order to present a text which displayed the Greek readings he had followed in his Latin translation, which he had been preparing for some time, and which appeared alongside the Greek in this edition. These readings were already supported by unspecified Greek manuscripts and other sources mentioned in the appended Annotations. The Annotations show that quotations from the early Latin ecclesiastical writers (called Fathers) were often decisive in his choice of readings, despite lack of support in Greek copies. For example, Acts 8:37 (And Philip said, if thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God) has almost no Greek manuscript support, but Erasmus inserted it because it was in the Vulgate, with some support from the Fathers, and in the margin of one of his copies. In Acts 9:5-6, the words it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks. And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him are imported from Acts 26:14 and 22:10, and appear in no Greek copy at all here, although they are represented in the Vulgate, with some support from the Fathers. On the other hand, Erasmus rejected the testimony of the Vulgate in a very important doctrinal passage: in 1 John 5:7-8 the words in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth, which express the doctrine of the Trinity more clearly than any in Scripture, are omitted in Erasmus' first two editions. In the book of Revelation he frankly resorted to conjecture in places, supplying Greek words by translation from Latin sources. Some of these factitious readings passed into the later texts of Estienne, Elzevir, and Beza, and are represented in the King James version, e.g., Rev 17:4 filthiness instead of unclean things; Rev 22:18 For at the beginning of the verse, and in the same verse add unto these things instead of add unto them; Rev 22:21 our added before Lord. As may be seen from the examples, however, the degree of corruption introduced by this expedient is very slight.

Format of the first edition: Publisher's Preface (one page); Dedication to Pope Leo X by Erasmus (three pages); Introduction (23 pages); parallel Greek text and Latin version without marginal notes (548 pages); lengthy appendix of annotations (401 pages).

Reprints and editions: Erasmus' first edition (1516) has recently been reprinted in a photographic facsimile: Erasmus von Rotterdam: Novum Instrumentum, Basel 1516: Faksimile - Neudruck mit einer historischen, textkritischen und bibliographischen Einleitung von Heinz Holeczek (Stuttgart and Bad Canstatt: Frommann and Holzboog, 1986). His second edition (1519) differed from the first chiefly in the correction of numerous errors of the press, and in the addition of more notes. In his third edition (1522) Erasmus inserted the so-called Comma Johanneum in 1 John 5:7, not because he believed it to be authentic, but in order to "take away the handle for calumniating him which had been afforded by his honestly following his MSS. in this passage" (Tregelles, Account of the Printed Text, p. 26. For a full discussion of the pressure Erasmus was under to insert the Comma against his better judgment see H.J. de Jonge, 'Erasmus and the Comma Johanneum,' Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanienses 56 [1980], pp. 381-389.). The fourth edition of 1527 gave a generally improved text, in which Erasmus adopted many readings of the Complutensian Polyglot (see Stunica 1522) for the book of Revelation, and also included a third column giving the traditional text of the Vulgate beside his own Latin version. The fifth edition of 1535 differed very little from the fourth, except that the Vulgate has been left out, reducing the size of the volume.

Reception: The first two editions quickly sold out (Erasmus states in a letter that these amounted to 3300 copies). James Lopez de Stunica, the editor of the forthcoming Complutensian Polyglot, criticized Erasmus' text for various faults, and for the omission of the clause in 1 John 5:7-8. The influential scholars of France followed Stunica in denouncing the edition, although most of their criticism was directed not against the Greek text, but against the innovative Latin translation. Elsewhere it was received more favorably. A letter of thanks was sent to Erasmus from Pope Leo X, to whom the first edition was dedicated.

Influence: The second edition (1519) was followed by Martin Luther in his German translation (1522). The third edition (1522) was used by William Tyndale in his English translation (see Tyndale 1526). The text of the fourth and fifth edition (1527, 1535) was closely followed by Robert Estienne in his influential third edition (1550), which in turn provided the basis for all editions later published by Beza (1565-98), subsequently followed by the translators of the King James version. The editions of Elzevir (1624, 1633) also derived from Erasmus 1527, as mediated by Estienne and Beza. Erasmus' text therefore became the foundation for nearly all editions and translations of the Greek text published for two centuries afterwards.

Secondary Literature: J.A. Froude, Life and Letters of Erasmus (New York, 1896). Jerry H. Bentley, Humanists and Holy Writ: New Testament Scholarship in the Renaissance (Princeton, 1983). Erika Rummel, Erasmus' Annotations on the New Testament: from Philologist to Theologian (Toronto, 1986). Heinz Holeczek, "Einleitung," in Erasmus von Rotterdam: Novum Instrumentum, Basel 1516: Faksimile - Neudruck mit einer historischen, textkritischen und bibliographischen Einleitung von Heinz Holeczek (Stuttgart and Bad Canstatt: Frommann and Holzboog, 1986); Roland H. Bainton, Erasmus of Christendom. (New York: Scribner, 1969); Robert D. Sider, ed., Erasmusí Annotations on Romans. Translated and annotated by John Barton Payne. (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1994).

Erasmus, 1519. Desiderius Erasmus, Novum Testamentum. 2nd edition. See Erasmus 1516.

Erasmus, 1522. Desiderius Erasmus, Novum Testamentum. 3rd edition. See Erasmus 1516.

Erasmus, 1527. Desiderius Erasmus, Novum Testamentum. 4th edition. See Erasmus 1516.

Erasmus, 1535. Desiderius Erasmus, Novum Testamentum. 5th edition. See Erasmus 1516.

Estienne, 1546. Robert Estienne, Novum Testamentum Græce. Lutetiæ: ex officiana Roberti Stephani Typographi, Typis Regiis. 1546; 2nd ed. 1549; 3rd ed. 1550; 4th ed. Geneva 1551.

The renowned French printer Robert Estienne, called Stephens in England, gave in his first two editions (1546, 1549) a text which for the most part followed Erasmus' fourth edition (1527), but with many departures from it according to the Complutensian edition (see Stunica 1522). In his preface to the first two editions he does not mention Erasmus, and instead refers vaguely to certain manuscripts he had examined in the King's library, and to the Complutensian edition, as his sources.

In his third edition (1550) he adhered more closely to Erasmus in the text (still without notice), and presented the various readings of the Complutensian in the margin, along with a selection of readings of the manuscripts referred to earlier. One of them was from Italy, he says, eight from the Royal Library, and six from private libraries; but he did not identify them in such a way that they could be found and consulted again by others. Although Estienne professed to have collated them himself, it is now known that this was done by his son Henry, who in his collation (which is very defective) indicated them separately by various letters of the Greek alphabet which he had assigned to them. Some of these have since been identified by scholars: they are mostly of the ordinary modern type, such as were easily available in Paris, with one notable exception; It appears that one of Estienne's manuscripts (the one he says came from Italy) was the Codex Bezae Cantabrigiensis, a peculiar old manuscript which later became rather important in textual criticism. This collection of various readings in the margin distinguished Estienne's third edition as the first Greek text with a critical apparatus, and greatly enhanced the reputation of the text. It was thought by many that Estienne had edited his text directly from these manuscripts, and indeed Estienne's preface promotes this idea. But in more than a hundred places all of Estienne's manuscripts are cited together for readings which differ from the text, and in several places the text follows Erasmus alone against all known manuscripts. It may also be observed that in the one place above all others where the various readings were likely to be consulted, that is, in 1 John 5:7, an error in the placement of brackets led readers to believe that all seven of the manuscripts collated by Estienne for the General Epistles included most of the disputed clause relative to the three heavenly witnesses, when in fact none of them contained the clause at all.

The fourth edition (1551) presented the text of the third edition in numbered verses. Estienne numbered the verses with the idea of providing a Greek concordance, which, however, he did not live to publish. (Robert Estienne died in 1559. It was not until 1594 that the Concordantiae Graecae Novi Testamenti was finally published in Geneva by his son Henry, although poorly edited). His verse numbers were adopted in all subsequent editions and translations.

The text of Estienne's third and fourth edition (1550, 1551) was used by William Whittingham and his colleagues as the basis for the English version of the New Testament included in the Geneva Bible, which was the most widely used English translation prior to the appearance of the King James version (1611). Theodore Beza also used the text of Estienne 1550-51 as the basis for his own influential editions (see Beza 1565), and it generally came to be regarded as a standard text, especially in England. It became the most commonly used text for the purpose of manuscript collation and exegetical commentary, and has been reprinted hundreds of times in various forms, up to the present day (see Newberry 1877, Berry 1897, Scrivener and Nestle 1906). Literal translations are given in Newberry 1877, Berry 1897, and Young's Literal Translation.

For a biography of Estienne, see Elizabeth Armstrong, Robert Estienne, Royal Printer: an Historical Study of the Elder Stephanus (Cambridge, 1954).

Estienne, 1549. Robert Estienne, Novum Testamentum Græce. 2nd edition. Paris, 1549. See Estienne 1546.

Estienne, 1550. Robert Estienne, Novum Testamentum Græce. 3rd edition. Paris, 1550. See Estienne 1546.

Estienne, 1551. Robert Estienne, Novum Testamentum Græce. 4th edition. Geneva, 1551. See Estienne 1546.