Monday, January 20, 2014

Matt 6:25 και τι πιητε

While some witnesses followed by Tischendorf (ℵ f1 892 pc a b ff-1 k l vg sy-c sa-mss) omit και τι πιητε either due to homoeoteleuton (ητε...ητε) or harmonization to Luke 12:22, others (B W Φ f13 33 al it sa-mss mae bo) have η τι πιητε either for stylistic reasons or from assimilation to 6:31. Most witnesses, however, retain the somewhat less proper and non-harmonized (and thus more likely authentic) και τι πιητε (E G K L M N S U V Γ Δ Θ Π Σ Ω 0233 [Byz ca. 1450 mss] 565. 1424 sy-p.h go), which von Soden and Vogels adopt. As Origen's wording in Contra Celsum 7.24 is too close to Luke's, the earliest attestation of the minority reading with η may be found in Acta Thomae 36 (Bonnet, Acta apostolorum apocrypha, [2 vols. in 4 parts; Lipsiae: Hermannum Mendelssohn, 1891–1903] 2.2:153).
     Erasmus (2:35) in arguing against the words ironically offers a motive for why some could have omitted them: "Although 'what you should drink' is found added in some manuscripts, it is superfluous since 'drink' is contained in the word 'food,' and a drink of water may not be accessible to everyone. It is certainly not present in Chrysostom, neither in Hilary. Jerome indicates that it had been added in some manuscripts but neglects to elaborate. We have allowed it to be added lest the Latin not correspond with the Greek. At any rate, it is not written in the most ancient exemplars, although in a few of inferior [quality] mention of drink may indeed be found."
     Wettstein (1:333), who virtually echoes Whitby (144), remarks, "But since Erasmus, Mill, and Bengel have retained the reading in verse 31, there seems to be no reason why they should have disturbed the present one, even less so since the words are read in Exod 15:24."
     Matthäi (94) draws attention to two places of harmonization of this passage in Chrysostom and Photius, and warns, "Frequently did variant readings arise from parallelisms of this kind, as I have just shown. For it altogether appears that the greatest portion of their observations were patched together from some Harmony in their own time, but one not very accurate."
     Griesbach's note (Commentarius, 1:74–75) deserves attention: "We think the question whether the words και τι πιητε, which are read in the common text, are genuine or have been imported here from another place is so uncertain that a rationale should be offered to the reader. Those words easily disappeared either by homoeoteleuton or on account of the similar passage in Luke 12:22 from which they are missing. Moreover, although only two manuscripts, 1 and 22, survive for us that omit them; those manuscripts nevertheless are exceptional (cf. what is said at 5:44): for that the words formerly went missing from many Greek manuscripts we gather from the versions and fathers which cite the text without και τι πιητε. And also surely the words were able to creep back in easily from verse 31 or from Luke 12:29; this circumstance, because of the true appearance that some old manuscripts exhibent η τι πιητε instead of και τι πιητε in the present passage, likewise makes it appear that it was taken from those very passages from which some harbor suspicion that the present passage was interpolated. Certainly Chrysostom's commentary does not supply the occasion for the omission of the words, for they are already missing from the beautifully woven citations of Basil and Hilary."
     Bloomfield (GNT, 48–9) comments, "There is no tolerable authority for the latter [i.e., omission of και τι πιητε], and still less for the former change [i.e., alteration of και into η], espec[ially] as internal evidence is against it, and it was evidently an alteration of some critic who thought the disjunctive particle [was required rather] than the conjunctive. . . . However, this use of και where one would rather expect, and strict propriety would require, η, is occasionally found in even the purest Greek Class[ical] writers, espec[ially] Thucyd[ides] . . . . I need scarcely say that this idiom being somewhat rare, internal evidence is always in favour of the και and opposed to the η, espec[ially] in writers like those of the N. Test. and of such Class. writers, even Thucyd. and Aristotle, as did not aim at the greatest exactness in the minutiae of critical accuracy in the use of particles." Bloomfield also suggests some passages where "the same class of MSS. [that alter και into η here] elsewhere introduce και instead of η," such as, e.g., Mark 3:33; 14:17; Acts 10:14; Eph 5:4, which, if "internal evidence is always in favour of the και," would require some other explanation from Bloomfield.
     Soden (1:1009), under his subtitle "Instances where it cannot safely be decided whether the Egyptian archetype or whether only the Jerusalem archetype provided the reading occuring in several Egyptian mss" notes that the η reading and the omission of και τι πιητε "may well be the effect of the Jerusalem text," that is, he thinks that the Egyptian archetype had και τι πιητε but some of its descendents later contracted the variations from cross-contamination with the Jerusalem text.
     Finally, as mentioned above, the omission of και τι πιητε could have occurred due to homoeoteleuton error (ητε...ητε) or harmonization to Luke 12:22, and a repair based on 6:31 could have caused the introduction of η. In addition, other witnesses without the omission could have introduced η purely for stylistic reasons or by assimilation either to 6:31 or the reading of many manuscripts in Luke 12:29.

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