Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Matt 7:25 προσεπεσον

In this insignificant spelling variation some manuscripts of every text type support the spelling προσέπεσαν (ℵ B C E X Z Δ 047 f1.13 892. 1500. 2224), followed by Bover, Greeven, Merk, Soden, Tischendorf (7th, 8th), Vogels (Lachmann has προσέπαισαν), but most manuscripts contain the regular spelling προσέπεσον (including K L M S U V Π Φ Ω Byz f35. 565). Codex W has προσέκρουσαν, Θ Σ προσέρρηξαν, and 1424 προσέκοψαν.
     By rule προσπίπτω is a second aorist verb due to the stem change from -πιπτ- to -πεσ-, and thus should take the second aorist suffixes (i.e., -ον, -ες, -ε, etc.). But due to the second aorist stem of this word ending in sigma, some scribes apparently assimilated the suffix forms to those of the first aorist (i.e., -σα, -σας, -σε, etc.). Additionally, the idiosyncrasies of certain areas caused the first aorist forms to intrude elsewhere in second aorist verbs, just as, e.g., codex B has ἦλθαν instead of ἦλθον earlier in this verse. Perhaps also the -σαν ending in some witnesses came in consequence of the ending of ἔπνευσαν preceding. On the other hand, if Matthew originally wrote the minority reading προσέπεσαν, the temptation to "correct" it with the regular spelling could have influenced some scribes. Nevertheless, due to the conflicting results of internal criteria, the retention of the reading that appears in that grouping of manuscripts that has proven itself more habitually correct elsewhere does not seem altogether unsatisfactory, and thus προσέπεσον may be retained.

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