The Presence (and Absence) of Nomina Sacra in To Theodore

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Secret Alias
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The Presence (and Absence) of Nomina Sacra in To Theodore

Post by Secret Alias » Mon Dec 07, 2020 10:12 pm

Κυρίου. The abbreviation of the word normally consists of the letters κυ and not κου. see v. 16, 46. Also the scribe would normally abbreviate the words θεού as θ(εο)ῦ in v. 41, Ἰησοῦν, Ἰησοῦς as Ἰ(ησοῦ)ν, Ἰ(ησοῦ)ς v. 52 and 54 and Δαβὶδ as Δα(βί)δ v. 52.
Is the strange use of nomina sacra an argument for authenticity or forgery? Hard to believe an erudite scholar like Smith attempting to pass a work he wrote as authentic would have chosen to only render κύριος as a nomen sacrum and an irregular one at that. It strains credibility.

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Re: The Presence (and Absence) of Nomina Sacra in To Theodore

Post by mlinssen » Tue Dec 08, 2020 12:38 am

Odd. I was under the impression I had reacted

There are certain patterns to the use of NS, for example Thomas and Philip are the rare exceptions of texts that have both IS as well as IHS

The whole application of the so-called NS was a dynamic process with customs and habits being created in the fly, then regulated, depending on source and type of text

The question is: what does the use of NS in this text tell us in terms of text type and date?

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Re: The Presence (and Absence) of Nomina Sacra in To Theodore

Post by Secret Alias » Tue Dec 08, 2020 5:41 am

I have to admit, I read your comments and was left baffled. My point AGAIN was as follows.

Most forgeries follow a pattern - quite literally. Presumably in the case of the 'Clement' part of the letter - i.e. where the author is introducing the fragment - the author took a list of words or expressions or themes that appear in the writings of Clement and imitated them the best he could. Given that the material passes as 'typically Clementine' according to noted experts on Clement of Alexandria, the forgery succeeded. Similarly with respect to the 'Mark' portion of the letter, a number of people have come along and said 'it is obvious the person created a pastiche gospel' - i.e. that he took lines from the various gospels and especially Mark and strung them together to get a new meaning (as described in Irenaeus AH 1.8 interestingly enough) the author again succeeded at his endeavor.

So (a) imitating Clement and (b) imitating Mark or the gospels.

How odd though that in the process of imitating the Greek of the Patristic and evangelical source material that the author DID NOT imitate the use of nomina sacra in the source material. In other words, I'd have expected - in attempting to imitate a 'typical' Patristic text - that Jesus would appear as nomen sacrum and in all texts of Clement of Alexandria that I have seen that form would be Ἰς or Ἰ(ησοῦ)ς. So too with respect to 'typical' gospel material - i.e. Jesus would appear written in 'short form.'

No. That didn't happen.

So now we have to imagine that Morton Smith spend days imitating Clement and Mark but not the manuscripts Clement and Mark are preserved. Why make up a completely original nomen sacrum for kurios? Why if you are - again - creating the appearance of a completely typical Patristic text citing a gospel do you go for completely original or atypical examples of nomina sacra? Is that clear enough now?

Again, for me at least IT SEEMS ODD that if Morton Smith was striving for typicality, normalcy, normality - in other words to have his forgery FLY UNDER THE RADAR - that he would chose to have the author do something atypical, abnormal in other words unusual with respect to his treatment of the nomina sacra. The idea that Morton Smith constructs is that a seventeenth or eighteenth century scribe at Mar Saba picked up a scrap from an older manuscript and copied it out (as was fairly typical). So the original MS this copy was based on would have had nomina sacra or at least standard nomina sacra/nomen sacrum. The scribe then came across what must have been Ἰς/Ἰν and wrote out Ἰησοῦς/Ἰησοῦν. Ok perhaps he added this idea of a 'choice' perhaps for clarity made in the process of forging but seeing κυ for κυρίου in the MS and copying down κου? Why add that strangeness to his attempt to pass an original work as a typical Patristic work? What possible motivation would he have had to do that? It makes no sense. Surely someone striving for unoriginality and proximity to known patterns of scribal copying would have avoided originality here.

I can find no examples of κου as a nomen sacrum. Perhaps they exist. I just can't find them.

At the very least it seems odd to have 'Lord' preserved as a rare or unknown nomen sacrum and all the other names typically rendered as nomina sacra (especially 'Jesus') rendered in full form. Why would a modern expert on Patristic manuscripts, one whom Tselikas acknowledges combed the various monasteries with expertise, have chosen originality in his composition of his forgery for no apparent benefit to his nefarious scheme(s)?

In short: how is the decision to use κου alongside Ἰησοῦς/Ἰησοῦν best explained as a forgery? The scribe was clearly NOT artificially striving for typicality. His choices clearly have nothing to do with attempting to 'fool' or 'pull the wool over the eyes' of scholars. That much is clear.
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Re: The Presence (and Absence) of Nomina Sacra in To Theodore

Post by mlinssen » Tue Dec 08, 2020 5:59 am

LOL. Having a bad hair day, I suppose

The general assumption behind the so-called nomina sacra (NS) is that they're at least also abbreviations. Yet while we're eternally unsure about chickens and eggs, we know that abbreviations come after the full word

So if you want to suggest that your text is very early, or when it indeed actually is very early, not having abbreviations might strengthen that case / situation

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Re: The Presence (and Absence) of Nomina Sacra in To Theodore

Post by Secret Alias » Tue Dec 08, 2020 6:05 am

Ok. If I was a social worker working with people with cognitive difficulties I might be better trained to handle your obtuseness. Again, I will try one last time. I am addressing the question of the motivation of the scribe and specifically is the decision to use κου as a nomen sacrum alongside Ἰησοῦς/Ἰησοῦν written out in full:

1. best explained as unfamiliarity/ignorance or better yet INDIFFERENCE with respect to Patristic norms on the part of the scribe
2. in keeping with someone trying to 'pull the wool over the eyes' of fellow scholars in 1958
3. something else

Is that clear enough for you? I will not keep banging on a drum hoping you 'get' the beat. I am acting the part of a detective or an investigator getting to the heart of the question of motive. WHY DO THAT? WHY WERE THESE DECISIONS MADE and 'locked into' the MS as we have it now preserved?

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Re: The Presence (and Absence) of Nomina Sacra in To Theodore

Post by Secret Alias » Tue Dec 08, 2020 6:11 am

It's like Columbo or your favorite TV detective coming across a corpse that exhibited signs of a typical suicide but the means of suicide was something ATYPICAL- like digesting radioactive plutonium. People don't normally decide to kill themselves by eating highly toxic radioactive material. As a detective you have to decide is this suicide or something else. What should we make of the decision to use κου as a nomen sacrum alongside Ἰησοῦς/Ἰησοῦν written out in full? Is it conceivable that an expert on Patristic texts from monasteries like Mar Saba would have/could have labored to make a forgery containing this sort of irregularity or atypicality as part of his presumed effort to 'fool' his contemporaries? How else can it be explained?

Why not if it is a modern forgery just make it seem the scribe was consistent in his copying? Why not have everything written out in full (like the seventeenth or eighteenth century scribe was striving for clarity for himself or a contemporary audience)? Or maintain the expected use or forms of nomina sacra? Why this irregularity? Why would Smith have made THESE DECISIONS as part of a nefarious plot to fool his contemporaries?

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Re: The Presence (and Absence) of Nomina Sacra in To Theodore

Post by Secret Alias » Tue Dec 08, 2020 6:19 am

Again κου for Κυρίου is odd.
Having a strange nomen sacrum for Κυρίου but not for Ἰησοῦς/Ἰησοῦν is really weird.
Doesn't seem consistent with someone striving to develop a fake text to pull the wool over the eyes of contemporaries by smuggling it into a monastery.

List of known early nomina sacra:

𝔓1 (P. Oxy. 2) ~250 ΙΥ ΙΣ ΧΥ ΥΥ ΚΥ ΠΝΣ
𝔓4 (Suppl. Gr. 1120) 150–225 ΘΣ ΘΥ ΚΥ ΚΣ ΠΝΙ ΠΝΟΣ ΠΝΑ ΧΣ ΙΥ ΙΣ
𝔓5 (P. Oxy. 208 + 1781) ~250 ΙΗΝ ΙΗΣ ΠΡ ΠΡΑ ΠΡΣ ΘΥ
𝔓9 (P. Oxy. 402) ~250 ΘΣ ΧΡΣ
𝔓12 (P. Amherst. 3b) ~285 ΘΣ
𝔓13 (P. Oxy. 657 + PSI 1292) 225–250 ΘΣ ΘΝ ΘΥ ΘΩ ΙΣ ΙΝ ΙΥ ΚΣ ΚΥ
𝔓15 (P. Oxy. 1008) 200–300 ΚΩ ΚΥ ΧΥ ΑΝΩΝ ΑΝΩ ΠΝΑ ΘΝ ΚΜΟΥ
𝔓16 (P. Oxy. 1009) 250–300 ΘΥ ΙΥ ΧΩ
𝔓17 (P. Oxy. 1078) ~300 ΘΩ ΠΝΣ
𝔓18 (P. Oxy. 1079)250–300 ΙΗ ΧΡ ΘΩ
𝔓20 (P. Oxy. 1171) 200–250 ΠΝΣ ΚΝ ΘΥ
𝔓22 (P. Oxy. 1228) 200–250 ΠΣ ΠΝΑ ΠΡΣ ΠΡΑ ΙΗΣ ΑΝΟΣ
𝔓24 (P. Oxy. 1230)~300 ΠΝΑ ΘΥ
𝔓27 (P. Oxy. 1395) 200–250 ΘΥ ΚΩ
𝔓28 (P. Oxy. 1596) 255–300 ΙΣ ΙΝ
𝔓29 (P. Oxy. 1597) 200–250 ΘΣ ΘΝ
𝔓30 (P. Oxy. 1598) 200–250 ΚΥ ΚΝ ΘΩ ΙΗΥ
𝔓32 (P. Rylands 5) 150–200 ΘΥ
𝔓35 (PSI 1) ~300 ΚΣ ΚΥ
𝔓37 (P. Mich. Inv. 1570) ~260
ΚΕ ΙΗΣ ΠΝΑ ΙΗΣΥ
𝔓38 (P. Mich. Inv. 1571)
~225
ΧΡΝ ΠΝΑ ΚΥ ΙΗΝ ΙΗΥ ΠΝΤΑ
𝔓39 (P. Oxy. 1780)
200–300
ΠΗΡ ΠΡΑ ΙΗΣ
𝔓40 (P. Heidelberg G. 645)
200–300
ΘΣ ΘΥ ΘΝ ΙΥ ΧΩ ΧΥ
𝔓45 (P. Chester Beatty I)
~250
ΚΕ ΚΣ ΚΝ ΚΥ ΣΡΝΑΙ ΙΗ ΙΥ ΙΗΣ ΠΡ ΠΡΣ ΠΡΑ ΠΡΙ ΘΥ
ΘΝ ΘΩ ΘΣ ΠΝΙ ΠΝΣ ΠΝΑ ΥΝ ΥΕ ΥΣ ΥΩ ΣΡΝ ΧΥ
𝔓46 (P. Chester Beatty II
+ P. Mich. Inv. 6238)
175–225
ΚΕ ΚΝ ΚΥ ΚΩ ΚΣ ΧΡΩ ΧΡΥ ΧΡΝ ΧΝ ΧΣ ΧΩ ΧΥ ΧΡΣ ΙΗΥ ΙΗΝ ΙΗΣ ΘΩ ΘΥ ΘΝ ΘΣ
ΠΝΑ ΠΝΙ ΠΝΣ ΥΙΥ ΥΙΝ ΥΙΣ ΥΝ ΣΤΡΕΣ ΣΤΡΝ ΣΤΡΩ ΣΤΡΟΣ ΣΤΡΟΥ ΕΣΤΡΟΝ ΕΣΤΡΑΙ

ΕΣΤΑΝ ΣΤΟΥ ΑΙΜΑ ΑΝΟΥ ΑΝΟΝ ΑΝΟΣ ΑΝΩΝ ΑΝΟΙΣ ΠΡΙ ΠΗΡ ΠΡΑ ΠΡΣ ΙΥ

𝔓47 (P. Chester Beatty III)
200–300
ΘΥ ΘΣ ΘΝ ΘΩ ΑΘΝ ΚΣ ΚΕ ΚΥ ΕΣΤΡΩ ΠΝΑ ΧΥ ΠΡΣ
𝔓48 (PSI 1165)
200–300
ΥΣ
𝔓49 (P. Yale 415 + 531)
200–300
ΚΩ ΘΥ ΘΣ ΙΥ ΠΝ ΧΣ ΧΥ ΧΩ
𝔓50 (P. Yal 1543)
~300
ΙΛΗΜ ΠΝΑ ΑΝΟΣ ΘΣ ΘΥ
𝔓53 (P. Mich. inv. 6652)
~250
ΠΡΣ ΙΗΣ ΠΕΡ ΚΝ
𝔓64 (Gr. 17)
~150
ΙΣ
𝔓65 (PSI XIV 1373)
~250
ΧΥ ΘΣ
𝔓66 (P. Bodmer II +
Inv. Nr. 4274/4298)
150–200
ΚΣ ΚΥ ΚΕ ΘΣ ΘΝ ΘΥ ΘΩ ΙΣ ΙΝ ΙΥ ΧΣ ΧΝ ΧΥ ΥΣ ΥΝ ΥΩ ΠΝΑ ΠΝΙ ΠΝΣ
ΠΗΡ ΠΡΑ ΠΡΣ ΠΡΙ ΠΕΡ ΠΡΕΣ ΑΝΟΣ ΑΝΟΝ ΑΝΟΥ ΑΝΩΝ ΑΝΩ ΑΝΟΙΣ ΑΝΟΥΣ ΣΡΩ ΣΡΟΝ ΣΡΟΥ ΣΡΘΗ ΣΡΑΤΕ ΣΡΩΣΩ ΕΣΡΑΝ ΕΣΡΘΗ

𝔓69 (P. Oxy. 2383)
~200
ΙΗΝ
𝔓70 (P. Oxy. 2384 +
PSI Inv. CNR 419, 420)
250–300
ΥΝ ΙΣ ΠΗΡ
𝔓72 (P. Bodmer VII and VIII)
200–300
ΙΥ ΙΗΥ ΙΗΝ ΧΡΥ ΧΡΝ ΧΡΣ ΧΡΩ ΘΥ ΘΣ ΘΝ ΘΩ ΠΡΣ ΠΑΡ ΠΤΡΑ ΠΡΙ ΠΝΣ
ΠΝΑ ΠΝΑΙ ΠΝΙ ΠΝΤΙ ΚΥ ΚΣ ΚΝ ΚΩ ΑΝΟΙ

𝔓75 (P. Bodmer XIV and XV)
175–225
ΙΣ ΙΗΣ ΙΥ ΙΗΥ ΙΝ ΙΗΝ ΘΣ ΘΝ ΘΥ ΘΩ ΚΣ ΚΝ ΚΥ ΚΩ ΚΕ ΧΣ ΧΝ ΧΥ
ΠΝΑ ΠΝΣ ΠΝΙ ΠΝΟΣ ΠΝΤΑ ΠΝΑΣΙ ΠΝΑΤΩΝ ΠΡΣ ΠΗΡ ΠΡΑ ΠΡΙ ΠΡΟΣ ΠΡ

ΥΣ ΥΝ ΥΥ ΙΗΛ ΙΛΗΜ ΣΡΟΝ ΣΤΡΟΝ ΣΡΩΘΗΝΑΙ

ΑΝΟΣ ΑΝΟΝ ΑΝΟΥ ΑΝΟΙ ΑΝΩΝ ΑΝΩ ΑΝΟΥΣ ΑΝΟΙΣ ΑΝΕ

𝔓78 (P. Oxy 2684)
250–300
ΚΝ ΙΗΝ ΙΗΝ ΧΡΝ
𝔓90 (P. Oxy 3523)
150–200
ΙΗΣ
𝔓91 (P. Mil. Vogl. Inv. 1224 + P. Macquarie Inv. 360)
~250
ΘΥ ΘΣ ΠΡΣ ΧΡΝ ΙΗΝ
𝔓92 (P. Narmuthis 69.39a + 69.229a)
~300
ΧΡΩ ΚΥ ΘΥ
𝔓100 (P. Oxy 4449)
~300
ΚΥ ΚΣ
𝔓101 (P. Oxy 4401)
200–300
ΥΣ ΠΝΑ ΠΝΙ
𝔓106 (P. Oxy 4445)
200–250
ΠΝΑ ΠΝΙ ΧΡΣ ΙΗΝ ΙΗΣ
𝔓108 (P. Oxy 4447)
175–225
ΙΗΣ ΙΗΝ
𝔓110 (P. Oxy. 4494)
~300
ΚΣ
𝔓111 (P. Oxy 4495)
200–250
ΙΗΥ
𝔓113 (P. Oxy. 4497)
200–250
ΠΝΙ
𝔓114 (P. Oxy. 4498)
200–250
ΘΣ
𝔓115 (P. Oxy. 4499)
225–275
ΙΗΛ ΑΥΤΟΥ ΠΡΣ ΘΩ ΘΥ ΑΝΩΝ ΠΝΑ ΟΥΝΟΥ ΟΥΝΟΝ ΚΥ ΘΝ ΑΝΟΥ ΟΥΝΩ
𝔓121 (P. Oxy. 4805)
~250
ΙΣ ΜΗΙ
0162 (P. Oxy 847)
~300
ΙΗΣ ΙΣ ΠΡΣ
0171 (PSI 2.124)
~300
ΚΣ ΙΗΣ
0189 (P. Berlin 11765)
~200
ΑΝΟΣ ΠΝΑ ΚΥ ΚΩ ΙΛΗΜ ΘΩ ΙΣΗΛ
0220 (MS 113)
~300
ΚΝ ΙΥ ΙΝ ΧΥ ΘΥ

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Re: The Presence (and Absence) of Nomina Sacra in To Theodore

Post by Secret Alias » Tue Dec 08, 2020 6:33 am

Actually. I think I might have made a breakthrough. It is a thoroughly MODERN Greek shortform - the equivalent of the English Mr. for 'Mister' or 'Master':
γενική ενικού: κου (κυρίου)
παλαιά αιτιατική ενικού: κον (κύριον, όπως στην αναγραφή σε επιστολές: προς τον κύριο) https://el.wiktionary.org/wiki/%CE%BA%CE%BF%CF%82
Last edited by Secret Alias on Tue Dec 08, 2020 6:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The Presence (and Absence) of Nomina Sacra in To Theodore

Post by mlinssen » Tue Dec 08, 2020 6:35 am

(I just now see your two next posts but will press Submit on this one nonetheless - we are working in the same direction now, it would seem)

You would make an absolutely lousy social worker :silenced:

Whodunit now, the scribe, secret Mark, Clement, Morton, or still somebody else?
in the process of imitating the Greek of the Patristic and evangelical source material that the author DID NOT imitate the use of nomina sacra in the source material.
I'm wholly unfamiliar with Clement, fortunately. But this is supposed to be a special text by Mark itself, so I'm unsure whether you should apply "general Clementine patterns" - I would think that Clement would very faithfully represent the exact text, so WYSIWYG, and out of respect for this so very secret text Clement would suppress his usual urges, something that Guillaumont couldn't, by the way (but I digress)

From http://waltzmn.brainout.net/NominaSacra.html#Fn3

The substantial early papyri use the abbreviations at least intermittently.
According to Scrivener, the Old Uncials use the following abbreviations: [back]

Vaticanus (B) abbreviates θεος κυριος Ιησους Χριστος πνευμα (generally only these, although the Old Testament sometimes abbreviates ανθρωπρος as well as Ισραηλ Ιερουσαλημ)
Bezae (D) abbreviates only θεος κυριος Ιησους Χριστος (D F G of Paul also follow this usage, but rather inconsistently)
Z "seldom abridges."
Σ abbreviates Πατηρ as ΠΤΗΡ
Codex 700 abbreviates εθνων as εθν.
The Bodleian Genesis has an odd abbreviation (ΠΑΡΝΟΣwith a θ above the line) for παρθενος

So, my theory is: the less nomina sacra, the earlier the text. And this text is so super early that it actually has almost none - whether it is real or a forgery

Last try though

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Re: The Presence (and Absence) of Nomina Sacra in To Theodore

Post by Secret Alias » Tue Dec 08, 2020 6:39 am

Your arguments aren't even arguments. They are exhibitions of someone struggling with the concepts in public. I think I've found the answer. It is a clear exhibition that the author was a typical RECENT Greek (how recent this shortform equivalent of our English Mr. abbreviation for 'mister' or 'master'). It is not ancient.

https://el.wiktionary.org/wiki/%CE%BA%CE%BF%CF%82

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