Medieval Handwriting: The App

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I don’t expect that many of you need to learn to distinguish among and transcribe the many kinds of medieval hands found in old manuscripts, but Medieval Handwriting is still a must for medieval buffs. The app, available for Android and iOS, includes 26 religious manuscript pages. Each has an introduction, specimen letter forms, and [Read More...]

“Jesus’s Wife” Scholar Admits: Where There Are Flames, There May Be Fire

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Partially conceding the bloody obvious, Harvard professor Karen L. King said the following to the New York Times: This is substantive, it’s worth taking seriously, and it may point in the direction of forgery. This is one option that should receive serious consideration, but I don’t think it’s a done deal. The “this” she’s talking [Read More...]

“Jesus’s Wife”: Still Fake

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More than 18 months after the mainstream media splashed front pages with credulous headlines about a “new” “gospel” “proving” “Jesus” had a “wife” (and I’ve used up my allotment of scare quotes just writing that much), we finally have the results of testing on the age of the papyrus, and the results are … meaningless, [Read More...]

Is The Fate of Ark of the Covenant Revealed in Hebrew Text?

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Unless “somewhere in the middle east” or “in the hands of angels” is your idea of a location, then … no, but that didn’t stop LiveScience from attaching a click-bait headline to their story on the new translation of the pseudepigraphal “Treatise of the Vessels.” The translation is important, however, since it marks the first [Read More...]

Sirach: An Online Manuscript Collection

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The Book of Sirach (Latin: Ecclesiasticus) is a beautiful wisdom work that blends Greek and Hebrew thought. It’s the last of the Old Testament books composed, and was probably written only two centuries before the first of the New Testament texts, providing an important glimpse into the development of faith and philosophy between the OT [Read More...]

Ancient Fragment of Work By Justin Martyr is 1,000 Years Older Than Any Other Version

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I’ve written about the Oxyrhynchus dump before, and this cache of ancient manuscripts and fragments just keeps giving up the goods. The latest treasure to be identified is a manuscript of a work by Justin Martyr:  In the latest issue of the Oxyrhynchus Papyri series (LXXVIII, Egyptian Exploration Society, 2012), W. B. Henry offers an [Read More...]

Mysterious Medieval Manuscript is Probably Not a Hoax

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The Voynich Manuscript has baffled everyone since it was first acquired (or, some say, forged) by collector Wilfrid Voynich in 1912. Probably dating to the 15th century and originating in Northern Italy, the manuscript consists of 240 pages of vellum covered in a mysterious, indecipherable script and illustrations of non-existent plants, astronomical diagrams, tiny naked [Read More...]

Frank Moore Cross, Requiescat in Pace

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It’s impossible to have even a cursory knowledge of the Dead Sea Scrolls without encountering Frank Moore Cross, who died last Wednesday at age 91 from complications from pneumonia. His work on Semitic languages and Canaanite myth informs a great deal of what we know about the development of Hebrew writing. Cross retired from a long and distinguished [Read More...]


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