Jesus’ Wife: Internet Plagiarist?

Jesus’ Wife: Internet Plagiarist? October 11, 2012

The “Gospel of Jesus’ Wife” has not been getting as much attention in the media or on blogs the past few days. Today it seems likely that that will change. As Mark Goodacre pointed out on his blog, Andrew Bernhard has posted an article with a tentative suggestion about the composition of the “Gospel of Jesus’ Wife” in which he detects evidence that a modern forger used Mike Grondin’s online interlinear – namely the reproduction of a typo from that online source.

The Gospels allegedly according to Jesus’ disciples copied from one another. Now the Gospel of his wife may have been caught copying from the internet! What is ancient Christianity coming to? 🙂

Mark Goodacre also had a post yesterday in which he linked to an article by Mary-Evelyn Farrior, about the fragment and scholars’ perspectives on it, including that of Egyptologist Leo Depuydt, who has the following to say, among other things:

An ancient native speaker of Coptic who can select and combine words and phrases from the Gospel of Thomas with any understanding could not possibly have produced said grammatical blunders… I don’t need any papyrus or ink tests. I already know it is a fake.

Elsewhere, Victoria Larson explains why Jesus’ wife matters to her.

See also Paul Rudnick’s somewhat humorous take on the matter in The New Yorker (HT Hemant Mehta).

Also on the subject of a Coptic fragment, Alin Suciu blogged about the discovery of another fragment of Codex Tchacos.

UPDATE: John Byron shares a video with Gabriel Barkay talking about archaeological forgeries. Tony Campolo and Nancy Wilson both commented (separately) on the significance of a married Jesus. James Tabor discusses the possible evidence for forgery and comments on why he is not yet persuaded.


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  • phil_style

    web-page gets beamed back to early Coptic period?clearly the good doctor was involved.

    • goodacre

      Ah, nice to know that there is a Doctor Who angle.

  • Three scholars – Mark Goodacre, Andrew Bernhard and Michael Grondin – are involved in the story of the discovery of this “Internet plagiarism” ; two of them are in good faith but wrong. The true timeline of “the bizarre sequence of events that led to the realization that the ⲙ had accidentally been omitted in the pdf version of Grondin’s Interlinear” is here :