Codex Ephraemi Rescriptus

From Textus Receptus

Jump to: navigation, search
Codex Ephraemi Rescriptus
Codex Ephraemi Rescriptus

Codex Ephraemi Rescriptus (Paris, National Library Greek 9; Gregory-Aland no. C or 04, von Soden δ 3) is an early 5th century Greek manuscript of the Bible,[] the last in the group of the four great uncial manuscripts of the Greek Bible (see Codex Sinaiticus, Codex Alexandrinus and Codex Vaticanus). It receives its name, as a codex in which the treatises of Ephraem the Syrian, in Greek translations, were written over ("rescriptus") a former text that had been washed off its vellum pages, thus forming a palimpsest.[] The later text was produced in the 12th century. The effacement of the original text was incomplete, for beneath the text of Ephraem are the remains of what was once a complete Bible, containing both the Old Testament and the New. It forms one of the codices for textual criticism on which the Higher criticism is based.



There are only 209 leaves, of which 145 belong to the New Testament. Written in one column per page, 40-46 lines per page, on parchment leaves (33 cm by 27 cm).[] The capitals at the beginning sections stand out in the margin as in codices A and E.

Pericope John 7:53-8:11 is omitted.

The manuscript probably was written in Egypt before the middle of the fifth century. It had been corrected, in Palestine in the sixth century, and again corrected in the ninth century possibly in Constantinople, and was in the twelfth century thoroughly used up.[]



The Greek text of the codex is a representative of the Alexandrian text-type, with the Byzantine readings in the Gospels, but with numerous Alexandrian readings. Aland placed it in Category II.[]


Matthew 8:13

It has additional text (see Luke 7:10): και υποστρεψας ο εκατονταρχος εις τον οικον αυτου εν αυτη τη ωρα ευρεν τον παιδα υγιαινοντα (and when the centurion returned to the house in that hour, he found the slave well) as well as codices (N), Θ, f1, g1, syrh.[]

Matthew 27:49

In Matthew 27:49 codex contains added text: ἄλλος δὲ λαβὼν λόγχην ἒνυξεν αὐτοῦ τὴν πλευράν, καὶ ἐξῆλθεν ὖδορ καὶ αἳμα (the other took a spear and pierced His side, and immediately came out water and blood). This reading was derived from John 19:34 and occurs in other manuscripts of the Alexandrian text-type (א, B, L, Γ, 1010, 1293, pc, vgmss).[]
Textual variants

Acts 15:23

It has unique reading γραψαντης δια χειρος αυτων επιστολην περιεχουσαν ταδε, it is supported by any other Greek manuscripts, it is supported only by versions: ar, c, gig, w, geo
γραψαντης επιστολην δια χειρος αυτων περιεχουσαν ταδε — D, d
It has one of the longest readings γραψαντης επιστολην δια χειρος αυτων εχουσαν τον τυπον τουτον. The other manuscripts read:
γραψαντης δια χειρος αυτων — Image:C3945eee4633c095c5059f9a67aca5f7.png45, Image:C3945eee4633c095c5059f9a67aca5f7.png74, א*, A, B, copbo
γραψαντης δια χειρος αυτων ταδε — אc, E, (33), Byz, syrh
γραψαντης δια χειρος αυτων επιστολην και πεμψαντες περιεχουσαν ταδε — 614.[]

Acts 20:28

it reads του κυριου (of the Lord) together with the manuscripts Papyrus 74 D E Ψ 33 36 453 945 1739 1891, but the corrector added και του Θεου (and God) as have P 049 326 1241 2492 and the Byzantine manuscripts.[][]
Facsimile with text of 1 Tim 3:15-16
Facsimile with text of 1 Tim 3:15-16

1 Timothy 3:16

although obscure, some maintain that it reads ὅς ἐφανερώθη (He was manifested), and speculate that a second corrector (C2) changed it into θεός ἐφανερώθη (God was manifested);[][]

James 1:12

It has singular reading κυριος (Lord); the Byzantine manuscripts have ο κυριος (the Lord), some manuscripts have ο θεος (God) (2816, 33vid, 323, 945, 1739, vg, syrp), another omit this word (א, A, B, Ψ, 81, ff, co).[]

James 1:22

it reads λογου (of the word) as majority of manuscripts, but the second corrector (C2) corrected into νομου (of the law), as have manuscripts: 88, 621, 1067, 1852.[]

Revelation 13:18

"the number of the beast" it reads hexakosiai deka hex (lit. six hundred sixteen).[]


Tischendorf in 1841
Tischendorf in 1841

After the fall of Constantinople in 1453, the Codex was brought to Florence by an émigré scholar.[] Catherine de' Medici brought it to France as part of her dowry, and from the Bourbon royal library it came to rest in the Bibliothèque nationale de France, Paris. In 1834-1835 was used Potassium ferricyanide to bring out faded or eradicated ink.

The first complete collation of the New Testament was made by Johann Jakob Wettstein (1716). Constantin von Tischendorf made his reputation an international one when he published the Greek New Testament text in 1843 and the Old Testament in 1845. The torn condition of many folios, the ghostly traces of the text overlaid by the later one made the decipherment an extremely difficult task. Even with modern aids like ultra-violet photography, not all the text is securely legible.

According to Edward Miller (1886) codices "B and probably א were procured under the dark gloom of Asian ascendency; A and C in the light of the most intellectual period of the early Church".[]

The codex (illustration, above right) measures 12 1/4 in/31.4-32.5 cm by 9 in/25.6-26.4 cm, with a single column to a page. Originally the whole Bible seems to have been contained in it.

See also



  • 1. Kurt Aland, and Barbara Aland, The Text of the New Testament: An Introduction to the Critical Editions and to the Theory and Practice of Modern Textual Criticism, transl. Erroll F. Rhodes, William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1995, p. 109.
  • 2. Scrivener, Frederick Henry Ambrose (1894). A Plain Introduction to the Criticism of the New Testament. 1. London. p. 132.
  • 3. C. R. Gregory, "Canon and Text of the New Testament" (1907), p. 348.
  • 4. NA26, p. 18
  • 5. Bruce M. Metzger (2001). "A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament", Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft, Stuttgart: United Bible Societies, p. 59; NA26, p. 84; UBS3, p. 113.
  • 6. NA26, p. 366.
  • 7. NA26, p. 384.
  • 8. Codex Ephraemi Rescriptus
  • 9. Edward Miller, A Guide to the Textual Criticism of the New Testament, Dean Burgon Society Press, p. 27.


  • Hatch, William Henry, The Principal Uncial Manuscripts Of The New Testament, The University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1939.
  • Frederic G. Kenyon, Our Bible and the Ancient Manuscripts (4th ed.), London 1939.
  • Bruce M. Metzger, Manuscripts of the Greek Bible: An Introduction to Palaeography, Oxford University Press, Oxford 1981.
  • Ph. Comfort, Encountering the Manuscripts: An Introduction to New Testament Paleography and Textual Criticism, Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2005.

External links

Personal tools