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Let us now make a few observations:
1. This manuscript, as is allowed by all, is of great value, and high antiquity; though there is some difference among learned men, in their computations of its age. Grabe thinks it might be written before the end of the fourth century; others are of opinion, that it was not written till near the end of the fifth century.
2: This manuscript has some relation to the church of Alexandria; for it was brought from that city by Cyril Lucaris, patriarch of Alexandria, when he removed to the patriarchate of Constantinople: and when he made a present of it to Sir Thomas Roë, the British ambassador at Constantinople, about the year 1628, to be brought over hither as a present to the king, he affixed to it a short memorandum to this purpose: This book of the scripture of the New and • Old Testament, as we have received by tradition, was written by Thecla, a noble Egyptian woman, about thirteen hundred years ago, not long after the council of Nice.' Another argument of its being written at Alexandria, is, that to the book of Psalms is prefixed the epistle of Athanasius to Marcellinus, concerning the Psalter; and I think it may be reckoned an argument of the same thing, that this manuscript has in it the book of the Revelation, which we can perceive to have been received by the church of Alexandria, in the fourth, fifth, and sixth, and following centuries: whilst it was rejected by the Syrians, and little regarded by many other Christians in the East: to which might be added the neatness of the writing, in which the Alexandrians are supposed to have excelled. It seems to me, therefore, somewhat strange, that Dr. Grabe should have taken a great deal of pains to prove, that this manuscript was written by Thecla, governess of a convent of women at Seleucia, in Cappadocia, or thereabout.
I shall say nothing more about the manuscript itself. I now proceed to observe, upon the just transcribed catalogue of books of scripture contained in it.
3. It is a full catalogue of canonical books: for, in the Old Testament, are expressly mentioned Ruth and Esther; in the New, fourteen epistles of St. Paul, seven catholic epistles, and St. John's Revelation; as well as others, which were universally received.
4. Concerning the order of the books, about which a great deal may be seen in Grabe, I observe these few particulars only. The twelve lesser prophets are here reckoned in a different order from that now common with us, agreeably to the Hebrews. i And from Jerom we learn that, in his time, these prophets were placed differently in the Hebrew bibles, and the Version of the Seventy: the order of this manuscript is exactly the same which, he says, was then observed in the editions of the Septuagint Version. The order of St. Paul's epistles, as we learn from Grabe, is the same as ours; except that the epistle to the Hebrews is placed next after the two epistles to the Thessalonians. The order of the catholic epistles is the same with that now in use;
a Haud diu igitur ante annum 396 exaratus videtur codex Alexandrinus, aut saltem paulo post, cum facta epistolarum Paulinarum divisio in xezλata nondum in publicum prodiisset, aut satis innotuisset. Cum igitur et codicis nostri et Thecla ætas in eamdem exeuntis seculi iv. periodum incidant, traditio ante dicta vero videtur simillima. Grabe, ib. sect. 5.
Accedo igitur sententiæ Casimiri Oudini, qui ex canonibus diurnis nocturnisque in hoc codice annotatis judicavit, codicem hunc in usum monasterii Acœmitarum, adeoque a monacho Acœmitâ exaratum fuisse. J. J. Wetsten. Proleg. ad N. T. Gr. p. 10. Si codex noster ab Acœmitâ scriptus est, uti diximus, non potest seculo quinto esse vetustior. Acœmitarum enim institutum auctorem habuit Marcellum Apamiensem, vel potius Alexandrum ejus successorem, qui floruit A. C. 420, teste du Cange in glossario.... Existimo igitur, tempus, quo codex iste scriptus est, incidere in finem seculi quinti, quæ etiam Millii est sententia. Prol. 1338. Id. ib. 11.
Prop. xiv. Nonnulla in se continet codex Alexandrinus, quæ ad ecclesiam Alexandrinam respiciunt. Veritas hujus assertionis probatur, 1. ex epistolâ Athanasii. 2. ex Hypothesibus Eusebii. 3. ex Canonibus Psalmorum. 4. ex Canticis annexis 5. ex tertio Maccabæorum libro. 6. ex Psalmis Salomonis. 7. ex traditione ecclesiæ Alexandriæ, Prolegom. ad Tom. 2. Septuag. ex edit. Grabe, sect. 47. &c. ..additâ schedâ, quâ brevem dicti codicis notitiam propriâ manu tradidit sequentibus verbis: Liber iste Scripturæ
Vid. Prolegom. in Tom. i. sect. 4.
Prolegom. ad Tom. i. sect. 3.
i Non idem ordo est duodecim prophetarum apud Septuaginta Interpretes, qui in Hebraïcâ veritate retinetur. Illi enim ponunt secundum Amos, tertium Michæam, quartum Joël, quintum Abdiam, sextum Jonam, septimum Naüm, octavum Abakuk, nonum Sophoniam, decimum Aggæum, undecimum Zachariam, duodecimum Malachiam. Hebræi autem post Osee, qui apud utrosque primus est, secundum legunt Joël, tertium Amos, quartum Abdiam, quintum Jonam, sextum Michæam, septimum Naum, octavum Abakuk, nonum Sophoniam, decimum Aggæum, undecimum Zacha riam; duodecimum, qui et ultimus est, Malachiam. Pr. Comment. in Joel. T. iii. P. 1335.
the epistle of James, the two epistles of Peter, the three epistles of John, and the epistle of Jude. Moreover, it might be agreeable to some of my readers to compare this catalogue with that of the Festal epistle of Athanasius, formerly transcribed by us at length: the two catalogues very much agree, from the beginning to the books of the Chronicles, inclusive; in both, the lesser prophets are placed before the four other; and in the Festal epistle, as well as here, the catholic epistles follow next after the Acts of the apostles, and precede St. Paul's epistles; and St. Paul's epistles are there in the same order as here; finally, both have the Revelation. It may be also worth observing, that St. Paul's epistles have likewise the same order (that is, the epistle to the Hebrews is placed before those to Timothy, Titus, and Philemon) in Euthalius, an Egyptian bishop, and well acquainted with Athanasius, who was bishop of Alexandria, about 490. The same order of Paul's epistles, is in Cosmas of Alexandria; to be alleged hereafter.
5. This manuscript contains a great number of books, which are not now reckoned canonical. As I have often spoken of this matter in several places, a great deal needs not to be said here. But probably all the books here mentioned, and written out in these volumes, were not reckoned, to be of equal authority: it may be supposed, that they were all read sometimes in the assemblies of Christians, in the city or country, where this truly noble manuscript was written. Nevertheless, it would be unreasonable to think, that they were esteemed of authority, and decisive in any doctrines of religion; that would be contrary to the sentiments of ancient Christian writers, in general; and particularly of Athanasius, in his Festal epistle, and of the Synopsis, sometimes ascribed to him, and probably written by an Alexandrian.
II. In the next place I shall put down the Stichometry of NICEPHORUS, patriarch of Constantinople, who flourished in the beginning of the ninth century. Some have disputed the genuineness of this catalogue, Pearson in particular; who supposeth it the work of an unknown person though it be found subjoined to the Chronography of Nicephorus.: but generally it is allowed. Cave says, if it is not Nicephorus's, it must have been composed by some other Greek, about the same time; because it was translated into Latin by Anastasius Bibliothecarius, in Italy, who flourished about 870. Fabricius thinks it to be Nicephorus's, or a more ancient writer's: nor do I perceive Mill to hesitate about its genuineness.
A Stichometry is, a catalogue of books of sacred scripture; to which is added the number of the verses which each book contains. This Stichometry contains a catalogue of the books of the Old and New Testament: I propose to transcribe the whole, omitting only the numbers of verses, which are oftentimes faulty, and are not material at present. There are many editions of this Stichometry, beside that at the end of the Chronography of its supposed author. I shall follow the edition of Montfaucon, which' he has lately published, as more exact than most others; observing, perhaps, in some places, the different readings of some other editions.
The divine scriptures, which are received by the church, and reckoned canonical, and their Stichometry, are thus: Genesis; Exodus; Leviticus; Numbers; Deuteronomy; Joshua; Judges, and Ruth; the first and second book of the Kingdoms; the third and fourth book of ⚫ the Kingdoms;, the first and second of the Remains; Ezra, first and second; the" book of Psalms; the Proverbs of Solomon; Ecclesiastes; the Song of Songs; Job; Isaiah the prophet; Jeremiah the prophet; Baruch; Ezekiel; Daniel; the twelve prophets. All together, the • books of the Old Testament are 22.
See in this vol. p. 39.
a See vol. ii. p. 399.
See vol. ii. p. 399.
d Ibid. p. 403-405.
At quomodo, quæso Stichometria pars est Chronographiæ, quæ ab eâ toto cœlo distat ? Assuta est illi quidem in Codicibus Græcis. Sed non magis ipsa pars est Chronographiæ, quam Chronographia pars est Stichometria. Vindic. Ignat. P. i. c. 4. p. 272 B.
' Auctoris tamen esse Nicephoro coævi vel inde patet, quod ab Anastasio Romano in linguam Latinam versa sit. H. L. T. B. p. 5.
Nicephori esse negat idem Pearsonius in Vindiciis Ignatii.
Et sane videtur Nicephoro antiquior esse. Libros enim recenset eodem ordine, quo in calce Synopseos Athanasianæ leguntur. Fabric. Cod. Apocr. N. T. p. 143. in notis. Conf. Ejusd. Bib. Gr. T. xiii. p. 844.
h Vid. Prolegom. n. 1030, 1031.
i Vid. Fabric. et Mill. ubi supra.
Apud Jos. Scalig. Thesaur. Temporum. p. 312.
i Vid. Bib. Coislin. p. 204, 205.
m Και όσαι εισι θειαί γραφαι εκκλησιαζόμεναι και κεκανονιζε μεναι, και ἡ τείων σιχομετρια, είως. Ibid.
n Βιβλός ψαλμων.
ο Όμο της πάλαιας διαθήκης βιβλια κα
The scriptures of the New Testament are these: the gospel according to Matthew, the gospel according to Mark, the gospel according to Luke, the gospel according to John; the Acts of the apostles; fourteen epistles of Paul; seven Catholic epistles; one of James, two of • Peter, three of John, one of Jude. All together, the books of the New Testament are 26. The contradicted are these: Three books of the Maccabees; the Wisdom of Solomon 'the Wisdom of Jesus, the son of Sirach; Psalms, and Odes of Solomon; Esther; Judith Susanna; Tobit, called also Tobias.
• The contradicted books of the New Testament are these: Enoch; the Patriarchs; the Prayer of Joseph; the Testament of Moses; the Assumption of Moses; Abraham; Eldad and Modad; Elias the prophet; Zephaniah the prophet; Zachary the father of John the Baptist; Baruch; Habakkuk; Ezekiel; and Daniel, falsely inscribed.'
Apocryphal books of the New Testament are these: The Circuits [or Itinerary'] of Peter, the Circuit of John, the Circuit of Thomas; the Revelation of John; the Doctrine of the Apostles; Clement,' his first and second [epistle]; Ignatius; Polycarp; the Shepherd, and • Hermas.'
I shall now make a few remarks:
1. This catalogue is of use, to shew that the Jewish canon was generally esteemed sacred by Christians; and that the other books of the Old Testament, which are now often called apocryphal,' and here, contradicted, were not of equal authority, though they were read sometimes in some churches, and often quoted by Christian writers. Indeed, Baruch is here placed among the sacred scriptures of the Old Testament; and Esther among the contradicted. And it is well known, that the book of Esther was not in all ancient catalogues: the book of Baruch is the only thing in which this catalogue differs from that of the Jews: and the inserting that, and the omission of Esther, may be reckoned things of no great consequence.
2. This catalogue affords evidence, that there never were any Christian writings, esteemed to be of equal authority with those which are now received by us as sacred and canonical.
3. One book, now generally received by us, is not here numbered among the canonical, but among the apocryphal scriptures. Upon this, therefore, I observe, as follows: In the copy published by Scaliger, after the Circuit of Thomas, is put the Gospel of Thomas, without any notice at all of the Revelation of John. In Montfaucon's copy, or manuscript, if I understand him, the Revelation of John' had been struck out, though he puts it in his printed edition. Of this point Montfaucon speaks distinctly in his preface to the Bibliotheca Coisliniana: He thinks • that 'the Revelation was put by Nicephorus among the canonical books: for, in his time, the Revelation was received by the Christians at Constantinople: however, it is certain, that there have been different opinions about this book; possibly, therefore, some transcriber, agreeably to his opinion, struck it out of the article of canonical books, and put it among the apocryphal :
⚫ another transcriber, after that, offended at seeing it among the apocryphal, struck it out; but yet did not replace it among the canonical, as he should.' So that learned writer.
4. It may deserve to be remarked, that Enoch, the Patriarchs, the Prayer of Joseph, the Testament of Moses, Abraham, Eldad,' and Modad, Elias,' and some other books of the like kind, are not placed here among the contradicted scriptures of the Old, but of the New Testament; which I think shews that these books were Christian writings: by their titles they should belong to the Old Testament; nevertheless, they are reckoned among the contradicted books of the New Testament. Very probably, therefore, they were of old time, as well as of late, esteemed by many, Christian forgeries.
Hoc, erasum fuit. Montf.
i Κλημενος. Α. Β.
Ιγναλιε, Πολύκαρπε, Ποιμενος, και Έρμα. * Περίοδος Ιωανν.. Περίοδος Θωμα. Ευαγγέλιον καlα Θύμαν. Scalig.
Decimum septimum anecdoton est Canon Scripturæ Sacræ per Nicephorum Patriarcham C. P. quod editum erat,
sed cum mendis perpetuis, ita ut in versiculorum numeris vix quidpiam sanum occurreret... Inter apocryphos hoc in libello Apocalypsin numerari, non est quod mireris. Non enim defuere variis temporibus, qui hunc sacrum librum inter canonicos non admitterent, nec a Joanne apostolo editum putarent. Ego vero non existimo Apocalypsin a Nicephoro ad apocryphos ablegatam fuisse. Nam certum est, illius tempore ecclesiam Constantinopolitanam hunc librum inter canonicos admisisse. Sed quispiam fortasse postea in Nicephori Canone Apocalypsin temere ex canonicis expunxerit, et inter apocry phos locarit. Quæ causa fuisse videtur, ut alius deinceps Apocalypsin in hoc codice ex apocryphis abraderet. Qui tamen eam non inter canonicos reposuit, ut debuerat. Præf. p. 7.
5. It is somewhat strange, that the epistles of Clement, Ignatius, Polycarp, and the book of Hermas, should be placed in a different class, below and after such books as had been mentioned in the foregoing article of contradicted,' and also after such books as precede in this article of apocryphal.' Fabricius thinks, that thereby are not to be understood the epistles, or genuine. writings of those apostolical fathers; but their doctrines, or didascaliæ. And so, indeed, this part is expressed in the Stichometry, or Indiculus, prefixed by Cotelerius to the apostolical constitutions:
III. Which, therefore, I shall now also transcribe. It is intitled, Of the sixty books, • and those which are not of that number:'1. Genesis; 2. Exodus; 3. Leviticus; 4. Numbers; 5. Deuteronomy; 6. Joshua; 7. Judges, and Ruth; 8. the first book of the Kingdoms; 9. the ⚫ second book of the Kingdoms; 10. the third book of the Kingdoms; 11. the fourth book of the Kingdoms; 12. the Remains, the fifth [that is, if numbered with those just mentioned;] 13. Job; 14. the Psalter; 15. the Proverbs; 16. the Ecclesiastes; 17. the Canticles, the fifth [that is, of the books written in verse or metre ;] 18. Ezra; meaning, probably, our Ezra and Nehemiah; 19. Hosea; 20. Amos; 21. Micah; 22. Joel; 23. Jonah; 24. Obadiah; 25. Nahum; 26. Habakkuk; 27. Zephaniah; 28. Haggai; 29. Zechariah; 30. Malachi; 31. Isaiah; 32. Jeremiah; 33. Ezekiel; 34. Daniel; 35. the Gospel according to Matthew, 36. according to Mark, 37. according to Luke, 38. according to John; 39. the Acts of the Apostles; 40. the Epistle of James; 41. of Peter, 42. of Peter; 43. of John, 44. of John, 45. • of John; 46. of Jude; 47. of Paul to the Romans; 48. to the Corinthians; 49. to the Corinthians; 50. to the Galatians; 51. to the Ephesians: 52. to the Philippians; 53. to the Colossians; 54. to the Thessalonians; 55. to the Thessalonians; 56. to Timothy, 57. to Timothy; 58. to Titus; 59. to Philemon; 60. to the Hebrews.
Those, which are not of the number of the sixty, are, as follows: 1. the Wisdom of Solomon; 2. the Wisdom of Sirach; 3. Maccabees, 4. Maccabees, 5. Maccabees, 6. Maccabees; 7. Esther; 8. Judith; 9. Tobit.
Such as are apocryphal : 1. Adam; 2. Enoch; 3. Lamech; 4. the Patriarchs; 5. the Prayer of Joseph; 6. Eldam and Modam; 7. the Testament of Moses [Here is a void space in the MSS. where, probably, was, or should have been, the Assumption of Moses;] 9. Psalms of Solomon; 10. the Revelation of Elias; 11. the Revelation of Isaiah; 12. the Revelation of Zephaniah; 13. the Revelation of Zachary; 14. the Revelation of Ezra; 15. the History of Jacob [or James;] 16. the Revelation of Peter; 17." the Circuits, and Doctrines of the Apostles; 18. the Epistle of Barnabas; 19. the Acts of Paul; 20. the Revelation of Paul; 21. the Doctrine of Clement; 22. the Doctrine of Ignatius; 23. the Doctrine of Polycarp; 24.* the Gospel according to Barnabas; 25. the Gospel according to Matthew.
Upon this catalogue we may make a few remarks, omitting minute particulars; as the order of the books, and other like things.
1. This catalogue, as well as the foregoing, tends to satisfy us, that a superior regard was always shewn, by Christians in general, to the books of the Jewish canon; for the Old Testament, above all other books, written before, or after the coming of Christ, which were not of that number; and that there were no other books received as a part of the canon of the New Testament, beside those which are now generally received by us.
2. The books of this catalogue are of three sorts: first, the sixty,' of the highest authority; secondly, those without,' which might be also called 'contradicted,' and probably were reckoned useful, and allowed to be sometimes publicly read in the assemblies of Christians; thirdly, books called apocryphal,' to which was paid a less regard than to the former.
3. With regard to the books of the Old Testament, we cannot but observe, that among the
• Cæterum ex eodem Cotelerii indiculo disertissime apparet in hac Nicephori soulpa non rejici inter apocrypha epistolas Clementis... neque epistolas Ignatii, neque Polycarpi denique, a totâ antiquitate Christiana pro genuinis habitas, sed διδαχας sive διδασκαλίας sub illorum nomine editas. Cod. Apocr. N. T. p. 144. in notis.
Indiculus ille etiam subjungitur Anastasii Quæstionibus in Codice, 1789. Bibliothecæ Christianissimi Rejis. Ita vero se habet. Coteler. Judic. De Constitut. Apostol.
c Indiculus MS. Cod. Baroc. 206. Qui etiam, a Cotelerio
'sixty' are placed three books only, which we call Solomon's; the Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and the Canticles: the other two, sometimes ascribed to him, Wisdom and Ecclesiasticus, are placed with those, which were not of the sixty. Again: among the sixty is but one book of Ezra, probably meaning our Ezra and Nehemiah; nor is there here any mention at all of any other historical books of Ezra: but among the apocryphal is a book called the Revelation of Ezra. Once more: the book of Esther is not here placed among the sixty; but among those which were without' that number, only as an useful book.
4. With regard to the books of the New Testament; here are none, beside those, now received by us, as was observed before. But here are not all which we receive; the book of the Revelation is quite omitted? what shall we say to this? It seems to me, that it was not received by the composer of this catalogue; for then it would have been among the sixty. But still it will be asked, How shall we account for the total omission of it? To which I answer, It may be accounted for one of these two ways. Either the author quite omitted it, thinking it better so to do, and be quite silent, than to put it in any class out of the sixty, which would have been offensive to some: or else the author himself did at first place it among some of the books, without the sixty; and some transcriber afterwards struck it out, not enduring to see it debased by an improper situation.
5. Among apocryphal books, and the very last of them, is the Gospel according to Matthew:" concerning which little or nothing beside conjectures can be said; but thereby cannot be meant our gospel of Matthew, which is among the sixty: possibly this article has been, by some means or other, curtailed. The gospel according to the Hebrews may have been here mentioned, and said to have been esteemed by some the original, by others a translation of the gospel according to Matthew.
IV. I shall take no farther notice of Stichometries, except adding, that there is another published by Cotelerius in his Judgment upon the epistle of Barnabas: he says, it is mutilated and corrupted. I put down that part which relates to the New Testament, and is thus: The four gospels; Matthew, Mark, Luke, John; the epistle of Paul to the Romans, the first to the Corinthians, the second to the Corinthians, to the Galatians, to the Ephesians, the first to Timothy, the second to Timothy, to Titus, to the Colossians, to Philemon; the first of Peter, the second of Peter; the epistle of James; the first of John, the second of John, the third of John; the epistle of Jude; the epistle of Barnabas; the Revelation of John; the Acts of the apostles; the Shepherd; the Acts of Paul; the Revelation of Peter.'
Every one perceives, that this Catalogue is much mutilated, there being wanting several books, which were always universally received; as the epistle to the Philippians, and the two epistles to the Thessalonians; as well as the epistle to the Hebrews, which also was generally received and it may be reckoned probable, that all these were originally in this catalogue, or Stichometry. What use can be made of the latter part of the catalogue, I must refer to every reader's own consideration.
COSMAS OF ALEXANDRIA.
I. His time, and Works. II. Scriptures of the Old Testament received by him. III. Books of the New Testament received by him. IV. General titles and divisions of the books of scripture, and marks of respect for them. V. Two general observations concerning the canon of scripture. VI. Select passages.
I. COSMAS, of Alexandria in Egypt, called Indopleustes or Indicopleustes, on account of a voyage which he made to the Indies; at first a merchant, afterwards monk, and author, lived in the time of the emperor Justinian, and is computed to have flourished about the year 535.
Vid. Patr. Apost. Tom. I.
b Vid. Cay. H. L. T. i. p. 515. et Montf. Præf, in Cosm. Topogr, cap. i.