Wednesday, November 28, 2007

On the Date of the Coptic Version

"The Sahidic is probably the earliest of the [Coptic] translations,
and also has the greatest textual value. It came into existence no
later than the third century, since a copy of 1 Peter exists in a
manuscript from about the end of that century."

20th century Coptic scholar and New Testament translator George W. Horner gives a date closer to 188 CE, based on "the internal character of the Sahidic [version]," which, he says, "supplies confirmation of a date earlier than the third century."

Coptic scholar C. S. Malan said, "The Sahidic Version was made when Greek was a living language even in Egypt, possibly in the second century."

The Coptic Church gives the date of 200 A.D.

The Sahidic Coptic version is likely as old, and as valuable, as the more well-known Old Italian, Vulgate, and Syriac versions.


Newtonian said...

Just a question - Is the Divine Name found in the Sahidic Coptic text?

Memra said...

No, since the Coptic text is a translation of Koine Greek NT texts of the 2nd/3rd century, which texts did not contain the Divine Name.

However, the Coptic text, like the Greek text, preserves the poetic form of the Divine Name, Jah (Yah), in the expression "Hallelujah" at Revelation 19:3, 4, 6.