Egypt Exploration Fund   [Hrsg.]
Archaeological report: comprising the work of the Egypt Exploration Fund and the progress of egyptology during the year ... — 1896-1897

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Coptic Studies.


dating of Greek uncials is to prove radically at fault, must be assigned
to a relatively earlier period. To support a later date by the statement
that parchment was ''not commonly used before the 6th or 7th century "
seems, in the case of a MS. such as that in question, a scarcely more
weighty argument than it would be if applied to the great biblical MSS.
It is as little probable in the one case as in the other that such volumes
were intended for common, popular use.

The second translation is that made for the Theosopbical Publishing
Society by Mr. G. R. S. Mead6 from the Latin version of Schwartze.
In the passages which we have tested, Mr. Mead's English appears to
represent the Coptic as accurately at any rate as does the Latin. The
translation is preceded by a succinct description of all previous works
on the subject, t.nd by a description of the MS. These portions of Mr-
Mead's book contain a few statements which it may be useful hero to
notice. The Oxford treatise on the powers of the letters is attributed
by its scribe to Apa Seba (Sabas), not to Atasius, as misread in Uri's
catalogue (p. xix), the publication of Rossi which the author sought for
in vain (p. xx.) is to be found in the Turin Memorie, ser. ii., t. xliii.
So far from being all the work of a single scribe (p. xxvii.), the MS. of
the Pistis shows at least two, probably three, different hands—a fact
partly recognized by Schwartze (text, p. 121) and noticed also by the
present writer {Coptic MSS., p. 3) and capable of clearing up important
problems of the text, such as that of the occasional " titles " or headings
(p. xxix.). It is true that the theological magazine referred to by
Kostlin is not to be found in London (p. xl.). The title is, however,
correct; it was a short-lived German publication of the last century.
The copies made from Gnostic MSS. by Dulaurier are now preserved
in the Paris National Library (p. xxxviii.). Not the least valuable
feature of Mr. Mead's work is the analytical table of contents prefixed
to it.

It will be of interest to many to know that Dr. C. Schmidt, the editor
of the Bruce MS., is preparing a complete translation of the Pistis to
appear in the new patristic series of the Berlin Academy.

Under the title of A Coptic Spell of the 2nd Century Mr. F. Legge
has reprinted certain lines of the great Paris magical papyrus from
Wessely's edition.7 The passage is one of those, numerous in the MS.,
which contain a mixture of Greek and Coptic, but it is not included in
Erman's edition (A. Z. 1883). Mr. Legge has done well therefore to
call attention to it. But his treatment of the Coptic text is scarcely
satisfactory. He has contented himself with adopting for the most part
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