Re: NA27 / NA26

From: David B. Gowler (
Date: Fri Sep 22 1995 - 12:38:50 EDT

Edward Hobbs wrote:

> Ken asked about the differences between the two, specifically as to whether
> he needs to buy NA27 for his course work.
> The APPARATUS is considerably changed. But "with few exceptions, the passages
> selected for the apparatus have not been changed."
> The apparatus really IS better; and the Alands said it is more accurate.
> But for YOU, Ken, the answer is a resounding YES! Not to please your
> profs; most of them (at least the ones I used to know) will have noticed little
> except the larger format. But because you are going into New Testament
> scholarship as a career, and this is your basic tool!
> And your own personal textual decisions . . . depend on
>whether your information is CORRECT! The few hundred
> errors in NA26 may not trouble you, but you never know when you are looking
> at an erroneous transcription, or other error.
> SPEND THE $18!

I couldn't agree more. Years ago, during a textual criticism
class on the masters level, I came across an article detailing
the numerous errors in the critical apparatus of NA 26. The
author had found an average of three per page, I believe. Many
others had found the same problem, as Edward noted.

In that class, we had already collated quite a few mss into our
own private critical apparatus -- not a pleasant task, but an eye-
opening one. I compared my results with the critical apparatus
of NA 26. Both of us had made some errors, but then scholarly
articles were not being written on the basis of my collation!


David B. Gowler
Associate Professor of Religion
Director, Writing Across the Curriculum
Chowan College

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