[b-greek] re: When you have a minute :o )

From: Michael Haggett (michaelhaggett@lineone.net)
Date: Wed Oct 25 2000 - 11:38:11 EDT

In reply to Mark Wilson
Maurice A. O'Sullivan (Monday, September 25, 2000 11:40 AM)
referred us to H W Smyth regarding the iota subscript.

Never having read Smyth, I checked out for myself whether Smyth's statement
about the iota subscript being written on the line is actually true, and
must tell you that it ISN'T!

I checked both Codex Siniaticus and Alexandrinus, and neither of them shows
the iotas we now indicate as subscripts in any way - either on or below the

Going back to earlier manuscripts, I then checked p46, and it doesn't

To crown it all, not even the earliest definite NT manuscript, p52, shows
such an iota either on or below the line. It's fourth line reads
APOQNHSKEIN, not APOQNHiSKEIN in John 18:32. Check this out for yourselves
by looking at the John Rylands Library website:


So I think the correct answer to Mark's question is that iota subscripts
were probably not written by the original NT authors, and certainly not
considered important enough to copy in the older NT manuscripts we still

My conclusion is that if they weren't important then, they're not worth
including now.

Michael Haggett


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