Saturday, February 14, 2009

CSNTM: P46 the Earliest Extant Witness to the 'Corpus Paulinum'

...this is the earliest Pauline manuscript and along with the prestige has come much scholarly debate concerning the date of the papyrus. F. G. Kenyon first suggested a third century CE date. Subsequently, Ulrich Wilcken dated the document to ca. 200 CE. More recently, Young Kyu Kim suggested a provocatively early date to the reign of Domitian in 81–96 CE. His argument was predicated upon six premises: (1) comparative literary papyri of such an early date, (2) comparative documentary papyri of an early date, (3) several unique features of the handwriting, (4) and (5) other morphologically early components, and (6) a corrector’s hand which was thought to be in several documents of the early period cumulatively convinced Kim.

However, most have not found Kim’s case compelling. Comfort and Barrett are more sober in their judgment, yet still rather early dating the papyrus to the middle of the second century. Bruce Griffin, in a detailed response to Kim’s dating, has offered what seems the most probable suggestion of ca. 175–225 CE. Metzger concurs offering “about 200.”

Read more: Centre for the Study of New Testament Manuscripts | Blog

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