The manuscripts extant for the four canonical gospels.
For use with the synoptic project.
The apparatus that I offer in my synopses is in no way intended to be as complete as in a standard critical edition of the gospel texts. I cover only a sampling of the hundreds of manuscripts available for collation, selecting only those variants that are in my judgment most pertinent to the study of the synoptic problem and related fields. This page is intended to inform the reader of exactly which manuscripts he or she may expect to find represented in the synoptic apparatus.
The top line of the apparatus in each of the synoptic columns is a simple list of extant manuscripts for that particular passage of each respective synoptic gospel. This list, however, includes only the papyri, the uncial codices, and the minuscule families 1 and 13. I refer to the versions and fathers only under certain conditions, outlined below.
I cover as much of the evidence from the papyri as I can, deeming it very important for establishing the gospel texts. If a verse containing a listed variant is extant for one of the papyri, I list the reading of that papyrus:
Greek uncial codices.
If I cite a variant at all in the apparatus, I include the evidence from each of the following ten codices if extant for that verse. Six belong to centuries IV or V; the other four belong to later centuries.
Evidence from the Byzantine tradition might include readings from any or all of the following uncial codices:
E F G H K N O P Q Γ Σ.
Greek minuscule codices.
I cite minuscule codices individually only if one contains an unusual or virtually unique reading, which is not at all often. But I do cite the evidence from the two following named minuscule families:
Family 13, also known as the Ferrar group (or φ), is distinguished from other textual groups most discernibly in how it treats the pericope de adultera, John 7.53-8.11, which it places after Luke 21.38. Two members of family 1, also known as the Lake group (or λ), place the pericope de adultera after John 21.25 (fin). (These two members are 1 itself and 1582.)
Family 1 dates to century X or later. Family 13 dates to century XI or later.
Where the variants from either of these two families are split across readings, I generally locate the family symbol (1 or 13) by its minuscule namesake (1 or 13) in the apparatus and mark it with a tilde (~1 or ~13).
Latin, Syriac, Coptic, Armenian, Ethiopic, and Slavonic versions.
I know Latin, but not any of the other versional languages.
My policy is to cite the versions only if (A) I am personally familiar with the versional variants or (B) at least one of the versions offers a variant that shows up in only few if any our extant Greek manuscripts.
My order of priority amongst the versions basically matches the order in the heading. Latin, Syriac, and Coptic are the primary versions, while Armenian, Ethiopic, and Slavonic are secondary. The Diatessaron of Tatian, essentially a cross between a version and a patristic witness, I would place into the primary category.
My policy is to cite the church fathers only if (A) I am personally familiar with the patristic variants or (B) at least one of the fathers offers a variant that shows up in only few if any our extant manuscripts.
I wish to stress that I am employing this limited patristic policy only because I know my present limitations, not because I do not value the patristic testimony. In fact, if one could broadly divide students of the text into two categories, those who underestimate and those who overestimate the value of patristic textual data, I would probably tend to fall into the latter category most of the time.