Back in October and November I wrote a series of three posts (1, 2, and 3) detailing my efforts to construct a critical edition of the Syriac manuscripts of the Infancy Gospel of Thomas. The project is now about eight years (and counting) in the making but it may soon finally see publication because I’ve been working diligently on it over the past six months, to the neglect, unfortunately, of other tasks, such as Apocryphicity. Right now I’m taking a brief pause in the project, so I thought I’d use some of this time to reacquaint myself with the blog […]
Between 2012 and 2014 I picked away at the edition while working on other projects. Brent Landau and I had begun the More New Testament Apocrypha project (a series of volumes collecting neglected Christian Apocrypha in new translations) and that took a considerable amount of time to co-ordinate. But I contributed a translation of the Syriac Infancy Thomas to the first volume and this translation integrated for the first time all previously-published manuscripts on the text, including provisional work on the three editions (Sa, Sw, and Sw) I was compiling for the Gorgias volume. We included Syriac Infancy Thomas in […]
When I returned to examining the Syriac Infancy Thomas tradition in 2008 I began with the Vatican manuscript translated in part (chs. 5-8 only) by Paul Peeters in 1914. He stated at the time that the manuscript was superior to William Wright’s sixth-century manuscript, despite its much more recent date of composition (17th century), because it contains portions missing in Wright. It was simple to obtain a microfilm copy of the Vatican manuscript and, being recent, it was quite easy to read. I could only wonder why it had taken so long for anyone to follow up on Peeters’ “superior” […]
One of the projects I hoped to finish over this past summer is a long-percolating critical edition of the Syriac tradition of the Infancy Gospel of Thomas. Alas, I was not able to complete the project, but instead of spending my time responsibly and working on it some more, I thought I’d put together a series of posts on the various stages the project has gone through so far. I hope the posts will be of interest to those who work on the text, on Syriac literature, or on text critical work in general. I became interested in the Syriac […]
Euangelium Thomae de infantia Saluatoris Other titles: Gospel of Thomas, Childhood of Jesus, Paidika. Clavis numbers: CANT 57; BHG 779p, 779n, 779pb; BHL 4151n. Related literature: Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew, East Syriac Life of Mary, Arabic Infancy Gospel. Standard abbreviation: Inf. Gos. Thom. Compiled by: Tony Burke, York University (firstname.lastname@example.org) 1. SUMMARY In its earliest form, Infancy Thomas contains no attribution; it is simply titled “The Childhood Deeds of Jesus.” It covers activities in Jesus’ life from the ages of five to twelve. The story begins with Jesus playing with other children at a stream. Then follows a series of curses: […]
Back in the summer, Christopher Skinner sent me a copy of his book, What Are They Saying About the Gospel of Thomas? (Mahwah, NJ: Paulist Press, 2012). It is a slim book (around 120 pages), so it did not take long to read, nor did it take me long to make some notes on its contents. What did take a long time is for me to get around to finally blogging about it! At first I was a bit leery about the book. I have read a number of discussions of the Christian Apocrypha from what one might call “conservative” […]
[This is the latest in a series of posts on texts to be featured in New Testament Apocrypha: More Noncanonical Scriptures edited by Brent Landau and I. The material here is incorporated also into the information on the texts provided on my More Christian Apocrypha page]. The Infancy Gospel of Thomas is well-known; it's sometimes shocking portrayal of the young Jesus cursing the townspeople of Nazareth has contributed to its popularity. The text is featured prominently also in the various Christian Apocrypha collections and commentaries. So why include it in MNTA? One of our guiding principles in selecting texts for […]
Hadavas, Constantine T. The Infancy Gospel of Thomas: An Intermediate Ancient Greek Reader (Beloit, WI: CreateSpace, 2014). Hadavas is Chair of the Department of Classics at Beloit College. I’m interested in seeing what Greek text he is using (likely it is Tischendorf’s Greek A with variants from Greek B and D). Here is the abstract: The Infancy Gospel of Thomas (c. 150 CE) is an excellent text for students who have completed the first year of college-level Ancient Greek. Its length is short, its syntax is generally straightforward, and its narrative is inherently interesting, for it is the only account […]
Congratulations to Stephen Davis on the publication of his new book, Christ Child: Cultural Memories of a Young Jesus (Yale University Press). I had a chance to read the book in manuscript form before publication but I'm excited to hear my complimentary copy is in the mail. From the testimonials: "Stephen Davis's Christ Child is as theoretically important as it is fascinating. Davis takes the reader on an engaging journey through the Infancy Gospel of Thomas and its surprisingly rich afterlives in Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. In the process, Davis challenges us to grapple with broader theoretical questions about transmission, […]
VIA Mark Goodacre's NTBLog: The latest Journal for the Study of the New Testament is a special edition focused on Simon Gathercole's The Composition of the Gospel of Thomas and Mark Goodacre's Thomas and the Gospels (which I reviewed HERE). See the original post for a full table of contents.
My article on the Syriac tradition of the Infancy Gospel of Thomas (titled, "The Infancy Gospel of Thomas from an Unpublished Syriac Manuscript. Introduction, Text, Translation, and Notes") can now be seen in preview at the Hugoye site (HERE). Here (once again) is the abstract: The Syriac tradition of the Infancy Gospel of Thomas (IGT) has been published from three manuscripts, two of which hail from the 5th or 6th centuries. Unfortunately, all three sources lack large sections of the text. In 1914, Paul Peeters discussed a fourth Ms (Vat. Syr. 159 from the 17th century) preserving the entire text, […]
My critical edition of the Greek manuscript tradition of the Infancy Gospel of Thomas, De infantia Iesu Evangelium Thomae Graecae (CCSA 17; Turnhout: Brepols, 2010) has been awarded the F. W. Beare Prize at this year’s Annual Meeting of the Canadian Society of Biblical Studies. This award recognizes an outstanding book in the areas of Christian Origins, Post-Biblical Judaism and/or Graeco-Roman Religions written by a member of the CSBS and published during the previous two years. The award was established in honour of Francis (Frank) Wright Beare, one of Canada’s most reknowned New Testament scholars. My thanks to the anonymous […]
I just received word that my article, "The Infancy Gospel of Thomas from an Unpublished Syriac Manuscript. Introduction, Text, Translation, and Notes," has been accepted for publication by the journal Hugoye. This article has been years in the making (editing?) and it is rewarding to see that it will soon be published. Here is the abstract: The Syriac tradition of the Infancy Gospel of Thomas (IGT) has been published from three manuscripts, two of which hail from the 5th or 6th centuries. Unfortunately, all three sources lack large sections of the text. In 1914, Paul Peeters discussed a fourth Ms […]
Well, the abstract of my forthcoming edition of the Greek tradition of the Infancy Gospel of Thomas is back up on the Brepols page (HERE). The proofing stage of the project has taken a considerable amount of time, thus delaying the publication by a year. But, good news: I will receive the final proofs imminently and Brepols wish to have the book out in March (yes, 2011).Which means I won't be getting much sleep in the next few weeks as I check over the text again and generate indices. I hope everyone has their 300 Euros ready for the purchase.
I have updated the text on my Syriac Infancy Gospel of Thomas page to reflect the work I completed recently on a translation of the unpublished manuscript Vat. Syr. 159, the only manuscript published (well, almost published) to date that includes the full text of the Syriac tradition of this text (previous Mss are all fragmentary). I am working now on another branch of the tradition preserved in eleven known (and unpublished) Mss. And one of these Mss (Mingana Syr. 5) can be viewed on-line at the University of Birmingham's Virtual Reading Room (the text begins at fol. 18).