Posted by: nuweiba | September 23, 2008

Fiurth-Century bible online

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Ancient Codex Sinaiticus accessible to global audience

One of the oldest copies of the Bible is now online. It was handwritten by early Christians living in Egypt around 350 A.D. The manuscript contains the Christian Bible in Greek, including the oldest complete copy of the New Testament. Its heavily corrected text is of outstanding importance for the history of the Bible as the manuscript is the oldest substantial book to survive Antiquity.

The Codex Sinaiticus Project is an international collaboration to reunite the entire manuscript in digital form and make it accessible to a global audience for the first time. Drawing on the expertise of leading scholars, conservators and curators, the Project gives everyone the opportunity to connect directly with this famous manuscript.

The document is believed to be the oldest known Greek copy of the Bible, along with the Codex Vaticanus. High resolution images of the Gospel of Mark, several Old Testament books and notes on the work made over the centuries now appear on as a first step towards publishing the entire manuscript online by next July. Selected translations will be available in English and German.

The manuscript “is like nothing else online,” said Ulrich Johannes Schneider, director of Leipzig University Library, which holds part of the manuscript. “It’s also an enrichment of the virtual world – and a bit of a change from YouTube.”

The vellum manuscript (a parchment made from calfskin) was discovered in Saint Catherine’s Monastery near Mount Sinai by German biblical scholar Konstantin von Tischendorf in 1844. He was allowed to take some folios to Leipzig. He returned in 1859 and acquired the largest section of the Bible for his new Russian sponsors. It remained in St Petersburg until Stalin sold it to the British Museum in 1933. The Codex is now housed at four locations in Europe and the Middle East.

The internet project was launched in cooperation with the University of Leipzig, the Russian National Library, the British Library and Saint Catherine’s Monastery.

“Thanks to technology we can now make the oldest cultural artifacts–ones that were once so precious you couldn’t show them to anyone–accessible to everyone, in really high quality,” Schneider said.

from TAP (The Anglican Planet) :


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