The Scribes and Correctors of Codex Vaticanus: A Study on the Codicology, Paleography, and Text of B(03)
In this thesis, I investigate the production of Codex Vaticanus (B) through the lens of its scribes and earliest correctors. While this manuscript, which contains the Greek Old and New Testaments, is recognized as one of the most important witnesses for Septuagint scholars and New Testament textual critics, there has yet to be any thorough examination of the scribes and their copying patterns. In other manuscripts, such as Codex Sinaiticus, it has been shown that knowledge of the scribal habits is necessary for understanding the overall textual value of the witness. This thesis, therefore, assesses the material, paratextual, and paleographic evidence concerning the number of scribes responsible for copying B(03), followed by an evaluation and comparison of their work. Part I of the study examines the physical structure of B(03) and then its formatting and paratexts. When these features are combined, the identification of overlapping irregularities can be used to flag potential loci of scribal transition. Part II follows a new division of scribes in B(03) and examines the types and methods of correction throughout the codex. While there are several ways to compare the quality of copying in a manuscript, this project concentrates on the types of errors that provoked corrections by either the scribes themselves or their colleagues. In doing so, the investigator learns more about the individual scribes beyond the first layer of writing, as the work of a scribe often involved correcting one’s own copying and, occasionally, that of another. By comparing the corrections in the work of each scribe, this project ends with an evaluation of the one scribe responsible for copying the New Testament. The conclusions emphasize the importance of understanding this manuscript as a whole pandect with both surprising consistency and telling irregularities.