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first part ; and that the learned professor has not disfigured the present publication with any such absurd and intolerant insinuations, as required our animadversion in the former.
The six lectures now published refer to two subjects; the criticism of the Greek Testament, continued from the publication of the Elzevirian edition of 1624 (to which period ibe preceding part had brought down the history) to the publication of the second edition of Griesbach's New Testament; and a similar critical and historical account of the text of the Hebrew Bible. Thus the first branch of this theological course, the criticism of the Bible, is completed.
Our author briefly notices the attack made upon the London Polyglott and its editor, by the ceļebrated Dr. Owen, and the able and triumphant, yet modest reply, in which Dr. Walton defended the cause of sacred criticism against the fallacious objections of his antagonist. The case would have excused stronger vituperation than Dr. Marsh has used against the nonconformist divine, who exbibited, in that instance, a melancholy yet instructive example of the power of prejudice and party spirit, to avert the mind from reason and truth. Had the Polyglott been conducted by an Oxford instead of a Cambridge man, by a parliamentarian instead of a royalist, by a presbyterian or a congregationalist instead of an episcopalian,-it is more than probable that Owen, who was not upon the whole, an illiberal man, would bave viewed the work with kindness if not with entire approbation. To drag the failings of eminent persons out of the obscurity in which one would wish them to remain for ever, is no pleasant employ; but sometimes it is a duty from which we must not shrink; and it may always be rendered a beneficial lesson to mankind. Our admi. ration of Owen, as a doctrinal and practical divine, may need the corrective of knowing his humiliation in this couitroversy.
It is remarkable that another divine, of a theological class very different from that of Owen, Dr. Whitby the Commentator, fell into the same errors, and still more egregiously, in his violent attack on the merits of Mill's Greek Testament. Of him, likewise, Dr. Marsh takes proper notice.
From the able and perspicuous disquisition on the materials, niethod, and character of Griesbach's second edition, we shall make some extracts.
But, after all the materials collected for the purpose of obtaining a correct edition of the Greek Testament, materials for which all the known libraries in Europe had been searched, and which it had employed Dearly three centuries to obtain, there was still wanted an editor of
· sufficient learning, acuteness, industry, and impartiality in the weighing of evidence, to apply those materials to their proper object. Dr. Griesbach, by his first edition of the Greek Testamenc had already afforded convincing proofs of his critical ability: and hence the learned in general, especially in his own country, regarded him as the person, who was best qualified to undertake this new revision of the Greek text. Indeed the subject had formed the business of his life.'
• There is a question however in reserve, of still greater consequence than the extent or the value even of the critical materials; and that is, have those materials been properly applied to the emendation of the Greek text? That they were conscientiously applied, is admitted by every man, to whom Griesbach's character is known. His scrupulous integrity, as a man and as a scholar, is sufficient guarantee for the honest application of them. Nor have his contemporaries ever questioned either his learning, or his judgement, if we except Matthæi, who wrote under the influence of personal animosity.'
• That Griesbach has fulfilled the duties, which in these respects he owed to the public, that his diligence was unremitted, that his caution was extreme, that his erudition was profound, and that his judgment was directed by a sole regard to the evidence before him, will in general be allowed by those, who have studied his edition, and are able to appreciate its merits. That his decisions are always correct, that in all cases the evidence' is so nicely weighed as to produce unerring results, that weariness of mind under painful investigation has in instance occasioned an important over-sight, that prejudice or partiality has no where influenced his general regard for critical justice, would be affirmations, which can hardly apply to any editor, however good or great. But, if at any time he has erred, he has at the same time enabled those, who are competent judges, to decide for themselves, by stating the contending evidence with clearness and precision. Emendations founded on conjecture, however ingenious, he has introduced not in a single instance : they are all founded on quoted authority. Our attention is even solicited and directed to that authority.'
The ninth Lecture is intitled, ' a description of the authors who have illustrated the criticism of the Greek Testament, according to its several departments.'
This comprizes some judicious observations on the true nature and province of Sacred Criticism, as distinguished from Interpretation. In his enumeration of writers, the professor recommends, as a general and elementary treatise, Dr. Gerard's Institutes of Biblical Criticism, Edinb. 1808. In this recommendation
can fully concur; and we take this opportunity of extending it farther than Dr. M.'s purpose required. That work contains, though in a manner too brief, and in some respects defective, the elements of Biblical Criticism, properly so called; but its chief merit lies in furnishing, for the aid of Scriptural Interpretation, a most copious collection of observations and rules the Hebrew and Hebraized
idioms of the Scriptures. This object is treated with a mninuteness and fulness exceeded, perhaps, by no author except Glassius, in his very valuable and well-known work, the Philologia Sacra : and on this account Dr. Gerard's book ought to be diligently studied by every one who is preparing for the office of the Christian ministry, or is engaged in it.
In the body of this lecture, Dr. M. points to the best authors for information on the editions of the Greek Testament, and on the three great sources of various readings, ma.. nuscripts, ancient versions, and citations in the writings of the Greek and Latin Fathers. Emendations from mere conjecture he rejects as, unnecessary and injurious. From the preliminary part of the lecture, we shall quote a passage, important for its incidental as well as for its direct purpose.
• Even that portion of sacred criticism, which in its application belongs to the third Branch of Divinity, or the Authenticity of the Bible, is in its principles so connected with verbal criticism, that the basis, on which they rest, is nearly one and the same. From the criticism of words we ascend to the criticism of sentences, from the criticism of sentences to the criticism of chapters, and from the criticism of chapters to the criticism of whole books. To illustrate this ascent, an example of each will be suf ficient. If we turn to Griesbach's Greek Testament at Matth. xxvii. 19. we shall find the passage thus worded. NopevOivt!S Mo@ntsucate ráyte tà έθνη, βαπτίζοντες αυτούς εις το όνομα του Πατρός, και του Υιού και του αγίου Πνεύματος, where the whole difference from the common text consists in the omission of the particle cūr: This omission is founded on the authority, not only of many ancient Greek manuscripts, but of the ancient Greek Fathers, Origen, Athanasius, Basil, Chrysostom, and Cyril, who are expressly quoted for this purpose. From the criticism of the particle ovo which is probably spurious, we ascend to the criticism of the whole
which is undoubtedly genuine. For, if Origen, who was born in the century after that, in which St. Matthew wrote, found the passage in his manuscript of the Gospels, with the exception only of a particle, and the Greek Fathers of the fourth century found it worded in the same manner in their manuscripts, we have a strong a proof of its authenticity, as can be given or required in works of antiquity. 'This passage, therefore, which includes the three persons of the Trinity, rests on a very different foundation from that of the similar passage in the fifth chapter of St. John's first Epistle, a passage, which no ancient Greek manuscript contains, and which no ancient Greek Father ever saw.
• From the criticism of sentences we ascend to the criticism of chipters. It is well known, that attempts have been made to invalidate the testimony, which the two first chapters of St. Matthew's Gospel bear to the doctrine of the incarnation, by contending, that those chapters were not original parts of St. Matthew's Gospel, but were prefixed to it by some other person, at some later period. Now, if we turn to the secoad volume, of Griesbach's Symbolæ criticæ, where he quotes the readings of the Greek Testament from Clement of Alexandria and Origen, we shall find a quotation from the firsi chapter of St. Matthew's Gospel, and a reference to the second, made by Celsus the Epicurean philosopher, which quotation and reference are noted by Origen, who wrote in answer to Celsus. “Hinc patet (says Griesbach very justly) duo priora Matthæi capita Celso nota fuisse. Now if Celsus, who wrote his celebrated work against the Christians in the time of Marcus Aurelius, and consequently little more than an hundred
after St. Matthew himself wrote, yet found the two first chapters in his manuscript of St. Matthew's Gospel, those chapters must either have been original parts of St. Matthew's Gospel, or they must have been added at a time so little antecedent to the
of Celsus, that a writer so inquisitive, so sagacious, and at the same time so inimical to Christianity, could not have failed to detect the imposture. But in this case he would not have quoted those chapters as parts of St. Matthew's Gospel. Consequently the truth must lie in the other part of the dilemma, namely that those chapters are authentic.'
The last three lectures are occupied in the essential topics which relate to the criticism of the Hebrew Old Testament, and in a description of authors who have illustrated the several departinents in this branch of the general subject. The peculiar characters of sacred criticism as applied to the Hebrew Bible, are correctly stated : the famous controversy is reviewed-between L. Capellus, Morinus, and Bishop Walton, on the one side, and the two Buxtorfs, on the other-upon the Chaldaic and Samaritan characters, the antiquity of the points, and the integrity of the Masoretic text: the discovery and use of the Hebræo-Samaritan Pentateuch, and the history of critical editions down to Dr. Kennicott's, are given in a concise and perspicuous manner.
No one will suppuse that Dr. M. is a believer in the absolute integrity of the Masoretic Hebrew Text: but he expresses a higher opinion of it than, in our humble conception, the evidence in the case will support. The learned Jews of Tiberias,' says he, in the third and fourth centuries, must have had access to Hebrew manuscripts which were writtcu" before the birth of Christ. We know that they scught and collated them. We know that their exertions to obtain an accurate text, were equal to their en. deavours to preserve it. Why then shall we conclude that they laboured in vain ?'
This mode of stating the case is liable to objection. That the Masoretic Rabbins sought and collated manuscripts cannot be questioned ; and it is sufficiently probable that they possessed manuscripts of the antiquity which our author affirms. But we do not know that their exertions to obtain an accurate text were either judicious or faithful. Our information concerning them and their labours has not descended through unexceptionable channels. It is to the Jast degree improbable that they possessed such ideas on the mode of critical investigation, as were likely to con
duct their labours to the best result. The odium theologicum
8vo. pp. 470. Price 10s. 6d. Johnson and Co. 1811.
Aiken has so often ministered to our gratification, that the appearance of the present volume put us in excellent humour; and we took up the book with rather lively an: ticipations of pleasure from the perusal of it. What, then, was our disappointment, on looking into its contents, to discover, in place of the valuable treasures we expectedif not "a beggarly account of empty boxes"-nothing, at best, but a meagre assortment of literary bagatelles.
The principal part of this thin octavo, consists of two essays, which are, in fact, a mere catalogue raisonnée of similes and personifications from the writings of the poets, occupying about three fourths of the whole book. The alithor begins his first essay by remarking, that the purposes for which si: milies are einployed may be referred to the two general heads of illustration and embellishment. In scientific and argumentative works, comparisons are useful for illustration; but in poetry, similes are employed almost entirely for the sake of ornament.
Considering, then, all similes in poetry as accessories, the purpose of which is to add to that pleasure which is the ultimate object of the poetic art, they may be viewed as producing this effect either by deepering and enforcing the impression made by the original image; by exciting an agreeable surprise from the suggestion of an unexpected resemblance; or simply by a variation of scenery which breaks the monotony of a continued narrative.' p. 3.