Codex Sinaiticus (Shelfmarks and references: London, Brit. Libr., Additional 43725; Gregory-Aland nº א
(Aleph) or 01, Soden δ 2) is one of the most important hand-written ancient copies of the Greek Bible. It was written in the 4th century, in uncial
letters. It was found in the 19th century at the Greek Monastery of Mount Sinai, and most of it is today in the British Library. Originally it
contained the whole of both Testaments. The Greek Old Testament (or Septuagint) survived almost complete, along with a complete New Testament, plus
the Epistle of Barnabas, and portions of The Shepherd of Hermas.
Along with Codex Vaticanus, Codex Sinaiticus is one of the most valuable manuscripts for establishing the original text of the Greek New Testament, as
well as the Septuagint. It is the only uncial manuscript with the complete text of the New Testament, and the only ancient manuscript of the New
Testament written in four columns per page which has survived to the present day.
Text-type and relationship to other manuscripts
For most of the New Testament, Codex Sinaiticus is in general agreement with Codex Vaticanus and Codex Ephraemi Rescriptus, attesting the Alexandrian
text-type. A notable example of an agreement between the Sinaiticus and Vaticanus texts is that they both omit the word εικη ('without cause',
'without reason', 'in vain') from Matthew 5:22.
Only in John 1:1-8:38 Codex Sinaiticus represents different text-type than Vaticanus and any other Alexandrian manuscript. It is in closer agreement
with Codex Bezae in support of the Western text-type. F.e. in John 1:3 Sinaiticus and Codex Bezae are only Greek manuscripts with textual wariant εν
αυτω ζωη εστιν (in him is life) instead εν αυτω ζωη ην (in him was life). This variant is supported by Vetus Latina and some
Sahidic manuscripts. This portion has a large number of corrections. But there is a number of differences between Sinaiticus and Vaticanus. Hoskier
enumerated 3036 differences:
Matt – 656
Mark – 567
Luke – 791
John – 1022
Together — 3036.
A large number of these differences is a result of iotacisms, and a different way for a transcription of Hebrew names. These two manuscripts were not
written in the same scriptorium. According to Hort Sinaiticus and Vaticanus were derived from a common original much older, "the date of which cannot
be later than the early part of the second century, and may well be yet earlier". B. H. Streeter remarked a great agreement between codex and
Vulgate of Jerome. According to him Origen brought to Caesarea the Alexandrian text-type which was used in this codex, and used by Jerome.
Since 4th to 12th century worked on this codex 9 correctors and it is one of the most corrected manuscripts. Tischendorf enumerated 14 800
corrections. Besides of this corrections some letters were marked by dot as doubtfull (f.e. ṪḢ). Corrections represent Byzantine text-type, just
like in codices Regius (L), Ephraemi (C), and Sangallensis (Δ). They were discovered by Button.
Yet another link
[edit on 6-10-2008 by Shocka]