The Amsterdam Database of New Testament Conjectural Emendation
The Amsterdam Database of New Testament Conjectural Emendation is the result of a research project at Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, conducted from 2010 to 2016 and funded by NWO (Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research).
The Amsterdam Database collects all known conjectures on the Greek New Testament, as well as an important part of the reception history of these conjectures.
The database was first put online on 23 September 2016, and released officially at the SBL annual conference in San Antonio, TX, November 2016.
It will be updated on a regular basis. Release notes for each instalment are published on this page.
With the Nestle editions up to NA27 (1993), scholars had access to only a very small part of New Testament conjectures, and even this small collection was very limited: the criteria for inclusion remained unclear, and for each conjecture only an author’s name—presumably of the earliest author—and the conjectured reading were given. When in NA28 (2012) it was decided to omit all conjectures from the apparatus, the Amsterdam project was already underway, and so the NA28 Introduction could announce the publication of the conjectures in a more satisfying digital form. In the end the teams in Münster and Amsterdam agreed that the best place for publication was to be the NT.VMR website.
The website itself should be easy to navigate, but some elements require a brief explanation.
On first load a box is given in which either a New Testament reference or a conjecture ID can be entered. The latter, e.g. cj10374, are unique identifiers for each conjecture record. For New Testament verses and ranges, standard English book names and abbreviations will find the relevant conjecture records, for instance:
Conjecture records have a unique, stable ID, such as cj10374, which is to be used for reference as well.
Many conjecture records also have a reception history in the database, accessed by selecting the row. Then a second table on the bottom of the page is opened.
In both tables, the icon next to the “Short Reference” when clicked shows the full title of the source.
If there is an icon in the “Rem.” (= “Remarks”) column, it can be clicked to consult the remarks by our team. These are often useful for background information on the record.
Similarly, an icon in the “Cit.” (= “Citation”) column provides the original citation found in the source mentioned in the record.
Four small columns provide information on the kind of the conjecture records and some more:
E. (“Editorial Alternative”) is marked when the conjecture record actually contains a proposal that does not alter the uncial text written without punctuation, accents and word divisions.
A. (“Attested”) is marked when the conjecture has been found to be attested in Greek manuscripts (in the case of editorial alternatives, A is marked by default).
N. (“Nestle”) is marked when the conjecture is mentioned in the apparatus of one or more of the Nestle editions since 1898. In that case the remarks provide more information.
M. (“Misunderstood”) is marked when the author attributed with the conjecture was actually misunderstood, so that the case is not a conjecture after all, but has been held to be one at some moment in history. Here as well the remarks provide more information.
The team responsible for the project consists of Jan Krans, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte, Bart Kamphuis, Silvia Castelli, and Karin Neutel, and has been assisted by Suzan Doodeman, Jolyn Nijsink, Noortje Blokhuis, Riekelt Woort, Theo van Beek, Albert Wubs, and An-Ting Yi.
We thank the Münster INTF team for its hospitality and collaboration. Holger Strutwolf and Klaus Wachtel encouraged and helped us in many ways, and Troy A. Griffitts proved able to turn our data into a web-accessible form.
Users are invited to contribute to the website by means of a feedback function, which will create a Forum post.
How to refer to the database
The database can be cited as follows:
Jan Krans, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte, et al. (eds.), The Amsterdam Database of New Testament Conjectural Emendation (http://ntvmr.uni-muenster.de/
Individual conjecture records can be referred to by means of their cjID, e.g. cj10374 for Erasmus’ conjecture on Jas 4:2. A web link to that record is http://ntvmr.uni-muenster.de/
A web link to a New Testament verse range is possible as well, e.g. http://ntvmr.uni-muenster.de/
Records of the reception history can be referred to by means of sID’s, e.g. s23860 for Zwingli’s acceptance of Erasmus’ conjecture on Jas 4:2. As web link to a reception history record the same link can be used as for the conjecture to which it belongs.
In all updates, conjecture records are added, as well as history records, and citations. Remarks are corrected, expanded, or added.
1. 30 November 2016 (2016)
This is the first official release, at the occasion of the SBL annual meeting in San Antonio, TX, with various corrections and additions compared to the pre-release version, online since 23 September 2016, but which need not to be listed here.
The database now contains 6113 conjecture records; because of editorial alternatives and cases of misunderstood conjectures, the total number of true conjectures is 5718 (NB: according to the definition of conjecture used in the Amsterdam project, appeal to versional or patristic evidence does not preclude a proposal from being a conjecture, if this evidence is not supported by Greek manuscript attestation). The total number of history records is 17357 (which includes the Urheber records).
The citations, references, and remarks use Unicode. For uncial script a technical solution has been found, which however has some limitations (see e.g. the citation in cj10631).
2. 3 January 2017 (2017-1)
Compared to the initial release (2016), 23 conjecture records were added (cj16113 to cj16135), as well as 73 history records (s27357 to s27429). The total number of true conjectures is now 5741, out of 6135 conjecture records; the total number of history records is 17430.
Many citations were added, notably by Sahlin and Könnecke.
John 19:11 cj15286 (Semler): the conjecture is the omission of ἄνωθεν (word 30), not με (word 40).
Rom 2:2 cj14296 (Sahlin): the proposal also includes the omission of δέ (or γάρ); therefore it is no longer an editorial alternative, but a conjecture.
1 Cor 4:1 cj14340 (Sahlin): the conjecture also includes the substitution for the plural forms ὑπηρέτας and οἰκονόμους by the singular forms ὑπηρέτης and οἰκονόμος.
2 Cor 1:10 cj14330 (Sahlin): the correct conjecture is εἰς ὃν ἠλπίκαμεν ὅτι καὶ ῥύσεται.
Heb 11:37 cj13431 (Wakefield): Wakefield conjectures ἐπειρώθησαν, not ἐπειράθησαν.
Rev 19:9-10 cj15259 (Charles): Charles' proposal is now listed as reinvention of Könnecke's conjecture cj12134. The latter was previously only on Rev 19:10, but on closer scrutiny turned out to be actually identical to Charles' one, and earlier than it. The original cj number (cj15259) has now been given to another (freshly found) conjecture, namely Könnecke's tentative omission of Rev 22:13.
3. 3 April 2017 (2017-2)
Compared to the previous release (2017-1), 126 conjecture records were added (cj16136 to cj16261), together with 378 history records (s27430 to s27807).
Most newly found conjectures are by Henri Bois, Johann Christoph Vollgraff, and Friedrich Blass. The total number of true conjectures is now 5864; the total number of history records is 17808.
Numerous citations were added, notably by Pallis, Semler, Bois, and Holwerda.
Due to limited Field Lengths, some citations and one book title have been shortened; the full citations will be made available in a later release (s11664; s12277; s14714; s15527; s15903; s17389; s28510; b4322 [at s23465]).
Mark 6:56 cj12998 (Pallis): the conjecture is ἀγυιαῖς, not ἀγνυαῖς.
1 Cor 1:2 cj15289 (Semler): the conjecture is not the omission of ἡγιασμένοις ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ, but of τῇ οὔσῃ ἐν Κορίνθῳ.
1 Cor 1:21 cj14337: an earlier author was found (Bois), so that Sahlin's discussion is now marked as "Reinvention."
1 Cor 3:17 cj13073 (Semler): the conjecture does not include the omission of οἵτινές ἐστε ὑμεῖς (as Heringa incorrectly indicates).
Jas 2:1 cj14544 (de Hoop Scheffer): this conjecture was found to be incorrect. De Hoop Scheffer's proposal actually coincides with Spitta's proposal (cj12801). Therefore the two records have been merged (into cj12801), and the ID cj14544 has been given to another freshly found conjecture, namely Bois' second proposal on 1 Tim 2:6. As a consequence, s19065 and s24509 had to be reused as well.
4. 1 July 2017 (2017-3)
Compared to the previous release (2017-2), 41 conjecture records were added (cj16262 to cj16302), together with 258 history records (s27808 to s28065). The total number of true conjectures is now 5905, out of 6302 conjecture records; the total number of history records is 18066.
Many fresh conjectures derive from Blass' work on Matthew's gospel. A few others were found as well, e.g. by Patricius Junius and John Price. Information from Griesbach's second edition was added.
Many citations were added, also to existing records, notably citations by Zachary Pearce (contributed by An-Ting Yi).
Acts 9:7 cj11625 (Valla): μηδενός has been changed into μηδένα, as this is the form in which the conjecture has been exclusively transmitted. Still, as Valla does not give the Greek, a case can be made that he intended μηδενός.
5. 1 October 2017 (2017-4)
Compared to the previous release (2017-3), 125 conjecture records were added (cj16303 to cj16427), together with 482 history records (s28066 to s28547). The total number of true conjectures is now 6030 (out of 6428 conjecture records); the total number of history records is 18547.
Many fresh conjectures are by Blass, but also conjectures by Zuntz, Price, Mill, Bailey, J. Weiss, Scheidweiler, Völter and some others were added. Noteworthy is also cj16367, as the most recent conjecture, published in 2017 by our colleague Peter-Ben Smit.
Noteworthy corrections and additions
Matt 9:12 cj11309: the conjecture was previously marked as misunderstood since the authors indicated by Bowyer (Heinsius and Grotius) could not be confirmed. The true author has now been identified, namely Samuel Clarke; hence the conjecture is no longer marked as misunderstood.
Mark 9:12 cj13009: a slightly earlier author than Pallis has been found, namely Bultmann (1931).
Luke 8:9 cj11389: the question of authorship has been resolved. It concerns a conditional conjecture (if λέγοντες is maintained, then the text should be emended) by Beza, repeated by Lucas Brugensis and Price.
Luke 8:36 cj15288: an earlier author than Griesbach has been found, namely Mill.
John 21:12 cj12005: an earlier author than Semler has been found, namely Mill.
Acts 8:10 cj14497: an earlier author than Michelsen has been found, namely Mill.
Acts 9:28 cj12015 (van de Sande Bakhuyzen): the conjecture was previously listed as attested by min. 1837 (following information from CNTTS), but it transpires (from CNTTS as well as ECM) that it omits the entire verse and should therefore not be counted as attestation for this short omission only.
Acts 13:33 cj10092 (Bornemann): for this conjecture, which has been adopted in the recently published ECM volume, the reception history has been much expanded.
Acts 19:40 cj15121: for Pervo's opinion that the verse contains a primitive corruption, Pervo himself indicates that Ropes already expressed the idea. Pervo's opinion is now listed as "Pro."
Acts 28:1 cj14697: an earlier author than Michelsen has been found, namely Mill.
1 Tim 6:5 cj13390: an earlier author than Naber has been found, namely Price.
Titus 2:5 cj13402 (Price): the conjecture should be listed as a substitution, not an addition.
Jas 3:6 cj15284: for this editorial alternative an earlier author than Abresch has been found, namely Heinsius (as well as Grotius).
Rev 1:7 cj11016 (Price): the correct form of the conjecture is ἐπ' αὐτοῦ, not ὑπ' αὐτοῦ, as incorrectly reported by Bowyer.
6. 1 January 2018 (2018-1)
Compared to the previous release (2017-4), 36 conjecture records were added (cj16428 to cj16463), together with 344 history records (s28548 to s28791). The total number of true conjectures is now 6064 (out of 6463 conjecture records); the total number of history records is 18791.
An interesting new conjecture is cj16456 by Constantine Simonides. It concerns a reading he included in several of his forgeries which in reality expresses his conviction on what the Greek text in Matt 19:24 should be.
Noteworthy corrections and additions
Matt 24:36 cj11261: the conjecture is now marked as "misunderstood," since its author, Owen, already appeals to manuscript attestation that he knows of.
Rom 6:19 cj14068: an earlier author than Moffatt has been identified, namely Wall (1730). This identification prevents the conjecture from being marked as misunderstood, which should have been done if Moffatt had remained the earliest author, since in his days the attestation of the omission in B03 was well known. Wall only refers to versional attestation (the Peshitta).
1 Cor 14:33-36 cj14070 (Moffatt): the conjecture was recorded incorrectly (though the citation makes clear what must be intended): the transposition is to after 1 Cor 14:40, not 1 Cor 13:40.
We express our thanks to colleagues who brought fresh information to our attention: Peter Gurry, Peter Head, Dora Panella, Marco Rotman, David Harold Warren, and Tommy Wasserman.
7. 7 April 2018 (2018–2)
Compared to the previous release (2018–1), 107 conjecture records were added (cj16464 to cj16570), together with 481 history records (s28792 to s29272). The total number of true conjectures is now 6173 (out of 6571 conjecture records); the total number of history records is 19272.
Noteworthy corrections and additions
The Bible de Jérusalem (English: Jerusalem Bible) contains a relatively high number of conjectures in its notes. This observation led us to explore the earliest French fascicules of the Bible de Jérusalem (1948–1953), which indeed yielded some fresh conjectures or support of known conjectures. More in particular Mollat’s conjectures on John betray a clear correlation with the work of Blass and Boismard, which as a consequence has received more attention as well, and will be studied more deeply for future instalments.
Some conjectures by Güting were added, pertaining to a pattern that detects more asyndeta in the Pauline epistles than the manuscripts contain (Rom 3:28 [cj16523]; Rom 11:13 [cj16512]; Rom 14:3 [cj16525]; Rom 15:20 [cj16519]; 1 Cor 7:34 [cj16524]; 1 Cor 8:7 [cj16526]; 1 Cor 8:11 [cj16537]; 2 Cor 5:8 [cj16520]; 2 Cor 12:15 [cj16521]; 2 Cor 13:5 [cj16522]).
Matt 2:5 cj11178: Jerome’s conjecture was previously listed for verse 1, where the same expression Βηθλέεμ τῆς Ἰουδαίας occurs, which the Remarks referring to verse 5. This solution has now been reversed.
Matt 6:28 cj14263: an author slightly earlier than Katz (1954) has been found, namely none other than Maas (1950). Since Katz does not refer to Maas, his contribution is now marked as “Reinvention.” Both critics improve upon an observation by Skeat on the reading in Codex Sinaiticus in a logical way, as would do, also independently, Sahlin (1982).
Matt 23:35 cj11258: the author to whom the conjecture was attributed, Hammond, actually does not support it, but mentions it without giving a name of an author. Therefore it is now given as anonymous. Possibly an earlier source can still be found.
Mark 14:22 cj15919: the correct form of Turner’s conjecture is not ἔφαγον πάντες· καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς but ἔφαγον ἐξ αὐτοῦ πάντες· καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς.
Luke 18:7 cj14449: an earlier author than Sahlin has been found, namely Jülicher. Interestingly, in a 1945 article Sahlin rejected the conjecture which he was to accept later.
Acts 19:24 cj15909: an earlier author than Shipley has been found, namely Blass.
Rom 9:5 cj14648: an earlier author than Schlichting has been found, namely Grotius.
1 Cor 10:11 cj16227 (Zuntz): Zuntz also omits δέ.
As usual, we express our thanks to colleagues who brought fresh information to our attention: Jeff Cate, Marco Rotman, and Frank Shaw.
The Amsterdam Database of New Testament Conjectural Emendation is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.