Testimonium Flavianum är inte till någon del skrivet av Josefus

Testimonium Flavianum är inte till någon del skrivet av Josefus.

HopperDetta är vad lingvisten Paul J. Hopper hävdar i en artikel från i fjol, “A Narrative Anomaly in Josephus: Jewish Antiquities xviii:63”, i Linguistics and Literary Studies / Linguistik und Literaturwissenschaft: Interfaces, Encounters, Transfers / Begegnungen, Interferenzen und Kooperationen, eds. M. Fludernik & D. Jacob (2014), ser. Linguae & litterae, vol. 31, s. 147–169.</ref>

En introduktion till vem Paul Hopper är, hämtad från engelskspråkiga Wikipedia:

Paul J. Hopper is an American linguist of British birth. In 1973, he proposed the glottalic theory regarding the reconstruction of the Proto-Indo-European consonant inventory, in parallel with the Georgian linguist Tamaz Gamkrelidze and the Russian linguist Vyacheslav V. Ivanov. He later also became known for his theory of emergent grammar (Hopper 1987), for his contributions to the theory of grammaticalisation and other work dealing with the interface between grammar and usage. He currently works as the Paul Mellon Distinguished Professor of Humanities at the Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, USA.

Hopper har analyserat texten ur ett strikt lingvistiskt perspektiv och jämfört den med de stycken i dess omgivning som behandlar Pilatus’ tid vid makten. För några dagar sedan förde jag in uppgifterna om detta i den Wikipediaartikel om ”Jesus hos Josefus” som jag skrivit och som fram till årsskiftet faktiskt var svenskspråkiga Wikipedias längsta artikel (listor borträknade). Jag skrev då följande:

Men lingvisten Paul J. Hopper menar att Testimonium Flavianum uppvisar en klart avvikande grammatik. Hopper har jämfört språket i Testimonium Flavianum med det i de övriga tre passagerna i bok 18 av Judiska fornminnen som handlar om Pontius Pilatus. Han kommer fram till att de grekiska verbformerna i Testimonium Flavianum markant avviker från den berättande stil som föreligger i de övriga berättelserna och att avvikelserna är så pass stora att man kan tala om en annan genre. Enligt Hopper är dessutom meningarna i Testimonium Flavianum välformulerade och syntaxen uppvisar heller inga avbrott som borde vara fallet om större strykningar och tillägg gjorts, och han menar att det på språklig grund därför inte finns skäl anta att en ursprunglig kortare Josefustext utökats med kristna tillägg. I stället anser Hopper att hela Testimonium Flavianum är en kristen skapelse. I stil och längd liknar det enligt honom de kristna trosbekännelser som började utarbetas under tidigt 300-tal, exempelvis då den apostoliska trosbekännelsen och den nicaenska trosbekännelsen som dessutom kyrkofader Eusebios var med och utformade. (Wikipedia, Jesus hos Josefus – Argument till stöd för förfalskning: Språket)

I inledningen till sin artikel skriver Hopper detta:

Josephus in the Jewish Antiquities introduces Jesus the Messiah into his history of the Jews, and appears to report events corresponding closely to those of the Gospels, including Jesus’s crucifixion on the orders of Pontius Pilate. A long standing dispute exists about the authenticity of this text. The present article offers a narratological analysis of the passage, comparing the styles of event reporting in the passage with the three other episodes in Josephus’s Pontius Pilate sequence. The study concludes that the uses of the Greek verb forms such as aorists and participles are distinct in the Jesus passage from those in the other Pilate episodes, and that these differences amount to a difference in genre. It is suggested that the Jesus passage is close in style and content to the creeds that were composed two to three centuries after Josephus. (s. 147)

Hopper skriver vidare:

My aim here is to point out some incompatibilities between the language of the Testimonium Flavianum and that of the other three episodes in the Pilate sequence that suggest they are not by the same author. (s. 148–149)

Enligt Hopper är berättelserna om Pontius Pilatus framförda i en berättande stil.

The language of the Pilate episodes, like that of Josephus’s work in general, is historical, that is, it is oriented toward the narration of events. The sense of a passage is therefore centered around the various verbal forms (verbs, infinitives, participles and nominalizations) that carry the main story line and the facts and situations that support it. (s. 155)

Testimonium Flavianum, däremot, är annorlunda framställd. Jesus framställs där som passiv och dessutom är berättelsen utformad mer som ett försvar för en position än som en vanlig berättelse.

That is, unlike the event reporting in the other Pontius Pilate episodes, we are not told in detail what Jesus did. Jesus is throughout a passive participant rather than an active agent. (s. 162)

The use of the negative in two of the four aorists suggests something else. Negatives point implicitly to the corresponding affirmative. They belong in the contexts of denial, of response to a challenge. They suggest here that the author is contradicting unheard voices that question the truth of the chronicle. There is an element of protest in the voice of the author of the Testimonium that is impossible to attribute to Josephus, the sober historian: “There must be some truth in all this, because his followers haven’t gone away, in fact they haven’t stopped worshipping him.” (s. 162–163)

Kan man då tänka sig att det är de kristna tilläggen och ändringarna I texten som har gjort den så avvikande mot det Josefus skrev i de övriga styckena? Enligt Hopper är det scenariot osannolikt eftersom sådana ändringar i texten skulle ha visat sig i syntaxen (ordföljden).

In fact, however, the syntax of the Testimonium does not display the kinds of discontinuities we might expect to find if substantial changes such as major deletions or insertions had been made. The sentences are well formed, the use of particles such as gar and de is appropriate, the Greek constructions are correct and complete. In short, the passage is linguistically and conceptually integrated, and the assumption of an originally longer text that has been substantially shortened or of a shorter text that has been lengthened does not appear to be warranted on purely internal linguistic grounds. (s. 149)

Artikeln är bitvis mycket teknisk och jag påvisar här bara ett antal av Hoppers slutsatser grundade på denna tekniska undersökning av språkets uppbyggnad. I vilket fall anser Hopper att Testimonium Flavianum överhuvudtaget inte är en berättelse om man ska jämföra den med det sätt på vilket de andra händelserna återges. Endast kristna skulle ha uppfattat Testimonium Flavianum som en berättelse, varför Josefus inte gärna kan ha skrivit TF.

The Testimonium has no such plot. From the point of view of its place in Josephus’s Jewish Antiquities, it does not qualify as a narrative at all. The Testimonium could not be understood as a story except by someone who could already place it in its “intelligible whole”, the context of early Christianity. (s. 165)

The Testimonium is anchored in a radically different discourse community from that of the rest of the Jewish Antiquities. The Testimonium reads more like a position paper, a party manifesto, than a narrative. Unlike the rest of the Jewish Antiquities, it has the same generic ambiguity between myth and history that Kermode (1979) has noted in the Gospels as a whole. (s. 165–166)

Hopper anser att Testimonium Flavianum mycket mer liknar de kristna trosbekännelser (creeds) som tillkom på 300-talet än Josefus’ berättelser. Han skriver följande:

The Testimonium Flavianum qualifies poorly as an example of either history or narrative. Where, then, does it fit generically? The closest generic match for the Testimonium is perhaps the various creeds that began to be formulated in the early fourth century, such as the Nicene Creed (325 CE).(ftn 10)

(n. 10) Eusebius of Caesarea (263–339) is sometimes mentioned as a possible author of the Testimonium and source of the interpolation (see Feldman 1965: 49). This same Eusebius, whose writings contain the first known citation of the Testimonium Flavianum, was also one of the creators of the Nicene Creed and played a central role in the wording and propagation of the creed. (s. 166)

Som synes antyder Hopper här att Eusebios kan ha varit den som skapat Testimonium Flavianum. Han framhåller dessutom Testimonium Flavianums längd, som också den stämmer med den typiska längden för trosbekännelser.

Less specifically credal, but similar in character to the creeds, are its length (77 Greek words, comparable to the 76 words of the Latin Apostles’ Creed and the 91 words of the Greek Apostles’ Creed) (s. 166)

Jag anser att Hoppers argumentering är trovärdig och ser få skäl till att tro att Josefus skulle ha skrivit ens något av Testimonium Flavianum. I sammanfattningen skriver Hopper följande:

The narrative grammar of the Testimonium Flavianum sets it sharply apart from Josephus’s other stories of the procuratorship of Pontius Pilate. The most likely explanation is that the entire passage is interpolated, presumably by Christians embarrassed at Josephus’s manifest ignorance of the life and death of Jesus. (s. 167)

Roger Viklund, 2015-01-21

Annonser

Richard Carrier’s article: Origen, Eusebius, and the Accidental Interpolation in Josephus, Jewish Antiquities 20.200

In December last year Richard Carrier had his article Origen, Eusebius, and the Accidental Interpolation in Josephus, Jewish Antiquities 20.200 published in the Journal of Early Christian Studies 
(vol. 20, no. 4, Winter 2012,
pp. 489–-514).

I should have commented upon it long ago. Anyway, in that article Carrier strongly arguments for the probability that the brief mention of Jesus in connection with James in Josephus’ Antiquities of the Jews (AJ) 20.200 is an accidental interpolation.

Richard Carrier

Richard Carrier, credit Wikipedia

Carrier begins by referring to the Testimonium Flavianum and says that he sides “with those scholars who conclude that the entire passage is an interpolation and that there was no mention of Jesus in the original text of AJ 18” (489). He gives two major arguments for reaching that position.

One is that the text of the Testimonium is so relatively short compared to what could be expected if Josephus really would have written about Jesus. A forger on the other hand would only have had “the remaining space available on a standard scroll” to add the additional text and would therefore “have been limited” to write only a short text. I have seen Carrier suggest this previously, but have never been convinced by it due to one specific circumstance. I have counted the words (or I guess the letters) of all the twenty books of the Antiquities of the Jews, and found that they deviated rather much in length. Book 18 is surpassed in length by very much more than the length of the Testimonium in quite number of books. So, unless I have misunderstood Carrier’s argument, there would have been plenty of room for a very much longer Testimonium if the scroll with book 18 were of the same length as some of the scrolls containing the longer books.

The other argument on the other hand, is much stronger. Carrier correctly, in my opinion, argues the following: “the paragraph that follows the TF begins with, ‘About the same time also another sad calamity put the Jews into disorder . . .’ (AJ 18.65), thereby indicating that Josephus had just ended with the sedition resulting in a public massacre described in AJ 18.60–62, and leaving no logical place for the unrelated digression on Jesus and the Christians (AJ 18.63–64).” I have made the same argument myself:

“The truly precarious in the situation is thus the first sentence of paragraph 4, which follows directly on the Testimonium. It says: “At about the same time, another [emphasis added] sad calamity put the Jews into disorder [ἐθορύβει, ethorubei]”. This means that if the Testimonium is genuine, if so only to a portion, Josephus must allude to the Testimonium when he directly after the Testimonium writes that another sad calamity put the Jews into disorder. He then had to be of the opinion that Jesus’ death was a sad calamity for the Jews – something almost unthinkable unless Josephus was a Christian, which he most likely was not.” (Part 2e of my article “The Jesus Passages in Josephus – a Case Study”, an article I intend to publish as a 200 pages pdf-file once I have updated the language and made some amendments)

But Carrier’s article is primarily not about the Testimonium, but the James passage. This he argues is an interpolation which came to be included accidentally. He further argues that “the passage was never originally about Christ or Christians. It referred not to James the brother of Jesus Christ, but probably to James the brother of the Jewish high priest Jesus ben Damneus.” (489) His way of reasoning is simplified this:

1)      Accidental interpolations happened frequently. When text by mistake was left out in the copying process, later proofreader would add the missing text either between the lines or in the margin. This text would then be inserted in the next copy of that copy. But scribes also included other text in the margins and between lines – sort of footnotes and the like. And “there was no standard notation for distinguishing marginal notes from accidentally omitted text” (490), and so marginal notes could easily be taken for being part of the original, and once it was included in the next copy the mistake would continue to be copied. Carrier writes: “A later scribe simply mistook the marginal note as accidentally omitted text and, upon creating a copy, ‘rectified’ the error by ‘reinserting’ it, thus creating an altered sentence that appears to be what its author originally wrote, but is not.” (491)

2)      Origen and Eusebius used the same manuscript or manuscript line of Josephus: “Around 231 C.E, Origen established a Christian library in Caesarea, which was passed to Pamphilus and then to Eusebius. Eusebius was thus in all likelihood using the very same manuscripts of Josephus that Origen had been using, or else copies thereof.” (492)

3)      Origen did not know the Testimonium: “In fact, the TF in that precise form was almost certainly not known to Origen, as there are several passages where it is almost certain he would have remarked upon it, even quoted it, had he known of it.” (492) Carrier, again correctly in my opinion, rejects all subjective reconstructions of alternative versions of the Testimonium, and also cautions us to trust the accuracy of so-called quotations. Like me, he thinks Alice Whealey is wrong when she claims that Eusebius originally wrote “He was thought to be the Messiah” in his quotation of the Testimonium. I am pleased to see that Carrier argues in the same way as I do regarding the small deviations of the Testimonium, especially in the translations: “More likely some early copy of Eusebius’s History alone was ‘improved’ by a scribe intending to restore a more plausible quotation from a Jew … and it is this that we see in Whealey’s cited examples. It is inherently less likely that all manuscript traditions of all the texts of Eusebius and all manuscript traditions of Josephus were conspiratorially emended in the same way, than only one manuscript tradition of a single text of Eusebius being emended the other way” (494).

4)      Since the Testimonium was not in Origen’s copy of AJ, but in Eusebius’, the latter must have used a copy of Origen’s copy from the same library and into which the Testimonium had been added. Carrier does accordingly not think that Eusebius invented the Testimonium himself. Although I would not bet on it, someone must have written the Testimonium if it was inserted into AJ, and Eusebius is then an obvious candidate. At least we can agree on that it was probably not yet invented by the time of Origen in the 240’s.

5)      The manuscript used by Eusebius would then have included marginal notes made into Origen’s manuscript (from which it would have been copied) and in all likelihood it also included Origen’s own notes.

6)      Carrier assumes that Josephus wrote “the brother of Jesus, the name for whom was James, and some others . . . ,” and that “the one called Christ” was added while perhaps at the same time “ben Damneus” was removed. He gives five reasons for assuming this (by me enumerated as a–e). a) If someone would make a note to remind himself of the place where he thought Josephus mentioned Jesus, “the one called Christ” is just what one could expect to be written. b) A participial clause such as this one is typical for interlinear notes. c) The phrase is practically identical to Matt 1.16 and something Josephus hardly would have written. d) In context, it seems odd to imagine that the executions would be executions of Christians, not least because many influential Jews are said to be very upset. e) The way in which this James is said to be killed diverges considerable from how it is described in Christian sources. I agree on all five issues, although point b seems a bit weaker than the rest.

7)      Carrier assumes that the wording ὃς … ἀδελφὸς Ἰησοῦ τοῦ λεγομένου Χριστοῦ, “the brother of Jesus who was called Christ”, stems from Origen expression (but not from empty nothingness) and not from Josephus. If “who was called Christ,” is removed, all that Josephus in AJ 20.200 and Origen share in common is the name James and the expression “brother of Jesus”. But they primarily differ in Origen linking James to the fall of Jerusalem, calling him Just and having the Jews wishing to have him killed (500).

8)      When Eusebius quotes the same passage in Josephus as Origen refers to, he is obviously not quoting Josephus but Origen. This can be seen from the fact that the quotation is basically identical to Origen’s wordings, that nor Eusebius knows where Josephus should have written it (Origen never said this) and that Eusebius is quoting the passage whereas Origen most certainly is not. Still the wording is identical. After this Eusebius also quotes the James passage which Origen never referred to and which obviously has entered into Josephus’ AJ after the time of Origen.

9)      If Josephus would have written about Jesus Christ of the Bible and he also had written the Testimonium, he would have provided a cross-reference and also explained what the name meant. Instead it is more likely that Josefus was referring to another Jesus, the one who became high priest after Ananus in 62 C.E. and whom Josefus mentions directly afterwards (503). According to Carrier (and I agree once more) the only intelligible reading of the story is that Ananus had James the brother of Jesus falsely accused and executed, and was punished for this by being disposed as High Priest and that James’ brother Jesus, son of Damneus, was appointed new High Priest: “In effect, Josephus was saying, ‘Ananus illegally executed the brother of Jesus, which got a reaction; for his crime, he was deposed and replaced by Jesus.’” (504) This Carrier, once again correctly, says is supported by the fact that the execution of Josephus’ James in no way, except for the stoning, corresponds to the Christian accounts of James’ death.

10)  Carrier suggests that Origen’s source for the James story was not Josephus, but the Christian hagiographer Hegesippus. This Hegesippus calls the Christian James “the Just”, and says that the fall of Jerusalem was the result of the execution of James (508). As the names Hegesippus and Josephus often were confused and Origen obviously refers to the same things as said by Hegesippus, Christian conceptions not shared by Josephus, the obvious interpretation, according to Carrier, is that Origen mistook a work by Hegesippus for being written by Josephus. (509-10)

To summarize, this is what Carrier suggests. In the 240’s Origen writes that “Titus destroyed Jerusalem, on account, as Josephus wrote, of James the Just, the brother of Jesus who was called Christ”. Although Origen says that Josephus wrote this, Origen nevertheless got it from Hegesippus, from whom he paraphrases it, not quotes it. He also includes a passage from Matt 1.16, and this he does in his Commentary on Matthew.

Origen searches Josephus in order to find where Josephus had written this, but does not manage to find the passage. He only finds the story of the stoning of one James in AJ 20.200 which spoke of “the brother of Jesus, whose name was James”. Perhaps he made a note there: “the one called Christ”. If Origen did not make such a note, then someone else later on made it, adapting to the phrase Origen previously used.

Eusebius used the same library as Origen less than a century later, and probably had a copy of AJ which was made from the very manuscript used by Origen. In the copying of that manuscript, the marginal note would have been inserted into the text so that it now read “the brother of Jesus who was called Christ, the name for whom was James …”. Eusebius, apart from this, also quoted the passage given by Origen as if it had been written by Josephus. But since he only got it from Origen, neither he could say where Josephus had written this.

As AJ later was copied, it was the expanded version used by Eusebius that became the standard version from which all later copies were made.

Most of this has already been dealt with at length, also by me. The “new” things are that this is published in a peer reviewed article (which seems to be so important for so many), and the idea of the manuscript line leading directly from Origen to Eusebius. Also this is known facts, but Carrier has refined and isolated the train of thought, even leaving out many alternative scenarios as being less likely. Although I share Carrier’s opinion that also the mention of Jesus Christ in AJ 20.200 is a later addition to the text, I am not as convinced as he seems to be, that this was done as described above. It is for sure a convincing line of argument that Carrier presents, still there are a number of other possibilities which – at least combined – seem to be as likely. The least likely scenario though is that Josephus would have written it.

Roger Viklund, 2013-04-02