Tatian’s Diatessaron in Latin : a new edition and translation of Codex Fuldensis.
Zola, Nicholas J.
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When Tatian composed his Diatessaron in the second half of the second century, his text would have predated nearly all extant copies of the Gospels today. But his gospel harmony has not survived intact, either in Greek or Syriac. What we have instead are citations and translations. The oldest surviving translation is in Codex Fuldensis, a Latin NT commissioned by Victor of Capua between 541 and 546. Like all surviving translations, its text has been “vulgatized” to read like a standard version of the Gospels, in this case the Latin Vulgate. Scholars once assumed that Fuldensis was the sole parent of all medieval Diatessaronic harmonies, but closer examination in the last century revealed readings in these later vernaculars that seemed to disagree with Fuldensis but agree with Eastern Diatessaronic witnesses. Scholars therefore postulated that an “Old Latin” Diatessaron had somehow survived in the West and fed these vernaculars “unvulgatized” Diatessaronic readings. More recently, some have challenged that premise by demonstrating that certain “Old Latin” readings in the vernacular harmonies actually derive from medieval exegetical glosses—and sometimes simply from mistakes in the printed editions themselves. As a result, the entire Western Diatessaronic tradition is collapsing back into a single witness: Codex Fuldensis. However, the most recent—in fact, the only—edition of Codex Fuldensis is from 1868, by Ernst Ranke. It is known to contain errors and was produced at a time prior to all the major advancements of Diatessaronic studies. Moreover, Codex Fuldensis has never been translated into any modern language. The field is in dire need of an updated edition and translation, which is the aim of the current study. Chapter one provides an introduction to the manuscript and its role in the shifting perspective on the Diatessaron. Chapters two through four provide selected texts and translation of Fuldensis, with apparatus and commentary. Chapter five uses indicative errors in Fuldensis to test its relationship with two later harmonies, Codex Sangallensis and the Liège Diatessaron. Upon completion, this edition and translation of Codex Fuldensis is intended to become the definitive edition of the manuscript for years to come.