fol. 72v-73r, St. John the Evangelist
This little manuscript must have seen considerable use. Its size made it easily portable and the parchment is not of fine qualitya trait that must have made this book affordable as well. The parchment is damaged on the hair side (the rougher side) and is brownish in places with some water spots, again indicating hard usage. Apparently there once existed a companion volume of Matthew and Mark which has so far been undiscovered. The back of the modern cardboard cover shows part of an eighteenth-century printing of the Greek Orthodox liturgy.
Since the scribe uniformly wrote nineteen lines per page, it is not difficult to determine how many leaves are lacking. In Luke twenty leaves are missing and in John three. Following the end of John is a table of contents of a lectionary consisting of thirteen leaves and containing a list of Scripture lessons to be read on particular days. The passage on the woman taken in adultery (John 7:53-8:11) is present and it is within the text of John, not at the end as sometimes occurs. The text is Byzantine. The forty-five passages sampled in Luke are Byzantine, and of the 365 passages sampled in John all but seventeen passages are Byzantine (or 95.5%).
The manuscript has been dated on the basis of paleographic evidence to the second half of the thirteenth century. The letters are written through, not on top of, the lines, indicating a date after the tenth century. A note after the conclusion of Luke reads: The Gospel according to Luke was published 15 chronoi after the ascension of Christ. But, unfortunately, the length of a chronos is nowhere stated.
Facing the opening leaf of the text of John is a portrait of the evangelist (leaf 72v). Generally, author portraits are of two varieties: those which show the evangelists standing and those in which they are seated while writing, meditating or teaching. In this painting, though considerably rubbed, John is seated with a scroll in his hands. In front of him is a cabinet from which rises a pillar that supports a lectern. The background is yellow or gold. Across the top are the words ió(annés) o Theolog(os) which means John, the one who speaks of God or Gods herald. Some marginal notes are in red ink, and Luke ends with the usual upside down pyramid arrangement of the last four lines.
John Fleming, the New York bookseller, showed me this manuscript in 1967. He said he had acquired it from the stock of A. S. W. Rosenbach and he graciously let me borrow it for a number of months so that I might put the disbound leaves in order (the pages had been shuffled like a deck of cards). After I had returned it having numbered the pages in pencil at the top right-hand corners and described its contents, Mr. Fleming asked the Morgan Library in New York for an opinion concerning the date. They placed it in the thirteenth century. In 1988 I took the manuscript to the Institut für Neutestamentliche Textforschung in Münster, Germany, where the Professors Aland and their staff examined it, dating it to the last half of the thirteenth century. The Institute had no previous knowledge of the existence of this manuscript and assigned it number 2813 in their census.
Literature: Fleming 1968; Hatch 1931; Thompson 1893, 159-80.