Grantley McDonald - Raising the Ghost of Arius - errata

Steven Avery

Grantley McDonald - Raising the Ghost of Arius - errata

This thread will concentrate ONLY on errata in Raising the Ghost of Arius (RGA) and the book Biblical Criticism in Early Modern Europe. (BCEME)

Grantley McDonald has not shown interest in publishing an errata, not even a simple internet page, which would be essentially free.

In some cases, we will be showing important auxiliary material, as when an author is called anonymous but his identity is known.

These range in importance from very minor errors (like the date of a book) to incredibly significant blunders. For now they are simply being put in by date of discovery.

And there are a few already on the main Ghost of Arius page, those will either be brought here or place the url here.


Grantley McDonald to Steven Avery - Feb 2, 2018 Messenger:
".... it's good to have people like you who know the material so well and who are willing to flag problems. That's really a help. So thanks!"

Grantley McDonald to Steven Avery - December 15, 2018 Messenger
I really appreciate the time and trouble you have gone to in reading and engaging with my work. That's what it's all about!

Steven Avery to Grantley McDonald- December 15, 2018 Messenger
I feel that what the efforts you made to extract a lot of historical scholarship should help anyone studying the history and the verse from any side

Grantley McDonald to Steven Avery - April 24, 2019 - Messenger
Dear Steven, thanks so much again for your eagle eyes! I'm away for a couple of weeks on an archive run to Belgium, but I'll get back to you once I'm back and have settled into my notes again! Do send me all your queries and corrections. I'm very grateful for them.
Now that Grantley is planning to make efforts to suppress this material, it is more important to put out a fairly complete errata. Most of these are new to the Public arena, and are not on the Pure Bible Forum pages. I was deferring to the possibility of Grantley putting out an errata, however, that idea is now defunct, the major concern is full exposure, in lieu of the censorship attempt.

Some of the worst errors are in BCEME (e.g. not knowing what text Erasmus, Luther and Newton supported in 1 Timothy 3:16, really basic distinction in the variants) and might well have been caught in the dissertation review.

All Grantley McDonald quotes are "fair use", with strong value-added commentary added with the quotes.

This project will likely take a couple of days, starting on June 9, 2020. Right now I am putting them in just in the order that I found the problems, later I plan to change the order.

Grantley plans a book from Cyprian to Erasmus. Hopefully, he will have learned a lot for that book. :)

#1 - Introduction
#2 - Significant Errors 1-10
#3 - Significant Errors 11-20 blank now
#4 - Small Errata
#5 - Mistaken names and finding Anonymous Authors
#6 - wip
#7 - Apparatus creations, errors and confusions (naming early church works)
#8 - notes
#9 - WIP NOTES for research
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Steven Avery


- (use search function to jump)
Considering changing this to a thread where each on has its own post and url.

Post #2
Ending of Mark is in the Peshitta manuscripts
"spiritus" Wild Attack on Frederick Nolan - Based on Grantley not Understanding the Grammatical Argument
Frederick Nolan - Eusebius secret inclination and Arianism and the Trinity
Wild Attack on KJVToday - scholarly consensus
Words from John Calvin 1537 are ascribed to Michael Servetus, misunderstanding John Wesley commentary
Tischendorf and the Textus Receptus
The "ADVANCES" of Westcott and Hort - Syrian Recension !?
Vulgate Prologue - Selden and Sandius

Erasmus 'vindicated' by 1969 Vulgate and Nova Vulgata

Post #3
Erasmus 1 John Paraphrase Before Third New Testament Edition
Erasmus - early Christians had no doctrine of the Trinity
Three Known Manuscripts - GA 629 Code Ottobonianus MIA
Wild Haphazard Integrity Attack against respected verse Defender Robert Bellarmine
Excision of the comma from the textus receptus?
Erasmus, Luther and Newton did not support the modern CT ὃς (solecism variant) for 1 Timothy 3:16
the false claim that Erasmus wrote of a marginal gloss that then came into the New Testament text
Date of Philopatris - outdated scholarship
Francis Turretin and Michael Walther

John Mill, Elzeviers and later scholars uninformed about the seven Stephanus mss?

Post #4
Scrivener AV underlying text Greek NT was not 'last years' it was published 1881 for the Revision
Scofield Reference Bible - edition of choice of most fundamentalists??
Frederick Nolan and Eusebius 'model of orthodoxy'. Walter Bauer on the loose.

attempting to slip in forgery pseudo-fact on Jerome's Vulgate Prologue
Simon's Calvinist Antagonist, Louis Capel?
Vulgate apocrypha sections - Melchior Cano not "of course" mistaken
Mistaken Pro-Con Authenticity Positions? (especially Lutherans) Melancthon was pro
John Mill and Cyprian - spinning untranslated Latin (possibly based on 3rd parties unknown)

(more planned - one or two to be moved to lesser spots like date updates)


Ending of Mark is in the Peshitta Manuscripts

p. 60, - BCEME
3- Syriac and Arabic editions
Serious study of the Syriac Vulgate (Peshitta) in Western Europe only began in the middle of the sixteenth century. Discrepancies between this ancient translation and the Latin Vulgate caused concern in some quarters. Not only did this translation lack entire books (2 Pt, 2 Jn, 3 J11, Jude, Rev), it also lacked the long ending of Mark ...
The ending of Mark, is in all the Peshitta mss with Mark 16, approximately 500+ extant mss . The ending is only missing in one Old Syriac ms., the Sinaitic (the Curetonian included the section.) James Snapp brought this to the attention of Grantley by Jan. 2018. This error shows a basic unfamiliarity with the manuscript evidences.


"spiritus" Wild Attack on Frederick Nolan - Based on Grantley not Understanding the Grammatical Argument

RGA - p. 22, Note 21
21 Nolan’s “argument from grammar” contains further deficiencies. For example, he writes that “the reading of the Greek Vulgate [... ] is not to be tolerated; the reading of the Latin Vulgate [...] is grammatically correct.”This point is a red herring. The Latin versions translate the participle μαρτυροῦντες with a relative clause (qui testimonium dant/ testimonium dicunt/ testificantur) because it would not have occurred to a native Latin speaker to translate the substantival participle in the Greek text as tres sunt testantes. Moreover, spiritus is masculine, so the three earthly witnesses as a group are construed as grammatically masculine. Nolan’s claim that the Latin is more correct than the Greek is thus irrelevant.
This blunder is also covered as part of the general grammatical analysis:

the grammatical issues in The Ghost of Arius (solecism and Middleton on the article)

This non-sequitur shows that Grantley has zero understanding of the grammatical gender argument, one of the super-evidences for authenticity. Spiritus is masculine in Latin simply confirms that there is no grammatical problem in the Latin. Precisely the point from Nolan. The key grammatical issue is in the Greek, where water, spirit and blood are all neuter.

Not only has Grantley given us a red herring analysis, Grantley also uses that false analysis that as his main attack against both the learned Frederick Nolan and the grammatical gender argument.


Frederick Nolan - Eusebius secret inclination and Arianism and the Trinity

RGA p. 14
One argument frequently made to support the authenticity of the comma is the so-called “argument from grammar,” often associated with Frederick Nolan (1815) .... Nolan believed that the comma was an integral part of the Greek text, but had been removed by Eusebius out of a secret inclination to Arianism. To support this hypothesis he argued that while the masculine participle μαρτυροῦντες (“those bearing witness”) in verse 7 requires at least one masculine referent, the neuter nouns πνεῦμα (spirit), ὕδωρ (water) and αἷμα (blood) in verse 8 cannot serve as referents without creating a grammatical problem. This apparent solecism, he argued, disappears if the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are made the referent of the participle, thus proving that a reference to the Trinity must have been an original and integral part of the text.2
2 Nolan, 1815, 257-260; Dabney, 1890-1897, 1:377-379.
Note: the real blunder involving Frederick Nolan is on p. 22, and will be discussed separately, involving the grammar of the verse.

First note, that the most important historical source for the grammatical argument, Eugenius Bulgaris, was not referenced at all in RGA. He did get a small section in BCEME.


As for the sections above:

An inquiry into the integrity of the Greek Vulgate, or received text of the New Testament (1815)

the Father, Son and Holy Spirit - no argument by Nolan based on Son rather than the Word.
a reference to the Trinity must have been an original and integral part of the text - this is Grantley's extrapolation and not a quote from Nolan, who rarely referred to "a reference to the Trinity"
removed by Eusebius out of a secret inclination to Arianism- Nolan on Eusebius and Arianism is best expressed on p. 132-133, there is no indication of a "secret inclination".


Wild Attack on KJVToday - scholarly consensus

RGA - p. 65
112 The discoveries of Payne and Canart have been claimed by defenders of the comma as decisive proof of its antiquity: , accessed 18 September 2010.
This anonymous article (KJVToday) is littered with errors of fact and reasoning, and should not be used as a guide to the scholarly consensus on the comma.
June, 8, 2020 access

Should Grantley be taken to court for his comment? :)

KJVToday is generally an excellent page, so what are the "errors of fact and reasoning"? (Reasoning being quite subjective.) And KJVToday makes improvements and corrections when proper. And I could go through the paper and point out all sorts of excellent points that Grantley could use for his future writings. (Note: I do also make some criticisms of the KJVToday, generally minor.)

And the author never claims to give you the "scholarly consensus", so bringing in that notion is simply silly from Grantley, a red herring.


Words from John Calvin 1537 are ascribed to Michael Servetus, misunderstanding John Wesley commentary

BCEME - p. 261
(formatting for quoted words added -- no reference given, so detective work was needed)
John Wesley ... Perhaps suspecting that his congregation included some Unitarians, he stated that he ‘dare not insist upon any one’s using the word Trinity, or Person. I use them myself without any scruple, because I know of none better: But if any man has any scruple concerning them, who shall constrain him to use them? I cannot.’ As an illustration of the evils to which an insistence on such matter can lead, he mentioned that the
‘merciful John Calvin’
had burned Servet for asserting that although he believed that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit were all God, nevertheless he hesitated to use the words ‘Trinity’ and ‘persons’, since they were not found in the bible. By contrast, Wesley would insist only that his hearers embrace the words of the
comma ‘as they lie in the text’.
The John Wesley position is very significant.

The Works of the Reverend John Wesley, A. M. (1850)
On the Trinity

4. I dare not insist upon any one’s using the word Trinity or Person. I use them myself without any scruple, because I know of none better : but if any man has any scruple concerning them, who shall constrain him to use them ? I cannot: much less would I burn a man alive, and that with moist green wood, for saying, “Though I believe the Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Ghost is God, yet I scruple using the words Trinity and Persons, because I do not find those terms in the Bible. These are the words which merciful John Calvin cites as wrote by Servetus in a letter to himself. I would insist only on the direct words, unexplained, just as they lie in the text: “ There are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.”

Grantley has mangled the reason for the burning of Servetus. And Servetus would not say that the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost are all God, a point even by Grantley in a different spot, the section about the Holy Spirit did not exist vs. was not yet given. Thus this claim that the quoted words were from Servetus should not have passed the doctrinal 'smell test'.

The root of the problem is following Wesley, whose wording is ambiguous at best, or he may have mixed up Calvin and Servetus, or he may have been adding some subtle irony. The words in brown-bold are actually words of Calvin in 1537, after the Geneva Confession with William Farel caused a reaction and trial. (Although we should also track down the Sermons reference.)

William Drummond helps make this clear in his footnote:

The Life of Michael Servetus: The Spanish Physician, Who, for the Alleged Crime of Heresy, was Entrapped, Imprisoned, and Burned by John Calvin the Reformer, in the City of Geneva, October 27, 1553 (1848)
William Hamilton Drummond

(Drummond also gives the reference:
"of one of his Sermons (vol 4, p. 55,) that pious, excellent, and truly Christian divine says:--")

"It may seem not a little remarkable that Calvin objected to the use of the term trinity, and that he should express his disapprobation of it
thus:—“I like not this prayer, 0 holy, blessed, and glorious trinity, have mercy on us. It savours of barbarity. The word trinity is barbarous, insipid, prophane; a human invention, grounded on no testimony of God's word: the popish god, or idol, altogether unknown to the prophets and apostles.” Such a declaration might have been quite sufficient to hand him over to the tender mercies of the Inquisition, and give him a passport to another world, through such a medium as that through which he sent Servetus."

Note though that Calvin spoke those words about 15 years before we had Servetus burned in Geneva.

Here is a source that gives some of the context of the Calvin quote above (which would never fit for Servetus):

The Life of John Calvin (1850)
By Thomas Henry Dyer

Though the synod and council of Berne, to which Caroli had appealed from Lausanne, had, as we have said, acquitted them of the charge brought against them by Caroli, it had required that they should subscribe the Helvetic confession, drawn up at Basle in February, 1530, and ratified by the Reformed cantons in the following May: in the 6th article of which we find the term Persons used with regard to the Trinity. Yet, in spite of this subscription, Calvin and Fared still continued to object to the use of the words Trinity and Person ...

There can be a lot more to this discussion, however for now I just want to point out the Wesley difficulty and the Grantley error.

This error I just fully unraveled today, June 09, 2020, although I did note earlier that Wesley seemed to be misrepresenting Calvin-Servetus.

The section here:

Did Calvin Murder Servetus? (2008)
By Stanford Rives
p. 200-226
See the quote on p. 220

Questionably, Standford Rives on p. 225
""Servetus too held that Jesus, the Holy Spirit and the Father are all God, but that did not make him trinitarian."
Rives corrects a different Drummond location of a citation on p. 225.

Is interesting, but he does have some selection bias.
An attempt for the flip-side is here:

Confession on the Trinity [1]
by John Calvin
Translated by Casey Carmichael


Tischendorf and the Textus Receptus

"Tischcndorf knew that it would have been hopeless to expect the Roman Catholic clergy to treasure the Protestant textus receptus higher than the Latin Vulgate."
Novum Testamentum graece (1841)
Constantine Tischendorf

Here a bit more checking is needed. Grantley referenced p. 615-616. Since the Tischendorf texts were far from the textus receptus, it is hard to see how Tischendorf would desire the RCC to accept the TR text. At best, this is ultra-awkward.


The "ADVANCES" of Westcott and Hort - Syrian Recension !?

BCEME - p. 296
Brooke Foss Westcott (1825–1901) and Fenton John Anthony Hort (1828–1892). These two scholars worked together for some twenty-eight years to construct a Greek text of the New Testament based on the advances of earlier scholars such as Tischendorf and Tregelles. Westcott and Hort distinguished the families of texts proposed by Bengel into further divisions, and proposed two new ideas: first, that the Syrian text (the basis of the Byzantine text) had been subject to two separate recensions; and that there existed a pre-recensional text close to that written by the original authors.72 Such advances in the study of the Greek text ...
72 Gregory 1900–1909, 2:917–921

How can their Syrian text recensions theory (or their Syriac text recension theory) be an "advance"? All these recension theories are basically in the dustbin of textual criticism history, even the idea of one Syrian (Byzantine Greek) recension is essentially a dodo bird. Although occasionally there is a half-hearted attempt of use the theory. There were failures, not advances.

Textkritik des Neuen Testamentes. 3 vols. Leipzig: Hinrichs, 1900-1909
Constantine Tischendord

And the reference to the theories of Westcott-Hort through Gregory:

The "ADVANCES" of Westcott and Hort - Pre-Recensional Text

BCEME - p. 296
there existed a pre-recensional text close to that written by the original authors
Is quite obscure. Is it a reference to Vaticanus? Maybe the ethereal "Neutral Text"?

It would have helped to actually use the English writings of Westcott and Hort to try to make whatever point is being attempted. Or even the Gregory English writings.


Vulgate Prologue - Selden and Sandius

RGA - p. 162
"Sandius (like Selden after him, see below) also asserted that the prologue to the Catholic Epistles was not written by Jerome,"
Two errors.
1) Selden is before Sandius
2) Selden's position is equivocal (even acknowledged by Turton)


Erasmus 'vindicated' by 1969 Vulgate and Nova Vulgata

BCEME - p. 311
However, by 1969, when the Württembergische Bibelanstalt published its critical edition of the Vulgate under the joint direction of Roman Catholic and Protestant scholars, the critical consensus finally decided against the Johannine comma, and it was relegated to the critical apparatus.143 The present-day ‘official’ Roman-Catholic bible in Latin, the Nova Vulgata (1979), reflects the Greek text of the Nestle-Aland edition, and thus excludes the Johannine comma. After more than four and a half centuries, Erasmus’ initial judgement on the Johannine comma was finally vindicated.
143 Metzger 1977, 351. .
The Wordsworth-White Vulgate of 1911 had removed the heavenly witnesses.
Grantley is frequently trying to make by his emphasis on "consensus", scholarly, critical, etc.

Novum Testamentum Latine (1911)



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Steven Avery

Post #3
Erasmus 1 John Paraphrase Before Third New Testament Edition
Erasmus - early Christians had no doctrine of the Trinity
Three Known Manuscripts - GA 629 Code Ottobonianus MIA
Wild Haphazard Integrity Attack against respected verse Defender Robert Bellarmine
Excision of the comma from the textus receptus?
Erasmus, Luther and Newton did not support the modern CT ὃς (solecism variant) for 1 Timothy 3:16
the false claim that Erasmus wrote of a marginal gloss that then came into the New Testament text
Date of Philopatris - outdated scholarship
Francis Turretin and Michael Walther

John Mill, Elzeviers and later scholars uninformed about the seven Stephanus mss?

Erasmus 1 John Paraphrase Before Third New Testament Edition

RGA - p. 121 also BCEME
Even after Erasmus had expressed his doubts about the comma in the Annotationes to the third edition of his New Testament, he was still happy to employ it when it suited his purposes. In 1523 he published his Paraphrases of all the Apostolic Epistles, a Latin translation combined with running theological commentary.
Steven Avery
Grantley has the Erasmus Paraphrase as 1523, after edition 3. However it was published in Jan, 1521.
"... and the Paraphrase on the three epistles of John a few weeks later in January 1521"
Desiderii Erasmi Roterodami Opera omnia: Carmina - Page 5 (1997)
1523 is the Gospel of John date, also the full Paraphrases of the Apostolic Epistles

RGA - p. 77
See also Erasmus, Ratio seu methodus compendio perveniendi ad veram theologiam (1519) in Erasmus, 1933, 258-259:
And I'm pretty sure the Ratio usage is shown to be published in 1518, rather than 1519 However, this note shows some of the complications.

These dates are important because they show Erasmus usage before the 3rd edition and likely before Montfortianus was known to Erasmus.

(Now in Grantley errata page.)


Erasmus - early Christians had no doctrine of the Trinity

BCEME - p. 96
"In a work on the Trinity {De falsa et vera unius Dei Patris, Filii et.Spiritus Sancti cognitione), co-written with David and published anonymously in 1567 or 1568, Biandrata declared that the first Christians had no doctrine of the Trinity, a conclusion reached earlier by Joachim of Fiore, Erasmus, Servet and Bernardino Ochino, a prominent Italian Franciscan who subsequently converted to Calvinism and then to Antitrinitarianism. "
Very possibly true for some of these men. However, quotes are needed. This is especially true for Erasmus. I have never heard of Erasmus saying that there was no Trinity for the early Christians.

Any scholar could hold that there was no doctrine of the Trinity in the 1st century, however I have never heard this said by Erasmus, and for the other men there would need to be a quote.


Three Known Manuscripts - GA 629 Code Ottobonianus MIA

There are a number of questions in the Bellarmine section.

RGA - p. 87
the reading in the Complutensian bible is quite different from that in the only two extant manuscripts that contain the comma in Greek (Montfortianus and GA 629),
Two manuscripts? This contradicts other spots in the paper! Perhaps 4 in text, 9 including margin spots.

BCEME p. 84
"However, only three known manuscripts display this reading in the body text, and all three were copied between the sixteenth and the eighteenth centuries from printed editions.58"
58 GA 918, 2318, 2473; see K. Aland, Benduhn-Mertz and Mink 1987, 165, Lesarten [6, 6C].
The logic is hard to follow. Where does this place Codex Ottobonianus, a 1300s diglot, GA 629

"Today, 629 is in the Vatican Library as Ottob. gr. 298. "

Perhaps "this reading" is used to qualify? Very unclear.

Ottobonianus shows that the restoration of the heavenly witnesses to the Greek line that was spurred by the Lateran Council also affected the manuscripts.

It would be interesting to go back to the source that Grantley gives and see if there is any reference to Ottobonianus.

Aland, Kurt, Annette Benduhn-Mertz and Gerd Mink, ed. Text und Textwert
der griechischen Handschriften des Neuen Testaments. Die Katholischen Briefe.
3 vols. Berlin: De Gruyter, 1987.


Wild Haphazard Integrity Attack against respected verse defender Robert Bellarmine

RGA p. 157
Bellarmino’s selective use of the philological evidence provided by Erasmus is misleading, while his co-opting of those Latin Fathers whose works
merely show a knowledge of the allegorical interpretation of 1 Jn 5:8 is nothing short of deceptive. Moreover, Bellarmino’s reliance on the decretal of ps.-Hyginus is quite unworthy.41

BCEME - p. 84-85
Either Bellarmino had access to manuscripts that have since disappeared, or he was not telling the truth. His selective use of the philological evidence provided by Erasmus is also misleading, while his co-opting of those Latin fathers who merely provide an allegorical interpretation of 1 Jn 5:8 is deceptive. Moreover, Bellarmino’s reliance on the decretal of pseudo-Hyginus was disingenuous.59 However, Bellarmino’s status within the church and his later canonisation gave his Three books particular prominence and authority, and they were reprinted into the eighteenth century.
Bellarmine, along with Jodocus Coccius, not given by Grantley, were two able verse defenders in the late 1500s. This seems to have unhinged Grantley a bit.

This is a truly terrible attempt to attack Bellarmine's integrity, by using anachronims and circular reasoning (e.g. Grantley has the absurd view that Cyprian was not referencing the verse, such a modern questionable position cannot be used to attack the integrity of Bellarmine!) and other fallacies. Bellarmine was a very solid scholar, whom the Protestants respected.

"The learned Lutheran historian Mosheim admits that the Jesuit controversialist “collected with reason and diligence the reasons and objections of his adversaries and proposed them for the most part in their full force with integrity and exactness.” (and additional quotes)

" co-opting of those Latin fathers who merely provide an allegorical interpretation of 1 Jn 5:8 is deceptive"

This is weak, circular, and anachronistic, relating to very dubious later modern scholarship.

The only solid question from Grantley is Hyginus. Presumably Bellarmine was not accepting the later date given after the Valla research on forgery.

Grantley is going so far as to say that:

Eugenius of Carthage (Council of Carthage 484 AD)

were all only giving allegorical interpretations of verse 8, which is absurd.

"Although Bellarmino was aware of Erasmus’ work on the New Testament, he retained the comma as a weapon to confute the arguments
of the Antitrinitarian Giorgio Biandrata (c. 1516–1588)."

This type of motive mind-reading, without evidence, is not scholarly, and quite common from Grantley. There is zero evidence that Bellarmino rejected the common Latin Vulgate reading, including the heavenly witnesses, and that he only supported the verse because of apologetics contra Socinians and others.

In reply, Bellarmino asserted that the readings in the Greek and Latin codices at this point are different: in v. 7, the Greek codices say that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit ‘are one’ (ἕν εἰσι),
The codices have Word, not Son, so does Bellarmine have Son?

Opera Omnia
By Robert Bellarmin
p. 103-105


Excision of the comma from the textus receptus?

BCEME - p. 283
"The attention attracted by the excision of the comma from the textus receptus, which was slowly being dismantled by the critics, ..."
There has never been an excision from the textus receptus, as TR editions like Youngs Literal or the NKJV, have always maintained the heavenly witnesses in the text.


Erasmus, Luther and Newton did not support the modern CT ὃς (solecism variant) for 1 Timothy 3:16

BCEME - p. 159 .
“Luther .. sided with Erasmus conclusion that ὃς was the original reading.”

"Erasmus suggested that the reading Θεός had arisen from an optical confusion in the uncial manuscripts between the abbreviated nomen sacrum ΘΣ (Θεός, ‘God’) and the relative pronoun ΟΣ (‘who’),"

Luther noted Erasmus’ suggestion that θεός was an anti-Arian corruption, and sided with Erasmus’ conclusion that ὅς was the original reading.
150 These conclusions also appealed to Newton, …
Neither Luther or Erasmus or Newton supported ὃς (who). (which creates a solecism that eventually led to hymn theory in the 1800s)

.. Luther supported the Vulgate reading which is equivalent to the Greek ὃ (which). Luther was equivocal between God and which - but the issue is that the solecism who was NOT in play for any of the three scholars. Luther changed his text in c. 1545

Jortin summarizes it well here:

Burgon explains how Tischendorf started the new march to "who" (or "he who") here:

George Benson in the 1700s preceded Griesbach on ὃς, this is made clear by the unitarian Andrews Norton:

A Statement of Reasons for Not Believing the Doctrines of Trinitarians: Concerning the Nature of God and the Person of Christ (1882)

"Among modern critics,

is regarded as the most probable reading by Benson, Griesbach, Schott, Water, Rosenmüller, Heinrichs, Meyer, De Wette, Olshausen, Wiesinger, Huther, Lachmann, Tischendorf, Davidson, and Tregelles;

is preferred by Erasmus, Grotius, Sir Isaac Newton, Wetstein, and Professor Porter.

Calvin and Beza really ripped the position of Erasmus on speaking against "God was manifest"
99% of the Greek mss are on the QEOS side

Now Grantley tries to give a correction:

Corrigenda to McDonald, Biblical Criticism in Early Modern Europe (2016)

Errata - Erasmus 1Timothy 3-16.jpg

And this does not solve the problem at all.
We are discussing this at the:

Facebook - Textus Receptus Academy

As I do not see Erasmus speaking of "optical confusion".


the false claim that Erasmus wrote of a marginal gloss that then came into the New Testament text
(ironically this claim is also false in Grantley's claim for Erasmus in 1 Timothy 3:16 right above)

RGA - p. 141
Furthermore, Bullinger followed Erasmus’ judgment in the Annotationes that this Trinitarian interpretation had begun as a marginal gloss which a half-learned (sciolus) reader or scribe had integrated into the text.168
Let's check in the Annotations if Erasmus spoke of such a marginal gloss.
Nope, nothing there.

While Bullinger mentions the margin, and he mentions Erasmus, they are not connected.

168 Bullinger, 1549, 103:
“Quidam multis hic agunt de unitate trinitatis, sed non in loco suo. Nihil enim hic agit de unitate trinitatis, quæ alibi commodius & firmius inducitur & comprobatur. Nam illud membrum, quod quędam insertum habent exemplaria (quoniam tres sunt qui testimonium dant, in coelo pater, sermo & spiritus sanctus, & hi treis unum sunt) è margine uidetur irrepsisse. Annotauit id forsan sciolus aliquis, qui non uidit aqua significari coelestem doctrinam, sanguine redemptionem, & spiritu uirtutem & administrationem diuinam. Fecit itaque ex aqua patrem, eo quod ex aqua omnia generari dicantur: ex sanguine filium, eo quod sanguinem fuderit: sed ex spiritu personam spiritus sancti. Verum plura huius generis annotata sunt & ab Erasmo in eruditissimis illis suis in nouum testamentum Annotationibus.”

False claims like this are annoying on a scholarship level, as they are totally unnecessary and they are propelled by the theories of Grantley, not by the actual Erasmian history.


Francis Turretin and Michael Walther

BCEME - p. 158
"Turretin's source is Walther 1654, 1347-1348"
This has many details, see the separate post at:

Francis Turretin and Michael Walther


Date of Philopatris - outdated scholarship

RGA p. 226-227
(In fact modern critics have argued from internal evidence that the dialogue was written much later, during the reign of Nicephoras Phocas [963-969], but Whiston’s point remains essentially valid.)196
196 Whiston, 1711-1712, 4:381. On the dating of the dialogue, see Barker, 1957, 117.
A 1982 paper by Barry Baldwin pretty much shredded that idea of Philopatris being at the time of Nicephorus

Later Greek Literature
edited by John J. Winkler, Gordon Williams
The Date and Purpose of the Philopatris
Barry Baldwin (b. 1937)


John Mill, Elzeviers and later scholars uninformed about the seven Stephanus mss?

RGA - p. 132
"Estienne marked off part of verse 7 with obelisks (thus: `ἐν τῷ οὐρανῷ’) to show that these words were not in the seven manuscripts of the Catholic Epistles he had at his disposal. Nevertheless, his failure to register in the critical apparatus that the rest of the comma was not found in any of the manuscripts in the royal library in Paris subsequently led many later scholars to assume that it was. These included a number of editors, .... Schmidt and Zacharias Gerganos, who produced the Wittenberg edition of 1622, intended for distribution in the Greek east; the Leiden Elzeviers, who published three editions in 1624, 1633 and 1641; and John Mill (1707)."
Lucas Brugensis had the scholarship straightened out by 1600. Anyone after Lucas Brugensis would have to have a positive affirmation of Stephanus mss for this to be a valid conclusion, since he had clarified the Stephanus ms. situation. Grantley even shows that awareness with John Mill.

(Some definitely did hold on to the Stephanus ms., e.g. David Martin, John Gill and George Travis all tried to use the Stephanus error, Travis may have dropped it later. In fact, Grantley could have had more about the apologetic tendency to err on this point, as he does to some extent on Montfortianus.)

We have a separate post on the Stephanus mss.

e.g. here is a resource on Mill and Bengel.

Memoir Of The Controversy (1872) ..
Ezra Abbot - also check the earlier Orme and Tregelles editions

"However, the best critics unanimously agree in the opinion, that Stephens’s MSS. had not the disputed passage; and among these Mill and Bengelius, whose orthodoxy is not doubled, and who were convinced of its authenticity.”

Mill directly mentions this Stephanus correction, here it is in Burgess:

Emlyn says that even the 1584 Antwerp Polyglot was not really claiming the Stephanus mss.

The claim of Grantley about those publishers and editors would generally be false, or at best a scholastic mind-reading conjecture.

Add more from RGA p. 132-133.

This does get more complicated at RGA p. 215:

and all of the manuscripts of the Epistles consulted by Estienne. (Mills strangely chose to ignore the objections of Lucas
Brugensis and Simon on this last point.)164
The Mill section could use a careful and accurate English translation, as he reports the Brugensis analysis.

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Steven Avery

Post #4
Scrivener AV underlying text Greek NT was not Scrivener's 'last years' it was published 1881 for the Revision
Scofield Reference Bible - edition of choice of most fundamentalists??
Frederick Nolan and Eusebius 'model of orthodoxy'. Walter Bauer on the loose.
attempting to slip in forgery pseudo-fact on Jerome's Vulgate Prologue
Simon's Calvinist Antagonist, Louis Capel?
Vulgate apocrypha sections - Melchior Cano not "of course" mistaken
Mistaken Pro-Con Authenticity Positions? (especially Lutherans) Melancthon was pro

John Mill and Cyprian - spinning untranslated Latin (possibly based on 3rd parties unknown)


Scrivener AV underlying text Greek NT was not 'last years' it was published 1881 for the Revision

RGA - p. 298
"Scrivener ... The last years of his life were devoted to a reconstruction of the Greek text underlying the Authorised Version, a composite of readings from a number of early printed editions. Scrivener’s edition of this Greek text, published posthumously in 1894 and reprinted unchanged to the present,"
The chronology and the motive is off. Scrivener did that work for the Revision! And it was done in 1881, while Scrivener passed in 1891.

The New Testament in the original Greek: according to the text followed in the Authorized version, together with the variations adopted in the Revised version (1881)

And it was reprinted many times.

The 1894 is omitted there, likely an error, it is called a "New Edition" and has the 1880 Preface from the First Edition -
I think there is also a 1949 edition that may have been used in the 1900s by the various Majority and NKJV folks.

Overall, I doubt that Scrivener did anything significant on that Edition after 1881.

Maurice Robinson :
"The 1894 text and the 1881 text are identical."

And lots of other good info in 1995 from Maurice Robinson.


Scofield Reference Bible - edition of choice of most fundamentalists??

RGA - p. 304
"The Scofield Reference Bible (1909, rev. ed. 1917), the edition of choice of most fundamentalists"
Maybe that was true for a segment about 70-100 years ago, but it applies to just about nobody today. Even the dispensational, futurist Baptists know the weakness of the edition. AV defenders generally reject it out-of-hand.


Frederick Nolan and Eusebius 'model of orthodoxy'. Walter Bauer on the loose.

RGA - p. 22
Apart from the dubious grammatical authority of their arguments, the position of Nolan and Dabney takes Eusebius’ model of orthodoxy and heresy at face value, but the inadequacy and bias of this view was indicated by Bauer.
This is like a throwaway teaser.

Since Nolan is very critical of Eusebius, and accused him of erasing and choosing scriptures based on his doctrinal views, Grantley would have to explain what "mode of orthodoxy and heresy' from Eusebius he takes.

We have covered elsewhere the errors of Grantley on Nolan and the grammatical gender argument.

RGA - p. 2 BCEME p.2
1 The notion of a monolithic and originary Christian orthodoxy from which “heretical” groups fell away was first challenged by Bauer, 1934/1971. Bauer’s thesis has been modified in several ways, but his essential point remains valid; further, see Harrington, 1980; and Ehrman, 1993.

Eusebius’ conception of a monolithic, originary Christian orthodoxy from which ‘heretical’ groups fell away was challenged by Bauer 1934 (English trans. 1971). Bauer’s thesis has been challenged and modified in several ways, but his essential argument remains valid; further, see Harrington 1980;
Ehrman 1993; Wiles 1996, 1–2.
This has been challenged by many for centuries. e.g. Look at Newton and Whiston and Anthony Collins. It feels like Grantley is just trying to get the name of Walter Bauer into the book.


attempting to slip in forgery pseudo-fact on Jerome's Vulgate Prologue
Again and again and again.

There is good Hyginus referencing here.

BCEME - p. 82-83
Franciscus Lucas Brugensis (1580) .... In defence of the authenticity of the comma, Lucas noted that it occurs in many Latin manuscripts, in the Complutensian edition, and is also defended by the prologue to the Catholic Epistles by ‘Jerome’ and the letter by ‘pope Hyginus’. (Lucas was evidently unaware that both documents are forgeries. The latter was a forgery based on pseudo-Athanasius’ Against Varimadus, which first appears in a collection of ninth-century attributed to the fictional ‘Isidorus Mercator’.)50
50 Pseudo-Hyginus, De fide et reliquis causis, included in Isidori Mercatoris collectio decretalium, PL 130:109; Thiele 1956–1969, 365.
51 Lucas Brugensis 1580, 462. See also Lucas Brugensis 1603, 361; Bludau 1903a, 289–291.
Notationes in Sacra Biblia, quibus, variantia discrepantibus exemplaribus loca, summo studio discutiuntur / auctore Francisco Luca Brugensi... |Biblioteca Virtual Miguel de Cervantes (1580)
p. 461-463

Romanae correctionis in latinis bibliis editionis vulgatae, iussu Sixti V. Pont. Max. recognitis, loca insigniora. Antwerp: Plantin, 1603.
(very minor, just Vulgate Prologue)

In other spots, Grantley is honest about the status of the Vulgate Prologue as contested.


Simon's Calvinist Antagonist, Louis Capel?

confusion on position, dates, and maybe which Capel

RGA - p. 185
"Simon’s approach to the question of Scriptural authority was defined to an extent in opposition to that of his Calvinist antagonist Louis Capel (Critica sacra, 1650)."
Capel was passed away before Richard Simon was writing.

Richard Simon (1638-1712)
Louis Capel (1585-1658) publications from 1624 to 1650 with an emphasis on non-preservation of the Masoretic Text (Buxtorf was his antaganist) including the 1650 Critica Sacra

"Sacred texts should be interpreted employing the same resources and the same methods used for any other text, starting with the tools of grammar and rhetoric. This held for the system of biblical criticism devised by the Huguenot Louis Cappel (1585-1658), who maintained that the Hebrew vowel points had been inserted later and that it was necessary to compare ancient translations right through to the polyglot Bible of the early modern period."

Richard Capel (1586-1656) is associated with the Calvinist view of the preservation of scripture, as discussed on this blog post.

(A bit of a weak preservation, imho.)


A 2020 book by Christophe Chalamet has a solid explanation of
Richard Simon actually building on and complimenting Louis Cappel's Critica Sacra - not opposition to an antagonist


Vulgate apocrypha sections - Melchior Cano not "of course" mistaken

MCEBE - p. 83
Melchior Cano (c. 1509–1560) pointed out that the Latin Vulgate contains several passages – the story of the boys in the fiery furnace (Dan 3:24–90), Susanna (Dan 13 Vg), the pericope de adultera (Jn 7:53–8:11), the long ending of Mark (16:9–20) and the Johannine comma – which he believed had been omitted from the Greek and Hebrew texts through the negligence of scribes.52
52 Cano 1563, 64; cf. Bludau 1903a, 405. Of course he was mistaken in the case of Dan 3:24–90 and Dan 13, which are transmitted in the Septuagint.
No he was not mistaken. Whenever you see an "of course", check to make sure the claim is not off course.
Melchior would be comparing the Latin Vulgate OT-Apoc to the Hebrew MT. The fact that the Greek and Latin might have the same sections is irrelevant.

The 1563 is p. 64 given by Grantley
Reuerendissimi D. domini Melchioris Cani ... De locis Theologicis libri duodecim (1563)
Melchior Cano;view=1up;seq=70

Here you can see the margin note with the heavenly witnesses and the woman caught in adultery, about the Greek mss. The Mark ending may be in the text, but since that was in virtually all the mss. a translation would be needed, to see if Cano thinks it was by scribal neglect.

clean this up
ex Graecorum mendis ante aliquot annos no bis suerat detractumut & Marci extremam coronidem, atque alia ite multa ex Latino exemplar, noui isu interrepees expunz eruat

De locis theologicis libri XII (etc.) (1564)
p. 111-112


Mistaken Pro-Con Authenticity Positions? (especially Lutherans) Melancthon was pro

RGA p. 218
"When pondering why it was that the great theologians of his tradition like Luther, Melanchthon, Cruciger, Jonas, Förster, Aurogallus and Bugenhagen could have been convinced to reject the comma, ."
- no ref given, btw, among the Lutherans this is largely Luther's Collegium Biblieum, so they would tend to follow Luther's lead

Melancthon is definitely is not correct as one who rejects.
Generally I don't trust the positions of 'Lutherans' without primary sources, often these are given through Abbot, Kettner, etc. and have to be checked. Abbot tends to be precise.

Forster and Förster for Johann Forster - two spellings


David Martin on Stephanus Manuscripts

RGA - 138

"Bugenhagen, Cruciger, Jonas, Forster and Aurogallus by contrast rejected the comma."
This looks to use Kettner, who wrongly also had Melancthon. Can any of these be confirmed beyond Bugenhagen? Aurogallus was a Hebraist, Jonas did many editions of Melancthon, Cruciger flies under the radar as the disappearing Reformer. They need primary sources.


David Martin thinking that Stephanus had all 17 NT mss with the Catholic Epistles?

Once Le Long realised that Martin was publicly defending a position he considered erroneous, he wrote him an open letter, dated 12 April 1720,
published in the Journal des Sçavans the following June. Here Le Long asserted that Estienne had used seven manuscripts of the Catholic Epistles (not seventeen, as Martin maintained), none of which contained the comma.

Martin’s Deux dissertations also came into the hands of the Parisian Oratorian Jacques Le Long, a noted biblical scholar. Once Le Long saw that Martin was publicly defending a number of errors, he wrote him an open letter dated 12 April 1720, which was published in the Journal des Sçavans on 6 May. Martin had assumed that all seventeen (actually fifteen) manuscripts inspected by Estienne contained the Catholic Epistles, and had been misled by Estienne’s misplaced obeloi to the false conclusion that they all contained the comma.
Again, this did not pass the smell test.
And we are not given the page or French quote.

And let us be clear.
David Martin was fundamentally mistaken and the criticism of his position is just.

Here Grantley's error is easily seen in Martin's writing in the English translation in 1719, before the Le Long writing.

A Critical Dissertation Upon the Seventh Verse of the Fifth Chapter of St. John's First Epistle, There are Three, that Bear Record in Heaven, &c: Wherein the Authentickness of this Text is Fully Prov'd Against the Objections of Mr. Simon and the Modern Arians (1719)
David Martin (1719)

Every one of these Copies had not the New Testament entire ; some of ' em which had been divided into two Volumes , having only in the first the four Gospels , and the Acts of the Apostles , which generally went together , wanted the second Volume, that contain'd the remaining part of the New Testament; others on the contrary had the second Volume , the Epistolary Code , without the first .

And for the seven Canonical Epistles , Mr . Roger Dr . of Divinity at Bourges , who not long ago publish ' d a Discourse ...
Martin's prose meanders a little, and he was picking a Don Quixote fight, and he did claim more than seven manuscripts likely with the 1 John Epistles.

However David Martin did not claim that all the 17 manuscripts had the epistle.


John Mill and Tertullian and Cyprian - spinning untranslated Latin (possibly based on 3rd parties unknown)
One of the most important errors, since Grantley jumps to contusions and confusions with Mill and gives him the exact opposite meaning! It shows real weaknesses with the presumed Latin sense, combined with wishful thinking, hopeful monster scholarship conclusions.


Examples of high-spin no-Latin assertions


The comma first appeared in two seventh-century Latin Bibles copied in Spain.
Highlighted by Grantley here:

First appeared in two sevemth-century.jpg

This is rather absurd.
There is an earlier extant Latin manuscript, 5th century, but you do not make "first appeared" claims based on our very limited extant mss.

This is from the Hilmar Pabel review, which is hosted by Grantley.


Earliest Old Latin ms?

RGA - p. 4
The first extant manuscripts of the Latin bible to contain the Johannine comma—a fragment in Munich and a palimpsest in León—date from the seventh century.

RGA - p. 46
Munich, BSB Clm 6436 (Fris. 236), 24r (the Freising fragments, reconstructed by Ziegler, 1876, 8, 56, abbreviations resolved) (seventh century): .... León, Archivio catedralico ms 15 (the León palimpsest, a biblical text written in seventh century over sixth-century text of Visigothic law code; the words in brackets are supplied by Berger, 1893, 10,

BCEME - p. 5
The first extant bibles containing the Johannine comma are Latin manuscripts copied in Spain during the seventh century: some fragments in Munich (BSB Clm 6436, the ‘Freising fragments’ = Vetus Latina 64) and a palimpsest in León (Archivo catedralicio ms 15 = Vetus Latina 67).

The earliest extant Latin manuscripts supporting the comma are dated from the 5th to 7th century. The Freisinger fragment,[12] León palimpsest, and the Codex Legionensis (7th century), besides the younger Codex Speculum, New Testament quotations extant in an 8th- or 9th-century manuscript.[6]

'r' in the UBS-4 also 'it-q' and Beuron 64 are apparatus names today. These fragments were formerly known as Fragmenta Monacensia, as in the Handbook to the textual criticism of the New Testament, by Frederic George Kenyon, 1901, p. 178.

One question here is how the Freising fragments are put so late.

Ziegler has c. 5-6

This is section one of the three sections, the Ziegler 1921 book has various references from century five to seven.
L'origene du manuscrit - p. XVI and XVII
Ziegler v or vi
Lehman hesitates to set a date, end of vi
Paul Liebaert - end of vii

And I believe that Grantley simplified to the 7th to avoid mentioning the earlier date.



BCEME- p. 273
For example, Travis had concluded that Erasmus must have been an Arian because he rejected the comma, and believed that this religious error impaired Erasmus’ ability to present the evidence honestly.
Circular reasoning claim, however Travis gave a reference for this claim outside the heavenly witnesses. - 1782 - 1785 1794
(b) Int. al.—Chamb. Cyclopaed. (Rees) Tit. "Arianism" Bezae leones;, Appendix IV.


More from the books to be added.


wild attack on Creationary/ID - Nick Sayers
Last edited:

Steven Avery



Mistaken Names and Questions on Names

Ofspring Blackall - not Blackhall

Justin Champion's error here, picked up by Grantley.
Champion is generally a bit sloppy, I had run into some other errors, typos and the wrong word, in his writing

Thomas Benyon - not Benyon
A letter to the Reverend Thomas Benyon
Auguste-François Maunoury - not Manoury
RGA-292 also BCEME
drawing published rebuttals from Pierre Rambouillet, Auguste-François Manoury and Jean-Michel-Alfred Vacant.
Manoury, Auguste-François. “Le verset des trois témoins célestes.” Revue des sciences ecclésiastiques 59 (1889): 289-297.
Maunoury was also in the Revue

Friedrich Brandscheid - not Brandscheidt
RGA p. 293 and p. 385
114 Gregory, 1907, 310-311. Gregory’s comments were made in the context of a review of Brandscheidt (1906-1907), an edition first issued in 1893; Brandscheidt’s editions include the comma without any comment or sign of doubt.
RGA - p. 385
Brandscheidt, Friedrich (ed.). Novum Testamentum Græce et Latine. Freiburg i. B.: Herder, 1893; 2nd ed. 1901; 3rd ed. 1906-1907
Seems to be everywhere Brandscheid, including the quote from Gregory, hard to find any bio info dates

"reprinted in the Antwerp Polyglot (1568—1572), with a Latin translation by Guy Lefevre de la Boderie (Fabricius).'
He was called Guido Fabricius and Guido Fabricius Boderianus in the Latin, but I have not seen simply "Fabricius", as we see with the learned 1700s writer Johann Albert Fabricius".

John Pye Smith
RGA p. 266-267 and other spots.
Both editions were subject to a joint critique in The Eclectic Review in 1809, probably written by Rev. J. P. Smith of Homerton.
Smith and J. P. Smith who took on Pharez is John Pye Smith
John Pye Smith clearly discussing his history on the topic.

reference the page in Orme
Smith, 1809a, 24. The review appears anonymously; in identifying Smith as the author I follow Orme, 1830, 139
However, Orme does not make the full name available.

Also , just cute to see .. (p. 24 of Eclectic Review does have John Pye Smith in handwriting)

John Pye Smith gets special note for blowing the whistle on the apparent plagiarism of Granville Sharp!


RGA - p. 287 - G. W. Abraham
An anonymous contributor to the Dublin Review of 1861 wrote:
G. W. Abraham


William Wright - not Georg Friedrich Seiler

RGA p. 420
"Seiler, Georg Friedrich. Biblical Hermeneutics; or, the Art of Scripture Interpretation. Trans. W. Wright. London: Westley and Davis, 1835."
All these referernces that are given as Seiler are actually original material from the translator William Wright (1813-1885) that was added to the 1835 English edition.

Appendix - by the translator


RGA - p. 380 - Charles Vincent Dolman

“The Revision of the New Testament.” The Dublin Review, 3rd series, 6 (1881): 127-144.
This was referenced on p. 281, as Anon, in an important quote.

We have no patience to discuss calmly their shameful treatment of the “Three Heavenly Witnesses.” The Revisers have left out the whole verse in
1 John v. 7, 8, without one word of explanation. Surely no one but a textual critic could be capable of such a deed. Nor would any one critic have had the hardihood to do such a thing by himself. It required the corporate audacity of a Committee of Critics for the commission of such a sacrilege. But textual critics are like book-worms—devoid of light and conscience, following the blind instincts of their nature, they will make holes in the
most sacred of books. The beauty, the harmony, and the poetry of the two verses would have melted the heart of any man who had a soul above
parchment. Fathers have quoted them, martyrs died for them, saints preached them. The Church of the East made them her Profession of Faith; the Church of the West enshrined them in her Liturgy. What miserable excuses can these Revisers have for such a wanton outrage on Christian feeling? They cannot find the words in their oldest Greek. MSS. 100

It is truly a very strong writing.
This caused Grantley to get all emotionally wrought (I am using some of his psycho-babble language in reverse.)
Let us look at his unscholarly attack:

"purple prose reeks with emotional ploys and fallacies of every flavour"
"Simon’s project—which had aimed at bolstering the authority of the church by maintaining its status as sole judge in questions of criticism—could easily be bastardised through fanaticism."
"cheap rhetoric"

Ironically Grantley accepts the main point:

"After reviving the argument from grammar, the reviewer makes a more pertinent point: that the minute atomisation of the biblical text exercised by critics put considerable strain on the Protestant principle of sola scriptura. If scriptura is no longer assured, what happens to confidence in doctrine?"

"the reviewer had put his finger on a number of central issues"

Grantley is always on the side of corruption versions from the Westcott-Hort recension.
"The editors of the Revised Version had suggested that the best way to convert the working classes was to present the most accurate text possible."

The author is Charles Vincent Dolman.
There was also an 1882 article in the Dublin Review, also by Dolman, which is more directly on the topic and missed by Grantley.

Recent Evidence in Support of 1 John v. 7
Dublin Review (1882)

This one reviews four publications, including Ranke on Codex Fuldensis and Charles Forster.

Also excellent from Dolman.

Dublin Review
New Testament Vaticanism (1884)

Some of the material on Dolman as author.

Downside Review (1886)

Additions & Corrections to "The Wellesley Index" for "The Dublin Review", January 1864-July 1900 (1982)
Ann Palmer
p. 33 - Revision of the New Testament


anonymous review, Quarterly Review 1826 (40 pages) is Orme, it is a bit complicated,


In his Three books on the controversies of the Christian faith, against the latter-day heretics (1586), Cardinal Roberto Bellarmino discussed the authority of various ancient versions of the biblical text.
The book is in Latin, and its name is in the bibliography.

Bellarmino, Roberto. Disputationes de controversiis Christianae fidei. Ingolstadt: Sartorius, 1586.

Where did Grantley get his English title?


An Humble Inquiry - Thomas Emlyn

RGA - p. 232
Emlyn had experienced the strength of this hostility at first hand in 1702 when he was tried, fined and imprisoned on charges of blasphemy after publishing a book entitled A Humble Enquiry in the Scripture Account of Jesus Christ, in which he argued an essentially Arian position.
title of Emlyn 1702 .. starting with "An Humble Inquiry.."
DNB handles the chronology details well here
Grantley has 1702 referenced, the trial was in 1703 and imprisonment stretches to 1705
the title of 1715 looks to be also Inquiry as in this Bibliography


Raising p. 389
The Confession of Faith, Together with the Larger and Lesser Cathecismes. Composed by the Reverend Assembly of Divines, Sitting at Westminster. 2nd ed. London: E. M., for the Company of Stationers, 1658.
Catechismes - not Cathecismes

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Steven Avery


Thomas Smith 1675 Edition - not 1690 (English not given by Grantley)

RGA - p. 194
"While Simon was working on his Histoire critique du texte du Nouveau Testament, Thomas Smith (1638-1710), a distinguished antiquarian and fellow of Magdalene College Oxford, was working on a vigorous defence of the comma, published in 1690.109"
109 On Smith, see Nichols, 1812, I:14-16.

RGA - p. 421 bibliography
Smith, Thomas. Miscellanea, In quibus continentur Responsio ad nuperas D. Simonii in libro super fide Græcorum de dogmate Transsusbstantiationis cavillationes. Dissertatio, in qua Integritas & αὐθεντία istius celeberrimi loci 1. Epist. S. Joannis, cap. V. vers. 7. vindicatur. Defensio superioris Dissertationis contra exceptiones D. Simonii in Criticâ historiâ novi Testamenti. Commentarius in secundam S. Petri Apostoli Epistolam. London: S. Smith, 1690.
Published in 1675 in English, long before Simon, here is the calumnia section in English

A sermon of the credibility of the mysteries of the Christian religion preached before a learned audience;size=125;vid=101752;view=text
"But St Hierome has suffi∣ciently confuted the falseness and boldness of this Cavil."
Front page;view=toc
Google books (1696 - 2nd edtion)

Grantley only includes the Latin book, many years later, that was a response to Richard Simon.

Altera miscellanea: responsio ad Simonii cavillationes ; Integritas loci 1 Jo. V, 7 ; Defensio contra exceptiones Simonii ; Commentarius in 2am Petri epistolam. [Apendix contra Simonem] (1690)
mainly p. 121-150 - see also 153-154 and p. 161

One quirk of Grantley's writings is that very little of the strong English writings in support of authenticity is actually included. In this case, the excellent English of Thomas Smith was even a total MIA, not even in the bibliography!

The BCEME edition is far better. The 1675 book is in the bibliography of BCEME and Grantley includes:

BCEME p. 156
"Smith had defended the genuineness of the textus receptus of the comma once before, in an appendix to a sermon published in 1675.
After reading Simon’s work, Smith felt compelled to write a more extensive defence of the comma, this time in Latin for a learned (and international) audience.142"
142 On Smith, see Nichols 1812, 1:14–16

Smith has a superb comment:
"Smith defended the attribution of the prologue to the Catholic Epistles to Jerome, though he noted that ‘Erasmus and Sozzini work hard to dissolve
the strength and the bond of this testimony, by which they realise that they are bound. They turn and twist this way and that; and lest they should seem to be struck dumb, flatter themselves that this matter is to be disentangled with untrustworthy and dishonest answers.’145
145 Smith 1690, 139

And then Grantley goes into a convoluted false dichotomy attempt towards Thomas Smith, one which is logically absurd, covered elsewhere. Plus a really weird attempt to call the excellent analysis of Thomas Smith on the Vulgate Prologue and also homoeteleuton a "lame attempt". Incredible bias and poor scholarship.

"Smith’s lame attempt to refute Simon’s arguments – relying in every case on what might have happened rather than on what demonstrably did – demonstrates how the misrepresentation of textual evidence often led to critically inadequate and ultimately unconvincing conclusions."

An incredibly biased, circular and inaccurate analysis and attack.

Literary Anecdotes of the Eighteenth Century: Comprizing Biographical Memoirs of William Bowyer (1812)
John Nichols
p. 14-16
(this is a very minor reference)


RGA p. 178
"Moreover, Cheynell asserts that the comma was known to Athanasius, Theophilus and Cyprian."
Nope - Athanasius ad Theophilum
(the specific work of Athanasius, usually called Ps-Athanasius)

The Divine Trinunity of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit ; Or the Blessed Doctrine of the Three Coessentiall Subsistents in the Eternall Godhead Without Any Confusion Or Divsion of the Distinct Subsistences, Or Multiplication of the Most Single and Entire Godhead ... (1650)

Cheynell also has an English section, that is about the same length, some different stuff p. 251-256 , most interesting in the English is the "internal" arguments and the reference to the copulative AND that morphed into the Middleton grammatical argument 150 years later

That section is not given by Grantley.


Jerome - Latin text omits a word

RGA p. 55
80 Jerome, Tractatuum in psalmos series altera, de Psalmo 91, CCSL 78, 424-429: “Relatum est mihi, fratres, quia inter se quidam fratres disputando quæsissent, quomodo Pater et Filius et Spiritus sanctus et tres et unum sunt.
correct is - Spiritus sanctus et tres sunt et unum sunt


Eberhard Nestle - German editions date is 1575 not 1593

RGA - p. 166
"German editions also began to appear in which the comma was included for the first time (Frankfurt, 1593; Wittenberg, 1596,1597; Hamburg, 1596).36"
Eberhard Nestle dates the first one as 1575
"The verse of the " three witnesses " (I John v, 7) was first introduced into a Frankfort edition of 1575,"

There may be controversy on this, so it could use further checking.


Evanson edition of Knittel is 1829, not 1827

BCEME - p. 282
"William Alleyn Evanson's introduction to his translation of Knittel's work on the comma (1827),"
-- no 1827, simply the 1829 Likely a 7-9 typo


Acts 20:28 is the doctrinal verse, not Acts 2:28

BCEME p. 72
Accordingly, Nye cited Erasmus (alongside other critics such as Grotius and Courcelles) in his attempts to demolish the traditional interpretation of verses cited as evidence of the Trinity: Jn 1:15, Jn 3:13, Acts 2:28, Rom 9:5, 1 Jn 5:7–8 and Rev1:17.
it is not Acts 2:28 Acts 20:28


Richard Simon - page number off

122 Simon 1689a, 215; Simon 1689b, 2:11; cf. Froidmont 1663, 657.
RGA p. 187
93 Simon, 1689a, 215; 1689b, 2:11.
Simon 1689a, 215; - it is actually p. 214


RGA p. 150
Myles Davies (sic) after stiffle, it is simply an earlier form of stifle, (he has Byass instead of bias in the same sentence)


Turretin publication date

RGA - p. 144
In his disputation on the three heavenly witnesses (first published 1661), François Turrettini (1623-1687)
De Tribus Testibus Caelestibus Coelestibus (1674)

French Bibliography (1803)
Latin Bibliography (1900)


Doctrinal convictions are not "bugaboos"

RGA - p. 251
the doctrine of absolute predestination, Wesley’s particular bugaboo.
Wesley had a principled position against absolute predestination (ironically, as likely Grantley does as well.) It is not proper to place a sense of fear and alarm on a principled Christian conviction. Bugaboo is inappropriate.


John Pye-Smith - wrong page

BCEME - bibliography p. 362
"[Pye-Smith, John.]. Review of Brown 1807 and Belsham 1808. The Eclectic Review 5 (1809a): 24-39, 236-251, 329-346
(ENDS On 343) - note that in another spot I point out that Grantley has names like J. Smith, not connecting it to the full name.


Hopton Haynes - apostrophe in wrong spot

BCEME - p. 178
"The English text underlying Hayne's translation"
apostrophe in wrong spot


Berger date is 1893, not 1896

RGA - p. 52
cit. Berger, 1896, 104 (checked against original):
Berger (1896) .. should be 1893


RGA - 201
Similar textual problems are to be observed, he notes, in 1 Jn 4:3, Jude 4, Rom 9:5, and Tim 3:16,
1 Tim 3:16


page correction on the 1881 edition of Grammar of Assent by Newman .. 135, not 131


Aquinas duplicate listing, missing one

RGA p. 62
quæst. 29, art. 4, arg. 2; quæst. 29, art. 4, arg. 2;
And I think the latter one is supposed to be quaest 30, which also has a heavenly witnesses usage


year and authority in Syriac editions

BCEME - p. 61
"... on Hutter’s authority, the comma was retained in the Syriac editions .... Leusden and Schaaf (Leiden, 1709)."
Gramtly points out that Leusden had his own section supporting the verse in 1670, on p. 35-38, a footnote on that page.
So how could he be said to be on "Hutter's authority"?
(I am not doing any Gutbier checking right now, however the Leusden section has been significant .... and also has three more pages on p. 46-48)


Grammar errors

BCEME - p. 280 - typos
The popularity of the legend was certainly due the fact
p. 281 -
of containing a Greek text had simply been altered
But even in those disposed to believe in the genuineness of the comma,
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Steven Avery

Apparatus creations, errors and confusions (naming early church works)
(note: check my ps.-apparatus page)



RGA - p. 184

Despite his doubts about the prologue, Selden was of the opinion that the putative reference to the comma in Cyprian’s De unitate ecclesiæ did indeed give evidence that Cyprian was familiar with the passage, and he carefully notes the citations in Contra Varimadum, ps.-Eugenius and Fulgentius, as well as in Erasmus’ British Codex and his last three editions.
Ps-Eugenius for the Carthage Confession of Faith is unique, and wrong.

Ps-Eugenius refers to a writing connected with Eugenius of Toledo II - 7th contury
Ps-Eugenius II is Decretal related

The Council of Carthage Confession I have seen as Victor-Vita or mss according to Victor-Vita


RGA - p. 184
"John Selden .. and he carefully notes the citations in Contra Varimadum, ps.-Eugenius and Fulgentius, "
Eugenius at the Council of Carthage 484 AD, which in the techie element Grantley has as Liber fidei catholicæ, is never referenced as ps-Eugenius.
In the apparatus, I've seen the unhelpful entry:
"mss - acccording to Victor-Vita"
or simply Victor-Vita

Last edited:

Steven Avery

"Gibbon reported the scholarly consensus"
James White,
Heztenauer and Pohle on opposite sides of authenticity
"safer and more candid"
Luther Commentary on 1 John - assigned to Johannes Agricola
Bugenhagen Job Arians 1st c
Cyprian -Madrid, Real Academia de la Historia ms Aemil. 3, 328r?
Galeni, the two synods and Gregory Sisensis
David Whitford paper
Ted Letis
Erasmus to Westminster article was generally very fine, excepting making the bald unsupported (and not easily supportable) statement that the Vulgate Prologue was forged.
"Loci Theologi" from the 1599 edition, the wording could be tweaked since Chemnitz passed in 1586 and Polycarp Leyser started the printings in 1591 .... it just sounds like you have Chemnitz writing it in 1591
Brochmand page
Alfonso de Castro
Biandrata - Erasmus - Trinity
more Bellarmine
2018 paper Jeroen Beekhuizen - The Comma Johanneum revisited, under Geurt van Kooten -
Semler flip
De Duplicio Martyrio
Juan de Mariana - currency debasement
Travis Hales Marsh Gill - Grantley could have harsher on some errors
Alfonso Manrique letter
Carolius - CERL gives Carolinus
Calvin has a heavenly witnesses reference in his errors of Servetus (forgot the name)
" He recorded Erasmus’ doubts about the passage (which was, according to Drummond, communicated to him in a letter),"
grammar - led many later scholars to assume that it was. "

Thomas Smith - Boucet - "embarrasingly naive"
mindreading "in a bind"- separate section

Bengel - Gnomon is in English
and mariner's compass


Steven Avery



George Bull and John Pearson are "orphan" references
Grabe's Appendix in Bull is one of the pre-1700 English writings if it is in the 1680 edition
Pearson is less important historically and substance, he is more known for working with Fell on Cyprian and a bit more like this

BCEME p. 60
"This text was reprinted in the Antwerp Polyglot (1568–1572), with a Latin translation by Guy Lefèvre de la Boderie (Fabricius).14 ...
Antwerp Polyglot (1568–1572), with a Latin translation by Guy Lefèvre de la Boderie (Fabricius).... The involvement of dubious characters such as Postel and Lefevre de la Boderie rendered the entire enterprise suspect. Mariana believed that the committee sometimes departed further than necessary from the Vulgate. Moreover, the commentary quoted rabbinic literature more frequently than the church fathers. 15 Mariana criticised the Latin rendering of the Peshitta at several points. For example, he worried that the omission of the pericope de adultera and the comma from the Syriac text could be used by Antitrinitarians to argue that the Latin Vulgate was corrupt. Moreover, the omission of these passages from the Latin version undermined the Tridentine decree upholding the integrity of the biblical books included in the Latin Vulgate.16 Despite these reservations, Mariana finally gave his approval for the edition."

14 Wilkinson 2007b, 71.
15 Wilkinson 2007b, 95–96.
16 Mariana 1609, 72–73.

Mariana, Juan de. Tractatus VII. Cologne: Hieratus, 1609.
Wilkinson, Robert J. Orientalism, Aramaic and Kabbalah in the Catholic Reformation. The First Printing of the Syriac New Testament. Leiden: Brill,
The Kabbalistic Scholars of the Antwerp Polyglot Bible. Leiden: Brill, 2007b
This is interesting did the Polyglot have two Latin texts, or only the Syriac translated to Latin?

Why did the report consider them dubious? Scholarship reasons? Doctrinal? Character?

Maybe Kabbalistic tendencies"

The Syriac World (2018)
edited by Daniel King


"An Accurate Examination of the Principal Texts Usually Alleged for the Divinity of Our Saviour; and for the Satisfaction by Him Made to the Justice of God, for the Sins of Men. London: [n. p.], 1692.";view=1up;seq=5
John Hunt in 1871 put Alleged, Paul Lim, Mystery Unveiled, p. 306, (in your bibliography) did the same, the primary source is "Alledged."
Was Lim "correcting" the spelling? - Bibliography should have original.

I ran into two, I think where a multi-volume reference was Volume 1 and that was not indicated,
One is William Ames
This is, I think, Vol 1 of 4, ""in quateur Tomos divisus"

the other one is probably Bellarmine p. 105 it is Volume 1 of 4 as Wiki has "The first volume treats of the Word of God, of Christ, and of the pope; the second of the authority of ecumenical councils, and of the Church, whether militant, suffering, or triumphant; the third of the sacraments; and the fourth of Divine grace, free will, justification, and good works."
Granted, there may be a default of "Volume One" when nothing is indicated, I know that from my experience the Volume One helps.


With William Whiston, is there a primary source writing with the name
"Society for Promoting Primitive Christianity and the Practice of Infant Baptism,"
.. checked one of GM three sources, Force, not Farrell or Duffy. Whiston could use the term "Infant Baptism" as "those of such an age as are capable of Catechetick Instruction before their baptism" as in Primitive Infant Baptism, Revived, part of Primitive Christianity Reviv’d.
At any rate, few readers today will understand that Whiston actually opposed, at that time, what we call today infant baptism. ! :)

Cajetan 1542 which is about Jerome but not in the context of the heavenly witnesses
p. 54, n. 109. This book is a critique of Cajetan by Catharinus -
Catharinus does have an interesting Dionysius ref
surprised not to see Sirlet ..
Sebastian Franck
Bugenhagen and Arian interpolations


radical reformation history Hubmaier

you had some fine scholars in the process, however somebody like Jan Krans, or even Teunis, is not likely to be looking for the clarity and consistency of balanced argumentation .. they have horses to ride.
Teunis is quite impressive though :) also Philip Maertens
The House of Textual Criticism stands on the non-authenticity of the heavenly witnesses.
And falls on the inverse.


Raising p. 178 -
Reid on Cheynell "somewhat disordered.. brain"
"71 Reid, 1811, 229." = the page is 230

p. 144 - Westminster Confession
176 The Confession of Faith, 1658, 155, 159.
153, bottom of page, not 155


compare to above

"This apparent solecism, he (Nolan) argued, disappears if the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are made the referent of the participle, thus proving that a reference to the Trinity must have been an original and integral part of the text.2"
2 Nolan, 1815, 257-260; Dabney, 1890-1897, 1:377-379.
Yes, that applies to Dabney, p. 379.
However, not the Nolan section, and he says very little about Trinity throughout the book.


RGA - p. 305
"As Keith Elliott pointed out..."
Elsewhere J. Keith Elliott
Often he is called James Keith Elliott, and in the RBL review he is J. K. Elliott.
Yes, there are places where Keith Elliott is used, including Amazon and a Leeds page.
The review itself is controversial, he did make many good points, Greenlee gave a short response, courtesy of Maurice Robinson here:
James Keith Elliott wrote a Simonides-Sinaiticus book in 1982, I wrote him and pointed out an important miss, he did response graciously.


BCEME - p. 83
The Dominican Sixtus Senensis (1520–1569) quoted the letter attributed to Pope Hyginus as evidence that the comma was an original part of the text of Scripture, both in Greek and in Latin. He concluded triumphantly that this gave the lie to those who denied the originality of the passage, such as the Anabaptists and the followers of Servet.53
53 Senensis 1566, 972; cf. Bludau 1903a, 404–405.


RGA - p. 14
Martin refuted Emlyn’s suggestion that Erasmus invented the comma and covered his tracks through deliberate vagueness about the identity and whereabouts of Codex Britannicus.454
RGA -214
Mills noted that the readings in the text of this manuscript are sometimes far from the Majority text; he had, he assured his readers, gathered over a hundred and forty unusual readings from this manuscript.162 (also claim that Mills thought Britt and Montfort were separate)
162 Mills, 1707, CXLVIII: “Codex N. Testamenti, recentiori & minus accurata manu descripti: qui olim fuerat fratris Froy Franciscani, postea Thomæ Clementis, deinde Guilielmi Charci, & demum Thomæ Montfortii S. T. P [sc. D]. In Evangeliis habet κεφάλαια seu titulos, & sectiones Ammonianas, cum στιχομετρία, ad calcem cujusque Evangelii. Lectiones variantes manu sua, ac suorum, excerpsit Usserius, in Evangeliis, Actis Apost. (ad Cap. 22di versum 29. ubi desinit Exemplar Cant.) & Capite primo Epistolæ ad Romanos. neque enim ultra processere. Codicis cum in corpore, tum præsertim in spatio marginali, plurima notavit eruditus quispiam (Gul. Charcus, ut opinor; erat enim is in Græcis insigniter versatus, ac præterea καλλιγραφώτατος, adeoque ad hæc notanda quasi genio suo incitatus.) Aliqua hîc illic delevit, quæ in Codicem hunc ex interpolato textu irrepserant. […] Textum ipsum quod spectat, magna in eo est vis lectionum plane singularium, seu hujusmodi saltem, quæ in Codd. nostris haud comparent. Tales quadraginta supra centum observatas à me olim memini. Sed & genuinæ aliquot ipsius lectiones sunt, ab Editis nostris discrepantes, quarum haud facta est in superioribus mentio, hoc loco memorandæ sunt […].”
163 Mills, 1707, 738-749; Mills’ remarks on the comma are reprinted in Burgess, 1822, 11.