Is there really any dispute about Jerome's authorship of the Vulgate Prologue?

Steven Avery

Administrator
Here is a short summary. It is planned for tweaking.

Through the middle ages, Jerome's authorship was unquestioned, and the Prologue was mentioned, eg. by the Glossa Ordinaria.

In the Reformation era, the authorship was again unquestioned. Erasmus was greatly embarrassed by the evidence when he was trying to justify the omission of the heavenly witnesses. Erasmus ended up essentially accusing Jerome of having invented the heavenly witnesses. In that economy, the Vulgate Prologue would be like a "two-fer" supporting work by Jerome to support his heavenly witnesses handiwork. This was one of the most absurdists positions ever taken by Erasmus, especially as he normally was a fan of Jeromes!

In the late 1600s there were some dabbles to doubt authenticity. A major point was that it did not seem to show up until the 800s, but now we know it is in the earliest Vulgate manuscript, Codex Fuldensis.

Martianay and the Benedictine Maurists came up with a group of reasons for doubting authenticity. Five, I think. Each one weaker than the next. However, this became the standard rallying cry. The reasons were all roundly refuted, from Genoud, who called them frivilous, through to Charles Forster.
 
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