the French debate c. 1885 - Martin - Rambouillet - Manoury - Vacant - Didiot - Philippe - Adam Hamilton - Mertens

Steven Avery

Start with Grantley bibliography and improve

Jean-Pierre Paulin Martin.

Pierre Rambouillet,
Auguste-François Maunoury (Manoury error, Grantley)
Jean-Michel-Alfred Vacant,
Jules Didiot,

... Jean-Pierre Paulin Martin. The fifth volume of Martin’s Introduction to the textual criticism of the New Testament, based on lectures given at the École supérieure de théologie at Paris in 1885–1886, contains a detailed account of many hundreds of variant manuscript readings of the comma which he had collected over three decades.

(this is pic in 2021 RGA thread, where the error about Martin being opposed to the Mark ending and Pericope Adulterae is corrected)

Martin’s summary of his conclusions, published in the Revue des sciences ecclésiastiques in 1887, set off a spasm of controversy, and a number of rebuttals were submitted to the Revue. The first came from Pierre Rambouillet, vicar at Saint-Philippe-du-Roule, an enemy of modernism, who argued that the Arians, ‘heretics as cunning as they were daring’, had corrupted the text of 1 Jn.98 The second was from Auguste-François Manoury, who defended the comma as authentic in his commentary on the Catholic Epistles (1888). Manoury challenged Martin’s position that the Greek manuscripts present the authentic text of the Scriptures, and that the failure of the Greek fathers to cite the comma in their polemics against the Arians suggested that it was not present in their bibles. A third refutation came from Jean-Michel-Alfred Vacant, a student of the decrees of Vatican I. The fourth came from Jules Didiot, who condemned Martin’s desire to downgrade to the rank of pseudepigrapha those passages present in the Vulgate but not in the Hebrew bible or the earliest Greek manuscripts of the New Testament – the Song of the Three Young Men and the story of Susanna in Daniel, the woman caught in adultery in John, the longer ending of Mark, or the Johannine comma – as a violation of the decree of the council of Trent. Martin’s error, Didiot suggested, arose from his failure to distinguish partes of the Scripture from particulae. What is worse, Didiot chafed, if the church cut itself loose from the Vulgate and had recourse only to the Hebrew text of the Old Testament, it might be compelled to cede to the rabbis in its exegesis.99 Martin defended his position in a series of replies, likewise published in the Revue.
Last edited:

Steven Avery


Didiot, Jules (not in RGA)
‘Commentaire traditionnel de la IVe session du Concile de Trente.’ Revue des sciences ecclésiastiques 62 (1890): 193–226, 385–400.

Vacant, Jean-Michel-Alfred.
‘Revue theologique.’ La controverse et le contemporain, n. s. 13 (1888): 125–141, 426–445.

Manoury, Auguste-François.
Commentaire sur les Épîtres catholiques de S. Jacques, S. Pierre, S. Jean et S. Jude. Paris: Bloud et Barral, 1888. - not in RGA
section ends on p. 438
‘Le verset des trois témoins célestes.’ Revue des sciences ecclésiastiques 59 (1889):
p. 289-297

Rambouillet, Pierre.
‘L’authenticité du verset des trois témoins célestes.’ Revue des sciences ecclésiastiques 58 (1888): 230–244.

much more in
Revue des sciences ecclésiastiques No. 355 July 1889
p. 193-227


Martin, Jean-Pierre Paulin.
Introduction à la critique textuelle du Nouveau Testament. 6 vols. Paris: Leclerc, 1884–1886. Vol 5

‘Le verset des trois témoins célestes, I Jean, V. 7, et la critique biblique contemporaine.’
Revue des sciences ecclésiastiques 56 (1887): 97–129, 193–223.

‘Les trois témoins célestes.’ La controverse et le contemporain, n. s. 13 (1888): 408–425.
1619449864296.png - 1891
This pic can be expanded to more of the article.
And we can look for the article in La Science Catholique, it might be the same as Vacant above.

‘Le verset des trois témoins célestes est-il authentique?’
Revue des sciences ecclésiastiques 59 (1889a): 97–140, 209–243, 385–389. - 1st - 2nd

‘Un dernier mot sur le verset des trois témoins célestes.’
Revue des sciences ecclésiastiques 60 (1889b): 538–560.


In RGA and not BCEME, not part of the debate above.

“Quatre anciens manuscrits du Nouveau Testament, auxquels on peut en ajouter un cinquième”. Revue des sciences ecclésiastiques 53 (1886): 5-33.

Last edited:

Steven Avery

Hard to find name, this was in the lectionary section, good long articles.



Dom Amand Mertens (b. 1853 or 1855 - 1927) (1896-1926), - monastery at steenbrugge


Vol 29 and 30

Nouvelle revue théologique, Vol 29
Le D6cret de la Congregation du Saint-Office sur l'authenticite du verset 7, chap. V, de la lr* Epltre de S. Jean.
p. 453-479
p. 619-643

Nouvelle revue théologique, Vol 30
Le Decret de la Congregation du Saint-Office sur I'authenticite du verset 7, chap. V, de la ln Epttre
A. Mertens
p. 117-146
p. 411-419
p. 453-468

Abby Mertens - R. P. Mertens

Book Review -
De hierarchie in de eerste eeuw des christendoms (1898)
A. De Coene
Last edited: