A lesser-known characteristic of Westcott and Hort's landmark edition of the Greek New Testament (1881) is the role of conjectural emendation therein. The editors refrained from adopting conjectures in their text, but at the same time marked some 60 places as probably betraying what they called “primitive corruption”. In their notes they offered conjectural emendations for these problematic places. This contribution describes and evaluates Westcott and Hort’s theory as well as practice of conjectural emendation: why, when and how did they apply it, and do their conjectures have lasting value? The paper also takes into account their position in the history of New Testament conjectural emendation: in which tradition did they stand, and what influence did they have?
20 Nov 2022
Annual Meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature