The first work of its kind in English, John Scott Porter's Principles of Textual Criticism stands at the beginning of a long tradition of text critical handbooks that extends to B. B. Warfield, A. T. Robertson, and Bruce Metzger. But while most textual criticism handbooks tend to focus on the New Testament, Porter's volume covers both the Old and New Testaments, thus providing the student with a much broader picture of textual criticism and showing how the same principles are applied to different texts.
Providing a complete introduction to textual criticism, Porter' volume begins with a summary of the goals of textual criticism and helpful discussion of why textual criticism should be viewed as a benefit to the Christian faith rather than a danger, followed by a discussion of general principles. These include discussions of the external and internal evidence, methods for determining the value of manuscripts and versions, and the classification of variant readings.
- Essential Reading for the history of textual criticism
- Thorough coverage of both the Old and New Testaments
- A helpful variety of manuscript pictures and plates
Praise for the Print Edition
The publication of Scott Porter's Principles of Textual Criticism (1848) came, indeed, at the opening of a new era in British textual studies. . . . and it first made accessible to the public the essentials for a knowledge of the true methods of critical research.
—The Christian Life, Vol. 10
The distinguishing characteristic of Mr. Porter's mind was its clearness, directness, and decision.
—Belfast Literary Society
- Title: Principles of Textual Criticism: With Their Application to the Old and New Testaments
- Author: John Scott Porter
- Publisher: Simms & McIntyre
- Publication Date: 1848
- Pages: xviii, 539
About John Scott Porter
John Scott Porter lived from 1801 to 1880. A student of Johann Griesbach, Porter was considered a pioneer in the field of textual criticism. For many years, he held the position of Professor of Sacred Criticism and Theology and eventually also of Hebrew and Cognate languages for the Association of Non-subscribing Presbyterians in Ireland. Academically, he was at ease in the Greek and Latin classics and well as the Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek of the Old and New Testaments. Porter was also fluent in numerous languages beyond those of Scripture, including Syriac, Arabic, Latin, German, French, Italian, Spanish, and Irish. Beyond the study of ancient and modern languages, he was also heavily involved in the Irish archeology, particularly in County Londonderry in what is today Northern Ireland.