The Sahidic and Bohairic Coptic editions of the Greek New Testament were some of the earliest translations of the Greek of the New Testament. But outside of Egypt, Coptic is not a widely known language these days—even among scholars of the New Testament. The Sahidic Coptic New Testament in English helps bridge the gap by providing a convenient English translation of the Coptic New Testament.
Sahidic was the leading dialect of pre-Islamic Coptic, and is the dialect in which most known Coptic texts are written. The first written instances of the dialect occurred around 300 A.D., including translations of Biblical texts. The spelling of written Sahidic became standardized by the 6th century, and almost all native Coptic authors wrote in the dialect. Whereas texts in other Coptic dialects are usually translations of other Greek works, the Sahidic dialect is the only one with a large body of original literature and non-literary texts. And since Sahidic shares most of its features with other dialects of Coptic, has few peculiarities not shared with other dialects, and has a considerable corpus of known texts, it is usually the dialect studied by students of Coptic.
When George Horner prepared his critical editions of the Coptic text in the early 1900’s, he also prepared translations of the Sahidic and Bohairic versions for the edition. While Logos has separately published the Sahidic and the Bohairic, this English translation has until now, been relegated to obscurity in the pages of the seldom-used print edition. With the Sahidic Coptic New Testament in English, English-only students will have easy access for the first time to this important New Testament Text.