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Samuel Prideaux Tregelles Collection (2 vols.)


Over the past three centuries, there are a plethora of scholars who have published introductory handbooks on textual criticism, but there are far fewer who have thoroughly researched and published on the history of New Testament editions, collating them, and setting forth the principles of comparative textual study. And fewer still are those who have compiled critical editions of their own. Samuel Prideaux Tregelles may very well be the only scholar to have done all three and more. And in the Samuel Prideaux Tregelles Collection (2 vols.), two of his incredibly important works are available digitally for the first time.

The name Tregelles is known in Old Testament studies for his translation of Gesenius' Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon to the Old Testament. But it was his New Testament efforts, particularly in textual criticism, that gave him a solid place in the history of biblical studies. It was an unfortunate accident of history that his work in textual criticism and his published text has, up to very recently, not received the hearing it deserves.

In delineating the history of textual criticism, scholars have tended to describe the nineteenth century in a linear manner that finds its climax in The New Testament in the Original Greek edited by Westcott and Hort. This, combined with the fact that the massive critical edition edited by Tischendorf was published just after that of Tregelles, prevented the work of Tregelles from receiving the full recognition it deserved. But with the publication of the German Bible Society's still-in-progress Novum Testamentum Graecum: Editio Critica Maior, the entire perspective of nineteenth century textual criticism and Tregelles' important role has completely changed. Textual critic David C. Parker, in comparing the new Editio Critica to Lachmann, Tischendorf, Tregelles, and Westcott and Hort, notes that of these editions, Tregelles' work has the fewest number of differences with the text of the new edition. Moreover, he observes,


Tregelles anticipated the Editio Critica Maior in nearly every place where the latter disagrees with Westcott and Hort. Only in the two readings at [James 5:4] do Tregelles and Westcott/Hort agree against the new edition.


For this reason, Tregelles' discussions of text critical methodology deserve our renewed attention. And with the Samuel Prideaux Tregelles Collection (2 vols.) for Logos Bible Software, the scholarship of this first-class scholar is made more accessible than ever, completely indexed and searchable with quick access to the Biblical texts, the papyri, and other text-critical resources.

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  • Thorough coverage of historical questions about authorship, historical background, and style of New Testament books
  • Complete history of the text of the New Testament through the middle of the nineteenth century.
  • Helpful discussions of manuscripts and versions of the New Testament
  • Comprehensive analysis of printed editions of the Greek New Testament for study and reference
  • Essential bibliography for further reading
It will be superfluous, to those who are acquainted with the character of Dr. Tregelles’ previous biblical labors, to say that his work has been done with scrupulous fidelity and accuracy.

—Henry Alford, Greek Testament

The fact that Tregelles comes so well out of this comparison with [the texts of] Lachmann, Tischendorf, Westcott and Hort, and the Editio Critica Maior suggests that we need to reconsider the usual view of nineteen century textual criticism as a linear development culminating in The New Testament in the Original Greek. It may be that we have overlooked the significance and standard of Tregelles' achievement.

—David C. Parker

  • Title: Samuel Prideaux Tregelles Collection (2 vols.)
  • Author: Samuel Prideaux Tregelles
  • Volumes: 2
  • Pages: 1,185
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An Introduction to the Textual Criticism of the New Testament

  • Author: Samuel Prideaux Tregelles
  • Publisher: Longman, Brown, Green, Longmans & Roberts
  • Publication Date: 1856
  • Pages: xxvii, 767

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

While there are many textual criticism handbooks and introductions available, there are far fewer scholarly giants in the field. Samuel Tregelles is one of those few. His scholarship has withstood the test of time and continues to be relevant to New Testament study. In this thorough and detailed volume, Tregelles provides discussion of every aspect relating to textual criticism. He covers everything from the language, grammar, and style of the New Testament, and the relevant historical issues of the New Testament books to the history of textual transmission and versions of the New Testament.

Drawing on his encyclopedic knowledge of the New Testament text, manuscripts, and editions, An Introduction to the Textual Criticism of the New Testament is an essential book for the study of the New Testament in its historical context and the manuscripts that have preserved it, all the while maintaining a high reverence of the authority and inspiration of scripture as God's word.

An Account of the Printed Text of the Greek New Testament: With Remarks on Its Revision upon Critical Principles

  • Author: Samuel Prideaux Tregelles
  • Publisher: Samuel Bagster and Sons
  • Publication Date: 1854
  • Pages: xxii, 369

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

Seeking to provide students and scholars with a complete history of the printed text of the Greek New Testament, this monumental volume begins with The Complutensian Polyglot, surveying the history and origin of the edition, its editors, and the manuscripts used in its creation. From there, Tregelles provides an overview of the editions of Erasmus, including a helpful discussion of the differences and changes between each successive edition, as well as the various incarnations of the Textus Receptus edited by Stephens, Beza, and Elzevirs. At this point, An Account of the Printed Text shifts gears to focus on the textual criticism that eventually shifted to overthrow the received text with the critically constructed text. Included in this are discussions of textual critics such as Bishop Fell, John Mill, Johann Bengel, Wetstein, Griesbach, Scholz, Lachmann, and Tregelles' contemporary, Tischendorf.

The second section of the book moves from historical survey to deal with issues of textual criticism proper. Tregelles helpfully includes a number of his own studies in textual criticism, an analysis of the value of various New Testament manuscripts, a brief, but helpful, overview of the principles of textual criticism, and extended notes on passages of theological importance. These last extended notes are of particular import. Tregelles takes care to discuss controversial pericopes such as John 7:53-8:11; Mark 16:9-20; 1 Timothy 3:16; 1 Peter 3:15, and a host of other theologically important texts, offering his own judicious judgment on the textual challenges involved in each of them.

All of this is followed by a thorough collation of the printed critical editions of Griesbach, Scholz, Lachmann, and Tischendorf's second edition with the Textus Receptus. This collation represents years of labor on the part of Tregelles to provide easy access to a vast amount of text-critical data, uniting the efforts of some of the greatest textual critics who have ever lived into a single convenient volume.

Samuel Prideaux Tregelles, born in 1813, was a giant of Biblical scholarship during the 19th century. His scholarly endeavors cover the whole gamut of Biblical and theological study, from Hebrew grammar and lexicography, to New Testament textual criticism. Most well-known for his work in textual criticism, he is one of only a handful of scholars to have produced a complete critical edition of the Greek New Testament single-handedly. His efforts laid the foundation for much of the text critical work of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, for scholars such as Westcott and Hort, Eberhard Nestle, Kurt and Barbara Aland, and Bruce Metzger. Known for his vast knowledge on virtually any topic, it is said that he was "able to shed a light upon any topic that might be introduced," but that asking could be dangerous because, "doing so was like reaching to take a book and having the whole shelf-full precipitated upon your head." He died in 1875 just following the completion of his tour de force critical edition, The Greek New Testament, Edited from Ancient Authorities, which was seen to publication after his death by Fenton J. A. Hort in 1879.

Note: Over the years many have wondered about the correct pronunciation of Tregelles' unique surname. The name is of Cornish origin and is pronounced with stress on the second syllable: Tre-gel-les.


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