My research project aims to investigate the source of the Latin Vulgate texts of the Pauline and Catholic Epistles and address the issue of their attribution. This has long been the subject of scholarly debate, although the discussions have been often inconclusive. New digital tools, however, now make it possible to provide a more extensive and detailed analysis. The methodology of the research is meant to be internal as well as external and is based on a double approach combining quantitative analysis with qualitative examination of particularly interesting lexical and syntactical renderings. I examine the question using a linguistic and stylistic approach, comparing the Vulgate Epistles with the Vetus Latina, the texts prior to the fourth century revision, widely considered an unusual linguistic source as it was closer to spoken than written Latin of the time. A comparison between the Vetus Latina and the Vulgate will enable us to establish the nature of the modifications introduced in the Vulgate and systematically group them into characteristic patterns. Some are likely to represent the use of a different Greek text, but others are changes in Latin style which allow us to clarify the intentions and possibly the identity of the reviser(s) of these texts. The purpose of the research is to cast light on the origin of the Vulgate Epistles, its early attestations in the manuscript tradition and in the biblical citations of the Church Fathers with the intention of promoting philological and theological discussion concerning the text and exegesis of the Latin New Testament among scholars in the fields of Theology and Classics.
- Classical literature and classical philology
- Textual criticism of the Latin and Greek New Testament
- Late Latin
- Palaeography and manuscript tradition