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"Opinion of the Catholic Church on the Vulgate"Edit

There has been a lot of too and fro here, but so far editor Calicem has been unable to substantiate his speculations from any notable recent scholarship.
So I am inclined to propose scrubbing the section on the Inerrancy of the Vulgate; and replacing it as Veverve suggested. TomHennell (talk) 12:21, 22 November 2019 (UTC)
I confirm that I still hold my opinion. Veverve (talk) 13:00, 22 November 2019 (UTC)
thanks; I suggest that the chapter by F.J. Crehan in the Cambridge History of the Bible 'The Bible in the Roman Catholic Church from Trent to the present day' (there is a Google preview link above) provides the basis for such a historical survey.
Crehan picks out four particular biblical tendencies that were variously supported in this period in Catholic commentators; but which were then condemned by the Catholic Church in the late 19th and early 20th centuries:
* a tendency to overstate the significance of the 'authenticity' of the Vulgate established by the Council of Trent; to the extent of proposing that Vulgate readings should be considered as inspired in themselves, and not properly to be corrected by reference to the original texts - condemned in Divino Afflante Spiritu;
* a tendency towards theories of 'subsequent ispiration'; such that passages or readings not found in the original texts (and sometimes not found in any version other than Latin) might be considered subsequently to have been established as part of inspired scripture through their traditonal use within the Latin church - condemned in the first Vatican Council;
* a tendency to distinguish within inspired scripture; obiter dicta, statements whose truth or falsity does not imply any belief of faith or morals, in respect of which the biblical principles of inerrancy need not apply - condemned in Providentissumus Deus;
* a tendency to propose 'spiritual' or 'typical' understandings within scripture; as meanings (often allegorical)inserted by God for the instruction of the Church, of which the original inspired author would have been unaware and which could be incompatible with his intended meaning - condemned in Providentissumus Deus and Divino Afflante Spiritu. TomHennell (talk) 01:17, 23 November 2019 (UTC)

@TomHennell: @Calicem: has this finally been settled? Veverve (talk) 17:56, 31 December 2019 (UTC)

I have heard no more from Calicem on the subject; as for me, I am happy for you to go ahead. TomHennell (talk) 14:02, 1 January 2020 (UTC)

@TomHennell: changes done. Veverve (talk) 02:36, 18 January 2020 (UTC)
I do not have the Cambridge History of the Bible, so if you want to include some material from it in the article, I am afraid you will have to do it yourself. Veverve (talk) 02:40, 18 January 2020 (UTC) @TomHennell:
@TomHennell: I have revised the article, if you want to add those information, doing it now would be a good time. Veverve (talk) 13:42, 23 February 2021 (UTC)

Not the same manuscriptEdit

@TomHennell: why do you say it is "not the same manuscript"? Veverve (talk) 15:38, 10 March 2021 (UTC)
@TomHennell: Also, you have not given your source for the new manuscripts you have added for the Benedictine Vulgate. Veverve (talk) 16:55, 11 March 2021 (UTC)

thanks Veverve ; source for both is the Stuttgart Vulgate (specifically the insert noting primary and secondary manuscript sources for each book). This also clarifies that the Codex Mediolanensis used by the Oxford editors for their Vulgate Gospels is an entirely different manuscript from the Codex Mediolanensis on which there is a separate Wikipedia article TomHennell (talk) 11:43, 12 March 2021 (UTC)
@TomHennell: Thank you for your answer. Could you add inline refs for both statements? Veverve (talk) 11:46, 12 March 2021 (UTC)
@TomHennell: There is no mention of manuscripts in the sources you have just added. Veverve (talk) 12:20, 12 March 2021 (UTC)
manuscripts identfied on these pages. TomHennell (talk) 13:06, 12 March 2021 (UTC)
@TomHennell: thanks. However, I checked the source and the problem I see is that there is no mention of the Benedictine or Oxford editions of the Vulgate on those pages. Veverve (talk) 13:15, 12 March 2021 (UTC)
the tabular columns on those pages denote the editions. In the body of the Stuttgart edition, they identify in the footnotes occasions where they include primary witnesses over and above those in the Roman or Oxford editions (e.g. S(s) in the Gospels). Otherwise, the primary witnesses in the big editions are also primary witnesses for Stuttgart. TomHennell (talk) 15:02, 12 March 2021 (UTC)
I do not get it. The manuscripts in those column are the manuscripts which are used in the Stuttgart edition, not those used in the Benedictine or Oxford editions. Where in the Stuggart edition do they state that the manuscripts in those colums are only those used in the Benedictine or Oxford editions. Veverve (talk) 15:11, 12 March 2021 (UTC)
The tables cross-reference the manuscripts used in the Stuttgart edition with the sigla of the same manuscripts used in the big editions. The footnotes on each page identify instances where the Stuttgart editors' set of primary witnesses have been extended to include manuscripts not included as primary witnesses for that section of text in the big editions. On the underlying principle; not to say where they are the same, only to say when they are different. This is so that readers can fully reconstruct both the reference text of each of the three prior editions (except purely in matters of orthography) and the also textual basis for those reference texts. This is explained in the various Stuttgart prefaces; taken together with the relevant footnotes. TomHennell (talk) 15:35, 12 March 2021 (UTC)

Sorry to revert all your most recent edits Veverve; but I am beginning to suspect that we may not be working from the same edition of the Stuttgart Vulgate; as you do not appear to be reading the same apparatus that I am.

Firstly; the Mediolanensis in the Stuttgart and Oxford apparatus is not the Codex Mediolanensis on which there is a separate Wikipedia page. Both manuscripts are in the Ambrosian Library, but the Vulgate one is at shelfmark C.39; while the Vetus Latina one is at shelfmark B.168.
Secondly; the Stuttgart critical apparatus provides full information on the primary sources of the Oxford edition - albeit that this is highly contracted, constructed according to the principles of manuscript collation, and in Latin. But it really does say what the article states it says; once you read it properly. Happy to discuss. TomHennell (talk) 22:52, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
@TomHennell: there is no problem with you reverting my edit as long as we can talk about it. I am using this version, which is the 5th one, from 2007. Which version do you use? The page numbers you have given are for me that of the critical apparatus (the "Index codicum" fro the Old and New Testament).
It is possible that I may not be seeing what I should be seeing in this apparatus, that my eyes missed an information. Could you screenshot me what I am supposed to see? Any image host will do. Veverve (talk) 23:03, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
Yep; that is the same edition; I am looking at the green inset card; but I think that simply reproduces the designated pages, so that they can cross-refer to the footnotes. Perhaps it might help to give a specific example of how the apparatus is intende to be read?. Look at Luke 23:35 on page 1655. The Stuttgart text is 'et stabat populus expectans' (waiting); whereas the Clementine text is 'et stabat populus spectans' (watching). But what is the support for each variant? Checking the footnote we see that 'spectans' is read in A,D, 'c' and 'o'; hence all other primary witnesses read 'expectans'. The primary witnesses for this page are given as S(s), A, M, and Z (footnote to the RH margin). Checking the green card, only AMZ have a siglum in the 'o' column; while D (the book of Durrow) is also not cited by the Oxford edition. So only A (Amiatinus) of the Oxford primary witnesses read 'spectans'; the other two, M (Mediolanensis) and Z (Harleianus) read 'expectans'. But the Oxford editors still preferred the 'singular' Amiatinus reading (maybe because they knew it to conform better with the Greek; maybe just because they tend to follow Amiatinus when the sources are unclear). The Stuttgart editors also consulted S(s) (Sangallensis) as an additonal primary witness; and as that supported the reading 'expectans' they consequently reversed the Oxford editors' pick. TomHennell (talk) 00:11, 16 March 2021 (UTC)
@TomHennell: I am not sure I understand what you mean. For example, on p. XLIII, could you give me the exact statement supporting that For the Pentateuch, the primary sources for the text are the Codex Amiatinus, the Codex Turonensis (the Ashburnham Pentateuch), and the Ottobonianus Octateuch. For the rest of the Old Testament (except the Book of Psalms) the primary sources for the text are the Codex Amiatinus and Codex Cavensis? Veverve (talk) 13:40, 16 March 2021 (UTC)
look on page 4; there is a footnote 'Citantur G,A,O,C, et ....'; this declares the primary witnesses through Genesis; as Turonensis, Amiatinus, Ottobianus and Cavensis in order of preference. All of these have sigla in 'r' column on the green card table; so all were applied as primary witnesses too for the Roman edition. As a subsequent footnote explains, G is frequently lacking (desunt) - and since the critical method of the Roman editors required always to have three primary sources, C made up the numbers for them in these places. As far as I can tell - though this is not explicitly stated - the Stuttgart editors simply treated all their Pentateuch primary witnesses in the stated straight preferential order. For the rest of the Old Testament; the footnote 'Citantur' for each book generally presents either A,C or C,A. TomHennell (talk) 14:04, 16 March 2021 (UTC)
@TomHennell: so, from what I understand, it is only you interpreting the footnotes. Moreover, you are putting pages as refs which do not contain the information in the article, as you have put p. XLIII to support the sentence I quoted, but now you say it is supported by p. 4. I checked, and I found no indication online that "Citantur" refer to the main manuscript(s) of a text in a critical edition. Therefore, it follows that the information you claim are supported are not to be found in the source, be it explicitly or implicitly; you claim they are present only cryptically which is a level of clarity low too for me to consider as useable. Veverve (talk) 14:24, 16 March 2021 (UTC)
You might find the method explained more fully if you search for "Elenchus Codicum". In any case; I have added a citation to a 1947 article on Dom Quentin and the Roman Revision of the Vulgate - which handily also provides a listing of primary manuscript witnesses; and explains how the inset card is intended to be used. But I do not accept your basic position; manuscript citations have to be interpreted according to the conventions of critical apparatus. This is not 'original research'; as it is simply extracting information in the manner that the editors have made public through the methods by which the editors intended it to be extracted. TomHennell (talk) 18:12, 16 March 2021 (UTC)

Paula & Eustochium in "See also"Edit

@Veverve: hi. Why so stubborn? There is no Wiki policy I'm aware of requiring lots of sources for a "see also" item to be added. I would claim that it's up to you to make the effort and read up, I've written it in my edit summary, and you still haven't. Just go to Paula's enWiki page for starters: Jerome translated the Bible in Bethlehem, while being supported by her financially. That should be enough for now. Their lifes were closely intertwined, Jerome was her guest and mentor already in Rome, and he probably had to leave the city because he had driven another one of Paula's daughters into a kind of "suicide by asceticism".

Again, as already written: my reasons of putting Paula (and Eustachium) into the "see also" were

  • to inform the user and help them look into an aspect unfortunately far too little mentioned (a "women out" reflex?)
  • as an incentive to editors like you and me to read up and add the missing data to the article.

It's very logical, rather unintrusive, and has become a standard procedure for me. It works, and no one, ever, has found a reason to object to it. I don't want to spend another day on Wiki, so please, if you really care about the user, who is all we're here for, read up and add to the article, rather than removing again the justified additions.

Also: if they were mentioned in the article, they would not be allowed in the "see also", as per Wiki rules. You should know that. I personally disagree with this blanket prohibition, as the "see also" can help create a systematic structure by which the user can continue reading up on the subject, but that doesn't relate to your intervention here in any way. I do insist that you don't re-revert, unless you can prove that the two did not contribute to the Vulgate. Your argument, that they are not in the article, only shows that you don't know the basic rules on "see also". Have a nice day, Arminden (talk) 11:46, 4 September 2021 (UTC)

The simplest Google search (Paula Eustochium Vulgate) immediately brought up this page, where it is clearly stated that the two were both the motor behind many of Jerome's works, explicitly including his retranslation of the LXX, and the Vulgate, as well as the "critics" whose opinion he asked for, step by step (for instance about Kings: "submitted it to Paula and Eustochium for their criticism"). So again: make an effort before removing material which is of use to the user, the only raison d'être for Wiki, and don't make up rules ("first place it in the article"), especially if they are in open conflict with the existing rules (if in article, not in "see also"). I find it very aggressive, especially since it's wrong and ill-considered. When one has a firmly established truth on his side, one can be bold, but here the opposite is the case. Arminden (talk) 12:01, 4 September 2021 (UTC)

@Veverve: Hello.
Articles in the "See also" section must be related to the topic of the article.
1) Just go to Paula's enWiki page for starters: the Vulgate is mentioned neither at Paula of Rome nor at Eustochium.
2) I have read all your edit summaries on the subject, which is why I answered to them in my edit summaries. I think a lenghty wall of text in talk page and a "Next step: arbitration" really set the tone. Also, per WP:BRD I believe those "See also" should be removed, as the previous version should prevail if their is a dispute on any addition.
3) if they were mentioned in the article, they would not be allowed in the "see also": I agree. If those information are so vital to the article, they should not be in a "See also" section but in said article.
4) if you really care about the user, who is all we're here for, read up and add to the article, rather than removing again the justified additions: adding things and then trying to guilt trip others to do the research you should have done is not very polite.
5) I have skimmed throught your source by A.H. Johns A.M; the other sources you added in the reference you put - Woman in Science and Bible Translation in Suriname - are useless, as their information are not useable information, but book titles.
I found not information on A.H. Johns A.M's reliability, and he makes very bold claims such as:
And they [Paula and Eustochium] did read and compare and criticise. And more than this, they frequently suggested modifications and corrections, which the great man accepted with touching humility and incorporated in a revised copy. It may indeed be confidently asserted that no two persons since their time have more thoroughly and more lovingly studied and compared the Latin, Greek and Hebrew texts of the Scriptures, or have more completely made this occupation the work of their lives, than did Paula and Eustochium.
I have never read such claims anywhere apart from in this one-century-old paper which sounds more like a hagiography than a scientific article ("Jerome was now fifty-five years of age, in the zenith of his magnificent intellect, in the full vigor of a mind stored with the accumulated learning and wisdom of a life devoted to unremitted study and contemplation."). I have made a Google search, and found nothing making those claims, apart, once again, from this article. No one has added those information about Paula and Eustochium on alleged contribution to the Vulgate in years on four pages (Vulgate, Paula of Rome, Eustochium; Jerome only has "Paula, funded his stay in a monastery in Bethlehem and he completed his translation there"), which makes me think there is a reason to. And yes, as I wrote, some prefaces of Jerome's translation of the Bible were dedicated to Paula and Eustochium.
The CE only has: "Paula and Eustochium took a larger share in the exegetical labours of Jerome, and conformed themselves more and more to his direction." No relation to Jerome's translation. The other CE articles about the subjects (Eustochium, Jerome) do not mention Paula or Eustochium in relation to the Vulgate.
Veverve (talk) 14:36, 4 September 2021 (UTC)
@Veverve: A.H. Johns is the pseudonym of John Augustine Zahm. One good source, a Catholic scientist of renown, writing in the style of his time. Perfectly sufficient. Can't remove anymore. Easy to find more, the burden of proof is fully on you. Arminden (talk) 14:45, 4 September 2021 (UTC)
@Arminden: no source says it is him. Also, even if it was, WP:FRINGE, and Zahm was not a historian. The burden of proof is not on me. Veverve (talk) 14:48, 4 September 2021 (UTC)
@Arminden: I checked the source, it is indeed him. Now, you only have WP:FRINGE and the fact he was no a historian. Veverve (talk) 14:52, 4 September 2021 (UTC)
@Veverve: No need to be a historian. He was a university graduate and science teacher at the University of Notre Dame, an evolutionist (!) and noted Catholic feminist. Of course he didn't write scientific works for a periodical such as The Catholic World, and reflected the spirit of the time. Note that Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815–1902) , another early US feminist, writes about P & E in the same vein and more: Paula as total equal to Jerome, working side by side with him, being the one who "suggested and inspired the undertaking, furnishing the expensive works of reference,... revised and corrected Jerome's work,.... then... assisted by Eustochium... performed the enormous task of copying it accurately for circulation" - only to be pushed out of popular memory by a patriarchal Church. I don't know if Stanton and Zahm extrapolated it all based on "common sense", without having any explicit sources, but my search now didn't bring up any surviving letter elaborating on P&E's intellectual contribution to the Vulgate. There is consensus on the fact that the two (or Paula) were the motivators behind his exegetical works, which came both before and after the Vulgate, that they helped him financially and probably physically (here Paula's granddaughter, Paula the Younger, plays a part too), and that they were a major part of the intellectual environment in which he worked. Jerome himself makes it quite clear, in his own words. Now after 1600 years, only few of their letters survive, so I guess that authors like Zahm found it fully legitimate to connect the many extant dots. If that is the problem, add a qualifying word to the "see also" entry. Katherine Rabenstein, very active contributor to official online Catholic lists of saints, feels free to write "Paula helped Jerome in his work of translating the Scriptures into Latin, and caring for him personally." (Saints of the Day, 1998. CatholicSaints.Info. 15 May 2020. <>). There is more by her about the two helping Jerome both physically and intellectually at the entry on Eustochium. qualifies Rabenstein's "Index of Saints" on a now defunct website: "In general takes a pious view of the saints. Good popular bibliography." She's good enough to be quoted in a 2012 paper written by a prof. (by 2017 emer.) of the Religion Department at the private California Lutheran University.
No introduction to the Vulgate with Jerome writing "I was helped in finishing this by P & E"? Sure. Very good circumstantial case in favour of it (P & E initiators of his exegetical works both before & after Vulgate; material and direct physical help for aging Jerome): no doubt about it. Quotable authors filling in the blanks? Yes, with a cautionary comment. Good enough for "See also", in order to push others do what we did today and take it further? 100% so. Arminden (talk) 16:59, 4 September 2021 (UTC)
@Arminden: A biologist is not ipso facto considered a RS on technological sciences, and a sociologist is not ipso facto considered a RS on textual criticism. This is not how competency and peer acknowledgement work.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton is not RS. John Augustine Zahm is not RS either, whatever his political or ideological affiliations where. Rabenstein is not qualified either, and CatholicSaints.Info is not an official website of the Catholic Church from what I can see on the website. And again, even if Rabenstein's opinion could be taken into account, it is once again WP:FRINGE.
The fact you do not seem to find the information you want to add on the numerous widely available secular, interdenominationan Christian, and Catholic encyclopaedias tend to indicate this POV is fringe. I would add that the Sources Chrétiennes book Canellis, Aline, ed. (2017). Jérôme : Préfaces aux livres de la Bible [Jerome : Preface to the books of the Bible]. - as far as I can remember - does not contains those information on those two women helping Jerome in his translation. Veverve (talk) 17:17, 4 September 2021 (UTC)
V, you seem to fight this beyond what's reasonable. Neither P & E, nor those who wrote about their partly proven, partly probable contribution to Jerome's oeuvre which show up online, are modern figures to whom we can apply the current peer-review criteria of a scientific journal. I don't believe it for a second that, after reading all I've put together, you have any doubts left that they did help Jerome during the 15 years or so he spent revising translations or producing new ones of the OT and NT. That they didn't just stop out of spite, after helping him both before and after at precisely the same type of work. If you insist on taking it to the last formal level of scrutiny, enjoy, and I hope you can feel satisfaction at the end. I wouldn't. That's why I put them in in the first place. Almost everything that old is on this same level of "credible", as opposed to "proven fact". Arminden (talk) 18:41, 4 September 2021 (UTC)
On a sideline: Zahm was a priest who studied theology and science. Any C19 seminarist had to study patristics and Church history; one who graduated with honours must have been good at it. The fact that he was a priest educated in sciences and even taught science at Notre Dame, is quite remarkable. The obsession with narrow specialisation of scholars is a new phenomenon, there is no way to deny him quotability as such; of an article he penned for a Catholic magazine, sure, that can always be debated. I found a false claim there, too. Arminden (talk) 18:41, 4 September 2021 (UTC)

@Arminden: There are dozens of modern encyclopaedias, be they general or specialised, which describe Jerome's Vulgate, as well as monographies or biographies on Jerome and his work, which you can check to see if you are right. I have read some of them, and never came accross those information.
From what I understand, you agree that the two links you added be removed from the "See also" section. Am I interpreting correctly? Veverve (talk) 20:03, 4 September 2021 (UTC)

@Veverve: Hi. Sorry, but no. I will add a source to the "See also" and a line to Paula of Rome. (Btw, that one already did have the 19th-c. feminist maximalist view of Paula there! You've overlooked it. I set it under a sub-heading, now that I've learned, thanks to you - and thank you! - that this is not a consensus, but a theory. You'll probably be amused of what other addition I've made there, under "Further reading. Have I mentioned that I'm most certainly not involved in this for any religious or other Weltanschauung p.o.v.?) Nancy Hardesty, at the time a Clemson University professor of religion with a 1976 PhD in the History of Christianity from the University of Chicago on a Christian feminist topic, repeats more or less the same claims in an article from 1988. It's written for the Christian History magazine, not a scientific publication, a popular magazine, but with a decent level of information (CH was taken over by Christianity Today for 15 years). Hardesty's papers are kept at a Columbia U. library in their "Archive of Women in Theological Scholarship". She writes with obvious knowledge of the primary sources (letters by Jerome, his dedications) and after years of studying and teaching about women in Church history. She does not mention Eustochium as a "colleague" of Jerome, as she does in the case of Paula, but her topic is Paula. I am normally not too much interested in theology and hagiography, except for their historical and philosophical value, so I don't have much access to the relevant literature other than via Google, but I'd love to know if and what Hardesty has written in her scholarly work about this topic.
The official Vatican News website makes the same claim as Zahm. Under "ST. PAULA, ROMAN MATRON" it reads: "Paula's most significant contributions to Jerome's preaching are the translation of the Bible from Greek and Hebrew into Latin. She herself suggested the need for such a translation, and with her daughter Eustochium, dedicated herself to copying the work so it could be shared far and wide.". And this is 100% an official website (self-description: "Vatican News is the news portal of the Holy See").
So the least we have is very good circumstancial evidence, accepted and published by scholars with a feminist focus over many decades, some more acceptable today than others; and a tradition of feminist claims, at least 125 years old (the Stanton quote is from The Woman's Bible, 1895, the chapter on Luke), which is continued uninterruptedly until now. This in itself is very interesting as a form of legacy, but not so much for the Vulgate article, as for the Paula page. The Vatican has now also adopted this view on its official website (maybe to show that it has come a long way from the "old ways"). Definitely worth pointing it out to interested Wiki users. Arminden (talk) 18:32, 5 September 2021 (UTC)
@Veverve: hi. As you can see at Talk:Paula_of_Rome#Collaboration_with_Jerome, I am satisfied with finding out about the modern perception of P&E's contribution, but certainly not with the actual facts. Two different pairs of shoes. It's quite possible that we won't ever have more than interpretations, but is it so? Is there more information on the topic in Jerome's letters? Are there other possible sources? I wonder. Hopefully somebody better trained in the subject will pick up the challenge. Arminden (talk) 20:04, 8 September 2021 (UTC)