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Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Oldest Known Bible Posted Online

The surviving pages of what’s believed to be the world’s oldest Bible have been published on the Web. And it's online for free.
Codex Sinaiticus, written in Greek by hand on parchment leaves, dates back to the middle of the fourth century. Pieces of the manuscript were found more than 150 years ago in a monastery on Mount Sinai, and have since been kept in Egypt, as well as at institutions in Britain, Russia, and Germany, where scholars worked to restore them.
Now, thanks to the British Library, the pages have been brought back together online (with translations in modern Greek and English) for all to see. There is a complete copy of the New Testament, a good portion of the Old Testament and the Apocrypha, and early versions of other texts not found in the Bible today. The first half of the Old Testament—from Genesis to 1 Chronicles—was part of the original manuscript, experts say, but most of it is now missing and assumed to be lost for good. —Heather Wax