While I was in Seattle for a conference this weekend, a review copy of the Codex Sinaiticus, Facsimile Edition came in the mail. Having seen this beautiful work a number of times at ETS/SBL, I have longed for a copy. But the list price of $799 would be more than my rent, and I would be sleeping on the couch months if I ever spent that. Thankfully the folks over at CBD have decided to bless us all by offering Codex Sinaiticus at the unreal price of $199! That, my friends, is a steal!
I look forward to posting my reviews of this important work in the next few weeks. Until then, here is a bit of info on Sinaiticus:
Codex Sinaiticus is the oldest known complete manuscript featuring the full canon of the Christian Bible in Greek. It was originally produced in the middle of the 4th Century (app. 350A.D.) in the south-eastern Mediterranean. Originally Codex Sinaiticus was produced on parchment whose total number exceeded 730 leaves, or approximately 1,460 pages. It contains the oldest complete New Testament, and at one time contained the entire Old Testament.
Sections of Genesis and other areas of the Pentateuch were damaged or lost over the centuries. Nevertheless, the vast majority of the OT text remains, and is now preserved in this facsimile edition. The importance of the 4th Century to Christian history cannot be understated, and Codex Sinaiticus is our greatest witness to that era, especially in understanding how Christians had begun to understand their canonical Scriptures.
Hendrickson Publishers, in conjunction with the British Library, is now releasing a limited number of full color facsimiles of the entire Codex Sinaiticus. This edition includes both the Old and New Testaments, represented by “life size” pages (13.5″ x 16.5″).
Totaling 828 pages, the facsimile edition comes in hardback binding accompanied by a sturdy slip case that is designed to provide support the weight of the facsimiles pages (app. 25 lbs) and prevent them from tearing away from the back binding, as is common with many large hardback books. Finally the Codex Sinaiticus facsimile edition comes with a 32 page booklet that provides a brief outline of the provenance, history, and discovery of this immensely valuable piece of history.