An Early Fragmentary Christian Palestinian Rendition of the Gospels into Arabic from Mār Sābā (MS Vat. Ar. 13, 9th c.)

In: Intellectual History of the Islamicate World

Our aim in the present paper is to show that the translator of the oldest portions of the Gospels preserved in MS Vat. Ar. 13 used at least two texts, Greek and Syriac. Our analysis is based exclusively in the fragment represented by Matthew 11:1–19. According to our analysis of the translation strategies adopted by the Melkite translator the Greek text was used as the base text for the translation into Arabic. At the same time, the Syriac text/s was/were consulted for revising the previous translation made from Greek, a task which may have taken place during the very translation process. As we shall attempt to show in the present paper the revision made through Syriac text/s, together with the exegesis added by the translator, influenced the final Arabic version in some concrete parts of the texts.