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A Coptic papyrus containing Didache 10:3b-12:2a, dated to the end of the fourth or start of the fifth century, was bought in 1923 for what was then the British Museum and catalogued as British Library Oriental Manuscript 9271. They conclude that "this sheet was originally cut from a roll of papyrus in order to serve as a double-leaf in a codex," but instead it was used "as a space for scribal exercises" (87).

It was, in other words, a rather casual copying of that section of the Didache for purposes of writing practice.

It is not enough, in any case, simply to note the mention of "firstfruits" in Didache 13:3-7, since that could indicate urban-based landowners.

My own preference for a rural over an urban setting comes not from those few verses but from the Didache's rhetorical serenity, ungendered equality, and striking difference from so many other early Christian texts. Kraft says about the provenance of the Didache (The Anchor Bible Dictionary, v. 197): "That most commentators now seem to opt for Syria (Audet 1958; Hazelden Walker 1966; Rordorf and Tullier 1978) or Syro-Palestine (Niederwimmer 1977) as the place of origin is not in itself an indication that the supporting evidence is compelling; Egypt (Kraft 1965) and Asia Minor (Vokes 1970) also have their supporters." On source criticism of the Didache, Kraft observes (op. 197): There seems to be a general consensus that the 'two ways' material in chaps.

2) The proposed elimination of all of the material after Did 12.2a is a rather radical solution to the open question of the disposition of the Didache. Willy Rordorf and Andre Tullier, writing in a major French series, located the Didache in northern Palestine or western Syria, but not in the capital city of Antioch.

It bears no date itself, nor does it make reference to any datable external event, yet the picture of the Church which it presents could only be described as primitive, reaching back to the very earliest stages of the Church's order and practice in a way which largely agrees with the picture presented by the NT, while at the same time posing questions for many traditional interpretations of this first period of the Church's life. Traces of the use of this text, and the high regard it enjoyed, are widespread in the literature of the second and third centuries especially in Syria and Egypt.

Fragments of the Didache were found at Oxyrhyncus (P. It was used by the compilator of the Didascalia (C 2/3rd) and the Liber Graduun (C 3/4th), as well as being absorbed in toto by the Apostolic Constitutions (C c. Patterson comments on the dating of the Didache (The Gospel of Thomas and Jesus, p.

364): The scribe who copied those seven texts signed the last leaf as "Lean, notary and sinner," and dated that completion to June 11, 1056. Now known as Codex Hierosolymitanus 54, that volume was removed to the Patriarchate at Jerusalem in 1887, where it remains.

Earlier Coptic and Ethiopic versions also exist for a few chapters of this text.

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  1. A partner who may have understood a one-night stand that is immediately confessed is less likely to feel as humiliated as one who finds out much later or when a relationship is more established.