I am under the impression that the Byzantine and Western texts also have a Greek OT that is a copy of ancient LXX codices. What is your understanding?
Sometimes it’s difficult to keep focused on the key points over a number of post, but
Again, Let’s keep in mind what the subject of this thread is, to wit: What is the provenence of the text that was used as the basis of the Christian OT. Let’s please keep in mind that the OP is Protestant which has it roots in Western Europe, so stick to the Western European provenence for the OT up until the 16th century.
That’s what I’m trying to do, but I get the impression that I’m failing miserably and not understanding your explanations.
So, what is the basis of the OT of the Bible in Western Europe used up until the 16th century?
My answer would be: the Vulgate.
Perhaps it would help if I illustrated what goes through my mind to give that answer. When you say “what is the basis of the OT of the Bible in Western Europe,” the image that comes to mind is, if I was your average monk in Western Europe, and wanted to make a Bible, starting from scratch, what would I do?
Is that even relevant? Perhaps I’m misunderstanding what you mean by using the terms you are using. When you say “the Bible in Western Europe,” I’m thinking of thousands of copies of the Old Testament and the New Testament that were copied and preserved in monasteries until they were transferred to modern museums and archives. And when you ask about the “basis of the OT” in this regard, I’m thinking, what OT text did they use to make all those copies? Is that what you mean by those terms?
Anyway, if I was an ancient monk who wanted to make a Bible from scratch, well, I would contact the nearest person who owned a Vulgate Bible, and ask if I could copy it. And he had probably made his Vulgate by contacting someone before him, and that person had probably done the same thing, all the way back to St. Jerome himself. And St. Jerome didn’t use the Alexandrian, Western, or Byzantine texts to make his Old Testament, not if I understand the process of creating the Vulgate correctly. My understanding is, he contacted local Jews in Bethlehem to get access to Hebrew manuscripts, and translated his Old Testament directly from the Hebrew.
Therefore, I don’t see any place for the Alexandrian, Byzantine, or Western texts to enter into the picture at any point in the process. Now, I am assuming that our understandings of this process are very different at some point, in that you seem to say that one of those three texts is the basis for almost all OT translations in Western Europe, and I think that none of them is.
Are you saying that Western Europeans used the Byzantine, Western, or Alexandrian codices at some point, rather than the Vulgate? Or are you saying that one of those is the basis of the Vulgate OT? And if so, aren’t they all Greek? Because I thought the Vulgate OT was translated from the Hebrew, and not anything Greek. So what am I missing?