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Novum Testamentum Latine: Nova Vulgata (Latin) Hardcover – 31 Dec 1984

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0x9e991b28) out of 5 stars 1 review
264 of 266 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9edc5048) out of 5 stars Critical edition of the New Vulgate 27 May 2002
By Robert W. Flammang - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'm a very new student of Latin, and not an expert on the Vulgate, so take my review for what it's worth. As far as I can tell, there are three versions of the Vulgate in print today, and I have copies of all three of them. So I thought that perhaps those who don't want to buy three versions might appreciate a neophyte's impression of their relative strengths and weaknesses. The full names on the title pages are rather long, so I'll just refer to these three versions briefly as the Stuttgart Vulgate (Biblia Sacra iuxta vulgatam versionem), the New Vulgate (Bibliorum Sacrorum nova vulgata editio), and the Madrid Clementina (Biblia Sacra iuxta Vulgatam Clementinam).
The Stuttgart Vulgate is available here on Amazon. It is a critical attempt to restore the Vulgate to its original Latin text. It comes with a complete critical apparatus showing variant readings from the most important Latin manuscripts. This version comes with the prefaces of St. Jerome, the old medieval critical apparatus of the Gospels (canones evangelorum), the apocryphal books of III and IV Ezra, Psalm 151, Prayer of Manasses, and the Epistle to the Laodiceans, as well as the complete Catholic canon. It also contains two complete Psalters, both by St. Jerome: The Psalterium Gallicanum and the Psalterium juxta Hebraicum. The two psalters are laid out side-by-side on facing pages to facilitate comparison. This version attempts to reconstruct the experience of reading a medieval manuscript, so the spelling is inconsistent and medieval, which can be a problem for anyone used to the Clementina, and to anyone looking up words in a dictionary. The text also lacks punctuation: no commas, colons, periods, question marks, or quotation marks; this actually is not a major problem in Latin, which is so rich in conjunctions. However, the lack of question marks sometimes gives me pause, as when Caiaphas says to Jesus "Tu es Christus Filius Benedicti" (Mc 14,61). The text is well cross referenced, and the typeface is modern and easy to read.
The Madrid Clementina does not seem to be currently (May 2002) available at Amazon, but it is available elsewhere on the internet. The Clementina was the official Latin text of the Catholic Church from 1502 to 1979. The Madrid edition includes a great many magisterial documents, and the biblical text is footnoted also with references to magisterial documents, although the prefaces of St. Jerome are missing, and there is no critical apparatus. Color maps are provided, but they are labeled in Spanish, not Latin. The orthography is fully modern, with modern punctuation and typeface. Like the Stuttgart Vulgate, this edition has two psalters (in adjacent columns for easy comparison): The traditional Psalterium Gallicanum, and the new Psalterium Pianum, a modern (1940's) translation of the Hebrew into neo-classical Latin. One of the delights of the Clementina is that it eclectically preserves some of the text from the ancient pre-Vulgate Latin versions, which reflect the early Latin liturgy of the Church.
The New Vulgate has replaced the Clementina as the official Latin text of the Catholic Church. Its New Testament and most of its Old, like the Stuttgart Vulgate, are based on a critical reconstruction of the original Vulgate text. However, in some cases the ancient text was amended to accord with the modern Greek and Hebrew critical editions. The spelling and punctuation are all modern, so in the majority of the verses the New Vulgate text is identical to the Clementina, but in Psalms, Judith, and Tobit, there are significant differences. I know of two editions of the new Vulgate, the one from Libraria Editrix Vaticana, and the Nestle-Aland edition; both editions are available here at Amazon. We can expect to see much more of the New Vulgate now that its use has been endorsed in the recent encyclical Litugiam Authenticam.
The Vatican edition is available used here on Amazon under the title Bibliorum Sacrorum nova vulgata editio. It contains the complete Old and New Testaments, but no prefaces, cross references, nor commentary, and has a minimal critical apparatus. It seems to be designed more for use in the pulpit than the armchair. Physically, it is an excellent tome made from red leather with gold lettering, large typeface in one column with plenty of margin on thick pages. It looks magnificent on my bookshelf.
More likely to be on my bureau is the Nestle-Aland edition of the New Vulgate. It contains only the New Testament, and is sold here under the title "Novum Testamentum Latine". The editors provide you with a thorough critical apparatus comparing the New Vulgate with other printed Latin versions such as the Clementina and Stuttgart, mentioned above, the Sistina, the Gutenberg, and some other editions I'm not very familiar with (the Complutensian, Roberti Stephani, Bartolomaei Gravii, and Christophori Plantini). Like the Madrid Clementina, this edition has color maps, but they are labeled in English, not Latin.
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