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TO THE STUDY OF THE

BOOKS OF THE NEW TESTAMENT:

BEING

AN EXPANSION OF LECTURES

DELIVERED IN THE

DIVINITY SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF DUBLIN.

BY GEORGE SALMON, D.D., F.R.S.,

PROVOST OF TRINITY COLLEGE, DUBLIN ;
SOMETIME REGIUS PROFESSOR OF DIVINITY IN THE UNIVERSITY OF DUBLIN.

FOURTH EDITION.

LONDON:
JOHN MURRAY, ALBEMARLE STREET.

BY THE SAME AUTHOR.

THE INFALLIBILITY OF THE CHURCH:

A Bourse of Lectures

DELIVERED IN THE

DIVINITY SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF DUBLIN.

8vo. Price 128.

Printed at The UNIVERSITY Press, Dublin.

PRE FACE

OronzoL.S.

TO THE FIRST EDITION.

THE

"HE Lectures out of which the present volume has

taken its origin were written some years ago, and did not aim at giving a complete or systematic account of the subjects with which they dealt. When I decided last year on sending them to the Press, I contemplated making no other change than that of altering the division into Lectures — the original division, of necessity, having mainly had regard to the length which it was convenient to deliver at one time. Accordingly, the first three Lectures of this volume contain, with but slight alterations, what was originally the introductory Lecture of my course. But as the printing went on I found additions necessary, partly in order to take notice of things that had been published since the delivery of the Lectures, and partly in order to include details which want of time had obliged me to omit, but which I was unwilling to pass unnoticed in my book. In this way I have been led on to re-write, and make additions (but without making any change in the style or in the arrangement), until I am now somewhat dismayed to find that the Lectures have swelled to two or three times their original bulk.

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The additions thus made have so far completed the discussion, that I have ventured to give this volume the title of an Introduction ; but it will be seen that it does not embrace all the topics frequently included under that title. I do not enter on the criticism of the text, nor do I make any analysis of the contents of the books. My main purpose has been to discuss their date and authorship on purely historical grounds; and to examine with sufficient completeness for a practical decision the various theories on the subject advanced by modern schools of criticism. It is in this latter respect that this Introduction will chiefly be found to differ from some valuable works on the same subject which are in the hands of students. Most of the original evidence requisite for the discussion has already been brought within easy reach in Canon Westcott's History of the New Testament Canon. Dr. Charteris, also, in his 'Canonicity,' has rendered accessible to the English reader the collection of ancient testimonies made by Kirchhofer in his

Quellensammlung.' According to the arrangement of Canon Westcott's book, each of the ancient witnesses is treated separately, and under each name are placed the books of the New Testament to which the witness bears testimony. According to the arrangement of Kirchhofer and Charteris, each book of the New Testament is examined in succession, and the ancient writers are cited who bear testimony to it. The latter is the arrangement I have followed. I do not always give as full a report of the evidence as the authors just mentioned have done, contenting myself with citing as many witnesses as I judge to be suf

ficient to prove my case. But on the other hand, as I have said, I aim at giving a somewhat fuller discussion than they have done of the theories of authorship which modern sceptical writers have proposed to substitute for the traditional belief of the Christian Church. The time has passed when it could be objected that a student's time was ill-spent in becoming acquainted with such theories, on the ground that he probably would never have heard of them if he had not been asked to study the refutation. Literature in which the theories in question are treated as established facts has now obtained such extensive circulation, that a clergyman must be pronounced ill-trained for his work if he has to make his first acquaintance with these speculations when he finds them accepted among his people as the latest results of scientific inquiry. Although my work may be described as apologetic in the sense that its results agree in the main with the traditional belief of the Church, I can honestly say that I have not worked in the spirit of an advocate anxious to defend a foregone conclusion. I have aimed at making my investigations historical, and at asserting nothing but what the evidence, candidly weighed, seemed to warrant. It would be idle in anyone to pretend that he can wholly divest himself of bias; but I must remark that the temptation to hold obstinately to traditional opinions is one to which those who are called apologists are not exclusively liable. The theories which in these Lectures I have found myself obliged to reject are now some fifty years old. They are maintained by a generation of scholars who have accepted them on the authority

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