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Lightfoot's Apostolic Fathers In English - J. B. Lightfoot, D. D., D.C. L., LL. D.

The Didache was discovered by Bryennios in the same MS with the complete copy of the Epistle of Clement mentioned above (p. 4) and called the Constantinopolitan or Hierosolymitan MS. Besides the Teaching and the Genuine and Spurious Epistles of Clement in full, this document contained Chrysostom’s Synopsis of the Old and New Testament (incomplete), the Epistle of Barnabas, and the Long Recension of the Ignatian Epistles. The MS is dated A.D. 1056. But though a list of the contents of this document was announced by Bryennios in 1875, eight years elapsed before the Didache itself was published. Meanwhile, as a work of this name is mentioned by Eusebius and others among early apocryphal writings, a hope was excited in the minds of those interested in such studies that this might be the book alluded to, and that it would throw some light on the vexed question of the origin of the Apostolical Constitutions. When at length in 1883 it was given to the world, its interest and importance were proved to exceed the highest expectations. It has been generally admitted to be the work mentioned by Eusebius and also quoted by Clement of Alexandria as ‘scripture.’ It is the basis of the seventh book of the Apostolical Constitutions. In language and subject-matter it presents close affinities to many other early documents, notably the Ecclesiastical Canons and the Epistle of Barnabas. A fragment of a Latin translation has also been discovered by Gebhardt, and is printed below (p. 225). Thus though there is but one extant MS of the Didache in its present form, the incorporation of a great part of it into patristic writings and early church-manuals renders the problem of its origin and development a peculiarly interesting one.








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