In my previous post, I showed why I believed Erasmus’ 3rd and 4th editions read παρ εστιν and not περ εστιν. I titled the previous post “Hoskier and Ligatures” and questioned his ability to read ligatures. So this time I will title it “Palmer and Ligatures” since I was the questionable one.
The problem with ligatures is that they can be blurry or tiny in one important detail that makes all the difference. Such is the case here. My ligature table and chart is correct, but I was limited to the font I had. In the font chart, the difference between παρ and περ is quite small:
Today Dr. Maurice Robinson emailed me to say I was incorrect on this. So I set about to find other examples of Erasmus’ ligatures for παρ and περ. It turns out that in Erasmus’ ligature for παρ, he has a relatively large alpha letter above, compared to my example in my ligature chart, which was limited by the font. The ligature for περ in my chart has a small half moon, convexed to the left. However, in Erasmus, this half moon is larger. I will give examples below.
In addition, Erasmus’ tail to his Rho letters is a large loop that circles back up diagonally to the left, compared to my chart which has a small, barely discernible loop, whereas in the ligature for παρ there is a large loop.
Compounding the difficulty with ligatures is that one same author may use 3 or 4 different ligatures for the same thing. And in fact Erasmus wrote these 3 different ways, even 2 different ways in one word, see below.
Erasmus’ superscript alpha is relatively large and far to the left.
Mat 4:18 παρὰ in Erasmus 3:
Matt 1:19 παραδειγματίσαι in Erasmus 3:
Matt 1:19 παραδειγματίσαι in Erasmus 2:
Here I will show Erasmus’ περπερεύεται in 1 Cor. 13:4 in all five editions, from 1 to 5:
Observe that he wrote the word περπερεύεται five different ways!