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No capital 'Z' in Tyndale & Great?

Discussion in 'Bible Versions & Translations' started by franklinmonroe, Jan 5, 2009.

  1. franklinmonroe

    franklinmonroe Active Member

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    I'm reading the NT in the Weigle Octapla and noticed that the 'z' in "zorobabel" was not capitalized in Tyndale's text at Matthew 1:12&13. I thought it might be a typographic (printer's) error but found the same treatment in the Great Bible column (but no others). All the other proper names are capitalized as expected. My Daniell reprint of Tyndale's NT is set with uppercase 'Z' here.

    Additionly, in the Octapla Tyndale & Great the 'z' is lowercase in the words "zabulon" (Matthew 4:13&15) and "zebede" (twice in Matthew 4:21), so it seems consistent and intentional. Can anyone confirm that this reflects the original printings, or simply know why early typesetting would be handled in this way?
     
    #1 franklinmonroe, Jan 5, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 5, 2009
  2. Logos1560

    Logos1560 Active Member

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    It is the same way at Matthew 1:12 & 13, Matthew 4:13 & 15, and Matthew 4:21 in the 1534 Tyndale's and 1539 Cranmer [Great Bible] in a photocopy of the 1841 The English Hexapla printed by Samuel Bagster.
     
  3. franklinmonroe

    franklinmonroe Active Member

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    Thank you, sir. Now here is the real oddity: in Tyndale's Matthew 11:23 "zodom" is small 'z' but in verse 24 it is "Zodom" with a capital. Both are lowercase 'z' in the Great Bible.
     
  4. Jerome

    Jerome Well-Known Member

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    Original printings:

    Tyndale 1525:
    Matt. 1 Zorobabel Zorobabell
    Matt. 4: zabulon, zebede Zebede
    Matt. 13 zodom

    Tyndale 1534:
    Matt.: zorobabel, zabulon, zebede, zodom
    Luke 1: zacharias Zachary Zacharias zachary

    Coverdale: caps as expected
    Great Bible: no capital Z's anywhere.
    First Book of Common Prayer: Zachar., zach, zebede
    Bishops Bible: caps as expected
     
    #4 Jerome, Jan 14, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 14, 2009
  5. franklinmonroe

    franklinmonroe Active Member

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    Thank you very much, Jerome. The Tyndale text in the Octapla is supposed to be the 1534 (I believe, its not with me at the moment).

    Any ideas about why only the letter 'z' wasn't capitalized regularly in early printings?
     
  6. Squire Robertsson

    Squire Robertsson Administrator
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    Please remember English spelling was not quite standardized at the time. So, if sometning sounded like a "z" it got spelled with a "z" even if in modern English it's spelled with an "s". "I" and "J" were another set of problem letters. Written out they were easiliy confused, that's why there is no "J" Street in Washington, DC.
     
  7. Jerome

    Jerome Well-Known Member

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    My guess is that, as type foundries shifted from making a long-tailed blackletter capital Z to a squared one, typesetters looking for a tailed capital Z, and not finding it, used the still-small-tailed lowercase Z.

    Tyndale 1525
    tailed capital Z, tailed lowercase z, capitalization not uniform (all letters)

    Tyndale 1534
    square capital Z, tailed lowercase z, capitalization uniform, except some Zs

    Coverdale
    tailed capital Z, tailed lowercase z, capitalization uniform

    Great Bible
    no capital Z, tailed lowercase z, capitalization uniform, except no capital Zs

    1549 Book of Common Prayer:
    [​IMG]
    upside-down? roman capital Z at left; blackletter lowercase z at right

    1553 Thomas More's Dialog of Comfort against Tribulacion:
    [​IMG]
    missing Z at top row, blackletter lowercase z at fourth line, roman capital N on its side at fifth row
    Now that's scrounging:laugh:
     
    #7 Jerome, Jan 19, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2009
  8. franklinmonroe

    franklinmonroe Active Member

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    That is a very interesting theory. Thank you for your efforts!
     
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