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The Kirtland Egyptian Papers


Kevin Graham

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[Note: This thread is back in view. Please be aware that it (like all else on this site) is protected by copyright. Also, the ideas expressed by Professor Hauglid and probably others, were their ideas at the time, some initial and working ideas that, as scholarship does, change and develop over time. They don't all necessarily represent his ideas now. ~mods]

I am somewhat at a disadvantage because I was not present at the conference, so I suppose it would be proper to start off with an outline of what was actually on display.

I have heard comments that the entire manuscripts were displayed. But the most reliable evidence seems to suggest that Brian displayed only four full pages (one from four different manuscripts) at the beginning (I understand this particular slide show changed at 10-15 second intervals) and then proceeded to display truncated portions that were used to reinforce his argument; the argument that the KEP project best represents a copying effort of some sort.

Brian, can we get an official confirmation on this? Knowing precisely which full and partial pages were used in this presentation would be helpful.

I have also been informed that you initially displayed the full pages side by side with Brent's online photos. As far as I know Brent has provided two full pages, so I assume this leaves two more that the free world has never before seen. Would this be accurate?

If four full pages were displayed, then this would only account for less than 10% of the Book of Abraham manuscripts from the KEP. There seems to be a wandering rumor that, unlike Brent, you managed to display the entire collection. I think these misconceptions should be put to rest, assuming they are false. I await your clarification.

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I am somewhat at a disadvantage because I was not present at the conference, so I suppose it would be proper to start off with an outline of what was actually on display.

I have heard comments that the entire manuscripts were displayed. But the most reliable evidence seems to suggest that Brian displayed only four full pages (one from four different manuscripts) at the beginning (I understand this particular slide show changed at 10-15 second intervals) and then proceeded to display truncated portions that were used to reinforce his argument; the argument that the KEP project best represents a copying effort of some sort.

Brian, can we get an official confirmation on this? Knowing precisely which full and partial pages were used in this presentation would be helpful.

I have also been informed that you initially displayed the full pages side by side with Brent's online photos. As far as I know Brent has provided two full pages, so I assume this leaves two more that the free world has never before seen. Would this be accurate?

If four full pages were displayed, then this would only account for less than 10% of the Book of Abraham manuscripts from the KEP. There seems to be a wandering rumor that, unlike Brent, you managed to display the entire collection. I think these misconceptions should be put to rest, assuming they are false. I await your clarification.

Kevin, I'm waiting on Brian to clarify something before I reply to your post above. I can confirm that only a small portion of the KEP were included in his PowerPoint presentation. As soon as I hear back from him, I will elaborate to the extent I can.

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I have heard comments that the entire manuscripts were displayed.

This is not true.

But the most reliable evidence seems to suggest that Brian displayed only four full pages

This is true. I showed a full-page digital image of the following BoA Mss side by side with the counterpart color prints:

Ms 1 p. 1

Ms 2 p. 3

Ms 3 p. 5

Ms 4 p. 2

I showed a partial image of the following:

W. W. Phelps portion of Ms 1 p. 1

Ms 1 Abr. 1:1 (numbering)

Ms 1 (Punctuation) Knowledge; a greater follower of righteous=

ness; ^a possessor of greater Knowledge; a father of many nations; a prince

of peace; one who keeps the commandments of

God; a righful heir; a high priest, holding

the right belonging to the fathers, from the be=

beginning of time; even from the beginning, or

before the foundation of the earth, down to

the present time; even the right of the first

Ms 1 (Dittography) the right belonging to the fathers, from the be=

beginning of time; even from the beginning, or

Ms 1 (Homoeoteleuton) God; a righful heir; a high priest, holding

the right belonging to the fathers, from the be=

beginning of time; even from the beginning, or

Mss 2 p. 1 & 3 p. 1 Sign of the fifth degree of the f-i-r-s-t second part

I sought for t-h-e mine appointment w-h-e-r-e u-n-t-o unto the priesthood

according to the appointment of God unto the fathers concer-

ning the seed

Ms 2 p. 2 (Dittography) Behold Potiphers hill was in the land of Ur of Chaldea

and the Lord broke down the alter of Elk=Keenah and of the gods

of the land, and utterly distroyed them g-o-d-s o-f t-h-e l-a-n-d

Ms 3 p. 4 (Dittography) a-n-d m-y

Ms 2 p. 1 & Ms 3 p. 1 (Homoeoteleuton)

do evil and were wholly turned to the God of Elk=kiner and the

God of Libnah and the God of Mah-mackrah and

the God of Pharaoh King of Egypt

Ms 3 p. 3 (Punctuation) And as they lifted up their hands,

upon me, that they might offer me up,

and take away my life, behold I lifted up

my voice, unto the Lord my god, and

the Lord hearkened and heard, and he

filled me with a vision of the Almighty

and the angel of his presence, stood by

my feet, and immediately loosed my

bands.

their hearts away from me, to worship

the god of Elkkener, and the god of Libn

ah and of Mah mach rah and the god

of Pharaoh King of Egypt; therefore I have

come down to visit them and to destroy him

who hath lifted up his hand against thee

Abram, my son to take away thy life; behold

Ms 2 p. 3 (Secondary punctuation)

Now after the priest of Elk-Keenah was smitten that he

died, there came a fulfilment of those things which

were spoken unto me concerning the land of Chal=

dea, that there should be a famine in the land; and

accordingly a famine prevailed throughout all

the land of Chaldea: and my father was sorely

tormented because of the famine, and he repented

of the evil which he had determined against me,

to take way my life: But the records of the fathers

even the patriarchs concerning the right of priesthood,

the Lord my God preserved in mine own hand:

I have also been informed that you initially displayed the full pages side by side with Brent's online photos. As far as I know Brent has provided two full pages, so I assume this leaves two more that the free world has never before seen. Would this be accurate?

I did not use Brent's online photos. I used scans of the photos I currently have. It should be noted that these scans are probably not identical to Brent's images since he has created new ones from the negatives.

There seems to be a wandering rumor that, unlike Brent, you managed to display the entire collection.

This is a rumor. I did not display the entire collection.

I hope this is clear enough.

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Hi Brent,

I've been thinking. Before you (and et al) starting picking away at my material, I think it is only fair to ask that you provide on the FAIR Board a detailed summary of your main arguments and evidence for your thesis that the Abr. Mss are "translation papers." This would include internal and external evidences, not aimed at refuting my views explicitly but only implicitly. I'm sure this would be a good way to get the ball rolling on this discussion.

Cheers,

Brian

P.s. As your probably aware I already provided my detailed summary on the previous thread.

Mod add-on. Here is the link to the prior thread in the main discussion forum:

Brian Hauglid's Book of Abraham Presentation, At FAIR conference '06

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Brent,

I thought it might be helpful if I reposted a general summary of my arguments and evidence before you post yours. That way you and I can be on the same page as the discussions begin.

<Aug 5>

Ms 1. The numbers at the beginning of the W. W. Phelps section indicate a clear and deliberate effort not attested in any dictated Mss I have ever seen. How could this section be a part of the translation process? What about the lapsis ocula/ dittograph "be=" and "beginning"? If this is not a copy error what is it? Why is there so much punctuation in this section when it is clear from all other dictated Mss from the BoM and the JST that little or no puncuation is used in dictation. Why does another very common scribal error, the homeotelueton, occur just as would be expected between the words "fathers" and "fathers" omitting what is between? Please explain using sound evidence that the W. W. Phelps part of Ms 1 is dictated or (as Brent told me) a conflation of the EAG.

Mss 2&3. How can the clear lapsis ocula/dittographs "gods of the land" (Ms 2) and "and my" (Ms3) be explained in the dictation theory? I realize that these two Mss have many similarities. But this could easliy be explained as two copies from a similar parent copy. How are all the difference between the two Mss explained? Why is Williams hearing Elk=keen and Parrish hearing Elkkener? Why is Williams adding "that is" while Parrish is crossing out "that is lying before you"?

Here's another evidence I did not have time to discuss. When I met with Royal Skousen I asked him what the major earmark of dictation was. He said it was in how the names were copied. He said for the BoM, most names would be crossed out and then spelled correctly inline. With all the weird names in the BoA there is no instance of a name being crossed out and then corrected inline as you would expect in dictation.

Why, again, is there so much puncuation on the Mss when this is not the case with the BoM and JST Mss?

How can the darker ink of the editorial marks be explained on Ms 2? Why does the darker ink match (under magnification) many of the hieratic characters on the left margin? Why is there not margin line on Ms 2 p. 4? And why doesn't the text on Ms 2 p. 4 jut up against the characters like you would expect if the characters were there first? Why does Ms 2 continue on to Abr. 2:6 while Ms 3 stops at Abr. 2:2? Why does Ms 2 repeat Abr. 2:3-6. How can any of the above anomalies be explained in a dictation theory?

To me it this suggests that these are not "translation working papers." Please provide for me the historical evidence that JS did use the supposed translation methodology of the BoA Mss. Give evidence from his previous translation projects (this is not an apples and oranges question. How JS actually did his translation projects in the past can provide strong evidence in how he likely did it later as well). Provide, if you can, contemporary statements from JS or anyone else that this is the metholdology used to translate the BoA. I think I gave enough evidence at the conference to strongly indicate that the Lord encouraged JS and his companions to study and learn ancient languages. This comes out clearly in the establishment of the Hebrew school. Is it so unreasonable to allow JS to be a seer and scholar? Considering the fact that not even the contemporaries of JS could explain how he got his revelations, is it unreasonable to suggest that JS and his companions labored over the learning of languages, like the rest of us?

There is no question that these Mss come from sometime after fall 1835. This is several months after the initial translation period in July 1835. We know that the word "shinehah" appeard as a code name in the 1835 edition of the D&C approved in Aug. We also know that when it comes to revelations Joseph can produce a lot of revelation in a short time.

My summary , of course, has lead me to ask quite a few questions. I believe the answers to these questions can provide a clearer picture of the diplomatics of these Mss. From the above research I am quite convinced that these Mss (1-3) are not "translation working papers" but "translation study papers." The internal evidences of the Mss and the external historical evidences I have noted support this.

NOTE: I have many more comments on the previous thread that adequately make the argument in more detail.

I await your summary.

Cheers,

Brian

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Hi Brian,

I've articulated my views on the transcription sequence and compositional order of the BoAbr manuscripts in numerous online posts; still, I'm putting together a summary that I hope will engender a productive exchange of ideas.

I'm unexpectedly hosting a sleepover for my son and his friends tonight, so I'll likely not be in position to post more until tomorrow at the earliest. I appreciate your patience.

My best,

Brent

Edit: I inadvertently deleted this message when I intended to edit another; so I'm restoring this post.

http://mormonscripturestudies.com

(

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By request, we are limiting the posting in this thread to just Brent Metcalfe and Brian Hauglid. Of course, if you'd like, another thread on the subject can be started in the main discussion forum to discuss what's going on in this thread.

[add-on:] I should add that, as you can see, there will be times that threads in this forum move slowly because (1) there are not as many posters and (2) developing their responses may take more time than most posts in our regular forums.

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Hi folks,

I trust that Brian won't mind if I tell you that he is otherwise occupied with familial commitments this week and probably won't respond to my posts until the beginning of next week.

Hi Brian,

I'm very familiar with your example emendations, and I'm simply unconvinced that they are best understood as copyist errors. To better understand why I think this, let's revisit your argument for copyist dittography from the deletion of the phrase "gods of the land" in BoAbr ms. 1a (fldr. 2).

Obligatory reiteration:

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Hi Brian,

Thanks for your amiable reply. I find it refreshing, even exhilarating, to exchange ideas about the BoAbr with someone versed in the relevant manuscript evidence.

(Note: What follows is an extract from an extended response that I've written to your last message. I plan on incrementally posting the remainder of my response over the coming weeks.)

Please indulge me while I present an example from your latest post where we agree on some points, yet disagree on others. In addition to articulating why I assess the evidence differently than you, I hope to illustrate for our readers the depth of scrutiny that you and I apply to the BoAbr manuscripts.

You wrote:

In the world of research a productive discussion between scholars includes lots of give and take. You say you cannnot accept my evidence of visual copying errors. That

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I was under the impression that Brian's FAIR paper was going to be posted. Is that still in the works?

Dan, I don't know if Dr. Hauglid spoke from a paper per se. He did have a PowerPoint slide show that he spoke from. I'm not sure if FAIR will have someone transcribe his presentation since it was pretty dependent on the graphics in the PPT. He may also be planning on publishing soon. So, stay tuned. . . Oreos

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Dan Vogel:

It is my understanding that Brian will ultimately make his paper available. I am under the impression that he is refining it somewhat based on his evolving findings. If I'm not mistaken, he will be examining the original KEP again in the next few days.

I am capturing the video of his FAIR presentation this afternoon, and, after editing, will forward the master copies of the DVD to Scott Gordon within the week (along with Dan Peterson's if you're interested :P). I'm not certain how soon FAIR will make the DVD available.

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Brent,

I want to respod to a couple of your assertions.

I find it refreshing, even exhilarating, to exchange ideas about the BoAbr with someone versed in the relevant manuscript evidence.

Me too.

I am, however, a tad perplexed by what struck me as a rather strident pronouncement from you at FAIR 2006 that Joseph Smith "could not" have dictated BoAbr ms. 1a (fldr. 2) and ms. 1b (fldr. 3) because if he had, that would demonstrate that Joseph was in fact attempting the linguistically impossible task of "translating" his Abrahamic narrative from the hieratic characters in the left margin
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  • 10 months later...

[Note: This thread is back in view. Please be aware that it (like all else on this site) is protected by copyright. Also, the ideas expressed by Professor Hauglid and probably others, were their ideas at the time, some initial and working ideas that, as scholarship does, change and develop over time. They don't all necessarily represent his ideas now. ~mods]

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