Coptic Vesion of the Book of Tobit

Does anyone know why the version of the book of Tobit that is found on Coptic reader is different from the one in the orthodox study bible NRSV, and many other ones too? According to wiki, there are two main versions that are being used, the second of which is the main one and is used by the OSB and NRSV. It is also the longer of the 2. However, the one in coptic reader, when compared to it, almost consistently has more verses per chapter and different wording here and there. For example, Sarah's beutiful words in 3:20-22 of the coptic reader version is not present in the other aforementioned versions.
Here is a link to the NRSV version of chapter 3 below. Thanks!


  • If I understand correctly the NRSV and most texts you read is based on Masoretic texts. This means it is translate from the Hebrews manuscript.

    Around 250BC, Ptolemy II Philadelpius requested to translate the OT into Greek. 72 Jewish scholars were chosen to do the job(of which you have the tradition of Simeon the elder, encourage you to read his story in synexarium). Coptic reader is based on the Septuagint. This means the english translation is based on the Greek translation. 

    As you know, there was no printer or photocopy machines till modern times. Texts were transcribed by...Scribes. This was their profession with high levels of 'training' to transcribe with ensuring no errors. The Texts are originally in Hebrew.

    Both of these manuscripts are from different time periods. Those are the general two sources of the manuscripts. I am no expert on the matter, but from what I am told, the Masoretic text and Septuagint text have very little differences (said to be under 1%). You may simply have stumbled on one of those differences.

    From my understanding, Coptic reader and the church in general choses to read the septuagint because Christ quoted from the Septuagint.

    I am sure there are many more who are better and more qualified to explain more details or correct any mistakes above.
  • ShareTheLord... You are correct about the info you said, but the book of Tobit is one that is not found in the Hebrew text, but is found in the Septuagint. So, the info don't apply here.

    But to answer the question, there are a couple of different versions of the Septuagint. Not that they are drastically different, but different for sure. And much of what we now have is a copy or a translation of the Septuagint and not exactly the exact original one. But almost all those version were finalized long before the Masoratic.

    So the difference you might be saying just depends on the source of the LXX
  • Coptic Reader uses Douay Rheims for the books that were removed by Protestants.
  • Thank you guys! I didn't know about the different versions of the different versions of the septiagint. That makes sense. God bless!
  • That is definitely a problem that we have in churches. we already have a problem with people knowing about the "Septuagint" many probably ignore or don't even know that there are different written sources for that one translation. 
  • i recommend the orthodox study Bible, it has really nice translations of the deuterocanonical books

    if anyone forgot to read the book of tobit this week, you can do it now!


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