New collection brightens New Testament research path

Eldon Jay Epp Collection

This past year, the Central Libraries Special Collections were honored to receive the Eldon Jay Epp Collection representing a lifetime of research and publications in the field of New Testament scholarship by Professor Eldon Epp.

Prof. Mikeal Parsons, Professor and holder of The Kidd L. and Buna Hitchcock Macon Chair in Religion at Baylor University, was key to this acquisitions. His knowledge of Epp’s library and proposal to Baylor to procure the materials fell at a critical time for Baylor to increase support for research.

The primary function of special collections is to engage the user in the highest levels of research. As the Library of Congress affirms, these unique primary resources are the raw materials of history supporting critical inquiry and analysis.

“For more than fifty years Eldon Epp has been one of the world’s premier textual critics of the New Testament,” said Parsons. “Over his career he has collected New Testament Greek manuscript facsimiles, Latin, Syriac and Coptic versions of the New Testament, first edition text-critical studies, and scholarly monographs into a library that is arguably the finest private collection of New Testament text-critical holdings in the world. Baylor’s acquisition of Epp’s library ensures that this treasure trove of materials will now be accessible in perpetuity to scholars and students of the text of the New Testament.”

The collection is approximately 4,500 volumes and will be housed in various collections in Moody Library.

Status update:

  • The volumes marked ‘rare’ by Prof. Epp, have been reviewed and are 90% cataloged and available through Baylor Libraries’ online catalog: https://www.baylor.edu/lib/
  • Work will begin this semester on other academic monographic series.

Events:

    • Lecture in Celebration of the Eldon Jay Epp Collection
    • “New Testament Texts and Manuscripts: New Life for a Dying Discipline”
      Speaker: Bart D. Ehrman (James A. Gray Distinguished Professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)
      Eldon Epp will be in attendance
      March 31, 2020, 3:30 – 4:30, Kayser Auditorium, Baylor University

    If you are interested in more information about the collections or would like to visit, please send us an email at RareCollections@baylor.edu, or call at 254-710-3679 (Beth Farwell).

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