OF THE SOPHERIM.
The Massorah (Ap. 30), i.e. the small writing in the margins of the standard Hebrew codices, as shown in the plate on p. 32, consists of a concordance of words and phrases, &c., safeguarding the Sacred Text. A note in the Massorah against several passages in the manuscripts of the Hebrew Bible state : "This is one of the Eighteen Emendations of the Sopherim," or words to that effect.
Complete lists of these emendations are found in the Massorah of most of the model or standard codices of the Hebrew Bible, and these are not always identical; so that the total number exceeds eighteen : from which it would appear that these examples are simply typical. The Siphri (*1) adduces seven passages; the Yalkut (*2), ten; the Mechiltha (*3), eleven; the Tanchuma (*4), seventeen; while the St. Petersburg Codex gives two passages not included in any other list (Mal. 1:12; 3:9; see below).
These emendations were made at a period long before Christ, before the Hebrew text had obtained its present settled form, and these emendations affect the Figure called Anthropopatheia. See. Ap. 6.
The following is a list of the eighteen "Emendations," together with
eight others not included in the official lists. Particulars will
be found on consulting the notes on the respective passages.
(*1) An ancient commentary on Leviticus (circa A.D. 219-47).
(*2) A catena of the whole Hebrew Scriptures, composed in the eleventh century, for ancient sources by Rabbi Simeon.
(*3) An ancient commentary on Exodus, compiled about A.D. 90 by Rabbi Ishmael ben Elisa.
(*4) A commentary on the Pentateuch, compiled from ancient sources by Rabbi Tanchuma ben Abba, about A.D. 380.