Gospel of Matthew

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Syriac translations

"Syriac is a dialect of Middle Aramaic that was once spoken across much of the Fertile Crescent. Having first appeared around the 1st century C.E.[1], Classical Syriac became a major literary language throughout the Middle East from the 4th to the 8th centuries,[2] the classical language of Edessa, preserved in a large body of Syriac literature.
"It became the vehicle of Syriac Orthodox Christianity and culture, spreading throughout Asia as far as the Indian Malabar coast and Eastern China[citation needed] and was the medium of communication and cultural dissemination for Arabs and, to a lesser extent, Persians. Primarily a Christian medium of expression, Syriac had a fundamental cultural and literary influence on the development of Arabic which replaced it towards the end of the 8th century. Syriac remains the liturgical language of Syriac Christianity.
"Syriac is a Middle Aramaic language, and as such a language of the Northwestern branch of the Semitic family.
"Syriac is written in the Syriac alphabet, a derivation of the Aramaic alphabet."[1]
Syriac manuscript of the gospels
"In 1892 the discovery of the 3rd text, known, from the place where it was found, as the Sinaitic Syriac, comprising the four Gospels nearly entire, heightened the interest in the subject and increased the available material. It is a palimpsest, and was found in the monastery of Catherine on Mt. Sinai by Mrs. Agnes S. Lewis and her sister Mrs. Margaret D. Gibson. The text has been carefully examined and many scholars regard it as representing the earliest translation into Syriac, and reaching back into the 2nd century. Like the Curetonian, it is an example of the Evangelion da-Mepharreshe as distinguished from the Harmony of Tatian"[2]