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Lawrence Pordes, Juan Garcés and Ulrich Johannes Schneider (from left to right) in front of a digitisation cradle designed by Manfred Mayer at The British Library. (© Charlie Gray)

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Translation of Codex Sinaiticus

When the Codex Sinaiticus website was launched in July 2008, it only featured translations of the first thirty-five Psalms in English and the book of Esther in German. Drawing on his own English translation in A New English Translation of the Septuagint (NETS, see below), Albert Pietersma revised the the translation of the thirty-five Psalms for the Codex Sinaiticus website. Reinhold Scholl and Nadine Quenouille adapted the German translation of Esther from the Septuaginta Deutsch (LXX.D, see below). A strategy to increase the number of translations offered on the website is in place.

English translation

The Codex Sinaiticus Project was primarily a conservation, digitisation, transcription and publication project. It did not aim to undertake a new English translation of the writings preserved in the manuscript.

The English translation of the New Testament part of Codex Sinaiticus used on the website was taken from the translation by Henry Tompkins Anderson in The New Testament: translated from the Sinaitic manuscript discovered by Constantine Tischendorf at Mt Sinai (Cincinnati, 1918). This out-of-copyright translation does not provide a literal translation of the text in Codex Sinaiticus, but was included in the website to serve as a navigational aid.

English translations of the Old Testament part of Codex Sinaiticus are currently available on the website only for Psalms 1-35 (translated by Albert Pietersma) and the Book of Esther (by Karen Jobes). These translations were based on those produced for the New English Translation of the Septuagint (the Greek version of the Hebrew Scriptures), which were adapted to the actual text in Codex Sinaiticus.

English translations of the remaining parts of Codex Sinaiticus (other Old Testament writings and the Epistle of Barnabas and the Shepherd of Hermas), are freely accessible. A modern English translation of the Septuagint (the Greek Old Testament) is available at There is an online English translation of the Epistle of Barnabas at and of the Shepherd of Hermas at

German translation

The Project is in discussion with the German Bible Society (Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft) in the hope that translators working on the Septuaginta Deutsch Project (LXX.D) may be willing to adapt their translation to the text of Codex Sinaiticus. Similar to NETS, Septuaginta Deutsch is a project, initiated by Wolfgang Kraus and Martin Karrer, to translate the Greek Old Testament into German. The German translation will soon be published by The German Bible Society.