Papyrus 46, P46

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First Composed: 22 April 2000

Last Updated: 25 May 2005


Papyrus 46 (Inv. no. 6238), P46


c. 200 CE (perhaps first half of the third century). Young Kyu Kim suggested that P46 should be dated to the first century. Pickering refuted Kim dating and he dates the manuscript back to c. 200 CE. There is no support for Kim's dating from other palaeographers such as Metzger.


Perhaps in the Fayum or ancient Aphroditopolis (modern Aftih).


About 21.5-23 cm. x 13.5-15.2 cm. There is one column and about 25-28 lines per page in the first part and 28-32 lines per page in the second part.

The total number of leaves are 86; 56 of which are in London (first part) and 30 at Ann Arbor (second part). Click here to see the image.


It contain parts of the Pauline Epistles including Hebrews.

Textual Character

If all the epistles are taken together, the text agrees most often with that of B; but the papyrus also shows many textual affinities with A D and F G. It is perhaps "proto-Alexandrian."


The words are slightly separated. Rough breathing in the angular form occurs several times.


Chester Beatty Collection, Dublin, Ireland and Library of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.


[1] Sir Frederic G. Kenyon, The Chester Beatty Biblical Papyri, Fasciculus III Supplement, Pauline Epistles, 1937, Emery Walker Limited, London.

[2] William Henry Paine Hatch, The Principal Uncial Manuscripts Of The New Testament, 1939, The University of Chicago Press, Chicago, Plate II.

[3] Y. K. Kim, "Palaeographic Dating Of P46 To The Later First Century", Biblica, 1988, Volume 69, pp. 248-257.

[4] S. R. Pickering, "The Dating Of The Chester Beatty-Michigan Codex Of The Pauline Epistles (P46)" in T. W. Hillard, R. A. Kearsley, C. E. V. Nixon and A. M. Nobbs (eds.), Ancient History In A Modern University: Volume II (Early Christianity, Late Antiquity And Beyond), 1998, Ancient History Documentary Research Centre, Macquarie University, NSW Australia and William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company: Grand Rapids (Michigan)/Cambridge (UK), pp. 216-227.

[5] B. M. Metzger, The Text Of The New Testament: Its Transmission Corruption, And Restoration, Third Enlarged Edition, Oxford University Press: Oxford (UK), pp. 265-266.

The New Testament Manuscripts