Washington: The Vatican newspaper has added to the doubts surrounding the claims that some early Christians believed Jesus was married, which were made by a 4th century Coptic papyrus fragment from Harvard University, declaring it a “fake”.
The newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano, published an article on Thursday by leading Coptic scholar Alberto Camplani and an accompanying editorial by the newspaper’s editor, Giovanni Maria Vian, an expert in early Christianity, the Washington Post reported.
Both of them cited concerns expressed by other scholars about the fragment’s authenticity and the fact that it was purchased on the market without a known archaeological provenance.
The fragment, with just eight lines of text on the front and six lines on the back, is from a fourth-century dialogue, written in the Coptic language, between Jesus and his disciples.
According to Harvard professor Karen L King, who discovered the fragment, in it Jesus speaks of “my wife.”