J.B. Mayor’s Commentary on the Epistle of James

The first page of James in Minuscule 319, a Greek minuscule manuscript of the New Testament.

The first page of James in Minuscule 319, a Greek minuscule manuscript of the New Testament. Source: Wikipedia

James Bickersteth Mayor’s commentary is generally recognised as one of the finest works on the epistle of James of all time. My thanks to Book Aid for providing a copy of this public domain title for digitisation.

Joseph Bickersteth Mayor [1828-1916], The Epistle of James. The Greek Text with Introduction and Comments, 2nd edition. London: Macmillan & Co., Ltd. / New York: The Macmillan Company, 1897. Hbk. pp.cclx +256. [Click to visit the download page]

Table of Contents

  • Preface to the First Edition
  • Preface to the Second Edition
  • Addenda Et Corrigenda
  1. The Author
  2. External For the Authenticity of the Epistle
  3. Relation of the Epistle to Earlier Writings
  4. Relation of the Epistle to the Other Books of the New Testament
  5. The Contents of the Epistle
  6. Persons to Whom the Epistle is Addressed and Place From Which it is Written
  7. On the Date of the Epistle / Harnack and Spitta on the Date of the Epistle
  8. On the Grammar of St James
  9. On the Style of St. James
  10. Did St. James Write in Greek or in Aramaic?
  11. Bibliography
  12. Apparatus Criticus
  • Text of St James
  • Notes
  • Paraphrase and Comments
  • Index

Preface To The First Edition

In writing my Preface I bring to a close a work which has for some years been my chief occupation, and which has indeed been seldom out of my thoughts since the time when, as an undergraduate, I first made acquaintance with Coleridge’s Aids to Reflection, and was led in consequence to study with some care the Epistle of St. James, to which reference is made in the earlier Aphorisms of that book.

In the Introduction I have stated my reasons for believing this Epistle to be the earliest of the books of the New Testament, written probably in the fifth decade of the Christian era by one who had been brought up with Jesus from his childhood and whose teaching is in many points identical with the actual words of our Lord as recorded in the Synoptic Gospels. If I am not mistaken, it presents to its a picture of pre-Pauline Christianity, which is not only interesting historically, but is likely to be of special value in an age of religious doubt and anxiety like the present…

Page vii.

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