The recently revealed papyrus fragment referencing the wife of Jesus is said to be a 'clumsy forgery'.
The 4th century parchment has been the topic of heated debate amongst religious scholars and historians since it was unveiled last month. The ancient writing appears to make clear references to Jesus having a wife and that she would be one of his disciples. "Substantial reasons would lead one to conclude that the papyrus is indeed a clumsy forgery," said Vatican newspaper editor Gian Maria Vian. "In any case, it's a fake."
The Vatican wasn't the only source of doubt over the discovery either, academics and historians have also expressed reservations over the parchment's authenticity. "It's really pretty unlikely that it's authentic," said Professor Francis Watson of the University of Durham. "There is a market for fake antiquities throughout the Middle East ... I would guess that in this case the motivation might have been a financial one."
"An ancient papyrus fragment which a Harvard scholar says contains the first recorded mention that Jesus may have had a wife is a fake, the Vatican said on Friday."
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