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Old 07-29-2009, 12:34 PM   #51
Vinnie
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Except for the person or people who wrote in Paul's name, the actual documentary evidence (the extant Pauline epistles with autobiographical details), Acts of the Apostles and a host of late first and early 2d century sources (e.g. Ignatius, Clement) along with a host of other considerations. But I suppose, naturally, Ignatius was forged and Clement dates to 140 along with Acts, in your view,

At any rate, they all corroborate the historical Paul and scholars are confident he wrote 7-10 of the New Testament letters attributed to him, with several of them being possible conflations along with the potential for numerous lost ones. Not to mention collections of Paul's letters in the early second century.

You are throwing out the baby with the bath water.
If that is true why did Papias not know of a single Pauline epistle? Why did Justin not know of a single Pauline epistle? Why did the author of Acts not mention a single Pauline epistle? Whay did 1 Clement and Ignatius show sure knowldge of only 1 Corinthians? :huh:

There is something very wrong with the traditional time line.

Jake Jones IV
The only thing wrong is your uncritical use of silence. Extant documents and positve attestations of a source trump silence a thousand times over.

It is important to note that Paul wrote LETTERS, not EPISTLES. I may be guilty of mixing the two up occasionally but there is a big difference. Romans probably comes closest to being an EPISTLE.

What is the evidence Papias did not know of a single Pauline epistle?

What evidence is there that the author of Acts did not know Paul corresponded with churches via written letters? You are offering a bad argument from silence. You would need to show why it is likely the author of Acts would mention or quote a letter Paul wrote to a specific church in his Acts of the Apostles and did not. Did Luke quote any other particular letters?

The letters Paul wrote to these churches became immensely important for Catholic Christianity but he was one of many traveling Christian missionaries in the first century and these were only his letters. What the author of Acts mentions about Paul coheres well enough, though not exactly (further support of historicity!), with the autobiographical data from Paul's own letters.

Justin's paucity of Pauline materials is attributed to the manner in which Marcion used them. There is absolutely NO doubt they existed in the time of Justin who obviously knew of and mentioned Marcion so your OWN ARGUMENT FROM SILENCE REFUTES ITSELF. It seems, Justin decided to simply stand clear of them. As far as Paul in Clement and Ignatius you can't forget about the echoes--all those instance of probable indirect dependence.

Don't forget the authors who wrote in Paul's name evince indirect (or direct?) knowledge of his writings and some also feel Colossians shows direct literary dependence upon them. [Sanders, SBL, Literary Dependence in Colossians, Journal of Biblical Literature, Vol. 85, No. 1 (Mar., 1966), pp. 28-45].

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Old 07-29-2009, 12:42 PM   #52
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Let us remember that Eusebius was not an unbiased reporter of history. He had a bias and an agenda.
As do you in this response. Euseius did not forge Papias.

http://www.vincentsapone.com/writing...seusebius.html

I'll copy and past number 5:

5) Eusebius creates Papias' Critique of Books


"For I did not think that what was to be gotten from the books would profit me as much as what came from the living and abiding voice." This comment from Papias has been abused to show all sorts of things about oral tradition in the second century. As has been demonstrated elsewhere on this site, Papias wrote much earlier than most scholars suspect. Thus pushing orality well off into the second century based off of Papias' comment is incorrect. It may be true but Papias can no longer serve as support for this.

But in Eusebius' day, the gospels were authoritative. If Eusebius is creating Papias to establish apostolic succession and the gospels, not only does he disconnect Papias from the apostles, he has him claim he sought after the living and abiding voice of those who heard the apostles, rather than focusing on the words of the apostles themselves (and Peter's interpreter and Luke, companion of Paul).

I know that in Papias' day it may have constituted a topos in certain contexts. As Gamble writes, "A similar statement is made by the learned physician Galen, a near contemporary of Papias, in De compositione medicamentorum, 6: "There may well be truth in the saying current among most craftspeople that learning out of a book is not the same thing as nor comparable to learning from the living voice. Galen's commnt shows that the idea of the "living voice" was proverbial and current, at least in the social context of the craftspeople." (BRECp.31)"

Papias' disdain for literature should not then be overestimated. He knew of 1 Peter, 1 John, Mark, maybe Matthew, Revelation and even wrote his own Five Books where he interpreted the Lord. Yet it does seem odd that if Eusebius is using Papias to evidence the Canonical Gospels he has him mention such a statement. Why not claim something to the effect of "For I profited much from the books of the apostles and the training of those who knew them"? Either Eusebius' activity here was extremely subtle or he was simply quoting the extant text of an actual figure from antiquity.

At the least there is discontinuity between the notion of Papias being a Eusebian forgery to authenticate the Gospels and his comment about books.

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Old 07-29-2009, 01:14 PM   #53
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Very interesting; thank you!

Both are quoted, then, from Cramer's catena -- one on Matt. 27, the other on Acts 1 -- and represent versions of the same passage in book 4 of Papias; in one the extra wording is attributed to Apollinaris himself, in the other to Papias. As Lake remarks, further research in the catenas would probably provide a better text. And if I follow him, this is the catena of Andreas that is being used here by Cramer.

Can I ask where the translation of the shorter passage comes from?
Brown The Death of the Messiah v.2 (or via: amazon.co.uk) pps. 1408-1409

Andrew Cridle
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Old 07-29-2009, 01:17 PM   #54
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Very interesting; thank you!

Both are quoted, then, from Cramer's catena -- one on Matt. 27, the other on Acts 1 -- and represent versions of the same passage in book 4 of Papias; in one the extra wording is attributed to Apollinaris himself, in the other to Papias. As Lake remarks, further research in the catenas would probably provide a better text. And if I follow him, this is the catena of Andreas that is being used here by Cramer.

Can I ask where the translation of the shorter passage comes from?
Brown The Death of the Messiah v.2 (or via: amazon.co.uk) pps. 1408-1409

Andrew Cridle
Its only $8 now....
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Old 07-29-2009, 01:40 PM   #55
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Let us remember that Eusebius was not an unbiased reporter of history. He had a bias and an agenda.
As do you in this response. Euseius did not forge Papias.

http://www.vincentsapone.com/writing...seusebius.html

But in Eusebius' day, the gospels were authoritative. If Eusebius is creating Papias to establish apostolic succession and the gospels, not only does he disconnect Papias from the apostles, he has him claim he sought after the living and abiding voice of those who heard the apostles, rather than focusing on the words of the apostles themselves (and Peter's interpreter and Luke, companion of Paul).

Papias' disdain for literature should not then be overestimated. He knew of 1 Peter, 1 John, Mark, maybe Matthew, Revelation and even wrote his own Five Books where he interpreted the Lord. Yet it does seem odd that if Eusebius is using Papias to evidence the Canonical Gospels he has him mention such a statement. Why not claim something to the effect of "For I profited much from the books of the apostles and the training of those who knew them"? Either Eusebius' activity here was extremely subtle or he was simply quoting the extant text of an actual figure from antiquity.

At the least there is discontinuity between the notion of Papias being a Eusebian forgery to authenticate the Gospels and his comment about books.

Vinnie
Hi Vinnie,

Thanks for the reply.

No, I have no agenda, as the following will demonstrate.

According to Eusebius Hist. Eccl. 3.39.1ff, Mark wrote based on Peter's eyewitness testimony. Then we have Mark by tradition to Prester John. Whoever he was, Iraneus and Eusebius cannot agree to his identity. Papias then listens to Ariston, allegedly one of the seventy disciples sent out by Jesus.

Papias then wrote a book (or a volume in "five books"), but there are no extant copies. Then Eusebius allegedly read this book, and it is only on his report that we have any extant record of what Papias allegedly thought about the Gospel of Mark.
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It is striking to realize that we have no actual text of Papias, only a set of quotations in various ancient authors... It seems worth asking if "Papias" simply functioned as a blanket attestation for any stray bit of lore about early Christianity and its heroes. ... Since we have no text of Papias at all and no manuscript of Irenaeus as old as Eusebius, it becomes reasonable to treat the passages we have quoted from Papias and Ireneus as no older than Eusebius's _Eccelsiastical History_. For us, they are no more than apologetic garnishes to that fourth-century treatsie and may be no older. The Incredible Shrinking Son of Man
Even if Papias existed, how can we independantly judge his credibility? And if Papias is deemed to be truthful, how do we know that the Prester John and Ariston were being truthful? Papias was reported to be not very intelligent (Hist. Eccl. 3.39.13) would have been a sucker for tall tales.

I don't see how the words attributed to Papias can be viewed with any degree of confidence. The alternative Gnostic origin of Mark, Peter to Glaucias to Basilides is no less credible. Indeed, GMark seems to have a gnostic hiding behind every bush.

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Old 07-29-2009, 02:11 PM   #56
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Very interesting; thank you!

Both are quoted, then, from Cramer's catena -- one on Matt. 27, the other on Acts 1 -- and represent versions of the same passage in book 4 of Papias; in one the extra wording is attributed to Apollinaris himself, in the other to Papias. As Lake remarks, further research in the catenas would probably provide a better text. And if I follow him, this is the catena of Andreas that is being used here by Cramer.

Can I ask where the translation of the shorter passage comes from?
Brown The Death of the Messiah v.2 (or via: amazon.co.uk) pps. 1408-1409

Andrew Criddle
Thanks!
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Old 07-29-2009, 02:52 PM   #57
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Even if Papias existed, how can we independantly judge his credibility? And if Papias is deemed to be truthful, how do we know that the Prester John and Ariston were being truthful? Papias was reported to be not very intelligent (Hist. Eccl. 3.39.13) would have been a sucker for tall tales.
The skepticism you employ could extend to many more things that are routinely taken for granted in life. We do not know is one answer. If I ask my friend for directions I assume he is not going to lie to me.

Papias may have been duped but we have, at least, his own statements claiming that he tried to get back to the earliest layer of the Jesus tradition in 105 C.E. He isn't a modern day historian but its an attempt at truth. It is a shame that his work does not survive.

Saying "what if the Christians lied to Papias to enhance status" might tell us more about how you perceive Christians of antiquity today than how they actually were in antiquity. Its similar to the gospel pericopes telling us more about the community they are being delivered to than Jesus in the 30's. There is no proof. Some groups did certainly trace themselves and their texts back to apostles but I think these types of "lies" are benign rather than malicious.

We have traditions that have to be sifted through and Papias relays an early tradition about the Gospel of Mark shortly after it was written. This tradition is far earlier and closer in proximity to what it purports than any other similar one in antiquity. That alone sets it apart from all the others.

Just to make sure things are clear I never said Papias' statement about the origin of the Gospel of Mark was accurate, only that, contra Price, 1) Eusebius obviously did not forge Papias, 2) the attribution dates to ca. 105 and that 3) he referenced the text we now know as canonincal Mark which means 4) it existed sometime in the first century.

I have no way of gauging the accuracy of the presbyter tradition aside from looking throughout the gospel of Mark. The tradition is certainly very early and comes shortly after the composition of a work also used independently by two other evangelists. Why it was not directly attributed to Peter has to be explained by those positing anonymous authorship and the usual solution is negated by an earlier dating of Papias' literary activity.

In the end, the securest way to determine if the attribution is correct is to evaluate the text of Mark. Look at everything, including potential geography errors and mistakes in regards to Jewish life and custom, etc, etc. The expectation is that John Mark, a Palestinian Jew would understand some basic things about Palestine. If this is demonstrated to be incorrect then the early attribution is demonstrated to be incorrect, otherwise, I see no plausible reason not to give it the benefit of the doubt.

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Old 07-29-2009, 05:46 PM   #58
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Just to make sure things are clear I never said Papias' statement about the origin of the Gospel of Mark was accurate, only that, contra Price, 1) Eusebius obviously did not forge Papias, 2) the attribution dates to ca. 105 and that 3) he referenced the text we now know as canonincal Mark which means 4) it existed sometime in the first century.
You are claiming to know what you really don't.

First, it is surely NOT obvious that Eusebius did not forge Papias and secondly, the reference of the text by Eusebius about Papias in no way can amount to the existence of gMark as known today.


There is no extant information anywhere that can show that Eusebius or any other person did not fabricate Papias and Justin Martyr, writing in the middle of the 2nd century, did not mention any Gospel called Mark.

In order to make any assesment of Papias' credibilty, the very existence of Jesus and the disciples must first be settled. The Jesus presented by the Church writers could not have existed, New Testament literature propagates a myth. The disciples inlcluding Peter were then mythical disciples and Jesus had no real followers.

The Church writers claimed a character called Mark got his Gospel from Peter but this could not be so at all. Peter was a fable.

Papias is a fiction writer, if he lived. Mark could not have met Peter and no real person could have known or heard the disciples. The so-called disciples never did exist. There is no corroborative evidence outside of the Church to support Jesus or the disciples.

Unless it can be shown that the Church writers are credible then no information coming from the Church about Mark can be trusted. The Church writers had witnesses for every implausible event. They claimed Peter and the disciples saw Jesus in a resurrected state ascending through the clouds, and then later they would claim Mark met Peter.

Then Eusebius in Church History would claim Papias knew people who knew disciples.

Papias is a fiction character produced by the Church as a witness of their fraudulent history.

And further, the extant informant found on Papias could have easily been fabricated by a 4th century writer since Papias was placed 200 years earlier.
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Old 07-30-2009, 05:03 AM   #59
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If it was true that Papias heard the apostle John, he must have been over a hundred years old. Papias Lived in Asia Minor between 70-140 AD. John, if he was around 30 when an apostle, would have been 70 years old when Papias was born. The facts don't compute.
This places Papias much too late. John was around in AD 100. Presumably he was 20 or so when he met Jesus.

Because he lived on after the other apostles, quite a few people knew him. Indeed we could tell that he was around a lot later than the others, if we didn't know, from the way that he has left all these anecdotes scattered around the Fathers.

All the best,

Roger Pearse
John the apostle? I doubt it. Even if he was 20 when he met Jesus, at around 100AD he would have been over one hundred years old. A very unusual age for anyone to live in those days when the average age of death was around 60 max.
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Old 07-30-2009, 06:32 AM   #60
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In the end, the securest way to determine if the attribution is correct is to evaluate the text of Mark. Look at everything, including potential geography errors and mistakes in regards to Jewish life and custom, etc, etc. The expectation is that John Mark, a Palestinian Jew would understand some basic things about Palestine. If this is demonstrated to be incorrect then the early attribution is demonstrated to be incorrect...Vinnie

OK Vinnie,

Let's take a look at the Gospel according to Mark. It is a strange tale, stranger than almost anyone who has read the Gospels of Matthew and Luke can realize. If, as most eveyone agrees, Mark predated both Matthew and Luke, then we must set aside the interpretive frameworks provided by the more conventional authors of Matthew and Luke. As we shall see, the message of Mark was too disturbing to be let stand. Matthew and Luke were compelled to rewrite it to change the message.

The gospel begins abruptly, with a misattributed prophecy. This is often thought to be accidental, but what if it is not? What if it is a sign that the conventional story of Jesus is flawed from the beginning?

In the baptism of Jesus in Mark 1:9-11, when the heavenly voice speaks, it addresses Jesus directly in the second person. Most commentators correctly identify that this is a private revelation to Jesus, which Matthew changes to a public announcement by using the third person. But what often escapes comment is that someone else hears the voice from heaven, the readers of the story.

Thus even at this early stage, the narrator, Jesus, and the reader all have significant knowledge that is hidden from the characters, i.e. the disciples. In fact, this begins even earlier in Mark 1:1. Jesus is entitled the “Son of God" in most manuscripts. This is known to the readers of the gospel to the exclusion of the characters within the narrative.

The failure of the family is unmistakably. Jesus utterly repudiates the alleged family ties in favor of spiritual ones.
Mark Chapter 3 KJV
31. There came then his brethren and his mother, and,
standing without, sent unto him, calling him.
32. And the multitude sat about him, and they said
unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren without
seek for thee.
33. And he answered them, saying, Who is my mother, or
my brethren?
34. And he looked round about on them which sat about
him, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren!
35. For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same
is my brother, and my sister, and mother.


Even more damning to the alleged family (actually the sects who claimed James as their
proxy founder):
Mark Chapter 6 KJV
3. Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the
brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon?
And are not his sisters here with us? And they were
offended at him.
4. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without
honor, but in his own country, and AMOUNG HIS OWN KIN,
AND IN HIS OWN HOUSE. [EMPHASIS ADDED]
The disciples fare even worse than the family. When they are said to witness unforgettable astounding events, in just a short period they have forgotten it entirely. It is if they had never seen it. There are two feeding miracles, the feeding of the five thousand (Mark 6:30-44) and the feeding of the four thousand (Mark 8:1-10). Despite having seen Jesus perform such a miracle before, the disciples say, “How can anyone feed such a crowd here in the dessert." (Mark 8:4). Now that is dumber than a rock, (pun on Peter intended). Only under direct questioning
by Jesus do they remember it Mark 8:18-20.

We find the “doubled story" technique used repeatedly in Mark; the twin sea stories of Mark chapter 4 and chapter 6; the welcoming of children in Mark 9:33-37 and 10:13-16. In all these cases the utter stupidity of the disciples is incomprehensible.

When Jesus was arrested, the disciples abandoned him (Mark 14:51). They were not around for the crucifixion. The women did observe the crucifixion, but only from afar (15:40). This compromises their ability as eyewitnesses within the narrative. Who was nailed to the cross, the Nazorean or the Cyrenian? Who cried out and what was said? Don't ask the women.

The legend of Simon Magnus predates Mark, in the guise of Simon of Cyrene. From the point that Simon takes up the cross, straight through the crucifixion it is all pronouns, so a literal reading would indicate that Simon was crucified in Jesus’ place.
Mark Chapter 15
21 They pressed into service a passer-by coming from
the country, Simon of Cyrene, the father of Alexander
and Rufus, to bear his cross.
22 Then they brought HIM to the place Golgotha, which
is translated, Place of a Skull.
23 They tried to give HIM wine mixed with myrrh; but
he did not take it.
24 And they crucified HIM [emphasis added]
[The gospel of Basilides has Jesus escape the cross just so. But the orthodox redactors of GMark nail him right back (15:34-37).]

The body was taken down and immediately wrapped head to foot in linen (15:46). The woman had no opportunity to view the body. They merely followed at a discrete distance and saw the body placed in a tomb, and a stone rolled against the entrance (14:46).

After the Sabbath, in the very early dawn (16:2), the women set out on a fool’s errand. They are going to anoint Jesus' body (16:1). The women had utterly forgotten that this had already been accomplished (14:8).

The women are as dense as the male disciples. Their dawn journey is halfway complete before they remember there is a stone blocking the tomb that they are apparently incapable of moving themselves. They asked each other, "Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?" (Mark 16:3). This is intractable stupidity. They should have thought of that beforehand.

When the two Mary's and Salmone arrive at the tomb, mysterious events have already transpired. We find the stone rolled away and the body gone. How this happened we are not told. Even the audience (the readers and hearers of GMark) are kept in the dark. There are secrets afoot, perhaps only for more advanced initiates.

A young man is in the tomb. He is not an angel; that is reading the context of the other gospels back into Mark. It is the Narrator who has been speaking to the audience all along, finally stepping from behind Jesus. Only the narrator can convey the message that Jesus is risen, and where he is to be found.

But now we see the utter folly of the women's mission. The young man's announcement is a rebuke, not a doxology. They are looking for Jesus in the wrong place! He had told them he would see them again in Galilee (14:28), not in a tomb in Jerusalem. Merely wandering back home is insufficient. Jesus had said, "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me." Mark 8:34. As the gospel ends, there can be no assurance that this would happen.

In Mark, only Peter is called Satan. Not even Judas is singled out for condemnation, as he is in the other gospels. In Mark, he does not commit suicide, and presumably is still considered one of the disciples. Peter is singled from the other disciples (16:7), not for praise but for condemnation. He was ashamed of Jesus, thrice denying him. And now Jesus is ashamed of him (8:38).

Thus we reach the conclusion of the trajectory. The story ends in the final failure, the women's terminal silence; it is inevitable. "... and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid" (16:8). The irony is thick enough to cut with a knife. Throughout the narrative Jesus asks various characters to be silent about him, and they seldom are. Now the women are commanded to speak, and they do not. Jesus has been utterly abandoned by his family, his disciples, and his women followers. None of them has been rehabilitated. The original gospel was written to discredit those various Christian sects who traced their founding back to Peter, James, or Mary Magdalene.

There are those who have secret knowledge (Gnosis) who have shared some, but not all of it with the audience of Mark. There are minor characters throughout Mark that display secret knowledge beyond the comprehension of the disciples, family, and women followers.

Who is the woman who anoints Jesus for death? Her name was to be forever remembered for her deed. But instead her name is forever unknown. Who is the owner of the ass? Who is the man carrying water (14:13)? Who provided the house for the “Last Supper” (14:14-17)? There are secret arrangements of which the disciples (and the readers!) have no knowledge.

Who watches with Jesus in Gethsemane (14:32)? The disciples are sleeping. Jesus prays to escape the cross (14:36). We may be excused if we entertain the expectation that the Father would grant Jesus’ request. We know someone else is there, who reports the alleged deeds. It is the young man who follows from Gethsemane after the arrest, who flees away naked. Then there is Joseph of Arimathea (15:43), otherwise unknown in Mark’s gospel and a *secret* follower of Jesus. Only he knows for sure if Jesus was dead when taken down from the cross, or if it was even Jesus. In Mark’s gospel the disciples, the family, the women; none of these can testify to the most important alleged events in Christian history. Instead, the vital scenes and events are controlled and observed only by sneaky “heretics.” No wonder the authors of canonical Matthew and Luke felt compelled to rewrite Mark’s “subversive” tale.

Perhaps the mysterious persons are Gnostic Masters who are guiding the initiates, who were the original audience of Mark, into the first level of the Mysteries of Jesus. Perhaps the earliest version of Mark was a rite in which the initiates participated, as in a play. This was a common practice in the mystery religions. There were more secrets to be revealed to higher level initiates. Was Jesus actually crucified, or did Simon take his place on the cross? Did he stand by and laugh at their folly? (cf Adv. Haer. 1.24.4)

What happened within the tomb itself? What is the Mystery of “Easter” morning that was only observed by the narrator in the guise of the "young man?"

Who are Rufus and Alexander? They are the “sons” of Simon of Cyrene. If the image of Simon Magus, the "Father of Heresy" is indeed hiding behind Simon, then Alexander and Rufus are coded references to Gnostic leaders known to the esoteric readers of the gospel. Similar to the blasphemous heretics Alexander and Hymenaeus, who were "consigned to Satan" by the catholic writer of 1 Timothy 1:20.

Jake Jones IV
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