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MARK16 is a SNSF PRIMA project on five years (2018-2023) that develops a new research model in digitized biblical sciences, based on a test case found in the New Testament: the last chapter of the Gospel according to Mark. The goal of the project is to produce new research results on a test-case, Mk16, and to create a virtual research environment, that will be the outputs website for textual criticism and exegesis of Mark 16, comparing researchers’ hypotheses. Team at the Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics: Claire Clivaz (PI), Mina Monier, Elisa Nury.


MARK16 is the first virtual research environment (VRE) focused on a biblical chapter and inaugurates a new research model for the digitized Humanities. The chosen topic is a famous enigma in New Testament studies: certain manuscripts evidences do not have an apparition of the resurrected Jesus at the end of the Gospel according to Mark, and at least six different endings of Mark can be found in the manuscripts. Presenting the research matter, this VRE will become the outputs place for textual criticism and exegesis of Mark 16, and will allow to visualize the “story of the winners and the loosers”, according to the French historian François Hartog’s expression. It will provide the basis to explore the PI hypothesis: the Gospel according to Mark had a previous ending, lost or destroyed, before the endings transmitted from the 4th century by the manuscripts evidences; the complexity of the textual variants illustrates the Ancient topos of people emotions in front of dead alive apparitions, and shows historically the tensions existing between Christian trends at the 1st century C.E. The outputs of the research team is available here ; news about the project here.

MARK16 VRE is divided in four parts. The first one, the “Manuscript Room”, will welcome a selection of Greek and other languages manuscripts of particular importance or interest for Mark 16, in collaboration with the NTVMR (Münster). The second part, “Interpretations”, gives voice to the scholars about their interpretations of Mark 16, through an innovative multimodal publishing format, the eTalk. The third part, “Material” provides references to the research material, including the open access material itself when available, from printed material to audio-visual and multimodal publications. The last part “Data Visualisation” will propose a geographical-time based representation of the manuscripts and research data, in collaboration with Pelagios. Thanks to our collaboration with Huma-Num, the open public depository Nakala allows us to give shape to our data with extended metadata information. Dataset are regularly published on the SNSF database p3.

A scientific board accompanies the project: Leif Isaksen (Exeter University, UK), Jennifer Knust (Duke University, USA), Valérie Nicolet (IPT, Paris), Laurent Romary (INRIA, Paris), Joseph Verheyden (Leuven Catholic University, BE) et Peter Williams (Tyndale House, UK). This project hopes to foster the digital turn of New Testament studies; it supports an academic reading of the Bible at a time in which the European research plays a crucial role in maintaining the social peace between religious communities.

Main international collaborations:

  • New Testament Virtual Manuscript Room, University of Münster (DE, INTF), Dr. Greg Paulson,
  • Pelagios project (University of Exeter, UK), Prof. Leif Isaksen and Dr. Elton Barker,
  • Nakala public open depository, Huma-Num (CNRS, Paris), Dr. Laurent Romary,


Websites :

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