Harvard professor Karen King has now conceded that the papyrus she named The Gospel of Jesus' Wife is probably a fake.
Actually it is a fake, and people have been saying so for years, and providing good evidence for saying so, yet even now professor King will say no more than it is 'probably' a fake, adding that she cannot say for certain until she is presented with scientific proof - which is exactly what she did not bother to obtain before declaring the fragment genuine and ensuring that it became a worldwide sensation by gratuitously calling it The Gospel of Jesus' Wife.
King's face-saving version of admitting that she was taken in by a fake came after The Atlantic magazine's website published an article that investigated the background of Walter Fritz, the man who placed the fragment in Karen King's hands.
'It appears now that all the material Fritz gave to me concerning the provenance of the papyrus were fabrications', she said.
|Professor King with her fake.|
That a fraud might also be accompanied by fraudulent supporting documents would be the first thing a person of scholarship and discernment would check. Yet such is the state of scholarship in this case that it was left to a journalist to expose the truth.Before King's admission that the fragment is a fake, I had written in The Quest for Mary Magdalene:
That is the amazing and damning thing: She never seemed to think that proof of provenance mattered.Faced with the charge that the Gospel of Jesus’ Wife is a forgery, both King and Harvard went mute. Professor King failed to come forward with everything she knows about the Gospel of Jesus’s Wife, including the full circumstances under which it was bought and sold several times before it came into her possession, and its shady history in Communist East Germany. Quite possibly Professor King knows nothing, for the papyrus fragment was apparently put into her hands without any proof of its provenance, and she never seemed to think that mattered.