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Q

“Q,” an abbreviation of Ger. Quelle, “source”; a symbol and term applied to the hypothetical source document of the “[[Sayings of Jesus]]” and other discoursive materials found in Matthew and Luke but not in Mark or John. The “Q,” “Quellen” or “Redenquellen” hypothesis was only one of a number of such theories proposed in the 19th cent. by the scholars of the Ger. higher critical schools. From the time of G. F. Lessing (1729-1781) on, the ferment of the so-called “synoptic problem” concerning the apparent discrepancies in style, content and chronological order between the gospel traditions of Matthew, Mark and Luke was a center of hot debate in N Ger. university circles. The hypothesis of a possible unknown “Q” source was greatly advanced by the work of various Scandinavian scholars on the epics and legends of the Norse peoples. The discovery of the Sayings of Jesus from Oxyrhynchus was thought to prove the plausibility of the contention. The form of the contents of the “Q” tradition