“Plain and Precious Things”

Brant Gardner

The logic supports the return to the word from the original manuscript but does not explain how the fulness/plainness error occurred other than to note that it did. Skousen suggests that it resulted from Oliver interpreting scribe 2’s handwriting. Combined with interpreting someone else’s handwriting and the emphasis on “plain and precious” truths in these verses, there is an understandable basis for Oliver’s copy error. Interestingly, however, the copy error had to depend upon the presence of “plain” in the text, which occurs after this copying error. Oliver had to be familiar with that passage in order to make the copying error on the basis of the emphasis on words which were yet to be copied. That tells us that he had read over this part of the text even though he was not the scribe for it.

Second Witness: Analytical & Contextual Commentary on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 1