Authorized (English) Version of the Holy Scriptures
Authorized (English) Version Of The Holy Scriptures.
As this was not a strictly new or original translation, it will be necessary to consider briefly those earlier English versions upon which it was founded, and it will enable the reader better to appreciate its value and character if we prefix some account of the still earlier Anglo-Saxon versions which led the way to these. (See Mrs. Conant's Hist. of Engl. Bible Translation, N. Y. 1856.) SEE VERSIONS (OF THE BIBLE).
I. Anglo-Saxon Translations. — Though our Anglo-Saxon ancestors early possessed translations, chiefly from the Latin, of at least portions of the Scriptures, the first attempt with which we are acquainted is the rude but interesting poem ascribed to CAEDMON, a monk of Whitby, in the seventh century. It contains the leading events of Old-Testament history, and renders several passages with tolerable fidelity; but the epic and legendary character of the composition preclude it from being ranked among the versions of Holy Writ. The first portion of it, entitled The Fall of Man, has been translated into verse by Bosanquet (Lond. 1860, 8vo). This work was succeeded in the following century by the Anglo-Saxon Psalter, said to have been translated by ALDHELM, bishop of Sherborn, who died in 709; the first fifty Psalms are in prose, the others in verse. About the same period, GUTHLAC, the first Saxon anchorite, is reported to have translated the Psalms. The next laborer in the field was the Venerable BEDE, who turned the Apostles' Creed and the Lord's Prayer into Anglo-Saxon. He also translated the Gospel of John, and completed it just as death put an end to his learned labors, in the monastery of Jarrow, on the south bank of the Tyne, A.D. 735. The close of the next century probably produced the celebrated Durham Book, containing the four Gospels in Anglo-Saxon, written between the lines of an earlier Latin copy, by ALDRED, a priest. The following is the Lord's Prayer from this version — Mt 6:9-13:
Fader uren thu arth in heofnum, sic gehalgud noma thin: to cymeth ric thin; sic willo thin sumels inheofne & in eortho; hlaf useune ofer wistlic sel us todseg: & forgef us seylda usna suae uae forgeofon seyldgum usum: and ne inlsed usih in costunge nlu gefrigusich from yfle.
The Rushworth Gloss, having the Anglo-Saxon word placed over the corresponding Latin, was probably executed about the same period, by OWUN, aided by FARMEN, a priest at Harewood. About this time, ALFRED the Great set at the head of his laws an Anglo-Saxon translation of the Ten Commandments, with such of the Mosaic injunctions from the 21, 22, 23 chapters of Exodus as were most to his purpose. He is also said to have entered upon a translation of the Psalms, which be did not live to finish. Next in order come some fragments of an imperfect interlinary version of the Book of Proverbs. Similar glosses were made on the Psalter; also on the Canticles of the Church, the Lord's Prayer, and other portions of Scripture. In the latter part of the tenth century, the monk JELFRIC translated — omitting some parts, and greatly abridging others — the Pentateuch, Joshua, Judges, a portion of the Books of Kings, Esther, Job, Judith, and the Maccabees. He also drew up, in Anglo-Saxon, a brief account of the books of the Old and New Testaments; and, by the texts and quotations used in his homilies, he contributed greatly to the knowledge of the Scriptures. A third Anglo-Saxon version of the four Evangelists, of which there are two copies, and a few copies of the Psalms, appear to have been executed at a later period, probably but a little before the time of the Norman Conquest. With these, the series of Anglo-Saxon translations of parts of Scripture would seem to end; though it is not improbable that other portions of Scripture were translated which have not come down to us.
Before the middle of the eleventh century the language of Caedmon and Bede had undergone important changes, probably through the influence of Edward the Confessor and his Norman associates, among whom he had been educated. At the period of the Conquest, A.D. 1066, the Norman began rapidly to revolutionize the old Anglo-Saxon language. Soon after this period a version of the Gospels appears to have been made, of which there are three copies, and it is difficult to determine whether they are to be assigned to the Anglo-Saxon or Anglo-Norman class of literary remains. Before the year 1200 the Anglo-Normans had translated into their own dialect, in prose, the Psalter and Canticles of the Church; and towards the middle of the following century appear to have possessed not only a history of the Old Testament in verse, as far as the end of the books of Kings, but also, it is supposed, a prose version of a great part of the Bible. Nevertheless, the Anglo-Saxon versions and glosses of the Gospels, and other portions of Scripture, remained long after in partial use. SEE ANGLO-SAXON VERSIONS.
II. Early English Translations. — The earliest essays of Biblical translation assumed in English, as in most other languages, a poetical form. The Ormulum, written perhaps at the commencement of the thirteenth century, is a paraphrase in verse of the narrative of the Gospels and Acts of the Apostles. The Biblical poem called "Soulhele" was probably written about the same period. To a later period of the same century belongs the poem reciting the principal events in the books of Genesis and Exodus. Apparently coeval with this is the metrical version, from the Latin, of the whole book of Psalms. In some manuscripts a version is found partly similar, but with amendments and revisions, probably the partial adaptation of the same version to a more modern diction and orthography. The 100th Psalm is here given as a specimen of this ancient English version:
Mirthes to God al erthe that es Serves to louerd in faines. In go yhe ai in his siht, In gladness that is so briht.
Whites that louerd god is he thus, He us made and our self noht us, His folke and shep of his fode: In gos his yhates that are gode;
In schrift his worches belive, In ympnes to him yhe schrive. Heryhes his name for louerde is HENDE, In all his merci do in strende and strende.
The earliest version in English prose of any entire book of Scripture is the book of Psalms, translated by WILLIAM DE SCHORHAM, vicar of Chart Sutton, in Kent. The translation is generally faithful and literal. The following is a specimen of this version — Psalm 23:1-6:
Our Lord governeth me and nothyng shal defailen to me; in the stede of pasture he sett me ther. He noriised me vp water fyllynge; he turned my soule fram the fende. He lad me vp the blistiyets mf riytfulnes; for his name. For yif that ich haiue _on amiddes of the shadowe of deth. Y shal nouyt douten inels, for thou art wyth me. Thy disciplinn and thyn amendyng; confolted me. Thou maaest radi grace in my sight; oyayns hem that trublen me. Thou makest fatt myn heued wyth mercy; and my drynke makand drunken ys ful clere. And thy merci shal folwen me; alle daies of mi lif. And that ich woonne in the hous of our Lord; in lengthe of daies.
Schorham's version of the Psalms could scarcely have been completed, when another was undertaken by RICHARD ROLLE, chantry priest at Hampole, near Doncaster, who died in 1349. Of this work of Rolle, to which he subjoined a commentary, there were copies which differed from each other, showing that the original must have been altered to some extent. The following is a specimen of this version — Ps 79:1-6:
God, gens come in thin heritage; thei filed thi holy tempul, thei sette Jerusalem in kepyng of appuls. Thei sette the dyande bodyes ofthi seluraunts mete to the fowles of the lyft; flesche of thli halowes to bestis of erthe. Thei spill bhore blode as watir in vmgong of Jerusalem; and none was for to graue, hade we are reproft to oure neghbors; skornynge and hething to alle that in oure vmgong are. Howe longe, Lord, shalt thou be wrothe in ende; kyndelt shal be thi luf as fire. Helde, or het, thi wrathe in gens that thee not knew; and in kyngdoms that thi nome incalde not.
All these versions were made from the Latin; and some of the venerable relics still exist in manuscript in the public libraries in the kingdom. A few of them have been printed as objects of literary curiosity.
It was not till about the year 1382 that our language was enriched with a complete copy of the Scriptures, by the hands of WYCLIFFE and his coadjutors, not improbably with the aid of other fragmentary portions then existing. This translation was made from the Latin Vulgate, collated with other old copies. For several centuries there had occasionally been found in England some scholars acquainted with the Hebrew and Greek languages;
and, though Wycliffe occasionally introduced Greek words in some of his writings, yet it seems scarcely probable that the knowledge of Greek possessed by him was at all sufficient to enable him to translate from that language. Hence, if the Bible must be translated at all, it must be from the Latin. It belonged to a later and more critical age to use the originals in forming vernacular versions of the Scriptures. The translation of the New Testament was probably the work of Wycliffe himself. During its progress, the Old Testament was taken in hand by one of Wycliffe's coadjutors; and from a note written in one manuscript, at the end of a portion of the Book of Baruch, the translation is assigned to NICHOLAS DE HEREFORD. Not unlikely the cause of this manuscript, and also of another which is probably a copy, suddenly breaking off in the Book of Baruch, was the summons which Hereford received to appear before the Synod in 1382. The translation was evidently completed by a different hand, not improbably by Wycliffe himself. However this may be, it was certainly through Wycliffe's energy that the earliest translation of the whole Bible in the English language was carried on and executed. Many of the peculiarities of this translation are to be attributed to the time in which Wycliffe lived; and it is remarkable that, in his version of the Scriptures, he writes far more intelligible English than is found in his original works; the — dignity of the book which he translated seems to have imparted an excellence of expression to the version itself. No part of the genuine version of Wycliffe was printed, excepting the Song of Solomon, by Dr. Adam Clarke, in his Commentary, until 1848, when Mr. L. Wilson published the New Testament in a beautiful Gothic-letter quarto volume. More recently, the entire Bible, accompanied with Purvey's revision, has been published. The following are specimens of Wycliffe's translation — Ge 3:7-8; Lu 8:31-33:
And the eizen of both being openyd; and whanne thai knewen hem silf to be nakid, thei soweden to gidre leeues of a fige tree, and maden hem brechis. And ywhanne thei herden the voys of the Lord God goynge in paradis at the shynyng after myd dai, Adam hid hym and his wijf fio the face of the Lord (od in the myddel of the tree of paradis.
And thei preiden him, that he schulde not comaunde hem, that thei echulden go in to the depnesse. Forsothe a flok of manye hoggis was there lesewynge in an hil, and thei preieden him, that lie schulde suffre hem to entre in to hem. And he suffride hem.
Therefore fendis wenten out fro the man, and entride in to hoggis; and with bire the floc wente hedlinge in to the lake of water, and was stranglid.
As Wycliffe's translation was completed in a comparatively short space of time, and necessarily possessed blemishes incident to a first edition, it is not surprising that a revised version was contemplated even in the lifetime of Wycliffe himself. Accordingly, about the year 1388, not more than four years after the death of Wycliffe, the revision was accomplished, but with few substantial differences of interpretation, by PURVEY, who had been Wycliffe's curate, and, after his death, became the leader of the Lollard party. Purvey's revision rendered the version more correct, intelligible, and popular, and caused the earlier translation to fall into disuse. Copies of this revision were rapidly multiplied; even now, more than one hundred and fifty copies of the whole or part of Purvey's Bible are in existence. The following are specimens of Purvey's version — Ge 3:7-8; Lu 8:31-33:
And the izen of bothe weren opened; and whanne thei knewen that thei weren nakid, thei sewiden the leeues of a fige tre, and maden brechis to hem ilf. And whanne thei herden the vois of the Lord God goynge in paradijs at the wynd after myd-dai, Adam and his wijf hidden them fro the face of the Lord God in the middis of the tre'of pardijs.
And thei preiden hym, that hoe schulde not comaunde hem, that thei schulden go in to helle. And there was a flok of many swyne lesewynge in an hil, and thei preid n hym, that he schulde suffre hem to eintre into hem. And he suffride hem. And so the deuelis wenten out fro the man. and entriden in to the swyne; and with a birre the flok went heedlyng in to the pool, and was drenchid.
Notwithstanding the prohibitory constitutions of Archbishop Arundel in 1408, and the high price of manuscripts, both versions were extensively multiplied; they contributed largely to the religious knowledge which prevailed at the commencement of the Reformation, and probably hastened that event. In the year 1420, the price of one of Wycliffe's Testaments was not less than four marks and forty pence, or £2 16s. 8d., equal to £42 6s. 8d. now, taking sixteen as the multiple for bringing down the money of that time to our standard. It is somewhat remarkable that the revised version by Purvey has been taken until recently for Wycliffe's own translation, and as such the New Testament portion was published by Lewis, 1731; by Baber, 1810; and again by Bagster, in his English Hexapla. It is, however, now known that the most ancient version is Wycliffe's, and. the revised or more modern one is by Purvey. These two earliest English versions of the entire Bible by Wycliffe and Purvey were printed, column by column on the same page, with various readings from the several manuscripts, in four splendid quarto volumes, under the care of the Rev. J. Forshall and Sir F. Madden, Oxford University Press, 1850.
The circulation of Wycliffe's version, and that of his reviser, Purvey, in manuscript, was the sowing of seed destined to yield a mighty harvest.. The downfall of the Eastern empire in 1453 contributed to the revival of learning by scattering learned Greeks, who carried with them manuscript treasures from Constantinople. The printing-press contributed immensely to revolutionize society throughout Europe. In several places on the Continent the Scriptures were printed not only in Latin, but in Hebrew and Greek, thus providentially preparing for setting forth the Inspired Oracles in the vernacular tongues. In England, however, the operation of the press was slow. In vain do we look over the list of works by Caxton, the father of the press in England, for a copy of any portion of the Scriptures. The earliest attempt at giving forth any portion of the Scriptures in print in English was a translation and exposition of the seven penitential Psalms, in 1505, by FYSHER, the Romish bishop of Rochester; and even this was printed on the Continent, though published at London. The instrument in the hand of God for translating the New Testament, and a great part of the Old, out of the original tongues into English, was WILLIAM TYNDALE. But in England Tyndale could find no place to print his translation of the New Testament. In the year 1524 he passed over to Hamburg, where he is said to have published the same year the Gospels of Matthew and Mark. As, however, no fragment of this first fruit of Tyndale's labor is known to be remaining, we suspect that it is merely another reference to the following fragment, printed at Cologne. In September, 1525, Tyndale, with his assistant Roye, was at Cologne, actually engaged in bringing the first edition of his New Testament, in quarto, through the press. When the sheets of this edition were printed as far as the signature K, the printer, through the influence of Cochlaeus, a Romish deacon, was interdicted from proceeding further with the work. Tyndale and his assistant snatched away some of the printed sheets, and fled to Worms. In this city Tyndale immediately printed an octavo edition of his Testament; then, it is said, he completed the quarto which had been interrupted, and published both editions at the close of 1525 or early in 1526. The only relic of the precious old quarto, which was the first partially printed edition, for we are inclined to think that it never was completed, was discovered in 1834 by the late Mr. Rodd, and is now in the British Museum. It only contains the prologue, a table of the books of the New Testament, and part of the Gospel of Matthew—chap. 1-22. The following is a specimen of this fragment, printed at Cologne by P. Quentell-Mt 2:1-2:
When Jesus was borne in bethlehem a toune of iury, in the time kynge Herode, beholde, there came wyse men from the este to Jerusalem sayinge: where is he that is borne kinge of the iewes, we have sene his starre in the este, and are come to worshippe hym.
The only known perfect copy of the octavo, which was the second printed, but the first published complete edition of Tyndale's New Testament, is preserved in the Baptist College Library, Bristol. The following is a specimen of this edition, printed at Worms at the close of 1525 or early in 1526 — Mr 14:3-5:
When he was in bethania in the housse off Simon the leper, even as he sate att meate, there cam a woma with an alablaster boxe of oyntment, called narde, that was pure and costly, and she brake the boxe ad powred it on his heed. There were some that disdayned i themselves, and sayde: what neded this waste of oyntment? For it might have bene soolde for more the two houndred pens, and bene geve unto the poure. And they grudged agaynste her.
In November, 1534, Tyndale published at Antwerp a third edition, "dylygently corrected and compared with the Greke." The second or first complete edition, though a most important advance, certainly bears marks of haste; but the edition of 1534, revised by himself, stands in the first place as exhibiting Tyndale as a translator. The following is a specimen of this edition — Mr 14:3-5:
When he was in Bethania, in the housse of Simon the leper, even as he sate at meate, ther came a woma hauynge an alablaster boxe of oyntment called narde, that was pure and costly: and she brake the boxe and powred it on is heed. And ther were some that were not content in themselves, & sayde: what neded this waste of oyntment:
For it might have bene soolde for more than thre hundred pens, and been geve unto the poore. And they grudged agaynst hir.
That Tyndale's New Testament was translated from the Greek, no one can question who has examined it with care: it will be found continually to leave the readings of the Latin Vulgate, and adhere to the third edition of Erasmus's Greek Testament, printed in 1522. Sometimes, indeed, great deference is paid to the critical observations of Erasmus; but still the translation is made from the Greek, and not from his Latin version. When Erasmus departed from the Greek, as he does in several places, apparently through inadvertence, Tyndale does not follow him, but adheres closely to the original. As Tyndale's New Testaments were eagerly bought up, partly by earnest inquirers, and partly by others for destruction, numerous surreptitious copies rapidly issued from different presses, chiefly by the Dutch printers; so that in the translator's time about fourteen editions were issued, and eight or nine in 1536, the year of his death. A very curious edition of Tyndale's Testament was printed, probably at Antwerp in 1535, during the translator's imprisonment at Vilvorde. The letter and the spelling prrve that it was printed in the Low Countries. Some suppose that it is executed in a provincial orthography, probably that of Tyndale's native county, peculiarly adapted to agricultural laborers; and that, by this edition, he nobly redeemed his bold pledge given to the priest in Gloucestershire many years before, "If God spare me life, ere many years I will cause the boy that driveth the plow to know more of the Scriptures than you do." He also put headings for the first time to the chapters. The following is a specimen of this edition — 1Co 15:41:
Thear is oone manner glory of the sunne, & a noether glory of the moane, & a nother glory ye starres. For oone starre differth fro a noether in glory.
The edition of Tyndale's New Testament, printed in folio, at London, by Thomas Berthelet, in 15-6, from the revised edition of 1534, was the first portion of the English Scriptures printed on English ground. The following is a specimen of this rare and interesting edition — 1Co 15:45-46:
The fyrst man Adam was made a lyvynge soule, and the last Adam was made a quyckenyng spiryte. Howe be it, that is nat fyrst which is spiritliall: but that which is naturall, & than that which is spirituall.
The martyr Tyndale was also the first to translate the five books of Moses into English from the Hebrew. As the books of Genesis and Numbers are in Gothic letter, while those of Exodus, Leviticus, and Deuteronomy are in Roman type, it would appear that these books were printed at separate times and in different places. The following occurs at the end of Genesis: "Emprented at Malborow, in the lande of Hesse, by me, Hans Luft, the yere of oure Lorde 1530, the 17 dayes of Januarii." Tyndale also translated and published the Book of Jonah. In the succeeding years of his life he was engaged in translating, perhaps in conjunction with Rogers, the remaining books of the Bible. Tyndale's translation, as far as the end of Chronicles, and other manuscripts, appear, at the time of his martyrdom, to have been in the possession of Rogers. The following is a specimen of Tyndale's Pentateuch of 1530 — Ge 24:18-20:
And she hasted and late downe her pytcher apon hyr arme and gaue him drinke. And whe she had geuen hym drynke, she sayde: I will drawe water for thy camels also, vntill they haue dronke ynough. And she poured out hyr pitcher in to the trough hastely and ranne agayne unto the well, to fett water: and drewe for all his camels.
During the year 1530, the Argentine English Psalter was printed. The translator, who rendered from the Latin, calls himself JOHAN ALEPH. The date at the end of this Psalter is January 10, 1530; it thus seems to have been, perhaps by antedating, the first whole book of the Old Testament which was printed in English, the completion of Tyndale's Genesis having been one day subsequent. In 1531 there was published a translation of Isaiah by GEORGE JOYE; in 1533, two leaves of Genesis; and in 1534 he published a translation of Jeremiah and the Book of Psalms. These portions were also translated from the Latin Vulgate.
MYLES COVERDALE was the first to publish, if not to translate, the whole Bible into English. He commenced this work in November, 1534, and it was printed, probably at Zurich, in October, 1535. Though Coverdale had evidently the Hebrew and Greek before him, he freely used the translations of Tyndale, both printed and perhaps manuscript. He speaks of his having been aided by five sundry interpreters in the Dutch, German, and Latin languages. In the Old Testament he may have had, 1st, the Latin Vulgate; 2d, Pagninus's version; 3d, Luther's German translation; 4th, Leo Juda's German-Swiss version; 5th, the Latin version connected with Sebastian Munster's Hebrew Bible, the first volume of which was printed in 1534.
The New Testament appears to be in part a revision of Tyndale's, in which Coverdale took much care, and availed himself both of the edition of 1525 and the amended one of 1534. This Bible, which was dedicated to King Henry VIII, had the following as the title: "BIBLIA. The Bible, that is, the holy Scripture of the Olde and New Testament, faithfully and truly translated out of Douche and Latyn in to Englishe. 1535." However, it must be observed, the use of the words "out of Douche, i.e. German, and Latyn," was merely a bookselling artifice by the printers, to make the work circulate better, as being intimately connected with the reformed doctrines, which were then equally well known by the name of German or Dutch doctrines. In the new title inserted the following year, these terms were left out. Coverdale certainly did not follow the Latin, nor even Luther's version, but he no doubt availed himself of all the different means of assistance within his power. This Bible was reprinted with some amendments at Zurich in 1537, with a London title-page, and was then allowed by the king to "go abroad among the people," but without any regal imprimatur or license. The following is a specimen of Coverdale's translation—Psalm 90 (91), 4, 5:
He shal couer the vnder his wynges, that thou mayest be safe vnder his fethers: his faithfulnesse and trneth shal be thy shylde and buckler. So yt thou shalt not nede to be afrayed for eny bugges by night, ner for arowe that flyeth by daye.
In the year 1537, the translations of Tyndale were published in a collected form, under the name of "Thomas Matthew." The editing of this Bible was really the work of the martyr Rogers. To this edition was prefixed, An Exhortation to the Study of the Holy Scriptures, beneath which stand J. R., the initials of his name. In the execution of this work, Rogers had the whole of Tyndale's translations, whether imprint or manuscript, before him. The Old Testament is a reprint of Tyndale's Pentateuch; the remainder, as far as the Second Book of Chronicles, was copied from Tyndale's manuscripts, which were undoubtedly in Rogers's safe keeping. The New Testament was Tyndale's of 1534 This Bible has the character of Tyndale's labors so stamped upon it as clearly to show that at least two thirds of the translation were his work; the remainder is the work of Rogers, who was probably aided by Coverdale's sheets. At the end of the Old Testament, the letters W. T. are printed in very large text capitals curiously flourished. This Bible was probably printed at Lubeck; and it is not improbable that it was actually in the press, under the joint labors of Tyndale and Rogers, at the time of Tyndale's arrest and martyrdom. Much credit is due to Rogers, who probably resided at the place of printing, as the careful editor I of this Bible; he was evidently a fine scholar, and he seems to have acted both as desiring to give his countrymen a Bible as correct as possible, and likewise to perpetuate the labors of Tyndale, his friend and instructor in the truth of the Gospel. This Bible was translated by the first Hebrew, Greek, and English scholars, and is executed most in conformity with the views of the latest and best Biblical critics. This revision, which is frequently but not inaptly called "Tyndale's Bible," appeared with the then much coveted words, "Set forth with the king's most gracious license;" hence it was the first properly authorized edition of the English Bible. This Bible — at least part of it — appears to have been printed at the expense of Richard Grafton and his partner, Edward Whitchurch I — who afterwards married the widow of Archbishop Cranmer. They, about the same period, became printers themselves, as their initials appear at the beginning of the Prophets, where, perhaps, the part of the expense which they defrayed commenced. "Thomas Matthew" may actually have been the person at whose cost the preceding portion was printed. This Bible was the popular translation, and from the various editions it appears to have been much used for many years. The following is a fine specimen of Tyndale's rendering from the Hebrew — 2Sa 1:17-18:
And Dauid sang thyg songe of moulnynge ouer Saul and ouer Jonathas hys sonne, & bad to teache the chyldren of Israell the staues thereof.
In 1538, several editions of Coverdale's new version of the New Testament were published. He also issued several editions of the English New Testament, together with the text of the Latin Vulgate. The printing of this Diglott Testament was executed with great carelessness, so that Coverdale had it speedily reprinted in Paris. It is probable that Nicholson the printer, hearing that Coverdale's Latin and English Testament was about to be reprinted at Paris, with more attention to accuracy, printed the one bearing the name of "Johan Hollybushe" without delay, in order to anticipate the Paris edition. The following is a specimen of Coverdale's Testament — Mt 5:13:
Ye are the salt of the earth. Put yf ye salt vanishe away, wherin shal it be salted? It is thece forth good vnto nothing, but yt it be cast out, & trode vndr of men.
In the year 1539 was published the English translation known by the name of the "Great Bible." This edition was executed under the superintendence of GRAFTON, to whom Coverdale lent his aid as corrector. This Bible was printed at' Paris by the permission of Francis I., obtained by Henry VIII. But, notwithstanding the royal license, just as the work was well advanced, the Inquisition interposed, and issued an order, dated December 17,1538, summoning the French printers, their English employers, and Coverdale, the corrector of the work, and inhibited their farther proceeding. The impression, consisting of 2500 copies, was seized, confiscated, and condemned to the flames. Four great dry-fats full, however, of these books escaped the fire by the avarice of the person appointed to superintend the burning of them; and the English proprietors, who had fled on the first alarm, returned to Paris as soon as it subsided, and not only recovered some of these copies, but brought with them to London the presses, types, and even the workmen, and resuming the work, finished it in the following year. This Bible, which is a revision of Matthew's version, probably by the hand of Coverdale, has been unhappily confounded with "Cranmer's Bible," issued in 1540. The preface written by Cranmer for the edition of 1540 was inserted in some copies of the Great Bible, but subsequently to their completion. The statesman Cromwell, not Cranmer, was the master- spirit, not only in getting up this edition, but in securing the royal injunction that "the whole Bible, of the largest volume in English," should be set up in the churches. This continued, with slight alterations, to be the authorized English version of the Bible — except, of course, during the revival of popery in Mary's reign — until, in 1568, it was superseded by the Bishops' Bible. The Psalms in this Bible were the same as those found in the book of Common Prayer, having seventeen interpolations from the Septuagint or Latin Vulgate, but printed in a smaller type, and between parentheses. These readings were marked in Coverdale's Bible as not being in the Hebrew text; they are also continued in Cranmer's editions. The following is a specimen, with the interpolation in smaller type, which includes three verses — Ps 14:3-4.
But they are all gone out of the waye, they are altogether: become abbominable: there is none that doth good, no not one (theyr throte is an open sepulcher: wyth their tonges they haue dysceaued, the poyson of aspes is under theyr lyppes Theyr mouth is full of cursynge and bytterness. theyr fete are swyft to shede bloude Destruccyon and unhappynes isin theyr wayes, and the wave of peace haue they not knowen, there is no feare of God before theyr eyes). Halie they no knowledge that they are all such workers of myscheffe, eatynge up my people as it were breade.
In the year 1539, another edition of the Bible appeared, dedicated to the king. It was a mere recension of Matthew's Bible, executed by RICHARD TAVERNER, under the patronage of Lord Cromwell. The three editions through which this Bible almost immediately went prove that its circulation was considerable, though it is to be observed that they were private readers alone who used it, as it was never, even for a time, publicly made an authorized version. Taverner's New Testament, of which he published two editions, is a different recension from that which accompanied his "Recognition of the Bible." In the year 1540 "CRANMER'S Bible" was issued from Grafton and Whitchurch's press. This was probably the first complete Bible ever printed in England. This edition, of which only five hundred copies were printed, was a mere revision of the Great Bible of 1539, and had a preface by Cranmer. Another edition, "overseen and perused," by the king's command, by CUTHBERT TONSTALL, bishop of Durham, and NICHOLAS HEATH, bishop of Rochester, who also made a few variations in the text, appeared in 1541. The following is a specimen from Cranmer's New Testament — Mt 6:9-13:
Oure father which art in heauen, halowed be thy name. Let thy kingdome come. Thy will be fulfilled, as well in erth, as it is in leuen. Geue vs this daye-oure dayly bred. And forgeue vs oure dettes, as we forgeue oure detters. And leade vs not into temptation: but delyuer vs from euyll. For thyne is the kyngdom and the power, and the glorye for euer. Amen.
The only impressions of. any portions of the Scriptures which were printed during the remainder of the reign of Henry appear to have been the Epistles and Gospels for the Sundays, in 1542, probably an edition of the Pentateuch in 1544, Joye's book of Daniel and the books of Solomon in 1545, and the New Testament according to the text of the Great Bible in 1546. The number of copies of the Scriptures in circulation at this time must, however, have been very considerable. In 1543 the Parliament prohibited the use of Tyndale's version; and in 1546 Coverdale's translation, as well as Tyndaleus, was prohibited by. a stringent proclamation, and all such books were to be delivered up to persons appointed for the purpose, in order that they might be burned. The diligence with which Henry's proclamation was executed, in the destruction of the earlier editions, accounts for the very few copies which have come down to our time. The destruction appears to have been almost as complete as that of the earlier editions of Tyndale's New Testament.
Among the early acts of the reign of Edward VI was the reversing of the restrictions which had been laid on the circulation and the reading of the Scriptures. Yet no new recension or translation was published, except a translation of the paraphrase of Erasmus in 1549-50. Among those who took part in this work was Coverdale; and the Princess Mary — the future persecuting queen — translated a portion of the Gospel of John. Cranmer contemplated a new translation of the Bible; but Fagius and Bucer died, and the work was frustrated. An edition of Coverdale's Bible, said to have been printed at Zurich, was published in 1550. This edition was probably one of the two revisions which Coverdale mentioned in his sermon at Paul's Cross, in which he defended his version, and said "if he might review the book once again, as he had twice before, he doubted not he should amend." During some part of this reign Sir JOHN CHEKE translated the Gospel of Matthew, and perhaps part of Mark, but the translation was not then published. The following is a specimen of Cheke's version — Mt 2:1:
When Jesus was boorn in Bethlem a citi of Juri in king Herood's dais, lo then the Wisard's cam fro thest parties.
However, many editions of the Bible were printed, some being reprints of Matthew's Bible, some of Cranmer's, and some of Taverner's Recognition. The total number of impressions of the Bible in the reign of Edward was at least thirteen. There were also several editions of the New Testament, some of Tyndale's translations, some of Coverdale's version, and some according to Cranmer's Bible. The number of these editions of the New Testament amounts to at least twenty-five, so that the whole number of Bibles and Testaments in circulation comprised many thousand copies.
On the accession of Mary the printing and the circulation of the Scriptures in English was hindered, so that her reign only witnessed the printing of one edition of the New Testament, printed at Geneva in 1557. The translator of the Genevan Testament was WILLIAM WHITTINGHAM, a native of Holmset, six miles from Durham, who was one of the exiles from England. This was a small square volume, printed in Roman letters, with the supplementary words in italics. — It was the first English New Testament divided into verses and broken into small sections or paragraphs. The preface was written by John Calvin, whose sister Catharine was married to Whittingham. In the manner of rendering not a few passages the translator followed the judgment of Beza in his theological views. The following is a specimen of this version — Mt 13:19:
When soeur a man heareth the worde of the kyngdome, and vnderstandeth it not, there commeth that euyl one, and catcheth away that which was sewen in his heart, and this is the come which was sowen by the way syde.
Whittingham and his companions in exile also executed a translation of the whole Bible at Geneva, and it is not unlikely that Coverdale aided in the work. The translators probably had motives which sufficiently influenced them in executing a new version, instead of giving a mere reprint or revision of any which had preceded. The intention of such a work had been entertained in the reign of Edward VI, and it is probable that in this projected revision, from the manner in which the name of Bucer was connected with it, there would have been embodied whatever might be learned from the biblical knowledge possessed by the Reformers on the Continent. This translation differed from all that had preceded it not only in its plan, but also in its execution. The other versions had been generally the work or the revision of an individual, or, at most, a revision in which certain individuals executed certain particular parts; in this translation we find, on the contrary, many acting unitedly in the formation of a version, and thus, in the plan of operation, there was a principle of completeness which had not been acted on previously. The translators, by the use of supplementary words, often aided the sense without seeming to insert what was not found in the original. It was also stored with marginal notes. This version of the whole Bible was printed at Geneva by Rowland Hall in 1560, so that it was not published until after many of the exiles had returned home. In this translation, which was the first complete English Bible — divided by verses, it is to be observed that the translation of the New Testament differs in several respects from that which had been separately printed in 1556. The expense o preparing the Genevan Bible was chiefly borne by John Bodley, the father of Sir Thomas, the founder of the noble library at Oxford. On the return of the exiles, Queen Elizabeth granted a patent to Bodley solely, for the term of seven years, to print this edition; yet, on account of the interference of Archbishop Parker, no edition of the Genevan Testament or Bible was published in England till the year 1576. Immediately after Parker's death this version was published; it continued to be frequently reprinted in this country, and was for many years the popular version in England, having been only gradually displaced by King James's translation, which appeared fifty-one years afterward. From the peculiar reading in Ge 3:7, the editions of the Geneva version have been commonly known by the name of "Breeches Bibles;" but this reading, as we have already seen, is as old as Wycliffe's time, and occurs in his translation. To some editions of the Geneva Bible is subjoined Beza's translation of the New Testament, Englished by L. Thomson. The following are specimens of the Geneva Bible — Ge 41:42-43, and Mt 13:19:
And Pharaoh toke of his ring from his hand, and put vpon Ioseph's hand, and araied him in garments of fine linen and put a golden cheine about his necke. So he set him vpon the best charet that he had, sane one: & they cryed before hime Abrech, and placed him oner all the land of Egypt.
Whensoeur a man heareth the worde of the kingdome, and vnderstandeth it not, the enil one cometh, and catcheth away that which was sowen in his heart: and this is he which hathe receiued the sede by the way side.
The next version of the Bible was superintended by Archbishop PARKER, hence sometimes called "Parker's Bible," and published in 1568. This version was executed with great care by more than fifteen learned men, the initials of whose names occur at the end of the portions executed by them. From the greater part of those who were engaged in its preparation being bishops, this version is also called the "Bishops' Bible." This edition is adorned with one hundred and forty-three engravings, including portraits and maps, which give it quite a pictorial appearance. The passages from the Vulgate, which had been introduced into Cranmer's Psalms, are omitted in this edition. This continued to be the version authorized to be read in the parish churches for forty-three years; but in private use it never displaced the Geneva version. Though the Bishops' Bible was the avowed basis of our authorized version, this latter was executed upon wholly different principles, and is very different in its general character. To this Bible was prefixed, among other things, the sum of Scripture, tables of genealogy, and a preface written by Parker. In 1585, under Archbishop Whitgift, the seventeen readings from the Latin Vulgate were re-introduced, so as to harmonize with the Psalms in the Prayerbook. The edition of 1572 contains a double version of the Psalms, that of Cranmer's and that of the bishops'. The edition of 1595 has the Psalms according to Cranmer's Bible. The following is a specimen of this version — Mal 3:17:
And they shal be to me, saith the Lorde of hoastes, in that day wherein I shall do [iudgment], a flocke: and I wyl spare them as a man spareth his owne sonne which serueth him.
In the year 1582 was published the Anglo-Rhemish version of the New Testament. The circumstances which led to the execution of this version are to be found in the history of the expulsion of Romanism from England in the reign of Elizabeth. The versions of the New Testament previously executed, from that of Tyndale to the Bishops' Bible inclusively — the English text of Coverdale's Diglott New Testament excepted — had been made from the original Greek; but the Rhemish translators took for their basis the Latin Vulgate. One of the principal objects which the Rhemish translators had in view was evidently to circulate their doctrinal and controversial notes, together with the Scriptures translated by them. Though the translators desired anything rather than to give the rendering of the text simply and fairly, few passages show a really dishonest perversion; yet very many passages exhibit a desire of expressing the sense obscurely, or at least in such a way that a common reader may find not a little difficulty in gathering from the words a definite meaning. However, if we take the whole version, we shall find a very large portion well translated, and truly exhibiting the sense of the Latin Vulgate, such as they had it. Though the Council of Trent had defined the Latin Vulgate to be the "authentic" version, as yet, when the Rhemish version was printed, there had been no decision as to what copy was to be regarded as such. The Rhemish translators, as may be supposed, do not exactly agree with either the Sixtine published in 1590, or the Clementine edition published in 1592. Sometimes they have the reading adopted afterward by the one, sometimes that which is found in the other. This may be said to be a matter of comparatively small importance, so long as they used the best readings which were within their reach, in the absence of an authentic edition of the Latin Vulgate. The following is a specimen of this version — Heb 11:4:
By faith Abel offered a greater hoste to God then Cain; by which he obtained testimonie that lie was iust, God giving testimonie to his guifts, and by it, he being dead yet speaketh.
The Romish translation of the Old Testament was published at Douay, in two volumes, in the years 1609 and 1610. The editors of this part of the version speak of it as having been executed many years before, but that the poor estate of the English Romanists, in their banishment, hindered its publication. They say that they have revised the version according to the Clementine edition of the Vulgate, that thus it might be fully in accordance with "the authenticated Latin." The following is a specimen of this version — Ge 49:10:
The scepter shal not be taken away from, Ivdas, and a dvke ovt of his thigh, til he doe come that is to be sent, and the same shal be the expectation of the gentiles.
In the modern editions of the Douay Bible and the Rhemish Testament, many changes have been introduced, some of which approximate to the authorized version, while others are not improvements.
It is marvellous how editions of the Scriptures were multiplied after the time of Tyndale, notwithstanding the severity of occasional persecutions. Besides about fourteen editions issued in Tyndale's life-time, eight or nine were issued in the year of his death. From the death of Tyndale to the close of Mary's reign, 1558, no fewer than fifty editions of the New Testament and twenty-six of the entire Bible were printed, and from 1558 to 1611 there were issued more than fifty editions of the New Testament. and about one hundred and twenty of the Bible, besides separate books. Of this number, twenty-one editions of the New Testament and sixty-four of the Bible were of the Genevan translation. Still the work of Tyndale forms substantially the basis of every revision, not excepting the translation now in common use.
III. History of the English Translation now in common Use — The authorized version was undertaken at the command of King James I, in consequence of several objections having been made by the Puritans to the bishops' translation at the second day's sitting of the conference held at the palace of Hampton Court, January 16th, 1603-4. The method proposed by the king for the accomplishment of the new translation was thus That the version should be made by some of the most learned men in both the universities; that it then should be reviewed by certain of the bishops; that it should then be laid before the privy council; and, last of all, be ratified by royal authority. Accordingly, fifty-four men, pre-eminently distinguished for piety and learning, were appointed to execute this great work. However, the list of persons actually employed in the translation contains only forty-seven names. Though several of the persons thus appointed were made bishops before the work was completed, yet, as none of them were so at the time of the appointment, it would appear that the number needed to make up the deficiency is to be found in the fact of certain bishops having been especially named as having the work in some manner under their control. This view is not improbable when it is known that Bancroft, archbishop of Canterbury, is said to have made some alterations in the version; and Bilson, bishop of Winchester, was one of those who gave the work its final revision. The following is a list of the translators' names, with the parts assigned to each company (see Clarke's Comment. Genesis Pref. to O.T.; Macclure, Authors of Engl. Bible, N.Y. 1853):
1. The Pentateuch; the story from Joshua to the First Book of the Chronicles exclusively; these ten persons at Westminster: Dr. ANDREWS, fellow and master of Pembroke Hall, in Cambridge; then dean of Westminster; afterward bishop of Westminster. Dr. OVERALL, fellow of Trinity Coll.; master of Kath. Hall, in Cambridge; then dean of St. Paul's; afterward bishop of Norwich. Dr. SARAVIA. Dr. CLARKE, fellow of Christ Coll., in Cambridge; preacher in Canterbury. Dr. LAIFIELD, fellow of Trin. Coll., in Cambridge; parson of St. Clement Danes. (Being skilled in architecture, his judgment was much relied on for the fabric of the Tabernacle and Temple.) Dr. LEIGH, archdeacon of Middlesex; parson of All-Hallows, Barking. Master BURGLEY. Mr. KING. Mr. THOMPSON. Mr. BEDWELL, of Cambridge; vicar of Tottenham, near London.
2. From the First of the Chronicles, with the Rest of the Storj, and the Hagiographa, viz., Job, Psalms, Proverb., Canticles, Ecclesiastes; the following eight persons at Cambridge: Master EDWARD LIVELY. Mr. RICHARDSON, fellow of Emman. Coll., afterward D. ).; master first of Peter-House Coll., then of Trin. Coll. Mr. CHADERTON, afterward D.D.; fellow first of Christ Coll., then master of Emman. Coll. Mr. DILLINGHAM, fellow of Christ Coll.; beneficed at ——, in Bedfordshire, where he died, a single and a wealthy man. Mr. ANDREWS, afterward D.D., brother to the Bishop of Winchester, and master of Jesus Coll. Mr. HARRISON, the rev. vice-master of Trinity Coll. Mr. SPALDING, fellow of St. John's Coll., in Cambridge, and Hebrew professor there. Mr. BING, fellow of Peter-House Coll., in Cambridge, and Hebrew professor there.
3. The Four Greater Prophets, with the Lamentation, and the Twelve Lesser Prophets; these seven persons at Oxford: DR. HARDING, pres. of Magdalen Coll. Dr REYNOLDS, pres. of Corpus Christi Coll. Dr. HOLLAND, rector of Exeter Coll., and king's professor. Dr. KILBY, rector of Lincoln Coll., and regius professor. Master SMITH, afterward D. D., and bp. of Gloucester. (He wrote the preface to the version.) Mr. BRETT, of a good family, beneficed at Qainton, in Buckinghamshire. Mr. FAIRCLOWE.
4. The Prajyer of Manasseh, and the Rest of the Apocrypha; the following seven at Cambridge: Dr. DUPORT, prebend of Ely, and master of Jesus Coll. Dr. BRAINTHWAIT, first master of Emmanuel Coll., then master of Gonvil and Caius Coll. Dr. RADCLYFFE, one of the senior fellows of Trinity Coll. Master WARD, of Emman. Coll., afterward D.D.; master of Sidney Coll., and Margaret professor. Mr. DOWNS, fellow of St. John's Coll., and Greek professor. — Mr. BOYCE, fellow of St. John's Coll., prebend of Ely, parson of Boxworth, in Cambridgeshire. Mr. WARD, regal, afterward D.D., prebend of Chichester, rector of Bishop-Waltham, in Hampshire.
5. The Fours Gospels, Acts of the Apostles, Apocalypse; these eight at Oxford Dr. RAVIS, dean of Christ Church, afterward bp. of London. Dr. ABBOTT, master of University Coll., afterward archbp. of Canterbury. Mr. ERDES. Mr. THOMSON. Mr. SAVILL. Dr. PERYN. Dr. RAVENS. Mr. HARMER.
6. The Epistles of St. Paul, and the Canonical Epistle.; these seven at Westminster: Dr. BAULOWE, of Trinity Coll., in Cambridge dean of Chester, afterward bishop of Lincoln. Dr. HUTCHENSON. Dr. SPENCER. Mr. FENTON. Mr. RABBET. Mr. SANDERSON. Mr. DAKINS.
The following instructions were drawn up for their proceedings:
1. "The ordinary Bible read in the church, commonly called the Bishops' Bible, to be followed, and as little altered as the original will permit."
2. "The names of the prophets and the holy writers, with the other names in the text, to be retained as near as may be, according as they are vulgarly used."
3. "The old ecclesiastical words to be kept, as the word church not to be translated congregation."
4. "When any word hath divers significations, that to be kept which hath been most commonly used by the most eminent fathers, being agreeable to the propriety of the place and the analogy of faith."
5. "The division of the chapters to be altered either not at:ill, or as little as may be, if necessity so require."
6. "No marginal notes at all to be affixed, but only for the explanation of the Hebrew or Greek words, which cannot, without some circumlocution, so briefly and fitly be expressed in the text."
7. "Such quotations of places to be marginally set down as shall serve for the fit references of one Scripture to another."
8. "Every particular man of each company to take the same chapter or chapters; and having translated or amended them severally by himself, where he think good, all to meet together, to confer what they have done, and agree for their part what shall stand."
9. "As any one company has despatched any one book in this maniner, they shall send it to the rest, to be considered of seriously and judiciously; for his majesty is very careful in this point."
10. "If any company, upon the review of the book so sent, shall doubt or differ upon any places, to send them word thereof to note the places, and therewithal to send their reasons; to which if they consent not, the difference to be com. pounded at the general meeting, which is to be of the chief persons of each company, at the end of the work."
11. "When any place of special obscurity is doubted of, letters to be directed by authority, to send to any learned in the land for his judgment in such a place."
12. "Letters to be sent from every bishop to the rest of his clergy, admonishing them of this translation in hand, and to move and charge as many as, being skillful in the tongues, have taken pains in that kind, to send their particular observations to the company, either at Westminster, Cambridge, or Oxford, according as it was directed before in the king's letter to the archbishop."
13. "The directors in each company to be the deans of Westminster and Chester for Westminster, and the king's professors in Hebrew and Greek in the two Universities."
14. "These translations to be used when they agree better with the text than the Bishops' Bible, viz., Tyndale's, Cover dale's, Matthew's, Whitchurch's, Geneva." To these the following rule was added: 15. "Besides the said directors before mentioned, three or four of the most ancient and grave divines in either of the universities, not employed in translating, to be assigned by the vice-chancellor, upon conference with the rest of the heads, to be overseers of the translation, as well Hebrew as Greek, for the better observation of the 4th rule above specified." According to these regulations, each book passed the scrutiny of all the translators successively. In the first instance, each individual translated every book which was allotted to his division. Secondly, the readings to be adopted were agreed upon by the whole of that company assembled together, at which meeting each translator must have been solely occupied by his own version. The book thus finished was sent to each of the other companies to be again examined; and at these meetings it probably was, as Selden informs us, that "one read the translation, the rest holding in their hands some Bible, either of the learned tongues, or French, Spanish, Italian, etc. If they found any fault, they spoke; if not, he read on." In this way every precaution was taken to secure a faithful translation, as the whole Bible underwent at least six different revisions by the most learned men in the kingdom. The translation was commenced in the spring of 1607, and occupied about three years, and the revision of it occupied about three quarters of a year more. It was printed in Gothic letter, and first published in folio in 1611, with the title, "The Holy Bible Conteyning the Old Testament, and the New: Newly translated out of the originall Tongues: And with the former translations diligently compared and reuised by his Maiesties speciall Comandement. Appointed to be read in Churches." The expense of this translation appears not to have been borne by the king, nor by any government commission, but chiefly, if not entirely, by Mr. Barker.
IV. Critical Estimate of the Authorized Version. — It has often been affirmed that "King James's Bible is in no part a new translation taken directly from the originals, but that it is merely a revision of the earlier English versions, and compared with various Continental translations." These remarks are not strictly correct. The translators themselves give us a correct view of the nature of their work. In their dedication to King James, they observe, "Your highness, out of deep judgment, apprehended how convenient it was that, out of the original tongues, together with comparing of the labors, both in our own and other foreign languages, of many worthy men who went before us, there should be one more exact translation of the Holy Scriptures into the English tongue." It must be admitted, however, that they closely followed the Septuagint and Vulgate in their emendations of previous English translations to suit the originals. As King James's version has been as extravagantly eulogized by some as it has been unduly decried by others, it will be well calmly and briefly to consider its merits as well as its faults.
The most prominent perhaps among its excellences is its simple, pure, and nervous style. Its words are usually chosen from the old — and more expressive Saxon element. It is this feature, no doubt, that has so endeared it to the popular heart, and which gives it a charm to the youngest reader. There are some noticeable exceptions to this remark, however, for it sometimes uses Latin terms when Saxon were at hand, e.g. "cogitation" for thought; "illuminate" for enlightened; "matrix" for womb; "prognosticator" for foreteller; "terrestrial" for earthly; "vocation" for calling, etc. In the Lord's Prayer, at both passages (Mt 6:13; Lu 11:4), our translators employ "temptation" instead of trial. Another marked excellence that has usually been attributed to the Auth. Vers. is its general accuracy and fidelity to the original. In this respect it compares to great advantage with the Septuagint, which not only very often misses or misconstrues the entire drift of a clause, but sometimes interpolates words and whole verses from apocryphal sources; and also with the Vulgate and other ancient versions, which, if they do not, like the Targums, run into paraphrase, yet are very often misled into fanciful and erroneous interpretations. To this commendation, however, there must, in candor and truth, be made very large drawbacks in many individual renderings of the A.V., and even in whole classes of renderings. Not only were the sciences of sacred philology, and especially of Biblical geography and antiquities, in too crude a state to enable the translators to fix the exact meaning of obscure and doubtful terms with precision, but they have totally ignored the diction, style, and arrangement of the poetic portions, especially the laws of parallelism (q.v.), reducing poetry to prose, and transposing the words in the clauses arbitrarily and without reference to the original. They habitually neglect the import of moods and tenses, especially in the Hebrew (constantly rendering the praeter or future by the present or indefinite past, or the reverse), and they constantly lose the true force of particles and the nice shades of meaning in the prepositions, the article, and syntactical construction. Occasionally they are very happy in their renderings, but there is scarcely a verse, especially in the more highly- wrought and terse utterances of the O.T., that is not marred or obscured by some loose or incorrect expression. It may safely be said that one half of modern popular commentaries is taken up with the correction of errors and the solution of difficulties, which a close, idiomatic, lucid, and judicious translation would at once have dissipated. It is true, few if any who have tried their hand at improved versions have succeeded any better; but this has usually been either because they were incompetent persons, or by reason of some dogmatic aim they had in view. Scholars who have been otherwise qualified have not themselves sufficiently appreciated the poetic element pervading the Hebrew writings, or they have overdone the task by embellishing rather than following the text.
Among the more obvious blemishes of the A. V. are its obsolete and indelicate phrases, its arbitrary and often absurd, always confusing, subdivision into chapters and verses, and its inexact and defective mode of punctuation. These are so objectionable, that, but for the attachment which long and early association produces for the version, it would often be laid aside for any other which avoided these faults. 'From these causes alone the Song of Solomon has been practically discarded from both public and private reading, and many parts of the Bible cannot be safely ventured upon in a promiscuous company. The difficulty, it is true; sometimes lies in the passage itself, but there are very few instances where such phraseology might not properly be employed as would obviate all embarrassment. If any other book were as badly edited as out common Bibles, it would have provoked severe literary animadversion. But the inherent interest of the volume, the ineffaceable beauty of its sentiments, and the irrepressible force of its teachings break through every disguise, and command the attention of all minds and hearts.
Among the lesser failings of the Auth. Version may be mentioned its frequent renderings of the same word or phrase in the original by various terms or expresssions. This want of uniformity (which those who use this Cyclopaedia will continually have occasion to observe) was the result, probably, in part at least, of the execution of the translation by various, parties. In proper names and technical terms, the identification not unfrequently becomes impossible to ordinary readers. Other infelicities seem to have been, in part at least, the result of king James's restrictive rules.
We cannot conclude this criticism, which may appear harsh to those who have not minutely investigated the matter, without expressing the hope that the day is not far distant when a thorough revision on liberal principles will be made of the common version by a committee of learned men chosen from all evangelical denominations; or, what would perhaps be still more satisfactory, a new translation be put forth under the auspices of such an authority, and then left to secure its acceptance for critical purposes by its intrinsic merits. However excellent, it could not be expected to supersede the extensively circulated and familiar version for general use. SEE VERSIONS (of the Bible).
V. Standard English Bibles. —
1. The Original Edition. — This, as stated above, was published in the year 1611, the translation having been commenced in 1604. The probability is that the translation was finished in 1608, at the latest, leaving the unnecessarily long time of three years occupied in printing; but the reasons for this delay are not now known.
The volume is a stately folio, each page measuring 14.25 inches by 8.875, exclusive of margin. Two columns of text are on each page, each having 59 lines when full, and two marginal columns. The text is printed from an uncommonly heavy and noble Old-English type — "great primer" in size, reduced by the shrinking of the paper to nearly "two-line brevier." The head-lines of the pages are in a very large Roman letter, three quarters of an inch deep. Each chapter commences with an engraved initial, about an inch square; and each book with one yet larger, often 2.5 inches square. In addition, engraved ornaments are at the beginning of every book, and the title-page consists of a heavy engraved border, having a very little place for letter-press. The effect of this display, however, is somewhat reduced when we learn that none of these embellishments were provided expressly for this Bible, but that they had all appeared in previous editions of other translations. One or two of the large initials, indeed, were engraved for an edition of Ovid. The parts usually printed in italic, as the headings and supplied words, are in Roman.
The volume contains, besides the text and Apocrypha (this latter being printed from the same type as the rest of the book), the Address to the Reader, a very valuable document, which, most unfortunately, is now almost entirely lost sight of; the Dedication "to the most high and mighty Prince James," which is just as worthless as the other is valuable, and is nevertheless printed in all English Bibles to this day; Speed's Genealogies, covering 34 pages, very intricate, profound, ingenious, and dry; and, apparently, a Calendar, though copies containing this last are very rare. The pages are not numbered, but the signatures, or printer's guide-letters, placed at the foot of certain pages, run up in the Apocrypha to Ccccc, which is equal, counting by sixes, to 1368 pages, and in the New Testament to Aa, which counts 300 more. This covers the text only.
The spelling and punctuation are very irregular, as in all books of the time. The following two verses, taken at random, will be a sufficient example — Mt 9:1-2:
And hee entred into a ship, and passed ouer, and came into his owne citie.
2 And behold, they brought to him a man ficke of the pal-fie, lying on a bed: and Iefus feeing their faith, faid vnto the ficke of the palfie, Sonne, be of good cheere, thy finnes be for-giuen thee.
There are also many typographical errors — more, indeed, than would be borne with in any Bible printed now. The most striking is in Ex 14:10, which reads thus, modernizing the spelling:
10 And when Pharaoh drear nigh, the children of Israel lift up their eyes, and behold, the Egyptians marched after them, and they were sore afraid: and the children of Israel lift up their eyes, and behold, the Egyptians marched after them, and they were sore afraid: and the children of Israel cried out unto the Lord.
Other notable errors are in Le 13:56, "the plain be somewhat dark," where we must read, "the plague be somewhat dark;" Le 17:14, "Ye shall not eat the blood." for "Ye shall eat ;" Jer 22:8, "deliver the spoiler," instead of "deliver the spoiled;" Eze 24:7, "poured it upon the ground," for "not upon;" Ho 6:5, "shewed them," for "hewed them;" and many others. These, however, were soon corrected.
Notwithstanding that by the king's command marginal notes were not to be affixed, some were found indispensable. For instance, at Mt 22:2, we have the note, "The Roman penny is the eighth part of an ounce, which, after five shillings the ounce, is seven-pence halfpenny." Others of this class are found. In other places, the translators did not even avoid critical rotes. Baruch 1:10, at "prepare ye manna," has "Gr. corruptly for mincha, that is, a meat-offering." Others of these notes might be pointed out; but, as a general thing, these would be quite as well omitted, as they now generally are. The number of marginal references is very small — only 8980, including the Apocrypha. At present the best Bibles, without the Apocrypha, have over seventy thousand. Bagster's Comprehensive Bible claims to have "nearly half a million," which, we opine, is incorrect.
The translators' manuscript has been lost. According to a pamphlet published in 1660, it was, five years previously, in the possession of the king's printers. It has not since been heard of. The manuscript of the Translators' Address to the Reader is said to be preserved in the Bodleian Library, Oxford. Copies of this edition are now pretty scarce. The commonest loss, as with other books, is of title-pages.
Much care is necessary to identify an imperfect copy of this edition, for a second was printed in 1611, and others in 1613, 1617, 1634, and 1640, from the same type, and running page for page. Each edition presents typographical errors peculiar to itself. The only clew we have here space to give is, that the two editions of 1611 are the only ones in which the signatures recommence with the New Testament, and the second of that year has the before-mentioned errors corrected. Many bad ones, however, are found in it, not the least of which is the enumeration of "1 Corinthians" and "2 Corinthians" in the list of the hooks of the Old Testament instead of Chronicles. In 1833 a reprint of this first edition, page for page, but in Roman letter, was made at Oxford, so exact as to follow even the most obvious typographical errors, and showing the ancient spelling throughout. Bagster's English Hexa-pla also contains the text of the New Testament printed verbatim from this edition; and where the book itself is unattainable, these are perhaps the best substitutes for those who, for any reason, require to go behind the Bibles now in use.
A close scrutiny of the volume reveals indisputably the facts that no member of the original companies of translators took cognizance of the volume as it passed through the press, but that the printer was depended on to secure accuracy; and that, notwithstanding the lapse of three, perhaps four years between the completion of the translation and its publication, it was run through the press with great haste. Add to this the fact that from 1600 to 1670 the British press was at its lowest point in improvement, and it will at once be seen that the chances of obtaining correct Bibles at first, or subsequently, were very. small. Upon its publication, editions were very rapidly multiplied. Each new one partly copied and partly corrected the errors of its exemplar; but each, to some extent, created new errors of its own, to be in like manner perpetuated. In 1638, for instance, a Cambridge Bible printed "ye" for "we" in Ac 6:3, thus throwing the appointment of deacons into the hands of the laity rather than the apostles; and this error continued down to 1691. It has been insinuated that the Independents made this change intentionally; D'Israeli, indeed, goes so far as to charge Field, the king's printer, with receiving a present of £1500 to make it; and only the fact of its being first found in a Cambridge University edition disproves the statement. Many other errata, curious, whimsical, absurd, and shocking by turns, might be brought up from Bibles of the period, such as, for a few instances, "I pray God it may be laid to their charge," 2Ti 4:16, in 1613; "Thou shalt commit adultery," in 1632; "the unrighteous shall inherit the kingdom of God," 1Co 6:9, in 1653. In each of these cases "not" is omitted; but often words are transposed or changed, and the quarto of 1613 leaves two verses entirely out. The first attempt at correcting these errors seems to have been made by a Dr. Scattergood about 1680. From a collation of various old Bibles, we have come to the conclusion that he did but little. The next notable edition was that of Archbishop Tenison, 1701. This was intended for a standard, but unluckily was so full of typographical errors that a complaint was entered against the printers by Convocation.
2. Blayney's Edition. — Sufficient care not being yet taken, King George I, in 1724, directed that the persons licensed to print the Bible — for in England, for the sake of insuring accuracy as far as possible, the book can only be printed by the universities, the king's printers, and persons by them licensed — should employ such correctors of the press, and pay them such salaries as the Archbishop of Canterbury and Bishop of London should approve. Errors, however, most pertinaciously crept in, and at length the University of Oxford employed Dr. Blayney to revise the English Bible and correct it throughout. His work was published in 1769. It was issued in two forms, folio and quarto, the former being claimed to be the most correct. His collation was made by comparing throughout the edition of 1611 (but which one cannot now be known, for it has only recently keen settled that two editions were published in that year), that of 1701, which has already been mentioned for its incorrectness, and two recent Cambridge copies. From these somewhat unpromising materials he claims to have reformed the text "to such a standard of purity as, it is presumed, is not to be met with in any other edition hitherto extant." How far this is the case will be seen by-and-by. Besides this, the punctuation was revised throughout "with a view to preserve the true sense;" upon comparison with the Hebrew and Greek originals, many alterations were made in the words printed in italic; "considerable alterations were made in the "heads or contents prefixed to the chapters;" many proper names were translated in the margin, where the narrative contained an allusion to their meaning (this should have been done fully); the chronology, which was first added in 1680, was rectified; and the marginal references were compared and corrected throughout, besides having 30,495 new ones added.
Dr. Blayney makes an accidental admission, tending to lower confidence in the book, that two proofs were read, "and, generally speaking, the third likewise," which is quite insufficient for a standard edition of any work, or even an ordinary edition of the Bible. Four proofs are the least allowable on such a work. It is no wonder that afterward one hundred and sixteen typographical errors were discovered in it. The most important is in Re 18:22, which in the quarto copy reads:
22 And the voice of harpers, and musicians, and of pipers, and trumpeters, shall be heard no more in thee; and the sound of a milstone shall be heard no more at all in thee;
Reference to a correct Bible will show that the following words are omitted: "at all in thee; and no craftsman, of whatsoever craft he be, shall be found any more." But, saying nothing of accidental errors like this, there is yet abundant ground for complaint against the text for incorrectness. In Jos 3:12, all previous editions had read "Take ye twelve men;" it appears here, to the confusion of the grammar, "Take you twelve men." In Jos 11:19, "unto my place" is changed to "into my place;" and, so far as there is a difference in the sense, the change is incorrect. But these errors, though utterly out of place in a standard Bible, are venial by the side of others. In Jg 11:7, all editions before, and most after, read "the elders of Gilead;" he has, "the children of Gilead." In Ps 24:3, instead of "and who shall stand in his holy place?" he introduced "or who shall stand." In Ps 107:16, he, followed only by editions copied from him, reads "for he hath broken the gates of brass, and cut the gates of iron in sunder," the true reading being "bars of iron." In Ps 115:3, he is the first to read "whatsoever he hath pleased," the inserted "hath" being quite superfluous. His is the only edition we have met with which reads, in Isa 47:9 "But these two things which shall come in a moment." Most important is the change he introduced into Mt 16:16, where he reads "Thou art the Christ" instead of "Thou art Christ." In this edition we find, for the first time, in 2Co 12:2, "I knew a man in Christ about fourteen years ago" instead of "above." In 1Jo 1:4, the reading "our joy" for "your joy," though often met with now, is only an error first made in this edition. In punctuation, too, Blayney did but little better. There are few places where he for the first time mispointed a verse, but he has perpetuated many errors. In De 9:3, the original, and all down to his time, are pointed substantially thus: "The Lord thy God is he which goeth over before thee as a consuming fire: he shall destroy them," etc.; but the sense is entirely changed by putting the colon after "thee," and no point at "fire." In Ac 27:18, the translators placed the comma after "day," but he perpetuated the mistake of placing it after ''tempest," the effect of which is to make the mariners endure an exceeding storm for twenty-four hours before they lightened the ship. In Heb 10:12, the sense is entirely lost by placing the comma after "sins" instead of at "forever," according to the translators. Other typographical errors remained uncorrected. For instance, the marginal reading of Jon 4:6, is the meaningless "palmerist." In 1Ti 2:9, Blayney reads "shamefacedness" instead of "shamefastness," a word of an entirely different meaning; and this error, unfortunately, has been continued to our day. In the same text he perpetuated the nonsensical corruption "broidered;" and in 1Ti 4:16, he continues the error made a century before of "thy doctrine" for "the doctrine." He is faulty in a critical point: the distinction between "LORD" and "Lord." The word seems to be uniformly printed "LORD" with him; certainly in every case we have noticed, including many where the Hebrew is Adonai. On the other hand, Blayney did some good things. He changed the obsolete "sith" into "since" in two places, though he left it unchanged in two others: Eze 35:6, and the heading to Romans 5. In a few cases in which "mo" had remained unaltered to his time, he changed it to "more." He changed "fet," taken as a preterite, into "fetched;" as a verb present it had been altered before. He attempted, too, to change "glister," but, as with "sith," only partially. Had he carried out his plan of translating signifcant proper names, he would have conferred a great benefit on his readers but here again he stopped half way.
The quarto edition, the one here referred to, is in three volumes, containing respectively the Old Testament, the Apocrypha, and the New; Testament. It contains no special preface, or mention of its peculiarities on the title- page or elsewhere, but is simply dated "Oxford: Printed by T. Wright and W. Gill, printers to the University." It was published at four guineas.
The University of Oxford paid Dr. Blayney £5000 for his labor in revising the Bible. They thereupon concluded that they had an available standard, and incontinently adopted it. The other privileged presses followed. But very soon his errors, one by. one, came to, light; some were corrected at one press, some at another; just as had been the case before, passages really correct were changed in ignorance, and the upshot of it all was, that in a very few years there was no standard again.
In 1804 the British and Foreign Bible Society was formed, and proceeded to work on the principle of buying the cheapest Bibles it could and trusting to the printers for accuracy. The American Revolution had erected a new Bible-reading nation; an effort made in its first Congress to restrict the printing of the book to licensed houses was cut short by the first amendment to the Constitution, and the book was thrown into the hands of the trade at large, with anything but a beneficial effect on its general integrity. To crown all, the English printers became careless in supplying the foreign market. Charles Knight tells us of a Bible so full of typographical errors that its printers dare not publish it in England, and he was assured "we had to send the whole edition to America!" The editions of 1806 and 1813, though adopted as standards by the Protestant Episcopal Church, were but careful reprints of Blayney without further editorial care.
3. The American Bible Society's Revision. — This society was formed in 1816, and proceeded to print its own Bibles, thus making itself responsible for their correctness. For the first thirty years it seems to have followed almost any respectable copy that came to hand, disregarding discrepancies. But in so many editions as were now produced in England and here, these differences were constantly increasing in number. They were chiefly in punctuation, the use of capitals and italics, and such minor points. At length, in 1847, these had accumulated to such an extent that the proof- readers of the Society really did not know what to follow. The matter was now referred to the Board of Managers of the Society, and in February, 1848, they resolved to have a thorough collation of the English Bible made, and appointed Rev. J. W. McLane, D.D., of the (New-School) Presbyterian Church of Williamsburg, N. Y., to proceed with it. Accordingly, recent copies from the four "standard" British houses were obtained, an American Bible Society's copy was the fifth, and the edition of 1611 the sixth. Blayney was ignored. These were carefully compared throughout; every variation, no matter how minute, noted; and this comparison furnished the data whence to prepare the text of a future edition. The number of variations found was about twenty-four thousand. The Apocrypha formed no part of the work.
The rules governing the formation of this standard text were simple. The reading of a majority of the copies was to be followed; when the three English copies agreed as to the use of the hyphen, their usage was to be accepted. In other matters, where each copy wass inconsistent with itself, a system was agreed on. For instance, each copy had in one place "a highway," in another "an highway." So, too, every copy had sometimes "a husband" and "an husband," "a hole" and "an hole," "a hill" and "an hill," "a hammer" and "an hammer," and so on. Here the strict grammatical rule was enforced. The distinction between "O" and "Oh," which had been lost sight of, was brought out, either form being used, as the sense of the passage required. In capital letters the words "Spirit" and "Scripture" were found very irregular; the first was made to be capital when referring to the Spirit of God, not elsewhere; the second, when referring to the whole volume. Some spellings, now obsolete, were reformed, as "spunge," "sope," "cuckow," "plaister," "rasor," "morter," "asswaged," and others; and, what was of more importance, some names of Old-Testament characters given in the New Testament, and there spelled according to the Greek, were changed to the ordinary Old-Testament spelling. Thus "Juda" was changed to "Judah," because it was already spelled so in the Old Testament; "Gedeon" to "Gideon," "Jephthae" to "Jephthah," "Sina," to "Sinai," "Chanaan" to "Canaan," "Core" to "Korah," and so with some — not all — others. In the words of the text the following changes from the modern copies were made. In Jos 19:2, "and Sheba" was made "or Sheba." In Ru 3:15, "she went" was changed to "he went." In Solomon's Song 2:7, "he please" was made "'she please." In Isa 1:16, "wash you" was altered to "wash ye." But all of these corrections were according to the original edition, which had been departed from in each case wrongly. Farther, in Mt 12:41, "in judgment" was made "in the judgment," because the Greek required it, and very many early English copies had it, though not the first. Also in Solomon's Song 3:5; Song 8:4, the same change was made as in 3:7; for, though the original edition here read "he," the probability, all things considered, was that it was but a typographical error in each case. In prosecuting the collation, the headings of the chapters came under notice. These often differed; but, so far as they agreed with the edition of 1611, or that of Blayney, they were frequently faulty. Some were distinctly and positively false, as those to Da 8; Isa 41; Zec 7; others were comments on the text, as those to Ps 49; Da 11, and the whole of Solomon's Song; others were incomprehensibly clumsy, as the few first of Acts; some positively shocking, as "the Lord refuseth to go as he had promised with his people" (Exodus 33); "Samuel sent by God under pretense of a sacrifice" (1 Samuel 16). These headings had not been prepared by the body of the original forty-seven translators, but by one of their number and one other person; they never were considered as forming part of the version; they had been extensively altered before, both by Blayney and by many anonymous parties, and therefore the committee under whose care the collation was going on resolved to remodel these where necessary. Wherever "Christ" or "the Church" was mentioned in any Old-Testament heading, "Messiah" and "Zion," the equivalent words used in the Old- Testament text, were substituted, in order to avoid comment. The marginal references were again rectified, many errors corrected, and their number, upon the whole, diminished. A very few marginal readings were added, chiefly explanatory of proper names. To Mt 23:24, where "at" is now generally considered to be a misprint from the first for "out," a note was put, "Or, strain out;" and to "Jesus," in Ac 7:45, the committee put the note, "That is, Joshua," as the translators themselves had done in Heb 4:8. (See, on the whole subject, the Society's pamphlet entitled "Report on the History of the Recent Collation of the English Version of the Bible," N. Y. 1857.)
The standard thus prepared was published in 1851. Though issued in a quiet way, it was received with general approval. For six years it remained the standard of the Society, and during that time not a whisper of disapprobation was heard. But in 1857 a Protestant Episcopal clergyman of Baltimore published a pamphlet aimed at this work, in which, while carefully avoiding specific charges, the most severe spirit was exhibited. The Society was accused of an attempt to "supersede the time-honored version in its integrity;" it was making a "half-way adventure" toward a new translation; it was "debasing the standard;" its Bible was "a vulgarized work," and so on. The committee had found twenty-four thousand variations in the Bibles in common use; their language was converted into a statement that they had made twenty-four thousand changes. The New- York organ of the same church at once joined in the attack, but the amount of its charge was that the standard was different from every copy collated. In the General Assembly of the Old-School Presbyterian Church in the same year, the same subject was brought up by a speaker who stigmatized the standard as being "tinkered up" by "an anonymous printer and a New- School preacher!" Asking, "Why discard these captions that have been acquiesced in two hundred years?" he forgot that they had not been so acquiesced in, and that abundant reason had been shown for "discarding" them. In July, 1857, the (Presbyterian) Princeton Review had a most bitter article on the same subject. — The only attempt to meet the difficulties of the case was the statement (page 510) that the Society should "give up entirely all idea of producing a standard text," or otherwise should "take the standard editions and collate them." But if this latter course was followed, as it had been, "the Society would have no right to exercise its own discretion in selecting the readings or the punctuation it would adopt." In compliance with these and similar demands from auxiliary bodies, the Board of Managers, in February, 1858, revoked this standard. Their present imperial quarto edition is now their printer's guide. With this action perished the hope of having for the present a generally-accepted standard of King James's translation. One cannot now be got up in England by any one church, because dissent in many branches is so extensive; nor by cooperation, because they have no union; nor by their Bible Society, because it does not print its own books. In this country the American Bible Society is the only body which has any general authority. It is to be regretted that this society has not felt itself authorized by its constitution to retain and prosecute the needed work. SEE BIBLE SOCIETIES, 3, 12.
VI. Marginal Readings. — These are generally passed over by Bible readers, but a careful student will find them invaluable for ascertaining the precise meaning of any text. They are of two kinds: the first, commonly marked by a dagger (†), giving the literal translation of a peculiar idiom in the originals where it could not be rendered in good English, also the translation of significant proper names; and the other, marked by a parallel (II), representing a possible different rendering where the original is in doubt from any cause. They are further distinguished by being prefaced by "That is," in the translations of names, or "Heb.," "Chald.," or "Gr.," according to the original language in the first class; and "Or," in the second class. In many modern Bibles they are referred to by consecutive figures or Greek letters; but the system here described is that used by the original translators and by the American Bible Society. The translators regarded these readings as a component part of their work; and to the present day ministers of the Church of England read and use either the marginal rendering or that in the text at pleasure. They were first used by the translators of the Geneva version of the Bible half a century before ours was made.
Since the publication of our translation in the year 1611, the marginal readings have at various times been enlarged and improved. There are now about three hundred of these more than the original number, and a few have been omitted. Of the others, many have been extended by adding the necessary expletives. A few palpable errors have been corrected, as in the note to 1Sa 5:4, where the stump of the fish-idol Dagon was ludicrously described as "the filthy part," now correctly printed "the fishy part." In other cases one note has been divided into two, one of each class. In one instance an odd typographical error has been introduced into a note and perpetuated; Jonah's gourd (Jon 4:6) is in the first edition described as a "palme-crist," or palma christi (the castor-oil plant), in the margin; but the word has been corrupted into "palmerist," to which no meaning can be attached.
There is no trace of any person or body authorized to make these changes, and except in the correction of palpable typographical errors, as above noticed, it would seem that they should no more be meddled with than should those other readings which form the body of the text. Both came originally from the same translators, and both were intended to be of equal authority. This fact at once places them above the rank of mere commentary, and renders their study most important. Ru 1:20, for example, is almost meaningless as commonly printed; but when opposite '"Naomi" we read "that is, Pleasant," and opposite "Mara," "that is, Bitter," we see at once a beauty in the passage of which otherwise we could form no idea. So, also, with strength of expression. Verse 13 of the same chapter is made much stronger when, instead of "it grieveth me much for your sakes," we read, "I have much bitterness for your sakes." Job 16:3, is wonderfully strengthened if we adopt the Hebrew idiom — never mind if the English is not so good — and instead of "vain words," read "words of wind." So when, in Job 5:7, we read "sons of the burning coal" instead of "sparks," we at once see, better than by any commentary ever written, the metaphorical character of Old-Testament poetry, and thenceforth can read the poetical books with vastly-increased appreciation.
VII. Chapter and Verse. — Among the Jews, with whom the only divisions of the Scripture was into books, according to authorship, references were made by citing the subject treated of near where the passage quoted was to be found. In this way Jesus referred the Sadducees to what we call Ex 3:6, as we see by Mr 12:26. The meaning here is not that God spoke to Moses in the bush, for the text says that he spoke to him out of it; but rather, "Have ye not read in the Book of Moses, in The Bush, how God spake unto him?" that is, "in that part of the Book of Moses called The Bush." "I may observe," says Archbishop Trench, "that Ro 11:2, is a quotation of the same kind. It can never mean 'of Elias,' as in our version, but is rather 'in [the history of] Elias,' in that portion of Scripture which tells of him." The Koran is quoted by this means now. Its chapters are called from their subjects by such names as "The Cow," "Thunder," "Smoke," "The Moon," "Divorce," "The Spider," "The Resurrection," "The Slanderer," and so on.
The division into chapters was made by a cardinal, Hugo de Sancto Caro, about the year 1250. He was employed in compiling a Latin Concordance, the first of which we have any account, and invented this division to facilitate his labor. The Book of Psalms is naturally divided. Paul quotes "the second Psalm" and "another Psalm" in Ac 13:33,35. The chapters having been marked, greater precision was obtained by putting capital A, B, C, and so on, at regular distances down in the margin, so that any passage near the beginning of a chapter would be quoted; as, for example, "John, 10, A;" further down, "Jeremiah, 14, D," and so on. The early English versions all showed this arrangement, and Marbeck's Concordance, the first one in English, makes its references in this manner. These smaller divisions by letters were inconvenient, because they were not made by any system, and in different translations were of different lengths. They generally embraced about six or seven verses under one letter. The divisions into chapters were not uniform; at least they are not so in our early English translations. Wycliffe, for instance, divides Jude into two chapters; and Coverdale makes thirty chapters in 1 Chronicles by dividing the fourth chapter into two. Very frequently in the Pentateuch and Job, and occasionally elsewhere, there is a difference of one to four verses in the beginning of a chapter. Where this is the case, too, our version often makes the division in the worst place.
The divisions into verses were made by several persons. About 1430 Rabbi Mordecai Nathan divided the Hebrew Bible thus, using Cardinal Hugo's chapters. In 1527 a Latin Bible was published at Lyons in which this division of the Old Testament was followed, and the New Testament also divided, but into verses averaging twice as long as ours. But our present arrangement in this part of the Scriptures was made about 1550, by Robert Stephens, a printer of Paris, who executed the work ,while making a horseback journey from Lyons to Paris. This was done only as an advertisement for an edition of the Testament he soon after published in Greek, with two Latin versions. The circumstances under which the work was done effectually prevented the exercise of any scholastic or critical care or ability. But, though the Old Testament was divided first, no edition of it in Hebrew was printed thus till 1661. The first English Scripture printed with verses was the Testament printed at Geneva, 1557, and in 1560 the whole Bible at the same place. The Bishops' Bible, next in order, published in 1568, had them, but also had the marginal guide letters, as in the earlier translations, and in its marginal references it uses the letters instead of the verses. In the next Protestant translation, King James's, or' our present one, the letters are altogether omitted. It seems never to have been considered that the division into verses superseded chapters; but really a reference to Luke 243 would be much shorter than to Lu 12:13. The Psalms are, by their structure, naturally divided into verses. But yet our translations are not uniform in this, even here. Psalm 42, for instance, is in Coverdale's Bible made one paragraph; Matthew's, twelve verses; Cranmer's, fifteen, Geneva and Bishops', eleven; and the Douay, twelve. In Cranmer's Bible each of the alphabetical sections of Psalm 119 is numbered independently, 1 to 8.
From all this it appears that these divisions have no divine warrant whatever, were carelessly made, and should be disregarded in seeking the sense of any part of Scripture. Hence it follows that the best Bibles for common use are those called Paragraph Bibles, in which the. matter is reduced to ordinary prose form, except in the poetical books, which are printed in short lines, so as to show their poetic structure. Unfortunately, but few editions are thus published. The Religious Tract Society of London issue a few; one in 12mo, some thirty years ago, was the best. One they have recently got out, in royal 8vo, with notes and maps, has all the parallel passages, and, though very useful, is so encumbered with reference marks in the text as to distract the reader's attention constantly. Rev. T. W. Colt published a very good one in Cambridge, Mass., 1834. Before that, others had been got out at Oxford, chiefly objectionable as not showing the poetic form of some parts. One of the most useful Paragraph Bibles to the English student is that of Bishop Wilson, Bath, 1785, 3 vols. 4to; but it labors under the disadvantage just spoken of.
After all, the best way of making references would have been by a system like the "folios" of the lawyers. Put a special mark at every hundredth word, and a corresponding number in the margin, and you have not only a ready means of reference, but a guard against changes in the text, and are yet at full liberty to print the matter either as prose or poetry, without distracting the eye or breaking the sense in the slightest degree. It is, however, too late to do this with our present version. As the next best thing, more Paragraph Bibles should be printed, in all respects like other books, except that the commencement of each verse may be shown by a Very small mark in the body of the line, and its number in the margin opposite. — Christian Advocate (N. Y.). SEE BIBLE.
VIII. Literature. —
1. On the history of the subject: Baber, Account of Saxon and English Versions (in his ed. of Wycliffe's N.T.); Newcome, English Biblical Translations, etc Duibl. 1792), Tomline, Engl. Translation of the Bible (in his Christ. Theol. 2); Timperley, in his Encycl. of Typographical A necdote, passim; Wilson, Catalogue of Bibles, etc. (Lond. 1845); Hewlet, in his Bible, p. 1; M'Clure, The Translators Reviewed (N. Y. 1853). 2. On the criticism of the present and proposed versions; Macknight On the Epistles, 1; Campbel On the Gospels, 2, 141, 241; Broughton, Works, p. 557, 575; Fulke, Defence, etc. (reprinted for the Parker Soc., Cambr. 1843); Killburn, Dangerous Errors, etc. (Lond. 1659); Lee, Memorial, etc. (Edinb. 1824); Curtis, The Monopoly, etc. (Lond. 1833; answered by Cardwell [Oxf. 1833], and Tutton [Cambr. 1833, again 1834]); Whetenhall, Scripture Authentic (Lond. 1686); Gell, Essay toward Amendments, etc. (Lond. 1659); Le Cene, Essay for a New Translation (Lond. 1727); Lookup, Erroneous Translations, etc. (Lond. 1739); Brett, Letter, etc. (Lond. 1743; enlarged, 1760; also in Bp. Watson's Tracts); Penn, Mistranslations, etc. (in his Tracts , p. 367); Garnham, Letter to Bp. of Norwich (Lond. 1789); Roberts, Corrections, etc. (Lond. 1794); Ward, Errata, etc. (Lond. 1688; Dublin, 1807; replied to by Ryan [Dublin, 1808], and Grier [Lond. 1812]); White, Sermon, etc. (Oxf. 1779, p. 24); Symonds. Observations, etc. (Cambr. 1789-94); Burgess, Reasons, etc. (Durham, 1816); Wemyss, Biblical Gleanings (York, 1816); Fuller, Remarks, etc. (Works, p. 990); Burges, Reasons, etc. (Lond. 1819); Whittaker, Inquiry, etc. (Lond. 1819, 1820); Hurwitz, Defence, etc. (Lond. 1820); Laurence, Remarks, etc. (Oxf. 1820).; Harness, State of the Engl. Bible (Lond. 1856); Malan, Vindication, etc. (Lond. 1856); Iliff, Plea, etc. (Lond. 1856); Cumming, Bible Revision (Lond. 1856); Baber, Plea, etc. (Lond. 1857); M'Caul, Reasons, etc. (Lond. 1857); Burgess, Revision, etc. (Lond. 1857); Trench, Revision, etc. (new ed. Lond. 1859).
The following are the principal editions referred to in this article (see also Bagster's "English Hexapla," containing the versions of Wycliffe, Tyndale, Cranmer, Genevan, Anglo-Rhemish, Authorized, etc., Lond. 1841, 4to; also the exact reprint of the A. V. of 1611, issued from the Clarendon Press, 1833, 4to).
1. Caedmon, original, with translation and notes by Thorpe (Lond. 1832, 8vo).
2. Gospels, ed. by Abp. Parker (Lond. 1571, 4to); by Thorpe (Lond. 1842, 12mo).
3. Psalter, Latin-Saxon, ed. by Spelman (Lond. 1640, 4to); by Thorpe (Oxford, 1835, 8vo). 4. Job, etc., Anglo-Saxon, ed. by Thwaites (Oxford, 1699, Svo).
II. EARLY ENGLISH.
1. WYCLIFFE: Bible (ed. by Forshall and Madden, Oxf. 1850, 4 vols. 4to); New Test. (? Worms, 1525, 8vo [exactly reprinted at Lond. 1836]; Cologne and Worms, 1525, 4to; also in 1526, 1527, 1528, 1530; ed. by Lewis, Lond. 1731, fol.; by Baber, Lond. 1810, 4to).
2. TYNDALE: New Test. (Antw. 1534,-12mo; altered by Joyce, Antw. 1534,16mo): Matthew and Mark (1534); the rest uncertain.
3. COVERDALE: Bible (? Zurich, 1535, fol. [reprinted by Bagster, Lond. 4to, 1835, 1847]; fol. and 4to, 153T; Zur. and Lond. 4to, 1550 [and 1553]).
4. MATTHEW (i.e. John Rogers): Bible (fol. Lond. 1537, 1549 twice, 1551 twice).
5. CRANMERS: Bible (fol. Lond. 1539, 1540, 1541, 1549 twice; 4to, 1550, 1552,1553; fol. 1558; 4to, 1561; fol. 1526, 1566; 8vo, 1566; 4to, 1568, 1569).
6. TAVERNER: Bible (fol. Lond. 1539; 5 vols. 8vo, 1549).
7. GENEVAN: Bible (Geneva, 4to, 1560; fol. 1561; 4to, 1569, 1570, 1575, Lond. fol. 1576, 1577, 1578; Edinb. 1579, fol.; Lond. 4to, 1579, 1580, 1581; 8vo, 1581, fol. 1582, 1583; 4to, 1585, 1586, Svo, 1586; 4to. 1587, 1588, 1589, 1590; 8vo, Camb. 1591; fol. Lond. 1592; 8vo, 1593, 4to, 1594; fol. and 4to, 1595; 4to, 1596; fol. 1597; 4to, 1598, 1599, 1600, Dort, 1601, 16mo; Lond. fol. 1602; 4to and Svo, 1603, 1606; fol., 4to, and 8vo, 1607; 4to and 8vo, 1618; 4to, 1609; fol., 4to, and 8vo, 1610; fol. and 4to, 1611; Edinb. fol 1610; Lond. 4to, 1613, 1614, 1615; fol. 1616; Amst. fol. 1617; 4to, 1633, etc.): New Test. (Geneva, 1557, 8vo).
8. BISHOPS' (or Parker's): Bible (Lond. 4to, 1568; 4to, 1569; fol. 157-?; 4to, 1573; fol. 1574, 1575; 4to, 1576, 1577; fol. 1578, 1584; 4to, 1584; fol. 1585, 1588, 1591, 1595, 1598, 1602, 1606).
9. BEZA'S Lat. tr. by Tomson; New Test. (Lond. 1576, 8vo); afterward in many "Genevan" Bibles.
III. KING JAMES'S.
The editions of this have been innumerable (see the Appendix to Anderson's Annals of the Bible, Lond. ed.).
The following are some of the attempts at an improved English version of the Scriptures (not including those for critical purposes contained in commentaries, etc.): Harwood, New Test. (Lond. 1768, 2 vols. 8vo); Purver, Old and New Test. (Lond. 1764, 2 vols. fol.); Worsley, New Covenant (Lond. 1770, 8vo); Geddes, Bible [Genesis to Ruth] (Lond. 1792-1800, 3 vols. 4to); Wakefield, New Test. (Lond. 1795, 2 vols. 8vo); Newcome, New Covenant (Dubl. 1796, 2 vols. 8vo); McRae, Eastern Bible (Lond. 1799, 8vo; Glasg. 1815, 4to, and 3 vols. 8vo); Tomlinson, Attempt, etc. (Lond. 1803, 8vo); Bellamy, Bible (incomplete, Lond. 1818 sq., 4to; severely criticized); Webster, Bible (N. H. 1833, 8vo); Penn, New Covenant (Lond. 1836, 8vo); Greaves, Gospel, etc. (Lond. 1828, 18mo); Hussey, Bible (Lond. 1844, 3 vols. 8vo); Cambpell, New Test. — (3d ed. Bethany, Va. 1833, 24mo); Sawyer, New Test. (Bost. 1858, 8vo); Boothroyd, Bible (Lond. 1853, royal 8vo); Norton, Gospels (Bost. 1855, 8vo); and the publications of the Am. [Bapt.] Bible Union (q.v.). SEE ENGLISH VERSIONS.