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GREAT BIBLE.—In the year 1539, Grafton and Whytchurch published a new edition of the English bible, with the following title: The Byble in Englifbe, that is to fay, the content of all the holy fcripture, bothe of the Olde and Newe teftament, truly tranflated after the veryte of the Hebrue and Greke textes, by the dylygent studye of diverfe excellent learned men, expert in the forfayde tonges. This is the first time any English translation of the bible was set forth as made after the verity of the originals. (See page 15. note.) Who the diverse excellent learned men were, by whose diligent
into Latyn, which coftumably is red in the church. To obviate these false suggestions, he tells his majesty, be has here fet forth this commune tranflation in Latin, and also the English of it. Next he obferves, concerning this present Latin text, forafmuch as it has been, and was yet so greatly corrupt, as he thought none other tranflation was, it were a godly and gracious dede, yf they that have authorite, knowledge, and tyme, wolde, under his grace's correction, examen it better, after the mooft ancient interpreters, and most true textes of other languages. Accordingly, in his epistle to the reader, fpeaking of the Latin text, he fays, wherein, though in fome places be used the honeft and just libertye of a grammarian, as was needful for the reader's better understandynge; yet, because he was lothe to Swerve from the text, (the vulgate Latin) be fo tempered his pen, that if the reader wilde, he might make plain construction of it, by the English that standeth on the other fide. In 1539, Coverdale set forth a second edition of this new testament, with a dedication to the lord Cromwell, in which, speaking of his inducement to publish the former edition, he says, Inafmuch as the new teftament which be had set forth in Englis before (namely in his bible), did so agree with the Latyn, be was hartely well content that the Latyn and it fulde be fet together, (namely, by Hollybafhe) provyded alwaye, that the corrector fulde followe the true copye of the Latyn in anye wyfe, and to kepe the true and right Englishe of the fame; and fo doing, he was content to fet bis name to it; and that fo be did, trusting that, though he was out of the land, all should be well. But when he bad perufed this copie, be found, that, as it was disagreeable to bis former tranflation in English, (Tyndal's tranflation, which he had copied in his bible) fo was not the true copye of the Latyn text observed, neither the English so correspondent to the fame as it ought to be. Therefore he had endeavoured himself to wede out the faults that were in the Latyn and English, &c. From these quotations, it is evident, that the translation of the new teftament which Coverdale allowed Hollybufhe to print with the Latin text was the one which he had published in his bible; confequently it was Tyndal's tranflation. It is evident, likewise, that that tranflation was made from the vulgate, and in fo literal a manner, that the reader might make plain construction of the Latin by the English. It is true Coverdale, in fome places, corrected the Latin text; but it was only as a grammarian: and in these corrections he was careful to fwerve as little as poffible from his text. Wherefore Coverdale, having affifted Tyndal in making his tranflation, they followed one and the fame method; that is, both of them tranflated the scriptures from the vulgate; both of them translated the vulgate literally; and both of them corrected the text of the vulgate as grammarians, making use of other tranflations for that purpose; such as, for the old teftament, the Septuagint, Luther's German verfion, and Muniter's Latin translation; and for the new, Wickliff's and Erasmus' verfions, and what others they could find.
study this tranflation was made, is not known. Johnson fays, it was corrected by Coverdale. And from the splendid manner in which it was printed, Lewis conjectures that it was intended to be used in the churches, and was patronised by Cranmer, who might appoint fome learned men to affift Coverdale in correcting it. But whoever these excellent learned men were, it is certain that this is no new tranflation from the originals, but, as Lewis observes, a revifal only of Matthew's, that is, Rogers's edition, with fome small alterations. However, to make it appear different, Matthew's name was omitted, as were Tyndal's prologues and notes, because they had been blamed as heretical and defamatory. In this edition, the additions to the Hebrew and Greek originals in the vulgate Latin, are tranflated, and inserted In a smaller letter than the text, particularly the three verses in Pf. xiv. which were omitted by Coverdale and Matthew; likewife the famous text, 1 John ch. v. 7. which Tyndal, in his new testament, (published in 1526) had printed in small letters, to fhew that it was not then in the common Greek copies. Next, where the editors found various readings in the text, they prefixed a cross to the word. In the third place, to fupply, in fome measure, the want of the notes, they placed on the margin, hands pointing to the texts which were fuppofed to condemn the errors of popery, that the reader might attend to them. This bible being printed with types of a greater fize than common, and in a large folio, with a fine emblematical frontispiece, faid to be defigned by Hans Holben, and beautifully cut in wood, it was called The Great Bible.
When the liturgy was first compiled, in the reign of Edward VI. the epiftles, gofpels, and pfalms put into it, were all according to this tranflation; and so they continued till the re storation of Charles II. when the Epiftles and gospels were inferted from king James's bible; but the pfalms of the great bible were allowed to remain.
CRANMER'S BIBLE.-In 1540, another edition of the English bible was printed in folio, with this title: The Byble in Englishe; that is to fay, the content of al the holy scripture, both of the Olde and Newe teftament, with a prologe thereinto made by the Reverende Father in God, Thomas Archbyshop of Canterbury. On account of this prologue, and becaufe Cranmer amended the tranflation in
this edition, in fome places, with his own pen, it hath been called Cranmer's bible, though it is little different from the great bible. In this, as in the great bible, the verfes of the Pfalms, Proverbs, c. which are not in the Hebrew, but which are tranflated from the vulgate, are printed in fmaller letters, and the order of the Pfalms is different from that of the vulgate, being according to the Hebrew.
By Cranmer's influence with the king, a proclamation was iffued, in May 1540, ordering this bible to be bought, and placed in the churches. But the popish party, making great complaints of the English translations in general as heretical, an act of parliament paffed in January 1542, prohibiting the reading of Tyndal and Coverdale's translation, in any church or open affembly within the kingdom. However, the king being refolved to have an English translation of the new teftament, which should be authorised by the clergy, Cranmer, in a convocation which met in February 1542, required the bishops and clergy, in the king's name, to revise the tranflation of the new testament. Accordingly, each bishop had his part affigned to him. But Stokefly, bishop of London, refusing to execute his part, the design miscarried.
Of Tyndal and Coverdale's ́ tranflation of the bible, and of its revifions by Cranmer and others, many complaints were made, even by the proteftants. B. Sandys wrote to abp. Parker, that the fetters forth of this our common tranflation followed Munfier too much*. And of the new teftament in the great bible, Laurence, a noted Greek scholar in that age, observed, that there are words which it hath not aptly translated; words and pieces of fentences in the original which it hath omitted; words not in the iginal which it hath fuperfluously added; nay, he charged this tranflation even with errors in doctrine, The en.
* Sebaftian Munfter was a learned proteftant, well skilled in the Hebrew language, and in rabbbinical learning. He published a Latin tranflation of the Hebrew bible at Ball, in the year 1534. And in 1546 he gave a fecond edition of it in two vols. folio, containing not only his Latin tranflation, but the Hebrew text with grammatical annotations, which F. Simon commends as ufeful for understanding the Hebrew language. Huet gives Munfter this commendation: He always adapted his ftyle to the Hebrew ; and at the fame time is not neglectful of the Latin, though he be not over attentive to the elegance of it. F. Simon preferred Munker's version, both to Pagnin's translation, and to that of Arias Montanus.
couragers also of the Geneva edition reprefented this bible as ill translated, and falfely printed, and gave it the invidious name of a corrupted bible.
Henry VIII. dying in January 1546, was fucceeded by his fon Edward VI. in whose first parliament the above-mentioned ftatute was reverfed. The gofpels and epiftles were now, for the first time, appointed to be read in English in the public fer
In 1550 an edition of the new testament was published, with this title, The Newe Teftament, diligently tranflated by Myles Coverdale, and conferred with the tranflacyon of William Tyndal. Coverdale's tranflation here mentioned, feems to have been that which he published in the second edition of Hollybufhe's new tefta
GENEVA BIBLE.-Edward VI. dying in July 1553, was fuc-. ceeded by Mary, who immediately restored the Popish service and facraments, and perfecuted the favourers of the reformation with such cruelty, that many of them fled into foreign countries; among whom was Coverdale, who, in Edward's reign, had returned to England, and had been made bishop of Exeter. He with fome others fixed their refidence at Geneva, where they employed themselves in making a translation of the bible. They began with the new teftament, which they published in 12mo. printed with a small but beautiful letter, in 1557. This is the first printed edition of the new teftament, in which the verses of the chapters are distinguished by numeral figures and breaks.
Strype, in his annals of the reformation, tells us, that the Geneva brethren, after publishing their new teftament, proceeded to revise the old. But not having finished it when Elizabeth came to the throne, some of them ftaid behind the reft to complete their defign. And having finished the old teftament, they publifhed the whole bible at Geneva in 4to, in the year 1560, printed by Rowland Hall. This is what is commonly called the Geneva Bible; concerning which F. Simon affirms, that it is only a translation of a French verfion, made at Geneva fome time before. But he faid this, perhaps, to difparage the work, In this translation cuts are inferted, representing the garden of
Eden, Noah's ark, &c. They likewise added a variety of notes, with two tables; the one containing an interpretation of the names, and the other an account of the principal matters in the fcriptures. There is also an epiftle to queen Elizabeth, in which they charge the English reformation with retaining the remains of popery, and exhort her to strike off certain ceremonies. But this epiftle giving offence, it was omitted in the subsequent editions. The Geneva Bible was fo univerfally used in private families, that there were above thirty editions of it in folio, 4to, and 8vo, printed from the year 1560 to the year 1616. The authors of this edition being all zealous Calvinifts, their tranflation and notes are calculated to support the doctrine and difcipline of that party. For which reafon, it was better efteemed at its first appearance than it hath been in later times.
THE BISHOPS BIBLE.-Queen Mary dying in November 1558, was fucceeded by Elizabeth, who, treading in the steps of her brother Edward VI. fuppreffed the Romish fuperftition in all her dominions, and filled the fees with proteftants. After this, abp. Matthew Parker, having reprefented to the queen that many churches either were without bibles, or had incorrect copies, fhe refolved that a revifal and correction of the former translation fhould be made, in order to publication. The archbishop, therefore, appointed fome of the most learned of the bishops and others to revife the bible commonly used, and to compare it with the originals: and to each of them he affigned a particular book of scripture, with directions not to vary from the former tranflation, except where it was not agreeable to the original; and to add marginal notes for explaining the difficult texts; referving to himself the oversight of the whole. A revifal of the English bible, on the fame plan, had been propofed by Cranmer, (fee p. 21.) but the defign did not take effect. Parker was more fuccessful in his attempt. The perfons employed by him performed their tasks with fuch cheerfulness, that the whole was ready for the prefs fome time before the year 1568 for in that year the bible of the bishops' revifal was printed in a very elegant manner, with a beautiful English letter, on a royal paper, in a large folio, by Richard Jugge, the queen's printer. In this edition, which contains the apocrypha, CA