In the latter part of the 19th century, F. H. A. Scrivener produced an edition of the Greek New Testament which reflects the Textus Receptus underlying the English Authorised Version.
F. H. A. Scrivener (1813-1891) attempted to reproduce as exactly as possible the Greek text which underlies the Authorised Version of 1611. However, the AV was not translated from any one printed edition of the Greek text. The AV translators relied heavily upon the work of William Tyndale and other editions of the English Bible. Thus there were places in which it is unclear what the Greek basis of the New Testament was. Scrivener in his reconstructed and edited text used as his starting point the Beza edition of 1598, identifying the places where the English text had different readings from the Greek. He examined eighteen editions of the Textus Receptus to find the correct Greek rendering, and made the changes to his Greek text. When he finished he had produced an edition of the Greek New Testament which more closely underlies the text of the AV than any one edition of the Textus Receptus.
Robert Estienne (known as Stephanus) (1503-1559) edited and printed four editions of the Textus Receptus from 1546 to 1551. His third edition of 1550 was the first to have a critical apparatus, with references to the Complutensian Polyglot and fifteen additional Greek manuscripts. The fourth edition of 1551 had the same Greek text as the third, but is especially noteworthy for its division of the NT books into chapters and verses, a system still in use today.
Unlike most other modern versions, this Bible's text is based upon the same Hebrew Masoretic Text, and Greek Textus Receptus, of the King James Version of 1611. The authors have endeavoured to keep the words as close to the 1611 as possible, but with corresponding modern words and grammar. Many hours have gone into this version in an attempt to achieve the greatest possible accuracy.
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By the mid-18th century the wide variation in the various modernized printed texts of the Authorized Version, combined with the notorious accumulation of misprints, had reached the proportion of a scandal, and the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge both sought to produce an updated standard text. First of the two was the Cambridge edition of 1760, the culmination of twenty-years work by Francis Sawyer Parris, who died in May of that year. This 1760 edition was reprinted without change in 1762 and in John Baskerville's fine folio edition of 1763. This was effectively superseded by the 1769 Oxford edition, edited by Benjamin Blayney.
The commissioning of the King James Bible took place at conference at the Hampton Court Palace in London England in 1604. When King James came to the throne he wanted unity and stability in the church and state, but was well aware that the diversity of his constituents had to be considered. There were the Papists who longed for the English church to return to the Roman Catholic fold and the Latin Vulgate. There were Puritans, loyal to the crown but wanting even more distance from Rome. The Puritans used the Geneva Bible which contained footnotes that the king regarded as seditious. The Traditionalists made up of Bishops of the Anglican Church wanted to retain the Bishops Bible.
The king commissioned a new English translation to be made by over fifty scholars representing the Puritans and Traditionalists. They took into consideration: the Tyndale New Testament, the Matthews Bible, the Great Bible and the Geneva Bible. The great revision of the Bible had begun. From 1605 to 1606 the scholars engaged in private research. From 1607 to 1609 the work was assembled. In 1610 the work went to press, and in 1611 the first of the huge (16 inch tall) pulpit folios known today as "The 1611 King James Bible" came off the printing press.
John Nelson Darby (1800-1882) was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, where he graduated in 1819 as Classical Medallist. He was ordained as a priest in the established church in Ireland in 1825, and ministered among country people in remote places. In 1827 he came to believe that the church to which he belonged was hopelessly corrupt; and, on the basis of his independent study of Scripture, he also came to believe that a Christian was obliged to separate himself from all corrupt organizations. So he resigned his position as a clergyman, and began to associate with certain brethren in Dublin who shared his views. This was the beginning of the so-called 'Plymouth Brethren' movement. In the year 1837 he went to the continent to promote his teachings among Methodists and Baptists there. In 1853 he went on to Germany, where he established congregations in Dusseldorf, Elberfeld. He was dissatisfied with the existing Bible versions in French and German, and so he collaborated with German and French followers in the creation of new versions in those languages. With some German associates he produced the 'Elberfelder Bible,' and with French-speaking followers he produced the 'Pau Bible.'
Darby did not feel such a need for a new translation in English, because he considered the King James Version to be adequate for most purposes, and he encouraged his followers to continue to use it. But, he decided to produce a highly literal English version of the New Testament for study purposes. This New Testament was first issued in parts, beginning with the Gospel according to Matthew in 1865. The New Testament was completed in 1867. The version is exceedingly literal, based upon modern critical editions of the Greek text, and abundantly supplied with text-critical and philological annotations. The annotations are by far the most comprehensive and detailed to be found in an English version. It was consulted by the translators of the English Revised Version of 1881 (see F.F. Bruce, History of the Bible in English, 3rd ed., 1978, p. 132).
Young's Literal Translation is a translation of the Bible into English, published in 1862. The translation was made by Robert Young, compiler of Young's Analytical Concordance to the Bible and Concise Critical Comments on the New Testament. Young used the Textus Receptus and the Majority Text as the basis for his translation. He wrote in the preface to the first edition, "It has been no part of the Translator's plan to attempt to form a New Hebrew or Greek Text--he has therefore somewhat rigidly adhered to the received ones."
While Noah Webster, just a few years after producing his famous Dictionary of the English Language, produced his own modern translation of the English Bible in 1833; the public remained too loyal to the King James Version for Webster’s version to have much impact.
The Bishops' Bible was produced under the authority of the established Church of England in 1568. It was substantially revised in 1572, and the 1602 edition was prescribed as the base text for the King James Bible completed in 1611. The thorough Calvinism of the Geneva Bible offended the Church of England, to which almost all of its bishops subscribed. They associated Calvinism with Presbyterianism, which sought to replace government of the church by bishops with government by lay elders. However, they were aware that the Great Bible of 1539 , which was the only version then legally authorized for use in Anglican worship, was severely deficient, in that much of the Old Testament and Apocrypha was translated from the Latin Vulgate, rather than from the original Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek. In an attempt to replace the objectionable Geneva translation, they circulated one of their own, which became known as the Bishops' Bible.
The Geneva Bible is one of the most historically significant translations of the Bible into English, preceding the King James translation by 51 years. It was the primary Bible of 16th century Protestantism and was the Bible used by William Shakespeare, Oliver Cromwell, John Knox, John Donne, and John Bunyan. Because the language of the Geneva Bible was more forceful and vigorous, most readers strongly preferred this version.
This version is significant because, it came with a variety of scriptural study guides and aids, which included verse citations that allow the reader to cross-reference one verse with numerous relevant verses in the rest of the Bible, introductions to each book of the Bible that acted to summarize all of the material that each book would cover, maps, tables, woodcut illustrations, indices, as well as other included features, all of which would eventually lead to the reputation of the Geneva Bible as history's very first study Bible.
The Great Bible of 1539 was the first authorized edition of the Bible in English, authorized by King Henry VIII of England to be read aloud in the church services of the Church of England. The Great Bible was prepared by Myles Coverdale, working under commission of Thomas, Lord Cromwell, Secretary to Henry VIII and Vicar General. In 1538, Cromwell directed the clergy to provide "one book of the bible of the largest volume in English, and the same set up in some convenient place within the said church that ye have care of, whereas your parishioners may most commodiously resort to the same and read it."
The Coverdale Bible, compiled by Myles Coverdale and published in 1535, was the first complete Modern English translation of the Bible with the Old and New Testament translated from the original Hebrew and Greek. The later editions (folio and quarto) published in 1539 were the first complete Bibles printed in England. The 1539 folio edition carried the royal licence and was therefore the first officially approved Bible translation in English.
William Tyndale was the first man to ever print the New Testament in the English language. Tyndale also went on to be the first to translate much of the Old Testament from the original Hebrew into English, but he was executed in 1536 for the "crime" of printing the scriptures in English before he could personally complete the printing of an entire Bible. His friends Myles Coverdale, and John [Thomas Matthew] Rogers, managed to evade arrest and publish entire Bibles in the English language for the first time, and within one year of Tyndale's death. These Bibles were primarily the work of William Tyndale.
The Wycliffe Bible is the only Bible here that was not translated from the Textus Receptus. Its inclusion here is for the Bible's historic value and for comparison in the English language.
John Wycliffe, an Oxford professor produced the first hand-written English language Bible manuscripts in the 1380's. While it is doubtful Wycliffe himself translated the versions that bear his name, he certainly can be considered the driving force behind the project. He strongly believed in having the scriptures available to the people.
Wycliffe, was well-known throughout Europe for his opposition to the teaching of the organized Church, which he believed to be contrary to the Bible. With the help of his followers (called Lollards), Wycliffe produced dozens of English language manuscript copies of the scriptures. They were translated out of the Latin Vulgate, which was the only source text available to Wycliffe. The Pope was so infuriated by his teachings and his translation of the Bible into English, that 44 years after Wycliffe died, he ordered the bones to be dug-up, crushed, and scattered in the river.