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Textus Receptus Bibles

Julia E. Smith Translation 1876



21:1The burden of the desert of the sea. As whirlwinds in the south for passing through, from the desert it came, from a fearful land.
21:2A hard vision was announced to me: The spoiler spoiled, and he laying waste, laid waste. Go up, O Elam: press, O Media; all her sighing I caused to cease.
21:3For this, my loins were filled with pain: distress took hold of me as the pains of her bringing forth: I was shaken from hearing; I trembled from seeing
21:4My heart wandered; trembling made me afraid: the evening twilight of my desire he put to me for fear.
21:5Set in order the table; view the watch-tower; eat, drink: arise ye chiefs, anoint the shield.
21:6For thus said Jehovah to me, Go set up a watchman, he shall announce what he shall see.
21:7He will see a chariot, a pair of horse men, the rider of an ass, the rider of a camel; and listening, he listened with much attention.
21:8And he will call, A lion: on the watch-tower my lord, I stand continually in the day, and upon my watch I stand all the night
21:9And behold, here came a chariot, a man, a pair of horsemen. And he will answer and say, She fell, Babel fell; and the carved images of her god he brake in pieces to the earth.
21:10O my threshing, and the son of my threshing-floor, what I heard from Jehovah of armies the God of Israel, I announced to you.
21:11The burden of Dumah. He called to me from Seir, Watch, what of the night? watch, what of the night?
21:12The watch said, I will mark out morning, and also night; if ye will seek, seek ye: turn back, come.
21:13The burden of Arabia. In the forest in Arabia shall ye lodge, ye wayfarers of Dedanim.
21:14To meet the thirsty, bring ye water, O inhabitants of the land of Tema: anticipate ye him wandering, with bread.
21:15For they fled from the face of the swords, the sword drawn out, and from the face of the bent bow, and from the face of the heaviness of war.
21:16For thus said the Lord to me, Within yet a year; as the years of a hireling, and all the glory of Kedar was finished.
21:17And the rest of the bows of the strong sons of Kedar shall be few: for Jehovah God of Israel spake.
Julia Smith and her sister

Julia E. Smith Translation 1876

The Julia Evelina Smith Parker Translation is considered the first complete translation of the Bible into English by a woman. The Bible was titled The Holy Bible: Containing the Old and New Testaments; Translated Literally from the Original Tongues, and was published in 1876.

Julia Smith, of Glastonbury, Connecticut had a working knowledge of Latin, Greek and Hebrew. Her father had been a Congregationalist minister before he became a lawyer. Having read the Bible in its original languages, she set about creating her own translation, which she completed in 1855, after a number of drafts. The work is a strictly literal rendering, always translating a Greek or Hebrew word with the same word wherever possible. Smith accomplished this work on her own in the span of eight years (1847 to 1855). She had sought out no help in the venture, even writing, "I do not see that anybody can know more about it than I do." Smith's insistence on complete literalness, plus an effort to translate each original word with the same English word, combined with an odd notion of Hebrew tenses (often translating the Hebrew imperfect tense with the English future) results in a translation that is mechanical and often nonsensical. However, such a translation if overly literal might be valuable to consult in checking the meaning of some individual verse. One notable feature of this translation was the prominent use of the Divine Name, Jehovah, throughout the Old Testament of this Bible version.

In 1876, at 84 years of age some 21 years after completing her work, she finally sought publication. The publication costs ($4,000) were personally funded by Julia and her sister Abby Smith. The 1,000 copies printed were offered for $2.50 each, but her household auction in 1884 sold about 50 remaining copies.

The translation fell into obscurity as it was for the most part too literal and lacked any flow. For example, Jer. 22:23 was given as follows: "Thou dwelling in Lebanon, building as nest in the cedars, how being compassionated in pangs coming to thee the pain as in her bringing forth." However, the translation was the only Contemporary English translation out of the original languages available to English readers until the publication of The British Revised Version in 1881-1894.(The New testament was published in 1881, the Old in 1884, and the Apocrypha in 1894.) This makes it an invaluable Bible for its period.