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Coverdale Bible 1535



2:1But there came vp a messauger of ye LORDE from Gilgall vnto Bochim, and sayde: I haue caried you vp hither out of Egipte, and broughte you in to the londe that I sware vnto youre fathers, & saide: I wyl neuer breake my couenaunt wt you,
2:2that ye shulde make no couenaunt with the indwellers of this londe, but breake downe their altares: Neuertheles ye haue not herkened vnto my voyce. Wherfore haue ye done this?
2:3Then saide I morouer: I wil not dryue them out before you, that they maye be a fall vnto you, and their goddes a snare.
2:4And whan ye messaunger of the LORDE had spoken these wordes vnto all the children of Israel, the people lefte vp their voyce, & wepte,
2:5and called ye name of the place Bochim, and offred there vnto the LORDE.
2:6For whan Iosua had sente awaye ye people, and the childre of Israel were gone, euery one to his enheritauce, for to take possession of the londe,
2:7the people serued the LORDE as longe as Iosua lyued and ye Elders, which lyued longe after Iosua, and yt sawe all the greate workes of the LORDE, which he dyd for Israel.
2:8Now whan Iosua the sonne of Nun, the seruaunt of the LORDE, was deed (whan he was an hudreth and ten yeare olde)
2:9they buried him in ye border of his inheritaunce at Timnath Heres vpon mount Ephraim on the north syde of mount Gaas.
2:10And whan all the same generacion was gathered vnto their fathers, there came vp after them another generacion, which knew not the LORDE, ner the workes that he had done for Israel.
2:11Then wroughte the children of Israel euell before the LORDE, and serued Baalim,
2:12and forsoke ye LORDE the God of their fathers (which broughte them out of the londe of Egipte) and folowed other goddes & the goddes of the nacions that dwelt rounde aboute them, & worshipped them, & displeased the LORDE:
2:13for they forsoke ye LORDE euer more and more, and serued Baal and Astaroth.
2:14Then ye wrath of the LORDE waxed whote vpo Israel, & he delyuered the in to ye handes of those yt spoyled the, that they mighte spoyle them, & solde the in to the handes of their enemies roude aboute, & they were not able to withstonde their enemies eny more,
2:15but what waye so euer they wolde out, ye hade of the LORDE was agaynst the to their hurte (euen as the LORDE sayde and sware vnto them) and they were sore oppressed.
2:16Now whan the LORDE raysed them vp iudges, which helped them out of the hande of soch as spoyled the,
2:17they folowed not the iudges nether, but wente a whoringe after other goddes, & worshipped them, and were soone gone out of ye waye yt their fathers walked in, to heare the comaundementes of the LORDE, & dyd not as they dyd.
2:18But whan ye LORDE raysed vp iudges vnto them, the LORDE was with ye iudge, and helped them out of the hande of their enemies, as longe as the iudge lyued. For the LORDE had pitie of their complaynte, which they made ouer those yt subdued the and oppressed them.
2:19Neuertheles whan the iudge dyed, they turned backe, and marred all more the their fathers, so that they folowed other goddes to serue them and to bowe them selues vnto them: they wolde not fall from their purposes, ner from their obstinate waye.
2:20Therfore waxed the wrath of the LORDE allwaie so whote ouer Israel, that he sayde: For so moch as the people haue transgressed my couenaunt, which I commaunded their fathers, & folowe not my voyce,
2:21I wil from hence forth dryue out none of the Heythen, who Iosua lefte behynde him, wha he dyed,
2:22that by them I maye proue Israel, whether they wil kepe the waye of the LORDE, to walke therin, as their fathers dyd, or not.
2:23Thus the LORDE suffred all these nacions, so that in a shorte tyme he droue them not out, whom he had not geuen ouer in to Iosuas hande.
Coverdale Bible 1535

Coverdale Bible 1535

The Coverdale Bible, compiled by Myles Coverdale and published in 1535, was the first complete English translation of the Bible to contain both the Old and New Testament and 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 license and was, therefore, the first officially approved Bible translation in English.

Tyndale never had the satisfaction of completing his English Bible; but during his imprisonment, he may have learned that a complete translation, based largely upon his own, had actually been produced. The credit for this achievement, the first complete printed English Bible, is due to Miles Coverdale (1488-1569), afterward bishop of Exeter (1551-1553).

The details of its production are obscure. Coverdale met Tyndale in Hamburg, Germany in 1529, and is said to have assisted him in the translation of the Pentateuch. His own work was done under the patronage of Oliver Cromwell, who was anxious for the publication of an English Bible; and it was no doubt forwarded by the action of Convocation, which, under Archbishop Cranmer's leading, had petitioned in 1534 for the undertaking of such a work.

Coverdale's Bible was probably printed by Froschover in Zurich, Switzerland and was published at the end of 1535, with a dedication to Henry VIII. By this time, the conditions were more favorable to a Protestant Bible than they had been in 1525. Henry had finally broken with the Pope and had committed himself to the principle of an English Bible. Coverdale's work was accordingly tolerated by authority, and when the second edition of it appeared in 1537 (printed by an English printer, Nycolson of Southwark), it bore on its title-page the words, "Set forth with the King's most gracious license." In licensing Coverdale's translation, King Henry probably did not know how far he was sanctioning the work of Tyndale, which he had previously condemned.

In the New Testament, in particular, Tyndale's version is the basis of Coverdale's, and to a somewhat less extent this is also the case in the Pentateuch and Jonah; but Coverdale revised the work of his predecessor with the help of the Zurich German Bible of Zwingli and others (1524-1529), a Latin version by Pagninus, the Vulgate, and Luther. In his preface, he explicitly disclaims originality as a translator, and there is no sign that he made any noticeable use of the Greek and Hebrew; but he used the available Latin, German, and English versions with judgment. In the parts of the Old Testament which Tyndale had not published he appears to have translated mainly from the Zurich Bible. [Coverdale's Bible of 1535 was reprinted by Bagster, 1838.]

In one respect Coverdale's Bible was groundbreaking, namely, in the arrangement of the books of the. It is to Tyndale's example, no doubt, that the action of Coverdale is due. His Bible is divided into six parts -- (1) Pentateuch; (2) Joshua -- Esther; (3) Job -- "Solomon's Balettes" (i.e. Canticles); (4) Prophets; (5) "Apocrypha, the books and treatises which among the fathers of old are not reckoned to be of like authority with the other books of the Bible, neither are they found in the canon of the Hebrew"; (6) the New Testament. This represents the view generally taken by the Reformers, both in Germany and in England, and so far as concerns the English Bible, Coverdale's example was decisive.