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Julia E. Smith Translation 1876



23:1And Balaam will say to Balak, Build to me here seven altars, and prepare to me here seven bullocks and seven rams.
23:2And Balak will do as Balsam spake, and Balak will bring up, and Balaam, a bullock and a ram upon the altar.
23:3And Balsam will say to Balak, Stand by thy burnt-offering, and I will go; perhaps Jehovah will come to my meeting: and the word which he will shew to me I will announce to thee. And he will go to the naked hill
23:4And God will meet Balaam, and he will say to him, I arranged seven altars, and I will bring up a bullock and a ram upon the altar.
23:5And Jehovah will put the word in Balaam's mouth, and say, Turn back to Balak, and thus shalt thou speak.
23:6And he will turn back to him, and behold, he stood by his burnt-offering, he, and all the leaders of Moab.
23:7And he will take up his parable, and say, From Aram, Balak, king of Moab, will transfer me from the mountains of the east; Come curse to me Jacob and come and be angry at Israel
23:8How shall I curse, God cursing not? And how shall I be angry, God not being angry?
23:9From the head of the rocks I shall see him, and from the hills I shall look after him: behold, the people shall dwell alone, and shall not be reckoned among the nations.
23:10Who divided out the dust of Jacob and who numbered the fourth of Israel? My soul shall die the death of the just, and my latter state shall be as his.
23:11And Balak will say to Balaam, What didst thou to me? To curse mine enemies I took thee, and behold, praising, thou didst praise.
23:12And he will answer and say, What Jehovah shall put in my mouth shall I not watch, to speak?
23:13And Balak will say to him, Come now with me to another place, where thou. shalt see him from thence: thou shalt see only their extremity, and thou shalt not see them all: and curse him to me from thence.
23:14And he will take him to the field of Zophim, to the head of Pisgah, and he will build seven altars, and bring up a bullock and a ram upon the altar.
23:15And he will say to Balak, Stand here by thy burnt-offering, and I will meet there.
23:16And Jehovah will meet Balaam, and he will put the word in his mouth, and say, Turn back to Balak, and thus shalt thou speak
23:17And he will come to him, and behold him standing by his burnt-offering, and the leaders of Moab with him. And Balak will say to him, What spake Jehovah?
23:18And he will take up his parable, and say, Rise up, Balak, and hear; and give ear to me, son of Zippor:
23:19God is not man, and will he lie? and the son of man, and will he grieve? Did he say, and will he not do? and speak, and will he not establish?
23:20Behold, I was taken to praise: and he praised and I shall not turn it back.
23:21He saw not iniquity in Jacob and he saw not sorrow in Israel: Jehovah his God with him, and the shouts of a king in them.
23:22God bringing them out of Egypt; as the swiftness of the buffalo to him.
23:23For no enchantment in Jacob, and no divination in Israel; according to the time it will be said to Jacob and to Israel, What did God do!
23:24Behold, the people will rise up as a lioness, and as a lion he will be lifted up: he will not lie down till he shall eat the prey and drink the blood of the wounded.
23:25And Balak will say to Balaam, Also, cursing, thou shalt not curse him, also thou shalt not praise him.
23:26And Balsam will answer and say to Balak, Spake I not to thee, saying, All which Jehovah shall speak I will do it?
23:27And Balak will say to Balaam, Come now, I will take thee to another place; perhaps it will be right in the eyes of God, and curse him to me from thence.
23:28And Balak will take Balaam to the head of Peor, projecting upon the face of the desert
23:29And Balsam will say to Balak, Build to me here seven altars, and prepare to me here seven bullocks and seven rams.
23:30And Balak will do as Balaam said, and he will bring up a bullock, and a ram, upon the altar.
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.