Category: Books

Begat the King James Bible and the English Language by David Crystal

The King James Version is celebrating its 400th anniversary (1611-2011). In the past 400 years, the King James Version (KJV) has made a great impact on the English language. David Crystal, in his book Begat The King James Bible and the English Language, shows just how much the KJV has affected our language and gives many examples of words and phrases that are in our common in our daily speech. I’ve read the KJV for many years and I was still amazed at how much of our language comes straight from the KJV. Crystal covers words and phrases such as “let there be light”, “my brother’s keeper”, “two by two”, “thou shalt not”, “out of the mouth of babes”, “heal thyself”, “sowing seeds”, “fly in the ointment”, “seeing the light”, “nothing new under the sun”, “begat”, and many, many more. Crystal discusses how these words and phrases have affected our modern usage of language and the impact they’ve had on developing the English language. Crystal includes a comparison to other old English translations, which in itself is a fine comparative study. He further notes the importance and contributions of translators such as Wycliffe and Tyndale, among others. Crystal does a great job of showing how the King James Bible played an essential role in ‘begetting’ the English language. Highly recommended.   Oxford University Press provided this free review copy....

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Bible The Story of the King James Version by Gordon Campbell

Marking the 400th birthday of the King James Version, Bible, The Story of the King James Version by Gordon Campbell from Oxford University Press tells of politics, religion, translators, printer’s errors, changed lives, the impact the KJV has had on the English language, and more. Campbell gives a nice introduction to the history of the Bible in English, discussing important translators and versions such as Wyclif, Tyndale, Coverdale, The Matthew Bible, The Great Bible, The Geneva Bible, The Bishop’s Bible, Douai-Reims, and the great impact they all had on the development of the King James Version. I’ve heard a lot of information about the history of translations, but I don’t always hear about the translation process. This book gives insights on how the KJV was translated. Campbell introduces some of the translators and takes us through their translation process including revision notes, language, style, and he even shows pictures of some work-in-progress documents that includes hand-written notes. I found this section to be very interesting. Campbell talks about some of the most important and influential KJV Bibles that have been published, including the most important revisions. He discusses the KJV as literature and shows the influence the KJV has today, discussing topics such as the King James Only movement. Campbell does a great job throughout the book showing how the KJV is the most important book in the English...

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