CSB Single-Column Handcrafted Bible Review

CSB Single-Column Handcrafted Bible

The CSB Single-Column Handcrafted Bible is part of Holman’s Handcrafted Collection. This is a two-color single-column edition with wide margins designed for reading and note-taking. Since it’s part of the Handcrafted Collection, it includes a goatskin cover and high-quality paper. This is ISBN: 9781087730295, made in China, designed and typeset by 2k/Denmark.

Lifeway provided this Bible in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to give a positive review, only an honest one. All opinions are my own.

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This Bible is available at (includes some affiliate links)

Amazon

Christianbook

and many local Bible bookstores

_________________________________________________________

Table of Contents

  1. Video Review
  2. Binding
  3. Paper
  4. Typography and Layout
  5. Footnotes
  6. Table of Weights and Measures
  7. Concordance
  8. Bible Atlas
  9. Comparisons
  10. Conclusion

Video Review

Table of Contents

Binding

The cover is a thick black goatskin with a pebbly grain. It’s soft to the touch and it’s highly flexible but not too floppy to hold easily. It has tight perimeter stitching. Nothing printed on the front. The spine includes tooled rib indications with all the text and logos printed in gold. The amount of overhang, or yapp, is about a 1/2″.

The liner is edge-lined leather and it includes a gilt line around the inside perimeter. The edge-lined tab isn’t stiff, so it doesn’t need to be broken in before it will lay flat in the first few chapters of Genesis. This one stays open in Genesis the best of any goatskin edition I’ve reviewed. It’s Smyth sewn and has overcast stitching in the front. This does cause the first few signatures to look separate from the others, but this is normal for overcast stitching.

It has three 1/4″ ribbons: black, gold, and red. The head/tail bands are black. The overall size is 7 x 9 3/4 x 2″. It weighs 3 lbs, 6 oz.

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Paper

The paper is 36 GSM Hadley White with an 85 opacity rating. This is the same paper used in the CSB Verse-by-Verse, which is some of the most opaque paper I’ve seen in a Bible. It’s off-white in color and has no glare. The texture is slightly rough, which makes it easy to grab and turn. This is easily some of my favorite paper in any Bible. It’s excellent for notes and highlighting.  The edges are art-gilt with red under gold. It’s not a deep red, but I like the color.

There are 7 blank pages in the back that can be used for notes. This is the same paper as the rest of the Bible and doesn’t include ruled lines.

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Typography and Layout

The text is presented in a single-column layout with poetry set to stanzas, lists presented as lists, and personal letters indented. Verse numbers are in red, making them easy to find. Footnotes are placed in the footer and a smaller font and separated from the text with a red line. Section headings are in all caps. The header shows the book name, chapter, and verse numbers in the outer margin and the page number in the center. All the header text is in red.

The typeface is 10,5 Bible Serif from 2K Denmark. It’s a black-letter text. Old Testament quotes are printed in bold. It’s printed with line-matching, so the lines on both sides of the page are printed in the same location. This greatly improves readability. The paper is opaque enough that it never looks gray because of the text on the other side.

It has between 14-16 words per line on average. This is more words per line than what I find to be ideal, but it’s still readable. It has enough space between the lines and a large inner margin that brings the text out onto the flat part of the page so you never have to read text that bends into the gutter. This word count makes poetry stand out because it has the best layout possible.

This is a wide-margin edition. It has a 1 1/8″ outer margin, 3/4″ inner, 5/8″ bottom, and 1/2″ upper margin. This isn’t a lot of space for extensive notes, but it is enough for short notes, bullets, thoughts, prayers, etc. For more about Bible marking, see my book Easy Bible Marking Guide on Amazon.

Footnotes

The footnotes are placed in the footer. They’re separated from the text with a red line. These are the standard CSB footnotes. The Old Testament textual footnotes show the differences between the manuscripts and ancient versions such as the Vulgate and Septuagint. The New Testament footnotes show the differences in manuscripts such as additions, variations, and omissions. They also show the literal renderings, alternate renderings, equivalence, when a word is from the original languages and provided with English letters, where it’s difficult to translate the text, etc. These are excellent footnotes. I find them helpful for seeing insights into the translation and other rendering options.

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Table of Weights and Measures

The table of weights and measures provides units for weights, length, dry measure, and liquid measure. It shows the biblical unit, the language the unit is from, the biblical measure, the U.S. equivalent, the Metric equivalent, and various translations. It’s similar to the typical table, but including the original language and various translations provides more information, making this table better for study. I especially like the various translations because we often hear these terms but don’t always know they refer to the same things.

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Concordance

The concordance is 39 pages with 3 columns per page. This is one of the smaller concordances from Holman and it’s printed in a small font. It includes biographical information with lots of good character studies. It’s a good concordance for basic study and sermon prep, but for serious study, you’ll need external tools. Here are a few example entries with the number of references they have in order to help you compare:

  • Christ (see also Messiah) – 18
  • Christian – 2
  • Faith – 10
  • Faithful – 6
  • Faithfulness – 2
  • Faithless – 1
  • God – 13
  • Godliness – 1
  • Praise (n) – 4
  • Praise (v) – 5
  • Pray – 8
  • Prayer – 4

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Bible Atlas

The standard 8 Holman maps on thick non-glossy paper are included. They’re printed with muted colors that look elegant and make me want to use them. I’m a fan of these colors. It doesn’t include an index to maps, but they are labeled well. I found them easy to use. They include distance, topography, cities, mountain peaks, routes, distance, water, Scripture references, borders, roads, locations of events, annotations, and dates.

Maps include:

  1. The Migration of Abraham
  2. The Route of the Exodus
  3. The Tribal Allotments of Israel
  4. The Kingdoms of Israel and Judah
  5. Israel in the Time of Jesus
  6. The Ministry of Jesus Around the Sea of Galilee
  7. The Passion Week in Jerusalem
  8. Paul’s Missionary Journeys

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Comparisons

Here’s how the CSB Single-Column Handcrafted Bible compares with the CSB Verse-by-verse Reference Bible, the CSB Pastor’s Bible, and the ESV Preaching Bible.

CSB Verse-by-verse Reference Bible

The CSB Verse-by-verse Reference Bible has the same paper and also has a wide outer margin. The font is slightly smaller, but it’s still a large print. It doesn’t include any formatting for the text, so poetry doesn’t look like poetry.

CSB Pastor’s Bible

The CSB Pastor’s Bible has a similar layout, but it doesn’t include red highlights. The paper and ribbons are the same as those in the lower-end Bibles. It’s a smaller Bible and it’s easier to carry. Of course, the pastor’s helps make this a specialized Bible. I do like the smaller size, but it’s still not a small Bible. I prefer the CSB Single-Column Handcrafted Bible, but both have their place.

ESV Preaching Bible

The ESV Preaching Bible is very similar to the CSB Single-Column Handcrafted Bible, but the CSB is more refined. The ESV doesn’t include the two-color printing, it has thinner ribbons, and it’s not as wide. The paper isn’t as elegant and the cover is thinner. Other than that, they’re so similar that if you like one you’ll like the other.

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Conclusion

CSB Single-Column Handcrafted Bible is an elegant wide margin Bible. The focus is on the layout and materials, and it excels at both. The wide margins are on the smaller side, making this ideal for those that just want a little bit of space for small notes. I can even see using this is a reading Bible and not writing in it. The text is beautiful and the red verse numbers make verses easy to find. If you’re looking for an elegant single-column CSB, this is it.

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_________________________________________________________

This Bible is available at (includes some affiliate links)

Amazon

Christianbook

and many local Bible bookstores

_________________________________________________________

 

Lifeway provided this Bible in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to give a positive review, only an honest one. All opinions are my own.

About The Author

Randy A Brown

WordPress writer by day, Bible reviewer by night, pastor all the time. And there's also that author thing.

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