2004 marked the 400th anniversary of the decision, taken in January 1604 at the Hampton Court Conference, to produce a new Bible, the King James. However, the history of the English Bible is not widely known. Let It Go among Our People is the story of the birth of the English Bible, the development of its literary style, and its tumultuous political history. In England, unlike almost every other country, it was illegal to translate the word of God into the vernacular. This ban lasted one hundred and twenty-seven years. Overcoming the political and ecclesiastical resistance to an English Bible was a dangerous and difficult task. Lives were lost not only for producing English Bibles, but also for the act of owning or reading them. The authors also analyse the language used in the Bible, viewing the whole as literature whilst studying its translation, and comparing important passages in different versions. Such close study of the text itself is warranted because the English Bible has had a profound effect on English language, literature, politics and ideas and has left a lasting impression on the language we speak today.
No other language, save perhaps German, can boast that its vernacular translation of the Bible is a literary masterpiece in its own right. This in-depth and fascinating study is finely illustrated from manuscript, incunabula and other early books to help to trace the development of this religious, literary and historical masterpiece.
David Price is a specialist in Renaissance Studies with a PhD from Yale University; he currently teaches at Southern Methodist University. Charles Ryrie received doctorates from Dallas Theological Seminary and the University of Edinburgh, and spent his career teaching Bible and Theology; the study of the history of the Bible has been a serious vocation for him for over four decades.
Preface Authors to the Reader 1. Sacred Text in the People's Language 2. Renaissance of the Bible 3. Breakthrough 4. Editor-in-Chief 5. Exile 6. Queen Elisabeth Version 7. Persecution and the Catholic Bible 8. Literary Majesti Appendix 1: Revising the King James Bible Appendix 2: The Post-King James Era Bibliography Index