Bishops' Bible

From Academic Kids

The Bishops' Bible was an English translation of the Holy Bible produced under the authority of the established Church of England in 1568.

The thorough Calvinism of the Geneva Bible offended the high-church party of the Church of England, to which almost all of its bishops subscribed. They associated Calvinism with presbyterianism, which sought to replace government of the church by bishops (episcopalian) with government by lay elders. In an attempt to replace the objectionable translation, they circulated one of their own, which became known as the Bishop's Bible. Their translation had the authority of the royal warrant, and was the version specifically authorised to be read aloud in church services.

They failed to displace the Geneva Bible from its popular esteem. Their version was more grandiloquent than the Geneva Bible, but was harder to understand. It lacked most of the footnotes and cross-references in the Geneva Bible, which contained much controversial theology, but which were helpful to people among whom the Bible was just beginning to circulate in the vernacular. As a result, while the Bishops' Bible went through 20 editions from its introduction to 1606, during the same period the Geneva Bible was reprinted more than 150 times.

In 1611, the King James Version was published, and soon took the Bishops' Bible's place as the de facto standard of the Church of England.

The Bishops' Bible is also known as the "Treacle Bible", due to its translation of Jeremiah 8:22 which reads "Is there not treacle at Gilead?" In the Authorized Version of 1611, "treacle" was changed to "balm".

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