Lost in translation

The upcoming 400th anniversary of the 1611 publication of the King James Bible has sparked a surge of interest in its origins. (Benson Bobrick's Wide As the Waters and Alister McGrath's In the Beginning both appeared last year.) Even taking into account the occasion's significance, the attention is a little puzzling. There have been plenty of other translations into English (e.g., the Geneva translation from the 1550s was the preferred version on the Mayflower), each with its own story. As a variety of other English versions and paraphrases have appeared, the King James Version has irreversibly been displaced.

 

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