“THE MOST CELEBRATED BOOK IN THE ENGLISH-SPEAKING WORLD”: 1723 OXFORD KING JAMES BIBLE, IN HANDSOME FULL CONTEMPORARY BINDING
BIBLE. The Holy Bible, Containing the Old and New Testaments… Oxford: John Baskett, 1723. Thick quarto, contemporary full gilt-paneled black morocco rebacked with original elaborately gilt-decorated spine laid down, raised bands, marbled endpapers, all edges gilt. $4800.
1723 Oxford edition of the magisterial King James Bible, handsomely bound in contemporary morocco-gilt.
First published in 1611 and indisputably the most influential of English Bible translations, the King James Version has exercised incalculable influence on piety, language and literature. Macaulay praised it as “a book, which if everything else in our language should perish, would alone suffice to show the whole extent of its beauty and power” (PMM 114). It is “the most celebrated book in the English-speaking world… Other translations may engage the mind, but the King James Version is the Bible of the heart” (Campbell, 1, 275). Decorative woodcut initials, woodcut head- and tailpieces. Hand-ruled in red throughout. Separate New Testament title page. Includes Apocrypha. Herbert 967. Early owner signature. Fair quotation from a poem by George Herbert affixed to verso of front free endpaper. Owner inscription dated 1774 to recto of first blank at rear.
Scattered light foxing, occasional marginal soiling; light dampstaining to final few leaves. A few minor abrasions to handsome contemporary morocco-gilt. An excellent Bible in very nearly fine condition.