LATE 16TH-CENTURY EDITION OF THE GENEVA NEW TESTAMENT
BIBLE. The Newe Testament of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Conferred Diligently with the Greeke and best Approved Translations in Divers Languages. London: by the Deputies of Christopher Barker, 1589. Quarto, 19th-century full paneled reverse calf rebacked, burgundy morocco spine label. $6000.
Attractively bound 1589 edition of the Geneva version of the New Testament, the important translation that shaped Protestant piety for some five decades, with woodcut title page.
William Whittingham, a Protestant exile who sought refuge in Geneva during Queen Mary's reign, published his translation of the New Testament in 1557. As part of the "Geneva Bible" (complete in 1560), it proved the dominant English translation of the Scriptures until the advent of the King James Version in 1611. Laurence Tomson's first published his revision of the Geneva New Testament (which he based on a study of Theodore Beza's Latin version of 1565) in 1576; it "became the final and popular form of the Geneva [New] Testament" (Herbert 146). The Geneva Bible as a whole "became the textus receptus for the Puritan element in England… and is thus of cardinal importance for its influence on the English language, literature and thought" (Great Books and Book Collectors, 105-8). Biblical text set in Gothic type, marginal notes set in Gothic and Roman type. Bound with contemporary edition of Sternhold and Hopkins' metrical psalter. Darlow & Moule 153. Herbert 199. Early owner signatures on title page and leaf *iiii.
Text generally clean, a few running headers trimmed a little close. Lower corner of Psalter title page torn away, affecting imprint and woodcut emblem. An extremely good copy.