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Coverdale Bible 1535



2:1And now (o ye prestes) this commaundement toucheth you:
2:2yf ye will not heare it, ner regarde it, to geue the glory vnto my name (sayeth the LORDE off hoostes) I wil sende a curse vpon you, & will curse youre blessinges: yee curse them will I yf ye do not take hede.
2:3Beholde, I shal corruppe youre sede, and cast donge in youre faces: euen the donge of youre solempne feastes and it shal cleue fast vpon you.
2:4And ye shall knowe, that I haue sent this commaundement vnto you: that my couenaunt which I made with Leui, might stonde, sayeth ye LORDE of hoostes.
2:5I made a couenaunt of life and peace wt him: this I gaue him, that he might stonde in awe of me: and so he dyd feare me, ad had my name in reuerence.
2:6The lawe of treuth was in his mouth, and there was no wickednesse founde in his lippes. He walked with me in peace ad equyte, and dyd turne many one awaye from their synnes.
2:7For the prestes lippes shulde be sure knowlege, that men maye seke the lawe at his mouth, for he is a messaunger of the LORDE of hoostes.
2:8But as for you, ye are gone clene out off the waye, and haue caused the multitude to be offended at the lawe: ye haue broken the couenaunt of Leui, sayeth the LORDE of hoostes.
2:9Therfore wil I also make you to be despised, and to be of no reputacion amonge all ye people: because ye haue not kepte my wayes, but bene parciall in the lawe.
2:10Haue we not all one father? Hath not one God made vs? why doth euery one off vs then despyse his owne brother, and so breake the couenaunt of oure fathers?
2:11Now hath Iuda offended: yee the abhominacion is done in Israel and in Ierusale, for Iuda hath defyled the Sactuary of the LORDE, which he loued, and hath kepte the doughter of a straunge God.
2:12But the LORDE shal destroye the ma that doth this (yee both the master & the scolar) out off the tabernacle of Iacob, with him that offreth vp meatofferynge vnto the LORDE off hoostes.
2:13Now haue ye brought it to this poynte agayne, that the aulter of the LORDE is couered with teares wepynge and mournynge: so that I will nomore regarde the meatofferynge, nether wil I receaue or accepte enythinge at youre hodes.
2:14And yet ye saye: wherfore? Euen because that where as the LORDE made a couenaut betwixte ye and the wife off thy youth, thou hast despysed her: Yet is she thyne owne copanyon and maried wife.
2:15So dyd not the one, & yet had he an excellent sprete. What dyd then the one? He sought the sede promised of God. Therfore loke well to youre sprete, & let no man despyse ye wife of his youth.
2:16Yf thou hatest her, put her awaye, sayeth the LORDE God of Israel and geue her a clothinge for the scorne, sayeth the LORDE of hoostes. Loke well then to youre sprete, and despyse her not.
2:17Ye greue the LORDE with youre wordes, and yet ye saye: wherwithall haue we greued him? In this, that ye saye: All that do euell are good in the sight of God, and soch please him. Or els where is the God that punysheth?
Coverdale Bible 1535

Coverdale Bible 1535

The Coverdale Bible, compiled by Myles Coverdale and published in 1535, was the first complete English translation of the Bible to contain both the Old and New Testament and translated from the original Hebrew and Greek. The later editions (folio and quarto) published in 1539 were the first complete Bibles printed in England. The 1539 folio edition carried the royal license and was, therefore, the first officially approved Bible translation in English.

Tyndale never had the satisfaction of completing his English Bible; but during his imprisonment, he may have learned that a complete translation, based largely upon his own, had actually been produced. The credit for this achievement, the first complete printed English Bible, is due to Miles Coverdale (1488-1569), afterward bishop of Exeter (1551-1553).

The details of its production are obscure. Coverdale met Tyndale in Hamburg, Germany in 1529, and is said to have assisted him in the translation of the Pentateuch. His own work was done under the patronage of Oliver Cromwell, who was anxious for the publication of an English Bible; and it was no doubt forwarded by the action of Convocation, which, under Archbishop Cranmer's leading, had petitioned in 1534 for the undertaking of such a work.

Coverdale's Bible was probably printed by Froschover in Zurich, Switzerland and was published at the end of 1535, with a dedication to Henry VIII. By this time, the conditions were more favorable to a Protestant Bible than they had been in 1525. Henry had finally broken with the Pope and had committed himself to the principle of an English Bible. Coverdale's work was accordingly tolerated by authority, and when the second edition of it appeared in 1537 (printed by an English printer, Nycolson of Southwark), it bore on its title-page the words, "Set forth with the King's most gracious license." In licensing Coverdale's translation, King Henry probably did not know how far he was sanctioning the work of Tyndale, which he had previously condemned.

In the New Testament, in particular, Tyndale's version is the basis of Coverdale's, and to a somewhat less extent this is also the case in the Pentateuch and Jonah; but Coverdale revised the work of his predecessor with the help of the Zurich German Bible of Zwingli and others (1524-1529), a Latin version by Pagninus, the Vulgate, and Luther. In his preface, he explicitly disclaims originality as a translator, and there is no sign that he made any noticeable use of the Greek and Hebrew; but he used the available Latin, German, and English versions with judgment. In the parts of the Old Testament which Tyndale had not published he appears to have translated mainly from the Zurich Bible. [Coverdale's Bible of 1535 was reprinted by Bagster, 1838.]

In one respect Coverdale's Bible was groundbreaking, namely, in the arrangement of the books of the. It is to Tyndale's example, no doubt, that the action of Coverdale is due. His Bible is divided into six parts -- (1) Pentateuch; (2) Joshua -- Esther; (3) Job -- "Solomon's Balettes" (i.e. Canticles); (4) Prophets; (5) "Apocrypha, the books and treatises which among the fathers of old are not reckoned to be of like authority with the other books of the Bible, neither are they found in the canon of the Hebrew"; (6) the New Testament. This represents the view generally taken by the Reformers, both in Germany and in England, and so far as concerns the English Bible, Coverdale's example was decisive.