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Julia E. Smith Translation 1876



3:1And Moses was feeding the sheep of Jethro, his father-in-law, the priest of Midian: and he will lead the sheep behind the desert, and he will come to the mountain of God, to Horeb.
3:2And the messenger of Jehovah will be seen to him in a flame of fire from the midst of the bramble; and he will see, and behold, the bramble burning in fire, and the bramble was not consumed.
3:3And Moses will say, I will now turn aside and see this great sight, why the bramble will not burn.
3:4And Jehovah will see that he turned aside to see, and God will call to him from the midst of the bramble, and he will say, Moses, Moses! And he will say, Behold me.
3:5And he will say, Thou shalt not draw near hither; draw off thy shoes from thy feet, for the place which thou standest upon it, this is holy land.
3:6And he will say, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaak and the God of Jacob. And Moses will hide his face, for he will be afraid to look to God.
3:7And Jehovah will say, Seeing, I saw the affliction of my people who are in Egypt, and I heard their cry from the face of their pressers; and I knew their pains.
3:8And I will come down to deliver them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of this land to a good and great land, to a land flowing milk and honey; to the place of the Canaanites and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites and the Jebusites.
3:9And now behold the cry of the sons of Israel came to me: and also I saw the oppression which the Egyptians oppressed them.
3:10And now come, and I will send thee to Pharaoh, and bring thou forth my people, the sons of Israel out of Egypt
3:11And Moses will say to God, Who am I that I shall go to Pharaoh, and that I shall bring forth the sons of Israel, out of Egypt?
3:12And he will say, That I will be with thee; and this a sign to thee that I sent thee; in thy bringing forth the people out of Egypt, ye shall serve God upon this mountain.
3:13And Moses will say to God, Behold me going to the sons of Israel, and I spake to them, The God of your fathers sent me to you; and they said to me, What his name? what shall I say to them?
3:14And God will say to Moses, I shall be that I shall be: and he will say, So shalt thou say to the sons of Israel, I Shall Be sent me to you.
3:15And God will yet say to Moses, Thou shalt say to the sons of Israel, Jehovah the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaak and the God of Jacob, sent me to you: this my name for eternity, and this my remembrance to generation and generation.
3:16Come, and gather together the old men of Israel, and say to them, Jehovah, the God of your fathers, was seen to me, the God of Abraham, Isaak and Jacob, saying, Reviewing, I reviewed you and what was done to you in Egypt
3:17And saying, I will bring you up from the affliction of Egypt, to the land of the Canaanites, and the Hittites and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites and the Jebusites, to a land flowing with milk and honey.
3:18And they heard thy voice; and thou camest, thou and the old men of Israel, to the king of Egypt, and ye said to him, Jehovah the God of the Hebrews, met with us; and now will we go a way of three days into the desert, and we will sacrifice to Jehovah our God.
3:19And I knew that the king of Egypt will not give you to go and not with a strong hand.
3:20And I sent my hand and struck Egypt with all my wonders which I will do in its midst: and after that he will send you forth.
3:21And I gave favor to this people in the eyes of the Egyptians, and it shall be when ye shall go, ye shall not go empty.
3:22And a woman asked of her neighbor, and of her sojourning in her house, vessels of silver and vessels of gold, and clothing; and put upon your sons and upon your daughters; and ye stripped the Egyptians.
Julia Smith and her sister

Julia E. Smith Translation 1876

The Julia Evelina Smith Parker Translation is considered the first complete translation of the Bible into English by a woman. The Bible was titled The Holy Bible: Containing the Old and New Testaments; Translated Literally from the Original Tongues, and was published in 1876.

Julia Smith, of Glastonbury, Connecticut had a working knowledge of Latin, Greek and Hebrew. Her father had been a Congregationalist minister before he became a lawyer. Having read the Bible in its original languages, she set about creating her own translation, which she completed in 1855, after a number of drafts. The work is a strictly literal rendering, always translating a Greek or Hebrew word with the same word wherever possible. Smith accomplished this work on her own in the span of eight years (1847 to 1855). She had sought out no help in the venture, even writing, "I do not see that anybody can know more about it than I do." Smith's insistence on complete literalness, plus an effort to translate each original word with the same English word, combined with an odd notion of Hebrew tenses (often translating the Hebrew imperfect tense with the English future) results in a translation that is mechanical and often nonsensical. However, such a translation if overly literal might be valuable to consult in checking the meaning of some individual verse. One notable feature of this translation was the prominent use of the Divine Name, Jehovah, throughout the Old Testament of this Bible version.

In 1876, at 84 years of age some 21 years after completing her work, she finally sought publication. The publication costs ($4,000) were personally funded by Julia and her sister Abby Smith. The 1,000 copies printed were offered for $2.50 each, but her household auction in 1884 sold about 50 remaining copies.

The translation fell into obscurity as it was for the most part too literal and lacked any flow. For example, Jer. 22:23 was given as follows: "Thou dwelling in Lebanon, building as nest in the cedars, how being compassionated in pangs coming to thee the pain as in her bringing forth." However, the translation was the only Contemporary English translation out of the original languages available to English readers until the publication of The British Revised Version in 1881-1894.(The New testament was published in 1881, the Old in 1884, and the Apocrypha in 1894.) This makes it an invaluable Bible for its period.