Christipher Howse: The global phenomenon that will never be lost in translation

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Like the Tower of London and its attendant ravens, the Authorised Version of The Bible stands as a monument at the heart of the English-speaking world. We may not often look inside, but we are glad it is there. Like the Tower too, Americans seem particularly keen on it, and we speak reverently of its ageless magnificence while remaining vague on the detail.

In the first decade of the 17th century, it took the new king James from Scotland to hammer out a Bible that endured. “It is one of the first British things to be made,” points out the Glasgow-born Neil MacGregor, fresh from his A History of the World in 100 Objects. “It was made by the whole island to be used by the whole island.”

Now it is used by the whole globe, as though God really were an Englishman. If the last Harry Potter sold 44 million, The Bible has sold 2.5 billion some say, or six billion, say others.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Christian Life / Church LifeChurch History* Culture-WatchReligion & Culture* International News & CommentaryEngland / UK* TheologyTheology: Scripture

Posted November 27, 2010 at 6:02 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. evan miller wrote:

The tragedy is how rare it is to have the KJV read in our worship services (never, in the case of my own parish).  It’s language was sufficient to evangelize the world, but apparently not good enough for the present generation.  Lessons & Carols with other translations sounds so flat an impoverished in comparison with the grand old familiar cadences of the KJV.

November 29, 12:28 pm | [comment link]
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