Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Textual Variant in 1611 KJV

The KJV, 1611 edition, was printed on more than one printing press. While the text printed was generally the same, there was at least one variant. At Ruth 3:15 the text correctly reads (in the current 2/3 majority of extant copies) "she went into the city" instead of "he went into the city", but the remaining about 1/3 have the variant with the misspelling.

Standard version of the KJV:

Ruth 3:15 Also he said, Bring the vail that thou hast upon thee, and hold it. And when she held it, he measured six measures of barley, and laid it on her: and she went into the city.

The KJV-1611 in the form provided with e-Sword reflects the variant:

Ruth 3:15 Also he said, Bring the vaile that thou hast vpon thee, and holde it. And when she helde it, he measured sixe measures of barley, and laide it on her: and he went into the citie.

The Schoenberg Center for Electronic Texts also has a copy of the KJV1611 with the "he" variant (link).

Copies of both variants can be purchased (though the price is quite steep: for an example, click to this site that I cannot vouch for).

For those people who believe that the KJV1611 was itself the subject of verbal plenary inspiration, I suppose the solution to the problem of this variant is to assert that one of the two variants (hopefully the "he" variant) was a later corruption. The problem, of course, is that there is no historical basis for this assertion, as it would appear that the two printings were performed at roughly the same time on at least two printing presses.

I should note that I still think that the KJV is the best English translation that is widely available, and it continues to be my preferred translation for study of the Scripture, for that reason.

-TurretinFan

3 comments:

Albert said...

My guess is that they would believe that whatever the original proofs the translators approved was the "inspired" version. I like the KJV too despite its archaic terminology and use of later manuscripts but I'm an Anglican using a traditional BCP so I have a certain bias for Elizabethen English.

By the way, I am still trying to figure out how a group of funamentalists came to the conclusion that an Anglican Bible based on a translation by a Roman Catholic monk of Byzantine Orthodox manuscripts with occasional passages of the Vulgate reversed engineered into the text was divinely inspired. You would be hard pressed to find a more "High Church" pedigree than the KJV...which makes it all the more confusing. Why didn't they decide the Geneva Bible had plenary inspiration? And when they are dispensationalists are the Scofield notes also considered inspired? :)

Turretinfan said...

Albert,

Perhaps you are right about the course they would take. That autograph (as it were), seems to have been lost.

They came to the conclusion based on the fact that the KJV was mightly used by God, especially in America and that KJV was mightily opposed by the forces of theologically liberalism in the last century.

The KJV was apparently commissioned as a revision to the "Bishops' Bible." Through a few textual transmission links, that Bible is largely based on Tyndale's translation, which was the first printed English Bible. In turn that Bible was based to a large degree on the early versions of the printed Greek Bible (especially Erasmus' version).

But the KJV translators relied on multiple sources - not only the former English translations, but the Greek and Hebrew versions available at the time as well as other extant translations of the text (including the Vulgate).

-TurretinFan

natamllc said...

And of course couldn't we add that King James was putting up the coin to bring about the feat, a most costly endeavor to bring together great minds of his day to develop an articulately accurate and concise versions of events, the Holy Ghost record for mankind to be delivered from the oppression of the devils by?

One man, who I have met personally, while lecturing on the authority of Scripture noted something about the KJV and the Geneva Bibles. His note, which made some sense to me, an unlearned man, that the opposition by King James was in fact that that you noted in your remarks, that "liberal mindset" that would dare open up and "add" commentary and footnotes to the "Record" so the reader had a more broad disciplined approach to understanding the Word of God and God. King James was, after all, King and so any move away from his authority to rule the minds of men would not set well in his soul. The Geneva Bible gave governmental understanding to passages of Scripture and opened a door of understanding King James would not want his subjects having available to them.

The Geneva Bible has commentaries and footnotes that gave the "common" learned a better insight into the "high" learned and their disciplines to control the common learned, or, "so goes the theory".

I have given myself to some study on the manuscripts and the editorial concepts and interpretation and just don't have a scholarly approach to these things.

I do know I know I know God as He has so revealed Himself to me that when I read some modern versions today coupled with observations of those critiquing the version, I say in my soul, hmmmmm, that makes sense or hmmmmm, yes, that raises a legitimate question.

I am now studying the ESV. Of the many translations, thanks to computer science, that I have right on my computer screen, I now put two things together based on this that Paul wrote and if the God of Peace or His Peace are not present, I sense it:::>

Php 4:9 What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me--practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.


After all, it is the "job" of the God of Peace to sanctify us wholly, spirit, soul and body! The flesh profits nothing. It returns to the dust from whence Adam's flesh was formed from!