Smithsonian Associates, Interview Series
Our interview with Steven Galbraith and Hannibal Hamlin, who, together, both will provide us a fascinating overview of the dramatic history of English Bible translation, the reformers who shaped the bible, despite opposition from the Church, and the Bible’s significant political influence.
The King James Bible of 1611 is one of the most influential books in the English language. The creation of this landmark translation was the culmination of a long and often unquiet history of the Bible in English dating back as far as 1000 A.D., when portions of the Bible appeared in Old English. It built upon the struggles of religious reformers who risked their lives by committing the “heresy” of translating the Bible into English. It borrowed freely from the labors of scholars tasked with new translations once the religious and political tides had changed. The men chosen to work on the King James Bible revised the translations of their predecessors with no idea of how influential and pervasive their results would be even four centuries later.
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