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you that of musick make such show,
O no! we have nor voice nor hand
"Though far I lye, sweet Sion hill,
if thy neglect in me do spring,
"But thou, ô Lord, wilt not forget
thy holy citie to deface:
thus did the bloodie victors whet
what time they entred first the place:
"And Babylon that didst us wast
shall take and dash against the stones
Christian Remembrancer, June, 1821, p. 331.
A considerable portion of the second division is occupied with different editions of Sternhold's version of the Psalms, published between the years 1541 and 1696; and some specimens are given in the Appendix, to shew the alterations which were successively made in that once popular, and, in many respects, very faithful metrical translation. Of the other versions by Dod, Brady, and Tate, Barton, Patrick, Merrick, &c. a few of the earlier editions only are mentioned, or those which presented any new variety. Of the Psalms in verse and prose, with the Songs of Moses, Deborah, &c. translated by H. Dod, we have a specimen in the Appendix: and for the information of such of our readers as have never seen an Act of Parliament in verse, it may not be amiss to mention that, at the end of this edition of the Psalms, is found the act for enjoining a public thanksgiving on the fifth
of November," composed into easie meeter, a song meete for yong and old"! We think we may safely affirm that it is the only poem in the English language which begins with the word "Whereas." No place or printer's name is indicated in either of the copies which are found in the Bodleian and Lambeth libraries: and Dr. Cotton states that the volume has much the appearance of having been printed in Holland. He has given the whole of this curious piece of rhyme in his Appendix, whence (as Dod's volume is of no common occurrence) we select a few stanzas :
"Whereas Almightie God hath in
And gracious deliverer
of Church and children dear: Protecting safely Kings and States who right religious are.
"And where no nation of the earth
and free profession
Of sacred Gospel under our
King, and dread Soveraigne.
"Who greatest, and best learned is,
and promising indeed," P. 151.
Having recited the circumstances of that horrid conspiracy, and of its providential detection, the Act proceeds to enact that the fifth of November shall be observed every year as a day of publique thanksgiving to Almighty God,' in the following terms.
"Be it therefore enacted, by
the Royall Majestie
Of our good King, and by his Lords
And also by authoritie
Of this whole Parl'ament,
Th' aforesayd powres, & Commons all
"That all and singuler divines
And ministers in everie Church
"Shalle alwayes on the fifth day of
give praise and thankes for ever:
That so the same may be preserv'd
In enumerating the principal editions of our present authorised version, Dr. Cotton has very properly taken notice of those which are characterised by peculiar inaccuracies, Thus in the folio edition, printed at Cambridge by Buck and Daniel, in 1638, Acts vi. 3. is translated-"Whom ye may appoint," instead of "we," and this mistranslation, or rather error of the press, was continued in several other editions of the same version.
"The Bibles printed during the time of the Commonwealth have been generally reputed to be full of errors :-In a tract, entitled The London Printer his Lamentation; or the Press oppressed or over-pressed,' 4to. 1660, (reprinted in the Harleian Miscellany,) it is said, that Bill and Barker had contrived to get into their possession ever since the sixth of March 1655, the manuscript copy of the last translation of the Holy Bible in English, attested with the hands of the venerable and learned translators in King James's time.' And that having thus secured themselves from instant detection, they published editions filled with 'egregious blasphemies and damnable errata.'" P. 33, note.
The Oxford Bible (8vo. 1811,) is remarkable for this mistake in Isa. Ivii. 12. "I will declare thy righteousness and thy works, for they SHALL profit thee," instead of "they shall NOT profit thee." The Beautiful folio Bible printed by Baskett, at Oxford, in 1717, is commonly termed the
Vinegar Bible, from an error in the running title at Luke xxii. where we read "the parable of the VINEGAR," instead of "the parable of the VINEYARD!" The Oxford Bible,
printed in 1792, in 8vo. is remarkable for a mistake in Luke xxii. 34. where Philip, instead of Peter, is named as the disciple who should deny Christ. To these examples of inaccuracy enumerated by Dr. Cotton, we may add that in overrunning Dr. Blayney's beautiful and correct folio edition of the Bible, (printed at Oxford, in 1769, and justly considered as "the standard edition,") into the quarto size, the following words are omitted in the latter, in Rev. xviii. 22. after the words "no more," viz. " at all in thee; and no craftsman of whatsoever craft he be, shall be found any more." The existence of such errors as these, presents a most powerful inducement to the superintendants of the two University presses, and of his Majesty's printers, to exercise the utmost possible correctness in the final revision of their proof sheets; especially as, since the adoption of the stereotype process, a single error may be perpetuated through MANY THOUSAND impressions, as many indeed as may be taken from the stereotype plates. In the Bible to make nonsense by misprints is bad enough; but to make a sense directly contrary to that which is intended, is absolutely intolerable. Nearly as guilty were the editors of those Prayer Books, in one of which we read, "thou shalt commit adultery;" and in the other, in the collect at the communion, "Almighty God, the fountain of all wisdom, &c. give us for the UN worthiness of thy son Jesus Christ."!! *
From the length to which this article has extended, our readers will readily conclude that we think highly of the author's research. Though he modestly claims "no other merit than that of a little diligence," we think it but due to him, to state that every page exhibits marks of great diligence; and bibliographers, as well as all who take a deep interest in the literary history of our unrivalled authorised version, are highly indebted to Dr. Cotton for the volume which he has presented to them; and which is indispensably necessary to complete their biblical collections. We are not prepared to say that there are no errors or deficiencies, (absolute accuracy in a work of this kind we know, by experience, to be unattainable,) but these are neither frequent nor of sufficient importance to require any enumeration of them. The book is beautifully printed at the Clarendon Press; and the circumstance of the University of Oxford having taken
* A copy of the last mentioned edition of the Common Prayer, is now in the Archiepiscopal Library at Lambeth.
the printing and publishing of it upon themselves, sufficiently indicates their approbation of Dr. Cotton's work. We trust that its reception by the public will be such, as will encourage him to supply an important desideratum in British literature, by undertaking a bibliographical account of all the editions of the Bible in English, whether entire or partial, that are extant. These might be given in chronological order, (with a specimen of each) down to the year 1611, when the present authorised version was first published, the principal editions of which might be given, specially noticing such as are remarkable for their inaccuracy, beauty of execution, or other circumstances. Versions of the Book of Psalms should be given separately, the prose translations being distinguished from those which are in metre. Translations of the Scriptures, by individuals, subsequently to the appearance of the authorised version, might be given under the heads of-Translations of the entire Bible, of the Old Testament, and of detached Books thereof, in their proper order: Translations of the entire New Testament, and of detached books thereof, in their proper order: and a chronological index to the whole might conclude the work. Lewis's well-known History of the English Translations of the Scriptures,' (for whose unavoidable mistakes Dr. Cotton has offered a just as well as handsome apology,) would afford much useful matter. Dibdin's edition of Herbert's Typographical Antiquities, the Censura Literaria and British Bibliographer of Sir Egerton Brydges, and other bibliographical works, would also contribute some useful information; and above all, the peculiar facilities which Dr. Cotton's situation at Oxford presents to him, together with the persevering research displayed in the volume of which we have given an account, point him out as the fittest person to undertake such a laborious task. And if, besides gratifying the inquiries of the curious, he should be the means of exciting any one to a more attentive examination of the contents of the Sacred Scriptures, and to a deeper sense of gratitude for the inestimable treasure which we possess in an admirable authorised English version, he will have a reward of the purest and most enduring kind.