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TO THE MOST HIGH AND MIGHTY PRINCE
JAM E S,
DEFENDER OF THE FAITH, &c.
THE TRANSLATORS OF THE BIBLE
| REAT and manifold were the blessings, most dread Sovereign, which Almighty God, the Father of all mercies, bestowed upor
us the people of ENGLAND, when first he sent Your Majesty's Royal Person to ruļe and reign over us. For whereas it was the expectation of many, who wished not well unto our SION, that upon the setting of that bright OCCIDENTAL STAR, Queen ELIZABETH of most happy memory, some thick and palpable clouds of darkness would so bave overshadowed this land, that men should bave been in doubt which way they were to walk; and that it should hardly be known, who was to direct the unsettled State; the appearance of Your Majesty, as of the sun in his strength, instantly dispelled those supposed and surmised mists, and gave unto all that were well affected exceeding cause of comfort; especially when we beheld the Government established in Your Highness, and Your hopeful Seed, by an undoubted Title, and this also accompanied with peace and tranquillity at home and abroad.
But among all our joys, there was no one that more filled our hearts, than the blessed continuance of the preaching of God's sacred
Then not to suffer this to fall to the ground, but rather to take it up, and to continue it in that state, wherein the famous Predecessor of Your Highness did leave it: nay, to go forward with the confidence and resolution of a Man in maintaining the truth of CHRIST, and propagating it far and near, is that which hath so bound and firmly knit the hearts of all Your Majesty's loyal and religious people unto you, that your very name is precious among them : their eye doth behold You with comfort, and they bless you in their hearts, as that sanctified Person, who, under God, is the immediate Author of their true happiness. And this their contentment doth not diminish or decay, but every day increaseth and taketh strength, when they observe, that the zeal of Your Majesty toward the house of God doth not slack or go backward, but is more and more kindled, manifesting itself abroad in the farthest parts of CHRISTENDOM, by writing in defence of the Truth, (which hath given such a blow unto that man of sin, as will not be healed,) and every day at home, by religious and learned discourse, by frequenting the house of God, by hearing the Word preached, by cherishing the Teachers thereof, by caring for the Church, as a most tender and loving nursing Father.
There are infinite arguments of this right Christian and religious affection in Your Majesty; but none is more forcible to declare it to others than the vehement and perpetuated desire of accomplishing and publishing of this work, which now with all humility we present unto Your Majesty. For when Your Highness had once out of deep judgment apprehended how convenient it was, that out of the Original Sacred Tongues, together with comparing of the labours, both in our own, and other foreign Languages, of many worthy men who went before us, there should be one more exact Translation of the Holy Scriptures into the ENGLISH TONGUE; Your Majesty did never desist to urge and to excite those to whom it was commended, that the work might be hastened, and that the business might be expedited in so decent a manner, as a matter of such importance might justly require.
And now at last, by the mercy of God, and the continuance of our labours, it being brought unto such a conclusion, as that we have great hopes that the Church of ENGLAND shall reap good fruit thereby; we hold it our duty to offer it to Your Majesty, not only as to our King and Sovereign, but as to the principal Mover and Author of the work : humbly craving of Your most Sacred Majesty, that since things of this quality have ever been subject to the censures of illmeaning and discontented persons, it may receive approbation and patronage from so learned and judicious a Prince, as Your Highness is, whose allowance and acceptance of our labours shall more honour and encourage us, than all the calumniations and hard interpretations of other men shall dismay us. So that if, on the one side, we shall be traduced by Popish Persons at home or abroad, who therefore will malign us, because we are poor instruments to make God's holy Truth to be yet more and more known unto the people, whom they desire still to keep in ignorance and darkness; or if, on the other side
, we shall be maligned by selfconceited Brethren, who run their own ways, and give liking unto nothing, but what is framed by themselves
, and bammered on their anvil; we may rest secure, supported within by the truth and innocency of a good conscience, having walked the ways of simplicity and integrity, as before the Lord; and sustained without by the powerful protection of your
's grace and favour, which will ever give countenance to honest and Christian endeavours against bitter censures and uncharitable
The Lord of heaven and earth bless Your Majesty with many and happy days, that, as his heavenly hand bath enriched Your Highness with many singular and extraordinary graces; so you may be the wonder of the world in this latter age for happiness and true felieity, to the honour of that great GOD, and the good of bis Church ; through JESUS CHRIST our Lord and only Saviour.
EAL to promote the common good, whether it be by de- any synod or meeting of the Clergy, but rather the contrary : thingo havė Z been ca.*
vising any thing ourselves, or revising that which hath been And lastly, against Churchmaintenance and allowance, in such lumniated. laboured by others, deserveth certainly much respect and esteem, sort as the ambassadors and messengers of the great King of
but yet findeth þut cold entertainment in the world. It is wel- kings should be furnished, it is not unknown what a fiction or
of newness or renewing, but the same endured many a storm, of saith, but also as oft as we do any thing of note or consequence, againsaying or opposition ? A man would think that civility, we subject ourselves to every one's censure, and happy is he that
wholesome laws, learning and eloquence, synods, and Church- is lcast tossed upon tongues; for utterly to escape the snatch of
maintenance, (that we speak of no more things of this kind) them it is impossible. If any man conceit, that this is the lot UTEM Dirovs, should be as safe as a sanctuary, and ll out of shot, as they say, and portion of the meaner sort only, and that Princes are prithat no man would lift up his heel, no, por dog move his tongue vileged by their high estate, he is deceived. As the suord do
2 Sam. 11. against the motioners of them. For by the first we are distin: voureth as well one as another, as it is in Samuel ; nay, as the 25, como guished from brute beasts led with sensuality : by the second we great commander charged his soldiers in a certain battle to busin are bridled and restrained from outrageous behaviour, and from strike at no part of the enemy, but at the face; and as the king
doing of jujuries, wbether by fraud or by violence; by the third of Syria commanded his chief captains lo fight neither with small 1 Kings 22. .. we are enabled to inform and reform others, by the light and nor great, save only against the king of Israel: so it is too true, 31. L 34,51 L feeling that we have attained unto ourselves : ,,briefly, by the that envy striketh most spitefully at the fairest, and the
fourth, being brought together to a parley face to face, we sooner chiefest. David was a worthy prince, and no man to be com
: compose our differences, than by writings, which are endless : pared to him for his first deeds, and yet for as worthy ap act as L** .and lastly, that the Church be sufficiently provided for, is, so ever he did, (even for bringing back the ark of God in solemnity) 2 Sam. 6.
agreeable to good reason and conscience, that those mothers are he was scorned and scoffed at by his own wife. Solomon was 16.
s and mothers, (wheresoever his power and wisdom he built a temple to the LORD, such an
19,6 fm for their estates. Thus it is apparent, that these things which we
and call unto him for † casing of the burden, Muke, say they, touráxspeak of are of most necessary, use, and therefore that none; the grievous servitude of thy father, and his sore yoke, lighter. brev.
1 either without absurdity can speak against them, or without note, Belike he had charged them with some levies, and troubled them
Kings 12 of wickedness can spurn against them.
with some carriages ; hereupon they raise upia tragedy, and Anacharsis, Yet for all that, the learned know, that, certain worthy men wish in their heart the temple had never been built. So hard a with others.
been brought to untimely death for none other, fault, but thing it is to please all; even when we please God best, and do
for seeking to reduce their countrymen to good order, and dis- seek to approve ourselves to every one's conscience. *j) vido In Athens : cipline ; And that in some Commonweals it was made 4, capital -If we will descend to latter times, *c shall find many the like! The highest teitness crime, once to motion the making of a new law for the abrogat examples of such kind, or rather unkind, acceptance. 4. The first personages Libanius in Olynth.
8 of an old, though the same were most pernicious: And that Roman emperor did never do a more pleasing deed to the learned, calumniatDemosth. certain, which would be counted pillars of the State, and patterns nor
, more profitable to posterity, for conserving the record of times ed. Cato the
C. Cæsar, virtue and, prudence, could not be brought for a long time to in true supputation, than when he corrected the Calendar, and Plutarch: > elder.
give way to good letters and refined speech, but bare themselves ordered the year according to the course of the supist and
es averse from them, as from rocks, or boxes of poison: And yet this was imputed to him for novelty, and arrogancy, land proGregory the foarthly, that he was, no babę, byt a great Clerk, that gave forth, cured to him great obloguy, So the first Christened Emperor (at Constantine. Divinc.
(and in writing to remain to posterity) in passiop peradventures the least wise that openly professed the faith liimself, and allowed
ء و ( أن
THE TRANSLATORS TO THE READER.
need of a guardian, or overseer. So the best Christened Emperor, suficient for him, if he come to draw with a devout and pious mind,
for the love that he bare unto peace, thereby to enrich both him. as true religion requireth. Thus St. Augustine. And St. Hierome, S. Hieron.
Cyrill. 7. feats of chivalry, and shewed so much when he was provoked,) and boys that are bred up in has
Scriptures become most religious, &c. contra Jucondemned for giving himself to his ease, and to his pleasure. But what mention we three or four uses of the Scripture, whereas lianum. Justinian. To be short, the most learned Emperor of former times, (at the whatsoever is to be believed, or practised, or hoped for, is con
least, the greatest politician,) what thanks had he for cutting off tained in them? or three or four sentences of the Fathers, since
carne Christa facerent, male audire, for their good deeds to be evil spoken of. thou bringest in (or concludest) of thine owon (head or store, de tuo) 'Oión rs, Neither is there any likelihood that envy and malignity died and without Scripture. So St. Justin Martyr before him; We must Justin. teowere buried with the ancient. No, no, the reproof of Moses taketh know by all means, saith be, that it is not lawful (or possible) to
“Ελλην. Nomb. 32. hold of most ages, Ye ure risen up in your fathers' stead, an in- learn (any thing) of God or of right piety, save only out of the Pro- 'Trsempat14. crease of sinful men. What is that that hath been done that which phets, who teach us by divine inspiration. So St. Basil'after Tertul- vías ruingoEccles. 1.9.
plo, shall be done : and there is no new thing under the sun, saith the flian, N is a manifest falling away from the faith, and a fault of pre- . Basil. Acts 7.51. wise man.' And St. Stephen, As your fathers did, so do ye. This, sumption, either to reject any of those things that are written, or lo med sníctius. His Majes and more to this purpose, his Majesty that now reigneth (and bring in (upon the head of them, ituonytīb) any of those things that staney, not- long, and long, may be reign, and his offspring for ever, Himself, are not written. - We omit to cite to the same effect St. Cyrill, withstandor and children, and children's children always!) knew fall well, accord-bishop of fierusalem in his 4 Cateches. St. Hieróme against Hel. viation, for ing to the singular wisdom given unto bim by God, and the rare vidius, St. Augustine in his third bouk against the letters of Petilian, the survey learning and experience that he hath attained unto; namely, That and in very many other places of his works. Also we forbear to of the Eo whosoever attempteth any thing for the publick (especially'if it descend to later Fathers, because we will not weary the reader. glish translation. pertain to religion, and to the opening and clearing of the word of The Scriptùrès then being acknowledged to be so full and so perAurès, rad God) the same setteth himself upon a stage to be glouted upon by féct, how can we excuse ourselves of negligence, if we do not raidis, azi caidur sér
every' evil eye; yea, he casteth himself headlong upon pikes, 'to study them of curiosity, if we be not content with them? * Men Tort traidis. be gored by every sharp tongue. For he that meddleth with talk much of cipsorum, how many sweet and goodly things it had 'Espsoriaza
συκα φέρει men's religion in any part meddleth with their custom," nay, hanging on it; of the Philosopher's stone, that it türneth copper
και πίoνας. with their freehold ; and though they find no content in that into gold; of Cornu-copia, that it had all things necessary for food derous, "Nery is which they have, yet they cannot abide to hear of altering. Notendas aro withstanding his royal heart was not daunted or discouraged for Catholicon the drug; that it is instead of all purges; of Vulcan's ar ang mad ρίτριττος
Taans, &c. και άκμων
this or that colour, bot stood resolute, as a statue immoveable, and mour, " that it was an armour of proof against all thrusts and all An olive
bread, and unto them, to have care of religion', yea, to know it aright, yea', dise of trees of life, which bring forth fruit every month, and the honey in a c. to profess it zealoasly, yea, to promote it to the uttermost of their frivit thereof is for meat, and the leaves for medicine. It is not a vil.
power. This is their glory before all nations which mean well, and pot of Manna, or a ciuse of oil, which were for memory only, 'or
this will bring unto them a far more excellent weight of glory in for a meals meat or two; but, as it were, a shower of heavenly 1 Sam. 2. the day of the Lord Jesus! Por the Scripture saith pot'in vain, bread'sufficient for a whole host, be it 'hever so great, "and, as it
Then that honour me I zeill honour: neither was it'a vain word were, a whole cellar fult of oit vessels ; whereby all our necessities
that Encsébius delivered long ago, That piety toward God was the may be provided for, and our debts discharged.' m a word, it is 3. 10. cap. weapons
, and the only weapon, that both preserved Constantine's a panary of wholesome food against fenowef traditions ; a physi- Keviu ime ***** person, and avenged him of his enemies.
cian's shop (as St. Basil calleth it) of preservatives against poisoned resion,
S. Basil. in
manded to search, John 56 39. Isaiah 8. 20. They are 'com - ing life. And what marvel! the original thereof being from
They are reproved that were unskilful in them, or slow to be inditer, the Holy Spirit, not the wit of the Apostles or Prophets ; d2? 3+17" lieve them, Mat. 22. 29. Luke 24. 25. They can make us wise
the penmen, such as were sanctified from the womb, and endued unto salvation; 2 Tim. 3. 15. If we be ignorant," they will in with a principal portion of God's Spirit; the matter, veritý, pietý,
avail J97: ) struct;ns ;rif ont of the way, they will bring us home; if out of purity, uprightness; the form, God's word, God's testimony, God's
in order; they will reform us ; if in heaviness, comfort us ; 'if dull, oracles, the word of truth, the word of salvation, &c.; the effects, Confesso libe quicken rus; if cold, infame as. Tolle, lege; tolte, lege , Takë up light of understanding, stableness of persuasion, repentance from Son 2. and ready take up and read the Setiptures, (for unto them was dead” works, newness of life, Holiness, peace, joy in the Holy Her er en the direction) it was said dites se "Augustine by a smpernatural Ghost ; Tastly, the end and rewart of the study thereof
; the voices What sbever is in the Scriptures, believe me, saith the same with the saints' participation of the fieavenly nature, fruition par 30% romana? cup.
si Ste-Altgrietine, tha kigā and divindig there is serily struth, and a doch aut"ithérítatice Immortal, undebed, and that never
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30. διοσίβεια. Eusebius,
De utilit. crelenili,
THE TRANSLATORS TO THE READER.
to them to take that which they found, (the same being for the Translation But how shall men meditate in that which they cannot under greatest part true and sufficient) rather than by making a new, necessary. stand? How shall they understand that which is kept close in an in that new world and green age of the Church, to expose them1 Cor. 14. unknown tongue? as it is written, Except I know the power of the selves to many exceptions and cavillations, as though they made 11. voice, I shall be to him that speaketh a barbarian, and he that speak- a translation to serve their own turn ; and therefore bearing wit
eth shall be a barbarian to me. The Apostle excepteth no tongue; ness to themselves, their witness not to be regarded. This may
Latin the finest. Nature taught a natural man to confess, that was allowed to pass for current. Notwithstanding, though it was
Roman did the Syrian ; and the Jew: (even St. Hierome himself Symmachus : yea, there was a fifth, and a sixth edition, the authors
to so many :) so the Emperor of Constantinople calleth the Latin Hexapla, and were worthily and to great purpose compiled to2 Tom,
tongue barbarous, though Pope Nicolas do storm at it: so the gether by Origen. Howbeit the edition of the Seventy went away edit. Petri :
Jews long before Christ called all other nations Lognazim, which with the credit, and therefore not only was placed in the midst
cover of the well, that we may come by the water, even as eth this reason thereof, Because they were, as it were, enlightened Novell, diaGen. 29.10. Jacob rolled away the stone from the mouth of the well, by which with prophetical grace. Yet for all that, as the Egyptians are said of tax. 146.
II gapntorns means the locks of Laban were watered. Indeed without transla- the Prophet to be men and not God, and their horses flesh and not
ώσπερ χά. tion into the vulgar tongue, the unlearned are but like children at spirit; so it is evident, (and St. Hierome affirmeth as much) that the poros stigiJohn 4. 11. Jacob's well (which was deep) without a bucket or something to Seventy were interpreters, they were not prophets. They did
when a sealed book was delivered with this motion, Read fell, one while through oversight, another while through igno- S. Hieron.
great in Israel, and in none other place; while the dew lay on sense thereof according to the truth of the word, as the Spirit gave ment out of Gideon's fleece only, and all the earth besides was dry; then for them utterance. This may suffice touching the Greek translations the Hebrew one and the same people, which spake all of them the language of the Old Testament. into Greek. See S. Au
of Canaan, that is, Hebrew, one and the same original in Hebrew There were also within a few hundred years after Christ Translation gust. lib. 12, was sufficient. But when the fulness of time drew near, that the translations many into the Latin tongue: for this tongue also was
out of He
brew and contra Faust. Sun of righteousness, the Son of God, should come into the world, very fit to convey the Law and the Gospel by, because in those Greek into
whom God ordained to be a reconciliation through faith in his times very many countries of the West, yea of the South, East, Latin.
lating of the
Scripture Greek, becometh hereby like a candle set upon a candlestick, which embraced in the Empire : (for the learned know tbat even in St. into the giveth light to all that are in the house ; or like a proclamation Hierome's time, the Consul of Rome and his wife were both vulgar
tongues. sounded forth in the marketplace, which most men presently take Ethnicks, and about the same time the greatest part of the Senate
S. Hieron. knowledge of; and therefore that language was fittest to contain also) yet for all that the godly learned were not content to have Marcell. the Scriptures, both for the first preachers of the Gospel to appeal the Scriptures in the language which themselves understood, , Zosim. unto for witness, and for the learners also of those times to make Greek and Latin, (as the good lepers were not content to fare search and trial by. It is certain, that that translation was not so well themselves, but acquainted their neighbours with the store 2 Kings sound and so perfect, but that it needed in many places correc- that God had sent, that they alsu might provide for themselves;) %. tion; and who had been so sufficient for this work as the Apostles but also for the behoof and edifying of the unlearned, which