Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Erasmus Greek-Latin Bible

1516 Erasmus Greek-Latin Parallel
New Testament: First Edition
An influential and very early work. We are not aware of any other copies for sale in the world. This edition was used by Tyndale to translate the New Testament into the English language for the first time. It was also used by Luther to translate the New Testament into the German language for the first time. Most scholars consider the 1516 Erasmus Parallel New Testament, in either the 1516 or the 1519 printing, to be one of the top ten most important books ever printed.

ERASMUS, Desiderius, ed.
Latin and Greek New Testament
Basle: Johann Frobern: 1516

This is the first edition of this work, which was dedicated to Pope Leo X, whose courteous reply was printed in later editions of the book; nevertheless the publication was a great impetus to the Reformation and Luther's German New Testament was done from the second edition; Erasmus' own new Latin translation, printed parallel to the Greek Text, is different from the Vulgate, which papal authority subsequently declared should be used exclusively.


Since Greek and Latin were printed side by side, I contend that no Bible lacks influence from Erasmus Latin paraphrase/translation. We know Tyndale was influence by Luther's translation and Coverdale mentions Pagnini. Do we really think that Tyndale was uninfluenced by a translation that was directly under his nose?

Photo: Ricoblog


Peter Kirk said...

Just for clarification, in this comment I was reacting to what looked like a claim that Tyndale translated the Latin without looking at the Greek. Now you may well be right that he looked at the Latin as well as the Greek. But we mustn't play down the uniqueness of his contribution by denying that he translated basically from the Greek, at least unless there is good evidence for that.

Suzanne McCarthy said...


I will get back to this soon. I really mean that he was influenced by Erasmus' Latin. How much - I don't know yet.

Anonymous said...

Oops! I'm sorry but, I forgot to mention that the Erasmus' 1522 Edition can be purchased in book form or downloaded from this site:


Suzanne McCarthy said...

Thanks so much. I will follow up on these links. I am very glad to hear from you again. I hope you will email me. My email is in my profile.

Several people have emailed me about your fonts but unfortunately my files have been corrupted. I forwarded some of them on to you but I need to check and see if there are others.

jahedquist said...

Does anyone know if Erasmus translated the Old Testament? And more to my interest, what was Luther's source on the Old Testament? I am a singer who is confused by the literal translation of a Psalms verse used by Brahms in his requiem. Brahms took his lines from the Luther Bible, which does not appear to jive with the KJV, the Douay, the Vulgate or the Septugint. Any info would be appreciated. Also, I'll send you the verse if you like. Jack