Buying a Geneva Bible

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Jake

Puritan Board Senior
What is the best edition of the Geneva Bible to use? I would like a leather cover, but as long as it will stay together with use, I don't mind if it is imitation.

I would also kind of like one with the Apocrypha (as did the original, correct?), so that I have it to reference when I am reading older works that reference it, even though I definitely do not consider it canonical!

This looks like my best option, although it does not have the Apocrypha. Is it good? What other suggestions have ye?

1599 Geneva Bible - Black Leather + CD ROM - Christian Reader
 

jogri17

Puritan Board Junior
It's the cool hip thing to do if your new to the Reformed faith. I went through my Geneva Bible phase also at one point.
 

Jake

Puritan Board Senior
I have been using a combination of NASB and ESV for the past five years, with my main Bible since 2009 being the Reformation Study Bible. I have been increasingly referring to Geneva Bible and KJV Bible online when I deal with differences in manuscripts between the CT and the MT/TR in certain authors I read, but I do not currently have a copy of the KJV or other Bible based on the TR (besides a New Testament of the YLT). It can be annoying when Calvin refers to a verse or phrase that does not exist in my Bible. I understand the basics of textual criticism and believe I am currently in support of the CT, but I would still like a decent copy of a MT Bible.

I appreciate the history of the Geneva Bible, even if the KJV is a far more widely used translation. I rather like some of the readings from passages I have read online and would like a copy. I would not be reading in public from this translation and I would probably not use it as my primary Bible, but I would like to have one. It does not concern me too much if it is widely used or not.

I would also like to read through the Bible in the translation. I have currently read through the Bible cover to cover in NIV, ESV, and NEB (the latter simply read so well that I could not put it down sometimes, though it certainly has its theological problems) and would like to read a TR translation.
 

a mere housewife

Not your cup of tea
Not to be a naysayer but what is the purpose of getting the Geneva bible since it is rarely, if ever used?

My husband brought one home perhaps a year and a half ago (though we aren't so new to the reformed faith anymore :) -- no leather cover, a heavy and not very portable facsimile hardback -- and I especially have loved the notes (especially in light of the historical situation in the preface, which was also well worth reading). I have even found some comfort in some of the old illustrations, with verses going all around -- and the particular emphasis there (which I have also encountered elsewhere in things from reformation times, but which is largely lost in our culture) of standing still and letting the Lord fight for us. The Lord did fight for them, for the persecution from which they had fled to Geneva was lifted just as this Bible was finished, and ready to be distributed. Wisdom in handling God's word doesn't go out of date: it's a very good study Bible, with very worthwhile insights from learned men in difficult times. And it's a beautiful piece of our English reformed history.
 

Wayne

Tempus faciendi, Domine.
Jake:

If you'll use the search feature, you'll find a number of good threads in discussion of which Geneva edition to buy,
as well as the merits of that translation.

Why, one fellow even said, "One of the smartest investments of my life."
 

Jake

Puritan Board Senior
Jake:

If you'll use the search feature, you'll find a number of good threads in discussion of which Geneva edition to buy,
as well as the merits of that translation.

Why, one fellow even said, "One of the smartest investments of my life."

I have tried to read through them, but many links are out of date and I am having trouble finding some editions and others matching them to current options. I thought I would ask again. For example, I cannot find anywhere that sells the Calvin legacy edition! :eek:
 

Wayne

Tempus faciendi, Domine.
Tolle Lege Press was the publisher of that edition. Try contacting them by phone to see if they might still have some available.
(even though none show up on the web.)

That said, I can't speak to the quality of that edition. I do remember some complaints about the binding of one recent edition,
but there have been several. That's why I pointed to the admittedly strenuous exercise of going back through earlier threads.
 

reaganmarsh

Puritan Board Senior
What do you mean by liner notes? Just being nosy...

"However I forgot the Geneva bible has liner notes, which makes it very appealing on second thought."
 

jfschultz

Puritan Board Junior
Jake, the link you posted is for a modern printing of the Geneva Bible in a modern typeset and spelling. To get a copy with Apocrypha you will need to find an original ($3K and up). The facsimile copy I have (and I guess Heidi has) is hard to read because of the type face and old spellings (i.e. faued for saved) and does not have the Apocrypha (though it is listed in the table of contents).
 

Jake

Puritan Board Senior
What do you mean by liner notes? Just being nosy...

"However I forgot the Geneva bible has liner notes, which makes it very appealing on second thought."

I think that he is just referring to that it is a study edition, with notes from reformers and such.

Jake, the link you posted is for a modern printing of the Geneva Bible in a modern typeset and spelling. To get a copy with Apocrypha you will need to find an original ($3K and up). The facsimile copy I have (and I guess Heidi has) is hard to read because of the type face and old spellings (i.e. faued for saved) and does not have the Apocrypha (though it is listed in the table of contents).

Yeah.. I was hoping to find a modern printing with the Apocrypha also, but that is not very important. I should probably just get a separate volume of the Apocrypha in some translation. I would rather not get a facisimile copy, and from what I can tell, all of the modern editions come from the same publisher. (Tolle Lege)
 

py3ak

Unshaven and anonymous
Staff member
The Hendrickson facsimile of the 1560 Geneva Bible does have the apocrypha. Some of the notes are hard to read because of the smaller typeface and a lack of clarity in the printing: I haven't found any indecipherable problems in the text itself, so far. This is the cheapest version of the Geneva Bible that I've been able to find in print.
 

Gavin

Puritan Board Freshman
I got the Tolle Leg one and I must say Im happy with the notes, short and pastoral. Ive had it for a while now (not like a hundred years) and the binding is holding out, but I am sort of carefull with it. The Geneva is very close to the King James, they even use easier words than the King James did. If your used to the King James, then this will be like that with cool notes. The prayers at the back are good reading too.:pray2:
 
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Somerset

Puritan Board Junior
The Banner of Truth recently published something from the Geneva Bible as a seperate work, I think it was the introduction to each book of the Bible. Perhaps another PBer who subscribes to the Banner, and has a filing system that lets them find things, can help.
 

Rich Koster

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
I purchased the 1599 from TL. The printed version lacks the Apocrypha, but the CD ROM has it. There are no commentary notes, as with the OT & NT, in the Apocrypha.
 

Pilgrim Standard

Puritan Board Sophomore
The Tolle Lege version that comes with a cd rom contains the Apocrypha On the CD rom but not in the printed bible.
I absolutely love my copy. I have used it since for a few years now, and find it a great blessing to follow along and note the differences with the KJV our pastor uses from the pulpit. I have found that many of the notes are of good value.

The down side is that I am rather disappointed in the covers of some of the newer printings. The bindings seem durable and tight but the leather in some printings is almost cardboard like in my opinion. My eldest son carries one in a bible cover and has not had any issues with the faux leather (bonded.) At the price they are selling at, I am half tempted to purchase a new one and have it rebound by one of the binders recommended on the board here.
 

Constantlyreforming

Puritan Board Sophomore
IN ALL SERIOUSNESS, If you look around, you can find an ORIGINAL for a steal....I'd do that if I were you. IF they are original and were rebound professionally, it may last much longer than any version you find that was a reprint. Take a look around. My dad just picked one up as well. It's nice to have something that could have been brought over with the Puritans on the Mayflower....

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---------- Post added at 09:22 AM ---------- Previous post was at 09:18 AM ----------

A few comments....

The Geneva Bible was the first Bible to have study notes in it. It is also the very first Bible to have chapter and verse numbers to aid the reader in study. It was the Bible used by William Shakespeare, Oliver Cromwell, John Knox, and John Bunyan....
 

Phil D.

Puritan Board Junior
Just a slight historical correction...

The 1560 Geneva was the first English Bible to include chapter and verse enumerations. However, it followed the chapter divisions originated by Cardinal Stephen Langton, which appeared in his 1205 edition of the Latin Vulgate. A Jewish Rabbi simply known as Nathan devised the basic verse system for the OT still used today, in 1448, which was later adopted, with a few minor revisions, in Robert Stephanus' Hebrew Bible of 1557. Stephanus was also responsible for the verse divisions still used in modern NTs, which were part of the 4th edition of his Greek/Latin NT, which was published in Geneva in 1551.

Here is a page from Stephanus' (aka Robert Estienne) 1551 NT.
http://smu.edu/bridwell_tools/publications/ryriecatalog/xi_3c.htm
 
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Jake

Puritan Board Senior
@Constantlyreforming: That certainly looks like a nice volume, but I would feel bad about using it and including my own notes in it!
 

toddpedlar

Iron Dramatist
IN ALL SERIOUSNESS, If you look around, you can find an ORIGINAL for a steal....I'd do that if I were you. IF they are original and were rebound professionally, it may last much longer than any version you find that was a reprint. Take a look around. My dad just picked one up as well. It's nice to have something that could have been brought over with the Puritans on the Mayflower....

"Look around" meaning what? Can you give some examples? Also, what's "a steal"? $500? $1000? The best price right now on ebay for a complete geneva bible, original printing, is $2900... Frankly, I don't think I've ever seen even a single leaf of a 1500's original printing of the Geneva Bible go for under $25 on ebay, let alone a full copy...
 

nicnap

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
It's the cool hip thing to do if your new to the Reformed faith. I went through my Geneva Bible phase also at one point.

Going a bit out of the way to sound uncharitable are we? You do not know the motivations behind this, nor can you impute your former motivations on someone else.
 

Jeff Burns

Puritan Board Freshman
IN ALL SERIOUSNESS, If you look around, you can find an ORIGINAL for a steal....I'd do that if I were you. IF they are original and were rebound professionally, it may last much longer than any version you find that was a reprint. Take a look around. My dad just picked one up as well. It's nice to have something that could have been brought over with the Puritans on the Mayflower....

"Look around" meaning what? Can you give some examples? Also, what's "a steal"? $500? $1000? The best price right now on ebay for a complete geneva bible, original printing, is $2900... Frankly, I don't think I've ever seen even a single leaf of a 1500's original printing of the Geneva Bible go for under $25 on ebay, let alone a full copy...

I just found a really nice first edition 1560 GB for 850.00! Wait... I forgot a few zeros. I meant 85,000.00! :duh:

---------- Post added at 02:21 PM ---------- Previous post was at 02:00 PM ----------

Just a quick question. What is the difference b/w the 1560 and the 1599 (other than 39 years)? There are a couple of folks who carry the 1599 to church where I am. I never realized there was an older edition.
 

Constantlyreforming

Puritan Board Sophomore
IN ALL SERIOUSNESS, If you look around, you can find an ORIGINAL for a steal....I'd do that if I were you. IF they are original and were rebound professionally, it may last much longer than any version you find that was a reprint. Take a look around. My dad just picked one up as well. It's nice to have something that could have been brought over with the Puritans on the Mayflower....

"Look around" meaning what? Can you give some examples? Also, what's "a steal"? $500? $1000? The best price right now on ebay for a complete geneva bible, original printing, is $2900... Frankly, I don't think I've ever seen even a single leaf of a 1500's original printing of the Geneva Bible go for under $25 on ebay, let alone a full copy...

I have seen a few go for $700.... I consider that a steal. You just have to keep your eyes open. Check windmillministries.org
 
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toddpedlar

Iron Dramatist
Well... $700 on an original Geneva (nice as it might be) isn't something I'll be keeping my eyes open for - that's way outta my league...
 

Edward

Puritanboard Commissioner
If you want the cheapest solution, download E-sword and add it as an additional Bible. (All free, if you already have a computer). It shows on the download page as having the Apocrypha, but it doesn't - there are other translations that do.
 

Gavin

Puritan Board Freshman
I suggested on the Tolle Lege site that maybe in a reprint they include the arguments, Calvin's catechism, Calvin's preface (Christ the end of the law) and maybe the Apocrypha. If enough people suggest this , or a combination of any of the above-they may do it:)
 
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