Talk:Geneva Bible

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The introduction reads like advertising copy. It positively glows with admiration. Would someone please address this? If there's one thing I can't stand, it's Wikipedia having biased verbiage. --Aaronchall (talk) 07:55, 14 March 2010 (UTC)

I just re-flagged this for the same reasons. The piece is very well written, so it is especially worth cleaning up. Please cite serious scholarly sources to alleviate the current appearance of NPOV & bias. 7 August 2011

I put up two citations (both to Metzger) for the assertions about historical influence and about who used it (which can be proved by how they quoted it, as Smerdis comments below). BUT I agree that the introduction overall reads like advertising copy... in fact, I think I saw the same text on an Amazon summary. So I too would love to see it re-written if someone had time. But, the facts and the judgement about historical influence are pretty solid I'd say.Megercliff (talk) 19:07, 15 December 2012 (UTC)


"This was the Bible read by William Shakespeare, by John Donne, and by John Bunyan, author of Pilgrim's Progress. It was the Bible that was brought to America on the Mayflower and used by Oliver Cromwell in the English Civil War. Because the language of the Geneva Bible was more forceful and vigorous, most readers preferred this version strongly over the Bishops' Bible, the translation authorised by the Church of England under Elizabeth I."

POV-o-rama. I'm glad the author has the psychic power to read the minds of dead authors and tell me what they did and didn't read.

Anon Faultfinder strikes! The Geneva Bible was massively circulated in both English printed and imported editions during the reign of Elizabeth I. The Bishops' Bible was not reprinted very often. If those authors read an English bible, the Geneva Bible is what they would have read. In fact, Shakespeare, Donne, and Bunyan quote the Geneva Bible. -- Smerdis of Tlön 22:46, 9 Feb 2005 (UTC)
  • The Bishop's Bible was a specific Reaction on Elizabeth's part to the Geneva. The official Bible of the Church of England was the Greate up to the creation of the creation of the Bishop's. Elizabeth was so alarmed at the popularity of a "non-authorized" version that she mandated the Bishop's translation. Not withstanding the official nature of the Bishop's Bible in the Anglican Church, the Geneva was the most widely published Bible up to the KJV version. (talk) 12:38, 21 October 2009 (UTC)
Yes, from the mouth of an idiot, it is pretty ovious the they read the Geneva Bible when the directly quote it. Oh, and another idiot added a link to his website claiming that it was the entire Geneva Bible with pictures, but when you go to the link, it was nothing what it claimed:(

The idiot who put up the link to reactor core simply wrote the link incorrectly, but that site really does have what it claims. -- 14:31, 16 September 2005 (UTC)

Ahh, I see that it does now. When I originally look, I browsed the website to try to fix the link before I removed it. After I couldn't find the page I assumed that it was someone just linking for the extra traffic. I cleaned up the links section, Facsimiles -> Text -> Articles.

"used by Oliver Cromwell in the English Civil War." -- that sounds pretty surreal, suggesting that Cromwell actually 'used' the Bible in warfare, for the thumping of royalist skulls or something :) 16:17, 23 October 2005 (UTC)

Quoting from a specific edition of a bible does not prove that the person doing the quoting actually read the entire bible or was even educated in the bible. About the only thing that Shakespeare's quotes from the bible prove is that he read those quotes from the bible. Did he PROBABLY read the Geneva Bible? Yes probably. But probably isn't proof. Collectively, his bible quotes show he most likely did have access to and read a Geneva Bible. I've quoted liberally from several books that I have never read in their entirety. The article as written gives the vague impression that Shakespeare studied the Geneva Bible. I would like to see a little better evidence to support this claim Surely if he did read the Geneva bible some one witnessed it. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:47, 15 January 2016 (UTC)

Page layout issue[edit]

I just moved the frontispiece image tag lower, since it was interfering with the clomn thing showing the two excerpts, they were overlaying each other and unreadable. Now, however, the image runs down beside the links section, which I think appears rather sloppy. This might be avoided if the Genesis 1 and John 3 quotes were not also stacked up on the right side. I am wondering why they are there at all, since without memorized familiarity with other versions they "mean" nothing. Could, or should, they be moved down below the other comparison column thing and presented with the Bishop's or KJ version of the same text? human 23:41, 22 February 2007 (UTC)


Who translated the Geneva Bible. Here in the English Wikipedia I can read it was translated by William Whittingham and in the French Wikipedia I can read it was translated by Pierre Robert Olivétan. What is correct? -- MarkusHagenlocher (talk) 21:07, 15 March 2009 (UTC)

There are two bibles called Geneva Bible. Both were translated in Geneva. The first one was a French translation by Olivetan and the second was an English translation by Whittingham and others. The French translation was also called French Geneva Version. -- (talk) 20:58, 21 January 2010 (UTC)


Does this translation of the Bible contain the Apocrypha?--Kencaesi (talk) 22:08, 10 April 2009 (UTC)

  • Authorized translations of this Bible contained the Apocrypha. I have numerous of them in my collection. However, this is only true with the authorized versions until their final printing in 1616 in small folio Herbert 348. After this edition, printing of the Geneva version was prohibited by James in England. Because of the demand for the version by the Puritans, copies were printed in the low countries that did not contain the Apocrypha. The most infamous of these is the "1599" It is a copy of the 1599 Geneva by Barker printed in the low countries and lacks the Apocrypha. Due to the fact that it was typeset by non English speakers, all sorts of typos made it into the volume. A great number of variants are known. The use of the 1599 date allowed Puritans in England to claim that their Bible was printed in 1599 and so legal. As a general note, Bibles at the time were almost often obtained from the printer as a set of leaves and then taken to a bookbinder to be bound in the manner the customer wanted. The lack of an Apocrypha would not have been of prima facia evidence that the book was printed after the date that James set as the last official printing. (talk) 12:38, 21 October 2009 (UTC)
  • Someone who knows his/her Bible history should emphasize how the Geneva Bible's printing was banned in England by officials of the Anglican Church. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:20, 27 December 2014 (UTC)

Dead links[edit]

This article has dead links in the External Links section. e.g.

Have indicated ‘dead links’ in the main text.--Lepton6 (talk) 17:09, 24 December 2009 (UTC)

Surviving copies?[edit]

Does anyone know how many copies survive in America?

It is likely that there are thousands of copies of 16th century editions in America. At this moment there are more than 30 copies of 1560-1598 editions and 20 copies of the "1599" edition being offered for sale.Virginia Faulkner (talk) 13:30, 25 February 2013 (UTC)


Can anyone speak to readership issues? How widely circulated was this? Could we have citations regarding the very interesting claims in the introduction (re: Cromwell, etc.)? There's no meaningful citations in the current piece, so I don't even know where to start. I greatly appreciate the efforts of whoever can tidy up this very well-written and informative but currently very unhelpful and dubious entry. Isaac, 7 August 2011

Bold & bald-faced assertion[edit]

The idea that the KJV Dan 4:1-3 was just ordered to be included by Elizabeth I (?!) or James I is literaly presented in boldface without any supporting footnote or any other discernable support. It hardly was actually put in a 1611 translation of the Bible by order of a monarch who was then deceased for a decade; the project did not even begin until over five years after her demise. I think that someone should either provide credible support for this incredible assertion ASAP or it should be removed from the article. (talk) 05:14, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

Other Geneva Bible Translations[edit]

I think the article is thorough. I would like to make a suggestion regarding Wikipedia organizational method. The title of the article is "Geneva Bible," but it does not differentiate between the English Geneva Bible and other Bibles that were printed in the 1500's in Geneva. My understanding is that these Bibles were printed in Geneva because the governments of the home countries (such as England and France) forbade the translation of the Bible from Latin or Greek into other languages, a result of various papal edicts. The English Geneva Bible was begun in 1560. The French Geneva Bible, based primarily on the translation of Olivetan, was highly influenced by Protestant French reformer Calvin. Several French Geneva Bibles were printed under the supervision of Robert Estienne (in Latin, Robertus Staphanus), as well as his four sons, and are known as the Stephanus Bibles. I think early Spanish Bibles, known as the Biblia del Reina Valera (a/k/a biblia del oso (the Bear Bible)) was first printed in Basel in 1569 -- not sure it's considered a "Geneva" Bible, but it neverthless was printed in Switzerland. So perhaps the title should be changed to Geneva Bible (English) with at least one new article, such as Geneva Bible (French), etc. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:29, 21 June 2011 (UTC)

Yes, it is time ago that I have made an simple english article to it: Bible de Genève with friendly greeings, Soenke Rahn --Soenke Rahn (talk) 18:06, 7 August 2011 (UTC)

Translation sources[edit]

Quote "the Geneva Bible was translated from scholarly editions of the Greek New Testament and the Hebrew Scriptures" Does anyone know which? For example, we know that the King James translators used Beza and Stephanus for the New Testament. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:15, 19 March 2012 (UTC)

Breeches Bible[edit]

So, not a single word on this Bible being referred to as the Breeches Bible? And why not? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:15, 3 August 2012 (UTC)

Edit the article by telling us what the reference means. (talk) 23:51, 26 February 2013 (UTC)Hans Wurst
I looked in vain for reference to the rendering of Genesis 3 verse 7, which caused the nickname of "Breeches Bible" in that it stated Adam and Eve sewed fig leaves together to make themselves "breeches" ("aprons" in King James version, "coverings" in more modern translations). Cloptonson (talk) 08:07, 5 April 2013 (UTC)