Item #7757 The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments with the Apocrypha. Translated Out of the Original Tongues, And With the Former Translations diligently Compare and Revised, By the special Command of King James I, of England. With an Index.
The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments with the Apocrypha. Translated Out of the Original Tongues, And With the Former Translations diligently Compare and Revised, By the special Command of King James I, of England. With an Index.
The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments with the Apocrypha. Translated Out of the Original Tongues, And With the Former Translations diligently Compare and Revised, By the special Command of King James I, of England. With an Index.
The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments with the Apocrypha. Translated Out of the Original Tongues, And With the Former Translations diligently Compare and Revised, By the special Command of King James I, of England. With an Index.
The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments with the Apocrypha. Translated Out of the Original Tongues, And With the Former Translations diligently Compare and Revised, By the special Command of King James I, of England. With an Index.
The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments with the Apocrypha. Translated Out of the Original Tongues, And With the Former Translations diligently Compare and Revised, By the special Command of King James I, of England. With an Index.
The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments with the Apocrypha. Translated Out of the Original Tongues, And With the Former Translations diligently Compare and Revised, By the special Command of King James I, of England. With an Index.
The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments with the Apocrypha. Translated Out of the Original Tongues, And With the Former Translations diligently Compare and Revised, By the special Command of King James I, of England. With an Index.

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The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments with the Apocrypha. Translated Out of the Original Tongues, And With the Former Translations diligently Compare and Revised, By the special Command of King James I, of England. With an Index.

Worcester, Mass.: Isaiah Thomas, 1791. Folio (15.75” x 10.25”), Old and New Testaments together in one volume. Original full calf with red lettering-piece stamped in gold at spine, blue marbled endpapers. Vol. 1 (so designated on title page): [4], 460 pp.; [Vol. 2]: [2], 461–1012 + 50 engraved plates. Family register of David and Hannah (Goodhue) Smith in ink on verso of [vol 2], p. [2], the New Testament title page. CONDITION: Good, expert repairs to head and tail of spine and along front lower portion of front joint; text foxed, plates heavily foxed, as usual; occasional small (less than 1.5”) tears throughout, only one affecting plate (XXXIII); 3–4” tears to pp. 167, 413, plates XLI and XLIV (both in margin); 7–8” tears to pp. 165, 205, 335, 872, plate XLI; no losses to text or images. Housed in a recent morocco backed box.

The first folio Bible printed in America, by the country’s “patriot printer,” Isaiah Thomas.

Dubbed “the Baskerville of America” by Benjamin Franklin, Isaiah Thomas issued a folio and a quarto Bible simultaneously, and Wright notes that “The two Thomas Bibles of 1791 were without doubt far in advance of any other publications of the same kind that had appeared in America in point of typography, excellence of paper, binding, and general execution” (pp. 81–82). Published immediately after the ratification of the Bill of Rights, the folio edition opens with a note from Thomas situating it as an important accompaniment to this national development:

The civil authority hath set an example of moderation and candor to all Christians, by securing equal privileges to all; and it must be their ardent and united wish, independently of foreign aid, to be supplied with copies of the sacred Scriptures, the foundation of their Religion—a religion which furnishes motives to the faithful performance of every patriotic, civil and social duty.

In preparing the work, Thomas compared the language of “not less than eight” significant English Bibles (most but not all of which were printings of the King James translation), and then had every page of the present edition examined by “the Clergymen of Worcester, and…other capable persons.” In keeping with his patriotism, all the plates are by American engravers: the majority by Joseph Seymour, with others by John Norman, Samuel Hill, and Amos Doolittle. The plate list, sometimes lacking in one-volume issues, is present in this copy.

A celebrated American Bible from one of the young country’s most important printers, this copy much better preserved than most.

REFERENCES: Evans 23186; Sabin 5172; Wright, Early Bibles of America, pp. 74–88; “Isaiah Thomas—Patriot Printer,” American Antiquarian Society online.

Item #7757

Price: $12,500.00

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