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Display cases at the library

400th Anniversary of the King James Bible

Currently on display, 4th floor, UMD Library (through 2013)

UMD Library Special Collections invites you to view a new exhibit from the Ramseyer Northern Bible Society Collection.

The year 2011 marked the 400th anniversary of the publication of what is now known as the “Authorized Version” or the “King James Bible,” the work of scholars and translators within the Church of England completed during the early years of the reign of King James I.

Libraries around the world commemorated the anniversary of this 1611 work produced by Robert Barker, the King’s Printer. “Manifold Greatness: The Creation and Afterlife of the King James Bible” was a traveling exhibit organized by the Folger Shakespeare Library, Washington, D. C., and the American Library Association Public Programs Office. The Manifold Greatness exhibit was at the University of Minnesota’s Wilson Library on the Twin Cities campus earlier this year.

Alan G. Thomas’s statement about the King James Bible noted its significance: “No book has had greater influence on the English language.” Linguistics scholar David Crystal’s 2010 book, Begat: The King James Bible and the English Language, investigated the Thomas comment by asking “Is it true?” He also asked the question, what do words like “influence” and “shaping” really mean? the Library Special Collections exhibit selectively draws upon and highlights these questions.

How many common phrases that we use without even thinking about them come from the Bible? How much has the language of the Bible influenced modern English? How many expressions of biblical origin come specifically from the King James Bible? Look at the exhibit, and decide for yourself..


Some past displays from the Ramseyer collection
From Ojibwe To Oromo: The Languages Of The People Of Minnesota
Writing Systems of the World
Bible Illustration Through the Centuries
Scriptures in the languages of the immigrants to and residents of Minnesota
Twentieth Century Translations
Rare and Unusual Items in the Collection
Fifteen translations of the story of the Good Samaritan
Christmas & Hanukkah with Illustrations from Bibles in the Collection
Gustave Doré as a Bible Illustrator
The Problems of Bible Translation
Early Printed Books in the Ramseyer Collection
The Scriptures in Unusual Languages
Native American Languages of Canada and the United States
Work of Bible Societies
Original Manuscripts of the Bible
History of the Translation of the Bible into English
In Celebration of Hanukkah and Christmas