The King James Bible

The Holy Bible, Conteyning the Old Testament and the New. Newly Translated out of the Originall Tongues, & with the Former Translations diligently Compared and Revised by his Majesties Special Comandement, Appointed to be read in Churches, Imprinted at London by Robert Barker, Printer to the Kings most excellent majestie, Anno Dom. 1611.

The King James version, called the “Authorized Version” in England, was a revision of the Bishops’ Bible on the basis of Beza 1598, with much direct borrowing from the English texts of Tyndale 1535 and of the Genevan Bible.

1. Reprints

The Holy Bible: a Facsimile in a reduced size of the Authorized Version published in the year 1611, with an introduction by A.W. Pollard, and illustrative documents. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1911.

The Holy Bible, an Exact Reprint Page for Page of the Authorized Version Published in the Year MDCXI. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1833. Roman type. (reprinted by Thomas Nelson in 1993 as The Holy Bible, 1611 Edition).

William Aldis Wright, ed., The Authorised Version of the English Bible, 1611, edited by William Aldis Wright. 5 volumes. Cambridge: University Press, 1909.

The Holy Bible, conteyning the Old Testament, and the New; newly translated out of the originall tongues & with the former translations diligently compared and reuised. London, Imprinted by Robert Barker, printer to the King, 1611. Cleveland: World Publishing Co., 1965. “Facsimile of the first impression.”

2. General Studies

Ward S. Allen, ed., Translating for King James: being a true copy of the only notes made by a translator of King James’s Bible, the Authorized Version, as the Final Committee of Review revised the translation of Romans through Revelation at Stationers’ Hall in London in 1610-11. Allen Lane: Penguin Press, 1970. A reproduction of notes taken by John Bois as he and others discussed the translation.

Ward S. Allen, Translating the New Testament Epistles, 1604-1611: A Manuscript from King James’s Westminster Company. Nashville: Vanderbilt University Press, 1977. A collation of Lambeth Palace Library MS. 98, with the Bishops’ Bible, and the Authorized Version of 1611. Includes bibliographical references.

Ward S. Allen and Edward C. Jacobs, The Coming of the King James Gospels: A Collation of the Translators’ Work-in-Progress. Fayetteville: University of Arkansas Press, 1995. Collates the scribal notes in a copy of the Bishops’ Bible used to record revisions for the KJV. Reproduces the text of the Bishops’ Bible, the proposed revisions, and the final form accepted in the KJV.

Irena Dorota Backus, The Reformed Roots of the English New Testament: The Influence of Theodore Beza on the English New Testament. Pittsburgh: Pickwick Press, 1980.

Benson Bobrick, Wide as the Waters: The Story of the English Bible and the Revolution It Inspired. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2000.

Frank Ely Gaebelein, Down through the ages; the story of the King James Bible. New York, The Macmillan company, 1924.

E. J. Goodspeed, ed., Translators to the Reader; Preface to the King James Version, 1611. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1935.

David Daiches, The King James Version of the English Bible; an account of the development and sources of the English Bible of 1611 with special reference to the Hebrew tradition. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1941. Reprinted 1968.

Melvin E. Elliott, The Language of the King James Bible: A Glossary Explaining its Words and Expressions. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1967. This is a very helpful book that gives a glossary of all the archaic words in the KJV. This book has nearly 2000 entries.

Alister McGrath, In the Beginning: The Story of the King James Bible and How It Changed a Nation, a Language and a Culture. New York: Doubleday, 2000.

Adam Nicolson, God’s Secretaries: The Making of the King James Bible. New York: HarperCollins, 2003. ISBN: 0060185163.

Gustavus S. Paine, The Learned Men. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell Co., 1959. Reprinted as The Men Who Produced the King James Bible. Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1988.

E.F. Rhodes and L. Lupas, The Translators to the Reader: The Original Preface of the King James Version of 1611 Revisited. New York: American Bible Society, 1997.

William Rosenau, Hebraisms in the Authorized Version of the Bible. Baltimore: Lord Baltimore Press, 1902.

F.H.A. Scrivener, ed., The Cambridge Paragraph Bible of the Authorized English version: with the Text Revised by a Collation of its Early and Other Principal Editions, the Use of the Italic Type Made Uniform, the Marginal References Remodelled, and a Critical Introduction Prefixed. Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press, 1873. This is a critical edition of the Authorized Version, containing a reconstruction of its original text and marginal notes, but with modernized spelling and with revision of the italics. The “Critical Introduction” to this edition was later revised and printed separately, under the title The Authorized Edition of the English Bible (see below). The New Testament portion of Scrivener’s edition was reprinted in 1962 as part of The New Testament Octapla, edited by Luther Weigle (see Weigle 1962).

F.H.A. Scrivener, The Authorized Edition of the English Bible (1611), its Subsequent Reprints and Modern Representatives. Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press, 1884; reprinted 1910. This is the definitive work on the textual sources and history of the Authorized Version. Scrivener’s appendixes A, B, and C give very full lists of the variations between editions of the Authorized Version, and his appendix E compares the Greek text presumed to underlie the Authorized Version (see Scrivener 1881) with several early printed editions and translations, listing all differences with Estienne 1550 and Beza 1598.

Edwin Eliott Willoughby, The making of the King James Bible. Los Angeles: Plantin Press, 1956.

Marvin Vincent, Word Studies in the New Testament. New York: Scribners, 1887. Issued in four volumes 1887-1890 and reprinted by Eerdmans in 1946. Currently available from Hendrickson. In these volumes Vincent offers many corrections to the KJV, and generally compares it to the English Revised Version (1881)

Millar Burrows, Diligently Compared: The Revised Standard Version and the King James Version of the Old Testament. New York: Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1964. A detailed and scholarly comparison.

Ralph Earle, Word Meanings in the New Testament. Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1986. Earle gives explanations for most of the important differences in rendering between the King James Version and the major English versions published in the twentieth century.

Hannibal Hamlin and Norman W. Jones, eds., The King James Bible After Four Hundred Years: Literary, Linguistic, and Cultural Influences. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011.

3. Books by King James Version Apologists

Please note: The books listed below contain many falsehoods. They are included in this bibliography only because of their importance as literature of the “King James Only” teaching which arose in some conservative churches during the latter half of the 20th century.

David Otis Fuller, Which Bible? Grand Rapids: Grand Rapids International Publications, 1970. 3rd ed. 1972.

David Otis Fuller, True or False? The Westcott-Hort Textual Theory Examined. Grand Rapids: Grand Rapids International Publications, 1973.

David Otis Fuller, Counterfeit or Genuine? Grand Rapids: Grand Rapids International Publications, 1978.

Jay P. Green, ed., Unholy Hands on the Bible. 2 vols. Lafayette, Indiana: Sovereign Grace Trust Fund, 1990.

Edward F. Hills, The King James Version Defended. Des Moines, Iowa: Christian Research Press, 1956. 4th ed. 1984.

Theodore P. Letis, ed., The Majority Text: Essays and Reviews in the Continuing Debate. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Institute for Biblical Textual Studies, 1987. 2nd edition (with a new forward), 2000.

Theodore P. Letis, The Ecclesiastical Text: Text Criticism, Biblical Authority, & the Popular Mind. Philadelphia: Institute for Renaissance & Reformation Biblical Studies, 1997.

Philip Mauro, Which Version? Authorized or Revised? Boston: Hamilton Bros., Scripture Truth Depot, 1924. Reprinted in True or False? ed. by David Otis Fuller (1973).

Gail A. Riplinger, New Age Bible Versions. Munroe Falls, Ohio: A.V. Publications, 1993.

D. A. Waite, Defending the King James Bible: A Four-fold Superiority. Collingswood, NJ: Bible For Today Press. 1992.

Benjamin G. Wilkinson, Our Authorized Bible Vindicated. Washington, D.C., 1930. Reprinted in the 3rd ed. of Which Bible? ed. by David Otis Fuller (1972).

Jasper J. Ray, God Wrote Only One Bible. Junction City, Oregon: Eye Opener Publications, 1980.

4. Against the King James Version Apologists

D. A. Carson, The King James Version Debate: A Plea for Realism. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1979.

Eugene H. Glassman, The Translation Debate. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 1981.

Peter Johannes Thuesen, In discordance with the Scriptures: American Protestant battles over translating the Bible. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.

James R. White, The King James Only Controversy: Can You Trust the Modern Translations? Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House Publishers, 1995.

Roy E. Beacham and Kevin T. Bauder, One Bible Only? Examining Exclusive Claims for the King James Bible. Grand Rapids: Kregel, 2001.

James A. Price, The King James Only Controversy in American Fundamentalism Since 1950. Th.D. dissertation, Temple Baptist Seminary, 1990.