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Running for Cover... the Coverdale Bible is Published

The first full English translation of the Bible is edited and published by Bishop Miles Coverdale. Coverdale is not doing much direct translation. He knows some Greek and Hebrew, but his forte is creating a good flow of language for easier reading. Much of the strangeness of the Bible comes from attempts to translate too literally the Hebrew and Greek phrases that make sense only in the original language. Tyndale had attempted this same thing with his translation of the New Testament. Much of Tyndale's work is included in the Coverdale Bible along with the work of Tyndale's nemesis, George Joye, who copy-proofed the Tyndale Bible and made a number of "corrections" regarding the afterlife vs resurrection that caused a rift between them. Coverdale, himself will go on to edit a number of Bibles, including the Great Bible but the Coverdale Bible itself will remain a best seller. [1] [2] [3]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
Bishop Coverdale will survive his translation of the Bible but it will be a close thing. As Kings and Queens come and go he will find himself exalted to high office or cast out under Queen "Bloody" Mary. He will manage to avoid losing his head. Tyndale will not be so lucky. As with any translation, there is always a balance between ease of reading, and conveying some hidden meaning in the original text. I recall the story of a minister who would base his sermons on the highlighted words in his Bible. He believed these were important words, and indeed they were. The publisher had highlighted the words that had questionable translations as a warning to the reader. This is why a concordance is needed when studying the Bible. Even the best translations are only an interpretation. You are being led. As long as you trust your leader, that's OK, but as the old Russian proverb goes... trust but verify. [4]

The Man for All Seasons is Sir Thomas More

Sir Thomas More is smart enough to find a legal exception to satisfy his oath to his King, but not smart enough to outwit his personal conscience. Although English Law requires him to swear an oath that Anne Boleyn is the Queen and her children are heirs to the throne, Sir More is a faithful Catholic who must side with the Pope, who refuses to grant King Henry the 8th an annulment of marriage to Queen Catherine of Aragon. That means, from his perspective, the King's marriage to Anne is bigamy. Bigamy has been outlawed for over a thousand years so annulment of a marriage is required. With the split between the Church of England and the Catholic Church the Pope isn't going to annul the King's marriage any time soon so key people are forced to take oaths of loyalty to the King and to validate his marriage to Queen Anne. Sir More resigned his post as Lord Chancellor but it was not enough for the King. Sir Thomas More's last words are "The king's good servant, but God's first." His head is summarily removed, parboiled and set upon a pike on London's Bridge. Sir More will be sainted in 1935. [5] [6]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
Cardinal John Fisher was also executed along with several monks. Most, if not all of them, are sainted. The Holy Roman Emperor remarked, "I would rather have lost the best city in my dominion than such a counselor as More." An inspirational movie on the life of Saint Sir Thomas More was made in 1966 entitled "A Man for All Seasons" based on the play by the same name. In the modern day we are close to taking similar loyalty oaths without exception to matters of conscience. It is one thing for a private business owner to walk out to the parking lot and fire anyone whose car carries a certain bumper sticker. You need not wear your opinion on your sleeve (or bumper) on the owner's property. It is another for government to do so at the point of a gun. When one must bake a cake for a gay wedding or lose one's business without exception to a matter of conscience, we have crossed the line into George Orwell's dystopia of 1984. It's like a utopia only everything turns out bad. [7] [8] [9]

Pizarro Wins the War against the Barbary Pirates ... All the Way from Peru *

The Pizarro brothers have been ransacking everything the Incas have with the help of the tribes that the Incas had dominated for years. But the Pizarro brothers have no respect for any of the tribes. They have put up a puppet Inca Emperor to rule and have abused him terribly. They have also sent whole ships worth of gold (about 1 million ducats) back to the King of Spain who is also the Holy Roman Emperor... just in time to fund his war against the Ottomans at Tunis. The Sultan has been building up a navy of 70 galleys led by Barbarossa, and just when it seems they are ready to rock and roll, the Emperor's fleet slides in and devastates them. Galleys of the Ottomans with Jews chained to the oars battle galleys of the Emperor with Protestants chained to the oars. Apparently Protestants are better than Jews in the "oars" department. Barbarossa escapes capture but the stench of 30,000 rotting corpses forces the Emperor to move his camp a little further away than he planned. [10]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
Before everyone starts patting the Pizarro brothers on the back, it looks like they held back a million gold ducats for themselves. Tunis itself will be recaptured a few decades later in 1574 and will remain a problem for Christian shipping until 1830 when France finally invades Algeria. In case anyone was wondering... yes... these are the same Barbary Pirates that figure into President Jefferson's calculations when he plans an "Overseas Contingency Operation" against these pirates of American shipping in the Mediterranean Sea along with pirates from Tripoli and Algiers. [11] [12] [13]

This Year on Wikipedia

Year 1535, Wikipedia.

See Also


* The asterisk in the section header indicates that it was read on the podcast.
  1. Myles Coverdale. Greatsite Marketing (2014). Retrieved on 15 March 2015. “In 1535, Myles Coverdale secured his place in history forever, by becoming the first person to print an entire Bible in the English language. In 1537 some of his translations were included in the Matthew-Tyndale Bible, the first true, direct English translation of the complete Bible.”
  2. George Joye - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 15 March 2015. “His Biblical translations were used by Myles Coverdale (for the Coverdale Bible), and by others.”
  3. 1535 Coverdale Bible. The Bible Museum (2010). Retrieved on 15 March 2015.
  4. Queen &lquot;Bloody&rquot; Mary. Greatsite Marketing (2014). Retrieved on 15 March 2015. “Mary had always rejected and resented the break with Rome that her father had instituted and his subsequent establishment of the Anglican Church that had flowed from her half-brother's protestantism, and now she tried to turn England back to Roman Catholicism. This effort was carried out by force, and hundreds of Protestant leaders were executed. The first was John Rogers (a.k.a. &lquot;Thomas Matthews&rquot;), the printer of the &lquot;Matthews-Tyndale Bible&rquot;. His execution was followed by the execution of former Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Cranmer, who was primarily responsible for the printing of the &lquot;Great Bible&rquot;. Hundreds more would follow in Mary's bloody reign of terror. This earned the queen the title of &lquot;Bloody Mary&rquot;.”
  5. Bigamy - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 15 March 2015. “Before Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Empire, Diocletian and Maximilian passed strict anti-polygamy laws in 285 AD that mandated monogamy as the only form of legal marital relationship, as had traditionally been the case in classical Greece and Rome.[citation needed] In 393, the Byzantine Emperor Theodosius I issued an imperial edict to extend the ban on polygamy to Jewish communities. In 1000, Rabbi Gershom ben Judah ruled polygamy inadmissible within Ashkenazi Jewish communities, living in a Christian environment.”
  6. Thomas More - Biography - Philosopher, Lawyer, Saint, Journalist. Biography.com (2015). Retrieved on 15 March 2015. “Thomas More was beheaded on July 6, 1535. He left behind the final words: 'The king's good servant, but God's first.' More was beatified in 1886 and canonized by the Catholic Church as a saint in 1935.”
  7. The Story of Thomas More. cin.org (2014). Retrieved on 15 March 2015. “The sight of men being put to death was ordinary enough in the year 1535, yet, when the head of Thomas More was set high on London Bridge, England was shocked, and indignation swept Christendom. 'I would rather,' declared the Emperor Charles V, 'have lost the best city in my dominion than such a counsellor as More.'”
  8. A Man for All Seasons. IMDb (1966). Retrieved on 15 March 2015. “The story of Thomas More, who stood up to King Henry VIII when the King rejected the Roman Catholic Church to obtain a divorce and remarriage.”
  9. dystopia - definition of dystopia. The Free Dictionary (2015). Retrieved on 15 March 2015. “1. (Literary & Literary Critical Terms) an imaginary place where everything is as bad as it can be [C19 (coined by John Stuart Mill): from dys- + Utopia]”
  10. Conquest of Tunis (1535) - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 15 March 2015. “The resulting massacre of the city left an estimated 30,000 dead. Barbarossa managed to flee to Algiers with a troop of several thousand Turks.[3] Muley Hasan was restored to his throne.[3] The stench of the corpses was such that Charles V soon left Tunis and moved his camp to Radès.”
  11. Conquest of Tunis (1574) - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 15 March 2015. “The Conquest of Tunis in 1574 marked the final conquest of Tunis by the Ottoman Empire over the Spanish Empire.”
  12. French Algeria - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 15 March 2015. “French Algeria lasted from 1830 to 1962, under a variety of governmental systems. From 1848 until independence, the whole Mediterranean region of Algeria was administered as an integral part of France, much like Corsica and Réunion are to this day.”
  13. First Barbary War - Wikipedia (2015). Retrieved on 15 March 2015. “The First Barbary War (1801–1805), also known as the Tripolitian War or the Barbary Coast War, was the first of two wars fought between the United States and the Northwest African Berber Muslim states known collectively as the Barbary States. These were the Ottoman provinces of Tripoli, Algiers, and Tunis, which were enjoying a large autonomy, as well as the independent Sultanate of Morocco.”

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