The Bible - King James Version book

A Folio Society limited edition

The Bible - King James Version

Four hundred years ago, a book was published that would be read for centuries by countless generations and that still remains of central importance to the English-speaking world. The King James Bible is one of the most influential books of all time.

Limited to 940 copies

Published price: US$ 895.00


The Bible - King James Version

Four hundred years ago, a book was published that would be read for centuries by countless generations and that still remains of central importance to the English-speaking world. The King James Bible is one of the most influential books of all time, not just as a devotional work but as a narrative of great power, drama and poetry. This Folio Society edition is published to commemorate the 400th anniversary of its original publication. Limited to just 940 numbered copies, it is a beautiful and lasting edition of one of the most important books in history.

Production Details

The Bible - King James Version book
  • Two volumes
  • Bound in full goatskin, blocked in gold with calligraphy by Stephen Raw
  • Two ribbon markers
  • Gilding on all three page edges
  • Printed on Abbey Wove paper
  • Presented in a buckram-covered wooden slipcase lined with moiré silk, with a sliding tray in the base for ease of use
  • 1,904 pages in total
  • Book size: 11" x 7¼"

A narrative of great power, drama and poetry

One of the first acts of King James I when he ascended the throne of England in 1603 was to commission a new translation of the Bible. The previous two centuries had seen the controversial arrival of the first ever English translations, and competing versions abounded. As head of the Church, James laid down the guiding principles of his new Bible, and forty-seven scholars from all over the country including Oxford, Cambridge and Winchester were assembled for the most ambitious translation project of the Reformation era.

‘An enduring link, literary and religious, between the English-speaking people of the world’

The scholars aimed above all to be faithful to the original Hebrew, Greek or Aramaic, translating literally where necessary. Though they were not aiming for poetic effect, their approach gave rise to some of the Bible’s most memorable and beautiful idioms: ‘labour of love’, ‘sign of the times’, ‘bite the dust’, ‘land of milk and honey’, ‘fly in the ointment’, and many others. The King James Bible became part of the public and private devotion of ordinary people and its phrases were absorbed into the English language. Also known as the Authorised Version, it is the touchstone by which all other translations are judged, and remains the Bible of choice for millions all over the world.

An exceptional reading edition

Over the centuries, different versions of the King James Bible have appeared, containing changes and corrections. This Folio Society edition follows the Cambridge University Press text edited by David Norton, who has worked to restore the original 1611 Bible. In his editor’s introduction, reproduced in this edition, Norton describes his decade-long labour as resembling ‘the cleaning of an old master’. The typography is simple and elegant, with single columns and paragraphs for ease of reading. The text is set in Swift, a clear modern font. Following a centuries-old tradition of fine Bible printing, the headings have been picked out in red.

This two-volume edition is bound in full goatskin leather, blocked with calligraphy by Stephen Raw. With gilded page edges, double ribbon markers and presented in a wooden slipcase lined with moiré silk, this is an edition to be read and handed down for generations.

Originally limited to 1,000 copies, however, 60 sets of sheets from this edition were chosen by Sangorski & Sutcliffe to create the limited edition Diamond Jubilee Bible.

About Siri Hustvedt

Siri Hustvedt, prize-winning author and scholar, is the latest distinguished introducer for the Folio Jane Austen series. Her fascinating introduction examines the notion of ‘persuasion’ as part of the 18th-century New Rhetoric philosophy that would have been familiar to Austen’s readers. She also charts the social changes revealed by the story, particularly in the conflict between the long-established but moribund Elliot family and Captain Wentworth, who has made his fortune in the Napoleonic wars. ‘Old money has given way to new money, aristocracy to meritocracy.’ Hustvedt writes that, despite its sadness, ‘Jane Austen’s last finished novel has become the book of hers I love best.’

About Deanna Staffo

Deanna Staffo’s illustrations are perfectly suited to the book’s tone, particularly that which shows Captain Wentworth dropping his pen while writing his letter to Anne – one of the most significant, highly charged scenes in literature, and one of the most beautiful of love letters. So successful were the illustrations that an additional one was commissioned. The slipcase reproduces one of the novel’s most famous lines.


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Review by bcapstick on 17th Feb 2013

Text: Illustrations: Binding: Rating: 5/5

"The Holy Bible is perhaps the most compelling and comprehensive vision of the human condition ever to have appeared in print and, for many readers, the King James 1st edition is the most eloquent of a..." [read more]

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