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dust once in many years by some deep delver in forgotten lore. Here are some books containing a little truth with a large admixture of falsehood. Here are still others, not a few, made forbidding to the general reader by the dryness of scholasticism or the affectations of pedantry. All of these books were written for the sole purpose of teaching men how to understand the Bible better than they had ever understood it before. Here was the problem : “How shall we, or can we, make all of this learn. ing accessible to the mass of men ?” If ten men read the Bible, nine of them misread it. How can we replace ignorance by knowledge, falsehood by truth? The problem was really twofold. First, how shall we have the work done, and next, how shall we have it read ? Great as was the demand made upon the world's scholars by the preparation of a critical edition of the Bible, far greater was the task of so popularizing the work as to dissipate both ignorance and prejudice. Facing the problem squarely, Professor Haupt sought some plan by which the work might be made both comprehensive and simple. The task was full of complexity. He did not wish merely to revise the “Revised Version,” for back of it lay an imperfect text. That must first be dealt with. He looked about for help, and found a large body of scholars who had devoted their lives to the study of the text and interpretation of the Bible, together with a careful examination of its literary and historic features. It is perhaps un. fortunate that these Bible students had called themselves critics, for in the popular mind the word critic is generally associated with the idea of destructiveness. The function of the Bible critic is more akin to that nobler definition of criticism realized by such men as Matthew Arnold, Andrew Lang and Edmund Clarence Stedman. They are searchers for the truth. They believe that as there is “no difference between Jewish mathematics and Christian mathematics, between Presbyterian astronomy and Baptist astronomy," there should be no difference between the exegesis of church and synagogue, or between Presbyterian and Episcopalian. Only one explanation of any passage can be correct. It is the office of the scientific critic to ascertain this explanation without any reference to denominational differences. They believe further that the worst enemy of the Bible is the bibliolatrist, who makes pretensions for the Book which he cannot substantiate and thereby weakens faith in its truth. Being of various creeds and shades of opinion, from orthodoxy to radicalism, the critics have one faith in common, that the true will survive and that nothing else can take its place.
Believing that the Bible is the greatest and grand. est literature known to man, they feel that it should all the more be cleared of all stupid accretions and presented in its pristine clearness and beauty. We have happily passed that age in which it was believed that good will alone was sufficient for interpreting the Bible, and we must welcome the assist.
ance of philologists and archæologists for its proper setting forth. The qnestion has been sometimes asked, in an ironical tone : How have we managed all these years without these great critics ?” And the answer is quite simple : “ As well, or as ill, as might be expected under the circumstances." The old-fashioned conception of the Bible was often as colorless as the page upon which it was printed, and the time has come for a clearer view of this won. derful achievement and a better appreciation of the perspective of its various parts. Some persons hold that the Bible is valuable for its content, no matter how or by whom it was written. This is all very true, but it is only half of the truth. We ought to know as much as possible of the writers and their times, so as to properly understand the intent of each passage. It does make a great difference in our conception of the history of Israel whether Leviticus, Chapter XIX., was coinposed by Moses or five hundred or a thousand years later. It is true that there is spiritual food in the Bible for even the most unscholarly, but we cannot help believing that a clear-cut, intellectual comprehension of its contents will broaden and deepen its moral influence. The critics have ascertained, after long and careful study, that the biblical documents have not been well preserved, nor always well arranged. That they are compilations, showing by varying style and thought that portions of the same book have been composed by different writers in widely different periods. Few lay readers of the Old Testament actually grasp the truth that it is the literature of the Jews (or what we have of it) for a thousand years
Fewer still ever conceive the idea that more than one writer has contributed to any single book. But the Bible has never been without its critics. Even within its own pages we find critical notes which have been erroneously embodied in the text. When some ancient scholar read the Book of Ecclesiastes (for instance), and found a doctrine of which he disapproved, he made a note of his disapproval upon the margin of the manuscript. A scribe copying that manuscript later might, either accidentally or purposely, copy text and comment together. In this way the critics explain many of the mutually contradictory statements found in that philosophic book. It was natural that students of the Bible should seek to nderstand it, and to teach their interpretations. Consequently our commentaries upon the Bible date from the earliest times.
What has been termed “Modern Criticism," or “Higher Criticism,” concerning itself largely with the questions when and by whom the Bible was written, may be said to have received its first prominence in Hobbe's “ Leviathan " (1561), where the Mosaic authorship of the Pentateuch was denied. Baruch Spinoza also expressed some radical opinions upon this subject (1670), and a Catholic, Richard Simon (1678), wrote at considerable length upon this topic in his Critical History of the Old Testa
the various readings found in existing manuscripts. His Introduction to the Old Testament” is the standard work upon that subject.
J. A. Paterson, D.D. (Numbers), is a professor at the Theological Seminary, Edinburgh.
Geo. A. Smith, D.D., Ph.D. (Deuteronomy), is Professor of Hebrew and Old Testament Exegesis at the Free Church College, Glasgow. A pupil of the late W. Robertson Smith, he contributed the commen.
ment." But the first of the great critical school advancing the theories of criticism as a system was Francis Astruc (1753). From that time to the present day the most eminent students of Semitics, including such men as F. Delitzch, Kuenan, Wellhausen and Driver, have sounded the depths and shallows of every verse and word to be found in the Bible. The modern discovery of the Assyrian tablets and monuments lent a new impetus to these investigations, and the tremendous development of Semitic philology offered surer ground upon which to tread. The Bible critic of to-day must know not only the modern and classical languages and Hebrew, but he must also be conversant with Assyrian, Arabic, Syriac and Ethiopic, so as to compare the ancient versions intelligently. In the Polychrome Bible reference is made not only to the Vulgate and Septuagint, but also to the Peshita (Syriac), the Targum (Aramaic), the Samaritan, and the various recensions of Jerome, Aquila, Symmachos, etc.
After this digression it is not difficult to grasp the magnitude of the labor entailed by the issuance of a work which was to sum up all of the investigations, concerning the Old Testament, of ancient and mod. ern times.
The general editor wished to present this summary in such a shape that
“ he who runs may read.” It would be invaluable to the scholar, but it must also be intelligible to the ordinary reader of but little culture. To this end he devised a special plan of publication, remarkable for sim. plicity and effectiveness. Since the time and con. ditions of composition bear so important a relation to these writings, forming their actual background, he determined to indicate the various periods and authors by printing the text and the translation upon backgrounds of different colors. Hence the name Polychrome, many colored. As his coadjutors, Professor Haupt selected the leading scholars of the world, many of whom had devoted their lives to the special study of certain books, which were, of course, assigned to them. The broadness of his choice is evident from the following list, which em. braces some of the most notable names upon both sides of the Atlantic, including representatives of many creeds and sects :
C. J. Ball, M.A. (Genesis), is the Chaplain of Lincoln's Inn, London, is a frequent contributor to magazines upon biblical and Assyriological subjects, and has made a special study of the language of the primitive inhabitants of Babylonia.
Herbert E. Ryle, D.D. (Exodus), is Professor of Divinity and Professorial Fellow of King's College, Cambridge. He has written upon the Canon of the Old Testament,” and has edited various books of the Bible, besides publishing a work on “ Philo," lately.
Canon S. R. Driver (Leviticus) is the successor of the famous Dr. Pusey at Oxford, and was one of the revisers of the King James Bible. He has written a masterly work upon the “Tenses in Hebrew," and edited the “ Variorum Bible," a work showing
tary on Isaiah to the “ Expositor's Bible" and the “Book of the Twelve Prophets" (in the same series). In 1894 he published a “Historical Geography of the Holy Land.” having made a journey through Judea, Samaria, Galilee, the Jordan Valley, etc.
W. H. Bennett, M.A. (Joshua), is Professor of Old Testament Languages and Literature at Hackney and New College, London, and has contributed frequently to “ Hebraica,” preparing one of the books for the “Expositor's Bible.”
George F. Moore (Judges) is Professor of Hebrew Language and Literature at Andover Theological Seminary. He has recently published a scbolarly commentary on the Book of Judges in the “ International Critical Commentary.” He is also editor of the Journal of Biblical Literature and of the Journal of the American Oriental Society.
Karl Budde (Samuel) is Professor of Semitics in the University of Strassburg, and has written at length upon Job, the traditions in Genesis, Hebrew poetry and Jeremiah. He will deliver a course of
lectures upon the “History of Israel,” within a year or two, in the United States.
B. Stade (Kings), born in 1848, studied at Leipzig and Berlin, and has been Professor of Theology at Giessen since 1875. He is the editor of the “ Zeit schrift für die Altestamentliche Wissenschaft” and author of a “ History of Israel,” of a valuable Hebrew grammar and (in conjunction with Siegfried) of a new Hebrew dictionary. He reorganized the theological faculty of Giessen (1878-82), and is the leader of the modern critical school in Germany.
F. Schwally is assisting in editing and translating Kings, a pupil of Professor Stade, and now tutor in Strassburg. He has written upon the subject of “ Jewish Views of the Future Life" and the Aramaic language.
C. H. Cornill (Jeremiah) has taught in Marbury and in Königsberg since 1888. He is author of an “ Introduction to the Literature of the Old Testament” and some lectures upon the “ Prophets of Israel,” which were translated into Faglish by Paul Carus, and published last year.
PRESIDENT HARPER OF CHICAGO.
and has written “ Assyrian-Babylonian Inscriptions and the Old Testament."
C. Siegfried (Job) is professor at Jena, and has made a special study of Modern Hebrew. He has also written “Spinoza and Bible Criticism."
J. Wellhausen (Psalms) is the successor of Paul de Lagarde in the chair of Semitic languages at Göttingen. His “ History of Israel ” (1878) caused a sensation in the theological world, but his views have been adopted by the majority of biblical scholars. His works on Samuel, the Hexateuch and the Historical Books of the Bible are characterized by rare acumen and sagacity.
John Taylor (Amos) has devoted special attention to the Masoretic text and ancient versions.
Andrew Harper (Obadiah) has contributed to the * Expositor's Bible," and is Professor of Hebrew and Old Testament Exegesis in Ormond College, Melbourne University.
Russell Martineau (Song of Songs) is a son of the famous Unitarian preacher and writer, Dr. James Martineau, and has been assistant keeper of printed books in the British Museum for many years. He has translated some of Ewald's works, and prepared a catalogue of all the editions of the Bible in the Library of the British Museum.
T. K. Abbott (Esther), Professor of Hebrew in the University of Dublin, has published essays on the original texts of the Old and New Testaments.
CANON DRIVER OF OXFORD.
paid special attention to the relation between Assyr. iology and the Old Testament, writing forcibly on this subject.
C. A. Briggs (Ruth) is Professor of Biblical The. ology and Higher Criticism at Union Theological Seminary. He is too well known to need more than bare mention.
Friedrich Delitzch (Jonah) is the most noted Assyriologist in Europe, having published various texts, an Assyrian grammar, and being now engaged upon the first comprehensive Assyrian lexicon to appear.
H. Guthe (Ezra Nehemiah) is " Professor Extraordinary” at Leipzig, and, as one of the founders of the German Palestine Exploration Fund, made valuable discoveries in the Holy Land in 1881.
W. R. Harper (Zechariah) was formerly Professor of Hebrew at Yale College, and is now President of the Chicago University. He is the editor of “Hebraica,” and has published Hebrew text-books and numerous papers
A. Kamphausen (Daniel) is professor at Bonn, was one of the revisers of the German Bible (1871), and has written upon Kings” and the “ Hagiography.”
J. F. McCurdy (Micah) is Professor of Oriental Languages in University College (Toronto). He has given special attention to the Minor Prophets,
PROFESSOR C. H. TOY OF HARVARD,
PROFESSOR FRIEDRICH DELITSCH, The Most Eminent Assyriologist of Europe.
M. Jastrow, Jr. (Lamentations), professor at the University of Pennsylvania, is editor of the series of hand-books on the history of religions published by Ginn & Co., and will soon send forth a book on * The Religion of the Assyrians and Babylonians.'
R. Kittel (Chronicles), Professor of Theology in the University of Breslau, has published a valuable
History of the Hebrews."
A. Müller (Proverbs) died in 1892, but had already sent in most of his manuscripts for the Polychrome Bible. He was an eminent Arabist and associateprofessor of Arabic at Halle.
C. G. Montefiore and J. Abrahams (Malachi) are the editors of the Jewish Quarterly Review. Mr. Montefiore is a grand-nephew of the late Sir Moses Montefiore. He delivered the “ Hibbert Lectures' (1892) on
The Origin and Growth of Religion as Illustrated by the Religion of the Ancient He. brews."
Alfred Jeremias (Nahum) is a Lutheran clergyman in Leipzig, a pupil of Franz and Friedrich Delitzch. He published (1891) a translation of the “NimrodEpic,” dedicated to Professor Haupt.
W. H. Ward (Habakkuk), the well-known superintending editor of the Independent, conducted the “Wolfe Exploring Expedition to Babylon in 1884," and has written extensively upon Assyriology.
E. L. Curtis (Zephaniah) is the successor of Professor Harper in the chair of Hebrew at Yale Col. jege.
G. A. Cooke (Haggai) is a pupil of Canon Driver and Fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford.
This array of talent may serve as a good index to the work before us. It is almost world-embracing, and certainly includes the most brilliant of biblical scholars.
In the instructions to the contributors are to be found suggestions which shed considerable light upon the excellent method pursued. They are told:
Anything that might tend to hurt the religious feelings of the reader must be avoided, provided that it can be done without any detriment to truth. The contributors need not hesitate to state what they consider to be the truth, but it should be done with the verecundia due to the venerable documents which form the basis of our faith.” The translation need not be what is commonly called 'literal.' It should be literal' in the higher sense of the word-i.e., render the sense of the original as faithfully as possible.
The object of the work is not a revision of the ‘ Accepted Version,' but a new translation in modern English." This is the dominant purpose of the work. By a true, clear and unmistakable version, the editor hopes to minimize the misconstruction and misinterpretation to which the Bible has been so generally subjected. His aim is to bring it nearer to the hearts of men by making it clearer to their understanding. The most orthodox could not, with justice, object to so lofty and laudable a purpose.
But the bare text, even when properly arranged and faithfully translated, is not always comprehensible. So as to aid the reader in understanding it correctly, notes are appended whenever they appear necessary. The editor's instructions to his colaborers upon this point are all that could be desired : "The explanatory notes shall be confined to brief historical and archæological illustrations of the text, paraphrases of difficult passages, quotations of parallels (biblical, classical, modern).” The notes shall help to show how the translator understands the text, not why he interprets it in this manner.' That these instructions have been closely followed is evident from the notes appearing in connection with the parts of the text already issued, and the advance sheets of the parts of the translation about to appear. They are illustrative, illuminative and explanatory, succinct and to the point. They wisely avoid the dangers of homiletic prolixity and theo. logical diversity of opinion.
Ten parts (one-half) of the Hebrew text have appeared : Genesis, Leviticus, Joshua, Samuel, Jere. miah, Psalms, Job, Daniel, Ezra-Nehemiah and Chronicles. The text of Isaiah and Ezekiel will be issued during the next month, to be followed during the winter by Nunibers, Judges, Kings, Proverbs and Deuteronomy. The English translation, in which the average reader unacquainted with Hebrew is most deeply interested, is well under way. The version of Leviticus and Isaiah will appear within a few weeks, and Psalms and Judges will