The OF Blog: After four years, time to update my Bible Porn collection, no?

Thursday, May 17, 2012

After four years, time to update my Bible Porn collection, no?

If you want, you can blame Charles Tan for this post.  Earlier this (very early) morning on Twitter, he asked: "For Christians/Catholics, when you see a battered Bible, does your respect for the owner decrease or increase?"  After replying that for me, it would depend upon the owner and that I myself try to take very good care of the ones that I do own, I remembered that I had years ago posted a picture of the various editions of the Bible (Old, New, both alike) that I owned.   Yet over the intervening 3.5 years, I had added quite a few editions, so I thought for the rare few of you reading this who might be interested, I would post pictures and list the languages that I have.

Starting from the left, the first edition is an English New American (Catholic) study bible.  It was the one I bought nearly 10 years ago when I decided to join a church after a decade of having a mostly non-committal attitude toward Christianity/organized religion (I will not bother to explain why, just noting here that this the edition that I've owned the longest).  Then come the Greek Septuagint and New Testament editions, each with English text.  I know this is dodgy (I'm wary of recent Protestant editions), but later I'll try to buy editions that do not have such translations.  After those is the New Testament in the Revised Vulgate Latin translation done almost a century ago in Germany.  I have the full Vulgate in e-book form, but needless to say, I didn't take a picture of it.  After that, the Protestant Spanish translation, which is the 1960 Reina-Valera.  It is, of course, missing seven books.  Then comes a Protestant Haitian edition, which was the only Haitian translation I could find when I ordered it back in 2003.  It is a very odd translation, containing some phrases that really aren't in use in contemporary Haitian Kreyól.  Next is a Catholic Spanish Bible, from an authorized Colombian translation that was released in 1992.  It reads closer to the Vulgate text than does the Protestant edition.  The Protestant Serbian Bible was a gift to me; I cannot say much more than it contains only 66 books (I'm slowly learning the language; taking several months off between study sessions does not help matters).  After it are unlabeled Protestant Gideon New Testaments translated into Portuguese and Romanian.  These are placeholders until I can get fuller, more reliable translations in both languages.  Final image, barely visible, is a black, unlabeled New Testament translated into Russian.  I didn't see any stamps indicating who translated it, but the cover style makes me wonder if it too might be a Gideon edition.

The French edition is a 1970 Société Biblique Française translation.  It contains 73 books, yet it bears no Nihil Obstat from a Catholic Bishop.  Next is another Protestant Russian translation, this time of 66 books.  The remaining language editions are all by Protestant Bible Societies and are of the New Testament:  Czech, Turkish, Persian, German, Indonesian (itself being from a Dutch missionary group), and Gullah (which is mostly spoken on the Sea Islands off the coasts of Georgia and South Carolina).  Then is The Complete Gospels, which contain virtually all of the Gnostic/rejected gospels (minus the Gospel of Judas) and a Croatian prayerbook.

For those who want to see something secular, there is always my collection of Italo Calvino translations in English (I have a further four in Italian) to go with a crucifix chain, two carvings, and a rosary.  Doubtless this was not the most titillating book porn that I've posted here, but perhaps some might find this collection to be interesting enough.  Yes, I'm aware of the evils associated with missionary activity (as I noted above, I'm not particularly thrilled to have this particular translations, but beggars cannot be choosers when picking up most of these translations at used bookstores; later on, I'll replace them with non-missionary translations), but on the whole, most of these were translated and published in the native languages.  Sixteen different languages...why am I tempted to learn all of them and more just now?  Maybe that says something about myself that I don't really want to consider now?

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