Origin of the Authorized or King James Version of the Bible
ORIGIN OF THE AUTHORISED OR KING JAMES VERSION OF THE BIBLE
In December 2010, when snowed in, I spent a day researching the King James:
James VI was born in Edinburgh Castle in 1566 the only son of Mary Queen of Scots. Because of his mother’s faith he was baptised a Catholic, but was brought up a Protestant, in a Reformed Scotland.
In June of 1567 Protestant rebels imprisoned Mary in Loch Leven Castle whereby she was forced to abdicate in favour of James, who was crowned King at the age of only thirteen months, the sermon preached by John Knox. Mary later escaped and fled to England for the protection of Elisabeth I but having previously claimed England’s throne as her own, Elisabeth had her imprisoned and nineteen years later she was finally executed for treason, over her alleged involvement in three assassination attempts against Elisabeth.
Queen Elizabeth I of England died in 1603 and with no heir, King James VI of Scotland achieved his ambition and was crowned King James I of England (and Ireland) thus uniting the two crowns of Scotland and England. In creating what he called, the kingdom of Great Britain he designed himself what is commonly known as the Union Jack, the flag of Great Britain, by merging the George Cross with Scotland’s white cross of St. Andrew.
Catholics, including Jesuits, attempted to assonate James a number of times, the most famous being the gunpowder plot on November 5th 1605, which is still celebrated today as Guy Fawkes or bonfire night at which an effigy of the Guy would traditionally be burned.
In 1607 colonists sent by the Virginia Company arrived in North America making James the founding monarch of the United States.
He became a patron of the troupe of William Shakespeare, his subsequently writing the play Macbeth for him.
In January 1604 James called the Hampton Court Conference to hear of things that “pretended to be amiss” in the church. A puritan, Dr. John Reynolds, requested a new translation of the Bible as those allowed by Henry VIII and Edward VI were corrupt. James embraced the suggestion and by July 1604, fifty-four of the best linguists and scholars in the world were assembled to perform the task. Needless to say Catholics were the chief opponents. However in 1611 the task was complete whereby it has become the best selling book of all time.
The King James Bible also referred to as the Authorised Version will be celebrating its 400th anniversary on May 2nd 2011.