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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : English Literature

Postgraduate Course: The Road to 1611: How the English Bible came into being (ENLI11132)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Course typeStandard AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) Credits20
Home subject areaEnglish Literature Other subject areaNone
Course website None Taught in Gaelic?No
Course description2011 marked the Quatercentenary of the Authorised Version with conferences and exhibitions around the globe. This course will build upon this important occasion to present students with the long history of the Authorised Version. It will trace the Bible as a complex object from the universities and mendicant houses of the thirteenth century, which gave rise to the first mass-produced pocket Bible, through the advent of print, to the Dissolution and the English Reformation. It will unearth how world events, beliefs and mentalities shaped the pages of these Bibles, and will explore the appearance of the medieval and early modern Bible, to provide fresh and unexpected views of well-known events and movements. Wycliffite Bibles will thus be analysed as a mark of orthodoxy and the Reformation Bibles will display their deep Catholic roots. The course will make full use of the wealth of books and manuscripts at the University Library, Divinity and the National Library of Scotland. Students will gain a first-hand experience of Bibles in manuscript and printed forms, and will discover how the modern Bible came into being.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs None
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Summary of Intended Learning Outcomes
Students will gain a better understanding of medieval and early modern church and society, through the prism of biblical prints and manuscripts. They will question and examine key historical events, such as the advent of print and the Reformation, and put them in a wider perspective. By the end of the course students will be familiar with the basic terminology of manuscript production and printing, as well as religious practices from the Middle Ages to the Reformation. They will understand the importance of paratext and the material culture of sacred books, and will be able to apply these to other societies. They will be exposed to recent theoretical discussions, and will be able to critically analyse them against the backdrop of the material evidence. Students will handle and analyse manuscripts and early printed books and supply a working-description of them.
Assessment Information
1 x 4,000-word essay: 100%
Special Arrangements
Additional Information
Academic description Not entered
Syllabus Weekly Schedule:
1. Introduction: What is the Bible? What was the Bible?
2. From Monastic lectio divina to Scholastic disputatio
3. The Late Medieval Bible: the First Modern Bible
4. The Lollard Bible: beyond the Premature Reformation
5. Gutenberg and the Incunabula Age
6. Coverdale Bible: a Shining Beacon?
7. The Great Bible: all things to all people
8. The Geneva Bible: the Bible of the Reformation?
9. The Bishops' Bible: an Attempt at reconstituting Sovereignty
10. 1611, or the Beginning of a New Era.
Transferable skills Not entered
Reading list Preliminary Bibliography
¿ The Bible as Book: The First Printed Editions, Kimberly van Kampen and Paul Saenger
(eds.), London 1999
¿ The Bible in the Middle Ages: Its Influence on Literature and Art, Bernard S. Levy (ed.),
Binghamton (NY) 1992
¿ The Bible as a Way of Life: A Casebook, Susan Boynton and Diane Reily (eds.), NY 2011
¿ M. H. Black, The evolution of a book form: The Octavo Bible from manuscript to the
Geneva Version, The Library (5th series 16), 1961, pp. 15-28
¿ ibid., The evolution of a book form: II The Folio Bible to 1560, The Library (5th series 18), pp. 191-203
¿ Cambridge History of the Bible: The West from the Reformation to the
Present Day, S. L. Greenslade (ed.). Cambridge 1963
¿ Daniell, David, The Bible in English: Its History and Influence, New Haven 2003
¿ Dove, Mary, The first English Bible : the text and context of the Wycliffite versions, Cambridge 2007
¿ Duffy, Eamon, Marking the Hours: English People and their Prayers 1240-1570, New Haven, Conn. and London 2006
¿ The Early Medieval Bible: Its Production, Decoration and Use, Richard
Gameson (ed.), Cambridge 1994
¿ The Geneva Bible: A Facsimile of the 1560 Edition: with an Introduction by Lloyd E. Berry, Madison 1969 (repr. 2007)
¿ de Hamel, Christopher, The Book: A History of the Bible, London 2001
¿ Hammond, Gerald, The making of the English Bible, Manchester 1982
¿ Herbert, A. S., Historical Catalogue of Printed Editions of the English Bible 1525-1961: Revised and Expanded from the Editions of T. H. Darlow and H. F. Moule, 1903, London and NY 1968
¿ MacKenzie, Cameron A., The battle for the Bible in England, 1557-1582, New York 2002
¿ Le Moyen Age et la Bible (Bible de tous les temps 4), Pierre Riché and Guy Lobrichon (eds.), Paris 1984
¿ Pelikan, Jaroslav, The reformation of the Bible : the Bible of the Reformation: Cataloge of the exhibition by Valerie R. Hotchkiss and David Price, New Haven 1996.
¿ Pollard, A. W., Records of the English Bible : the documents relating to the translation and
publication of the Bible in English, 1525-1611, London 1911
¿ Smalley, Beryl, The Study of the Bible in the Middle Ages, 3rd rev. ed., Oxford 1983
Study Abroad Not entered
Study Pattern Not entered
Course organiserDr Eyal Poleg
Course secretaryMs June Haigh
Tel: (0131 6)50 3620
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