King James Bible (1715)

King James Bible (1715)
Alternative Title
Forsyth Family Bible
This later edition King James Bible contains examples of how the KJV was adapted over the years, not within the text, but with marginal notes and accompanying information to serve as an aid to family learning. This Bible was owned by Alexander Forsyth, a "Merchant in Elgin," Scotland and his wife Margret Ross. Each of their children's births, baptisms, and deaths are recorded in the back with a helpful transcription of a later owner made in 1875.

The publication of the King James Bible was sponsored by its namesake, King James VI/I (James VI during his rule of Scotland, James I during his rule of England). The KJV has become one of the most widely used Bibles across the world and stands as a standard translation. Forty-seven known individuals were selected for the task of translating the Bible and were “formed into six companies” as follows:

(1) Westminster, Genesis-II Kings
(2) Cambridge, I Chronicles-Ecclesiastes
(3) Oxford, Isaiah-Malachi
(4) Cambridge, Apocrypha
(5) Oxford, Gospels, Acts, Apocalypse
(6) Westminster, Romans-Jude

All of the knowledge of translation due the the multitude of Bibles which had come before all came together to translate the KJV. No marginal notes were added, as King “James himself had been annoyed by what he considered seditious comments in the Geneva Bible (Ackroyd).

In addition to his obvious love of scripture, James VI/I was a controversial figure. During his time as a ruler in Scotland, he engaged in a "satanic panic" which resulted in the torture and eventual burning of "about 2,500 people--the vast majority of them women" (The Observer). This crusade against "The feareful abounding at this time in this countrie, of thefe deteftable flames of the diuell" was perpetuated by the book he published in 1603, Dæmonologie (James I).

"James VI -- later James I of England -- became obsessed with witchcraft after the execution of his mother, Mary Queen of Scots, in 1587. He blamed a violent storm when sailing back from Denmark with his new wife, Anne, on evil spells and ordered a vicious witch hunt.Macbeth, thought to be first performed at court in 1606, three years after James became king of England, catered to the new monarch's witch obsession. It was another 130 years before the law was changed and the executions ended" (The Observer).
* * *
Ackroyd, Peter R., C. F Evans, G. W. H. Lampe, and S. L. Greenslade. 1963. The Cambridge History of the Bible. University Press, 1963-70. Vol. 3.

James I, King of England. 1603. Dæmonologie. [Electronic Resource] : In Forme of a Dialogue, Diuided into Three Books: Written by the High and Mightie Prince, Iames by the Grace of God King of England, Scotland, France and Ireland, Defender of the Faith, &c. Early English Books Online. Printed by Arnold Hatfield for Robert VVald-graue.

The Observer (London, England). 2020. “300 Years on, Will Thousands of Women Burned as Witches Finally Get Justice? Lawyer Seeks Pardon for 2,500 Scots Who Were Tortured and Killed in ‘Satanic Panic’ Begun by James VI; Lawyer Seeks Pardon for 2,500 Scots Who Were Tortured and Killed in ‘Satanic Panic’ Begun by James VI.”
Date Created
1715 AD
King James VI of Scotland
King James I of England
Geographical Coverage
Temporal Coverage
18th Century
Collecting Areas
English History of Writing Collection
English English Bibles
Given to James "Macauireus" by "John Alexander Longmore of Edinburgh, grandson of John Forsyth of Deaushaugh, Elgin... in the year 1875."
Bibliographic Citation
The Holy Bible, Containing the Old and New Testaments: Newly Tranflated out of the Original Tongues; And with the former Translations Diligently Compared and Revifed. By His Majefties Special Command. 1715.

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