Wednesday, July 8, 2009

New Douay-Rheims from Tan/Saint Benedict Press

Coming this August, Tan Books, who were recently acquired out of bankruptcy by Saint Benedict Press, will be publishing various editions of the venerable Douay-Rheims. They will come in different covers, including paperback, leather-like, and genuine leather. It is nice to see that the old Douay-Rheims will have a genuine leather option, particularly since Baronius Press stopped production of their genuine leather Douay-Rheims. In addition, the words of Jesus will be in red, it will have a newly re-typeset, and there will be updated New Testament maps. Looks like it will be a nice little update for those of you who love the Douay-Rheims.
More info from the site:
The Douay-Rheims Version of the Holy Bible, translated between the years 1582 and 1610 and revised by Bishop Richard Challoner from 1749-1752, is the most accurate English translation of the Bible available today. It was the only Catholic translation of Scripture commonly in use for over 200 years and we maintain that it is still the best and safest version of the Bible in English. Translated with profound respect for every word, the beautiful style of the Douay-Rheims Bible will instill in the reader a deeper understanding of the Word of God. Annotations, references and an historical and chronological index make it convenient for study as well as meditation. Our Douay Rheims Bible is the only edition available with the words of Christ in red! Includes updated full color New Testament maps, beautiful pictures depicting the life of Christ. Complete with Family record and Presentation pages. This beautiful Bible is available in a black genuine leather cover, with gold edges and a ribbon marker and is packaged in an eye catching presentation box.
Gotta love the "eye catching presentation box" feature!


jogomu said...

Tim, did you get my email re: NRSV/DR interlinear? (doesn't exist, but see my note...)

I just learned that NETS shares a lot of verbiage with NRSV so an interlinear OT wouldn't look too messy. Ever since I saw the AV/RV interlinear I've wanted one... Mt 13:52

Esteban Vázquez said...

What? Words of Christ in red? Well, that's a deal breaker for me. I must reproduce again my favorite quotation on this matter, from the pen of Archimandrite Ephrem (Lash):

"I must protest most vigorously against the wholly unorthodox inverted Arianism of the typography whereby the words of Christ are printed in salmon pink, while his heavenly Father has to be content with mere black along with Caiaphas and Pontius Pilate."

Timothy said...


One word: Amen!

Timothy said...


Could you re-send me the info. I am in the process of switching email accounts, which I will give you.

Meg said...

"... the most accurate English translation of the Bible available today..."

I cannot think of one single Scripture scholar who would agree with this statement!

"... we maintain that it is still the best and safest version of the Bible in English..."

Safest? And we wonder why the rumours have persisted for years that Catholics are not allowed to read Scripture privately. My goodness, if it might be dangerous, I think I'll just skip it!!

This is just shameful.

Timothy said...


One thing I would add as it that it is the toughest to read, particularly with all the archaic language. I own a couple of old versions of the Douay-Rheims, but only occasionally do I refer to them.

Paul said...

Timothy, I agree with Meg. The blurb is unbelievable.

Anonymous said...


In your opinion, do we really need the DRB anymore? Hasnt Jerome's Vulgate been updated w the Nova Vulgata? Didnt Pius XII request more accurate translations from the greek and not the latin? As a convert i went through a doauy rheims only phase since i thought this is what the Church held as official but since Vatican II it seems it isnt so. When will we get the updated NAB or NRSV(liturgicam autenticam update)? Our protestant brothers have so many study bibles but us Catholics are stuck with older translations and inferior higher criticism mumbo jumbo commentaries. Mother Church please feed us w the truth of scripture/tradition, we are dying.

jogomu said...

There are valuable insights in the DR, such as different English tense choices for the aorist... go read "errant aorist interpreters" online. Oftentimes modern scholars are blinded by their own traditions...

I'm not saying folks should read the DR primarily, only that it has value. For another example, it reflects mss traditions that the Nova Vulgata still proclaims as canonical that are absent from ALL modern Catholic bibles in English.

In our day we have some technical proficiencies... in their day (e.g., St Jerome, or the Septuagint translators) they had more cultural/traditional proximity. As Jesus says, our job is to "bring forth from our treasure what is old AND what is new." Not one or the other.

jogomu said...


Here is what I emailed you about earlier:

This is a very rough first cut at an algorithm to build interlinear english/english texts based on statistical analysis and (eventually) iterative best-fit convergence. (I know that this example still contains errors.)

The idea is to be able to read something like the NRSV with something else, such as the DR, close enough to the experience that it can be absorbed almost simultaneously. The idea came from the AV/RV interlinear publications of the past, and from my frustration with parallel Bibles (too much looking back and forth).


Esteban Vázquez said...

Well, you know, blurbs are strange beasts.

But don't be so quick to dispense with the Douay-Rheims Bible, folks. It is, after all, a faithful translation of the traditional ecclesiastical text of the Western Church, and as such a still an invaluable resource to have on one's shelf--and yes, even for regular reading. I wish a thorough revision of it became available at some point.

Timothy said...

I am all for a revision of the old Douay-Rheims. I am sure it would sell pretty well too.

One thing that somewhat bugs me about all the recently published editions of the old Douay-Rheims is that they continue to use old type-settings, maps, pictures, etc.... Why not take the text and put it in an edition with updated maps, a concise concordance, weekly Mass reading list, along with producing it in various "hip" bindings. Oftentimes when I look at these newly released DR, they just simply look old.

Vince C said...

Timothy - I've always thought the same thing. And why do all of the DRV editions have to be so darn expensive? Being several hundred years old, you'd think they'd be in public domain by now and the profit margin could be a wee bit smaller?

Timothy said...


Thanks for stopping by. Yeah, it is really a mystery. In comparison with the KJV, there are far more attractive editions of it out there. In many ways, it isn't even a fair comparison. You can find youth Bibles that use the KJV, as well as study Bibles, apologetics Bibles, etc... The list is endless.

And you are right, most Douay-Rheims Bibles are soooooooo expensive, many of them are not even practical to carry around either.