Monday, October 5, 2015

Douay-Rheims New Testament: Paragraph Edition

I recently was contacted by Mike who has completed a unique project that may be of interest to all of you who love the Douay-Rheims Bible.  It is called The Douay-Rheims New Testament (Paragraph Edition).  As someone who as advocated for more modern looking editions of such classic Catholic Bibles like the Douay-Rheims, I was very excited to find out about this.  Mike was willing to answer a few questions about this project, which you can read below.  Even if you are not a regular reader of the Douay-Rheims Bible, perhaps you might consider purchasing this edition, since it is such a great concept and cost less than $9.00.  Oh that more Catholic publishers would consider doing what Mike has done!  

So why did you decide to do this?
I decided to do this because I wished to make available a printed copy of the Douay-Rheims New Testament at as inexpensive a price as possible (It is my favorite translation, even more than the RSV, 2nd Catholic Edition). Douay-Rheims Bibles tend to be more expensive, and while I could not hope to make the whole Bible available, I figured having at the least the New Testament available for a cheap price would still be good. Since I was going to be trying to publish the New Testament anyway, I thought it would be nice to put it in a paragraph format. (Not only would it seem more reader friendly, but it would also cut down on the size of the book, since in any case it would be single column.) So I decided to apply (for the most part) the paragraph divisions found in the original Douay-Rheims New Testament to the text of the Challoner revision. (I also decided to add asterisks in the text to indicate the presence of footnotes, which follow the chapter, as
well.) 

What can a person expect who orders this Rheims NT?
 I made a single column, paragraph edition of the New Testament (basically based on the paragraph divisions found in the original Douay-Rheims New Testament, only that I applied them to the text of the Challoner revision). Admittedly, it's a huge book (the pages are 8 1/2" X 11", and it's around 350 pages), and so not that portable like, say, a pocket New Testament would be, of course. At the same time, it does have 12 point type.  As for what anyone who ordered it should expect, well, not a professional job admittedly, since it does have flaws, most notably the lack of page headings showing where one is in the text, necessitating the use of the table of contents to find a specific passage quickly. However, hopefully it would be a more reader friendly version of the Douay-Rheims New Testament than other editions, and at a a reasonably large font. Plus, as I said, at an inexpensive price (I priced it at as low of a price as CreateSpace would allow.) 

22 comments:

Christopher Buckley said...

The big surprise out of all my recent Catholic Bible blogging is how much I love the DRC!

In fact, with all eight of the translation families available on my shelf now, during my Office of Readings each morning, I find I've now gravitated to a comparative reading in three main translations:

-The DRC (as the first Catholic translation in English from the Vulgate)
-The RSV-2CE (as the first Catholic translation in English from the original languages)
-The NABRE (as the Church's modern translation of the original languages with an eye to the Vulgate tradition)

Christopher Buckley said...

That and the fact that only in the DRC can we read about basilisks, dragons, and unicorns!

Michael Demers said...

Call me picky but this isn't the original Douay-Rheims version; it's Challoner's, so let's call it the Challoner New Testament.

Timothy said...

Michael,

I think he would most likely sell more by calling it the Douay-Rheims NT. The vast majority of people know it by that name, even though as you say it was revised by Challoner. Heck, most modern publishers don't list Challoner in the title either.

Biblical Catholic said...

I would like to get a copy of the original 1609 DR text. I've often seen the 1609 text be ripped to shreds by critics complaining that it is incoherent and ungrammatical, but authors making the complaint always use the same passages, which makes me wonder if it really is as bad as they claim, or if they are just cherry picking the worst passages, without really knowing the rest of the text, kind of like the way that NAB critics always pick on the same passages, as if they are unfamiliar with the rest of the text.

Michael Demers said...

Biblical Catholic, try these links [I hope they work]:
https://books.google.com/books?id=kofWAAAAMAAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false
https://books.google.com/books?id=WI7WAAAAMAAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false
https://books.google.com/books?id=yobWAAAAMAAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false
https://books.google.com/books?id=D_U2AAAAMAAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false

Anonymous said...

To All: I don't remember how I got to this original D-R; but I have found this the most readable. Often the copies on-line are very faded. It is also indexed with a table of contents.

http://catholicresourcepage.blogspot.com/2015/08/the-original-douay-rheims-bible-pre.html

Jim

Michael Demers said...

Jim, good one. Archive.org is a great resource.

Jeff S. said...

Just like many of you on this blog I've bought many a different translation. What's sad is that the "ORIGINAL" Douay-Rheims has
never been printed by Catholic publishers in modern font and easy
to read. And yet the "ORIGINAL" is just so difficult to read because
of the old font and poor quality of the copies.

Almost 6 years ago in early 2010, I bought the complete hardcover set of 4 volumes(3 for the Old Testament and 1 for the New Testament)
from here:
http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/rheims?searchTerms=&pageOffset=1
http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/rheims?searchTerms=&pageOffset=2

I must give this Dr. Peters credit for doing an amazing one-man job.
I've compared his printing with random passages in the originals such
as mentioned above and it appears that he's done a truly faithful job. He hasn't "changed" anything other than printing all the letters in modern English font. And coming as a bonus at the time
and maybe still were two CDs with that Bible on it along with the
1649 Catholic Catechism and I copied them onto my computer
onto my computer and can call it up anytime.

You might want to check it out. I'd be interested in the opinion(s)
of anyone else who's ever purchased it.

Once again, I think the guy is a faithful Catholic and did an amazingly good job for one person to have done.

Biblical Catholic said...

Well. thanks but there is no way I'm going to try to read a Bible off of a web page....if it was downloadable....

I guess the fact that the original 1609 text of the Douay-Rheims has never been reprinted since the early 17th century kind of confirms the negative opinions of the quality of the product. Surely, a good text wouldn't be out of print for 400 years.

Anonymous said...

Biblical Catholic, actually there are readily available reprints of the 1609/1610 text.

http://www.churchlatin.com/douayrheims.aspx

http://www.lulu.com/shop/dr-william-von-peters/the-original-true-douay-old-testament-of-anno-domini-1610-volume-1/paperback/product-306585.html (with modernized spelling)

The real reason the original 1609/1610 OT was not published after the first three printings in the 17th century was that it was illegal to import it into England and it was too large as a three volume Bible. Why do you think so many Catholics bought Fulke's A Defense of the Sincere and True Translations of the Holy Scriptures...? They bought it because then they could read the original Douay Rheims New Testament INSIDE a Protestant book to be above suspicion!

vladimir998

Biblical Catholic said...

Well, there's also the fact that until the 20th century, Catholics had no other choice. It was the Douay-Rheims or nothing.

Anonymous said...

Biblical Catholic,

Well, that's true. The original Douay-Rheims was seriously revised by Bishop Challoner in 1749. It would continue to be revised - here and there - for almost 200 years. There were attempts at a serious revision by Archbishop Kenrick in the 1850s/60s: http://bibles.wikidot.com/kenrick The last completed revision - of the whole NT - was in the 1930s.

The Westminster translation didn't start coming out until 1913. Before it was either completed or abandoned it took more years to publish in booklets than the Ignatius Study Bible!

vladimir998



Biblical Catholic said...

I have to admit I don't understand the complaints about the delay with the Ignatius Study Bible, look at the Anchor Bible, it started in 1956, the first volume was published in 1964, and since then more than 120 volumes have been released, and it still isn't done. That's a long delay. The Ignatius Study Bible? Not really.

Timothy said...

BC,

You are comparing apples to oranges. The ICSB is meant as a one (or dreadfully a two) volume study Bible. The Anchor is in a totally different league. It is a technical commentary done by some of the greatest scholars of the past 75 years. It also has its own translation with it. The length of commentary in the Anchor, is vastly longer and more detailed than the ICSB.

The fact remains that any comparable single volume study Bible on the market, no matter Catholic or Protestant, would never take over 15 years to complete. And it's still not done! When it is complete, it will look dated compared to what is being produced by other publishers. Almost every other major translation, ESV, CEB, NIV, NLT, or NABRE, will look better and contain as much info if not more.

Anonymous said...

Biblical Catholic,

I have to agree with Timothy. The Anchor Bible Commentary Series is a collaborative work with more than 1,000 scholars participating. Even the Anchor Bible Dictionary had 800 scholars participating. These are mammoth works. The Ignatius Study Bible is a a one volume work with only a relative handful of scholars participating. Mind you the Anchor Yale Bible Dictionary, according to Yale University Press - six volumes of about 1200 pages each - took ONLY SIX YEARS TO PRODUCE!!! I assume Yale backed it with the proper resources.

vladimir998

Biblical Catholic said...

Yeah, but what you're not keeping in mind is just how much work it is for one person to write a commentary, even a meager one, on every book of the Bible.

Those big one-volume study Bibles you are referring to are generally the product of dozens of scholars, each of whom complete only one small part, they aren't the work of 1 or two scholars working all by their lonesome.

Timothy said...

BC,

You are absolutely correct. Yet, don't you think that something like the ICSB, which is relatively small, compared to the the Anchor Bible should in no way take well over 15 years to complete......and its still not done. Again, if you compare the quantity of notes, not necessarily quality, and production quality of an ESV or NIV Study Bible, the ICSB is going to look like a dinosaur when it is done. These protestant study Bibles were done in only a few years. Yes, they had many other contributors, but doesn't that also reveal a greater problem of the ICSB? Shouldn't there have been more collaboration with more scholars? While I have been very positive of the content, doesn't this end up being primarily a "Scott Hahn Study Bible" much in the same way you would see a John MacArthur study Bible?

Anonymous said...

Biblical Catholic,

No, I just happen to know that the Minor Prophets section of the Ignatius Study Bible was already written in 2008. It still isn't published. Seven years. Seven whole years and it still isn't published. Do you think it took seven years for Anchor/Yale to publish a volume after it was finished? And, by the way, the Minor Prophets volume was not written by either Scott Hahn or Curtis Mitch - although I have no idea if their names will appear on the final Minor Prophets volume. (I tend to think not since Dennis Walters is listed on the NT booklets he contributed to.)

Clearly there's a problem at Ignatius Press. That's all I'm saying.

vladimir998

Biblical Catholic said...

It actually sounds like the problem is that they need more editors. If a volume is finished but not printed, that likely means a lack of editors.

But actually you're quite wrong about there being no delay with the Anchor Bible. The author of the Anchor commentary on Deuteronomy, Moshe Weinfeld, died in 2009. There are several reports that his commentary was finished before he died. But it still hasn't been printed. There has been a similar delay in the publication of the second volume of the commentary on Revelation, which was widely believed to have to been finished in 2007 or 2008, but wasn't printed until 2014. And there have been several volumes which have allegedly been assigned to an author, but there has been no apparent progress on the writing of the volume for a decade or longer.

Anyway, you guys are forgetting that the original plan for the Anchor Bible was that the entire project would take only 10 years and it would fill only 28 volumes, with some of the longer books of the Bible getting their own volume, but with a lot of the smaller ones combined into one volume.

What actually happened is that almost every book of the Bible got not just one but multiple volumes devoted to it. The original plan was to have all 4 gospels in one volume, instead the 4 gospels now take up a whopping 8 volumes, with 2 volumes for each individual gospel. There's no way around it, this is a project which quickly got completely out of control, and the reason fro the decades-long delay in completing it is lack of oversight by the editors who allowed it to spiral out of their control.

Anonymous said...

Biblical Catholic,


I never once said there was no delay with the Anchor Bible Commentary. I said any delay with that series was more understandable than with the ICSB since the Anchor series had over 1,000 participating writers and editors and was a HUGE multi-volume series. Even only originally envisioned as 28 volumes that still millions more words longer than the ICSB.

vladimir998

Anonymous said...

Also some of the Anchor Bible volumes are revisions of earlier volumes, i.e. new commentaries on the relevant book written by someone else.