Religion: Wycliffe to Tyndale to James

More than 60% of the King James version of the Bible was lifted word for word from earlier translations, reported Charles C. Butterworth in The Literary Lineage of the King James Bible (University of Pennsylvania Press; $3.50). The sources: 19% from the Puritan influenced Geneva version of 1560; 18% from William Tyndale (d. 1536); 13% from Miles Coverdale's versions ; 4% each from the Wycliffe and Bishops' Bibles; 3% from other versions, including the Rheims-Douay Catholic Bible.

"The chief place of honor is undoubtedly Tyndale's. It was he who gave to our Biblical speech its organic features, shaping it out of...

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