The first Bible in English, 1535

Title page from the first Bible in English

Title page from the second edition of the first Bible in English published in Paris in 1538.


The first complete Bible in English was published abroad, most likely in Antwerp, in 1535.

Myles Coverdale (1488-1569), an Augustinian friar from Yorkshire educated at Cambridge, 'faithfully and truly translated [it] out of Douche [German] and Latin into English'.

Working alone, Coverdale modified William Tyndale's New Testament. As sources for his translation, he made use of Martin Luther's and the Zürich Bible's German versions, the Latin Vulgate, and another Latin translation of the Hebrew Old Testament.

The copy from 1538 has both the Latin and the English texts next to each other. This edition is also known as 'Coverdale's diglot'.

[NLS shelfmark: RB.m.469]


This Bible and others formed part of the display about 'The Bible in English' in our George VI Bridge Building from 2 November 2011 to 8 January 2012.

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