Coverdale Bible - 1535 First Edition Facsimile Elmo Brown Leather
From 1528 to 1535, Coverdale labored to finish his compilation of the Old Testament, which was then published by Jacobus van Meteren. In the same year, the Coverdale Bible, the first complete printed English Bible, was published. The previous year, Coverdale had published Dulichius’ Vom alten und newen Gott and his own Paraphrase upon the Psalms. In 1535, Coverdale published Goostly Psalmes and Spirituall Songes Drawen out of the Holy Scripture, the first English hymnbook. Many of Coverdale’s translations were also published in 1537 as part of the Matthews Bible. In 1538, Coverdale moved to Paris, where he supervised the printing of the Great Bible, a dual-language Bible in which he compared the Latin Vulgate with his English translation. Coverdale’s English New Testament was published in London and Paris, and he proceeded to translate Cranmer’s Bible in 1540. He returned to England in 1539, but with the execution of his close friend and protector Thomas Cromwell, was compelled to go into exile once again.
From 1540-1547 Coverdale lived at Tubingen, where he earned his doctorate, and worked as a pastor and schoolmaster at Bergzabern. During that time, Coverdale translated several tracts, published an English New Testament, and edited Cranmer’s Bible of 1540. After the death of King Henry VIII, Coverdale returned to England, where he enjoyed much favor under King Edward VI, spending most of his time at Windsor Castle as the King’s chaplain. In 1551, Coverdale became Bishop of Exeter, but after the succession of Queen Mary, best known as “Bloody Mary” in 1553, he was deprived of that position and imprisoned. During his imprisonment, the King of Denmark, who Coverdale had become acquainted with during his time in Germany, pleaded his cause to Queen Mary and arranged for Coverdale’s safe transfer out of England. Coverdale was released and quickly left for Denmark, before moving on to Wesel, and finally back to Bergzabern. After the reign of Queen Mary had ended, Coverdale made his final trip back to England, where he served as rector of St. Magnus’ near London Bridge until 1566. He died shortly thereafter, in 1568.