1611 King James Bible Found in Village Church

Frontispiece to the King James Bible, 1611

Just a few weeks after the magnificent Henry VIII Mural was found in a house in Somerset, an original 1611 King James Bible has been rediscovered on the shelf of St Laurence Church in Hilmarton, Wiltshire.

A member of the church’s parochial church council, Geoff Procter, told the BBC how they had read about a “fine chained Bible in a glass case” being on display at the church and that they then put two and two together and figured that it was referring to a Bible that was sitting on a shelf at the church. When they looked carefully at this Bible, they realised that it was 400 years old and was one of the editions printed in 1611.

The recent discovery of this Bible is described as a ‘rediscovery” because it was found in 1857 by the then vicar, Reverend Francis Fisher, who tidied it up by trimming some pages and giving it an oak cover. Although it has suffered by undergoing this ‘tidying up’, the Bible is mostly intact and is an amazing find given that there are fewer than 200 original King James Bibles in existence today.

St Laurence Church intend to display the Bible in a glass case to protect it and also allow visitors to see it.


1 thought on “1611 King James Bible Found in Village Church

  1. Claire — just now getting to comment on this article, but what a beautiful find! The King James Version remains my favorite translation of the Old and New Testaments, and I adore old books as well, and I’m glad to hear it’s relatively in great shape. I remember how excited I was to see a Magna Carta at the British Library, but I’m happy that the church will preserve the Bible on their property — which seems only right.

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