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Plymouth University celebrates 400th anniversary of Bible

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BBC Two religious presenter Diarmaid MacCulloch is one of five guest speakers marking the 400th anniversary of the King James version of the Bible, with Peninsula Arts at Plymout University.

Throughout March, eminent professors will be looking at a variety of topics about the Bible from banned scriptures to how the Bible became literature.

The King James Bible History Series has been organised in partnership with the University of Plymouth’s History Department, the Multifaith Chaplaincy and the Plymouth Historical Association.

University of Plymouth Subject Leader in History Dr Elizabeth Tingle said: “The production of the Authorised King James Bible in 1611 was enormously important in British history and for the English language and there are currently many national celebrations of the 400th anniversary of the event.

“We are delighted to welcome such distinguished scholars to speak on the subject, to encourage and inspire our staff, students and members of the public to learn more about history.”

The lecture programe began on Wednesday, March 2 with a talk about the earliest English Bible translation, led by University of Oxford Professor Anne Hudson and continue on Thursday, March 10 Professor Alec Ryrie from Durham University will be looking at Henry VIII’s authorised version: Making the 1539 Great Bible.

University of Oxford Professor and BBC Two presenter Diarmaid MacCulloch continues the programme on Wednesday, March 16 with Taking the Temperature of the Church in 1611.

Ecumenical Coordinating Chaplain at the University of Plymouth, Rev David Evans said: “Today we take it for granted that we have the Bible in our own language but it was a hard fought struggle at the time and a thrilling story.

“I hope many people come and hear the story of how English people were able to hear the Christian scriptures in their own tongue and how this truly memorable translation came to be published.”

Tickets are available from the Peninsula Arts Box Office, £5, concessions £3 and free for Friends of Peninsula Arts, University of Plymouth students and staff and Historical association members. Telephone 01752 585050 or email

(image: psalm 23 Attribution Some rights reserved by khrawlings)

(from a press release)



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