Tag Archives: Bible
Lollard

Lollard

    John Wycliffe   John Wycliffe, or Wyclif, (1330?-84) was an English religious reformer. He criticized the wealth and power of the Church and upheld the Bible as the sole guide for doctrine. Wycliffe instituted the first English translation of the complete Bible. His teachings, regarded as precursors of the Reformation, were disseminated by itinerant preachers, contemptibly called Lollards. The Lollards believed that […]

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The horns on Moses’ head

The horns on Moses’ head

    Michelangelo (1475-1564), following the earlier artists, made a statue of Moses with horns. (San Pietro in Vincoli – Rome)       Moses is conventionally depicted with horns.   This is the result of a blunder in translation.   In Exodus, 34:29, where we are told that when Moses came down from Mount […]

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On biblical translations

On biblical translations

    Erasmus, by Hans Holbein the Younger – 1523         Scholasticism was the system of theology and philosophy taught in medieval European universities, based on Aristotelian logic and the writings of the early Christian Fathers, and emphasizing tradition and dogma.   Humanism was a Renaissance cultural movement which turned away from […]

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ivory tower

ivory tower

  Sainte-Beuve in the 1860s       MEANING   a state of privileged seclusion or separation from the facts and practicalities of the real world     ORIGIN   This is a literal translation of the French tour d’ivoire, coined by the poet and critic Charles Augustin Sainte-Beuve (1804-69) in his 1837 poem À […]

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‘Temptation’ in the Lord’s Prayer

‘Temptation’ in the Lord’s Prayer

  Notre Dame du Port – Clermont Ferrand (France)     To this day I suckle at the Lord’s Prayer like a child, and as an old man eat and drink from it and never get my fill. Martin Luther - 1535     The Lord’s Prayer, le Notre-Père in French, is a central prayer in Christianity. The […]

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malaria

malaria

  Malaria remains one of the most important causes of human morbidity and mortality worldwide, with a tremendous impact in the developing world. Theories on the cause and transmission of malaria have evolved over time, from Hippocrates’ theory of bad air in the 5th Century BC to our current understanding of plasmodial organisms as the […]

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gingerly

gingerly

  MEANINGS   The word gingerly is: – an adverb meaning in a careful or cautious manner, – and an adjective meaning showing great care or caution.   Aller à pas menu. To goe nicely, tread gingerly, mince it like a maid. (Randle Cotgrave – A Dictionary of the French and English tongues – 1611)   […]

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The resistible rise of Marine Le Pen

The resistible rise of Marine Le Pen

   The new, reassuring face of old extremism     Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Gospel of Matthew – 7:15    The tricolour logo of Rassemblement Bleu Marine     The Front National, France’s main far-right party, was renamed Rassemblement Bleu Marine when Marine Le […]

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The ‘one’ in ‘alone’

The ‘one’ in ‘alone’

  William Tyndale (1494-1536)     Why is the element ‘one’ in alone and only not pronounced like the numeral one? And why does English, unlike most European languages, distinguish between a book and one book?   The Old English word ān has given both the indefinite article an (a before consonant) and the numeral one. In Scotland, ane has survived both as […]

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