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date: 24 June 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter explores the relationship between the King James Bible and other texts contemporary to it: works written, published or performed close to the 1611 translation. The result of placing the KJB in its cultural moment is to demonstrate that it shares many features with other texts emerging from this particular period. The discussion is structured around aspects of the translation stressed in its prefatory notice, ‘The Translators to the Reader’, which are then explored in relation to contemporary texts. The chapter addresses questions of translation; the balance of tradition and innovation; the necessity of interpreting the Bible; and the role of patronage and authority in the literary world of 1611. It draws together works by authors including John Donne, George Chapman, William Shakespeare, Ben Jonson, Thomas Coryat, and Aemilia Lanyer.

Keywords: John Donne, George Chapman, William Shakespeare, Ben Jonson, Thomas Coryat, Aemilia Lanyer, King James Bible

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