Re: most widely translated book?

From: Frantz Iago (
Date: Thu Aug 21 1997 - 21:16:42 EDT

I work for the ABS in PA. The resources I have point out that it is the Bible
the most translated book. This is due to the missionaries (national and
foreign) efforts all over the world. Books like the Qur'an are espected to be
learned in Arabic. Among Orthodox Jews the Hebrew Bible is also espected to be
learned in Hebrew, but today many Jewish organizations have made a major
contribution to the translation and distribution of the Bible, ie., the Hebrew
Bible (OT), into many languages. The Bagavat Gita is also becoming a very
popular religious book in many languages, due to the missionary work of
European and Jewish people, as well as former Christians, converted to
Hinduism, especially to the Pravupada movement. The book of Mormon is also
available in many languages. The only edition they stop printing is the Hebrew
translation of it (By the way if anyone has a copy of it, I am searching for
one for a research paper).

Among secular books the classic Castillian work El Quixote, and some of
Shakespear's works, among a few other classic are becoming available in many
languages. Many scholars rather study these works in the original language.
Even David Ben Gurion learned Spanish to read El Quixote.

Something I have noticed is that in many Native American languages (of South,
Central and North America) the Bible is the only book available in that
toungue. There are also very old Bible editions that have preserved ancient
languages that no one speaks today (I may be wrong).

In our local library we are planning to have a display of ancient Bibles and
texts on the History of the Bible. If any of you would like to use this
display send me a note directly to my e-mail (do not use the list, please.)

If we have made as part of our tradition to teach our children to read the
Bible in Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek, there would not be the need for
translations nor new English revisions. What do you think?

There is a Jewish legend that says that Joshuah wrote (or ordered to write) the
commandments of the law (instruction=Torah) in the 70 languages known to them
around tha altar.


Frantz Iago-Peretz
POB 623
Ephrata, PA 17522-0623 US

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