Work on the 'The Holy Bible in Modern English' began in 1853 by a London businessman named Ferrar Fenton (1832–1920). The complete Bible was first published in 1903, though some individual bible 'books' were published as separate volumes during the preceding 11 years.
Fenton is well known for a rearranging of the books of the Bible into what the author believed was the correct chronological order. In the Old Testament, this order follows that of the Hebrew Bible. The name of God was translated throughout the Old Testament as "The Ever-Living".
Fenton is an exciting translation that shows respect and gives clarity in many areas where other translations fall short. This Bible is described as being "translated into English direct from the original Hebrew, Chaldee, and Greek languages."
Henrik Borgström assisted Fenton with his translation of the Book of Job, which first appeared in 1898. The book of Job was "rendered into the same metre as the original Hebrew, word by word and line by line". His translation of the New Testament is based on the Greek text of Westcott and Hort. The ordering novelty in the New Testament is that it places the Gospel of John and the First Epistle of John at the beginning before the Gospel of Matthew, thus placing the Acts of the Apostles immediately after the Gospel of Luke.
Notable as well, is Ferrar Fenton's restoration of the Psalms into the musical verse form as close to the original as he could get. The Psalms were, quite literally, songs, complete with instructions for the "choirmaster" as well as descriptions of the proper musical instruments to be used. Today Psalm 48, Psalm 137, and Psalm 23 are still sung in churches, albeit to tunes not the original.
This bible is named the "Revised Fenton" because it puts things back into chronological order. In many cases, whether in error or not, Ferrar moved some parts of the scriptures down to the footnote section. These re-ordered verses have been returned to their chronological order as they are currently found in the King James Version. There was no alteration of the wording or intended meaning of what was originally intended by Mr. Fenton."
Welcome to the new blog section. Join us in this exciting effort to display the works of Ferrar Fenton! The Holy Bible in Modern English is now fully digitized and can be seen for it's creative and artistic beauty as well as for the spiritual edification that we all need through the daily study of the scriptures.
This project actually began in 2012 when the conversion of scanned images, using OCR software, revived a very beautiful but tangled digital version of Ferrar Fenton's work. The major part of the editing, including verse alignment, OCR errors and chapter breaks took over one year. Still, as we go there are minor fixes to punctuation and a few odd necessary edits.
In its very raw form, 'The Holy Bible in Modern English' went online with a free but very undependable web hosting service in 2014, where it has been ever since.
With thanks to the generosity of others, just recently, the site has been moved to its current home. This hosting service is by far superior to the previous but costs are high so we are maintaining an ad service to help offset the costs.
|RF ECC 9:1||
For I had applied my mind to all that, and could only discover this,—That the Righteous and Philosophic in their labours, are in the hand of God. Whether he likes it or dislikes it, man cannot know all that is before him!—
|RF ECC 9:2||To the wicked,—to the good,—and to the pure;—and to the depraved;—and to the worshipper, and to the one who neglects worship; —to the Good and to the Bad alike; —to the Perjurer, and to him who respects his Oath, comes the same result!|
|RF ECC 9:3||This is the grief in all that is done under the sun;—that one event happens to all; therefore the mind of the Sons of Adam is full of grief, and agitation is in their hearts during their lives,—and after that,—the Dead!|
|RF ECC 9:4||For who, of the living, has his choice? Who is hopeful? Yet a living dog is better than a dead lion!—|
|RF ECC 9:5||The living, however, know they will die; but the dead know nothing whatever.—And they have no more fame;—for the remembrance of them is forgotten!|
|RF ECC 9:6|| And their former loves, and hatreds, and ambitions perish; and they have no more possession, for ever, in all that they accomplished under the sun!
|RF ECC 9:7|| Lecture 12: On the Enjoyments of Life.
Go! Eat your food with pleasure, and drink your wine with a merry heart;—for GOD is well pleased by your doing so.
|RF ECC 9:8||Let your clothing always be handsome, and let not your head need oil!|
|RF ECC 9:9||Enjoy life with the wife you love, all the days of the worthless life given you under the sun!—all your worthless days!—for that is your lot in life, and your endeavor in all your efforts under the sun!|
|RF ECC 9:10||Whatever your hand finds to do,—do it with all your might! for there is neither Work, or Skill, or Knowledge, or Science, in the Grave to which you are going!|
|RF ECC 9:11||I have explored, and have seen under the sun, that the race is not to the swift; nor the battle to the strong;—nor bread to the wise;—nor wealth to the skilful; nor success to the prudent; but Time and Chance happen to them all!|
|RF ECC 9:12||Man, also, knows not his opportunity!—Like fishes caught in a cruel net,—and like birds caught in a trap,—the sons of Adam are caught like them, at a cruel time, that suddenly falls upon them!|
|RF ECC 9:13||Once I observed this result of intelligence under the sun,—and it was astonishing to me!|
|RF ECC 9:14||There was a little town with few men in it, and a great General came against, and surrounded it, and built entrenchments against it.|
|RF ECC 9:15||But a poor person possessing intelligence was found there, who rescued the town by his intelligence;—but the men did not remember that poor person!—|
|RF ECC 9:16||I, however, said, "Intelligence is better than strength. Nevertheless the intelligence of the poor is despised, and no one will listen to his words."|
|RF ECC 9:17|| Lecture 13: Two Epigrams.
On the Value of Intelligence, as compared with Ignorance in Human Affairs.
1. Wisdom and Folly.
The words of the Wise are heard in quiet,
While shouting rules among fools!
|RF ECC 9:18|| Wisdom is better than weapons of war,
But one blunder destroys much success