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 SOL 1:1||
The song of songs, which is Solomon's.
|RF SOL 1:2|| SHEPHERDESS.
Let him kiss me with his kissing mouth;—
For your love is sweeter than wine!
|RF SOL 1:3|| SHEPHERD.
Your breath is a charming perfume!
Your fame is abroad;—that all the girls love you!
|RF SOL 1:4|| SHEPHERD.
Entice me!—I'll run after you!
(She runs off in sport.)
ACT 1. SCENE 1.
(In DAVID'S Park Lodge. The SHEPHERDESS sings on being to the other attendants in DAVID'S Park Palace.)
The King has brought to his home.
We are pleased and delighted with you!
Your charms are more pleasant than wine; —
The Princes will love!
|RF SOL 1:5|| SHEPHERDESS in reply.
I am dusky but comely,
Like pavilions of Kedar,
Like Solomon's tents;—
|RF SOL 1:6|| Oh! look not on me!
I am black!
The sun has embrowned me!
The sons of my mother were cruel to me,—
They set me to watch in the Vineyard,
So my own Vineyard I never could guard!
|RF SOL 1:7|| SCENE 2.
(The SHEPHERDESS alone and in the KING'S Park thinking of her Shepherd lover.)
(Sings.) Oh! tell me, you love of my soul,
Where you pasture?
Where your flocks lie at noon?
Why should I go wandering alone,
With my flock not alongside of yours?
|RF SOL 1:8|| (Her lover who has come to see her replies from the bushes.)
If you do not know, oh most charming of maids
Follow on by the track of the sheep,
And pasture your lambs
By the tents in the mead!
|RF SOL 1:9|| SCENE 3.
(Solomon walking in the Park sees and begins to court the SHEPHERDESS.)
To the steeds in the Chariot of Pharaoh
I would compare you my girl!
|RF SOL 1:10|| Your cheeks are made charming with ringlets,
With corals your neck!
|RF SOL 1:11|| I will make for you girdles of gold,
With silver for clasps!
|RF SOL 1:12|| (SHEPHERDESS in response replies with cross purposes, to evade SOLOMON'S flattery, pretending she has to go to DAVID, whom she is nursing.)
The King now returns from his stroll;—
I must run to attend him.
|RF SOL 1:13|| (SOLOMON, trying to retain her by further flatteries.)
My dear, you're a satchet of Myrrh
To be laid in my breast
|RF SOL 1:14|| My dove, you're a cluster of roses,
In Engedi's gardens!
|RF SOL 1:15|| (The SHEPHERDESS leaves, and SOLOMON calls after her.)
You are charming, my love, you are charming!
You have eyes like a dove!
|RF SOL 1:16|| You are charming, my love, you are charming!—
Let our roof be green leaves.
|RF SOL 1:17|| And the beams of our house fir-tree boughs,
And the Cypress our screen!