Eleven Places Where the 1611 KJV Has Textual Critical Notes

A friend of mine sent me these eleven places where the 1611 KJV has textual critical notes, places where the translators or editors felt it important to tell readers when the Greek New Testament manuscripts to which they had access included variant readings. Such notes are not a new invention.

(NT examples HT: Andy Efting)

As best I can tell, having checked David Norton’s New Cambridge Paragraph Bible, there are four places in the Old Testament (1 Chron 1:6, 7; Ezra 2:33; 10:40) and two in the Apocrypha (1 Esdras 5:25; 8:2) where the KJV translators did the same thing.

Author: Mark Ward

PhD in NT; theological writer for Faithlife; former high school Bible textbook author for BJU Press; husband; father; ultimate frisbee player; member of the body of Christ.

5 thoughts on “Eleven Places Where the 1611 KJV Has Textual Critical Notes”

  1. Hello Mark, speaking of critical notes or judging, why do so many people think they are being Biblical when they say, “Judge not, lest ye be judged.”? That verse is nowhere in the Bible! It actually says: “Judge not, that be be not judged”

  2. All Cambridge KJV reference Bibles have the original translators’ text critical notes and variant readings in them. There’s a big difference in philosophies between the people involved in determining the autographic text in the 1600s and today’s text critics. Their presuppositions and assumptions are as different as night and day. In the 1600s, people were readily able to identify the autographic text within the extant apographs and the translations these people produced (like the KJV) were (and still are) considered authentic representations of the autographic text. You may want to read “The Inspiration of Scripture: A Study of the Theology of the Seventeenth Century Lutheran Dogmaticians” by Robert Preus.

  3. Yes, I find that aspect of my Cambridge KJV Bible helpful as well.

    However, if they were “readily able to identify the autographic text” why the need for including textual variants? The fact that they viewed their translations as authentic despite uncertainty regarding some of the readings seems to be the right position, and not at all different than how I view the ESV.

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