Turn of Phrase from the KJV

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by Deacon, Dec 28, 2010.

  1. Deacon

    Deacon
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    So many of our modern English phrases were derived from idioms found in the bible.

    Perhaps because the King James Version was produced during a particularly formative time in our languages history, it supplied many of these expressions.

    In celebration of The King James Version’s 500th anniversary I’ll be examining some of the idioms associated with it that have become commonplace expressions today.

    I’ll start a bit early because this phrase is connected to Christmas.

    *****************************************

    ‘So be good for Goodness Sake

    “Remember not the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions: According to thy mercy remember thou me For thy goodness’ sake, O LORD. ”
    (Psalm 25:7, AV 1873)

    OTHER VERSIONS

    “Remember not the sins of my youth or my transgressions; according to your steadfast love remember me, for the sake of your goodness, O LORD! ” (ESV)

    “Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions; According to Your lovingkindness remember me, For Your goodness’ sake, O LORD. ”
    (NAS)

    euen for thy goodnesse sake, O Lord.
    (Geneva - 1587)

    but accordyng to thy mercie euen of thy goodnesse O God remember me
    (Bishops - 1568)

    but acordinge vnto thy mercy thynke vpon me (O LORDE) for thy goodnesse.
    (Coverdale - 1535)

    and on myn vnkunnyngis. Thou, Lord, haue mynde on me bi thi merci; for thi goodnesse.
    (Wycliffe - 1395)



    Application: “So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. ” (1 Corinthians 10:31, ESV)

    Rob
     
  2. Dr. Bob

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    Oh, for goodness sake. :laugh:
     
  3. rsr

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    I was listening to an interview with David Crystal, author of Begat: The King James Bible and the English Language on NPR the other day, and he addressed this very topic. Crystal has traced 257 English idiomatic expressions in common usage that can be traced to the KJV.

    That doesn't sound like a lot, but Crystal points out its twice the number contributed by Shakespeare.

    Crystal also told NPR that "only a very tiny number of the expressions ... are unique to the King James Bible. The vast majority come from other Bibles from the 16th century."

    In fact, in his book Crystal says "Much of the linguistic distinctiveness of the King James Bible in fact originated in Tyndale ... So when people talk about the King James Bible introducing various expressions into English, it doesn't mean that it always originated them. Rather, it gave them a widespread public presence through the work being 'appointed to be read in the churches.'

    A synopsis of his appearance and an excerpt is at:

    http://www.npr.org/2010/12/22/132262167/thank-the-king-james-bible-for-favorite-phrases
     
    #3 rsr, Dec 28, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 28, 2010
  4. BobinKy

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  5. rsr

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    Your first example shows the transmogrification that some idioms pass through.

    "Goodness sake," as used in modern English, is a euphemism (or minced oath) for "God's sake." Thus in common usage it really has nothing to do with Psalms 25, other than repeating the words.
     
  6. The Archangel

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    I really hate to be a buzz-kill and a nit-picker, but the KJV will have its 400th anniversary this year, not its 500th. The 500th anniversary will be in 2111. Since the publication date of the KJV was 1611, this year, 2011, is the 400th anniversary.

    Blessings,

    The Archangel
     
  7. Deacon

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    Goodness sakes, my anniversary celebration is a bit early; I think I was mislead by Calvin's 500th year celebration this past year.

    As Bob noted, many of the examples that will be offered, predate the KJV.


    Some of these examples come from a book I recently read:
    Where'd That Come From?. McCalip, Steven Melvin. Chattanoga: 2002.

    It's a quick + easy read with little more than the idiom, its meaning and a bibilical reference.

    Rob
     
  8. Dr. Bob

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    I hate to DOUBLE knit-pick (or nit-pick, depending on if you work in a woolen mill or a zoo with monkeys) but the KJV is not the AV1611. Not even close. Total revision. Major changes + gajillion minor ones.

    So 2011 will mark 400 years of the AV1611, a translation few even have or use. My KJV will be 400 years in 2169 and I might not live that long . . .
     
  9. robycop3

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    I believe we received as many idioms & expressions from the BRITISH ROYAL NAVY as from any other source. An example is "son of a gun". More than one woman, especially sailors' wives, officer & seaman alike, stowed away on a British warship, and, once out to sea, they couldn't get rid of her. They often became pregnant, & one of the best places aboard a British warship to deliver a baby was atop a cannon. These children, boy or girl, were called "sons of guns" & were treated with special deference; the sailors believed them to be a sign of God's blessing upon ship & crew.

    BTW, "stowaway" comes from the RN as well!

    Another-"square meal". When the RN was able to serve a sumptious meal at sea, which wasn't often, they used square wooden dishes.

    That's all; I certainly didn't wanna derail the thread! So lemme close with an expression from the KJV-"spare the rod & spoil the child", something all-too-common today.
     
  10. Scarlett O.

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    (Nevermind, it wasn't important)

    Happy New Year's, everybody!
     
    #10 Scarlett O., Dec 31, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2010
  11. Ed Edwards

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    Pro 18:9 (English Bible in my head)

    A lazy man is brother to the saboteur!

    THE LIVING WORD is where it comes from, according to authority of Google :)
     
    #11 Ed Edwards, Dec 31, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 31, 2010
  12. BobinKy

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  13. Amy.G

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    It's very interesting seeing where some of our expressions originated.
    One recent expression is "don't drink the koolaide". Of course that's not biblical, but it did come from one who was famous for perverting the bible. :)
     

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