Reina y Valera Bible

The Bible that is, the sacred books of the Old and New Testaments. Moved in Spanish. The Word of our God remains forever. 1569, also known as the Bear’s Bible, is the first complete translation of the Bible into Spanish, published on September 28, 1569. Its translator was Cassiodoro de Reina. The Bear Bible is usually referred to as the Reina-Valera (RV) for having made the first revision of it by Cipriano de Valera in 1602. The Reina-Valera was widely disseminated during the Protestant Reformation of the 16th century. Today, the Reina-Valera (with various revisions over the years) is one of the most widely used Spanish bibles by many of the Christian churches derived from the Protestant Reformation (including the Evangelical churches), as well as by others. Christian faith groups like theSeventh-day Adventist Church , The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints , Gideons International, and other non-denominational Christians.


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  • 1 Translation of Queen
  • 2 Importance of Reina’s text
  • 3 Pitcher’s Bible
  • 4 Reviews of the United Bible Societies
  • 5 Reina Valera Gómez
  • 6 Holy Bible Valera 1602 Purificada
  • 7 Golden Age Bible
  • 8 Holy Bible, LDS edition
  • 9 Review of the Trinitarian Bible Society
  • 10 Sources

Queen’s Translation

Casiodoro de Reina, a Spanish Jerome monk from the Monastery of San Isidoro del Campo, after going into exile to escape persecution by the Inquisition, worked for twelve years on the translation of the Bible. The Bear Bible was published in Basel, Switzerland. It is called the Bear’s Bible because of the illustration on its cover of a bear trying to reach a honeycomb hanging from a tree. That illustration, the logo of the Bavarian printer Mattias Apiarius, was placed on the cover to avoid the use of religious icons, because at that time any translation of the Bible into vernacular languages ​​was prohibited. The translation of the Old Testament, as Casiodoro de Reina expressly declares in his “Admonition of the interpreter of the sacred books to the reader”, was based on the Masoretic Hebrew text (Bomberg edition, 1525).

Since he considered that the Latin Vulgate had already fulfilled its role and contained errors and changes, he preferred to use the Latin translation of Sanctes Pagnino (Veteris et Novi Testamenti nova translatio, 1528) as a secondary source, because “to the vote of all the learned in the Hebraic language is held to be the purest there is up to now ”, correcting the Masoretic version every time it departs from the quotations of the Old in the New Testament. The Ferrara Bible (Abraham Usque and Yom-Tob Athias, 1553) was always at hand to resolve doubts, a translation from Hebrew to Judeo-Spanish used by Sephardic Jews, which Reina considered “the work of the highest esteem”, “for giving the natural and first meaning of the Hebrew words and the differences of the verb tenses ”.

For the translation of the New Testament, Reina relied on the Textus Receptus (Erasmus 1516, Stephanus, 1550), the Complutean Polyglot, and the best Greek manuscripts known at the time. Apparently, he had before him the versions of the New Testament of Juan Pérez de Pineda of 1556, Francisco de Enzinas of 1543 and translations of Juan de Valdés. The first two editions, that of Cassiodoro de Reina (1569), called the Bear’s Bible, and that of Cipriano de Valera (1602), called the Pitcher’s Bible, contained all the books included in the Latin Vulgate Bible of Jerónimo de Estridón , which is the official text of the Bible for the Roman Catholic Church. That is to say, it included nine Catholic-Orthodox deuterocanonical books and three others, typical of the long canon followed by Orthodox Christian churches. In Valera’s review,

Importance of Reina’s text

Before the Protestant Reformation, translations of the Holy Scriptures into modern languages ​​generally took the Vulgate as the textual basis. Reina’s work is the first translation of the complete Bible in Spanish made from the Hebrew and Greek languages, since the pre-Alphonsine Bible and the Alfonsine Bible (first versions of the complete Bible in Spanish) were translations made from Latin. Before the Bear Bible there were only versions from the Hebrew and Greek languages ​​to Spanish of parts of the Bible such as the Alba Bible and the Ferrara Bible (Old Testament) and the texts of Juan Pérez de Pineda and Francisco de Enzinas (New Will). Reina’s Bible reflects the literary beauty of the so-called Golden Age of Castilian literature. In History of the Spanish heterodox,

Pitcher’s Bible

Cipriano de Valera began the first revision of Reina’s Bible in 1582 and concluded it in 1602. The original title of Valera’s revision was The Bible that is, the sacred books of the Old and New Testaments, second edition. It was published in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and became the most widely used Spanish version of the Bible for several centuries. It was also known as the Pitcher’s Bible because of the illustration on the cover: a man who is planting a tree, while another man waters it with water from a pitcher. The illustration would be alluding to the first Corinthians 3: 6, according to some experts. Various revisions have been made from the Pitcher’s Bible over the years.

Revisions of the United Bible Societies

In 1862 a revision of the Reina-Valera was published by the printing press of the University of Oxford made by Lorenzo Lucena Pedrosa. Subsequently, the United Bible Societies revised the Reina-Valera in 1909, 1960, 1995 and 2011. The revisions of the United Biblical Societies have been eliminating many old forms of the Spanish language and have updated some elements of style, but at the same time keeping as possible the way Reina wrote her work. Those revisions were edited without the deuterocanonicals because they are not within the Hebrew canon recognized by the Jews.

The “Reina Valera revision de 1960” (RVR60) was carried out by a group of biblical scholars from various Hispanic countries from various Christian denominations. The review commission took into account the observations made by pastors and laity from Spain and Latin America. All this without altering the basic meaning of the biblical message and also preserving the style and cadence of the Reina text. The translation type of the RVR60 is formal equivalence.

In 2011, the Reina Valera Contemporánea (RVC) came out, prepared by the United Bible Societies Review and Translation Committee. The textual basis of the RVC is the Hebrew Stuttgartensia Bible for the Old Testament and the Textus Receptus for the New Testament. The RVC indicates with footnotes the most notable differences between the Textus Receptus, The Greek New Testament of the United Bible Societies and the Critical Text of Nestle and Aland. In the RVC the divine name “Jehovah” was replaced by “Lord”, following the example of the Septuagint. The type of translation of the RVC is of a more dynamic equivalence, since it seeks to present a text where natural expression predominates and that follows a more modern syntax. Among those language changes are: Greater use of the syntactic order of Castilian (Subject-Verb-Object) instead of Hebrew (Verb-Subject-Object). Substitution of those gerunds that give Spanish strange turns. Better use of punctuation marks. Language best adapted to Spanish in America. A modern name day. Some faithful, for theological and textual fidelity reasons, preferably use the revisions of 1862 and 1909, while rejecting the last revisions.

Reina Valera Gómez

A Baptist group from Matamoros, Mexico, made a revision of the text of the RV of 1909 in 2004. They used the original texts in Greek and Hebrew, as well as the King James Bible . The version is called Reina Valera Gómez (RVG), as Humberto Gómez is the main editor.

Holy Bible Valera 1602 Purificada

The Holy Bible Valera 1602 Purificada is a revision of the Cantabrian Bible of 1602 made by a Baptist church in Monterrey, Mexico It was completed in 2007 and published in 2008. It is based for the Old Testament on the Masoretic text of Jacob ben Hayyim ben Isaac ibn Adonijah (edition of Daniel Bomberg, Venice, 1524) and for the New Testament in the Textus Receptus by Teodoro de Beza (1598). It is a version criticized by various Baptist, Pentecostal and other denomination groups for being allegedly an adaptation of the King James Bible.

Golden Age Bible

On June 16, 2009, the Golden Age Bible was published in Spain. It was presented by the National Library of Spain and the Spanish Bible Society to celebrate the 440th anniversary of the first edition of the Bear’s Bible in 1569. Biblical texts, including deuterocanonicals, have been placed following the revision of Cipriano de Valera. Only after more than four centuries, the work of Reina and Valera was published in Spain just as its authors did.

Holy Bible, LDS edition

In September 2009, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints published the Holy Bible: Reina-Valera 2009, revision based on the Reina-Valera of 1909, with some very conservative updates regarding old grammar and vocabulary . The Reina-Valera of 1909 was chosen for being recognized in terms of the quality of its translation and the availability of copyright. The LDS edition was prepared and revised by a team of translators, General Authorities, Area Seventies, Bible scholars, and members of the Church.

Trinitarian Bible Society Review

The Trinitarian Bible Society is working on a revision of the Reina-Valera version 1909 (RV1909). The objective is to apply, as far as possible, the sentence structures and the original vocabulary used by Reina and Valera, but accepting the current spelling rules of the Royal Spanish Academy and discarding those words that have changed their meaning. It is also avoided to link the Reina-Valera version 1909 with the particular characteristics and languages ​​of other translations. The revised New Testament is expected to be in circulation by 2014 in various countries.


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