Bible translations by language

Bible translations by language

__NOTOC__Bible translations have been made into 2,454 languages, with various portions of the Bible in 848 languages, one of the two Testaments in 1,168 languages, and the full Bible in 438 languages. [Citation | last = United Bible Society |author-link = United Bible Society | title = Statistical Summary of languages with the Scriptures | year = 2008 | url = | accessdate = 20080322 ]

:AfrikaansAmharicApacheArabicAramaicArmenian • Arapaho • Azeri • Belarusian • Bulgarian • Burmese • Catalan • Cherokee • Chinese • Cornish • Croatian • Czech • Dakota • DutchEnglish • Esperanto • FinnishFrenchGerman • Gothic • Greek • Gullah • Haitian • Hawaiian • Hawaiian Pidgin • Hebrew • Hopi • Hungarian • Icelandic • Ilocano • Inupiat • Irish • Italian • Japanese • Jèrriais • Kazakh • Klingon • Konkani • Korean • Latin • Lisu • Lithuanian • Macedonian • Malayalam • Manx • Maori • Navajo • Norwegian • O'odham • Oromo • Pashto • Persian • Polish • Portuguese • Romanian • Russian • Serbian • Shawi •Slavonic • Slovene • Spanish • Swahili • Swedish • Tagalog • Taiwanese • Thai •Tongan • Turkish • Ukrainian • Uyghur • Vietnamese • Wakhi • Welsh • Yoruba • Zulu • Zuñi



The first Bible portion in Arapaho was translated by John Kliewer, a mennonite missionary, he translated Matthew 9:1-8. This was published with commentary in a ten page pamphlet by Wm. J. Krehbiel in 1888.

The first book was done by John Roberts, a Protestant Episcopal missionary, and Michael White Hawk who translated the Gospel of Luke into the Arapaho language for the American Bible Society in 1903. Distributed Proofreaders is working on digitizing it [] .


The Cornish language has died out in its traditional form but is being revived again.Two chapters of St Matthew’s Gospel survive from the hand of William Rowe of Sancreed (fl. 1650-1690). Henry Jenner translated John 5:1-14 , which was published in 1918, and in 1936 A. S. D. Smith produced his own translation of St Mark’s gospel, a revised edition being published by Talek (E.G. Retallack Hooper) in 1960. St Matthew’s Gospel was translated by D. R. Evans, appearing in 1975 and a version of St John’s Gospel was translated by John Page, published in 1984. Ray Edwards published his translation of Revelation and of a number of epistles in 1986, and St Luke appeared in 1989. Furthermore the Cornish version of the order for Evensong contains a translation of I Corinthians 13 by R. M. Nance. The complete New Testament (Common Cornish version) was published in 2004 and a complete Bible is due in 2010


The first translation of the whole Bible into Czech, based on the Latin Vulgate, was done in 1360. The Bible is called the "Bible of Dresden". This manuscript was lost during World War I. Many other translations followed this Bible of Dresden, and from the linguistic point of view they can be divided in four different redactions. The last one was finally printed.

The first printed Czech New Testament is the "New Testament of Dlabač", printed in 1487. The first printed complete Bible is the "Bible of Prague" from 1488. Another Czech Bible printed before the year 1501 is the "Bible of Kutná Hora", printed in 1489. All these texts were translated from the Vulgate.

The first translation from the original languages into Czech was the Bible of Kralice, first published in years 1579–1593. The translation was done by the Unity of the Brethren. The third edition from 1613 is considered classical and is one of the most used Czech Bible translations.


The Dakota Bible translation was started with Thomas E. Williamson and a half-breed trader, Mr. Renville, who had taken an interest in Williamson's work. After Williamson had modified the Latin alphabet to "work" for Dakota, he spent day after day for two or three winters in Renville's warehouse, reading verse by verse from his French Bible. Mr. Renville would then give the Dakota, and Williamson would write it down. They finished Mark and John this way. In 1837 Williamson was joined by Stephen Riggs, and both of them learned Dakota, and then compared the tentative translation with the original Greek.

In 1843 they offered a corrected gospel to the American Bible Society to be printed. It took nearly 40 years before the full Bible was translated. Williamson never lived to see it finished, as he died in 1879. Their work was revised by Williamson's son, the Rev. John Williamson. [The Centennial History of the American Bible Society By Henry Otis Dwight, pg. 359]

External links

* [ Dakota Bible Digitization, and re-Orthogriphication Project]
* [ Dakota Wowapi Wakan] (text form, not scanned, of some of the Old and New Testaments with plans in the future to update it to modern Lakhota)
* [,M1 Dakota Wowapi Wakan Kin] (Scan of the New Testament in Dakota on Google Books)


The initiator of Esperanto, L. L. Zamenhof, translated the entire Hebrew Bible into Esperanto. A monograph by Douglas B. Gregor, "La Esperanta traduko de la Malnova Testamento", compares Zamenhof's translation in some detail with a wide variety of major versions in other languages. A committee, consisting primarily of British clergy and scholars, was formed to translate the New Testament and review Zamenhof's translation for eventual publication by the British and Foreign Bible Society. The New Testament was published in 1910. A translation of the entire Christian canon, often referred to in Esperanto as the "Londona Biblio", was published in 1926. The most recent printing of the "Londona Biblio", issued in 2003, includes the Berveling translation of the Catholic deuterocanonical books.

An Esperanto organization devoted to Biblical and Oriental Studies, the Internacia Asocio de Bibliistoj kaj Orientalistoj, beginning in the 1960s, attempted to organize the translation of a new, ecumenical Esperanto Bible version, but this project eventually lapsed, with only Gerrit Berveling's translation of Numbers ("Nombroj", 1999) published. Dr. Berveling (a Dutch Free Church theologian and classical linguist) has, however, translated most of a new version of the New Testament, eschewing the syntactically overliteral tendencies of the B&FBS version, which is perhaps most akin among English versions to the Revised Version of 1881. His gospels have been published as "La bona mesaĝo de Jesuo: laŭ X" [X = "Mateo", "Marko", "Luko", "Johano", all 1992] , and the first volume of his projected New Testament has appeared as "Leteroj de Paŭlo kaj lia skolo" (2004). He has also published a three-volume edition of the Deuterocanonical Books ("La duakanonaj libroj"), the first two of which (those included in the Catholic Canon) are incorporated in the latest printing of the Londona Biblio.

There have also been other translations of specific books of the Bible and of shorter portions.

External links

* [ Old and New Testaments]


A Hawaiian translation was done by New England Christian missionaries and the Reverend Hiram Bingham in the early 1800sInformation gathered by Wikipedia user Hoshie based on a phone call to Jacquelyn Sapiie, Supervisor of Library Services at the American Bible Society on January 14, 2004.] . The Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) were translated in 1828. The rest of the New Testament was translated in 1832, the Old Testament was translated in 1839, and the translation was revised in 1868.

External links

* [ Review of the history of the Hungarian Bible editions] (in Hungarian)
* [ Comparison of the existing Hungarian versions] (in Hungarian)
* [ Hungarian Bible translations online (Protestant and Catholic)]
* [ Károli's translation online]


The New Testament was the first book printed in Icelandic. It was translated by Oddur Gottskálksson (whose father was Norwegian) and published in 1540. 44 years later the whole Bible was printed in Icelandic thanks to Guðbrandur Þorláksson, a Protestant bishop at Hólar. The current publisher of the Icelandic Bible is Hið íslenska Biblíufélag (The Icelandic Bible Society). The latest full translation was published in 2007.

External links

* [ Klingon Language Version]


Konkani is the Indo-Aryan language of Konkan in western coastal regions of India.

External links

* [ Konkani Bible]


*Korean Living New Testament
*Korean Common Language Bible. 1977
*Pyongyang Bible. 1984

In 1866, an American merchant ship, the "General Sherman", was sunk as it tried to enter Pyongyang along the Daedong river. All on board were killed in the ensuing battle, including Protestant missionary from the British Congregation Church to Korea – a young man called Robert Thomas. He had managed to get to shore, holding a copy of the Chinese Bible, which he gave to one of the Korean soldiers before he died. [ [ World Report 387 — August/September 2004 #14 ] ]


There were a number of piecework translations into Latin during the period of the early Church. Collectively, these versions are known as the "Vetus Latina." In the Old Testament, they follow the Greek Septuagint closely. The Greek translation was the usual source for these anonymous translators, and they reproduce its variations from the Hebrew Masoretic Text. They were never rendered independently from the Hebrew or Greek; they vary widely in readability and quality, and contain many solecisms in idiom, some by the translators themselves, others from literally translating Greek language idioms into Latin.

All of these translations were made obsolete by St. Jerome's Vulgate version of the Bible. Jerome knew Hebrew, and revised and unified the Latin Bibles of the time to bring them into conformity with the Hebrew as he understood it. The liturgical Psalms, however, are often taken from the older Latin bibles.

As discussed in the Vulgate article, there are several different versions of the Vulgate: the Clementine Vulgate, the Stuttgart Vulgate, the Nova Vulgata. These represent various attempts to either revise or modernise the Vulgate, or to recover Jerome's original text.

In the Protestant Reformation, Theodore Beza produced a new Latin version of the Old Testament, the Apocrypha and the New Testament. However, because demand for a Latin Bible among Protestants declined steadily, Beza's translation never achieved wide circulation. Nevertheless Beza's Latin translation, with its many exegetical margin notes, influenced the translation of the famous Geneva Bible.



As Danish was the written language of Denmark–Norway, there was no Norwegian language Bible until the independence of Norway in 1814, and for some time thereafter (see Norwegian language struggle). The independence of Norway saw the formation of the Norwegian Bible Society, which first produced Bibles in Danish, which became Bokmål as a separate Norwegian written language was formalized.A translation of the New Testament into Nynorsk was published in 1899, and of the entire Bible in 1921. [ [ History of Bible in Norway] (in Norwegian)]


The O'odham New Testament was translated by Dean and Lucille Saxton.


The Oromo New Testament was published in 1893, the complete Bible in 1899, the work of Aster Ganno and Onesimos Nesib. A new translation of the entire Bible was published by the Ethiopian Bible Society in 1992.


The New Testament was first published in the Pashto language in 1818, with the first complete Bible in 1895. In 1991 the Pakistan Bible Society produced a modern New Testament, most recently revised in 1996.

External links

* [ New Testament in Pashto — Injil]


The Bible was translated into Persian in the early 19th century. One major figue in this work was Henry Martyn, a contemporary of William Carey, who translated the New Testament. In 1811 he journeyed into Persia (now Iran). There he sent a copy of his translation of the New Testament to the Shah [ [ Henry Martyn, the Bible, and the Christianity in Asia ] ] . It was published in 1815. The complete Bible translation was completed in 1838 [ [ The Bible in Persian ] ] . A new version, Common Language Translation, first published in 1976. The New Testament is largely based on Henry Martyn's work.


The principal translator of the Bible into Portuguese was João Ferreira de Almeida, who began the translation in 1644, at the age of 16, and continued until his death in 1691. He translated all of the New Testament and a majority of the Old Testament. Those portions he did not translate before his death were completed by Jacob op den Akker.

Nova Versão Internacional (NVI) is an International Bible Society translation for the Brazilian dialect of the Portuguese language, completed in April 2000, and is primarily used in Brazil.


The first complete translation to Romanian was done in 1688 (called "Biblia de la Bucureşti") by Radu and Şerban Greceanu with the help of Şerban Cantacuzino and Constantin Brâncoveanu.

Before the Greceanu brothers, have been other partial translation like the Slavic-Romanian Gospel (1551), Coresi's Gospel (1561), The Braşov Psalm Book (1570), Palia from Orăştie (1582), The New Testament of Alba Iulia (1648) and others.

Two main translations are currently used in Romanian. The Orthodox church uses the "Biblia Sinodală" (Bible of the Holy Synod) version, the standard Romanian Orthodox Bible translation, published with the blessings of Patriarch Teoctist, whereas Protestant denominations mainly use the more widespread translation of Dumitru Cornilescu, first published in 1928. In 1989 "Biblia Cornilescu Revizuită" (Revised Cornilescu Version) appeared; it tried to get the existing translation closer to the original manuscripts, in a form grammatically corrected and adapted according to the evolution of the modern Romanian language.



*"Ang Bagong Ang Biblia" [| Full text]

*"Ang Biblia", 1975 [ Full text]

*"Ang Biblia ng Sambayanang Pilipino" [ Full text]

*"Ang Dating Biblia", Ang Dating Daan translation based on "Ang Biblia" [ Full text]

*"Ang Magandang Balita Biblia", 1973 [ Full text]
*"Ang Magandang Balita Biblia", 2005 edition
*"Ang Salita ng Diyos", 1998: New Testament only; produced by Bibles International [ Full text]


Part of the Bible in Thai was first published in 1834. The New Testament in Thai was printed for the first time in 1843. The first full collection of Bible texts in Thai came out in 1883. [ [ Reading the Scriptures in Thai] ]

External links

* [ Thailand Bible Society Page]
* [ King James Version Thai Bible]
* [ Reading the Scriptures in Thai]


Although parts of the Bible were first translated into Tongan in 1844, the New Testament was first published in 1849. [ [ The Bible in Tongan ] ] The first complete edition of the Bible was translated into Tongan by Wesleyan missionaries; the translation was then revised and edited by T. West, and published in London by W. M. Watts in 1860 (New Testament) and 1862 (Old Testament). [] Another translation of the Bible into Tongan was completed by James Egan Moulton in 1902 after serving there as a Methodist minister for eleven years. His translation is still in use today. [ [ Moulton, James Egan (1841 - 1909) Biographical Entry - Australian Dictionary of Biography Online ] ]


The Bible was translated into Turkish by Wojciech Bobowski, a Polish convert to Islam, in the 17th century. It was known as the Kitabı Mukaddes ("Holy Book"). For many years it was the only Turkish Bible.

Following Atatürk's orthographic reforms in 1923, the Bible was rewritten in the new Latin alphabet. This project was completed in 1941.

However, as the Turkish authorities were determined to remove as many foreign words from Turkish as possible, the language consequently underwent a dramatic transformation. In just sixty years, the language went through the equivalent of three hundred years of changes, thus many foreign words used in the Bible were no longer used. Because of this the United Bible Society and the [ Translation Trust] joined together to produce a translation suited to the new language. This work would be called the Colloquial Version. The translators included Ali Simsek, Behnan Konutgan and Mahmud Solgun. The translation consultants included the Rev. Dr. Manuel Jinbachian and Dr. Krijn van der Jagt. In 1989 the New Testament was published, one journalist saying the work "flows like music." The complete Bible was dedicated on October 21, 2001. [ [ UBS Special Report 27, Romania & Turkey - November 2001 #16 ] ]

External links

* [ History of the Turkish Bible Translation]


Fragments of the Biblical texts dating from a very early time were found in Turpan. Probably translated by the Nestorians.

The first modern translating began in the late 1800s, when Johannes Avetaranian, a Turk working with the Swedish Missionary Society translated the New Testament into Uyghur. The gospels were published in 1898 by the British and Foreign Bible Society in Lepzig. Avetaranian had translated the whole New Testament, but couldn't get the British and Foreign Bible Society to print it all at once. He left Xinjiang, thinking it would be temporary, but never returned. In Avetaranian revised his Gospels, and in 1911, along with Acts they were published by the German Orient Mission, in Plovdiv, Bulgaria. Gustaf Raquette, also with the Swedish Missionary Society, came to Plovdiv, Bulgaria, and worked together with Avetaranian on a revision of the New Testament translation. This revision was published by the British and Foreign Bible Society in 1914.

Selections from the Old Testament, translated by Avetaranian was published in Bulgaria in 1907. It is a small booklet though, and it is unclear how much/if he translated any more then that.

Genesis in 1917, Job in 1921, and Psalms in 1923 were translated by other members of the Swedish Missionary Society, especially Oscar Andersson. The British and Foreign Bible Society also printed a revision of the New Testament, by Lars Erik Hogberg and G. Sauerwein in Cairo, in 1939.

George Hunter, of the China Inland Mission in Urumqi, translated Mark, published in 1920 by the Shanghai branch of the British and Foreign Bible Society, and Acts, published by them in 1922. 1 Samuel (a tentative edition) was published in Urumqi in 1917.

After the Swedes had been exiled from Xinjiang, Gustaf Ahlbert, Oskar Hermannson, Dr. Nur Luke (a Uyghur), Moulvi Munshi, and Moulvi Fazil, completed the translation of the Uyghur Bible in India. This, and a revision of the New Testament, was published by the British and Foreign Bible Society in 1950, in Cairo. [Book of a Thousand Tongues]

Modern Uyghur translations of the Bible are in progress.

External links

* [ Online text of a Modern translation]
* [ Samples of Older Translations]


*1926 Vietnamese Translation (VT), (Cadman)

*1995 Republication of the 1926 VT

*2008 New Vietnamese Bible

Although, the Chu Quoc Ngu had been written in the 17th century, it took more than 250 years (1872) for Vietnamese Bibles to be translated for common teaching use in Vietnam. In 1963, Catholic officials published Vietnamese Bibles for the Vietnamese people's use.

A group of pastors are working to translate the Bible to Vietnamese using the English New International Version (NIV).Fact|2008-09|date=September 2008

External links

* [ "History of Vietnamese Bible"]
* [ New Vietnamese Bible]
* [ UBS-Vietnamese Partnership] – has downloads for a mobile phone version of the Vietnamese Bible


The translation of the Bible into Wakhi has begun in Moscow.

The first publication of a biblical text into Wakhi, was an excerpt from the Gospel of Luke (2:1-20) in a book on the birth of Jesus in the 80 languages of the peoples of the CIS, (IBT, 2000. p. 68-69)

In 2001 the Institute for Bible Translation published 1,500 copies of "Selections from Luke".Fact|date=November 2007

Wampanoag language

The Bible was translated into the Wampanoag language (now extinct) by John Eliot. It was published in the 1600s and is the first Bible to be printed in North America.


In 1837, the first portion's of the Bible in the Zulu language were published, in the "First Book for Readers" portions of Genesis and two Psalms were published.

The first book of the Bible to be translated into the Zulu language was Matthew's Gospel, published in 1848 by the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions (ABCFM). This was translated by George Champion, and revised by Newton Adams.

The completed New Testament was published in 1865, translated by a several missionaries of the ABCFM. And the complete Bible, translated also by many members of the ABCFM, and corrected by Andrew Abraham, and finally edited by S. C. Pixley was published in 1883. [Faith and Narrative by Keith E. Yandell, pg. 27] [The Zulu Yesterday and To-day: Twenty-nine Years in South Africa by Gertrude Rachel Hance, pg. 45]

It was revised in 1959, and published in London by the British and Foreign Bible Society.

A Modern Zulu New Testament, and as the Psalms was completed in 1986 and published in Cape Town by the Bible Society of South Africa. This was translated by Dean Nils Joëlson, and project co-ordinated by, Mr. D. T. Maseko and Mr. K. Magubane.

External links

* [ Bible Society of South Africa]


In 1906, Andrew VanderWagen translated the Gospel according to Mark. In the 1930s and 1940s, Wycliffe Bible Translators Carroll Whitener translated the Gospel according to John, as well as a few other portions of Scripture, with the help of Rev. George Yff and Rex Natewa.

After extensive study of the Zuñi language, and massive recordings of their folklore, and after creating a writing system that worked for their language, Curtis Cook translated the gospel of Mark (published in 1970) and Acts into the Zuñi language. [ [ Deseret Morning News | Arizona man helps preserve Zuni language ] ] Cook's chief language helper was Lorenzo Chavez [ [ NSM KnowledgeBase - #17201 - Recollections of Twenty Years in Zuni, New Mexico - Part XII: Zuni Language ] ]


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