I haven’t posted nearly as much this year as I would have liked, and especially not since I promised more Star Trek-related thoughts (way back in September). Those are coming as soon as I have the time to sit down and compile lists and reviews of my favourite episodes.
But before then, I wanted to share about one of my Christmas presents this year. Well, I call it a present but of course I bought it for myself. Over two years ago. And I’ve been waiting for it to be finished ever since. Beginning life as a Kickstarter project which raised about a million dollars more than expected, then delayed by the desire to make the final product better, delivery finally came this month. My own package arrived on Friday and I’ve been salivating over it ever since.
It’s called Bibliotheca. Book designer Adam Lewis Greene conceived of the project as a response to what he, and many others, feel is an intimidating and unhelpful presentation of the Bible. Bibliotheca (named after the Latin word for “library”) is an edition of the Bible which removes chapters, verses, cross references, double columns, and all the usual apparatus we’re accustomed to seeing when we open a Biblical tome. Adam Greene chose the American Standard Version as a base text, planning to remove the old-fashioned thees and thous, then decided to split the Scriptural canon into separate volumes to eliminate the need for thin and transparent paper; he then designed the typefaces, page layout, and the cover concept. When Kickstarter furnished him with an incredibly robust financial backing, he was able to hire a team of scholars to produce a new revision of the ASV as well as professional proofreaders. It also meant the books could be manufactured in Europe by some of the finest bookbinders and paper mills in the world.
In the wake of Bibliotheca, other translations have appeared in their own versions of the same reader-friendly format. But after finally holding Bibliotheca in my hands, opening its pages, and poring over the words…I can safely say this is a landmark in the history of Bible publishing. Greene’s determination to see the project through is to be commended, and he deserves our profound thanks.
I made an unboxing video, recording my impressions and giving a “tour” of this new edition of the Bible. You can watch it here: