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NRSV to be updated

NRSV to be updated

The National Council of Churches announced at the 2017 Society for Biblical LiteratureAmerican Academy of Religion Annual Meeting that there will be an update of the New Revised Standard Version English translation of the Bible:

The update will focus on three areas:

Text-Critical and Philological Advances: The primary focus of the thirty-year review is on new text-critical and philological considerations that affect the English translation. The philological review will draw upon the fruits of historical-critical scholarship that affect expressions in English. For the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, text-critical developments in the last thirty years have been especially significant. The publication of the Judean Desert biblical texts and fragments has revealed a number of readings that differ from the medieval Hebrew traditions in the Masoretic Text, which was the basis of the NRSV.

Textual Notes: SBL’s initial review of the NRSV suggested that the current text-critical footnotes are neither complete nor consistent. There are cases when the translation silently adds words not conspicuously in the sources or does not indicate when a reading is not following the sources. To address this deficiency, reviewers will be asked to identify text-critical issues that should have been documented in the notes but were not.

Style and Rendering: The translation philosophy of the NRSV will be maintained, including its overarching commitment to being “‘as literal as possible’ in adhering to the ancient texts and only ‘as free as necessary’ to make the meaning clear in graceful, understandable English.” That being said, when a reviewer judges a particular translation awkward, inaccurate, or difficult for general readers to understand, the reviewer may suggest a more elegant rendering.


 Read the report beginning on page 7 here
Evangelical Textual Criticism blog has more
h/t to Dr. Deirdre Good

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Justin Hanton

I couldn’t seem to see when this was going to be completed and released in publication. I was keeping an eye on the new edition of the NRSV study bible that is due to come out in a few months, so it is interesting to know that the entire NRSV text is up for revision.

Scott Knitter

Somewhere I saw a reference to three years from now for the updated translation. Meantime, yes, there is a 5th edition of the New Oxford Annotated Bible (NRSV) coming out this spring.

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