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Portraits of the Past: King James Bible translator Miles Smith

Published: Thursday, April 7 2011 8:00 a.m. MDT

King James Bible translator Miles Smith, 1554-1624, served on the First Oxford Company, translating Isaiah-Malachi. He studied at Corpus Christi and Brasenose colleges.

As a translator, he did not have a university affiliation. Smith served as Bishop of Gloucester and at the parish church at Bosbury, Herefordshire. Bosbury is just a mile or two from what would one day be the John Benbow farm. The separate bell tower dates back to the Knights Templar.

Miles Smith had an extraordinary knowledge of the Jewish exegetes. Hebrew, Aramaic, Syriac and Arabic seemed as familiar to him as English. He sat on the Revision Committee for the whole King James Version and wrote the preface.

It is said that Miles Smith was "covetous of nothing but books," and he did not keep books on his shelves that he hadn't read.

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