Gallery: Facts about the Saint John’s Bible

Published 11:42 am Tuesday, November 1, 2011

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What you should know about Saint John’s Bible:

• The one and only hand-written edition of the Saint John’s Bible will be on display at St. John’s University.

• The Heritage Edition, a precise copy of the Saint John’s Bible, is valued at $145,000.

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• Together, the seven volumes of the Heritage Edition weigh about 165 pounds.

• So far, about 70 of the 299 Heritage Editions of the Saint John’s Bible have found a home. A few include the Mayo Clinic, Arizona State University, St. Martin’s Church in London, the Vatican Library, the Morgan Library & Museum and the University of Michigan.

“Some very prestigious museums and libraries and universities around the world have acquired it, so they’re (Austin Public Library) in really good company,” said Jim Triggs, executive director of the Heritage Program.

• Two of four volumes displayed Sunday will stay at the library, including the editions for the Pentateuch — the first five books of the bible — and the Wisdom Books — Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and Song of Solomon.

The remaining five volumes will be shipped over the course of about 18 months. The final three volumes are still being finished.

• The original Saint John’s Bible was printed on vellum. The Heritage Edition was printed on 100 percent cotton pages. Both are meant to last for generations.

• The fauna and insects in the illustrations are native to Minnesota to show where the Bible came from. Other illustrations include modern elements, like a double helix DNA strand.

“This really meant to be a Bible for the 21st Century for all people of all religions, of all cultures,” Triggs said.

• The Bible is in English and is a New Revised Standard Version of the Bible (NRSV).

Viewing hours this week:

10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday
2:30 to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday
A volume will be on display in a case during regular library hours, and the volumes will be available for viewing outside the case during open viewing hours.

Public celebration:

1:30 to 4:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 6.
A 50-minute video on the Saint John’s Bible will be shown at 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m.