Article 24. The Lincoln Bible
This Bible is an edition of the King James Bible that was printed by John Hayes, Printer to the University of Cambridge in 1674. In 1686, Henry Lincoln, who was one of the Churchwardens, presented his copy of this Bible to the Church, and written on the reverse side of the frontispiece is his inscription to this effect.
Facing the Frontispiece is the usual dedication to the Most High and Mighty Prince JAMES, by the grace of God, King of Great Britain, France and Ireland etc. This dedication was given by the “Translatours of the Bible”
A mistake in binding
There then follow several pages which are headed “The TRANSLATOURS to the READER”. These cover in great detail the instructions given to them by King James I, and the way in which they have interpreted them. They also deal with problems encountered in translation.
This section covers 10 ¼ pages. Now the first ten pages were printed on either side of five sheets of paper, but, when the book was bound, this section was bound incorrectly. Three sheets, which should have come at the end of this section, were actually inserted after the first two sheets. Now these inserted sheets include the Contents Page, the Order of Psalms and the Table of Lessons. These would have been referred to very frequently, so there is no way in which this error could have passed unnoticed. Furthermore, this was a very expensive book and Henry Lincoln (or whoever the original purchaser was) would have noticed the error straight away, so why did he not demand that it be re-bound, or that he be given another copy? Perhaps he recognised that the error had occurred in a section that he did not regard as important and he was prepared to accept it - in return, no doubt, for a substantial reduction in the price of binding! It is, of course, possible that the error occurred during a later re-binding, but there is no evidence of this.
Who was the Henry Lincoln who presented the Bible to the church?
His relationship to Abraham Lincoln is shown in the chart below. He is the son of another Henry Lincoln, who was Richard Lincoln’s son by his fourth wife, Anne. The younger Henry is also the Henry Lincoln whose lands are shown in the survey of Swanton Morley that was carried out in 1692, so we know quite a bit about him.
Page Created: 28/07/12
This Bible where (sic) bought by M.r Hen.ry Lincoln
Church Warden of Swanton Morley in the Year 1686
A close-up of the inscription showing that it was printed by John Hayes
All Saints' Church