The 1560 Geneva Bible:
The First Edition / First Printing
An expertly repaired leaf from the very first press run of the famous Geneva Bible. These leaves are over 462 years old. They cost more than our “pre-1644” Geneva Leaves (in the Most Affordable Leaves section) because these leaves are from the 1560 printing, and we know that for our most discriminating customers… only a FIRST printing will do. These leaves measure approximately 9 inches tall by 6 to 7 inches wide. Each leaf comes with a beautiful Certificate of Authenticity.
The Geneva Bible (also known as the “Breeches” Bible) was the Bible of the Protestant Reformation. It was produced more than 50 years before the King James Bible, and it remained the most popular English language Bible among the people until decades after the introduction of the King James Bible.
The Geneva Bible was first printed in Geneva, Switzerland, by refugees from England, fleeing the persecution of Protestants by Roman Catholic Queen “Bloody” Mary. Many copies were smuggled back into England at great personal risk. In later years, when Protestant-friendly Queen Elizabeth took the throne, printing of the Geneva Bible moved back to England. The Geneva Bible was produced by John Calvin, John Knox, Myles Coverdale, John Foxe, and other Reformers. It is the version that William Shakespeare quotes from hundreds of times in his plays, and the first English Bible to offer plain roman-style type in some of its printings, such as this 1560 First Edition printing.
The Geneva Bible was the first Bible taken to America, brought over on the Mayflower… it is the Bible upon which early America and its government was founded (certainly not the King of England’s Bible!) The Geneva Bible was also the first English Bible to break the chapters of scripture into numbered verses, and it was the first true “Study Bible” offering extensive commentary notes in the margins. It was so accurate and popular, that a half-century later, when the King James Bible came out… it retained more than 90% of the exact wording of the Geneva Bible.
They were printed on 100% rag cotton linen sheet, not wood-pulp paper like books today. Each leaf is a unique piece of ancient artwork, carefully produced one-at-a-time using a movable-type press, and later bound together into whole Bibles. These genuine original antiquities are very rare and precious pieces of our history and our Christian heritage