Page images

This great work, first published at London in 1660, in 9 vols. folio, under the direction of Bishop Pearson, John Pearson, Anthony Scattergood, and Francis Gouldman, is considerably augmented in the above second and best edition. The notes of Grotius, Vatablus, and Drusius, Munster, Castalio, Clarius, Junius, and Tremellius, are to be found in this collection, besides a multitude of commentators on particular books, and numerous valuable disquisitions on particular subjects, which are enumerated by Dr. A. Clarke in the general preface to his Commentary, vol. i. p. xiii. To complete this great work, there were published at Amsterdam, in 1701, Thesaurus Theologico-Philologicus, in 2 vols. folio, and in 1732, in two folio volumes also, Thesaurus Novus Theologico-Philologicus,-two valuable. collections of critical and philological dissertations by the most eminent biblical critics of that day. These are necessary to complete the Critici Sacri; of which great work an admirable abridgment has been published under the title of,

7. MATTHÆI POLI Synopsis Criticorum aliorumque SS. Interpretum. London, 1669-1674, 5 vols. folio. Utrecht, 5 vols. folio, 1684; also Frankfort, 1712, 5 vols. folio, and 1694, 5 vols. large 4to.

On this most elaborate work the learned author spent ten years; it consolidates with great skill and conciseness all the Critici Sacri of the London edition into one continued comment, besides many valuable additions from other authors of note, Hammond, &c. and his own corrections and decisions in several places. It has many advantages over the Critici Sacri, not only in point of size, but also in its admirable arrangement and concentration of evidence, and in the author's remarks; and it furnishes a most complete material index to the Critici Sacri. (Dr. Hales's Analysis of Chronology, vol. ii. preface, p. xviii.) Of the various editions above noticed, that edited at Utrecht by Professor Leusden, is by far the best and most correct. The folio Frankfort edition is not worth purchasing, on account of its incorrectness. The 4to. edition, which is somewhat better, is nevertheless very inaccurate it is badly printed, and sells at a very low price.

8. JOANNIS CLERICI Translatio Librorum Veteris Testamenti, cum ejusdem Paraphrasi perpetuâ, Commentario Philologico, Dissertationibus Criticis, Tabulisque Chronologicis et Geographicis, folio, 4 vols. Amsterdam, 1708, 1710, 1713. Ejusdem, Translatio ex Anglica Linguâ Henrici Hammondi Paraphrasis et Adnotationum in Novum Testamentum, Animadversionibus suis illustrata. Frankfort, 1714. 2 vols. folio.

Le Clerc's Translation and Commentary are highly commended by Bishop Watson of Dr. Hammond's Paraphrase and Notes on the New Testament, some account is given below. Many of Le Clerc's observations throw great light on the Scriptures; in others he has indulged his own fancy, and, what is most to be regretted, has completely frittered away the meaning of the Prophecies concerning our Saviour. He considers the miracles as the effects of nature. His Commentaries on the Prophets and on the Hagiographa are greatly inferior to those on the Pentateuch. John Justus Von Einem published a volume of Animadversiones ad Joannis Clerici Commentarios, at Magdeburgh, 1735. 8vo.

9. LA SAINTE BIBLE, expliquée par DAVID MARTIN, Amsterdam, 1707. 2 vols. folio.

M. Martin revised the Geneva version of the French Bible and corrected it so materially, that it is frequently considered as a new translation. The short notes, which he has annexed, contain much good sense, learning, and piety.

10. OSTERVALD (Jean-Frederic) La Sainte Bible, avec les Argumens et Reflexions, Neufchatel, 1772. folio.

M. Ostervald was an eminent divine of the French Protestant Church. The French Text of the Bible is that of the Geneva Versic revised and corrected by himself; whence it is often considered as a new version. Ostervald's arguments and reflections are very valuable, and have been liberally consulted by later commentators. A detached translation of them, in three vols. 8vo., was published by Mr. Chamberlayne in the early part of the eighteenth century, at the request and under the patronage of the Society for promoting Christian Knowledge.

11. JOANNIS COCCEII Commentarii in Sacras Scripturas, in ejus Operibus. Amsterdam, 10 vols. folio.

The commentaries of Cocceius are also extant in quarto and folio, under different dates as they were published. It is the fault of this learned man that he has in the Old Testament spiritualised every thing to the utmost; his commentaries, however, particularly on the New Testament, abound with valuable illustrations, and will amply repay the trouble of perusal.

12. CALMET.- Commentaire Littéral sur tous les Livres de l'Ancien et du Nouveau Testament, par Augustin Calmet. Paris, 1719 -1726. 8 tomes in 9 vols. folio.

"It contains the Latin text of the Vulgate, and a French version in collateral columns, with the notes at the bottom of each page. It has a vast apparatus of prefaces and dissertations, in which immense learning, good sense, sound judgment, and deep piety are invariably displayed. This is without exception the best comment on the Sacred Writings ever published, either by Catholics or Protestants (Dr. A. Clarke.) Walchius (Bibl. Theol. vol. iv. p. 433.) has pronounced an equally strong but well-deserved eulogium on this valuable work, to which we have been largely indebted in the course of these volumes.

13. CHAIS. La Sainte Bible, avec un Commentaire Littéral, et des Notes choisies, tirées de divers Auteurs Anglois, &c., par Charles Chais. Hague, 1743-1790. 7 vols. 4to.

Besides a French translation, which in general is judicious, this learned and elaborate work contains a valuable comment on the Old Testament as far as the end of the historical books. The seventh volume was posthumous, and was edited by the late Rev. Dr. Maclaine. "It is much to be regretted that the learned and pious author did not complete the whole. What he has published, however, at long intervals, is excellent. His notes are chiefly taken, as he professes, from the best English Commentators, to whom he gives a decided preference above the foreign, Houbigant, Calmet, &c.; all of whom he appears to have carefully studied. It may therefore be justly considered as a considerable and valuable improvement upon his predecessors, of every description, as far as it goes." (Dr. Hales.)

14. Jo. AUG. DATHII Libri Veteris Testamenti, ex Recensione Textus Hebræi et Versionum Antiquarum, Latine versi, notis philologicis et criticis illustrati. Hala, 1773–1789. 6 vols. 8vo.

This work is in high repute on the continent, where it was published at different times in six volumes or parts, most of which have been several times reprinted with improvements. See a notice of it, in Part I. p. 224. of this volume. The difficult and obscure passages are illustrated by notes placed at the bottom of the page. After M. Dathe's decease, Rosenmüller edited a collection of his Opuscule ad Crisin et Interpretationem Veteris Testamenti spectantia, 8vo. Lipsia, 17 These should be added to the above work, as they contain critical disquisitions on some antient versions, &c.

15. Libri Sacri Antiqui Fœderis ex Sermone Hebræo in Latinum translati; notatione brevi præcipuæ Lectionum et Interpretationum diversitatis addita. Auctoribus D. Henrico Augusto Schott et Julio Friederico Winzer, volumen primum. Altonæ et Lipsiæ, 1816. 8vo.

This volume comprises the Pentateuch only; the first three books were trans lated by M. Schott, and the two last by M. Winzer, but the whole work has been so carefully revised, that it appears to be the production of only one person. With a few exceptions, the version is said to be close; and the annotations, which are very brief, are strictly confined to the indication of the principal various lections. and of the different interpretations proposed by eminent biblical critics. This work has not been continued.

2. British Commentators on the whole Bible.

1. THE REFORMERS' BIBLE. -The Holy Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments, according to the Authorised Version; with short Notes by several learned and pious Reformers, as printed by Royal Authority, at the time of the Reformation, with additional Notes and Dissertations. London, 1810. 4to.

The notes on the Old Testament in this edition are reprinted from those appended to the English version of the Bible, published at Geneva by Coverdale, Sampson, and other reformers who fled to that city during the reign of Queen Mary: whence their translation is generally known by the appellation of the Geneva Bible. The annotations on the New Testament are translated from the Latin of Theodore Beza. Although in edition the orthography is modernised, and the style has in some few instances been improved, the editor (the Rev. Thomas Webster, M. A.) states that the utmost caution has been observed, that no alteration should be made in the sentiments of the reformers, whose "notes and illustrations," the late eminent Bishop Horsley (no mean judge of biblical literature) has pronounced to be "very edifying, except that in many points they savour too much of Calvinism." The notes on the Apocalypse are selected by the editor from various commentators: he has also occasionally supplied arguments to the different books of the Old and New Testaments: his dissertations on which, though concise, are sufficiently comprehensive for those readers who have not leisure to consult more expensive commentaries. A few useful maps and tables accompany the work, which is further ornamented with some neatly executed vignette engravings.

2. HALL (Bishop).- Contemplations on the Old and New Testaments. 2 vols. 1808. 8vo.

These have been reprinted at various times and in different forms; the edition now noticed was published by the Rev. Josiah Pratt, B. D. and is very correctly printed. Bishop Hall's Contemplations "are incomparably valuable for language, criticism, and devotion." (Dr. Doddridge.) The Bishop also wrote a "Paraphrastic Exposition of hard Texts," which forms the 3d and 4th vols. of Mr. Pratt's edition of his whole works. These expository notes Dr. D. pronounces to be "very valuable, especially for showing the spirit and force of many expressions that occur." They do not, however, contain much learned criticism. Most of them, if not all, are inserted in the valuable Commentary of Bp. Mant and Dr. D'Oyly, noticed below.

3. Annotations upon all the Books of the Old and New Testament this third, above the first and second editions, so enlarged, as they make an entire Commentary on the Sacred Scripture; the like never before published in English. Wherein the text is explained, doubts resolved, Scriptures paralleled, and various readings observed; by the labour of certain learned divines thereunto appointed, and therein employed, as is expressed in the preface. London, 1657. 2 vols. folio.

This valuable work (for valuable and learned it is, considering the time when it was composed) is usually called the "Assembly's Annotations;" from the circumstance of its having been composed by members of the Assembly of Divines who sat at Westminster during the great rebellion. The reader will find an account of its authors in Dr. Calamy's Life of Mr. Baxter, p. 86. et seq.

4. POOLE. Annotations upon the Holy Bible, wherein the sacred text is inserted, and various readings annexed; together with the parallel Scriptures. The more difficult terms are explained; seeming contradictions reconciled; doubts resolved, and the whole text opened. By the Rev. Matthew Poole, folio, London. 2 vols. 1683. Edinburgh, 1803. 4 vols. 4to.

The annotations are mingled with the text, and are allowed to be very judicious; the author (who was an eminent non-conformist divine) wrote them only as far as the 58th chapter of Isaiah; the remainder of the notes was compiled after the same manner, by several eminent dissenting ministers. It is no mean praise of this valuable work, that it is in the list of books recommended to clergymen by Bishop Tomline.

5. CLARKE. The Old and New Testament, with Annotations and parallel Scriptures. By Samuel Clarke, A. M. London, 1690. folio.

The selection of parallel texts is admirable; and the notes, though very brief

are written with great judgment. The work was commended in very high terms by Drs. Owen and Bates, as well as by Mr. Baxter and Mr. Howe. "It has been an excellent fund for some modern commentators, who have republished a great part of it with very little alteration." (Chalmers's Biog. Dict. vol. ix. p. 403.) This work, notwithstanding the learned author was a non-conformist, is inserted in the list of books recommended by the Bishop of Chester (Dr. Cleaver) to the attention of the younger clergy. It is unfortunately very scarce and dear. The purchaser must be careful that he be not misled by another Bible published also in one vol. folio, in 1811, in the name of S. Clarke, in numbers; and which is a very indifferent compilation by some anonymous editor from various commentators, all of whom lived long after the time of Mr. Clarke.

6. The Rev. Dr. Edward Wells published a Help for the Right Understanding of the Scripture, in various parts, between the years 1709 and 1728. As this useful work is not often to be met with, complete, the following bibliographical notice of it is copied from the Rev. Dr. Cotton's List of Editions of the Bible and of parts thereof. (Appendix, pp. 163–165.)

(1.) Wells's Paraphrase of the Old Testament.

Part I. The Title, "An Help for the more easy and clear understand"ing of the Holy Scriptures: being the book of Genesis explained after * "the following method: viz. The common English Translation rendered "more agreeable to the original. A paraphrase. Annotations." Oxford, printed at the Theatre, 1724. "A preface to the reader," 5 pages. "The "general preface," xv. pages. "A discourse of the year, &c. in use


among the Jews," p. 1-91. "A Chronological Account," &c. 23 pages, not numbered. Additional notes, 6 pages, not numbered. The text, p. 1-277. A synopsis to the Pentateuch, 2 pages.

Part II. Title, “An Help," &c. as before: containing Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy, printed 1725. "A preface to the reader," p. i-xi. Errata, 1 leaf, not numbered. Exodus, p. 1–149. Leviticus, p. 1-86. Numbers and Deuteronomy, p. 1–236.

Part III. Title," An Help," &c. containing Joshua, Judges, and Ruth : printed 1725. A preface to the reader, 11 pages. Joshua, p. 1-84. Synopsis, 1 leaf, not numbered. Judges and Ruth, p. 1–102.

Part IV. "An Help," &c. containing two books of Samuel, and two of Kings: printed 1726. Preface, p. i-vi. Samuel to 1 Kings, chapter i. p. 1-182. Errata, 1 leaf, not numbered. 1 Kings, chapter ii. &c. p. 1–148.

Part V. "An Help," &c. containing Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, and Esther printed 1727. Preface to the reader, p. i-v. Chronicles, p. 1— 136. Ezra, Nehemiah, and Esther, p. 1-80. a continuation of Jewish history, p. 81-109. Chronological tables, 2 pages.

Part VI. "An Help," &c. containing Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Canticles: printed 1727. Preface to the reader, 2 pages. Job to Psalm lx. p. 1-160. Psalm lxi-cl. p. 1–115. Preface to Proverbs, &c. 4 pages, unnumbered. Proverbs, &c. p. 1–116.

Part VII. "An Help," &c. containing Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Lamentations: printed 1728. A general discourse, p. i-xvi. Isaiah, p. 1–162. Jeremiah and Lamentations, p. 1–168.

Part VIII. “An Help," &c. containing Ezechiel: printed 1728. The text of Ezechiel, p. 1–178.

Part IX. "An Help," &c. containing Daniel: printed 1716. Dedication, 4 pages, not numbered. General preface, with a table, p. 1–10. Discourse, with four tables, p. 11-44. Daniel, p. 1-134. Synopsis, 1 leaf. Various readings, p. 137-170. N. B. This edition of Daniel was published with the New Testament: a second was printed 1728.

Part X. "An Help," &c. containing the twelve Minor Prophets : printed 1723. General preface, p. i-v. Preface to Hosea, p. i-vi. Hosea to Obadiah, p. 1–121. Jonah to Zephaniah, p. 1–88. Haggai to the end, p. 1—

77. N. B. A second edition was published in 1729, containing a preface, 2 pages. Text, p. 1–244.

(2.) Paraphrase of the New Testament.

Part I. "An Help," &c. containing the Gospels and Acts. Oxford, at the Theatre, 1718. General preface, p. i-iv. Two discourses, p. v-xx. Chronological tables, p. xxi-xxxv. The contents of St. Matthew and St. Mark, 5 pages, not numbered. Then follows a second title, "An Help," &c. containing the Gospels of St. Matthew and St. Mark, dated 1717. The text, p. 3-411.

Part II. "An Help," &c. containing St. Luke and the Acts: dated 1719. Advertisement, &c. 6 pages. St. Luke, p. 1–225. Acts, p. 1–209.

Part III. "An Help," &c. containing St. John's Gospel: dated 1719. Advertisement, &c. 4 pages. Text, p. 1–195.

Part IV. A treatise on the harmony of the four Gospels, with a table. Preface, 2 pages. The treatise, p. 1-83.

Part V. "The second part of an Help," &c. containing the Epistle to the Romans: dated 1711. Preface, 2 pages. Procemial discourse, p. 124. Text, p. 1–125. A second edition was published in 1715, with a title professing the part to contain all St. Paul's Epistles. General preface, synopsis, and lists of books written by Dr. E. Wells, 6 pages, not numbered. Advertisement, &c. 2 pages. Promial discourse, p. 1-20. Text, p. 21-145.

Part VI." An Help," &c. containing the Epistles to the Corinthians : printed 1714. Errata, 1 leaf. Text, p. 1-171.

Part VII. "An Help," &c. containing the Epistles to the Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, Timothy, Titus, and Philemon : printed 1715. The text, p. 1-173.

Part VIII. "A specimen of an Help," &c. being the Epistles to the Thessalonians and Galatians: printed 1709. Dedication, 2 pages. Preface, 5 pages. Text, p. 1–76. N. B. In 1716 was published a second edition; the contents and pages the same.

Part IX. "An Help," &c. containing the Epistle to the Hebrews: printed 1713. Preface, 2 pages. Text, p. 1-95.

Part X. "An Help," &c. being the Catholic Epistles: printed 1715. Advertisement, &c. 2 pages. Text, p. 1-149.

Part XI. "An Help," &c. being the Revelation of St. John: printed 1717. Dedication, 2 pages. Preface, 3 pages. Table and Explanation. Text, p. 1-183.

7. PATRICK, LOWтH, WHITBY, and ARNALD'S Commentary on the Bible. London, 1727-1760. 7 vols. folio. London, 1809. 8 vols. 4to. 1821. 7 vols. 4to.

Bishop Patrick wrote the commentary on the historical and poetical books of the Old Testament, in 2 vols.; Mr. W. Lowth, (father of Bishop Lowth) that on the Prophets, in one vol.; Dr. Whitby, that on the New Testament, in 2 vols. ; and Mr. Arnald, the commentary on the Apocryphal books. The four volumes of Patrick, Lowth, and Arnald, are justly valued, as containing one of the best commentaries on the Old Testament and Apocrypha which we have in the English language. As Dr. Whitby's work on the New Testament is very frequently found separate from the above commentaries, the reader will find some account of it, infra, in the list of commentators on the New Testament.

8. HENRY.. An Exposition of the Old and New Testament, by the Rev. Matthew Henry, folio, 5 vols. 4to. 6 vols.


The value of this commentary is too well known to require any testimonies to its merit it is perhaps the only one "so large, that deserves to be entirely and attentively read through. The remarkable passages should be marked there is much to be learned in this work in a speculative,, and still more in a practical way." (Dr. Doddridge.) The quarto edition was superintended by the Rev. Messrs. Burder and Hughes, and is very correctly and handsomely printed; there are some copies on royal paper.



« PreviousContinue »