So, this Thursday I went to the Royal Library in Humlegården (the former Royal Hop Garden) to ask for Dag Hammarskjöld’s
own copy of the RSV. Apparently he bought it in New York 1953, shortly after becoming Secretary General.
It was a new venture by the New York Bible Association, following novel translation principles, a thorough breach with the ancient principle of Correspondence word for word.
It must have been the talk of the town, at least in "churchy" circles.
However, many (Evangelicals, who else?) refused to acknowledge it because of its Red cover – that didn’t go down well in the era of
It was really funny to present my query to the (really very nice and helpful) librarians, who were, first of all, marvelling at the sheer numbers of Bibles in the various catalogues on paper and in the computer – not to mention in Dag Hammarskjöld’s own library… (remember that Sweden only has had one translation at a time, no questions asked), and that I needed precisely this very copy and no other.
I explained that it was translated in 1952 and much reworked twenty years later, accommodating Roman Dogmatics (including the Tu es Petrus… and all that). It even has an Imprimatur ;=)
And the only copies I have found besides this one, are 1972 ones.
Now, as I knew that important changes, with the intent of suppor-ting anti modern Sexual and Social Politics globally (but especially in America), had been made in 1966 by Roman Academics at Cambridge (the English language version of the 1961 Bible de Jérusalem, a long Bible including the OT Deutero-canonicals) and Rome (its accompanying, so called Analysis philologica Novi Testamenti graeci, by Pater Zerwick, S.J. – which is not in any way an “analysis”, but presents Rome’s Dogmatic interpretations), I had begun to wonder, if the oft repeated “homosexuality” in 1 Cor 6:9, were put first in the 1966 Jerusalem Bible, and then inserted in the 1972 RSV.
In the intervening years I had also found that Calvinists and Romans sometimes have radically different and incompatible interpretations (for pastoral reasons?) even when they agree based on a shared Gnosticism/Neo Platonism. Like the word koítän; the Bed, which Rome claims is a Verb (euphemistic) and the (nowadays) United Bible Societies (the Stuttgart Novum) still claim is a Noun – which it is.
So I wanted to see with my own eyes what the 1952 Calvinist RSV (a short Bible, excluding the OT Deutero-canonicals) put there.
In short, is “homosexuals” a Modern or late modern addition?
The search went on for quite a while, before the librarians mastered the electronics. Dag Hammarskjöld’s library (which to my mind should be a real Gem in the Crown of the Royal Library!), isn’t really searchable. They did find a siglum at last – but it has to be found by foot. Deep down in the underground vaults.
I felt a bit like Harry Potter in Gringott’s bank.