Tyndale: New Discoveries

A half-day seminar, Saturday 26th April

Well for those of you who were not able to join us, this was a delightful morning and a wonderful opportunity to renew friendships. The Tyndale Society Seminar was once again hosted by University College London. After a brief welcoming address by our society Chairman, Professor David Daniell, Dr Eberhard Zwink of the Wurttenbergische Landesbibliothek Stuttgart gave us an insight into the secret history of the second copy of Tyndale's 1526 New Testament. This was a fascinating and well illustrated lecture that offered hope that more Tyndalia is out there just waiting to be discovered. This New Testament is currently in New York but it will be returning home to Stuttgart in September. We now have a titlepage for the 1526 New Testament which, we now know, George Jove used for his 1534 New Testament revision.

The second lecture was to have been given by Jane Carr but, unfortunately, she was unable to join us. In her stead Professor Daniell shared some of her thoughts with us about the highly successful Tyndale exhibition Let There Be Light which attracted 42,000 visitors during four months at its British Library location.

Dr Kimberley Van Kampen divulged some of the secrets and the pleasures of the book collecting world. Her enthusiasm for old books started whilst still a student and the substance of her lecture was taken largely from her own experience of collecting rare books. Having successfully whetted our appetites for a trip to Michigan, through her discussion of some of the exciting items in the Scriptorium, Michigan, collection, she paid homage to the fine materials that have ensured the survival of so many important books.

Professor Daniell completed the morning's lectures by delivering the research findings of Bill Cooper, who has been working with the British Library's Foxe papers. Professor Daniell indicated that there was still a great deal of work to be done on William Tvndale and stressed that there was more Tyndalia out there for willing researchers. The recent emergence of the second copy of the Tyndale 1526 New Testament gives all researchers in this field fresh hope that he is right.

The conference ended with a lively discussion of the morning's papers. Not surprisingly many of the questions were directed at Dr Zwink. Andrew Hope proved to be an invaluable resource in supplying some of the historical detail of book exchanges. The buffet lunch was an excellent opportunity to meet fellow Tyndalians, pick up our copies of Reformation 2 and thank the speakers individually for their enduring hard work and contributions to our appreciation of William Tyndale's achievement. Make sure you don't miss out next time.

Vivienne Westbrook

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