You certainly don’t have to be a biblical scholar to be a fan of History’s blockbuster drama series The Bible — which continues tonight at 8pm ET — but those who are of the more studious persuasion will be happy to hear about a chance to see some rare biblical artifacts in real life.
Bible producers Mark Burnett and Roma Downey are teaming with the Green Family Private Collection to bring The Bible Experience — which includes a stunning array of rarely seen and priceless artifacts, as well as production photos from the series. Normally seen at the Vatican, this special collection will be on display from March 20-27 (after which it will return to the Vatican) at 450 W. 14th St. in New York.
Some of the featured items (as outlined in a press release) include:
Dead Sea Scroll Fragments: Daniel 10:18-20, and Jeremiah 23:6-9: Three pieces will be on display in this exhibit, containing portions from the books of Daniel, Jonah and Jeremiah
Medieval Torah Scroll, 14th century: One of the oldest surviving Torah Scrolls in the world
Codex Climaci Rescriptus: Between the late 4th and early 9th centuries AD, it represents one of the earliest near-complete Bibles in the world. With two layers of text, some of which are written in Aramaic, the language of Jesus Christ
Bodmer Papyrus: From the 3rd century AD, these leaves are from one of the oldest near-complete books of Psalms in Greek
Gutenberg Leaf: Isaiah 44-5, Mainz, Germany, 1454: The first book printed in moveable typeset in the Western world
Aitken Bible: First English language Bible printed in the United States and the ONLY Bible ever officially authorized by the Congress
Eliot Indian Bible: First Bible printed in America. It was translated into Algonquin to help convert the Native Americans
King James “She” Bible, London, England, 1613: Commissioned by King James the 1st of England and the 6th of Scotland. It took a committee of 47 scholars seven years to finish the project. It is significant in that it contained a printing error in the Book of Ruth
Pocket Bible, Italy, c. 1240-1250: Produced in Italy between 1240 and 1250, it contains all of the books of the Bible in a single volume
Rice Psalter, London, England, c. 1450: This book of Psalms is an exquisite example of English Gothic manuscript illumination
Complutensian Polyglot, Vol. 1, Alcalá de Henares, Spain, 1514-1517: The first printed polyglot of the entire Bible; it simultaneously displays the text of the Bible in as many as four different languages: Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic and Latin
Cairo Geniza Manuscript Fragments, Cairo, Egypt, c. 1150 – c. 1250: Dating from the 12th to the 13th centuries, contains portions of prayer books from the Karaite Jewish tradition, including morning prayers, prayers for the Holiday of Booths, and prayers of the New Moon
Photo: © 2012 A+E Networks, LLC / Photo Credit: Joe Alblas