<em>Le Miroir de Humaine Saluation</em>
Pseudo-Ludolf of Saxony, Le Miroir de Humaine Saluation, ca. 1455.

Scripture, or sacred text, is central to the three great monotheisms (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam), exemplified here in three versions of the Christian Bible. But the single most important religious manuscript in the Newberry’s collection contains the sacred texts of the Maya people. Their elaborate polytheistic system is described in this unique copy made by a missionary.


This manuscript is a fine example of Western European Christian scripture in a vernacular—in this case French. It explains Bible stories by juxtaposing a New Testament story with three from the Old Testament. [Essay 93]

Pseudo-Ludolf of Saxony
Le Miroir de Humaine Saluation
[The mirror of human salvation]
Bruges, c. 1455
Louis H. Silver Collection, 1964
VAULT folio Case MS 40

<em>Biblia sacra, Hebraicae, Chaldaice, Graece et Latine</em>
Biblia sacra, ..., 1569-1572.

Philip II of Spain subsidized the printing and publication of this Bible in four languages as part of his role as defender of the faith against Protestantism. [Essay 123]

Biblia sacra, Hebraicae, Chaldaice, Graece et Latine . . . [Sacred Bible in Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek, and Latin . . .]
Antwerp: Christopher Plantin, 1569
Wing Fund, 1945
Wing oversize ZP 5465 .P7013


<em>The Holy Bible: Containing The Old Testament and The New. Translated into the Indian Language...</em>
The Holy Bible: ..., 1663.

The first Bible printed in the American colonies was this translation into an Algonquian language known as Massachusett (also called Wampanoag). In the twenty-first century Native Americans and scholars have begun to reuse this translation as part of language reclamation projects. [Essay 122]

The Holy Bible: Containing the Old Testament and the New. Translated into the Indian Language
Cambridge, Massachusetts: Samuel Green and Marmaduke Johnson, 1663
Gift of Edward Ayer, 1911
VAULT Ayer 421 .M435 B5 1663

<em>Tesoro de las tres lenguas</em>
Francisco Ximénez, Las Historias del Origen de los Indios ..., 1700-1703.

The Popul Vuh is the creation account of the Mayan people. This text is a side-by-side transcription, first into Quiché, a language of the Mayan, and secondly into Spanish. The transcription was completed between 1700 and 1715 by a Dominican priest and linguist from an earlier, seventeenth-century version. [Essay 125]

Francisco Ximénez
Historias del Origen de los Indios de Esta Provinçia de Guatemala . . .
[The history of the origins of the Indians of Guatemala]
Santo Tomás Chichicastenango, Guatemala, c. 1700/1715
Gift of Edward E. Ayer, 1911
VAULT Ayer MS 1515