Major Bible exhibition opens at Vatican

Published 02 March 2012
Some of the rarest Bibles and recordings of Scripture have gone on display at the Vatican today.

"Verbum Domini" is an impressive collection of 150 biblical antiquities that span thousands of years and draw from the Roman Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox Christian and Jewish traditions.

Around two-thirds of the collection come from the Green Collection of 40,000 Scriptural artifacts belonging to the family of American retail giant Steve Green.

Green, the President of Hobby Lobby and a committed Christian, said he wanted to make the Bible "accessible to everyone".

He said he hoped the exhibition would give people the chance to "experience the Bible's dramatic history" and the "perseverance" of those who recorded it down the centuries.

The exhibition is being supported by the American Bible Society. Its President, Dr Lamar Vast, said: "We are not here to honour a dead book but a book that is alive with a message that leaps from generation to generation."

The free exhibition includes some of the earliest fragments of the Psalms, Gospels, Romans, Hebrews and 1 Peter.

Among the English-language Scriptures are Bibles and books written by William Tyndale, John Wycliffe and King James VI.

Verbum Domini is on display until April 15. There are plans to permanently house the collection in Washington DC.

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