Enzinas to Valera: motives, methods and sources in sixteenth-century Spanish Bible translation
Full recordShow full item record
AbstractThis dissertation contributes to the understanding of sixteenth-century vernacular Bible translation by means of a comparative analysis of seven editions of the Old and New Testaments in Spanish: the New Testament (1543) of Francisco de Enzinas, the Old Testament (1553) in two editions by Abraham Usque and Yom Tob Atias, the New Testament (1556) of Juan Pérez de Pineda, the complete Bible of Casiodoro de Reina, the New Testament of Cipriano de Valera (1596) and Valera's revision of Reina's Bible (1602).
These Spanish Bibles reflect both general trends in sixteenth-century scholarship and translation and the specific circumstances of Spanish Evangelicals and their communities in exile. In their prefaces, the motives and methods of the Spaniards for producing Bible translations are similar to those of Luther, Calvin, or Coverdale, yet there is a unique Spanish pride evident as well. The translations themselves provide examples both of a deliberately wooden, non-literary approach as well as a literary, pre-modern critical approach to translation. The Spaniards also negotiated questions of political and religious authority in their prefaces, though philological concerns are also important, especially for Reina and Valera.
A close examination of the Spanish texts clearly shows a direct line of descent from Enzinas to Pérez and on to Reina and Valera, with each borrowing substantially from the previous translation. The Complutensian Polyglot (1520) and Erasmus' Novum Instrumentum (1516) as well as the traditional Vulgate influenced the Spanish translators, though not to the exclusion of their own independent judgment and their use of other vernacular translations such as the French of Olivétan.
These earlier models of scholarship influenced the first translations of Enzinas, Usque-Atias, and Pérez, but after the middle of the sixteenth century Reina and Valera became increasingly reliant on the Genevan biblical scholarship pioneered by Theodore Beza. Despite the context in which Reina worked, distinctly Lutheran renderings left virtually no mark on the Spanish Bible tradition. As the confessional boundaries of Protestant factions hardened, so did the theological orientation of the Spanish Bibles. The irenic humanism of Enzinas gave way to the Calvinism reflected in Cipriano de Valera's translation.