Centre News

“Manifold Greatness” opens with reception and lecture on April 17


April 11, 2013 By Elizabeth Trollinger       
Manifold Greatness

The Grace Doherty Library will host a reception from 5 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, April 17 for the opening of “Manifold Greatness: the Creation and Afterlife of the King James Bible,” an exhibit honoring the 400th anniversary of the original publication of the King James Bible.

Those who attend the reception will have the opportunity to see the exhibit for the first time at Centre, as well as meet Humana speaker Bart Ehrman, who will deliver a convocation following the reception at 7 p.m. in Newlin Hall.

Ehrman, the James A. Gray Distinguished Professor of Religion at the University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill, is “a major scholar in the field of New Testament studies and early Christianity,” says Assistant Professor of Religion Lee Jefferson. “He articulates many well-grounded arguments in the formation of the New Testament itself. His research has challenged the perception that the New Testament was created ‘ex nihilo,’ and that there was any type of pristine Christianity from its beginnings.

“He is one of a handful of religion scholars that has crossed over into mainstream appeal, as well,” Jefferson continues. “Many of his books are bestsellers and in several printings, and he is a frequent guest on NPR shows and other pieces.”

Ehrman has written or edited 24 books about the New Testament and early Christianity, four of which have appeared on the New York Times Bestseller list. His books have been translated into 27 languages. Ehrman is the co-editor of the series “New Testament Tools, Studies and Documents,” and is also co-editor-in-chief of the journal “Vigilae Christianae.”

Ehrman was the recipient of the 2009 J.W. Pope “Spirit of Inquiry” Teaching Award, among many others. He has served as president of the Southeast Region of the Society of Biblical Literature and book review editor of the “Journal of Biblical Literature.”

Other upcoming lectures in conjunction with the Manifold Greatness exhibit include:


• “The History of Publishing in England and the King James Translation,” given by Amos Tubb, Gordon B. Davidson Associate Professor of History at Centre College, at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 18 in the Grissom Room of the library;

• “The ‘Birthing’ of the King James Version of the Bible: Two Hundred years of Labor Pains,” given by Eugene March, Arnold B Rhodes Professor Emeritus of Old Testament at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, April 22 in the Vahlkamp Theatre;

• “Family Bibles as Sources for Legal Documents and Historical Research,” given by genealogist and researcher Carolyn Crabtree at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 25 at the Boyle County Public Library; and

• “Authenticity and Authority: The King is Dead, Long Live the King,” given by Rev. Mark Davis of First Presbyterian Church of Lexington at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 30 in the Vahlkamp Theatre.


As part of “Manifold Greatness,” the Grace Doherty Library will display rare items in the Thomas A. Spragens Rare Book Room and Archives Display Case, including Centre’s copy of the Geneva Bible, which pre-dates the King James Bible. Centre is one of a handful of colleges and universities across the country to host the exhibit, which will remain in the Grace Doherty Library until May 17.

“Manifold Greatness” is made possible through a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), and was developed and organized in partnership by the Folger Shakespeare Library and the American Library Association (ALA). For more information about the exhibit, click here.



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Centre College, founded in 1819, is a nationally ranked liberal arts college in Danville, Ky. Centre hosted its second Vice Presidential Debate on 10.11.12, and remains the smallest college in the smallest town ever to host a general election debate. For more, click here.



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