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THE most important of the Teutonic versions of the Book of Common Prayer is the Dutch translation, the earliest of which was printed in 1645. It had been the earnest endeavour of Archbishop Laud to extend uniformity of worship throughout all the lands of Great Britain, and, if possible, to make the Dutch and Walloon congregations, which had settled in England soon after the Reformation, conform to the worship of the church, established by the law of the realm. And thus, the year after his elevation to the primacy of all England, he sent, by his vicar-general, Sir Nathaniel Brent, to the French and Dutch congregations, which were; ten in number, having between five and six thousand communicants, these three articles of enquiry: “(1) Do you use the Dutch or French liturgy? (2) Of how many descents are you since you came into England? and ’(3) Do such as are born here in England conform to the English ceremonies?” These questions were proposed to the congregations on the 14th of April, 1634. They were allowed until the 5th of May to prepare their answers. They reported that they used that liturgy which the French Reformed Church both in France and in Holland had used since the Reformation, and which they had used for sixty or seventy years, since the first settlement; that they did not use the French translation (of 1616) of the English liturgy, and that they knew not whether it had been translated into Dutch.

Perceiving that these congregations were not minded to conform willingly, the archbishop enjoined that all members of the foreign congregations who were natives born should attend their parish churches; and that those who were not natives should use the liturgy of the Church translated into their own language. This order was issued on the 19th of December, and on the following 15th of March they were expected to conform.

Upon petition of the congregations to the king, the archbishop qualified the second injunction by ordering that those who were foreigners by birth should still attend their own peculiar worship; while, as to the first, the king insisted on its being carried out. This injunction undoubtedly added another ingredient of strife to the many already in existence in England and Scotland[1].

Inasmuch as there had thus far been no Dutch translation of the Book of Common Prayer, the archbishop took steps to provide one for future emergencies. The translation, however, did not appear until a year after his execution . It was published at Rotterdam, entitled: De Engelsche Liturgie: | dat is: | den Gemeynen Kercken-Dienst | van Engelandt. | Of te | Het Boeck der Gemeene Gebeden: Bedieninge der Sacramenten, en de Ceremonien, | in de Engelsche Kercke gebruyckelijck. | Getrouwelijck vertaalt, nae het Engelsch en= | de Latijns exemplaer, ten tijde des Koninginne | Elizabeths, in den jare, 1574 ende 1575 ge= | druckt, en de tegen de laetst-gedruckte | exemplaren ten tijde des Konings | Carels over-sien. | Tot Rotterdam, | By Joannes Næranus, Boeck= | verkooper, woonende op’t Steyger, 1645[2].

Black letter, excepting introduction, rubrics, chapter and section-headings and running head lines. The preface is also in black letter. Reverse of title-page blank. (64), 368 pages. Page, 3⅛ x 5¼; paper, 3¾ x 6⅛ inches. Follows as Part II: Het Boeck | der | Psalmen Davids: | Gelijck men de selvige gewoon is te lesen | of te singen | in de Kercke | van | Engelant. | Vertaelt na de nieuwe Over=settinge. | To Rotterdam. | Gedrukt by Joannis Næranus, Bœck-verkoper, | ... 1645. | Black letter. Reverse of title blank. 213, (6) pages, of which latter the fifth is blank. The whole book is printed in long lines.

[1] See John Parker Lawson, The Lije and Times oj William Laud, Lord Archbishop oj Canterbury. In 2 vols. London: C. J. G. & F. Rivington, 1829, 8vo. Yol. I, pp. 583, 586-592; Yol. II, pp. 77-86. On the other hand, Acten van de Colloquia der Nederlandsche Gemeenten in Engeland, 1575-1624, uitgegeven door Johan Justus van Toorenenbergen. Utrecht, 1872. [Marnix-Yereeniging, Utrecht; Werken, Serie 2, deel 1]. 2 vols., 8vo. And here Yol. 2, Aanhangsel: Uittreksels uit de acten ... 1627-1706, pp. 304-313. Also, David Neal, The History oj the Puritans. A new edition; Bath, ·1794; Yol. 2, pp. 257-259; Yol. 3, pp. 212-221.

[2] A copy of the 1645 edition is in the library of the General Theological Seminary, New York, N.Y., and another in the Whittingham library, Baltimore, Md.

Griffiths 31:1; reprinted 1651, 1657, 1661

A revision of the edition of 1645 was edited by Abraham Duez and B. Hoefnagel, with the title: Het Bœk | der | Gemeene Gebeden | en | Bedieninge der Sacramenten, | Nevens andere Kerkelyke Gewoonten en | Plegtigheden, gebruykelyk in de | Kerke van Engeland. | Als mede de | Psalmen | van | David, | So als deselve in de Kerke moe- | ten geleesen worden. | Voor desen onder de Regeeringe van de Koningin- | ne Elisabeth uit het Engels vertaalt, | nu wederom herdrukt, | overal na de Nieuwe Engelse Kerk-Dienst verbetert, veel , vermeerdert en met Ordre van Haar tegenwoordige Maje- | steyt, Koninginne Anna, in’t light gegeven tot Dienst | van Haare Majesteyts Nederduytse Hof-Capelle te S. James. | Londen: by Jan Hendrik | Schuller. | MDCCIV. | (44), 180, 247 pages. Page, 3¼ x 6; paper, 4½ x 7 inches. Printed in long lines. Of the (44) pages, page 1 is blank; 2 contains Approbation . of H[enry Compton]., London, in English and in Dutch; 3, title, 4, blank; 5-8, B. Hoefnagel’s dedication to her Majesty, Queen Anne; 9-12, Her Majesty’s order for the use of the liturgy; 13-44, the usual preliminary matter. The second part, 247 pages, contains the Dutch translation of the Psalms of David printed in MDCCIII.
Griffiths 31:2

In 1710 (?) there appeared in London: Kort Formulier .der gemeene Gebeden, so als die, volgens de Liturgie van de Kerk van Engeland, des Sondags s’ Morgens en des A vonds geleesen worden in de N ederduytsche Kapelle van St. James. Agter aan is gevoegt het Formulier van het H. Avondmaal. 69 pages. 8vo.

It is very probable that Archbishop John Sharp, of York, was somewhat instrumental in the publication of these Dutch editions of the Liturgy; for we know that he had rendered essential service in the settlement of a church at Rotterdam, in which he received the hearty sympathy and support of the S.P.C.K.

Better known than the purely Dutch translations are the editions of the liturgy in English and Dutch, the editio princeps of which appeared in 1711, entitled:

Griffiths 31:3

* The Book | of | Common-Prayer, | . . . English and Lowdutch. | Amsterdam: John Crellius, | M. DCC. XI.

The reverse of the English title-page contains: The approbation of Mylord Bishop of London [Henry Compton], 1710, in English and in Dutch. Then follows the Dutch title, reading: Het Boek | der | gemeene Gebeden, | En Bedieninge der | Sacramenten, | Nevens andere Kerkelyke Gewoonten en Plechtigheden, | gebruikelyk in de | Kerke van Engeland. | Als mede de | Psalmen van David, | Zo als de zelve in de Kerke moeten | gezongen of geleezen worden. | ... tot dienst van Haare Majesteits Nederduitsche Hof-Kapelle te S. James. Engelsch en Nederduitsch. | Te Amsterdam. | By Joannes KrelIius, Boekdrukker | in de Lauwrierstraat. 1711.

Reverse blank. xxxvi, 565, (8) pages. Page, 3½ x 5½; paper, 4 x 6½ inches. The edition contains a beautiful frontispiece by Adrian van Spiers (died 1718). The English and the Dutch are printed in parallel columns, the latter mainly in black-letter type. It has the form “At the Healing” in English and in Dutch, immediately preceding the Articles of Religion. The Dutch text is that of Duez and Hoefnagel, revised by S. Vandereyken, reader of the Royal Dutch chapel at S. James.

This edition is one of the early publications of the S.P.C.K., which in 1709-10 made provisions for an edition of 750 copies, mainly for the use of the Dutch in New York City and the Provinces, which in 1665 had been ceded by the Netherlands to the English[3].

Griffiths 31:4
[3] See also Classified Digest of the S.P.G., 1701-1892, 5th edition, p. 58.
The edition was not satisfactory, and on July 20, 1711, the destruction of this Socinianized Prayer Book in English and in Dutch was ordered at Lambeth Palace. Through some misunderstanding the order was not carried out until February, 1716, when they were burned to ashes in the kitchen of the palace. A second edition, prepared in 1713-14, with the assistance of the Revs. Nucella and Coughlan, was published at Haag in 1718, 8vo, and a third in 1728, by Henry Walpot, Dordrecht. It is a duplicate of the former edition, with a new title-page.

Griffiths 31:5 (1728; reprinted 1738, 1748)


After a lapse of more than a hundred years an entirely new translation was made by Joseph Bosworth, D.D., the well-known Anglo-Saxon scholar. Bosworth was born in 1789. He became, in 1829, chaplain in Holland, first in Amsterdam, and afterwards in Rotterdam. He continued to reside in Holland until 1840, making occasional visits to England. While residing in Holland he made this new translation of the Liturgy into Dutch, the copyright of which he made over to the S.P.C.K. Its title begins: Het Boek der Gewone Gebeden, etc. . . . Amsterdam: C. A. Spin for the S.P.C.K., 1838, xvi, 554 pages, 12mo. In 1858 Bosworth was appointed professor of Anglo-Saxon at the University of Oxford. He died in 1876. Bosworth’s translation, revised and edited by him and Henrik Gehle, and entitled Het Boek van het Algemeen Gebed, etc., was published by the same society in 1853.

Griffiths 31:6 (1838); 31:8 (1853)


The Diocese of Cape Town was founded in 1847, the Right Rev. Robert Gray (1809-1872) being its first bishop. The new diocese included the whole of South Africa, which had been taken from the Dutch forty years previously. Gray was a man of indomitable courage and perseverance; one who could work himself and make others work. He obtained from the S.P.G. grants for missions and colleges. The establishment of the Church of South Africa and the recognition of its independence was largely due to the bishop’s strength of will. In all the many dioceses of South Africa now in existence the work of the Church has gone on among colonists, Boers, natives of all tribes and Oriental coolies. It was for the benefit of his Dutch-speaking Boer congregations that the first bishop of Pretoria, the Right Rev. Henry Brougham Bousfield[4], together with the Rev. Charles Clulee (died 1892), and “others more able,” published a new edition of the Liturgy in English and in Dutch. An 1898 output of this edition numbers (60), 811 pages; page, 3¼ x 6; paper, 4 x 7 inches. It is printed in two columns to the page, one containing the English and the other the Dutch. In the preliminary sections the arrangement differs whenever the exigencies necessitate a deviation. The English title, reverse blank, is followed by the Dutch title, reverse blank. Then follows (on p. 5) a table of contents in English and in Dutch.

[4] An interesting account of the founding of the Church of England in the Transvaal was written by the late Bishop Bousfield in Six Years [1879-85] in the Transvaal. Notes on the founding of the church there. London: S.P.C.K., 1886. 96 pp. 16mo.

title page, 1853 Dutch BCP
Griffiths 31:7 (1853, reprinted 1873, 1877, 1898, 1911)




THE English Liturgy was translated into German during the opening years of the eighteenth century. This was mainly due to the efforts of John Sharp, archbishop of York, and of Daniel Ernst Jablonski, court-preacher of King Frederick I of Prussia.

In The Life of John Sharp, D.D., Archbishop of York, Vol. I, pp. 403, 404, we are told:

“Frederick King of Prussia had found it necessary, for the greater solemnity of his coronation in 1700, to give the title of bishops to two of the chief of his clergy, the one a Lutheran, the other a reformed .. The former died soon after; whereupon the other, viz. Dr. Ursinus, continued without a colleague, and with the title of bishop. Since that time the king, who was a lover of order and decency, conceived a design of uniting the two different communions in his kingdom, the Lutherans and the reformed, in one public form of worship. And as he had a great respect for the English nation and Church, and held a good opinion of the Liturgy of the Church of England, he thought that might be the most proper medium wherein both parties might meet.”

To this conclusion the king was undoubtedly led by the advice of Jablonski. The latter was born in 1660, son of Petrus Figulus, who had been born at Jabloni (Jablonka), in Bohemia, whence he later called himself Jablonski. The family belonged to the Moravian community and had for this reason been driven out of Bohemia. Jablonski studied at the University of Frankfort-on-the-Oder and at Oxford, which latter created him D.D. in 1706. In 1693 he was appointed court-preacher, and soon became very influential in the rapid development of the Prussian State. He was instrumental, with Leibnitz, in the foundation of the Berlin Academy of Sciences. With Leibnitz also he worked most zealously in bringing about a union of the two branches of the German Protestant Church, Jablonski working at Berlin and Leibnitz at Hanover. He cherished for many years two ideals, toward the realization of which he devoted his time and energy. The one, the union of all Protestant Churches in Germany under the leadership of Prussia, failed on account of the opposition of the clergy; the other, the introduction of the episcopate into the Evangelical Church, met but a temporary response.

Both, King Frederick and Bishop Ursinus, were well inclined to a conformity in worship and discipline to that of the Church of England.

“By the advice principally of these two [Jablonski and Ursinus], the King ordered the English Liturgy to be translated into high Dutch, which was done at the University of Frankfort upon the Oder, where the professors in general were friends to the Church of England. . . . A letter was wrote [in 1705] by Dr. Ursinus to his Grace of Canterbury, pursuant to the King’s directions. And two copies of the high Dutch version of the English liturgy were sent along with it; one for her Majesty the Queen, the other for his Grace.” — SHARP, Vol. 1, p. 407.

The title of the first German translation reads as follows:

Die | Englische Liturgie, | Oder/ | Das allgemeine | Gebeth-Buch/ | Wie auch die | Handlung der H. Sacrament en | und anderer | Kirchen-Ceremonien/ | Sambt den en | XXXIX. Glaubens-Articuln | der Englischen Kirchen. | Wobey auch | Die Psalm en Davids. | . . . | Franckfurt an der Oder/ | Zu finden bey Jeremias Schrey/ und Johann Christoph | Hartmann. 1704.

Griffiths 40:1


Black letter. (1), 272, 88, 288 pages. Page, 3 x 5⅝; paper, 6¼ x 8 inches. Long lines. Title in alternate black and red. Reverse of title is blank. Page 1 reads: “Diese Ubersetzung ist verfertiget nach der Englischen Edition, so Anno 1687. zu Oxfordt gedruckt herausskommen ist; in welcher man dem Text/ soviel möglich/ gefolget/ ohne dass Lutheri Version in den Sprüchen der heiligen Schrifft und Psalmen/ beybehalten worden.” Reverse blank. Page 3 begins Die Vorrede. The first part, 272 pages, sig. A — Ll 4, in fours, ends with Die Ordnung nach welcher die H. Tauffe gehalten wird. Part 2, 88 pages, without special title-page, sig. a — f 4 in eights, begins with Der Katechismus . . . , and ends with Glaubens-Articul der Englischen Kirchen. Part 3, sig. A — S 8, in eights, has special title-page, Die | Psalm en | Davids | Wie sie in denen Kirchen | gelesen oder gesungen | werden. | Reverse blank. The Psalter ends on p. 228. Pages 229-242, Das Formulair der Beth-Stunden | so zur See gehalten werden. Pages 243-288, the State services.

The translator was, most probably, Dr. Philipp Grossgebauer, born in Gotha 1653, and director of the Latin school at Weimar from 1687 until his death in 1711. The book is now very rare and scarce ever heard of. Copies of this editio princeps of the German translation and of the third edition, 1718, are in the Krauth Memorial Library of the Lutheran Seminary at Germantown, Pa. Through the courtesy of Professor H. E. Jacobs, dean of the Seminary, and of the librarian, the Rev. Luther D. Reed, a thorough examination of the two editions has been made possible.

Griffiths list copies of 40:1 at the British Library, Lambeth, and Williams College.


The determination of the Prussian king to adhere to his project seemed mainly to depend upon the degree of encouragement he should receive from the English Church. His displeasure, therefore, and perplexity may well be imagined when not a single word of response was received from Archbishop Tenison. Queen Anne had duly returned her acknowledgements to Frederick through Lord Raby, the English Minister to the Prussian Court. But Tenison remained silent, and the cause of it has never yet been satisfactorily explained. Some have alleged that the letter of Ursinus never came into his hands; others, that he entertained so mean an opinion of Ursinus[1] that he refused to answer him. It is only left for us to note and bewail the fact that, in consequence of this apparent discouragement on the part of the English Church, the design of Frederick was abandoned. All further endeavour of Jablonski to have the ritual and government of the Church of England introduced in Prussia resulted in failure, and came to an abrupt end when Frederick William ascended the throne in 1713.
[1] Benjamin Ursinus was a descendant of Zacharias Ursinus (1534-83), one of the compilers of the Heidelberg catechism. His real German name was Baer. In 1701 he was made bishop and a nobleman. He died in 1717. “If he did not prosecute the King’s design with a warmth and zeal equal to Jablonski, it may be imputed to his never having seen the Church of England in her own beauties and proper dress, as the other had.” — SHARP, Vol. I, p. 405.

Reviewing the whole situation, it appears most probable that the silence of Archbishop Tenison was due to a feeling of jealousy on his part of the archbishop of York, who had interested himself particularly in this matter, and enjoyed the Queen’s confidence more than any other prelate, the archbishop of Canterbury included. Even if by an accident he should not have received the letter of Ursinus and the copy of the German translation accompanying it, it is more than probable that he would have been informed by the Queen of the letter and the copy which she had received and had acknowledged. John Sharp (1645-1714) was a most powerful and influential man in England. He was one of the commissioners for the reform of the Liturgy and the ecclesiastical courts, appointed in 1689. He became archbishop of York in 1691.

According to a statement in Vol. II, p. 174, of The Life of John Sharp, this German translation was printed at Berlin in 1734, undoubtedly under the direction of the aged Jablonski. But this must be an error for Franckfurt an der Oder, 1704.

Jablonski’s ideas concerning the use of a ritual in public worship, agreeing with that of the Church of England, are found prefixed to the Neuchâtel Liturgy, of which an English translation was published in 1712, entitled: The Liturgy used in the Churches of the Principality of Neufchatel [compiled by J. F. Osterwald]: with a letter from the learned Dr. Jablonski concerning the Nature of Liturgies: to which is added the Form of Prayer lately introduced into the Church of Geneva. London: Joseph Downing. 1712. xii, 116 pages. 4to.

Jablonski’s discourse on liturgies, published as preface to this Liturgy, is found also in Vol. II, pp. 153-164, of The Life of John Sharp, entitled: “A Letter from the Rev. Dr. Jablonski, first Chaplain to his Prussian Majesty, to his Excellency Baron Printz, President of the Council for Ecclesiastical Affairs at Berlin.” Jablonski wrote this letter

“In response to a command of king Frederik, who, in 171O, thought proper, by way of experiment, to give orders to his divines to draw up their thoughts separately, upon a model of a worship and discipline to be established. . . . Jablonski avoided in it the recommendation of the Church of England in particular, as judging that not so seasonable at that juncture, especially as he lay under the imputation of being too much a friend to it. Nor did he as yet treat of Church government, because he thought it was yet too hard a saying tor them, and besides, he conceived that the Liturgy, once established, would of course bring on the discipline. . . . It was rendered from high Dutch into English, and by way of preface to Mr. Chamberlain’s translation of the Neufchatel Liturgy, printed at London, 1712. In settling which Liturgy; in conjunction with Mr. Osterwald, Dr. Jablonski had been very instrumental.” — Life at John Sharp, Vol. I, pp. 4II, 412.

Neuchâtel (Neuenburg), it will be remembered, belonged at that time to Prussia; hence the collaboration of Jablonski and Osterwald. The “Independent Church of Neuchâtel” was, since the time of the Reformation, ruled by a body called the “Company of Pastors,” which continued at the head of the Church of Neuchâtel down to 1848, governing the Church completely, independent of the State, and maintaining with great fidelity the preaching of the pure Gospel, begun by Guillaume Farel (1489-1565). The revolution of 1848, which dissolved the relation in which the State of Neuchâtel had stood to Prussia since 1707, overthrew the ecclesiastical sovereignty of the “Company of Pastors.” It was this company, headed by Osterwald, which in 1704 went so far as to render the divine worship in their churches as conformable as might be to the English Liturgy.

Jean Frederic Osterwald was born at Neuchâtel in 1663, and died there in 1747. In 1686 he was appointed deacon in his native city, and was very successful as a preacher and instructor of the young. In 1700 he became a member of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, and during his whole life was on intimate terms with English and Dutch clergymen. In 1702 he began to gather students, and his activity as teacher, pastor and writer, exerted so lasting an influence upon the Church of Neuchâtel, that he was called its second reformer. He was neither a Rationalist nor a Moralist, but might be called a Pietist in so far as he tried to replace dogmatics by the Bible and doctrinal disputes by the cultivation of personal piety and genuine preaching of the Gospel. He published in 1702 a catechism, which found a large circulation. It was immediately introduced in Neuchâtel, took the place of Calvin’s catechism in Geneva, and was accepted even in England, Holland, and Germany.

John Chamberlayne, the translator of the liturgy compiled by Osterwald, was born in 1666, and died in 1723. According to statements of contemporaries, he knew sixteen modern languages. He spent some years at the University of Leyden, Holland, as a student. He was elected, in 1702, a Fellow of the Royal Society. He was a member of the S.P.C.K. and translated for it Osterwald’s Arguments tor Books and Chapters ot the Old and New Testaments, 1716, 3 vols. He was for some years secretary of the society, and translated for it all the foreign correspondence[2].

[2] Allen and McClure, Two Hundred Years, etc., p. 18.
The earliest edition of the Liturgy in German and English was published in Dublin by Andrew Crooke in 1710, 8vo. It was according to th~ Use of the Church of Ireland. The same printer had put out in 1704 Durel’s French translation, adapted to the Use of the Church of Ireland. Both publications were undoubtedly instigated by William King (1650-1729), archbishop of Dublin (1703-29)[3].

Griffiths 40:2

[3] On King see Vol. II of Bishop Mant’s History of the Church: of Ireland, London. 1840.

The Dublin edition was presumably put out for the benefit of the 3,800 German Palatines settled in Ireland in 1709. It is on record that the pastor of the Danish Church at Dublin preached alternately German and Danish. It is said in the preface to the edition of 1718 that the German text of the 1710 edition is a reprint of that of 1704. See, also, Christian Wilhelm Franz Walch (1726-1784), Neueste Religionsgeschichte, Vol. II, p. 192.



According to Graesse and others a German translation was published in London by Joseph Downing in 1707, 8vo. The translator or reviser was Anton Wilhelm Boehme, German chaplain to Prince George of Denmark and a member of the S.P.C.K. from 1708 on. Boehme was born June 1, 1673. In 1701 he went to England, as tutor to the children of some German families in London. On his way to England he made the acquaintance of Heinrich Wilhelm Ludolf, secretary to Prince George. When the prince at the request of Queen Anne resolved to introduce the Common Prayer Book into his own chapel, the Royal German Lutheran Church in St. James’s Palace, Boehme was appointed, at the recommendation of Ludolf, assistant chaplain to read the prayers which the then chaplain found too hard for him. After the death of the prince the service was continued at the chapel as before, and on the accession of George I no alteration was made. During the eighteenth century there were in London alone six German Lutheran churches, most of whom used a German translation of the Book of Common Prayer, with the Halle hymn-book. The kings of England were, at the same time, electors of Lutheran Hanover, providing for the spiritual care of their subjects in England. through the archbishops and bishops, and in Hanover through the Lutheran consistorium. The German colony in London which had existed for four or five centuries before, was, in the eighteenth century, augmented by persons of influence attracted thither by the nearer relations of the two countries. While the Royal family attended the episcopal services, their court attended as a rule the services of the German royal chaplain at the St. James’s Chapel.

Boehme was a man of great influence in London. His counsels had no small weight with the directors of the S.P.C.K. He was especially interested in the Tranquebar Mission and in the Palatines who emigrated to Carolina in the American colonies. He died May 27, 1722. He was a voluminous writer and a still more prolific translator.


Not listed by Griffiths.

According to the statement in the Digest of the S.P.G., a translation into German was also made in 1715 under the direction of a select committee of the S.P.G., by the Rev. John James Cæsar, Chaplain to King Frederick I of Prussia, and the Bishop of London, John Robinson (1650-1723), the latter undertaking the cost of printing as a benefaction to the Society. It is very probable that when the project of Dr. Jablonski and of Archbishop Sharp did not become a fact, owing to the disinclination of Archbishop Tenison and the death of Frederick I, Archbishop Sharp endeavoured to atone for the inactivity of his superior colleague by having a translation made anew, with the assistance and co-operation of the persons just mentioned.

That Bishop Robinson had much to do with the final revision of it is confirmed by the fact that Charles Wheatly commends him highly for having made “a just and elegant translation of the English Liturgy into German.” Robinson was a good linguist, who knew German, Swedish and Dutch equally well. The title of this German transslation reads: “Das allgemeine | Gebet-Buch, | Wie auch die | Administration | der H. Sacramenten, | und | Anderer Kirchl. Ritus und Ceremonien, | nach dem Gebrauch der | Kirchen von England. | Mit den | Psalmen Davids | Wie solche in den Kirchen gesungen oder gele- | sen werden sollen. | Samt den | Religions-Articulen. | Durch | Ihro Königlichen Hoheit | Der | Princesse von Wallis, | Gottseligen Eyffer für die Ehre Gottes, | und seine Kirche, fortgesetzet, und auff Dero | gnädigsten Befehl verfertiget. | Im Haag, | In Verlegung C. Fritsch. MDCCXVIII.

Black letter. xliv, 728, (2) pages. Page, 3⅛ x 5⅞; paper, 4⅝ x 7½ inches. Title in roman and black-letter type; reverse blank. Sig. a — c6, in eights, for preliminary matter; text, A — Zz6, in eights; last (two) leaves blank. Pages iii, iv contain a short preface by the translator, in which he mentions the editions of 1704 and 1710; but, inasmuch as these had numerous errors and mistakes obscuring the splendour of the English liturgy, it is “anjetzo von neuem übersehen und corrigirt, in dieser Dritten Edition, ans Licht gegeben worden ... 1m tibrigen ist dieses Werck von einer Hoch-berühmten Englischen Societæt de propagando Evangelio, beydes approbiret und befördert worden.”

The almanack (pp. xlii-xliii), “Eine Taffel der beweglichen Feste, Auff viertzig Jahr berechnet,” begins 1701 and ends 1740. Page xliii, end,: “Nota: Dass man in der Kirchen von England den Anfang des Jahrs, eigentlich vom 25 Tage Martii an rechnet.” The Commination service ends on p. 424. Page 425 (sig. Dd 5, obverse) contains title for the Psalter: “Die | Psalmen | Davids, | Wie sie in den Kirchen sollen | gelesen oder gesungen | werden.” Psalm 1 begins on p. 426. The Psalter ends on p. 628. Follows, on pp. 629-646, “Das Formular. | Der Beth-Stunden, | Zur See zu gebrauchen.” Pp. 647-700, the State services; 701-726 “Glaubens-Articule"; 727, 728 table of kindred and affinity. The last two pages contain “Register der in der Englischen Liturgie enthaltenen Sachen.” This edition, of 1,500 copies, was printed mainly for the use of the Palatines in the Province of New York, whom the Society had taken under its care[4]. Copies were also sent to the Germans in Virginia in 1720, and to the colony of Georgia, where a number of German settlers had taken up their homes, as well as a body of immigrants from Salzburg, who had been driven from their home for the sake of their religion, and were most liberally aided in their distress by the S.P.G. and the S.P.C.K. Other copies were sent to Nova Scotia in 1751.


Griffiths 40:3 (1718)


[4] See Sanford H. Cobb, The Story of the Palatines: an episode in colonial history. New York; Putnam, 1897; 319 pp., 12mo;’ Digest of the S.P.G., 5th edition, p. 61.


Johann Jakob Rambach (1693-1735), professor of theology in the university of Goettingen brought out a complete edition of Boehme’s works in 1731. In the preface to “Boehmens Geistreichen Gebeten” he stated that Boehme translated the Book of Common Prayer for use in St. James Chapel. This must be the edition of 1707, a copy of which is in the Bodleian library, Oxford. Philipp Friedrich Hane (1696-1774) in his Historisch-und theologische Anmerckungen uber A. W. Böhmens ... acht Bücher von der Reformation der Kirche in England, 1735, again, maintains on page 233 — remarks to page 107 of Boehme’s work — that Dr. Ph. Grossgebauer translated the liturgy. This, of course, refers to the 1704 edition, not to the 1718 revision, as Hane believes. Boehme’s successor as chaplain of the Royal Lutheran church, the Rev. Friedrich Michael Ziegenhagen (1694-1776), was equally zealous in the interests of the German Lutheran emigrants to the American colonies. During his pastorate a new edition was published in 1757 for the use of the German Lutheran Chapel of St. James, London. A reprint, called a “neue und verbesserte Auflage,” was made in 1770/1 (London: Bey W. Faden und C. Heydinger. xlviii, 702 pages. 16mo), for the congregation at Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, so called from the town of the same name in Germany, the chief of the settlers coming from that region. They began to settle there in the year 1753, and were at first much indulged by the Government[5]. In 1770 the Rev. Paulus Bryzelius, formerly a Lutheran minister, had been “ ordained by the Bishop of London to the charge of the German mission at Lunenburg.” He was contemporary with the Rev. Jean Baptiste Morreau, who ministered to the French congregation. Bryzelius died in 1773, at the age of sixty. Later on, in 1788, copies were also sent for the disbanded soldiers at Montreal[6].

Griffiths 40:4 (1757) “not strictly a BCP”

Griffiths 40:5 (1771)

[5] Additional information is given by Mather Byles Des Brisay, History of the County of Lunenburg, 2nd edition. Toronto: Briggs. 1895. Pp. 80-90, “Church of England"; Digest of the S.P.G. pp. III, II2. ’

[6] Digest, pp. 115, 116, 142, 143.


A revision of the German translation, by Dr. J. H. Wilhelm Kueper was printed in the octaglot edition of the Prayer Book published by Bagster. It was also published separately. 572 pages. 32mo. This edition, and that edited by Dr. Bernhard Gaebler: “Die vollständige Liturgie und die 39 Artikel der Kirche von England, nebst einer Einleitung ... Anhang: Die Liturgie der protestantisch-bischöflichen Kirche in den vereinigten Staaten von Nordamerika” (Altenburg: Pierer, 1843. 326 pages. 8vo), may have been used by the German congregations in Nova Scotia and Canada. Likewise the 1845 edition, put out by the S.P.C.K., and revised by the Rev. Dr. W. H. Schwabe, minister of the Lutheran Church in Goodman’s Fields, London (xliii, 484 pages, 8vo). Another edition of Schwabe’s revision appeared in 1847.

Griffiths 40:7, 40:8 (both 1821)


Griffiths 40:12 (1843)


Griffiths 40:13 (1845; reprinted 1847, 1851, 1856, 1859)

A new translation for the S.P.C.K. was made by the Rev. J. A. Jetter (London, 1851). Jetter was one of the earliest graduates of the Mission College at Basle, Switzerland, founded in 1815 by Christian Friedrich Spittler. He entered the service of the C.M.S. in 1818; laboured first in India, and later, after 1831, in Syria. In 1840 he was recalled owing to the hostile attitude of the authorities and the people. He retired to England and lived for many years in Shropshire. But whenever called on by the C.M.S. he willingly went forward again. He died at the age of ninety-four. Jetter’s translation was revised for the S.P.C.K. in 1863 by the Rev. J. Joseph Overbeck, teacher of German in the Taylor Institution at Oxford.




Griffiths 40:16 (1863, reprinted 1866 & many times through 1938)


These editions of the German translation of the Liturgy were used also for the congregations of the disbanded German Legionaries, settled in South Africa after the war of 1853[7], and in other German congregations within the vast British domain.

[7] Ibid., pp. 300, 302.


Of selections we mention here, Die Ordnung der Morgen-und Abend-gebete, die Litanei, Collecten, und ein Gebet für die ganze streitende Kirche hier auf Erden, published by the Prayer Book and Homily Society, London, 1846. 58 pages. 24mo; and Ausgewählte Stücke aus dem in der Englischen Kirche gebräuchlichen Allgemeinen Gebet-Buch. Mit Einleitung von G. W. Kitchin. Uebersetzt von J. Griebel. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1869. 123 pages. 16mo.

George William Kitchin was born in 1827. He was a lecturer in several schools and colleges, and in his day a well-known author, editor and translator. He became dean of Winchester in 1883, and was transferred to Durham in the same capacity in 1894. The same year he became warden of Durham University, an office which he held until 1908, when he became first chancellor of the same university. He died October 13, 1912. — See Guardian, October 18 and 25, 1912, pp. 1325-1373.

“The S.P.C.K. German version of the Prayer Book is some sixty years old. Germans find much tautology — or what to them seems such-in it, e.g., the German rendering of ’to acknowledge and confess,’ ’sins and wickedness,’ ’pardoneth and absolveth,’ etc. This somewhat detracts from their approval of the book.” — W. ST. CLAIR TISDALL.





Griffiths 40:17

title page, C of E BCP in German, printed 1938
Griffiths 40:16, 1938 printing

The first attempt at translating the American Prayer Book into German was made in 1837. The publication put out then contained only the Morning and Evening Prayer and the Litany, (32) pages, 12mo. Without special title-page. The title on the yellow paper cover reads: Ordnung. | des | täglichen | Morgen- und Abend-Gebetes | nebst | emer Litaney | zum | Gebrauch der deutsch-protestantischen Episcopal-Kirche | in den Vereinigten Staaten. | New York: | Doolittle und Vermilye. The date of publication can only be inferred from the Journal of General Convention and the second Report of the New York Bible and Common Prayer Book Society, 1838, p. 9. See also Lowndes, Vol. I, pp. 444, 445, 448.


not listed by Griffiths

The first complete edition appears to have been prepared in 1843 and was brought out in 1847. A reprint of 1852 reads: Das Buch | des | gemeinschaftlichen Gebets | und der | Verwaltung der Sakramente | und anderer | kirchlichen Gebräuche und Ceremonien | nach dem Gebrauch der | protestantisch~bischöflichen Kirche | in den | Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika, | nebst dem | Psalter oder den Psalmen David’s. | New York ... | 1852. 360 pages. 18mo. Two columns to the page. Another edition appeared in 1855, and in 1863, etc. See also Lowndes, Vol. II, pp. 484, 485, 493, 520, 521.


Griffiths 40:14 (1847, reprinted 1848, 1852, 1855, 1861, 1863)

The “Tabelle der Tage auf welche Ostern fallen wird,” on page 18, beginning with the year 1843, proves that the translation was made during that year. The General Theological Seminary at New York preserves in its library the manuscript of this translation, given by the Rev. Adolph Frost to Dr. Haight,[8] dated 1843. Frost is said to have been the author of this translation. (On the other hand, see Lowndes, Vol. I, p. 476.) He returned toward the end of his life to Germany and died at Heilbronn in 1865. Frost’s translation was revised by a committee appointed by General Convention, consisting of the Rev. Dr. Christian Frederick Crusé (born June 27, 1794), and the Rev. Theodor A . Tellkampf. Crusé was for upwards of fourteen years librarian of the General Theological Seminary at New York, and died there October 5, 1865, aged 71 years. See also Lowndes, Vol. I, p. 476; Vol. II, p. 493.

[8] Benjamin Isaacs Haight was at that time professor of Pastoral Theology and Pulpit Eloquence in the General Theological Seminary, New York, N.Y. He had been instructor from 1837-39, and was· professor from 1841-55. He was born in New York City in 1809. From 1855-77 he was assistant minister of Trinity Church, New York. He died in New York, February 21, 1879.


In 1869 appeared “German Services proposed as a specimen of a proposed German Prayer Book.” By a Presbyter of the Church. Philadelphia: Lippincott. 43, (1) pages. 12mo.
not listed by Griffiths
In 1875 there was published Gottesdienst-Ordnung | für | deutsche Gemeinden | der | protestantisch-bischöflichen Kirche | in den Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika. | Mit bischöflicher Genehmigung. | Published by the Church German Society. vii, 109 pages. 12mo. The copyright was taken out by G. F. Siegmund. Georg Friedrich Siegmund came to America at the time of the meeting of the General Alliance, 1872, as a delegate. He became interested in the English tongue and in the Episcopal Church. He took Orders, founded a German service at Grace Chapel, New York, and translated the portions of the Prayer Book, cited above, into German. He died in New York, February 23, 1884, aged 46 years. In 1875 Siegmund had also published Deutsche | Matutin und Vesper | in abgekürzter Form, | im Anschluss an die | Gottesdienst-Ordnung | der protestantisch-bischöflichen Kirche | in den Vereinigten Staaten, | nebst | Psalmen und Kirchenliedern. | Mit bischöflicher Genehmigung. | Same publisher. 34, 82 pages. 12mo. On Siegmund’s work, see also Lowndes, Vol. II, pp. 760 foil., 773, 797-799, 801, 802, 805.


not listed by Griffiths

title page, German 1861 BCP
Griffiths 10:14, 1861 printing

Seven years later appeared Deutsches Ritual. | Gottesdienst Ordnung | für | deutsche Gemeinden | der | protestantisch-bischöflichen Kirche | in den Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika. | Mit bischöflicher Genehmigung. | Herausgegeben von der | Kirchlichen Deutschen Geselischaft. | Church German Society. | 1882. | 414 pages. 12mo. A reprint of this was published in 1887.

Griffiths 40:18 (1882, reprinted 1884 & 1887)

A translation was also made by the Rev. Karl Emil Georg Oppen, priest of the Diocese of Western Michigan. It is entitled: Das Allgemeine Gebetbuch der Protestantischen Episkopal Kirche in den Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika . . . In die deutsche Kirchensprache übertragen. Millwaukee. Young Churchman Company. 1891. 360 pages. 16mo. Oppen was for some years before his death rector of Christ Church, Cleveland, Ohio. He died at South Bend, Indiana, October 23, 1900.

Portions of the Prayer Book in English and in German were put out in 1892.


Griffiths 40: 19

The latest German translation, with the certificate of George Worthington, bishop of Nebraska, dated New York, April 12, 1904, reads: Gemeinschaftliches Gebetbuch und Verwaltung der Sakramente und anderer gottesdienstlichen Handlungen, nach dem Brauche der Protestantisch-Bischöflichen Kirche in den Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika. Sammt dem Psalter oder den Psalmen Davids. New York. Printed by James Pott & Co., for the New York Bible and Common Prayer Book Society. 1911. xxvi, 528 pages. 12mo. Printed in long lines.
Griffiths 40:20 (1892); 40:21 (1899 & 1902); 40:22 (1904 & 1911)

For this translation compare Journal of the Proceedings of General Convention, 1901, p. 289; 1904, pp. 21 and 127; 1907, p. 193[9].

The translator, according to the Journal of the General Convention, was the Rev. August Ulmann. The translation follows the original too closely and slavishly to be called idiomatic and to appeal to an educated German congregation. It is dictionary German rather than a literary transfusion of the English original into readable, easy-flowing German.

Griffith 40:20 "title page";
40:21 essentially identical

 title page, German US BCP of 1892



[9] An account of preliminary work for the latest German translation of the American Prayer Book will be found in Lowndes, Vol. II, pp. 833 fol., 836 fol., 838, 840-843, where it is stated that a. new German translation was ready for distribution in September, 1892. This is the work mentioned above in the text. It gave the English and the German text on opposite pages, and was in the main the work of Professor Thomas Egleston (1832-1900), the well-known metallurgist (Lowndes, Vol. II, pp. 872, 873)· The House· of Bishops of the General Convention of 1892 disapproved the translation (Journal, p. 138). See, further, Lowndes, Vol. II. pp. 858, 859, 877, 879, 881, 882, 883, 884·





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