Market Lavington Museum

More dates in the old Bible


In Market Lavington Museum, we have a Bible dating from the 1700s. We have looked at this book before in A Family Bible and know that it belonged to Jane Miell before passing to Robert Merritt.

Inscriptions on the blank pages of the Bible give us dates of birth and innoculations for Robert Merritt’s family. (See Robert and Lea Merritt’s family and They was nockalated.) But this old book is also interesting for its printed dates too. It is a very large volume, containing much more than just the Old and New Testaments.

We would have presumed that it was printed about 1700 as it contains a page of the dates of moveable feasts such as Easter, Whit Sunday and the first day of Lent for the years 1700 to 1739.

However, the edition we have has a page relating to the Hanovarian King George 1st, which refers to it being November in the first year of his reign, which was 1714. So the Bible must have been printed after that year.

Some of the information in the book seems to be there to support a preacher in what his service should contain on specific dates.

This calendar gives the Bible passages for the morning and evening services on each date. It also gives relevant information about some of the dates. These are often, but not always biblical.

For example, February 14th is linked to St Valentine, a bishop and martyr.

March informs us of the annunciation of Mary on 25th, but also of Edward, King of the West Saxons on the 18th.

We could look at some more pages from this fascinating volume on another occasion.