Page:Commentaries on Genesis (Calvin) Vol 1.djvu/25

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TRANSLATOR'S PREFACE.

in his day, dimly seen, or quite misunderstood. And though it belongs not to an Editor to alter what is erroneous, or to incorporate in his Author's Work any thoughts of his own, or of other men; yet it is not beyond his province,—provided he does it with becoming modesty, and with adequate information,—to point out mistakes, to suggest such considerations as may have led him to conclusions different from those of his Author, and to quote from other Writers passages, sometimes confirmatory of, sometimes adverse to, those advanced in the Work which he presents to the public. Within these limits the Editor has endeavoured to confine himself. How far he has succeeded, it is not for him but for the candid and competent reader to determine.

As it was possible that a doubt might exist whether the version of Scripture used by Calvin was his own, or whether he had borrowed it from some other source; it was thought worth the labour to investigate the true state of the case, by having recourse to the excellent Library of the British Museum. For this purpose the several versions which Calvin was most likely to have adopted, had he not made one for himself, were subjected to examination. It was not necessary to refer to any made by Romanists; and those made by Protestants into the Latin language, which there was any probability he should use, were but two. One by Sebastian Munster, printed at Basle with the Hebrew Text, in 1534, from which the version of Calvin varies considerably; the other by Leo Juda and other learned men, printed at Zurich in 1543, and afterwards reprinted by Robert Stephens in 1545 and 1557. The last of these editions was made use of in comparing the versions of Leo Juda and Calvin; and though there certainly are differences, yet they are so slight as to leave the impression that Calvin took that of Leo Juda as his basis, and only altered it as he saw occasion. To give the reader, however,