The Wicked Bible

In 1631, an edition of the King James Bible was published containing a printing error at Exodus 20:14. That edition came to be known as the “Wicked” Bible because it said, “Thou shalt commit adultery”—leaving out the significant word: “not.” The English royal printers, Robert Barker and Martin Lucas, were fined £300 for the error and lost their printing licenses. One thousand copies of this Bible were ordered suppressed and most were either destroyed or corrected. One of those corrected copies from the 17th century is on display on Floor 4 of Museum of the Bible with the authorized text, “Thou shalt not commit adultery.”

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