THE VULGATE PROJECT
We have brought this beautiful edition of the Latin Vulgate back into print, so that this work of art can be read and appreciated by anyone who desires it. There are a handful of editions of the Bible in Latin available today. None are as beautifully illustrated and formatted as this particular one. During our years of collecting Vulgate texts printed in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, we have found that this edition seems to be one of the few printed with all of the beauty and elegance that is due to such a venerable text. All of the editions printed after this one (by this publisher and by others) present the text only without any (or minimal) illustrations and do not use the same wonderful typography.
It seems that we live in an age where only the bare-minimum is done when publishing. The typography and illustrations are not the only reason why we have reprinted this particular edition. It is also because of the editorial quality of the text itself. Which is stated very clearly in the "Editor to the Reader" CLICK HERE TO READ IT IN ENGLISH
(this is the text as presented in the insert that is included with the 1901 black and white reprint)
I have prepared a special web page with a mass of information regarding these Vulgate editions- Please click below to visit the page.
NOTE: THE BELOW UPDATES REPRESENT THE SLOW METAMORPHOSIS OF THIS PROJECT AND THE FLIP-FLOPPING OF WHICH EDITION THAT WAS TO BE PUBLISHED FIRST. DELAYS IN THE SCANNING AND EDITING OF THE RED AND BLACK EDITION CAUSED ME TO MOVE FORWARD WITH THE BLACK AND WHITE EDITION.
UPDATE 4/22/11- As mentioned in an earlier update, the beautiful 2-color first edition (1881 A.D.) will be reproduced instead of the black and white last edition, 1901 A.D. (6/21/21 SEE UPDATES BELOW: Due to continual delays with the preparation of the black and red text edition, I have decided to move forward with a reprint of the black text only edition) I have spent the last year or so doing a considerable amount of discernment and research on several aspects of this project. After much consideration, I have decided to do all of the scanning myself. Quality control and attention to detail are important in this step. You can pay for that but it is expensive. Editing was never an issue. I knew that I would have to do it myself but I did not know how. In a short amount of time I have been able to get a firm grip on this process. I have learned that there is a science to the scanning and image editing process. I have tried my best to learn this science both through personal research and the help of professionals. I have also been researching into the history of the publishing company of Desclee under the name of The Society of St. John the Evangelist which originated in Tournai, Belgium. It has led me on an email chase from the Abbey of Maredsous to the Historical Society of Tournai. I have learned a lot and the research is not finished. I plan on sharing this fascinating story at the time of printing. (EDIT 6/16/21 I have decided to share this information now, on this page)
I have begun the scanning/editing process and provided some sample images below. I have uploaded examples of the raw scans and the edited image which is close to what the end product will look like. Click on the links below to open a pdf file of each. I am still perfecting the editing process, so please consider these samples as a work-in-progress. I am very reluctant to set any dates or deadlines as to when copies of the work will be available. My schedule is very fluid and unpredictable. I will use all available time for this project and I'll try to post updates when prudence allows them.
UPDATE 1/3/2014- A major milestone has been reached in the Vulgate Project. Each and every page of the entire tome (all 979 of them) has been scanned at high resolution and are waiting to be edited and digitally enhanced for reprinting. I spent over 60 hours standing at my scanner waiting patiently for each cycle of the scan head to complete its journey from one end of the scanning device to another. I'm glad it's done and I can move on to the next tedious step. Adobe Photoshop will be my new friend, where each individual page scan will be opened and edited with the utmost care. The goal is to create sharp, vivid page images that are ready for the modern printing press yet still preserve the original historical nuances of a 133 year old Bible. Another goal is to make this reprint accessible to all who desires it by making the price reasonable. I could easily charge hundreds for such a book but I vow that I will not. It is not about and will never be about profit. It is about the preservation of beautiful work of art and making it available to those who appreciate beauty and aesthetics. It is about the Holy Bible in the timeless sacred Latin language. My motivation for the completion of this project has never lessened. It increases as I reach my goal. But one thing that I cannot control is the time available to work on this project. I appreciate all those who have emailed me over the years and have remained so patient with my slow progress. I hope that this year is a productive one! Stay tuned for more details.
UPDATE 1/6/18- The original churchlatin.com website was shut down. This project was on hold.
UPDATE 6/15/19- Thanks to a generous offer from an individual, the editing process has been taken from my hands! I had to come to the realization that I simply do not have the time available according to my state in life to edit all of the scans. All of the raw scans are currently being processed. More updates to come.
UPDATE 3/11/20- New website launched! Editing of the scans is still ongoing. Stay tuned......
UPDATE 4/22/21- Editing of the original scans has been put on hold. We are exploring new scanning methods to make the editing process more streamlined. More updates to come.
UPDATE 6/16/21- I have assembled a special webpage- devoted to laying out all I have learned about these Vulgate editions over the past many years. Please have a look- THE VULGATE- PAR EXCELLENCE
UPDATE 6/21/21- I am currently working on preparing scans of the black and white, 1901 edition of the illustrated Vulgate for the release of a printed edition before the end of the year. Preparation of a promotional web-page is in process and I am weighing out the options for funding the first printing- via fundraising or pre-orders- or maybe both. More updates coming soon.....
UPDATE 12/21- The black and white edition has been released is now available.
UPDATE 5/3/22- I am still working on solutions for editing the scans of red and black text edition. I've been working with a programmer who has written specialized software that edits the scans- namely: background removal, despeckling, enhancement of the red and black colors, and cropping. The early trials have produced stunning results. The automated process of the software does the bulk of the work, but then each scan must still be inspected, de-skewed, cleaned, and repaired where necessary. More details to come...
UPDATE 11/26/22- I am working through the New Testament of the red and black text edition of the Desclee Vulgate (1881 A.D.)
The specialized software that I'm using to process the scans is working almost flawlessly. I'm getting slightly different results on certain pages, several of which will need to be re-scanned from a different copy. Below is a sample, showing the typical results I'm getting. The enhancement feature of the software does a great job of bringing out the black and red from the original printing, resulting in an almost perfect restoration of the original with very little 'hand work'.
Click on the images below to open a full size PDF
Raw scan of original page
Processed, deskewed, centered, and cropped.
UPDATE 7/08/23- It has been difficult to devote time to this project! Lately, I've been spending time trying to finish a few other smaller projects that have been 'on the back burner' for quite some time. Fulfilling orders also takes a considerable amount of time.
While I still feel committed to getting the black and red text edition completed someday, I find myself being drawn to other projects that have been lurking in my mind for a while. I have received many requests over the years for a more compact sized complete Latin Vulgate Bible, but having a large enough font size that is still readable. So I've been exploring this option and I believe I am very close to perfecting a typesetting format that will be suitable for a smaller page size with a larger than normal font size for a compact bible.
I hope to be posting some page samples soon. Stay tuned....