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Volume No. 2 Issue No. 32 - Saturday March 15, 2008
Dominica may have influenced biblical description of the Garden of Eden
By Thomson Fontaine


morne watt
Morne Watt- one of Dominica's (Eden's) majestic mountains.
The biblical description of the Garden of Eden found in the King James Version of the bible could very well have been influenced by vivid images of the island of Dominica.

Paul Miles writing in the March 13 edition of the famed London Financial Times observes: “Dominica is almost literally Eden: the man who translated the book of Genesis into English for the King James Bible visited the island in 1593. Historians and biblical scholars think he let his experiences colour his translation. His Dominica journal entries are remarkably similar to some of the Old Testament’s description of the Garden.” See article

The man he refers to is no other than John Layfield, one of the fifty-four men who translated the bible for King James. Adam Nicolson in “Power and Glory: Jacobean England and the Making of the King James Bible” had this to say about John Layfield:

“John Layfield was a fine Greek scholar, but [Nicolson] has turned up a tantalising and strange aspect of his contribution [to the translation]; he was one of the earliest men to describe the British empire's ventures into the Caribbean, and left a marvellous description of Dominica; as Nicolson says, something of that dreamy evocation of tropical orchards must, for him, have underlain his rendering of the story of the Garden of Eden.

According to Genesis Chapter 1, verses 8 – 10: And the Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed. And out of the ground made the Lord God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. And a river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted, and became into four heads.
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