The Amplified Bible
The Amplified New Testament was published by the Lockman Foundation and Zondervan Publishing House in 1958. The Amplified Old Testament was released in two parts, in 1962 and 1964. The entire Amplified Bible was published in 1965.
In its quest to make the Bible understandable to contemporary readers, the translators chose to use amplification. Its purpose is to reveal, together with the single-word English equivalent to each key Hebrew and Greek word, any other shades of meaning that might exist. The translators felt that amplification would help the reader comprehend what the Hebrew or Greek listener understood.
The symbols used for the types of amplification are:
- Parentheses and dashes, which signify additional phases of meaning included in the original word, phrase, or clause of the original language.
- Commas are used to set off titles of Deity.
- Brackets contain justified clarifying words or comments not actually expressed in the original text.
- Italics point out familiar passages now recognized as not adequately supported by the original manuscripts
The verses are arranged similarly to the KJV, with each verse set off as a separate paragraph in two columns. Although the intent was good, the format works against a goal of producing an easily readable text. Each verse is read as an isolated passage, making it difficult to read the verses in context.
To make matters worse, no quotation marks are used, and there are no headings of any kind. Cross references, found in brackets after the verse, sometimes refer to specific parts of the verse which are not indicated.