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The Nag Hammadi Library: Definitive Translation of the Gnostic Scriptures Hardcover – 15 Jan 2002

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 550 pages
  • Publisher: Brill; 3Rev Ed edition (15 Jan. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9004088563
  • ISBN-13: 978-9004088566
  • Product Dimensions: 4.4 x 15.9 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,167,423 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


'This definitive translation has become a standard since its first publication in 1977.' J.K. Elliott, Novum Testamentum, 1991. 'Dieses Buch ist ein Meilenstein.' Wolf-Peter Funk, Theologische Literaturzeitung, 1981.

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132 of 139 people found the following review helpful By Peter Kenney on 25 May 2004
Format: Hardcover
The Nag Hammadi Library is a collection of ancient religious texts which were discovered in Egypt in 1945. The people who collected and buried the library are believed to have been Gnostic Christians. The various scriptures are considered to be examples of texts used by them before Christianity achieved favored status during the reign of Constantine.
James Robinson's book is divided into chapters which include English translations of individual scriptures plus discussions of each by noted biblical scholars. A table is also provided to show the appropriate identifications for the texts comprising the thirteen Nag Hammadi Codices and Papyrus Berolinensis 8502. Among the contributors are Elaine Pagels and Karen L. King. For supplementary reading I recommend especially THE GNOSTIC GOSPELS and BEYOND BELIEF by Pagels as well as THE GOSPEL OF MARY OF MAGDALA by King.
I find the subject of Gnosticism to be extremely interesting and suspect that the study of it is just in its infancy. We know that Gnosticism is similar in some respects to primitive Christianity and a few eastern religions.Gnosticism is also different in many ways from the orthodox Christianity which ultimately gained the upper hand in the fourth century. It is hard to overestimate the significance of Gnosticism.For anyone wishing to explore this topic, THE HAG HAMMADI LIBRARY is a good place to begin the journey.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 9 reviews
35 of 40 people found the following review helpful
*****Find the Original 1977 printing of this book***** 19 Jan. 2002
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I ordered my new edition copy 2 weeks back. While awaiting receipt I borrowed the 1977 printing from our local library. I rate the 1977 edition at full 5 stars. I expected the copy I ordered to be simply a paperback edition of the hardback version I had on loan. The new copy is revised. Introductions to each of the published tracts does make them clearer to follow.
If you want the highest connection with Spirituality, as what must have truly been in the original texts, don't settle for anything less than the 1977 printing of this book. Word usages and phrase placements in the newer edition have drastically minimized the Spiritual impact and feeling of connection one receives from reading the 1977 translation text.
It is as though the worms of "political correctness" have entered the minds of the translators, causing them to minimize the Actuality of the Spiritual Power and Powers which must have been truly experienced by the originators of these tracts in both the Coptic texts and in the native tongue of their authorship.
18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
An influencial addition to Spiritual understanding 27 Oct. 1999
By Charles H. Kropf ( - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I have a copy of the Library in my library at home. I cannot truthfully express how much of an influence it has had on my own literary efforts. It expresses a profound Gnosis that cannot be grasped by the finite mind, and offers archetypal messages for the soul. I do not agree with every text of the Nag Hammadi Library, and have found some passages somewhat disturbing, to say the least. But I can say truely, that the good found in this Library far outweighs the bad. This is why I give it a five star rating. I place it right up there with the Zohar and the Dead Sea Scrolls as one of the most influencial volumes of the twentieth century and beyond.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Great book 23 Dec. 2009
By Pawel Jesien - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Very interesting book.Profesional translation.I am interested in history of christian religon and I am sure it is a milestone in understandig it.worth buying.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Library Book... 20 Dec. 2012
By Omur Esen - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book has all of Nag Hammady document and it is so useful for researchers. I hope that new version is published.
Hymn to Isis 25 Jan. 2015
By ashutosh pandey - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Beautifully worded, researched and compiled by James Robinson. Highlights from the Book on pg 297 is 'The Thunder : Perfect Mind' (VI,2), George McRae was honest enough to say it may have come from the Bhagwad Gita (IX, 16-19). Part of which is reproduced here:-
For I am the first and the last
I am the venerated and the despised
I am the prostitute and the saint
I am the virgin and the wife
I am the solace for the pain
And He is my rejected Son
Always respect Me
For I am the shameful and the magnificent one
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