The American Standard Version (ASV) came into being due to the leadership of Phillip Schaff, who assembled a team comprised of 30 American and British scholars. Work on the ASV was completed in 1901. The translation was tasked with the goal of an accurate, literal, word-for-word translation of the Holy Scriptures.
The ASV took advantage of two 19th century developments to achieve their goal: improvements in understanding the grammar and syntax of koine Greek (the language of the New Testament), and a more complete library of manuscripts than previous Bible translators had access. As a result of this work the ASV translation was developed that retained distinctions made in Greek that are not normally expressed in modern English.
For example, second person personal pronouns in modern English usage are normally “you” which gives no distinction between the singular and plural. Koine Greek unambiguously makes the distinction between a second person personal singular pronoun and the second person personal plural pronoun. In this case the ASV retained these distinctions by using archaic English (“you” for the singular and “ye” for the plural).
The word-for-word translation of the ASV was attractive in the scholarly environment, and the ASV was adopted as the standard version used by many American seminaries.
The ASV is the foundation and starting point for several modern translations. Hence it is a very good reference and even primary translation to use.
Note: Paperback is 8.5x11 with regular thickness pages for durability. Also only 263 pages for portability. Small font to keep the price down, but readable and excellent as a reference.
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