A Hieroglyphic Bible for Children

This curious children’s Bible, certainly the most ambitious illustrated American book up to its time, contains nearly 500 woodcut images. It was produced by the pioneer publisher of children’s books and preeminent early American printer, Isaiah Thomas (1749–1831). A hieroglyphic Bible replaces some of the words of the text with pictures in an attempt to tell a story in a direct and interesting way. Such Bibles were quite popular in the eighteenth century as a device for teaching the scriptures, as well as reading, to youth.

A Curious Hieroglyphick Bible, or, Select Passages in the Old and New Testaments, Represented with Emblematical Figures, for the Amusement of Youth. Worcester, Massachusetts: Isiah Thomas, 1788. American Imprint Collection, Rare Book and Special Collections Division, Library of Congress

Call number: BS560 1788

A Hieroglyphic Bible for Children

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