Indian Bible, Eliot's

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INDIAN BIBLE, ELIOT'S. Eliot's Indian Bible was a translation into Algonquian by John Eliot, a minister at Roxborough, Massachusetts. Eliot was one of a few ministers who had served as a missionary to American Indians in New England, and he had organized several "praying towns"—communities of converted Indians—in Massachusetts. Composed between 1650 and 1658, his was the first Bible printed by Protestants in the New World. In order to compose it, Eliot had not only to learn the language, in which effort he received help from many American Indians, but also to invent an orthography. Converted Indians on Martha's Vineyard used Eliot's Bible for more than a century.


Cogley, Richard W. John Eliot's Mission to the Indians before King Philip's War. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1999.

Morrison, Dane. A Praying People: Massachusetts Acculturation and the Failure of the Puritan Mission, 1660–1690. New York: P. Lang, 1995.

PerryMiller/s. b.

See alsoKing Philip's War ; Martha's Vineyard ; Massachusetts ; Puritans and Puritanism .