6 October

'If God spare my life, 'ere many years pass, I will cause a boy that driveth the plough shall know more of the Scriptures than thou dost.' So spoke William Tyndale, who was burned at the stake for heresy on this day in 1536, to a priest whose ignorance of the bible was typical of many clerics of the time.

October 6, 2009 · 1 min read

Tyndale was as good as his word. His translation of the New Testament was the first to be printed in English, in 1526, and his painstaking work later formed the basis for around 90 per cent of the King James Version of the bible.

The early 16th-century church establishment, which opposed all translations of the bible, hated him for it. Tyndale’s bibles were pronounced heretical in England, and Cuthbert Tunstall, the Bishop of London, had piles of them heaped up and burnt outside St Paul’s cathedral.

In 1536 Tyndale himself was burnt at the stake. But the ploughboy could now read the bible in his own language – and the power of the priesthood would never be the same again.


Review – Asylum for Sale: profit and protest in the migration industry

Siobhán McGuirk and Adienne Pine's edited volume is a powerful indictment of the modern migration complex writes Nico Vaccari

End SARS and Fanon’s mission

The uprisings against police brutality that swept across Nigeria must be contextualised within the country’s colonial history, argues Kehinde Alonge

In the shadow of student rent strikes

Outside the media fanfare surrounding the recent wave of university-based militancy, one community's fight against developers goes on. Robert Firth reports


The conspiracy election

Conspiracy theories aren’t the preserve of a minority – they lie at the heart of US politics, argues Thomas Konda

Review – National Theatre Connections 2020: Plays for young people

From climate change to the perils of the information era, the collection powerfully explores the struggles facing contemporary teenagers, writes Jordana Belaiche

The convivial, practical road to socialism: a tribute to Leo Panitch

Hilary Wainwright remembers friend and mentor to many, Leo Panitch, who died on December 19, 2020