This exhibition comprises a selection of highlights from Bridwell Library Special Collections. Representing various strengths of the library’s rare book collections, the materials document the role of books in religious practice in selected eras and locales. These materials reflect the uncommonly strong foundation for teaching and advanced research that Bridwell Library provides for students and faculty of Perkins School of Theology and Southern Methodist University as well as the broader community.
The Bible constitutes one of the core collections at Bridwell Library. The Elizabeth Perkins Prothro Bible Collection, donated in 1996, offers a comprehensive survey of the printed Bible with notably strong holdings in early English editions and vernacular translations. It is complemented both by the Thomas J. Harrison Bible Collection, received in 1994, and continuing acquisitions in this field. The holdings include medieval manuscripts, first editions of nearly all of the major European language translations, and dozens of uncommon vernacular versions used to propagate the scriptures worldwide.