Richard Lattimore, among the most distinguished translators of the Greek classics, concluded late in his life one of his most ambitious projects—a complete translation of the New Testament. Published in its entirety for the first time in 1996, this New Testament is itself a classic of another kind—the words of the gospel and the apostles presented for the modern reader in fresh English by a writer without pretensions as a biblical scholar, who was an authority on the Greek language in which these texts have come down to us. The New York Times hailed the first volume as "an achievement that places us more deeply in Lattimore's debt than any other in a long and diligent career."
Lattimore aim was to provide a simple, literal rendering in which the syntax and order of the Greek dictate the character of the English style. He lets the words of the apostles and early disciples speak for themselves with an accuracy and fidelity to the original language that is a gift to today's reader.
"Without the gaudy beauties of the King James version or the overly hip sound of some modern editions, Lattimore's New Testament possesses an austere, moving plainness, a willingness to shape long sentence, and an admirable clarity."—The Washington Post Book World
"Beautiful . . . the competence of the translator is unquestionable."—Bible Collectors' World
"For this labor of love [Lattimore] conceived a language and vocabulary of complete simplicity and dignity . . . an uncanny melding of the ancient and the contemporary that turns into something timeless as you read. Lattimore understood well the nature of his enterprise: not to make the New Testament contemporary in tone . . . but to make a past that is historical, legendary, and divine comprehensible in its own qualities to the present. In that, he has succeeded beyond all praise."—Frederick Koeppel, The Commercial Appeal (Memphis)