One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1An apocryphal gospel attributed to St James the Less.
2The promise concerning the seed of the woman implied in the curse upon the serpent (Genesis 3:15), regarded as the earliest intimation of the gospel.
Mid 17th century; earliest use found in Peter Heylyn (1599–1662), Church of England clergyman and historian. From post-classical Latin Protevangelium an apocryphal gospel attributed to St James the Less, the promise in Genesis 3:15 from proto- + evangelium.
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