Definition of Bible in English:



  • 1The Christian scriptures, consisting of the 66 books of the Old and New Testaments.

    1. 1.1 The Jewish scriptures, consisting of the Torah or Law, the Prophets, and the Hagiographa or Writings.
    2. 1.2 A copy of the Christian or Jewish scriptures.
      ‘clutching a large black Bible under his arm’
      • ‘You won't find the Apocrypha in most bibles, as for Christians of the Reformation it is not regarded as Scripture.’
      • ‘We stop and he takes down one of the smaller bibles.’
      • ‘It shows an African man from the waist up, holding a bible, with his arms extended and raised.’
      • ‘We provide training for them, and I make sure they have all the materials they need - things like bibles, books and study materials.’
      • ‘Often, the introductory pages of local bibles or books of hours would be elegantly decorated with wonderful letter forms.’
      • ‘You dropped your big black bible on the table with a thud for emphasis.’
      • ‘Some 561 editions of the Bible were produced in English between 1520 and 1649 (enough bibles were printed in the 1630s alone to provide a copy for one in every four English households).’
      • ‘I hadn't read the bible, nor asked any Christians why they considered it so important.’
      • ‘My own godfather gave me a leather bound bible on my christening.’
      • ‘Even today, many bibles have different translations.’
      • ‘It reminded me of how the ancient scribes lovingly embellished letters in bibles and illuminated manuscripts with human and animal forms.’
      • ‘A number of bibles and books, including old church records will be put into storage after the sale goes through.’
      • ‘A court usher held a copy of the bible to her right hand for the woman to take the oath.’
      • ‘She collects used stockings and tights to be sent to India, where they can be used as bandages, bibles to pass on to missionaries abroad and used stamps for other charities.’
      • ‘The priests process round the church, swinging clouds of incense, carrying their elaborate silver Ethiopian crosses and richly bound bibles.’
      • ‘He would do so every day and talk to the family about the bible and Jesus.’
      • ‘The priest intoned the last few words of the ceremony and closed his thick black bible sharply.’
      • ‘The most poignant relics, however, are the items brought from their homeland, including an air-piano, a harp, numerous bibles and the original embarkation document for the passengers who boarded the Mimosa.’
      • ‘The creation of the digital images is surprisingly swift. 1,300 pages of the bibles were photographed in just 4 days.’
      • ‘On his arrival at the church, the priest rushed to retrieve his bible and looked up Psalm 129.’
    3. 1.3 A particular edition or translation of the Bible.
      ‘the New English Bible’
      the scriptures, the holy scriptures, holy writ, the good book, the book of books
      View synonyms
    4. 1.4informal Any authoritative book.
      ‘“Larousse Gastronomique,” the bible of French cooking’
      • ‘Looking for an Italian cooking bible? Look no further. This is one of my favorite types of cookbooks by far.’
      • ‘This is the bible of pregnancy books, answering virtually every question you could ever think of. A great resource.’
      • ‘The annual Blue Book, bible of the insurance industry, will be published in the next few weeks.’
      • ‘It is sometimes referred to as the "electronics bible", and remains a popular text.’
      • ‘New editions appeared regularly as the book rapidly became a bible for all aspiring radiologists worldwide.’
      • ‘I've used this edition and the previous two editions as my never-to-be-missed always-at-hand 'bible' of computing.’
      • ‘The Les Routiers guide - one of the few bibles of the catering and accommodation world - contains 600 entries, covering hotels, restaurants, inns, B and Bs and cafes.’
      • ‘But I was also obsessed with the possibility of the future turning out to be horrible - so I carried around 1984, Farenheit 451 and Brave New World like they were my Bibles.’
      • ‘His book, London, The Biography is the absolute bible for those who like to know their London history.’
      • ‘Most recently, she decided to entrust me with one of her cooking bibles called L' Art Culinaire Moderne written by Henri-Paul Pellaprat, which she acquired in late 1946 as her handwritten ex-libris attests.’
      • ‘My bible is Mastering The Art Of French Cooking, a two-volume cookery book I was given at 25.’
      • ‘I know it is much maligned by those who prefer the prior editions, but it has become my beloved bible of cooking!’
      • ‘A cooking bible can be so helpful when it comes to unusual ingredients, and cooking techniques.’
      • ‘The book became the bible of the democracy movement, and the city a place of pilgrimage for human rights activists.’
      • ‘This is the bible of cooking – as simple or as complicated as you care to get.’
      handbook, manual, abc, companion, guide, primer, essential book, authoritative book
      View synonyms
    5. 1.5 The scriptures of any religion.
      • ‘Give the Bibles at the beginning or the end of confirmation.’
      • ‘After fourteen hours of manually transporting stacks of Bibles from the conveyor belt to the shipping depot, he followed the crowd of fatigued workers to the auditorium.’
      • ‘For those of you who forgot your Bibles this morning, the passage is here.’
      • ‘We fought and died against oppression for the right to read our own Bibles.’
      • ‘He made extensive travels through Japan - Kyoto, Shiga and Hiroshima prefecture - selling Bibles door-to-door.’
      • ‘This assures a continual supply of Bibles in that language, and generates funds for subsidies in countries where sales are difficult.’
      • ‘School supplies and Bibles were thrown down wells.’
      • ‘In some courtrooms, witnesses of different races were required to take oaths on separate Bibles.’
      • ‘We will import no missionaries, distribute no Bibles.’
      • ‘The German printer produced approximately 180 Bibles in Latin, of which 48 are known to survive today in collections throughout the world.’
      • ‘There are a lot of Bibles in the world, it's true.’
      • ‘Benevolent societies provided religious schooling to impoverished children, Bibles to their unchurched fathers, and sewing to their underemployed mothers.’
      • ‘A hospital trust is considering removing Bibles from patients' bedsides for fear that they may be spreading the superbug MRSA, it emerged today.’
      • ‘It's hopefully safe to assume that though the Bibles are new, they will not be ‘improved.’’
      • ‘I have eight Bibles, and the Ten Commandments are difference in each one of them.’
      • ‘When you entered the room, the wall to the right had the black stains and a bookcase full of bibles for all the different religions.’
      • ‘Some prisons restrict inmates' access to Bibles, or prohibit inmates from having concordances or biblical commentaries.’
      • ‘Is it possible that the truth of the Bibles, (for there are many), is that truth is beyond our grasp and therefore meant to remain a mystery?’
      • ‘Altogether, nearly eleven million Bibles and Scripture portions were distributed in 40 languages to 126 countries.’
      • ‘The proliferation of fancy bindings, for example, sold lots of product but made Bibles objects to be admired rather than texts to be absorbed.’


Middle English: via Old French from ecclesiastical Latin biblia, from Greek biblia books from biblion book originally a diminutive of biblos papyrus, scroll of Semitic origin.