"People haven’t been fascinated by this book because the translation is mellifluous or beautiful,” said Michael F. Suarez, a professor of English at the University of Virginia who directs the Rare Book School there. “People haven’t been attracted to this book because the presswork is beautiful. It’s not.”
Instead, the Bay Psalm Book
is treasured for being the first surviving piece of printing
done in the British North American colonies. Only 11 copies, many incomplete, today survive. Remarkably two of those copies belong to the same owner, Boston's Old South Church
. This month, the church made the controversial decision
to sell one (the first such sale in 65 years), and it could bring as much as $20 million for the church's endowment.
In the wake of the venerable Boston Phoenix changing to a glossy magazine format
and rebranding itself as simply The Phoenix (as well as the ongoing turmoil at the Village Voice
), Salon's Will Doig writes the obituary for the age of the alt-weeklies. The Phoenix responds.