John Batchelor and the Ainu
Rev. John Batchelor (1854-1944) was an English missionary with the Anglican Church Missionary Society (CMS), who from 1877 to 1941 lived among the Ainu people in Hokkaido, Japan. He studied the Ainu and published many works about the Ainu people and language, and works in Ainu itself. He was the first to write in Ainu and use a writing system for it.
Ashiri Aeuitaknup - Ainu New Testament 1897
Parts of the Bible were translated into Ainu by the Anglican missionary Rev. John Batchelor at Sapporo in Japan. He started to translate the Bible using the Roman script and published 250 copies of Matthew chapters 1 to 9 in 1886. This was translated from the Greek with reference to the Revised Version of 1885. The whole of Matthew came out in 1889 along with Jonah. The proofs were read by Mr. George Braithwaite, the agent of the British and Foreign Bible Society in Japan. In 1891 Batchelor returned to England and published the remaining Gospels. In 1893 he produced 300 editions of the Epistles to the Galatians, Ephesians and the Philippians. In 1895 he revised the Gospels and produced the Psalms. In 1896 the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge (SPCK) published the Anglican Book of Common Prayer in Ainu. With the help of the Ainu, Batchelor's revised translation of the whole New Testament (Ashiri Aeuitaknup) was published in Yokohama in 1897 as "Chikoro Utarapa ne Yesu Kiristo Ashiri Aeuitaknup". The Ainu Scriptures were published in Yokohama "for the Bible Societies' committee for Japan" which was a joint committee of the British and Foreign Bible Society, the American Bible Society, and the National Bible Society of Scotland. Other books written in Ainu include dictionaries, a grammar, and books on Ainu culture and language. A facsimile of the New Testament was published by the Japan Bible Society in 1981.
Digital Edition 2018
The text was digitised for the British and Foreign Bible Society (BFBS) at the request of the Japan Bible Society.
© British and Foreign Bible Society 1897, 2018
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