Glimpse: Holman Legacy KJV

Another out-of-print gem: the Holman Legacy KJV. It’s a Holman UltraThin Large Print Reference Bible bound in black, hand-finished morocco with a leather lining. The measurements are 6.75 x 9.5 x .8 inches, making it slightly wider and an inch taller than a Thinline ESV. It has two ribbons, generous in length.

Did I mention it’s kind of flexible?

Holman Legacy KJV - Newspaper Roll

These aren’t listed on the Holman site, but the Legacy line lives on in the form of the Legacy CSB. According to the company:

Holman Legacy is a product line dedicated to the creation of only the finest handcrafted Bibles. Each Legacy edition features top grade papers, heirloom spine detailing, soft genuine leather, deluxe box for safekeeping, and a lifetime guarantee.

I haven’t handled the CSB, but from the photos I’ve seen, I don’t think the binding is as nice as this KJV. (The interior layout is another story.)

Holman Legacy KJV - Spine

Holman Legacy KJV - Yoga

A personal anecdote. This was one of the first non-Cambridge ‘nice’ Bibles I ever purchased. I walked into a brick-and-mortar shop on the south side of Houston hunting from Cambridge goodness and one of the girls in the shop produced this in response to my query. A lot of salesmanship came along with it, and a few minutes later I was sitting in the car with this thing in the passenger seat gleaming back at me.

The only practical way to use a Bible this big in church was to fold the cover back. This halves the footprint and makes it handy — and the limp cover is made for such ‘abuse.’ At the time, the thought of accidentally damaging a $100 (!) Bible meant that I only took it out on special occasions. I look back on that with irony. These days, I make a point of abusing Bibles in direct proportion to their price tag.

Holman Legacy KJV - Gold Edge Detail

Holman Legacy KJV - Spread

Holman Legacy KJV - Binding

Since this appeared before the Nelson Signature line had made matte calfskin the norm, it has a glossy sheen. At the time, I didn’t care for the shine, but now I rather like it. What do you think?

27 Comments on “Glimpse: Holman Legacy KJV

  1. You are making me jealous! Boy, what a pity these aren’t around. How long ago did you buy it?

  2. I got exactly this binding when I ordered the Holman Legacy CSB recently…now should I send it back to exchange for the “newer” binding? Any advice people?

  3. Great blog you have here; I just added you to Google Reader. I’m a fan of the KJV/AV>RSV>ESV, and the Tyndale legacy.
    Since this Bible isn’t available anymore, may I suggest an alternative from Cambridge? The version I have is calfskin, very supple, and with the quality one would expect from Cambridge:
    This is simply the best edition of a text-only KJV that I’ve been able to find, and I’ve looked. Although classified by Cambridge as “Large Print”, it’s actually just 10pt type, in terms of readability much superior to the “Standard” 8pt type editions.
    It also has no textual notes, concordance, or cross references. British spelling, and no brackets around the longer ending of the Gospel of Mark.

  4. I actually have this Bible, and it’s a great product–good typography, lovely binding, top quality materials. No complaints about the shiny leather–I hadn’t even noticed it until you mentioned it. (I have a “special edition” Thompson Chain KJV that takes the prize for shiny leather; it makes this Holman edition look positively subdued).
    I love your comment about abusing Bibles in direct proportion to the price. I’m not quite there yet, but have recently started with a Cambridge Concord “premium” edition in black goatskin–it’s been in the box for a while, and then I figured out I’m not really enjoying it that way. Better to put some mileage on that leather!

  5. Mark, as always, you never cease to amaze me. You have a talent for detailing your thoughts with excellent photography, and that’s a great combination. What you have there is a Bible anyone would be pleased to own and read.
    Also, I have a Holman UltraThin Reference Edition, copyright 1987, that is a wonderful little Bible. I don’t know how it’s possible, but the type is very readable to me. It has really stood up well over the years, too.
    I had the Bible Daniel mentioned, but sent it back to Baker Publishing because of quality issues. It was replaced with ISBN 978-0-521-50880-3. Daniel’s right, this is a great Bible and perfect for my eyes. You can read about it on my blog, if you want. Here’s the link:

  6. Speaking of KJV and bindings… any word on Cambridge’s further plans for a nice leather edition of the Paragraph KJV?

  7. The gold detail on the inside covers is a really nice touch. It ups the quality value exponentially.

  8. I’ve had mine for quite a few years. It’s marked up, highlighted and pretty-well abused… yet it still looks pristine. The pages have held up to all my scribbling. It’s still my #1 bible.

  9. Be ye wise as serpents but harmless as doves. I’d avoid the “personal” websites of some of the posters here who have not established a track record of valuable comment, even if you’re in need of the services that their posting name so straightforwardly advertises. You know, Poison Java and all that.

  10. Blogs are so interactive where we get lots of informative on any topics…… nice job keep it up!!

  11. The sacred book of all times. It has been past generations and generations about the history of the creator of all beings.

  12. Where has this world gone..have people gone so far in the wrong direction..that the design of a Bible has become important..c’mon people do you think that Jesus Christ would really care about the design of covers of the Bible…c’mon wake up it’s important what you believe in..not how costly and shine your Bible is!!

  13. Anyone who doesn’t think Jesus cares about the design of Bible covers hasn’t read in the Bible the detailed instructions God gave Moses for the construction of the tabernacle in the desert. Yes, these things can be taken to extremes, but a concern for Bible design and binding in itself is not evil. It is an appropriate means to an end, i.e., good design and binding can encourage the reading of what is inside!

  14. I really like your ideas about posting comments. i am a new for blog posting and i just like your thoughtful post

  15. Greetings this is my first time on here. I am delighted to discover a group of people that value printing the Word of God in a quality fashion. It makes me sick to go in most bookstores and see that many books and CD sets or other “Christian art” cost more than most if not all the Bibles. The reason I came on here was that the Bible in discussion on this blog( Holman Legacy KJV) is quite similar to the 3 that I have owned over the past 37 years. I have had 3 Holman verse reference jewel Bibles 549XRL with cover of Black Pin Seal Morocco, leather lined. The first was actually Sealskin before it was banned. The page layout has been identical on each one. While I use many different translations in my study this particular KJV is what I grew up with and am therefore most familiar with it. I need a replacement just like it; preferably new but used in good condition would be fine. Any suggestions? I realize I may need a miracle to find one, which is exactly what I am praying for!
    Expectantly yours,
    Source Ministries International

  16. Lewis, are you familiar with the upper-end text-only or reference editions presently available from Cambridge/Baker or Allan? They maybe aren’t as super-thin as this discontinued Holman but are available in at least as nice a binding and paper.
    When you say you desire a similar “page layout” do you just mean you want a similarly high-quality KJV center-column reference (several fill the bill) or do you literally want the exact same pagination/layout as the editions you’ve owned before? The latter could be quite a bit more difficult, although I understand the motivation to keep everything familiar in the same place!

  17. I’m a Believer and about two months ago I purchased one of your KJV pocket bibles with celtic design on .First glance it seemed attractive but as I took a closer look at it later in the day I notice the strange desingns. So I did some research on the celtic symbols. They are pagan symbols related to the occult.Please explain your reasoning.Perhaps you were not aware of this but would you please consider some other designs or orinate your own that would bring glory to GOD ? Your CO; by the way provides wonderful products, thank you. Sincerely Steve Stueber.

  18. This is a guess, but I think these Bibles may have been bound by Lewis Bindary. Anyone still interested might be able to get it straight from Lewis. I recently ordered an NIV ultrathin in morocco (which is a factory seconds Bible from a batch that had to be trimmed and re-gilt). The result of the trimming is a slightly shorter and narrower text block with a bit more yapp. Nevertheless, I think it’s a Bible just like the one above (I think) for $75 direct from Lewis.

  19. UPDATE: I just received my Lewis Bible this afternoon. It is the NIV Holman Legacy. The yapp is 1/4″. I’m not sure what it was supposed to be. I wouldn’t have known that it was anything other than what it was supposed to have been had the guy at Lewis not told me.

  20. Does anyone have experience with the Lewis KJV Giant Print text bible? Does it have a Holman (or other) “equivalent”? The Closeup image page makes the paper appear almost 100% opaque. Is it really that good?
    $150 is a bit pricey without some recommendations.

  21. Wow! These are beautiful. I also enjoy my Bible tabs so much, as well. I am able to turn to the passage I want very quickly because it’s organized by the tabs.

  22. I bought one of these at the KJV Store about 6 or 7 years ago. I love it. If it wasn’t out of print I would have purchased one or two more by now.

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