Was the Epistle of James Named After King James?

James 1:1, James. This name is the English form of the Old French variation of James from the Late Latin name Iacomus, which was derived from the Greek New Testament name Iakobos, which in turn derives from the Hebrew name Ya’aqov. This was the name of five men recorded in the Testimony of Yeshua.

The Testimony of Yeshua/The New Testament

The Testimony of Yeshua/The New Testament from my 1790 KJV Bible.

It is speculated that the development of Iacobus to Iacomus is a result of nasalization in the French language of the o and assimilation to the following b followed by simplification of the cluster mb through loss of the b.

The notion that the name James derives from King James of England, who ordered the translation of the Bible version (published in 1611) that bears his name, is erroneous. This is because earlier English versions of the Bible (the Geneva Bible published in 1557 and the Wycliffe Bible published 1382 to 1395) used the name James (the English equivalent name Jacob) long before King James was born.


2 thoughts on “Was the Epistle of James Named After King James?

  1. Of what you say is true, why are none of the other instances of the Yachov translated as James.? Only this one instance is noted in my bibles.

    • Probably for the same reason that it’s Jesus instead of Joshua/Yeshua, God instead of Elohim, LORD instead of Yehovah, Moses instead of Moshe, Elijah instead of Eliyahu, John instead of Yochanon, Jude instead of Y’hudah and so on and so on. It has to do with languages, linguistics and the differences between languages and the difficulties of translating from one to another as well as the fact that not all sounds in one language are translatable or pronounceable in another language. Anyone who is multilingual or who has studied other languages will easily understand what I’m talking about. Those who are monolingual or who have no experience in other languages will have a harder time comprehending these issues.

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