ST.JEROME AND THE VULGATE TRANSLATION
Because of the numerous variant readings of the Itala, due to the copyists, revisers, or translators, Pope Damasus requested St. Jerome to revise and correct the New Testament. St. Jerome began his revision with the four Gospels and then revised the remaining books of the New Testament, but more hurriedly. The work was completed at Rome about A.D. 383-4. After the death of Pope Damasus, St. Jerome went to the Holy Land. He spent 34 years there, devoting his time to revising the Bible, to exegetical works, but mainly to the great ‘work of his life the translation of the protocanonical books of the Old Testament from Hebrew into Latin. This work extended over a period of fifteen years and it was a prodigious task, for the modern Vulgate is made up of:
(a)the protocanonical books of the Old Testament, with the exception of the Psalter, translated from the Hebrew by St. Jerome;
(b) the deuterocanonical books of Tobit and Judith from the Aramaic by St. Jerome;
(c) the deuterocanonical books of Wisdom, Sirach, Baruch, and l and 2 Maccabees from the Old Latin unrevised by St. Jerome;
(d) the deuterocanonical parts of Daniel from the Greek of Theodotion and of Esther from the Septuagint; and
(e) the New Testament revised from the Old Latin by St. Jerome.